2021 Rhode Island Design Awards

Scroll this year's award winners and discover picture-perfect abodes, from a repurposed power station to a three-century-old farmhouse.

Residential Interiors • Design Star

Round and Round


Tria Giovan.

Right off the bat, our jurors praised how the designer responded to the easy, open interior of this summer beach house by integrating an innovative palette with elements of the homeowners’ style. The navy blue accents in the kitchen, living room and bathroom, the use of a clean white backdrop in wall coverings, wainscotting and fabrics, and the layering of natural textures is exceptional, they said. They also liked the incorporation of a circular theme that’s echoed from the coffee table in the living room to light fixtures, trays, the window in the entryway, even the small bathroom stools. “It’s a nice juxtaposition,” they pointed out, more inviting, cozy and livable than a square look, which can seem stuffy. The consistent use of color and materials thread together transitional and coastal elements throughout this Quonnie home. “It’s got a very maritime feel.”


Tria Giovan.

Designer: Taste Artful Interiors and Design
Architect: Penniman Architects
Builder: Gardner Woodwrights
Landscape Architect: Anne Penniman Associates
Photography: Tria Giovan

Commercial Interiors • Design Star

Little Lessons


Alain Jaramillo.

Teachers remind us that young minds thrive in a place that encourages curiosity and the creatively designed James L. McGuire Elementary School in North Providence does just that. The judges liked how the small tables and niches feel cozy and protective, and the use of color, with bright pops of greens and blues, is both refreshing and soothing. The group rooms, which allow for social distancing, are strategically placed to be shared by two adjacent classrooms. Easily accessible shelves for kiddos are handy for storing books and toys. “It sold me from the beginning,” said one. “I love the comfy reading environment. It’s a space made for little people. It’s all about the user, and you rarely see that.”


Alain Jaramillo.

Architect: The S/L/A/M Collaborative a.k.a. SLAM
Project Team: Glenn Gollenberg, Cathie Ellithorpe and Kristen Furtak
Photography: Alain Jaramillo