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Carol & John | Northshore Family Room

What we did:

I started with color. I knew that they were fed up with all the random needs, so I went for a cooler color pallete to give the space an airy, open feeling and also, to give it a beach house vibe for Carol. I also created a new art piece for the fireplace to ground the room a bit and to keep John’s personality in the room.

The toughest part was finding a furniture style that complemented both of them. I had to balance the beach house aura with John’s urban chic taste. But, by working with them and listening each step of the way, I was able to create a new space that worked for both their sensibilities.


Here’s the highlights of the rest of the project:

  • Came up with a space plan, a color plan and fabric scheme that worked for both John and Carol.

  • Used seating groupings to break up an otherwise large room.

  • Reused several pieces of furniture and accessories.

  • Selected all furnishings, accessories and art.

  • Customized an entertainment center furnishing, that has since kept John in the living room more than in the basement, much to Carol’s delight.


What I love:

  • They gave me the go ahead to mix up styles, all while keeping the palette fresh and clean.

  • Those damn rugs. I have since ordered one for my own home.

  • The art on the fireplace. We were able to go BIG and dramatic since we had the ceiling height.


A sampling of what they said on

“Tiffany is a terrific designer to work with. She has amazing taste and was able to blend my husband’s tastes and mine in a way in which we both love our new family room. She listens well, has great ideas and knows what will work (and won’t work) in your space. An added plus, is her wonderful husband Dante who assists her in the design projects.”

Total time – 6.5 months

When I first met Carol and John, I immediately connected to Carol. She was witty, smart, and had an amazing fashion sense. John, on the other hand, seemed to be a bit apprehensive about the design process. But he quickly warmed up to me when I started giving him tips on his favorite room, the basement (his man cave).

The more I talked to Carol and John, the more I realized they were not in tune with the style of their house. The space was what I would call “North Shore Traditional”. It was very suburban Chicago, reds and warm colors highlighting an otherwise bland room.

Upon digging deeper, I realized that Carol and John were opposites of the style spectrum. Carol loved the beach – anything Cape Cod, grays, beiges and the neutral colors. John had a more modern, city condo style to him – blues, hard lines and chic patterns.

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