Category: Decorating (page 2 of 6)

Pop Quiz: Is Your Home Too Trendy?

To find out, answer the questions below, keeping a pen and paper handy.  Each response has points assigned to it.  You’ll need to add up the points from all of your responses to tally your score at the end and see if your home is–indeed–too trendy.  Don’t worry: it’s only 8 questions + a lightning round…

1.  What best describes your bar cart situation?

a.  It’s always photo-ready, loaded with gorgeous glassware, patterned straws, and every bartending tool imaginable.  Nothing is ever amiss, because I usually only drink wine at home. (3 pts)

b.  I don’t have a bar cart per se, but there’s definitely a designated cocktail station that also functions as a decorative statement. (2 pts)

c.  From a home decor standpoint, I’m observing the 18th amendment and have no need for the devil’s trolley. (1 pt)


2.  When it comes to tropical-themed wallpaper…

a.  I think it looks great in other people’s homes. (1 pt)

b.  I’ve a got an accent wall that fits that description. (2 pts)

c.  People often mistake my place for The Beverly Hills Hotel. (3 pts)


3.  What percentage of your furnishings and decor did you purchase new and in the last year?

a.  75%+ (3 pts)

b.  around 50% (2 pts)

c.  25% or less (1 pt)


4.  Your art wall is…

a.  A mix of art from different disciplines, family photos, and mementos. (2 pts)

b.  Restricted to black and white photography only. (2 pts)

c.  Mostly pop art and funny or inspirational sayings. (3 pts)

d.  Nice try.  I don’t have an art wall. (1 pt)


5.  Your primary accent color is…

a.  Pink. (3 pts)

b.  Any other color. (1 pt)

c.  Different in each room. (1 pt)

d.  Forget accents!  Color reigns supreme in my home. (1 pt)

e.  Sorry, I live in a strictly monochrome zone. (3pts)


Pop Quiz: Is Your Home Too Trendy?

6.  The metal finish that plays the most significant role in your decor is…

a.  Chrome. (1 pt)

b.  Brass and gold. (2 pts)

c.  Rose gold and copper. (3 pts)

d.  Stainless steel, blackened iron, or oil rubbed bronze–nothing too shiny. (1 pt)

e.  They all battle each other for dominance.  It’s tough to say who’s winning. (2 pts)


7.  Lights hung from exposed cords or wires are…

a.  Totally a thing now.  Ain’t nobody got time for an electrician! (3 pts)

b.  Something I try to hide or I begrudgingly tolerate. (2 pts)

c.  Nowhere to be found in my home. (1 pt)


8.  Most of your furniture can be described as…

a.  Minimalist or streamlined. (1 pt)

b.  Midcentury modern–whether vintage or reproductions. (3 pts)

c.  Scandinavian in spirit. (3 pts)

d.  Antiques. (1 pt)

e.  Bohemian. (3 pts)

f.  Too diverse for any one style to claim the majority. (2 pts)

g.  Hollywood Regency. (2 pts)

h.  Other. (1 pt)


Lightning Round!  Give yourself one point for each of the following that you have in your home:

  • A sheepskin throw over a chair (1 pt)
  • Succulents and/or cacti (1 pt)
  • A figurine of a hand making a piece sign (1 pt)
  • Reclaimed wood (1 pt)
  • A painted portrait of someone–you have no idea who (1 pt)
  • A macrame or 70s-inspired wall hanging (1 pt)
  • Random mineral specimens (1 pt)
  • Books strictly for display purposes (1 pt)


OK, time to add up your points!  If you scored…

8-13 pts

No one could accuse you of being too trendy in your home decor.  Sure, you’ll adopt a trend here or there, but ultimately, you march to the beat of your own drum.

14-26 pts

Clearly you stay on top of trends and, as such, you’re predisposed to run with more of them.  Still, your style is all your own.  You’ve mastered that balance.

27-32 pts

You’re a bonafide trend scout!  In fact, you’re probably that friend whom everyone goes to with questions like “what do you think of this coffee table?”.  It’s because you have swagger and that comes through in your digs.  But is your home too trendy?  The truth is: there’s no such thing.  Your home should be a place that makes you happy.

Share your score in the comments below!

