Friday, June 28, 2013

FRIDAYfinds! - A solution to my Show House drapery dilemma

When I design a show house, 
I want everything in the room to be very special.
Whether it's the quality of the furniture, a unique upholstery fabric,
or the look of the windows,


and so it's been with my design of the window treatments...

I've fiddled with this off and on for weeks.  
Churning different ideas around in my head to deal with a real challenge with these windows.
The dilemma?
Two windows, two different heights, in a very small space.

Not a good equation.
The windows need to look the same to create the continuity and flow.
There are sure-fire ways to solve this issue,
but it's a show house and I want it to be drop dead gorgeous.
London shades would do the trick
but I just can't get the idea of 
"Ball Gown" drapery panels
out of my mind.
There's something so very elegant and extravagant about window treatments done this way,
and they would definitely add the drama I'm after.

I've been determined to find a way to make it happen...

So I worked with my talented workroom staff and 
literally "Pinned out the details".
We made a mock-up to get a better idea of the pleating I wanted
and when I finally saw it all  put together I said,

Combined with other key elements of my design, the windows will now appear to be the same height,
and I don't have to sacrifice my vision for the "Ball Gown" panels!

Where there's a will there's a way!

I can't wait to see these beauties hanging in the room.


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Summers are for tomatoes and the color RED!

Sarah Trefny - Heirloom Tomato no.2
As I munched on a super fresh tomato salsa and blue corn chips today, it occurred to me...
I'm obsessed with these beautiful juicy gifts from nature!
But it's more than their tasty flavor that keeps me coming back.
It's the 

How alluring it is, in it's many shades.
And as is often the case, 
"The design world has once again taken its cue from nature
and pushed this fabulous color to the forefront."

Martyn Lawrence Bullard wallcoverings for Schumacher
Martyn Lawrence Bullard put a fresh spin on his new wallpaper design
by grounding it with this shock of red.
Both energetic and calming, 
he effectively uses red to balance the strong pattern in the wallpaper.

Via High Point Market on Pinterest
Red was popping up everywhere this spring
at High Point Market.
I particularly love the faux Malachite secretary with it's racy red interior!

Global Views 
And these organic glass bowls would look right at home with 
a big pile of just-picked tomatoes in them!
Design mimics nature...
We've come full circle, haven't we.


Friday, June 21, 2013

FRIDAYfinds! - Ottoman Envy

Pearson Star of India Ottoman
What's your idea of an ottoman?  
Whatever it is, think again!
Ottomans are taking center stage in design these days
There's really no limit to the design options
and designers are taking advantage of 
the customization available to them.

This show stopper from Pearson is a perfect example!
Custom-sized at 60", it's not the shy, little ottoman of the past.
This shot was taken in the High Point factory right after it was finished.

Check out the attention to detail... 
Not all ottomans are created equal.  It takes tremendous skill and experience to create
an upholstered piece like this. 
Perfectly flow-matched, the fabric turns into this fantastic radiating pattern on the top.
And the black piping defines it like a well-executed line drawing.

Intrigued?  This should start your creative juices flowing.
A place to perch, set a tray and put up your feet - 
what more could you want?
An ottoman has a place in every home




Monday, June 17, 2013

Style Booster - Discover your style at the flea market

One of my favorite past times is 
wandering through flea markets,
especially when the weather is as pretty as it was this weekend!

We were up in Cincinnati visiting our daughter
having brunch at a cafe in an area of the city known as "Over the Rhine".
I overheard someone talking about... 

a curated urban flea market on the grounds of the historic Music Hall 

Well.....that's all it took for me to make a beeline 2 blocks away!
And this was some of the scenery along the way.  With the University of Cincinnati Design School
just up the hill, the artistic influence is everywhere. 
 I particularly like this wall mural of an interior scene.

What I find most exciting about flea markets is the

Moving from stall to stall, everything is there to be discovered.
And it feeds my artistic soul.
"I'm always thinking about how to use something 
in a new and creative way."
And that's the whole point of this post...

Start looking at things with a fresh perspective
and let your mind wander.
What are you drawn to?

I love graphic images like the ones above, because they're fun, unique
and most of all...ORIGINAL!

My take on these would be to pick out 8 or 10 favorites, frame them up
and stack the collection on a wall over a sofa.
Instant drama and style...and it tells a story about YOU!
You'll never go back to generic art again.

This vintage purse spoke to me.  I envisioned 
repurposing it as a cross-over bag.
One-of-a-kind and full of panache!

 Ok, so what did I see in this???
First of all, I'm obsessed with vintage images (see my Vintage Vibes board on Pinterest)
And this one had sooo much potential!
I love the saying - a great little pick-me-up for children AND adults.
I would frame this for a child's room 
hang in a mid-century inspired kitchen.

Speaking of vintage.  
Maybe these become the inspiration for the kitchen renovation I'm working on...

Great ideas are around every corner at a flea market!
And it's a wonderful way for you to discover your personal style

What am I holding?  It's a metal art lobster
and I'm already thinking...
he's going on the kitchen counter in my little cottage by the sea.

What are YOU going to find?


Thursday, June 13, 2013

Petite but Powerful - Powder room Project

Sometimes the smallest projects 
are the most CHALLENGING!

When my clients called me and said they were ready to "fix up" their little powder room
none of us had any idea it would turn into a major overhaul.

As you can see, there were obvious issue with this tiny space that needed correcting.
To be fair, when the house was constructed in the early 20th century,
this was a utility bath 
 intended for use by the staff, not members of the family.

Fine and dandy then, 
but now the homeowners wanted to create a more elegant powder room for guests.
So we got to work and developed a wish list for the "new and improved" space.
*More head room
*Updated fixtures
*Classic finishes 
*Safer entrance
But what we discovered during demolition, was that certain things could be changed,
and certain things COULD NOT.

