Long Lake House Refresh: e-design plans

I've been working on a design plans for a custom home on Long Lake in Northern Michigan.  My clients are tired of their brown and red decor, and ready for a refresh.

Let's start with the lighting.  If you're a regular reader you know that lighting is one of my passions.  Did you know you could be passionate about lighting? ;-) It's true.  Switching out your fixtures can have a huge impact on your design.  My goal in this plan was to de-Tuscan this home.  My clients like clean and modern (think Jeff Lewis) but are always entertaining and have children, so we want to it be warm and friendly.  

My plan was to add a little sparkle without going glam.  They have numerous colors going on in the kitchen between the counters and the cabinets, which is why I went with glass and nickel.  I didn't want to add any further pattern to the room.  Plus with glass, the light will fill the huge room and tall ceilings.

You can see by this photo that changing the lighting will create an entirely new vibe in this kitchen.

We are also changing out the bar stools, dining room set, and rug.

I'm proposing these woven, textured, bar stools in ivory.  I wish I could show you the close-up of the fabric, but it has an tiny basket-weave look.

I was looking for a clean lined dining table that could expand, and was the same wood tone as their darker cabinets.  Here she is.

My clients requested upholstered and comfortable chairs.  Believe it or not, the chairs I liked best with this table that fit the bill are from Ikea.  The color ties in with the floor and counters, but has a slight texture without being a pattern.  

My clients live on the beach, and the door to their gorgeous patio is off to the left of the table, so I went with an indoor/outdoor rug.  Here are how the pieces come together.

Back to lighting...
The hallway has this interesting octagon detail.

I'm recommending they swap out the current light for this 25" fixture that includes six lights.  More than enough to light the way.  I think it could create some beautiful shadows and dress it up a bit.

Let's move to the living room/office/entry area.  Scroll back to the top to see the recommended chandelier for the entry.  All of the furniture will stay, for now.  So my plans for pillows and throws are a simple refresh.  All the walls will get painted out.  Notice they have very warm tile and carpeted floors. to balance out the cool colors I have planned.

Here's another view of the living room.  I wanted to keep the fireplace in mind when selecting paint colors.  In my ideal world, we'd replace the mantel with one that goes all the way across so that artwork could be placed against the stone chimney.  Maybe someday.

Here's the paint plan for the entire main living area.  Hallways, ceilings, office, and kitchen.

As usual, I was inspired by fabric.

Because my clients were asking for a totally new look, I'm giving them two options.

Here's option one.  Solid greige pillows with white trim, mixed with jade and charcoal fabrics.  I added a large green tray for their ottoman, because I think they need one.  :-)  The cream throw blanket has concentric circles, but you can't tell by this photo.  The throw blanket and the solid velvet lumbar pillow are for the leather chair.

Here's the second, more daring option.  I honestly love them both.  They're a young, fun, family and may want a bolder look with their pillows.  We'll see.

What do you think? I'm excited to see the home refreshed.  
Which pillow combination would you choose?
Whether you're near or far, I would love to work with you to create a home you love.  Email me at abbyminteriors@gmail.com for more information on my local & e-design services.


One Room Challenge 2014: week 3

We're halfway through the One Room Challenge and it's starting to get even more exciting.  Welcome back to week three!  I'm so glad you're here.  If you missed week one or two, be sure to click on those to catch up.  

Last week I shared the vanity hardware.  You may be thinking "those are pretty but how is she going to bring in those colors."  Art.

Minted is one of the generous One Room Challenge sponsors, and I went a little crazy.  I used to think Minted was just about paper.  In fact, my business cards are from Minted and I get complements on them all the time.  I've even used them for wedding shower invitations.  But now...oh my goodness...they are the place to check for art. Here's why: not only are their limited edition prints beautiful, but they support independent artists who otherwise may not be in stores.  I'm all about supporting our artist friends.  You can select framed or unframed, and they have quite a few choices on the frame. I went with all white frames because I wanted the contrast with the walls.

