I was flipping through the new Aug./Sept. issue of Adore Magazine yesterday and came across the Brisbane home of Tina Kent. Colorful and bright, filled with pattern and texture, the abode perfectly suits the young family that resides within its walls. I was particularly fond of what I thought was the living room, so imagine my surprise when I learned it was actually a playroom for Mrs. Kent’s two children! My childhood basement/playroom did not resemble anything of the sort, and definitely was not adorned with Amrapal Jacaranda wallpaper – I would have been in heaven hosting my tea parties in here!
Decorating a small space is usually one of the biggest challenges for city dwellers. Every square inch needs to have a purpose, and multi-functional home decor is not typically the most attractive. Developing a detailed floor plan is essential for any room – especially for small space living – and finding new ways to use everyday items is cardinal. This lovely 800 sq. ft. NYC apartment designed by Ashley Whittaker follows these notions to a T.
LEFT: The oversized parsons desk doubles as a dining table, and the settee (similar) in the “reading nook” can be pulled up to accommodate guests. The Madeline Weinrib rug defines the work/dining space from the rest of the living room, and the bar cart makes entertaining from the table a breeze.
RIGHT: Ms. Whittaker was even able to carve out an entry in the tiny apartment behind the front door, using a petite demilune (similar) as a console. Osborne & Little’s Maharani wallpaper is a showstopper creating a wonderful first impression, while the bamboo mirror reflects light into the dark corner.
The clear acrylic coffee table (similar) appears to float in the middle of the room taking up little visual residency, and the pops of pink guide the eye throughout the room.
LEFT: Hanging the roman shade (or any window treatment for that matter) above the molding is a great design trick, bringing the eye up and making the window appear bigger than it actually is.
RIGHT: White Ikea dressers stand-in as nightstands providing additional storage, and D. Porthault Demoiselles linens add the perfect amount of luxury!
And how incredible is this kitchen?! White cabinets and light countertops always make the space appear bigger, while the Rose Cummings Zebrine wallpaper and birdcage chandelier (and similar here) add so much whimsy! I love how the designer used a countertop high breakfast table that can double as a workspace, and the stool can easily slide under the table when extra space is required.
Check out more tips for small space living here and here.
I was browsing through Southern Living last night and came across the new Idea House located on the grounds of Fontanel in Nashville. The new Southern farmhouse is comprised of one main house and several outbuildings in a horseshoe configuration, reflecting the classic farmstead. The wraparound porch ties all of the buildings together seamlessly and the gable roof adds the perfect amount of charm! While not all the interior rooms are my style – some are a bit too conservative for my taste – there are several show stoppers!
Let’s start out with this AMAZING herringbone inlaid wood door – gorgeous!!! The front porch is so enchanting, I’d drink ice tea out there all day and never leave!
The custom cabinets in the kitchen are stunning painted in Sherwin Williams Pewter Green, and the shaker-style compliments farmhouse aesthetic perfectly. The lighter green (Sherwin Williams Oyster Bay) planked walls provides just the right amount of contrast, bringing depth and dimension to the space. And don’t even get me started on the schoolhouse pendants from Circa!
A complimentary hue in the same color palette (Sherwin Williams Palm Leaf) was carried into the study on both the walls and bookshelves, making the room incredibly cozy, further complemented by the cut out in the built-in’s for the sofa.
The pleated gingham table skirt on the sink makes me incredibly happy!
How do you feel about new construction based on older designs that served a specific purpose – like the classic farmstead? I think there’s a lot of really bad examples out there, but it looks like the Idea House was done well. I’d love to see it in person!
I like a few good doses of pattern in a room to keep things interesting. Stripes are one of the most versatile, easily combined with toile, floral and other geometric strokes. As for my favorite, it’s a toss-up between ticking stripes and awning stripes, with the former ringing in #1 for large-scale coverage – like upholstery or wallpaper. The subtle pattern looks almost like a solid from a few feet back and the classic petite lines render a timeless design.
Ticking stripes are most commonly associated with coastal style homes.
But can also be elegant, and even a little mysterious, especially when paired with darker walls.
And of course they look fabulous in a more traditional settings as well – I’ve always adored that Odette Sofette!
Here’s a few of my most recent crushes: 1- Ticking Stripe Apron $48 // 2- Target Dress $20.99 // 3- J.Crew Schoolboy Blazer $129.99 // 4- Ralph Lauren Writer’s Chair // 5- Target Denim Button Down $22.99 // 6- Pottery Barn Ticking Stripe Ruffle Shower Curtain $79 // 7- Ticking Stripe Roman Shade $49.50 (great price!)
What’s your take on ticking stripes? Do they appear anywhere in your home?
