Room Envy: A playful dining room with a tropical touch

How interior designer Perry Walter jazzed up the space in a nearly 100-year-old condo

Room Envy

Photograph by Rustic White

Dining rooms can be the most playful areas of a home. Color-loving interior designer Perry Walter jazzed up this circa-1925 Virginia-Highland condo by highlighting the existing molding.

Touch of the tropics
The homeowner bought the focal-point teak table at an estate sale years ago. The vintage find is most likely from the ’50s.

Molding magic
“When I first walked in, I had a light-bulb idea moment,” says Walter: “Let’s use the existing picture wall molding in a creative way by framing wallpaper.” This green wallcovering from Thibaut highlights the 10-foot ceilings and creates a soothing background.

Tulip tribute
Molded modern chairs inspired by the iconic Eero Saarinen design are lightweight, sculptural additions. Walter covered the cushions in black-and-white performance fabric, which repels stains.

Right angles
A linear light fixture echoes the rectangular forms of the table and framed wallpaper.

Hip hexagons
The clients—who live full-time in Alabama but use this condo as a second home—wanted to play up the building’s classic roots with a black-and-white scheme. The designer found this geometric rug online at Rugs USA.

Design Tip: Add a conversation piece. “The zebra photograph fit right in with the black-and-white stripes,” Walter says. “Introducing animals into decoration makes the style playful and gets people talking.”

This article appears in our April 2023 issue.