Convert It: An Andalusian Country Home in Spain

Good Morning!

The Andalusian country home that I’m sharing in today’s post really takes me back to my recent trip to Spain. I know I haven’t (yet) anything here about my trip, but I swear I will soon….just as soon as I get a chance to go through all my pictures. I will say that one of my favourite areas of the Spain was Andalusia in the south. The mix of both Spanish and Moorish history creates a vibrant culture which is unlike anywhere else in Spain. The Moorish influence in the architecture has resulted in some of the most beautiful buildings I’ve ever seen. It’s definitely the area of Spain I’d like to spend more time in. But, I digress. Today’s home in my “Convert It” series is a gorgeous 17th century moorish building which has been restored/converted into a country home in the town of Carmona in the heart of Andalusia. The home was designed by Javier González Sánchez-Dalp, who turned this once dilapidated building into a bright, eclectic space. Walls were knocked down, new walls put up, and a whole second floor was added to make this space a home. And don’t even get me started on the outdoor living area. Whitewashed arches and columns, a natural cave, and a swimming pool so expertly incorporated to the space that it almost looks like it could have been original to the building. 

Photos in Nuevo Estilo via Onekind Design

I love the all the bright colours against the whitewashed walls and ceilings, and the mix of antiques that were used. It is that mix that makes this entire home look like it’s been there forever, despite the fact that a good bit of it is new.  And, again, that outdoor space is spectacular.  Can you imagine having coffee on that patio every morning? I certainly can. You can read more about this home and see more photos here. Have a great Friday!

XO,

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Kelly & Alun’s Family Room

Good Morning!

My best friend Kelly and her husband Alun recently moved to a new house with their three kids under six. To say they are busy is an understatement. Kel has great style and I don’t doubt that if she had an extra 20 hours to spare her week that she would already have magazine-worthy spaces in her new home. However, at the moment she’s lucky if she has an extra 20 minutes a day, which is why she has asked me to help her get these rooms to where she wants them. And I couldn’t be more excited.

First up is the family room. This room is where the family will congregate the most so it needs to be finished….and pronto. This is our starting point…

Project K&A_Before

This room is a bit of a balancing act. Of course it needs to look great but anything that goes into this space has to be kid and pet friendly (did I mention they also have 2 large dogs?). The furniture has to be comfortable and durable, and a rug cannot be light in colour due to dog hair.

The large grey sofa is staying where it is. It has a great modern shape and colour and happens to be very durable. The lamp is also staying.  Not surprisingly, Alun’s priority was getting the new extra large TV you see above.  Although it’s not not the prettiest thing in the room it does have a really cool bracket on the back so it can come out and tilt into the room when you want to watch it but also (and most importantly) goes flush against the wall when you don’t. After lots of back an forth the room is coming to together a little like this:

Kelly's Family Room_edited-2 From Top Left: Home Depot Arch Marble Base Silver Floor Lamp, IKEA KRAMFORS sofa  (discontinued), Fabric from Tonic Living (Sterling White, Cats Cradle Sunshine, Neo Toile Indigo, Velvet Water), Loloi Rug Viera Light Blue from Wayfair.com, Restoration Hardware Printmakers Media Console, West Elm Sedgwick Recliner, Small Crystal Service Table Zara Home, TOV Clyde Chair from Wayfair

Kelly fell in love the chinoiserie toile fabric she found at Tonic Living and that really became the jumping off point for the colour scheme of greys, blues and yellow. Everything you see in the mood board has been finalized and/or purchased except for the side table which we are still searching for. In addition to what you see above, the final piece of the space will be a large round ottoman/coffee table upholstered in that toile fabric. I am desperately waiting for Home Depot to get back back to me when a wooden electrical wire spool in the right size becomes available so that I can use it for the ottoman base. I’m very excited to this family room come together!

XO,

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New Obsession – Curved Sofas

Good Morning,

As an upholsterer, I always have my eye out for a piece of furniture with a great shape. Lately, I’m more than a little obsessed with curved sofas. There is something about a curve in a sofa that gives the whole room a softer edge. Not to mention that there are so many beautiful ones out there! And you know how circular dining tables are often more conducive to good conversation? I’m going to bet it’s the same thing for sitting on a curved sofa.  For all you traditionalists out there, I know that immediately you are thinking that curved sofas are mostly mid-century modern and retro in their design. And yes, vintage stores are packed with those beauties. However, many contemporary furniture manufacturers like West Elm and Crate & Barrel are now carrying curved sofas, so I am starting to see them pop up more often in traditionally designed spaces. Here are some examples of curvy goodness for your Friday viewing pleasure.

