How to use Exteriors products Inside?

With Summer upon us, I find myself gazing out into the warm sunny skyline more often and dreaming of being outside. I daydream of hiking through Devil’s Den in Easton, CT, the waterfalls up in Kent, or even a stroll about The Lake in Central Park. As I peer out the window I realize what a presence natural can have indoors! Decorating with plants, stones and wood creates a very tranquil and relaxing atmosphere in your home. It’s this blazing good weather and admiration for the outdoors that inspires this weeks blog.

Amazing weathered wood dining table and matching set of chairs. The piece looks one of a kind and has a very timeless look. Drift wood similar to the look of this table can be admirable additions to your home as a mantel or maybe a piece of art.

Kitchen contemporary dining room

The dramatic look of this two story stone stacked fireplace is remarkable. This breathtaking focal point allows you to double up the view with matching two story windows which blurs the line between inside and out. The dark wood floor and ceiling is a nice touch and add warmth to this over-sized room.

Large glass area focuses view to lagoon. contemporary living room

Here is another powerful fireplace, hand-crafted and dry-stacked by a mason that shaped and laid each piece one at a time. The natural tones of the stone inspired the rest of the room with sandstone gray, taupe and gold seen in the couch, cushions, and rug.

Woodinville Retreat contemporary living room

Super modernism with hints of natural elements can be a difficult challenge to cross but is done beautifully in this Brooklyn apartment. The striking clean lines and minimalism with the conflicting crude and organic chaos of the outside is pleasing to the eye and creates quite a dramatic effect.

The Silhouette contemporary living room

Love the stone fireplace and continuation of gay colors throughout this open floor plan.

The Georgia contemporary living room

The wood you see here is Bamboo, a very eco-friendly, sturdy, sustainable product that is fabulously inexpensive due to its rapid growth.  Not only can you use Bamboo on your walls and shelves, there is a large amount of products you can find. Bamboo is made into anything from chairs, to closets, even bed sheets!

Apt Moema contemporary living room

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this barn door to replace the doorway into the Master. Here the designer left no detail behind with the leather products on the bed and even cowbell shaped sconces on the wall. Not only beautiful, this door replaces the concept of a pocket door, which would require rebuilding the entire wall. All the hardware is mounted on the outside wall for easy installation.

Mill Valley contemporary bedroom

Reclaimed barn wood make up the walls of this lofted bedroom. With the dark wood being the focal point of the room, it opens up endless possibilities for the designer.

Loft bedroom contemporary bedroom

I find this shabby chic kitchen absolutely adorable. The wish-washy white painted bricks add rustic femininity to the room while also resembling an outdoor patio space. The large potted plants that rest on the sill make you feel like you are in your own private garden. Love.

Here is a master bathroom I finished in Connecticut. The stone wall adds a romantic touch to the spa tub and allowed room to place small shelves for candles. The small details such as the jack-in-the -box plant and natural shade make this bathroom a relaxing outdoorsy spa.


How to Jazz Up your space using Ceiling Detail?

When perfecting your home decor, you take plenty of time choosing the right furniture, perfecting the accessories and matching your colors. This weeks blog is inspired by the accent wall that seems to go unnoticed: The Ceiling! Also known as the 5th wall, very few realize how a jazzed up ceiling can expand your design and make your home unique. Whether your adding dark tones to make the room more cozy, or building large architectural beams for a power-house effect, ceiling decor, with all its options, is the new craze.

Designing a sophisticated yet lived-in feel looks easy with this mature child’s nursery. Here, a beautiful shade of brown patterned wallpaper wraps the ceiling and gives comfort into the room. With hints of charm in the drum chandelier and zebra rug, this room defines eclectic elegance.

historic renovation eclectic kids
This custom plaster tracery ceiling design was created to keep up with the vintage details from the original property. The curvilinear furniture is reinforced the line of the ceiling.  It is a modern take on the ornamental ceiling frieze that has been a tradition in architecture for hundreds of years and linked back to the French.
Salon with Custom Plaster Ceiling traditional living room

Large architectural features like this coffered ceiling make a authoritative impression on your guests in this refined dining room. The large beams are detailed with crown molding on all sides to hide the seams. This is a very classic look.

Dining Room Re-Design in Edmonton, AB for Magazine Photo Shoot traditional dining room

Give your room an organic feel with exposed wall joints or Japanese wood screens. Not only does the modern sleek lines of the piece add length to the room but its also creates an interesting separation from the kitchen and the kitchen table.

Bent/Sliced House modern dining room

Wow. This slanted ceiling design with wood trusses and paneling is breath-taking. The mirrored effect with the window shape and wood beams is intelligent and creates a spectacular effect. This conceptual design is an elaboration of your traditional ski-lodge or barn, a very sophisticated barn that is.

Robinsons Bay Residence traditional living room

Painting your ceiling with a sky motif is a technique that goes back to the late 1800’s Italian villa homes. The washy blue tones look marvelous next to the brass chandelier and dark brown walls. Not only that, its an easy weekend project.

powder room sky ceiling and metallic texture walls traditional powder room

I cant help but LOVE this A-symmetrical ceiling. The contract between the modern white wash and traditional country paneled ceiling is amazing. And its hard to not realize how Feng Shui, which we learned about in last weeks blog, this room feels.

