Filigree and Fretwork

Maybe it's a continuation of the lace trend, but I'm seeing a lot of openwork in products and home design, especially with filigree and fretwork.

 Boco do Lobo

Boco do Lobo

Both of these forms of design work have been around for millennia. Ancient Romans turned filigree - tiny beads and twisted wires all made of metal - into a fine art form. And Ancient Egyptians used fretwork to create decorative passages that allowed cooling breezes to pass through or provided privacy.

 Lorenzo Pennati

Lorenzo Pennati

Modern designers are rediscovering these fabulous open patterns for today's lifestyles, with swirling loops of metal, or laser-cut geometric patterns.

 Shades of Light

Shades of Light

The looks can be delicate and feminine like in the pendant above, or bold and beautiful like the screens below.

 Silian Art Gallery in London by Miles and Lincoln

Silian Art Gallery in London by Miles and Lincoln

I love people who are taking these older crafts and using them in new ways, like designer Julie Bradshaw who added a stunning metal fret to the cabinet doors below.

 Bradshaw Designs

Bradshaw Designs

And these sliding doors below from Summer Thornton are a brilliant way to hide or reveal the shelves in this room! Notice the classical details that speak to this trend's historical roots.

Summer Thornton.jpg

What do you think about filigree and fretwork? Let me know in the comments!

Warmly,

Beth

Behind the Scenes: My Kitchen Inspiration

I'm SO excited to give you an inside look at what we're planning for my new home! I've been thinking about what we would love to change over the last 10 months since Hurricane Harvey hit, and now that we're at the demolition stage, it's all becoming so real!

 DiNunzio Architecture

DiNunzio Architecture

As you can see in the sketch above from our amazing architect, Carlo DiNunzio, I'm keeping the galley format of the kitchen. But we're expanding the space into what was originally a sitting area. That will give me more cabinet space and will allow me to add a wine service area and a fabulous island. 

 The demolition

The demolition

You can just see a peek of the Calacatta Gold marble we had in the original kitchen. I loved it, but it didn't survive the flooding and then the demolition. I'm thinking about transitional cabinetry with porcelain or quartz for a more modern look. Oh, and do you see those old french doors on the left?

 Sarah Johnson

Sarah Johnson

I'm thinking of adding a folding wall from Nana to really open the kitchen up and flood it with light! You can see an inspiration photo above - more modern than the kitchen I'll have, but you can see how beautiful a folding wall can be.

 Beth Lindsey Interior Design

Beth Lindsey Interior Design

I actually found another bit of inspiration in the house I designed for Brother vs. Brother on HGTV! I loved the floating shelves we put into the coastal kitchen, so I'm considering having this idea in my new space, too.

I may have an all-white kitchen - it's just so classic and clean. But I am open to color, too. What color would YOU choose for the cabinetry? So many decisions and so many wonderful ideas! Stay tuned for the final results later this year!

Warmly,

Beth

Gorgeous Gardens

As you know if you've been reading my blog, I'm starting on a recovery/remodel of my house 10 months after Hurricane Harvey flooded it, along with thousands of others in my home city. One part of our home that I can't wait to see revive is the outdoor areas. We live on a golf course, so there's always something green and gorgeous nearby, but I miss my plants, trees, and flowers! So I'm looking for a little outdoor inspiration!

 Landscape artist Tim Stoddard, via Atlanta homes & Lifestyles

Landscape artist Tim Stoddard, via Atlanta homes & Lifestyles

I do love a garden gate covered in flowering vines - it says welcome like nothing else can!

11.jpg

I also like the idea of defining paths with a combination of gravel and cobblestones, as you see in the garden above.

13.jpg

While I'm waiting for the plantings in our yard to mature and fill in, I would love to have stunning containers like these woven baskets for blooms to brighten our day! 

14.jpg

Since we're starting over again from scratch, it might be fun to try a single color theme! The hard part would be choosing which color....

And of course we'll need places to sit and enjoy the new garden - that's really the best part, right? I'm so looking forward to having our home back, and to enjoying those outdoor spaces!

To see more of my ideas and inspirations, visit my pinboard here!

Warmly,

Beth

Behind the Scenes: Renovation Sketchbook

There are often silver linings in the darkest clouds, and although we've been through a lot since Hurricane Harvey hit 10 months ago, I'm definitely seeing the brighter skies ahead! In today's edition of my ongoing renovation series, we get to talk about all of the fun planning I've been doing for our rebuilt home. I've been lucky enough to work with innovative architect Carlo DiNunzio to reimagine our living spaces.

 The "cocktail napkin method"

The "cocktail napkin method"

Carlo has a unique service called Cocktail Napkin Architecture. This process allows him to help with existing floor plans when the client isn't adding any square footage. He says: "Sometimes a sketch is all you need."

 Sketching out my new home.