4 Palette Ideas for Benjamin Moore’s 2017 Color of the Year, Shadow

Benjamin Moore’s choice of Shadow (a smoked amethyst purple) was a surprising selection for 2017’s color of the year and a drastic departure from last year’s “Simply White”.  Still, I for one, am excited to see a moody jewel tone take center stage in the coming year and hope its a harbinger of more colorful, dramatic interiors to come.  Naturally, I’ve been bouncing around palette ideas in my head.  After much thought, 4 color combos bubble to the top.  Here they are…

Shades of Gray & Shadow

Both complex hues with plenty of depth, gray and purple are a match made in heaven, creating a sexy, mysterious atmosphere.  In this pairing, I’d give precedence to gray, layering shade upon shade with limited pops of deep, dark Shadow and lighter notes of dusty lavender.

The other key to pulling of this color duo is to pile on the lustrous textures.  Think: velvet, antiqued mirrors, mother of pearl, and chrome…

Violet & Citrus

Benjamin Moore’s 2017 color of the year, Shadow isn’t just purple.  It’s a sultry, saturated, slightly-more-blue-than-red tone.  Thus, it’s complimentary color is a somewhere-between-yellow-and-green hue.  These two botanical-themed shades of violet and citrus are meant to be.

Of course, complimentary colors can be overwhelming or even jarring.  So, be sure to balance the intensity and even the amount of the two hues to match the mood you’re looking to create in particular room.  Hedge the duo with plenty of neutrals for a more relaxing atmosphere.  Or throw restraint to the wind and saturate a room with the two colors for a more energizing effect.

Amethyst & Sapphire

4 Palette Ideas for Using Benjamin Moore's Shadow | Sapphire & Amethyst

via OKL

4 Palette Ideas for Using Benjamin Moore's Shadow | Sapphire & Amethyst

David Collins

A cool blue also plays nicely with the 2017 color of the year and–contrary to the last pairing–makes for a soothing, tension-free setting.

Of  course, a little tension is necessary.  Thus, make sure to mix in some warm neutrals like rattan, burl wood, cognac leather, or even tortoise shell.

Every Shade of Purple

4 Palette Ideas for Benjamin Moore's 2016 Color of the Year: Shadow | Layers of Purple

Hunt Slonem

Layering Shades of Purple | Shadow, Benjamin Moore's 2017 Color of the Year | 4 Palette Ideas |

via AD

Then again, purple is a shade that begs to be layered and Shadow is no exception.  Nearly every tint–from lilac to orchid–can be used in concert, as evidenced by the overwhelmingly violet interiors above.

If you take this route, commit.  Contrast light shades of purple with dark.  Mix ultra saturated tones like aubergine with more delicate hues like wisteria.  Oscillate between indigo and merlot.  Diversity is key.

14 Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie & Asian-Inspired Rooms

Still on a high from my trip to Asia, it seems only fitting to pay homage to the East’s contributions to contemporary interior design.  Since the 17th century, Asian decorative arts have fascinated the West.  Fueled by admiration for the mysterious and exotic, Europeans distilled Eastern motifs into a whimsical, romanticized style known as chinoiserie.  While most cultural influences fall in and out of style, chinoiserie has enjoyed unmatched endurance.   Ceramic garden stools, ginger jars, and hand-painted wallpapers depicting trees and birds are common place in some of today’s most celebrated interiors.  And in this modern age, more authentic Asian furnishings–not to mention textiles–are more accessible than ever.   So, without further adieu, I give you 14 jaw-dropping chinoiserie and Asian-inspired rooms…

14 Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie & Asian-Inspired Rooms on Motley Decor

This bedroom expertly mixes cultural references; however, the Asian influences among them are perhaps the most palpable.  The walls are wrapped in texture-adding grasscloth in a moody teal shade (which–by the way–is 1 of 7 Fool-Proof Wall Colors).  Lacquered folding screens flank the bed paired with stylized bamboo chairs, enveloping the space with Asian flair.

14 Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie & Asian-Inspired Rooms on Motley Decor

In this show house dining room, the Eastern allusions are more subtle.  The art on the far wall could arguably be construed as Asian-inspired with birds in flight, rendered in gold leaf.  The drapes too are a fretwork pattern, which is commonly associated with chinoiserie decor.

Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie & Asian-Inspired Rooms

A motley of far-flung treasures from the East congregate in this guest room.  The chinoiserie cabinet is topped with a fish bowl planter.  The headboard is draped with (what I can only guess is) a fabric remnant from some breath-taking kimono.   All of this is set off by the silver mylar wall covering–a suitable, updated alternative to silver leaf.  (Bonus: see the living room of this house in one of my previous posts.)

Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie & Asian-Inspired Rooms | See 13 More on

The pagoda day bed in this space provides for a stunning focal point that is unmistakably chinoiserie.  The mural also contributes to the exotic feel.  However, everything else in the room takes on a more streamlined and modern air, ushering the space into the present and allowing the showstoppers to do their job uninterrupted.  The balance is achieved pretty much perfect.

14 of the Most Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie & Asian-Inspired Rooms | See 13 More on

Although as of late Kelly Wearstler’s work has skewed edgy, enchanting spaces with traditional leanings can be found in her body of work.  Above is one such example: the dining room of her former Hillcrest Estate.  Although the architecture is clearly modern, that didn’t stop Wearstler from filling her home with exotic antiques.  Here, East and West mingle to the delight of anyone lucky enough to dine in this space.

14 Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie & Asian-Inspired Rooms | See 13 More on MotleyDecor

The interior of this Cape Cod home (which contains another room that was also featured previously on Motley Decor) is coated completely in this seductive, pine green lacquer.  In the bedroom–as you can see–it makes the blossom tones of the Chinese pillows sing.  The pierced fretwork shutters usurp the  undersized art in prominence and anoint the room with both light and chinoiserie vibes.

Vibrant Living Room with Asian Influences a la Eddie Ross // See 13 More Chinoiserie & Asian Inspired Rooms on Motley Decor

It’s no surprise that an avid collector like Eddie Ross would have an eclectic home.  His living room is a testament to this and a celebration of many cultures.  Asian references are counted among them.  Just look at that chinoiserie folding screen, that ceramic garden stool, that bamboo chest, those ginger jars…

14 Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie Rooms

Windsor Smith, a designer known for her laid back yet elegant style, is responsible for this arresting vignette.  That pearly wallpaper with a chinoiserie motif is enough to inspire envy even in the most uncovetous of hearts.  (Mine is among them.)  The tone-on-tone layering of other white objets–the matte and shiny ceramics along the dull, fibrous linen of the chairs–is beautifully executed.  At the center is an Asian cabinet in stark, weighty black that delivers a surprising but welcome contrast.  Crystal sconces and brass hardware deliver an extra dose of glamour.

Chinoiserie room in blue and white with stunning details // The Most Exquisite Chinoiserie & Asian-Inspired Rooms //

In this blue lacquered cave of a room lies a myriad of Eastern inspirations.  Where to start?  The palette of blue and white is characteristic of chinoiserie decor–as is the Greek key rug.  Asian textiles and pottery pepper the far wall.  The luminous gold leaf ceiling radiates Eastern elegance.  Even the conical cocktail tables–though contemporary–feel rooted in Asian design.  This home also contains a gorgeous blue & white, Asian-inspired bathroom.

Dining room with neutral chinoiserie wallpaper and candied apple red lacquer chippendale chairs // 14 Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie Rooms //

The first time I saw this room, I vowed to one day lacquer dining chairs in a candied apple red.  These Chippendale specimens ooze character–especially set against the backdrop of the neutral-hued chinoiserie wallpaper.

14 Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie Rooms // // Ideas & Inspiration for Home Decorators with Eclectic Taste

Still, large doses of saturated color are not a prerequisite for an inspiring chinoiserie space, as illustrated by this show house living room.  In a sea of white, cream, beige, and tan; whispers from the East rise above the din in the form of striking patterns and shapely silhouettes.  Again we see the Greek key motif, trimming the ottoman.  Swirling clouds adorn the side table.  And Chinese figurines, along with curvaceous urns, stand guard at the mantel.

A colorful dining room by Nick Olsen with a dash of chinoiserie | 13 More of the Most Stunning Asian Inspired Rooms

Taking on a more light-hearted and laid back feel is Nick Olsen’s dining room.  In a clever and unexpected pairing, Chinese Chippendale-like chairs bring Danish midcentury modern perches to the table.  Red vinyl upholstery unites the two styles.  A thin band of chinoiserie wallpaper lines the walls and, in this setting, trapezoid lampshades are reminiscent of pagodas.

