Sometimes a problematic feature in a room can become an asset. My client had just purchased her new-build home and wanted to convert the family room into an elegant dining room. I looked at the beige, nondescript space, featureless except for a large rustic brick fireplace at one end and gulped.
After some contemplation, I decided to use the fireplace as inspiration for a French Country look.
I clad the room in a softly-patterned, taupe grass-cloth wallpaper in one of the tones of the brick, to minimize the prominence of the fireplace in the room. I continued the understated palette in the window coverings and area rug, added French Country-style furnishings and a simple, but elegant rustic chandelier. The result was a sophisticated take on French Country; the client loved the look so much we carried it through the rest of the house.