Creative, Captivating Use of Color Helps This Home Redesign Shine

The indoor-outdoor living area of the home incorporates the feeling of Costa Rica. “It’s their own oasis in Westchester,” Dufton says — compete with a hammock.


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The secret to the design of this Larchmont home? Creative, captivating use of color.

By Andrea Barbalich 
Photography by Michael J Lee


When Raeleen and Charlie Yoon relocated from Boston with their two children, daughter Kendall and son Brady, and bought their home in Larchmont, they had familiar help in renovating it: Kendra Amin-Dufton and Brad Dufton of design firm Color Theory Boston. The Duftons worked with the Yoons on their home in Boston and knew from that experience that they loved color. Travel — in particular to Costa Rica, which the family frequently visits — is a huge inspiration, along with a Mid-Century Modern aesthetic. Kendra spoke to Westchester Home about the process of creating “a vibrant, cheerful home full of life.”

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The Kitchen


“Rae is a home chef, and she wanted the kitchen to be the heart of the home,” Dufton says. And that’s exactly what it turned out to be; however, it didn’t start that way. “The kitchen’s overall layout was complicated by the large openings into the sitting room,” says kitchen designer Sarah Robertson of Studio Dearborn. “We had to be very creative and thoughtful about the base cabinetry storage.”

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Here, as throughout the home, the walls are muted to allow pops of color in furniture and textiles to make a statement. Standout features include the large island, the combination of blue and white cabinetry, and floating shelves. “The blue and white feels crisp and clean and creates a welcoming space,” Dufton says. “Legitimately comfortable” stools flank the island and invite guests to gather. The counter on the island is quartz composite; elsewhere, marble is carried through, from the counters to the top of the tulip table. Pops of brass on pendant lighting add a touch of glamour.

Another standout feature: the floating fireplace, one of two in the home. “This one is wood-burning, and you can rotate it 360 degrees,” Dufton says. “It gets heat going throughout the home and creates a cozy feeling.” For the range hood, Robertson said she loved the idea of having it be reflective and blend into the wall. “The room already had a large focal point in the fireplace,” says Robertson. “We kept that cohesiveness going by extending the subway tile behind the single wall cabinet and all the way around the banquette.”


The Dining Room


Rae wanted to display a collection of vintage pieces throughout the home, starting with the dining room, where cherished items occupy an entire wall atop glass shelves. The walls are painted lavender gray, which allows the colorful ceramics to stand out. The oval table allows for ease of movement as guests enter from the kitchen. Brass again provides a touch of glamour and pops against the wall color, while the chair upholstery brings in the blue-and-white color scheme from the kitchen.


A Teenage Girl’s Room


The couple’s teenage daughter, Kendall, loves books, blues and greens, and nature — all of which are reflected in her bedroom. “We identified the wallpaper first,” Dufton says: green birds in flight. The color is carried through in the bed linens, rug, window treatments, desk chair, and even a picture frame. A nestlike hanging chair “provides the perfect place to curl up with a good book,” Dufton says. “It lets her feel like she’s in her own world in that room. It’s her oasis.”



5 Stylish Ways to Add Color to Your Home

From interior designer Kendra Amin-Dufton​

On the front door: Let a bright pop be the calling card for your home. Then find small ways to carry that color through the rest of the house.

With furniture: Don’t be afraid to go bold with a large piece of furniture. A sofa or upholstered bed is just as versatile in a deep jewel tone as in a shade of gray or beige, and breathes new life into an otherwise neutral space.

In smaller rooms: Secondary spaces are the perfect places for all-over color. A powder room in a rich, saturated tone is a nice element of surprise and will make you and your guests smile.

On the ceiling: If you have crown molding, a color on the ceiling is the perfect way to add an unexpected pop, which you can then tie in through textiles such as a rug and throw pillows.

With textiles: Using variations of the same hue on fabrics and textures — velvet, faux fur, and luxurious wovens — adds color in an elegant, refined way.


Top left: Shades of blue and black are found throughout the home, starting here. Top right: A small vestibule off the kitchen and dining area provides a place to house Rae’s rotating library of beautiful cookbooks. The floors is made of marble.



With smoky-gray walls and furniture that’s a bit more formal, this room is more grown up, Dufton says. “We took the feeling of the house and went a little moodier with it.” Brass details in the chairs, coffee table, and lighting add an art deco vibe, while the silk rug “feels like a piece of artwork.” The home’s second floating fireplace is located here. “It’s biofuel,” Dufton says, “so there’s no mess.”


Boy’s Bedroom


The Yoons’ preteen son, Brady, is super-high-energy and loves sports. “So one wall is cork tile with a basketball hoop on it,” Dufton says. “He can toss the ball around in his room without a problem.” Wall-to-wall carpet tiles dampen impact and sound. To maximize the space, a lofted bed has a desk underneath, “so he can use most of the floor space to spread out and do his thing.” He also has a secret room off the bedroom: a tiny space Dufton describes as a bat cave, adding, “He can go in there with a book or a tablet and have downtime.”

Top left: The couple wanted the small powder room to be bold and fun. The black-marble vanity is from Restoration Hardware. The mirror was originally chosen for a guest bedroom in the couple’s Boston home. Top right: The basement has two zones: one for kids and one that’s more of a man cave. Here, the man cave features an “architecturally incredible” wood pool table with chrome detail and felt in a shade of turquoise that’s used elsewhere in the house. The tufted leather sofa and bar give the space the feeling of “a cool jazz bar in the city 60 years ago,” Dufton says. Bottom: The highlight of this sitting and meditation room is a colorful modular sofa with pieces that can be reconfigured or laid flat. The walls and over-dyed vintage rug complement the colors in the sofa. “We wanted to make the room feel like it’s enveloping you in warm shades of pink and lavender, like you’re inside a sunset.”


The Family Room


Color takes center stage in this relaxation spot for the family. “It’s in the front of the home and provides an introduction to the rest of the house, so we wanted to pull colors that are used throughout the home into this room,” Dufton says. The jumping-off point was the colorful rug featuring geometric patterns. The sofa and chairs bring in additional colors. The ceiling beams are painted black, which comes into play elsewhere. “Little threads of black serve as a roadmap throughout the home,” Dufton says. At the back of the room, a small reading area has a pair of chairs in a “warm, orangey-brown patina” and a gallery wall of the children’s artwork — the perfect finishing touch to make this space a true family room.

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