Luxurious Contemporary Apartment in Poland

Exotic artwork; Chinese, Japanese and Spanish influences; and luxury materials such as backlit onyx make this Central Warsaw flat a stunner. The customers, a couple in finance, traveling often and wanted their residence, which overlooks Łazienki Park, to reflect their love of the Orient and Spain. Working together with them “gave me the most joy,” says interior designer Pawel Sókol. “I heard from and was inspired by their own enthusiasm for layout — down to the most minute details.”

in a Glance
Warsaw, Poland
Size: 2,583 square feet
Designer’s question:
Sókol’s customers insisted on integrating onyx, marble, metal and wood –and design changes from the East and West — under a single roof.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

A reddish, flowerlike chandelier adds drama to a space where the ceilings are not very high. Paired together with the neutral, warm and earthy tones of the space, the headboard enhances the decoration and can be admired by the adjacent living room space.

Chandelier: Flower of Life, Willow Lamps

EXIT Interior Design Studio

A luxe custom drapery track is hidden underneath a header and glows from panel lighting; silk drapes breaking at the floor give a puddled appearance and some motion to the draperies.

In the front end of this space is an Alhambra carved-wood divider, one of the select pieces brought home to Poland from the customers’ journeys to Spain.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

Silver velvet sofas and an armchair contrast against the warm wood tones of the side tables, coffee table and floors. The metallic impact of this draperies and upholstery up the glam factor of this living room tastefully; the metallic motif extends to the circular centerpiece, silver frog figure and die-cast brass lampshade trio (the third lamp is not visible in this picture).

Lamps: Pasha, Luminara by Ceccotti

EXIT Interior Design Studio

The study has a serene view of the foliage from nearby Łazienki Park, which is home to many classical-style gardens and palaces.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

The customers’ love of Eastern layout is evident in this chinoiserie-inspired vignette: a pair of guardian lions, a Chinese porcelain plate and an altar table adjacent to a wood divider produced by a Polish carpenter employing a Japanese blossom print.

How to Insert Touches of Chinoiserie

EXIT Interior Design Studio

The Eastern influence extends itself into the restroom. A white lantern hovers over a vessel sink; red and white glass panels are placed between black iron frames with a Chinese geometric pattern.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

Sókol points out that the absence of cabinets, shelves and cabinets in the bedroom. “The bedroom is used for rest and sleep. Clothes, accessories, additional possessions have their place in the wardrobe in another room.”

EXIT Interior Design Studio

Sókol’s clients especially requested to integrate onyx to the interior layout. This picture shows backlit onyx panels at the ceiling, which include a visual richness that is preferred by luxury hospitality and commercial spaces. A small nook next to a center pillar with modular closets is used for coffee and afternoon tea.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

This shiny kitchen sink area looks like it could also belong within a luxury suite.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

This stunning receiving area by the flat elevator would be fitting at a contemporary hotel. It reflects the customers’ need for the same sleek look they enjoy while traveling abroad.

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5 Smashing White and Black Homes

By now everybody knows that it is fairly simple and cheap to change up the look of a space by changing out throw pillow covers, a lamp or two, artwork along with a rug. However, to pull this off you want a foundation that is versatile. Using black and white as a foundation makes these switch-ups really simple and can be visually striking. Get ideas on how to do this by these five houses that use black and white as a starting point.

LDa Interiors & Architecture

1. An home in Massachusetts. Upon entering this stunning oceanside home north of Boston, one immediately knows that LDA Architecture and Interiors hasn’t designed a typical beach home.

LDa Interiors & Architecture

This equilibrium of the two colors even retains an TV looking glossy.

LDa Interiors & Architecture

Not all the rooms are white with black accents; others, such as this kitchen, allow black dominate and attract big drama.

Watch the rest of this home

Stephanie Sabbe

2. A daring Manhattan apartment. Interior designer Stephanie Sabbe made a wowing look by using black, white and shades in between (for example, the light grey sofa). This complex home begins with a strong black and white chevron rug on the floor, and picture touches abound in the floor up to the ceiling.

Stephanie Sabbe

Another black and white rug creates continuity between the rooms; this time it’s left in a zebra print. Electric orange dazzles as part of this palette, while boldly coloured prints are anchored by black and white framing. Any of the artwork’s colors would work on the dining chair slipcovers.

Watch the rest of this home

Stephanie Sabbe

Out on the terrace, black woven furniture may take on a bevy of bold hues and geometric prints.