Gorgeous bedrooms by Europeo contemporary bedroom

How to Design with Asian Influence

Peaceful, Relaxing, and Serene is the best way to describe the ambiance that Asian elements give to your home. Their culture carries a rich philosophy dedicated to Zen and they are obedient to the rules of Feng Shui. You can see this dedication to harmony and nature with restful colors, soft lighting, symmetry, natural elements, and furniture placement. Here are few designs I found online and projects of my own that exhibit these Asian influences.

Love the clean and unique look of this Japanese screen staircase and LED floor lighting. The hardwood screen is bold and sleek while the lights add a softness to the room.

Wood Staircase asian staircase

The small ‘pebbled” tiles used around the mirror and flowing into the shower give hints of nature to this modern Japanese Bath. The sense of relaxation continues into the vanity with the vessel sink along with the blonde wood plank bench seating and floor. Finish the look with a bonsai tree or orchid, very Feng Shui.

Japanese Modern asian bathroom

This bedroom indulges in the Feng Shui tradition with the position of the bed against a solid wall which imparts a feeling of safety and security. The large art piece that hangs above the bed is also very Feng Shui as well, bringing in positive energy and enjoyment. Love bubble pendant and the color of the accent wall.

Bedroom asian bedroom

Beautiful earth tones are used in this Asian inspired master bathroom. Adding hints of nature is very popular in oriental cultures and can be recognized in the rock sink and waterfall installation in the back of the bathroom.

Downtown penthouse asian bathroom

This spa bathroom is fitted with an amazing deep stone Japanese bathtub and sauna for a perfect relaxation retreat. You can see the distinct elements associated with Asian decor with the river rock decorative along the wall and the simplicity of accessories.

Personal Oasis asian bathroom

Here the designer fused the office and the meditation room together. The Meditation room is very important in the Asian culture. The built-in shelving with the contrast of dark and light stains on the wood create an exotic platform to display your Feng Shui accessories and Buddha Statue.

Arnold Schulman asian home office

Japanese Cherry Blossoms decorate this tiled bathroom in Connecticut. I hired a gentleman to come paint the mural art after installing the tiles which gave it a very personal touch.

Again with the reference to nature and sleek lines. I see these bamboo plants and think of the Japanese forest.

Symmetry is a strong element in Asian design and is displayed beautifully in this Master Bedroom I designed in Connecticut. The purpose of this feature is to create balance throughout the room.

Chinoiserie is French for “Chinese-esque,” and represents a very popular Oriental style furniture that emerged in France. The vessel sink sits atop this one-of-a-kind piece that is decorated with detailed scenes painted on dark lacquer-like wood.

Bridge Design Studio asian bathroom

How to Decorate your new Fireplace?

The fusion of functionality and art is what vindicates my love for interior design and the limitless design options for your fireplace is a perfect example of this merger. Having spent years designing homes in the Tri-state area, I have found some key design tips to make a focal point out of your fireplace. I realize now is a bizarre time to reconsider redesigning the hearth but with several months of planning and rebuilding, you will have a dazzling masterpiece to enjoy this winter season.

Through my years of experience designing homes in NYC, it is clear how impossible a traditional wood-burning fireplace can be.  That is why EcoSmart Fireplaces are perfect for adding glamor to you home. They use a Bio-ethanol, a renewable energy source for each of their units. This clean emission allows for their fireplaces to be added anywhere in your home without expensive and invasive rebuilding. Below are a few examples of these EcoSmart projects.

Cement is an excellent material to use to spotlight your fireplace. It has a very natural masculine look and will bring your style to the next level. As mentioned before, this is a bio-ethanol project.

kris modern living room

Minimalism can create some of the most spectacular focal points. This contemporary living space is seamless in its design, finished off with twin cushioned ottomans for enjoying the warmth.

Cary Bernstein Architect Choy 1 Residence modern living room

Take advantage of a your space by using an irregular shape for your fireplace. Here, the designer built an extra wide fireplace which inevitably amplifies the warmth and eye-catching focal point.

Huntington Beach contemporary bedroom

Or here….notice the interesting textured wall that accents the fireplace. The stone finish glows when the fireplace is lit.

E Bar contemporary media room

Be creative when designing your hearth. Try something a-symmetrical, like you find here in this eclectic living room.

custom fireplace contemporary family room

This clean modern fireplace is a beautiful addition to any room whether its your bedroom or the master bath. Don’t bother with a mantel or hearth. Small white stones finish off this sleek look.

Living Room modern living room

Design your fireplace to be three-dimensional so that you can enjoy it from multiple rooms. By installing such a unique fireplace aside these floor to ceiling windows gives the space a bonfire like atmosphere.

Magnifico Residence contemporary living room

Now that we are in the warmer months, a great way to keep your fireplace engaging is to fill it with interesting objects. Organic spheres were added to this rectangle fireplace for contrast.  One could add some free-standing candles for a romantic feel.

Spring Mantle eclectic living room