Sketching out my new home.

I won't be adding any square footage to our 3,000-square-foot house, so this was the perfect partnership for me. I love Carlo's dynamic designs, so I couldn't wait to jump in and get started!

 Goodbye curving staircase!

Goodbye curving staircase!

So what are we planning at this point? The kitchen will remain a galley, but I am taking over the sitting area and adding additional cabinetry and a longer working island, which should make the kitchen feel larger. I'm also replacing the curved wall staircase you can see above. I am sure it was fabulous in the ‘60s - now not so much!

The master bath and closet are small, so I will take in the master study to have a larger bath and closet. I'll also rework the powder and guest bath, remove the fireplace hearth and replace with plaster, and we'll update the overall traditional design with more transitional cabinetry and modern art to give it an up-to-date look.

Whew! It's a lot, but it's also exciting! Stay tuned in the coming weeks as I walk you through each room's makeover.

Warmly,

Beth

The Digital Age of Design

I'm so lucky to have such a world-class museum practically in my backyard, and I'm excited to see an upcoming exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston that makes its debut on June 24. Joris Laarman Lab: Design in the Digital Age focuses on a Dutch experimental artist who is creating incredible furniture designs using the latest technology, like robots and 3D printing.

  Aluminum Gradient Chair ,   Joris Laarman, laser-sintered aluminum

Aluminum Gradient Chair, Joris Laarman, laser-sintered aluminum

Even though he uses cutting-edge production processes, like digital fabrication and robotics, Laarman says he is most inspired by nature, so his pieces still have a lot of organic beauty.

  Branch Bookshelf,  Joris Laarman, in bronze

Branch Bookshelf, Joris Laarman, in bronze

I'm really intrigued by the 3D printing process and how it can create objects that are beautfiul but also functional for the home.

   Kilovoxel, Mega & Giga Voxel Tables , Joris Laarman, nickle-plated neodymium 3D voxels

 Kilovoxel, Mega & Giga Voxel Tables, Joris Laarman, nickle-plated neodymium 3D voxels

I love looking into the future of design and finding new ideas and inspirations! If you're in Houston before Sept. 16, be sure to see this incredible exhibit!

Warmly,

Beth

Behind the Scenes: After the Hurricane Hit

Ten months ago, Hurricane Harvey hit my home city of Houston, dumping over 50 inches of rain and causing $125 billion dollars in damage. I haven't really talked about the impact of the hurricane on me, my family, and my business because so many others lost their lives and so much more than we did. And people are still struggling to recover from last year's hurricanes, especially in Puerto Rico. In fact, I would like to encourage anyone reading my blog to make donations to those who are in need. Click here to make donations for Houston, and here for Puerto Rico.

It's interesting to be in the "home business" and to see the rebuilding in my city from that perspective. I'm finally ready for the renovations on my own home and I'm going to give you a behind-the-scenes look in a regular series here on my blog, with a big reveal by year's end of my home's new look.

 My home immediately after Harvey.

My home immediately after Harvey.

After the hurricane hit, the water had nowhere to go. I had over 3 feet of water in my house, which is on a golf course. But we were lucky because the water receded after only 2 days - for some people, it was a much longer wait.

The entire downstairs was damaged - entry, living, dining, kitchen, powder bath, study, master bedroom, master bath, laundry, and master study. You can see where the water line stopped. There was so much that was damaged and a lot of clean up needed to be done. All the drywall, flooring, furniture, and clothing that was damaged across the city created 8 million cubic yards of garbage. That's enough to fill the Texans' stadium up...twice.

We tried to salvage what we could, rehabbing appliances that would still work, having antiques refinished, and drying rugs and draperies when we could. We have not been able to live in the house since the storm and flooding 10 months ago, so it's given me a lot of time to plan out what I want to do differently this time.

IMG_1268.JPG

Ironically, I had already started thinking about a renovation on this house. I just probably wouldn't have done as much as Harvey did for me. So why has it taken me 10 months to really start on this project? 

IMG-0451.JPG

The city of Houston was devastated during Harvey. You would think being in the industry it would be super-easy to line up a contractor and subs to start working on my house. But with so many people needing help, I decided to wait a few months to start. I thought we would begin in January. Around December it was pushed back to the end of March, and now it will be the end of July before we can begin.

IMG-0443.JPG

Over 135,000 homes were damaged or destroyed in Houston. This has had a ripple effect in our industry with a shortage of workers and supplies, higher prices, and time delays, which is frustrating for everyone. But I'm lucky - I've had a place to stay during this process, and I do have contacts with great teams to help us in rebuliding our home.

IMG_1122.JPG

Next Monday, I'll talk a bit about my plans for the new house, and the incredible architect I'll be partnering with to make it all happen. It will be exciting to see my home - and so much of Houston - recovering this year! Stay tuned!

