May 12, 2012
May 8, 2012
May 7, 2012
I love neutrals,they don’t have a shelf life… (pun intended – around my family maybe too much this weekend, they love a pun) Neutrals never date, , they are rich and beautiful in their own natural and subtle way, they allow textues to stand out and important things like art, views and people to stand out… not to mention forms and shapes of furnishings. The idea of hanging nesting baskets on a wall to create storage is so simple but it works so well and looks so good, I had to post this shot. But, of course I have to take it a bit further and add a few beautifully done interiors to really push the look of natural and neutrals tones. Just look at howe interesting a tonal room can be…
Ignore the green in that last one – even though it’s really pretty. Loving the way they hung the art lower than the desk! Grass cloth always chic! Below: Headboard, coverlet and night stand become contrast pieces in a taupe against the creamy whites in the bedroom below.
Back dating this post for yesterday, sorry I missed a day but was traveling back from California!
May 6, 2012
I don’t remember where I got this image, it could be a promo shot from Hickory Chair, it might have been in Elle Decor, or House Beautiful (their images usually have a watermark) but no matter… it’s the masculine yet pretty stylings of this room, the layers and playful details that make me love it. This room goes a bit 5th avenue for me, old school with a twist. Urban sophisticated. My style icon Thomas O’Brien is responsible for much of this furniture.
The exceptional lattice work on the back of the side chair is O’Brien’s refining and reworking of a simpler antique Georgian chair that he had seen at auction. An elegantly extended high back and more complex carving give the chair a scale that works for today, both as an occasional and a dining room option. In all, this is a caliber of chair that is increasingly hard to find from new furniture makers, which demands absolute finesse in fabrication. The Side Chair is designed two ways, to be used independently, or mixed together. A carved wood version with the lattice work back can be grouped ensuite with the arm chair for a more traditional dining room presentation. A second variation offers a fully upholstered seat and back, with the same distinctive, graceful shaping of the chair top. Standard nailheads front and rear help to outline the unique silhouette of the seat back. Also available is the Sebastian Arm Chair and Sebastian Upholstered Back Side Chair. Shown in optional Oxford finish. Also in the shot – one of many pieces this season to feature paw or claw feet – the diminutive side table with a big personality is named after Thomas O’Brien’s dog Jones. It is a close translation of an antique occasional table found in upstate New York, with a charming, unusual, triple paw configuration of each foot. The paws are on such a bold scale that the design seems more gutsy and whimsical than nostalgic. Elaborate acanthus leaf details join each leg to the tabletop, and the carving overall is very true and fine. Shown in standard Dark Walnut finish, but this piece looks amazing – and a tad less serious – painted in the image above.
I could be wrong but I’m almost sure the armchair in the photo is the Paolo. This continental-style design is based on French and Italian forms of the late 1930’s, with echoes of clubby origins on a luxury liner or Pullman car. For those who like a more angular style, flared arm panels reach beyond the high back, while distinctive block feet give the chair a dressy carriage. The Paolo Ottoman (2203-29) serves well in pairs and shows the same clean piping detail as the chair, a Thomas O’Brien trademark.
This low, three-drawer chest couples a spare 1950′s design with Neoclassic Brass Hepplewhite knobs. The evenly proportioned drawers, with blind parting rails, create a level, measured face, while the thin case, inset apron panel, and subtly flared legs impart a late mid-century sophistication. Standard in Antique Ivory with Neoclassic Brass knobs as shown above. Available in dozens of optional finishes and in Customer’s Own Hardware. To visualize optional finishes and hardware visit “Customize Your Furniture” on the Hickory Chair website.
May 3, 2012
It seems as thought everytime I find something on the internet that I love, it’s in/from/available from a Canadian resource. Snob is a high-end Toronto boutique specializing in “furniture as art, art as furniture.” It turns out most of the furnishings in Denise Zidel’s beautiful Carlaw Street showroom hails from Africa, as does the owner herself. SNOB is dedicated to African craftsmanship, which, apparently, does not come cheap. you know what I’m gonna say next… I Love This! Exotic Modern.
