When Charleston, South Carolina-based interior designer creates a space, high-impact color is one of her first considerations — and, arguably, her biggest calling card. “Color invigorates and inspires me,” says the former graphic designer. “It propels my creativity.”
Incorporating saturated brights into projects big and small, residential and commercial, has become a signature of sorts for Hranowsky, be it with paint, upholstery, large-scale art, or her favorite design category: wall treatments. Take her own Charleston home, with its magenta living room sofa presided over by painterly Roman shades in the same punchy pink. Or her installation within design emporium , with its pale peony walls bedecked with angular turquoise sconces and emerald green silk drapery. When it came time to decorate her own office—equal parts design showcase, team brainstorm hub, and client meeting space—Hranowsky knew she had to go bold.
“Turquoise is one of my favorite colors,” says Hranowsky. “I’m constantly inspired by its notes of earth, sky, and water.” So it was an easy decision to swath her office, located in a circa-1920s brick building near downtown Charleston, in the vibrant blue tone. To achieve the perfect color and texture, Hranowsky called on decorative painter to hand-apply layers of pigmented plaster onto the walls—a laborious process, but a surefire way to achieve the multifaceted, almost earthy variance in texture and tone that transforms a color that might otherwise be one-note into an artwork unto itself.
The decision to stop short of painting the full height of the walls was a deliberate one for Hranowsky: “painting the upper walls and ceiling white creates an airy feeling,” she says. “Not to mention a much-needed contrast to the rich turquoise.”
When it comes to decorating in a room that already has so much color at its foundation, Hranowsky has a formula: more color! “Fuchsia and golden yellow are colors of equal value,” says Hranowsky, referring to the dense saturation and jewel-like richness of the two hues. “They provide the perfect accent to the turquoise.”
Her groovy desk chair and an angular accent chair sidled up against the wall are perfect examples of the designer’s knack for complementary contrast; brass light fixtures, yellow-flecked abstract artwork, and fresh Forsythia branches add welcome hits of golden warmth.
Like any good color enthusiast, Hranowsky catalogues her many design resources by hue—a well-plotted rainbow assortment that would make a Pinterest-lover swoon. To avoid visual clutter, her many swatches, samples, and strike-offs are stored in their assigned drawer in the custom quartzite-topped island—that is, until it’s time to scheme.
Keeping the countertop and floors to neutral hues was Hranowsky’s only concession to the otherwise color-happy design, and a smart one at that, allowing the textiles she lays atop the island, and spreads out on the floor, to stand on their own without distraction. While Hranowsky may be her own most daring client, it is, in the end, a workspace designed to foster her creativity for the many lucky homeowners with whom she collaborates.