Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween - circa 1981

As I write this post, my 16 yr old son is having a Halloween party in the other room. Coincidentally I came across this photo while cleaning out the basement today. Here I am w/my fellow senior friends at our high school Halloween party. I'm the one in the "punk-rock-camouflage" costume. Not sure what to say about my get up...although I remember this was a really fun party.

Friday, October 29, 2010

A Restful Stay at the St. Regis SF

A month later and I'm still thinking about the design of the bedroom I stayed in at the St. Regis in San Francisco. What I noticed: (1) light colors that were warm, (2) low contrast (3) warm, medium-toned woods. It all combined for a really restful, peaceful space. Has me rethinking my own bedroom and wondering about some changes I can make...
Loved the pull-out tray in this nightside table.
The view from the bathroom through pull-back sliding doors.
This photo was taken at night - bit more orange than in real life.

Hope you have a great weekend. On my list - FINISH the end table with the marbled paper.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Fluted Zinc

Love these fluted zinc containers I saw at Wynn Alex in San Francisco last month. A large grouping like this makes a big impact. Looking at these makes me wish I had bought some.

On an unrelated note, my hometown of Auburn NY was ranked by Forbes as one of the best small cities to raise a family - coming in at #18. In 2008 I did a post about Auburn here. Congrats Auburn!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Eye Candy

Eye candy from the interiors of Ramon Garcia Jurado and Paco Pocovi as featured in Nuevo Estilo here. I think it's time I subscribe to this magazine.

Friday, October 22, 2010

This Paper for This Table

I've painted my yard sale find with leftover Farrow & Ball Shaded White but am thinking about using this Renato Crepaldi french curled marbled paper from to cover the top and lower two shelves. The idea for doing this came after reading this post on designer Capelloe Kincheloe's blog. However, because patience is not one of my virtues, I've already bought the paper without ordering a sample. It's beautiful but it's a bit darker than it appeared on my computer screen. My daughter liked it though and thinks it will work in my bedroom so I'll go ahead with it this weekend. Wish me luck! Oh, and any advice for attaching paper to wood and applying polyurethane is welcome.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Meeting Grant and Scot & Sue Fisher King

It's always great fun when a business trip can include a wonderful design-focused diversion. A few weeks ago I was in San Francisco for work and was very happy to have a chance to meet Grant Gibson and Scot Meacham Wood. As a long time fan of their work and their blogs, I really appreciated their willingness to take time out of their day to meet-up at Sue Fisher King and then on to a cafe for coffee and conversation. Charming, funny, interesting and a great pleasure to talk with - it was the highlight of my trip. Thanks Grant and Scot!
Sue Fisher King seems to top everyone's list for a must-visit while in San Francisco. Grant mentioned it in his piece in Rue magazine and the store has an impressive and beautifully selected range of linens, towels, bedding and other wonderful home accessories. I don't think I've ever seen a wider selection of cashmere throws in one place.

Genius packaging.
Love this fresh, light table setting. Some people are sticklers for white candles, but colored candles, like these blue ones, are really beautiful here.
Outside there's a display of Lavastone tables and samples of the range of saturated color options for both tabletops and counters.
This was my 4th trip to San Francisco but my first trip to Sue Fisher King. I really missed out those other 3 times!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Nov. 7th - really?

This morning I woke up in the dark and googled when daylight savings time would start. I was really hoping it would be soon as I'm not one of those people who does well waking up in the dark & having it stay dark for a while (Although I don't like having it get dark early either. Shortened daylight is a huge downside to fall and winter for me.) Anyway, we don't get to set our clocks back until Nov. 7th. Last year it was Nov. 1st. Sorry for the whining on a Monday morning. Hope these images from Maison Interiors make up for it.

All images from here.Speaking of sleep, here are some of the fun designers and bloggers I got to catch up with at Ronda Carmen of All the Best's SFERRA event at Timothy Paul Bedding. From left to right, designer Barbara Franceski, Stefan Hurray of Architect Design, designers Heather Safferstone and Sally Steponkus of Sally Steponkus Interiors and Daniela Shuffler of Aesthetic Oiseau.

