Maryline Damour of Damour Drake believes beautifully designed interiors should be accessible to everyone—regardless of economics, location, or the size of an abode. Her desire to bring great design down to earth and to build cohesion around the vibrant and varied portfolio of local Hudson Valley makers inspired Damour to start the Kingston Design Showhouse in 2018. The annual event was conceived as a scrappier, more homegrown response to the exclusive, luxury showhouses common in the rest of the country. Five years later, Damour and her flourishing network of Hudson Valley artists and artisans have gone way beyond proof of concept, establishing the region as a rich design hub in its own right while providing an inspiring roadmap for bringing beautiful design into your own home.
On the first floor, BNR Interiors reimagined the classic Victorian front parlor with a moody, marbled, deep river-green wallpaper that reads like plaster and a collection of locally sourced, Mid-Century vintage furniture.
Across the Simone Eisold-designed foyer, eco-conscious design firm Creatures of Place captured a waning summer-into-autumn vibe in the dining room, lush with dried floral ceiling arrangements and wall art from Ekshathe. A simple, low, white oak table is complemented by a set of plant-dyed Silk & Willow floor cushions that serve as seating. On the tabletop, ceramics by West Shokan-based 28A Clay are interspersed with beeswax tapers in vintage brass candlesticks and seasonal decorative gourds.
In contrast to the dark, earthy palette of the dining room, Hendley & Co’s “Ode to Grandma” kitchen is an airy, light-filled space. The kitchen, with its pale chartreuse ceiling and textured wall treatment, is a luminous setting to showcase E. Penderleith & Co’s warm wood cabinetry inspired by early 20th-century woodworking techniques.
Inspired by the 19th-century Luminous Painting movement, designer Simone Eisold complemented the home’s original stained glass windows, wood paneled staircase, and banister with marmorino lime plaster walls in a soft blue. She then reimagined the foyer and second floor landing as gallery spaces with works by artist Molly McKinley, Susan English, Ian McMahon, Kieran Kinsella, and many others.
For a bit of luxury, and an update on Victorian-era plumbing, Michael Gilbride Design created a luxe bathroom with modern fixtures and period-inspired details. A Smart steam shower by Thermsol transforms into a full sauna and includes a screen with access to streaming services and a discreet Infinity drain. A mosaic of marble floor tiles and handcrafted millwork harken back to Victorian-era opulence while maintaining a distinctly modern sensibility.
A collaboration between Quittner Antiques and historic preservationists Worth Preserving, the space, dubbed “A Room of One’s Own,” is full of antique tables and chairs, dreamy oil paint landscapes by Marieken Cochius, and custom-painted floor cloth by Studio Teppi. The designers ingeniously transformed the room’s closet into a cozy reading nook by raising the floor to bench height and layering the surface with pillows, blankets, and lighting. Wool-filled pillows, a handwoven blanket, and sheepskin, produced by Millterton-based Dashing Star Farm, complement the antique hanging rug that rounds out the space.
The home’s primary bedroom, recast as the “Forest Floor Boudoir” by the West Shokan-based art collective Hinterland, serves as a sort of piece de resistance for the fifth iteration of the showhouse. Many of the cooperative’s 10 artists met through the showhouse during previous years, and the creative synergy Damour had hoped to spur is well on display with their collaborative design.
Inspired by Victorian-era naturalism and the idea of aging as a luxury, the space’s layers of careful design are reminiscent of the rich layers of a Catskills woodland floor. Conceived and directed by Jennifer Salvemini of JLS Lifestyle Consulting, the room is dominated by a handcrafted Tusk and Tenon four post canopy bed in local ash by AUZ Design Studio.
The soft bedding, upholstery, and other textile accents include chiffon, linen, velvet and botanical dyed silk taffeta in deep greens, browns, and reds by Vagabond’s Daughter. Co-op member Brenna Chase of Willow Deep Studio created a custom stained glass mushroom piece for the space and the walls are split with two different hand-painted treatments. A blue-tone, mycelium-inspired, hand-painted design by artist Marcie Paper takes up one wall; Katie Westmoreland’s hand-painted botanical musings fill out the rest. The co-op even created a custom scent for the space—“Hinterland Petrichor” by Phoenicia Soap Co. From textural complexity and provocative color palettes to local sourcing and custom collaboration with area artisans, the Kingston Design Showhouse is both a destination in itself and a breadcrumb trail inviting you to range deeper into the realm of creativity possibility.
The showhouse will be open for one more day on October 22 between 12pm and 5pm. Buy your tickets online.