Sorry I’ve been so late with posts lately, It’s a very busy season both at work and at home.  These days my me time is filled with hunting down key items for my Halloween costume, painting… hot glue gun-ing… and scouring the basement, attic and families houses for illusive items.  Work is CRAZY busy too.  Everyone wants something (everything) in by Thanksgiving and It’s got me running from morning til dusk.   Sure I still troll the internet, check Facebook and never miss Project Runway – shocking results, but that’s a different blog – but the mood to sit and write has been evading me.  So here, borrowed from Design Milk is a great post on designer Frank Flavell.  Enjoy.

Frank Flavell

Young designer Frank Flavell paired with the furniture and product design firm, & Then, to create the Leaning Man tables and shelves. The simple leaning cube design of the side table, made from ash and lacquered MDF, evolved into the creation of the Leaning Man Console and Leaning Man Shelves. The design is quirky and fun and comes in range of colors.  The Leaning Man collection can be purchased from & Then.

Frank Flavell

Flavell has a few other projects that include the the Wingback Dining Chair and the Standard Lamp. The Wingback Chair is meant for public spaces to evoke privacy from a crowd.

Frank Flavell

Frank Flavell

The Standard Lamp has a center pole that allows for raising and lowering as needed to control the light in a room.  Read more at Design Milk:

Paper Halloween

October 24, 2011

Paper is all you need to make a spooky Halloween decoration for your stairs, walls, windows or lamps.  I love the craftiness of these simple projects.  If I were going to make the ghostly silhouette for my staircase, I’d simply trace a friend laying down on over-sized craft paper and cut it out.  measure for the stair risers and voila!  The bats in the lamp shade are even easier, cut and tape… just be sure to use a heavy paper that allows little or no light through it for best results.  If your not a good drawer I’m sure you could find an image or two on the internet to copy and reproduce.  Happy Haunting!

futuristic funky bed design

The people over at Dornob always seem to have the best radar for cool furnishings.  I was still very much in my grey zone when I came across this bed, love it and I love the grey and white.  This gravity-defying bed seems to float in space. Suspended from the side wall and bolstered by hidden supports the concept is elegantly simple and the optical illusion is dizzying but compelling, particularly set against the flush-to-the-wall minimalist white headboard behind the main hanging frame of the bed itself.  And the grey adds a sophistication I must say.

futuristic modern bed design

This hover bed by Alf Group also converges seamlessly with the surrounding shelving and storage spaces, themselves part of a larger elegant headboard system that provides stability to the bed where it meets the wall, as well as visual continuity.

futuristic cool bed diea

More than a mere aesthetic trick, this designer bed-and-headboard set is actually quite functional and relatively minimalist. Only the essential edges and lines to make everything work well as part of the whole bed, and each element reinforces the floating horizontals that are the centerpiece of the design concept.


October 23, 2011

Since I missed a day or two – sorry, sometimes it just happens – here is a p.s. to the bed post.  Perhaps the anthesis of the pervious bed… this one is made completely of soft goods that are grounded and visually “heavy”.  Created by textile designer Linda Topic for a competition, this is a semi-serious look at an easy alternative to complex and costly wooden frames. Hard to say how well the super-soft approach would work for less-tolerant backs, but the idea is genuinely ingenious.  I think if you stacked multiple futons you would get the support needed for a comfy sleep and the look of this beautiful bed.  I’d like this look in a beachy loft space, maybe all white, off white and cream?  pretty.

Trend Alert

October 20, 2011

Funny how colors trend in and out of popularity when it comes to design and home decorating.  Colors can become so popular that they become cliché and fall out of fashion, only to resurface after it overexposure has been forgotten.  One of the strongest trends of late is certainly light blue and brown.  That combination is what teal and mauve was to the 80′s, it will define this decade, I’m sure of it.  A color I see becoming popular again is grey.  Back in the day everyone – and I mean everyone – had grey walls and white trim, we also had track lighting but thats a different blog post.  Todays grey is perhaps a slightly warmer grey and I’m seeing it over and over agin with camels and tans.  

