How To Style A Round Table

Quick Post :

There are so many reasons to love a round table.  Round tables really improve both the physical and visual flow of a room.  They also serve to ground a space by literally establishing a center point; a round table forces one to gravitate to that spot, thus fostering conversation.

However, many people struggle with how to style them.  Maybe it is the lack of a straight edge that people find difficult.  Below, I show you a quick and easy way to place objects that make this shaped table beautiful.  This of course, is not the only way, but an easy no fail approach.

table from Pottery Barn

add a stack of books

add greenery

add a group of objects – here, I chose small white vases

add a tray in an interesting shape

add a “crown” to your stack of books

viola! A beautifully styled round table!

I hope you enjoyed my quick and easy tutorial!  Let me know what you think!

XO

Laurie

Cyber Monday!

Let the shopping continue for Cyber Monday!!!  A lot of retailers just took Black Friday deals and codes right through until next Wednesday.  For the sake of time, I listed 4 retailers; although, I probably could have listed at least another five!!  Below, are online only retailers with some pretty amazing sales.

Zinc Door: I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this site for unique, well made, really stylish furniture and accessories.  ZD has a really sophisticated, modern aesthetic whose pieces are always on point, but never overly trendy.

I absolutely love that cocktail table; the color and unique shape makes it a definite focal point.

blue throw pillowaccent table, upholstered bed, cocktail table, navy desk,  agate bowl

Joss & Main is giving 30% off with free shipping using code SAVE30! The wall sconce is a Jonathan Adler dupe that goes for MUCH more! The stool is very unique and a pair would look great nestled under a console table.

wall art, console table, circle console table, stool, wall sconce, table lamps

Hayneedle – I love this site for fun, modern furniture and decor.  No code necessary, but sale prices are only valid until the 27th.

There is something about a chaise that commands one to relax…..I’m obsessed with chaise lounges!!  Once you have one, you wonder how you ever lived without one!!

Those Serena & Lily bistro chair dupes are a steal!

coral drapesdoor mat, starburst mirror, drapes, bistro chair, chaise

One Kings Lane is offering 20% off sitewide and free shipping on all orders over $100 with code OKLFREESHIP

The gold etagere would be an amazing room divider or a perfect place to display your one-of-a-kind pieces.

Geometrics are coming back in 2018, so the both of these rugs would be the perfect base to any room!

ikat rug, etagere, nightstand, gunmetal etagere, pale gray nightstand,  geometric rug

If you missed Black Friday, here is another opportunity to update your home.  Any of these pieces will absolutely ensure that your home will be ringing in 2018 in style!!

Happy Shopping!

XO

Laurie

Black Friday Favorites

I have to admit that I have never been one to go out at 3:00 a.m for a Black Friday deal.  I can’t remember EVER going out to shop on Black Friday.  Unless Chanel is having a sale, there is nothing I’ve wanted to buy that warranted me getting out of bed at an un-Godly hour to wait in line and fight through crowds in order to save $50 or $100.  I shop almost everyday of my life; I love to shop.  Like most people, I love a good sale.  However, I like to be more civilized about my approach to shopping; specifically, on Black Friday.   This basically means that I’d prefer to stay at home in my PJs and shop for great deals.  Of course, retailers found a way to accommodate those of us who feel this way.  SInce I consider you a part of my tribe, I’ve researched and compiled the most amazing and noteworthy sales for Black Friday.  I want you to be able take advantage of all of the great deals without falling into the Black Friday abyss!

Here are my best picks for you:

HOUZZ – Houzz is a great resource; however, Houzz can be overwhelming.  Most times I don’t need 40,000 options for a cocktail table.  I’ve mined this site for some of the best Black Friday deals I could find.  Their code seems to be automatic at checkout at this time, but I will let you know if this changes.