Hutton Wilkinson's Living Room + 13 More Jaw-Dropping Chinoiserie & Asian-Inspired Rooms // Motley Decor

Let’s end on a high note.  Shall we?  Enter: Hutton Wilkinson, who embraced chinoiserie with enough zeal and grandeur to rival an 18th century aristocrat.  His walls are koi fish orange, juxtaposing his collection of jade green ceramics.  A generous strip of gold leaf highlights his art and penchant for symmetry.  Intricate garden stools and pagoda statues satisfy the need for sculptural elements.  This celebrated maximalist and right hand man to the late Tony Duquette never fails to amaze.  Be sure to check out Hutton Wilkinson’s dining room too!

What Japan Taught Me About Design

Visiting Japan was a deeply rewarding experience that precipitated lessons in design (among other things) that I will carry with me forever.  If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve seen a sneak peak of what I’m referring to.  Either way, here are 4 aesthetic truths that the splendor of Japan has engrained in me.

There’s No Competing with Mother Nature

Design Lessons from Japan on Motley Decor... 1. There's no competing with Mother Nature

As a maximalist, walking into my room at a ryokan (traditional Japanese inn), I was struck by its simplicity.  The palette and materials were completely neutral and natural: warm wood finishes, woven tatami mats, and semi-transparent paper screens.  Adornments were limited to a singular tapestry accompanied by a lone vase.  However, as soon as my eyes beheld the view outside, it all made sense.  My room wasn’t the main event.  Rather, it was a frame for the lush, verdant, and utterly magical garden just beyond the floor-to-ceiling windows.

Design Lessons from Japan on Motley Decor... 1. There's no competing with Mother Nature

In fact, the few minutes that I spent strolling through that garden were among the most memorable of my trip.  Every shade of green was represented in every fathomable texture–from dark, smooth pine needles to velvety, chartreuse moss.  Black dragonflies danced about as glittering koi slithered downstream.  Only birds could be heard and the air was spiced with an earthy, faintly medicinal aroma thanks to some morning showers.

Having returned home, I’m definitely motivated to focus more attention on landscaping.  And, if I ever achieve an enchanting garden (like the one I visited in Kinosaki-Onsen) I’ll have to remember my time in Japan and tone down the room that overlooks it.  Because we mortals simply can’t compete with the wonders of Mother Nature.

Food Presentation Is Important

What I Learned in Japan via MotleyDecor... 2. Food presentation is important

Another extraordinary perk about staying in a ryokan is having an elaborate meal served in your room.  Low slung lacquer tables are set with the greatest of care and small course after small course delights every sense.

What I Learned in Japan via MotleyDecor... 2. Food presentation is important

Each petite portion is plated to impress.  Notice how the pumpkin is cut to resemble a gingko leaf and how the gingko berry is skewered on a pine needle.  This is just one example of many.  Each serving is as beautiful as it is delicious.  Despite the small portions, the sheer number of courses is enough satisfy nearly any appetite.  I was blown away and humbled to think about how much work had gone into preparing our meal.  I felt immensely grateful for the experience.

And now that I’m home, it’s time to up my food presentation game.  For real.

Have a Signature Color

What I learned about design from visiting Japan | Motley Decor | Have a Signature Color

Kyoto is home to over 2,000 temples and shrines.  Every few blocks, you stumble up on a new one–even in crowded markets.  More often than not, they make themselves known  by their vibrant, blood orange entrances.

What I learned about design from visiting Japan | Motley Decor | Have a Signature Color

After some quick googling, I learned that this color is meant to purify the patrons who pass beneath so that they are fit to meet the gods within.

Unfortunately for me, this koi fish orange color did not cure me of the tremendous sense of gluttony I felt while in Japan–home of sushi, ramen, tempura, udon, sukiyaki, and the best fried chicken I’ve ever had.  However, it did impress up on me the importance of a signature color.  I hereby call dibs on green!

Nothing Conveys Grandeur Quite Like Gold

Nothing Conveys Grandeur LIke Gold | Design Lessons from a Trip to Japan on Motley Decor

I’ve long been a fan of the yellow metal hoarded by nearly every civilization since the beginning of time.  But, there’s something about the way the Japanese employ gold and feels especially majestic.  I suppose the best example is the Kinakuji Temple, a structure sheathed entirely in gold, crowning a reflective pond and nestled among dense vegetation.

Nothing Conveys Grandeur LIke Gold | Design Lessons from a Trip to Japan on Motley Decor

But, even in smaller doses–whether it’s the embroidery on an obi sash or the paint on this wall mural–gold enhances Japanese art forms with synergistic results.

I will strive for this level of grandeur the next time I apply gold leaf.