If your lucky enough to find yourself anywhere near Carlaw Ave. (yes, in Canada) Pop in and tell Denise I sent you.
388 Carlaw Avenue #202F
Toronto, Ontario M4M 2T4
May 2, 2012
Undyed linen, rustic woods, sisal rugs… Yes please! I love the easiness of this room and the balance of light, medium and dark is perfect if you ask me. I’m not a fan of any of the light fixtures but that’s an easy change… what I love of course is the tonal palette of the space.
I must be getting old, don’t remember if I’ve posted this image before, sorry if it’s a duplicate but it reinforces my point – You don’t have to use color or pattern to create a beautiful space. Sometimes the natural beauty of a textile, or texture in some wood or the slub of a weave can be the detail.
Simple right? Who knew some rope in a jar could be so pretty, set the right mood and cost pennies? Well we all do now. I love this look. Celebrate simple yet beautiful items by putting them on display.
May 1, 2012
I’ve got Summer Houses on my mind. The season is really picking up and more and more seasonal clients are calling and ordering furniture to get ready for a great summer. I am especially excited to have a couple of jobs right now with clients I really like. For one young couple I’m hoping to give them a burst of color by painting the backs of their built-in bookcases after we slipcover all of their furniture of course and paint the floors. I love the look of the shelves above and the pillow fabric too.
This eclectic mix of furniture and the color palette are both perfect for a summer-house. The bright and fun pillows break-up an otherwise nondescript sofa and the blend of styles makes for a relaxed and unplanned looking sitting area. I think a sisal or seagrass would be a better choice and I think a painted floor would really summer it up!
Navy and white is always a good look – I think it wants the fun of the random pillows from the image before – but it’s a classic look. The big art keeps things clean and simple and reminds visitors they are near the sea. I love the big ottoman, the striped rug (Dash & Albert) and the little wing chair covered in that ticking stripe, too cute.
April 30, 2012
It’s always the last thing a client thinks about, but 9 times out of 10 I get asked about art, wall decor and family photographs. Family Photographs… they are like rabbits, you put two of them out and before you know it there are 6, or 10… or more! Whats a designer to do?!? Of course the ones I’m typically presented with are “snap-shots, in non-matching frames, some color and some black and white. What to do?
EDIT! If you have 3 or 5 photo’s of your best friend, baby or partner… Pick one (ok two) of your favorites and put the rest in an album, or in a private setting ( offices are perfect ) and keep your “collection” together as best you can. Don’t mix in do-dads.
NEXT… Try and coordinate your frames to one type or two (ok, 3 if you must but no more) I like White frames, because I like white – and I think you see the image not the frame – but you can mix brown and white, silver and white, gold and brown, brown and black or black and white, or… well you get the point.
THEN… practice grouping the images you want to display on the floor to get a good idea of how they will look best hanging together. If you’d like to take an extra step, cut out paper templates of your frame sizes and use painters tape to hold them on the wall as you organize them. I love a grid, but that only really works when you have like size frames (mat size can vary – keep that in mind) and like frames. If your collection is a little bit hodgepodge, then go with a loose, eclectic arrangement.
April 29, 2012
Pattern and print make a come back… Look in any shelter magazine and you’ll se plenty of color, were all crazy for turquoise, tangerine, raspberry, lime, mint and mellon… I’m hungry… anyway what you will also see is lots and lots of pattern, used in a bold way. An entire room in pink trellis, layered with an animal print, an ikat – yes they are still hot – and probably a “floral” of some type, albeit more vine-ish these days and less cabbage rose.