 

chair, Stool, side table, navy chair, rug, Egg Chair, 

CRATE & BARREL – It is rare that this retailer has a store wide sale; therefore, giving 15% off on all full-price items is kind of a big deal.  C & B is offering 40% off select furniture.  Use code SAVE15 for most items.  Here are some of my favorites:

mirror, floor lamp, sofa, chair

WISTERIA – Save 25% – use code HOLLYJOLLY

stool, lamp, cocktail table, wall art, floral wall art, acrylic side table

BED BATH & BEYOND: This is not the store it was even two years ago!!  This store has undergone HUGE changes!  They have purchased stores such as Chef Central and World Market, thus, upping their “street cred” in the many areas of home decor.  There is definitely a future post in the works on this retailer!  While shopping for clients’ holiday decor, this was definitely a retailer that I found great deals at and found myself visiting weekly!  For Black Friday, they are offering 25% off using code: Save 25%.

Here are some of my favorite items:

Casual dinnerware:

Ombre dinnerware, blue dinnerware, Mixed pattern dinnerware 

Fine China:

Organic shaped chinaMadison China, Richmont Road China

Flatware:

Hammered flatware, dot flatware, gold flatware

I wish you and your loved ones a happy and blessed Thanksgiving!  It goes without saying, that people are much more important than things.  However, should you need additional items to accommodate your loved ones this holiday season, I have you covered!

Please let me know if I’ve missed any noteworthy Black Friday deals!

All the best,

XO

Laurie

My #1 Styling Trick for Holiday Tablescapes

I’ve had some really exciting and fun projects this year.  Clients have kept me insanely busy, which has left me little time for anything else.  This has resulted in my breaking the cardinal rule of blogging the past few months, which is the importance of consistent posts; thus, leading to my official induction into the “Blogger Hall of Shame”!!  As I have mentioned in past posts, I don’t believe in posting unless I have something useful to say.  These last few months of being knee deep in construction dust, hunting for the perfect chandelier, as well as researching the latest trends is the stuff that keeps me inspired, feeds my soul and allows me impart my knowledge on to you.   Putting together inspiration boards for fictitious rooms doesn’t lend one the experience to convey the practical application, or the wisdom in designing, as well as how to avoid possible pitfalls.

Below, I will give you my best tips (as well as my #1 tip) on holiday styling.  Let me first give you a brief background on my (accidental) career in holiday decorating.  Decorating homes specifically for the holidays is a niche.  A lot of people who just decorate for the holidays work in retail merchandising and do things like store windows or holiday displays.  In my case, this is a niche I NEVER meant to get into!!! From September through January, I am usually swamped with clients calling in a panic needing to get their powder room, dining room and/or family room done before they host the holidays.   During this time, I would usually put a few decorations on their mantle or create a beautiful, but simple centerpiece and be off on my way.  Little by little my clients would add something to the list; for one client it was decorating her foyer, another it was decorating her tree, on and on, until one Christmas Eve I was at a client’s house setting her table (this included ironing her linens!!!….which is something in my everyday life that I hate to do).  To my surprise, I always had a blast doing it and it was a really nice deviation from what I do the rest of the year.  I also love to entertain, which allows me to look at my holiday decorating in a practical way.  I know just how much decoration a table can handle while still being functional.

Below, I will deconstruct my tablescapes to help you execute decorating yours beautifully (and stress-free).

So, my #1 styling trick for holiday tablescaping is: USE SOMETHING UNEXPECTED as your centerpiece!  There is NOTHING more interesting than using an item for something other than its intended purpose.  Below, I used a window shutter as the base for my centerpiece.  It is the perfect base for my modern farmhouse centerpiece.  It looks really sophisticated with the muted gourds, greenery, burlap ribbon and candles.  I also like to use a raw wood cheese boards (as seen in the 3rd and 4th images), cloches, cake stands etc…. as centerpieces.  Below, I used a throw blanket as my table linen.  I’ve used scarfs as runners as well.  I happen to love showing my wood table at then ends, so not having the throw blanket covering the entire table was a bonus for me.

Another tip for successful tablescaping is to vary your linens.  I have very few “rules” in design; however, I NEVER, NEVER, NEVER match my tablecloth and napkins.  Is it wrong if you do? No.  However, it is such a missed opportunity to inject style and visual interest to one’s table.  If you are not confident with pattern mixing, choose one pattern and one solid, as I did in the first image.  If are confident, try mixing in another pattern.  In the second image, I added in a gray ticking stripe napkin.  I love the depth that mixing patterns gives to a table.