Warmly,

Beth

Travel Inspiration

Memorial Day has come and gone, so that means summer travel season is officially here!  One of the reasons I love to travel is the endless inspiration the world provides. Even in my favorite return destinations, there is always something new to seen and discovered, and more often than not, that inspiration finds its way into my work, sometimes in something as simple as the green of a landscape.

This summer we have some big things in the works, so getting away might be hard (stay tuned!), so I’m thinking that rather than a big vacation, I might sneak in a weekend getaway or two...

 New Orleans Vernacular Architecture

New Orleans Vernacular Architecture

New Orleans is just around the corner from home, and always provides such inspiration, so it’s always a favorite for a weekend getaway. As you know, it's a city steeped in the arts, so I feel design-turbocharged after even a quick visit. The shotgun houses are so pretty and so lovingly preserved, and combined with the lush greenery everywhere and the romantic wrought iron balustrades in French Quarter, it just feeds my design soul. 

 Tara Shaw, New Orleans

Tara Shaw, New Orleans

I’m also dreaming of a quick visit to Mexico. Sun, sand, seafood and margaritas sound just heavenly to me right now, and Tulum is just a couple hours away by plane. Like New Orleans, the history of the town is like catnip to this designer. Prehistoric ruins and charmingly colorful Colonial Architecture, all while enjoying said sun, sand, and margaritas (and maybe a massage or five thrown in), is travel perfection! How could I not return inspired?

 Tulum

Tulum

 Old Town Tulum.

Old Town Tulum.

Or, maybe I’ll take a break from the heat, and head north to Colorado. I may be an Interior Designer, but I’m also a nature lover so bike rides and hiking up a mountain trail are definitely in my wheelhouse! I also think I may have connection for a place to stay in Telluride, and trust me, this view is just as beautiful when completely covered in verdant green - I should know, as we installed this gorgeous mountain chalet project before the fall/winter high season kicked in, when the peaks weren’t quite so snow-capped!

 Beth Lindsay Interior Design

Beth Lindsay Interior Design

And how about you? I’d love to hear of your summer travel plans! After my busy summer is over (again, please stay tuned!), I’ll need a real vacation, so please send me some exotic vacation inspiration!

Warmly, 

Beth

Let There Be Light!

IMG_0795.JPG

Do I have your attention? I can’t think of any example better to stress the importance of lighting than the iconic Lobmeyer crystal chandeliers at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City. I think when the subject of lighting is brought up, our minds naturally tend to think of chandeliers, after all they are the center of attention in any room!

 David Flint Wood

David Flint Wood

In both the above and below photos, the chandeliers probably caught your eye first, but I’d like to also point out that in each dining room there are a pair of lamps on the sideboards, because the best lighting practice in any room is a layered lighting plan. Rooms should have a variety of light sources, some overhead, and some at eye level or just below eye level, like sconces or table lamps. This is important because having light only overhead is not only unflattering lighting for the human face, it’s also hard on our eyes, so ambient lighting at eye level helps to “fill” a room out, and make the light soothing and more flattering.  Be sure the overhead and the ambient lighting are on dimmers as well. Always better to have multiple low-level light sources rather than one bright light!

 Benjamin Johnston

Benjamin Johnston

Rooms also need task lighting, ie, lights that have a job to specifically light a surface.  Task lighting generally refers to lamps that illuminate a work area, like a desk lamp, but can also refer to a bedside reading lamp or as in the below photo, library sconces used to illuminate the spines of books (or anything, really).

 Urban Electric Co. 

Urban Electric Co. 

In bedrooms particularly, it’s important to include multiple lighting sources. I prefer not to overly rely in overhead lighting, and instead have table lamps, floor lamps, and sconces placed anywhere someone might read a book, like at the sides of the bed and next to a chair. And, yes, even in the age of  illuminated screens on phones and tablets, reading or task lighting to write a note or read a book is still a rule that must be followed!  

 Beth Lindsey Interior Design

Beth Lindsey Interior Design

There are so many creative and important ways to use lighting within a specific room, that I’ll have to revisit the subject in another post, maybe one devoted specifically to kitchens and baths, but in the meantime, I’ll leave you with this incredibly cool staircase and stair rail lighting combo. So dramatic! 

 Massimo Iosa Ghini

Massimo Iosa Ghini

For more lighting inspiration, please visit my “Light It Up” Pinterest board. 

Warmly, 

Beth

A Real Life Fairytale

A show of hands, please - who was up with me in the wee-early hours of Saturday morning, crying tears of joy viewing the fairytale-come-true wedding of Meghan Markle to Prince Harry? 

IMG_0802.JPG

Who would have thought that a picture perfect American girl of humble lineage would grow up to fall madly in love with a real life Prince Charming? If I watched a movie with the same story, I wouldn’t have believed the plot for one second, but there I was, watching with the rest of the world, as the fairytale was made real in front of our eyes. The emotions between the newlyweds made the reality of the event sink in - this was two real people, in very real love, and sharing their joy with the rest of the world.

