Designing a Ridgewood, New Jersey, home for a young family brought back fond memories for Emma Beryl—the homeowners were among her first clients, and Beryl tackled their former New York City apartment in 2015.
“The challenge in this house was finding ways to incorporate the furniture we had purchased for their city apartment a few years earlier as the style of the new space was so different,” Beryl reflects. “Their city apartment was a glassy modern high-rise, and this house had a much warmer, more farmhouse aesthetic.”
This time, Beryl and her clients really wanted this to feel like a comfortable family home that still felt pulled together and sophisticated.
The family room is immediately visible upon entering the home and was designed to serve as both a play space for the couple’s kids. At the same time, though, Beryl’s clients wanted the space “to feel grown up and totally pulled together,” so proper storage solutions were key.
“We added the built-in because it was a way to hide a lot of toys, but painted the interior a fun color as a nod to the playful quality we also wanted the space to have,” Beryl explains. A sectional is perfect for family members of all ages to kick back, while poufs can serve as either seating for little ones or footrests for adults, Beryl adds.
Beryl tackled the dining room furniture during phase one of the project—which entailed sourcing the larger pieces for the home. Thus, she says, the space was totally functional, but aesthetically was a little lackluster and needed to be dressed up.
In came molding and wallpaper, which made a world of difference. “This immediately elevated the room and made it feel a little bit more formal,” Beryl explains. “While the overall mood of the house is relaxed and family-friendly, I love that the dining room feels a little bit more special.”
The curved mirror in the powder room is one of Beryl’s most-loved pieces in the home. “I love this little powder room and how feminine it feels,” she says. “I always love to make a powder room feel extra special since they are such a self-contained space. This one is simple, clean, and classic.”
Fortunately for Beryl’s clients, their kitchen had already been renovated prior to move-in. Details such as window treatments, counter stools, and accessories livened up the space. Beryl calls the breakfast room her favorite spot in the house, and a former furniture find made its way into the space.
“So often when I work with people who have moved from a small space to a larger one, we need to start from square one with the dining table,” she says. “In this case, we got to use the family's dining table from the city here, since it’s a smaller break-out room.” This nook opens to the kitchen and living room and features beautiful shiplap walls, which are adorned with family photos.
The living room also features many furniture pieces from their former NYC apartment. “While this room is considered the ‘formal’ living room, we definitely wanted to make sure it was completely family-friendly and comfortable,” Beryl says. “The oversized seating is all very welcoming and cozy, and the muted neutral color palette emphasizes the different textures layered throughout the space, such as the stone fireplace with herringbone brick interior, wooden mantel, and shiplap throughout.”
Upstairs, Beryl enjoyed adding bold touches to the couple’s son’s and daughter’s rooms. “Kids' rooms are always my favorite because you can be bolder than you can elsewhere,” she reflects.
“I’m all for unapologetically feminine spaces and was beyond thrilled when they let me cover all four walls with this bold floral wallcovering and add the beautiful floral flush mount fixture,” Beryl says of the couple’s daughter’s space. “Usually when I suggest a bold wallpaper, people are timid and want to try it only as a feature wall, but completely ensconcing a room in a bold pattern is so much more sophisticated and impactful. It really makes the space unforgettable and infuses so much personality.”
The main bedroom boasts incredible ceilings, which Beryl chose to highlight by incorporating a canopy bed. “I love that the soft palate makes the room feel relaxing and the weathered wood nightstands add an organic quality to the space,” she adds. “We had the curtain panels from their apartment in the city tailored so that we could repurpose them here and they really worked perfectly.”
The husband’s office space is sophisticated and professional-looking. “The husband sometimes films news segments in this space so it was important that his background look great on camera as well as in person,” Beryl explains. “We chose this wallpaper because it’s clearly an intentional, designed room but it’s also not distracting. Burgundy is such a rich, sophisticated color and gives the office a professorial feeling that I love.”
Overall, Beryl is extremely pleased with how the architectural elements of the space influenced the design process. “The house has so much charm and character built into it and our ultimate goal was to let that shine and emphasize how welcoming and cozy the space itself is,” she says. “The existing shiplap made it so that even the furniture we brought in from the city automatically felt like it had more of a farmhouse vibe to it.”