 1/New England Home magazine, photo via John Bessler 2/The Fig House Designed by Emily Henderson (photo from website)3/Designed by Parisien designer Pierre Yovanovitch (photo from website) 4/Photo via Mitchell Gold and Bob Williams Home 5/Designed by Amy Lau, photo via Home Adore 6/Photo via Domaine Home by Angus Fergosson

Sadly I don’t have space for one of these beauties but if you do, maybe you should get one so I can live vicariously through you.  Have a lovely weekend!

XO,

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St. Paddy’s Day Inspired Living Room

Good Morning!

With St. Paddy’s Day coming up on Monday, this morning I thought I would put together a living room design idea inspired by the holiday.  So I headed over to my Polyvore page and created this…

I used the IKEA stockholm sofa in a gorgeous kelly green as the base. Then I added those gorgeous round-back armchairs and layered it wooden and marble accents pieces. To add a pop of colour I used a dark cranberry morrocan style rug and some throw pillows. I have to say, I’m really liking the green and cranberry colour combo. What do you think?

Have a great day!

XO,

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Masters of Furniture: Charles and Ray Eames

Good Morning!

Since was talking about the Eames molded plastic chair in my last post, I thought it seemed appropriate to have Charles and Ray Eames as the subject of today’s Masters of Furniture post.

So I’m a little embarrassed. Although I know their designs very well it was only this week that I discovered that Charles and Ray Eames are in fact a husband and WIFE team, not two brothers. Ray is woman. Perhaps everyone else knew that already, but I had no clue.  But I suppose this is why I’ve been posting this series, to learn more about these designers.

photo by Christian Newton via Flickr CC

Charles Eames, Jr was born in St. Louis, Missouri. Charles studied architecture for two years at Washington University in St. Louis on an architecture scholarship. and then left the university. Many sources claim that he was dismissed for his advocacy of Frank Lloyd Wright and his interest in modern architects. However, less publicized sources indicate he left because couldn’t balance his studies with his part-time work at a local architecture firm.While at Washington University, he met his first wife, Catherine Woermann, whom he married in 1929. They divorced in 1941.  They had one daughter.  Charles worked in his own architecture firm in St. Louis until Finnish architect Eliel Saarinen (one of his great idols) invited to further study architecture at the Cranbrook Academy of Art.  He became a teacher there and later the head of the industrial design department.

Ray Kaiser, born in California, graduated from Bennett Women’s College in Millbrook, New York, and then moved to New York City, where she studied abstract expressionist painting with Hans Hofmann.  In 1940, she began studies at the Cranbrook Academy of Art.  That is where magic began!

Charles had became close friends with Eliel’s son Eero Saarinen and together they designed prize-winning furniture for New York’s Museum of Modern Art “Organic Design in Home Furnishings” competition. Their work displayed the new technique of wood moulding.  Ray was working on design drawings for the competition.  Charles and Ray married a year later to Los Angeles where they would continue designing furniture.

I’ve highlighted some of their most famous and influential designs below which are still in production to this day by Herman Miller.  You will recognize most of these pieces, in particular the iconic Eames lounge chair and ottoman.

670 Lounge Chair, 1958

Aluminum Group Tilt Swivel, 1958

 

Dining Sideshell Wire Wood base  or DSW, 1954

Dining Chair Wood or DCW, 1948

Dining Armchair Wood or the DAW, AKA the shell chair, 1954

All product photo above from Herman Miller

They also designed some toys using molded wood, like the Eames Elephant!

Photo Source Design Within Reach

Outside of furniture design they were still involved in architecture projects. Most notably, Charles and Ray designed and built the Eames House, as part of Arts & Architecture magazine’s “Case Study” program.  Case Study House #8 was hand-constructed in a matter of days out of entirely prefabricated steel parts and it is considered to be a milestone of modern architecture to this day.

Wikipedia

The couple also were involved in other creative ventures over the years such as films and textile design. Charles Eames died in 1978 and Ray died 10 years later. You can read much more on the Eames and their designs here.

Even if modern mid-century style pieces aren’t your go-to design style, I think most people can certainly appreciate how much the Eames designs have influenced today’s modern furniture design.  You can see my two previous Masters of Furniture Posts, here and here.

Have a great weekend!

xo,

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Friday Musings

Good Morning Lovelies,

I woke up with the beginnings of a cold this morning.  And here is the kicker….I recently finished a 7 day cleanse which was essentially 80% fruits and vegetables, giving me a week of constant vitamin and mineral intake, and NOW I start to get a cold?  This karma seems a bit backward.

But enough about my physical health, and on to the thinking side. I have had a whole bunch of thoughts and ideas rolling around in my noggin’ this week.  Mostly random ones and about various aspects of my life.  So, because it’s Friday, and because I like to share the quirky confines of my brain with you all, I’m just going throw out some of my recent musings.

