Have you heard the great news? Ina Garten’s new Barefoot Contessa series – ”Cook Like a Pro”- airs this Sunday!

”I’m so excited to announce that my new Barefoot Contessa series “Cook Like A Pro” starts this Sunday, May 28, at 11am ET on Food Network. I’m sharing lots of recipes and tips that I’ve learned professionally so you can cook at home with confidence. The first of 8 episodes is – of course! – all about chicken! I’ll be making Roast Chicken With Radishes, Chicken & Spinach Waldorf Salad, and Truffled Chicken Liver Mousse. Hope you can join me; it’s going to be so much fun! xxx Ina” 

Now although I’m a vegetarian, I still won’t miss any of it because the Barefoot Contessa is more than just a cooking show. It’s a lesson of effortless, chic living. In the meantime, I came across some new shots from Ina’s barn that I want to share with you. I’m sure you’re all familiar with her barn/filming studio – it has made waves throughout the design blogosphere years and years ago. Built in a Belgian farmhouse style (an aesthetic Ina and her husband Jeffrey admire) – with interiors decorated by Robert Stilin, it was published in House Beautiful and established Ina Garten as a style icon!

Recently, Ina has enlisted the help of architect Daniel Romualdez to create an addition to the above mentioned barn that would house her expansive collection of cookbooks, glassware and cake-stands and that could also serve as a hang-out space for her filming crew. The result is a cheerful, vibrant space that has a more modern pace than the rest of the barn. It is inviting,  youthful, and very fresh!

ina roses

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In line with yesterday’s post, I have a pretty little home to show you (again). I’ve blogged about it before, it was one of the first home tours I ever featured, but I know you won’t mind seeing it again. It fits the bill perfectly as it is all about transforming dark and dated interiors into fun, fresh, modern ones with minimum of effort and on a budget. Imagine that!

Country Living published the story in 2011 and it still remains one of my favorite makeovers! Designer Sara Story helped her sister Lisa redecorate her Connecticut house without breaking the bank. With a budget in mind, the entire home design was cleverly planned and carefully thought out. The major ”splurges”, or investments if you will, were made in the kitchen (new cabinets and appliances) and powder bath (new tiles and waterworks). The rest of the rooms got new coats of paint, wallpaper, old pieces were smartly recovered to play along nicely with some new catalog additions.

The end result is simply fabulous! It certainly pays off to have a decorator sibling willing to help you create a beautiful home.  With some clever tricks, the house looks brand new and so bright.

sara story 002

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Happy Mother’s Day to all of the wonderful, loving, caring and fun mothers out there! I hope you’ve all had a great weekend. We have been on a whirlwind of social events for the last couple of weeks but somehow I managed to squeeze in some alone time this weekend. As a mom of a five year old, it’s not often that that happens but when it does, I’m thankful for every minute. Yoga and a good (design) read are two of my favorite ways of spending some quality  ‘me’  time. Cue, Elle Decor’s June issue. I was slightly intimidated by its cover but once I got to the style section, I was hooked. This beautiful project by Steven Gambrel has been a teaser for some time as I’ve seen shots of the living room before, but now the entire project is revealed and it’s another Gambrel dream home!


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Have you seen the summer issue of Veranda? If not, make sure to pick up your copy, it is a beautiful array of projects by design masters like Frank de Biasi and Cathy Kincaid! One of the homes in the issue is this blue and white dream house in Locust Valley – a sprawling property designed by de Biasi a few years ago. It is a c. 1917 Colonial-style home with the prettiest blue shutters and carefully manicured gardens.



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The work of ceramicist and lamp designer Christopher Spitzmiller has become the standard of excellence in the design world. The talented potter and business man  may spend his days in his New York City studio, but on the weekends, he drives 90 miles north to Millbrook. In the heart of Hudson Valley, Spitzmiller has carved out a little corner of rural paradise, the perfect place to unwind and forget about the hustle and bustle of the Big Apple.

Back in 2005 he bough a dilapidated Greek Revival house that was so run down, it was in desperate need of a loving restoration. It took about 5 years to bring the house back to a glorious state, time in which Spitzmiller’s mentor and friend, Albert Hadley contributed with ideas on how to rework the dated floor plan into a practical, modern one.


”My house is a Greek Revival American farmhouse. Albert Hadley was a great mentor to me and I used as many of his wallpapers and designs [in the house] as I could. Albert made sketches from photos of the different rooms, and we worked out the floor plans together. The hook zebra rug in my living room is from his Parish-Hadley days and is one of my favorite possessions. Harry Heissmann, who worked for “Mr. Hadley,” helped me decorate it. Jeffrey Bilhuber has even affectionately called it “Hadleyville.””

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