design tips

Picking the Perfect Accent Chair by Sharon Blaustein

Feeling ready to refresh your space, but don’t have the time or desire to commit to a full redesign or renovation? Never fear, there are lots of design tips that you can use to energize your home in the meantime! One of our favorite (and fastest) ways to bring some new life into a room is to add a fun accent chair!

When selecting a chair, don't be afraid to add in a pop of color, a funky shape, and some cool materiality. A chair has the opportunity to bring style and personality into a room, without being a huge undertaking or investment like other pieces of furniture. Keep reading to see how we've used seating to switch up some of our spaces! 

We love the deep blue color that you just want to dive into after a long day. and the enveloping design gives off an approachable modern vibe. The  Ventura Lounge  chair is one of our personal favorites! 

We love the deep blue color that you just want to dive into after a long day. and the enveloping design gives off an approachable modern vibe. The Ventura Lounge chair is one of our personal favorites! 

 

When searching for the perfect chair; comfort is key. Make a design statement that also serves a practical function. We believe comfort should never be sacrificed for style, especially in your home or workplace. A good chair should feel like it's welcoming you with open arms at the end of a long day.

Upholstery Selection

Choosing a nontraditional fabric is a great option for a lounge chair, but it's also important to keep the traffic and use of that room in mind. A stark white linen chair might make an elegant statement, but the first time somebody spills red wine at a party, it's a heartbreak! 

The sumptuous velvet of these lounge chairs provide a surface that's just begging to be sat upon. They also juxtapose with the vintage rug that we chose for this room, you can also read more on our  tips for selecting the perfect rug !

The sumptuous velvet of these lounge chairs provide a surface that's just begging to be sat upon. They also juxtapose with the vintage rug that we chose for this room, you can also read more on our tips for selecting the perfect rug!

Choosing the Perfect Print

You can also mix things up with by selecting a fun pattern! You can think of your chair like your own personal throne, it's an opportunity to have a physical reflection of your style.

This cowhide lounger is definitely making a statement in a living room or office. Organic textiles like a cowhide always give a one-of-a-kind feel, we also love to use these as  unique floor coverings

This cowhide lounger is definitely making a statement in a living room or office. Organic textiles like a cowhide always give a one-of-a-kind feel, we also love to use these as unique floor coverings

Mixing Materials

In contemporary design, selecting materials and shapes that complement one another is very important to the overall flow of the room. Another of our favorite chairs is the Ipanema Armchair designed by Jean-Marie Massaud. Named for one of Brazil's most famous beaches, its design does remind you of reclining under the sun, but the clean lines and dark walnut finish blend perfectly in a modern living room.

Dark colors and a structural design come together perfectly in this modern living area. 

Dark colors and a structural design come together perfectly in this modern living area. 

Take a Risk!

A chair is a great time to go all out and have some fun! You may have read our previous post about selecting the perfect stools for your home, having seating options that works for your home and your personality is very important. Chairs are typically not as expensive as some of the larger pieces of furniture that will define your space, not as permanent as a coat of paint or wallpaper, and they truly can tie a room together. Below are a few of the crazier seating options that we've seen over the years, hopefully you will now feel inspired to go out and find a new chair to transform your home! 

The Spanish Chair  by  Børge Mogensen  is made with solid oak and saddle leather.

The Spanish Chair by Børge Mogensen is made with solid oak and saddle leather.

The Tropicana Chair  by  Patricia Urquiola  made using wrapped threads on a tubular steel frame.

The Tropicana Chair by Patricia Urquiola made using wrapped threads on a tubular steel frame.

How to Design Your Dream Kitchen by Sharon Blaustein

There is no place like home! And there is no place in the home like the kitchen!

A kitchen is the heart of the house. It’s where loved ones gather at the end of the day for a family dinner and it's a place where friends can relax and drink a glass of wine while the food simmers on the stove. Since it is such a vital part of any home, and there are so many components, we believe it's a room that needs to be comfortable and reflect the personality of the homeowners. 

