INTERIOR DESIGNER LYNNE SCALO INFUSES A WESTPORT HOME WITH PERSONALITY
"It seems easier to most people to arrange a room like some one else's than to analyze and express their own needs," wrote Edith Wharton in her first book, The Decoration of Houses, in 1897. As demonstrated by a recent project by designer Lynne Scalo, more than a century later Wharton is still on the mark.
Scalo could have been channeling the grande dame of American literature when she first entered the home of a Westport client, a husband and wife in the publishing business with a 3 1/2-year-old daughter. "I walked in and I thought, 'Whoever did this has no idea what the client is like!' It looked more like a version of what somebody thought she [the wife] was like, not this chic, elegant, unpretentious woman who had walked into my store."
Scalo, owner of the eponymous design firm that also sells original art, furniture and light fixtures, met the wife when she walked into the designer's store for an art consultation. The two meshed so well that the homeowner hired Scalo to update her house. "She's very chic, stylish and understated," Scalo says, "and that's what I tried to create in the house while also making it comfortable, casual and livable." On a grander scale, the designer wanted to translate the client's personality into the interiors, not use the kind of cookie-cutter design scheme that so many fall victim to.
She began by reworking the color palette, opting for simple, warm tones and earthy hues mixed with silvery green, lots of silver, gold and pops of peacock blue. Making the selections was easy, says Scalo. "I chose the colors she looks good in. When she walks through that environment, she looks great in every room." Another nod to her client's personality is the touch of exotic elements throughout—African baskets hanging on the mudroom wall, a hide-skin rug in the family room, another leopard-print rug in the master bedroom.