Monday, September 28, 2009

Linda's Kitchen: A little progress, a lot of thinking

I gave my volunteer staff the weekend off so there was not a huge amount of work accomplished on the kitchen makeover.  I did install all the bead board where I could (still need to do behind appliances and am going to be installing as back splash).

You can click here to view the updated floor plan. You will see that I've added the recessed lighting and intend to install a narrow counter along the long empty wall entering the kitchen. I have a terrible lack of storage for both kitchen items and the general detritus of house hold stuff like stamps and tape and string. So, the plan is to install a long counter at counter height that will have front legs and be bolted to the wall in the back. I'm going to add wire shelving with baskets, etc. underneath and add a skirt all around. This also solves the issue of the baseboard heater taking up space and not allowing me to push anything against the wall! When the space is only 4'6" wide, those 3" inches really are important!

And here is a section of my project planner page which show the paint colors I'm considering for the ceiling, a mock-up of the cabinets (which I do intend to paint black) and the window treatment I'm going to make.

Oh, and the other news from the weekend is that my dishwasher has apparently bitten the dust. It ran for over five hours (I was elsewhere in the house and didn't hear it) and the dishes were not washed... yikes. So, it's a darn good thing that I don't mind hand washing dishes. It's also a darn good thing that all new appliances are on the horizon!

 Subscribe to ::Surroundings::

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Giannetti Home Sweet Home

A couple of weeks ago, we at The Skirted Roundtable were joined by Brooke Giannetti, blogger and interior designer.  During our conversation, Brooke talked about her relationship - both personal and professional - with her architect husband Steve Giannetti.  What a great partnership they have!

Steve and builder Paul Morrow just completed a gorgeous 6 bedroom, 8 bath house in L.A. that is currently on the market.  Brooke profiled this house on her blog here and also detailed her lovely staging of the pool house here.

I'm so enamored of this house that I wanted to share some of the images with you too.  For a large house, the prospect from the road is really quite charming, almost cottage-like:

The front hall with view towards the double-story library:

Much of the house is an austere white, which makes the walnut paneled library feel all the more luxurious and warm.

Looking back across the front hall towards the dining room:


The dining room is a study in calm sophistication with paneled wainscoting and Phillip Jeffries grasscloth wallpaper.

One of the things I particularly enjoy about this house is the decided East Coast beachy feel. The board walls and white on white color palette along with the dark floors evoke the beaches of the Hamptons or the Vineyard.

This powder room is to die for! I am totally in love with the onyx vanity top and Rosslyn wallpaper from Farrow & Ball.

Here we have a seating area with coffered ceiling that leads to the kitchen. On the left is a bank of French doors with transom windows that have a full on view of the backyard, pool and pool house.
And the lovely kitchen with great lighting and an amazing stainless steel stove hood.


I could spend all day in this breakfast room.


In the basement level, we have a full bar and wine cellar.

Another one of the eight bathrooms - this one features glass block tile installed vertically, which is quite eye-catching.

And the master bedroom with paneled ceiling that curves over the bed, creating a cozy nook.

And the master bath:

A nice little vignette. Loving the Venetian mirror on the right.

Another little bath:

A rear staircase.

And finally, the back porch and yard. There is an entire outdoor living space here - with full dining table in the background and seating area in the foreground.

Lovely backyard, pool and poolhouse.


And the pool house interior, which Brook styled as an artists' studio.

Thanks to Brooke and Steve Giannetti for sharing these amazing photos! Click here to see the entire slide show.

 Subscribe to ::Surroundings::

Friday, September 25, 2009

Happy Anniversary Elle Decor!

October 2009 marks the 20th anniversary of Elle Decor - the hip, chic and grand shelter magazine that has been helmed by the equally hip, chic and grand Margaret Russell. These are tough times for the magazine industry and yet Elle Decor keeps going strong, celebrating beautiful, yet livable interiors. I've always enjoyed the openness of the interiors profiled in the magazine. They are grown up spaces with attitude and exuberance, but never stuffy or touch-me-not.   I've had the pleasure of getting to know Margaret over the last couple of years and I have to say that the magazine is a fitting reflection of the woman.  Kind and generous, MR is someone who knows the value of a handwritten note and a kind gesture. She is endlessly supportive of young designers and of causes close to her heart.

Here are two images from the current issue that make are making me drool. This bedroom is like a dream and I keep drooling over the fabric! I did a bedroom design for a client a while ago that had a very similar fabric (I actually thought it was the same, it's so close) and color palette. Unfortunately, the bedroom never happened, but it was thrilling to see this one!

design by Muriel Brandolini; photo by Eric Boman

And how about this wallpaper and the lantern. Gorgeous!

