Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Feminine Living Room in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Delicate, romantic, cozy yet simple and airy living room.
Very nice proportions.
Charming retro influences.
Beautiful reflection of the opposite side of the room that can be easily confused for a pastel due to the minimal, blending with the wall mirror frame.


Living Room; Sao Paulo, Brazil. Maristela Gorayeb. Interior photo via Casa de Valentina

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Monday, July 30, 2012

Industrial Bedroom - London, United Kingdom

This is a loft space in London that has been converted from a former industrial factory.

While the walls and floors underwent a nice makeover, the ceiling was left in a completely depressing, sick looking state.

How is it to go to bed every night or to wake up every morning, and the last / first thing you see is that mildew ceiling on top of you?

All aspects, elements of design have been overlooked (there is no color, there is no pattern, there is no variety, etc, etc, etc) in 'favor' of emphasizing a violent block contrast between the warm texture of the wood and the sick looking state of the concrete.
A dungeon it might be more or at least as inviting as this bedroom.


Industrial Bedroom; London. William Tozer. Interior photo via Freshome

I am all for mixing in the industrial, but if it is done in a way that uplifts the spirits instead of lowering them.

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Friday, July 27, 2012

Asymmetry and Stripes - Living room in Chicago, USA

Excellent use of asymmetry, variety, and pattern in this interior.
The symmetrical arrangement in the central part of the room - consisting of a sofa and two open back chairs - give the room a formal look.
Yet the sides of the room take the interior to an entirely different, relaxed, feeling through their completely asymmetrical compositions.

By not obstructing the view the open back of the chairs lend an airy feeling to the room.
The open back of the shelf keeps up with the same idea of lightness and openness.

And the rug works great too:
- it creates a focal point;
- it introduces pattern;
- the pattern gives the space a sense of movement;
- the black color in the design creates a unifying repetition.


Living room; Chicago, USA. Nate Berkus. Interior photo via Elle Decor

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

My Style

Wearing a shiny, gold skirt in a casual way, during daytime.
I combined the gold skirt with a simple white top, a scarf in the same gold color tone, a cross-body pouch in black and brown, and casual sandals in tan color (not seen in the photo).
A brooch pined on the scarf is my final touch.

Unconventional, and White, Bathrooms

Unconventional. Unique. Inspiring. Memorable.
Have a look.

Making full use of a tiny space: Tub hidden in the floor - Bathroom in Tuscany, Italy


Bathroom in a converted hangar - Brittany, France


Beautiful and perfect simplicity - Bathroom in Africa


And ... an attic transformed into a refined, minimalist bathroom - Stockholm, Sweden


Photos via Marie Claire Maison

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Living Room in Alamo, USA

This is a living room in Alamo, California, USA.
The room has a generous size, very nice doors, a lot of natural light, and nice flooring throughout.
But pretty much everything that is good stops here.

Below are some of my suggestions and ideas for styling this space.

The post doesn't intend nor could be a thorough or set-in-stone solution but rather an inspiration.


First, here is a new furniture layout that I would suggest:
- create three distinctive areas: one small conversation area in front of the fireplace, one large conversation area in the center of the room, one desk area in the corner of the room next to the windows;
- anchor the two conversation areas by a rug;
- the conversation area in front of the fireplace: place an accent table next to each chair. Place a source of light on one side;
- place a console table behind the sofa, and flanking the console place two sources of light.
You do this: to create a pleasant view when you enter the room from the outside - the back of a sofa is not that appealing, a console table topped with nice objects is.
- place a chandelier above the central conversation area - it will give a great presence to the room
- place a source of light next to the desk.

And: remove the fireplace mantel - it's very dated. Remove the mirror above the mantel too.

Furniture layout: Oana Singa

Regarding the existent furniture - none of it belongs in this space / everything should go.
Here is a collage I created as an inspiration source for the conversation area in the center of the room.

Seating area
Collage: Oana Singa

My picks:
Cork Stool as accent side table at DWR.com; Sofa at Shopcandelabra.com; Chair at Downtown at Claremont, New York; Trunk as coffee table at Mantiques Modern, New York; Rug at Modern One, Los Angeles;  Chandelier at Las Venus, New York

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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Rustic Bedroom in the United Kingdom

Raw. Modest. Effortless. Surprising. Great.


Bedroom; Bath & North East Somerset, United Kingdom. Invisible Studio. Interior Photo via HomeDSGN

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Monday, July 16, 2012

Rustic Contemporary Living Room in Sao Paulo, Brazil (II)

In one of my previous posts I presented a living room in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Check out what I was saying about the project.