Watch the rest of this home

Susan Duane

3. A nation charmer in western New York. Susan Duane, blogger of Hometown Girl, has maintained the traditional look of her classic home through major renovations. Using black and white brings a traditional look.

Turquoise chairs stick out on the otherwise only black and white screened-in porch.

Susan Duane

White and black tiles on the floor and a traditional floral print on the walls and windows provide this bathroom a classic feel.

Watch the rest of this home | Add classic touches to your bathroom

SchappacherWhite Architecture D.P.C.

4. A Shelter Island cottage. For this enchanting cottage on Shelter Island, New York, Steve Schappacher and Rhea White chose a common beachy farmhouse aesthetic and changed it up by making it in black and white.

SchappacherWhite Architecture D.P.C.

Maintaining a strict color palette ties with an eclectic mix of seating and decorating styles.

SchappacherWhite Architecture D.P.C.

Paint provides the cottage kitchen with an ever-changing background.

Watch the rest of this home

Vanessa De Vargas

5. A modern box at Venice Beach. In this modern home, interior designer Vanessa De Vargas conveys substantial black and white pieces throughout the home, frequently in chevron designs. This gave her the freedom to blend in shots of bold color in every room while keeping a cohesive look throughout the whole first floor.

Vanessa De Vargas

The black and white bits in the area work nicely with chrome and glass. An ornate gold mirror along with a natural fiber rug keep things from becoming too matchy-matchy and warm up the otherwise stark colour.

Vanessa De Vargas

Pops of yellow add cheer to the breakfast nook that is white and black.

Watch the rest of this home

Home Designs: New Traditional Style
5 Inspiring Homes in the Chilly North
Dream Spaces: Seriously Glamorous Homes

See related

5 Weed-Smothering Ground Covers

So many anglers profess their love of weeding. “It’s therapeutic,” they say, and I see their point. Spending some time in the garden can be good therapy. However, I have a confession: I hate weeding. I’d rather have a stroll or sit with a book in my garden, enjoying the crops I’ve endeavored to develop. I wholeheartedly resent the time suck of eliminating those I have not.

As such, I am a big fan of earth covers that choke out weeds. Sure, if you would rather mild-mannered plants, you may consider them weeds within their own right, but for anglers like me, they help keep the “bad” weeds.

If it’s odor you’re after, look no farther than soda-scented ‘Walker’s Low’ catmint (Nepeta x faassenii ‘Walker’s Low’, zones 4 to 8). Brushing its foliage releases a beautiful bouquet into the air, and it flowers lavender early to midsummer. I shear mine a little with a hedge trimmer as it flowers for a new flush of foliage and blossom. This cool cat thrives in sun and lean, dry soil, and you will be amazed by how far one little clump will stretch. It divides readily in spring should you discover you want to help it together.

Creeping raspberry (Rubus pentalobus) is a little locomotive of a plant, with crushed-velvet leaves that turn a beautiful bronze color in zones where the weather gets cold but not cold it melts. It’s hardy in zones 6 to 9, grows well in sun or shade and even reasonably dry conditions, in typical soil. You may also find it under the name Rubus calycinoides and the very similar cultivar ‘Emerald Carpet’.

Photo by J.smith via Wikimedia Commons

Terra Nova® Nurseries, Inc

Asian jasmine (Trachelospermum asiaticum) has been a popular evergreen ground cover in the South for decades, and when we say weed smothering, we mean it with this one. It’s for people who want an extremely low, very compact hedge. If you’re in the market for that with a little additional pizzazz, have a look at these fabulous variegated cultivars: ‘ ‘Gold Brocade’ (shown here) features wild and mad gold foliage with reddish new growth, whilst ‘Tricolor’ (next photo) is much more demure in mottled white with pink new growth.

This brand of vanilla has been grown mostly for foliage and seldom blooms. All these cultivars thrive in average conditions in sun or shade. They are solidly hardy in zones 8 to 10 but definitely worth a shot in zone 7. Their unvariegated parent grows just fine well into warmer parts of zone 6, even though it’s less known there. All are playful, glossy-leafed garden additions that send weeds packing.

Terra Nova® Nurseries

I recently extolled the virtues of plumbago (Ceratostigma plumbaginoides, zones 5 to 9) here, and I think that it’s worth mentioning twice, simply to drive the point home: This plant grows well in sun and part shade in all sorts of states all around the U.S.. It chokes out weeds, blossoms in a clear blue that reflects the summer sky and tops it off with fantastic fall color. What more can you ask for?

