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Lighting in Your Home: It’s Looking Up!

Lighting plays an important role in your home. Of course we need lighting to see; that’s the functional role of lighting. But lighting can also step up and play a decorative role in a home as well. There are many different types of lighting, but we are going to focus on hanging pendant/chandeliers, semi-flush lighting and wall sconces. Often times, decorative lighting may serve as an integral design feature in a room.

First, let’s look at hanging pendants and chandeliers. These are the fixtures you would typically see hanging in a dining room or kitchen above a table. Pendants can be small or large. People usually think of kitchen islands when they think of pendant lighting. But pendants and chandeliers are turning up in entry foyers, going up steps, in bedrooms, and even bathrooms and powder rooms. Semi-flush fixtures hang close to the ceiling, but may drop down 12-18 inches. Wall sconces are lights that hang on the wall.

When choosing pendants/ chandeliers, semi-flush lighting and wall sconces the scale of these lights in relation to the size of the room, furniture, etc. is very important. A light that is too small or too large will look odd in a space. Also, the style of the light makes a difference. A traditional looking light in a contemporary space may look out of place. Remember too, that the finish of the fixture should blend with other finishes in the room.

Another important thing to keep in mind when selecting these types of lights is to pay attention to the amount of light a fixture gives off. If it’s too much, a dimmer can always control the light output, but if it’s not enough, you are kind of stuck.  These fixtures can be used for task lighting, or they can be used to set a mood or feeling within a space.

We want to share with you some of the lighting we have used in our projects and why.

This small star shaped pendant fixture is perfect in the entry foyer of this 300 year old farmhouse. It provides ample light to greet guests and the shape and finish coordinate well with the other decorative items in the foyer.

small star pendant light

This large pendant fixture was used in this space obviously for light, but also to create a dramatic look in the room. Since all other fixtures are close to the ceiling, this pendant demands attention. It’s polished nickel finish is reflective and goes well with the other finishes in the room.

Large pendant light

Next, the glass baubles on this chandelier leading up to the second story are just right for the baby grand piano below. The airiness of the fixture provides the perfect contrast to the heaviness of the black piano – it almost looks like it’s floating. Of course the light also leads the way to the second floor.

small chandelier

These wall sconces on either side of the family room window provide ambiant light and softness to this contemporary space.

wall sconces

This semi-flush light fixture was used above the kitchen table to provide light without blocking the view to the outside. The light fixture has an interesting detail at it’s base and the finish of the metal and the shade coordinate with the other items in the kitchen. In this case, the light is beautiful, but is not the focus of the room. One thing to look for when selecting a drum type fixture is a light diffusing cover on the bottom of the fixture that hides the bulbs from view underneath.

semi-flush light fixture

In summary, lighting plays a key role in your home and lighting fixtures provide a way to bring light in while serving as a design element in your space. Need help finding the perfect lighting for your home? That’s where we come in!

Wallpaper – Go Big By Going Small

Set your preconceived notions about wallpaper aside.

Wallpaper is making a splash as the new “it” kid on the design scene. It never really went away, but gone are the days of the basic boring wall coverings. Now it’s patterns and textures and florals and geometrics (insert, “OH MY!” here). If you are wallpaper shy, or traumatized by the wallpapers of the seventies, let’s take a look at easing back into these “goods”  in a small way.

First up, the laundry room. Most people don’t love to do laundry so why not make your laundry room a lively place that is appealing to the eye? Here, this trellis pattern by Schumacher and Co. infuses some fun and color into a basic white laundry room.

Wallpaper - laundry room

Next, a powder room is the perfect place to add interest without a huge commitment and without breaking the bank. This powder room by Muse Interiors is infused with a royal blue and white stylized block print wallpaper . It adds interest to the room and certainly makes a bold statement. Wallpaper can add “pow” to any powder room. See our last blog where we enumerated other ways to add pizazz to your powder room… See Previous Blog Here

Powder room wallpaper

Next, an accent wall can infuse a space with energy and can even take the place of artwork. We recently had this red zebra print wallpaper by Scalamandre installed in a client’s foyer. A custom credenza will be placed in this niche as well. The wall has high impact and will certainly be a conversation piece whenever anyone new enters the home.

zebra print wallpaper

Here’s another wall accented with wallpaper in a bedroom at Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi. A vintage French map was used to provide interest to the bed wall. The result is stunning.

