Custom Furniture by Yours Truly...

I am always looking for new and inspiring ways to grow as a designer, and recently I have been dipping my toes into the custom designed furniture pool.

My client in Pelham, NH was looking for a farmhouse style table that was narrow, yet long enough to fit in their kitchen dining space and the options that existed were not "perfect", so I decided to design one that was! 

Typically, dining tables are 38-42" W x 64-72" L and this one is 30" W x 84" L, aka completely customized and fitted for a specific space. 

By creating a custom design from start-to-finish, it allowed everything from the size, stain color, base paint color, top style, antiquing levels, etc. to be exactly what the client was looking for.  

It was a huge success all around!

You can find the furniture maker, A Vintage Wren on Custom Made

Pro tip: when picking out the table's stain finish, make sure to not only coordinate it to your hardwood flooring and other wood finishes; however make sure if you're doing a painted base, that it works well with the home's trim color.

Officially Open for Playdates!

While I know most of you are used to seeing my before & after re-creations more suited for adults, I want to share with you a playroom I re-designed for a client in Andover, MA who wanted me to transform the space for her active sons.

My main goal for this room, was to create a space that would look presentable even when it was actively played in. To achieve this, I replaced their small area rug with carpet tiles, which covers and protects most of the wood floor, while creating a larger space for the boys to play on and contains all of their toys without it looking cluttered.

My client requested a sitting area where she can host other moms and children for a comfortable play-date so I knew a loveseat near the bay window would be the perfect addition. By adding this loveseat in this particular location, it created a nice frame around the drapery while simultaneously creating a relaxed comfortable social area. I also picked a dark and textured fabric for the loveseat, so it would be able to withstand any inevitable stains that occur. I then added fun patterned pillows to add a pop of color to the room (so fun!). 

For storage and organization, I found stackable bookcases which hold smaller toys and games (legos, hot wheels, puzzles, etc). For coloring and playing I found a long desk to go against the wall with base storage compartments for paper, crayons, and markers. For a finishing touch, I added a bulletin board which neatly displays the kids’ newest works of art. Since task lighting was needed I found cute and inexpensive desk lamps for each side, which adds a flash of red.

Music to My (Clients') Ears!

I always enjoy working on a room that relates to my clients' favorite things, hobbies, collectable items, etc.

My clients in Littleton, MA love going to concerts and playing guitar, so I wanted to create a wall that was the focal point of their living room that featured posters as well as their beautiful arrangement of guitars they have collected over the years.

I had their music posters reframed by a local gallery, designed the layout, and hired an art installer to hang everything to match my vision and...voila! This wall is a statement in their house and also very functional and convenient for whenever someone wants to have a jam session.

IMG_8632.JPG

California

I flew out to California last week for a 4 day install. I styled 6 model apartments and common spaces in a four-story luxury senior living facility. It was a lot of fun and so rewarding to see all of my selections come together with the buildings finishes, furniture and fabrics.

I will have photos to post soon of the actual spaces! But here are some non-design photo highlights :-)

Views from the plane - flying across the midwest to California

Views from the plane - flying across the midwest to California

Gorgeous live succulents outside of a coffee shop, taken on a mid-day coffee break walk

Gorgeous live succulents outside of a coffee shop, taken on a mid-day coffee break walk

YUMM! Avocado toast - a true California breakfast

YUMM! Avocado toast - a true California breakfast

 

 

Shipping off to California!

These 6 pallets of product have shipped and are on their way to California!

The pallets include accessories for community common spaces, hallways, dining rooms and 6 model apartments. All accessories were carefully selected and curated for each piece of furniture.

Pictures to come in a few weeks, as I am flying there to do the installation!

Granite Shopping

Today I went shopping with my client, who is building a new home in Newton, MA. We went to LeaMar in Marlborough, MA to select the slabs for their kitchen.

We elected granite for it's durability and natural characteristics. There are only a few granites that I really really like. This is one of them - it goes by Royal White, Cold Spring and probably a few other names depending on the supplier.

It has so much natural beauty and character. I love granites and stones where you can see the mica and quartz crystals inside. Those tiny clusters add so much beauty, a touch of glamour and luxury to any space.

The kitchen will have bright white cabinets and the flooring is going to be stained in a warm brown finish.

I can't wait for it to be installed...!

Royal White Granite

Royal White Granite

Up Close Royal White Granite

Up Close Royal White Granite

Emerald Green

I always enjoy working on a project where my client requests that his/her favorite color(s) is incorporated into the room. I see this as a positive challenge to subtly feature the color(s) within the furniture and accessories. 

In a recent project in Dunstable, MA, I worked with emerald green as the dominant color and in order to successfully incorporate this into the room, I kept the rug, ottoman, and end tables very neutral. I also added some floating shelves to provide an extra element where family photos could be displayed.

Family Room Floorpan - Dunstable, MA

Family Room Floorpan - Dunstable, MA

Option A - Interior Design - Dunstable MA

Option A - Interior Design - Dunstable MA

Pillow Options - Interior Design - Dunstable MA

Pillow Options - Interior Design - Dunstable MA

Pillow Options - Interior Design - Dunstable MA

Pillow Options - Interior Design - Dunstable MA

Plenty of Tables!

The "Andover Family Room Design" post below is updated with this photo. You can read that post for the background.

I think four coffee tables are better than one! What about you? They fill up the space so nicely with all of the seating around them and they allow plenty of surface area for her two twin boys to play their games on, while storing a lot underneath.

Before and after pictures coming soon.

Family Room Design -Andover, MA

Family Room Design -Andover, MA

It's coming together!

