It’s Black & White

One of my design icons, Celerie Kemble, recently published a book titled Black & White (and a bit in between).  I purchased a signed copy when at the Atlanta Merchandise Mart a few months ago.  It is an absolutely beautiful salute to designs in black and white.

I have included a few of the photographs from her book and some of my own favorites below.   Enjoy and remember everything is not black and white (or is it?)!

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“If you want to make beautiful music, you must play the black and white notes together”.–Richard Nixon 

 

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Elle Decor via Black & White –Celerie Kemble

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Doug Friedman apartment via http://mackenziehoran.blogspot.com/2010/09/black-white.html

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http://www.housebeautiful.com/room-decorating/colors/advice/g1861/dark-paint-color-rooms/

Pillow Talk – Styling your Bed

Making our beds every day – just like mom taught us – is part of a morning routine, and many of us feel happier, more organized and ready to go once we’ve tidied up the sheets and plumped the pillows.

There are so many attractive permutations and combinations when it comes to styling the pillows on a bed.  Some people prefer a very minimal, streamlined look.  Some prefer a more Bohemian, scattered feel.  Others like a little of both.  Below are  general guides from King and Queen beds, but you may have other ideas.  As long as it makes you feel happy, it’s right!

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King bed general guide above.  The rule of thumb to “fill” the width of a King bed:  3 Euro shams, 3 Standard Shams or 2 King Shams.

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Queen beds shown above.  The width of a Queen bed requires 2 Euro shams or 2 Standard Shams.

Below are examples of some of the myriad of pillow arranging options.  Most of these are King beds.

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John Robshaw

Fabulous John Robshaw bedding!

 

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Surroundings Interiors

Definitely on the Bohemian spectrum.  We love this fun bed!

 

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Sarah Sama

We don’t often see this style but for the minimalist this is a nice look.

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Surroundings Interiors

The client wanted a simple, classic, clean look.  Monogrammed King shams backed with 3 Euro Shams.  The real sleeping pillows are tucked behind the Euros.

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Surroundings Interiors

This Queen bed has 2 sleeping pillows hidden by 2 Standard shams and 3 highly  textural throw pillows.  Lucious.

 

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Style Estate

The very feminine example above is a Queen bed with 2 Standard Shams, 2 Euro Shams and 2 square throw pillows.

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Terrat Elms

Romantic layering of Euro shams, King shams and throw pillows above.

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Mia Rao

Some like a modern, simple arrangement.

How your bed looks once it’s made up depends on your personal style and design preference.  So go minimal, go Bohemian, or go traditional…but definitely go make your bed!

Surroundings is swinging into 2016!

Swinging may be my favorite pastime.  I love the feeling of freedom, the tummy butterflies and the sense of revisiting childhood.

Swings can be seen everywhere lately.  You will see them in living areas, porches and even professional offices.  Take a look at a few examples and imagine yourself no longer tethered to the ground.  Yippee!

 

8b27d447e31af5c89e1ffa4ff938f971.jpg‘Nautica’ swing by Expormim

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RSB by Ro Sham Beaux

Bastille Chair Tibetan Fur by Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams

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Hanging Hoop Chair, Lee Broom

A Surroundings original creation overlooking the bay on Anna Maria Island.

Work play!  Swing Table by Duffy London via Dezeen

 

Airstream Dreams

One of the recent summer catalogues for Bed Bath & Beyond caught our attention recently.  It’s cover features fun accessories for the backyard, though it’s a luminous Airstream trailer in the background that caught our eye!

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Airstream trailers are an American classic that are at once nostalgic and futuristic.  The shiny exterior, shaped like a bullet, looks ready to fly down the open highway on an adventure.  It inspires fantasies of a simple, spontaneous life.

The images of Airstream evoke fun and freedom.   They really are iconic.   Wally Byam, the founder and original Airstream designer, is a modern American inspiration himself.  He attended Stanford University, working at times for various newspapers, where he met lifetime friend Cornelius “Neil” Vanderbilt, Jr. (who invested in and travel-tested Byam’s early creations).  He started selling his campers from ads in the back of magazines and managed to build his backyard business into a successful American company.

Image via glamperanairstreamdiary.com.

Image via glamperanairstreamdiary.com.

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The first factory produced Airstream, fittingly named “The Torpedo.” Image via Airstream.com.

Over the years,  Byam’s Airstream became not only a symbol of the open road, but also an embodiment of how beauty and modern functionality go hand in hand.  NASA commissioned Airstream to build the “Astrovan” to quarantine Neil Armstrong’s crew after returning from the first flight on the moon (in case they carried ‘moon germs’).