Today I will try to come up with a few suggestions - on how this space's play of proportions and scales could be improved.

So, for the fireplace wall:

Step 1. 
Take the bear out. It’s very cheesy, very small, and absolutely out of place in the decor.


Step 2.
Place a mirror / a decorative object above each door.
The pieces don’t have to be identical but look for similarity in shape and size.

You do this: to elevate the doors' level, so the doors' added height will be more appropriate related to the dimensions of the fireplace, and to the whole interior.

Step 3. 
Raise the curtains' level, and therefore replace the curtains with longer ones - the new hanging level should be above the top line of the decorative object.

You do this: to elevate the doors' level, and to balance out the huge proportions of the fireplace.



The post doesn't intend to be a thorough or set-in-stone 'solution' but rather an inspiration.

And I hope it helps!

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Friday, July 13, 2012

My Style

Starting today I will introduce a new topic on my blog: My Personal Style.

In other word you'll see what I actually wear on a given day.

Here is what was my choice for today - an all about mixing the accessories outfit:
- a simple tunic type of dress in a bright orange-red color
- I layered a beaded belt on top of a faux fur strip
- I finished the outfit with a blue-green-red necklace that is my own design.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Blue Living & Dining room and bold mix of patterns in Curitiba, Brazil

A pine wall and a bold mix of upholstery patterns happily coexist in this full of personality interior.

Why it works: 
- the color scheme is restrained: blue and green shades, grounded by black
- the walls are all plain, but variety is introduced by using a different, yet related color on two opposite walls in the living area 
- more interest and variety are created by introducing a new texture on the dining room area: the entire wall is covered with plain pine planks
Also, by changing the textures a visual separation is created between the two areas of the open space
- the two artworks are large but simple, graphic, and are casually leaned against the wall on the floor
- the center stage is taken by the bold mix of patterns
- the pink rug choice is lovely: layering a small pink rug on top of the large patchwork main rug  introduces a pop of unexpected contrasting color
- great: the mix / association of a large big pattern covered square coffee table with two plain stools that act as coffee tables. 





Living Room & Dining Room; Curitiba, Brazil. William Torres. Interior Photos via Casa de Valentina

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Striped walls Bedroom in Paris, France

A simple yet elegant and sophisticated look that is created through an excellent blend of pattern, color, textures.

The overall stripes pattern on the wall:
- creates a graphic, crisp look, and a distinctive focal point


The inserts of yellow-orange stripes on the wall:
- break the monotony and simplicity of the black-and-white stripes,
- the color gives a whimsical twist to the serious feel of the black-and-white pattern,
- the yellow-orange color establishes a connection with the rest of the decor

The bed's canopy:
- adds another graphic element into the decor
- its airy design blends into the wall's pattern

The upholstery fabrics:
- the muted hues and pattern-less textures don't distract / compete with the impact of the feature wall,
- the diversity in textures (matte, shiny) introduces variety.

Guest Bedroom; Paris, France. Quito Fierro. Interior Photo via Elle Decor

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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Rustic Contemporary Living Room in Sao Paulo, Brazil

How many focal points (that compete and create confusion) are in this room? How are the proportions and scale?
- There is a very high ceiling that has a detailed work beams and is illuminated too. At the floor level there is barely some light, but this is a whole another aspect again; 
- There is a massive floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace. The fireplace is completely ignored through the furniture layout, but this is a whole another aspect;


- There is a floor-to-ceiling wood covered wall. And there is an enormous arrangement of shelves that partially covers this wall;
- On the opposite side of the room there is another half wall covered in wood.  


The windows seem dwarfed compared to the size of the elements above.

The furniture and the furniture layout are so huge that make you feel lost. You can't feel that you could spend cozy moments in here.

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And the coffee table that is decorated on a small corner only with just tiny objects ... 


Rustic Contemporary Living Room; Sao Paulo, Brazil. Mauricio Karam. Interior photos via Freshome

See here a few 'what could be done' suggestions / how I see this project to be transformed, and why.


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Would you like my commentaries on design, and a few advices and suggestions on a specific project?

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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Minimalism in Paris, France (II)

My previous post on Tuesday was about a minimalist interior in Paris, France.

Here is what I was saying about the project.

Below are a few details about how I see this project to be transformed, and why.

The arrows show where I suggest the objects to be placed.