IMG_0801.JPG

So what does this have to do with design? Everything was just perfection - her Givenchy gown, his dress uniform, the florals, the chapel! There was so much inspiration from the fabrics to the architecture.

IMG_0803.JPG

And when I thought I couldn’t be more overwhelmed by it all, they changed outfits, and went from old-fashioned fairytale, to modern, gorgeous, glamour. I adored her sleek Stella McCartney look for the reception.

IMG_0800.JPG

To cap things off, they hopped into my all-time favorite classic car, a Jaguar E-type convertible to speed to the reception. I didn’t expect that when I saw the images later in the day, and it certainly brought a smile to my face.

IMG_0804.JPG

I’m so happy for the new couple, and so glad they shared their day with the rest of us. A bit of fun and romance is always welcome, isn’t it? Best wishes for a lifetime of happiness, Meghan and Harry! And thanks for the inspiration!

Warmly, 

Beth

Commercial Design

Few things have shaken up the world of residential design as much as the advent of “experience design” in the world of commercial design. When I started in the business, no one came to me and said, “I want my home to feel like the Four Seasons, or the Plaza Hotel,” but since the rise of the boutique hotel and the destination restaurant, there has been a huge crossover between residential and commercial design, and that’s good thing!

I don’t think most of my clients want their homes to look like the last hotel they stayed in, with a reception desk and valet, but it does give them a wider vocabulary to express what they do and don’t like, which wasn’t available 20 years ago, except in magazines. A client can now say: "I had lunch at Leo’s Oyster Bar in San Francisco, and it was like eating in the jungle! Could we do something similar in my breakfast room?"

 Leo’s Oyster Bar

Leo’s Oyster Bar

I can definitely hear a client say “I stayed at a hotel in LA where the sitting room was really graphic and modern. I didn’t think I’d like something like that, but I did. Think we could do something similar in my media room?”

 The Chamberlain

The Chamberlain

I can’t tell you how excited I get when a client says things like that to me, mostly because being exposed to fabulous restaurants and hotels makes them eager to try new things, and not just want a cookie-cutter home like their neighbors. I recently featured a photo of a day spa I designed in a post on ceilings, but I would be tickled pink if one of my clients saw the spa, and said “That chandelier, that ceiling! Can we do something similar in my dining room?” 

 Beth Lindsay Interior Design

Beth Lindsay Interior Design

We designers also get excited about cool restaurants and hotels, because these establishments really showcase our fellow designers pulling out all the stops, sort of like how you might not wear a couture outfit from a Dior fashion show, but when you see the same beading detail on a simpler dress, it speaks to you because you are reminded of the spectacular couture creation.

Now would I hang 4 dozen mismatched baskets in somebody’s home? Probably not. But 3 or 4 mismatched baskets hung over sweetly patterned tufted chairs in a beach retreat eating area? Sign me up!

 The Ham Yard

The Ham Yard

Now if you come home from vacation, and decide you want a 3-story lobby/atrium as your living room, I can’t do that for you without an architect and a year-and-a-half of your life for construction, but I can give you elements of what you loved - a light and airy color palette and a stunning screen to divide your living room and dining room.

 St. Regis, Doha. 

St. Regis, Doha. 

So be sure to look around when you travel, and take lots of pictures. Inspiration is everywhere!For more commercial space inspiration, please visit my “Commercial Endeavors” Pinterest Board. 

Warmly,

Beth

Deceiving the Eye with Beauty

Tromp l’oeil is a french term for “deceive the eye”, and is a term used in both art and decor for 2D paintings that look as if they are 3D objects, like grapes in a Dutch Old Master painting that look so real you want to reach out and pluck one to eat.

In decor, it’s one of the oldest concepts we have. Thousands of years ago, both the Greeks and the Romans employed trompe l’oeil techniques to make their homes lighter, more colorful, and more lavish than they really were.

 Trompe l’oeil mural, from Pompeii

Trompe l’oeil mural, from Pompeii

In the elaborately carved and ornamented Chateau de Versailles, it’s hard to tell where the real carving and gilding stops and the trompe l’oeil illusions take over. 

 Chateau de Versailles  

Chateau de Versailles  

Of course, though in use for centuries, the popularity of trompe l’oeil in decor is still popular today. In the 1950s, Piero Fornasetti popularized the form on furniture, on everything from cabinets, to wastebaskets, to trays. They were, and still, are highly sought-after! 

 Piero Fornasetti

Piero Fornasetti

Modern artists still practice the form for interiors as well. Can you believe this laurel wreath isn’t actually carved from stone?

