Kitchen of the Week: a Dining Nook for 16 and Turquoise Tile

Unhappy with their humdrum, builder-grade kitchen at Rancho Santa Fe, California, these homeowners needed something that would permit them and their four kids to do what they love most: amuse. Interior designer Kari Arendsen and her staff in Intimate Living Interiors responded by gutting the space, including more storage, installing an extra-large stove for whipping up massive dishes for numerous guests, and producing a customized island that could accommodate everything from prep work into serving. A mirrored wood plank, bold turquoise backsplash and custom dining room add character, while durable materials, such as bleached oak floors and marble counters, will suit this busy family for years to come.

The sink previous location determined the design of the area, as the homeowners needed to avoid moving any pipes. They also wanted to get a very clear view of the backyard when doing dishes.

A French armoire adds storage for mugs and cookware. “it is a refreshing departure from just doing all cupboards,” Arendsen states.

Range: 60-inch Wolf; faucet: Rohl; faucet fixtures: Jalco

Intimate Living Interiors

Turquoise arabesco tile is repeated in the backsplash and the custom made island’s built in pet dining area. The repeating pattern and color produce symmetry and stream without taking away from the clean appearance of the custom white paint walnut cabinetry and bleached oak floors.

The home is part of a development community, also Arendsen wanted to create this new kitchen stand out. The mix of textures — Calacatta marble, arabesco tile and the worn metal of this chandelier — give the kitchen character and depth.

Chandelier: Amarass, Joss and Main

The wooden plank over the stove was found at a reclaimed-wood lawn. Arendsen and her staff screwed a small, unique piece of metal hardware they found in San Francisco into the board.

The formerly tiny dining area that was connected to the kitchen is now a cozy corner and bar area that seats 16 people. The habit tables have removable glass tops so the family can rotate in various design patterns beneath.

The zinc and leather seats were added with the growing youngsters in your mind. Wear and tear over the years will add character to the materials.

See more Kitchens of the Week

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Summer Plants: How to Boost Tomatillos

Tomatillos, also referred to as husk tomatoes, are a vital ingredient for several Mexican dishes, such as salsa verde and enchiladas verde. They’re also yummy whether eaten raw or cooked, so why not add them to your edible garden? They have the identical basic care requirements because their tomato cousins, with the added advantage of fewer issues and a longer and frequently sooner crop, a plus in short-summer places. Additionally they reseed.

The crops resemble berries but using papery husks encasing the fruits. Green tomatillos are the most common, but it is possible to find some that are purple or yellow. Purple varieties are generally sweeter. For odd varieties check Johnny’s Selected Seeds, Seeds of Change and Seed Savers Exchange.

Notice: To put fruit, you’ll need at least two crops for cross-pollination.

When to plant: Start seeds inside five to eight weeks prior to your planned planting date; set out begins or nursery plants two weeks to a month after your last frost and after the soil is warm.

Days to maturity: 70 to 120

Light requirement: Full sun

Water necessity: Regular

Favorites: Cisneros, Fiesta Duo, Green Husk, Pineapple, Purple, Purple di Milpa, Toma Verde, Verde Pueblo, Zuni

Photo courtesy of Seed Savers Exchange

The New York Botanical Garden

Planting and care: Wait until the frost has passed and the soil has warmed up before planting outside. Pick a website with rich, well-drained soil in full sun. Work in compost plus a low-nitrogen fertilizer prior to planting.

Plant deeply, burying about two-thirds of this plant. Leave 1 1/2 to two feet between plants. Tomatillos fared well in containers. Even a 12- to 15-gallon size is good, even though they will grow bigger baskets.

Water thoroughly after planting. Add supports now also, whether conventional tomato cages, stakes or some other sturdy structure. Nonmetal stakes or cages will not burn the plant if they become hot. As the crops grow, reaching an eventual height of 3 to 4 feet, attach the stems to the supports with tender ties.

Water regularly, about 1 to 2 inches directed to the base of this plant. Keep the roots moist but not soggy Mulching helps conserve water and keep weeds down. To promote fruit set, feed the soil using a low-nitrogen fertilizer after flowers look.

Tomatillos aren’t bothered by several pests and diseases. Providing good air circulation around the plants will help stop early blight, and staking will frustrate snails and slugs. Other issues you may experience are aphids, beetles, leaf-damage pests and powdery mildew.

Harvest: select the fruit when it’s filled the husk but remains firm to touch, and the husk has become brown and began to split. Remove the husk and wash off the fruit just prior to use.

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What You Need to Know Before Buying Chicks

You may not think of baby chicks at the dead of winter, although the ground is frozen over and icicles are hanging out of the eaves. Cold as it may be, winter is time for ordering chicks, particularly if you’re likely to order rare-breed chicks online. If you’re likely to purchase basic White Leghorns or Rhode Island Reds from the local farm supply store, feel free to wait until spring, but for the rest of us, the time is now!

After your chicks arrive, you’ll need to have an interim place for them to stay; you can’t throw them straight into the coop. Here’s the way to take care of your infant chicks in their infancy,”teenage” months and maturity.

Designs to the hens: Chicken Coops Rule the Roost

Amy Renea

When you buy chicks online, you’re most likely buying a rare breed that cannot be found locally. You need to place your order today since the inventory begins to run out on the many gorgeous breeds the nearer we get to spring up. Obtaining your order in early ensures that you will find the strains you desire. The chicks will arrive in spring, and they will be literally a day old.

Before ordering chicks, first make sure that your neighborhood statutes and town zoning laws allow you to raise cows. Asking your neighbors about their own tastes is also a nice gesture when considering raising a flock.

Amy Renea

Chicks are sent in cardboard boxes throughout the country whenever they’re hatched. As crazy as that sounds, the chicks arrive happy and healthy.

When intending a temporary home for chicks, note the industrial shipping boxes used. Made from cardboard, the boxes give little chick feet something to hold onto. You do not want to place chicks in a slick plastic or metal container, since their feet and feet will not develop correctly. You’ll also require a simple heat lamp or quite warm room for those chicks in the beginning.

Amy Renea

Take a peek in the shipping box and then notice the thin and soft bedding material. When designing your chicks’ first home, choose the smallest pine shavings or perhaps hamster bedding in the beginning. Avoid cedar chips, as these can damage the chicks’ lungs.

While chicks will gradually go outdoors to open grazing, it is a bad place for them initially. Although chicks survive just fine outdoors with their mom in nature,”orphan” chicks will not survive out in the open by themselves, without heat and security.

Lindsay von Hagel

The second worst place for the chicks is your coop, with its mature chickens, thick bedding and spacious water pans. They can drown in the water and become trapped under bed. Mature cows will even peck in the babies.

Amy Renea

Baby chicks may also start pecking at one another. If it comes to pass, it is vital to separate the injured chick. So be prepared to have a lot of spaces inside and then outdoors to house the chicks.

Williams-Sonoma

Alexandria Chicken Coop and Run – $1,499.95

A moveable chicken tractor is the best set up for integrating chicks to the outdoors. After they sleep inside at night, you can let them to the guarded part of the tractor each day. The mature cows can roam around in the grass surrounding the tractor, permitting both flocks to get used to one another.

A triangular design functions well with this adjustment period as well. If you’ll be raising new chicks each year, you may want to consider this design.

If you’ve got a small coop, consider letting the adult chickens out in the early hours, putting the chicks indoors, and then shifting through the nighttime. Chicks can get accustomed to the coop without being at risk in the adults.

Amy Renea

Once chicks can jump to nesting boxes and up a small scale or ladder, they can start seeing the”grown-up” coop through the day.

Amy Renea

Placing nesting boxes levels allows the smaller cows to become accustomed to flying into the boxes, while leaving space for the adults to lay their eggs at the higher boxes.

eric marcus studio

Straightforward ramps can allow”teenager” cows to go just about everywhere. A simple plank design with small cross pieces can allow small cows to get to and from the coop, feeding areas and nesting areas.

Avant Garden

A fenced-in area with a enclosed coop also functions well to integrate younger and mature chickens. Since the chickens become used to one another, they have different space to move in, and fighting is kept to a minimal.

eric marcus studio

In your roosting setup, make sure there is more than enough space for both mature and younger chickens. When there’s limited space, the adults will strike the smaller cows when they try to roost. Multiples bars or multiple roosting spaces solve this problem.

While natural predators and mature chickens are often the best threat to your chicks, a housecat can cause difficulties as well. Housecats are usually uninterested in chicks and are intimidated by full-grown chickens, but teenage cows would be the ideal age for them to pursue. Make sure housecats are introduced to the chickens early, so that they can get used to them, but do not expect them about chicks between 6 and 3 months old.

Janiczek Homes

To recap, while purchasing buying chicks in the farm store or online may be a simple endeavor, their care once they arrive at your doorstep is more involved. Make sure you have an easy, warm setup when they arrive. If you’ve got adult chickens and other animals, make different spaces for the new chicks. Be cautious of dangers like open water utensils, heavy bedding and housecats. Nip any poultry bullying in the bud immediately. While raising chicks is much more work than purchasing pullets, it is definitely enjoyable and well worth the effort.

More:
Chicken Coops Rule the Roost
The Twist on Chicken Coops

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How to Plan a Just-Right Living Room Layout

Whether you are constructing a new home, remodeling an existing living room or just rearranging furniture you already have, laying out your living room is best done with a plan in your mind. It may seem to be a very simple matter of rolling up a chair over here and squishing the couch over there, but even the simplest elements of space planning can get complex quickly. Before you start doing some heavy lifting, consider these professional living room layout tips.

Habitar Design

Planning. Analyze how that you spend time on your living room. Nashville interior designer Kippie Leland suggests writing down everything that you plan to get there. “This can allow you to prioritize when you reach the furniture planning phase,” says Leland.

Then consider traffic and dialogue flow. How can you enter a room? Move between chairs? Get around the corner of a sofa? “You don’t ever want to feel trapped or feel as if you are making laps around an area to get out or in,” states Minneapolis interior designer Lucy Penfield. And “do not locate the back of a sofa by the entry,” says Colorado interior designer Andrea Schumacher. “It should be installed so you could walk in and out of the room easily.”

Don’t leave too much distance between seating, so conversation can flow readily.

The Cross Interior Design

Arranging and rearranging. Everybody has an individual preference when it comes to arranging furniture. Some individuals prefer to take their time and plan out every detail. For those, Leland suggests starting off with a scaled drawing of this room, measuring the existing furniture and making to-scale cutouts of each piece to play with. “It is much easier on your back to rearrange on paper than to transfer the furniture,” she states.

There’s a different route for people who prefer to be spontaneous. “Block out a good hour or so, bring a friend along or your own family, and really move things around,” states Penfield. Move out everything that’s simple to carry first, just to find a new view of this room. Then switch it all up — even take out the carpet to learn what the room looks like without it. “Every time you come up with a fresh configuration, take a little time to sit down and see how it feels,” she states.

A few things to remember, regardless of what arrangement you decide on:Try to maintain 15 to 18 inches involving upholstery and the coffee table. Be certain that you have 2 to 4 feet of walking distance in a most important pathway. If you opt to put your furniture within an angle, know that it’ll take up a lot of extra space. Try symmetry first — that often works well in living rooms.

Meredith Heron Design

Keeping things to scale. All of the designers here highlight the importance of furniture size in a living room. “Properly scaled furniture may make or break a room,” says Austin, Texas, designer Allison Jaffe. “Having too much room or too little room can really throw away the look and feel of this room.”

Just because the scale and size of a bit appears right in a shop doesn’t mean it’ll feel right on your living room. Larger rooms require larger furniture, and bigger rooms require a bigger scale.

But above all else, make sure everything you buy is comfortable too. “Select furniture that fits you,” says Schumacher. “Try out different sized pieces. We’ve found some people prefer larger furniture they could flake out, and some people prefer more miniature furniture”

Terracotta Design Build

Purchasing furniture. A brand new living room usually means some new furniture — at the very least a bit here and there. Jaffe suggests because it will be the piece in the room, picking the sofa first . “When purchasing a sofa, go moderate in proportion, for it may be used at a future home in the library or den,” adds Leland.