Until next time, sayonara!

4 Ways to Decorate with Yellow Inspired by Emmy Gowns

Yellow gowns dazzled on the red carpet of the 2016 Emmy Awards.  Shades ranging from lemonade to dandelion compliment a variety of skin tones and are having a moment in fashion.  As always, fashion informs interior design–or perhaps the reverse is true.  In any case, here are 4 ways to decorate with yellow inspired by gowns worn to the 68th Emmy Awards.

If you love Angela Bassett’s acid-dijon-yellow, batwinged frock…

…then consider taking an equally fearless approach to decor and slather your walls in a bold shade a la Kim Bachmann…

4 Ways to Decorate with Yellow Inspired by the 68th Emmy Awards

via OKL

If you prefer a more citrusy shade of yellow enhanced by ornate, feminine details much like Lianne La Havas’ dress…

4 Ways to Decorate with Yellow Inspired by Emmy Dresses

via Vogue

…then take a page out of Thom Filicia’s book and put citron paint to statement-making furniture…

Yellow Decor Inspired by the 2016 Emmys

via AD

Or, if you have a sunny disposition and a penchant for throwbacks like the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt aka Ellie Kemper who donned this patterned, retro number…

…then embrace vintage pattern in a subtle sulfur hue…

4 Ways to Decorate with Yellow Inspired by the 2016 Emmys Red Carpet

via OKL

However, if it was Mandy Moore’s ruffled marigold gown that caught your eye at the 2016 Emmys…

Inspired by the 68th Emmys: 4 Ways to Decorate with Yellow

via usmagazine

…then go goldenrod in an unexpected way like this beaded chandelier…

Inspired by Yellow Gowns on the Red Carpet of the 2016 Emmy Wards...4 Ways to Decorate with Yellow

Which approach do you prefer?

Kitchens with Character, vol. 3: Displaying Art

A few weeks ago, I started exploring kitchens with character–first admiring wallpapered kitchens and then discussing kitchen islands that break the mold.  Then I got distracted by other pretty rooms and…well, life.  In short, it’s been a while since I’ve posted, but I’m excited to pick back up where I left off and praise kitchens that prominently feature art today.

In my observations, there are 3 parts of a home that are typically under-decorated: kitchens, hallways, and bathrooms.  Still, of these 3 spaces, kitchens are usually the least likely to feature art.  Perhaps the flinging of food poses too great  threat.  Whatever the reason, there’s sometimes nothing more thrilling than breaking with convention.  Here are 8 kitchens that do just that…

Kitchens with Character, vol. 3: Art | Motley Decor

The bohemian thread that defines this home endures even in the kitchen.  Here, boldly patterned tile, a Kurdish rug, and a grandly framed painting impart character in spades.

Kitchens with Character, vol. 3: Art | Motley Decor

In this polished kitchen, cabinets are painted deep blue, walls are clad in marble, and a still life hangs above the sink–lit by a brass lamp.  Typically, we see a window above the sink, but art seems just as fitting.

Kitchens with Character, vol. 3: Art | Motley Decor

Miles Redd adorned the subway tiled walls of this kitchen with an oversize print depicting a white tiger.  The striking art is balanced by a burst of magenta, courtesy of the adjoining room.  Combined, the two bold statements set this kitchen apart.

Kitchens with Character, vol. 3: Art | Motley Decor

In this dramatic kitchen, two paintings preside over an accessorized shelf.  However, the backdrop on which they hang is actually chalkboard paint, allowing for impromptu works of art to accompany them.

Kitchens with Character, vol. 3: Art | Motley Decor

In Kris Jenner’s all-white kitchen, art imitates life and animates the far wall, where a cluster of white vessels echo those in the foreground.  The painted backdrop is solid green, providing a pop of color.

Kitchens with Character, vol. 3: Art | Motley Decor

Rustic and elegant, this space feels just as cozy as any living room with a roaring fire.  The brick accent wall is enhanced by an oil painting flanked by antique candle sconces, dripping with oversize crystals.  Pleated skirts and weathered wood contribute to the patina that envelopes and charms this kitchen.

Kitchens with Character, vol. 3: Art | Motley Decor

Although most of the examples of art in kitchens we’ve seen in this post feature one singular focal point, that’s not the only way to go.  Smaller pieces, displayed en masse can be just as appealing.  This the approach Michelle Adams took in her character filled kitchen.