 Ian Cairnie

Ian Cairnie

This years Kip’s Bay showhouse featured a room by Alexa Hampton swathed in hand-painted trompe l’oeil fabric wallpaper by de Gournay.

 Alexa Hampton

Alexa Hampton

And as technology moves on, we will be seeing even more trompe l’oeil in our homes and commercial spaces, like this dimensional wallpaper by Kelly Hoppen and Dynamo.

 Kelly Hoppen and Dynamo.

Kelly Hoppen and Dynamo.

Warmly,

Beth

Dynamic Duos: Lucite and Brass

I’m a Texas gal, and that makes loving all things shiny part of my DNA. So today, I’m going to double down on the shine, and discuss not one, but two of my favorite shimmery, reflective materials, lucite and brass.

I just looked up brass on wikipedia because I knew it was an alloy of two metals, but I couldn’t remember which ones (copper and zinc), but I also discovered something I didn’t know, brass has been around for so long it actually predates recorded history! Lucite I knew was a much more modern invention, a clear plastic dating to the 1930’s. Lucite is actually a trade name for the material. Generically, it’s acrylic plastic, but here in the US, the term lucite is pretty interchangeable, like kleenex. The Brits and Aussies do the same, but their trade name is Perspex. 

 Early use of lucite in a curvaceous lucite and brass chair, circa 1930’s.

Early use of lucite in a curvaceous lucite and brass chair, circa 1930’s.

The marriage of old and new materials is appealing, but I like them together because they are just pretty, and add a touch of glam to any room, modern or traditional.

 Rivers Spencer Interiors

Rivers Spencer Interiors

Lucite is also a very dense plastic, and gets very heavy! It’s one of the ways you can tell a quality lucite material from a cheaper acrylic as the more it weighs, the more costly it is. That's why it’s considered a luxury material unlike most plastics. A lucite slab this thick would take a forklift to move. Thankfully, brass is also a dense, strong metal, equal to the challenge of being its partner’s support.

 Fawn Galli

Fawn Galli

Lucite is also known for it’s highly refractive qualities, so light looks pretty when passed through it, so it’s often used as a choice for lighting. The below photo has some pretty lucite and brass bunching tables, which is why I saved it, but that chandelier? I’m 99% certain it’s lucite and brass as well, as circa the 1990s, not murano crystal circa the 1940s or '50s. It looks amazing!

 Ken Fulk

Ken Fulk

Last, I am completely in love with this bedroom by Meg Braff. The chic-ly over-the-top lucite and brass bed is the perfect foil to the other, more traditional elements of the room. I also thought if i ever lived in California, I would want this to be my bed. Lucite and brass are both incredibly strong materials, so this monolithic bed might hold the ceiling up in an earthquake!

 Meg Braff

Meg Braff

For more shiny inspiration, please visit my Dynamic Duos: Lucite and Brass Pinterest board.

Warmly, 

Beth

Hall Monitor

Today I thought I’d talk about one of the overlooked spaces in the home and that's the not-so-humble hallway. This necessary space gets us from place to place, but is often overlooked as a place to bring glamor and beauty to the home, so let’s fix that, shall we? 

Longtime readers of this blog know of my obsession with the great American designer, Dorothy Draper, so I thought I’d start this post with a favorite image from her well-known masterwork, the Greenbriar Hotel. It’s grand, but also happy with all that color, accented by crisp black and white.

 Dorothy Draper

Dorothy Draper

Halls have the ability to be so much more than a pass-through space. If you study the image below, you’ll see just how long the hallway is, and that could be oppressive in a residential space. But Steven Gambrel made this extra-long hall cozy, with built-in shelving and window seat nooks so it doubles as a impromptu library.

 Steven Gambrel

Steven Gambrel

A long hallway can also be a great spot to house a gallery collection of large artworks, here creatively framed multilples of family portraits. Love this idea.

 Studio McGee

Studio McGee

In this hall, the multiple arches and groin vault ceilings were the stars, so I selected an antique Persian runner, and old world lantern-style chandeliers to complement, not compete, with the architecture, and added a few special pieces of furniture and art at the end as a focal point. 

 Beth Lindsay Interior Design

Beth Lindsay Interior Design

The wall of metal casement windows could have made this hallway feel coldly modern, but the designer warmed things up with a pecky cypress ceiling and sliding door for a modern farmhouse chic feel.

 Decor Provence

Decor Provence

Sometimes, a hall is filled with so many doors and openings it’s difficult to decorate, so the choice of a floor runner is key! The pink door and furry friend don’t hurt to liven things up either.

 Via Pinterest

Via Pinterest

For more hallway inspiration, please visit my “Hall Monitor” Pinterest board. 

Warmly, 

Beth

Looking Up

If you find yourself reading this post at home or at work, look up! Chances are most of you will be looking at a plain white ceiling - and there is nothing wrong with that. A plain white ceiling is like a plain white t-shirt, classic and aways in style. Oftentimes though, a bare white ceiling is a missed opportunity to change up the look and feel of a room, so today I thought I’d share some design tips for the "5th wall" of the room.