Last but not least is a sumac. No, not the poison kind — this is ‘Gro-Low’ sumac (Rhus aromatica ‘Gro-Low’, zones 3 to 9), and it is not poisonous in the least. Grow it for its shiny blue-green leaves, buttery-yellow spring blossoms, fuzzy red fruit in late summer and fire-engine-crimson fall color. This plant is one tough cookie and grows great in color, but it picks up steam faster with sun and warmth — the first place I found it had been a parking lot. And as if all that weren’t enough, its parent plant is native to the whole eastern half of North America.

Great layout trees:
Texas Mountain Laurel | Bald Cypress | Chinese Witch Hazel | Japanese Maple
Manzanita | Persian Ironwood | Smoke Tree | Tree Aloe

Great layout blossoms:
Catmint | Golden Creeping Jenny | Pacific Coast Iris | Plumbago
Red Kangaroo Paw | Sally Holmes Rose | Slipper Plant | Snake Flower

Great layout grasses:
Black Mondo Grass | Cape Rush | Feather Reed Grass | New Zealand Wind Grass

Great layout crops:
Blue Chalk Sticks | Hens-and-Chicks | Redtwig Dogwood | Toyon

See related

Get the Most out of a Small Garden

Forget grand gardens, expansive rolling hills and giant ranches. A serene or functional backyard can match in any sort of space. Here are typical living spaces with gardens that are anything but ordinary. They might be tiny and spartan, but they are fascinating. Care to take a look?

Westover Landscape Design, Inc..

Fences, gates and other structures can break up a smaller backyard into sections. This gives the garden a sense of being bigger and permits you to create different experiences within one space.

Mark Brand Architecture

Terracing is among the most significant tools in a small space. It allows the gardener to add fresh land in raised beds onto a concrete foundation, gives varying lighting to several kinds of plants and adds dimension to a small backyard. Adding terraces visually assembles a small plot into different, different spaces.

Arterra Landscape Architects

This space might be small, but it lives big with a seating area, a charming water feature plus a multitude of plantings. Water provides a sense of movement, along with also the lime-color plants include brightness into a shadowed corner.

Jesse Im/bugonmyleaf

A bonsai garden is a great option for a deck. The plants grow very slowly and seem charming in a shelved screen. The best part? This whole backyard takes up just a few feet.

Bill Fry Construction – Wm. H. Fry Const. Co..

Do you have an open space without soil? Do you live in an apartment with plenty of hardscaping but no available planting space? Think pots, and think large pots. You may plant just about anything if the pot is large enough (at least 16 inches across), including small fruit trees and other edibles. Choose one finish to unify the pots as a backyard.

Maybe you’ve got space for just one long bed of plants. One species implanted throughout the bed creates a sleek, contemporary look that gives life and movement to a blank wall.

Elemental Design Group

Is the cabin look more your style? Cottage gardens are ideal in a small space. Cluster 10 to 15 plants round your doorstep for a charming look. Go for plants with odor to create an experience each time you come home. Plants that operate nicely in a cottage garden similar to this include catmint, Russian sage, rosemary, lavender and rose.

20 Ways to Get the Cottage Garden Look

Another classic cabin plant is the charming hollyhock. Situate this plant in the back of a small border to add height to a garden. When you grow hollyhocks from seed, expect to see your first blooms in the next year.

Beertje Vonk Artist

Maybe you wish to use your outdoor space to grow edibles. Grow garden vegetables and herbaceous plants in a bed. The square-foot gardening system allows you to grow the most produce in the smallest amount of space.

More about potagers

The Garden Route Company

Think up when you are in a small space. Trellises, arbors and pergolas are great for producing more growing space.

More on vertical gardening

Slater Associates Landscape Architects

You may have a beautiful garden in a small suburban yard, a townhome deck, a rooftop garden or a front entrance. Grow vertically, consider large pots and break up the space into chambers to make your garden unique.

I would love to see your small gardens! Please discuss your backyard stories and photos in the Comments section below.

Give Your Little Garden A Few Room
Vertical Gardens Boost the Limits for Landscapes

See related

Design Calendar: Feb. 17-March 9, 2012

Soak in style and sun as you lace up your shoes with this year’s Venice Modern Home Tour at Los Angeles. Admire the architectural beauty and interiors of nine Westside homes. Learn ways to find that ideal interior layout shot from photographer David Livingston. And when winter weather gets you down, have a look at the terrarium exhibit at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden or half of a million flowers in bloom at the Dallas Arboretum. Continue reading for 5 selections of what to do and watch now.