1.  I think I need a personal clothes shopper.  Alright, the likelihood that I would EVER pay anyone to help me shop is REALLY low, but I am a bad shopper.  I’m not saying I have bad style or need to be on the next episode of “What not to Wear”, but I have a really hard time looking in my closet, assessing what I need, and what I should be buying to maximize the pieces I already have.  I wish I could shop and put together outfits like this lovely lady…

 

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2.  I’m caught in a web of interdependence when it comes to storage and decor in my place.  And the web begins here:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA My kitchen cupboards are too shallow for any decent sized serving platters so I end of storing them here on top of my fridge I would like to move them to open shelving here…

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA but my makeshift bar is currently residing on that shelving….which is why I want/need to find a pretty bar cart to put here in my living room, under my window….

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA (There was a bookcase here which is why there is a stack of books sitting there right now).  I envision my bar cart area looking something like these ones…

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So, as you can see I need the bar cart in order to deal with other storage and decor issues. The search continues.

3.  I need to work on my Recreated Facebook page.  Let’s be honest, it’s less than spectacular and I rarely post to it or update it.  It really needs a revamp.  Does anyone know if its possible to concurrently post to two Facebook pages?

4. It is possible the I may be going on an amazing trip very soon.  I’m still sorting things out so I don’t want to jinx it by telling you where yet, but it will involve me doing this to get there…

Will keep you posted!

Have a great Friday!

XO,

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The New Traditional Kitchen – Guest Post by David Leland

Good morning!  I’m VERY excited this morning to have my friend David Leland, a designer with Aya Kitchens and Baths (who are one of the amazing sponsors of the upcoming Blogpodium!), here to share with you one of his recent kitchen renovation projects. David first visited Recreated last year to share his favourite piece of furniture as part of my Pieces of You series. And now he’s back talking kitchens, and he has some great information for you on New Traditional kitchen design. So, without further ado, I give you David.

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Hello peoples!  As mentioned, my name is David Leland and I am indeed a kitchen designer with Aya Kitchens and Baths.  I am certainly excited to have been invited by Lindsey to be part of her “all things design”  blog and have the chance to share a little of me, with you!   There are many things I suppose I could have discussed, but ultimately I decided I would talk to you about a project I recently worked on. I hope you find it an interesting read and enjoy the transformation!

Classic in its esthetic  and timeless in its design, the traditional kitchen is still a prevalent desire among most people embarking on a kitchen renovation project today.  So if you’re a traditionalist at heart, but are concerned you may be dating your home, don’t worry, because a major trend has hit the kitchen design world: the new traditional kitchen.

The key to creating the new traditional kitchen is the combination of traditional design elements such cabinet door styles and detailed mouldings with more contemporary design elements such as open concept floor plans, clean, bright-coloured finishes and contemporary hardware to keep the space looking fresh and up-to-date.

In the project I’m featuring today, the clients wanted update their space, while still keeping with the overall traditional esthetic of the home.  The removal of a bulkhead, some light fixture concerns, and the refinishing of all the baseboards and mouldings were just some of the things that had to be addressed to really bring this space into the present and give the clients the showcase kitchen they deserve.

Before 1

In addition to just giving this space a facelift, we wanted to give the main floor a more open,  free-flowing design  – conforming with today’s idea of a more modern floorplan. We decided that the kitchen and the eating area should no longer be divided as shown below in the before photo below.  To do this we removed the wall between the kitchen and the formal dining area,  and relocated the range and ductwork which was originally found on that wall to get a a more open-concept space.

Before 2

The first choice of the redesign was the more traditional, raised-panel cabinet door style – the Churchill – and we went from there.  The selection of an elegant 3-1/2” crown moulding (my clients also had a finish carpenter copy the profile of the crown moulding, so they could continue it throughout the space), false panels on any exposed cabinetry ends, decorative posts flanking either end of the island, and an intricate on-lay over the “desk” provided the traditional base for this kitchen design.

After 1

Now, to incorporate the “new” elements to this new traditional design we opted for a bright oyster painted finish on the cabinets, clean white marble tile, a modern mixed mosaic back splash, a white Alaskan granite counter top, a clean, modern faucet, and a two-tiered island.  Furthermore, all the mouldings were painted white providing a more elegant feel to the space, and with the wall removed a much more intimate gathering area is achieved – allowing for those in the kitchen to entertain and maintain conversation with those seated at the table.  Given that in today’s world everyone loves to congregate in the kitchen at parties, it is important for hosts to be able to do what needs to be done, but at the same time allow them to enjoy the company of their guests.

