November 18, 2010

A Sophisticated, Soft and Safari Inspired Nursery

Design Plan for: Boy's Nursery
Client: Francis and Ken

(click to enlarge)


Francis and Ken a young, fun-loving couple expecting their first new bundle of joy - a little baby boy they've named "Frankie" - are in the process of leaving their life as renters and purchasing their very first town-home right on time before their special delivery comes home!:) They contacted me and asked that I design an elegant, fun and unique nursery for their little bundle of joy. They initially gave me pretty much free reign on the design choices as long as I kept it "boy-friendly." That was until they saw one of my recent Photography Art Galleries, from my Fine Art Photography Shop, entitled  Wild.  As soon as they laid their eyes on the pictures of the baby animals, they  literally went "wild" (pun intended) with excitment and asked me to design a room around those prints, and of course I  readily consented!  This is the first nursery I have ever designed and I can honestly say with candor that I have never had this much fun on a client project!  I put a lot of thought and emotion in picking every little detail to create the perfect safari-esque escape for this future little ranger:)


Wall Paint and Color Palette. Instead of a juvenile, or overly themey safari decor scheme, I wanted to design something fun but elegant and modern for this young couple. After drawing inspiration from the prints, I decided that a gray similar to the skin of the baby elephant would make the perfect wall color. To lighten and brighten this nursery, I chose a buttery yellow, reminiscent of the African Safari Sunset, for the ceiling. The gray and yellow along with various shades of brown, cream and a dash of sky blue was the color palette I chose to add a bit of baby-fresh softness and calm factor. The paint colors, Benjamin Moore's Gray Horse and Benjamin Moore's Popcorn Kernel in an eggshell finish will set the stage for this beautiful nursery.

Here is a breakdown of the Design Board for Safari Nursery with the numbered items below:

1 - 3. Represents the most important part of the nursery. The crib and bedding, where little junior will (hopefully) spend many restful nights doing what babies do best - sleeping. I chose this elegant, espresso brown crib with traditional lines and the ability to transform later on into a full-grown bed, the head-board can later be dismantled and added to a bed for an adult, definitely a great investment piece for this young family. As for the bedding, this subtle safari themed black and gray fitted crib sheet will work flawlessly with the design. For added softness and warmth  I chose an organic crib matress along with organic cotton cream blankets and flannel throws to make sure baby Frankie is kept extra warm and cozy.

4. This sunny yellow dresser will not only add a stylish accent to the gray/yellow design scheme but will serve as the ideal functional piece to store many of Baby Frankie's clothing and diapers and supplies. It will also double as a changing table, as an added benefit the price was hard to beat.

5 - 7.  Represents one of my favorite pieces of the room. This extremely cool and surprisingly comfortable rattan rocking chair not only brings in one of the popular textural materials used in African Safari design, but is modern and cozy enough to be utilized as the perfect nursing chair. To bring in added cozy factor, this yellow and white zebra print throw pillow, as well as this soft blue flannel blanket that will be draped over the chair will make for the perfect comfortable seating for both mommy and baby.

8. This adorable, stylish and functional zebra print lamp has me smitten. It not only brings in texture and works with the color scheme, but is the perfect smaller size for a nursery and will give a much needed glow for those nights where baby Frankie willl be read or sung to by his proud parents.

9. Are the prints that Francis and Ken chose from My Wild Gallery (which are available for purchase  here) and the ones I built the design of the nursery around. Francis fell in love with the shots of the baby giraffe, elephant and zebra, and I made sure to include elements from all three into the rooms design scheme. These will be printed in  8x10 metallic finish and framed in espresso wood frames with simple white mats. The perfect artwork for this perfect litle safari nursery.

10. The rug that will anchor the room and all the furniture pieces that will be placed above it, while adding softness and style to boot. As soon as I laid eyes on this natural fiber rug in a giraffe print pattern, I knew it was the perfect piece to add to the nursery's gorgeous wood floors without taking away from their natural beauty. This rug is also elegant and versatile enough to later be used in future spaces and design schemes.