David Duncan Livingston

WORKSHOP — Feb. 29, 2012, 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Photography Workshop: Interior Vignettes on La Cienega
716 North La Cienega Blvd., Los Angeles

Calling all interior photography shutterbugs! Internationally recognized interiors photographer David Duncan Livingston will direct a hands on workshop showing how to take and write better interior photographs. You’ll find out how to block out a photograph composition, how to look for the ideal light and how to operate with natural light. Through a mix of brief discussions and live demos you may remove straightforward, practical tips about item placement, photo cropping, when to use which lens, and camera angles and height will enhance your shot. Photoshop, Lightroom, meta tagging, rights and utilization issues will also be covered.

This workshop is geared to photographers of all levels — from iPhone into DSLR shooters. The workshop will begin at the Therien showroom, then move on to Hollywood at Home.

Cost: $175, such as lunch

Julius Shulman

HOME TOUR — Feb. 18, 2012, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Venice Modern Home Tour, Venice and Mar Vista, California

Go on a self-guided tour of nine architecturally progressive homes on Los Angeles’ Westside. Featuring the work of Tighe Architecture, Ortiz Mexia Projects, Carson Architects, Glen Irani and others, the tour allows you peek inside these amazing homes and come away motivated. The homes were selected by Ingrid Spencer, contributing editor for Architectural Record.

Cost: $30 advance online purchase, $40 day of; free to children 12 and younger

Jae Hi Ahn

EXHIBIT — Through Feb. 26
Brooklyn Botanical Garden
900 Washington Ave., Brooklyn, New York

The chilly gloom can frequently inspire indoor gardens to blossom. On display at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s Steinhardt Conservatory is a imaginative exhibition pairing delicate terrariums with art installations by Brooklyn artist Jae Hi Ahn. Ahn uses easy artificial materials such as plastic tubes and wires to pay tribute to the organic forms of the natural world. Extended rows of terrariums housed in a variety of vessels exhibit unique miniature plant worlds on tables, even though some of Ahn’s advanced sculptures hang from skylights.

The backyard is available until 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday before March 11 and until 6 p.m. from March 13 to November 4; weekday entry is free.

TULIP SHOW — March 3-April 8, 2012
Dallas Blooms, Dallas Arboretum, 8525 Garland Rd., Dallas

For an instant mood lifter, head to the Dallas Arboretum to admire an impressive display of more than 500,000 colorful flower types, such as tulips, daffodils, Dutch iris and hyacinths, pansies, violas, poppies and tens of thousands of other spring-blooming annuals and perennials. In this flower festival, cherry blossom trees may also blossom for a 10-day period.

Whilst soaking from the blooming extravaganza, check out the exhibition Small Houses of Great Artists, built and created by Bob Hoebeke of Hoebeke Builders and other Dallas architects. It will open to the general public through Dallas Blooms and will run through Dec. 31, 2012. A fine art show and sale named ArtScape will also occur in the backyard March 16-18, including the works of 100 artists from around the nation.

Joe Woolhead

LECTURE — March 6, 2012, 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
The Butler-VanderLinden Lecture on Architecture comprising Craig Dykers of Snøhetta
Art Institute of Chicago, Rubloff Auditorium
111 South Michigan Ave., Chicago

Join Craig Dykers, cofounder and principal of Snøhetta, for an engaging lecture highlighting his recent endeavors. Dykers conducts an integrated architecture, landscape, and interior design practice in Oslo and New York. In recent years, the company has won international competitions for major American jobs, such as an expansion of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the redesign of Times Square, and the National September 11 Memorial Museum Pavilion at the site of the World Trade Center (photograph ). Dykers is a fellow of the Institute for Urban Design in New York.

Cost: $5 students, $10 A&D members, $15 public. Register online here.

More 2012 design occasions: Feb. 4-24, Feb. 6-Mar. 2, 2012

What’s on your calendar? Let us know in the Comments!

See related

Cool, Calm Edwardian Gets Another Update

Recall Lucy McLintic’s cool, Serene Edwardian at San Francisco? She’s just completed a remodel of her kitchen, dining area, family room and powder room in a build that took three months and was in preparation for nearly nine.

