24 posts categorized "dining"

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 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

May 19, 2010

Nestor's Nest: Redefine The Dining Room With Brilliant Strokes Of Color

Samantha had dreams of a dining room that would be as chic, unique, and sophisticated as her.  Initially, this was not that room.  Samantha's designer, Christopher Coleman wanted to make her fantasy a reality. Here's how they used specialty finishes, a bit of creativity, and some serious talent to create this dining room solution. 

Dining room 

If you love the Metallic Glaze technique in Samantha Nestor's Dining Room, you will fall head over heels for this book, Paint Style.  It outlines ideas, gives you details, and offers color combinations from both Benjamin Moore and professional Interior Designers.  It can boost you from Blah to Beautiful in a jiffy.  We still have a few treats to share from Samantha's house in upcoming posts.  Keep checking back to see her bedroom, home office (I call it the Rainbow Room), and some tips on where to spend and where to save.

May 06, 2010

MAD about HUE: Benjamin Moore Celebrates Designers and Architects

 Last night was amazing.  I took the stage with my fellow Master of Ceremonies, Ray Gomez, to celebrate our Fourth HUE Awards.  The event was held at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York City.  Complete with dancers wearing painted gowns, a few gentlemen on stilts while balancing paper flowers made from paint chips, and an incredible guestlist from the world of design professionals, the HUE Awards event was a the perfect celebration of color in design and architecture.

The coveted HUE Award is a glass sculpture that's radiant with color

Sophie Donelson Diamond Barrata

  Lifetime Achievement HUE winners WIlliam Diamond and Anthony Baratta being interviewed by Sophie Donelson

Design notables like Interior Design Magazine's Editor In Chief, Cindy Allen, designers Darryl Carter, Jamie Drake, Amy Lau, Evette Rios, and House Beautiful's Editor In Chief Newell Turner were among the hundreds who came to the party to congratulate our HUE Honorees.

Jamie Drake Ghislaine Vinas Danielle Boker
Back to the future-- Past Hue winners for Residential Interiors, Danielle Boker (08') and Jamie Drake (05') congratulate this years winner Ghislaine Vinas

Evette Rios Sonu Mathew    
Yours Truly with Evette Rios-- just look at all the colors between the two of us!

Our Honorees each received a gorgeous hand blown pant drop shaped glass sculpture commissioned by Benjamin Moore and were awarded a $5000 prize for their work.  And the winners are...

Diamond Baratta 1
Diamond Baratta 3
Diamond Baratta 2

William Diamond and Anthony Baratta received the Lifetime Achievement HUE Award.  In casting their votes for Diamond Baratta, the HUE judges noted that the New York City-based interior designers are risk takers who have made color usage an unmistakable and defining signature of their work. The firm follows in the footsteps of three other distinguished color advocates who also have been cited with HUE Lifetime Achievement Awards:  Steven Holl,2005; Ettore Sottsass, 2006; and, Legorreta+Legorreta, 2008.  It was a philanthropic surprise to learn that Diamond Baratta chose to donate their prize money to the Center for Special Studies at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, which focuses on care for people with HIV and AIDS.  Benjamin Moore will match the donation to honor their generosity and a cause that we strongly support. 

Our other HUE Honorees are:

Ghislaine Vinas Bedroom

Ghislaine ViƱas Interior Design,New York, for Residential Interiors.  Ghislaine's work is alive with saturated color and a brilliant sense of balance.  I was touched that she shared her award with her beautiful children who joined her on the stage.

Envision Design USGBC 

Envision Design, Washington, DC, for Contract Interiors.  Envision Design integrates materials, color and architecture seamlessly.  Their work on the US Green Building Council's headquarters (pictured above) has awarded them many accolades and great distinction.


Amy Wax, Montclair, NJ, for Residential Exteriors.  Amy is the first Color Consultant to recieve a HUEY and I've seen first hand how dramatic a difference her work makes in a neighborhood.

Allen Philps Trader Vics Rendering 

Allen + Philp Architects/Interiors, Scottsdale, AZ, for Contract Exteriors.  Liz Damore and Mark Philp represented their team at Allen Philp.  Their striking commercial exteriors infuse color to give buildings character.

These four honorees competed in their categories for the prestigious prize, topping a total of nearly 150 entries from across the country.

A HUE Special Achievement Award was awarded to Eikona Studios, Cleveland, OH, for its unique dedication to the restoration and preservation of mural art and masterpieces that grace the walls and domes of American churches, cathedrals and houses of worship.  Eikona is not just about preservation of sacred/religious art/spaces - they work throughout the U.S. and Europe in houses of worship, museums andn public spaces.   The Special Achievement HUEY was awarded to them for their commitment to preserving artistic expression and story tellilng with paint -- an art form that could quickly become extinct without the dedication of artisans, such as found at Eikona, ensuring it is passed to future generations.They say it best when they describe themselves as "a unique team of artisans and designers specializing in sacred spaces and creative projects." 

A clear day in New York City, views of Central Park, and a gathering of people who are as passionate about color as I am made for a spectacular party at MAD.  Here are some highlights.


Dancers Hue 1 
Dancers wearing colorful gowns performed and interacted with us all night

Paint Chip Dresses
Benjamin Moore's New York Design Center Showroom Manager Rainy Lawrence showcased some hidden talents through these custom designed and created dresses made from paint chips! 

Man on Stilts
Whimsy was in full effect at MAD for the Hues

  Goodie Bags 
The perfect way to end the night.  Goodie bags called "Basura Bags" are made from recycled juice boxes, made with fair trade and wage policies, and all profits go to Honduran school children.

March 24, 2010

The Colorful Side Of Dining By Design 2010

Dining By Design by Design Industry Foundation Fighting Aids (DIFFA) took New York by storm!  This is the first Dining By Design I've missed in years and from what I gather, it was amazing-- filled with exciting design ideas, celebrities, colorful table decor, and even an iPhone inspired dining room!  My friend and colleague, Michelle Zakko, is sharing her images with us so we can all feel like we were there. 

Benjamin Moore David Stark Iphone

Benjamin Moore inspires with their iPhone AppDavid Stark has done it again.  His designs are progressively impressive for DBD each year!  The layering of iPhone graphics and the clever details like iPhones with flames on the candelabra are perfect examples of our interaction with technology to create art.

Evette Rios for Buitoni Dining By Design 
Evette Rios designed a mysterious forest  for Buitoni complete with roots supporting the table.  The clever use of metallic stools offsets the natural scenery well.  I like her bold combination of finishes and color.  She brings reds, greens, wood, metal, and even dusky violets together well.

Kravet Dining By Design

Kravet Fabrics created an upholstered den with gorgeous little boxes that held place settings.  To me, this is such an abstract and well executed nod to the international tradition of quilting, showcasing several luxe fabrics together. 

Cappellini Walt Disney Dining By Design

 Iconic design house Cappellini designed the Walt Disney Signature Collection and worked in all the "Hidden Mickey's" in a subtle and modern way.  What you don't see in this photo is the giant Mickey that sat above the booth sporting his usual smile.  Whimsy and sophistication marry beautifully, don't they?

There are so many pictures of the tables out there now, so make sure to

see them all.  If you must see it for yourself, check out Dining By Design in one of the other scheduled cities throughout the year:  Kansas City (April), Chicago (November), San Francisco (November).

Most importantly, remember that Dining By Design is just one of the many ways

DIFFA brings attention to the epidemic of AIDS that we as a world are facing.  DIFFA was also the winner of Benjamin Moore's $500 donation based on all of your votes during ten.