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Charismatic Retreat

Natural instinct is needed to see the potential of a dark space with little sunlight. This couple saw just that — “A diamond in the rough,” agrees interior designer Chrissy Howard and design associate Barbara Schwenk of Jinx McDonald Interior Designs.

Howard and Schwenk knew their two-woman design team had a third member when the client came to them with a clear vision of vibrant color, timeless furnishings, and hope, for a bright space with sweet feminine accents for this twenty-year-old property. “Having a client so well prepared with what she wanted elevated our team. Needless to say it was a delight,” says Howard.

Natural light now fills the great room, and the bright collection of colors and timeless details shines. “Using such vivid colors, we all wanted white walls for a balanced design,” says Howard. The apple green chairs in a solid tweed offer a solid color against the Palecek chair done in a citrine and periwinkle ikat fabric.

A large soffit running across the glass doors had cast a shadowy feel on the condo. It is now full of bright, tropical light that illuminates the playful amalgam of intricate ikat patterns and vivid fabrics. Softer interpretations of the lively color palette flow through the private spaces with gentle curves and soft powdery blues and pinks to add a feminine touch.

Matt Mendenhall, president of August General Contracting, shares, “The client, the design team, and myself all wanted to open up the space to allow more light in and offer better views of the Gulf of the Mexico.” Mendenhall transformed the choppy space by reengineering the air conditioning systems, reworking the fire sprinklers, all while contending with the constraints of a condo building.

Howard beautifully articulates the inspiration, “The cream and white pillow fabric, where birds and blooms flourish in aqua, apple green, and sapphire inspired us and gave us permission to use cream and white together.” Colorful expression harmonizes these living, dining, and kitchen areas. The white and aqua kitchen extends the view of this bountiful design and is now open to the great room. Gaby Saad of Real Wood Floors helped the homeowners, Howard, and Schwenk select the perfect finish for the French oak flooring to unify the spaces. “Gaby really understands her products and has excellent design aesthetic,” says Howard. “Ultimately, she narrowed down the options to the perfect floor for this project!”

Minka McDonald, of Jinx McDonald Interior Designs — daughter of founder Jinx McDonald, and now president of the firm — credits the success of this project and others to the firm’s strong, long-standing reputation in the industry, along with their client-centric approach to design. “We create beautiful yet livable spaces,” says McDonald. The firm’s philosophy is to ensure that each project accurately reflects the homeowners’ taste and brings out their personalities.

It takes a natural instinct to see the potential in a client’s strong vision for a space, and the team at Jinx McDonald Interior Designs, alongside August General Contracting, value inspiration and communication. Together they created this light and bright, charismatic, Gulf-front retreat.

Howard notes the dining area’s artwork is a “bright, high-impact focal point.” Infusing sunny orange and red hues, its playful beach day scene mirrors the great room’s view of the beach and Gulf, and the beaded chandelier makes a statement being the only ceiling fixture. An ivory, washed-linen look to the dining table from International Design Source reinforces the white and cream concept, while the rattan chairs in a small scale ikat fabric offer subtle repetition.

Mendenhall re-frames the ceiling to create architectural interest, and uniquely places all electrical outlets in the under cabinet lighting for aesthetic. This bright white and aqua kitchen features a modified Shaker-style door with a slightly beaded accent from Kitchens by Clay. The polished Pompeii Misterio countertop glistens with the luminous aqua tile backsplash. While all done in the same aqua, the handmade glazing technique produces varied saturations of color.

“The dynamic colors energize this space, but classic shapes and profiles lend sophistication,” shares Howard. The scallop skirt on the Hickory Chair media console from International Design Source offers a rustic femininity. Other pieces like the white palm leaf ceramic table adds variation to wood and upholstery. The bleached sand French oak flooring by Real Wood Floors allows for a soothing experience across the rooms.

This Sadie Beaded mirror in an emerald green by Palecek has gold accents with hand-painted cocoa shells and green buri nut beads. From Naples Lamp Shop’s leafy pendant chandelier to accent vases from International Design Source, gold repeats itself across this welcoming entry. Graceful curves and organic textures on the console in a woven seagrass anchor these gorgeous elements, while Wendover’s Touch of the Sea artwork bridges the view.

To accomplish the client’s vision, the team cleverly conceals new plumbing for the freestanding Jacuzzi tub and filler from Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery under a raised platform finished in tile from Design Works. Organic feminine forms and muted colors on the Ocean Toile Delft wallcovering partner with the master bedroom’s classic blue and ivory colorway. Warmth is brought in with a mink brown finish on the cabinetry, while subtle texture is offered by the Roman valance with an ombré tassel trim.

This master bedroom exhibits touches a of Northern influence, but in a muted coastal palette. Mountain Air paint by Sherwin-Williams sets a crisp backdrop for the lattice details on the indigo nightstands and bed with bamboo trim from International Design Source. White classic sheers with an ombré tassel trim offer playful movement and complement the pillow top X-Frame stools from International Design Source that showcase a geometric fretwork pattern.

The Zanzibar Trellis wallcovering in blush pink “gives the guest bath a modern graphic with a dash of femininity,” Howard explains. Against the geometric shapes, the circular mirror framed in natural stone from International Design Source offers a calming respite. Howard and Schwenk use a white-on-white approach to the counter and cabinets with crystal pull accents to balance and harmonize the space.

This guest room became infinitely more functional with a number of construction changes. The twin beds from Serena & Lily in a white frame showcase the textural cane inset. “The bedding is a harmonious blend of what we and the client realized,” shares Schwenk, “Together we layered quilted pieces, sweet pink and sandy tones with a mixture of geometric and leafy patterns.” Whimsical flamingo artwork is eye catching, while gold gilded palm leaves from International Design Source elongate the headboards.

This luxurious guest room features a trundle bed chaise from Burton James. The team layers throw pillows in both bold and muted hues that shows off complex Greek key and softer organic palm leaf patterns. Overseeing this quaint corner is a striking work of art, Open Waters, from Wendover. Its saturated aqua coloring pulls out the blue tones in the Sherwin-Williams’ Sea Salt wall color.

Written by Rachel Seekamp

Photography by Amber Frederiksen

Interior Designer

Jinx McDonald Interior Designs

1959 Trade Center Way

Naples, FL 34109


Luxury Home Remodeler

August General Contracting

1915 Trade Center Way, Suite 1

Naples, FL 34109



Design Works

2082 Trade Center Way

Naples, FL 34109


Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery

38 Goodlette-Frank Road South

Naples, FL 34102


International Design Source

6001 Taylor Road

Naples, FL 34109


Kitchens by Clay

7935 Airport Road, Suite 5

Naples, FL 34109


Naples Lamp Shop

4010 Tamiami Trail North

Naples, FL 34103


Real Wood Floors

2013 Trade Center Way

Naples, FL 34109



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