The intent to redesign was in place because they moved into five years back and this was finally the right time.The design had two major issues: a narrow corridor leading from the kitchen to a small one-quarter bathroom (only a toilet, no sink). The bathroom was so tiny the door knocked the toilet bowl once it opened. And more space was required for 2 boys to playwith. Some crafty rearrangement was obligated to prevent major structural work or another addition. Read on to find the glowing, natural and modern haven now.

Lucy McLintic

Lucy has dreamed of the kitchen for ages! She knew the countertops and cabinets had to be whitened. That required darker shades for the tile and flooring, and some pattern. She chose herringbone floor tiles to echo the zigzag rug that could be reused in the family room. Silver travertine wall tiles added a touch of luxury and texture, while staying within the modern, clean-lined look.

Lucy McLintic

Lucy McLintic

The old kitchen was badly organized (with four entry doors), and falling to bits. The issues were solved by blocking up a door between the kitchen and bathroom, creating more counter space for the kitchen and room for a sink in the bathroom. The doors have been eliminated between other rooms.

The countertops have a strange border profile: a reverse bevel, or’sharknose’. Lucy noticed that as an emerging fashion in Europe and wanted to give it a shot. It was hard to describe, but her builder knew what she meant and got it just perfect.

Lucy McLintic

Open walnut shelves and toe kicks warm up the area. A white kitchen can be so clinical, but open shelving lets you bring some character to the room. The shelves are full of a mixture of old items, gifts and products by a local restaurant supply store.

Lucy McLintic

The dining area and family room were swapped, making the dining room currently visible from the kitchen so that it seems just like a kitchen-diner. It all feels like one area, though no major structural changes were made.

The small dining area is the best size for the household. Attention is focused on the dining table from Room and Board. The neutral palette is in shades of java, latte and milky white but intriguing shapes and textures have been added, such as the hyperlink suspension pendant by LZF. It’s made from wood veneer and can be rather the statement bit.

See the preceding arrangement in this earlier house tour

Lucy McLintic

The inlay mirror was the beginning point for the powder room. Lucy didn’t need the overall effect to be traditional, therefore she paired it with modern minimal glass tiles and a floating walnut vanity with square-edge countertops at the same Caesarstone as the kitchen. The dressing table is habit but from the same shop as the kitchen cabinets. The paint is Benjamin Moore’s Iron Mountain. Wall-mounted taps were selected as a result of limited space.

Lucy McLintic

The family room is used all the time. It’s the middle of the house physically, so there is a natural gravitational pull toward this area. Now the dining area transferred to the rear of the house, the space feels more open and inviting. Most of the items in the area — the sideboard, mirror, rug and end table — were reused. The sofa and the Cherner chair were the only new developments.

Lucy McLintic

The area was intentionally kept sparse to book the floor area for the kids to play. The deeper wall color (Benjamin Moore Wiemeraner) and patterned carpet prevent it from feeling empty.

A Little Cottage Grows Up
A Kitchen to Family and the Joy of Cooking
New Style With Old-World Warmth

See related

Hilltop Palace in San Francisco

Unparalleled views of the city and bay were what drew Geoffrey De Sousa to this San Francisco house, but it’s his stunning mixture of natural materials and exquisite product selections that truly sets it apart. An interior designer and one of the owners of this showroom De Sousa Hughes, De Sousa was residing in a Victorian home in the city when he discovered the perfect location for his dream house. Perched on top of the greatest of San Francisco’s hills in Clarendon Heights, his new house has views of the city in virtually every direction.

De Sousa opened up the home to benefit from their views and natural lighting, working with architect Mark English to double the square footage and create a clean and crisp appearance. He then outfitted the house with impeccable product choices to flaunt its clean architecture and comparison the surrounding fog.

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

De Sousa significantly expanded the space, starting the main floor to a gallery-like foyer, stairway, dining room, living room and kitchen. The dining room is simply one of many rooms that opens up onto the house’s brilliant view.

Dining room table: Stephanie Odegard

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

The simple and contemporary dining table is made out of forged metal, and also the Robjohns Gibbons dining chairs are one of De Sousa’s favourite finds. “It took five years to locate all 6,” he states. “We discovered them in San Francisco, in Palm Springs, in St. Louis.”

