Wednesday, June 21, 2017

My New Love Affair - Purple. Drywall That Is.

Last month, the renovation geek in me got to spend some time learning about a well used, but so not heralded product: drywall. PURPLE® drywall to be exact.
If you've followed me over the years, then you know that renovations are the core of my design business, so I've kinda seen my share of drywall. I've also ripped out my fair share of drywall, but since I'm no DIY expert, I then hand over the baton to my trusted team of drywall guys who install endless walls of this stuff in our projects.
But I didn't know much about the PURPLE® brand of drywall made by the innovative folks at National Gypsum®. And lemme tell you, they are passionate about their products and with good reason.

Moi, soaking in that Purple knowledge
Well, it's PURPLE® so they could stand out from other drywall companies but their lineup of products also provide unparalleled resistance to moisture, mold, mildew, scratches and dents and can dramatically reduce the noise heard between rooms.
They're also fire resistant, GREENGUARD Indoor Air Quality Certified and made in the USA - we had an amazing tour of the factory but no pics were allowed because that PURPLE® drywall formula's gotta be protected .
But we did a have a blast as you can see from our little Boomerang video:

I did look extra snazzy in these safety goggles though!

As I'm plotting renovation projects for the rest of the year with my clients, I'm now able to share the product options offered by National Gypsum® and why they make sense for their homes.
There's PURPLE® XP® - moisture and mold resistant which can be used on walls and ceilings especially in kitchens, bathrooms and laundry, essentially anywhere where mold and mildew is a concern.
PURPLE® Hi-Abuse® XP® - Used anywhere that's prone to scratches and dents - think my son Xavier's room! plus hallways, playrooms and pretty much any place that's subject to added abuse.

Purple® Hi-Abuse® XP® versus the competition after a machine tested for scratch and dent resistance.

Then there's PURPLE® Hi-Impact® XP® - this is the product that takes a licking and keeps on ticking. I tried hard to make a dent and failed. This is great for use in garages, bonus rooms, and any room that's subject to high impact and dents from hard objects.
And PURPLE® SoundBreak® XP® - Offers a superior level of noise reduction and is perfect for any room that needs some noise control such as my home office, bedroom walls, media room walls and ceilings.

Major shoutout to the DIY bloggers who I met on this campaign - Daniel of Manhattan Nest, Kim of Yellow Brick Home, Justin of Remodelaholic and Sandra of Sawdust Girl and Anitra Mecadon, coolest designer/DIY chick on any network.
Yes, they kinda kicked my butt at the DIY challenge because, duh, DIY is what they do!

Love me some Sawdust Girl! She crushed me on them drywall boards. Just crushed me.

But shoutout to the real MVP Justin of Remodelaholic. Snagged that medal like a true drywall champ!

And stay tuned for a giveaway we have coming up soon.

*While this post was sponsored by National Gypsum®, all words and details of the tour are by yours truly.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Pillow Talk: Should we Mix or Match?

We recently installed a living room project for a dear client and a week later, she emailed me with the unthinkable: she hated that her pillows didn't match.
Whatttttttttttttt? 😓 I  was speechless.  How could this be?

It's pretty clear from my earlier design projects that matching was kinda my thing.


But over the years I've kinda evolved and have instead fallen in love with an unbalanced approach when styling with pillows because well, whose life is always really perfectly balanced?

 And for me, mixing and matching colors, shapes and textures just spoke more to my design aesthetic these days and the lived in feel I wanted to invoke with each project.


But even I break my own rules as you can see from this recent installation. Ultimately, it honestly just depends on the creative process. But now you can best believe I'm adding this sentence to our client questionnaire: should we mix or match your pillows? Designing minds need to know!
Are you on team mix or team match? Would love to hear from ya.

1st Mix: 1/2/3  2nd Mix: 1/2/3  1st Match: 1/2  2nd Match: 1/2

Monday, February 13, 2017

For Valentine's Day: Love is Home + Paws

This valentine's day, may you find love in the simplest of things. And continue to show that love  tomorrow and beyond. Here's a quick round up of home décor ideas to help you do just that.

(1) Doggie Mat (2) Watch Box (3) Faux Fur Throw (4) Bottle Opener (5) Pillow (6) Pet Carrier      (7) Baskets (8) Abstract Rug (9) Dog Sweater (10) Accent Chair (11) Champagne Flutes (12) Pet Bed (13) Art (14) Candle

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

How a Stairway Became an Office Nook

One of the most fun parts of this renovation we've previously shared here , here and here was carving out this lounge/work area from what was once a dining room.

Our clients have a large breakfast room, and a large island with so didn't see the need for a formal dining room.
They wanted a secondary lounge/work space adjacent to the living room we'd also designed. As we gutted the bathroom that's on the other side of the stairs, we realized there was a lot of hidden space under the stairway that would make for a great area for a desk.  

This neatly tucked in workspace was the result.

That pesky support beam meant we had to divide the space and do a  custom desk which we did with deep drawers for file storage. We also added an electrical outlet and recessed lighting.

Custom shelves also added extra surfaces for books and accessories.

This apartment size sofa was the perfect fit for this lounge space. The bold blue added a bright touch to the room's neutral color palette.

All photos by JHillstead Photography 
And that's that. A dining room that was sure to get very little use, is now a functional and much used lounge for this family.
Would you transform your own dining room into another space? I did. My very own home office was once our dining room.

