A Pretty Palette

As a designer you have to learn how to compromise with clients in order to create a space that reflects both your concept and your client’s taste beautifully.  This means you often don’t get to use ALL the fabrics, colors and items that you initially pull for a room.  So I often have fun just coming up with pretend concepts on my own when I feel inspired.  It’s like sketching but in 3D. :)

Yesterday I was looking through one of our fabric bins and came across this GORGEOUS  Schumacher Indian Arbre that I have looooooooved since I pulled it but have not gotten to use yet for anyone.  So I started pulling things to go with it and came up with this scheme in blues, violets and creamy whites.  This is basically how we pull together schemes for our clients on our office floor!
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A Little NYC Trip.

Last week I zipped down to NYC for a night and got to do some cool stuff.
Like get a tour of the Duralee design studio where they come up with the prints and wovens that we use in our work all the time! I can’t show you a lot of what I saw (sneak previews of some fun new lines) but it was so interesting!
I love that a lot of the creative work isn’t on the computer- concepts for new collections begin as inspiration boards on the walls of the studio- from pictures of fashion to scraps of historical prints…
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Hot Fabric: African Mud Cloth

I’ve noticed that this year’s hot textile trend seems to be African mud cloth. I saw it here and there last year on Etsy as pillows and didn’t know much about it. Now I’ve seen it quite a bit more and really love the natural meets geometric sensibility it has. Real mud cloth is handmade in Africa using thick woven cotton fabric with the patterns painted on using mud, clay and tea dyes. Each symbol means something different and tells a story of the maker or a specific village. No piece of mud cloth is the same if it’s authentic.

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A Quick Post From the Air!

We had a blast last night in Raleigh at Furbish Studio, but had to wake up at 4 a.m. to make out 6:30 a.m. flight to Dallas so we would be there in time for my 11 a.m.-2 p.m. signing at Wisteria (please come, y’all)- which I am currently on!  I am bleary eyed and hopped up on caffeine, and not in my most creative mindset- however, I couldn’t leave you hanging without a post.  So here are some colorful snaps from last night as well as my outfit, which I actually LOVED- this top is heaven- it’s long in the back to cover your bum and loose but not so loose it’s looks maternity. And check out that perfect leopard print. Also, my niece Kate who happens to be the cutest thing ever.

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Top: Elizabeth & James “Everly” (on sale today!!!!) // Pants- Helmut Lang // Shoes: Christian Louboutin // Curling Iron (a staple on this tour) // All those awesome pillows: Furbish Studio :)

Design Crush: Jeanette Whitson and Hague Blue!

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I kind of flipped when I saw the cover of the new House Beautiful.  And the editors clearly felt the way I do about this room since they made it a fold out cover to show the entire space! The designer is self-taught Jeannette Whitson of Garden Variety Design. It’s a beautiful home with lots of traditional details that somehow feel fresh and new.

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This kitchen is amazing- and making me think I should have painted the frame of my window the same color as my lower cabinets!

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Where to start here? The light? The banister? The windows? The ceiling?

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Best. Butlers Pantry. EVERRRRRR. Do you even SEE that sink?  And while taxidermy is not everyone’s jam, I love that it’s the mascot for her shop Garden Variety Design (you can shop yourself on 1st Dibs!)

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I have a soapstone sink JUST LIKE THIS in my basement waiting to be used in this way…..

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Shall we venture outdoors? Yes, lets.

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OK, back to the blue room of my dreams….ridonculous. And the second I saw it I knew it was Farrow & Ball’s Hague Blue because it’s my favorite paint color ever. It looks lighter in this photo than it really is, but it’s the most perfect navy with a dash of peacock blue ever created.  It’s so amazing it serves almost as a neutral backdrop to tones like orange, violet, tan leather, yellow….. you name it.

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On top of the amazing paint job she used two of my all time favorite fabrics-Peter Dunham’s Ikat Stripe and  Michael Smith/ Jasper’s Indian Flower.  I seriously bow down to this room.

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Initially I thought it was so out there to do a sofa in the same navy as the walls but then I quickly found a few other images where designers had done the same thing!

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And a few more images of Hague Blue (mostly high gloss) in use proving that it’s the most magical of colors!

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Navy blue walls

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I used it in an small Beacon Hill home office paired with Osborne & Little’s Coronata Star on the ceiling….

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I painted Andrew’s office similar shade and we love it- it’s a tiny space (as is the space above) and the dark color makes the walls recess instead of close in on you- so consider a dark shade like this in any of your small spaces!