Date: February 28, 2023 | Story: Tate Gunnerson | Photography: Rett Peek | Styling: Stephanie Maxwell Newton |
A blue-and-white color palette fills a pool house in Conway with classic style
For interior designer Jill Lawrence, designing a pool house offers a chance to let loose and create a milieu that’s more relaxed and even a bit whimsical. Indeed, that was the environment her clients, a couple with three children, envisioned when they recruited her to select finishes and furnishings for their new backyard hangout.Designed by H+N Architects, the pool house’s glass-paned garage doors drench the atrium-like interior with natural daylight. The open concept allows the clients’ gatherings to spill outside, where the designer incorporated woven furnishings around the pool. “It’s a little more playful than the main house and has a staycation feel,” Jill says of the aesthetic.
A palette of blue and white flows through the pool house, where shiplap walls and wood tones establish a light and airy backdrop. “Blue and white is a timeless combination that’s cheerful and uplifting,” the homeowner says. “I wanted something traditional and classic that would stand the test
of time.” In the main living area, a blue indoor/outdoor rug anchors a seating area in front of the painted brick fireplace. “There’s a rhythm of blues,” Jill says, pointing to the variation of hues throughout the furniture and accessories. “Adding those warm periwinkle tones and lighter icy blues against darker hues like navy gives you a whole different dimension and freshens a super classic look.”
Texture plays a key role in Jill’s design, as does practicality. For example, the anti-slip porcelain tile flooring is an attractive yet practical choice for a space prone to pool parties. In the kitchen area, wicker barstools add warmth and interest while coordinating with the outdoor furniture. A raffia cocktail table adds another layer of dimension to the living room while connecting visually with the white oak consoles flanking the fireplace. “There are common threads woven throughout the room that relate to each other, and that makes the room feel peaceful,” the designer says.
While the multi-month collaboration was seamless, pandemic-related supply chain issues meant long waits for some furniture pieces. That didn’t stop the owners from setting up makeshift tables and inviting about 40 people over for Thanksgiving while the pool house was still nearly empty—the first of many such soirées they have hosted since then. “We’ve enjoyed it so much, and it’s been great for the kids to have fun with their friends,” the homeowner says. “It feels like a happy place.”
Opening the glass-paned garage doors creates a lively indoor-outdoor space that includes distinct zones for lounging, dining, and conversation on the poolside patio. Both the interior and exterior furnishings are covered in easy-to-clean performance fabrics, ensuring a worry-free environment that perfectly suits the setting. “Jill did a wonderful job incorporating durable fabrics, so we feel comfortable sitting anywhere,” the homeowner says.
A symmetrical layout fosters a sense of serenity in the living area, where pillows covered in patterned fabrics from Jane Churchill and Ballard Designs coordinate with a durable yet stylish indoor/outdoor rug, a pair of matching sofas, and striped cushions on the spool chairs. White oak sideboards flanking the painted brick fireplace relate visually to the open shelving in the kitchen.
“I wanted something traditional and classic that would stand the test of time.”
Woven barstools with upholstered seats add warmth and texture to the open kitchen, which features custom cabinetry, “Absolute Black” leathered granite countertops, and a ceramic subway tile backsplash with a beveled edge that “adds interest without feeling too trendy,” Jill explains. The cabinetry is painted “White Dove” by Benjamin Moore.
A pair of framed Audubon prints add to the coastal aesthetic established by the shiplap walls and nautical color palette.
Architect H+N Architects Interior design Jill Lawrence, J. Lawrence Design Accessories Cobblestone & Vine, Fabulous Finds, Providence Design, and Tipton & Hurst Appliances Metro Appliances & More Countertops Conway Marble & Granite Fabrics, lighting, and rugs J. Lawrence Design Flooring Ridout Lumber Furniture Bassett, Cantrell Furniture Design Center, and J. Lawrence Design Paint Benjamin Moore Pool and spa Jerrell’s Pools