In the case of this well done interior, the pattern is on the chairs, windows, and pillows, please note there is plenty – PLENTY – of neutral or negative space to allow the eye to rest, and to keep the place from feeling like a fabric bazaar. On top of all that pattern, there are the goat skin stools, by OLY – we love OLY – than further layer pattern texture and diminution. Can’t give a shout out to this space without praising the grasscloth. What a difference the texture and weight of the woven wall covering makes to this room. Instant glam, instant luxe and beautifully layered. I also like the pull in from the shiny chrome table to the mercury glass table lamp, nice connection there… The thing I’d change: Who does a skirted round any more? Are they hiding a woofer? Would have liked a painted white table, or an old english stained pedestal table there instead.
I’m loving the mix of the trellis-ish window seat fabric with the wallpaper with the throw pillow fabric, just enough pattern on pattern, without overwhelming… the flat banded roman shade is the foil for all that pattern. The painted ceiling is another nice touch. I have a similar color (Hydrangea, Ben Moore) on the ceiling of my double height foyer. I love the hit of color that can some times go unnoticed because it’s so high and not too strong, from the upstairs hall it’s a much stronger feature.
And while this last image is only one pattern, the fact that it’s so bold and floor to ceiling really makes a statement in this entry way. I think the room might have not been finished or it’s just staged within an inch of being a stage set, but seriously… if you have to put something down when you come in, there is no room on that bench and there is a guard dog watching so that you don’t move anything. I sure hope there is a table across the hall AND I hope they are about to hang that art… it’s just too low.
April 28, 2012
How could you not love the stillness of the broad strokes of white in this bathroom. even with the movement of the paper? paint treatment? this room is a calm oasis that speaks to me. It says… “Come here, get in the tub and stay awhile… Forget get the trouble of the day and allow deep relaxation be the only thing that remains”. It’s also a damn pretty room! the sweet white cabinet, high-end tub and classy – yeah I said classy – window treatments add up to a pretty room.
This second shot ( pinched from the Pale & Interesting webpage ) could be the other side of the tub room above, it isn’t but the vibe fits, the collection of old mirrors and old-timey medicine cabinet are too freaking charming. I want this look.
Minus the kids – only kidding, not really, sort of, seriously kidding, ish – this room is PERFECT. I am 100% crazy for horizontal board. It’s shippy, and old-timey and modern and textural and interesting and my next/other home WILL have this in one if not many, if not all rooms. how smart and perfect are the build-ins with storage at the end to eliminate clutter? No art, that’s ok with me too. Because I tend to collect and display “things” a room like this would be hard for me to leave pure, but that is exactly what I like about it. Maybe, just maybe I’d add a chair… white of course.
Here is an example of a Do-Dad display I have going on in my hall right now. See I told you I am a collector… twigs, moss, feathers, rocks, birds nests, pinecones, shells, dried leaves… you get the point. Art Credit goes to Dora Miliken (sp? sorry Dora) she’s a painter in the South Coast area of Massachusetts.
Last… but not least… a few more white rooms, some “decorated” others “un-decorated” which in fact is a style. Intentional randomness is sort of the vein running though design right now. It’s all about the interesting, unexpected mix. French, Modern, Danish, Contemporary, what-have-you all thrown together is WHITE HOT!
April 26, 2012
It’s one of those things that sometimes goes unnoticed, nailhead gives architecture and highlights the form of a piece of furniture. Sometime however, nailhead can elevate a piece of furniture from ho-hum to oh-la-la the Cabrillo Nailhead Chest from Bernhardt is definitely an OH-LA-LA. This piece of furniture would look good anywhere. WANT!
Bungalow 5 gets into the act with the Marco Side Table, the textured and lacquered grasscloth is the perfect foil to the polished silver nailhead. At 18 X 18 X 28H this piece also slips in to many places and provides storage, a shelf and table-top. But, nailhead doesn’t have to be limited to furniture. Take a look at these great applications…
April 25, 2012
I love just about everything in this image. The old staircase painted out white mixed with a modern hall table is chic and fresh… A classic, updated. I love the pops of orange, “the” color of the moment because it’s so cheery and adds energy to the space AND most of all I love the painted stair runner. So, so, cool that is narrow, and i love the tipped detail in that much darker grey. This treatment reminds me of a racing stripe, sleek and cool.