Contemplate your entertaining needs and choose furniture which may be used with larger groups if necessary. Slip a bench or locate ottomans which may be used as side tables or seating.

Dana Nichols

Handling the TV. The TV is not necessarily pretty, but for a lot of us, it’s a must-have at the living room. Fortunately, the design issue is lessened by flat-screen televisions. Keep relaxation in mind when putting your TV — make sure not to hang it in a height that will make your throat ache. Above the fireplace may be too large, unless the couch has enough distance so that your neck doesn’t have to strain. But, Jaffe advises to not put the TV over 10 ft or less than 6 ft away from the sofa.

You may not want your TV to become the room’s focal point (regardless of how proud of it you’re). “Do you want a black hole dangling in a significant visual location in the room?” Says Leland. Consider placing it on a bookshelf which flanks the fireplace or on a buffet from the wall.

More about putting your flat-screen TV

Inform us What have you learned while setting out your living room?

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Beat Winter's Chill With an Indoor Picnic

Picnics are among life’s simple pleasures, but winter, naturally, is normally too cold for individuals in most areas to head outside with a basket and blanket. It is still possible, but to enjoy the fun and love of picnic dining now; just recreate the encounter indoors. It is a great way to package in friends and family, even when you don’t have a great deal of traditional dining space. Get motivated by this particular indoor picnic spread.

Holly Marder

The Setting

A indoor picnic is a wonderful opportunity to snuggle up on the floor with a few comfy blankets and pillows with a loved one. And if you are hosting several guests, then it is also a creative alternative when dining room is limited. If your house is blessed with a great view, clear a place beside the window for your installation.

Picnic basket: Picknickshop; plaid blanket: Hermine, Ikea; poufs: Slumber and Bonnet, Casalis; gray platter: Serholt Sweden

Holly Marder

Just as you would do outdoors, make things comfy with a plentiful supply of picnic blankets. Take advantage of being indoors by integrating throw cushions as well as a few poufs.

Holly Marder

Bring the outside in by incorporating some greenery into your picnic setting. The plant is a species of eucalyptus.

When you have a fireplace, make sure that you’re ready with a supply of chopped wood. A crackling fire is a certain way to amp up the coziness element.

Holly Marder

The Meal

Getting your picnic indoors also suggests you could employ your loved ones dishes and cutlery. This picnic set includes cutlery and dishes, but trendy compostable choices will also be available that can make cleanup a cinch.

Holly Marder

Holly Marder

When planning your menu, then think of easy finger foods that are easy to share and serve. The spread displayed comprises cheeses, crackers, salami, pesto, fruit along with a newly baked pecan pie.

Tip: To prevent drink spillage, ensure you have a sturdy tray with a lip available.

Holly Marder

Pecan Pie(adapted from Allerhande)
Serves 12

1 cup (250 g) flour
100 g powdered sugar
1 cup (250 g) butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups (280 g) whole pecans
1/2 cup (150 g) maple syrup
1/3 cup (75 g) sugar
1/3 cup (75 milliliters) fresh lotion

Timing: prep, 30 minutes; cooking, 50 minutes

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (180 degrees Celsius). Blend the flour, sugar, butter and salt in a mixer and mix everything into a crumbly dough. Knead the dough into a ball with your hands and line a greased 8- by 8-inch skillet with the dough to form an even base. Bake for 20 minutes. Roast the pecans in the oven in an 8- by 11-inch tray for 10 minutes.

2. Heat the cream and sugar in a saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil then cook it on low heat for 6 minutes.

3. Remove the gently roasted pecans and pie foundation in the oven. Distribute the pecans on top of the precooked pie foundation, placing them in lines and forming two layers. Carefully pour the caramel sauce on the nuts and put the pan back in the oven for another 20 minutes.

4. Allow the dish to cool completely before serving it in your indoor picnic. Enjoy!

Holly Marder

The Entertainment

After indulging in dialogue, relaxation and food, have a few games available to continue the fun. Ensure that you also prepare a playlist of your favourite holiday tunes to play.

Holly Marder

After unwrapping gifts this Christmas, gather your loved ones for an indoor picnic. Afterward, don’t hesitate to prop yourself in a comfortable spot against some cushions for some quality quiet time with a fantastic book.

Tell us : How will you be getting comfy this winter?

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Light-Up Mirrors Offer Bright Design Solutions

I’m often turned on to fresh design trends or merchandise through recommendations from my own clientele or the designer on the project. One of my most recent enjoys is a light-up electrical mirror — yup, it is too fancy as it sounds! This mirror with built-in lighting can solve many design problems. For instance, if a vanity is facing a toilet window, then finding a place to get a mirror and a light fixture can be difficult.

While electrical mirrors can be bought online, using one custom made is an option, too. Take a peek at a few methods to put in this new design element through your bathroom remodel.

Risinger Homes

This glistening powder area is a fantastic use of space. If the mirror did not possess the built-in lighting, the design would be much more complicated. What kind of light could the designer have set up? How big could the mirror happen to be?

The round shape allows for a much larger mirror size and looks fine against the angled ceiling. The simple fact that the mirror is also the light source simplifies the design challenge.

Flüff Designs & Decor

I have heard that side lights make using makeup considerably easier (although I can not say I know from experience). These new mirrors have the identical impact as an old-school Hollywood dressing room mirror, but without the bulbs running down the side.

The light output is great, but care ought to be taken when choosing the type of LED lighting. LED lighting colors can vary from one company to another. Warm and cool whites are available in LED, therefore get a record of both if possible.

Edgewater Design LLC

Here we see a fantastic example of built-in hot white light at a mirror. Warmer white tends to function well with warm-hued paint and tile colors. Cooler white lights work well in white and blue bathrooms.

RKI Interior Design

Yet another design challenge solved with this customized corner mirror.A little vanity at the corner often means you can not get light across the side without shoving a light fixture into the corner. The usage of this next mirror solves this dilemma. It is a clever design and creates a very slick appearance.

Platinum Series by Mark Molthan

The lights for these mirrors can be RGB — LED lights that change colors and turn your mirror into colour therapy. You may select whatever colour makes you feel most happy or relaxed. Imagine taking a bath with all the lights gradually scrolling through numerous colors. Or perhaps you have a migraine and select light purple only, as it is the most relaxing for your pounding head.

If you’re using chromotherapy (colour therapy) or nighttime light elsewhere in the area, I recommend you have the light all from one supplier and don’t mix warm white light with trendy white light at precisely the exact same space.

Bubbles Bathrooms

The sky is the limit in mirror design. It is simple to have mirrors created and sandblasted. The lights can be set up on the back and represented through the sandblasted areas.

By Any Design Ltd..

We installed some solitude film over this toilet’s window and mounted on the electrical mirror on a customized support.

Low-voltage leads to your mirror snake up between the windows at a dado cut and are covered with the original window trimming stock. Each of the wires are encased in certain bend conduit, which protected them when the trimming was emptied.

More: Magic Mirrors Emerge From Fairy Tales

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5 Anytime Glad to Rev Up Your House All Year

Now that January is in the past, party season is again upon us. Allow the celebrations begin! Celebrations are instances for sharing special moments with family and friends, like birthdays, weddings and birthdays. Other celebrations are just for the pleasure of it. Parties in my town start with the Super Bowl and just keep on coming until Christmas again. Some celebrations are for universities, charities and churches and are commonly called”party book” occasions.

In case you have been attempting to show off that new kitchen remodel for your friends, use your new barbecue or host a memorable day for the sake of a charity, then below are some party ideas which will surely be the talk of town.

Cost Plus World Market

Chinese New Year Packets, Set of 6 – $2.99

1. Chinese Takeout Party

Chinese New Year is celebrated in February and is now a joyous time of food and traditions. Join in the fun with a small twist by hosting a Chinese takeout party.

The color red is a big part of the celebration. Red envelopes such as these are used to give gifts to friends and family, usually coins or dollar bills.

Horchow

Pagoda Salt and Pepper Set – $60

Set your table with Chinese-inspired reasonable.

Number Four Eleven

Dragon Napkins – $125

It can be quite formal or as casual as you desire. Put the table based on the Chinese zodiac; 2013 is the year of the snake. Find the Chinese place together with all the yummiest takeout in the town and serve it directly from conventional takeout boxes.

Laura U, Inc..

2. Poker Party

Throw a poker night with great food and friends.Make sure to have a lot of finger foods and cold beverages.

Restoration Hardware

Classic Edition Monopoly – $149

You are able to host a family-friendly version of this party using another table for children and traditional board games, such as Monopoly and Bingo.

Restoration Hardware

Town Hall Bingo – $129

Have an older kid keep score for the younger children and have prizes for the winners.

Crate&Barrel

Cuisinart Electric Fondue Set – $69.95

3. Chocolate Fondue Party

This is just one of the’70s. Ideal for girls’ night, the chocolate fondue party is an enjoyable potluck-style party. Have your guests bring sliced fruit, marshmallows or graham crackers.

Jeanette Lunde

Throw in a touch color for the party. Color consistently makes a party festive by creating instant whimsy. Anything hanging from the ceiling is a great start to a celebration.

Charmean Neithart Interiors

Organize the food artfully with other goodies before everyone starts to dip.

John Willis Homes

4. Movie-Night Party

Oscar night is February 24 in 2013. It is a great time to concentrate on films. This is a gathering my children love. This works great when you have a media room or just a big-screen TV. Make tickets and gather them at the door when the kids arrive.

Doug Pitts Construction

Enjoy a lot of conventional movie treats, such as popcorn, soda and ginger pop. Although not the funniest treats for children, every once in a while they make film night even more special.

Oriental Trading Co..

Mini Striped Popcorn Boxes, Set of 24 – $4

Actual popcorn boxes are available at most party stores or online. Personalize the boxes by writing everyone’s name on them.

Dillard Pierce Design Associates

5. Concert Party

Have musical Buddies? Why not have a concert at home? A growing number of people are choosing music rooms in their houses, occasionally turning underused rooms, such as dining rooms, into miniature concert halls.

Tulp Kids

Gakki Percussion Set – AUD 67.50

This sort of party can do the job for kids or adults. Child-friendly tools are simple to find, and playing an instrument is a wonderful hobby to boost in children.

The Cavender Diary

For an adults-only version, set up a bar cart and serve delicious drinks as you listen to your friends share their musical talents.

Tell us about your favourite party heritage below!

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Make a TV Star With Your Video Phone Calls

The future sure is not what it used to be. By the year 2000, according to futurists of the first half of the 20th century, everyone was supposed to be driving a nuclear-powered flying car, eating food in pill form and running errands around the city using a personal jet pack.

What happened to the future?

The majority of the predicted technologies never occurred because they proven to be undesirable, dangerous or far too expensive. However, a number of them really came true. One uncontroversial prediction was the video phone, which revealed as a standard element of daily life in matters such as 2001: A Space Odyssey, popular science magazines and The Jetsons.

Futurists predicted that in their future — our present — telephone calls would involve a TV display, and we’d have natural, face-to-face conversations instead of holding a gadget up to our faces for audio-only communication. Along with the futurists got it right — sort of. In fact, millions of video calls now happen daily. And the surprising fact is that the caliber and experience of these video calls can be massively better than futurists ever imagined.

Much more surprising is that we frequently don’t make the most of what is possible. The very best video phone experience is given through a big-screen TV, for an obvious reason: The display is quite big and probably faces some comfy sofas or chairs. TV-based video calls most closely simulate the experience of getting the caller seeing in your property.

Below are some methods to bring video calling to your TV.

Warpia ConnectHD Video Conferencing System – $139.99

There are three fundamental strategies to achieve TV-based video call nirvana. One is via a pc attached to your TV, another is via a smart TV and the third uses a special-purpose gadget attached to your TV.

