Our Favorite Summer Whites

There’s nothing lighter and airier than a breezy white curtain blowing in a summer wind.  But why only bring out the whites between Memorial Day and Labor Day?  For a fresh look 12 months a year, add a soft summer white and keep a little summer in your home year round.

I love the whitewashed woods mixed with the creamy neutrals.  The Kouboo Chandelier just completes the room.

Kouboo

Kouboo

 

Stash some white accessories around…they go with everything!

Lulu & Georgia

Lulu & Georgia

 

Nothing beats white curtains on a white wall for a fresh “summer” feel.

Crate & Barrel

Crate & Barrel

 

And crisp white bedding is a practical and pretty solution for what to put on the bed.

Matouk

Matouk

 

A white sofa and table don’t have to be monochromatic.  Change it up with colorful pillows and accessories, and you have a room that can change along with your mood.

Wisteria

Wisteria

 

White outside on cushions?  Absolutely!  Make sure they’re washable and you’ll have them for many seasons.

Serena & Lily

Serena & Lily

 

White slipcovers also are a great, practical solution – just make sure they can be easily cleaned and you’re ready to go.

 

Kathy Kuo Home

Kathy Kuo Home

 

What’s your take on white all year long?  Do you have a favorite room to use this crisp, clean look in?

 

Design Trends 101: Transparent Furniture

What is functional, easy to maintain, makes a statement without having any visual weight, and goes with everything?  Try transparent furniture.  Unlike glass there is no heavy weight, so moving is a snap.  Transparent furniture is adaptable to almost all interior design styles and is available in almost anything.  Perhaps it started with the iconic Louis Ghost Chair.

Designed by Philippe Stark, this chair was created in the early 2000’s as a throwback to the King Louis XVI armchair. Another thing that makes this chair great is that it can be used in any room of the house to give it a bit of “ghostly” flair. You can place this outside or inside and it will not get dirty or damage easily. It was made in Italy, and when folded can be stacked up to six chairs high!

This chair is shock, scratch, and dirt resistant, making it both beautiful as well as durable.

LouisGhostChairsPhillipeStarck-500x285

Louis Ghost Chair, Kartell (Available at Voltex)

 

From chairs, to desks, to tables, the transparent characteristics add a new dimension to your decor.

Wisteria

Wisteria

 

Wisteria

Wisteria

 

Wisteria

Wisteria

 

Mixed with woods and metals, hinges and clasps, polycarbonate can transform the ordinary into the focal point of your room.

Jonathan Adler

Jonathan Adler

 

Jonathan Adler

Jonathan Adler

 

Clearstands Trunk, Photo by Homepolish (Via Refinery 29)

Clearstands Trunk, Photo by Homepolish (Via Refinery 29)

 

Big or small, tall or short, transparent furniture offers something for everyone.

Photo by Homepolish (Via Refinery 29)

Photo by Homepolish (Via Refinery 29)

Amanda Nisbet Design

Amanda Nisbet Design

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PB Teen

PB Teen

 

What do you think about this look?  Show us some of your favorite ideas!

5 Tips to Design Around Your TV

When designing a room, the television always seems to be “the elephant in the room”.  You want it there and you want to be comfortable to sit and watch it, yet you don’t want to design your entire room around it.  What do you do?  Try to hide it?  Make it inconspicuous?  My advice is that it’s there to stay, so let’s just work with it!

Unless we are creating a true media room where the only function of the room is to watch the screen, we need to take all of the room’s functions into consideration.  What else is the room used for?  Family gatherings?  Reading nooks?  Children’s play areas?  What about a television in the kitchen or the bedroom or bath??

 

Here are my 5 Tips to Designing WITH Your Television…

1.  DO mount your television at eye level.  Whether it is directly on the wall or on top of a TV console, do your neck a favor and hang it at a comfortable height!  Why bother putting it in the room if it’s not going to be comfortable to watch?  I’ve seen too many people watching a TOO big TV that is TOO high and you are sitting TOO close!

Pottery Barn

Pottery Barn

 

Wisteria

Wisteria

 

 

2.  DO make use of creative storage options.  This only works if the doors open and close conveniently and preferably self store when open.  You don’t want your guests having to dodge around the swinging open doors of your “secret” TV hideout!  Be creative!  I’ve used chests as coffee tables that have a top that raises to reveal a television!

