What's Inspiring Me Lately
We presented six (six!) design plans to clients in the last month, and completed the construction design process of one full remodel just in time to begin another. Needless to day, design is on my mind! We aren't abandoning our signature elevated California style any time soon, but I am always looking for ways to incorporate both trends and timeless design elements when it makes sense for the home. Here's a peek at what is feeling exciting these early spring days.
I'm seeing a big shift back toward classic elements, and while I doubt I'll ever define my style as traditional, I can certainly appreciate the way traditional elements play with modern pieces. I love that element of tension in design and art is a really fun way to bring something classic into a modern space. A vintage painting is kind of like a vintage rug, but for your walls. It brings color and pattern and often a little bit of patina that just can't be recreated with new products. It also gives a room a more collected feel, rather than the sense that everything was purchased yesterday. Landscapes and still-life paintings are an easy way to dip your toes into classic art styles, and since they often feature muted tones, they fit easily into the organic modern aesthetic.
I mentioned curved furnishings when I predicted design trends for 2022 and, for me at least, it still holds. Curved upholstery just feels fresh and different, and of course the comfort factor is second to none! Adding a curved accent chair is an easy way to update a room, but I'm also loving adding curves and arches to more permanent elements like cabinetry, doorways, and built-in furnishings.
Tonal and Patterned Tile
I'm really inspired by tile when it is used as a strong design element, rather than a safe choice that recedes into the background. We specify a lot of Zellige tile which looks pretty neutral at first glance, but since it is handmade, is really special and interesting up close. I want to lean into that vibe but using different shades of Zellige in a tonal way, but also by expanding our use of patterns and shapes.
Design by Studio McGee
We recently walked through a new project that had a set of doors leading to an outdoor space that was fitted with original cremone bolts. It was a small detail, but it lent such a feeling of authenticity to the space. Hardware is another place where a safe choice can sort of fade into the overall design scheme, but choosing a statement really takes the room to the next level. Plus, hardware is one of the most-touched objects in the home, so it's practical to prioritize craftsmanship. I'm equally inspired by modern oversized or integrated handles, and traditional pieces like those cremone bolts or cabinet latches.
The word "reclaimed" may conjure images of modern farmhouse style, but that's not really what we have in mind. Found or reclaimed objects and materials pair so nicely with modern architecture that it's almost a no-brainer! A wood-planked ceiling in a dark-painted room, furnishings made from beat-up barn wood, an antique door into a powder room instead of a standard door... all bring so much texture and an organic element into a space. And it goes without saying that in these days of wild and painfully long shipping delays, any time we can source a vintage object, the better!
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