Brag Blog

October 19, 2011

On a trip up to Maine recently I was on the hunt for a table lamp for our library.  I wanted to move a pair of floor lamps (or one anyway) from behind the sofa and I wanted to add a table light to the table behind the sofa.  And, while I had a sense of scale, I was open to metal/ceramic/wood & black/green/white/brown, or a combo of those… bottom line? Second store, less than 5 minutes, this lamp! = Super happy.

I love the patina on the japanned spool base, there are areas where the gold and black lacquer is rubbed away.  For me the visible age adds to the story of the room… old, new or shiny, dull.  I pulled the match stick lamp shade off of another light in the store and was thrilled to find it was a deep green that when lit glows a warm amber.  Because I mixed the parts of two fixtures the shop owner was able to supply the appropriately sized harp and a pretty finial. Needless to say, I scored. Perfect lamp, hand-picked shade, comfortable price, yay!

The Same Only Different

October 18, 2011

I’m a fan of both looks, sleek modern and uncluttered as well as rustic and rough.  For me it’s about what feels appropriate to the environment and the home in which it’s found.  It makes sense that the modern kitchen would make for a good urban space, an efficient place to prepare breakfast before a hectic day in the city.  The rustic kitchen is more of a pot roast, stormy night kind of place, with a fire in the fireplace, a weekend getaway.  No matter where you live, you can’t go wrong with white on white.  If you’re remodeling or freshening up your old kitchen consider taking down your upper cabinets, it really opens up a room.   


More Halloween Fun

October 17, 2011

The classy way to decorate for Halloween and/or Thanksgiving (although a carved pumpkin won’t last that long).  These are a nod to an old-fashioned lantern, perfect in a period home or one with olde timey character.  Try polka-dots in a contemporary house or any other pattern that strikes your fancy.  The beauty of this carving is that the skin is cut away but the flesh is not pierced through, it creates a beautiful warm glow.  Color variation with different thicknesses can be pretty.




Are you familiar with this candle?  If you haven’t had the pleasure of smelling the VooDoo Rose candle before, seek them out and buy as many as you can find/afford.  It is the most intoxicating sent I have ever smelled in a candle before.  musky and rosey at the same time. not too sweet, clean but earthy.  clove? maybe… it’s hard to say.  I wish I could post a sample of it’s sent, but I have to tell you I am so excited to finally be able to buy the VooDoo Rose sent again!

Boca do Lobo

October 15, 2011

Hailing from Portugal, a country with a long and established tradition in textile, footwear and furniture design and manufacturing, Boca do Lobo (‘Mouth of the Wolf’) is a brand that produces some of the most exciting and unique furniture around these days. Since it was set up in 2005, Boca do Lobo has gone from strength to strength, having exhibited in numerous trade fairs in Portugal, Angola, Belgium, Dubai, France, Italy, Spain, The Netherlands, UK, and the US, and have had their products featured in publications in Dubai, Greece, Japan, Latvia, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Turkey, UK, and the US. Phew, that’s a lot.  Just look at their diverse offerings below.

This is a brand whose mission over the last six years has remained focussed on creating beautiful pieces that are inspired, crafted, and delivered by staff passionate about what they do. Boca do Lobo’s vision is to understand manufacturing techniques past and materials that have been used for centuries, and interpret them through innovative technology and contemporary design.

The current collections by Boca do Lobo are named ‘Soho’, ‘Coolors’, and ‘Large Emotion’. The Soho range is inspired by the New York City’s neighbourhood and its diverse architectural styles. ‘Coolors’ celebrates the cool power of colour, and the ability that different hues have in influencing the human psyche through the stimulation of one’s emotions and states of mind. Created byPedro Sousa, ‘Large Emotion’ is a limited edition collection of 20 copies of only 12 pieces handcrafted by a single artisan.

Boca do Lobo’s furniture is available and distributed internationally. For more information, visit the brand’s website.


