Tour a “Funky Traditional” New Jersey Home That Fully Embraces Power Clashing

The first question interior designer Fawn Galli asked the owners of this updated colonial home located in Summit, New Jersey, was: “On a scale from one to 10, how groovy are you?” Both clients answered with a 7.5. Nonetheless, Galli needed more than just one simple metric in order to understand the overall aesthetic direction of this lively family of five. Soon enough, she had her clients and their children make a Pinterest board to help zero in on their collective tastes. She also took careful note of their clothing styles and interpersonal dynamics.

Despite this careful attention to detail, the entire design process was, as Galli puts it, intuitive. “I’m [uninterested in] rubber stamping my voice onto hundreds of interiors,” she says. Instead, Galli hopes to push clients to inhabit a dream home that they never even knew they wanted. In other words: “I [want to] help clients find their design voice.”

In the case of this specific design project, that meant creating a home office suffused with musical instruments and one swing chair–appointed bedroom. It also meant more standard additions to the dwelling, such as media and exercise rooms, and a collection of carefully picked art.

Galli decorated the home with a focus on vibrant common areas in order to promote togetherness. Over the course of the pandemic, these rooms certainly came in handy, as did designated zones intended to allow her clients the ability to recharge in private. In fact, the family was so grateful to have such a spirited space in which to quarantine that they called Galli to thank her once the pandemic hit.