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

An elegant custom glass and walnut staircase leads from the foyer to the top floor, which contains the master and guest suites. Another pair of stairs leads down to a media room and exercise room on the floor. The mix of cold and warm stuff with this unique stairway is the perfect transition between the distances and acts as a great way to highlight pieces of De Sousa’s artwork collection. “The foyer is just like a little gallery space of its own,” he states.

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

De Sousa’s previous home was a Victorian decorated entirely in white, so he chose to do something completely different this time around. Lush colors, contemporary lines, and incorporated indoor/outdoor living define the house’s aesthetic. The blend of products within this main-floor living room surely echoes that. The yellow upholstered chairs and the coffee table in this room are De Sousa’s own designs.

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

De Sousa chose plush textiles in rich browns, grays and reds which play from the city’s cool and muddy disposition perfectly.

Chaise: Charcoal Velvet Preston Chaise, Geoffrey De Sousa
Tables: Plexiglass tables, Ted Boerner
Mirror: Blackman Cruz

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

A cozy outdoor seating area, complete with a fire pit, sits just inside the entrance courtyard. The stacked stone walls and calming water feature have made this a relaxing outdoor sanctuary.

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

“We live at the banquette at the kitchen,” says De Sousa. “I’ve wonderful memories of friends and family gathered around that table.” The beautiful rope chairs are produced by Christian Astuguevieille, one of De Sousa’s favourite designers. The black-and-white photos above the banquette are part of a series of 1950s circus photos.

Black and white photos: Robollo Home

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

The open kitchen design allows for a clear view of the San Francisco Bay. Clean and crisp architectural lines keep this space simple but magnificent, and automatically direct the eyes out to the perspective. De Sousa wanted to emphasize natural substances in his house, and used a mix of walnut, Brazilian mahogany, piled slate, and also Calacatta marble throughout. The comparison between timber, glass and stone creates an artful and visually satisfying look.

Artwork: Created by Alon Langotsky

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

Chocolate brown accents liven up the calming taupe tones in this bedroom.

The home’s appearance is a result of a love for several distinct styles and eras. “It’s also a portion of the cities where I have lived,” he states. “Boston, where I grew up amidst classic American architecture and interiors, to San Francisco, to Palm Springs, where we have a modest mid-century-style retreat.”

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

The master bathroom is a calm, light-filled space that highlights natural timber, tile and stone. Employing the pebble-style tile round the edge of the space provides a unique contrast that ties the whole space together.

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

The rooms on the base floor have a clear perspective of the city. A small outdoor patio off a guest bedroom enables visitors to fully enjoy the occasional sunny San Francisco day.

Geoffrey De Sousa Interior Design

Of course, the terrace has by far the most magnificent view in the home. The Bay Bridge and Golden Gate Bridge are visible here, and therefore are best enjoyed with a warm blanket and a glass of wine.

Photography by Matthew Millman

More Tours:
Elegant and Modern at San Francisco
Sleek San Francisco Getaway
Georgia Peach Grows California Roots

See related

2012 Color Trends: Organic Purples for Kitchen and Bath

This 2012 Color Trends show is all about five sexy colour trends projected for the year. In particular I’ll be showing you how you can integrate them into your kitchen and bath in a means which makes sense for your home.

This ideabook concentrates on purple, among my personal favorites. This season’s color predictions show the deep and pale purples you see at sunset and in wildflower fields, instead of those that appear in royal palaces. Purple is a simpler colour to use than you’d expect, because it’s such a natural shade. You find it in herbs and dusky horizons, vineyards and vegetable gardens.

If you have only seen purple a retro glam colour, you are missing its rich subtleties. Consider this: colors which occur in nature, especially when paired with their own natural neighbors, will work together in your house. Mother Nature is the best designer anywhere!

My bedroom and bath is going to be painted a soft plum this year. Here are a few ideas about how you might integrate the purple color trend into your property.

More 2012 Color Trend Ideas:
Orange | Red | Blue | Green

If you do not need an entirely purple area, consider one section of your kitchen. This bit of plum may be just enough for your preference.

Celia James

Deep purple paint attractively matches the white cabinetry within this kitchen, and it also works well with walnut, walnut oak as well as organic cherry.

Amoroso Design

Fabrics are a great way to introduce color to a kitchen. Here, a deep aubergine pillow covers a banquette and performs well with the area’s white canvas.

Other fabric opportunities comprise dish washer, oven mitts, window coverings and area rugs.

