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6 posts from July 2010

July 28, 2010

Color Added: Why Kitchens Crave Fun Color and The Best Paint

Just above the golden statue of Prometheus at Rockefeller Center, House Beautiful's Kitchen of the Year 2010 has been transformed into Bar 30.  I was the last speaker at the Kitchen last week as we wrapped up a whirlwind of excitement tied into the kitchen and deck designed by Jeff Lewis.

Here are some clips from my talk on Color, Paint, and Kitchens:

Natural Monochromatic Style

What's In That Colorant?  A Real Zero VOC Paint

Go For Color!

How to Select Color with Stainless Steel

Pick A Sheen, Any Sheen


Be bold with Color in a Kitchen.  There's usually relatively little wall space, so make the color really count!

Make sure all your finishes in the kitchen are highly durable and will stand the test of time, spaghetti sauce, and steam!  Use Aura Bath and Spa (low VOC) when you want a highly durable paint that will cover well, dry fast, and work in a kitchen in any color and sheen.

Use Natura in your dining rooms and seating areas around a kitchen for a Zero VOC solution that's available in ANY color.  Your Green Paint can be blue or yellow or red or...

If you're using monochromatic style to create a soothing atmosphere, remember to use contrast (darker/lighter) so it's not blah, but aaaahhh...

What are your best Kitchen Tips?  Learn more about Kitchen Of The Year here.


July 26, 2010

House Beautiful Tells All About Kitchen Of The Year

I'm still coming off my Kitchen of The Year Dream Cloud this week.  The kitchen itself sits where the New York City Christmas Tree usually sits at Rockefeller Center.  It boasts so many great gadgets and finishes that Jeff Lewis, house flipper extraordinaire from Bravo's "Flipping Out", integrated into his design.  I especially love the 1000 square foot deck that surrounds the kitchen.  Here's a short video with House Beautiful's Editor In Chief on his thoughts on the design of this year's kitchen and how kitchen color trends are evolving.

I have my own thoughts (of course) on kitchens and color.  In fact, I shared my ideas at the Kitchen of The Year on Friday to a fantastic audience of people from around the world!  We captured the talk on film and I'll share it with you here in the next couple of days.  So start to dream about your ideal kitchen and let's chat about what colors would be perfect soon!

July 20, 2010

House Beautiful, Jeff Lewis Reveal Kitchen of The Year 2010

Kitchen of The Year from House Beautiful and Jeff Lewis of Flipping Out is finally open!  Rockefeller Center was the center of a design buzz that brought together celebrities, designers, and the press today.  The press event was a fun preview to the kitchen that boasts fabulous elements.  I had so much fun that I went back for the opening gala this evening...

What moved me at the Kitchen of The Year:  Touch technology appliances by Jenn-Air, the Crevasse prep sink by Kohler, a tremendous 1000 square foot deck that uses Arborcoat from Benjamin Moore, reclaimed wood from Mohawk, scrumptious fabrics by Kravet indoors and Sunbrella outdoors, orbital lighting by Licht Im Raum, monolithic countertops by Ceasarstone, carved limestone backsplash tile from Walker Zanger, furniture from Restoration Hardware outside and Design Within Reach inside, a reclaimed wood dining table by Soderbergh, outdoor televisions from Sun-Brite, and accents from Calvin Klein and Kate Spade.  These specifications all lend themselves to a look that House Beautiful's Editor In Chief, Newell Turner, referred to as a warm contemporary look that sets the tone for the future direction of House Beautiful itself. 


Soderbergh Dining Table created from reclaimed timbers from the Vanderbilt Estate is set with accents from Kate Spade and Calvin Klein

Kate Kelly-Smith reading a Proclamation from Mayor Bloomberg recognizing the Kitchen of The Year as Editor In Chief Newell Turner and Jeff Lewis of "Flipping Out" look on.

Lounge seating just off the main kitchen area is framed by a room divider that serves as bottle storage

Jeff Lewis shares his ideas on kitchen design with us all

The evening in full effect with an eager crowd inspecting the kitchen  thoroughly

A more private view of the kitchen

If you're wondering where exactly the kitchen sits, look above the Golden Statue of Prometheus and your treasure will be found .  This is the view from the deck.