Today my client had their furniture delivered from Ethan Allen, where we ordered 2 sofas and an end table. Their new rug that I had sourced was also set up in the room - it's looks just as I imagined and works so well with their art. Their motorized window shades and luminette sheers were also installed for an updated and modern look.

I am so happy with how everything's coming out! We are still waiting on their coffee table ottoman and new accessories for their built-in. More pictures to come!

Family Room Design - Bolton, MA

Family Room Design - Bolton, MA

Custom Window Treatments - Family Room Design - Bolton, MA

Custom Window Treatments - Family Room Design - Bolton, MA

Family Room redesign

When working on a redesign, I always welcome my clients to bring me something they'd like the new look to be inspired by, and most recently I used a larger piece of artwork which allowed me to pick out the fabrics from Ethan Allen (solid beige chenille, textured beige/navy chenille, navy suede leather, and a geometric light blue) shown in this picture. I am very excited about this transformation and will debut the new room coming this April!

Fresh Paint

The area rug and drapery panels came in for a dining room I recently redesigned, and now it's time to select a new paint color to complete this fresh new look!

An important tip to keep in mind when repainting is to choose the paint color after the new furnishings are decided, so then it's easier to coordinate a new color that also compliments the new features.

Laying Out Tile

This morning I worked on a tile layout which was a porcelain tile with a marble pattern for a custom shower and floor I designed for my client.

The shower tile will be staggered/brick style when installed but it was easier to lay it out this way for the installer.

Picking a graphic tile like this one invites creativity since I can move around each tile until I get the perfect look!

Tile Layout for a client in Concord, MA

Tile Layout for a client in Concord, MA

Here are some updated photos of the progress!

Kids Playroom

A huge advantage to doing what I do is having the opportunity to work on a wide variety of rooms which also allows me to showcase on my blog for your viewing pleasure!

I recently designed a playroom for a client in Andover, MA who wanted me to transform the space for her active sons. My main goal for this room was to create the space that would look presentable even when it was actively played in. To achieve this, I recommended a very large area rug to cover most of the wood floor to break up all of the hard surfaces and to keep the floor scratch-free (for the most part!) 

My client requested a sitting area where she can host other moms and children for a comfortable play-date. Given this request, I decided a loveseat near the bay window would be the perfect addition and would nicely frame the drapery while simultaneously creating a relaxed comfortable social area. The loveseat fabric options that I recommended are darker and textured as they would be able to withstand any inevitable stains that occur. Also, fun patterned pillows are a great accent piece and will add a pop of color to the room.

For storage and organization, I found stackable bookcases which hold smaller toys and games (legos, hot wheels, puzzles, etc). For a work surface for coloring and playing, I provide two options for the client to decide on: a small square table and a longer desk to go against the wall with base storage compartments for paper, crayons, and markers. For a finishing touch, I added a bulletin board which will neatly display the kids’ newest works of art. 

These few furnishing additions will transform this space into a playroom both parents and children will enjoy!

Playroom Floorplan for Option A & B

Playroom Floorplan for Option A & B

Playroom Option A - neutral scheme

Playroom Option A - neutral scheme

Playroom Option B - colorful scheme

Playroom Option B - colorful scheme

Playroom Floorplan for Option C

Playroom Floorplan for Option C

Playroom Option C - colorful scheme with different work surface option

Playroom Option C - colorful scheme with different work surface option

Playroom Option C - Double Desk

Playroom Option C - Double Desk

Playroom Window Treatments

Playroom Window Treatments

Andover Family Room Design

When I work on designing new floorplans for clients, there is a basic action plan I put into place which I wanted to share with you so you can have a deeper insight into how I transform bland into glam.

In a recent project for clients in Andover, MA, I worked on a Family Room where existing furniture had been collected since my clients’ college days, and they were ready for a room that felt more sophisticated and reflected their mature style, while also being durable for their very active five year old children.

My first step for all floorplan re-designs is to scale the room using my CAD program, which allows me to figure out the best way the room will function and determine the size/scale for all furniture, rugs, accessories, etc. so that I know exactly what I can incorporate into the room without making the room feel too crowded or too empty. Then…I shop!

I had free rein for the most part, however my clients did request that I modeled the re-design based on existing artwork (see below) they wanted in the room, which is what I ended up using as inspiration and compiling two subtly different looks (one soft & light and the other more playful & masculine) for the client to review. The biggest task was finding a rug that was child friendly (polyester/polypropylene material is generally the best bet) that didn’t throw off my entire vision. After sourcing online and narrowing it down to a couple rug options, I went to a local furniture store to source the upholstery and casegood options for the rest of the design plan.

I generally select casegoods which are very versatile, so “mixing and matching” can be done within all design options. The fabrics showcased below are also one of many color and material options to best fit the clients’ personal preferences.

Below are the two designs I proposed and *updated design with what we are moving ahead with. Feel free to comment which design you like best and why!

Inspired by client's existing art, which will be re-framed for new design plan

Inspired by client's existing art, which will be re-framed for new design plan

Floorplan Option A

Floorplan Option A

Living Room Design Option A

Living Room Design Option A

Floorplan Option B

Floorplan Option B

Living Room Design Option B

Living Room Design Option B

Casegood Options

Casegood Options

UPDATED*

They went with Option B! We swapped some casegoods from Option A, added a floor lamp and new kid friendly table lamps.

Decided floorplan: all but end tables next to sofa and area rug size have changed

Decided floorplan: all but end tables next to sofa and area rug size have changed

They went with Option B! We swapped some casegoods from Option A, added a floor lamp and new kid friendly table lamps.

They went with Option B! We swapped some casegoods from Option A, added a floor lamp and new kid friendly table lamps.

Here is an updated photo of how things turned out - still more to come as things get delivered and installed!