The art is not installed yet, because I need to maintain some element of surprise for "the big reveal" ;-) but I want you to see them in all their glory.  Because I love them.  Just as a little background, I did try to use a vintage chart of whales that we already have in my son's room, and he boldly told me that he was NOT going to look at whales while he went to the bathroom.  What?!  Mkay.  Noted.  So rest assured that all art was approved by my boys before it was ordered.  This is the bathroom they share with our guests.

I started big.  This print is technically supposed to hang vertically, but I thought it was too perfect to pass up, so I'm installing it horizontally.  The colors are ideal.  

This is a smaller print, and I apologize for my hand in the photo, but I love the soft gray-blue color and the subtle pattern.

This watercolor...so pretty.  You know I'm crazy about green, and anything nature related fits right in.

They won't all next to each other, but I put a board together to give you a better idea of how the art works together.
*Designer Tip: mixing art is like mixing fabric patterns.  Keep the sizes of the patterns different.  For example, I have a solid in the watercolor, a medium sized pattern in the geometric, and a larger scale pattern in the abstract.  Of course rules can be broken, but use this as your guide.

In other updates, you may remember this fancy faucet from the first week.  I have no doubt it's original to  our 70's ranch home.  The beige sink...who thinks of that?  Who decided that the ideal color of a sink would be something slightly dirty looking.  It has served my boys well for three years, but the faucet and sink are out of here.

I hunted and searched for the perfect faucet for the bathroom.  
I found this polished brass faucet here.  
**Designer Tip: don't be discouraged by the ugly photos some businesses use to sell their products.  This may seem obvious, but if my bathroom had the wallpaper in the above photo, I would poke my eyes out.  You need to close your eyes, remove all the ugly, and picture the piece in your room.

I was a little nervous that maybe the faucet wouldn't arrive, because the price was so affordable. Like maybe it was a too-good-to-be-true trick of the internet.  
But she arrived in all her her glory and I couldn't be happier.
I mean really...she looks stunning against the wall color.  Am I right?
If you're reading this then you're obviously very design savvy and up on the times, but spread the news to your friends that brass is here to stay.  I know some are resisting, but it's not going anywhere for a long time.  

Lest you think I'm nearly done, please know my punch list is crazy long...I may not sleep until the One Room Challenge is over.  But it's totally worth it!

Just as a teaser, this is happening...

Thanks so much for reading!  Please come back and check on the progress next week.  I've got plenty to finish...
Thank you to my One Room Challenge sponsors.  

Now let's see what the other challengers have done...that's really my favorite part.  Everyone has such a different take on their space and a different process.  So thankful to be part!

Whether you're near or far, I would love to work with you to create a home you love.  Email me at abbyminteriors@gmail.com for more information on my local & e-design services.


What I'm Working On: client updates

Spring break is over and it's back to school and the usual grind. I thought I'd share with you a few random client updates to share what I'm working on.  

First up, my latest e-design client project, the Long Lake House.  This is a custom built home, roughly 8 years old (?) and they are ready for a fresh look.  Thankfully they contacted me. :-)

Let's take a look...

New lighting, wall & ceiling colors, and introducing new fabrics are going to make a huge difference.  I need to keep all the furniture, but simply removing the Mediterranean style pillows and lighting will be drastic.

All of these fixtures--going.  Wall color will get changed, and I'm really hoping there is room in the budget for me to sneak in new stools.  We'll see.  

Moving on...

Below is a client from Kalamazoo (Hi Lori!).  I had the pleasure of spending an afternoon with her a few weeks ago, and we knocked out all of her design needs in three hours.  It was great!  What I love about Lori and her family is that they started implementing the changes right away.  They had already painted their oak cabinets white, but I suggested they paint the bulkhead the same color as their cabinets.  Then add both crown molding and 1x3 flat trim to give the illusion of cabinets to the ceiling.  Worked like a charm.  Looking forward to after pictures of this project!