The easiest is the first: linking a laptop or PC to a TV using a cable, like HDMI, then clicking over to that as your video source. From that point it is possible to use your computer’s camera and video conferencing software, and display it all over the TV.

That is an inelegant solution, but one you can probably implement now without extra purchases. One small improvement to this general approach can be made using a product known as the Warpia ConnectHD. It utilizes video conferencing software running on your PC or laptop. But instead of using your PC’s camera, it comes with its own, which you may place on top of the TV. And instead of working with a big, sloppy HDMI cable, then it utilizes wireless using a USB device that plugs into the pc.

Using the camera on top of or just below the TV is important with video calls, because it creates the illusion of eye contact.

Samsung 51-Inch Plasma 8000 Series Smart TV – $1,697.99

Samsung’s 51-inch plasma TV is a terrific all-around smart TV, with 3-D, apps, innovative motion gestures, voice command and face recognition. Additionally, it has something I think many TVs are going to have in the future: a built-in camera. Along with the TV comes with Skype built in too, so you may readily make living space video phone calls.

Future smart TVs from Samsung and other major TV giants will increasingly come with Google TV layouts, that will enable Google+ Hangouts as the video-conferencing system, and also other apps for doing video phone calls in fresh ways.

Logitech TV Cam HD – $199.99

Logitech and Skype offer a product called the Logitech TV Cam HD. The camera connects to the Internet within either Wi-Fi or ethernet, and links to TVs using HDMI. Logitech claims that any TV that supports HDMI will work with the item.

The camera itself is high definition and wide angle, so it will demonstrate the whole living space. However, you can zoom in if you desire using the included remote control unit. Four noise-canceling microphones cut down to any echo from a large room.

And you’re going to hear the phone ring if the TV is off.

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Conventional Meets Airy in a Luxurious Coastal Home

Interior designer Diane Bergeron had some convincing to do with this project, a weekend home for a large family who uses the home year-round. The project architect had suggested a death by a comfy coastal home: a slick inside with a glass staircase and modern furnishings. “However, I told him ‘The conventional bones are. Why tear down them?'” She says. “It only made sense to work together with all the architectural bones of the home and move from there.”

Bergeron applied her layout knowledge of conventional American coastal homes throughout the project. “They enjoyed images of summer homes in the Hamptons and the warmth and airy feel of California coastal homes,” she says. “We opted for a soft, neutral base and layered on patterns and color.”

The clients turned off from what a lot of folks in those pieces are doing: “Lots of ultracontemporary houses with a glass-box structure that would have certainly carried into the interiors and furnishings,” Bergeron says. And did they enjoy the last outcome? “My clients are utilized to fine surroundings,” says the designer, “and they have a fantastic city home. But there were tears during the show. They’re only in love with this home.”

at a Glance
Who lives here: That really is a weekend home for Jack and Diane Gringlass and their 4 grown kids.
Location: Mornington Peninsula, Melbourne, Australia
Size: 5,488 square-foot
Design challenge: Changing a darkened, lodge-like country house in an airy and bright coastal home

Diane Bergeron Interiors

A photograph shot at sunset lets us see into the front-facing inside rooms of this home: three bedrooms, the analysis, a card room and a billiards room. Motorized Roman shades can be controlled with simplicity for privacy.

Diane Bergeron Interiors

John Himmel’s woven rope furniture adds warmth, warmth and texture into the living room. A vintage Lucite coffee table does not take attention away from the rich patterns of this window shades, carpeting and upholstery. Bergeron paired couture Quadrille China Seas cloth in the rope seats with a striped cotton dhurrie, which ties the distance together.

Flooring: stained European walnut; empire stools: Jonathan Adler; sofa: custom in camel linen, Diane Bergeron Interiors

Diane Bergeron Interiors

The designer loves the all-white walls and trusses. “The house used to be somewhat dim and cabin like, and you feel like the whole area is breathing, which is a quality I associate with California coastal homes or summer homes in the Hamptons,” she says. “I’m happy this comfy coastal style has found its way to Melbourne,” says Bergeron.

Sofa: custom in cotton twill, Diane Bergeron Interiors; facet table: vintage French; Roman blinds: custom, Diane Bergeron Interiors; pendant lighting: Ralph Lauren

Diane Bergeron Interiors

Windsor chairs create a surprise pairing with a Lucite table at the game room. Lulu DK wallpaper swathes the walls and continues into the backs of custom shelving units, giving the room a compatible flow.

Diane Bergeron Interiors

A rustic farmer’s table from Boyd Blue surrounded by Windsor seats adds warmth and contrasts with the all-white kitchen along with metallic sheen of those fittings and Ralph Lauren pendants.

Diane Bergeron Interiors

Bergeron turned into a mostly white and metallic powder room into a stone box with art deco Scalamandre wallpaper in Zanzibar Gold.

“If done correctly, layering on color and pattern may add a lot of verve to your home without being garish or too over the top,” says Bergeron.

Mirror: custom, Diane Bergeron Interiors

Diane Bergeron Interiors

Bergeron created a cozy space by mixing vintage fabrics and furnishings with new decor.

Diane Bergeron Interiors

Custom piled curtains and orange Roman shades dress up the most built-in bunk beds. An alpaca wool rug softens the sharp whites and stripes of their bunks’ window treatments. Underbed drawers maintain guests’ items tucked away.

Diane Bergeron Interiors

A home theatre hosts the entire family on film night, with custom reclining seats and both luxury chocolate brown picture walls. “A French artisan came and stitched all of the linen together by hand,” Bergeron says. “This was an amazing process to watch and actually adds this stunning, touchable caliber to the walls”

Diane Bergeron Interiors

Grass fabric wallpaper in sage covers the study walls and pays tribute to the customer’s love of green. A dark Roman color adds a masculine touch. “He loves this room,” she says. “It’s his little sanctuary within what is a relaxing weekend home.”

Background: Diane Bergeron Interiors; executive chair: vintage Eames; sofa: custom, Alan Campbell

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Trend Alert: Oxblood Red Enriches Autumn Style

This week I finally had time to catch up on all my September and October fashion glossies, and two things struck me. To begin with, a great deal of this September 2012 dilemma of Vogue is styled just like”1990s club kids meet people from the Capitol at The Hunger Games,” and it’s odd. Secondly, and far better news, is that oxblood red is back, and it appears rich, tasty and more current than ever.

Since fashion and decor tend to take turns following each other, these fashion pages sent me searching out the hue here at . I found designers employing this deep red tone in spaces from conventional dining rooms to contemporary powder rooms. I know the name”oxblood” is a little off-putting, but these rooms are anything but. Take a look.

Soorikian Architecture

Use oxblood red as an exterior accent. Doors like this are welcoming and draw the attention.

Susan Jay Design

Oxblood is a warm way to welcome visitors once they are inside the doorway as well.

Brenda Olde

The richness of this color combined with leather is a stunner. Use oxblood leather onto a Chesterfield sofa, wooden dining chair seat cushion or tufted corner chair, as you see here.

Martha O’Hara Interiors

Give this deep red a neutral background with tans, lighter and lighter hints of crimson.

Andrea Schumacher Interiors

Glenn Gissler Design

Give natural wood tones oomph with an oxblood blot.

1800Lighting

Use oxblood walls in conjunction with a contrasting trim, for example wainscoting.

Karlene Hunter Baum

Use it as a backsplash in a warm, traditional kitchen.

Celia James

Try it as a dramatic accent in the most minimalist of kitchens, whether on a valance a single cabinet or table linens.

Macy’s

Just Designz Serveware – $24.99

Speaking of table linens, if you want to give oxblood an evaluation run, try it with serving pieces, china, blossom or floral structures.

Stig Carlson Architecture

Oxblood is a great selection for style that is Asian.

W. Gibson & Co..

When this red goes iridescent, it transforms into a glamorous appearance.

Beth Dotolo, ASID, RID, NCIDQ

Blend touches of oxblood with eggplant. Split it up with creams, woods, tans and browns.

Rachel Reider Interiors

Oxblood Red Sculpted Vase Porcelain Table Lamp – $149.99

Accessories like lamps are a fantastic way to present the color to a room.

More:
Browse more color ideabooks

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Southwestern-Style Florida Mansion

When architect Roger Gritton’s customers approached him in a custom house, he knew that his business’s biggest challenge will be their preferred Southwestern style. “We’d never previously created a layout from the client’s selected style. Fortunately for us, the [customers] could see that although this style was new to us, we’d shown the capability to learn and adapt. I think we were able to make their dream home,” states Gritton.

The final result? A home that’s symbiotic with its surroundings, symbolizing the homeowners’ love of horses and deep respect for nature and the outdoors.

at a Glance
Who lives here: An equine-loving couple and their kids
Location: Florida’s northern peninsula
Size: 7,950 square feet
That’s intriguing: All doors and beams were made of laminated barn wood and timbers.

Gritton & Associates Architects

The kitchen materials and color palette embody Southwestern style. Ceramic tiles, a mantel-style variety hood, rough-sawn timber beams and ceiling, rusticated brick floors and stucco walls evoke the feel of Arizona, where the owners previously had a home.

Gritton & Associates Architects

The tall cabinets near the skillet have metal rails installed at the top, and a ladder slides for simple access to items in the bigger cabinets (much like the way libraries use ladders for books). The ladder tucks neatly across the side of the cabinetry when not being used. Gritton states, “The ultimate aim for the kitchen was to be hot, inviting, functional and a bit unexpected.”

Gritton & Associates Architects

The home’s architectural massing divides its profile to avert a boxy look and feel like a hacienda. “We tried to make the house feel like it was added onto many occasions and built organically by using different roofing materials in different pavilions: horizontal roofs with parapet walls or sloped roofs with Spanish clay tile,” states Gritton.

Gritton & Associates Architects

A number of the exterior spaces on the back elevation are coated, due to Florida’s torrential summer rains (as opposed to the uncovered patios of this arid Southwest). The living room windows function as focal point with a number of large, stepped, fixed panes of glass. Wings open at obtuse angles to reach out and embrace the horse pasture and surrounding environment.

Gritton & Associates Architects

The stairway’s natural shape makes it feel like it is carved from a mud wall. A beautiful chandelier in the round tower component generates comparison with the milky, light-washed ceiling. A dried chili pepper garland wraps round the railing, adding a personal touch.

Gritton & Associates Architects

From the covered porch, you may see the pool, horse paddock and side yard. A corner fireplace anchors the porch, and the visible flue accents the ceiling elevation. Splashy colors on the fireplace complement the most vibrant Adirondack chairs.

Gritton & Associates Architects

The living room serves as a gathering space and provides optimum views of the pool and horse paddock. Gritton states, “The substances remain consistent in this room: clay tile floors, stucco troweled walls, wood-beam ceilings. All the accessories are the homeowners’ touch and create a personal feel in this space.”

Gritton & Associates Architects

The foyer hall sets the tone of the home. Openings leading to the wings flank each side. These openings are stabilized by timber beams and shaped to resemble “donkey” door openings — a unique touch.

Gritton & Associates Architects

“Notice the way the clay tile flooring changes pattern into some 45-degree [angle] which helps you to define the distance and anchor the dining table,” states Gritton. Rough- sawn wood timbers framework the tall coffer from the ceiling, and green paint accents the arched market, which uses another beam as a display shelf for more accessories.

Gritton & Associates Architects

The back porch is one of many that include heavy timber columns and beams, coupled with rough-sawn wood mounts. The majority of the porches serve a dual purpose as flow corridors. Lantern-style wall sconces line the porches to provide light as well as Western detailing.

Gritton & Associates Architects

River stones add an outdoor texture to the shower, which has been designed to feel spacious, “almost as though you were taking a shower out in a horse stable,” states Gritton.

