Area rugs. They are the foundation for almost any room design. We recently went in search of the perfect area rug to complete a sophisticated, warm, neutral living room design. One of our favorite haunts for area rugs isRead More
I am basically a lazy cook. I don't want to create any more work or spend any more time than necessary, but I still want the best possible result. I value efficiency, of course, but until I acquire a scullery maid, here are some processes and gadgets that make cooking and baking a pleasure instead of a chore.Read More
Well, it's groundhog day and apparently we have 6 more weeks of winter. Honestly, no matter what the furry rodent says, we in New England KNOW that winter weather is capricious right up to (and sometimes into!) May. But spring is coming...eventually!
The good news? Trapped inside during winter is the perfect time to spruce up your house in time for the spring flurry (no pun intended) of activities. And one of the most effective ways to make changes is with paint.
There are many places where new paint will make a big difference:Read More
There is no such thing as a typical day in the life of an interior designer. Which may be precisely why I love it so much - it is NEVER boring!
Most days start with checking and responding to emails and texts and putting out any fires that started early in the day! After that it's anybody's guess.Read More
So, I'm writing about food. Again. Because eating is always a big priority around here and we believe that, like all things home-related, mealtime should be the essence of graciousness whether you are cooking for your family or entertaining friends. And since we are all short on time, some strategies for making meals that are both quick and gourmet-ish is important.
In order to facilitate that, let me suggest these three ideas:Read More
The holiday decorations are finally all packed up until next year. And now is the time to turn our attention to organizing and freshening our homes. Here are three small changes with big impact that will breathe new life into your rooms:Read More
Our most recent entertaining venture was our annual Nutcracker's Sweets Dessert Open House. It occurred on an absolutely frigid evening, but it was cozy inside and a delight to celebrate the end of the holiday season and the beginning of a new year with family and friends.Read More
I love to bake and I love entertaining. So naturally, I enjoy creating parties centered around desserts. Dessert parties are some of the easiest parties to manage since desserts generally require very little last minute attention.
Here are some tips I have found helpful over the years as I have honed my dessert party skills:Read More
It's no secret that I LOVE the holidays with all the beautiful lights and decorations and wonderful food! But as a designer, color is one of the first things my eye sees and I have a need for my holiday decor to blend seamlessly with my home decor. I addition to the tree, garland, and wreath ornaments and ribbons, I also like to color coordinate my packages under the tree. Beautifully wrapped packages are a lovely holiday tradition, and thoughtful packaging is as important as the gift inside!
Here are some suggestions for upping your gift packaging game:Read More
Recently, we have been investigating living room tables...that backbone of creating a functional living space...a place to put your drink, or book, or remote control, or table lamp, or whatever makes the room work for you!
We have come across an interesting variety of cocktail, end, wine, and console tables. Many have a mix of finishes that make them not only interesting pieces, but a nice opportunity to tie in other elements in the room for a more cohesive feel without the boredom of 'matched to death' suites of furniture.Read More
Sharing a peek at a project in progress....
We are almost done with the first phase of this redecorating project at a charming vacation home in a private beach neighborhood on Cape Cod. After years of living with a "living room" space that didn't ever get used, the homeowner tasked us with creating a comfortable space that would be inviting.Read More
A Thanksgiving Feast
Food and it’s presentation has been central to our family gatherings for as long as I can remember. That may be why I love to host meals and parties…I equate food-centric gatherings with feelings of love, comfort, and celebration.
AND it’s almost Thanksgiving…the beginning of the holiday entertaining season! We have SO much to be thankful for…family, friends, and the blessing of a warm, safe, and welcoming home.Read More
For many of our design projects, we need to specify new lighting. Recently, we have been on the hunt for chandeliers and lanterns and wanted to share some of our finds!
Trying to avoid another fussy crystal or ubiquitous barrel stave chandelier we found these classic alternatives to be a refreshing change.Read More
A well-designed room is alchemy…part science and part art.
Sure, we want our rooms to look good, but more importantly, we want them to be comfortable – to LIVE well. And the essence of comfort in a room is feeling good there. Comfort is about more than the cushion fill in the sofa. It also includes the convenience and functionality and welcoming FEEL of the space. Good design serves the occupants of the room, not the other way around.
Whether starting from scratch or reworking existing spaces, here are a few essential processes and principles:Read More
One of the smartest upgrades in a house is a kitchen renovation. And one of the most common kitchen renovation projects is replacing the countertops - and when you do, the sink and faucet as well. WHAT to change your countertops TO is a subject for another day, but today we're talking about faucet choices.Read More
Low maintenance…we appreciate it in our relationships, but we adore it in our interiors! As long as we can get great style, low maintenance versions of natural materials are an enticing alternative.
I love natural materials but they require extra care – they are susceptible to staining, fading, scratching, and wear. Sometimes we just don’t have the time or patience or lifestyle (or house denizens!) to accommodate the care often required by natural products.
Luckily, technology is keeping pace and there are now products available that imitate nature well, but are MUCH easier to keep looking good.
Here are 3 of our favorites:Read More
Trade Secrets: the do’s and don’ts of hanging draperies
It has come to my attention that in the wonderful world of decorators, most have jumped on the bandwagon of "hang ‘em high". I refer to, of course, the trend to hang the curtain rod for drapery panels well above the window to elongate the proportions in a room. And this does, in fact, work. BUT… like most things, this cannot be applied universally willy-nilly.
The advice is grounded in the notion that a longer line creates an unbroken vertical that makes the perceived height of the room taller. And while this is absolutely true, there are caveats.Read More
Wandering about the seaside town of Swampscott on the North Shore on a beautiful summer afternoon recently, we happened upon the charming Maison de Mer shop a stones throw from the ocean!
Vintage and new tableware, furnishings and accent pieces are interspersed with imported French lotions, creams, and soaps. Alongside a few Swampscott stamped tote bags and pillows are a smattering of miscellaneous other treats from French-themed books, to paper goods and baby bibs .
Several rooms reveal treasures around every corner...Read More
Whenever we start a project, one of the first things we need to determine is how the room will be used, how many people will be using it at a time, and what are the possible needs we should consider when selecting and arranging the pieces for the room. And with the multipurpose spaces like the “great rooms” that are breeding in new construction and rehabs like rabbits, many rooms need to have the flexibility to serve a lot of functions. After all, if a room doesn’t function comfortably and well, what good is it? We WANT you to love your room and that means it needs to work perfectly as well as look good doing it!Read More
“This is SUCH a glamorous job!” I quipped to my colleague yesterday as I headed up the front walk to a clients house with an area rug balanced on one shoulder…
Glamorous? Not really.
I know everyone who isn’t a designer imagines we sit around all day playing with pretty fabrics and paint swatches, and maybe occasionally sketching with colored pencils while sipping tea. And while we DO get to do a bit of that, it’s not all sunshine and roses! We alsoRead More