Wednesday, 30 March 2011

The Non-Emergency Design Emergency

Tomorrow is our final installation day for the DC Design Showhouse. We have almost everything installed except for the custom concrete parsons table (which I've just been informed is non-existent due to it breaking into pieces). SO my assistant and I are off to the design center today in a mad dash to find a replacement table.

Wish us luck that a showroom manager takes pity on us, because we need this piece TOMORROW!

Ps. I truly stand by the belief that there is no such thing as a design emergency. (That is, unless I come home tonight emptyhanded ;)

We'll be twittering during our search today!

xoxo, Lauren

If you'd like help creating a home you absolutely love, contact me about our design services.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Little Victims... Photoshoot Prep

Since Spring isn't really doing its thing quickly enough for me, I am seriously craving green:

I love what plants do for rooms.  Sometimes when I look at magazine rooms and cover up the plants/ flowers in them, they seem pretty lifeless.  There's something about a pretty explosion of green (no matter how small) that I just love.  
Our house looks like a greenhouse right now because I picked up a ton of plants for the DC Design House and some upcoming photoshoots I'm doing with my good friend & photographer, Helen Norman next week.  This little orange tree will sit in a kitchen I recently finished with a vintage-styled green subway tile backsplash & dark walnut cabinets:

I found this cool pot at Merrifield Garden Center and filled it with this pretty little guy (I already forgot his name) for my room in the showhouse:

Love these moss pots:

And this gardenia is staying in my office for a while because it just smells like Heaven:

I picked up a bunch of herbs  & topiaries for another kitchen:

I truly love plants.  But I'm not very good with them.  They tend to die here.  My house is sort of like a plant hospice. 

...BUT...  the other day my assistant Meghan said I had a "green thumb." 
I have played this compliment over and over in my head since then and even relayed it to my husband who argues she must have been being sarcastic. 

I'm hoping I can change.  I'm really trying. 
There are plants in my house that have been here since September.  Yay.

ps- loved all the comments from yesterday about vines.  It's so fun to see that dialogue between the "romantics" and the "practicals."  I definitely fall on the romantic side, but it's sort of like eating cookie dough...  I'm sure once I got my first case of salmonella, I'd be done with cookie dough. 

xoxo, Lauren
If you'd like help creating a home you absolutely love, contact me about our design services.

Monday, 28 March 2011

Climbing Vines

I've always wanted climbing vines on my house.  I remember reading a book when I was a little girl that pictured a red brick house covered in ivy and how I wanted it.  Yeah, I know, it's bad for the house, but I love it anyway.  There's something so incredible about a wall of green and vines growing up a home. It blurs the line between the home and the land, which is something that the houses I truly love all have in common.

{Betsy Burnham}

I attemped to grow jasmine vines up a trellis in front of our house last year but they died in a harsh winter storm.

{image from}

Now I'm holding out for an evergreen clematis, which I grew up all over a fence in our old townhome and really took a beating.  I'm having a hard time finding it again though.  The last garden center I stopped at asking for it looked at me like I was nuts.  :(

{image by Cassie Lee}

I would go nutty for this on my front walkway steps:

{image from}

I might try it although I'm not sure if the treads on my stairs are deep enough.

{Image by Galen Frysinger}

Climbing vines give buildings a sense of permanance. 

{image from}

I love it when they completely take over like this:

{image from}

And I cannot get over this ivy-covered turret:

{image via}

And, finally, here's a secret garden:

{image by Gap Photos}

What I wouldn't give for a secret garden.
If I could completely wall in my backyard with hedges & vines, I would.  I'm a pretty social person but I do love private outdoor spaces.  

I am soo ready for March's lion to give way to the lamb. 
It's time.

