Design Inspiration: The PNE Prize Home Brings Nature’s Shades of Blue Indoors

With thousands wandering through the PNE prize home, you might have missed a few of the details. Walk through our complete slideshow

Credit: Courtesy Marcos Armstrong

The 2010 PNE Prize Home is wrapped in shades of blue

Thousands of visitors to the PNE prize home will admire its Craftsman-style, the thoughtful detail of the finishings and its elegant furnishings

But what they won’t see is the view it comes with – the house’s permanent perch on Kirschner Mountain in Kelowna, overlooking Okanagan Lake.

The stunning vista filled with shades of blue – from water to sky and the mountains beyond – is the inspiration for the neutral blue-grey tones that wrap the home’s interior.

“Because this house has so many windows in it, we wanted to create the sense that you were actually outside,” explains Barbara Aylesworth from A Stroke of Genius, one of the home’s three designers. The blue was chosen to blend in with the outside view, and dark window frames draw the eye outward, rather than catching one’s eye as white frames do. 

“Some people think of blue as being cold and uninviting,” says Aylesworth, “but in this case it’s not. It’s a warm blue; it’s calming and relaxing.”

A Neutral Colour Scheme

Dark hardwood floors and black trim anchor the lightness of the space, creating contrast and also a sense of warmth, says Cathy Still of Seascape Interiors. “It’s a pretty neutral colour scheme but just a really good mix; we used dark, medium and light colours in almost every room, with blue being the theme.”

Rich, co-ordinated fabrics used for the curtains, upholstery and linens pick up that blue and carry the colour palette throughout the house.

“A lot of the fabrics are muted and textured, so we added contrast by adding some shine,” says Still, noting the glossy wood floors, granite counters and polished chrome hardware. 

Black and metal accents appear in nearly every room, as do elements of crystal or glass – from the light fixtures and cabinet knobs to the glass tile in the bathrooms and kitchen.

“I think it’s very important to show that continuity all the way through, so when you’re walking from one room to another room to the next, you always feel you are still in the same house,” says Colette Amaral of Beyond Clutter Interiors.

The tradeswork throughout the home also offers an element of unity: a floral motif. The wrought-iron front gate and the entrance’s glass window feature a tulip design. A leaf detail in the wine cellar door is echoed in the carved stone of the fireplace surround.

“It’s great to carry a common theme throughout,” says Aylesworth, “so that even though you don’t notice it, it’s still there.”

Take a peek inside the PNE prize home to see for yourself.

Originally published in BC Home magazine. For monthly updates, subscribe to the free BC Home e-newsletter, or purchase a subscription to the bi-monthly magazine.