Congratulations to Alison, of Minneapolis, Minnesota, for her grand-prize winning colorful room. She made the most of a gorgeous vintage architectural detail in her home by choosing just the right color to highlight and give an updated feel to the dark wood trim in her living room.
The deep teal-blue paint is an excellent backdrop to Alison's furnishings -- from the dark gray sofa to a warm mustard-yellow rocker and in combination with the dark blue rug and navy and white patterned throw and pillow. The artwork, framed in black with light mats, shines against the strong solid color. The use of a fun, ultra-decorative wallpaper (by Orla Kiely) in the adjacent entryway completes the look and echoes the teal in the floral pattern. As Alison shares, "Pick a color you adore and use it in your house...you won't be unhappy when you choose a color that you love." More of Alison's style can be seen in her House Tour, featured on Apartment Therapy in 2010.
Bernd, from Vienna, Austria is our International Division winner for 2011. His apartment has many enviable architectural details -- high ceilings, big windows, beautiful herringbone hardwood floors and double doors -- but the part of the design that is so engaging is the relaxed yet accomplished way in which he's incorporated pieces and colors with a modern sensibility into this classic space.
The palette he's chosen continues the fresh look kicked off by the eclectic mix of furniture in the multipurpose living and dining room. A light and bright pastel blue is a lovely counterpart to the warm golden wood floors and the bright reddish pink rug, while a just right more cool-than-warm neutral beige provides, as Bernd states, "a perfect background for my own little art collection".
Congratulations to Alison and Bernd as well as our finalists, Turtle, Stephanie and Michele. Thanks to each of the 141 contestants for sharing their colorful rooms, as well as all of you who submitted entries this year. To our partners who provided prizes, Farrow & Ball and Smart Furniture, thank you! And to all the voters and commenters, we couldn't do it without you and hope to see you next time around...its only about 5 months until Small Cool comes around again!