Secret Garden

Sometimes after putting all that hard work into the interiors of our homes we neglect to think about what the exterior looks like. I get it! It takes time to pick the right paint color for your living room or which cabinets fit best in your kitchen. Just thinking about pulling the weeds, mowing the lawn or planting a rose bush seems tiring after all the planning you’ve tackled inside your home. But hear me out. We should plan just as much design detail to our landscaping and garden as we do our living spaces. There will be days when you want some fresh air while at home and could you imagine not having to actually leave the house to get it. All you would have to do is walk a few feet from your living room or kitchen and “Voila.” 

Well let me help you at least get started on the planning. First decide what your outdoor space will be used for? Eating al fresco, entertaining or just family fun. Do you have enough space for casual seating, outdoor dining or both?  Things to consider when creating your secret garden is symmetry, repetition and contrast. Also planting many varieties of flowers, plants and trees (if your space allows) to create the ultimate outdoor green space. Keeping in mind what grows seasonally and plant accordingly. 

Creating a serene, cheerful and comfortable space begins with how much space you currently have to work with. You do not want to overload your space where it feels overcrowded and will be hard for you to maintain. However, you do want to incorporate a mix of non-plant materials such as stone, gravel and/or pebbles. This helps to create zones and divide the space in your garden. Even utilizing hedges, a row of tulips or trees can give you a lovely sense of division in your outdoor space. I hope these ideas get your outdoor project started. Take a look at some beautifully landscaped spaces for a starting point for your own creative design.







Designer Highlight

Today’s designer highlight features designer Rafael de Cardenas. Once a menswear designer at Calvin Klein, de Cardenas moved from fashion to product design and finally found his way to creating Architecture at Large in 2006. His design studio located in two major cities London and New York is derived of several creatives who design both residential and commercial interiors, furniture and architecture. 

Known for his boldly striking and luxuriously fashionable designs. His distinguishable style staples are using black and white, incorporating bold use of vivid colors and adding geometric shape to his designs. He also has a unique design style where he creates characters for his clients. Developing a fantasy that encompasses a storyline and theme with a soundtrack to match. That sounds like an awesome way to design. Take a look at some of his work and tell me what you think!

Canopy Beds

Now when you visualize a canopy bed what do you think of?  You may envision extravagance, ornate and decorative carved wood or handsomely sculpted metal. Maybe you see a symbol of status, or a sumptuously dreamy masterpiece. I am sure we can go on and on with our imagination, right? Well you may be surprised to know how far from that ideal the canopy bed originated. 

Despite the alluring extravagence typically seen of these admirable beds the concept came out of necessity. Lords and nobelmen used simple drapery in the Middle Ages to keep themselves warm. Canopy beds were also used to provide privacy since typically attendants were near by sleeping in the same room. During this time they were very understated. It was not until the 16th century were there was a focus on craftsmanship and more ornate designs. 

Another rich history of this masterfully crafted piece of furniture is in the pre-Republican China the canopy bed was an important piece to the family and customarily a brides dowery. I only dream of having the space to have an attractive canopy that goes with my personality and design aesthetic. In looking for inspiration there are so many styles to choose from. Take a look a tell me which style fits your personality. 

Perfect Pair

Poet Friedrich Schiller once said “There is room in the smallest cottage for a happy loving pair.” This is absolutely true. There is nothing like having an understanding with the other because of the similarities between the two. Completely insynch. Now I know this quote was probably meant to speak for a loving couple. That’s great! But I am talking about your furniture. A balance and compatibility between two pieces that just work. That is what I call a “perfect pair.” 

The power of two creates symmetry and a harmonious balance within the space. The commonality between the two, the line, structure, size, and color create the ultimate statement.

The Raw Deal

Lately, everyone has been a bit more conscious of their carbon footprint…and rightfully so. It is important that we appreciate what the Earth provides us naturally. In today’s society green living and conserving precious resources  is a way of contributing to changing how we live for the better. 

There has been a rediscovered interest in natural materials when it comes to interior design. Incorporating natural materials in the home has been around for centuries. A way to show off natures beauty and live with it daily. Bringing nature into your home creates both character and warmth, welcoming and providing peace to those who inhabit the space. There are so many ways you can achieve this look in the design of your own home. Whether in the middle of renovating or just adding something new be inspired to look at nature. Here are a few visuals to get your gears turning. 

Sitting Pretty

I must say I think I am a bit obsessed with seating, but who isn’t? Right…? Well, I know my husband is going to be over me if I add one more chair to our apartment. I just can’t help myself sometimes. There is nothing like a statement piece of furniture. You know the kind that stops everyone in their tracks and becomes the center of attention. 

Strategically thinking about what type of seating will suite a space is a designers top priority. It is important to chose seating that best fits the personality of the owner/owners. The practicality of how the piece will be used in the space. Does it add drama and balance to the space? Is the color, comfort and size a good fit for the clients needs? These are all very important questions to consider when making the right choice for the space. Whether you are looking for a new sofa, accent or dining chair be mindful of the things I previously stated. It will make for easier hunting when you go out to find your perfect match for your space. 

In my ventures in looking for statement seating I found some inspiration to steer me in the right direction. Take a look and tell me what you think. 

Designer Highlight

Today, I want to highlight interior designer Michel Smith Boyd. Having received his BFA in interior design he has hit the design world by storm. Becoming one of the most influential and sought after designers. He has received many accolades and his work has been featured in several national publications. 

Michel Boyd’s design aesthetic is true luxury with a thoughtful and collected design style. He infuses and finds the perfect mix of texture and fashion into all of his designs. His work is definitely going to get you inspired to try something new in your own home. Take a look.