My obsession for blue and green continues!!! I had something else in mind for today’s post but I just can’t help myself! Last night I leafed through the May issue of House Beautiful and was impressed by one project in particular. Michael Maher‘s New Jersey home is simply stunning! Maher lives in a historic Victorian style house (a blend of  Gothic and Second Empire) together with his two teenager sons and has created a happy family home filled with color, pattern and history. I just wish there were more shots of the rooms but among the ones in the magazine, one stood out like no other – a small guest bedroom tucked under the eaves where Maher mixed freely patterns in soft blues and greens, with cheery yellow accents!

maher bedroom

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Let’s be honest, backyard storage is often times an eyesore! A designated dump yard for all of our gardening equipment, lawn mowers, paint brushes and potting benches, the shed can be a real pain to make pretty. But if you thought garden sheds cannot be glamorous, think again because this talented and business savvy mother-daughter duo has taken backyard storage to new heights of chic.

What started as an unfortunate event – their barn burned down a few years back and the neighboring Amish community helped rebuild it – has turned into a creative business idea. Impressed by the skilled craftsmanship of the Amish, the two soon came to realize that the market in the States is lacking in beautifully crafted, prefabricated garden sheds. With this thought, Hillsbrook Collections was born. Inspired by classical architectural styles, their garden cottages are stunning and highly customizable. You can chose your finishes and opt for charming add-ons like towerlets, finials, Dutch doors, trellis work, lanterns or armillarries. The only trouble will be in deciding between their pretty designs!

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I don’t know about you but I am on a (recurring) blue-and-white kick as of late and this dining room clad in vintage Ralph Lauren furnishings fits the bill perfectly! Since I am slightly obsessed with this space, I thought it would be fun to share it here on the blog, and break down its magic into details that might help understand why this space works, and how to recreate a similar look.

For me, the key to understanding this unusual design is layering and contrast. Layers of details – like matchstick shades, black-and-white photography and a one-of-a-kind light fixture – contrast with the more polished furnishings and blue-and-white chinoiserie tablescape.

The interior architecture of the room sets the stage. The white vertical shiplap shows signs of aging, the beautifully rough-hewn beams along with the hardwood floors ground the space and bring in warmth. A row of double-hung windows covered in textured shades brighten the space. As a whole, the room feels casual, coastal, fit for easy summer living.

ralph

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I hope you’ve all had a peaceful holiday weekend! We had a great couple of days, enjoyed some sweet family time as well as entertaining with friends. The temperatures are now in the mid 70s, tulips and lilacs are in full bloom and our entire neighborhood smells divine. Don’t you just love Spring?

For today’s design post, I have in mind a beautiful mountain lodge set in Big Sky, Montana that is all about nature. Designed by architect Paul Bertelli and decorator Markham Roberts, the home is a sophisticated holiday retreat that is cozy and comfortable without the usual rustic clichés. Weathered wood, native stones and breathtaking vistas blend seamlessly with chic fabrics and bespoke furnishings. The result is one of the most beautiful mountain homes I’ve ever seen!

montana

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A few weeks ago, Caitlyn Dorris, Community Manager of Chairish, kindly extended me an invitation to participate in a bucket list challenge marking the launch of Decaso, the Chairish baby sister site.

Decaso is a high-end market place for some of the world’s most respected antique dealers and it completely lives up to that description. It is a treasure trove of antique and modern furniture pieces, artwork and vintage textiles, botanicals and decorative objects – so make sure to bookmark it for future client projects!

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I happily accepted Caitlyn’s invite as it meant virtually shopping with a limitless budget in mind. When does that ever happen? Real life projects, no matter how large or small ALWAYS, ALWAYS involve a budget so this was a great distraction for someone who lives and breaths design. Mind you, it will be hard to get reacquainted with the real world but boy, was it fun!

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