Gritton & Associates Architects

The homeowners wanted the tub to create the space feel as rustic as you possibly can. “We did this by putting it on a platform and employing a traditional stand-alone tub with a foundation,” states Gritton. “The tub is lit with a rustic wrought-iron chandelier. Decorative heavy timber beams and the same heavy-duty iron plates continue to give the illusion which the timbers, posts and beams are actually structural.”

Authenticity has been of extreme importance to Gritton’s customers, who wanted both the exterior and interior to stay true to Southwestern style. Gritton says that the residence is “a beautiful, approachable home that doesn’t feel quite as large as it actually is. Kudos to the homeowners for the personalized layout details; they are what attract the home to life.”

More:
Historic Home in Austin, Texas
Tahoe Ridge House
Pattern Play: Subtle Southwest Style
Southwestern Chic
Home Design Suggestions for the Cowgirl at Heart

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White Vases Hold Secret Twist

You only finished arranging all the new furniture and placing the rug in your newly painted room, and yet it seems unfinished and empty. My go-to remedy for adding that well-styled designer touch is to display a cool assortment of white vases and dishware. They’re easy to findeasy to fit to any present décor and simple to integrate into any kind of room.

Leclair Decor

A group of otherwise shaped tall and brief vases that are kept cohesive by using their minimalist white porcelain bodies is the objective.

Atmosphere Interior Design Inc..

Upgrade a so-so room to some showcaseworthy sample with a wonderful arrangement of snowy ceramic vases onto a games console. I love how they match the monochromatic tones of the sitting room.

FrontPorch

You don’t need to invest in many vases. You can test out the look first by clustering two or even three on a games console tablethen grow from there.

Horst Architects

Finding an arrangement of light ceramic vases onto a dining table isn’t what I would expect here, so it seems fresh.

Crestview Floors

I’m actually smitten with a single row of identical white vases, each having a spring of greenery, across the dining table. This type of very simple arrangement really brightens up the space.

Alabama Sawyer

The kitchen is a natural home for your empty vases maintained handy close to the sink to fill with water for fresh flowers. Housed one of other white dishware, especially in open shelving, they look just right.

Ilija Mirceski

White with organic timber is among my favorite end mixes. The combination of pearly vases on white floating shelves against a darker timber panel is stunning in any room.

Anthony Baratta LLC

Alabaster vases need not be simplistic. In this dining room setting, they’re downright exotic and kooky. Think beyond the box when incorporating this idea in your décor.

Dawna Jones Design

And don’t forget the bathrooms. They can use a decorator’s closing touch as well.

IKEA

PERSIKA Vase – $3.99

IKEA is a superb source for a supercheap vase to start your own arrangement. You simply won’t find much variation in size and shape.

West Elm

Pure White Ceramic Vase Collection – $10

West Elm offers an whole lineup of differently sized, somewhat glossy white ceramic vases at moderate rates.

2Modern

Shine Labs – Avalon Vase – $158

2 Modern also has a fine offering.

Etsy

The Bloom Collection Vase by Aedriel Originals – $15.99

I love the cheekiness of concealed colour inside these vases out of Etsy.

More:
Developing a Tablescape

More Than Flowerpots: Amazing Vases

9 Ways to Decorate with White

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Get It Done: Whip That Junk Drawer Into Form

I know the purpose of the catch-all drawer should be you could throw whatever you want in there and not worry a lot about business. The problem is, it tends to reach a point when you can’t find anything, and you realize there’s significant stuff inside. This is when it has demoted from “catch-all drawer” to “junk drawer.”

The catch-all drawer is usually near your front or side door or at the kitchen; it usually has in it the stuff that you need as you depart or enter the home: keys, checks, stamps, rubber bands, paper clips, sunglasses, camera, chargers, pens, measuring tape and Post-Its. The catch-all drawer is really a highly individualized space — everybody might have entirely different things in it. You simply need to be certain the catch-all is not behaving as a Venus flytrap, grabbing and devouring all of your things. Let us get started.

How to Organize Your Catch-all Drawer

spare time: 1 hour plus possible shopping period

Installation: Possessing a wastepaper basket along with a recycling bin near, and another box for stuff that you are going to be discovering new homes for.

More: Take a before picture for Additional satisfaction when you’re done.

Before Photo

1. Open the drawer. Take a good look at all of the stuff in there and be thankful you’re doing this. Within an hour or less, your drawer will proceed from crap standing to organized-necessities status.

2. Empty and assess. I am really doing this job as I write this ideabook. I will discuss some silly items in the drawer that aren’t helpful to me at all :
Eyeglasses with hideous frames from about 20 prescriptions agoHardened Liquid Paper (I don’t have some use for Liquid Paper anymore)5 collections of Delta Airlines headsets6 inches of carpet tape, that is perhaps enough to use a dollhouse area rug.Packaging and cans for each iPhone and iPod I’ve ever owned, including a few who are no longer in my possession. I don’t really require a shrine to Steve Jobs taking up space in here.By the way, this is among my 2 catch-all drawers.

3. Pause and ponder. Out of all of the items in this drawer, what can you really use, and what’s handy to have in this spot? What goes in a different place?

Determine: Would it be handier to have your own stamps and checkbooks in your office? Would you want to spread a few of the 10 Post-It pad around the home where you might need them? Is this the place in which you would like to keep every pencil you own, or do you want them in other places in the home? Shouldn’t that raffia be hanging out with the other wrap supplies?

Bottom line: This is prime property. Only items that you use regularly and in the close vicinity of the drawer should find a spot in this drawer.

Shannon Ggem ASID

4. Sort everything.
Give your drawer a good wipe-down. Put aside the items that belong on your catch-all drawer.Throw old newspaper (coupons that died four decades ago, luggage claim checks, ticket stubs) from the recycling bin.Toss the material that is as worthless as hardened. Liquid Paper belongs in the trash. Place the items that are going to be put away in new houses in the other box. Carry said box around and place everything in its designated space.

Lonny at K and B

5. Determine whether you want to go shopping. Take a look at what’s left and what type of organizers you’ll need to keep it all in place. A silverware or makeup drawer organizer may suffice; even if your drawer is heavy, you might choose to utilize shoeboxes. Cardboard jewelry boxes might be built to maintain your goodies too.

Organize

Mesh Drawer Organizer – $4.79

Luckily for me, I did this job about five decades ago and bought a lot of these mesh drawer organizers at The Container Store. Obviously, this cleanout is a job that needs to happen more frequently than each five decades.

Hammocks & High Tea

Grey Chevron Drawer Liners – $25

6. Shop

If you would like to add some flair to your drawer, buy some stylin’ contact paper and line it.

The Container Store

Lucite Drawer Organizer – $19.99

By now you may tell what type of configuration you’ll need for your organizers — it is time to pick out them. If you have invested in the above contact newspaper, Lucite organizers will let it show through.

The Container Store

Bisley Five-Drawer Cabinet – $99.99

You might decide you want more than just one catch-all drawer, or you may need for your items to be placed somewhere that does not have a drawer. If this is so, invest in a tabletop cabinet and be sure to label each drawer so.

EliteWatchWinders

Heiden Deluxe Charging Station Valet – $139.95

7. Reward Your Efforts

If your cords and personal electronics are giving you fits, treat yourself to a charging station. It will continue to keep all of these important elements in one place and keep your cords from becoming tangled and knotted.

Jennifer Weiss Architecture

This is the greatest catch-all spot. It’s built in chargers (something to think about) along with a minimalist, modern appearance. Most of our catch-all drawers won’t ever look this great, but we could try.

Inform me : What are a few of the crazy things you discovered on your junk drawer?

Browse more weekend projects

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Patterns at Play at a Scotts Valley Home

When Stacey Costello and her husband, Brian, made a decision to update from their little bungalow, they found a easy tract home that has been an ideal canvas for adapting to their lifestyle. “It was size at first sight,” says Stacey. “The inside was like a mansion for us. It was a simple tract home, but we knew we can do everything to make it our own.”

They worked together to redesign and personalize almost every aspect of their house since then — such as all the surfaces, the light, the flooring and the facade. Now their house is a unique and gorgeous addition to their neighborhood and a real manifestation of the loved ones.

in a Glance
Who lives here: Stacey and Brian Costello, son Patrick and dogs Ruby and Coco
Location: Scotts Valley, California
Size: 2,400 square feet; 4 bedrooms, 3 baths, office

Shannon Malone

“I stuck to three to four colors to keep it calm and easy,” Stacey says. “I mainly use greens, whites, creams and chocolates.” She loves how the neutral tones and white walls set the scene due to her decor, furniture and art.

Nearly all paint throughout the house is custom-mixed Benjamin Moore.

Leather seat: Crate & Barrel

Shannon Malone

Stacey is a interior designer, so her home frequently ends up being a style lab to test potential ideas for her customers — she consistently has more custom throw pillows than necessary. She rearranges them frequently and plays different color combinations, designs and fabrics.

The coffee table is a family heirloom dining room table that has been cut with her grandfather.

Sofas: Restoration Hardware; ceiling light: classic mercury glass

Shannon Malone

The kitchen “was such a labour of love. I simply love being in here,” she says. The couple changed every detail in this area: flooring, cabinets, lighting, appliances and window treatments. The color of the backsplash tile has been custom created by Sonoma Tilemakers.

Shannon Malone

This is where her family gathers and hangs out often. “I am big on eating every meal along with a family,” she says.

Though she loves her cabinets, Stacey plans to eventually repaint them white.

Light fixture: Urban Electric

Shannon Malone

A daring purple wall color and an artful display of styled Manolo Blahnik shoe prints make for a stunning statement from the downstairs powder room. Stacey also made the shower curtains with two picture materials.

Paint color: Bonne Nuit, Benjamin Moore

Shannon Malone

The formal living area doubles as a dining room and entertaining area, and will be home to Stacey’s selection of serving pieces and collectibles. She had this hutch custom built for the distance.

Stacey refinished and handpainted the dining table, including custom slip covers for the seats. For a better transition to the living room seating area, she uses a backless seat as seating.

Shannon Malone

Stacey instantly fell in love with this collection of classic French patio seats in a store in Mill Valley, California. After arriving home, she could not quit considering the set, so she called the store in hopes of purchasing it, only to find out it was marketed.

As luck would have it, it was her husband who purchased the seats and was planning to give them as a present. “Brian knew I’d call the store asking for them, and made sure that the employee didn’t inform me he’d bought them,” Stacey says.

Floor light: Saffron and Genevieve

Shannon Malone

Stacey loves the accumulated, layered look. She is inspired by a Really feminine and somewhat French aesthetic, and by designers like Mary McDonald, Jan Showers, Charlotte Moss and Susan Kasler.

This faux fireplace in the living area was passed to Stacey from her grandma. It was added here specifically to exhibit the mirror.

Coffee table: Craigslist

Shannon Malone

The living room sofa is a custom upholstered piece by Lee Industries, decorated with throw pillows designed by Stacey.

In the formal living area and the family area, classic shutters found at a store in Los Gatos, California, add architectural interest.

Shannon Malone

Custom rug lining on the staircase gives the household dogs more grip on the flooring.

This seat on the staircase is a reupholstered family heirloom. Stacey’s father built the shelving unit, and it is currently home to a selection of antiques.

Art: Cary Nowell

Shannon Malone

Stacey altered the upstairs landing to a workspace for her style company. The office area is covered with personal sources of inspiration and unique artwork.

Shannon Malone

This dresser on the staircase landing was Stacey’s first classic purchase. She purchased it for $99 when she was 16, and it’s moved with her to each new home.

Shannon Malone

Stacey’s workspace leads to one of the bedrooms, which functions as an additional work area for the arts and crafts.

Shannon Malone

“My son, Patrick, wanted his room for a ‘gentleman’s room,” Stacey says. Keeping this in mind, she made with darker brown and grey colors, aiming for a more complicated but still young aesthetic.

