VIA THE PROVINCE: “It’s a great area with a variety of future homeowners…all with their own style, I wanted to show some versatility, as well as something to remember our displays by,” says Kenwood, Wesgroup’s in-house designer. To make the Columbia a truly memorable space, she decorated the two display homes with high drama, pitting dark against light, using bold wall covering and striking local artwork.

Visitors get a taste of this drama in one bathroom and bedroom, thanks in no small part to the dark wall covering in both rooms. Kenwood chose this dark blue shade because she wanted to convey a sense of comfort, and offer the feel of a more expansive space at the same time.

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“I believe that carefully adding a bit of drama in certain locations can make your home feel bigger and cozier at the same time. It moves the walls out,” she says.
“Adding something like the midnight blue wall covering in the bedroom and carrying it into the bathroom helps one look at the space as a whole rather than several smaller rooms. It relates to an open plan feel, which is how people live today.”

The effect is so successful that visitors may want to copy it — but they should use some restraint, cautions Kenwood.

“Be careful about using too much. Choose one carefully edited feature and carry it through the home. Stick to feature walls or rooms,” she advises.

The drama continues in the kitchen in the malt palette. Wesgroup combines dark flooring with dark cabinetry, only to make a splash with bright white kitchen island seat cushions, a stunning “galaxy”-like chandelier, and a bright white table and chairs.

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The art of pulling the visitor’s attention “out”, as Kenwood and the Wesgroup team did with the wall covering, is put into practice in a living room, which commands attention with millwork and storage on one wall, and dramatic black-and-white photographic art directly opposite.

Kenwood’s tactic here is to give the living and dining area a strong focal point. “The millwork wall gives the living and dining area a focus and demonstrates how to fit usable storage into the main areas.”

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The artwork does more than expand the look of the space; rather, local artist Michael Wesik’s photographic series forces the viewer to do a double take. The bold black-and white piece is more than a simple landscape, but a scene turned on its side, she says. The quality of the work reflects the healthy cultural activity surrounding The Columbia.

“New Westminster has a very strong local art scene with many local artists,” says Kenwood. “I find that artwork really adds interest to any space.”

Click here to see the full article in The Province.