Take Me Away // Marina Del Rey Hotel

106289528c495b61dc5591dcf98fd25bLast summer I was a bridesmaid for the 6th and (I assume) final time in my life. With the bride being April, my BFF from high school, this is what bridesmaid duty looked like.

IMG_2087Basically I helped the bride get dressed, and did my best to make sure she felt relaxed and gorgeous. So easy and fun!

As an added bonus, the reception of this beautiful wedding was held at the Marina Del Rey Hotel, where the airy lobby and bar became a new source of design inspiration for me. The hotel was renovated by the Pacifica Group, and I found that the thoughtful mix of design elements – nautical, mid-century, Moroccan, organic and more – all added up to a California Eclectic feel that works great for a hotel on the marina. I showed you the wonderful seagull sculpture installation that greets you in the lobby (above). Here are some other things that caught my eye.

Mid-century style furniture mixed with organic pieces like the live-edge coffee table….
image1…all working together with this very contemporary textured wall-treatment.
5ce26ac44da90a89c3d0354a7504a533I’m delighted by unexpected details like this in the floor
image2And this lounge area looked so fun and inviting!
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2d8ce043b366952b68adfa0d1d219faeSALT, the hotel’s bar and restaurant, has contemporary lighting features warmed up by mid-century style furniture.87b54bb43606415cd62189ea7b829345I love the mixture of Wishbone chairs with the quilted texture of the vinyl on the lounge-ier chairs.
f928a1e5eeb5bf2030b3826d143494d7The marina itself is a beautiful sight. I don’t get to this part of L.A. very often, so looking at all these boats bobbing around on the water made me feel like I was on vacation.967-0945a1ed05da7f70493d36317c73e363In fact, I think this place would be a great location for a Staycation!ef5fdf5a3b2f65bf8722c48905eb8874Photos 6-10 are from the Marina Del Rey Hotel website, the rest are by me and a kind bartender at Salt.


A Quick, Low-Budget Makeover // Minimalism Meets Modern Prep

One of my favorite quickie projects of the year…

This article originally appeared on Apartment Therapy.2

This is a bedroom I designed and installed in just a couple of weeks. My clients were a recently transplanted east coast couple, reluctant to commit to their new west coast life in a rented house. They wanted to furnish this room quickly with inexpensive pieces that they wouldn’t mind parting with in the event of another cross-country move.

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But they also wanted their room to feel like a quiet, uncluttered haven that reflected them personally. I hit the flea market and my favorite accessible retailers and gave them a bedroom that is a bit modern, a bit Swedish and a bit preppy. There are splashes of happy color and cozy texture in the details.

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Our starting point was the walls, which went from beige to a very light and subtly celestial blue (Ralph Lauren Paint’s Ephemera). 

My favorite thing in the room is the print, which sets a playful and romantic tone. This couple got married in Bermuda! So I sourced reproduction vintage travel posters featuring the destination, and asked them to pick the one that most resonated with them. Their choice gave me some pretty colors to play with, and when I found the Vera Bradley-esque quilt and shams, it all clicked against the quiet backdrop of pale blue and white.

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We scouted a pair of vintage bedside chests to give the room more unique character. They had a chalky finish, so we painted them in a semi-gloss for a cleaner look and feel. Key to this room’s design is the industrial styling of the bedside lamps. Along with the straight lines of the furniture, they lend the space a modern and masculine edge to balance the pastels and prettiness.

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Ikea’s ever-practical Hemnes dresser is a clean-lined chameleon, changing according to the hardware you put on it. We upgraded this one using gorgeous china knobs with a gold pattern from Anthropologie. And after trying out 4 different table lamps, we went with a wood one to break up all the glossy white with something organic.

7The bench was slated for the foot of the bed, until we found these brass and marble hooks from Anthropologie. Teamed with a fuzzy sheepskin and a pair of eye-catching laundry baskets, all the pieces make up a dressing area vignette – and my client’s chicest handbags and pretty floral robe became art!

