Posts Tagged ‘Interior designers’
The 35th Annual San Francisco Decorator Showcase featured the work of top Bay Area interior designers 2012. While full of beautiful rooms and talented designers, last year’s showcase featured a room that stopped me in my tracks. For me, the most amazing room was this small upstairs powder room, entitled “Reflections”. What the space lacks in size, it makes up for in big impact. It was delightfully designed by Sophia Kabler Cowley and Joe McGuire for KCS Estates, a design-through-build company in Mill Valley, California.
This powder room used the home’s classic elements as a foil for this unique mirror installation. The organic shape of the mirror softens the straight lines created by the vanity and bath; it is laid over a patchwork of detailed Walker Zanger tile. Polished chrome and marble adds traditional style. From a technical point of view, I must confess the mirror is a stunning piece of work. The shape was probably waterjet cut to create the wonderfully curving shapes, but the fact that the edges were then fully polished is very, very nice. It is extremely difficult to polish those inside radius corners, and were probably done by hand. The overall effect is a contrast of order and organic, texture and smoothness, solid and transparent,…and overall delightfully unexpected.
According to KCS Estates website: “The concept, “Reflections,” draws upon the home’s classic details mimicked in new and contemporary ways. As a team we were driven by the idea of eliminating the lines that a mirror and bathroom vanity can create by incorporating the bathroom mirror directly into a wall mural. This allows an elegant space like a powder room to make a single dramatic statement. The mirror cuts away to reveal “Tracciato Diva” tile by Walker Zanger warmed by the rich taupe walls. “Steelwork Argento” Walker Zanger tile is laid to draw someone in. The polished chrome fixtures and calacatta marble countertop fuse traditional and contemporary elegance. Similar to art, our hope is that the silhouette of the design will cause someone to pause and reflect.”
I’m not sure how thoughtful and reflective I became at seeing these images. I was more inspired and impressed. Thank you, KCS Estates, for sharing such a wonderful project for a fine cause. The 2013 San Francisco Decorator Showcase will be taking place April 27th – May 27th, 2013. [For the past 35 years, the charity event has benefited San Francisco University High School's financial aid program, raising over $12 million and benefiting hundreds of students for this private high school, of which over 20% of the student body receives some amount of financial aid.]
In an Associate Press article, Melissa Rayworth wrote about some ideas for “Letting the Sunshine In” to your home and interior spaces by interviewing HGTV personality Genevieve Gorder, “Design Star” producer Brian Patrick Flynn, and LA designer Betsy Burnham for their best tips. (To view the full article, click HERE.)
• Whatever a person’s taste, “I think almost everybody wants to maximize the light in their living space,” says HGTV host Genevieve Gorder.
• “People can think it sounds a little ’70s or dated, but not if it’s an antiqued mirror and if it’s just a small part of your room,” Burnham says.
• Smaller mirrors can be used anywhere. Line the backs of bookshelves with mirrors or arrange several on one wall. ”If you stick them on your wall, left to right in a diamond pattern, it’s so beautiful and really affordable. You can go across an entire wall,” Flynn says.
What are these three different designer’s easy top tip for bringing more light into a space? MIRRORS. I’ve always claimed it’s the interior designer’s “secret weapon”. It can make a space feel more spacious by visually opening up the space, doubles the light by reflecting the existing light back into the room, and it can even shift view and reflect desired ones to direct the occupant’s gaze. But it’s nice to hear such experts in design take the same stance,…and to call out antique mirrors specifically.
Here are some of the designers’ tips for using mirrors for great effect:
- Antique mirrors have a softer reflection when you’re not needing precise reflection for fuction
- Beautiful custom framing is often worth the price for a perfect piece
- A large “leaner” type mirror allows spaces to feel less cramped
- Small mirrors arranged on a wall draw the eye with excitement and pattern
- Lining a bookshelf with mirrors can highlight a collection, make shallow bookcases feel deeper, or draw the eye
- Using mirror as a tabletopper creates instant, airy glamour on a coffee table
Your client is sold on a glass back splash for their kitchen. It’s practical: easy-to-clean, non-staining, and a breeze to maintain. You are thrilled, because with custom color matching, you can get the exact match to that awesome textile you’ve chosen for the window treatments. But there are a few considerations when designing a back painted glass back splash:
1) How long is your run? 144 inches is the longest dimension offered by Dreamwalls Color Glass. If your run is longer, you’ll need to consider where you want your seams to fall and work that into your design.
