Living in Upstate NY there are many historic farm homes that were built with excellent architecture. Large wooden beams and coffered ceilings make farmhouse design alluring today. With a revival of Rustic design and rich heritage of older homes and estates in upstate New York,  this style is a marriage made in heaven! I’ve put together some steps to follow to create beautiful, functional upscale farmhouse designs. To start the Journey…

Stay Neutral

Use a neutral pallet of light and airy colors to create a calming and casual atmosphere. When you do add color make it  a soothing green or sea-mist blue that adds a touch without too much pop. Soft shades of brown, black, grey, tan, beige and white are used quite often to ground the whole design concept.


Blending History and Current design

Mix together old furnishings, new fabrics and colors to keep your look fresh, but inviting. Even if you don’t currently own true antiques you can fake it. Use Distressed furnishings and sanded off painted surfaces to give the look of worn out furniture that has a story to tell.  Pull vintage farm equipment into the décor and give each piece a new purpose. Think outside of the box when decorating your home using old plates, glass jars, used books, dressers as vanities, trunks as coffee tables and more.


Using Fresh Flowers and Greenery

Pulling in greenery from your yard adds character and beautiful texture to warm up a room. Options includes indoor plants, twigs, branches, succulents, herbs, flowers, pine cones. Use them in pots, clear vases, and more. Whether real or fake, this is a staple farmhouse décor.


Adding Texture

Shiplap wood ceilings, stone accents, barn wood floors, milk glass, linen pillows, antiqued tables, textured mirrors and much more. There should always be abundance of texture in farm inspired homes.  Even if you don’t own a home with brick walls or wood floors you can add in texture through your furnishings. When it comes to farmhouse style, there are guidelines but no hard and fast rules. You may enjoy anything from metal barn lights and industrial chandeliers, to classic mason jar pendants. The common thread that all farmhouse style shares is the antique, casual and streamlined design.


Finding Time … Clocks

Amazingly unique wall clocks have wowed you, designers strategically place them everywhere in farmhouse design. Incorporating gorgeous antique (or antique looking) clocks to remind us of times past. Here aged leather chairs and the right accessories, invite you to sit and pass the time away..


What is a perfect farmhouse home? In my opinion its architecture and construction that fits naturally into the topography while offering beautiful inspired interiors that transform outdated spaces into Old World themed treasures. Treatments such as coffered ceilings, crown molding and transom glass windows enhance the warm farmhouse inspired designs….


As Always stay tuned for more Adventures in Styleland..








As time passes our family home matures. Trees Grow and so do the children. The landscape gets worn, and gone are the swing sets.  Our needs and uses for the outdoor space have changed.  Priorities often change, and our children leave the nest. We find ourselves with more free time to relax and enjoy our home. Being cooped up inside during the cold winter months especially here in upstate New York, is not our idea of enjoyment. Maximizing the space in your back yard is one way to enjoy it year round, even when your sitting inside looking out.


With the intent to extend the living space beyond the walls of your home, Curtis Lumber has many options to design an outdoor space suited for your needs. Here they have designed a comfortable space for friends and family to enjoy each other’s company while dining on a delicious meal cooked on the built in grill. The granite countertop surrounding the grill allows the family to keep everything they need for a cookout close by. While relaxing under the free standing pergola this family also enjoys many intimate evenings in the hot tub under the stars. To complete the look they have updated the landscaping with young shrubbery chosen for its low maintenance and eventual privacy value.

Visit Curtis Lumber at the Home Expo this year or stop by their showroom in Ballston Spa for their Outdoor Kitchen  display. Ask Curtis about Cambridge pavingstones, wallstones and outdoor livingrooms. Cambridge products are distinguishable value and quality.

Terra Mira Curtis Lumber Kitchen 6 .JPG

Terra Mira built this outdoor display for Curtis Lumber. Contact them before the snow flies so your outdoor space can get started.


Give Terra Mira a call, 518 337-0501,  they can make your outdoor space happen within your budget.


Enjoy some new projects happening for fall from  Duke and Hal at Terra Mira….


terra-mira-outdoor-project-3Hardscape lighting:  Cambridge LED lights meets the latest technological advancements in the lighting industry with a wide range of outdoor lighting, The lighting kits come complete with Remote Dimmer and patented Easy Plug™ Installation System allowing fixtures to be daisy chained together without cutting or splicing.

Steps and Stairs: Durable stone stairs from Cambridge offer both beauty and convenience in addition to being a more affordable substitute for bluestone. The choice of colors, inspired from their natural counterparts, along with the variety of stylish options will coordinate nicely with styles and colors of Cambridge Outdoor Living Products.









