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5 Rooms to See at the Lake Forest Showhouse & Gardens

Laura Hine | April 7, 2020 | Home & Real Estate

[Editor’s note: Ticket sales for the Lake Forest Showhouse & Gardens have been suspended due to COVID-19. Please see for updates.] It’s been three years since the last Lake Forest Showhouse & Gardens, but that wait hasn’t been in vain. Top designers from the city and suburbs are busy transforming the 11,000-square-foot house for viewing April 25 to May 17. Check out some of our fave Chicago designers’ rooms at one of the showhouse’s special events, like the lecture with design chair Paloma Contreras. April 26, tickets $135, including a signed copy of Contreras’ book, Dream Design Live


Elizabeth Krueger Design
The plan for the gallery includes grounding the space in dramatic hues with a stunning, textured Phillip Jeffries grass cloth wallcovering and juxtaposing the dark walls with a luminous, stark ceiling. Everything is in conflict and in harmony in this edgy and elevated room.

James Thomas
This duo’s plan turns a forgotten side entry into a sunny and colorful potting room straight out of the grounds of an English manor with walls and ceiling clad in a chalky black Venetian plaster and cabinetry faux-finished in a limed oak wash. Topiaries, baskets and garden-inspired objects finish off this fun and sophisticated room.

Sarah Vaile Design
It’s a jungle in there. Sarah Vaile Design wraps the powder room in gilded Rousseau wallpaper by de Gournay. Exotic leopards, birds and verdure meet a black-and-white geometric floor that feels at once traditional yet modern. The neighboring cloak room is encased in a royal plum lacquer, continuing the riot of color.

Studio Gild
Studio Gild’s teenage girl’s bedroom draws inspiration from an androgynous fashion editorial photograph that depicts the interplay between feminine and masculine sensibilities. This tension plays out throughout the room’s design with soft, voluptuous fabrics balanced with militant tassel adornments from an officer’s epaulet.

Wendy Labrum Interiors
The master sitting room will be a supremely elegant lounge. Labrum is starting with a sumptuous Royere sofa to create the perfect reading spot, and she’s adding antique lighting from Paris, a custom marble coffee table and vintage chairs. The finished product will be the ideal mix of collected elegance.

Tags: design

Photography by: Photo by JS Eckert Photography/courtesy of Lake Forest Showhouse & Gardens