Wallpaper accent wall

Next, consider backing a bookcases or bookshelves with wallpaper. This can add a pop of color, texture or pattern to a bookshelf area which will immediately add a more lively look. Go easy on this one… a little goes a long way!

Bookcases backed with wallpaper

Melanie Johnson Photography for Domino

 

Bookshelves back with wallpaper

Design by Christina Murphy

Finally, another way to add wallpaper in small doses is to install wallpaper in picture frame mouldings. Here, wallpaper was inserted into picture frame mouldings to add pattern and color to a space. The result is an instant impact.

wallpaper in moldings

Have we convinced you yet that this is no longer your grandma’s wallpaper? Here are some interesting textures and patterns to consider…

Fun & New

Eykon wallpaper

This Eykon wallcovering adds texture and color to this wall.

 

Elitis wallpaper

Ths wallpaper by Elitis adds warmth and interest to this wall.

 

Lori Weitzner wallpaper

This fun Lori Weitzner wallpaper is a nod to all that is fit to print.

 

Osborne & Little wallpaper

This “homey” wallpaper by Osborne & Little is anything but.

We can provide wallpaper ideas that will give immediate impact to a particular area of your home. You can opt for one of the smaller ways we talked about above, or wallpaper an entire room. Walpaper is going big and waiting to come into your home!

Has Your Powder Room Lost its “Pow”?

Spring is just around the corner and it’s time to take a good long look at your powder room. This is most likely one of the smallest rooms in your home which makes it a “big bang for your buck” project. Typically this is an often used room for both family and guests alike. Also, chances are very good that the room is so small that no plumbing needs to be moved. This is a win! So where do you begin with a powder room renovation?

When considering a powder room renovation, begin by taking a serious look at each of the following with an objective eye:

Floors – If your floor is tile, is it dated? Are there cracked tiles? Are the grout lines wide or dirty? If so, it may be time for a new floor.

Walls – If your walls are painted, is it time for a refresh? If there is wallpaper, is it dated or coming apart at the seams? Perhaps you currently have painted walls, but want to make an impact with wallpaper.

Lighting – Is there ample lighting? Is it dated? Is it time for LED lighting?

Vanity or pedestal sink – Are these dated? Is it time for something more current and attractive?

Countertop/sink – Are the colors outdated? Are there chips? Is the countertop material used no longer in style?
Faucet – Is the finish peeling? Is the faucet outdated?

Toilet – Are there chips? Is the color unappealing? Is it working properly?

Accessories – towel rings/bars, mirror, shelf, cabinet pulls/handles, etc. – Is it time for a refresh on these items?

Once you’ve determined what you like and what you don’t about your powder room, you’ll find that it’s possibility for transformation is usually somewhere between a new paint color and an entire renovation.

Since powder rooms are often small, this is a great place to add drama, often times without breaking the bank. You can opt for a to die for wallcovering or wall paint treatment, a striking vanity, an interesting mirror, beautiful lighting, gorgeous floor tile, or a combination of these items. We would recommend that you don’t make a statement with your toilet and sink.

Powder Room

Lighting can also make a huge impact in a powder room. Instead of using the expected light above the mirror, opt for sconces on each side of the mirror instead. Another option is to use a striking chandelier in the center of the room.

We designed this powder room for a client in Maryland who later termed it, “the fancy powder room”.

powder room

This custom-built bookmatched mahogany vanity along with the pieced porcelain vessel sink are a few of the hightlights in this fancy powder room

We can help you decide what look you want for your powder room and can help you achieve that look. We ask a lot of questions to understand your preferences. Here are two of our favorite powder room looks from the internet…

Powder room

The textured wallpaper provides interest in this powder room by Julia Wong. Photo by Werner Straube

black and white powder room

This black and white powder room was designed by Vanessa Francis Design. Photo by Stephani Buchman

We also do full bathroom design as well. take a look at our blog titled Bathroom Design.