Shannon Malone

Stacey picked a dark blue hue for Patrick’s upstairs bath, giving the space a more masculine feel. She made custom-made curtains, additional accumulated decor and changed out the mirror.

Paint: Newburyport Blue, Benjamin Moore

Shannon Malone

Stacey chose neutral colors and a unisex decor for the master bedroom. The mattress is made of walnut with a custom made and a custom-designed canopy. She had the small tufted seat made for their dogs to enjoy.

Shannon Malone

The couple gutted the master bath, raising the bathtub size and the shower area. They installed custom cabinets and tile, and also an integrated medication cupboard disguised as a wall mounted mirror.

Tile: Sonoma Tilemakers; stool: Wisteria

Shannon Malone

Stacey brought her decorating technique for her garden, too. “I layered all the plants and decor to provide it more privacy,” she says.

Shannon Malone

Brian wanted the outside of their house to have an appearance that was similar to that which he watched growing up on the East Coast. The couple additional shingled siding, larger columns, a custom made door and an overhang above the door.

Shannon Malone

The Costellos’ two dogs, Ruby and Coco (here with Stacey) are a big part of the family members and provide a warm welcome to all their visitors.

Do you reside in a gathered, personalized home? Share it with us!

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8 Natural Home Materials That Can Not Be Performed

Listen, I understand we architects can be difficult. More often than not, we don’t listen and we don’t respect the owner’s budget. Or at least these are of. However, there are many wonderful possibilities and opportunities. It is just that we view every how each job has a really fascinating story to tell, and we want to use the complete selection of our language when telling that story.

A large portion of the language is the materials we choose. My preference, as with all these architects and other designers, would be to utilize natural substances. While human-made substances are good, and oftentimes the best thing to do, natural substances have a luminosity and depth of color that can’t be beat. Along with the uniqueness of every piece of quarried stone, batch of hand-mixed stucco and sawn wood board contributes to the narrative about you and only you.

Some preferred natural substances that just don’t have an artificial equal are under. Which would you prefer to their synthetic counterparts?

AIA, Tom Meaney Architect

Natural stucco. Although it costs a little more and requires a little more upkeep, there are many reasons to utilize natural stucco over synthetic stucco — the best of which is that natural stucco will take on a patina as it ages a synthetic stucco just won’t. So rather than all uniform and monolithic, I’ll choose irregular and full of character.

Mason Miller Architect

Quarried stone. Not one of those laminates or the quartz substances can have the variety and character of quarried rock. So to get a counter my preference is granite, marble, granite, marble or soapstone. The veining and color is exceptional for every single piece, and the visual thickness is unsurpassed.

Carson Poetzl, Inc..

Clay tile. Like the stucco walls which encourage them, clay tile roofs are all made by mixing natural substances and forming the mix into a distinctive form. As every tile weathers and ages otherwise, the whole roof takes on the impression it has been there forever and will continue to be there for some time.

2fORM Architecture

Wood siding. Many will tell you to stay away from wood siding. They will say you’ll spend your evenings refinishing the outside of your house rather than appreciating life.

Not Correct. A well-installed and well-finished wood siding may last a lifetime or more without a longer maintenance demands than any other substance. As an instance, on this home the beautiful cedar shingles protected by the broad roof overhang will age beautifully and gracefully and be present for several years to come.

Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape Architecture

Wood decking. Along with also a wood deck is far more inviting than one made from a composite substance. Each plank will weather in its own pace and choose on such a patina that states, “Come, sit and enjoy the view.”

PMWArchitects

Copper. Stainless Steel will constantly seem shiny and new; aluminum has to be painted, anodized or completed; but copper, like a favorite grandparent, just gets better with age. Even inside, where it will age more slowly, copper offers character to this modern and spartan setting.

Stonewood, LLC

Natural stone. Newer quarrying and production techniques enable us to utilize natural rock on walls where previously only artificial rock was accessible.

And while the producers of artificial rock do an excellent job creating some really nice items, nothing beats a natural rock for color and texture.

While we might someday have the ability to immediately manufacture substances which have taken eons to create, we just aren’t there yet.

Bruce Wright

Sunlight. Last, natural daylight beats generated light any day of the week. Does natural daylight make you feel better, but it conserves energy so is more sustainable. Maybe in your new house or another renovation project, you’re search for ways to bring more natural daylight inside.

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A Dallas Home Goes Modern and Artful

First-time homeowners Matt and Mary Emma Hawthorne orchestrated a modern remodel of the Dallas house like experienced professionals. Their secret? A crystal-clear vision and lots of research. Matt says, “We wanted a fresh, intentional space prepared for our artwork and artifacts.” Mary Emma adds, “But we wanted to do it right the first time.”

Both Matt and Mary Emma possess a similar layout aesthetic, letting them move ahead on their remodel with a unified vision. Matt, an expert photographer, provided a computing eye for detail, colour and space. Mary Emma, an artist, attracted her keen understanding of texture, layering and organic forms. Together, this young couple produced a modern gem with a handmade feel.

at a Glance
Who lives here: Matt and Mary Emma Hawthorne, their 1-year-old son, Oliver, and cat Parker
Location: Lake Highlands neighborhood of Dallas
Size: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths
That’s interesting: Mary Emma’s father is a lifelong art collector and awarded the family lots of the pieces exhibited in the house.

Sarah Greenman

The Hawthornes spent the first five years of the union in a small apartment filled with hand-me-downs, saving their pennies for some time when they can create their own dream space.

Sarah Greenman: Tell me about your decorating Procedure.
Mary Emma Hawthorne: After forfeiting for such a long time, it had been this fun to pick out furniture and fittings.
Matt Hawthorne: We see furniture as artwork also. When we had been making initial decisions about furniture, we chose a blueprint and cut out furniture contours to scale and moved them around on the paper until we had the ideal configuration. Everything was planned.

SG: How would you describe your own personal aesthetic?
MH: That is tough. It is a lot of things. Urban. Modern. Organic. Eclectic. Minimal.
MEH: I seek out authenticity. Some of the “artwork” in our house is just real artifacts from our journeys. A drum from a box or Indonesia from Ghana. We enjoy things that are real.

Art: “Water Well,” by Mary Emma Hawthorne, dining table: Bo Concept; seats: Design Within Reach; bookcase: Expedit, Ikea

Sarah Greenman

SG: How did you realize that was the ideal house for your renovation?
MH: We wanted a house that had no prior renovations. Why pay for updates which you’re only going to take out? It was built in the 1950s, and we enjoyed the floor plan. We dissected each house that we looked at and knew that this one would best match our vision.
MEH: We spent a lot of time in each home. I believe what I enjoyed the most was that the face of the house was directly across, accentuating the clean-line texture.

Art (far left): Beast sculpture by Patrick Mehaffy and “Nana” by James Havard

Sarah Greenman

SG: After you chose the house, how can you decide on a contractor?
MH: We went with Scott Powell of New Leaf Construction since he was confident he could do exactly what we wanted within our budget.
MEH: We just sat down and chatted with builders. Some of them had their own ideas about layout which didn’t jive with what we wanted.
MH: We were very picky.

Sofa: Gus Modern; java table: Anthropologie

Sarah Greenman

SG: I understand you were on a budget. What was your greatest steal?
MEH: The 3 globe pendants dangling in the kitchen. I used to be a screen coordinator at Anthropologie and got them for $30 apiece rather than the first $200.

Bar Condominiums:
Sportsman’s Guide

Sarah Greenman

The excellent room is anchored by a huge piece of abstract artwork by Dirk de Bruycker, which greets guests as they enter the front door.

Sarah Greenman

Oliver just celebrated his first birthday and loves to scoot around the house. He is, building a escape down the hallway to his bedroom.

End table: Crate & Barrel; lamp: Bo Concept

Sarah Greenman

Oliver’s area is filled with vintage toys and whimsical artwork, much of it created by Mary Emma. The red screen-print above the crib is by Evan Hecox.

Crib: Walmart; dresser/changing table: Oeuf

Sarah Greenman

Wire baskets under a wooden chair provide storage room for Oliver’s books and trinkets. The silver roadster from Design Within Reach was a present.

Armchair: Small Castle, Baby Bliss

Sarah Greenman

Oliver’s playthings are neatly tucked away on shelves by Ikea.

SG: How has your home’s design changed since you’d Oliver?
MEH: It has not. After we were pregnant we had been nervous. Spaghetti on walls! But I couldn’t care less today.
MH: The house stands up. If Oliver bangs a toy on the wall, I believe “uh-oh,” but it is fine.

Sarah Greenman

Although the hallway bathroom is small, it is inviting and well appointed. Mary Emma points to the countertop and says, “This is a struggle that I won. Matt wanted a different whitened, but this white has little flecks in various earth tones. It goes great with the wood floors.”

Sarah Greenman

The guest area doubles as a workplace. The artwork above the bed is among Mary Emma’s first functions.

Sarah Greenman

The office is a clean, compact space. The framed Polaroids above the desk were shot by Matt. See Matt Hawthorne Photography for much more of his photography work.

Desk, drawers: Ikea

Sarah Greenman

Mary Emma’s desk can be from Ikea. The seat is a discovered object she obtained while working at Anthropologie. The artwork above the desk is by Cody Hudson. It was a present from Mary Emma’s father purchased at The Public Trust a gallery at the Regional Deep Ellum neighborhood.

Sarah Greenman

Atop her desk is Mary Emma’s prize possession: a paintbrush that once belonged to abstract impressionist Agnes Martin.

Sarah Greenman

A low-lying platform bed covered in a strong grey quilt, either from Crate & Barrel, is the centerpiece of this master bedroom.

Art: Waddy Armstrong (over headboard), Mary Emma Hawthorne (next to TV); lamp, side table: CB2

Sarah Greenman

SG: Where are your favorite places to look for home products?
MH: We enjoy Design Within Reach, West Elm, Bo Concept, global markets while traveling and small, interesting boutiques.

The master bath is simple, practical and monochromatic with a double sink and a huge glass walk-in shower.

Sarah Greenman

There was no backyard landscaping once the family moved in, so that they brought in 10,000 pounds of dirt, built a short retaining wall by hand and installed grass. Potted succulents, aloe and agave anchor the edges of the patio.

Painted brick, dark grey trim and bright green grass create a pure framework that showcases the home’s crisp, clean curb appeal.

Sarah Greenman

Mary Emma retains Oliver while Matt leafs through a few of his art books. The excellent room, with a view from the bay window, is a favorite spot for the Hawthorne family.

SG: what’s your advice to homeowners interested in remodeling at a modern style?
MH: Don’t rush it and don’t be trendy.
MEH: We often see modern remodels that seem cool at first, then quickly become obsolete.
MH: And do your research. Make sure your contractor is on precisely the same page. His answers must be in line with the homeowner’s vision.

Do you have a creative, modern home? Share it with us!

See related

Picture: Just How Much Does Your Building Weigh, Mr. Foster?

Even in the event that you don’t know who Norman Foster is, chances are you’re familiar with his work. Take a moment to look the Swiss Re Tower in London or the Hearst Building in New York to refresh your memory — remember now? It’s fairly tough to forget Foster’s unique appearance.

“How Much Can Your Construction Weigh, Mr. Foster?” Traces the existence of the British architect — from his life in Manchester, to his education at Yale, to his very first company in London, to his worldwide triumphs. The documentary is distinguished by its striking cinematography and extreme narration, which only emphasizes Foster’s extraordinary work. But what’s even more fascinating are the pieces of insight that the viewer gets into Foster’s persona. His love of flying airplanes, his personal dress and his distinctive hand drawings are all part of what creates his apparently effortless architectural style.

“How Much Can Your Construction Weigh, Mr. Foster?” Opens at New York’s IFC Center Jan. 25, 2012.

