In House Plan

Whitney House. The Hearth Room.

The Hearth Room in the Whitney House is what would normally be the Dining Room in a home—and it could still be used that way—but since I elected to have the main eating area in the kitchen, this room would function differently. I envision it as a place to have a cup of coffee in the morning, to watch TV, to hang out with friends and family, to play games; a place for kids to be loud and play, a place to play the piano, a place to enjoy a drink in front of the fire. The Hearth Room lives up to it’s name, and is the heart of the Whitney House. (Ok, yes, I said that of the Kitchen too, so I guess this house is a cardiac anomaly).Model

FURNITURE PLAN a. Settee: 59″w x 35″d | b. Coffee table: 40″ diam. | c. Side table: 21″ diam. |  d. Arm chair: 27″w x 27″d | e. Side table: 24″ sq. with table lamp | f. Rug: 7’x9′ | g. Upright Piano |  h.  Piano stool: 12″ diam. | i.  Indoor plant  |  j. Bar cart: 15″ x 26″

I usually try to avoid placing a television above a fireplace, so in this design I put the fireplace in the corner so that a TV could go on the wall next to it. Arranging the furniture on an angle allows both the fireplace and the TV to be seen, and the room is large enough to place two settees with a small arm chair in this orientation. It also gives a different energy to the room to place a furniture grouping on an angle. There is one large window to let in natural light, and a pretty plant would be great in front of it. Or a Christmas tree during the holidays. I love upright pianos, so I made a place for that to go. (To see where this room is in the home, refer to the floor plans.)

Here’s a concept of what this room could feel like, using this floor plan:

Whitney Hearth Room Style
1. Settee: “Jessica 59″ Linen Settee.” One Kings Lane.  |  2. Chandelier: “Villier” Anthropologie.  |  3. Pillow: “John Robshaw Petiole B&W Pillow” Anthropologie.  |  4. Trim Color: “Railings.” Farrow & Ball.  |  5. Light Fixture: “Alto Surface” Cedar & Moss.  |  6. Coffee table and Side table: “Meadowscape.” Anthropologie.  |  7. Lamp: “Mid-Century Yellow Ceramic Lamp” 1st Dibs.  |  8. Rug: “Moroccan Inspired Rug.” 1st Dibs.  |  9. Indoor Plant  |  10. Piano Stool: “Foundry Piano Stool.” Anthropologie.

This room has more trim work than in the living room, especially around the fireplace focal wall. I still want to continue the darker “Railings” trim color as in the other rooms, but since you’ll see more of it in the room, it results in a moodier, more dramatic space.

Here’s the design for the fireplace wall so you can see what I’m talking about.

Model Keep in mind, the fireplace is at an angle, so you’re not looking straight at it in this elevation. What I want you to see is the detail I came up with for the TV. I ended up with a mantel of sorts that can support a flat screen. At first I thought to just place a small piece of furniture in this location to hold the TV, but I wanted wood storage also, and this was the logical place for that. This way I get both needs met, and it’s a unique way to display the TV without destroying the paneling design.

It also doesn’t have to be for the TV. It can also be a nice ledge for displaying art and accessories, as sort of an extension of the fireplace mantel.


This was my inspiration image for the fireplace design.WHITNEY_hearth room inspiration 1

Photo Credit: John Milner Architects

Here it shows wood storage open with a copper insert, and it is beautiful. I drew the wood storage behind doors as I thought perhaps it would get visually busy to keep it open. But then I realized the left door would get in the way of the fireplace if it were open….so maybe then these doors slide back into a pocket recess on the sides when wood needs to be accessible. Little details…


I think the wood paneled pocket doors to the study would be nice stained, to bring in some richness against the painted woodwork in the room. Chair rail moulding would be found in an original dining room, so I drew that in this room, even though I wouldn’t use this room as a dining room. I also added crown and picture rail moulding.


A large cased opening takes you to the kitchen. I feel like these two rooms would be used the most, so having them connected with a large opening made sense to me. Again, I included a little display cabinet like you might see in a dining room for a touch of architectural charm.


Here is the window wall, showing what draperies and art would look like here.

I also put together a second option showing what this room might look like if everything was painted in the dark trim color. This is another look I love, but the woodwork and fireplace wall would disappear.


Hmmmm, not sure which I prefer. Your thoughts?

So, that wraps up the Hearth Room. Here are more posts in this Dream Home Design Series. I’m designing this house room by room, so please “subscribe” to The Made Home so you don’t miss the next post!

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