Stay tuned to see the finished patio..and for more Adventures in Styleland!



It’s time for the largest Home Expo trade show in the upstate area and we are delighted to be back. Mark your calendar starting February 10-12, 2017, Save the date! As always we’re talking design, trends and new innovative products. Our home improvement and home remodeling show is a wonderful place to get really great ideas for your next home improvement or home remodeling project. At The Times Union Home Show you can find highly qualified companies to help you tackle your home improvement and home renovation needs.

Perhaps you have an event happening this year, feeling your home is in need of improvement, it may be time to seriously consider remodeling areas of your home or even adding to it!

What’s hot this year in design??? The latest trend is Master Bathroom renovations. A (bath)room with a view, bathrooms are now occupying prime window space in many homes.master-bathroom-with-view

Everybody wants to relax at the end of the busy day. The best way to feel relaxed is to chill in your bathtub. After all, the bathroom is a quiet, private and relaxing space.

Luxury Bathroom upgrades grow more expensive and more lavish in 2017. As much as $350 billion in 2016 will be poured into home remodeling’s, additions and improvements, according to the American Institute of Architects 2016 spending projections released late last year. That’s up from $ 325 billion in 2015 and more U.S. homeowners are opting for luxury bathrooms over other rooms in the house, even kitchens.


With near record low interest rates that encourage mortgage refinancing (the lowest since the record low set in November of 2012), many homeowners are going bigger on renovations and remodeling than ever before.

This architectural tub by MTI is the centerpiece of this master bath. Black and white color theme gives contrast against a palette of whites and creams, with Asian-influenced details.


The freestanding tub gives a spa like feeling to the bathroom. The tub filler gives a tradition and elegant look to the tub area. One of the most impressive luxurious bathroom ideas, don’t you think?

I look forward to seeing everyone again this year at The Home Expo 2017, in the Times Union Center. Stop by my booth and say “Hello” I’m located in Booth #328!

As always Stay Tuned for more Adventures in Styleland…



This recently completed master bath renovation was in a newly built home. The owners were happy with the layout of the bathroom but, wanted to punch it up a bit! The master bathroom should be your sanctuary, as stylish as it is soothing. We wanted to turn the existing bath into something unique.

I’ve rounded up a stunning way to create the dream bath that they would love being in. This bathroom was to be transformed into a peaceful escape reserved for the masters of the house.  With stunning tile work, soft fabrics and a calming color palette blend to form a decadent space designed for relaxation.

I started wall a gorgeous tile, the moment I saw this glass tile I knew.. this was perfect. And I was right, the owners squealed with excitement when I presented my ideas and finishes.

We chose a white glass tile, Jeweled j-603 in diamond white: The combination of finishes on the sheet of tile are clear glass,  wavy glass, frosted glass and marble,  it is exquisite.Jewel tile

The countertop, I used is  Cambria: Berwyn, this silver flecked stone adds a soft yet glamorous touch to this master bath.


The Delta Vero Lavatory Faucets with waterfall spout, gives the right touch of sophistication to this charming master bath without breaking the budget.


I took the bathroom mirror and lighting under the microscope to show how this bath accessory can change the ambience of your bathroom. Remember the main task of lighting in the bath, both direct and indirect is to caress and compliment you.

What do you think about illuminated mirrors? I used the LED Strip lights to back light the mirrors in this design, providing illumination as well as visual style above the vanity’s white under-mount sinks and quartz countertops.


Two glass jeweled pendants hang above the double vanity adding a bit more interest and an elegant look.  Its tailored, not to girly for a man, and has a upscale feel in a restrained way.


The lighted mirrors are remote controlled to fade to different colors and also soften or brighten with a touch.  The darker wood cabinets provide a subtle contrast with the lighter tiled floor.


“It is a very luxurious spa like experience in this bathroom” the homeowners said when the project was completed.

It’s the details that give this Master suite a luxurious touch. I was hoping to create the sense of a 5 star hotel, it’s very important I think, that is  the experience you have when you walk into this space. This space is serene and peaceful, you have the same experience in the master bedroom.

To visually connect the master suite each room plays off the colors and fabrics of the last space. Though they’re usually hidden behind closed doors, master bathrooms deserve to be as thoughtfully decorated as your home’s living spaces.


As always, stay tuned for more Adventures in Styleland!




