Inside a colorful Palm Beach house

“We call it dipping,” says Vancouver-based interior designer Gillian Segal, referring to her tactic of dotting an entire room in a single color – drywall, ceilings, even moldings – as if it were literally “soaked” in a pot of paint. Whether it’s a color dip or a mural, Segal often pays attention to what she calls the “fifth wall” – the rest of us call it a ceiling – like another vehicle for creative expression.

In a recent Palm Beach project, Segal fully outfitted a home office in Farrow & Ball’s Card Room Green. She then kept the furniture in the same scheme, selecting similar shades of green balanced with creamy whites and an occasional touch of mustard. In the dining room and living room, Segal has “soaked” entire rooms in black (“Deep Caviar” by Benjamin Moore), which don’t look like caves but rather moody dens. The dining room is home to teal-hued artwork and a creamy white rug to offset the harsh walls. The living room is complete with wavy sofas and mirrors rendered in hot pink tones juxtaposed. While this caviar case study on “soaking” may seem daunting to many owners, a subtle gray or dusty pink could achieve the same result without the shock factor. Fortunately, the client was up for the challenge.

Originally a special home, the space was in dire need of personality to match the liveliness of the owner (note the ostentatious hues). Along with Segal’s eye-catching color work, she implemented things like unique millwork to dress up the walls even more. “We have added [what we call] lightning bolt moldings in the master bedroom,” she says of a zigzag break in the generally clean lines. In the office, 70s curvature adorns the fitted wardrobes in a similar way in eccentricity but totally different in effect. “I love traditional design and traditional details, but we’re always looking for ways to add a more contemporary feel,” says Segal.

The end result achieves the desired modernity and pizzazz without giving up the characteristic charm of Palm Beach. Dotted throughout the house’s contemporary bulbous furniture and art fixtures, you’ll find nods to the region in the form of vintage rattan finds and grasscloth wallpaper. “We [still] wanted there to be that element of glamour, which I think is so synonymous with Palm Beach,” Segal says. Find out more about how this project came to fruition via Zoom during the height of the pandemic, and get inspirations for your own home, below.

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