So much of the time we are focused on the big picture, and we forget about the details. Making decisions about furniture, wall colour, lighting, kitchens and baths provide a foundation - but we shouldn't forget about the styling of these interiors. Styling is the icing on the cake, the step that gives interiors their individual personality; sort of akin to accessorizing an outfit. I get so excited when I see a clean surface - a console table, or dresser, a fireplace mantle, coffee table or even a single tray that has yet to be given some personality.... oh the possibilities! One can choose to remain minimal, to fill a cabinet head to toe in books and objects, or just use a single piece of statement art hung above - there are so many choices. I have gathered some of my most favorite images of styled bookshelves, console tables and cabinets. To get the perfect look is an art; and I am constantly educating my eye.
Now that summer is in full swing, I have been thinking about ways to bring warm weather style into my home. Creating an airy, beachy feel seems to make me enjoy the summer months so much more, even though I don't live anywhere near the ocean... sigh. Straw hats seem to be the IT accessory for decorating summery spaces as of late; they offer texture and a casual sensibility creating a relaxed, vacation-like feel wherever your home may be.
Take a look at the images below; they are the perfect dose of tropical inspiration.
Why not start your own collection and add to your summer decor?
This hat from ETSY adds a fun dose of color to any room with its pom pom detail:
This classic hat from H&M with a black bow makes a vintage statement:
This preppy fedora with red and navy ribbon adds a masculine touch to any decor:
I love the fringe trim the pink accent cord on this hat:
Over the past several years it seems that every bathroom that shows up online, or graces the pages of a shelter magazine has been highlighted by brass and gold-colored plumbing fixtures and hardware. This is a classic choice, however it's always exciting when new and upcoming trends hit the market. I, for one am ready to move on from these warmer tones and focus on designs that exude a more stark and urban feel. In these gorgeous images below, simple hardware in matte black takes the stage and pulls together concepts that are both delightfully European and gorgeously modern.
Here are some examples of bathrooms and powder rooms that I am loving lately:
This rain shower head and handheld are a sleek contrast to the softer tones of the marble slab wall.
A black industrial-styled shower fixture works to update this otherwise simple space.
A minimalist shower stall is my dream; the circular styling of the fixtures offsets the stark white square tiles in this shower.
The glamourous style of this bathroom is accented with gold gilt and the smooth black hardware works nicely to sharpen things up.
This small powder room is super chic with its exposed black plumbing and minimalist styling.
Loving the unexpected pale pink tiles, dark grout and black hardware here in this bathroom.
The black also works in this casual country house bath with barn door and vintage tub.
The vintage and elegant lines of this black hardware add an old-world aesthetic and the space is freshened up by the Moroccan pattern tiled floor and oversized black paned doors in the shower area.
Since Valentine's Day is only a few short days away, I thought I would share a collection of interiors showcasing one of my favorite color combos; pink and red. For many, pink and red is too colorful and a pairing that they would never consider in an interior decor plan. I beg to differ - these two colors work very well together and even create spaces that are sophisticated, cohesive and pleasing to the eye.
Bubblegum walls, pink lamps and a red sofa...
Rosy-pink slipcovered armchairs, white walls and a vintage red rug...
Alessandra Branca's Red striped walls, and pink flowers in the floral fabric on this gorgeous armless settee...
A dusty pink wall color and a red cut velvet sofa with solid pink cushions...
Miles Redd; fabulous as always with his coral-pink walls and deep red velvet chesterfield...
Alejandra Redo's dark pink walls, painted red and white floors, red armchairs and red piping on the slipcovered sofa mixed with blue and white...
Happy Valentine's Day!
It's no secret that I love a good dose of color and pattern in any space that I decorate. So when I came across Pierre Frey's new "ARTY" fabric, I completely feel in love! Bold, abstract art; brushstrokes in candy-colored hues covering a ivory linen background with abandon!
My a few of my favorite hues are included in this fabric - black, coral-red, and varying shades of blue and pale aqua. I see this as a classic choice - one that could work equally well in a modern or traditional space.
The image below shows the fabric upholstered on a fabulous antique chair. I mean, please...this is a total show stopper!
Not sure you are ready to commit to purchasing a few yards for a project? Why not try this textile out in the form of a throw pillow or two. There are several vendors on etsy.com that offer options just like the cushion pictured below - they are even available in custom sizes!
I am lucky enough to have just received a vintage black lacquered James Mont Style Ming chair from my mother. It currently has a ivory seat cushion that is so awful - a total insult to the beauty of this sexy beast.
Here she is, begging for some fabulous new fabric. I think "ARTY" could possibly be it!
Even if you are not convinced it should be in your own home, at the very least, take a few moments and run over to your local designer fabric showroom. This fabric is definitely worth a look - if only to indulge in some bright, fun color for a moment or two.
