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Posts Tagged ‘Showhouse’

As a designer I must admit I am addicted to design trends and 2017 is quickly approaching.. I think now is a great time to start exploring what trends are already shining through:

color-trends-2017-deep-grey

Organic color pallets – Muted, blues and greys still shining, with more organic and natural influences this years pallet will have deep greens, deeper greys and steel blues. There Back…..Deeper Jewel Tones! Deep colors are the best way to kick up a traditional space.

Archiexpo

Cork – As a designer I am very attracted to natural texture. Cork does double duty. It creates warmth in rooms while adding texture. To add another excellent element to this already shinning star, cork absorbs noise in our increasingly open and larger homes. In a home office or luxurious bedroom this trend is often a overlooked design element. Cork brings a unique story to any part of your home. The natural but soft texture of cork complements every style.

home-bar-1Home Bars – This latest home trend raises the bar on what was once considered only for the uber wealthy. Home bars are now becoming the norm.  At the end of a tough day at work, coming home and popping open a beer or decanting a glass of wine is a great way to unwind, but there’s just something special about making a cocktail at the bar.

mid-century-meets-traditional

Vintage goes Modern – In design, what goes around comes around. … start heading on over to your local vintage furniture store now to grab some great finds. Burled wood of the art deco period, classic campaign furniture and other vintage looks were front and center at High Point again this fall. Historic pieces and mid century modern are still going strong.

beautiful-bedroom-ideas-upholstered-headboards

Upholstered headboards – Expect more of this glamorous look, with luxurious fabrics and tufted bed heads. This trend is very versatile, and fits into any room. Nail head’s to tufted buttons, upholstered headboards are an instant way to update your boudoir. Tailored lovely and very desirable!

terracotta-bordered-tile

Terracotta – The color is already prominent in fashion trend this fall, but this is not your mamas tile! Tiles with a matte finish are used on feature walls and fireplaces. The tiles are bordered and in uniquely warmer hues with added texture.

With only a few months left in 2016, trends in 2017 for your home are already arising! Forecasters and designers are rolling in with the newest and hottest trends for your luxury home. So if you’re thinking about or already renovating or building your own luxury home, these are some trends to look out for. Come visit me at the Home Expo for your renovation projects, let the pro’s help you, stop in and see me for some inspiration! in booth 328.  We have a variety of experts on hand to talk to, so bring your ideas and let them help you complete your list.

Stay tuned as always for more Adventures in Styleland…

 

XOXO

M

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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

 

XOXO

 

M

 

 

 

 

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 Layering patterns involves four main elements: color, scale, shape and texture. If you’re like me and you fall in love with four times the amount of fabric you need at a showroom, you’ll need to go through some major editing. First up is color. Lay all your possible choices out on the floor and if certain ones look a hot mess and just don’t play well with others, remove them from the mix right away. It’s kinda like kicking an obnoxious reality cast member off the island after an elimination challenge but with fibers and weaves versus emotions and bad behavior.

Here’s an example of a great color edit. Notice how each of the fabrics sports different shades of a common color, blue? This is what you ultimately want; the varying intensities lead to an evolved, effortless look. Something else that’s happening here is a great mix of shapes going in different directions.

I borrowed this picture below from Ballard Designs.

Traditional

A traditional rug doesn’t have to define your space. Add in updated prints and colors pulled from the rug for a wonderful eclectic look.

1.) Carlson Rug
2.) Claire Gray
3.) Felicity Spa
4.) Lorenzo Charcoal
5.) Bark Twill
6.) Danish Linen Oatmeal
7.) Natural Microfiber, Bark Twill, Indochine Stone

8.) Kravet Indochine Ikat Stone

Traditional Layering

Contemporary

Keep a monochromatic color scheme interesting with great patterns that play well together and fabrics with tonal texture, like Kravet’s Scandicci Gray.

1.)Kravet Indochine Ikat Stone
2.) Kravet Toscana Ikat Slate
3.) Lorenzo Charcoal
4.) Asha Pewter
5.) Danish Linen Tea
6.) Scandicci Gray (Kravet)
7.) Panthea Rug (Gray)

Contemporary Layering

 Add contrast. Once you have your main color selection down, in this case its Grey, add a bit of contrast. See the Suzanni fabric #4 with the gold and pewter.

Vary the scale. While color and shape are easier to get a grasp on, scale is a bit more complicated. There are three different sizes of scale: small, medium and large. When mixing prints, try not to choose more than one of the same scale size; multiple patterns of the same scale often result in a heap of Hodgepodge. The person who does this best is Betsy Burnham, if we were all as talented as this women the world would be pattern of loveliness!