To say I have a design crush on Miles Redd is a bit of an understatement. His unique aesthetic combines whimsy and glamour, infusing traditional forms with modern gestures, all executed with a fearless hand for a look that is truly his own. This fabulous Bahamas beach house is one of Mr. Redd’s more recent projects, and I was delighted to see him apply his invigorating style with a more laid back vibe.
The octagonal entry was designed as a sitting area, where guests can be greeted with cocktails upon arrival – I’m sure there’s a place for hats and coats too! The painted compass on the floor is one of my favorite aspects of the room, followed shortly after by the Fromental wallpaper and China Seas Sultan II fabric used to upholster the sofas…
…which was also carried through into the living room to cover the walls and ceilings, with curtains to match!
The parrot and map prints suggest an island vibe without being overtly beachy, and obviously I love the color combo in the room!
And can we discuss the plastered pineapple walls is the hallway?! Amazing!!! The Paule Marrot wallpaper isn’t too shabby either!Dubbed Pineapple Hill (houses with names are like the cool kids in school these days!), the plantation style home is one chic beach house!
According to the WSJ, chintz is back. To be perfectly honest, I never really thought it was “out”. My grandmother is the classiest and most stylish lady I know, and a chintz sofa has always reined supreme in her living room. I think the pattern may have gotten a bad rap in the 80’s when more was more, and pastel chintz on chintz was done just down right wrong. I prefer a more chinoiserie-chintz pattern paired with a modern motif, like a chevron fabric or leopard print rug.
Adore the chintz table skirt paired with Quadrille’s more modern zig-zag roman shade!Thaibaut’s Guadeloupe wallpaper brings this bathroom to life!
So what’s your opinion? Most people seem to either love or hate the pattern!
The Living Room, located in c/o The Maidstone Hotel is one of my favorite restaurants in the Hamptons. Not only is the food amazing – Modern American with a Swedish twist following the tenants of Slow Food cooking – but the design is incredible (these pictures do not do it justice!). Swedish hotelier Jenny Ljungberg overhauled the 150+ year old Greek Revival in 2008, infusing the historic Inn with a whimsical, sophisticated and distinctly Scandinavian-modern sensibility.
Colorful Josef Frank pillows rest on Swedish antiques and contemporary photography hangs alongside graphic wallpaper.
Now don’t get me wrong, I will always choose a restaurant based on food first (one of my favorite NJ restaurants is a Mexican dive), but when the cuisine is superb and the decor is spot-on, it really makes for a wonderful experience!
My family’s house is less than 10 miles down the road, so I really can’t justify staying in the hotel – but the rooms are so pretty!
And guests get to utilize these adorable bikes! Staycation while on vacation perhaps?
Oh, and dogs are welcome in select rooms, lounges/salons and restaurants – they even have their own menu! Bella and Cody, pack your bones!
Check out more of my favorite places to eat and visit in the Hamptons here.
Images via and via
I must be having a green moment this week, but couldn’t pass up sharing this amazing lounge/powder room designed by Shelley Johnstone Paschke for the Lake Forest Showhouse & Gardens.
I mean, look at those painted malachite ceilings! The mural is perfectly complimented by gold trimmed moldings and brass accents, while the blue and white chinoiserie pottery bring in just enough color to ensure the room isn’t too monochromatic.
The powder room portion of the space isn’t too shabby either, I adore the Farrow & Ball Acanthus wallpaper!
Very jealous of all you Chicago folks who get to see the showhouse in person – let me know your thoughts!
I grew up in a quaint 3-bedroom Brooklyn abode until the age of 10. Being one of three children, my brother scored a room of his own and my sister and I shared a bedroom, which was a complete recipe for disaster! I was a girly-girl loving bright colors and feminine accents (not much has changed!), and my sister spent most of her time outperforming our male neighbors in touch football. Luckily my five year seniority and her lack of aesthetic interests allotted me the majority of design decisions for our room. At the age of 9 I begged my mother to allow me to redecorate (a completely normal request from a 9 year old?!) and to my surprise she complied! I selected a lovely wallpaper with little red hearts, and my amazing grandmother hand-quilted us matching blankets. The next step in the “design process” was to choose the light fixture, and I had my eye on a lovely little crystal chandelier. On our trip to the lighting store my 4 year old roommate had a complete meltdown because she wanted a black ceiling fan with glow in the dark stars, and there was NO WAY I was allowing that in my room! Lucky for me my mother was equally as horrified by the spider-like monstrosity and sided with my selection. But the seed was planted we had outgrown our little Brooklyn home, and a few months later moved to a larger house in New Jersey.
I haven’t had wallpaper since, but given the opportunity Hinson & Co.’s Martinique would be on the top of my list!
Made famous by the Beverly Hills Hotel, the paper is timeless, exotic and dramatic! I’m not sure I would plaster my bedroom walls with it, but think it would look pretty fabulous in a kitchen, entry or bathroom!
What’s your feelings on wallpaper? Love it, or way too permanent?
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