I love this wallpaper - mostly because what I pedal is seashells and wide stripes – and because it’s so silly and unexpected and it’s flocked!  Create a real statement in your bar or cabinet or powder room with this fabulous Skull Wallpaper available in striking colours with glitter, oil slick and flock. 

Skull Wallpaper – Bronze Flock on Oil Slick is the color way show in this post.  The signature paper featuring skulls in a reflective bronze, deep pile velvet on a incredible light-catching, iridescent base called oil slick.  Expensive ink which changes colour as you walk past it – through reds, greens, blacks and golds is where the name oil slick came from.  Roll size 52cm x 10m, repeat 56cm.  This wallpaper is in stock and can be dispatched within 5 days. $258 pounds per roll.  available through

Modern Prairie Part II

October 13, 2011

So trust me, I know this isn’t “Prairie Style” but who wants to live in a Prairie Style home with Prairie Style furniture and Prairie Style light fixtures and Prairie?  Only a select few.  But the style can be lived in with a more eclectic mix of furnishings that make it less museum and more home.  I’m going to show this sofa to my client because the wrap-around bookcases are reminiscent of the exposed wood frame a sofa from the period would have had.  This sofa is just a bit more sleek, certainly more updated and the deep seating of the fully upholstered sofa will be much more comfortable.

Would you believe I’ve just taken on a client who has recently purchased a prairie style home?  The house offers a large livingroom with a good-sized fireplace and plenty of room for seating.  The plan is to honor the lines and vibe of the house without creating a museum to the distinct style.  We will definitely take liberties, and pull in other styles including perhaps Deco, Arts and Crafts, Asian, and modern.  Pieces will present themselves with time, right now I’m more focused on color palette.  I want to use the strong earthy palette of craftsman pottery in the space and balance their strong presence with light neutrals – that will “pretty it up” – and a mix of different wood types.   Furniture will be clean lined and for the most part straight lined, although we may throw in a curved sofa.  Some things I pulled  after our first meeting included these…

What do you like in bed?

October 10, 2011

I go back and forth between simple white sheets, crisp and clean & a patterned sheet and/or duvet set.  Sheets are something you can take a risk on because you change them so regularly, and depending on how you choose to make your bed, they are not always visible.  I have a room covered in dark brown grass cloth and my favorite sheets for that room are a set of white ones with a brown (to match of course) geometric pattern.  It makes the room feels more “decorated”, gives the bed some visual interest and is a good foil to the off white headboard and dark brown walls.  A little pattern goes a long way is the mantra I guess.  If you have pattered walls or a busy rug, keep the sheets simple.  Quiet room, lots of solids… take a chance with something more edgy.

If you like Halloween as much as I do – or even 1/2 as much as I do – you’ll probably want to put up some type of decorations to celebrate the season.  I love a low pressure crafty project and this one seems pretty easy.  A mask of some sort filled with newspaper or old trash bags, wired to a coat hanger and covered with a sheet or maybe large sheets or a gauzy muslin.If beadazling is more your thing, plug-in the glue gun and hot the craft store for some rhinestones or sequins for this glamtastic Halloween table topper.  best seen from above a coffee table is the perfect place to display something with this much detail.  You could use a fancy spider pin if you have one, paint a toy to match your sparkly bits… or skip the spider all together.This has to be the easiest and my favorite of the bunch.  I’m guessing the faces are drawn on with black Sharpie marker.  So cute right?  Perfect for a centerpiece that needs height, and this project won’t break the bank.  Put done your lap-top and start making a list of the things you’ll need to make your house more festive for Halloween.

 The iconic interior designer to the rich and famous, Kelly Wearstler is now available to the masses!  She probably wont be making a visit to your home personally any time soon, but you can add a dash of her witty and ironic style via her line of accessories available on her website.  There is more than a little influence from the 1970′s in her brass objets d’art, marble sculptures and ashtrays, vases and much more.  Her style may not be for everyone, to me there is something ironic to most of her pieces, a wink as if she knows there is a silliness or whimsy to them, but at the same time glamour and glitz.