CR's Marine Sacandaga Lake

Great Sacandaga Lake

With Summer upon us, boaters flock to the water throughout Upstate New York as soon as winter’s ice retreats and shimmering waves return. We have some of the best lakes, canals and rivers in upstate New York,  for many people making time on the water is a favorite recreational activity with family and friends.

marian Skaneateles 17662382-largeSome of the best boating destinations are here in upstate New York.  We’ll start with The Finger Lakes, Skaneateles Lake  flush with scenic beauty, and this lake is just one spot among the bevy of boating locations in the region. The water here is so clean and fresh that the towns surrounding it use the lake as an unfiltered drinking source.

Or take a leisurely sail through history on the Erie Canal. Connecting 500 miles of canals, rivers and lakes, the

Marina CC1_SenecaFalls_TrinityChurch_CarlCrumley-2-452x322

Seneca Falls Trinity Church

Erie Canal National Heritage Corridor traverses New York State and features a lock system that captures a moment in our state’s history for today’s adventurers. Maybe you want to visit Saranac Lake it is actually a series of interconnected lakes that stretches for 24 miles in one of the most scenic spots in the Adirondacks.


CR's marina Great SacandagaPlanning your summer fun, begin your adventures on the areas most scenic waterways!

Stay tuned for more advice for our DIY’ers!!




In honour of mothers on their special day, I asked myself what decorating secrets did I learn from my Mom…

mom carol and I

She made our home beautiful, chic and inspiring while juggling both a full-time job and being a mother. I learned about fabrics and sewing from my mom. She was an extraordinary seamstress. When I was little, I loved going to the fabric store with her — it was a world of imagination and creativity. She taught me to appreciate quality, natural fibers like wools, silks and fine cotton. Now working with fabrics is one of my favorite parts of decorating.

Another important lesson she taught me,  never to buy what I don’t need: a bargain is only a bargain if it’s something important. I also learned all about color selection and furniture arranging from her. We lived in Brooklyn NY in a 6 room apartment, she always kept it fresh, ever changing.. and I firmly believe that had this wonderful woman been any less interested in our family home as I grew up, I might not be where I am today.

My mother taught me that it’s important to develop personal style,  buy the best quality you can afford and mix family pieces, antiques and comfortable upholstered furniture– eat in the dining room, use your china or better dishes on Sundays.. I learned to respect our home and everything within it, including my mother.

My mom used to rearrange the furniture a lot — it’s surprising how furnishings can look completely new when viewed from a different angle or in a different room. She also taught me that every window looks empty and cold unless softened by a window treatment, she changed hers often.

She was never afraid of bold patterns, I remember her sewing room or the SPARE ROOM, we had large orange and yellow wall paper, and smaller floral wall paper on the ceiling.. It was cutting edge at the time..

When I was little, my mother always dressed — she was glammed up even when cleaning the house. From her, I learned to dress and decorate with the intent to be gorgeous, having no fear of color.

I will end here with a couple of ideas for what to do for your mom..

Source and pay for a house cleaning service for a few months. A house cleaning every two weeks, I’m sure all moms would appreciate the break. That being said, do not buy her a vacuum, cleaning supplies, or tools unless she specifically asks for them. I’m looking at you Dad.

Brunch was always a favorite of mine.. I loved to go to a special Italian place locally that served cured meats..fresh fruits..baked delights and my family would all laugh and enjoy the meal together…

table scape

Spend time, yes…time… take the day and pull out pictures, family vacations reminisce with her, make cookies sit and have a cup of coffee.. Love her and let her know that she is the most important women in your life.

Mom and Dad


Miss you Mother Theresa…All my love









Get Inspired.. update your front yard or back yard design with shrubbery, gardens, walkways and more…Grasshopper has been helping clients create beautiful green spaces, making their outdoor living flow with the existing architecture. They offer Lawn Care, Design and Construction and Landscape Maintenance. 
grasshopper winding pathCreate winding paths, with boxwoods whether rounded, squared off, or snaked through other borders, they can add charm to any country garden. The clipped boxwood above leads you down the path which artfully binds the garden to the house.

grasshopper stone pathThis Garden Courtyard, with stone paths framed by tall grass and spirea sprinkled through .. brings you to a relaxing seating area, creating an oasis for relaxing and entertaining in this outdoor space..

grasshopper mixed greeneryThis elegant landscape, with bee balm and Liatris Spricata has a variety of perennial plantings that making it colorful and easy to maintain.

grasshopper quiet corner

Let Grasshopper set up your quiet corner, this lush is space overflowing with Tardiva and Annabelle hydrangeas. Grasshopper will be located at booth 309 in the Times Union Center, let them help you design and install the landscape you’ve dreamed of..

More adventures to come at the Times Union Home Expo..

See You There! XOXO





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