“We are stuff people,” says Becky Fann of the collection of artwork and objects she and her husband, Mike, have in their Bothell home. But you wouldn’t know it stepping into their carefully curated living room, part of a massive redesign created by Ballard-based interior designer Keri Petersen for the family last year. “Becky knows what she likes and she likes her things,” Petersen says. “So our goal was to design a space around those pieces to better showcase them.”
After 25 years of working for Safeco Insurance, Fann was looking forward to retirement and getting to spend more time at home. “We loved our neighborhood and our house, but felt like we were collapsing under the weight of all these things we’d accumulated in our travels over the years,” Fann says. “I told Keri, ‘I need you to help me edit.’” The contents Petersen was given the task of editing included Turkish rugs, ceramic serving platters from Greece and plein air paintings from Hawaii. “Becky wanted a space that reflected her favorite places,” Petersen says. “You just can’t have everything out at once.”
Petersen started with the walls. Benjamin Moore’s bold shade of cobalt, a color called “New York State of Mind,” offered the perfect backdrop to display the Fanns’ art. An outdated fireplace was redecorated with handmade clay tiles, creating a Mediterranean feel for the space. Room & Board upholstery updated the living room’s seating, and new neutral carpet throughout further solidified the area’s aesthetic.
Handmade clay tiles sourced from Seattle Tile Company in Ballard cover the living room fireplace, adding to the Mediterranean feel of the space.
After the decorative additions, it was time for the project’s all-important subtractions. Petersen worked with Fann and her husband on which pieces of their prized art to selectively display. “Keri would say, ‘We’re gonna let that wall breathe,’” joked Fann about initial impulses to fill every space. Completed last spring, the finished room has become a place where the Fanns can truly exhale. “When I’m going to read, I’ll curl up in here and have a glass of wine,” Fann says. “It’s just really enjoyable.”