Danika over at Gorgeous Shiny Things did this floor! amazing right? I love the mix of geometric, there is a depth to the stencils and the wood that makes this floor rich look. It’s not sweet like your typical stenciled floor. Job well done, gimmie some of that!
late this morning – it was a morning spent with the trainer – so that’s all for today folks. Have a great day!
April 24, 2012
Can’t say that I’ve ever seen clear lucite cantilevered open shelves in a kitchen before…. Love it! what a great way to add a lightness and modernity to a space.
April 23, 2012
Saw this first image on La Dolce Vita’s blog today. I’m enjoying my weekend at Ocean House and all the wonderful events scheduled into the weekend to celebrate one of my best clients birthday, but a tiny but sad I’m not at High Point in NC, getting my shop on and buying beautiful things for the store and clients. But I’m here being spoiled with the best service, in a beautiful room, partying with great friends and celebrating a good friend and client.I can’t count how many times I’ve posted about Visual Comfort, a favorite lighting manufacturer of mine. They make so many wonderful types and styles of lighting it’s really one of the only sources I need to make my clients – and myself – happy. Of course there are dozens if not 100′s of others I like including Jamie Young, The Natural Light, Vaughn, Robert Abbey, Oly, Currey & Company to name just a few… But Visual Comfort has quality, great finishes and more choices than any designer would need to complete a lighting plan from beach house to loft to city apartment to farm house, they do it all… and they do it well.
It’s my last day here at Ocean House and I am overwhelmed by the sheer number of lights the designer responsible for the furnishings has committed to. Form my bed – yes, I’m still in bad at 11:51 AM – I can count 8 lights and from memory (meaning I don’t have to turn them upside down to know that – 5 are Visual Comfort. AND, there are more down the hall… because I’m still in my Jammies, the 2 grainy shots and the end of the post – taken with the zoom on my iphone, not the best - will have to do, but just look at these handsome lights…
and from the Jammie-cam…
April 19, 2012
This cool painted geometric is the backdrop in a Ralph Lauren print ad that I saw in Elle Decor recently… I’m in love with the soft hand-done look and texture it has. Raised panel-ish, it’s not really trying to be something it’s not – not a faux anything – just a beautiful texture with a three dementional quality. So of course after I saw this ad - I had been lounging poolside – I googled handpainted geometric walls and found this…
The smarty pants – and talent – behind this writes a blog called gorgeous shiny things and her name is Danika Herrick. Needless to say I’m smitten and have a new favorite blog? Maybe. She’s crazy talented and just a wee bit crazy (who paints a fabric pattern on a sheet linoleum floor??!). Danika does, and it looks great plus she makes a mean stencil too. How awesome is the pretty little mudroom above? The pattern was borrowed from a Quadrille – China Seas pattern.
And these found via James Andrew ( WhatisJamesWearing.com )…
The trellis pattern below is attributed to the late great Albert Hadley… he put the old in “Old Guard” and the Glam in just about everything he touched.
BOTTOM LINE: Everything old is new again & If it’s boring… paint it. Heck, it’s only a can of paint and a weekend, ok maybe 3 weekends, 6 bottles of wine and a divorce BUT it’ll look great. Go get a paint brush!
April 18, 2012
I put bronzer on the other day – my husband helped get the hard to reach places in all honesty - the warm weather has me nervous that I’m going to end up in my bathing suit soon (sooner than I’d like) and I didn’t want to get caught in my winter white epidermis. The “season” is approaching and I know this because clients I see for just a few months every year have started to call asking about how quickly a sofa (or a room full of upholstery actually) can be slip-covered and if I have any fun Sunbrella patterns for the furniture around the pool that might be in stock? Of course the answers are “anything for you doll” and “of course I do”. The phone ringing and clients needing my help is always a good thing, but this time of year it means I’m about to sprint through spring and half of summer before I get to the finish line – a two-week vacation on the cape with acquaintances, loved ones and my honey. It’s 2 weeks of cocktail parties, the pool, the beach, dinners, the pool, the beach, lazy mornings, lots of coffee, the pool, the beach… well you get it.