Collage: Oana Singa
My picks:
Rug: Classic European Deco, cca 1940's. Galerie Shabab, New York
Torchere: Italy, cca 1960's. Pierre Anthony Galleries, West Palm Beach
Bronze Sculpture: 'Taking Flight', John Helton, 2012. Christian Hohmann Fine Art, Palm Desert
White Sculpture, Woman: 'Glendelia', Armando Amaya, 2004, marble. Christopher Clark Fine Art, San Francisco 
White Sculpture: 'Mountain', Ruth Marten, 2012, white stoneware glazed. Hosfelt Gallery, New York 

Create a sitting / conversation area:
Utilize the spacious, natural light infused space in front of the window by creating a sitting / conversation area.
This area could be comprised of a two chairs, an accent table, and a floor lamp to have light at night.
A pair of identical floor lamps - one lamp placed on each side of the shelves would create a pleasant symmetry (see the floor lamp inspiration image in the collage). 

Why the Rug choice: 
- brings textural variety amid the large wood and concrete surfaces
- introduces pattern amid the entirely plain surfaces
- the simple, subtle design stays within the minimalist decor scheme
- gives a 'home' feeling to this area currently resembling an empty gallery in a museum

Why the Floor Lamp choice:
- the bowl-shaped mounted at the top of the lamp introduces a welcome variety in lines and shapes - all the other existent lines are severe straight horizontals or verticals
- the white color and the brass brighten up the dark surfaces
- the more classic design creates a contrast with the minimalist decor scheme
- gives a 'home' feeling to this area currently resembling an empty gallery in a museum 

Why the Bronze Sculpture choice:
- introduces variety in texture 
- the color creates a great contrast with the white niche in the wall, while it stays within the original brown - white - yellow-green color scheme
- the very graphic design stays within the minimalist decor scheme

Why the Collection of White Sculptures choice:
- a collection will create a focal point on the wall. An empty shelf is not a focal point, even if is painted in a daring yellow-green color.
- the white color creates a great contrast with the yellow-green color of the shelves, so the objects will stand out against that background
- a collection of sculptures and decorative objects united by a common white color won't distract from the minimalist decor scheme, yet it will introduce variety and repetition
- don't place an object on each shelf, leave some shelves empty 
- various shapes, design, materials can be introduced as long as they are united by the white color: e.g. the woman sculpture introduces round, feminine shapes to balance out the straight lines existent in the decor, the mountain sculpture is very graphic, ...

Although detailed, the post doesn't intend to be a thorough or set-in-stone 'solution' but rather an inspiration.

And I hope it helps!

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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Minimalism in Paris, France (I)

The question that arises in my mind when looking at these images is: 'Could someone give life to this space?' 

A completely empty space is very far from being fun. Or successful. Or engaging.

A glass wall, and an empty shelf even if is in a bright yellow-green color doesn't help with the terrible feeling of vacancy, vacuum, hollowness this space gives.
This is an unfortunate interpretation of the term 'minimalism'.



Another area in this house: the 'vacancy, vacuum, hollowness' feelings from the previous images switch to feelings associated to an interrogatory room. 
Well, I have to admit that the interrogation takes place at least in the presence of a few chic accents like the animal print pillows.


Another area that looks like a dining area. 
A shelf identical to the one in the first two images this time is filled with books, a decorative work hangs on the wall, and a bowl decorates the table.

Unfortunately the cavern like feeling, and the lack of a coherent design scheme are still strongly noticeable:
- cold, sterile, impersonal walls 
- the shelf is placed so low, while the decorative work hangs so high on the wall, and along with many other horizontals all at different levels this space doesn't have any continuity
- the decor includes no trace of textiles to warm up the space
- why the dining table is placed against the wall? - poor furniture layout 
- the table is too small - lack of proportions 
- the table is positioned between the stairs and a huge wall of cabinets 
- there is no soft lighting 

How dining here suppose to be inviting and relaxing?


And finally, the bedroom: includes the same bright color found throughout the space.

The repetition of an element is necessary for providing continuity. 
The way the repetition is applied though, in big blocks without any variety, make the space feeling totally unrefined, more like the result of a child's work.

The window screens are a good choice - they introduce pattern that is otherwise totally lacking in the rest of the space.
The curtains soften a little the coldness of the massive stone walls and the dark colors of the wood that is present on the flooring, walls, and ceiling.

Minimalist interior; Paris, France. Moussafir Architectes. Interior Photos via ArchDaily

See a few 'what could be done' suggestions / how I see this project to be transformed, and why.


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