Remember the Modern Bungalow Project?  They're another fast working client.  This is a shot of their kitchen.  They were keeping their wood cabinets but hired me for the wall color.  I'm so glad she sent me this shot of the minty walls!  I love them against the dark wood and Rive White counters.  

You've already seen the Saddle Ridge Project nursery and big boy room, but I've also been working on the master bathroom and home office/craft room.  The photo below is the latest and greatest shot of the craft room with the new light fixture, wall color, and desk area.  No more builder basic room for them!  We still have a ways to go.  I'm on the hunt for kid-friendly chairs for the desk.  And Sarah Richardson fabric will be installed as a bulletin board between the book shelves.  I'm going to love this one.  

I'm looking forward to meeting a new local client tomorrow for a one hour consult on their remodel.  She found me because her friend follows me on Facebook.  Social media never ceases to amaze me!  So thankful to get to do what I love.  If you live in the greater Grand Rapids area and would like to work together, please mail me at abbyminteriors@gmail.com for more information on my local & e-design services.


slate appliances + plans for our kitchen

this old house

Our dishwasher started growling at us.  We'd look at each other and wonder what the noise was, and it really was our dishwasher.  Not good.  

But one thing leads to another and months later we still hadn't replaced the dishwasher because we (I) couldn't decide what finish I wanted on our appliances.  I didn't trust myself to keep stainless clean.  I really love white appliances but the ones I wanted were all super high end and out of our price range.  Enter the Slate appliances from GE.  Ding Ding!  We have a winner.  They are similar in appearance to stainless steel, but darker gray in color and a matte finish. 

We've known since we bought the house three years ago that eventually we'd have to change the appliances.  We have one white appliance, two black, and one stainless.

Let's take a photo time-travel trip to back when we bought the house.

MLS photo...

MLS photo...

When we moved we had the dining room walls and bulkhead skim coated, and the kitchen, hallway, bulkhead painted white.  Then the kitchen ceiling painted blue.  Design is in the details. ;-)

Then recently I painted our backsplash.

That freed me (color wise) to add a new color to the walls.  I chose a pale, pale, blush pink.

This week our new slate dishwasher and refrigerator arrived!  I'm thrilled with them.  This is my first big-girl fridge, and I couldn't be happier.  We love the color and the finish.  No fingerprints!   

Now for the exciting news...

I think I've convinced my husband that it's time to paint the cabinets.  These cabinets aren't ugly, and they certainly aren't old, they just aren't me.  Plus this house is surrounded by trees which can make for dark days.  I need light and bright!

Now decisions have to be made.  I know I want white upper cabinets.  No questions there.  And the black granite will stay.  But the lower cabinets are where I'm not so sure.  I've limited it down to a blue or green color.  Or possibly some mix of the two.  

Naturally I pulled some inspiration for our viewing.

I really like how the light blue looks against the black counters.  But my living room is light blue and I don't want to be too match-y.

LOVE this teal color against the white uppers and black counters.

Then there's glossy...I'm 99% sure I'm going glossy no matter what color I choose. We'll see.

You know how I feel about green, especially this emerald green, but I'm the most nervous about this choice.  I'm afraid it doesn't really fit our home.  

This deep blue/gray color I would love.

And ohmygosh this kitchen...

And more green--I think this shade is a more likely option for me.  Not as bright as the other green.

And mint is never a bad choice.  Is that a blush wall I see in the background?  Looks close.

This kitchen looks so rich.  

Maybe a blue/gray is really the way to go.

Obviously I have a lot of decisions to make.  All good!  Between our kitchen and the One Room Challenge plus client work there's enough to keep me busy.  Once we've finalized decisions I'll be sure to put a design board together so you can see my full vision.

What do you think?  Blue?  Green? Or somewhere in between?
Whether you're near or far, I would love to work with you to create a home you love.  Email me at abbyminteriors@gmail.com for more information on my local & e-design services.


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