There are a few key ingredients to creating a dream kitchen:

Kitchen designed by  ODA Architecture

Kitchen designed by ODA Architecture

Space planning:

Space planning is the secret sauce for a functional kitchen. A thoughtful plan is important for the right flow within the kitchen whether you are working or entertaining (and more often than not, both!). The main component to consider is the kitchen's work triangle – the path that you make when moving from the refrigerator, to the sink, to the oven while you're preparing a meal. Make sure all three of these areas are in close proximity or easily accessible to one another.

Classic work triangle.

Classic work triangle.

 

Another important component to consider is the kitchen island, which acts as the centerpiece of the kitchen. It can function as additional counterspace as well as an eating area for when you're on the go. If you plan on placing seating around it make sure you have an overhang of 10” or more to allow for comfortable space underneath. You can read more on our favorite bar stool options here

Kitchen designed  Stefano Pasqualetti

Kitchen designed Stefano Pasqualetti

 

Countertop material:

We love natural stones! They are rich, warm and have so much character with their natural veining. However, it's important to keep in mind that most natural stones stain easily, scratch and need regular maintenance. If you like to cook, have a busy household with young kids or just don’t like to worry every time you use the kitchen, we would suggest to avoid natural stone (or stainless steel counters that scratch easily). Quartz is our go to. Brands like CaesarStone offer a huge variety of finishes ranging from stone replicas to cool, concrete-like finishes. They are super durable and need no maintenance. If you're curious about learning more about different countertops, you can read more here.

Kitchen trends:

Modern kitchens, especially in a modern home layout where the kitchen is open, are often designed to look like furniture that you will find in a living space. The appliances are mostly hidden behind panels and the kitchen cabinets are made with rich wood finishes and seamless details such as grooves and reveals to open the cabinets rather than hardware. 

 

A modern kitchen in our  Scarsdale Home  project designed by  B Interior

A modern kitchen in our Scarsdale Home project designed by B Interior

There are so many more ingredients to a perfect kitchen such as lighting, cabinets, drawings planning, fixtures, appliances and list goes on and on. We wanted to give you a taste of the perfect kitchen design and will go get back to you with more in our future blogs. Stay tuned!

 

How Much Does Interior Design Really Cost? by Sharon Blaustein

Have you ever considered hiring an interior designer but were intimidated by How much does interior design cost?

So, you are looking around you and are very tired of your living room. You really want to get rid of that awful sofa that your husband brought from his bachelor pad when he moved from the West Village, you have that rug that you bought on your last trip to Turkey which you love, and you do have those chairs that you got from ABC Carpet + Home, but nothing really works together and you are desperately looking for someone who can tie it all together.

You google “NYC Interior Designer” or “Modern Interior Designer” and find some designers you really like, but it all looks very expensive and intimidating and you have no clue on how much this is all going to cost.

Here are 3 tips that will help you figure out how much does interior design cost

 

Tip 1: How does the designer charge?

Make sure you know how the Interior Designer charges. Some designers charge by the hour, others charge a global fee, and some charge a purchasing fee and/or a combination of any of the above. Before you start working with an Interior Designer make sure you are clear on how they charge.

Tip 2: Your expectations from your designer

Know what you really want to get out of the interior design process: Do you want to be more active and come up with some items or do you want the interior designer to lead the process? If the latter is true, communicate it to the Interior Designer, if you can do some of the leg work then the designer will charge less.

Tip 3: Budget expectations

Set a reasonable budget for your project. If you are on a budget take into account the shipping, sales tax, installation and purchasing fee. Make sure you communicate it to the Designer so your budget includes all these costs. They can add up and inflate the total budget.

In conclusion:

Nobody likes to start a project not knowing how much it will cost them at the end.  Therefore you need to be clear on how much interior design costs before you start working with a designer.

When we start working with a client, we set the expectations early on and make sure that everyone is on the same page. We believe in an open communication, zero surprises and happy clients!

Contact us with your next project big or small and you will know how much your Interior design project will cost.