Country Chic Whiskey Room in Chadds Ford, PA

The Background

Every so often, a design project so special comes along that we just have to pinch ourselves to make sure we’re not dreaming. When we received the call from this young couple we were very excited. We had worked with them on two other occasions – once in their 300 year old farmhouse in West Chester, PA (see the foyer and lady’s office of that home on our Portfolio page) and more recently, in their Tribeca penthouse in New York. Their current farmhouse in Chadds Ford, PA is truly a unique home and the couple wanted our help to make it reflect their youthful vibe and personal tastes. We were certainly up for the challenge.

One room that received much attention was one that originally didn’t have much of a purpose. We began calling it the Game Room and soon that name morphed into The Whiskey Room. We can’t be sure why, although we do have our hunches! The design all began with a few simple ideas and finishes, and that morphed into some grand planning. After our meeting, and some phone calls, the client excitedly posted this picture on Instagram… We knew this was going to be a winner!

sample board

The Plan

After our original discussions, we knew we would do the following in the Whiskey Room:

  • Create custom walnut paneling for the walls
  • Add a custom built-in for storage and trophy display
  • Create a world map for the ceiling
  • Improve the lighting in the room
  • Furnish the room with a “clubby” vibe (think Ralph Lauren meets Old World Town & Country

Executing the Plan

We started with the walls, and no two walls in this room were quite the same. The windows on one wall were lower than the windows on the other, spacing between the windows was different, we had to incorporate paneling going up a set of stairs and there was a painted wall that was already paneled which needed to remain. After several drawings and many calls to our wood-working expert, Ryan, from Michael James Furniture, we finalized the drawings and got to work.

walls

One wall “before”.

wood paneling

The start of paneling along one wall.

wood paneling

Progress continues.

wood paneling

Next step: mouldings will be added.

We designed a walnut built-in with storage below and display above and had it installed along the back wall of the room. We incorporated some special details like raised oval panels and beaded mouldings.

oval door panel insert

The oval panels in the doors provide some relief to all the straight lines in the room.

custom cabinetry

The custom cabinetry is installed along the back wall of the room.

custom cabinetry

Once in position, the built-in cabinetry was stained to match the surrounding paneling.

Once the paneling and built-in were complete, the walls were protected with plastic sheeting and it was time to watch the ceiling receive its due. We called upon Billet Collins Studio to create an old world map mural that would be installed on the ceiling of the Whiskey Room. The mural was created at their studio and then transported to Chadds Ford for installation. The map is so large that it had to be completed in two separate sections that were joined on the ceiling onsite.

custom mural

A little insight into the painstaking detail that goes into a map ceiling mural

map ceiling

The mural is installed onsite. Here you get a feel for how large the mural is.

ceiling map

The ceiling lights in the room were carefully placed so as not to distract from the map

The fireplace wall was originally paneled and painted when our clients purchased the home. We kept the panel in place and had the wall painted to look like the paneling elsewhere in the room, but had the panel insets painted to look like burl wood.

custom cabinetry

Halfway there: the panels have been made to look like burl and the remaining areas imitate the paneled walls elsewhere in the room.

And what is behind the double doors on the fireplace wall? Well, what Whiskey Room would be complete without a hidden bar?

Custom walls and ceiling

The room takes shape with its custom walls, built-in and ceiling mural.

But Wait, There’s More


But there is so much more to do and see! Since these pictures were taken, the furniture has arrived and been arranged in the room, a custom metal base ottoman is being made and window treatments in the plaid fabric below are being completed. We plan to update our Blog when the room is complete. We’ll also show some other unique details in the house. Check back on our Blog in the future to see more of this project. Thank you for visiting!

Ralph Lauren plaid

Roman valances in this Ralph Lauren plaid will adorn the windows of the Whiskey Room.

Fireplace Update

Now that the weather is starting to get chilly, it’s time to think about your fireplace. Many people have fireplaces that simply do not reflect their style and surroundings in their home. The good thing is that you don’t have to live with the outdated fireplace that you currently have. Whether your fireplace is gas or wood burning, there are many options to give it a more updated look.

Before we continue, let’s take a quick look at the parts of a fireplace.