SFERRA has launched a campaign called Lose Count to increase awareness that there are other important elements to high quality bedding in addition to thread count. Check it out here as there's also great info on putting together a beautiful bed.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Upcoming Design Camps with Tobi Fairley

Maybe you've seen this but interior designer Tobi Fairley is hosting more Design Camps in Little Rock. They look like great fun & as well as highly informative (wish my schedule would allow me to go!) The Basic Design Camp on November 6th and the Advanced Camp on November 12-13 have been officially confirmed and there's still a chance to secure one of the remaining seats. In addition, there's a third offering of a Blog Camp on Friday December 10th. Go here to get more details and hear what former campers have to say about the experience.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Gwen Driscoll: Break-Out Design Star

I've been a fan of Gwen Driscoll and her blog, Ragland Hill Social, since coming across it last December. It was always a treat when she showed snippets of her home and work for clients - often leaving me wanting more!

Well, Gwen just launched her website and to say her work is incredible is not descriptive enough. Warm, elegant, layered and unique, I think her work is harbinger of an increased emphasis on homes that personally reflect the homeowner and the artistic side of interior design. As she mentions on her site, "Spaces are lived in but become living spaces." In addition to the website launch, Gwen's work with Jane Scott Hodges, founder of Leontine Linens, is in the November issue of Elle Decor, which Teresa of Splendid Sass recently blogged about here. It's so exciting to see Gwen get the national attention her work deserves. Brava!

all images via Gwen Driscoll Designs.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Yard Sale Buys & the Price $ Thing

I've been on a recent lucky streak with yard sale finds. Here's a Trumeau style mirror purchased at Arlington's Civitan Community yard sale for $40 (it's the same place where Jenny of Little Green Notebook sold her truckload of amazing stuff).

When I saw the mirror, two women were eyeing it and the seller said it was $40. They walked away and when I approached and asked the price, she replied $50. Well, since I had heard her original price of $40 I offered that - which she relunctantly accepted. Still not sure why it was $40 for one person but $50 for me...? (p.s. the other women were dressed better than me)

It's very-very gold and I plan to tone down parts of it w/some grayish paint. As you can see I'm currently moving things around in my dining room/library. I'm thinking the acanthus leaf sconces will stay although I need a way to better deal with the cord. The concrete antique french trough is is from Flat Earth Designs and it's on my to-do list to plant something in it!
Saturday we stopped by a family-run estate sale and bought this dresser for $30. It's a Henredon piece and the drawers work beautifully - I'd already removed some of the hardware when I took this pic. I thought $30 was a very good price and the seller seemed happy that I simply said, "Yes, I'll take it."
Then I asked how much for this great end table. The very nice woman said $5 and as soon as she said it, I could see she was a bit disappointed with herself. So I asked her to let me pay $10 for it. I really felt $5 was too cheap, wasn't a fair exchange at that price and would have left me feeling guilty. **I hope this story doesn't come across as self-serving. Feeling guilty sometimes make me do the right thing. Plus, she was a really nice person. If she hadn't been, maybe I would have just paid $5.

So 3 situations: (1) one the price was higher for me than somebody else and I offered the lower price, (2) price was good for buyer and seller and (3) price was too low and I would have felt a bit cheap and guilty for paying the lower price.