After 2

Various other ideas and elements were used to make this traditional kitchen feel up-to-date and contemporary; from shiny chrome hardware to the mix of contemporary stools and traditional dining chairs.

After 3 The finished product is a beautiful elegant space, classic enough in its design so it never goes out of style, but dressed up with some modern elements.   The result is a clean, simple, and tailored look and a great example of the New Traditional kitchen.

All photos taken by David Leland and used with permission from the homeowner.

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Hope you all enjoyed and thanks again to David for visiting today!

Have a great weekend lovelies!

XO,

Inspired by Movies – Under the Tuscan Sun

Good morning! Today I’m talking about one of my favourite films, “Under the Tuscan Sun”.  I mean who hasn’t had a time in their lives where they wanted to run away and buy a villa in Tuscany? Not only is this film set in a beautiful location with a great storyline, but I loved watching the transformation of the villa as she makes it her own.  I love movies where either the location or spaces in the movies are a character themselves.  SJP always said that New York City was the fifth character in “Sex and the City”, and I feel similarly about the villa in this movie.

The Synopsis (of sorts):

After going through a divorce, she buys a run down villa in Tuscany on a whim….

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She does some renos….

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And lots of cleaning….

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And makes it cozy…

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She learns to cook…

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She enjoys her balcony…

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And makes new friends and drinks lots of wine.

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THE END

Ok, so there is a lot more to it than that but you get the gist.  If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it. And I loved the laid-back attitude in both the Italian lifestyle as well as in the decor. Rustic materials, with muted colours paired with a few pops of colour thrown in.  Here is my take on a Tuscan-inspired room:

1. Italian Wood and Iron Chandelier, Circa Antiques via One Kings Lane 2. Clay tiles by Stoneshield 3. Portou Oak Armchair by Rathwood Furniture 4. Lytton Cocktail Table by Vanguard Furniture 5. Atelier Chesterfield Anthropologie 6. Missoni Pillow 7. Benjamin Moore Desert Green Paint Colour 8. Tuscan Landscape by Marlene Robbins

Oh and did I mention you can rent the Villa Bramasole where Under the Tuscan Sun was filmed as a vacation home…..if you decide to do that, please note that if required I could fit in a really large suitcase (take me with you!).

AND, now I’m craving wine….

Ciao Bellas!

Last Weeks Loves – Online Shops Edition

Good morning!  Monday again, so you know what that means….my last weeks loves are up!  But today there is a little twist…instead of last weeks posts I loved, today I’m featuring online stores that I’m loving which I’ve only recently discovered (i.e. in the past week!).  I’ve come across these shops/stores either through searching for specific items or through other blogs, but all have items I would buy on the spot….if I only had unlimited funds and storage.

First up….

I love the great vintage housewares found at High Street Market – the shop is very well curated with lovely pieces with pretty details, and they appear to be in great condition.  Some of the beauties I’ve found are…

I want this lamp for my desk

I love this bold brass lamp with the plain white shade.

And I love this modern brass bowl.

I found Have You Met Miss Jones through this post by SF Girl by Bay.  This great online store is full of beautiful bone china, clay pottery and recycled glass art for your home.  I love the bone china lighting in all sorts of interesting shapes and forms, as well as their beautiful vases….like these ones….

And this adorable little doe nightlight, how cute would that be for a kids room?

And I love these handy yet pretty white china paper bags

Part of the reason I love upholstery is because I get to make old new again.  Which is also why I really like Found Design Miami.  They take old furniture and make it new again, by refinishing, redesigning and/or reupholstering. How could I not like that?

This piece called “Paige’s Curiosity Cabinet”, is so unique…..I can’t even think what kind of space I would put it in, but there is something about it that I’m drawn to.

I love a chairs with good shape, which this one definitely has, and I love the simple fabric with the detailed wood frame. Great piece.

I occasionally randomly search for vintage items on Etsy and during this weeks perusal I found Loverly Vintage.  Beside an amazing name, this store has a really neat collection of vintage items from housewares to accessories.

Hot pink and vintage go hand in hand, right? OK, maybe not normally, but this piece challenges that for sure. Love it.

ummm, pretty copper cups…gorge, totally gorge.

Vintage copper coloured beaded belt….pair this stunner with a LBD and you’ve taken your outfit from plain to fabulous.

It is crazy how many great online shops are out there, and these are just a tiny sampler.  Also, Miss Christine over at Bijou and Boheme featured two great blog shops this week, The Enchanted Home Shop and Recycled Consign and Design.  Go check out her post to see the fabulous items you will find in those shops, and then check them out for yourself! (Oh ya, and keep your peepers peeled for Christine’s shop in the coming months…with her talents, how could it not be fab?)

Have a great week!

XO,