Sharp- Nicholson FIreplace Dining room Chaddsford-Layout3

We frequently get requests to change the look of existing fireplaces. We’d like to share one of these projects with you. This client lived in her home for a number of years and wanted a fireplace that reflected her more contemporary tastes. We had designed her living room several years back with a transitional style rug and furniture. The fireplace and living room are some of the first things you see when you enter the house. The original fireplace mantel was painted white and was a Federal style with an urn and acanthus leaf detail, fluted pilasters and traditional moulding. The surround and hearth were white marble with gray veining. Since fireplaces are often the focal point of a room, this formal and traditional focal point was not conveying what the rest of the room was. So she sought our help to change the look. This shows the existing fireplace…

traditional fireplace

The updated mantel couldn’t be more different in style and fits in so much better with the feel of the room. First we drew the mantel and had it custom built by Michael James Furniture out of cherry wood that was stained in a rich walnut finish. The look hints at modern design with its simple angled configuration and clean lines. The existing marble surround and was replaced with large scale light textural tone on tone porcelain tiles to further the updated look. The hearth is made from the same color tiles but without texture.

The first step was demolition of the existing fireplace surround…

demolition

These pictures show the new mantel being installed…

New Fireplace

New Fireplace

The simple and yet dramatic result gives the room a warmth even when the fireplace isn’t on. We completed the overall look with a custom metal fireplace screen in an Olympic Grey finish – also by Michael James Furniture. It’s diagonal lines play off the horizonal and vertical lines of the fireplace.

Fireplace Screen

And the final product…

transitional fireplace

What should you do if you are thinking of updating your fireplace?

  1. Look through magazines, internet sources, etc. to get an idea of what you like
  2. Hire professionals – this is not your typical do-it-yourself kind of project – an Interior Designer can assist with the final look, budget, purchase of materials, selection of vendors, management of the project, etc.
  3. Schedule the work to be done
  4. Sit back and enjoy your new surroundings!

Custom Furniture Design

Custom Furniture – Uniquely You

When you are looking for furniture that is uniquely you and made especially for your home, consider custom furniture. We recently worked with a client to provide storage and a custom look around her fireplace and TV. We began with a concept and tweaked it until we got to the final drawing that looked like this…

custom furniture

When considering custom furniture, the client wanted to increase her storage space and have a place to display pictures and trinkets. As is usually the case, the space had its challenges. The main challenge of this project was that left side of the fireplace was wider than the right side because we had to allow for a door to swing into the room from the balcony.

We then decided to finish the piece in a glazed gesso finish in cream with olive accents. The cabinet tops would be olive green. We had the pieces custom painted by Billet Collins Studio. To further customize the pieces we procured large birch twigs that were used to create the brackets for the display shelves. In keeping with the “woodsy theme” we selected pinecone knobs in an antique brass finish.

Our furniture vision was brought to life by Michael James Furniture.

pinecone knob

We specified a square tulip leg like the one below…

leg

We always get excited about installation day! It’s when all of the idea generating, sketching, and planning comes to 3D reality. Here, the pieces are being installed…

Custom Cabinets

Custom Cabinets installed

When working with an Interior Designer to create custom furniture here are some things to consider:

  1. The Space – where the custom furniture will go
  2. The Look – options here are almost endless – we will work with you to determine your style
  3. Your Needs – storage? display? drawers? doors?
  4. Your Budget – give us an idea of your budget and we can design something that incorporates your needs and wants

Lastly, a look at the finished product…

custom cabinet base

Custom shelves

Interior Design – Before and After

Who doesn’t love Before & After pictures of an Interior Design transformation?

In our previous blog post, Full Service Design (posted 3/16/17), we shared one of our full service design projects in Potomac, MD.

The Interior Design Project Included:

  1. A move from one home to another
  2. A kitchen renovation from floor to ceiling (and everything in between)
  3. Space planning for the clients’ existing furniture as well as newly acquired pieces
  4. Project management of the entire job

Project management included, but was not limited to:

  • Complete coordination with kitchen designer
  • Overall selection of furniture, fabrics, window treatments, tile, countertops, lighting, wall finishes, etc.
  • Color and finish selections
  • Complete lighting plan and coordination of implementation
  • Timing of all project and design elements
  • Design and coordination of all custom cabinetry

As a followup to our previous post, we would like to share some of the Before and After Interior Design pictures from this project. First, we’ll begin in the kitchen.