I love decorating for Christmas. I have fond memories of helping my mother fix the garland down the main interior staircase, design the wreath for the front door, and place pine boughs on the fireplace mantle, and of course decorate the tree with family.
Here are some of my favorite Christmas wreath images in pine, boxwood, mixed greenery and even dried hydrangeas!
Don't get me wrong, once a month I do love to sit down with a brand new home decor magazine, devouring each and every detail, page by page; House Beautiful, Elle Decor, Architectural Digest; I don't discriminate. First, I flip through each editorial piece and advertisement furiously, then go back to the cover and starting again carefully reading through each feature, googling products and designers as I go.
For the rest of the month, it is a whole other obsession - scrolling, scrolling and scrolling through some of my favorite NYC real estate websites. This is a decor addict's best kept secret; some of the most fabulous interiors never reach the page of a magazine, but are inside a family penthouse on Central Park South or a tiny studio co-op in Greenwich Village!
Yes, Manhattan is known for its multi-million dollar apartments, but as you can see, not every look inside these homes is totally out of reach. Below are a few places that I am seriously in-love with:
This fabulous entryway is from an apartment on West 81st St. Chinoiserie wallpaper, green lamps, a matching green folding screen and chevron floors - I am in heaven!
This gem is on east 52nd St. is just fabulous with those black paned windows, white floors, beamed ceilings and minimal white tuxedo sofa:
Check out the living area in this co-op on East 84th St. The room has a neutral base but you will find several unusual elements that definitely set it apart - the bright teal occasional chair near the window, the quirky antler ottoman, a pink throw over the back of the sofa and lavender rug. Very "Elle Decor" if you ask me:
Next time you are looking for some interior inspiration in between magazine issues, hop on over to real estate site CORCORAN and check out some of the best apartments in NYC!
Lately, I have been dreaming about taking a break from all the pattern and colour in my life. Although I find it energizing and cheerful, there are times when I come home and think...hhhmmmm what would it be like to live in a space that was completely restful and monochromatic.
I am not talking about that "all beige" look that is in every catalogue and at every big box retailer. but all white furniture, white/off-white accents, a slightly creamy wall and minimal clutter - lets call it scandinavian-chic.
To achieve this look I already have several key pieces that have been with me forever:
- white slipcovered sofa
- white ming-style console
- a pair of oversized white ginger jars
- BM Cloud White walls
- all white bedding
- two white three drawer chests
That would mean new throw pillows, new drapery and a re-upholstered headboard and bed skirt - all in an off-white solid linen perhaps?
Here are some favorite images that serve as great inspiration...
Here are two of my favorite traditional off-whites for walls...
BELOW ARE A FEW IMAGES OF THE ITEMS I NEED TO COMPLETE THE SPACE:
The more I daydream and gather these new ideas, the more I am seriously considering heading in this direction!
I have babies on the brain. Not mine... Oh goodness no, my sister is having a little one next spring and I couldn't be more excited. She and I will be working together on planning the nursery. Over the past few weeks, we have been gathering all sorts of inspirational images on pinterest over a shared board and have lots of ideas swirling around; color, no color, wallpaper, paint, vintage, traditional...who knows at this point. I am really leaning towards all-white or a combo of cream and white to keep things soft and restful, a full departure from the rest of their home which combines a fair amount of color and pattern.
Here are some images that I just love:
Here are a few products that I am loving lately that have provided lots of inspiration...
The key is to design a space that is gender-neutral as they are keeping the big boy/girl news a surprise!
It's no secret that I am a blue and white girl at heart and having spent lots of time living by the ocean, I can't help but love coastal decor; blue stripes, fresh colours and white slipcovers are never out of place in my book. But every fall, my focus seems to shift a little toward woodsy cabin decor and I crave items like plaid wool blankets, antler chandeliers and shearling rugs. One of my favorite destinations to visit in the fall is the Adirondacks. There are miles of hiking trails and gorgeous views; this area of upstate NY is lovely and is the perfect place to visit in October when the leaves are fiery shades of red and the temperature is still perfect for enjoying the outdoors.
Below are some of my favorite Adirondack-style interiors:
For the past few years in October I have stayed at Lake Placid Lodge for a mid-fall getaway. This intimate resort has it all; fabulous decor, picturesque views and even better food. I couldn't be more excited as I am headed there to spend Thanksgiving and the following week with my family and the dogs. I plan on filling my days with lots of hiking, canoeing, fly fishing and relaxing by the fire with s'mores, a cup of hot cocoa and my current needlepoint project.
Here are a few photos of LPL:
You don't have to be in vacation-mode to enjoy this rustic, woodsy style. Why not add a few touches to your current space? Mixing a few iconic Adirondack decor objects into your home will most definitely create a collected and unique interior.