2) How high do you want your backsplash to go? Consider something more than the old-fashioned 4 inch lip. Taking it all the way to the bottom of the upper cabinets is the most sensible option for the practicality offered by the surface. But what about in areas without cabinets? Consider tying them in to the window sash, or at some other visual break within the room.
3) How many holes? Outlets, switch plates, and faucets holes, are all fabrication that adds expense, so they’re necessary to know for preparation of a proper quote. But ideally, you don’t want a seam to fall at one of these holes to draw excess visual attention. Consider adding matching glass outlet covers to further make these necessary elements “disappear”.
4) Tempered or annealed? Tempering adds strength to the glass, but it’s often not necessary for most back splash installations since they are mounted to a solid surface. I say most, because there are times when tempering may make sense: such as where it is in very close contact to high heat, or when high impact is a very real possibility. Tempering does add expense and limits the ability to fabricate the glass in the field. It has to come ready-to-install from the manufacturer or fabricator, so your measurements or CAD drawing needs to be as precise as possible.
5) Permanent or Changeable? Most glass back splashes are installed using an approved adhesive affixed to the wall. It’s sturdy and secure, but some clients may balk at the idea of permanence. A solid sheet of glass can also be fabricated with holes for installation using special glass grommets and screws. This allows it to be removed or replaced in the future. The holes need to conform to fabrication tolerances (which can change depending on if the glass is annealed or tempered), and you’ll also need to be sure the screws are going into solid structure to hold the weight of the glass; so this method will need to be designed and communicated early into the project.
Answering these questions early on in your design process will make your installation go smoother, and keep any unforeseen expenses from cropping up later. Glass is often one of the last items to go into a space,….but it can’t wait until the last moment to think about its design.
We’re talking tile this week. And I am amazed that glass isn’t getting specified more in projects. With our product, you can have it coated it any color; and with our waterjet capabilities, you can cut it into any size or shape imaginable. But one project I first saw in Decorative Glass Magazine’s Designers On Design Blog called out two more reasons why backpainted glass tile should be explored more in the design community: finish and thickness.
This residence in Florida was designed by Pepe Calderin, a designer who really understands the beauty of glass. In this stunning residence, Calderin used glass tiles in a bright red color in different thicknesses (we can do 3mm to 25mm thick) in various sizes and in both matte (acid etched low iron glass) and shiny (regular low iron glass). The result plays with the light, plays with the intensity of the color, and begs to be touched.
I’m just amazed by the possibilities and think everyone should be trying this on an accent wall in their home. Stunning. What other tile can give you so many options? A truly customized tile is waiting for you at Dreamwalls Color Glass.
The trend spotting from High Point Fall 2010 continues this week. For earlier topics, go HERE (Modern Menagerie), HERE (Wing Chairs, Menswear, & Pagodas), HERE (Customized Brights), or HERE (Red and a Touch of Dread).
But today I show some general motifs I saw while breezing down the halls,…designs that repeated in several places that jumped out at me. The clover shape was still prevalent from last market, but I saw the following new shapes really begin to emerge in lovely ways.
First was the square within a square. I photographed it at Worlds Away and Jonathan Adler, but saw it in many, many others. I am really partial to this shape for the simple purity of it; but also for its flexibility to create a practical structural element as well as a pleasing design.
Secondly, was the easy interlocking circle motif; reminiscent of floating bubbles or ripples in a pond. Worlds Away, Selamat and Cyan all had lovely pieces featuring this fanciful and light-hearted design.
Lastly, was a modified diamond within a square,…which quilters know as Cathedral Windows. As the daughter of a quilt teacher, it’s nice for me to see it in steel, burlap, and wood from Caracole, Gabby and Mr. Brown by Julian Chichester.
Thank you to all the wonderful showrooms that create such amazingly well-crafted pieces with such evocative designs. I encourage you all to visit their websites and love the variety of their offerings.
A few quick trends from High Point instead of my usual quote post today. There’s just so much to share, I don’t want a day to go by. So here are 3 more trends in Shapes and Patterns that jumped out at me at Fall 2011 Market.