In the pictures below, I was presenting to a local women’s organization on how to tablescape for the holidays. This is one of my favorite tablescapes because it is not fussy, yet still sophisticated.  I used tons of mercury glass and my favorite pattern of the season, the black and white buffalo check (which I got from Pottery Barn). I LOVE a black and white table!  It is so extremely versatile; if you look to the bottom right you can see all of the different colored napkins I brought to show these lovely ladies how many colors and patterns you can inject with this color scheme.  Every color pairs well with this scheme.

Finally, 90% of the time I create a long linear centerpiece as opposed to a round centerpiece.  Every guest should have something beautiful to look at.  Sticking a vase in the center of the table only allows a beautiful view to the two guests sitting across from each other in front of the vase.  When I’m done, I walk around to every seat at the table to ensure everyone, when seated, has something pretty to look at.  Creating a long linear centerpiece also aligns with my philosophy of having a separate food table when hosting 6 or more guests.

When in doubt (or pressed for time), fresh flowers and candles are always my go-to.  Group the flowers and candles in alternating groups down the center of the table for a simple, but elegant table.  However, I highly recommend keeping a flower-less centerpiece in your closet for when you don’t have time to stop for fresh flowers and you are having last minute dinner guests.

I hope this post has inspired you to try something new for the holidays. Most of my resources are listed below.

On a final note, in order to reach those who do not use social media, I will be posting weekly a “Insta-post roll” to keep you in the loop of what trends I’m loving, my client before and afters and just general musings.

Wishing all of you a Happy Thanksgiving!

XO

Laurie

List of Resources:

Both throwblankets:  Buffalo check, First one is not available but here is an alternative

Raw wood cheese board base (under tray in black and white tablescape)

Candle sticks, large, medium and small

Mercury glass,

Shutter

solid gray napkins, ticking stripe napkins

 

Saturday Style Diary

2017 has been a whirlwind; the past two months alone, I have doubled my client roster!!  I have been a busy bee with lots of really exciting design projects ranging from a kitchen showroom, media room, a few family rooms, tons of kids’ rooms, a couple of formal living rooms and so much more!! I can’t wait to share my finished projects with you.

One of my favorite things about being a designer is that (for obvious reasons) no two projects are alike.  Interior Design is a study in psychology, sociology, economics and fine arts.  Each project is different and stretches me in ways that always leaves me feeling like a better version of myself by the end of it.   I enjoy getting to know each of my clients and hearing about their lives, as well as what role they would like me to play in the design of their home.

I always begin asking about how my clients want their space to feel.  I have learned that asking clients this question, as opposed to how they want their space to look, allows me to lead the design process by instinct.  Since clients often have trouble articulating how their space should look (hence, my role in the process), this is the best place to start.  I strive to find unique ways to achieve the clients’ dream room.  I love when a client says “I never would have chosen any of this, but this is EXACTLY how I wanted this room to look!”

With all of the diverse projects I’ve been working on, I thought I’d share a quick post on things that I am loving right now.

  1.  White Painted Rooms

Gray has completely taken over the market the last few years.  It is EVERYWHERE!! I love gray; it is a great neutral. However, it has been overused and is beginning to lose the characteristics that initially attracted us to it.  In addition, when everything and everyone is using gray it begins to suck the life out of a space.

I have been really loving white-painted rooms.  White rooms need not translate into boring spaces.  Quite the contrary; a space with white walls can be very dramatic.  Painting walls in white lets you control where the focal points are and orchestrate what elements you want to showcase and what elements you might want to hide.  It is no secret that art galleries favor white paint to draw focus to each piece of art.  It is the same for interiors.  An heirloom piece is so much more impactful when showcased in a white room.

Bright white paint with blue undertones is perfect for a modern room; white paint with pink or yellow undertones is more suitable for a rustic interior; and white with gray undertones is perfect for a transitional space.

I love the clean and sophisticated backdrop that a white-painted room provides.  However, white is a very fickle color. Hands down, it is the hardest paint color to pick because of all of the undertones.  When done right, it feels fresh, calm and allows all of the right elements to shine.  When done wrong, it feels cold, boring and sterile.