Enjoy your long weekend!
I am a chinoiserie fanatic. So much so, that I need to be careful that it doesn't overtake my apartment. Give me anything with faux-bamboo styling, fretwork detail, lacquered finishes, pagoda-inspired objects and blue and white ming porcelain, and I.AM.FINISHED.
A few months ago I came across the most stunning pair of chairs - two vintage glossy green Ming chairs with brass detail. I would love to have them for myself, but I am bursting at the seams, so I kindly passed them on to my client, who will soon be moving into a new space and starting fresh with her decor.
Below is a snapshot of these gorgeous nuggets...the photo doesn't even do them justice! The color resembles a muted, multi-toned, faux-malachite finish. There is something like 22 coats of lacquer on these lovelies...I'm just dying!
check out that lacquer!!!
Here are some images that I have saved to my pinterest page that showcase similar chairs...
The fabric that is currently on the chairs is an great choice, but unfortunately won't work in this particular space.
I think we have narrowed it down to this lovely print from Schumacher - Chiang Mai Dragon. The colors are perfection with the paint color and the rest of the room.
A fun combo with Farrow & Ball's Blue Ground paint
This will be one fabulous space - watch out for pics from the install that will take place in October!
I have always loved a skirted round table - they are traditional and timeless -a soft and elegant option for any room. Tailored, draped, panelled, embellished or simple - in my mind they are the perfect piece to soften a space. Choose a fabulous fabric, maybe some trim, a utilitarian base and you are set! Ideal as a dining table, bedside or to display a collection of objects in an entry - these tables, made in any size, can work anywhere! The best thing about this whole scenario is that if you are short on space, plenty of storage can be created underneath!
Some images below of the look:
Grab an IKEA Billsta table top - available in a variety of sizes...
and an IKEA BILLSTA star base...
Then the fun part; choosing the fabric and style!
My favorite fabrics I am loving right now - perfect for a skirted table!
Why not add some trim?
My go-to sewer , Robin at Threadneedle Sewing in Toronto can whip one of these up in no time Contact them at 416-739-1233.
I have always admired Bunny Williams' style - her traditional interiors are layered and colourful and always incorporate a touch of the unexpected.
Not only does she run a busy interior design business but she also co-owns a decor boutique, Trelliage in NYC's Upper East Side neighborhood and has a fabulous collection of furniture, lighting and accessories which she offers through Bunny Williams Home.
Here are a few items that are at the top of my perpetual wish list...
Hourglass Table - I love octagonal tables - and the wood detail is incredible:
ZIG-ZAG drinks table in glossy lacquered wood - such an unusual design:
Brush Stroke Lamp - love the blue & white combo and the antiqued gold detail:
Reverse Regency Mirror - obsessed with the gold snake scale detail - so ridiculously chic:
Retro Decorative pillow - perfect for seaside living; loving the blue geometric link pattern on this guy:
Head over to Bunny Williams website and check out the other delicious finds!
I am sure you are all familiar with Sister Parish, the late great New York interior decorator and partner at Parish-Hadley Design. Sister's cozy, eclectic style was created using lots of colour, quirky patterns and painted furniture - she created rooms that were classic and timeless, whimsical and free-spirited - she always nailed that quintessential english look! Her society clients included the Kennedys, Annette de la Renta and she also partnered with Nancy Lancaster on American projects.
Sister and her beloved dogs
Here are a few of my favorite Sister Parish rooms.
Sister's legacy is continued through her family who founded Sister Parish Design in 2000 re-printing Sister's favorite fabrics and wallpapers. They have also expanded to offer pottery, dog accessories, totes and custom pillows.
Here are some of my favorite fabrics from the collection:
"Albert" in blue
How fabulous does it look on these x-benches!
'Burmese' - available in lots of fun colorways
'Campbell' in yellow
'Campbell' - Tete de Negre on a dining chair
'Eliza' - green
'Kismet' - gold
Kismet 'gold' used on an antique cane chair - love this!!
Here are some accessories from SPD that I have had my eye on forever!
Laminated fabric trays
Nomad Tote using their 'Burmese' fabric in Indigo
I have just ordered a wonderful selection of fabric samples to present to clients - I know they will fall in love!
*All images courtesy of sisterparishdesign.com*
I dont know about you, but I am always on the hunt for a delicious new hardcover (especially on home decor topics) book to add to my collection. There are so many talented designers with lots of incredible work to showcase - it seems like lately they have all authored a must-read. The covers alone are great eye candy; I use them to style my coffee table, add colour to my cabinet, and of course to read and gather great ideas! Lately, it seems that I have an endless wish list (the total in my amazon cart right now is $656.78... yikes!) that I am slowly making my way through.
Below are some great titles that I have picked up recently and then a list that are in in my perpetual queue.
