Getting lighter, staying elegant By Design: Room with walnut paneling could be brightened with floor coverings.

BY DESIGN

November 26, 1995|By Rita St. Clair | Rita St. Clair,LOS ANGELES TIMES SYNDICATE

A large room in our newly purchased home has beautiful walnut paneling and shelves as well as a walnut wood floor. Though it's quite elegant looking, the room is very dark. And the only furniture we have for it at present is a maroon leather sofa and a large mahogany desk. How can we give the space a lighter appearance?

Starting from the bottom, you might install a wall-to-wall carpet in a light neutral color such as wheat. Such a selection will enhance the color of the paneling and lighten the overall setting. Whether the choice is sisal or a more traditional tufted carpet depends on your own taste and also on the option of adding a decorative area rug.

As you can see, the designer of the room seen in the photo did decide to put a rug on top of a sisal wall-to-wall carpet. This particularly colorful area rug, which serves to define the room's seating area, comes from the Tufenkian Tibetan Carpet Company.

Lighting is another way to make a room brighter. In addition to shelf and directional lighting, you might wish to include standing reading lamps and even a ceiling fixture in a bright brass finish.

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