Room of the Day: Family Room Turns Into a Cool, Teen Rec Room

By Jeannie Matteucci

Who wants to hang out at the mall? Not these teens. They relax with their friends in a colorful former family room off the entrance of their parents' updated Danville, California, ranch home. Designer Kristin Rowell and her team from ScavulloDesign Interiors used a smart high-low design approach to create a fun space that speaks to all the family members and their tastes, which combine loves of music, athletics, reading, design and travel. The teens and their friends can lounge and watch movies, and everyone can get together for jam sessions on the drums and guitars. Plus, the home's kitchen is way better than any food court.

Kids by San Francisco Interior Designers & DecoratorsScavulloDesign Interiors

The edgy European silvery gray and lime-green wallpaper used behind the sofa was a splurge. "It's pretty powerful and would be too overwhelming to do the whole space in that wallpaper," notes Rowell. "It gives you that effect of texture, and you get its full weight of importance when you do only one wall."

Wallpaper: Serie Limitee, Elitis; sectional, arching lamp: Crate & Barrel; assorted pillows: CB2; wall art behind sofa: Dolby Chadwick Gallery

Neutral curtains dressed up with color-blocked segments (including green, orange and turquoise) hang from a hospital drapery track that runs around two sides of the room. The draperies block out light for movie nights and also hide the new pocket doors that separate the lounge from the home's entry (seen at the far end of this photo).

Rowell says the arching lamp over the sofa provides both task and accent lighting. "When you turn all the lights off for movie night, it allows you to come and go from the room," she says.

French doors lead to the pool and backyard.

Window coverings: custom, Susan Lind Chastain Fine Sewing Workshop; round entryway mirror: Vernazza Mirror, Gregorius Pineo

Candy-filled jars and flowers were inexpensive ways to add more fun color.

Canisters, vases: Crate & Barrel and The Container Store

A hanging bubble chair feels like the perfect finishing touch. "It adds that mod element," says Rowell. "You can tuck it into a corner, and it doesn't take up too much space."

The design team consulted with a contractor to make sure the ceiling could handle the weight of the chair, which instantly draws the attention of anyone who enters the room. "Adults, kids, everyone wants to sit there," says Rowell.

Chair: Eero Aarnio

This floor plan shows the furniture layout and space planning for the lounge, and where the large drum set usually sits. The colorful touches and relaxed vibe make the space inviting for the teens but still comfortable for the parents.

"For this space we were definitely thinking outside of the box," says Rowell. "We didn't worry about matching the rest of the house. We tried to make it feel custom, but on a budget."

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