- Wing Chairs: Funky and fabulous,…everyone needs a good wing chair for some refined cocooning. These examples prove that the “ears” don’t have to be huge in order or cordon off some personal space. The Lou Lou chair by Candice Olson for Norwalk features real Swarovski crystals on the upholstered back. Not certain it was right for my home, but it was gorgeous in person. Links: Norwalk, Artmax, C.R. Laine, VanCollier, Global Views, Mr. Brown by Julian Chichester, Noir Furniture
- Menswear: A good houndstooth pattern (or herringbone, or pin stripe) will make any interior sing,…in deep, manly baritone. The quirky, quilted ottoman from Moe’s is made from old men’s ties. I am a sucker for a good crazy patch. Links: C.R. Laine, Selamat, Moe’s Home Collection, Steven Shell
- Asian Pagodas: A geometric pediment gives a stylish flavor to mirrors, accessories, and armoires. It’s a clever expansion of the bamboo Chinese Chippendale trend that appears to be continuing. The table top pagodas from Bungalow 5 are EASILY on of my favorite items from this market. Using antique mirror, they create light play and height on the table in 360 degrees. Links: Bungalow 5, Selamat, Global Views
The photography of my humble phone do none of these items the justice they deserve, and each of these showrooms were truly fantastic, so I urge you to explore each of their websites that I’ve linked to above. There is so much more I can’t show, but each of these showrooms knocked my socks off. These glimpses are just the tip of their very stylish iceberg.
“Mirror two walls parallel to the long sides of a dining table, but above the chair rail only. Then hang two interesting antique mirrors on the middle of each mirrored panel with a sconce on either side — and you are dining in your own palazzo!” - Keith Irvine
Keith Irvine was THE quintessential interior designer who introduced some wit to the classic English style. He died on May 31st, 2010, at age 82. In a House Beautiful interview in 2006, he was asked how he’d recommend energizing a room. The above was his response. Read the NY Times article here about his death.
NeoCon 2011 was a great success for Dreamwalls Glass Tile. Everyone we spoke to about this custom color / custom shape option to our capability was visibly excited and receptive to the possibilities. To now have the ability to cut virtually any shape created in CAD and saved in a .dxf format opens up a whole new world of possibilities to designers wanting to express their creativity in new ways. Mark Melvin and Jay Nichols are two of our finest sales associates, so I’m thrilled that so many were able to meet them.
———MEETING THE STARS——–
I was fortunate to hang out with some really great people at NeoCon this year. Patricia Linthicum, creator of the blog Looking At Glass, was able to spend some time at our booth. She is a fellow North Carolinian, so I was glad she was able to come to Chicago and even join us for dinner.
We went to a “tweet up” (live twitter chat) of Interior Designer Chat. Barbara Segal, the chat founder, arranged for a lovely party at the amazing Brizo showroom, and it was absolutely stunning. I think attendance was even greater than they expected. It was fantastic to see some that I had only tweeted with previously, like #MarkJohnsonFAIA, #JamesSwan, #SusanElNaggar, #Stagetecture, and many more. A great group, you really should join us on Tuesdays on Twitter.
I was able to attend a few of the educational opportunites offered at NeoCon as well. The best ones I attended were Pamela Heyne‘s “The Versatile Mirror: Cost Effective Magic”. Heyne is an architect in Maryland, and author of two books on decorating with mirrors. She focused on ways to visually expand space, amplify light, shift views, and save energy and money by using mirrors. She offered an inspiring look at new and old techniques to boost confidence on using mirrors in designs.
The other presentation I would really recommend highly, was Frank Stasiowski‘s “Chase Less, Win More: How to Produce Proposals & Presentations That Will Bring Your Firm Back to the Top.” The founder of PSMJ Resources, Inc. in Massachusetts was able to point out in a very clear way, some of the ways to differentiate your company – in a good way – to stand out and make the cut. He has over 35 Years coaching, helping, and guiding Leaders of Design and Construction companies worldwide and I could have had an additional hour on this one, it went so fast.
So between the education, the exchange of ideas, the meeting of new friends, and fun with old friends, NeoCon 2011 will go down as great experience both professionally and personally. More on the personal part later. Tell me about your NeoCon experience…
It’s officially begun. NeoCon is here. I’ve got the Best of NeoCon awards breakfast bright and early this morning,…fingers crossed and hopes up. But you can see what we’ve been up to this past weekend with this short video:
I’ll have more trends and tips on Wednesday, when I’ve had a chance to look around the floors of over 700 exhibitors. And don’t forget there will be a live twitter chat for #IntDesignerChat on Tuesday at 6pmEST (5pmCT), from the Brizio/Delta Dream2O Showroom in the Merchandise Mart. Dreamwalls is a proud sponsor of IDC Education & Design Worth Spreading event that coincides with NeoCon.