Kitchen & Baths – the latest trends in 2018

This year’s Kitchen & Bath Industry Show in Orlando was teeming with spectators, vendors, and exciting new products.

Between faucets, tubs, sinks, vanities and more, everyone was in awe of the dazzling array of products.

The category of free-standing tubs continues to expand and more design elements have been added. I saw a few tubs that had interesting swirls reminiscent of waves of water. See photo below.  One tub was perched on two columns of dark wood which added a traditional element. Another claw footed tub in red lacquer stood out in the main aisle. Yet another had a cascade of water on a headrest flowing into the tub.  It looked like it would be heavenly.

Faucets had their own intriguing look.  Best of show was a system that was fabricated in a 3-D fashion with water running through metal in an open faucet.  Everyone was in awe of this new futuristic design.  See my photo.

The latest finishes that are trending include rose gold, titanium, brushed gold and matte black. They were beautiful and were seen on faucets, knobs, and light fixtures.

Lighted mirrors were the rage in many booths, and there was one by Kohler that could be connected to an intelligent personal assistant like Alexa. You can ask her to give you the traffic update while you’re getting ready for work!  Who knows – you may decide to stay home when she gives you the report!

Vanity top bowls in various designs are still in vogue. One particular bowl was a bold floral in black, green and purple.  The bowl in the photo below is reminiscent of a bohemian look.

White and light wood were still popular vanity finishes as well as a few seen in a reclaimed wood finish, continuing with the farmhouse theme.

Cobalt blue was hot and trending.  A farmhouse sink was sporting a shiny cobalt lacquer apron.  There was a wine fridge with a similar façade, and a beautiful stove by ILVE.  The glass and mosaic tile display was particularly striking.  See below.

In the countertop category, quartzite continues to surge in interest. In fact, the top countertop finishes are granite, marble and quartz.

Copper has a look of its own and I find most people either love it or hate it.  I loved it on this elegant range hood.

Shower doors have come a long way from the frameless looks.  See some of the photos of this awesome custom color-block shower door.

I was fortunate to have been chosen to join an insider tour of the show with Connecticut Cottages and Gardens on one of the days.  We were treated to private showings of their products along with generous meals and snacks.  The chef at Gaggeneau prepared a delicious lunch showing us the properties of their product line.  We also visited the Miele booth, and I am familiar with them because I have been to their Princeton showroom many times.  One of the reps demonstrated their ironing system which is so strong that you can iron through several layers at a time, saving a lot of time.  We all watched in awe.  It was fun also to network with other designers from the area.

I will definitely be attending another Kitchen and Bath show in the future.

Pantone 2018 Color of the Year

Ultra-Violet has been selected as the 2018 color of the year.  I have seen many positive reviews about this color through the home furnishings industry as well as the bridal industry.   Purple is seen as a regal color, one that exudes power, wealth and mystique.  It is also a color thought to be reserved for the gods.  Purple is a color rich in nature – think of “purple mountain majesty.”

This ultra-violet color seems to have a mystical quality about it.  According to Pantone, it “communicates originality, ingenuity and visionary thinking that points us toward the future.”
Here are some fabric suggestions from my suppliers:

 

 

Dangling Window Cords can be Deadly

October is National Window Coverings Safety Month. The October window-cord awareness campaign is sponsored every year by the Window Coverings Safety Council (WCSC) and the US Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC).

Both organizations recommend that only cordless window coverings or those with inaccessible cords be used in homes with young children. Infants and children are injured or die each year from window cords. Some of these incidents involve older blinds that are still hanging in windows.

If you have infants and young children, I urge you to follow these basic cord-safety precautions:

Never place a crib, playpen, bed or any type of low-standing furniture near a window. In exploring their surroundings, young children can accidentally fall through an open window or window screen, or become tragically entangled in a nearby window cord. Whenever possible, place cribs and furniture on a non-windowed wall.

Dangling or accessible cords on window coverings can pose an accidental strangulation hazard to infants and young children. For safety’s sake, replace older corded window coverings with today’s safer products.

If you can’t replace your corded window coverings, you can order free retrofit kits from WCSC at windowcoverings.org. The website also contains a wealth of useful safety information for parents and caregivers.

There are many cordless shade and blind options available as well as remote-controlled shades, and we can look at your particular situation and choose the best option for you.