The good news first.
We were able to lower the floor to gain 3 more inches of head room!
The bad news?
There was no way to correct the curved ceiling, as it was the underneath of the staircase.
But I did find a hidden jewel tucked in there.  See the area to the right?
Perfect for the new custom storage cabinet I designed.

Did you notice the height of the original tile wall?
It was way out of scale so I designed a wainscoting instead
and curved it down to room level.
This was a bit tricky to construct but not in the hands of our skilled trim carpenters!

I'll show you the results of this beautiful renovation
next week when we finish up.

How do you create a successful space like this?
 I'll leave you with my opinion...
"It's all in the details!"


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Show House Update - A, B, or C?

I was talking to a client today about the progress on the show house
and telling her that we got an unexpected surprise last week!

When I first saw my space, I envisioned a cool chandelier hanging in the center.
Perfect way to enhance the feminine elegance of my

Unfortunately, by the time this was relayed to the "powers that be"
 it was too late!  
The drywall had already gone up so they couldn't run the wiring.

"I was disappointed, but hey, I know the rules of the game."

It's a show house and nothing is assured until they open the doors. 

But I've also learned that things can change quickly.
Needless to say, I was ecstatic when they informed me that 
the electrical box was now in the ceiling!

So, here I am looking at three great options for the chandelier
and trying to decide which one.
What do you think?

 Visual Comfort
 "A" is a Regency-style chandelier that definitely has an updated vibe,
much like the mix I'm going for in the room.  And I LOVE that Sheffield nickel finish!

Visual Comfort
 "B"  has all the classic elements of a crystal chandelier without the "fuss"!
Clean, refined, and soooo timeless.

Currey and Company
 And then there's "C".  
What can I say other than, 
"I can't take my eyes off of you"

The winner will remain a secret until Sept.7, when the show house officially opens.
Gotta keep a few surprises up my sleeve :)


Friday, June 7, 2013

FRIDAYfinds! - Opposites

My vendors are always shooting me emails 
with cool new inventory.
So of course, when I see something that catches my attention 
I want to share it with you!

 Today I got two noteworthy items that couldn't be any more opposite in style and attitude.
But that's what  is so fun about interior design.  There truly IS something for everyone :)

Tara Shaw Gilded Barometer
I'm such a fan of sunbursts and gilded anything!  
And this fabulous antique barometer is really speaking to me right now...
Where would I put it?
Oh yes, I definitely see it hanging in a hallway or foyer above a cane-backed bench.
Pieces like this are so unique and hard to find...but that's why we love antiques, isn't it?

And then there's this...
Guild Master 4 drawer sideboard

Isn't it crazy?
I'm lovin' the strong color thing going on here.
So cheery and happy...and a far cry from the seriousness of an antique!
They call it a sideboard, but when I saw it, the first thing that came to my mind?
It offers so many jumping-off points for a great color scheme.
Great storage for clothes 
and did you notice the pull-out shelves? 
They're intended to be use for serving but I see it a little differently - 
Great for holding jewelry or makeup when you need a little extra room.

Hope you enjoyed my 
FRIDAYfinds! "Opposites" 



Thursday, June 6, 2013

What happened to ENTERTAINING?

Something happened along the way...
I'm not sure if it was a gradual decline
more abrupt with the recession,
but somehow many of us lost the desire to 

This revelation came to me after a day that was less routine, and way more fun!

A good friend and I took some time away from work 
to attend a fundraising garden tour in our community
and then a luncheon and silent auction by the pool.
It was so great to reconnect with friends I hadn't seen in a while,
not to mention the gorgeous gardens, homes, and food! 
This was entertaining in a big way, with lots of interesting people and a great cause.
Kudos to the joint garden clubs who put on this fantastic event!
Everyone left with smiles on their faces...

Fast forward to a late appointment I had with a wonderful client of mine.
We talked for a while about her home 
and how beautiful the renovation turned out. 
They added a new den, kitchen, bar,screened porch and patio area.
It was all designed guessed it...


But here's the client said,
"We just don't entertain much anymore"

I had come full circle in one day -
from a huge entertaining event to
meeting with a client who admitted that she hadn't entertained in a long time.
That's when it hit me.
I got a unique perspective today, which was a big wake-up call.

I was reminded that it's really very simple...
 If we all would remember WHY we entertain, then maybe we would do it more often.
It's about friendships, sharing commonalities, and building relationships.

Whether you're living on an impressive estate or
in a tiny apartment, it really doesn't matter.
The point of entertaining is to connect with people you enjoy.
And the more you give of yourself, the more you will receive in return



We'll talk more about this, especially since it's a great way to express your "Style"
There are soooo many ways to entertain in and around your home so stayed tuned.



Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Show House Update - Peek at the Concept Board

J. Waddell Interiors Bellarmine Show House 2013
Now that my concept has been approved 
I can share some of the details with you.

I've named the room, 
Being upstairs near the bedrooms, 
I thought it was fitting to create an intimate area for the women of the house to relax.
A nod to the past for sure, but it's definitely designed for today's lifestyle.

This is a historically significant home so it seems appropriate to 
include antiques.
But as you can see, I've mixed it up with strong color and graphic wallpaper (for the bath)
to keep it from getting too "museum-like".

Pearson fabric 8083-72
I'm a huge fan of color 
so this Pearson fabric I found really spoke to me! 
It has everything I was looking for - classic motif but fresh, new colors. 
It's no wonder it  became the starting point for the whole color scheme.
I can't wait to see it on two of Pearson's big, cushy lounge chairs.
Against a backdrop of aqua walls, they're really going to stand out!

Still a work in progress right now.
Will get back with you :)