Monday, June 25, 2012


Patterned Floors

I love patterns on floors!  The pattern becomes the energy source for the room.  It adds movement to the room and can bring your eye all around the space. You can always have a carpet or a rug that does this,  but I really like it when someone is so courageous, they paint or tile their floors!  I say courageous because it is pretty darn permanent- or at least, not cheap to change.  When you put pattern on the floor the results are worth every scary moment you spent second-guessing yourself and worrying if it would be "too much." They look amazing!

I read an article in the Wall Street Journal on nautical decor and saw this chevron floor. The white walls with the baseboard painted in the same blue as the chevron is so dramatic and fresh!  

Chevron painted floor

Phoebe Howard's room is just plain pretty.  It isn't dramatic, but the tonal diamonds add character to a room that may have been a bit too ordinary without it.

Phoebe Howard

Yes, I am obsessing on chevrons!  This gorgeous green and white Moroccan tile is perfect for the outdoors!  Because it is the same color as the other garden greenery, the color choice is brilliant.  I adore the texture the floor brings to the space.  I would live in this garden!

Designed by Richard Shapiro

The subtle stripes in the picture below are so calming.  They move your eye to the dog first, then the fireplace.  OK, and back to the dog!  Don't you love dogs in pictures?  It makes me like the house- and homeowners- even more:-)
Country Living

Now, this wood floor is stunning.  I love the two different tones of wood used!  The space is small and this gorgeous floor turns the room into a gem!  Ok, I just took a break to open my new Veranda and this photo is in the July-August issue!  You must read the article and see all of the other rooms that Nick Olsen designed in this house!


This paint is amazing too.  There is so much going on in the room- the turquoise walls, the green lamp shades, the gigantic ornate frame- that it needed an equally strong floor to balance the room.

Lastly, look at this painted "rug."  There are so many jewel colored paints used.  It has a time worn feel that instantly makes this room homey- in a good way!


There are so many more examples that I have fallen in love with!!  When I am sick of my own floors, I will paint them.  I may be a little scared, but when I am ready, I will look at these photos and remember that the reward is just around the corner!


Friday, June 15, 2012


Desert Kitchen

I am so glad many of you liked to see the progress of the desert house great room!  I thought I might add the kitchen for you to see as well.  Again...this is a progress report!  Not a final:-) Can you tell I have school age kids?

Here is the kitchen the first day I saw it.  A few stub outs for water in the middle of the floor in the big room.  Hmm.  Not much there:-)  I see an island-to-be, a stove, upper cabinets and a gorgeous hood.  What do you see?

Near the door is space for a breakfast table

A random electrical room could be turned into a pantry...

A butler's pantry that could have a coffee bar and a desk for those quick recipe look ups on the internet!

Back to the drawings.  I had to draw out what was in my mind.  Of course, that includes every angle of the kitchen.  The island had to have four views so everyone (the electrician, the plumber, contractor, etc.) knew where to put the necessary connections for the 2 dishwashers, the sink, the microwave, etc!  The cabinet maker took my scribble and put it into CAD (computer aided design) to work out exact dimensions.

Then, on to fun things like slab yards.  The island ended up being 10' long so I needed to pick out some big slabs!  Since there would be a seam in the middle, I found some slabs that are "book matched."  The beautiful Arrabescato marble slabs below were cut sequentially from the Italian quarry.  Then, they polish a "front" and "back" side of the stone so the two slabs become mirrors of themselves.  The result is quite dramatic.  I can't wait to see them installed!  We went over edge detail and the overhang for the bar stools earlier this week.  We are getting close!

My picture is pretty bad, but the stone mainly has grays with some hints of taupe and brown.

For the back splash, we are using my favorite Moroccan hand made tiles!  This is the pattern I want them to lay it in.  It is called a running bond or subway pattern.  I took this picture outside in the blazing sun, so the tiles look the same.

This shows how the tiles will vary in color.  They have white, gray and beige colors.  I won't have a border, but I wanted you to see the depth of color.  They have a high gloss finish and because they are hand made, the light will bounce off the tiles.  Gorgeous!

So, drawings became a reality this week!  The center is the island and the empty space will house the hood.  

This a close up of the cabinet detail.  I love the simplicity with a hint of pretty-ness (yes, a new word!) found in the beaded detail.

The fridges will go on the left empty area.

A close up of the double fridge (actually, a fridge and freezer).

This is the entrance to the Butler's pantry.

The little desk will go inside.  I thought we should use the "un-useable" space in the lower right side.  There will be a hidden door with a printer that will slide out.  Then, you won't have to look at the nightmare on your desk!

