Monday, July 13, 2009


Mixed Company-Contemporary finshes and traditional furnishing meet in a dining room

Recently, a client contacted up for a revamp of her foyer and open dining room after inheiriting a suite of antique dining room furniture. Our challange: to combine the traditional furniture with the home's transitional architecture, while maintaining a modern feeling suitable to a young family.

Foyer before: We started with several pluses--dark wood floors and attractive lighting that we had selected during the home's construction a few years back. We also still loved the neutral paint that we used throughout the first floor open plan, but we did want to richen it in the foyer and dining room, as well as adding a feature wall for interest.
During: We decided to emphasize the lean, horizontal orientation of the dining room and kitchen (through the second opening in the striped wall) with broad stripes. We used a narrow tape to make thin stipes of the existing wall color.
Foyer after: We moved the chandelier in order to use an existing table as a center table. The striped wall has been coated with layers of gloss polyurethane for sheen and drama.
A trumeau custom made from salvaged architectural pieces adds casual elegance to the wall by the staircase. It's clean lines and heroic scale recall contemporary pieces, while it's touches of gilt and peeling paint place it firmly at home with the family antiques, including a side chair we recovered in a neutral animal print.
To accomodate all of the family, pieces, we used the china cabinet as a curio in the foyer, pulling the draperies on the flanking windows to the sides to give the illusion of a larger wall.
A ceiling medallion finished to match gives the existing chandelier more substance.
The dining room before: Again it has several pluses--plenty of window, a great iron and crystal chandelier, and dark wood floors. It just needed a dose of drama.
Dining room after: A metallic bronze finish gives drama and sheen to the ceiling and crown. Glossy stripes encircle the room and give a contemporary counterpoint to the antique mahogany table. The cream ultrasuede host and hostess chairs help lighten the room and give relief from all of the wood pieces. Sculptural mirrors provide interest and texture.
Lush silk draperies soften the room and provide a feeling of elegance, while bamboo shades filter light, provide privacy, and keep the room from becoming to formal. Eventually, after restoration, a large sideboard will go underneath the abstract painting.
The painting is a custom piece by provisions interiors.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Office Space: A home office before and after

Conference area after.
Our client was a successful business woman in the construction supply business who works from a home office which occupies most of the ground floor of her home. Clients and vendors frequently visit her office, so it was important that it look polished and professional. Many of the clients are contractors who visit fresh from building sites, so it was important that the fabrics and finishes used be durable and easily cleanable. Since the space is in her home, especially since it adjoins her guest area (her own living area is upstairs), it was also important that it be a warm, inviting space that welcomed friends and family.
In order to stay on both time and cost budgets, we worked with several existing elements, including many of the client's furniture pieces, the earthy and stain concealing tile floor, and the neutral wall paint. Our main focus was to add personality and functionality.

We wanted to ackowledge the client's industry by including some touches that referenced the wood products she sells, so we used these create wooden plaques as an art installation on the long wall by the work area. They add interest and warmth without being distracting during the work day. New task and ambiant lighting supplement the overhead lighting and give the client much more flexibility. The mask and earthen ware lamp give the African influence the client requested.

A large graphic tree mural again speaks to the client's industry as well as giving a major focal point to the room and highlighting the beverage station, which we fleshed out with open shelving, an undercounter refrigerator, and coffee bar.

In the conference area, we added a modern version of a wingback in an easy care leather/fabric mix for their comfort and style. We also brought in another piece of the client's modular office furniture to serve as an additional work surface, as well as to display accessories.
Washable sheer linen panels hung as long cafe curtains, provide privacy and sun protection, while still allowing in plenty of natural light. Potted plants provide interest and a splash of color.