The perfect mix. We’ve got a large-scale pattern sporting an orange suzanni pattern, a medium-scale blue plaid which is traditional, and the small scale cheater global animal print. The trio is also different directionally; the rug runs horizontally, in this ethnic/global zigzag like pattern. But all of these prints work well together!! Hopefully you can use some of these tips when putting together patterns in your home…

As Always stayed tuned for more Adventures in Styleland….

XOXO

M

M

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Times Union Home Expo Banner

 

Home Expo 2015

Building a new home? Remodeling a room in your home? Well this year we have so much in store for you. Meet Jason Cameron February 8th, from the DIY Network. Watch our website for additional information on shows and events. My name is Michele Conti I am a local Designer/Blogger in the Albany Area! I will be here for the next few weeks, sharing information about the home expo, giving you DIY ideas and little blurbs about some of the Vendors and shows that the exhibitors will schedule during the expo. Check out our link on Times Union Home Expo. Below is a quick and easy DIY project for you… With a little help from Behr Paints available at Lowes located in the Times Union Center booth 284-285 this crafty idea was a breeze!!

Couch Seating DIY

Check out the Times Union Home Expo 2015 Web site and read my blog everyday now thru February 6th for great info and DIY projects!!

Chat with you soon!!!! Stay Tuned for more project information!

 

M

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It’s Furniture Friday!!!! I wanted to share this great find with you. I was in Buffalo NY visiting family.  One of my favorite haunts there is the Salvation Army at 252 S Cascade Dr, Springville, NY 14141. I always stop there. They seem to have a treasure for someone I’m currently working with.  Well on this Adventure in Styleland I found these:

Fabulous Find

Fabulous Find

My Goal was to transform them into the Louis the XV Salon chairs that I found on Ballard Design. Two of these beauties for only $10 how could you beat that! And so the project begins, here is a quick picture tutorial it took about a week to do both chairs.

 

Louis the IV Chair

Louis the IV Chair

 

Although these chairs retail for $700, the thrift store chairs look amazingly similar, almost exact same frame…

Removing the cording

Removing the cording

 

 

You can see the thousand staples used to attach the cording, this is only the beginning oy vey!! When asking Gabe to help with pulling the staples, he took pity on me, and I thought OK Green Light!!!  When my husband agrees to a project in our home (and by that I mean agrees to open his heart and sometimes his wallet to help me ), I act quickly.

Experience has taught me that green lights all too quickly turn yellow. Then, before you know it, there’s a big, fat red light staring at you through the windshield of your dreams.
When that happens, you are left with two choices… delays or apologies.  Trust me, it’s best to act while the light is green. Get Help when it’s offered!!!

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The fabric had just as many staples as the cording,  I will admit that by this time my fingers were a tad sore. The fabric came off quickly with Gabe’s strong hands… and before you know it we were down to the frame working together..

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Finally!!!! all the staples out and it was time for spray paint!!

 

The spay paint that I used was Satin Black from Rust-Oleum.

Black Spray paint for Ballard Chair Makeover

I spayed the frames with two coats and let them dry for a day before I began to start covering them, this also gave my hands a break, because at this point I was on my own, and was determined to finish these by the end of the week!

I decided to use drop clothes to cover these chairs,   I’ve always wanted to use drop cloths as a slipcover (from Martha Stewart’s magazine years ago). This was my opportunity, here is the what I used:

10 oz. drop cloth

10 oz. drop cloth

I washed and press the drop cloth first.  I used the old fabric we removed from the chair to create a pattern for the seat and back.

 

 

IMG_0113Stapling the fabric was a little tricky, I needed to pull it tight and staple it as I went, this didn’t always go smoothly, I had to remove some staples a couple of times because the fabric would pucker, but after you get a rhythm going, it goes along quickly. I did sew the fabric cording, and decided to use a black gimp on the arm pads.

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Here is the finished product (pictures are not professional). This was an easy project total cost was about $60! What do you think??

 

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Here is a picture of the living room where the chairs reside now,  complete with our Chocolate Lab Chino to compliment the brown in the room! Another project done!!

 

Stayed tuned for move Adventures in Styleland!!

 

XOXO

 

M

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From the moment a designer first starts sketching a new space, she will give thought to the materials you would like to use, and make sure the design is the right fit for you and your home. But what designers really create is pure art and beauty to inspire your home!  Recently, I decided to do some research and found some great pictures of Kitchens and Baths that take design to a new level, of course there are a few of my favorites thrown in as well hope you enjoy these:

Goforth Gill Architects

Shaker style began a rise in popularity in 2009 and gained momentum in 2010. By the end of the year, Shaker has supplanted Contemporary as the second most popular style used by  designers, while Traditional remains the most popular style. Cottage was the only other style to garner at least 20% of the market. 
Dark natural finishes overtook medium natural, glazed, and white-painted finishes to become the most specified type of finish toward the end of 2010.

