After years of vacationing on South Carolina’s Kiawah Island, one family from northern New Jersey decided it was time to make a little piece of their favorite destination their own. So the family of four bought a traditional home on the north side of the island, overlooking the marshes of the Kiawah River.
Built in 1995, the 5,100-square-foot home needed some extensive cosmetic updating to transform it into the escape the family envisioned. The wife of the family discovered Charleston-based designer Megan Molten on Instagram and struck up a productive, cooperative partnership. “Working with her and her family was a wonderful process, as she has worked with an interior designer before on her primary home and very much trusted our process,” Molten says.
The owners wanted a design that reflected the coastal calm and beauty they seek when they visit Kiawah Island, a contrast to the hectic nature of life just outside New York City. The home’s spectacular river and marsh views were a touchpoint for all of the design choices. Airy whites, cool grays, and pale blues predominate the color palette, with woven textures throughout extending the serene feeling.
Every detail continues this approach. A soft-white, beaded Palecek chandelier creates a striking organic shape over the dining table and scalloped tiles on the kitchen backsplash evoke fish scales or rippling waves. Woven seats both indoors and on the porch provide a visual connection between indoors and out. The space also incorporates pieces by some of the owners’ favorite artists, making the design personal to the new inhabitants.
Molten incorporated a playful touch in the bedroom for the family’s two school-age boys, who love playing in the ocean and surfing. The Philip Jeffries wallpaper features an alligator-skin texture and the pillows sport an alligator print in a nod to the massive reptiles that make the island their home. Surfboards mounted to the wall speak to one of the boys’ favorite activities.
The office provides a counterpoint to the coastal breeziness of the rest of the home. Lined with built-in wooden bookcases, the room had the potential to feel dated, so Molten and the owners chose a moody, masculine deep green paint – Benjamin Moore Narragansett Green – for the walls and a bold geometric light fixture to bring a modern touch to the space. “It elevated the room and brought it into this decade,” Molten says.
The owners are delighted with their home’s makeover. So much so that when they bought a condo nearby for the husband’s parents, they quickly called Molten and asked her to source the furnishings.