Benjamin Moore 2018 Color of the Year

Benjamin Moore has selected Caliente, AF-290, a strong, bold color that can make a room pop with clean, white trim. Red is powerful, hot and provocative.  Red also is an appetite stimulant and is a popular color for a dining room or kitchen.  Benjamin Moore’s 2018 color palette has a few dramatic colors but focuses more on neutrals than Sherwin Williams.  Red and gold has long been a popular traditional palette, or red and yellow. Blues, greens or blacks can provide an alternative look.

See more about this exciting color here

 

 

 

Sherwin-Williams 2018 Color of the Year

Sherwin-Williams has announced its 2018 color of the year and it is being met with a lot of enthusiasm.  It is both rich and dramatic, and I love it!  It brings together a beautiful balance of green and blue and can be used in a variety of settings, depending on the mood.

In a home office, it can inspire creative thinking, while in a bedroom can invite meditation and calm.

This color, Oceanside, can be universally used across many design styles, including mid-century modern, contemporary, transitional, to traditional.  It can also pair well with yellow, bright pink, pale blue, and gray.

View video here

Summer – Work and Play

This summer Comfortex, one of my shade vendors, hosted their dealers for a day at the races in Saratoga. It was a lot of fun sitting trackside in an air conditioned tent and being treated to a lavish buffet. The day was sunny and mild and so were the horses.   Downtown Saratoga is beautiful so it was a fun day.
The next day we visited Comfortex offices and took a very interesting factory tour. We also were able to see how each of the shades are manufactured and try every product and mechanism.  Their lift and lock system is great for little ones because you push the button and the shade locks into place
The new product line from Comfortex is a line of cellular and roller shades with over 800 colors to choose from and in both duck and linen textures.  I have all the samples and clients have been loving their new shades.

Report from Las Vegas Market

This summer I attended the Las Vegas design market for the first time.  I had never been, as my usual market trip is to High Point, NC. There were many similarities in the market itself; however, there is no comparison to the square footage and sprawling area that the High Point showrooms comprises.
I was on a “red carpet” tour with two designers who run the tour, and there were 30 of us from all over the US and Canada on the tour.  Not only was it fun, it was informational and I met new vendors along the way.  And it’s always productive because I usually shop for clients and found the perfect pieces for them.
As always, I look for trends and usually they become very obvious as you go through the different showrooms.
Blush and pink tones were seen on furnishings such as this beautiful vanity or these pretty jars.  Pumpkin, teal and navy continues to have a strong showing.
Agate was also a popular trend and seen in shadow boxes and as a stand-alone accessory.  Geometrics and the chain look are still seen on light fixtures, tables, cabinets, and many more furnishings.
Concrete table tops and even concrete as a lamp base are pertinent to the urban style that is still so prevalent.
Stay tuned for trend updates as we move closer towards 2018.

Master bath remodel

This was our recent master bath project and we assisted the client with all recommendations from start to finish.  All the finishes are marble.  We added a backsplash because she had three young children who like to splash in the tub.  We enlarged the shower by eliminating a linen closet, and then added the elegant touches like the chandelier, sconces, mirrors and silk folded valance.

Here are some before photos.

 

 

Here are the after photos.  It’s a dramatic improvement, don’t you agree?

 

 

 

 

May 2017 Show house – Alnwick Hall

May is always show house month. A grand estate or historic home and property that is generally in a distressed state is chosen to be redecorated and restored to its previous grandeur by interior designers who bid for the chance to do a room.  This year the “Mansion in May” in New Jersey was Alnwick Hall – the Abbey at Morris Township and there were 41 interior spaces plus several garden areas.  So many were so beautiful, it was hard to pick a favorite.  The ceilings, too, were jaw-dropping!  What do you think?

 

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Your Environment has an Impact on your Health

I recently was interviewed by Remya Warrior on her internet show, Koffee Break. The topic was how important your environment is in the role of healing. I spoke about two clients that were greatly affected by their updated colors and surroundings and how it helped them heal.

 

One client had received a heart transplant and he told me repeatedly that their newly decorated family room gave him total peace. He spent a lot of time resting on the sofa and enjoying the aqua, teal and rust tones in the room.

 

The second client was from a year ago and was on oxygen waiting for a lung transplant. Her walls were a soft blush but her curtains really needed to be replaced.  New swag treatments with a soft pattern were added to the living room and dining room and they brought her immense joy.

 

This is what makes all that I do worthwhile. It’s all about creating the look you love to live with and that makes you happy in your surroundings.

I was interviewed on a program called “Koffee Break”, a 20-minute program where we talked about healing environments.  Here is the link.

Healing Environments