~Get the Look~

Sunday, January 15, 2017

My Ongoing Love Affair With Navy Blue

Holy Smokes and Gee Whiz, and Happy Freaking New Year! Damn, it's been a minute my loves but I've been going through some pretty heavyweight personal changes (will dish on that in the near future) and so have been hunkered down, licking my wounds and focusing a LOT on designing some amazing spaces.
Speaking of said spaces, this powder room has me doing all sorts of dancing. I mean, WTH right? Who gets to the call this space their own?
A wonderful young couple from the my second favorite island, Barbados. They're newlyweds, bought their first home last year, and realized a few months in that they needed some guidance. Once I met Aria - hubby Steven is among the blessed team of "do what you want my love " -  I knew immediately we'd be in for a very long term relationship. She is a kindred spirit who wanted a thoughtful design process, right up my alley of design goals this year.
We have a lot to tackle but decided to begin with the living/dining rooms and powder room first in phase one. We completed the powder room first. Here's where we started:

Side note: why are the toilet seats always up in our before pictures?
Yes ladies and gents, what we have here is your standard builder grade bathroom fare. Basic ish. And Aria is no basic chic so we needed a powder room to showcase her fun, glamorous island styling ways.
I'd fallen in love with the vanities from Worlds Away on my rookie visit to High Point market last Spring, and knew we'd pitch one from their collection.
A tad pricey for a powder room, but oh, was it worth the splurge. 
We initially pitched this one but we had size issues and had to instead go with this one, a happy stroke of luck since Aria swooned when she saw the marble and gold.

The marble is a solid blend of the traditional, and paired with the gold Greek key legs just made this piece a stunner. The chevron tiles added a modern flair, with subtle drama. Tip:There's no need for a rug in a powder room when you have floors like this. Let em shine.

We chose a round mirror to balance the hard edges of the vanity. And decided to mix metals by going with chrome for the faucet and towel ring. And oh, I knew navy would make the gold and marble sing but wanted it everywhere, including the ceilings and moldings.

The blue ceilings would also make this chandelier sing all kinds of high notes. We settled on Sophisticated Navy by Glidden in a glossy finish.

But alas, a high gloss finish shows every imperfection on your walls and after living with it over the holidays, Aria decided she'd prefer a more matted finish and gasp, wanted to paint the ceilings and moldings white to be consistent with the rest of the house. Well, ya'll know I fought hard to keep it as envisioned, and I usually win, but Aria missed her white molding so we respected her wishes ( I mean, yes, ultimately it's her home!) and repainted the moldings and ceiling.

This photo was taken by Aria the morning after we repainted (lighting plays insane tricks with paint colors so yes, it's showing very purple in her photo).  She's insanely in love with her new powder room and that, my friends, is something she did not feel for the powder room in its former state. We're happy as long as she's happy.
So, where do you stand? Could you live with blue moldings and ceiling or are you a traditionalist at heart and prefer a white ceiling and moldings?
Can't wait to hear your thoughts.
I've missed ya.

~Get the Look~

(1) Mirror (2) Vanity or awesome alternative here  (3) Semi Flush Light (4) Paint Color (5) Faucet 
(6) Wall Art (7) Wall Art (8) Tile

Monday, October 24, 2016

The Well Traveled Home - The Master Bedroom Reveal

When you have the luxury of a large master bedroom, then best believe you should make it as luxurious as possible. This was our mission for our clients Shakia and Michael, whose home renovation project we’ve been chronicling here and hereWe also revealed their adjoining master bathroom here.
We needed a bedroom retreat that was high on both style and function so we got to work.
This is where we began: 
Gotta love a blank slate. 

We would need to keep the laminate floors to stay in budget but would change everything else including paint, lighting, and the mirrored closet door. It is a space large enough for three distinct zones: a space to rest, read/work, and a must have makeup space for Shakia to get all dolled up. Here's how things are looking these days.

The first thing we all fell in love with was the wallpaper. We wanted something with a distinct yet subtle pattern and texture and this navy wallpaper on a grid was the perfect find.

Shakia and Michael work overseas and shipped us several rugs to use throughout their home. They chose this stunner from the markets in Afghanistan since it pulled in the blues from the wallpaper and has one of their favorite colors, red.

We wanted dramatic lighting over the bed, with very modern lines and we think this one fit the bill perfectly.

Oh these nightstands. I fell in love with them on my visit to High Point Furniture Market this Spring and swooned at the wood/chrome legs with Lucite handles juxtaposition. It fit right in with the goal for this space - a mix of textures, colors, patterns with modern and timeless flair. 

These nightstands were also insanely practical as they're able to fit lamps, storage boxes and my favorite accessories, books!

Shakia is a girly girl, and needed a designated spot for her makeup and accessory needs. We added this mirrored console, and mirror to give her just that.
And last but not least, they needed a small work zone with a chill vibe to lounge and read as well.
My heart! My heart. I think it's safe to say this is my favorite spot in this master suite.

Our original desk/console was stolen in transit! Yes! Stolen. WTH right? Madness, I know. But this replacement was just the simple/sleek balance for these stunning chairs.

I'm all about this corner right here. A book, some good wine and all is well with the world.

Details. Details. And more details. 

And there you have it. One of the swankiest yet functional master suites we've ever designed. See below on how to score some or similar items and let us know if your favorite area in this space.
~ Get the Look ~









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