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Modern Gray Interiors

Modern gray interiors sometimes get a bad rap as being cold, sterile and institutional.  No doubt some people are drawn to that steely gray with undertones of blue, but I’m not one who will ever be comfortable in a residential space that may be even remotely reminiscent of my 7th grade gym.   You don’t have to look far into my former blog posts to know that I actually love designing with grays, but I blend layers of gray tones, starting with something a little more complex and warm,  and then inviting shades of browns and tans to pepper the scene.  The result is much more dimensional and inviting.

The thing I like most about this color palette is that it is equally gorgeous in a very contemporary space, a shabby chic cottage, or a traditional living room.  And while most people assume the colors of nature to be greens, yellows and reds,  grays and tans are all around us in the natural world.

modern gray interiors by design theory interiors of california inc

 

warm neutral color palettes by design theory interiors of california inc

photo courtesy modulnova.com

 

warm neutral color palettes by design theory interiors of califronia inc

photo courtesy Glamradar.com

 

 

warm neutral palettes by design theory interiors of california inc

photo courtesy of The Nester

 

 

 

 

 

modern gray interiors by design theory interiors of califronia

 

modern gray interiors by design theory interiors of california

Gorgeous resin sculptural horses by Brigitte Eberl and photography by Josine Vingerling

 

modern gray interiors by design theory interiors of california

 

modern gray interiors by design theory interiors.com

photo courtesy of Scoop Charlotte

 

 

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One Fabric, Three Looks

The title of this post is pretty straight forward.  One Fabric, three looks means I’m basically going to share with you a secret to the way a designer sees fabric and how you can use the same fabric in different style formats.  This is a powerful and somewhat dangerous tool so let’s be perfectly clear on a couple of crucial points.

First, not ALL fabrics can be used in multiple applications.   This, for instance is not appropriate for your living room.  Honestly, it really isn’t appropriate for a child’s room.  Kids hate clowns parents.  This fabric is where Carol Ayaann’s Poltergest lives.  You want that on your conscience?  TV all eatin your kid up?  

Second, not ALL fabrics should be used at all……anywhere……as evidenced below.   Let’s start top left moving clockwise.  If you haven’t seen “Weird Science”  and you don’t speak emoji, let me enlighten you.   The fabric on the left is a a series of turds resting on a pretty pink background while stars dance between them.  I don’t care how hard you try, you can’t dress up a turd.  Next we have…..what?  Cats maybe?  Playing fiddles and tambourines?   Gummy worms in any form are nasty.  And finally, the piece de resistance.  Mushrooms of all shapes and sizes.  Because throughout history the mushroom has been iconic in the fashion industry.

Image result for ugly fabrics          Image result for ugly fabrics                       

 

Let’s wash our eyeballs with lye soap and move on.

The first thing you have to keep in mind that your interior designer spends a lot of time researching new products and new trends so he or she is the best source for What’s In, What’s On It’s Way In, What’s Out, and What’s On It’s Way Out.   This is important because you don’t want to drop a lot of cash on redesigning your home only to find out that it’s a quickly fading fad, or a trend that is on it’s way out because it’s been done SO many times.   So in a lot of cases a designer may introduce a fabric or product that you “would never have picked” yourself because it has a wide range of applications and looks that you perhaps haven’t considered.

The fabric we’re using to illustrate is a chevron stripe with an Ikat-style print in some bright, playful colors.    But look closely at how it can be used quite successfully in these three interior styles.

In the first example, Tailored Elegance,  the gray background of the fabric is the basis.   It is paired with solid silk, a textured man’s suit fabric and a tasteful small geographic.   So the space seems understated and sophisticated while the chevron stripe becomes that hint of color, adding depth and interest.

One Fabric, Three Looks

 

Using the same fabric, Modern Magic plays up the geometrics and the green tones to create a mid-century modern design.

One Fabric, Three Looks 2

 

 

And if you love color,  have fun with it.  This fabric has some great shades of blue, yellow and green that can be pumped up for that Playful Glamour style that loves bright colors, sparkle and shine.

