Friday, August 28, 2015

Tusculum Residence

Tusculum Residence by Smart Design Studio

Description by Smart Design Studio

This exciting renovation and extension of a turn-of-the-century terrace house in Sydney’s Potts Point focuses on a grand and gracefully spiralling stair that forms the pivotal junction of the old and new parts of the house. The staircase, spanning the width of the building, features delicate fan-like steel treads cantilevered from the central steel post and winding their way past six split levels, offset between the old and new sides of the house. The stair was conceived as the element that grafts the contemporary and new minimal structure to the refined, trimmed and formal older portion of the dwelling.
Spacious living areas and private zones open out from each side of the stair with one area per level alternating between the old and new building. Formal living, dining, kitchen and informal living; master suite, guest suite, study and laundry: each zone maintains a natural sense of privacy from the other through the offset in level yet maintains a sense of interconnection in the openness and movement created by the stair.
Internally, finishes in the old portion of the house are contemporary and elegant in a stripped-classical style with deep flush skirting boards, mannered panelled doors and wide timber floorboards, all in gloss white paint and offset by richly coloured set plaster walls. In contrast, the mainly white extension with the same gloss white floorboards, features a black stained timber-boarded joinery element across three levels. Bronze window frames, ironmongery and trims unite both portions of the three-storey home.
Externally, the connection to the outdoors is accentuated through a 13 metre clear span wall of sliding doors that overlooks a pocket garden. An addition to this, the bi-folding doors are concealed by joinery to provide a seamless connection to the tiered rear garden with mature pepper tree. This house offers extraordinary spaces complemented by confident forms, understated design and exquisite detail.

Monday, August 10, 2015


Beck Residence by Horst Architects

Beck Residence by Horst Architects

Beck Residence by Horst Architects

Beck Residence by Horst Architects

Beck Residence by Horst Architects

Beck Residence by Horst Architects

Beck Residence by Horst Architects

Beck Residence by Horst Architects

Beck Residence by Horst Architects

Beck Residence by Horst Architects

This is totally a design I LOVE!!!!

Description by Horst Architects

Perched atop a rocky seaside promontory, this loft renovation is an efficient response to the problem of limited space with simplicity and restraint being the guiding principles of the design solution. The clients requested a design which would accommodate office work by day and intimate social and familial gatherings by night. The interior spaces have been completely reconfigured into an open plan evolving around a double height entry volume containing the principal stairway. Sliding partitions and fabric behind frameless glass have replaced traditional means of enclosure and spatial transition. A sculptural interplay of material, light and form define spaces, which are both intimate and communal, sheltering yet expansive. Indoor and outdoor living is integrated by frameless, bi-folding doors. Windows are positioned to embrace the view of the harbor, while second skin systems such as wood shutters mediate the late afternoon sun and provide privacy. The changing play of light on surfaces, the breezes that move through and around the structure, the touch and smell of walls and gardens, the play of colors, the sound of spaces all play a part in the reception of architecture as it is lived in, and are important determinants in our well being.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Serenity In Design HGTV Interview

Serenity In Design-Cynthia Phillips

Jacqueline Dowling of multiview media contacted me and asked if I would be interested in interviewing Libby Langdon and David Gregg at HGTV, below are the questions I prepared along with information about Libby and David.

Hello my name is Cynthia Phillips, I received my A.S.I.D. in interior design in 1993 and am now retired. I continue to manage Serenity In Design blog, were I publish articles about Interior Design, Design Products, Art and Artists as well as accomplished designers in the industry. My site can be found at

First of all I want to say thank you to HGTV for inviting me to conduct this interview with Libby Langdon and David Gregg. Both Libby and David's credentials speak for themselves as having achieved such high honors in the design industry.

David Gregg has achieved remarkable success as a New Product Journalist on television, radio, print and the web. David combines his relatable style and easy to follow information while featuring the latest consumer products (electronics, appliances, housewares, leisure) during his television and radio segments. He is a regular in-studio guest on major market television stations across the country, among them: -WPIX-New York, WAGA-Atlanta, WLS-Chicago, WJBK-Detroit, WTTG-Washington D.C. and has been seen nationally on - Fox News Channel's "Fox and Friends", The Daily Buzz, CNN, ABC's "The View" and The Discovery Channel. David is also a frequently featured contributor on CBS News - “The Early Show" and is currently the Senior Editor of

Libby Langdon is an interior designer and an expert commentator on HGTV’s hit show Small Space, Big Style. Libby is also Rachael Ray’s go-to interior design “buddy”, and frequently appears on The Rachel Ray Show doing design makeovers. Libby was the interior designer on the Discovery makeover pilot called Construction Intervention and hosted the FOX makeover TV show, Design Invasion. She is also the author of Libby Langdon’s Small Space Solutions. Libby has appeared on The View, The Early Show, BetterTV, and NBC's Open House NYC. Her designs have been featured on magazine covers of Hamptons Cottages and Gardens, New England Home and Decorating Spaces. She is a regular contributor and small space expert to Woman's Day, Budget Decorating, Better Homes and Gardens, and Glamour as well as a regular contributor to the nation’s top daily newspapers with her design, entertaining and food ideas. Libby is also a regular on WCBS radio as an Interior Design/Lifestyle expert.

I would first like to ask Libby and David the following questions?

Libby, why do you feel moving to be so stressful?

Libby, why are people often unprepared when they arrive in their new space?

Libby and David, what are the biggest design mistakes people make in a new home?

Libby and David, what are the latest home design trends in your opinion?

Libby, how do you approach making the most of small spaces?

David how do you tastefully incorporate technology into your home decor and design around it? What are the top five tips people need to know about relocating their entertainment centers?

David and Libby, please give us ideas for a to-do list for someone moving into a new home?

David and Libby, what was the most stressful thing about your own last moves?

David and Libby, do you have any special considerations for international moves?

David and Libby, what are some of your favorite money-saving tips?

David and Libby, where can my readers find additional information?

Thank you for answering my questions and participating in the interview. I know my readers will be very excited to view this interview and will appreciate your knowledgeable views to my questions, having received informative design tips and ideas you have so eloquently answered for us today.

Cynthia Phillips

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Open and Clean

A 280m2 single family house designed by Architects EAT located in the leafy suburb of Canterbury, Australia. Concrete, steel and glass were used as the primary building envelope of the extension. The project has been featured over 14 presses internationally and has been a popular feature over 100 blogs and websites. It has also won the acclaimed ‘AIA Victorian Chapter Residential Award’.O

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Black, Brown and White Theme

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (7)

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (4)

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (13)

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (20)

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (27)

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (28)

I love the contemporary style of these book shelves, beauty and function.

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (31)

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (37)

The accent wall of wood is spotlighted and quite different from a normal display, continue reading to see what it is actually used for, which will surprise you.

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (38)

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (34)

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (40)

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (46)

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino (52)

The low lighting offers a soothing feel and is perfect for relaxing in your bathing environment to offer a spa like feeling.

Giolitti by Fabio Fantolino: Located in the center of Turin. The living area, is opposed to the sleeping are of cozy and intimate spaces.

In the lounge, the resin and baked brushed brown oak, give balance to a living room that with the sofas, rugs and chairs make this environment full of atmosphere.

The Interiors are embellished with precious materials such as the pantry: built as a vintage cabinet using old woods make it a centerpiece for display.