BEFORE…

Kitchen

The original kitchen design included both an island and a peninsula. The cabinets were a medium maple finish and the counter was a basic granite. In order to accommodate the exhaust fan, a soffit had been built above the cabinetry, and a shelf was constructed above that. This was an awkward design that shortened the tall ceilings.

AFTER…

kichen after

The new design moved the stainless steel refrigerator to the left of the range which created the perfect area for a tall pantry. The peninsula was removed from the design which opened up the kitchen and made room for a large island. The awkward shelf above the cabinets was removed which allowed for taller wall cabinets. Lighting in the crown moulding of the cabinetry was installed which creates visual interest that draws your eye up to the tall ceiling. The new cabinets feature a custom painted finish while the center island is contrasted in a rich walnut stain. Complimentary granite countertops and backsplash tile complete the updated look.

Next, we’ll move on to the breakfast area of the kitchen.

BEFORE…

Breakfast Room Before

The original breakfast area lacked continuity. The shelf near the ceiling seems to chop up the room, while oversized lighting, heavy draperies on the windows leave the room feeling heavy. The furniture is all in the same basic wood tone which leaves much room for improvement.

AFTER…

Breakfast Area After

The old tile floors were removed and replaced with medium tone hardwood floors throughout the kitchen and breakfast area. The cabinets and countertop continue into the breakfast area to create a beverage center with storage for glasses, drinks, and a hidden refrigerator for cold beverages. The cabinets are made to feel lighter with glass doors and interior lighting. We used a glass table top with a metal base and all-weather woven chairs with vinyl seat cushions to add interest to the eating area. The heavy draperies were removed and the windows were covered with custom shutters that match the window trim. Shutters are perfect for providing a clean look while allowing maximum light control. The heavy light above the table was replaced with a scale-appropriate contemporary light fixture more suited for the space. This is another view of the space…

Breakfast area after 2

Next we move to the dining room.

BEFORE…

Potomac dining room before

The original dining room felt heavy with a wood table, wood trimmed chairs, a wood buffet, wood framed mirror and wood floors. The lighting was too large and ornate for the space and the two-toned walls gave the room a chopped up appearance.

AFTER…

Dining Room After

A view of the dining room from the living room shows a lighter and more dramatic space. The floors were darkened a bit which adds to the warmth of the space. Although we used a round wood table, the all upholstered chairs and open console table give the room a more open look.  The chandelier is more scale-appropriate for the room. The chair rail was removed and the walls received a warm and inviting decorative paint finish. The finishing touch is the artwork framed in finish similar to the light fixture that graces the wall above the console table.

Lastly, we move on to the master bedroom.

BEFORE…

Master Bedroom Before

The master bedroom was very neutral and once again, heavy draperies weighed down the room.

AFTER…

Master Bedroom After

Although the new master bedroom is also neutral in color overall, the pillows, bed scarf, side tables and lamps help to provide contrast. The mid-century modern chairs provide a little seating area for the couple. The small overhead light was replaced with a contemporary ceiling fan. The draperies have been simplified to allow natural light into the room and to provide a cleaner lined look. The paint scheme shows off the tray ceiling.

Thank you for taking the time to look at our Before & After transformation!

 

 

 

 

 

Full Service Design

Full Service Design – Interior Design from A to Z

Projects that provide opportunities for interior design and renovation are among the most challenging and rewarding for us. We recently had a full service design project of this nature photographed.

They say that the heart of the home is the kitchen, and let’s just say this transitional kitchen makes our hearts skip a beat!  The redesign and renovation of this kitchen began with us bringing in Jack Rosen Kitchens to come up with an overall plan for the room. Some of the things we were looking to achieve:

  1. Better overall layout of the space
  2. Keep the existing breakfast area, but make it more a part of the kitchen
  3. Provide maximum storage
  4. Provide maximum surface area
  5. Create a beverage area near the table space

Kitchen Bar Cabinetry

Since the kitchen opened up into the family room, we also had to make sure that the two rooms worked together and coordinated with one another.  Some other features that were worked into the space:

  1. Large center island
  2. 2 diswashers
  3. 2 sinks
  4. Cabinet to hide small appliances
  5. A lighting plan that incorporates overhead lighting, under cabinet lighting, ambient lighting in the crown moulding, and decorative lighting in the breakfast area.