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Photographs by Tessa Neustadt

SOURCES
Melrose Trading Post flea market – vintage bedside chests (painted Behr Swiss Coffee)
Ikea – Hemnes 8-drawer dresser, Ranarp bedside lamps, Omvaxlande tray, Rens faux sheepskin, Ensidig vase
Anthropologie – Byzantine knobs (dresser hardware), Circlet brass and marble wall hooks
Target – table lamp and shade, bench, rug, throw pillow (none are still available!)
World Market – Watercolor Ogee quilt and shams, Valeria frame, cloche candle, baskets
Allposters.com – Bermuda reproduction vintage poster, framed
Bed Bath & Beyond – bed-skirt
Joann Fabrics – headboard foam and fabric
Home Depot – headboard frame materials
Clients’ own bed, linens and drapes

Show Me Three // Wishbone Chairs

Portraits of Danish merchants sitting in Chinese Ming-style chairs inspired mid-century furniture designer Hans Wegner in his design of the iconic Wishbone chair. This is why faithfully crafted or inexpensively knocked off, this style works to give a room a combination of Scandinavian minimalism and exotic flair. The bentwood form is sculptural, and the rush-seat offers an interesting textural contrast.

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HIGH // Wegner CH24 Wishbone Chair // Danish Design Store // $1,000

 

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MID // CH24 Wishbone Chair  // Hive Modern // $600

 

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LOW // Baxton Studio Wood Dining Chair // Overstock // $170

A Wishbone could be a dining chair or an occasional chair, and although I’m showing you wood tones here, colorful versions abound. A set of Wishbone-style bar stools in a white painted finish is at the top of my wishlist this Christmas!

 

 

 

Take Me Away // Napa Valley Working Vacation Weekend

A design project in the Napa Valley had been a long-held little dream of mine, and in 2015 it has come true twice! Earlier this year, it was the tasting room for a small winery in St. Helena. And then this Fall, I started collaborating with a dear friend on her lovely new cottage in Napa. This is a picture of the bungalow where Emily used to live. So charming, and the scene of many good times over the years. We want more of that feel with the new place – an unpretentious warmth.

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Emily’s new house doesn’t come with quite this much vintage character, but it is on its way to revealing its own charms. After a few weeks of Pinterest back-and-forth based on floor-plans and pictures, last weekend I made an overnight trip of it and finally met the house in person. Amid the beautiful distractions of the Napa Valley and time with my friend, the mission was to review design progress, develop some ideas further, and of course get some good shopping done.

IMG_4876I was very pleased about some key pieces of new furniture that had arrived. It’s no secret that I am obsessed with these dhurrie chairs, and this is my favorite colorway.  I adore these hues and that texture paired with the copper Martini table. Emily was initially a bit skeptical when I pinned this chair, but now it’s true love.

IMG_4877This gem of a bentwood rocker was picked up at an estate sale, and Emily is in the midst of re-finishing it. We decided on a rich black stain to contrast with some of the other furniture in more naturally finished woods. It is such a gorgeously sculptural chair, and is going to look great next to a big plant.

IMG_4933This is part of a gallery wall for which I did a preliminary lay-out. Emily has a fair amount of art that she has collected in 20 years of travel, and I love that it’s a mix of media including textiles and photography. We sorted through it all and made decisions about how to frame and hang the best pieces.

To wrap up Day One of our work, it had to be a dinner at one of my favorites in Downtown Napa, Angele Emily and I sat at the bar, where the people-watching and eavesdropping was almost as good as the food and wine!IMG_4892

And then we saw Janeane Garafolo, who I hadn’t really thought about in years, do standup at City Winery. Since Emily and I became friends in college in the 90’s (probably J.G.’s heyday, as far as high-profile work goes), nostalgia made us curious to check out her current act. Happy to say we laughed a lot – her comedy held up!

Day Two was all about shopping. The Napa-Vallejo Flea Market turned out to be NOT what we had imagined (at all!), so we quickly moved on to sourcing vintage furniture online. I introduced Emily to the world of bidding on Ebay. (We missed out on a sweet midcentury credenza, and then found an even better one and won it for a steal!)