First Run Features

The enigmatic name of this film comes out of a well-known question that American inventor, architect, author and all-purpose genius Buckminster Fuller once requested Norman Foster. Both had a fantastic friendship, and Fuller was always challenging Foster’s views, particularly in the domain of sustainability. Fuller once requested Foster how much one of the buildings weighed. Of course, he didn’t have an answer then, but Foster figured it out a week or so later. By answering the question, he realized that most of his building’s weight has been stored in the unseen concrete areas of the structure — a complete waste of material. To Foster, powerful design was tied into layout which has been lasting and was eco friendly, and he strongly believed that his buildings should do the most with the least way possible.

First Run Features

Directed by Spanish documentary filmmakers Norberto López Amado and Carlos Carcas, the film was created by Antonio Sanz and Elena Ochoa. Although creating a film on Foster was something the supervisors and directors had discussed within the course of many decades, it didn’t quite click until they moved to a trip to Foster’s newly assembled Beijing Airport — what is now the most significant building in the world.

The filmmakers meshed with Foster and his group, and determined that producing this film was a must. “I’m not an architect, nor do I consider myself someone who understands architecture,” states Carcas. “So for me, the main issue in this film is’Why should I care about architecture, and also what does it matter to me?'”

Above: The Millau Bridge in Southern France

First Run Features

The film covers Foster’s life, career, architectural achievements and worldwide influence in fantastic depth. The majority of his primary work is shown at some point in the film, but many of his more famous pieces are discussed in detail. The Hearst Building in New York, The Reichstag in Berlin, the Millau bridge in France, London’s Swiss Re Tower (pictured here), the HSBC Main Building in Hong Kong, along with the Wonderful Beijing Airport are all examined in terms of their structure, inspiration and architectural technique.

Above: The Swiss Re Tower in London

First Run Features

The cinematography in this film is just striking. The camera moves slowly, frequently drifting through foggy skylines as the edges of Foster’s epic designs are slowly revealed. All of Foster’s major works have been shown from incredible angles, and in ways which most people would not see unless they had been right there. Each framework highlights the magnificent intricacy of the design. As somebody who had only the smallest bit of experience with Foster’s job, it was jaw-dropping to see such shots — it’s hard to imagine how beautiful these buildings have been in person.

As a unique contrast to the big and bold shapes of Foster’s buildings, his most delicate hand-drawings look many times throughout the movie to illustrate the structures and techniques he is describing — and frequently his clearly labeled sketches clarify concepts better than the more complex computer renderings. His drawings are extremely controlled — there are no wasted lines or movements — just like his buildings.

Above: The HSBC Main Building in Hong Kong

First Run Features

Above all else, this film leaves the impression that Foster is an artist. The film explains how Foster constantly carries around a pencil and paper, just in case inspiration strikes — and as an artist, he finds inspiration in the strangest places.

Picture: “How Much Does Your Construction Weigh, Mr. Foster?” Opens at New York’s IFC Center on Jan. 25, 2012. More

More:
Eames on File: The Architect and the Painter

See related

Design Calendar: What to See and Do in July 2012

Whether you’re interested in finding new artists or speaking architecture, choose a design event below for motivated.

Inform us What’s in your creative calendar? Let us know about your beloved July design events in the Remarks.

hirshhorn.si.edu

EXHIBIT — Through August 12, 2012
Suprasensorial: Experiments in Light, Color, and Space
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.

Sometimes you Only Want to violate the rules and touch the artwork. In the Hirshhorn Museum’s “Suprasensorial” exhibit, you’re invited to do precisely that. Engage your senses in an interactive wonderland of neon lights, mirrored passageways along with noise. Installations from five revolutionary Latin American artists wonder the best way to observe the art because you become a part of it. Highlights include Jesús Rafael Soto’s “Blue Penetrable BBL”(photograph), an immersive square jungle of blue hanging nylon strings, and Carlos Cruz-Diez’s “Chromosaturations,” three distinctively lit rooms which change hues depending on where you look.

Hours: 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m. daily

EXHIBIT — Through Sept. 23, 2012
Skyscraper: Art and Architecture Against Gravity
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago

Although Chicago was named the birthplace of the skyscraper in the late 19th century, the lure of building constructions sky high has always analyzed physical, technological and material limits. At the latest exhibit at the Museum of Contemporary Art, artists dig to the individual longing to build through the clouds with video, film, sculpture, painting and photography.

Hours: Tuesday, 10 a.m.–8 pm; Wednesday–Sunday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Price: Free (kids under 13) to $12; free on Tuesday for Illinois residents

Photo: “Portable City: Hangzhou, 2011,” © Yin Xiuzhen, courtesy of The Pace Gallery, Beijing

EXHIBIT — July 14–Sept. 5, 2012
New Function by Akio Nukaga
Heath Ceramics, San Francisco

Known for his elegant, contemporary pottery, Japanese master potter Akio Nukaga is coming to San Francisco; his job will be the first show at the new Heath Ceramics Theater and showroom. The show will feature Nukaga’s hand-thrown strands and strands broadly inspired by cubism.

Meet the artist at the opening reception from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday, July 14. Then at 2 pm on Sunday, July 15, visit his technique in the potter’s wheel.

aguinigadesign.com

EXHIBIT — July 12–Sept. 8, 2012
Come In! Les Femmes
Architecture and Design Museum (A+D), Los Angeles

The next installment of A+D’s summer exhibition show, “Come In! Les Femmes” includes work by 25 female musicians across all areas, transforming the museum into an interactive gallery. Artists include furniture and fabric designer Tanya Aguiñiga (photograph) and Amy Jean Boebel.

Mingle with the artists and snack on food truck offerings in the opening reception on July 12 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Hours: Tuesday–Friday, 11 a.m.–5 pm, Saturday, Sunday, 12–6 p.m. (closed Mondays)
Price: $10 general, $5 students, A+D members free
Buy tickets Ahead of Time

Uhuru Design

CYCLONE LOUNGER

EXHIBIT — July 20, 2012–Feb. 3, 2013
40 Under 40: Craft Futures
Renwick Gallery, Washington, D.C.

“Craft Futures” features the work of 40 artists younger than 40 in celebration of Renwick Gallery’s 40th anniversary. The selected works reveal the value of contemporary sustainable practices.

Select works from the exhibit also provided inspiration for distances in the Washington Design Center’s DreamHome. This Coney Island–motivated lounger by Uhuru (photo) motivated the dining area.

Hours: 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m. daily (closed December 25)

SHOW HOUSE — July 22–Sept. 3, 2012
2012 Hampton Designer Showhouse, Water Mill, New York

As if spending some time in the Hamptons in summer weren’t enough of a draw, take a look at this year old designer show house, presented by Traditional House magazine and become motivated by the inner transformation of a traditional shingle-style home. Over 20 designers worked to outfit every square foot, from the butler’s pantry to the breakfast area. Proceeds benefit Southampton Hospital.

Hours: 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
Price: $225 gala preview party; $30 admission
Buy tickets on line

Amazon

TALK — July 11, 2012, 7:15 p.m.
Houses+Origins, by David Stark Wilson
Menlo Park Library, Menlo Park, California

Join San Francisco Bay Area architect David Wilson of WA Design because he presents his newest illustrated publication and leads a discussion on homes designed and built in the exceptional California landscape. A native of Berkeley, California, Wilson creates modern buildings which explore how substances, shape and color experienced in character evoke resonant answers in the built environment.

To learn more, email [email protected]

laforum.org

EXHIBIT — July 13–Aug. 26, 2012
Unfinished Business: 25 Years of Discourse in Los Angeles
WUHO Gallery, Los Angeles

With the aim “to open up a rich and potentially provocative dialogue,” an upcoming exhibition at the L.A. Forum for Architecture and Urban Design takes a look at two decades of the organization. The forum has functioned as a place for architectural discourse since the 1980s, and by revisiting the history of its programming and books, the exhibition aims to delve into the advancement and projection of architectural expansion in one of the country’s liveliest urban environments.

Hours: Thursday, 1–8 pm; Friday–Sunday, 1–6 p.m.

remsberg.com

FESTIVAL — July 20–22, 2012
Artscape, Baltimore, Maryland

Each summer, Artscape invites thousands and thousands of Baltimoreans outdoors to enjoy a visual feast of performance and art. See ordinary sedans transformed into art bits and stroll through “At-TENT-ion”: 20 tents turned to thought-provoking “secret worlds” Also on display are 16-foot-tall metal interactive sculptures designed by artist Christian Ristow; each sculpture comprises one of the major facial muscles to convey an androgynous individual face.
See the full program

Hours: Friday, Saturday, 11 a.m.–9 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.–8 p.m.

See related

For the Boys: 5 Homes With Masculine Energy

I write this ideabook with my tongue placed firmly in my cheek, as whenever I attempt to strike a few man-centric subject, folks write in and say”you could tell a chick attempted to write this around dudes.” Well, busted, however, these are seriously chic spaces where real guys really dwell. In reality, four out of five of these are bachelor pads, with no table made out of a keg in sight.

Scot Meacham Wood Design

This San Francisco condominium was inspired by fashion, particularly by one of the homeowner’s tasks as a stylist at Ralph Lauren. A rich leather couch, a bearskin throw and pillows covered in suit cloth give the space a warm and manly feeling.

Scot Meacham Wood Design

Metallic finishes, a Chinoiserie cupboard and more menswear-inspired cloths on the window treatments prevent matters from getting rancid.

Scot Meacham Wood Design

An expansive dining room outside extends the house’s living room outdoors. See the rest of the home

NICOLEHOLLIS

This Pacific Heights home was supposed to be minimal, unique, and also have European flair.

NICOLEHOLLIS

An 8-foot-long fireplace keeps the crisp space hot, as do unique accent pieces similar to this classic black rain drum.

What’s a proper bachelor pad with no guy cave? This dark media room is comfortable and trendy. See the rest of the home

This stunning flat in San Sebastián, Spain knocks my socks off. A mixture of vintage, modern and contemporary pieces reside in harmony against a white walls, trimwork and ceilings.

Dark-colored textiles add a manly feel to the bright guest space.

This is still one of my favourite moments of photo styling. In reality, it inspired an entire ideabook about the Seven Deadly Sins. This shot served as gluttony.

See the rest of the home

Dabito

This smart L.A.-based blogger, Dabito, has gathered and curated an impressive collection of thrifted vintage treasures. These bits are arranged throughout his home in a means that makes it seem easy (it is not).

Dabito

A set of his own etchings and lithographs, as well as artwork given to him by friends, decorate the walls.

Dabito

Things like an alpaca blanket out of Ecaudor are cozy not just for Dabito, but also for Beatrice Arthur, a star pet.

See the rest of the home

estudio gutman lehrer

Ultimately, we’ll travel down to Buenos Aires to get a peek at a small but luxury attic. This gorgeous space takes advantage of every spare inch without consuming a bit of polish. There is even a gallery to gaze at above the bed.

estudio gutman lehrer

The home was retreat from the hustle and bustle of city and career demands. Therefore, a custom platform bed bedecked in soft textiles was crucial.

estudio gutman lehrer

While this resembles a slick bar, it is really a fully-functioning kitchen. Appliances and supplies are integrated into the wall and cabinets. See the rest of the home

More:
Pattern Play: Masculine Ruggedness Modernized
Masculine Upgrade: Ladders in the Home
Make Your House More Man-Friendly
The Gentleman Cellar: Anti-Man Cave

See related

Design Calendar: Things to See and Do in June 2012

From a rooftop exhibit at the New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art into West Coast design festivals, you will find an assortment of inspiring things to keep your home looking refreshing this summer. Bookmark this guide, grab a friend and make some plans to escape and get motivated.

Tell us What’s in your calendar this month? Let us know about your favorite upcoming design occasions below.

tomassaraceno.com

EXHIBIT — During November 4, 2012 (weather permitting)
Tomás Saraceno on the Roof: Cloud City
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City

Climb and walk throughout the Met’s latest rooftop summer commission: Tomás Saraceno’s Cloud City. The reflective, interconnected constellation of contemporary structures is an impressive web of Plexiglas, steel and tension cables reminiscent of an urban jungle gym. The Argentine installation artist explores habitable networks based on interconnectivity, and while you ponder the ways that we occupy and experience our environment, you are going to find a pretty sweet view of Manhattan.

