I spent a beautiful spring afternoon a little while back in New Hope, PA. It's a quaint town on the border on New Jersey--you can actually walk over the bridge to Lambertville, NJ. Here are a few shots from the day.
Upstairs dining at The Dandelion
Philadelphia is definitely a city known for its delicious treats-everything from cheesesteaks to pretzels to Tastykakes. But don't be mistaken, Philly is also a city known for fine dining. And the king of restaurants, at least according to Eric Ripert, is Stephen Starr. I was lucky enough to have dinner at The Dandelion and drinks at The Continental Saturday night.
One trend I've noticed in home furnishings is tiled drawer fronts, though this exhibitor from the AD show also had mirrors, tabletops and other items. The first picture is wood "tile", this second one is glass. I'm curious to how this would work as a DIY project. For those of us who can't afford a backsplash of stunning Ann Sacks tile, perhaps this is a good alternative.
How can homeowners benefit from attending home shows without getting overwhelmed? Have a plan! My comment received the "Most Thought-Provoking" award. To summarize, I said that homeowners should use the opportunity to check out products that aren't available at your local home improvement store and to engage with the professionals there. Recommendations from friends are a great way to find contractors, but it's also important to see if their personality and communication style blends well with yours. Especially since those time estimates almost always run long!
Remember back in the early 90s when everyone used the word "mint" to describe something extra great? Well, mint is back. I've been seeing it in fashion (lots of mint green skinny jeans and tops in magazines) and House Beautiful had a great little slideshow with inspiration. I wanted to put a few accents together for those who'd like to add just a little bit of minty flavor (oh, that's a bad one) to their home.
A few weeks ago I went to Austin with my sister for SXSW and had an absolutely great time. One of my favorite spots was the Driskill Hotel on Sixth Street. I loved the combination of grandeur and Southern Charm.
Here's a shot of the lobby, which features bold columns, stained glass panels and lush palms. There's lots of little seating areas which came in handy during SXSW for extended networking. If you're headed to Austin, it's definitely worth a visit! Check out a few more shots below.
Another trend I spotted at the AD Show was furniture (and pillows, as seen above from the Design Lush booth) with some shimmer. Opalescent leather, especially when used with other items in the same tone, adds a real wow factor.
The New Traditionalists chair
One of the trends I spotted while checking out the AD Home Show was leather straps and buckles used on furniture. Take note of the chair here. It's a very simple design but the color (surprisingly one of the few bits of the 2012 color I saw) and "belt" detail set it apart.
I am a big fan of trays. They are great at corraling your stuff and giving at least the appearance of organization. Plus, it's an easy, low commitment way to dip your toe into a certain style. The group above are all from West Elm and are all very reasonably priced. Great variety, right? The goldfish one is actually made of glass and would be adorable as a soap dish.
ps-Are you proud of me for not calling this post "tray chic"? I thought about it, but decided you deserved a little better from me.
Christine Schwalm is an Interior Designer and Visual Merchandiser based in Los Angeles. This space will keep you updated on what's going on with CSD along with some ideas to inspire you. Go here for more information about pricing and services and here to make an appointment.