Architectural Digest Show

A few weeks ago I once again attended the annual Architectural Digest Home Show at the Piers in NY.

The large manufacturers are always in attendance, including Miele, Wolf, Viking, Kohler, Delta, Benjamin Moore, Farrow & Ball, and many more. Other products include lighting, tile, furniture, wallcoverings, pillows, rugs, accessories and more. It always provides inspiration, and this year was no exception.

The ovens were front and center, and the colors continue to wow. Ovens from several manufacturers were seen in red, turquoise, Kelly green, and one in a two-tone of gold and green. I don’t know about you but I don’t want to see a return to the old days of harvest gold and avocado.

Bathroom vanities in various shades of gray, taupe, driftwood and espresso tones were dominating at the vanity companies, and options include cabinets or wall-hung.

Tiles continue to evolve and the patterns are incredibly complex. Many are dimensional and the pattern repeats are becoming larger and larger.

Swarovski crystal provided some bling in many areas. There was a range hood with Swarovski crystals on a section of the hood. At one of the lighting booths, there was a fixture that looked like an eye and the crystals were the center of the eye.

Knobs and cabinet hardware is another category that you can see at the show. Using unique hardware allows you to bring your own creative expression to your special piece.

There is also a section known as DIFFA by Design, which are tablescapes designed by design students. The vignettes are always fascinating to see, as they are unusual and very creative.











Biltmore Estate in all its Grandeur

We recently visited the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC, which has been on my bucket list for quite some time. I was not disappointed. I especially love seeing all the fabrics and window treatments of the rich and famous from that era of long ago. The ceilings are also a work of art in many of the rooms, as seen here. The first photo is of the grand dining room. Here are a few photos of some of the treatments.

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Window Coverings Expo 2017

Last week I attended the International Window coverings expo in Charlotte for the first time in a few years. It was a busy show and many of the attendees were optimistic about their businesses and the economy.

A big highlight of the show was motorization as well as new and innovative child-safe cords on shades. One innovation was a wand similar to the wands on a blind that you can give a slight tug and the shade slowly goes up. This will be introduced to the marketplace in the next six months. You can see this on my YouTube channel.

Another company introduced their line of motors and remotes which were smaller and sleeker than other ones currently available. And they are much easier to operate, as seen here. They can also be operable with an iPhone.

Roman and roller shades are increasingly popular as the fabrics have become more beautiful. These are not your grandmother’s roller shades!

Everyone was wowed by a new introduction of wood drapery poles trimmed in leather. There are several leather samples and colors to choose from along with many wood samples. This would be a very classy touch to a home office, a den, or even a man cave.

Large wide bands were seen at one of the vendors and would be a fabulous addition to a solid or textured fabric on a long drapery.






Rugs – Comfort or Wow

Many of my clients of late have been finishing off their rooms and adding area rugs. Before you rush out to buy a rug, think about the following questions:


Are you trying to protect your floor, muffle sound, or add comfort to your feet? Do you need a rug to stand up to children and heavy traffic, or is this rug mostly for show?  Have you thought about adding a rug to your outdoor spaces, such as a porch or patio?


Do you need a specific style of rug based on the room décor? Geometric, paisley, solid, floral are just a few of the thousands of designs available.


What size would work best? Do you want to highlight a sitting area, or do you want to cover much of the wood in the room?  And yes, your furniture can be placed partially on the rug.


What color palette are you working with? Are you looking to create a focal point?


Finally, what is your budget? There is a wide range in quality and price from flat weaves, machine made, hand loomed, hand tufted up to hand knotted.  This sometimes goes hand in hand with the room location of the rug.


There are so many factors to consider when choosing a rug. We can help you decide what’s best for your room.

Here are a few new designs from Jaipur, one of our suppliers.



Blue, Blue, My World is Blue

Who remembers this famous song back from the 1960’s? Oh well, now I am dating myself.


That is what came to my mind color-wise when I was at the gift and home furnishings show yesterday at the Javits Center in NY. Blue is the color of the moment.


I was taken by the glamorous vignettes displayed by Bungalow 5, Worlds Away, and Jonathan Adler and wanted to share some of their beautiful furnishings.  Which piece do you like best for your home?

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Any Drapery Rod will be fine…or is it?

Sometimes when I am with a client planning drapery panels or valances for their windows, they will usually tell me that any rod would be fine. They are always surprised by the vast array of choices.  My role is to ensure that the selection is chosen based on function and their furnishings and what would look and work best.  There are wood rods, metal, hammered, acrylic, resin, and more.  So what’s the trend for 2017?

According to a recent report in Vision magazine, experts say that simple traditional looks seem to have returned.

Companies are reporting that finials have returned to a simple look after years of elaborate finials. Round glass and geometric designs are becoming more popular in the finial category.  Rods are sleek and minimalist, with 5/8″ or 3/4″ rods becoming more popular.  With urban living on the rise, interest continues to grow in the industrial look in decorative hardware.  Outdoor decorative hardware also has increased.  Gold finishes are gaining in popularity, but satin nickel and chrome are two of the most popular.  Square rods and square rings work well in a contemporary setting if the panels will be stationary.

Here are a few samples from Rowley Company, Horizons and Helser Brothers.

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Pantone 2017 color of the year

Wow – bold bright green “Greenery” has been selected as the 2017 color of the year.  Seen as a color that will help us take a deep breath and rejuvenate during tumultuous times.  It will help us yearn for new beginnings and reconnections – with nature and with one another.


Pantone 2017 Color of the Year


Here are a few fabrics from Kravet and Stout that represent this bold new color.  How about adding a new pillow or two to brighten up your room?  Or maybe a new vase?









Monet’s home and gardens

On a recent trip to Paris, I was thrilled to visit Giverny and Monet’s home and gardens. I loved seeing the décor and moldings and the rich French-influenced themes, of course!  Blue and yellow is still widely used in the French country style of today, although the blue tones have changed through the years.  Notice the variety of tile motifs used on the backsplash and around the kitchen.  Even though it was October, the gardens were still blooming, and there were interesting flowers that I had never seen before.  Both the home and gardens were so inspirational!

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Benjamin Moore 2017 Color of the Year

There is a lot of excitement for this bold color, which has undertones of purple and gray and can set the tone for a dramatic room.  Imagine this in a powder room, which would evoke elegance and coziness.  Or as an accent wall in a foyer or living room.  Pair this color with silver or gray tones for a truly elegant look.


Window Coverings safety month

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:


  • Move all furniture, cribs, beds and climbable surfaces away from windows.


  • Keep all window cords well out of the reach of children.


  • Install only cordless window coverings in homes with young children.


  • Make sure tasseled pull cords are as short as possible. Continuous-loop pull cords on draperies and vertical blinds should be pulled tight and anchored to the floor or wall.


  • Be sure cord stops are properly installed and adjusted to limit inner-cord movement.


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.


Here is a recent project I completed for a client with a two-year old – new cordless roman shades and a decorative flat valance to coordinate with her new paint color in her family room. At least the parents and I can sleep at night knowing that their son won’t get entangled in any cords.