Browse the latest kitchen photographs

Jamie Gold, CKD, CAPS

Waterfall Ruffle Shower Curtain – $79

Adding colour with textiles also works nicely in the restroom. A shower curtain is a simple redo if you tire of this year’s fashion color. This shower curtain flirts with texture as well as colour. Wouldn’t it be fun for a teen girl or even a bachelorette’s bath?

Comparatively Quirky Ltd

Wallpaper delivers the opportunity to introduce both colour and pattern into a room. Here, the print mixes together with the bathtub and the wall beneath. A partial treatment allows for a conventional trimwork element within the room, which doesn’t compete with the bathtub facing it.

Bathroom Tile

This look isn’t for the faint of heart, nor the apathetic housekeeper. But it’s a stunningly magnificent tile to integrate into a bath or kitchen project in which you want to create an impression. I envision that this one covering a powder room wall.

Flux US – Bath furniture and accessories

Purple gets playful in this Italian vanity. Its curves and gloss impart a levity into the space. The wall mount adds to the lighthearted feel of the space, as will the coordinating racetrack-shaped mirror over. If you are a purple fan with a sense of whimsy, this could be a fun addition to your master bath.


Muuto Restore Storage Basket by: Muuto – Huset-Shop. com | Your House – $120

Each kitchen and bath has coordinating needs. Why don’t you take the opportunity to add colour via your storage systems? It’s low impact, readily changed and may even brighten your day when you have a look at its cheerful colour.

Your Own Colors: Three Ways to Use Purple
Selecting the Color Purple
Color Play: The Power of Purple

See related

Handmade Holiday: The Modern Wreath

Deck the halls (and doors) with wreaths of grandeur this holiday season — and all year. There is no shortage of creative wreaths nowadays. From unusual stuff to unexpected contours, I really like the contemporary spins on this classic Christmas decoration. Here’s inspiration to your wreath-making, whether you want a rustic contemporary wreath made of fresh greens or an eye-catching wreath crafted together with the pages of a vintage book.

More: Fall wreaths for inside or outside

Agnes Blum

Our grandparents may have crafted wreaths made of yarn back in the day. However, this yarn wreath feels present — the choice of black and white yarn adds a contemporary spin.

See more of this homeowner’s home and creations

The Happy Home Blog

Old pages from a vintage book are glued and attached to a ring to make this vintage paper wreath. This wreath could easily decorate a room year-round.

Living With Lindsay

Here’s another wreath utilizing vintage pages. The newspaper is clustered together in several layers for added drama.


Here’s one you do not see everyday: an ice wreath! I really like this thought. The pops of red cranberries and greens floating in the ice feels so festive.

Tip: Wreaths are not limited to holiday décor. A simple wreath similar to this could be an easy way to dress up an entryway for a winter wedding.

Between Naps on the Porch

There is a contemporary simplicity to this set of boxwood wreaths, simply adorned with a bell and brown decoration. The green wreaths are stunning against the black doors.

Tip: This, the wreath hangers are the same colour as the doorways, so they disappear against the black paint.

Lemons are the primary element of this wreath, which can be much more yellow than green. It is a fresh alternative to traditional evergreen wreaths.

TruexCullins Architecture + Interior Design

This brown twiggy wreath includes a country modern fashion — and could definitely work as yearlong decoration.

Jeanette Lunde

Following is a wreath which you may keep up all year. A ring of pine cones makes for a simply contemporary twist on the timeless. The spare amount of pine cones adds to the rustic contemporary style of this wreath.

It’s hip to be square with those green wreaths. The shape is absolutely unexpected. I like how these square foot wreaths were hung over the window molding. It reminds me of eyeglasses hung over bookcases to break up the grid of shelves.

Stephanie Woody

This contemporary wreath looks like it is made from birdseed. It is a unique spin on the holiday decoration, but it fits right in with a mantel decked out in traditional greenery and silver mercury glass.

The Happy Home Blog

Two contemporary DIY wreaths: a wreath made of red tinsel along with a wreath made of rolled up book pages attached to a foam wreath. I like the balance of shiny new tinsel and vintage book pages.

Here’s just another DIY twist in the newspaper wreath idea. This wreath is made up of vintage pages of a publication. The grade of this paper wreath is dramatic — there are layers and layers of rolled pages glued together.