Kitchens with Character, vol. 3: Art | Motley Decor

An art filled home deserves an art filled kitchen like this one.

Why create imaginary and unnecessary boundaries?  Why not extend your personal style to every inch of the house?  Go ahead: hang some art in your kitchen!


11 Art Deco Inspired Contemporary Interiors

This weekend I had the immense pleasure of attending the 2016 Art Deco Festival on the Queen Mary.  A devoted fan of all things 1920s and a card carrying ADSLA member, I look forward to this event all year.  2016 did not disappoint.  I left the ship dreaming about what I would wear to next year’s festival, Gatsby style parties, and–of course–Prohibition Era interior design.  Spurred by my thrilling weekend, here are 11 of my favorite Art Deco inspired contemporary interiors.

11 Art Deco Inspired Contemporary Interiors

This is one of my all-time favorite spaces, The Viceroy Miami, designed by Kelly Wearstler.  As in many Wearstler-designed interiors, the floor is composed of different colored marble, evoking a strong sense of geometry–one of the hallmarks of Art Deco design.  The table too recalls the era of bootleggers with it’s scalloped, fan-shaped composition.  Many of the sculptures in the vignette are neoclassical, which is one of the design styles from which Art Deco draws.  Finally, the mammoth cranes of the wallpaper suggest the kind of Asian exoticism that flappers were mad for.

Library by Kelly Wearster + 10 Other Contemporary Art Deco Inspired Interiors

And while I’m at it, I will just go ahead and knock out the other Kelly Wearstler room on this list.  In this Mercer Island library, we again see dominating geometric motifs.  Luxe materials–like marble inset with brass–also impart a sense of Art Deco.  The graceful Murano glass chandelier further channels the kind of grandeur that Daisy Buchanan would live amidst.

A Madrid Living Room with Art Deco Influences + 10 Other Updated Art Deco Rooms

This Madrid living room boasts an Art Deco vibe thanks to an octagonal mirror and shapely, urn-like vases.  Symmetry is another distinguishing characteristic of Art Deco design and the pillars flanking the fireplace reinforce its influence in this space.

A Spanish Home Filled with Art Deco Furniture + 10 Other Contemporary Spaces with Art Deco Influences

Filled with furniture from the 1920s, 30s, and 40s; this stunning living room is also located in Spain.  The wall to wall patterned carpet of stripes, right angles and scales compliments the sensuous curves and quirky angles of the eclectic furnishings.  The resulting atmosphere is polished, contemporary, and faintly Machine Age.

Lorenzo Castillo's Dining Room + 10 Other Contemporary, Art Deco Inspired Interiors

Mirrored walls and glittering chandeliers adorn Lorenzo Castillo’s Madrid dining room, lending an air of opulence and more than a whisper of Art Deco goodness.

Art Deco Inspired, Contemporary Interiors on Motley Decor

One final example from the country of Matadors and Flamenco is this Art Deco inspired space.  Symmetry plays a crucial role in this room as well.  Geometric shapes, exotic pattern, and luxurious materials contribute to the overall effect.  The enveloping barrel chairs also feel like the sort of place where F. Scott Fitzgerald might sit while sipping a Sidecar.

Marc Jacobs' Home + 10 Other Updated Art Deco Interiors

In the entryway of fashion designer, Marc Jacobs’ home sits a collection of Art Deco vessels.  Combined with yet another eight-sided mirror, the impression is decidedly Deco.

Contemporary Art Deco Inspired Spaces on Motley Decor

Three pieces are all that is needed to impart the magic of Art Deco to this luxe bathroom.  A Chinese rug and two corresponding ginger jars are far flung accessories that Jordan Baker might have picked up on her travels.

1 of 11 Contemporary but Art Deco Inspired Interiors

Stripes emphasize the geometric architecture of this entry hall by Pierce & Ward.  An art deco pendant dangles above a burl wood table that may very well have come from the same period.

11 Art Deco Inspirations on

This Paris apartment is an eclectic mix of treasures.  My eye immediately goes to the two Art Deco inspired torchiere floor lamps that frame the room.  A 1930s console table echoes their origins.

11 Art Deco Inspired Spaces on

And last, but far from least is this glorious room by Jean Louis Deniot (another of my all-time favorites).  With gilded geometric panels, near-perfect symmetry, neoclassical references, and a stylized chandelier; this New Delhi home oozes opulence, sophistication, and Art Deco-worthy glamour.

