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Cool Blue Living Room Refresh

As a part of my vow to refresh our living space this Spring/Summer, I have also promised to do a quick spring cleaning of my blog as well. (ahem! anybody notice the new banner?!) That was all me;) I guess fiddling around with Photoshop for the past 5 years has started to pay off. Although, I do need the expertise of a pro graphic designer for the remaining look and feel.

Many of you have asked to see the results of a client home restyle that I did this Spring. I am happy to finally share the results of the photo shoot with you.

All photos are credited to Amelia Tabullo photography.

 

Originally, this mirror was a tricky one to find. In fact the search for a round 24″ mirror inspired me to create this hanging leather belt mirror.

DIY explained here.

In this case, all of the waiting and hunting around really paid off in the end, when I came across this metal porthole mirror. It is steely with a tinge of blue and really reminds me of something from the side of a ship. I just love how she captured the reflection of the books in the mirror peeking through.

In my opinione, the juxtaposition of the warm walnut and cool blue is what makes this really work.

This project was all about working with we had and streamlining the look with accessories. For example these custom walnut sofa wraps can be made to fit any size sofa and really added warmth and interest to the IKEA KIVIC sofas that my client already owned. The wide arm works so well with a wrap!

Other accessories included custom slipcovers, pillows and throws. I really like the combination of cobalt blue with the brown walnut wood.

If you’re looking for more living room design ideas, head over to see the almost completely updated version of my design portfolio here.

I will be sharing some clicks of this fruitful photo shoot.

Have an inspired week!

 

 

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Living Green: Succulents

I think styling with succulents is one of my favorite current trends. Although it has certainly been in style for a while now…those cute like organic shapes never tire the eyes.

I love to be surrounded by nature and in interior design incorporating that natural element is something I that I strive for.

I happened across this image today and it struck me as wild and pretty.

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Ivonne’s Cozy Living Space

I loved working on Ivonne’s place because of the simple lines of the architecture and the freshness of her home.

Working with white, creams, and a neutral palette was an elegant concept for a modern cozy space.

The dining room is ever more formal with a Robert Abbey oil rubbed bronze chandelier. Bronze finials, drapery rods, harware and locksets complete the look on crisp white moldings and trim.

I loved these cozy taupe and gray pillows made of soft cotton mixed with a rich fur throw. The leather ottoman pictured below adds another layer of unexpected warmth to the living space.

It is hard to imagine that we have been working on her place since July because it all has gone by so quickly. From the beginnings, replacing the existing lighting with recessed, adding entryway lights, and a new coat of paint.

Most times, my favorite thing to change in an interior to make a dramatic impace can be lighting and simply a new coat of paint. Thankfully, Ivonne had recently had a sun light added to the living space, which only accentuated our recessed lighting upgrade.

Other details, like our favorite chair recovered and painted, transformed the entryway. The woven basket which doubles as storage for umbrellas add charm to the vignette.

Lucky of us Ivonne already had great art and a beautiful mirror for the dining space. All we needed to add was a midcentury walnut floating frame to truly accent the painting.

Never fear, if you are interested in her place and want to see more. We still have photo gallery wall and tufted bench in the works!

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Ivonne’s Living and Dining Space

I am in the midst of designing  both living and dining spaces in a wonderful home with European charm.  It has been a super fun project with a client who happens to be a designer herself. She designs amazing jewelry and accessories, so it is great to collaborate on the look and feel of her two distinct, yet related rooms.

Below is a preliminary view of the furniture plan and products that we are choosing. It will include neutral fabrics layered with artwork and softly hued pillows. Plus, a leather ottoman will add texture and comfort to the center of the space.

The new recessed lighting that we installed along with the white slipcovered sofas really brightened up the place…which brings me to the Product Board for the adjacent dining room which reflects the classical elegance and charm of the Mediteranean architecture of the home. I am calling this style Italian Transitional because it filled with rich yet comfortable details, simple fabrics, and old world finishes.

I can’t wait to show you the results once this beautiful transformation has taken place. I look forward to bringing you inside the process with more pics of Ivonne’s Living and Dining spaces as we create.

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Portfolio

Marina Del Rey

Alexander Residence

Noveck Residence (coming soon!)

Tilo Medical (coming soon!)

Beracha Residence

Fairburn Condo Lobby

Deutsch Residence

Nessim Residence


Chun Residence

Picataggio Residence

Farmer’s Daughter Hotel Group

Coachella Valley Music Festival

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Renovation: Finishing Details

Today, I’m sharing all the miscellaneous details and bonus photos of our property renovation on Keats Ave.

There is a bonus room located off the kitchen, that was historically an addition to the property. We found evidence of the addition in the augmented rooflines of the home. I think this room might function as a formal dining room, den, office, extra bedroom or nursery. I wanted to keep the space traditional, neutral, and versatile. For this reason, I chose the color, Silver Plate by Sherwin William, which allows the window trim to contrast beautifully against the walls and ceilings.

