Archives for April 2011

Maryland Interior Designer Brings Sophistication to the Master Bedroom

What do the parents of two active four- year olds need in the way of a retreat? A sophisticated master bedroom with a spa-like feel that provides them with relaxing alone time but is tough enough to stand up to story time and playtime with the kids.

This master bedroom began with some basics – the four poster bed and two nightstands. We added some whimsy to one of the nightstands by having Billet Collins studio work their magic on what was a very generic round table. In an effort to control the light, we began with crisp white plantation shutters for all of the windows. The walls were painted a cool misty blue while trim was painted a crisp white.
An existing chair and ottoman were reupholstered in a child friendly fabric that that is also stylish and sophisticated . The beautiful Icthus bench by Michael James graces the foot of the bed providing a practical place to sit.

The couple purchased the large piece of artwork that provides a tranquil and soothing focal point on the far wall of the bedroom. We added the metal base console table with a natural stone top for under the artwork. We also added a large glass vase with natural grasses to complete the look on the far wall.

The couple had most of their bedding already, but we added a pillow in a stylistic floral fabric that brought together the colors of the room and served as the inspiration for the faux painting on the night table.

A large floor mirror framed in a natural fabric was propped against one of the walls and provides a smart way to bring more light in the room as well as serve as a functional accent.

The final touches included a spa-blue throw for the end of the bed, a porcelain lamp for the night table, and accessories for the console and the nightstand.

This is one master bedroom that will hold up to time in style and durability… and will look good doing so.

Maryland Interior Designer Does the Math: Form + Function = Fabulous

What do you get when you combine great finishes with classic design? You get a transitional kitchen that is both functional and fabulous.
The owners of this Chevy Chase kitchen began with an outdated white kitchen and a design that included a peninsula with a bar height counter on the other side. The kitchen design was limiting to the wife who loves to cook for her husband and three children. The clients did not want to add on to their existing kitchen, so we had to take a good hard look at the current layout. Together with our favorite kitchen designer, we developed a plan that included an island and change of the overall design that allowed for a much better flow for the cook and busy family of five.

Once the kitchen designer completed the layout, we knew we had the functional part of the kitchen under control. Next it was time to work on the fabulous.

We decided that light mushroom colored cabinets would go around the perimeter cabinets, and dark wood cabinets wood compose the center island. This scheme was no accident. The lighter cabinets would help to keep the kitchen looking light (and in return help to make the kitchen look larger) and the center island would help to ground the room and would literally make the island the centerpiece of the room. Again with Jan, the kitchen designer, we developed great legs for the base of the island and she suggested using a wonderful metal element on the sides of the island.
Next the countertop and backsplash materials were selected. Granite was chosen for the countertop and opera glass tiles were chosen for the backsplash. The tile provides an instant WOW! in this kitchen . The appliances are concealed with door panels to give the kitchen an overall consistent and seamless flow. A small desk serves as the command center of this kitchen. A lucite counter stool sits below, while a glass front cabinet for those special pieces is directly above.
Since this is NOT the type of kitchen that just looks good, many functional features were added in a “smart” way. The center part of the island has shelves for the cook’s massive cookbook collection. A small wall became the perfect spot for a custom built-in fabric covered memo board that is trimmed in moulding and covered in designer fabric. This serves as the perfect spot for the family calendar, permissions slips and important notes.
With the “kitchen” part of the kitchen in order, it was time to work on the “breakfast area” of the kitchen. The clients wanted to keep their existing table which worked well with the overall design. We replaced their wood spindle backed chairs with chairs from Lee that are covered in a heavy duty vinyl that is practical and stylish and looks like a rich leather. The chairs are trimmed with satin nickel nailheads that give them a finished and high end look minus the high end price tag. These chairs look stunning from all angles and best of all, they are comfortable and keep pace with this active family. Finally, the breakfast area needed something to set it off from the rest of the kitchen. We found the perfect light fixture that makes a bold statement without being over the top.

This kitchen is a perfect example of a kitchen layout that can be dramatically improved upon without having to make the overall footprint of the kitchen larger. The many details add to the desired look and the end result is fabulous.

Presentation Materials

The presentation of fabrics and finishes is most often done in a casual way by showing clients different fabric swatches and finish options.

Occasionally a client will have a difficult time picturing a concept and it is necessary to do presentation boards with color renderings. Or sometimes a commercial client wants to show design options to their decision-making committee to help with the selection of the final design. We’ll put these selections on a presentation board to help with the decision making.

The following are examples of a rendering and a presentation board.