Chris Novak Berry Brooksberry and Associates

While medium natural cabinet finishes fell from being used, dark natural finishes rose from 42 to 51%. Light natural and colored painted finishes remained fairly common and distressed finishes dropped significantly.

Cabinetry options also changed recently,  Wine with everything. 
While the incorporation of wine refrigerators seems to be on the decline (below), unchilled wine storage is growing in popularity. Other types of cabinetry options are on the decline, including tall pantries, lazy Susans , and pull-out racks. Appliance garages also seem to be falling out of favor, as their use declined from the end of 2009 to 2012.

Four doors, 
the French door refrigerator has strengthened its position as the type specified most often by designers. While freezer-top refrigerators were always used by designers, as 2010 drew to a close, freezer-bottom models began to gain popularity.  Side by side refrigerators have made a good showing, still being used in many designs.

This Kitchen was created by my friend and colleague Denise Maurer of Denise Maurer Interiors, It was featured in  June 2012 Country Living Magazine! Love the Soap Stone carved sink with whale motif!  The owners are Bonnie and Bill Daggett’s this is their Massachusetts beach house. This is just a little excerpt from the article:

 
 “My theme was ‘sun, sea, and sand,’ and I love painted furniture,” Bonnie says.  She envisioned lobster-red Adirondack chairs, gray-blue night stands, and a  melon-bright coffee table, but choosing the right shades proved difficult. The  yellow she originally picked for the kitchen morphed into something “too ugly to  describe,” says her friend and interior designer Denise Maurer, who recommended  white wall tiles and Celadon cabinets instead. “The natural light in Chatham is  different than in most places,” Bonnie explains, since the water shifts from  gray to cerulean throughout the day. “Artists come here because of the way color  is reflected and perceived.”Read more: Green Kitchen Cabinet – Colorful Beach House Decorating Ideas – Country Living .
Now for some of Clive Christian’s gorgeous kitchens, sumptuous baths from Candice Olsen and a few other favorites:
 
Ending with this spectacular Kitchen, as Shakespeare has said “Parting is such sweet sorrow”…………
Stay tuned for more adventures in Styleland!
XOXO
M

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My desire for beautiful things led me to the wonderful world of custom window treatments. These windows could not be created through JC Penny’s (not to diminish the great treatments they sell but…) finding all the beautiful window treatments we see in magazines, made me think… you must know that designers create them, right??. Our vision along with the talented women and men who run our workrooms. They can take the idea that we draw on a piece of paper along with the fabric that we send to them and make our thoughts a reality. There is nothing as beautiful as a custom window treatment!  I hope you enjoy my long love-affair with fabrics, fringe, draperies, tassels and all things to do with improving your view………. There are just so many talented people out there designing, creating, sewing, building, and making the world a more beautiful place… Just to share some of the fabulous Window Treatments I have come across lately. As you all know I love Roman Shades but the elegance of these draperies makes me long for more formal spaces…

Smocked Header so feminine and lovely…..

Barry Dixon Decorator magazine

Sue Ellen Gregory Design

I just love this room by designer Sue Ellen Gregory, love the bench! tea anyone? Here’s a rod-pocket done well, and I love the way they’re mounted on the hold backs… Wow that’s just talent!!!

Judy King

Love this whole room!!!! What beautiful windows!!

Swept back silk with those cute little london’s in the bay (this is opera’s Renee’ Flemings’ home) window by Jamie Gibbs Assoc.

OMG!!!!! These are the one of the most creative!!!! Inverted pleat with bows!!!!!!!!!!! They just make you smile :-) Susan Schurz.

                        With Rods and Rings taking Center stage this box pleat heading is so popular right now!!

Jan Cote

This is luxury, love the leading edge on the panels!  Great Bench!!!!

Christina Azario, so I’ll end here with the luxurious Panels and of course ROMAN SHADES!!!! My favorite…. Hope you’ve had a good time I know I did..

As Always, stay tuned…..

XOXO

M

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I have been doing alot of window treatments lately!! I just love seeing all the fabrics and creating such beautiful window dressings. Some of my favoite windows are Roman Shades and beautiful panels. Panels have been around since the beginning of time, but Roman shades have been extreamly popular lately. They are so versitle, they can be dressed up or made in a casual linen or cotton duck. They go in any space wether formal or casual living. Shades are ther way to go !! Here are some windows I love, Please Visit my Etsy store for ordering!! or call (518) 852-4185. Enjoy the pictures!!

