Getting a Gut Job Right

We are so excited to be working on a complete home renovation in Burlingame, and save a few walls..the entire place has been gutted.  We have selected the slabs, the appliances, the hardware, the doors and made countless other important decisions with the oh-so stylish homeowner, and now we get to talk about furnishings, decor, and paint!

Her kitchen is large and will be her most used room.  It has also long been a dream of hers to have an all-white kitchen (except for a blue La Cornue range).  And dreamy, this kitchen will be.  


We hand selected beautiful honed Calcutta Oro marble for her island and countertops, and for the decor we wanted to keep the vibe fresh, light and airy.  Her home is traditional in style but when her family's renovation is complete the new home will lend itself to a more modern, cool sensibility.  

We created this board for her (above) to give her a visual of how her space will come together.  To add some texture, and a bit of color to the clean and light palette, we will be adding a custom settee to wrap one corner of the room and provide seating for the rustic farmhouse style table (custom banquette not shown).  We chose the rustic farmhouse style table to counter-balance the sharpness of the white marble on the countertops and on the island.  

We are debating the chair choices above (woven bistro chairs or more organic, modern ones), as well as the lantern choices above.  We have chosen a weathered Oushak rug in saturated, yet faded colors to provide a cozy contrast to the white.  And pillows on the custom banquette will also add a comfort and color.

We can't wait to share the "after" of this beautiful space with you all, but in the meanwhile feel free to weigh in on the lighting and chair choices above(:

What's Your Style?

People often ask Shannon and me what our favorite "style" is.  And at the risk of sounding annoyingly diplomatic, it is hard for us to define one style that is our "favorite".  I think why we feel so passionate about interiors, and exteriors...(and even clothing for that matter) is because we truly love and appreciate so many different aesthetics.  Shannon and I share a very similar style, which encompasses a variety of different genres.   But even as business partners whose styles are very aligned, we definitely have (and celebrate) our differences.   I am a little more excited about a monogrammed pillow than she is,  while she appreciates a funky side table a little more than I do.  

 

That being said, we've thought long and hard about this "favorite" look question and so we are prepared to give you our answer.  If we could pick only one style to live in ourselves, it would be a combination of modern, rustic and bohemian.  

 

 

 The above image is a stunning representation of a room that is modern while still oozing comfort.  The wood ceiling, and the wood beams that frame the door in combination with the natural floor covering offer a rustic vibe while the art and the shape of the chairs and the minimal furniture assemblage are clean and modern.

Rustic Modern bathroom.jpg

 

This bathroom.  Simple, modern, clean and oh so stylish.  We love the bold use of dark iron, complemented by the white subway tiles.   The natural wood shelf adds a rustic element so that the result doesn't feel too cold or harsh.  The design and color palette are modern, the warm wood and iron are rustic, and the brass adds just the right amount of glamour.

Rustic Modern Kitchen.jpg

This kitchen is another dreamy space.  The herringbone floors are stunning, and are especially noticeable against the rich black cabinetry.  The antique mirror gives an old world feel, while the Platner chair is decidedly modern.  Salvaged floors, exposed beams, industrial lighting, and a mirrored backsplash styled with rustic cutting boards, edgy chairs and shiny appliances make for one beautiful space.

And there you have it...our favorite rooms are rustic, modern and slightly bohemian in style.  Adding the bohemian element is easily done with flooring and  textiles choices.  Add a kilim, a vintage oushak or a Beni Ourain rug to a room to instantly lift any pretension and often times add depth and color.  Add a sheepskin throw or a batik pillow to soften a square edged sofa.

Rustiuc Modern Lounge.jpg

 

 

We'll share a few of our top places to buy modern, rustic and bohemian pieces:

Styling Your Kitchen

Honestly, this blog post is less about "styling" your kitchen as it is about "de-cluttering" your kitchen.  We are all guilty of it...the blender on the counter, along with the coffee maker and the knives...oh, and what about the paper towel roll, and the toaster oven.  Where are we supposed to put those?

Away, is the simple answer.  But we'll give you a few suggestions that might make this task easier.

The Blender:  How often do you use the blender?  Even if it everyday (which it is in our family), the blender is only used in the morning, so it does not need to sit on the counter and take up precious space all the while serving as clutter.  Clean the blender after use, dismantle the few parts and put it away (a deep drawer or pantry will work).  It will take less than 2 minutes and removing the clunky object from view will make a big difference.  

The same goes for the toaster.  Most people only use it in the morning.  It has one plug and can easily be moved underneath where it is typically plugged into a deep pull-out drawer, or a lower cabinet where pots are concealed.  We use our pots and pans as much as our toaster (usually once a day), so why does the toaster get to hang out on top of the counter, while the pots are banished below?  Doesn't seem fair, and doesn't look good either(:

The Knives:  How about a drawer?  I know it seems really convenient to have your knives in a butcher block on your counter but if you have limited space (as we do...these pics are all from our Sonoma Project and unfortunately not from my kitchen), every square inch that is cleared, is space more visually appealing.  My mother-in-law is the first person I had seen who used the drawer approach for knives, and it is fantastic.  She uses a shallow top level drawer and puts only her sharp knives in this drawer (no other utensils, no whisks, no spoons, etc).  Knives, just knives.  It is safe because all of the handles are on the same side and it is as convenient as a butcher block without the visual clutter.

As for styling the kitchen, don't do much.  Less...as in everything less...is so much more.  For your fruit, choose a beautiful bowl...an art piece if you will.  Spend the money to buy a beautiful piece as it will sit on your counter for all to see.  We absolutely love Hudson Grace for a chic vessel and they have stores in San Francisco, Marin Country Mart and Montecito.  Whether wood and rustic or white and ceramic, choose something neutral without a whole lot of color because filling the bowl with fruit, particularly citrus, will provide the desired punch of color.  As for other styling tips, if you are going to host items on your counter, have them be like-minded...meaning: gather all of your wooden utensils and place them in a jar, instead of placing a hodge podge of stainless, ceramic and wood.  The result is a clean, modern and artistic.  

The take-away is that less is always more...unless you are styling your counter with spoons and cutting boards from Hudson Grace.  And in that case, more is more (:

Try these small and easy tricks to see how much brighter, larger and cleaner your most used space will feel.  And the best part....it's free.

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