More: Decorate Your Door for Christmas
Make a Candy-Cane Striped Wreath

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Guest Picks: Loving Lacquer

If it comes to adding a punch of whimsical freshness to any room in the home, you can not beat lacquer. From the French term lacre, meaning”a kind of sealing wax,” lacquer is a phrase for a very clear or colored tough, durable finish that can vary from a subtle sheen to a high gloss. White, glowing and everything in between, lacquer adds a hint of glow to everything around it. — Kristy And Beth in My Design Chic

Nightright Orange Side Table – $938

Bring laquer into the bedroom with a table. We love the glass top with this one because it’s easy to wipe, making it ideal for maintaining a glass of water right at hand all night long.

Jonathan Adler

Lacquer Block Cocktail Table – $1,495

If it comes to decor, 1 statement bit can totally make the room. We’d use this coffee table between a set of tufted, white leather sofas for a fresh, contemporary feel.

Modern Wastebaskets – $48

The toilet isn’t a place to skimp on fabulous design. The glow of lacquer is ideal for the bath, and a punch of color makes it more enjoyable.

Jonathan Adler

Round Lacquer Waste Basket – $68

For a fantastic accessory at a room that requires white, we’d choose this waste basket. It would be ideal for adding a sleek touch to a posh workplace.

Jonathan Adler

Desmond Screen – $995

We’ve never needed a display before, but that lacquered one makes us wish we did. Our ultimate use of a display like this? Creating a separate dressing room at a gigantic closet!


Bungalow 5 Jacqui Table – $600

The enjoyable shape of the bungalow table makes it among our selections for an out-of-the-box coffee table. Accessorize it with a couple of gorgeous books for instant style.


Bungalow 5 Green Tray – $165

A brightly colored tray is the perfect method to add a punch of color to a room. We’d use this one in addition to a creature print ottoman.


Lacquer Jewelry Box, Turquoise – $135

Everybody wants a fashionable place to stash their paintings, but a plain wooden box can be dull. We’d add pizzazz to our dresser for this turquoise box.


Lacquered Boxes, Poppy Yellow – $90

Pretty accessories are superb, and if they include storage, all the better. These boxes are perfect for stashing office accessories or papers to keep a squeaky-clean desk.


Lacquered Trays, White And Orange Edge – $140

For storing mail, paperwork or other odds and ends that seem to get scattered about the house, a pair of vibrant lacquered trays is a must. We’d continue to keep these in the kitchenbecause that is where most of our crap tends to accumulate.

Shop Ten 25

Wangright Orange Lacquer Cocktail Table – $559

Glass top tables would be our choice for the ideal cocktail tables. Put out beverages and hors d’oeuvres without worrying about spills or bands — no coasters required!

Zinc Door

Tini Table II Z – $485

If a solid color just isn’t your style, this tiny table with upholstered top is just the thing. The animal print adds a touch of the unexpected. We enjoy this table for beside a bed.

Zinc Door

Newport Square Mirror – $1,155

If it comes to mirrors, getting stuck at a frameless rut can be simple. Get out of that rut with a pleasure colored lacquer frame. We’d use this one in a kid’s bathroom.

Zinc Door

Tropical White Mirror – $450

There’s nothing cleaner than white, but occasionally a plain white frame can get a little dull. Liven things up with a fabulous texture. We’d select this frame for a shore entrance hall positioned over a great console.

White Lacquer Trellis Mirror – $563

For a more sophisticated space, we love this trellis mirror. It’s simple to hang vertically or horizontally, making it work in a variety of spots.

Shop Ten 25

Studly White Lacquer Cabinet – $2,125

If you enjoy the look of lacquer but believe it’s a touch too glamorous, toughen it up using hardware. We believe this piece is ideal because it would work in a living area, bedroom or hallway.

Shop Ten 25

White Laquer Oriental 2-Drawer Chest – $1,495

We can see this patterned chest at a Palm Beach home. The three-dimensional detail adds interest, and we love the elegant feet.

haute + box

Allen TV Stand, White Lacquer – $1,100

When focusing on decor, the TV can be tricky. We’d display ours in design with this gorgeous TV stand.


A Pair Of French Red-lacquered Club Chairs

For luxury influence in a living space, a seat with a lacquered frame and cushioned seat is ideal. We love a statement color, particularly in a neutral area.

Zinc Door

Southport Coffee Table – $1,981

Turquoise is one of our favorite colors for instant beach house design. The pattern of the table is super chic. Paired with furniture that is neutral and a couple of turquoise bits, the look is fun and finished.

Next: Maintain Things Fresh with a Bright Lacquer End

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