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I’ll start with a Thank You to Nathaniel Bette,  he is a remarkable man, his vision, perseverance, unending patience and good nature made this year’s showhouse such a great project to be involved in. When I first saw the home back in October, I was inspired to do a period design. Here are some of my early pictures of the room, when I first learned I was going to do the Guest Bedroom!  I loved the fireplace, recently one of the many people whose talents stand out in the restoration of this home,  is a gentleman called  CJ (who worked for Nate, over seeing many projects and also did the italian venetian plaster ceiling in the wine cellar), he mentioned that the marble used for the mantle on the fireplace was rare and is no longer available, it’s characteristics  are similar to Grigio Carnico in color and veining,  this is fireplace is stunning. The view from the Guest Room windows are of the Helderburg Mountains. The artwork above the mantel mimics the hills and valley’s preceding the mountains , which is what you see from the endowment, out the south window of the room.

The walls were painted by Jason D’Amrbosi for me, he was again one of the many artisans that took part in this transformation. The color on the walls is Lunch Bag, from the  Martha Stewart palate. Benjamin Moore donated the paint for this space, Thank you to Miller Paints in  Latham, NY!!  The finish we chose for the walls from Faux Effects, it is a troweled finish called Luster Stone. 

 

Working with Mary Beth was terrific. We adjusted the gradation of color in the Luster Stone with the tint formula (provided by Ben Moore) and the walls were transformed into suede, the subtle depth that I conjured up in my head was there… perfection. It was as if the layers of plaster took on a pearlized finish, the soft shade was so alluring. We did this finish in two days, the first day we taped off the ceiling and moldings. The tools we used were a textured roller and trowel. Once we applied the luster stone onto the wall we used a trowel to tight trowel off the product and create a smooth textured look. It was all coming together, loved the Gray Cashmere on the ceiling it was the perfect back drop for the ceiling medallion… we were ready for  draperies and furnishings!!

Finding a Bed for this room was a passion,  I was looking for a focal point in the design, this piece of history from the Civil War, belonged in this house and was perfect for the Guest Room! The story behind this bed was quite interesting. Circa 1861, this hand painted bedroom set includes: Bureau that has a mirror, night table and two chairs. This set was made in Sudbury Massachusetts by a resident (Smith) who was leaving to fight in the civil war. He left the set for his daughter to paint while he was gone, which she completed flawlessly. The floral painting on the head board was fabulous!!! All the pieces to this set have similar hand painted floral arrangements on them, there are roses, lilly of the valley and pansies. Simply exquisite! The families related to this story are Smith (Seneca Smith Chief of Police, Sudbury MA) and Curt Garfield the Sudbury Town Historian. I purchased this from Johanna Withiech in Tenafly NJ. Johanna and Michael brought this up to Albany for showhouse, the bed room set is for sale, I have all the pieces in my possesion, although I only used the headboard in the Guest Room. The bureau was worn and the mirror was missing, we didn’t have enough time to have them restored.  She was happy to have this bed in such a historic Showhouse, and the moment it came off the trailer I knew it was the perfect complement to this room. Johanna would like to see this bed room set in a historic home and I would also, please contact me if you know of a  historic home that this set could be part of. Thank you to Johanna for her expansive knowledge of the history of this bed and for journey to deliver it.

A couple more pictures for you….

I started with thank you and so it seems that it would be appropriate that I would end with the many thank you’s  to the  people who helped and participated in my space, to the wonderful, Barbara Richer who is always there to answer any question, help with a resource, talk with you and help with any concerns you may have. Barbara was, ever-present , always kind, loyal, caring, sympathetic, reassuring, compassionate, understanding, encouraging, empathetic. Her guidance is so appreciated, her strength is inspiring. To Grace Thomas, who is my friend and supported me through out this project, Mary Beth Johnson, for her enthusiasm and energy, Nancy from Saratoga Signature, for lending me everything I could have needed and more, Debbie from Stockade Imports for her unending support, she was such a tremendous help in pulling everything together, she not only supplied the rugs in this space but many of her own accessories to finish this room! Anna Privitera whose Marshalls trip was so successful, also her help with researching antique beds for this room! Rae Rau for cutting in my medallion when my hands were unsteady. To my wonderful husband for all  his support and help with art work and extending his Honey do list, to my room!! ” You are the wind beneath my wings, you might have appeared to go unnoticed, but I’ve got it all here in my heart. I want you to know I know the truth, of course I know it. I would be nothing without you!”  I love you… your unwavering support and encouragement that means the world to me!

Signing off for now, as always stay tuned…………….

XOXO

M

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