Green Tiles and Saturated Cabinetry Take a Berkshires Lake House From Dated to Divine


The designer placed a whimsical brass pendant light above the family’s existing dining table and chairs, refinished in a lighter tone. A colorful bench handwoven by craftspeople in Nicaragua picks up the colors on the other side of the room and lets extra bodies squish in at mealtime.

Built-ins with a slatted wood screen and doors painted a pink terra-cotta hue anchor the family room beyond. To avoid being matchy-matchy with the shelves in the kitchen, Jess stained the oak slats in a mid-tone shade that ties to the dining table. “People use lake houses here year-round, so a beachy feel isn’t appropriate,” the designer says.

AFTER: Sheer drapery softens the bedroom and helps with noise. “The vaulted ceiling makes the room loud and echo-y,” Jess says. The Stone and Sawyer wood and ceramic lamp was made in the nearby Hudson Valley.

Lisa Vollmer Photography

Jess incorporated pink into the primary suite too. The bedroom walls are washed in a hushed, sand-meets-blush hue and the caned bed, like the wicker pendants downstairs, infuses another dose of lakeside cool. The handwoven rug, like the dining bench, pulls together the home’s palette. “When we found this rug in California, we used it as inspiration for this room,” Jess says. “The multicolor stripes are made by weaving threads from vintage carpets onto a cream wool base.”

BEFORE: Jess transformed the ’80s-style powder room by painting the brick navy, trading the tiled vanity for reclaimed wood, and replacing the clunky mirror with a round one with a leather strap.

Courtesy of Jess Cooney Interiors

AFTER: Terrazzo floor tile in the primary bath emulates the sand down by the lake, while the reclaimed oak accents echo details in the kitchen.

Lisa Vollmer Photography

Color explodes in the couple’s en suite bath, where a mural of oversized watercolor florals in magenta, red, marigold, and violet sprawl across the vanity wall. The room can handle it. The ceiling is vaulted, and the atmosphere is bright thanks to the oak-framed transom that Jess cut to borrow sunlight from the shower and tub room. “I knew they would love this playful, organic mural,” Jess says. “Besides, it’s not too big a commitment; it will be easy to change if they want to, down the road.”


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