Home design ideas: ‘Don’t be afraid of doing something bold’

Flora Kogan’s clients were clear from the get-go that they wanted an artistic and modern space. Taking cues from the East Boston couple’s eclectic tastes, love of plants, and existing artwork, the principal of Zaz Studio created a living room with a contemporary twist on mid-century modern style. Color from a bold work of art is key in the punchy look. “That they had that photograph was a sign that we could play with color and pattern,” the designer says. “Don’t be afraid of doing something bold; regardless of space size, you can make it work.”

1 Mario Bellini’s 1970 modular sofa is once again the darling of the design world. Its sensuous form and low-slung profile fit the bill. “We wanted comfort and presence,” Kogan says.

2 The clients purchased Keith Sklar’s Inversion after seeing it exhibited at MassMoCA. “We picked up on its colors and abstract shapes, but not in an obvious way,” Kogan says. “It’s the star of the room, with the sofa and plants framing it.”

3 The Italian flush-mount chandelier with smoky Murano glass shades by Fabio Ltd. amplifies the sexy vibe without intruding upon the space, which has a low ceiling. “The asymmetrical design reinforces the room’s circulation.”

4 The owners’ oversize plants flank the bright bay window that Kogan filled in with a bevy of additional specimens.

5 Toronto-based furniture maker Brett Paulin crafted the walnut lounge chairs. Kogan emphasizes that people shouldn’t hesitate to talk to makers about sizing, swatches, and such. “We wanted the wood tone to balance the dining table on the other side of the space, and we adjusted the thickness of the cushions,” she says.

6 Kogan chose the black-stained oak coffee table by Philippe Malouin for its shape. “There’s a common thread of soft, round forms in the room,” she explains. “The textural graininess is also part of its charm.”


Marni Elyse Katz is a regular contributor to the Globe Magazine. Send comments to [email protected]

https://www.bostonglobe.com/2022/05/13/magazine/home-design-ideas-dont-be-afraid-doing-something-bold/