Style Watch

A Westwood couple asks for a living room design inspired by their school color

The revamped first floor of a suburban Colonial plays up purple, the color of the owners’ alma mater.

Michael J. Lee

Purple isn’t the most common request for living room décor, but the owners of this Westwood Colonial love the regal hue. “The husband and wife both went to Northwestern University,” designer Holly Joe says. “They told me right up front that they absolutely adore purple, which is the school color.” So Joe devised a scheme that prominently features amethyst and aubergine. “We used every shade of purple throughout the entire first floor,” she says. In the living room, Joe kept the existing wall color and grounded the space with a neutral wool rug that sports a raised geometric chain-link design. Joe says, “It opens into a few other rooms, so it was important to maintain a common thread amidst all the color and pattern.”

1 Joe designed the room around the sculptural antique sofa, which the wife inherited from her grandparents. The crushed-velvet throw pillow, which sparkles in the sunlight, is a lush counterpoint to the new masculine tweed upholstery.


2 The Currey & Company coffee table has a weathered walnut finish. The soft curves reference a 1950s style that complements the lines of the sofa without overwhelming it.

3 The oil painting by Watertown-based artist Hagop Keledjian, from J. Todd Galleries in Wellesley, depicts the Seaport skyline. “We looked for something dynamic with a Boston scene,” Joe says.

4 The oversize damask motif on the plum-colored drapes is done in silver metallic thread. “They’re not afraid of color or pattern,” Joe says of the homeowners. The drapes “have an almost three-dimensional effect and really shine.”

5 A pair of modern, low-slung chairs from Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams are custom covered in textured velvet by Romo. Says Joe, “They’re unbelievably comfortable, and the velvet is so soft it’s like petting a kitten.”

6 The hand-cast aluminum accent table with a brass-like finish adds texture, movement, and a reflective surface to the room. “It’s a great, lightweight drinks table that is super functional and lends interest,” Joe says.

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