On a side note, I also sat in on a Prohibition Era mixology class while on the Queen Mary and I promise to share those cocktail recipes in upcoming posts.  Cheers!

Decorgasm: Scott Maddux’s Masterful Command of Color

When Scott Maddux was hired by a London couple to breathe new life into their newly acquired 6 bedroom home, the creative brief called for “exuberant color”.  Knowing this, one might expect the outcome to contain super saturated walls, jewel-toned upholstery, and neon accessories.  However, the actual result was much more subtle.  Even so, exuberance was not sacrificed.

The Living Room

Decorgasm: Scott Maddux's Masterful Command of Color

At this end of the living room, color starts brewing in the custom kilim rug of grapefruit pink, lime green, and oceanic turquoise.  Having established the color palette, the rug then informs the upholstery, sending color upward to the vibrantly patterned Otto Schultz chairs and dusty blue Ico Parisi sofa.  The abundance of pink in the room casts a rosy glow onto the faux parchment walls.  The drapes react similary, assuming a shade somewhere between beige and blush.  Thus, the room’s color becomes increasingly less intense as the eye travels upward–right up to the white ceiling and glass Vilhelm Lauritzen  chandelier.

This Is How To Use Color In Your Home | Decorgasm: Scott Maddux's Masterful Command of Color | Motley Decor

At the other end of the living room, Maddux employs a similar formula.  He anchors the space with the aforementioned rug’s twin and again includes colorful seating options.  What looks to be an Egyptian revival settee recalls the denim blue of the sofa from the previous picture.  And, once again, we see a lively patterned chair.

Still, this end encompasses some bolder strokes.  A two-sided, kidney-shaped sofa is dressed in lustrous key-lime green silk and tufted all over for extra light-reflecting opportunities.  In addition, two Peter Lanyon abstract paintings flank the fireplace, injecting the room with moodier hues like navy blue.  The blackened metal frame of the Marianna Kennedy mirror reinforces those darker shades.  Even the cast-terrazzo stools (from Maddux Creative) contain bits that echo the pinks and blues of the room.

In short, Scott Maddux has clearly lavished great care on the application of color.  The palette is restricted to three color families that dance around the room and create rhythm.  Bright hues are balanced by shadowy counterparts and easily influenced neutrals provide the stage on which all these hues perform.

The Dining Room

This is How to Decorate with Color! | Decorgasm: Scott Maddux's Masterful Command of Color | Motley Decor

The dining room’s color strategy turns that of the living on its head.  Here, color originates from above.  Inspired by the art of Ben Nicholson, color pervades the dining room in the form of floating rectangles, starting with the ceiling painted by artist Isabelle Day.  From there, the theme trickles downward in the colored glass panels of the sliding door that separates the dining room from the kitchen.  A pendant light by Johanna Grawunder consists of transparent, overlapping boxes that perfectly mimic the motif in three, increasingly intense colors.

Right angles dominate not only the color blocks, but also the furnishings.  Wall sculptures and a Paul Evans dining table repeat the rectangular shapes from above, but in stunning  neutrals of chrome, brass, and burl wood.  Scott Maddux uses these familiar silhouettes relate the neutral ground level of the room to its more colorful stratosphere.

The Entrance Hall

This is How to Decorate with Color! | Decorgasm: Scott Maddux's Masterful Command of Color | Motley Decor

The entry hall is home to some unexpected color combinations and nuanced details.  At first glance, the olive in the silk stair runner and cotton candy-colored fur of the bench surprise the eye.  However, the blue marble floor insets and similarly painted edges of the wall somehow reconcile the two opposing shades.  The green marble in the floor marries the runner to the artwork above the bench.  Gilded moldings, sconces, and the banister converse with the mustard touches in the runner.  Although the walls are white, color is carefully layered and peppered throughout the space in such a way that keeps the eye moving–uncovering those discreet details along the way.

What can I say?  Scott Maddux knows how to use color.  He doesn’t slap you in the face with it.  Rather, his command of the rainbow is marked by finesse.  Although this home is dominated by light neutrals, color is still the focus.  It is, perhaps, easier to appreciate in the presence of benign, non-competing hues.  Still, there’s enough diversity in the shades here to allow for chemical reactions between them.  Indeed, the request for “exuberant color” was executed with mastery.

