December 29, 2010

Recent Project: Cottage Style Home

We are THIS CLOSE to being finished with this beautiful new home.  There are just a few more details to be finished, such as mirrors and miscellaneous cabinet hardware.  I did this project through Arendal Kitchen Design, with Interior Designer Scott Andersen.  Scott does amazing work - I admire his attention to detail in every part of every project.  And I especially admire his taste in light fixtures.  Every light fixture in this house is a "wow" piece that is a work of art in itself and truly MAKES the house.  Of course, the cabinetry is pretty fabulous too (patting myself on my back).  The kitchen is my favorite - the white inset cabinets with custom glass transoms and custom hood are simple yet beautiful.  And they pair so well with the classic marble and limestone tops and subway tile backsplash.

Butler's Pantry

Butler's Pantry

Master Closet

Master Bath

Master Bath

Laundry, unfinished (check out the painted wood floors!)

2nd Floor Bath

December 17, 2010

Re Store

Have you ever been to a Re Store location?  Re Store is a resale outlet that sells used and donated items to raise money for Habitat for Humanity.  It also helps prevent these items from ending up in landfills.  And considering the large amount of landfill space that is occupied by construction waste, an operation like this is a necessity.

I'm fascinated by what you can find at Re Store.  We've purchased garden tools, seeds, car parts, patio furniture, a humidifier, and much more from the Salt Lake City location.

Today I stopped by because I wanted to see the cabinets that my clients had just donated from their kitchen project.  They used to look like this:

And now they look like this:

These are well-constructed solid wood cabinets with a beautiful veneer. 

My favorite part is the hardware. 

 I can't tell what sort of wood these pulls are (could it be rosewood?) but they are beautiful pulls.  I'm thinking it might be worth buying the cabinets just for the pulls (and then donating the boxes back to Re Store if you don't have a use for them)!

I hope someone recognizes the potential and can give these items a new home!

On another note, I couldn't resist buying this awesome retro office chair for myself!  Whether it fits or not is to be determined, but it was only $10 so I had to do it, right?

If you live near a Re Store, please check it out!  I think you might be surprised.

December 13, 2010

Quick & Easy Christmas Decoration

I'm definitely not one to go crazy with Christmas decorations, but this year is the first year we will be spending Christmas at our home, so I wanted to add some tasteful holiday flair.  

Over the years we've both received many ornaments from our families, to the point where we actually run out of room on the tree.  So this year we put some of the extra bulbs into a truffle bowl and I love the extra holiday sparkle it adds.

I have to confess, I saw this as a centerpiece somewhere (can't remember where) and totally copied it.  

December 8, 2010

Sneak Preview

We're getting close to the end of a project I've been working on for a while now!  There is still a lot to be done before I'll be taking final photos, but in the meantime, here is a before and after detail.

We changed the tile (DalTile Panaro Blend.), painted the mantle, and painted the walls (Benjamin Moore Pismo Dunes).  

Big difference, huh?

Stay tuned for more photos in the next few weeks!

December 1, 2010

Using Photographs and Children's Art in Home Decor

Artwork can add a lot of personality to a home, but it can also be expensive to cover all those walls with art.

Believe it or not, you can make your own art, and even if you don't have a creative bone in your body, it can still look good!  The secret:  Use multiple pieces together in one big arrangement, so the individual pieces are just a small part of the whole look.

See examples below, and keep in mind that these would be great gift ideas if you're on a budget (and we all are!)

You can use this approach with photographs:

by Stuart McIntyre, via desire to inspire

Our dining room (I took all the photos, and the frames are all from Ikea)

  You can do the same thing with kid's art:

from Caitlin Creer (family portraits, painted by the kids)

Eric Cohler via vivafullhouse

I love the following images, where the children's art was scanned or photographed and made into a poster collage:
from Sixx Design via Little Green Notebook

You can also use non-traditional display methods:

from Caitlin Creer (hanging wire from Ikea)

Of, if you are somewhat confident in your creative abilities, try something like these resin art pieces :

from Design Ties (see step-by-step instructions here)

November 23, 2010

Milk Glass

I love my milk glass vases.  I picked them up at various thrift stores one day last year.  I bought 4 vases for a whopping $ 3.50, and there were so many there it was hard to choose which ones I wanted!  Because of the stark contrast against our black walls, these inexpensive vases are one of the most dramatic elements in our dining room.