Has this kind of thing ever happened to you?

p.s. - In a burst of unusual productivity, I've already clean, sanded and primed the furniture. Please send me emails if I haven't posted the results by Friday. I get more done with people looking over my shoulder!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Meeting Darryl Carter

First off, a huge thank you to Lauren of Pure Style Home for letting me tag along with her to meet Darryl Carter and have our well-worn copies of The New Traditional signed. Here's a pic of her w/Darryl. (I would show you mine but will you understand if I said I was having a bad hair day...) Darryl couldn't have been more generous with his time or more enjoyable to talk to. It was really a highlight to meet him!
He recently joined Jura Koncius and Terri Sapienza of The Washington Post for their Home Front Q & A. Two things that impressed me so much: his willingness to give specific paint color suggestions and local design sources. Be sure to check out the complete discussion here. Here's just a bit of the advice from this talented designer:

- In response to a question about what to paint a repro Duncan Phyfe dining table: "Try Benjamin Moore Pashmina… Gesso the table white and then apply – probably will need a protective coat of matte finish to preserve for use. Ask the paint specialist how best to execute. Try a few colors in this family to execute to your taste."

- Request for a blue for a front door: "Benjamin Moore Wolf Gray or Gravel Gray - high gloss or satin finish."

- "My go to paint color is Benjamin Moore’s Moonlight White. It’s a white tone that is very rich with a good deal of depth. Being in an attached dwelling with limited natural light, Moonlight White will open the spaces and allow light to move with ease from the front of the home to the back and vice versa… The other unique aspect of this color is that it takes on different color tonality at different times of the day."

- Local Sources: Strasburg Emporium in Strasburg, VA; Deleplane Store & Antique Center, Deleplane, VA; Red Schoolhouse/Scottish Connection Antiques in Millwood, VA; US Marble & Granite in Beltsville, MD; Timothy Paul on 14th St. DC

If you're interested in more, Sonu Mathew, Sr. Interior Designer with Benjamin Moore & Co. has some great video interviews with Darryl posted on her blog, Living in Color with Sonu. The above paint picks are some of his favorite go-to colors via her blog.

I hope you have a great long weekend. I'll leave you with these beautiful, serene images of Darryl Carter's work.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Inspiration from Tobi Fairley's Table Transformation

Tobi Fairley designed a beautiful Stair Hall for the Richmond Symphony Designer House that pairs classic pieces with modern finishes and vibrant color. The focal point when you first enter the space is a striking pedestal table that she designed and had custom built by Kent Hughes of Fairfax Designs and beautifully painted by Stephanie Jones of me & mrs. jones. (photo by Tobi Fairley via A Passion for Home)Here's the before in a natural wood state with sanding sealer applied. I see tables similar to this in consignment shops and flea markets pretty regularly (although the quality of the craftsmanship in this table does set it apart). Maybe you have a piece in your home like this?
Now here's the after - stunning! In her blog post, Mrs. Jones mentioned that Tobi specified a soft-oyster white and accent trim of raspberry red. Here's a close-up of the perfectly painted lines that give extra definition to the piece.

Here's a view of the space from the stairwell - giving context to the pedestal table in the space. The Showhouse is open through Oct. 11th - the designers did an amazing job and it's definitely worth it to see it in person. (photo by Jami Carlton via RS Designer House Facebook page)
Go here to see more of Stephanie's work & for inspiration for possibly transforming some pieces in your home. Right now I have my eye on a mirror I bought at a flea market Saturday...

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Jean Paul Gaultier & Roche Bobois

A few weeks ago I had a chance to attend a party celebrating the Washington D.C. launch of the new Jean Paul Gaultier collection for Roche Bobois, which marks its 50th anniversary this year. The blend of high fashion and interior design is evident in the mix of nautical stripes and striking patterns in the pieces for this limited collection. Gaultier updated the Mah Jong sofa, originally created for Roche Bobois by Hans Hopfer in the 1970's, with glam fabrics. Along with being hip looking, this sofa was extremely comfortable and included adjustable cushions that lengthened the seat back.
This press release image does much better justice to the crisp coloring than my photos.

My favorite - this Roman chariot inspired chair. So fun!!

Scott Fazzini of Domicidal Maniac did an in-depth post with very interesting information about the designer. The DC area Roche Bobois is located at 5310 Wisconsin Ave, Washington DC (Maza Gallerie area)


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