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Wally Byam’s Airstream creed was to put the “great wide world at your doorstep.”

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Matthew McConaughey’s Airstream parked in Malibu, CA. Image via AD.

Check out the ocean in the background!  Via Jelanie.

Check out the ocean in the background! Via Jelanie.

Via Remodelista

Via Remodelista

Image via Pinterest.

Image via Pinterest.

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Image via Pinterest.

And though most of us may never own an Airstream, it’s fun to dream!  The same design spirit and Airstream inspiration can be found in interiors, especially in furniture design.

This retro redwood and aluminum folding chair reminds us of the chairs we sat in many afternoons under our grandfather’s grapefruit trees.  The aluminum makes it light, impervious to the elements and easy to transport. The wood gives it a natural, organic feel.  You can find these on Etsy and eBay.

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For a similar, sleeker look, check out the Emeco Navy Armchair 1006 (called 10-oh-6) with wood seat available at DWR.  This chair was designed as a lightweight, easy to use chair aboard ships for the U.S. Navy.  It has a sturdy traditional look, but the aluminum gives it a light, airy modern appeal.

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Airstream also toyed around with producing colored versions of their popular travel van, specifically in pastels, to match the interior design color trend of the 1950s.  Wally Byam decided to stick to the classic aluminum, but the idea of a little pop of aluminum color is so much fun.  Would love to see pastel Airstream trailers going down the highway!

Instead, we can appreciate these colorful aluminum stools.

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This cocktail table, from CB2, combines a rustic wood top with an aluminum base.

Image via CB2.

Image via CB2.

We found this collapsable, army grade aluminum and canvas cot, from Kaufmann Mercantile.  The shiny base gives a bit of glamour and shine to the functional canvas.

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Restoration Hardware’s Blackhawk Collection below.  Looks like we could put wheels on it and drive it to the next campground.

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Interestingly, this Restoration Hardware line is part of the Aviator Collection — Wally Byam worked for an airplane manufacturing company!

And finally, we’re writing this blog from computers made mostly from recycled aluminum.

Image via pcmag.com

Image via pcmag.com

For those of you in the Tampa Bay area, next time you’re driving down the I-4 corridor, catch a glimpse of Airstream Ranch.

Photo by Skip O'Rourke via Tampa Bay Times.

Photo by Skip O’Rourke via Tampa Bay Times.

We have such an obsession with Airstream trailers.  Thanks for letting us share.  We have a Pinterest page devoted to the iconic travel trailer.  Take a look!

Outdoor Spaces: Interior Design Inspiration for Summer time!

Summer is upon us.  We celebrated Memorial Day, the school year has ended or is ending soon, and we are beginning to settle into that lazy summer feeling.  Most of us still have to go to work each morning, but we get to dress more casually and look forward to slower weekends. Spending time outside with friends is one of the best parts of summer for us and we’ve been eyeing some bright, airy and inviting outdoor spaces.

Christopher Worthland has gathered a great collection of outdoor rooms, and shares them on The Art of the Room.  We are passing along some of them to you.

The first few photos showcase graceful and elegant rooms dressed in natural and neutral shades of whites.  Looking at these pictures, it’s easy to imagine our friends, wine glasses in hand, engaging in witty conversation and enjoying a relaxing summer evening.

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Image via The Art of the Room. Photo by Pieter Estersohn.

Image via The Art of the Room.  Photo by Miguel Flores-Vianna for Veranda.

Image via The Art of the Room. Photo by Miguel Flores-Vianna for Veranda.

The stone wall adds a timeless feel to this room, and those chairs are amazing!

Photo by William Waldron.

Photo by William Waldron.

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Image via Pinterest.

The breezy, tropical feel of the next few areas makes us ready for an afternoon nap.

Image via the Art of the Room.  Photo by Tim Beddow for Architectural Digest.

Image via the Art of the Room. Photo by Tim Beddow for Architectural Digest.

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Image via Pinterest.

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Image via Tom Scheerer.com.

Photo by William Waldron.

Photo by William Waldron.

We’ll leave you with this last room, one of our favorites!  With the staghorn ferns lining the walls, the soft blue color pallette, and natural wood touches, this room feels stylish and and fresh, while also evoking memories of quiet, calm, lemonade-filled afternoons.

Photo by Eric Piasecki for Steven Gambrel Time & Place.

Photo by Eric Piasecki for Steven Gambrel Time & Place.

Happy Summer!