What I moved at the event:  I was indulging a very nice House Beautiful photographer at the event who wanted to capture a casual shot of me "opening the drawers and exploring the kitchen" when a Kraftmaid panel literally detached itself from the face of the cabinets and fell at my feet, creating an uninvited hush in the crowd and prompted Jeff Lewis to say (with a smile) "Someone please escort her out!".  Tension broke and the party continued.  Oops!  I have been working out, but I was certainly surprised by the feat!  The cabinets are lovely, of course and I hope the slight issue has been fixed.  Naturally, this would only happen to me, so I thought I'd share. 

The rest of the event went swimmingly well and it was fun to see people come out, dressed to impress, focused on celebrating design!  If you're in New York, the Kitchen of The Year will be hosting events all week.  I'm speaking at 2pm (and will refrain from touching the cabinets) on kitchens and color.  Hope to see you there!

July 15, 2010

DwellStudio and Benjamin Moore Combine Colors

There's a bit of a love affair between Christiane and Benjamin, better known as Christiane Lemieux (of DwellStudio) and Benjamin Moore.  The object of their affection is Color!  I have to admit, I'm head over heels for approachable, yet leading style sensibilities that both companies share in design and color. 

Baby room dwell benjamin moore color 

One color choice for a nursery is Smoked Oyster 2109-40.  See Christiane's other picks from Benjamin Moore for different rooms.

When it comes to color, we know we have choices and sometimes it's hard to narrow it down.  Have you ever tried repainting a wall and keeping everything else in tact?  It can create big impact with very little time.  DwellStudio is pairing some of their designs in rooms that are painted in Benjamin Moore's paint using three different color schemes to show how a room can change at the sweep of a paintbrush.  Take a look at what simply changing color on the wall can do for your room.

Dwell box surprise 

And here's where it gets personal...I have been neglecting my own master bedroom in my home.  I know, I know-- bad designer behavior!  As we were working with DwellStudio on this project, Christiane and her team shared with me their new collection of bedding and I found the perfect inspiration for my bedroom!  Which of their new introductions do you think would work best?

Etching Ink

Etching in Ink

 Peacock Citrine

    Peacock in Citrine

Peacock Dove

Peacock in Dove

Gate Ash

Gate in Ash

 For me, a makeover is not just a surface treatment, but a changing of mindset and of mood.  I think I'm ready to add some style to my most personal space.  Now, I've sketched, planned, and I am ready to go!  Over the next couple of weeks, I'll put my room together and share it with you.  Stay tuned to see what was in MY box from DwellStudio.  What will you put in YOURS?

July 09, 2010

Dining In Colorful Style All Year Long

Park Avenue in New York City is no stranger to beauty.  The restaurant by the same name evolves throughout the year with an intricate series of changes that recreates the interior to signal the changes in seasons. 

The team oat AvroKO designed the space around the concept of transformability.  They believe in the space creating a feeling of exploration and used Captain James Cook's travels as a guide to their designs. 

The frames around the perimeter have a series of seasonal panels that instantly change the texture of the space.  And all the coordinating details are devilishly perfect from the lighting to the menus.  One look at the photos below and you'll see the instant impact of mood through Color!

The idea of changing your space seasonally is so inspirational to me.  With a little planning, I can easily imagine cycling in and out of accessories, an accent wall, and even dish towels to usher in color that reflects my seasonal taste.

In fact, having a theme can help you create exploration in your own space.  I've always thought restaurants were great sources of inspiration for residential kitchens and dining rooms.  Park Avenue's approach gives us a fresh perspective on the idea.  

Park Ave Summer

Park Avenue Summer

Park Ave Autumn

Park Avenue Autumn

Park Ave Winter

Park Avenue Winter

Park Ave Spring

 Park Avenue Spring

Lighting, color, and details make a world of difference!  Does theme based design have to be seasonal?  Of course not!  Be brave and bold, design souls! 

I'm having visions of encouraging each member of the family to have a "design season" that reflects their tastes and choices.  Learn about famous designers or artists an theme your space around their style. Use seasonal design as an opportunity to grow your knowledge and feed your imagination. 

Feast For Your Eyes: Park Avenue Restaurant