30 posts categorized "kids"

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.

March 26, 2010

Color of the Week: Purple Room Design

Sargeants room Flickr Visualtricks

Photo by Visualtricks

Trying to find a unique color for your home can be a challenge.  Filled with rich mystery and history, Purple is one such color to consider.  I suppose you could call Purple a color of royalty because, centuries ago, only the wealthy could afford it.  It took over 10,000 mollusks to create one gram of Tyrian Purple dye.  Purple was such a measure of status that some societies actually banned anyone but royalty and the most priviledged from wearing it!  Can you imagine such color control?? 

Vesta Show House Champagne Chic Interiors 
Photo and design by Champagne Chic Interior Design

The Purple bedroom above creates a high contrast monochromatic design with every tone of Purple you can imagine.  The dark plum drapery and trim accen the main lighter Purple with ease to accentuate the architectural details of the room.  Take a look at some other renditions of Purple below.  What room would you paint Purple?


Jamie Drake Eric Striffler
This wardrobe is a girl's dream room!  The palest versions of Lilac were partnered with cool Fucshia and fabulous lighting to make it all work.  Photo by Eric Striffler, Design by Jamie Drake 

Coco kelley Purple ceiling 
I love Coco+Kelley's comments on her photo above.  It's rare and memorable to see strong color on a ceiling like this.  Photo by Coco+Kelley 

Today, Purple is a gender neutral color that can still evoke that feeling of richness in a space.  This hue is called the color of creativity and works well for play rooms, dens, and rooms that are meant to feel unique.  Purple will often carry traits of both colors used to make it-- red and blue.  The resulting color is one of calm vitality. 
Benjamin Moore has hundreds of Purples to peruse.  Try some virtual painting using Personal Color Viewer to find the perfect Purple for you!

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. 

February 25, 2010

The Best Eco-friendly Dream Home Kids Room Yet!

Not only is the National Home Show in Toronto a great place to get all the info you need to resolve your renovation or design dilemmas, but this year, it's also the host a Dream Home that lives up to its name.

Dream Home 2010

Dream Home Exterior

Eurodale Developments, Richard Librach Architects, CityLine and Toronto Star are all partners in this event.  This Dream Home is focused on being ecologically and economically conscious (yeay!).  Imagine a modular set of 16x16 pods that you could move, buy, sell, add, or subtract from your property as your needs change.  They even suggest alternative exterior panels to change the look of your home as your style preferences change.  These concepts of longevity and flexibility alone are two ideas that can make a big impact in future housing!

For the interior, several designers were chosen to let their skill and imagination converge.  Benjamin Moore's team of stellar design experts, Sharon Grech, Michelle Cook, and Manny Pavao, created a children's area that leave me wanting to be about five years old again. 

The design lead, Sharon Grech, shared her concept with me. "Inspired by the modern, “green” architecture of the building pods themselves and the incredible large viewing windows.  I have imagined a tree-house theme for the project. These days, kids and adults alike have to spend far more time indoors than we might like, so we need to surround ourselves with natural elements, organic textures and the earthy colours of Mother Nature. We designed the spaces with a contemporary feel balanced with true organic elements and naturally playful colours."  For this green-focused project, all paint used is Benjamin Moore's Natura.

Kids room bed view 1

The bedroom is themed around a treehouse at night with warm neutrals and pops of color.  The silhouettes of trees and animals opens the room to imagination!  Colors used: Storm AF-700 for walls and Blue Echo AF-505 for the ceiling.

_21904kids play room chairs and swings

A playroom situated across the hall has hanging swings and open space to explore.  The bright colors in the Vinyl Plank flooring compliment the Grasshopper AF-415 colored walls and Fossil AF-65 ceiling, playing on the theme of a daytime treehouse.

Kids washroom

The washroom uses Thunder AF-685 on both walls and ceilings to minimize the narrow feeling of a long space.

Kids play room laptop stations

The laptop stations in Tropical Orange 2170-20 accommodate two computers. 

Interior design divas

Look at the fabulous scale of that pendant forming a halo behind our Design Angels, Sharon and Michelle!  (Photos Courtesy of Sharon Grech)

You see what I mean?  They definitely did not have such fun rooms when I was a kid!  If you're in the Toronto area, see the Eurodale Dream Home for yourself at the National Home Show, until February 28.  After the show closes, the house will be deconstructed and preserved for future use.  Ah...the beauty of pre-fab and modular housing!

January 25, 2010

The Perfect Pouf! Style and Color in an Instant

 I struggle sometimes with how to incorporate kid friendly furniture into my space without compromising style.  Today, I'm inspired by the magic of a pouf. 

Poufs, by definition are  a firm floor ottoman or cushion used as a seat.   Often, you'll find that they are made with some fabulous fabrics and colors that can become the starting point when you're picking out your paint colors, too! 

Though they come in a variety of sizes, I set out to find the perfect poufs that would be just the right size to use as a pint-size perch. 

Etsy Pouf kid

To make it really fun, I looked for four options that are unique, well designed, and around $100 or less. 

Okay, I couldn't resist, I did allow one in that's designed for those without kids and willing to spend a little extra, but it's ADORABLE and Eco-Friendly!

Custom & Chic:

Etsy Pouf BranchandBirdie


Branch and Birdie caught my eye because of a fresh combination using your choice of fabrics from their offering.  These cool little handmade poufs are $68 each and they ship within a week!

Paint colors I would pair with these poufs:

I love the bright green in the background of the photo and found a similar color that's a knock-out plus some others I like!


Authentic Pouf:

Moroccan Pouf  


Authentic Morocco has a selection of these very traditional leather Moroccan poufs for about $79, but what I really enjoyed was their fun rounded poufs called Sabra Poufs.  They're about $60 and are made in Marrakech from a traditional Moroccan berber fabric and come in some fun colors like these:

Sabra pouf

Sabra pouf redSabra pouf blue


Colors can vary by choice for these poufs, but I suggest trying a specialty finish in a bold color when you use a traditional element like this.

Kid Approved:

Sitabout Madras

Moolka has of my favorite children's brand, Haba.  This Sitabout Madras is made for the curious child who can busily explore the pockets, tabs, and even the shooting stars.  It's available for $62.99.

Colors to compliment this pouf:


Lounge with the Little Ones:

Urban Outfitters Pouf


Urban Outfitters sells this little velvet cushion for $20 (sale) each in a variety of saturated colors that you can stack together to create great combinations of color.

Dhurrie Style Pouf:

West Elm Dhurrie


The simple form and pattern of this West Elm pouf is inviting and a great design statement.  This particular one is on sale now for $88.

Depending on the rest of your decor, you can really go in many directions for paint.  This pouf would be equally striking against a bright yellow wall or a deep red wall.


The Not So Splurgy Splurge For Us Big Kids Only:

Miss Rio DWR

Design Within Reach caught my eye with their Miss Rio Pouf.  It's bold, colorful, and made with rubber taken from recycled foot flops.  Karin Whittman's design is brought to life by Brazilian social organizations who employ local craftspeople who would otherwise have no job.  So for $245 (sale), this splurge is a pretty smart choice.  (Because the individual pieces can be pulled out, they don't recommend this pouf for environments with small kids)

Do you Pouf?  Where do your little stylistas like to sit in your house?