Mr. Redd is one of my all time favorite designers. A must for those who love color:
Indulge in the best of "relaxed country style" with this fabulous book about the late, great work of Sister Parish:
Learn about traditional silhouettes and classic styles that are still great bases for decorating today:
Are you wondering what the living room of your favorite designer looks like? Well this is your book:
A great read, but to be honest, I bought this book for the gorgeous metallic, art deco cover - love it:
These are waiting patiently in my cart..
There is something so elegant about palm trees... Love the large scale of this book:
Sailboats are my jam, and the photos in this book are INSANE:
Tom Sheerer's eclectic style just takes the cake, his interiors are mad eye candy. This one is really calling my name:
This designer is a new fav of mine; his work is sophisticated and elegant with unexpected touches. Need this:
I just love Thomas O'Brien's classic, tailored interiors:
I mean who doesn't love the "Prince of Chintz"? Mr. Buatta is a legend:
I have always been a fan of choosing dark colours for tiny rooms - be it a small kitchen, pint-sized entry or a cramped powder room. I find it makes the boundaries somehow disappear, it just saturates the room, creates drama and makes it feel more spacious.
Currently, just my kitchen is painted a dark charcoal - ceilings and all, but I have been toying with the idea of painting my bathroom black; both walls and ceiling and even selecting a black linen shower curtain to complete the look.
The images below show a selection of fabulous black bathrooms where homeowners and designers have taken the plunge and created gorgeous little spaces...
So, why stick to all white? The black in these photos creates a glamorous and sophisticated backdrop - I love the look!
In a few days I am leaving for a full 10 days of R&R - Chester-style; lots of sailing, sunning, lobster and probably more D&S's than I will admit to.
Here is a shot of the lovely village where I have summered since childhood - a small sailing town on Nova Scotia's south shore.
I plan to spend every waking minute on the water...
Capt. P will be serving these up like they are going outta style...
Most of all, just looking forward to having a super casual and relaxed vacation...
Chester has definitely influenced my interiors in more ways than one...especially my love of blue and white. I am lucky enough to have a few clients that love the combo too. I will head out east super excited about this concept I put together for one of my favourite clients in Toronto; white furniture, lots of blue and a hit of yellow. Excited for the install which will take place in August!
Fabrics and rug...
This stunning lantern hung high up above the coffee table...
and these yummy lamps...
Now THAT is a room worth coming back for!
A few years ago, I was lucky enough to inherit a ceramic lamp in a stunning shade of celadon with a chic black ming-style wood base - a super fabulous addition to my space (props to my lovely grandmother who had such a great eye). Don't get me wrong, I loved the look of the lamp when I received it, but I am sort-of addicted to detail, so in my mind It still needs one more little finishing touch. Currently its crowning glory is a predictable white paper shade which is fine, I guess....but too safe for me. I added a tassel that hangs from the socket, which I love, but I am still not there yet...
Here is the lamp:
I think the necessary next step is to paint the shade a punchy red. I love all of these spaces below and feel that the bright lampshades are key to these looks. I mean imagine the rooms below with plain white linen shades....hhhmmm....not so good.
Headed to my local Benjamin Moore dealer this weekend to grab a quart of "TRICYCLE RED". I plan to give the shade a light sanding and then slap on a few coats in high gloss . Stay tuned for the finished product.
Lately, I have been noticing a trend in wall colour choices. More and more images are showing up over instagram and pinterest with living areas, dining rooms and bedrooms in corally-orange and salmony-pink hues. It's a chic colour that works really well with neutrals, black, blue and white - in fact every colour! Could we go as far as to call it a neutral?
Here are some fabulous images I have collected that showcase this trend.
Here are two Benjamin Moore colours that would re-create the above looks beautifully:
I would love to settle on one of these colours and re-paint my entry way... stay tuned!
The best thing about decorating is finding that perfect fabric in a great colourway that you can't live without. I have had a love affair with fabrics since I was young, following my mother around to various showrooms in search of new yardage for an ottoman or selecting trims for a custom pillow she was dreaming up.
Two of my favourite fabric houses are Quadrille and Clarence House. Quadrille for their bright hues, summery geometrics and ikats and Clarence House for their unusual colour combinations and bold prints.
Both companies produce a similar print - a colourful organic silhouette of trees and leaves in lots of colourways. Clarence House's version is simply called "Fauve" and Quadrille has named there fabric 'Arbre de Matisse". I don't necessarily have a favourite - I would be delighted to use either fabric!
Below are samples of each...
I find it hard to keep them both straight! Especially since the option from Clarence House looks more similar to the style of Matisse....to me anyway.
Here are some images that show the fabric on a larger scale:
Either fabric is a timeless choice...a designer fabric staple in so many interiors. An investment, but definitely worth it!