Good morning, friends! I hope you had a peaceful weekend. Our prayers are with those affected by Hurricane Harvey and their families. It is yet another reminder of how small we are standing alone in front of nature’s incredible forces. We only gain strength as we unite, help and care for one another, so please reach out in any way that you can. Thank you!

The following story originally appeared in the July / August 2015 issue of House Beautiful and I missed it. The other week as I was looking for ideas on how to maximize space for a cute living room project I’m working on, I came across the Manhattan studio apartment of designer Max Sinsteden. It blew my mind!

Clever, functional and so beautiful – the studio is a merely 525 square feet packed to the brim with style.  With a passion for fashion and interiors, Sinsteden was mentored by Charlotte Moss before striking out on his own and his home is an expression of both of his loves. More than just a beautiful space, it is a masterclass on how to create stylish homes within the confinements of space.

Cafe Design | Compact Living | Entry

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Happy Wednesday, friends! I hope your week is going swell. We are officially in kindergarten and so far it has been a smooth experience. Our daughter loves her new school and her big-girl routine and so do we. Her school is a short ten minutes walk from our home ( a blessing, I know…) and although her backpack is twice her size she insists on carrying it herself – cute and responsible, I love that 🙂

As a result, my blogging schedule is a bit off (working on new ways to find an extra hour in my day) but from now on I’ll try to blog at least three times a week. For today’s installment of beautiful rooms to study I’m looking at a bedroom designed by Sarah Bartholomew and published in House Beautiful earlier this year. Part of a D.C rowhouse project that I wrote about here, the space is a stunning lesson in small space design.

I don’t know about you but this lady caught my attention. In a relatively short period of time, Sarah Bartholomew has become one of my favorite designers out there and that’s because one – she’s incredibly talented, two – her taste in decor is very similar to my own, three – self-taught, she has honed her skills by studying the great classics of design -Billy Baldwin, Thomas Jefferson, Oscar de la Renta, Givenchy… she’s the real deal.

Her rooms are always bright and fun, filled with classic details interpreted through a delicate, more feminine lens. What’s there not to love? Chinoiserie blue and white porcelain, abstract artwork (many of Bartholomew’s spaces feature the work of talented Ms. Kayce Hughes, which I love!). When it comes to color, soft blues, greens and neutrals complement timeless furnishings with a few modern accents thrown into the mix.  All that and more make her my favorite neo-trad.

Cafe Design | Sarah Bartholomew

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Happy Eclipse Day!

I’ll be signing off shortly and head South for a better view but not before a quick Monday post. I wrote about architect Gil Schafer’s Middlefield home a few weeks ago and recently came across his latest published project. In its September 2017 issue, Traditional Home Magazine offers a tour of a beautiful Dutch Colonial style “new old house” with architecture by Schafer, interiors by designer Libby Cameron and landscape by the talented Miranda Brooks. What a great trio!

One of Schafer’s calling cards when designing new homes is a strong connection to the past. His homes are perfectly appointed for modern life yet retain an old world nostalgia. In this particular case, the Dutch Colonial style home is built with historical accuracy in mind.  Many old house on the East Coast started life in the late 18th century and “if they’re still around today, they probably were added to by each generation”, Schafer explains. Painted wood-shingle siding gives the home a cozy scale. Homes  evolve over time and it’s precisely this attention to historical details that makes Schafer  great.

Cafe Design | Exterior

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If you follow me on Instagram, you might have noticed I have a thing for this living room designed by Rita Konig. It’s also pinned in my office, on our dream home mood board, on Facebook and Pinterest…you name it. I love it so much that I try to study it every chance I have. It is really funny how rooms can surprise you. There are so many talented designers out there with a different style whose work I admire but this cottage/farmhouse living room has my heart. I can’t fully understand why but every time I post this image on my social media, the positive response is overwhelming, so clearly I’m not the only one!!!

The more I look at this space the more details I notice about it so I though it would be a fun exercise (fun for me, I’m not sure about you lol) to try and deconstruct its beauty. In case you’re interested, here are five things I love and have learned from studying this room:

Rita Konig

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