Blue accents in a kitchen designed by Lars Erickson evoke the waters of Le Gates Cove. © Katie Pegher

Ask the Pros: Interior Design

Advice on decorating a home by the bay

How should homeowners infuse color throughout their interiors without going overboard? 

For most homeowners, incorporating color to tie rooms together is a delicate balance, especially in open-concept homes. Ideally, spaces should flow effortlessly, while not feeling contrived or “matchy-matchy.” A few well-placed accessories or fabrics in an accent color can enhance the overall palette and furnishings. Throw pillows, accessories, books and art help to pull color through, yet can be easily replaced seasonally for a quick and less costly refresh. Colored accent furniture and mirrors make for great statement pieces and can always be custom-painted to achieve a specific hue, if necessary. I always like to have a variety of items to work with when accessorizing, to make sure there is balance from room to room. This way, color can be added or removed as spaces evolve. The key is to use color intentionally and strategically throughout your home to enhance your style—not overshadow it. —Julie Sweeney, Associate ASID, Coastal Haven Design, LLC, Easton and Annapolis, Maryland