This is a picture of the kitchen faucet we are going to use.  We used Newport Brass fixtures throughout the home.  We will have levers instead of cross handles.

know it is not finished, but it is a LOT closer now!!  I will show you the final when it happens!!


Wednesday, June 13, 2012


Desert- almost DESSERT

As I have mentioned, I am working on a couple of projects in the California Desert. (Think, Palm Springs area.)  I was on the job site yesterday and thought I should show you the property and give a progress report.  Now, when I say almost dessert, I want to warn you that my dessert may not be your dessert.  

I LOVE construction.  When I walk into a house, I almost never see what is actually there.  I see what it could be!  In my mind, I move walls, take out doors, change cabinets and add lighting.  When the dust starts falling, I see mirrors and pillows.  I know, a little crazy, but when I saw this home, I saw gorgeous-ness!!

From a distance, you may be able to see it too.  The sprawling Mediterranean, the mountain peaks behind, the lovely grass that leads into the golf course.  Can you?

Now, here is the back of the house as I saw it that first day.  A little more rough in the edges, but I focus on the palm trees, the great quality roof tile and the arched windows.

Inside the great room, you may think, "Not bad."  Again, I see the potential. Near Newport Beach, we have a bunch of Mediterranean tract homes that were built in the 90s.  They look dated and the curved ceiling reminded me of this.  Why have it?  This is a custom home, so let's give it soul and character that can only come from the details.

Within a week, the room was squared off.  Then, to bring your eye up to the amazing 16' ceilings, I wanted to add wood beams.  Don't get distracted by this mustard yellow.  I see a more sophisticated, clean lined home. (Do you like my "little" set of plans!?)

You say, "Why wood beams if you want a more contemporary home?  Do character and contemporary need character?"  You bet!

This was yesterday.   The paper was off.  The walls have been painted and the beautiful (un-distressed) beams were exposed.  Now, if you remember a post a while ago with the light fixtures, remember that I am having two 50" round Ralph Lauren fixtures hanging off these beams.

It is the little things that add the character, too.  Most of the windows are arched, but with the few doors and windows that are straight across the top, I thought we should add a wood lintel (beam across the top).  This brings more substance and weight to the doors. 

The rounded foyer is gone.  Now when you walk in, your eye will go up and follow the beams to the outdoors where you can see the glorious mountains!  Do you see the thick baseboard that was added?  The doors, baseboard and beams were stained in the same color to give the house consistency.  

I have just ordered 1,459,102 pieces of furniture.  You can see the outline in blue tape on the the floor.  The great room is so great that there will be more than one seating area. You need to make it intimate, right?  Nothing worse than shouting to someone 16 feet away from you trying to "converse!"

There are so many things I want to share.  Yesterday, the built ins were arriving.  The great room will have long cabinets flanking each side.  I am having 4 round pendants hanging over the built ins, two on each side.  We don't even have the stone on (or IN) the fireplace yet!  We also will be removing the transom windows and the large sliders in the third photo.  We will be putting in ten foot windows that can be pushed all the way to either side and bring the outdoors in!  

I can't wait.  I also can't wait for all of the furniture and fabrics and window treatments and pillows and mirrors and beds (well, you get it!) to arrive:-)

Hope you have enjoyed!


Monday, June 4, 2012


Jonathan Adler for Kohler

Holy cow!  Did everyone know this and I didn't?!  I just saw that Jonathan Adler has designed a line of kitchen and bathroom sinks for Kohler.  They are so stinkin' cute I can't stand it! You have to listen to Jonathan Adler talking about color.  He describes himself as a "maker."  He makes everything!  I love it.  

I adore the bathroom below- not only for the fabulous mirrors:-) but the surprise of a colored sink is great.  It adds a hit of magic.  It works because everything else is white. No colored tiles or countertops to distract you!

KOHLER Colors Featuring Jonathan Adler for the Kitchen

The bathroom sinks:

What about putting all four on the wall like a sculpture?  LOVE!
Demi Lav: Wading Pool
Below are the three styles that have these colors:


Demi Lav: Wading Pool

Kitchen sinks:

Seriously, I live in a beach cottage.  Wouldn't one of these be fabulous in my all-white kitchen??  I just used the Riverby in a client's kitchen.  It is in boring white.  (That's not fair.  I think white will be used 99.9% of the time.)  But if you had an all-white kitchen...


Color Options:

So here are the color options.  Do any of you have the guts to use these colors?!  

Palermo Blue (J-16)

Greenwich Green (J-15)

Annapolis Navy (J-17)

Piccadilly Yellow (J-14)
I have to say that the Greenwich Green looks awfully close to the color I painted my living room walls.  This is just too fun.

Hope you enjoyed another beautiful design by Jonathan Adler!!