One Fabric, Three Looks 2

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Modern Bathroom Design Ideas

It’s where I catch some private reading time, wash away the sins of the day, exfoliate, put on my face, ladyscape, hairscape, brush (for a full 3 minutes) and floss, dress, and spend a considerable amount of time in front of the mirror shaming myself for last night’s brownie offensive.  It’s my bathroom and the single most intimate space in any home.   No matter your personal style, it should be a sanctuary that allows us to perform all of the behind-the-scenes prep work in comfort.

There’s been quite a surge in contemporary bathroom design and I actually think the reason behind the movement is that the lines are crisp and straight and the overall feel is clean.  Additionally I think the simplicity of contemporary design lends itself to easy maintenance.  It’s easy to wipe down surfaces that don’t have detailed carvings and moldings.  So the modern bathroom retains it’s look and ages gracefully with less effort.

Here some of my favorite  modern bathroom design ideas to hit the market recently.

 

modern bathroom design ideas

Malta Freestanding Bath Tub by Three Rivers Trading Company

Nothing better than a soaker tub after a long day.  I love the shape of this one by Three Rivers Trading Company.

modern bathroom design ideas

Very cool floor mounted bath faucet.  The Atlantis by Three Rivers Trading Company

modern bathroom design ideas

Refined geometric shapes are all the rage in vanity bowls.   These shown are by Duravit

modern bathroom design ideas

There are so many innovative faucet designs.   They’re both artistic and functional.  This beauty is from the Elemental Spa Collection by Dornbracht.   It can mount on the wall for vanity or bathtub and can mount on the floor for a freestanding tub.

modern bathroom design ideas

This is another piece from Dornbracht Elemental Spa Collection.  This shower head can be ceiling or wall mounted.

modern bathroom design ideas

Programmable, digital and hands-free are the buzz words in bath fixtures right now.     One example is this Allure faucet by Grohe, shown with a wireless digital control.  This control has a memory function,  pause function and gives a digital readout of water temperature.  Adjust temperature with one-finger-touch by tapping the Plus or Minus button.

modern bathroom design ideas modern bathroom design ideas

How cool is this?!?!   The Openspace shower enclosure by Duravit creates extra space in your bath.   The glass doors fold in against the wall to remove the barrier taking up valuable real estate.    Doors can also be mirrored on one side to completely conceal shower fittings.  The mirrored door will also create the illusion of enlarging the bathroom.

modern bathroom design ideas

I love these modern vanities by Dedecker (above and below).   These look like custom pieces but Dedecker has made bathroom design easy by offering a number of styles, sizes, finishes so you can put together the vanity of your dreams without the cost of custom design and build.modern bathroom design ideas

Even bath accessories are stepping it up.   Towel Racks, Toilet Tissue holders and robe hooks are much more fashion forward, ranging in style from the clean, sleek modern to the baroque shapes of the Hollywood glam.
modern bathroom design ideas
modern bathroom design ideas modern bathroom design ideas modern bathroom design ideas

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7 Modern Table Top Wine Racks

In my house we have His & Hers wine storage.  His is downstairs in the cool basement proudly displayed on a wall-mounted rack system that stretches most of the length of the room.  These are the bottles that I’m not allowed to touch.   It’s not that they’re all pricey collector bottles.  You’ll come across a Caymus or an Opus One next to one of our favorites from here in the Santa Cruz Mountains.   But they’re all wines that we both really love and that means that one of us – me – isn’t allowed to go rifling through the goods while I’m alone at home lounging around in my Tears For Fears T-shirt and watching reruns of “King of the Hill.”

So Hers is kept upstairs in the kitchen and within arm’s reach of the TV remote.   This is the drinking wine.  The stuff that tastes good, but a) no one will get his feelings hurt if he misses out, and  b) if there’s a chance he’ll get his feelings hurt, it’s cheap enough to replace before he gets home and finds out.

