Friday, September 23rd, 2011
So in the time I’ve been meaning to scan the best images from the latest issue of Elle Decor many things happened, pushing it onto tomorrow’s to do list. Over and over again. Guess what happened? Before I could get through the Septmeber issue, I got October’s issue in the mail. Oops! So I guess this isn’t quite “Hot Off the Press,” but I still wanted to share the great spaces and details I enjoyed from this issue. If the weekend isn’t too bad maybe I’ll actually get the October issues of Elle Decor and House Beautiful up for you too. Maybe.
Once I’d saved all my favorite images I realized what stood out to me in this issue was really the juxtaposition of very different approaches to similar spaces. For instance, here is a conservatory that is so bright and filled with light that I can’t imagine having a gloomy day in here. It’s an expansive space and fairly formal feeling.
Here is a porch that I’m sure is normally flooded with light thanks to those large windows and high ceilings. But the dark shades are a bit of a color surprise and allow the space to become a cozy den like space. The furniture is more casual and curl up ready. The dogs clearly have the run of the space, and the concrete floor is fuss-free.
Here is the dining room from the same house as the conservatory. I love the mix of furniture and those peacocks at the back are spectacular! It took me multiple looks at this photo before I saw the white peacock on the right. The color palette is crisp and vivid. The furniture is not overpowered by the homeowner’s impressive art collection.
In contrast, this dining room in an urban loft has a dark warmth thanks to the giant original beams, large wood table and vintage chairs, and the big bookcase. It has a library meets dining room casualness that feels inviting in a totally different way.
Now I have two offices that look nothing like typical offices to me, but perhaps that’s because they really work at the kitchen table with their laptop most of the time (no idea if that’s really true).
I love the vivid peacock blues of the wall, lamps and chairs that so brilliantly pull the colors from the painting by Kim Douglas Wiggins on the back wall. I love that painting! The crisp white trim, desk and rug help balance all that saturated blue.
Or you could chose to work in a “chamber of curiosities” filled with botanical drawings, 19th century taxidermy songbirds and Pedro Friedeberg’s Hand chair. It’s the complete commitment to a style that I love about each of these rooms. If something is your passion, then embrace it!
The twine faux taxidermy head reminds me of Ballard Designs’ recent collection of rattan bull heads to hang on the wall in a similar fashion.
Finally, I love the ironwork holding up the draped fabric over the bed and windows in this Master Bedroom. Adding the lantern hanging from one of the branches is a brilliant touch of whimsy that reminds me of dark stories set in times of old like the Legend of Sleepy Hollow, where walking through dark forests with only a lantern would be a common occurrence. The faux bois wall treatment subtly references back to the branches.
Or you could have a masculine bedroom filled with lots of rich woods and leather. It’s all about solid sturdy pieces in this room with enough visual weight to balance the visual weight of those beams and pillars. I love the arms on the Frits Henningsen armchairs.
Are you drawn to one room more than the other? I love how many options there are out there for decorating a home to truly reflect your personal style. That’s why I can’t ever design in just one style. I can select what would work in my house and my life, but every client has a different answer to the questions “what do you like?” and “how do you want your home to feel?” Translating that into a home they will love is an honor and privilege.
All photos via Elle Decor
Friday, March 18th, 2011
Spring is hinting at a return of all things bring and cheerful. But until I see a week of 50 degree days I know not to get too hopeful. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t have spring fever and start craving bright, sunny, and upbeat spaces that look filled with sunshine and warm air. Here are few favorites to help you through this transition season.
The light floors, walls and ceiling open up this living room and allow the bright colors room to breathe. The open chandelier isn’t visually heavy so it doesn’t weigh down the space.
Spring and summer I start bringing bright colors and patterns back into my wardrobe in more frequent rotation. The same is true with interiors. Why not go for it with a mobile of paper lanterns? This works over a couch in a living room with high ceilings too. Add a fun border or wallpaper to add pattern to a otherwise simple room. Notice that the crib and couch both have black frames and white bedding/ cushions? The pops of colors come from the lights, curtains, border and throw pillows. The one olive green side table is a fun addition.
The green backsplash is the perfect fresh cut grass color to remind me of the grass finally breaking through the melting snow piles to reclaim their turf (literally). So cheerful!
A few well placed accessories transform a home office nook into a springy destination. And the daffodils on the windowsill? What better representation of spring is there? I love buying the bunches of fresh daffodils during the American Cancer Society annual fundraising drive.
This is the way I want summer to feel. Sitting on a big veranda, lounging amongst the cushions, surrounded by greenery with interesting leaves, and a little cafe table where I can have a morning cup of iced tea and a scone. Oh gosh, I’m so ready for it… maybe this wasn’t a good idea.
But if I’m going to torture myself, let’s go for the full fantasy.
This shingled beach house says Cape Cod or the Hamptons in the height of summer to me. You can even see a bicycle leaning against the wall on the left, ready for me to peddle into town for a lobster roll from the best fresh seafood shack.
Or perhaps you’d prefer to escape to your rustic cabin with modern details. A modern sink and faucet are juxtapositioned against the raw wood planks and vintage mirror for an unfussy minimal aesthetic that doesn’t take itself too seriously.
In the end, the best part of summer is really the ability to hang out with friends outside, and the long nights which seem to never end and no one wants to go home. Get ready, because before we know it the warm weather will truly be here to stay!
What are you looking forward to in Spring? How about summertime?
Photo credits: 1 – Living Room by David Jimenez. 2 – Nursery source unknown. 3 – Kitchen by Eve Robinson. 4 – Home office by i-can’t-remember-her-name. 5 – Porch by Suzanne Rheinstein. 6 – Beach house source unknown. 7 – Bathroom source unknown. 8 – Backyard source unknown.
Tags: beach house, grass, green, home office, interior design, Kitchen, living room, nursery, paper lanterns, porch, spring, summer, wood planks
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