Because we really do have to *look up* to see them, and thus can’t touch or inspect up close, ceilings provide one of the easiest and cost effective solutions to fool the eye and completely visually change the style of a room. For example, most of us have plain white ceilings for a reason: they reflect light, thus can make a room feel open, light, and airy. But what if we want the opposite? A room to feel cozy and sheltering? Yes, we can simply paint the ceiling a darker color, but that often falls flat. So how about shaking things up a little bit by adding both color and tactile warm by using a grasscloth wallpaper? 

 Lindsay Coral Harper

Lindsay Coral Harper

Tall ceilings are very desirable, yet conversely, also can feel very cold and stark, especially in a small space. So what do you do when you want the best of both worlds? In a recent commercial day spa project, I had this exact issue, so I solved it with a dropped soffit ceiling with a dramatic oval shape, and then painted the original ceiling a deep gray to contrast against the dramatic centerpiece chandelier. Bonus: all sorts of ducting and wiring were cost-effectively hidden behind the dropped soffit, which also pleased my clients!

 Beth Lindsey Interior Design

Beth Lindsey Interior Design

We all love a rustic wood-beamed ceiling, straight out of farmhouse in Tuscany, or the south of France, but just between you and me, if you see them here in the U.S., 9 times out of 10, those structural wood beams were added on after the structure was built, and are purely decorative, not structural at all. And I take the fifth about ever doing so in one of my own projects.

 Beth Lindsey Interior Design

Beth Lindsey Interior Design

Speaking of old world, what’s more dramatic than a tented fabric ceiling? The artist I employed to create a trompe l'oeil (trick the eye) tented ceiling did such a fantastic job in this master bedroom, that it’s better than the real thing!

  Beth Lindsey Interior Design

 Beth Lindsey Interior Design

Old world plaster craftsmen would painstakingly build-up intricate, tracery details in plaster on the ceilings of the great 18th century manor houses in the UK, but today, new world craftsman can do the same with pre-carved wood moldings available at any specialty lumber house. 

 PROjECT Design

PROjECT Design

I’ll close with another favorite designer “trick” that works especially well in light-challenged spaces. Start by embracing the darkness and paint (or paper) a room a deep, moody color, then use a metallic silver or gold leaf wallpaper on the ceiling and turn what light is available in the room into ethereal reflections above, which seem to move with you as inhabit the space. This treatment is particularly affective in entries, powder rooms, and dining rooms. Pure magic.

 Amanda Nisbet

Amanda Nisbet

For more 5th wall inspiration, please visit my “Ceilings” Pinterest board. 

Warmly, 

Beth

Dining Al Fresco

There is nothing I love more on a gorgeous spring evening than enjoying our dinner outside. The weather is perfect and it makes the meal more special. I even have quite a few sets of dinnerware specifically for outdoor dining, and I love making the table look just as special as the one inside.

 Beth Lindsey Interior Design

Beth Lindsey Interior Design

For example, since the outdoor spaces at the house I worked on with Drew Scott for Brother vs. Brother on HGTV was on the water, I used "water colors" of blues and greens. I also used napkin holders with small turtles to add a little coastal whimsy.

 Beth Lindsey Interior Design

Beth Lindsey Interior Design

If you let nature be your guide, you can't go wrong. I love this table designed with magnolia leaves, and individual pots of herbs for the guests.

 The Everyday Hostess

The Everyday Hostess

You can be even more whimsical outside than you can inside your home. I am crazy for this low table with pillows for seats - it creates a fun boho vibe!

 Jessica Capstick

Jessica Capstick

But dining al fresco doesn't have to be so over the top. Think about designing your table around a single color - but always include some form of greenery or florals. After all, you're out in nature!

 I Spy

I Spy

For more fun ideas, see my Tablescapes pinboard!

Warmly,

Beth

Outdoor Spaces

Spring is in full bloom here in Texas, and with our warm climate, that means we can already start to enjoy our backyards and patios, but for much of America, there’s still a window to whip your outdoor spaces into shape before summer is here! So today, I thought I’d do a round up of outdoor living spaces for inspiration.

The key word for any outdoor space is “comfort.” Outdoor living spaces should always say “pull up a chair and make yourself at home.” They should be spaces for afternoon naps, or late night conversations over wine and candlelight... both of which I kept in mind when I designed outdoor living areas for Drew Scott, on HGTV’s Brother vs Brother.

 Beth Lindsay Interior Design

Beth Lindsay Interior Design

I wish I could take a nap on the softly swinging daybed we designed, but we designers rarely get to nap in the spaces we create! And the casual deck living area below was designed with sunset and evening cocktails in mind! You’ll note that the comfort theme is present in both spaces: lots of outdoor fabric pillows and throws, and plenty of candles to keep things enchanting in the warm evenings. 

