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Colorful Beach House Project Part 2

I recently mentioned a beach house design that I am working on, and I wanted to follow up with a few more items that I plan on using. Maybe they could help add summer sparkle to your home…

These pendants lights from Shades of Light  remind me of beach glass and will work well over the kitchen island:


Textiles from Galbraith & Paul are colorful and natural. The drapes (shown here in a room designed by Katie Ridder) add a nice mix of color and pattern without overpowering the room. I love the way sunlight filters through linen drapes – it creates a classic beach house feeling.

 In the home office, I am considering bookcases with a pop of color, like these from Grange:

Outside, I plan to use tables and chairs from Fermob . They make classic outdoor pieces painted in vibrant colors:

 And I have to incorporate a couple of these amazing stone stools from Coleen and Co. The tufting looks so realistic!

Add one more item to the “I can’t believe its outdoor furniture” list: this eco-friendly outdoor rug (made of recycled plastic bottles) from Viva Terra. I already have two of them myself! 



July 27, 2012   2 Comments

Current Design Projects and Dining Room Feng Shui Tips

I went for a wow factor with the custom banquette in this breakfast room.

Its been awhile since my last post, I’ve been working on several exciting design jobs and haven’t had time for much else! But I wanted to share some of my current “Works in Progress” with you, and give a few Feng Shui tips and design sources that you can hopefully use for your own home. 

Right now I will focus on the Dining Rooms of the homes I am renovating. Here are three dining rooms in progress (these are not completed spaces, so please excuse the unfinished photos) but I want to point out some of the Feng Shui design decisions that are going into each one:

Dining Room 1: Brooklyn Loft

This home is a gut renovation, removing all sheetrock on the walls and ceiling, and returning the loft to its original state. However, its important to add some glamour as well!

 Based on the Feng Shui analysis of this apartment, the dining room needed EARTH element, to enhance joy and socializing. One form of Earth element is crystal, so the chandelier is also acting as a Feng Shui remedy and enhancing the good energy of the space. The antique French chandelier was found on 1st Dibs. Antique French Victorian doors were found at Eron Johnson Antiques, and are used here as closet doors.

Dining Room 2: Central Park Views

This mid-town apartment is flooded with light and has gorgeous views of the park, but the “dining room” isn’t really a room. It is more of a pass through area between the living room and kitchen. In order to give it presence and drama as its own space, I painted the wall a deep metallic copper color, achieved by starting with a base coat of Benjamin Moore “Penny” topped with a coat of Modern Master’s “Copper” metallic paint. The end result is a powerful focal point in the home. 

Based on the Feng Shui analysis of this apartment, the dining room needed METAL element to support wealth. So the metallic wall color, along with an overhead light and sconces with metal accents (from Lamps Plus) help draw abundance into the space.

Dining Room 3: Retro Catskills Cottage

I gave this breakfast nook a mod makeover with a swanky custom banquette and Jetsons-like dining table. The antique mirror and deco sconces are the clients own. The paint is a tiffany-blue shade from Behr Paint. The table is from Suite NY and the ceiling fan from Lumens.

The Feng Shui reading of this house showed that the room needed WATER and METAL. The blue wall (for water) and gold banquette (for metal) represent these two elements beautifully!

I promise to blog more often, and welcome any of your thoughts or inspirations on dining room design.

April 30, 2012   4 Comments

Feng Shui Bathroom Design Before and After Photos and Tips

In the spirit of Christmas: “I’m dreaming of a white bathroom…

  …not like the one I used to know”

 I just did a renovation of a small NYC bathroom. I hope that by showing you some of the details of the new bath, you will be inspired to perform your own makeover.

What gives this bathroom good Feng Shui?

Well, there are always two levels to Feng Shui design: 1) “big picture” decisions that affect the broader feeling of the space, and 2) the subtler, energetic changes, that have a deeper impact on those who reside there.  In every project I address both. 

Today we will look at the first of those levels.  Specifically, let’s tackle making an inherently small, cramped bathroom feel tall and spacious.  From a Feng Shui point of view this is important, as we want to allow the Chi energy to flow easily and fluidly through the room, not to get pinched off. 

 So, how did I make this bathroom look bigger and taller?

1. I chose a petite tub that had a grand look. The claw foot tub in this bathroom is less than 5’ long. However, it creates the feeling of luxury, while still allowing room for a relatively large vanity with ample storage and surface space.  Also, the fact that some floor space is visible below the tub adds to the sense of openness, and allows the Chi energy to flow freely. 

2. I used an oversized floor tile. These tiles are 18”x36” – not what you would expect in such a small space.  However, by using a big tile and staggering them, it tricks the eye into thinking the room is much larger than it actually is (compare the flooring in the two pictures above, and you will see what I mean!)

3. I went with a clear shower curtain. This was an easy way to open up the feeling of the room. By allowing the eye to “see through” an object in the foreground, an elongating effect is achieved.

4. I hung the shower curtain from the ceiling. Shower curtain rods are often hung a foot or so from the ceiling, and make the ceiling look lower than it is. In this bathroom, I used ceiling mounted track hardware (from a company that makes drapes to separate cubicles or hospital beds).  In order to disguise the shower track a little, I painted the ceiling the same color as the track, metallic silver.

5. I installed a show-stopping light fixture. The black chandelier is a strong focal point that draws the eye up and emphasizes the ceiling height. If you don’t have room for a hanging fixture, you can do the same thing with an exciting flush mount or semi flush mount fixture.

In December posts, I will address several of the other Feng Shui aspects of this bathroom renovation. You can read all about it and see more pictures soon.

But hopefully this already gives you a few things to think about if you are considering your own bathroom renovation.  Remember, using Feng Shui principles, combined with some neat design concepts, you can paint a grand picture even if you are working with a small canvass!  

To be continued…

December 6, 2011   11 Comments