What does this all have to do with a pool House? I’m not sure, but I love a pretty pool house, I’d like to decorate this one and anyone that has one should call me. Aerin Lauder if you’re reading this, I’d love to help you redecorate your pool house!
The one above is Aerins… so pretty. Dosen’t really need a re-do, but hey a boy can dream.
Modern if thats your thing.. this one is major WOW.
April 17, 2012
Now this is my kind of room. I so love this glam-tastic livingroom, and not just for its tonality and minimal use of color but because it exudes glamour! The beachy Capiz shell chandelier looks great and sets a mood along with the giant clam shell but frankly you could buy the light at Cost Plus for 69.99. And that’s not a bad thing – in fact I might pick up two – but for me it’s the scale of the room, the enormous carpet both sitting areas share, the formal layout of the room and of course the color story really cranks up the chic factor.
This might be the Kitchen living room (or KLR as a client calls it) or the TV room for the same house. On message with keeping things light, virtually free of pattern, and colors range from cream to tan, to oatmeal to toffee to chocolate, only a bit more toned down, casual, easy… When can I move in?
April 16, 2012
Old school is the new New School. Madras, plaid, chambray, seersucker… it all coming at us in the next few weeks, next thing you know you’ll be pulling out your flip flops and looking for your white jeans. Me? I’m going to rock an oxford cloth suit at a party this coming weekend in RI to celebrate a friends birthday. Can’t wait to see the beautifully redone Ocean House Hotel (of course pictures to come!). Love an excuse to buy a few new items of clothing and I love knowing I’m packing a new outfit or two. If you’re in the market for a suit, they are still wearing them snug, lapels are not too wide and jackets are still just a wee bit shorter than you might think it oughta be. This one is by JCrew.
I expect that I’ll be able to break up the suit and wear the pants with a blue blazer for work, and mix the slacks with khaki pants or blue cotton trousers or jeans for that matter. A suit is just a good investment, no matter how you wear it – unless of course you grow out of it or if styles change to drasticlly. Me? I like a short jacket that fits snug and a 3 button is better for my body type, so I usually go 3 button, but not always. you can always button the middle button if you want a 2 button look… and you know what they say about buttons on an man’s jacket, don’t you?
TOP BUTTON: ALWAYS
MIDDLE BUTTON: SOMETIMES
BOTTOM BUTTON: NEVER
April 15, 2012
Love this Wallpaper from Australian website jimmycricket.com could go traditional or could go funky modern depending on the application. Check them out for other cool wallpapers and wall stickers.
April 15, 2012
As a person who collects art, respects the creativity of artists and a designer who appreciates beautiful works that can really make or break a home, the work of Guido Mocafico hits a home run with me. Not only would I own one of these pieces – I love the black mysterious background he has chosen, further enhancing the already sinister mood of the images – I would hope to use one or several in a space for a client. They are bold and graphic, the colors are amazing and like any good piece of art I could look at them over and over and over. Something else I like is the unexpected rectangle, these animals typically so organic and coiled shown compartmentalized and color blocked, a unique juxtaposition.
Pinched from the pages of the Colossal Art & Design blog…
Generally when you encounter a photograph of a snake it’s coiled up in a circle, a clump, or perhaps dangling from a limb, twisted into a naturally organic shape. Y’know, it’s snakelike. Photographer Guido Mocafico has taken a decidedly different approach with his Serpens series (Part 1, Part 2), choosing instead to place the snakes into rectangular boxes, snapping each photo from above at a precisely balanced moment, turning chaotic figures into something distinctly geometric. From Mocafico’s selection of different species to their gorgeous coloration and almost zen-like positioning, I’ve never seen anything like these. For more serpentine photography don’t miss the work of Mark Laita who travels everywhere to photograph the world’s deadliest snakes. (via supersonic electronic)