Below are rooms where white is done beautifully:

2.  Antiqued Mirrors

Antiqued mirrors are the easiest way to add interest and patina to a room.  This element immediately elevates any room or piece it adorns.  Adding an antique finish is not cheap, but the visual payout is HUGE!!!

There are so many antique finishes to choose from; they can range from blue, black, brown and gold.  Choose the finish that best conveys the look you are going for, or that shares the same color palette as the rest of the room.

I have backed bookcases, added to cabinets and used them in a myriad of decorative ways.  I can not say enough about antique mirrors; I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this finish!!

3.  Lucite

This is the finish that I get the most initial push back on from clients, and the one they ALWAYS love once they take the leap.  This is also a finish that looks horrid when done poorly.  The key is in the material used, which usually coincides with the price.  Thin, cloudy lucite looks cheap.  Look for lucite that is thick (usually heavy) and crystal clear.  The beauty of lucite is that it takes up no visual space; therefore, it is the perfect piece to put in small spaces or if you want to highlight a beautiful area rug or wallpaper.  There is MAJOR impact in this transparent material!

4.  Matte Black

I have been loving this material for months now (see my post here).  There is something really rich about this color.  I have always felt that every room needs some black.   Black is a neutral.  Whereas some neutrals move the eyes through a room, black serves to ground a space and stops the eyes “dead in their tracks”.  There is something so incredibly chic about black; the matte finish adds a more current feel to this versatile color.   I always compare black elements with black eyeliner.  Like black eyeliner, black serves to outline spaces and creates a portal through which one’s focus is guided.  This is the reason I love to paint the moldings for doorways and windows in black.

5.  Overdyed Area Rugs

Like gray, geometric rugs have been overdone.  I still use them when the space warrants it, but I am loving the depth that overdyed rugs lend to a room.  I also love the juxtaposition and tension that an overdyed rug creates in a modern space.  The saturation in the dye, as well as its absence, adds a really interesting layer in a room.

I hope this post has served to enlighten and inspire you to try some of the elements I’ve listed here.  What makes design so fun, is for the most part, things are easy and inexpensive to change.  If you don’t like the paint, then repaint; if you don’t like a piece, return it.  Design should not be stressful.

Our home is a reflection of who we are or who we would like to become.  It is within those walls that we dare to be all that we truly are.  Have fun. Be bold. Stay curious.

I would love to hear what you think of some of these trends.  Let me know which, if any, you have tried and loved.

XO

Laurie

Wisteria: Contest For A Cause

Every once in a while an opportunity arises that allows me to use my talents altruistically.  At some point we all ruminate on our legacy, hoping to be able to contribute to the world in a meaningful way.   I feel that all things whose purpose is to lift up others, is truly valuable.

Wisteria is partnering with Dwell With Dignity, which is an organization that helps families escape poverty and homelessness by bringing good design into the lives of those less fortunate.  Their philosophy is so aligned with my feelings about design, that I could have written it myself; it is the belief that one’s environment changes one’s outlook on life.  Amen to that!

Wisteria is hosting a contest with design bloggers to design a space using only pieces from Wisteria.  The prize is collaborating on a piece of furniture or décor, where 20% of the proceeds goes to Dwell With Dignity to help those in need.

Wisteria has such an interesting and eclectic aesthetic.  They carry really unique pieces that feel special; pieces that feel like you found them while traveling to the most fabulous and exotic places.

Above, is the mood board I submitted.  My inspiration was the French Riviera.  In my mind, this board represents a pied-a-terre where its sagacious, worldly, and captivating le resident spends her holiday.  A place where the floor to ceiling windows are always opened wide, casting rays across the warm, sun-bleached herringbone patterned wood floors.  The breeze circulates the soft scent of fresh cut jasmine throughout the apartment.  Truly joie de vivre!!

For the most part, I put rooms together instinctually.  However, I love to go back and dissect all of the relationships that each piece has to other elements.  Sometimes, the pieces relate through shapes, fabrics or materials; other times, it is through texture or spatial orientation.  There are definitely some “rules” I adhere to; but ultimately, a room needs to “feel” right to me.  After I finished designing this board, I counted 10 elemental relationships between the pieces I chose.  Do you see them?

I’d love to hear your feedback on my mood board.

XO

Laurie