Come on Spring!

xoxo, Lauren

If you'd like help creating a home you absolutely love, contact me about our design services.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

The Mad Hatter & a question

The Mad Hatters arrived today for my room in the DC Design House and I am in love:

{My first Mad Hatter Wing Chair with a taupe velvet in front.. remember flash makes furniture look bad but people look better ;)  }

I had recently seen pictures sent from the factory of the chairs and knew that they looked exactly as planned but didn't know until I sat in them that they'd be exactly what I wanted.  They are sooooooo comfortable...  And they're big and they surround you and make you feel seriously cozy.  (Can you see how tall the back is?? And I'm a tall person.)  You can sit in normally and really easily snuggle up with a kid or pet, or you can turn sideways & pull up your feet and it's perfect. 
Here's the side view which shows off the insanely gorgeous Michael Smith / Jasper Fabric called Grace (in Willow).  (Available through John Rosselli in DC) 
I could take a nap in this chair: 

Our curtains & pillows will come in on Monday and I cannot wait to see the Peter Dunham fabrics!!  I'm also mixing in a few of my own along with some others so it should be pretty collected-feeling. 

We hung art work today and I've been looking at the photos, wondering if what I selected is too disjointed?  I approached the room as I would have a room in my own home, so instead of choosing pieces that work perfectly together, I went from my gut with pieces that I loved.  Looking over the photos tonight, I can't tell if it looks like a totally crazy person did it or if it has that only-slightly-crazy Alice-in-Wonderland-feel that I love...   I am toying with the idea of swapping out some of the more random pieces for ones that fit a little better (it is a showhouse after all)...  or keeping it real and a bit off the way I typically do in my more personal spaces. 

Any thoughts???

xoxo, Lauren

If you'd like help creating a home you absolutely love, contact me about our design services.

Move-in Day!

We move into our room at the DC Decsign House today!!  I CANNOT WAIT to see the Madhatter chairs from my new line in person.  (They're covered in the most beautiful Michael Smith floral.)  They arrived at our shipping warehouse this morning at 6:45 AM, just in time.  They are our first prototypes.

{sooo excited}

Our Stark rug is arriving along with the chairs and we're hanging the paintings & prints today.  The custom concrete piece I'm having made BROKE last night when it was being moved at the factory so we're in a bit of a pinch to get it finished in time.  eeeksters!! 

We'll be doing twitter updates today- first time ever so we'll see how it goes- on the process.  To follow, go here. 

Wish us luck that nothing else breaks & have a great day!! 

xoxo, Lauren

If you'd like help creating a home you absolutely love, contact me about our design services.

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

German Favorite Antiques

This weekend I headed to one of my absolute favorite antique stores- German Favorite Antiques in Leesburg, VA-  with my best friends from college visiting, to pick up some items formy room in the DC Design House.

{Gorgeous wooden angel...  not in the DC Design House room }

They have the most interesting things- many of them found in Germany & sent over by the container.  I picked up an incredible antique drop-leaf table with the most beautiful patina to sit in the showhouse room along with some paintings, etchings and books.

{There're always interesting collections of every day objects a German Favorite Antiques.}

Most items in the entire DC Design House will be for sale with a percentage of the proceeds going to Children's Hospital.  All of the items from German Favorite Antiques in my room will be for sale.

I found the cuckoo clock for my baby Justin's nursery @ German Favorite Antiques:

And his old mushroom chart:

..And honestly waaaay too many things for me to recount.  I love this place.
Evelyn is always in to help you pick out that perfect something:

...And if you're in Leesburg shopping (which is such a fun day in this nice weather!) check out the restaurants!  I always forget the name of this one but it's one of our favorites.  It's something like Old Leesburg Inn or Pub or something like that. (If anyone leaves it in the comments I'll be sure to update :) 

{me & my "cheeses" as we refer to one another because we love each other as much- no definitely more- than cheese: muenster, chedda (me), feta and prov}

I'm not sure it gets better than best friends, shopping (without paying... the items are on loan) and eating.  (Our husbands & my kiddos were with us too...  and all were very patient.)  I had one of the best weekends I've had in a long time and I'm still laughing thinking about its ridiculousness.

xoxo, Lauren

If you'd like help creating a home you absolutely love, contact me about our design services.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Happy St.Patrick's Day!