These are just a few of the rooms pictured in Elle Decor’s coverage of this beautiful and eclectic home.  There are even a couple of rooms that are completely neutral (but no less impressive).  I encourage to check out the rest.

Trending: Mismatched Stools

Lately, I’ve been noticing a trend: mismatched stools.  Grouped together in pairs or clusters, a variety of different stools can be quite striking.  As an added bonus, they are incredibly versatile.  Stools can be used as drinks tables or even extra seating.  In other words, they’re perfect for entertaining.  Here are 5 rooms with mismatched stools that shine.

Trending: Mismatched Stools

The cocktail tables in Lauren Santo Domingo’s living room are surrounded by an eclectic selection of stools–including one irresistibly quirky, hot pink, faux bois number.

Trending: Mismatched Stools

This super chic office offers a trio of stools–each different in style and material–for visiting collaborators to pop a squat on.

Trending: Mismatched Stools

Tucked beneath an hallway’s console table are two disparate stools, piled with accessories.  This stylish scene is the work of Joslyn Taylor.

Trending: Mismatched Stools

A pair of nesting tables mingle with metal and wood stools on a plush carpet in Domino’s Instagram, making for a richly textured vignette.

Trending: Mismatched Stools

The line between seat and table is blurred when the two assume the height in Pamela Makin’s living room.

If you are as into this trend as I am, check out these stools to start curating your own collection.

Kitchens with Character, vol 2: Surprising Islands

Welcome to vol. 2 of Kitchens with Character.  In my last post, we examined 6 kitchens made extraordinary with wallpaper.  Today, let’s take a look at delightfully surprising kitchen islands.  Since the island is a large mass that sits in the middle of this formerly utilitarian space, it only makes sense that, as home decorators start to turn their attentions kitchenward, the island becomes a breeding ground for bold experimentation.  Following are 8 kitchens, in which, the island is the focal point.

Kitchens with Character vol. 2 | Surprising Islands | Motley Decor

Jean-Louis Deniot composed designed this unexpected kitchen island with stainless steel, blackened, and mirrored panels.  The result is a chic patchwork of lustrous surfaces that simultaneously blend in and stand out in this neutral-hued kitchen of grays and metallics.

Kitchens with Character vol. 2 | Surprising Islands | Motley Decor

In this kitchen, the island echoes the backsplash and totally steals the show.  Gold, silver, and gunmetal mosaic tiles compose and up-to-date, oversize floral pattern.  Stunning!

Kitchens with Character vol. 2 | Surprising Islands | Motley Decor

Meghan McCain’s favorite piece in her apartment is her kitchen island.  I can see why.  Instead of an ordinary boxy island, she had a custom table from Phillips Collection built to appropriate portions.  The free-form piece is Brutalist-inspired but with a lustrous, mother of pearl-like finish.  It utterly breaks the mold.

Kitchens with Character vol. 2 | Surprising Islands | Motley Decor

What happens when two designers decide to spend their lives together and share a home?  That home becomes impossibly cool and stylish.  And, in the case of Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent, their kitchen is no exception.  In particular, their kitchen island is clad in perfectly patinaed brass, radiating warmth in the largely black and white space.

Kitchens with Character vol. 2 | Surprising Islands | Motley Decor

Here’s an easy hack (and one I might soon employ): just paint it!  Peach may be an unexpected color choice for this kitchen bar, but it certainly draws the eye.  As an added bonus, it also makes those barstools pop.

Kitchens with Character vol. 2 | Surprising Islands | Motley Decor

This kitchen island may be a more traditional choice, but still makes a statement.  Painted black, pinstriped in white, and adorned with glamorous brass hardware; one can’t help but be drawn in.

Kitchens with Character vol. 2 | Surprising Islands | Motley Decor

Industrial, Brutalist, organic…  It’s difficult to nail down this kitchen island, the handiwork of Jeffrey Alan Marks.  Regardless, it’s undisputedly the focal point of this Sonoma kitchen and beautifully crafted to boot.

Kitchens with Character vol. 2 | Surprising Islands | Motley Decor

The mirrored island in this kitchen reflects light and adds a dose of panache.  It’s an unexpected by welcome compliment to the blue cabinetry.

If you’re in the process of trying to infuse your kitchen with a bit of your sparkling personality, I hope this post inspired you to take a second look at your kitchen island.  If not, I’ve got more kitchen design ideas coming your way.  So, don’t be shy…subscribe!

Older posts Newer posts

© 2018

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