Tour a “Funky Traditional” New Jersey Home That Fully Embraces Power Clashing

This updated home by Hiland Turner Architects maintains a sleek look thanks to its white shutters. The streamlined landscaping was handled by Leaf and Line.
This updated home by Hiland Turner Architects maintains a sleek look thanks to its white shutters. The streamlined landscaping was handled by Leaf and Line.
The all-white walls, in Benjamin Moore’s Tundra paint, brighten the entryway. A unique teal staircase with a teal runner, by Summit International Flooring, is a testament to the eccentric yet polished style of the house. The wall-hung console is by FGI Design, and the mirror is by Desiron. The rug is vintage.
The all-white walls, in Benjamin Moore’s Tundra paint, brighten the entryway. A unique teal staircase with a teal runner, by Summit International Flooring, is a testament to the eccentric yet polished style of the house. The wall-hung console is by FGI Design, and the mirror is by Desiron. The rug is vintage.
The living room juxtaposes vintage and modern elements to create a space that is “soothing and personal,” says Galli. The modern art pieces include Ivan Navarro’s infinity mirror and a piece from the Foley Gallery. Both the end table and the glass coffee tables were sourced from 1stDibs. The emerald sofa, which is upholstered in Kravet fabrics, is by Egg Collective. The rug is FGI Design.
The living room juxtaposes vintage and modern elements to create a space that is “soothing and personal,” says Galli. The modern art pieces include Ivan Navarro’s infinity mirror and a piece from the Foley Gallery. Both the end table and the glass coffee tables were sourced from 1stDibs. The emerald sofa, which is upholstered in Kravet fabrics, is by Egg Collective. The rug is FGI Design.
In this area of the living room sits a settee by Lief Almont that was upholstered in Eskayel fabric. Alan Macdonald’s portrait Bella was purchased from Stone Sparrow NYC, and the amethyst side table is by Holly Hunt.
In this area of the living room sits a settee by Lief Almont that was upholstered in Eskayel fabric. Alan Macdonald’s portrait Bella was purchased from Stone Sparrow NYC, and the amethyst side table is by Holly Hunt.
In this stylish living area, a TV was placed to the side of the fireplace in order to “make it a little bit out of the way and more gracious,” says Galli. Above the fireplace are sconces by Allied Maker. The indigo sofa, from Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, is paired with two ottomans upholstered in Maharam fabric. The window treatments, in fabric by Eskayel, break up the walls, which were painted in a yellow hue by Farrow & Ball. The white chairs are by Matter, and the custom Moroccan rug is from Anou.
In this stylish living area, a TV was placed to the side of the fireplace in order to “make it a little bit out of the way and more gracious,” says Galli. Above the fireplace are sconces by Allied Maker. The indigo sofa, from Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, is paired with two ottomans upholstered in Maharam fabric. The window treatments, in fabric by Eskayel, break up the walls, which were painted in a yellow hue by Farrow & Ball. The white chairs are by Matter, and the custom Moroccan rug is from Anou.
The drapes, by Malhia Kent, add “personality and celebration” to an otherwise minimal and clean dining room, says Galli. The white wooden table is from Egg Collective. The chairs are from The Bright Group, and the amber fabric is by Holland & Sherry. The chandelier is vintage and was sourced from 1stDibs.
The drapes, by Malhia Kent, add “personality and celebration” to an otherwise minimal and clean dining room, says Galli. The white wooden table is from Egg Collective. The chairs are from The Bright Group, and the amber fabric is by Holland & Sherry. The chandelier is vintage and was sourced from 1stDibs.
The office provides a comfortable place in which the owners can pursue their hobbies, Galli notes. The leather lounge chair, by The Bright Group, and the photography, by Terry O’Neal, are testaments to the owners’ passion for music. The fabric used for the Roman shades is by Malhia Kent.
The office provides a comfortable place in which the owners can pursue their hobbies, Galli notes. The leather lounge chair, by The Bright Group, and the photography, by Terry O’Neal, are testaments to the owners’ passion for music. The fabric used for the Roman shades is by Malhia Kent.
This guest room has a “tremendous presence,” observes Galli. The dark walls, painted in a Farrow & Ball hue, are purposefully paired with delicate, light furniture. The modern platform bed is from The Inside. The vintage armchair is from 1stDibs, and the bright rug is Kravet. The floor lamp is Celerie Kemble, and the window fabric is by Shyam Ahuja.
This guest room has a “tremendous presence,” observes Galli. The dark walls, painted in a Farrow & Ball hue, are purposefully paired with delicate, light furniture. The modern platform bed is from The Inside. The vintage armchair is from 1stDibs, and the bright rug is Kravet. The floor lamp is Celerie Kemble, and the window fabric is by Shyam Ahuja.
The second guest bedroom features a funky stacked-box chest dresser by Lawson Fenning. Above the dresser is an oil-on-paper painting, T-Shirts, by Alex Dodge, from the Klaus Von Nichtssagend Gallery. The vintage chair, from 1stDibs, was reupholstered with bright blue fabric, from Holland & Sherry. The bed is by West Elm, and the rug below it is from Stark Carpet. The floor lamp is from Circa Lighting.