Apartment of Keith Johnson and Glen Senk; photo by William Waldron

Editor's Page: I really like that MR uses a different candid photo on her Editor's Page each month. Often with a friend or at an event, it's such a refreshing change from the usual head shot.

In honor of their 20th anniversary, Elle Decor has published a new book "Style and Substance: The Best of Elle Decor", which I'm looking forward to reading.

On Tuesday of this week, the New York design glitterati met to celebrate Elle Decor's 20th anniversary and the book launch at Bergdorf Goodman's.

Margaret signing books. Photo: Piotr Redlinski for The New York Times

The New York Times had a piece this week about the party and a little on the who's who attendees - including Alexa Hampton and her Mom, Mario Buatta, Celerie Kemble and Thomas O'Brien. Vicente Wolf blogged about it as did Michael Devine.

Superchic fashion designer Catherine Malandrino blogged too!

Guest of a Guest has a whole roundup of party pics as well.  I so wish I could have attended and thank Margaret for her kind invitation to the party. It's just so hard to zip into the city from up here in the hinterlands sometimes!!!

Again, happy anniversary to Margaret Russell (who has been with ED for the entire twenty years) and the now #1 shelter magazine Elle Decor!  And stay tuned for The Skirted Roundtable as Margaret will be joining us in early November!!

 Subscribe to ::Surroundings::

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Designer's Coffehouse at

A big thanks to Kathy Barlow of for including me in her Designer's Coffee House with fellow designers
The interview was done in two parts: Part 1: Current Design and Part 2: Behind the Curtain.
Thanks Kathy!

 Subscribe to ::Surroundings::

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

New England Design Hall of Fame 2009

The 2009 inductees into the New England Design Hall of Fame were announced last evening at beautiful unveiling ceremony held in the courtyard of the Boston Design Center.

The New England Design Hall of Fame honors the region's finest architects, interior designers and, new for this year, landscape designers whose work is of the highest caliber and who have made a significant contribution to the design field in New England. Also new for this year is a Specialty Design Award, which will be given periodically to outstanding practitioners in more focused fields such as kitchen or lighting design. The Hall of Fame will have a permanent "Living Legacy" in the form of a birch grove in front of the Boston Design Center.

This year's inductees are:

Peter Forbes, Peter Forbes, F.A.I.A., Architects, Seal Harbor, Maine
Maryann Thompson, Maryann Thompson Architects, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Interior Design
Gary McBournie, Gary McBournie, Inc., Boston, Massachusetts
Cheryl & Jeffrey Katz, C&J Katz Studio, Boston, Massachusetts
Landscape Design
Stephen Stimson, Richard Johnson & Edward Marshall, Stephen Stimson Associates Landscape Architects, Falmouth, Massachusetts
Douglas Reed & Gary Hilderbrand, Reed Hilderbrand Associates, Watertown, Massachusetts
Specialty Design Award
Dalia Tamari, Dalia Kitchen Design, Boston, Massachusetts

Kyle Hoepner, editor-in-chief of New England Home, praised this year's inductees as "representing an enormous fund of sheer talent and hard work. Each of them has been a tireless exponent of fine design in New England, and each one is a fitting addition to the prestigious roster of individuals already in the Hall of Fame."

The slate of inductees for 2009 was selected by a diverse committee of individuals representing different facets of the New England design community, including: Richard Bertman, principal, CBT Architects, Boston, MA (2007 NEDHOF inductee); Nancy Taylor, principal, Nancy Taylor Interior Design, Providence, RI(2008 NEDHOF inductee); Theodore Landsmark, president, Boston Architectural College, Boston, MA; Katherine Field, Katherine Field and Associates, Newport, RI; Alexis Contant, vice president and general manager, Boston Design Center, Boston, MA and Kyle Hoepner, editor-in-chief, New England Home magazine, Boston, MA.

The inductees will be formally honored at a gala dinner on November 4, 2009, at the State Room in downtown Boston.

Congratulations to all!

 Subscribe to ::Surroundings::

Skirted Roundtable: On seasonal decorating, gilded walnuts, dried cranberries and a tree named Ramona

This week at The Skirted Roundtable Megan, Joni and I discuss seasonal decorating. None of us are about to give Martha or Eddie a run for their money!

Fruit display at last King Caesar House Holiday Decorator Showhouse that I did a few years ago. Note my "famous" gilded walnuts.

A beautiful, simple mantle

Chenonceau Castle, France

Join at The Skirted Roundtable and let us know how you decorate for the season!

 Subscribe to ::Surroundings::