Through the Grecourt Gates

Last night, I dragged my husband, Bob, to see the movie Julie and Julia in downtown New Canaan.  Yes, he ended up liking it…  I loved it, but that was never a question.  Julia Child was a Smith College graduate, as am I, and I was not going to miss this movie!  The theatre was packed and we were lucky to get a seat.

As a side note, Bob grew up in Norwalk so he seems to know everyone.  I moved here from the city and so I don’t know nearly so many people.  At the end of the movie, we ended up in the best conversation with the couple next to us.  Ends up this would be my night for a connection!  The wife is a Smith grad too.  She also lived in Martha Wilson house, though she graduated a few years before I did.  I have the best memories of Smith and even better memories (if that’s possible) of Martha Wilson house.  We reminisced on and on about candlelight dinners and afternoon tea, while they rolled up the sidewalks of New Canaan around us.  Numbers and e-mails were exchanged and we will definitely be staying in touch with this couple!  What a lovely way to end an evening with new friends and future plans.

Smith College Grecourt Gates

Smith College Grecourt Gates

Since this is a design blog and I can’t get Smith College off of my mind, I have to share with you some of the wonderful photos I found on Flickr of the architecture and gardens on campus.  The first is the Grecourt Gates with the tower of College Hall in the background-love the iron scrollwork.

Smith College Lyman Plant House

Smith College Lyman Plant House

The Lyman Plant House is surrounded by gorgeous gardens seen on my walk to classes each day.  In the fall, there is a mums show and in the spring, a bulbs show–both heavenly…

Smith College Brown Fine Arts Center

Smith College Brown Fine Arts Center

Smith College has one of the premier college art collections and what an amazing building it is housed in.

Smith College Ford Hall

Smith College Ford Hall

The new building for Sciences and for the Engineering Program (first of its kind for women).  I have not seen this building yet, but am looking forward to a closer look at those great glass windows.

Smith Campus Center

Smith Campus Center

Wish I had a photo of the old Campus Center from my time…  This is spectacular in comparison!

Smith College Paradise Pond

Smith College Paradise Pond

What’s not to love about Paradise Pond?   School-wide rowing competitions held in the Head of the Paradise–fun…

Smith College Martha Wilson House

Smith College Martha Wilson House

Last but not least, my home for three of my four years…Martha Wilson House.  Head of the Quad, I received my diploma with so many others on our front steps.  Also, I met Julia Child on these very same steps when I was a student.  Memories don’t get any better than this.  Think I have a visit to Smith in my immediate future.  Can anyone say Mountain Day?

Beach Bath

Hall Bath 1993

The “before” photo of the beach bath I just finished designing for my client. Makes you just want to cringe… This bath’s layout was terrible. No elbow room anywhere and what you can’t see to the left was a tiny blue shower–remember the 70’s colors–like that! A closet blocks the person at the right hand sink. So excited to be able to share photos below of the finished design of this beach bath.

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What a difference!

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I moved the vanity to the wall on the right, tore out the closet and replaced it with a built in cabinet style closet. I added a large mirror and side sconces above the Corian counter top. Now there is space for people to move without sacrificing storage. And now for the shower…

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Crisp, clean, big… Amazing what creating a custom corner shower did for the space! The white subway tiles with a line of wave accent tile and the great border tile define it.  The all glass shower walls and door just open it up even more. Family friendly is my passion so the practical hand shower on a vertical bar is perfect for kids–slide it down for their height.

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Ever notice how design magazines don’t show toilets in the bathrooms? This just looks so pretty with the silver mirror and the blue bead board walls, I couldn’t resist. Note how there are lots of towel racks for guests.

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No detail was missed–check out the beautiful drain in the shower. It perfectly complements the gorgeous round tile floor.

Can’t you just imagine how your guests will ooh and aah over a beautiful and functional bathroom like this…

Tile by Tile

One of the great joys of being an Interior Designer is learning something new every day.  The other is being surrounded by experts who are passionate about what they do and are exceptional at providing the very best customer service.

The other morning, I met with Carlos Drake, Store Manager and Ken Harrington, Design Consultant extraordinaire of Ann Sacks Greenwich.  Ken has already worked with me on a project for a client and asked me in for a tour of their great new product lines. Ken wowed me with his presentation.  Here are a few of my favorites.

Ann Sacks Aura

Ann Sacks Aura

Aura–the name is great and the photo doesn’t nearly do it justice.  You simply have to see this one to catch its depth, richness and vibrancy.  This is art on glass inspired by the landscapes of Israel.  This tile breathes life.  I want to put the lava color as one sheet (yes we can custom order as one piece) on a focal wall in a jewel box powder room…mmm…

Ann Sacks Artiste_Mosaic_EasternStar_Repetition

Ann Sacks Eastern Star

Everything old is new again and what’s not to love about Eastern motifs.  Imagine dancing the night away in a contemporary home with this sleek yet classic mosaic of stone and stainless steel under foot.

Ann Sacks Koi

Ann Sacks Koi

Koi is a modern interpretation of the classic Japanese style of glazing.  This tile has to stand alone, because you will just have to run your fingers over its great texture!

Ann Sacks Parquet CharlesStone_Install_aab07164

Ann Sacks Charles Stone Parquet

This is a tile.  Hard to tell.  Made of composite, it is designed to look like Parquet wood flooring…unbelievably realistic looking. And it’s much easier to install, clean and maintain than wood flooring. A win, win, win in my book.

Ann Sacks AvalonII_Color_CocoaBeige

Ann Sacks Avalon II

Last but not least, this updated line of Avalon has the deepest neutrals I have ever seen.  This is so rich it reminds me of perfectly painted straight lines. I can just picture this as a feature wall behind a contemporary bed–crisp white linens, unfussy, no headboard required.


(All photos from Ann Sacks website)

Lush under foot

I had the pleasure of attending an event at Artifact in Wilton the other day.  One of the speakers was Malene of malene b.  For those of you who don’t know her yet…get ready.  Her designs are fantastic.  Her inspiration like mine…is her travels.  And has she traveled!

Malene showing her rug samples

Malene Displaying her Rug Designs

For each rug sample, Malene showed us her inspiration boards.  First of all, a photograph can not begin to do justice to the quality of her work.  She hand draws all of her artwork.  Above is Cowrie from the Classic Collection, based on cowrie shells.

Malene’s background is in textiles, so she knows what the factory needs to do to bring her designs to life.  The textures are unbelievable.  One person attending wondered how anyone would want to walk on them.  Personally, they were so lush, I could not wait to sink my toes into them!

Malene b room setting wolof_367x534

Above is Wolof, inspired by the women of Senegal.  Tell me you didn’t have to look twice to see that this amazing design is of women!  Aren’t the colors yummy?  You can specify the colors you like and Malene will provide you with a sample.

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This is Masks.  The depth is provided not only by the contrast in color but by varying the weave and the materials.  She designs “according to fibers and to specific technique.”

Market Women

Malene described Market Women above as “global icons done in a classic textile repeat.”  As you can see in this photo, her rugs can be used wall to wall not just as area rugs.  The options are limitless.  Each rug is custom made: size, texture, colors.

Elizabeth Clark of Artifact said of Malene “Your spirit is in your work.”  I am in love with Malene’s fresh innovative approach to textiles.

Take a trip with me to see malene b…you won’t be disappointed.  I guarantee it.

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