IMG_0522.JPG

Don’t forget to add shade to some of your outdoor living space so it can be enjoyed on warm summer mornings and afternoons.

 Alexander Design

Alexander Design

Your existing landscaping can provide shade as well, and I love the idea of hanging lanterns from a mature tree like on this California terrace. 

 Nickey-Kehoe

Nickey-Kehoe

I honestly don’t know how much outdoor entertaining they did in 1772 when this house was built, but I’m sure the new owners do quite a bit with the modern update of a bluestone paver terrace. Old World meets new.

 Cameron Schwabenton

Cameron Schwabenton

A fireplace, like in this gorgeous loggia, is the ultimate in outdoor comfort, and it extends the life of this chic outdoor living room from early spring to late fall (note the ceiling fans for dead-of-summer heat as well).

 Markham Roberts

Markham Roberts

For more outdoor living inspiration, please visit my “Outdoor Spaces” Pinterest page!

Warmly,

Beth

The Perfect Pantry

Spring is here, so what better time to do a little spring cleaning by organizing your kitchen pantry? We all know they become caches of half-used bags of raw walnuts and a 1/2 cup of quinoa that seemed wasteful to throw out. Time to get rid of the detritus of baking projects past, and start fresh! In honor of pantry spring cleaning, I thought I’d bring you a few images of beautiful pantries to inspire...

Every kitchen needs a pantry, whether a large cupboard, a shelved closet or a true, bona fide butler’s pantry, with counters and a sink for food prep. We all need somewhere to store kitchen items and bulk foods - from the 12 packs we buy at Costco to the mixer we may only use at the holidays, and everything in between! 

 Bell Kitchen and Bath

Bell Kitchen and Bath

For me, the key to the success of a pantry big or small, lies in plenty of open shelving of various heights and depths. Some shelves need to be deep to hold large items, but others need to be shallow, so everything can easily be seen. I recommend the deepest shelves be near the ground or the very top of your space. Since big bulky items are often least used, putting them near the ceiling makes sense, and heavy items can be placed near the ground for easy lifting. 

 Oh Happy Day

Oh Happy Day

For storage of bulk food, glass containers are a must so the ingredients are instantly identifiable. For the same reason, I prefer open-wire baskets for catchalls - straw baskets merely hide what you're looking for, and that defeats the idea of organizing!

 Crate and Barrel

Crate and Barrel

I love the idea for lid storage on the back of a pantry door, as I always seem to be missing the lid for some of my favorite pots!

 Cooking World

Cooking World

I particularly love the idea of a walk-in pantry with countertop access for small appliances, as I like to keep my kitchen counters as uncluttered as possible. Even a large kitchen can feel small with too many countertop gadgets!

 Zillow

Zillow

The ultimate walk-in pantry for me, in addition to plenty of storage shelving and countertops, also has a sink for easy clean-ups. Think of it as a kitchen within a kitchen! This vintage butler’s pantry is like a dream. Look at all that storage! And while not a huge fan of glass cupboards in the kitchen because one has to keep them “styled,” in a pantry they make perfect sense to always easily find what you need.

 Homes and Gardens

Homes and Gardens

For more pantry inspiration, please visit my “Organization” Pinterest board!

Warmly,

Beth

April Showers

The best part of the day for me is when I step into my morning shower. I love the time spent showering to plan the day ahead and wash away the cobwebs left from last night’s dreams. Which is why, for me at least, a beautiful and comfortable shower space is tops on my list of home necessities. Today I thought we’d look at the elements needed for the perfect shower.

Of course, of primary importance is the shower head itself. Do you prefer a rain shower from the ceiling? A standard adjustable wall mount? A handheld shower? Multiple heads from ceiling and wall? It’s all personal preference, so no wrong answers here. As for the look of the hardware, I’m always of the mind that bath hardware should either look like it’s been there since indoor plumbing was invented, or so sleek, it looks like it arrived from the future. 

 Early 1900’s inspiration from Drummond’s UK

Early 1900’s inspiration from Drummond’s UK

 Sleek modernism by Gessi

Sleek modernism by Gessi

For years, the standard has been a frameless glass enclosure for a stand alone shower.

 Erin Gates Design/Elements of Style

Erin Gates Design/Elements of Style

Open showers have been gaining in popularity, and can really open up a space.Perfect for a minimalist aesthetic.

 Joanna Laajisto

Joanna Laajisto

And the steel framed shower enclosure is a very hot trend right now.

 Jenny Wolf via Traditional Home

Jenny Wolf via Traditional Home

A bench is a must in the the master bath, or at least a small stool. This shower has both! 