 

Rossetto USA (Available at Wayfair)

Rossetto USA (Available at Wayfair)

 

 

3.  DO incorporate the television into a bookshelf or wall unit. (If it’s at eye level!)

Or, use some pictures and curate around it!  Sometime you just have to “own” the television and put it on the best wall for viewing.  Making a gallery wall including the television helps to make it look like it belongs there.  I am not a fan of the trend to “frame” the television.  Putting a picture frame around a television does not turn it into a pretty picture!!

Pottery Barn

Pottery Barn

 

 

4.  DO put it over a mantel.

Okay, this one is a little tricky.  I usually recommend against mounting a television over a mantel unless it’s a last resort.  That being said, there are a few good reasons to do it – very often a mantel is a room’s focal point, so this just gives it a dual focal point!  A few things to watch out for if you choose to go this route:  Make sure the mantel is not over 4 feet.  The viewing angle over 4 feet is just too high (and 4′ is even a stretch!)  Also, make sure the heat and smoke from the fireplace will not damage your television!

 

By Ziger/Snead Architects via Decoist

By Ziger/Snead Architects via Decoist

 

 

5.  DO make sure that you are sitting at the correct viewing distance for the size of the television.

Okay, time to do some math.  Proper TV viewing is 1.5-2 times the size of the DIAGONAL measure of the TV.  For example, if you have a 42″ on the diagonal you should be sitting 5-7′ from the television.

Toshiba

Toshiba

Toshiba

Toshiba

Toshiba

Toshiba

 

What other design dilemmas do you have?  Send us a picture and maybe we can help!

Coffee Table… or Cocktail Table?

The difference between a coffee table and a cocktail table???  THE TIME OF DAY!  Here are some clever ways to make your coffee (or cocktail) table work double duty!

 

Ottomans

Sometimes it’s best to use multiple ottomans as a coffee table by adding a tray on top.  We added these beautiful Beeline Home by Bunny Williams ottomans that are available through Lee Jofa to a recently completed family room. They can be custom created in an ENDLESS array of fabrics.  Their perfect size and shape allows them to be used for extra seating as well!

Rosmarin After Overall

With ottomans such as these, you could incorporate simple, practical trays, or have a little fun with something a bit more bold!  Trays are great ways to make sure those drinks won’t spill on your furniture!

Chiseled Bone Tray, Studio A

Chiseled Bone Tray, Studio A

Penshell Ottoman Tray, Palecek

Penshell Ottoman Tray, Palecek

Oversized Round Serving Tray in Lampakanay & Wicker, Kouboo

Oversized Round Serving Tray in Lampakanay & Wicker, Kouboo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artisan Pieces

Sometimes there is no better addition to your living room than a beautiful artisan coffee table.  These handmade beauties would be perfect for day OR night!

DC Furniture brings the warmth of wood to this inlaid table.  I just love the graceful lines of the trestle bottom.

DC_Coffee

Coffee Table, DC Furtniture

 

I can just imagine enjoying a glass of wine on this vintage barrel “cocktail” table!  Yes, unusual, and definitely a conversation piece!

Handmade Vintage Oak Whiskey Barrel Coffee Table

Handmade Vintage Oak Whiskey Barrel Coffee Table

 

 

 

Sleek and Contemporary Tables

Glass, marble, and mirrored tops bring a little shine and pizazz to your room.  These 2 tables could not be more opposite, yet each has its own unique function.

 

I LOVE this Global Views fretwork table – a real statement piece for a room that needs that one special eye-catcher.

Marble Fret Cocktail Table, Global Views

Marble Fret Cocktail Table, Global Views

 

And here, Knoll has it hands down for sleek and contemporary.  This simple table, although large, takes up little visual space in the room.

Barcelone Table, Knoll

Barcelona Table, Knoll

 

The Esme Coffee Table by Interlude Home brings just that little bit of glitz to add some pizazz!

Esme Coffee Table, Interlude Home

Esme Coffee Table, Interlude Home (Available at Wayfair)

 

 

Coffee tables…cocktail tables…take your pick!!