Friday, November 28, 2014

Room of the Day: Awkward Attic Becomes a Happy Nest

In this attic renovation, it was all about the angles. Awkward roofline angles, so often found with attic walls and ceilings, can be made cozy and light with the right approach. In turning this attic into a master bedroom, interior designer Sarah Wittenbraker knew she needed a free-flowing wallpaper to work with the room’s challenging nooks and crannies, and after choosing a colorful bird and butterfly pattern, she needed to apply it to the right walls. “The last thing we wanted was for it to feel like the butterflies were attacking!” she says. Here’s a closer look at how she turned the formerly dark and uninviting space into a happy nest for the parents of two young children.

Room at a Glance
What happens here: Sleeping, lounging, reading, working, nesting
Location: Austin, Texas
Size: About 200 square feet (18½ square meters)
Attic tip: When choosing a wallpaper for a room with odd angles, opt for a free-flowing pattern over an unforgiving geometric one.

When this couple moved into their antique Tudor-style cottage, the former owners had begun converting the attic into their master suite but had not finished. To save costs, Wittenbraker built on the existing renovations without doing any major architectural changes. Phase one was creating a cozy bedroom; updating the master bath would come later. The biggest splurge was the beautiful wallpaper, which makes the biggest impact in the room.

Attic tip: “Consider unified colors for floors and ceilings, so they will all become one thing,” Wittenbraker says. “This helps with all of the odd angles.” She chose Decorators White by Benjamin Moore to brighten up the once-dark space, which has only two small windows. She carefully chose focal walls for the paper, to avoid the aforementioned butterfly attack. “The beautiful wallpaper makes the walls recede and adds interest, but overusing it would have made it dizzying and highlighted the odd angles,” she says. She used it on the headboard wall, the wall behind the desk and the window wall in the reading nook.

She also made the room look deeper by choosing two matching flat-weave striped rugs — the stripes orient to accentuate the room’s length. They create zones (the workspace–reading nook zone and the bed-nightstand zone) without overwhelming the floor. Their light colors work well with the whitewashed floors and add more of the blue, green and aqua tones she used throughout the rest of the room.

To keep everything from looking too stark, sparkling and new, she added a few items that show age, like warm brass finishes and a vintage-style chandelier over the bed.

Room of the Day: Awkward Attic Becomes a Happy Nest

Room of the Day: Awkward Attic Becomes a Happy Nest

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