I bought these shamrocks (above) a week or so ago from Trader Joe's and they're hanging in there!  I covered the dirt in reindeer moss which I can't get enough of.  (It doesn't die...  Or maybe it's already dead??  anyway, love it.) 

We sent the boys off to school today in my favorite color:

And I attempted to work on the split pea soup that my husband & mom started yesterday...  And the bottom dropped out of the blender which made my pup, Ashby, very happy.

{"Happy St.Pattie's Day to you too Mommy!!!"}

On a related note, the new cabinets are painted now:

I taped the fabric to the backs of the panels because we couldn't find our staple gun.  (The sad part is that now that they're up I have no incentive to search for the staple gun.)  Now I need to get that drywall handled and switch out the plywood top for a stone one. 

But plywood'll work for a little St.Pattie's Day bar tonight. 

Hope you have a great one!! 


xoxo, Lauren

ps- Thank you so much to everyone who made it out to Apartment Therapy Night last night!!  Desire @ Sukio was an awesome host it and was a lot of fun. Will post some pics on facebook soon!!

If you'd like help creating a home you absolutely love, contact me about our design services.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011


Is there anything left to say about the talented Miles Redd that I haven't already said?  Well I thought not until I ran across this Manhattan home designed by none other than Mr. Redd himself!

If your are not familiar with Miles Redd or his work, I have written enough about his work to fill a book, so if you are interested in learning more, visit the previous posts listed at the end of this piece.  ENJOY!

To read more about this home pick up the April issue of House Beautiful.
To read more about Miles Redd visit here, here, here, here, and here.

See you soon,

Bainbridge Island Sustainable Home

Bainbridge Island Sustainable Home1

Each one of these ensure it is integrate well in its beautiful normal environment. Ellice Residence is in fact a makeover of an outdated villa. In an effort to boost the current building, the architects utilised greater than 80% in the elements that resulted in the deconstruction. Furthermore, the undertaking has lots of sustainable qualities, for example geothermal and photovoltaic methods, heat-recovery technologies, at the same time as solar h2o heating methods which make certain a very low electric vitality usage.

Bainbridge Island Sustainable Home3
Bainbridge Island Sustainable Home4
Ellice Residence was finished by Coates Design and style and it is found in Bainbridge Island, Washington. In line with Trendir, the residence is situated on best of the Yeomalt Bluff and has panoramic views of Puget Sound along with the Seattle skyline. The constructing includes a hugely welcoming exterior, featuring significant windows contrasting the wood plus the stone.

New York Tank House Loft Architecture by Brian Messana

New York Tank House Loft Architecture
New York Tank House Loft Architecture1
New York Tank House Loft Architecture4
New York Tank House Loft Architecture3

Brian Messana developed The Tank Home, a renovation of an existing loft in New york. Here is often a description in the architect: “The tank house was conceived because the quintessential retreat, a location for reading through, calming and listening to new music. The project concerned the renovation of an current loft apartment and the advancement of an current sprinkler tank house into an urban retreat. The apartment’s basic layout was maintained, but reconfigured so that the bedrooms had person entry to a shared bathroom instead of it becoming accessed in the living area ( a powder room in the entry way meant that guest wouldn't must accessibility the bathroom ). The sky lit bathroom doubled in dimensions and was developed to possess a serene spa like high quality, with a continuous stone floor, polished waterproof plaster walls, and apparent glass shower enclosure. Inside the residing room and bedrooms, new storage was launched at each and every probable stage behind hidden flush lacquer panels.

The kitchen was resurfaced plus the maple wood floors had been lightened and refinished. A customized stainless steel spiral stair replaced an unpleasant painted steel stair with wood treads.A 12-ft window was lower in to the east aspect with the room and the new window looked out onto the roof deck plantings. Circular skylight was introduced into middle of the skylight casting an ethereal light into the space. The floor of maple matched the apartment and was segmented into detachable panels providing access to storage room beneath.”