Making Room: 10 Interior Design Ideas for Small Spaces

Could you live in 132 square feet of space?  New York City building law defines this as an apartment.  YIKES!  It would certainly force one to prioritize.

One of the most helpful design courses in college was Small Space Design.   Because even outside of Manhattan — where the 2014 Census Bureau measured the average American home at 2,600 sq ft — one of homeowners’ biggest concerns is “WE NEED MORE SPACE.”

“Editing” is always a good idea, and is a design term for “getting rid of stuff!”  But it’s hard to let go of your kids old board games, that set of Holiday mugs that never seems to get used, and the clothes in the back of your closet that you might wear again…someday.  So, we say, design your space to accommodate the Clue and Monopoly boards, tuck away the 90’s denim and still have room for more!

Below are a few of the gems of wisdom that were gleaned from the classroom and design lessons learned along the way when it comes to making small spaces live large.

1. A PLACE FOR EVERYTHING AND EVERY THING IN ITS PLACE.

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Photo by Annie Schlecter via MyDomaine.com

The closet above makes use of every square inch, and though small on space, it’s big on design details like the hanging lamp, rug, mirrored doors, and custom built-ins.  Doesn’t this make you want to run to the nearest Container Store?

2. BUILT-IN FURNITURE (and closet shelving like above) SAVES SPACE AND PROVIDES OPPORTUNITY FOR ADDITIONAL STORAGE.

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Image via Homedit.com

This small office works well with built-in filing cabinets, computer nook and lighting.

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Shelving built around and above windows.  Brilliant!

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Though not deep shelving, it’s shelving! (Love the sliding door –  see Tip #7.)

3. THERE ARE STORAGE OPPORTUNITIES HIDING BETWEEN WALL STUDS.

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Image via bhg.com

Medicine cabinets, open shelving and niches can all be placed between wall studs.

4. SHARP CORNERS IN SMALL SPACES ARE AN ACCIDENT WAITING TO HAPPEN.

Round the corners of furniture and counters for an easy, comfortable flow.

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Image via Houzz

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5. MIRRORS, AND OTHER REFLECTING SURFACES, VISUALLY ENLARGE A SPACE.

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Above, a mirrored backsplash helps visually enlarge a tiny apartment kitchen.

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This hallway has it all: mirrored walls, a glossy floor and a glass entry door add shine and reflect light.

6. GLASS TABLES, LAMPS AND LIGHTING FIXTURES ALMOST DISAPPEAR CREATING THE ILLUSION OF SPACE.

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Can you find the chair in the picture above?  We also like how this mirror reflects the real window on the adjacent wall.

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7. SWINGING DOORS EAT UP VALUABLE SPACE. IF POSSIBLE, GET RID OF THEM!

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Image via bhg.com

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A modern sliding shower door helps in ‘space challenged’ bathrooms.

8. UNIFORM COLORS VISUALLY ENLARGE A SPACE 

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Image via Surroundings Interiors

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9. EXTEND YOUR CEILINGS WITH PAINT OR WALL PAPER

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Image via House Beautiful

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Image via House Beautiful

10. GET AWAY FROM THE WALLS

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Moving furniture even a few inches from walls expands the feel of a room.  Seems a bit counterintuitive but give it a try, it works!

There are so many space saving tips.  We could write a book on this subject.   Make the most out of every inch  to maximize your storage and create an open and inviting space.  Go big on creativity and make your small space work for you!

Unless noted Images Via House Beautiful, Elle Decor, and Pinterest

Displaying Collections in Your Home

Mother’s Day is this weekend, and in honor of my Mother, who has collected and curated objects and obsessions for decades (i.e., before eBay), Surroundings offers a few ideas for displaying and styling beloved pieces.  Whether it’s art, teacups, Lalique, thimbles, African masks or depression glass, you can show off your collections without auditioning for the next episode of TLC’s Hoarding: Buried Alive.

A few rules of thumb to consider when displaying your collections:

Neutral, monochromatic backgrounds (think museum walls) will allow your collection to “pop” and speak for itself.

Unify collections by highlighting one color, shape, texture or theme.

Venture outside the glass.  Curio cabinets are beautiful and stave off the dusting, however, some of your precious objects might really shine if they are allowed to breathe (and yikes) be touched.

Consider collections part of the architectural landscape, and really build or create a place for your passion to add personality and dimension to a room.

Finally, there are no rules that can’t be broken when it comes to collections…be creative, proud and impactful!

