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Home Design

Victorian’s third floor transformed into guest suite

A wrought-iron bed from Pottery Barn is featured in the bedroom.Eric Roth

The third floor of Kelly Rogers’s Waban Victorian home had black carpet and MDF built-ins on every wall. “Two bedrooms had been combined to make a teenage boys’ sleep and work space,” recalls Rogers, an interior designer. “There was very contemporary lighting on the walls that didn’t suit the style of the house, which was built in 1896.”

Rogers, who shares the home with her husband and two sons, had planned to leave the third floor suite as it was, figuring it wouldn’t get much use. However, when guests visited, they all wanted to sleep in the suite rather than the second-floor guest bedroom. “It’s big, it can accommodate an entire family with young kids and it’s private.”

So Rogers set about creating a new, more inviting scheme for the room. “I wanted a place where guests would feel relaxed with a little bit of a cottagey vibe,” says Rogers.

The jumping off point for the room’s new look was a vibrant green rug with a white trellis pattern. “It’s cheerful and balanced out by the lightness of other aspects in the room,” says Rogers, who let the rug be the focal point and avoided going too riotous with pattern elsewhere.


The walls are painted “Cool Breeze,” by Benjamin Moore, a light and calming hue that recalls light turquoise. Furnishings are a high-low mix, and strategic pops of color add interest. Guests may never want to leave this soothing, spacious, and visually stimulating retreat.


A wrought-iron bed from Pottery Barn has a “good blend of a Victorian look and a cottage feel,” says Rogers. White bedding with yellow piping is also from Pottery Barn. For a more individual appeal, Rogers ordered a custom bolster made of Manuel Canovas fabric. “I thought the embroidered pattern was perfect with the color scheme,” she says. “Sometimes you need just one patterned pillow on a bed to make it look special.”

Bedroom detail

Eric Roth

Rogers put the yellow pedestal tables — from One Kings Lane — by each side of the bed together herself. The bright blue Barbara Cosgrove lamps were a splurge. To give guests a place to unpack their clothes, Rogers found a small striking blue bone inlay dresser on The beaded wall sconce by Currey & Company has a shabby chic, cottagey feel. “It’s almost a piece of artwork for the wall,” says Rogers.


Lounge area

Eric Roth

The one built-in that remains in the room from its past life as a teenage haven is the expansive window seat. New 6-inch thick cushions were made that are firm enough to comfortably sleep on. Abundant ready-made throw pillows are from Eastern Accents. “They all have unique details — exposed buttons and zippers and patterns and colors that work really well in the room.”

Jaci Conry can be reached at