Hours: Tuesday–Thursday, Sunday, 9:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m.; Friday, Saturday, 9:30 a.m.–9:00 p.m.; closed Mondays (except holidays, Thanksgiving Day, December 25 and January 1)
Price: $25, $17 seniors, $12 students, 12 and younger, free

beautyisembarrassing.com

FESTIVAL — June 14–24, 2012
Los Angeles Film Festival

Calling all cinephiles! Whether documentaries, short films or music videos are something, the Los Angeles Film Festival has something that you see. One of the many films to be screened, the documentary Beauty Can Be Embarrassing (photo) by manager Neil Berkeley follows artist Wayne White’s career, extending from New York’s East Village into the set of Pee Wee’s Playhouse into the thrift shops of Los Angeles. The Summer Showcase Provides a look at the summer’s most talked-about independent film releases on the festival circuit, including Sundance romantic humor Celeste and Jesse Forever, starring Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg, to the world premiere of L.A. “dramedy” It’s a Disaster, with America Ferrera and Julia Stiles. Also on the lineup is Pixar’s newest animated feature, Brave, starring a red-haired Scottish heroine.
Watch the schedule for screen times and places

Price:
$13 individual films
Purchase tickets and passes online

FESTIVAL — June 22–24, 2012
Dwell on Design
Los Angeles Convention Center

Feast on contemporary design in the form of tens of thousands of products, presentations, home tours and presentations in this year’s Dwell on Design, celebrating the theme “Modern Beyond Expectations.” Highlights from the three-day occasion contains a rope installment from the Oyler Wu Collaborative, a screening lounge featuring short films on industrial design and architecture, in addition to winners of this prestigious Swiss Design Prize.
Check out the full schedule

Hours: Friday, 10 a.m.–8 pm; Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.; Sunday 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

Tappan Collective

Chateau Marmont Photograph, Gia Coppola – $200

ART SHOW — June 9, 2012
The Tappan Collective Group Art Show and Launch Party
The Jeffries Building, 117 Winston St., Los Angeles

Two young creative graduates in the University of Michigan have teamed up to Supply an Internet platform for others to find emerging artists. To kick off their new internet venture, they’re placing on a launch celebration featuring artwork by photographer and filmmaker Gia Coppola (photo), photographer Clara Balzary-Flea, The Stillhouse Group and several others in downtown Los Angeles. Enjoy refreshments, meet the inspiring entrepreneurs on the other side of the site and take home that ideal piece for your sterile wall.

Hours: 7 p.m.–11 p.m.

museumofdesign.org

EXHIBIT — During June 3, 2012
Stories in Form: Chair Design by Portfolio Center
Museum of Design Atlanta

Have a seat, or reimagine what it means to do through the eyes of design students studying the history of modernism. The Museum of Design Atlanta has partnered with Portfolio Center to honor the background and design of this chair. Pupils were challenged to combine their personal history with design background, exploring the delicate balance between old function and their new imaginative journeys.

Hours: Tuesday–Saturday, 10 Gamble–5 pm; Sunday, 12 p.m.–5 pm; closed Mondays
Price: $10, $8 seniors, $5 students and 17 and younger, members free

FESTIVAL — June 23–July 8, 2012
London Festival of Architecture, U.K.

For two weeks this summer, London will become “The Playful City,” indicating ways where both Londoners and visitors can be active participants from reinterpreting recognizable places through new installations and cartoons. This curated festival redesigned three big hubs and multiple public spaces to encourage physical fitness at the spirit of the Olympic Games and interact with all the city’s historic buildings in new ways. “Date a designer” by simply enrolling in a free 30-minute consultation, explore a treehouse or select a walking tour to find that the city’s hidden architectural gems.
See the Entire event schedule

FESTIVAL — June 2–3, 2012
Sunset Magazine Celebration Weekend
Menlo Park, California

Research the grounds of Sunset magazine’s Bay Area headquarters for the yearly weekend festival celebrating West Coast gardening, food, travel, home and garden. Love food tastings, chat with garden and home sellers or sip locally made wine. There will be plenty of things to see and do, from a cooking demonstration of grilled Dr. Pepper pork flatbread from the Food Network’s Guy Fieri into a workshop on travel photography using your smartphone.
Download the full schedule

Hours: 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Price: $16, $14 seniors, 12 and younger, free; discounts available

FESTIVAL — June 11–17, 2012
San Francisco Design Week

Proceed an open-studio crawl and peek in the studios of Apparatus Architecture, Gensler and Lunar Design, or attend an exhibition presenting new typography from young Swiss designers. Celebrating the diverse creative community of the Bay Area, San Francisco Design Week is an initiative by AIGA SF in partnership with local professional design chapters to emphasize and increase public awareness of innovative design work. Events happen all around the city.
See the Entire schedule of events

See related

Guest Picks: Baby Your Walls

With baby number four (my fourth boy) about the way, I have nursery on the mind. I’m constantly on the lookout for ways to customize my newest little man’s space. Obviously, even with boys, I can’t help but”ooh” and”ahh” over a number of the more girly prints, so I have thrown in a few of those, too.
— Rita from Fighting Off Frumpy

Etsy

Children’s Art Print Poster, Mustache by Pumpkin & Butterfly – $23

This print makes me laugh — what is far better to look at all the time than something that makes you laugh? It’s perfect for my dudes.

Etsy

Love String of Hearts Folk Art Print by Tascha – $14

What a sweet picture! It’s just so unique. I love the unusual crackle finish along with the girl’s small heart-shaped lips.

Etsy

Nursery Art Print, Homes by Kathy Panton – $16

The vibrant colors and swirling patterns in this film are mesmerizing. Plus, who doesn’t love cute little houses?

Etsy

Alphabet Nursery Art, ‘Alphabet Soup’ by Sugar Fresh – $32.50

This is just so clean and contemporary looking, in spite of the traditional decoration theme. I love that the artist can perform customized colors, so this piece can fit perfectly with whatever scheme you have got going on.

Etsy

Owl Baby Nursery Art by Missprint Design – $18

This small owl is cute! It’s a fun and lively print, and it is totally customizable with color along with your kid’s name to boot.

Etsy

Fine Art Bird Photography Print Flock by Bomobob – $85

This film includes a cool, retro-hipster vibe that is softened by the fluffy white clouds against the blue sky. I dig the peaceful feeling that it rains, and I’m pretty certain a baby could, too.

Etsy

Carnival Photos Nursery Art, Turquoise, Ferris Wheel by Bomobob – $45

This isn’t just 1 picture; it is a pair of eight, and it is just so magnificent. I love the color scheme, and the theme is joyful and surprising for a nursery.

Etsy

Cherry Blossom Orchard, Tree Art Nursery Print, Wonderland by Raceytay – $210

This is stunning. I can’t imagine a prettier theme or colour scheme for a little girl’s nursery.

Etsy

Trafalgar Rabbit Catch A Falling Star by Trafalgar’s Square – $20

Simple and sweet, this cute little bunny grabbing a falling star could be perfect for either gender.

Etsy

Nursery Art Print, Little Red Car by Simply Sublime Baby – $14.95

This tiny red car is so adorable. It’s a nice, cheery, non-fussy piece of art. Additionally, I’m a sucker for anything that can be personalized. My boys will love this.

Etsy

Nursery Art Print, Ever So Sweet by SophieBella Photos – $14

The vintage feel makes this piece a standout, and I love the colour combination.

Etsy

Personalized Definition Typography Nursery Art by Announce It In Design – $15

I completely adore this piece for two reasons. First, I’m a word nerd, and dictionaries make me salivate. Second, you can personalize it with whatever adjectives and nicknames you desire, taking the customization mode beyond the name.

Etsy

Alphabet Paintings by Over Da Crib – $150

The bright, bold swirls of colour make for this intriguing statement. Additionally, they are not so babyish that they’d look out of place when the nursery isn’t a nursery .

Etsy

Personalized Nursery Art With Baby Pictures by Celadon Home – $200

This isn’t your normal wall art, and that is exactly what I love about doing it. A vintage songbook together with the modern lines of this frame make this an intriguing conversation piece.

Etsy

Summer Bird Tree Painting Art Print by Sascalia – $18

I adore the colors, the flowers and that adorable little bird nestled directly at the fork of the tree! This film would add such a spring-like feel to a room.

Etsy

Nursery Art Print, Monsters by Pituda – $18

I wouldn’t normally consider monsters as a nursery theme, but this monster is so stinkin’ friendly and adorable.

Etsy

Automobile Display in Mini by Katie Lloyd Photography – $50

As the mother of 3 boys (and yet another on the road ), these cars are a staple in my home. Maybe if this cool and colorful print were hanging on my wall, I could tell folks that the cars strewn across the carpeting were just there to highlight the art.

Etsy

Nursery Decor, Whimsical Fine Art Photography by Carl Christensen – $30

This is just another fairly atypical — or at least, surprising — piece of art for a nursery school. I adore its retro look and the comparison of the glowing blocks from the weathered wood.

Etsy

Daybreak On The Farm Acrylic by nJoy Art – $84

With all these colors in this adorable and cozy farm landscape, you can tie it in to just about any colour scheme. And these sheep are cute!

Etsy

Boy Nursery Art I Love You to the Moon and Back by Hop Skip Jump Paper – $20

This picture is so peaceful and serene. In the sleeping birdies into the way in which the moon and stars look virtually vaccinated against the backdrop, this is something I would love to have hanging on the wall.

Next: The New Look of Nurseries

See related

Guest Groups: Soup Essentials

Soup — of all types — is my favourite meals. It’s also something that I write about and photograph quite frequently for my website. This month’s set of things consists of things that I love for the soup-making kitchen. I have found stylish serving pieces, cookware with pops of color and a few things to make your soup demonstration really unique. Tami from Running with Tweezers

West Elm

Mug with Lid – $8

Versatile for casual soup meals or hot winter drinks, the coaster doubles as a lid to keep the contents warm.

Terrain

Simon Pearce Brookfield Spoon Rest – $35

This isn’t your typical secondhand spoon rest — it’s sleek, minimal and modern.

Etsy

Porcelain Pottery Bowls in White and Golden Yellow by Suite One Studio – $52

Suite One Studio makes a number of my favourite ceramic bits for both photos and dining at home.

Vitamix

Vitamix 5200 – using Compact Container – $449

I’d be lost without my Vitamix. It’s the most used appliance in my kitchen — nothing compares to the texture of soups created in this thing.

Le Creuset

Le Creuset – 8qt. Stockpot – $80

A large-capacity stock pot is a must-have my kitchen. Le Creuset has choices that are vibrant and classic.

Anthropologie

Vegetables From An Italian Garden: Season-By-Season Recipes – $39.95

This cookbook lives in my kitchen in colder months. It’s so much inspiration for using seasonal produce.

Pottery Barn

Antique-Silver Ladle – $29

Amazing such as this ladle, can make viewing simple everyday sauces seem unique.

IKEA

ELLY Dish Towel – $3.49

The vintage vibe of those towels makes me happy, and at less than $4 for four of them, you don’t care if they have stained with canned berries.

Williams-Sonoma

Big Double-Handled Soup Bowls – $32

I love these double-handled soup crocks for hearty french onion soups and stews. They are oven safe so you can melt cheese and toast bread on top!

Emile Henry USA

Flame Top Round Dutch Oven/Stewpot, 7qt. – $235

I adore my Emile Henry Stewpot. The 7-quart capacity makes it easy to cook huge batches of soups and stews in a lightweight pot.

Hayneedle

Smart Stick Hand Blender – Green – $32.99

While I don’t feel like distributing the Vitamix, or I am making soup in tiny batches, so I whizz things up in the pot along with my Cuisinart immersion blender. I am in love with this kelly green color.