Then Emily showed me the brick and mortar stores in Napa that she has been prowling for inspiration.  Poor House is my new favorite, with so many pieces that looked made for my aesthetic – a perfect mix of simplicity and distinctive details.IMG_4923So inspired by everything in the vignette above, from the quilted leather of the chair, to the streak of red on the desk!
IMG_4921The swooping lines and rich walnut finish of the lounge-y chair (above) caught my eye, as did these bar-stools, which hit just the right “warm industrial” note for me with the leather and the leg details.IMG_4915

Antiques on Second is a store I will return to with a truck one day.
IMG_4909I have such a weakness for campaign furniture. My current projects have no room for this folding bench, but I want somebody to give it a home in an entry hall or covered loggia. IMG_4910These chairs also deserve a good home. That green! So much character. I’m going to run with this idea sometime for sure.

Before I knew it, it was Sunday evening and time to head home to L.A.. My farewell to Napa and Emily was made less sad by the spectacular sunset we got to accompany us on the drive to the airport.

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I’m not allowed to show up at home after a trip without a special little surprise for my kids, so I made sure to stop at The Roost Napa on my way out to look for gifts. Here’s one I found for myself!

IMG_5042I was going to have so much remorse if I didn’t buy this tote bag. My passion for its playful print is unbridled!! And it will always remind me of this special little trip.IMG_5027

And I didn’t forget my girls, who got these awesome finger puppets. They were only a buck each, and the details are wonderful. As expected, they were a hit with this little monster.
IMG_5022Weekend Mission Accomplished! A bit of work, a bit of play, and lots of fresh inspiration for this project and my work next year. Thanks, Emily!!

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Scouted! // Floor Lamps at Target

I’m at Target frequently out of household necessity, so naturally, I scout the furniture and accessories each time. Over the past 5 years or so, it has gotten better and better. This season, they are particularly nailing it with the floor lamp offerings. I’m seeing the kinds of modern classic styles I have been pinning for years, at a crazy low price point.

seededglass

1.// Threshold Seeded Glass Industrial Floor Lamp $89.99

crosbyschoolhouse2.// Threshold Crosby Schoolhouse Floor Lamp – Black $49.99

adjustablependant3.// Threshold Adjustable Drop Pendant Floor Lamp – Ebony $89.99

goldtripod

4.// Threshold Tripod Floor Lamp – Antique Brass $79.99

oaktripod

5.// Threshold Oak Wood Tripod Floor Lamp $79.99

goldarc

6.// Threshold Globe Arc Floor Lamp – Antique Brass $129.99

So many rooms out there are hurting for light, or at least a tall piece with a bit of presence. These are my picks for solid styles at a super-reasonable price.

Scouted // Galbraith and Paul Wallpaper

I am currently working on two different projects where a special wallpaper has been called for, and in each one, Galbraith and Paul‘s exquisite Lotus has been the answer. pink orange

For me, the 16 dazzling color combinations make the wallpaper a possibility for all kinds of interiors where exotic can meet contemporary.

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This pattern can skew Traditional, Modern or Bohemian…I can imagine it in the most casual room of one kind of house, or the fanciest room of another kind of house.

purple pink

And it comes as a hand-block printed textile as well!

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This is from a Master Bedroom design I am looking forward to bringing to life after a client’s remodel next Spring. The wallpaper will be a feature wall behind the bed. So excited about this one!!

IMG_4074Galbraith & Paul produces their wallpapers and textiles at their studio workshop in Philadelphia. They have plenty of beautiful patterns. Lotus is just my current obsession!

Design Details // Metal Stair Rails with a Twist

My love for stair details is true. I have written about spiral staircases here and hereand about interesting stair risers here and here. Now let’s talk about stair rails – necessary for safety, and a huge opportunity to make a design statement!

stepped

The part you hold onto is called the handrail. The part that keeps you from falling out the side is called the balustrade. It’s made up of balusters, and this is where the fun can be on a set of stairs. There are so many ways you can go other than wood spindle. These are my favorites crafted in metal.

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round

 

bubbles

 

rectangles

 

iron lace iron lace detailAll the images above can be linked back to where I found them via my Pinterest page on the “Stairs” board.

 

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Show Me Three // Lucite Chairs

Whether a room is colorful or has a neutral palette, there may be a place for an acrylic glass piece. Lucite might work in a range of interior styles, but for me it can only be in a small dose, such as a console table or a single chair. Here are three such chairs we found this week – possibilities to pair with a writing table in a serene Master Bedroom retreat.

