Archive for January, 2010

Red is Cool… Outside of School.

Forget about the green chalkboards of yesteryear. And you can say no way to the spray on black ones that we oohed and awwed over a short while back. It’s your turn to play Picasso with an array of colored chalkboard paint from Hudson Paints. Go ahead. Paint the town red. Create a wall of wild flowers with yellow and purple. The most beautiful blue sky is yours inside your home office. Just another way to give your child (and yourself) the creative backdrop for blooming talents. Chalk it up!

chalkboard paint

Hudson Paint is $25 per quart

colored chalkboard pallette

get a good brush, turn on some music, and paint away in any color shown here.

Be Square and Get Organized.

I’m planning to change my living space here shortly and am on the search for beautiful items that do double duty in a home. Once such peice is this Storage Cube for West Elm. The colors are serene and I love the textured grass cloth upholstery. One or even three would be  perfect in a living room where closets and drawers are typically lacking. I am all about items that maximize storage while maintaining style.

storage cube west elm

Storage Cube, $99 each | West Elm

I Dream of Green.

I’m alterady over Winter. Go away! If its not going to be fluffy white out there, then how about some green? In the meantime, I’ll get my fix from pretty pictures of urban greening projects that are being planned or completed around the world. This one is my current favorite as it looks like the elaborate and layered home landscapes found right here in the affluent metropolitan uber neighborhoods of McLean, Great Falls, and Potomac. Architonic surprises its readers with this fantastic Copenhagen courtyard that’s anything beside boring. The meandering paths, accent lighting, and variegated grasses, shrubs, and trees creates interest, privacy, and a gorgeous view from the surrounding buildings.

Charlotte Garden open park and courtyard.

Charlotte Garden is open to local people as a meeting place, playground, and escape.

Charlotte Garden Copenhagen

Movement and enriched vision is enlivened by the changing patterns.

Charlotte garden variety of plant life.

Plantings include meadow grass, Festuca glauca, Seslevia and Molina caerulea.

Colors in the winter landscape.

Colors change with season and include golden tones in the winter months.

Planting schedule.

The garden was nominated for the Mies van der Rohe Award.

The design team included Stig L. Andersson, Hanne Bruun Møller, Lars Nybye Sørensen along with client Harald Simonsens Ejendomsselskab. The nearby buildings are designed by Lundgaard & Tranberg Architects. The pretty photos are by SLA.

An Eclectic Facade Lineup.

It’s not often that one would run into a facade of buildings where four semi-attached buildings in one large metropolitan city exemplify four different architecture styles. Except for right here in Washington DC. I’ve driven by this lineup several times – blaring Friday night tunes on my way to see sibs at Ozio and hurriedly on my way to work while tearing across the intersections yellow light. With each passing, I may have glanced and noticed the contrast of styles. Not truly until now. DC Metrocentric clearly points it out in todays’ post called The Historic Modern Mix. Commenter Thayer-D details it beautifully. Mansard and all.

DC Metrocentric's Blog Post

Resolve to Fix-It!

Thank you Washington Post for this in-depth list of things to add to your never-ending to-do list.

January is prime time to tackle those chores.

Sitting Pretty.

The wintertime scenery in DC is beautiful, even without leaves on trees and a lack of true blue skies. Recent snowfall in the city was so picturesque, both on the streets and from the views within our own homes. And I hear there is more to come throughout the season. So clean those glass panes and pull up a seat. If you have a classic bay window or a picture window with a gorgeous view, consider creating a stylish perch for a multi-tude of uses – sitting, sleeping, and even storage. This Old House shares some adorable options that also add value to your home. Relax and watch the world go by.

A daybed offers additional sleeping in an alcove. Add shutters to control morning light.

A window seat balances windows and offers book and file storage both behind and below. Add pillows and walls sconces for task light and comfort.

The corner window seats mimic the trim detail of the entertainment unit and have lift off tops hiding twin pull out beds.

The corner window seats mimic the trim detail of the entertainment unit and have lift off tops hiding twin pull out beds.

Cabinetry is sute and allows ease of access to storage. Though more expensive with drawers, built-ins are a worthy investment in any home.

Corner configurations can be charming for occasional seating. This L-shaped bench has open storage and a simple arm rest.

Place a mini-library under your seat by adding dividers into open bookshelves to support your seat and act as bookends. A toe kick elevates it off of the floor.

Got space under a window? Build in a flip-top bench and you've got room to stash extra scarves, gloves, and other coat-closet overflow.

When creating your own special nook, consider a seat depth of at least 22″ and up to 36″.  Use medium-density or firm foam for the core of a cushion and wrap it with cotton batting. Cover it with upholstery-grade laminated fabric or apply a stain-resistant treatment to lighter-weight material. Voila.

10 Easy-to-Grow Orchids.

My best friend (beside my twin sis) cares for a few pots of orchids that are, how should I say, not doing so well. Okay, more like flowerless. I’m told the delicate blooms will return with abundance. Hm. Still waiting. Here is to you BF, compliments of Better Homes and Gardens. Love ya and good luck with that. =)

10 Easy-to-Grow Orchids

These Words Ring True.

Need a New Year’s resolution for your home and your design point of view? Here are some famous words to live by:

“Make your home as comfortable and attractive as possible and then get on with living. There’s more to life than decorating.” – Albert Hadley

“Have nothing in your house you do not consider to be useful or beautiful.” – William Morris

“The difference between good and great design is intelligence.” – Tibor Kalman

“Design is not for philosophy, it is for life.” – Issey Miyake

The essence of interior design will always be about people and how they live. It is about the realities of what makes for an attractive, civilized, meaningful environment, not about fashion or what’s in or what’s out. This is not an easy job.” – Albert Hadley

“It is just as disastrous to have the wrong accessories in your room as it is to wear sport shoes with an evening dress.” – Dorothy Draper

“Beauty is the quality of harmonious relationships. A formula to produce it it does not exist.” – Frank A. Parsons

Remember, color is not just color, but mood, temperature and structure.” – Van Day Treux

“Interiors speak! Rooms emphasize whether one exists or lives, and there is a great difference between the two! “ – Van Day Truex

“I believe that architecture and decoration are art forms of the highest order.” – Mariette Himes Gomez

Just a Thought.

"A person should design the way he makes a living, around how he wishes to make a life" — Charlie Byrd

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