IMG_0478.JPG

Last, a storage niche is always a good thing to include. I try (when possible) to make sure the niche is on a side wall, so it’s not the focal point of the shower- no need to showcase your shampoo brand!

 Walker Zanger- Note the nearly invisible niches on both sides of the shower!

Walker Zanger- Note the nearly invisible niches on both sides of the shower!

For more shower inspiration, please visit my “Bath and Beauty” Pinterest board.

Warmly,

Beth

Making a (Back)Splash

When designing a kitchen, the biggest expense by far is kitchen cabinetry. But for dollars spent vs. visual impact, the biggest decision to make is the not-so-humble backsplash. Yes, the backsplash serves a functional purpose as an easily-cleaned surface, but visually it sets the tone for the entire kitchen. It can be simple or as grand as you like, it’s all up to you and your designer, but it’s one of the most important decisions you’ll make.

 Brass backsplash, Kelly Wearstler, Elle Decor

Brass backsplash, Kelly Wearstler, Elle Decor

Most people think of tile when they think of a backsplash, but your choices are not limited to to tile alone. Any hard surface can work - tile, stone, glass, metal, even sealed wood (not recommended near the stove). A rule of thumb is anything you can see being used on the floor can be used on a wall as a backsplash!

 Delft Mural Backsplash, Lori May Interiors

Delft Mural Backsplash, Lori May Interiors

Sometimes, the best decision can be to keep your materials simple, particularly in an open plan kitchen. In a modern farmhouse kitchen I recently completed, I kept things minimal and cohesive but also luxurious by choosing a heavily veined marble for both counters and backsplash and matched the cabinetry paint colors to complement. Pro-tip: there are infinite colors of paint, so select your hard surfaces like backsplash, counters, and floor first, then coordinate paint.

 Beth Lindsey Interior Design

Beth Lindsey Interior Design

Sometimes you want your backsplash to be the statement, so that’s the time to co crazy with color! 

 Megan Hudacky via Coco & Kelly

Megan Hudacky via Coco & Kelly

Now the next photo has something in common with the jewel-toned kitchen above - can you guess what it is? They both used classic subway tile, but in unexpected ways! The white subway in a vertical running bond pattern below, makes the most inexpensive of tiles looks fresh presented in a brand new way. The blue tiled wall above is a smaller size of subway tile, in delicious matte colors, arranged in a modified basket weave bond. I love the idea of new ways of seeing an old look!

 Lotta Agaton

Lotta Agaton

Another luxurious look with a relatively inexpensive material is to use antique-look mirror for the backsplash. This is a favorite trick of mine in small, galley kitchens as it makes the space seem open and infinite, and looks particularly good with today’s dramatic black kitchen trend.

 Boscolo London

Boscolo London

Last, don’t be afraid to do the unexpected with your backsplash. This modern farmhouse kitchen used square tiles with a delicate decorative pattern that could have easily overwhelmed the space. Randomly interspersing the pattern with plain white squares helps keep the minimal, Scandinavian design aesthetic.

 Lars Bolander

Lars Bolander

For more backsplash inspiration, please visit my “Tile Talk” Pinterest board!

Warmly, 

Beth

Marvelous Mudrooms

April showers may bring May flowers, but they also bring muddy sneakers, boots, and paws! There's a perfectly named room that takes care of that, as well as backpacks, coats, sports gear, and everything people drop as they come in the door - and that's the mudroom!

I love well-planned and well-designed mudrooms, like this gorgeous space in ever-rainy England. The standouts are the sophisticated dentil molding at the ceiling, and the gorgeous reclaimed stone floors. Very English and very classic. If a mudroom could be described as dreamy, it would be this one.

 Artichoke

Artichoke

Now let’s talk about mudroom reality. For busy and/or growing families, a mudroom where everyone has a cubby for their stuff, is really a necessity. When kids are getting ready for school, or coming home from a game, there is a spot for everything and everyone knows their spot!

 The Whole House

The Whole House

Now, what do you do without a dedicated mudroom at all? Get creative with hooks and shelves and turn a wall behind a door into a mini-mudroom!

 The DIY Mommy

The DIY Mommy

I’m enamored with the idea of a mudroom/laundry room, especially with littles in the house. You can strip them down and throw their adorably grass- and mud-stained clothing right into the wash! 

 OneKinDesign

OneKinDesign

And if there is anywhere that needs a mudroom it’s a ski lodge, so this rustic beauty caught my eye.

 Peace Design

Peace Design

We began with a dreamy mudroom, so we’ll close with an elegant mudroom. This luxurious spot meets all the mudroom needs for storage and functionality, but it’s so beautiful, I feel like I’d want to hang out in it for cocktails. And can we talk about those amazing light fixtures? 

 S.B. Long Interiors

S.B. Long Interiors

Please visit my Organization Pinterest board for more mudroom inspiration! 

Warmly,

Beth