In the daylight, I enjoy the combined look of the chocolate malt hardwood floors with the painted gray walls and white trim. We reinstated transom windows above the exterior and interior doors of the property to keep classic details within the property.

We fixed up the stairs by painting the steps espresso and white. The original banister really matched the floors pretty well, so we just kept it the same, which was lucky because they can get pricey. I thought a sisal runner would add texture to the stairs and protect the paint for the time being.

Meanwhile, we painted the upstairs bedrooms in Whisper White by Dunn Edwards. We used nice 5″ architectural baseboards through all the bedrooms of the property. Our carpenter created custom door and window trims ranging from sophisticated to basic. In the bedrooms, we kept trims basic.

We saved money by using closet doors from Habitat for Humanity resale store and economical carpet from Home Depot.

The basic light fixtures and recessed lighting throughout the property are all about creating illumination. You can see how the white walls and open doorways really create an open feeling in the front living space.

Painting the gray door was a finishing touch to the property. I felt it added to the Scandinavian sensibility that I am really drawn to.

You can catch up on the rest, if you missed out on the bathroom and kitchen designs.

As for now, I’m staying busy!  Lulu’s bathroom demolition starts tomorrow and I will keep you looped in via Instagram.

 

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Renovation Story: Exterior Adjustments

I thought it would be fun to start this post with a hidden picture of the house on N Keats Ave. in Summer. It was late July, when we acquired the property, and then September when we returned to begin the ground breaking unceremoniously. As Summer faded into Fall, there was just so much overgrown in the front of the home. The hedge had overtaken the house completely, along with a Crepe Myrtle tree that just wouldn’t stop growing.

After trimming the hedges and mowing the lawns ourselves, one of us ended up with a bad case poison ivy! In due time, we gave a call to a family member who owns a tree service and had the hedges and the trees eliminated completely.

Admittedly, the house looked as barren as the Autumn trees after the removing the greenery. Yet, it seemed that like it might be fun to work with a blank canvas when replanting everything in the Spring!

Today, I plan to reveal the exterior progress that is happening on the property. You can see the initial inspiration photos for the exterior in my first Renovation Story. You may notice the vinyl on the side of the house was warping and not in as good of condition as that on the front of the property. The roof also needed complete therapy a.k.a replacement. Along the side of the home we planned to restore the original street facing side-door (just behind where the ladder is resting).

After the side patio and cinder blocks were removed, we decided to increase the front porch appeal by simply re-pouring the concrete steps leading to the front door.

Incidentally, we had opted to do a larger side patio and back patio in lieu of a more substantial front porch.

Next, the front windows are replaced and trimmed out with a thicker wood trim. Wood trims are something to carefully consider when updating a home. For this property, we made sure to keep with historic guidelines by preserving the original size of the windows and updating to an appropriate trim.

Then, we decided to replace the front of the home with a sturdier more appealing Hardieplank wood siding instead of vinyl. In the spirit of true conservation and green living, we reused the better condition vinyl from the front of the home as a replacement on the sides and back of the house, where the vinyl had aged more noticeably.

Here you can see the facade being prepared with plywood for the Hardie board.

Afterward,we reincorporated the original transom windows above the doors architecturally. It was super rewarding, when I received this photo because the home began to look like the original drawing that I had submitted to the Landmarks and Preservation team in summertime.

Above the flat-lap Hardieboard siding is primed, the sweet side patio is poured and the home was just about ready for painting, that is, until the Winter snow settled in!

The waiting time for snow to melt and temperatures to rise begins. It took months for the roof to thaw and ice to melt.

Lucky for us, with early February came the new Estate Gray roof replacing the former brownish one. The painters came out and painted the windows and door trims in Swiss Coffee. For the front of the home, I chose a shade of grayish beige called Cobblestone that I thought worked well with the slightly warmer vinyl siding.

Final touches included the oil rubbed bronze porch lighting, satin nickel lock-sets, blackish mailbox and modern address numbers.

As a side note, I have never officially seen the home in person since our trip to Kentucky in September, nor do I have any more pictures of the exterior facade.

At the moment, we have spread the seed and straw in hopes that new blades of grass will begin sprouting this May. I look forward to working with a landscape design company to layer in the shrubs and ground coverings. I am hoping the greenery of the landscape may soften the vivid red of front doors and incorporate the surrounding street.

Next week, we will step back inside the home to see the kitchen changing shape from beginning to end!

*Update* since painting these doors, I heard that both neighbors have painted their doors in shades of red. Now, I find myself searching for a different possibility…so please share with me your favorite paint shade for a front door!

 

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