The problem with Hers is that it’s a little harder to find modern storage that looks hip in a more contemporary space.  You can find all kinds of rustic options, wine barrels reinterpreted as storage, or utilitarian options, but sometimes you just want something interesting and modern that has a more artistic flair.  Something that has a stand-alone presence.

So here are 7 modern table top wine racks that I think look trendy and intriguing.

 

7 modern table top wine racks

Infinity Wine Rack by Kartell

This rack by Kartell comes in 4 colors.  It is also modular so you can add to it or rearrange in a number of shapes.

 

7 modern table top wine racks

Modern Acrylic Wine Rack from Interior Trade Furniture

Nothing says modern like acrylic.   Great curvilinear shape and barely there look of this acrylic wine rack is a great addition to any space.  Let your wine be center stage!  From Interior Trade Furniture

 

 

7 modern table top wine racks

Noe 6 Bottle Tabletop Wine Rack sold by All Modern

I love the simplicity of this rack at All Modern.  I love the simplicity of this one.  Also modular so you can attach additional pieces.

7 modern table top wine racks

Wine Rack by Echelon

This curvilinear solution from Echelon comes in kits of 6, 12 & 24 bottles.  The beauty of this is that it’s a system that you can build on and can even incorporate into custom cabinets to create really interesting storage units as your collection grows.

7 modern table top wine racks

10-Bottle Winehive by Winehive

The Winehive rack is another modular piece.  Made from recycled aluminum, you can start as small as 6 bottles and can build onto this as your collection grows.  The large 120-bottle rack is a fascinating freestanding work of art.

7 modern table top wine racks

Wooden wine Rack by John Lewis

This piece by John Lewis has such a beautiful shape.  As a plus, this product is made of FSC certified oak. The goal of the FSC is to “meet our current needs for forest products without compromising the health of the world’s forests for future generations.”

 

 

7 modern table top wine racks

Vintage Wine Rack from Mainly Modern on Etsy

And I have to include the vintage option.   Etsy and Ebay are excellent sources for finding unique products from the mid-century era like this gorgeous piece from Mainly Modern on Etsy.

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Use Gold Accessories in Your Home Like a Pro

If you want to use gold accessories in your home like a pro, you need to pay close attention to what you see the pros using.    Just because something is gold doesn’t mean it’s a tasteful addition to your home.

Consider the Finish:

A cheap coat of gold paint is like hiding a poo in a Birkin bag.   Looks great initially but eventually the ugly truth will reveal itself.    Try to find items that have a refined solid finish that won’t chip.

Consider the Color:

Gold comes in so many shades.  A shiny polished gold finish has it’s place but it isn’t the only option so try to blend a gold leaf finish with a hammered an antiqued gold.  Too much of the exact same finish is monotonous and will definitely make you look like an amateur.

Consider the Shape and Function:

Use interesting shapes.  One of my favorites is the grouping of organic twisted candlesticks below.   Keep your eye out for mid-century “found” items that blend gold and wood.   A sunburst clock is always hip.  And consider using natural bone accessories.  The natural bone is tonally very warm and I find it really enhances gold accessories.

Don’t Over-do It:

And remember that too much of a good thing is still too much.   Every accessory in your living room doesn’t have to be gold.   The shine and the sophistication of gold  has so much visual power that a little bit can go a long way!

Using gold accessories in your home like a pro

World Market Glassware

Using Gold accessories in your home like a pro

Interlude Home

 

Using gold Accessories in your Home like a Pro

Fireplace Screen by Interlude Home

 

use gold home decor accessories like a pro

Mid Century Clock from RetroSpecList on Etsy

 

 

Use gold accessories in your home like a pro

Atelier Stella Vases by West Elm

 

Use Gold accessories in your home like a Pro

Morning glory Candle Holders by Studio A Home

 

Use gold accessories in your home like a pro

Bookends by Cyan Design

Use gold accessories in your home like a pro

Glass Knot by Cyan Design

use gold accessories in your home like a pro

Decorative Bone Rings by Pottery Barn

 

 

use gold accessories in your home like a pro

Jar Candles by Studio A Home

 

 

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