Saturday, March 24, 2012
A nap on this ship-shaped daybed, inspired by a Chinese boat, may just feel like a journey across the ocean. It turns a simple backyard corner into a perfect lounging spot.
This traditional porch near Palmetto Beach, South Carolina, employs coastal-style architecture to give this new home old Southern charm with shutters that reach all the way to the ceiling. The folding shutters can be opened to let in light and air or closed for more privacy. The slats can be adjusted to let air circulate.
A large stone fireplace is the centerpiece to this screened porch that sits in a wood cabin along Lake Michigan. Fire logs are nestled in a silver drink tub next to a slipcovered ottoman with a floral and fruity pattern.
Two lounge chairs and a fountain make this patio a great place to hang out with friends or take a nap. The lounge chairs are upholstered with chocolate brown fabric, which can stand up to outdoor conditions and easily hide stains.
Just outside this home's kitchen is a patio for casual meals. Paved with saltillo tile, it overlooks the courtyard, with its cooling custom-designed fountain
Monday, March 19, 2012
The galley, or corridor, kitchen has two straight runs on either side. Typically the sink is on one side and the range is on the other. The drawback to this design is traffic flow.
The U-shape evolved as storage needs increased. It provides a massive expanse of counter and storage space as well as great flexibility. The G-shape is the basic U with another little leg.
To really break up the different areas of the kitchen, consider a zone design. In this kitchen, a separate work station exists for cooking, eating and even cleaning, allowing space for several helpers.
The three points of the frequently mentioned work triangle are the range, sink and refrigerator. Appliances can be broken up with the classic shapes.
For more privacy when cooking, choose an L-shaped layout which forces the traffic out of the work area. For more interaction with family and guests, try an L-shape with an island.
Friday, March 16, 2012
Also known as ochre, this shade is warm and welcoming. With just a hint more orange than mustard yellow, it's a nurturing tone that is commonly used in gathering areas such as kitchens and dining rooms.
Red-violet tones are a bit less serious than violet and blue-violet hues and are excellent for informal or playful spaces. The red undertones make this color somewhat feminine and youthful.
Red, the color which the eye most recognizes, is associated with movement, speed and excitement. Studies have proven that viewing red results in an increased heartbeat.
Of all the colors in the color wheel, orange is often considered the most flamboyant. Orange spaces are fun, happy and unapologetic. People who use this color for their interiors can be characterized as warm.
Often used by designers and architects to capitalize on the availability of a home's natural light, white also symbolizes purity.
Although black symbolizes both power and authority, it's usually the color east likely to be used on interior walls. This stems from the fact that black also implies submission. By the way, my favorite color is black.
Associated with romance, pink has long been a preferred color of women and girls everywhere. Certain shades of pink, when paired with otherwise masculine colors, can create a gender-neutral space.
Many men choose brown as a favorite color. It's also a go-to choice for designers looking to create an organic or earthy aesthetic.
Gray is often thought of as timeless and practical; however, too much gray leads to a feeling of old age or nothingness. Add bright colored accessories to make the gray pop.
This color combines the dependability and wisdom of blue with the royal richness of violet.
Friday, March 9, 2012
Add a little sparkle to your kitchen. The metal tiles add an industrial edge and luminescent backdrop to the crisp white surroundings. Stainless steel backsplashes are eco-friendly, easy to keep clean and look especially gorgeous in contemporary settings like this.
Nothing is more eye-catching than a sparkling mosaic backsplash. Designer Linda Woodrum created this kitchen's focal point by combining reclaimed stained-glass tiles in gray, white and yellow to create a stunning, detailed backsplash against the entire back wall. The colorful glass tiles complement the dark wood cabinetry and the kitchen's overall urban edge, while also integrating a bold dose of color to match the golden-yellow work island.
To add some visual eye candy to her brand-new kitchen, RMS user cc_insidearch used gold glassed-curved tile to create a basket weave-patterned backsplash in the cut-out of her back wall cabinet unit. With bright backlighting and a reflective granite countertop, the glass tiles' iridescent finish appears especially sleek and shiny.
To prevent this Mediterranean kitchen from feeling ancient Old World, designer Sarah Barnard used a modern backsplash technique, embossed concrete, to add a contemporary edge. A wide range of imprinting tools and embossing skins can be used to stain, stamp or add texture to concrete, creating a variety of classic appearances. This particular patterned backsplash suits the rich wood cabinetry surrounding it, and it also blends well with the other hues and materials within the room.
To create a rich and natural look in this country-style kitchen, designer Joel Snayd used Carrera marble with a stunning pattern for the backsplash and countertops. The veins in the marble prevent the kitchen's all-white elements from appearing washed out. Considered a "living surface," marble can easily chip, crack and will acquire a patina over time, so proper care is essential to keep it looking beautiful.
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
This traditional neutral master bedroom is complete with matching lamps. A touch of black in the lampshades anchors the space and adds the right touch of elegance and drama.
This bedroom addition opens out to the desert floor where the homeowners enjoy coffee with the Arizona wildlife. Mechanized window shades are recessed into the soffits to provide blackout or translucent light control. A base of neutral colors (paints, fabrics, carpet) is balanced with varying textures and patterns to create a calm, harmonious interior space. A new gas fireplace, recessed TV, lighting, sound and windowcoverings are controlled via remote from the bedside.
Custom pieces can make a big statement in a room. This hand-carved, mahogany mirror frame was specially commissioned to artisans working in the mountains of Colombia.
This dramatic, custom-designed master bedroom features an oversized diamond-tufted leather headboard that sits in a niche. The espresso-colored Wenge flooring is carried up the wall frame through to the custom bed. The bone white headboard is a sharp contrast against the rich wood floors and walls, creating a sense of luxury.
The Buddha cutout and shoji screens slide together to cover the window completely, or slide apart to become large blank canvases reflecting the 'being" and "nothingness" of Zen.
Speaking of Zen, I love this closet design. The walls in this luxurious, Asian master suite closet were rearranged to resemble a spacious high-end boutique. The custom cherry cabinetry by Irpinia Kitchens adds to the elegant look.
Sunday, March 4, 2012
From a distance, the Azzurro Collection might actually appear to be made of woven linen, such is its intricacy and palpable tactility. Any one of the more than 40 designs positively begs to reach out and be touched.
And the exotic nature of the prints might suggest linen as well, evoking, as they do, a sense of the bygone days of colonial Britain. But this is a new era and it takes a wise use of an old reliable material to create the dazzling reproductions of Azzurro.
This vinyl wallpaper on an unwoven backing comes in rolls of 10 x .7 M., sufficient dimensions to adorn the walls of an Italian villa or a Bombay flat. Each design in the Azzurro collection plays with shadow and light. There are vibrant purples dazzled by streaks of white; a dizzying and dazzling masala of reds, yellows, blacks, blues, and greens; and, my favorite, a burnished blend of earthy browns, burnt oranges, and floral yellows—evoking, ever so subtly, the wondrous striations of a Bengal tiger’s stripes.
About the Manufacturer: Èletis was established in 1988 when the company’s founders perceived a niche just ready and waiting to be filled: “colorful and innovative wallpapers which we felt were missing.” The company’s product line thus includes the fanciful and the fantastic—everything from stripes and geometrics to patterns and solids, in all the colors of the rainbow and many more besides: “Our strong passion and distinct look are recognized worldwide and this has allowed us to develop rapidly.”