When Maggie and Troy Lyons moved into their new 4,800-square-foot house in Alexandria three years ago, they knew it would take a little work to make it truly feel like home.
The challenge was to take that sterile new-build environment and add some texture, warmth, and layers to create some personality.
They wanted to incorporate some color; however, it was important to Maggie that it be done in a way that provided a strong sense of flow from room to room.
“I had a lot of ideas, but they just felt very disjointed,” says Maggie.
The couple teamed up with Erin Myers of Arlington-based Erin Myers Design to help bring their vision to life.
“I love color, but it can sometimes be very intimidating if you don’t know how to put it all together,” Maggie says. “Having Erin there was great to get feedback and help form a more cohesive vision.”
Bringing the Living Room to Life
After getting a sense of the Lyons’ tastes, Myers began searching for rugs and Maggie fell in love with a hand-knotted wool area rug from F.J. Kashanian.
Making that selection helped set the tone for the living room space.
“It has these big yellow paisleys with fuchsia and sky blue, just a lot of vibrant colors in it,” says Myers. “I knew instantly when they picked that rug that this was going to be a fun project.”
Considering the vibrancy of the rug, the Lyons decided on a more neutral color for the couch in a family-friendly fabric and a simple taupe color for the walls.
They were then able to add brightly colored throw pillows to balance it all out.
“I’m all for pattern-on-pattern but when it’s an open floor plan like this home, you need to be mindful of the transitions,” says Myers.
A Dream Home Office
The home office design began with a very distinctly patterned chair.
Painted a custom green, the chair features a pink seat with a citrus-inspired garden print on the back showcasing butterflies and leaves.
“It’s not what you would except,” says Myers. “It’s so custom and so her. The chair is just this great bespoke moment for Maggie to claim the office space as her own.”
The rest of the room was crafted around that color scheme with the curtains and walls displaying varying shades of green.
Star of the Show
The dining room ended up being Maggie’s favorite part of the whole project.
The family has two young children under 10. They knew they did not want a super formal dining area.
“That’s not who we are,” she says. “We were looking for something more on the fun side.”
After adding some molding that goes up the chair rail, they worked with Erin to find the perfect wallpaper to bring some more character to the room.
“I had brought over some samples in color schemes that I thought Maggie might like and just like with the rug, she fell in love with the cheekiness of the monkey print with the seafoam green and the bright yellow lemons,” says Myers.
“It was just so lively with so much color,” says Maggie. “I had never seen anything like it.”
Once they decided on the wallpaper, they worked to incorporate some other little touches, like the deconstructed animal print on the back of the chairs and the other monkey pieces found throughout the room.
They decided to add a round table to provide a more intimate setting for conversation during dinner parties.
“I just love the way this room came out and I know how much joy it brings Maggie with it being right across from her office,” says Myers. “It feels like a young family lives here. You walk in and you just think, ‘Wow, these people know how to entertain.’”
Adding Character to the Entryways
They carefully thought out the entryway.
The final product included a duck egg blue grass cloth wallpaper with a subtle white stripe.
“Since the office, living room and dining room were so saturated in color, it felt important that the entryway to the home be able to stand up to that but not overshadow it,” says Myers.
And the mudroom also received an upgrade.
“The home did not offer a ton of storage space, so a custom built-in was added to the mudroom, as well as a place to hang school or spots bags and a place to sit down to put on your shoes,” says Myers.
The eclectic wallpaper theme also trickled into this area with a Hygge & West dog park wallpaper, an ode to the family’s black lab rescue, Blossom.
Cozy Little Oasis
The final piece of this project was to bring a sense of coziness to the very large primary suite.
With so much open space, the original furniture the Lyons had felt a little lost in the huge room with a peaked ceiling.
“We added a four-poster canopy bed, which helped to sort of ground the room, as well as a textured wallpaper that just instantly added some much-needed warmth,” says Myers. “Just that small detail made it feel much cozier.”
Finally, some drapes created some softness in the space.
“And suddenly this bedroom, although quite spacious, felt like a nice little retreat,” says Myers.
“Everything turned out better than I could have ever imagined,” Maggie says. “When I first reached out, I had a much smaller scale project in mind, but once we started working with Erin, it became clear that this was a much larger project.”
She says she would describe their home as a very happy place to spend time in.
“The style is taking traditional elements and elevating them with a little bit of whimsy,” says Myers.
“It’s very colorful but it’s also very personable and comfortable,” Maggie says. “I think it just really reflects our personalities and our family.”
Feature image by Laura Visioni Photography
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