Crate&Barrel

Weck Canning Jars – $3.95

I utilize Weck glass jars for soup storage. They’re so minimal, allow the soup shine through the glass and don’t discolor or take on odors like some plastic storage containers.

Bed Bath & Beyond

Round Canape Plates – $4.99

I love the notion of gussying up plain white soup cups using picture saucers or charger plates. These would be a fantastic conversation starter in a dinner celebration.

Bloomingdale’s

Bernardaud “Dune Blue” Soup Tureen – $790

While I tend to lean toward nominal dishes and serving pieces, I am a sucker for a beautiful tureen. The color of this one makes me swoon.

Ace Hardware Outlet

Hot/Cold Food Jar 10oz. – $8.92

I am now in love with this vintage-style thermos. It’s a stylish way to take soup for lunch, picnics or road trips.

CB2

8-piece Spoon Coffee Mug, White – $15.80

I love the concept of having a set of these for entertaining. They are a really fun way to present a flavor or soup course.

Amazon

All Clad Stainless Steel Simply Soup Establish – $189

This set is a great gift idea for a soup lover — the All Clad metal ramekins are extremely exceptional.

UncommonGoods

Ramen Spoon and Fork – $14

Specially created for a ramen noodle restaurant in Japan, this “spork” is a super neat kitchen addition for lovers of Asian-inspired soups.

RedEnvelope

Culinary Growing Kit – $69.95

Fresh herbs are always a touch I add to my soup recipes, and indoor herb blossoms allow you do this yearlong.

Bella Cucina

Spouted Pourer – $11

1 thing that I love to do when entertaining is pour soup to guests’ bowls in the table. It’s an easy touch that makes soup look fitting for a dinner celebration.

Next: Baking Stations Make Cooking More Enjoyable

See related

Guest Picks: I'll Have a Blue Christmas

You won’t be feeling blue once you break away from tradition and celebrate the Christmas season with this fun, fresh and trendy colour palette! Whether turquoise, teal or aquamarine, blue is the “it” colour this season, and it couldn’t be easier to integrate it into your holiday decoration.
Heather and Vanessa from In the Picket Fence

Etsy

Beaded Christmas Ball, Paisley by Meredith Dada

We love the combo of chartreuse and blue in those handmade beaded ornaments. The paisley design is stylish and traditional at exactly the exact same moment.

Crate&Barrel

Jester Teal Candleholder – $5.95

Can’t you just picture this with all the delicate glow of a candle shining through? Placed atop a mantel or just on a side table, this is certain to be a bit you use year after year.

Modern Holiday Decorations – $14.95

Having the blues does not have to be a bad thing when it is possible to buy a number of items for your holiday decoration at one time. We love this combo of aquamarine silver and gold.

Eclectic Napkin Rings – $40

We think this nod to one of our favorite feathered friends is the best way to add a bit of glamour into your holiday table setting this year.

Etsy

Blue Christmas Yarn Wrapped Wreath by Morning Songbird – $42

We turn to our entrance doors to set the stage for our decor. Hanging this joyous and fun blue yarn wreath will let your visitors know that you plan on using a “blue Christmas” this year.

Modern Charger Plates – $18.95

Chargers are a terrific way to spice classic white or ivory china. These will add the perfect touch of blue for a table setting and can be used throughout the New Year’s Eve parties too.

Cost Plus World Market

Blue Flour Sack Kitchen Towel, Set of 3 – $9.99

We adore the colour palette of those kitchen towels from Cost Plus World Market. Sitting on the kitchen counter or in the pub area, they don’t just be convenient for casual holiday spills but also add a festive touch of blue into the area.

FRONTGATE

Place of 12 Teal Beaded Picks

We love how items similar to this can be utilised in a variety of methods in your property. Add them into a Christmas tree for a few frosty blue sparkle, or bunch them together in a large vase for a big visual effects. The possibilities are endless!

CB2

Elroy Ornament – $2.95

This fun and amazing ornament is perfect all on its own, but we love the idea of utilizing it as a napkin ring or perhaps a decorative detail on a wrapped gift.

Eclectic Decorative Pillows – $29.95

The sparkle does not have to end if the holidays do! We love this stunning beaded pillow will bring a touch of glamour to your decoration all year-round.

Nordstrom

TableTopics ‘Dinner Party’ Conversation Starters – $25

Forget awkward lulls in the conversation or having to listen to Uncle Joe’s corny joke for the umpteenth time. These Table Topics cards will fill in the gaps and help you get to know your family and friends a bit better. You could be surprised — or fearful! — with everything you find out. Either way, it will be a vacation to remember.

Etsy

Metallic Gold and Blue Tasseled Christmas Tree Skirt by Deer Camp Creations

We are pretty sure we would not want to pay this up with gifts. This magnificent Christmas tree skirt with an icy blue pattern can definitely stand by itself. We enjoy it so much we could just wear it ourselves.

Papyrus

Gold Snowflakes Fill-In Invitations – $9.95

We absolutely love to play hostess during the holidays, and we think these beautiful invitations would be the perfect way to kick off the season of entertaining in style.

Papyrus

4×6 Beaded Sequin Frame – $42

A frame such as this shouldn’t just be put out for the holidays. We love how it meets the joyous and fun requirements of the season, yet it would be equally as beautiful to welcome the warm summer breezes.

Grandin Road

Martha Stewart Flights of Fancy Gold Stocking – $39

No coal for all these stockings! This unique combination of gold and turquoise will make a statement on your mantel this year, and we know they’ll be just as beautiful when filled to the brim with Christmas goodies.

Tiffany & Co..

Tiffany Blue Box® Charm – $250

This is our kind of ornament! It may be dangling from our wrists instead of our Christmas tree, but once we see that famous shade of azure, we’ll know we were certainly on the “nice” list this year!

Lenox

Gilded Tapestry 5-piece Place Setting – $195

What about this fresh spin on traditional vacation china? This beautiful place setting is just one we’d want to utilize year-round, even if they are just holding takeout.

Grandin Road

Ashley Pencil Christmas Tree – $169

It might not be for everybody, but we’d be remiss if we didn’t at least stick it out there, correct? We think this bright and cheerful tree takes “Blue Christmas” into an entirely new level.

Target

Home Blue Floral Quilted Table Runner – $17.99

Something as simple as adding a runner can bring an original touch to your decor. We love this just captures the heart of winter with its arctic blue tones and simple branch layout.

PFI Western

Could there be a more appropriate way to celebrate with a “Blue Christmas” compared to a toast to The King for this Elvis Presley Blue Christmas Cabernet Sauvignon? We think that this Napa Valley wine is a fun and one of a kind gift for the Elvis fan on your list.

Next:
Dreaming of a White Christmas
Make a Fashionista Christmas Tree

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2012 Color Trends: Using Red in Your Kitchen and Bath

This 2012 Color Trends series is about five hot colour trends projected for the year. In particular I will be showing you how to integrate them into your toilet and kitchen in a way which is logical for your preference and your home.

Red shows up on pretty much every 2012 Color Trend report. Sherwin-Williams sees reds burning brightly, from deep fuchsias into red-oranges. Yolo Colorhouse and Behr see 2012’s reddish as earthy and rustic, more evocative of clay compared to flame. Benjamin Moore sees the spicy side of red for 2012.

The previous rules of reddish pairings are broadening too. It punches the hell from white or cream, but feel free to pair it together with different neutrals like stainless and walnut, in addition to colors which may not have occurred to you in the past, including those in red’s colour family, such as purple and pink.

Move as large or small with red as you feel comfortable in your space. Here are a few splashy and sensible fashion ways to do it.

More 2012 Color Trend Suggestions: Orange | Blue | Green | Purple

Snaidero USA

If you absolutely, passionately enjoy red and plan to remain in your home indefinitely, by all means, knock yourself (and your guests) out.

Red cabinetry, particularly premium European red cabinetry, is a very private, very lasting investment. This highly effective choice demands you to turn down the volume on all of your kitchen choices. If everything is a focal point, then nothing is a focus.

Dallas Renovation Group

Talking of focal points, you are able to integrate red cabinetry with only an island. This island adds a punch of colour to the surrounding creamy neutrals.

Know more about this particular kitchen

Glenvale Kitchens

Another big-commitment way to incorporate red is through your appliances, most commonly on a range. Unlike stainless steel, you’re (hopefully) not going to go red for every one of them. Choosing paneled and hidden models for your other appliances would be the way to go when adding a dramatic color like red.

As you would with reddish cabinetry, keep the other colors in the room neutral.

Tatiana Takaeva

Red on a countertop creates a strong statement. I have yet to design a kitchen with red countertops (and can’t see it happening), but a pinch of this hot trend colour works nicely on an island or in a powder room. Both thrive on drama.

Niche Interiors

Red tile may produce a strong design and trend statement in your bathroom or kitchen. If you fear you’ll tire of it in the future decades, incorporate it strategically in accents, as revealed here. You do not require a totally reddish shower or kitchen backsplash to create your point.

Modern Chandeliers

You adore the glass jar mild trend, but you won’t wish to have the exact same style that all your neighbors have. Add colour; it makes your glass jar uniquely you.

Paint is a fantastic way to add a colour trend to your space, particularly when it is a high-drama colour like deep reddish. If you tire of it down the line, it is comparatively simple and affordable to change.

Sharon Portnoy Design

You’ve heard (and perhaps tired) of accent walls, right? How about accent insides instead? The deep red back of an open maple or birch cabinet really can warm up their cool blonde tones. It also functions as a sudden color punch within an otherwise neutral space.

One of the simplest, most temporary techniques to incorporate red to a toilet or kitchen is with furniture. While you’re unlikely to take a brush or spray can to your cabinets, painting a chair or counter stool red is a fun and amazing move. Dining chair slipcovers and banquette accent cushions may have a similar impact in exchange for very little work or investment.

gelpro.com

GelPro Crocodile Red Gel Mats | Gel-Filled Comfort Flooring Mats and Kitchen Mats – $99.95

Red accents can serve a function, in addition to a colour punch. Since your kitchen may benefit from a comfortable mat, why not get one in a dynamic color and feel? Red towels, cafe curtains and counter tops may also add colour tendency to your own kitchen.

More:
Sangria Hues: Punch Colors for the New Year
Will a Red Bathroom Make You Blush?
Shade Pop: Bold Red robes

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The way to Get Your Landlord to reduce Your Rent While on Unemployment

One of the main concerns when losing your job is the ability to pay for your rent and keep a roof on your head. Getting unemployment benefits is useful, but usually the amount that you’re entitled to every month is significantly less than what you’re making at your work. Legally, your landlord has the capability to alter your lease if you both agree to the alterations; however, he’s under no obligation to do so. Method your neighbor from a company standpoint to negotiate a decrease in rent till you get back on your feet.

Figure out how much money you can set aside for rent every month. Cut your expenses down to only requirements, including your telephone bill and food. Subtract that number from your total unemployment income to see what you have available for rent. Factor in any severance money which you received or any money which you have in a savings account if applicable.

Make a proposition to your landlord. Explain your financial situation, and let your landlord know how much you can reasonably pay monthly for rent while unemployed. Let your landlord know your task status is temporary and that the reduction will ideally only be for three to six months, for example.

Offer to work out a payment plan for the missed rent as soon as you’re gainfully employed. Determine approximately how much money you expect to underpay within a certain length of time. For instance, possibly you’re asking for a rent reduction of $300 monthly for six weeks, that might be a total of $1,800. Explain your proposed repayment plan, such as you may pay your normal rent amount plus $180 monthly for 10 months. Place the terms in writing so he sees you’re serious.

Ask if you’re able to work for the decrease in rent by doing cleaning, cleaning or doing maintenance work across the property. Propose an hourly or fixed cost per job and specific hours that you’re available to work. Place the conditions in writing, and sign the file with your landlord. Have your landlord sign off on a reception after every completed job.

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