HIGH // Juliette Lucite Chair // Mod Shop // $1000

Lucite Mid

MID // Louis Ghost Armchair // DWR // $430

 Lucite Low

LOW // Vapor Acrylic Chair // CB2 // $180

Since a Lucite chair is sleek and transparent, I like to pair it with something opposite. A fuzzy sheepskin throw…a rustic wood desk…that is my kind of Minimalism.

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Recently Completed // Woodland Nursery Preview

Nurseries for friends instantly get “pet project” status with me!  Whether this baby would be a boy or a girl was to be a complete surprise, so every choice had to be loosely gender-neutral. We also had to incorporate a dark wood crib and dresser, handed down from two older siblings, and make them feel fresh – and maybe a bit softer. As I shared concept ideas from all over the map, the already glowing mama lit up over this gorgeous Sleeping Fox rug from Anthropologie. I love the tone it set: playful, yet soothing – with lots of nuanced color for us to riff on elsewhere in the design.

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1. Multi Dots Bin // Petit Pehr 2. Alice in Wonderland Print // Etsy 3. Velveteen Rabbit Print // Etsy 4. Harry Potter “Always” Watercolor Print // Etsy 5. Where the Wild Things Are Print // Etsy 6. Moravian Star Pendant // ATG Stores 7. Silent Fox Rug // Anthropologie 8. Garland // Land of Nod 9. Laura Frisk Woodland Creatures Pillows // Etsy 10. Tanga Toggle Knob // Anthropologie

We picked a warm white for the walls (Ralph Lauren Paint’s Tibetan Jasmine) as a quiet neutral backdrop for colorful focal points. Craftsman Greg Mauro built custom library display shelves for the walls, which we painted in a gradient of Ralph Lauren greens. I am looking forward to posting a picture when the project is professionally shot. In the meantime, here are the paint chips. These are good woodsy, leafy greens.FullSizeRender (2)

Personal touches are really what make a nursery design special, and I love finding out about what is meaningful to my clients. The art we sourced from Etsy was based on the family’s favorite children’s books. You just can’t go wrong with Alice riding a flamingo!

Nursery collage

New hardware elevated the old dresser, and broke up the heaviness of the piece with a contrasting white. Some fun felt garland strung over the crib brought the exuberance. And World Market had this adorable set of owl hooks for $14. Whoot!

Nursery hardware

A beautiful set of hand-made wood-block print pillows by artist Laura Frisk was the finishing touch, and another affordable custom element. I got to pick the colors for each creature, so everything is cohesive with the rug.

IMG_2732 And how cute is this? It was a lovely touch, included with the pillows by Laura Frisk. I love supporting talented artist-entrepreneurs!
FullSizeRender (4)A little cherub now dwells in this woodland wonderland nursery. It’s a girl – with an adorably gender-neutral name! I think this spirited but sweet design suits her very well.

Thanks to her mama for allowing me to share the details!

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Design Inspirer // Mark Khaisman

Mark Khaisman is a Ukrainian artist whose work delights me.

Khaisman 1His medium is packing tape and plexiglass!  And he bends it all to the light in such a nuanced and brilliant way.

Khaisman artist

The effect is mesmerizing and beautiful, and I am hooked by the subjects of his portraits – often my favorite classic movie stars. It makes Khaismain’s art feel soothingly familiar, yet totally innovative.

Sean Connery… swoon!Mark Khaisman Sean

“Mark Khaisman treasures the alchemy whereby a commonplace material is transformed into a fine art medium because he sees it as enabling him to deconstruct the hierarchy of culture by filtering it through association with mundane material.”  (via Wikipedia)

This installation reminds me of Versailles, Grey Gardens…and every time in my grown-up life that I have packed up and moved!Mark Khaisman installation

Artists like Khaisman inspire me to explore my crazier design ideas.

mark Khaisman phone I would design a room around any of these pieces in a heartbeat.

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 Images sourced here.

 

Catch Natasha Jansz on HGTV's "HOUSE HUNTER'S RENOVATION" October 28th 10pm/9c