These two bold plate collections are fantastic examples of collections that can’t be ignored.  The first picture capitalizes on color,  focusing on green, blue and white.  As the plates climb the wall, almost floor to ceiling, the eye travels along.

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White is a color, and in this display, it pops against the gray walls.  Instead of a linear installation, this collection is hung in a relatively circular pattern that creates visual interest and is a nice accent to the straight backed chairs.

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In this more traditional home, a linear arrangement of prints provides order and emphasis by covering the wall almost entirely.

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A picture hanging rod sets this collection apart.

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However, art work doesn’t have to be hung over the fireplace or behind a sofa.

Here, art is hung on the back of a door.

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Or in the bathroom.

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Even the kitchen provides an unexpected, but impactful space for art.  Besides the portrait hanging below, everyday dinnerware in shades of white becomes a collection when displayed on open shelving.

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Set off your collection and give it a place of promenence by building a niche or custom shelving unit.

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The arrangement of antique teacups here provides color and whimsy to this modern kitchen.

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Choose a color the accents your collection.  The neutral sea fans and seashells really stand out against pretty blues.

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Even those figurines hiding in an old box in the attic are lovely in the right setting.

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Nothing makes us happier than a client with a collection.  It really gives us a starting place, framework and inspiration.

This Surroundings client collects hats.

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Antique mirrors are on my list of collectibles.

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Surroundings Media Director’s two sons love Legos.  So many great ways to display a collection of Legos or any small toy.  Below is one example.

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Mom’s collection of Corday figurines, sitting prettily on a two-tiered glass table, and her perfume bottle collection gathered together on an antique mirrored tray.

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Send us pictures of your collections.  Happy Mother’s Day, Mom(s)!  

Images via  Surrounding InteriorsPinterest and House Beautiful

Do you have rhythm?

Rhythm is all around us.  We hear it but we also see it, sometimes without realizing it.  It’s an inherent part of nature.  In the world of interior design it is one of the guiding principles.  It creates interest, focus and leads your eye through a room.  It can be subtle or make a bold statement.

It is attained though repetition of any of the design elements: line, color, light, texture, pattern, scale or proportion.  Alternating two or more elements in a regular pattern is another method.  Progression is also a way to create rhythm (for example moving from light to dark ombre).

Below is a sampling of some great rooms, and a few of the ways we incorporate design elements to create rhythm.

Rhythm comes into play in various ways in this room including the color blue, the wallpaper pattern and the crown moulding detail.

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Interior Design by Tom Scheerer, House Beautiful, 2013 via QuadrilleFabrics.com

The grand beds, with their graceful curves and black and white linens make for a beautiful and restive retreat.  Notice the rhythm created by using the same dark wood of the beds for the artwork and mirror framing.  The same color tone and straight lines can be seen decorating the shams.  The vertical lines of the canopies are repeated in the wood detailing of the ceiling.

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Via myhomeideas.com

In the picture below, we love how the floor pattern creates rhythm through repetition and leads your eye across the room as you enter.  There is also the repeat of the great turquoise tables and brass mirrors (balance is here too – revisit our 1st Design Principles blog, Balancing Act).  The detailed crown moulding is another example of rhythm at work.

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Via desiretoinspire.net

Again, a floor pattern that draws the eye around the room, is mirrored by the patterned ceiling in this gorgeous room by Kelly Werstler.  The colors, black, brass, and gray, are repeated throughout (the black table, grey sculpture and small gold accessory in the forefront even maintain the beat here).

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At Asiate, a restaurant in the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in New York City, you can imagine having a quiet, elegant dinner among the seemingly endless rows of booths and tables.  There is repetition in the architecture, the wallpaper in each booth, and the accents (the pillows, the simple red flowers and silver vase), and the multiple system of lights installed to create an airy sculpture.

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Creating a somewhat predictable (yet interesting), easy to follow rhythm in commercial spaces is important in influencing the emotional state of customers and clients.  Calm, comfortable patrons (as well as employees) are the happiest!

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A New You, by Surroundings Interiors

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Hunter Warfield by Surroundings Interiors

In your own home or commercial space you can create rhythm through lighting installations, artwork, tile and fabric patterns.

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Surroundings Interiors

Duncan Am Stairs

Surroundings Interiors

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We used this Ikat for a client. Ikats are bold and can be found in various colors, patterns and textures.

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Rhythm can be subtle and natural.

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Sometimes, with Rhythm, more is more.

Spelling rhythm may be the biggest challenge…soooo many consonants!  Thank goodness for spell check.  Send us pictures to add to our rhythm collection.