Here is a link to her blog, her inspirations and current goings-on make for good light reading ( much like this blog ) and I enjoy the creative process she builds into her blog that gives the reader an idea of how she is inspired, what motivates her and how she gets things done ( photo shoots etc.)


When I was looking for sofa frames on the Hickory Chair website, I came across this shot of the Artisan Bed and knew it would be prefect for my new clients (see below).  There is a deep tradition in the four-poster bed with rails but this updated version is young, a little modern and timeless too… just right for a young couple looking to make quality investments in home furnishings.  The bedside chests are also from the Artisan collection by Hickory Chair.  They can be ordered in many different finishes, with or without drawers or cabinet doors.  Mix and match to suit whomever sleeps on that side of the bed, or keep it more formal with a matched pair!  Love them either way!

I’m Working On It

October 6, 2011

Can you say NEW CLIENT?!  I met a new client yesterday and she’s young hip and ready to tackle a few key rooms in her new home.  We are going to furnish the living room (my favorite room to decorate) and a family room that is open to the kitchen.  We had a great meeting and the plan is to go with a rich chalky grey wall in the living room with cream and dark grey upholstered furniture.  Touches of burnished gold in side tables and sconces and maybe a white lacquered table to glam it up a little.  Here is a before shot…

Were changing everything I’m pretty sure… Wall color, Trim color, Sconces and Drapes! I had a great time getting to know the client and we are definitely on the same page regarding the “look” we want for the space(s).  Here are a few things from one of my favorite resources Hickory Chair that I am considering for the job.  Love the texture of the tufting, the decorative nail head and the glitz of the burnished gold. 

From the good folks at dornob…

While nearly the definition of an adorable regional half-ruin to a passerby, from a livability standpoint, essentially everything was wrong with the original worn-out, nearly-rubble house that sat on this lot.

Using elements of the existing retaining wall (largely left intact) and reusing stones, doors and window shutters from the former residence (partly demolished out of necessity), a quaint new cube by Alan Chu & Cristiano Kato was erected from the remnants of a clay-roofed, stone-walled caretaker’s home in Brazil.

Where the former dwelling was largely closed off and took no advantage of the view, a bright white box appears to establish two stories and peer back out on the valley below.

The front lower-level wall presents a private facade at street level, and wraps visitors to the entrance via the looping road and retaining wall that form a natural path and partial enclosure.

Throughout, tactically recycled materials tie the structure to history while naturally saving costs during the reconstruction and addition, but the views, well, those are entirely novel for the new owners.

UM, AMAZING! Is this not unbelievable? How is it that I grew up in and lived in California for 38 years and I had never heard of the Devil’s Postpile?!?  Would you believe that it is a natural occurring formation of many tall columns of basalt?  The Devils Post Pile presents a textbook example of the volcanism that helped to form the Mammoth Lakes region of the Sierra Nevada mountain range but looks more like an Andy Goldsworthy installation.

The molten basalt flowed southward and poured into the Middle Fork of the San Joaquin River valley, filling it to a depth of more than 400 feet. As the lava cooled and solidified, it shrank, creating cracks radiating from the center, approximately two feet apart. Eventually, the cracks joined, also growing downward. A large glacier quarried away most of the columns, leaving remnants on both sides of the valley, of which Devil’s Postpile is the largest. The tremendously heavy mass of ice created a highly polished basalt, some of which is still visible, though much of it has weathered away during the thousands of years since.  Today frost-wedging and ice continue to cause the giant posts to fracture and fall.

High design in nature, gotta love it… The Devil’s Postpile is nature at its best!  And, it’s important site for California visitors to experience. It offers some insight into the fascinating geologic history of the area it’s found in.  Information regarding tours and hikes is available at the Mammoth Lakes Visitors’ Center, located on Highway 203 …if you’re headed that way any time soon.


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