Apparently I'm not the only one who loves milk glass (nor am I the only one who displays them in groups of three).  Here are a just a few photos I've collected of vintage milk glass in more modern settings:

from operadork on flickr

from Lulu'sDressingRoom on flickr

photo by HotHoller via

November 20, 2010

DIY Inexpensive Credenza

Anna over at Door Sixteen recently unveiled her "fauxdenza" (her words, not mine), and I love it.  She used 3 Ikea Akrum wall cabinets at $52 each.  It's a clean look that doesn't take up any floor space, and will cost much less than any furniture pieces you'll find out there (unless you find an amazing craig's list deal or undertake a much larger and more time-consuming DIY project).  Yes, it's Ikea (someday I promise I'll post about all my research comparing Ikea cabinets to other cabinet lines), and you have to assemble it yourself, but if you're in a pinch and you need some extra storage / display space, it's a great option.

Note that the wall cabinets do not have finished tops, which is why she has a table runner (temporary).  A wood top would look great, or maybe a back-painted glass  (I've always wondered if I could do a good job of painting glass myself, though I think it would be tough to make it look just right)?

What do you think?

P.S.  Isn't the ampersand fun?  And the Eames-like rocker?  Oh, and I have those same candlesticks in my dining room (yes, also Ikea)

November 18, 2010

Goodbye Grasshopper!

We took the grasshopper chair to the upholsterer last weekend.  

I was a little sad to see him go.  There's so much life and history behind that chair, it's almost as if he's a person.  Okay, maybe not a person, but definitely like a pet.  Maybe because it's called grasshopper, and  when I was younger I always tried to keep grasshoppers as pets.

Anyway, in a few short weeks he'll be back as good as new, well-groomed and sporting this awesome new fabric:

Maharam Steelcut Trio #533
Stay tuned!

And if you're interested, find info about the chair, and the original look we are going for, at the Knoll Museum website.

November 17, 2010

Collages by Google Picasa

I just recently discovered the capability of the collage feature from Picasa, and I'm loving it!  I've been using it for collage boards for clients.  The collage feature allows you to move, resize, rotate, and change the order of photos.  I can mix photos I've saved from various websites with actual photos I've taken.   I can use the eyedropper thingy (I really don't know what that's called!) to make my background match a paint color exactly.

Here's a project I'm currently buried in:

I've created this collage to help envision the sofa, chair fabric, area rug, wall paint, and floor with various accent pillow options that will help keep the space lighter and more playful.  I'll add accent tables and other accessories as we get further along in the process (oh yes, after you've created a collage you can edit it and add more photos!)

November 15, 2010

Where Have I Been?

Well, I never intended to go so long without posting!  But I have my reasons... First of all, I'm BUSY!  And in this economy, that's great news.  Second, I recently took a trip to southern Utah.   A group of us mountain-biked the White Rim in Canyonlands National Park.  Over 90 miles in 3.5 days.  It was one of the most incredible things I have ever done.  Typically this blog is all about design and DIY and my own home projects, but this trip was so amazing I just had to post a few photos.

I'll really REALLY try harder to post more from now on, okay?

October 18, 2010

Traditional Kitchen Remodel

We just finished a beautiful kitchen remodel for a great client!

The kitchen used to look like this:

From the beginning, the clients wanted to remove the wall between the Kitchen/Dining area and Family Room.  We decided that also closing up the exterior door, removing the closet, and widening the window would help us create the perfect layout.
My colleague at Arendal, Jeff Byington, did this 3D rendering during the design phase.

And here's the final product!

The cabinetry is Columbia Cabinets, supplied through Arendal Kitchen Design.  And Re-Vive was the general contractor.  

And this beautiful floral arrangement came from Lindsy at TriFecTa!