The second guest bedroom features a funky stacked-box chest dresser by Lawson Fenning. Above the dresser is an oil-on-paper painting, T-Shirts, by Alex Dodge, from the Klaus Von Nichtssagend Gallery. The vintage chair, from 1stDibs, was reupholstered with bright blue fabric, from Holland & Sherry. The bed is by West Elm, and the rug below it is from Stark Carpet. The floor lamp is from Circa Lighting.
The daughter’s room is centered around a curved rattan bed from Anthropologie. The hanging chair, by Thibaut, adds a youthful energy to the space. The night tables are by World’s Away, and the peacock green dresser is from Chairish. The Flushmount light, by The Urban Electric Company, is in a custom pink shade. The window coverings are by Malabar.
The daughter’s room is centered around a curved rattan bed from Anthropologie. The hanging chair, by Thibaut, adds a youthful energy to the space. The night tables are by World’s Away, and the peacock green dresser is from Chairish. The Flushmount light, by The Urban Electric Company, is in a custom pink shade. The window coverings are by Malabar.
A son’s bedroom features a playful yellow bed by Bludot. The colorful window coverings, by Pierre Frey, and eccentric artwork, by Gray Malin, further enhance the fun spirit of the room. The night tables are by Made Goods, and the rug is by Stark.
A son’s bedroom features a playful yellow bed by Bludot. The colorful window coverings, by Pierre Frey, and eccentric artwork, by Gray Malin, further enhance the fun spirit of the room. The night tables are by Made Goods, and the rug is by Stark.
The wallpaper seen in this bathroom has a unique “scale and sensibility,” as Galli puts it. It’s “totally funky,” she adds.
The wallpaper seen in this bathroom has a unique “scale and sensibility,” as Galli puts it. It’s “totally funky,” she adds.
In the primary bathroom, a tub by Apaiser and stone floors by Virtue Tile give the space a timeless look. Galli says she made “the room a little more magical” with a vintage wooden makeup vanity. The sconces above the makeup vanity are from Souda. The vanity is by Orchard Design, and the window coverings are by Fawn Galli Interiors.
In the primary bathroom, a tub by Apaiser and stone floors by Virtue Tile give the space a timeless look. Galli says she made “the room a little more magical” with a vintage wooden makeup vanity. The sconces above the makeup vanity are from Souda. The vanity is by Orchard Design, and the window coverings are by Fawn Galli Interiors.
“The intent here was to create different [areas in which] people could enjoy the exterior world and have fun with family and friends,” says Galli. The terrace space is centered around a custom fire pit, designed by R.T. Facts. The sectional fabric is by Maria Flora, and the lounge chairs are from RH.
“The intent here was to create different [areas in which] people could enjoy the exterior world and have fun with family and friends,” says Galli. The terrace space is centered around a custom fire pit, designed by R.T. Facts. The sectional fabric is by Maria Flora, and the lounge chairs are from RH.
According to Galli, the pool cabana is the family’s favorite area of the home. The ceiling wallpaper, by House of Hackney, transforms the space into a fantastical oasis. The beige inset wallpaper is also by House of Hackney, while the dining chairs are from Fermob. The wooden dining table is from RH.
According to Galli, the pool cabana is the family’s favorite area of the home. The ceiling wallpaper, by House of Hackney, transforms the space into a fantastical oasis. The beige inset wallpaper is also by House of Hackney, while the dining chairs are from Fermob. The wooden dining table is from RH.
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“I love when things have a weird sparkle,” Galli reflects. In the case of this home, her guiding ethos was to “jazz up the traditional” in a style that she refers to as “funky traditional.” The exterior of the house, with its all-white façade, is admittedly charming—but it belies Galli’s more layered interior compositions. Inside, an eclectic blend of vintage and modern elements can be seen, while colorful prints and textures are sprinkled throughout.

Not surprisingly, Galli’s design scheme was inspired in part by her book Magical Rooms: Elements of Interior Design, which outlines a system of five central decorating tenets: an appreciation for nature, surrealism, and bohemianism, coupled with a healthy appreciation for clashing attributes and a hint of sparkle.

The designer is also “100% committed to creating people’s fantasies.” In an earlier iteration of this house, the poolside decor skewed more toward traditional wicker. Now, the poolside cabana has been revamped thanks to the addition of raffia wallpaper and a tiki bar, so that the house’s inhabitants can always “feel like they are on vacation.” (Fittingly, the cabana is their preferred whimsical oasis on the property.) But, of course, it’s hardly the only fantastical area within sight.

According to Galli, the pool cabana is the family’s favorite area of the home. The ceiling wallpaper, by House of Hackney, transforms the space into a fantastical oasis. The beige inset wallpaper is also by House of Hackney, while the dining chairs are from Fermob. The wooden dining table is from RH.
According to Galli, the pool cabana is the family’s favorite area of the home. The ceiling wallpaper, by House of Hackney, transforms the space into a fantastical oasis. The beige inset wallpaper is also by House of Hackney, while the dining chairs are from Fermob. The wooden dining table is from RH.

Originally Appeared on Architectural Digest