Transforming Your Living Spaces After a Fire

In Part III of this series, designer Denise Wenacur reinvents a living room, family room, and dining room after a devastating house fire.

We’ve been following the journey and the design process of one Croton-on-Hudson family who suffered through a devastating house fire. In this post we talk with designer Denise Wenacur of DW Design & Décor to see how she redesigned the three living spaces including the living room, family room, and dining room in this family home.

Part I: How This Westchester Family Rebuilt After a Devastating Fire

Part II: Rebuilding a Bedroom After a Fire

The living room and family room are adjoined, separated by French doors so there needed to be a good flow between the design of the two rooms, however, according to Wenacur, each space serves its own function.

“The living room is more for reading, relaxing, and enjoying music as the piano is the focal point of the  room,” says Wenacur.

So she chose seating and fabrics for comfort such as the love seat in the corner and the wing chair.

The family room, which is located off of the kitchen, is enjoyed by the entire family and therefore needed much more seating. “The family room has a large sectional for the whole family to watch TV and movies together in front of the fireplace,” adds Wenacur.

Wenacur kept the basic footprint that was place before the fire, but said she added framing around doorways to the living room and family room and made ceiling height adjustments to the entry hall. “This gave the rooms a more finished appearance,” says Wenacur.

The overall color palette for the design is neutral, with pops of blue. Wenacur utilized different textiles to create interest in the spaces.

Because the homeowners love artisanal quality, hand-crafted wood furniture, in the dining room, Wenacur paired a farmhouse dining table with upholstered seating for an elegant combination. 

The homeowners were open to using wallpaper and beautiful window treatments, which became Wenacur’s favorite part of this design. “We specified a beautiful, warm, brown faux leather wallpaper, complete with stitching detail for the living room,” says Wenacur. “Paired with framed, vintage maps and custom built-ins, [the space] took on an old world sophistication.”

In the family room, there are beautiful views of the outdoors and the landscaping so Wenacur didn’t want to cover too much but she wanted to add some visual interest. To do so she went with lovely patterned fabric for the inside mounted hobbled roman blinds.

Wenacur paired a farmhouse dining table with upholstered seating for an elegant combination. 

Because the children in this family are teens, no one had to worry about little fingers knocking over accessories so the homeowners and Wenacur could have fun, but just in case, she did have the upholstered pieces scotch guarded to “avoid mishaps.”

But Wenacur says with so many options now, even young families can use neutral or white furnishings without fear.

“Now that manufacturers like Crypton and Sunbrella have created a wide variety of performance fabrics, even a young family can have white furnishings in their home with without worrying,” says Wenacur.

Next up, the kitchen…



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