A judicious use of bold color makes a successful marriage with a predominantly achromatic backdrop.

Janice Kleinschmidt. Interior Design

Living room furniture is upholstered in marine-grade vinyl. Selecting artwork became “an exercise in discipline, which ultimately gave the condo a bold yet understated vision,” Saguil says. His cousin, Loy Saguil, painted the red diptych. The black bust below, he notes, is “a pseudo Augustus Caesar resin I bought for $20 from the Palm Springs Vintage Market.” Eduardo Carriazo created the ceramic piece on the console table.

Two stark homes prove that a minimal pop of color is all you need to invigorate a space.

Ossie Saguil describes the former state of his 1960s-built Seven Lakes Country Club condo as a “fairly nondescript rental” awash in beige. When he and Craig Mann purchased it, they ditched the beige tiles in favor of slate and painted the walls Dunn-Edwards’ Whisper White.

“Although dramatic, the white and black gave the condo a somber, cold feel,” Saguil says. “To balance this, we chose red to add ‘fire’ and complement a few vintage Asian pieces the previous owner left.”


Round shapes in red repeat throughout the home’s artwork, rugs, and accessories. “I envisioned apples falling from a tree,” says Ossie Saguil, who owns this Seven Lakes Country Club home.

Another Palm Springs couple reviewed 400 achromatic hues before selecting Dunn-Edwards’ simply named White for the exterior and interiors of their Alexander home in Vista Las Palmas. “It was the purest white we could identify, with no warmth to temper the purity,” says Kevin Comer, who headed up the design of their renovated 1959-built residence. For pops of color, they looked to nature — pulling orange from the sun and blue from the sky.

“Yves Klein Blue is considered by some to be the most beautiful shade of blue ever created. That’s the shade we tried to emulate in furnishings and accent tile,” Comer says. “For the orange, we went back mentally to that original Crayola box we had in kindergarten.”

White serves as a fabulous foundation, and bright colors are the icing on the cake.

It took several months for Kenneth Cobonpue’s Dragnet to arrive from the Philippines. The combination of a steel frame with knotted rope gives it “a sense of portability and substance,” Saguil says of the guest bedroom’s canopied chaise.


Karastan carpeting adds coziness to the 
bedrooms. “It was hard to find that particular tint 
of white I wanted, which is colder,” Saguil says. He commissioned Palm Springs–based artist Terry Hastings for the photograph behind the bed. “I had to swim 
under and through heavy bolts of fabric that he tossed in the pool to create the undulating feel of the piece.”

“Think of opposites, roughly equal in percentages, and add 10 to 
20 percent of a color highlight. Think balance and tension.” Ossie Saguil

LEFT: Porcelanosa glass mosaic tile becomes a feature wall in the master bathroom. “We didn’t want the color to overwhelm the lines of the house, but rather to add a little something that, wherever we put it, people might think, ‘Oh, that’s nice there.’ ” RIGHT: Bedroom furniture was a serendipitous find for Rick Distel and Kevin Comer when they visited the Twentieth furniture store in L.A. “The Bauhaus collection in blue (shown) and orange were done custom, but not for us,” Comer says. “They came out of a home in the Hollywood Hills that was being sold.”


Distel and Comer carried their home’s color palette outdoors. Now salt water, the pool and spa were rebuilt with custom Bisazza mosaic tile in orange tones around the waterline and the spa’s spillover fountain.


LEFT: The “Orange Suite” pairs a rug that mirrors the master suite’s with a Bauhaus bed and dresser in orange. Trina Turk pillows match the scheme in each space. RIGHT: Porcelanosa’s Trento mosaic tile in orange pops as a backdrop for high-gloss white floors and cabinetry topped with white Cambria countertops.

As in the blue master bath, a wall-mounted vanity hangs on glass mosaic tile. The photograph, titled Palm Springs Midnight, is by Fred Moser. “Adding too much in accessories in other colors dilutes the power of the accent color,” Comer says. “I don’t think we’d ever try to match art to a space, though. Art should stand alone as much as 
the lines of the house.”

“White works very well with simple lines. You just have to let 
the home tell you what color it wants. Great architecture can be vocal.”Kevin Comer