Breakfast Area

Kitchen Island and Backsplash Tile

On a regular basis, the family room seats two people, but the clients entertain often and were looking to seat at least six people comfortably.  We worked on blending the clients’ existing furniture while adding new pieces that coordinated. The fireplace in the family room received a total makeover that gave it a more transitional look. One of the best additions to the family room was this custom entertainment center designed by us and built by Michael James Furniture. The piece provides a place for the TV along with display, storage and housing for two custom metal benches.

Custom Cabinetry
The clients’ dining room provides comfortable and elegant seating for eight. The walls and moldings were given a custom paint finish by Billet Collins Studio. The windows were treated with working drapery panels made from a striped silk fabric. An arched “window” in the dining room was outfitted with glass shelves that proudly display a collection of crystal heirlooms. The clients’ artwork adorns one of the walls of the space. A beautiful chandelier bathes the room in a warm glow.

Transitional Dining Room

The master bedroom was another space in this overall project that received our interior design work. We worked with the clients’ style to procure an upholstered bed, two oval night tables with storage, a dresser for storage, workable draperies and bedding and carpet. The client provided two existing mid-century modern chairs and a wood slatted bench for the end of the bed.  Overall the spacious bedroom provides a restful backdrop for pleasant dreams and a goodnight’s sleep. Just off the bedroom is a lady’s study with a double-sided fireplace.

Transitional Master Bedroom

Lady's Study

Contemporary Design Transformation

We’d like to share one of our contemporary projects with you. But first, what makes a room or project “contemporary”?

Key Elements to Contemporary Design

1. Open floor plan
2. Natural light
3. Similar wood tones
4. Airiness to furniture
5. Overall neutral colors with color accents
6. Metal accents
7. Use of natural materials

When it was time for a contemporary design change after 25 years, the couple living in this traditional Chevy Chase home called upon Danziger Design to help them through the many hurdles of their renovation project. The game plan involved turning the entire first floor from traditional closed off kitchen, dining room and family room to a contemporary design with an open floor plan.

Contemporary Design

Family Room – Interior Design, Chevy Chase, MD

Since the homeowners were previous clients of Danziger Design, we were initially called in to review the architect’s plans for the space. These plans were tweaked based upon our knowledge of the client and from there, the project took off. Many decisions had to be made throughout the project. Selections such as floors, cabinets, counter materials and other finishes were made at the beginning and once construction began, the fun part began. We worked with the client to decide upon rugs, furniture and accessories.

Family Room - Interior Design, Chevy Chase, MD

Family Room – Interior Design, Chevy Chase, MD

 

Family Room - Interior Design, Chevy Chase, MD

Family Room – Interior Design, Chevy Chase, MD

 

Some of the features that make this an engaging space are the tall cherry cabinets and bookshelves throughout that provide more than ample areas for storage and display. The dining room and family room placement were switched to allow for less formal entertaining.

Dining Room - Interior Design, Chevy Chase, MD

Dining Room – Interior Design, Chevy Chase, MD

 

Angles throughout make the first floor more appealing – from the angled island in the kitchen to the angled wall that serves as a room divider between the dining room and kitchen.

Breakfast Room - Interior Design, Chevy Chase, MD

Breakfast Room – Interior Design, Chevy Chase, MD

 

 

*Photography by John Cole Photography

 

 

Danziger Design Wins Best Of Bethesda 2017

 

We Won The Best Of Bethesda Reader's Pick: Best Builder for 2017

What an exciting way to begin 2017!

 

We have officially won Bethesda Magazine’s

2017 Best of Bethesda Readers’ Pick for Best Interior Designer.

We would like to thank everyone who voted for us.

 

Click here to view the page from Bethesda Magazine.

Click here to read all of our testimonials!

Click here to read our reviews on Houzz!