11. This black chandelier silhouette pendant lighting will be the ideal ceiling lighting for this baby boy's room. It is a fusion of traditional and modern due to the materials used and masculine enough to pass Ken's requirements for his son's room:)

12. Are the Window treatments I chose for the space. This organic cream cotton curtain panels will provide enough privacy to cover the gorgeous french-door/windows of the nursery. The couple will also be adding bamboo shades to ensure there is enough comfortable darkness for baby Frankie to sleep without interruption.

13. Finally, this most adorable and tender pale baby blue elephant made from organic materials, will be a perfect little play-mate for baby Frankie.

Here is Francis's Testimonial in her own words:

"When I saw your completed Design Scheme and read your consultation, I was literally left without words. All I could do was cry,cry tears of joy (not blaming the pregnancy hormones either:) Ken and I are blown away !!!!! This is exactly what we wanted and so, so much more! What an AMAZING nursery for our precious little Frankie. You have this most incredible of gifts to take one element like your beautiful prints, and create a masterpiece of a space. There aren't enough words to thank you except to say we are extremely grateful and can literally not wait to start putting all of the elements together.I have already ordered half of the items and sent Ken to buy the paint cans! Thank you a million times over!!!!!!!"

Here is one of the Before Pictures of what will become Frankie's Nursery, those windows and floors have me drooling....


Want to transform your own space on a budget? Please fill out my Decor Application Here or email me @ cestlavie.events@gmail.com.

November 17, 2010

A Feminine and Functional Craft Room

Design Plan for: Multi-Purpose Craft Room
Client: Joyce

(click to enlarge)


Joyce, a dynamic and incredibly talented work at home mom, was in dire need of a dedicated work room where her creativity could flow freely as she designed and created beautiful and unique vintage-inspired accessories for her craft business (link to her ETSY shop in side bar.)  Her current work space was crowded and a bit cluttered and she needed a space that was light, feminine, airy and bright but that would simulataneously be functional to store all of her supplies, while doubling as a sewing room.  She provided me with pictures of a space that was formerly a lovely nursery for her gorgeous baby girl, but would  now be used for her special craft room.  The paint colors Joyce originally chose were a nuetral cream on the walls,  and a vintage cameo pink on the ceiling -  the beautiful sparkly chandelier would also stay in the room and work flawlessly with the design I envisioned.  Keeping in mind her need for function and fabulousity, I went to work to create a truly inspiring space.

Here is a breakdown of the Design Board for the Multi-Purpose Craft Room with the numbered items below:

1. Represents the gorgeous, classically styled (and functional to boot) shelf-unit I chose for her space.  This gorgeous clear-glass shelf unit  works to display all of her crafting supplies in a stylish and colorful manner. The clear glass will allow for display of her  beautiful beads inside mason jars or storage wicker baskets displayed either inside or above this unit,  as well as stacks of gorgeous fabric, yarn packages and ribbons. The possibilities are endless.

2. This beautifu white parsons desk is the perfect work area/counter space that Joyce needed to work on her projects.  It is  clean-lined and functional with enough space to store large wicker baskets underneath  for extra storage and can work great as a photo-prop area with its white counter-top. I envision this desk working seamlessly with the shelf unit I selected above and recommend that this piece actually be placed flushed against the side of the shelf, that visually would appear as one large storage/work unit.

3. I love the idea of adding a bit of softness and crispness to every element  of this room -  including the seating. My floor plan for this room will include for the sewing machine to be distressed in a new finish and become the focal point of the room. As a result, covering the current chair in this soft and crisp white chair cover will transform the seating area and enhance the new look of the that furniture piece.

4. Represents the fabrics/textiles I have chosen for this space and the way we will bring in  most of the color and texture for the color palette which is a combination of: Cream, White, Aqua and a Cameo Pink. To keep things on a budget for this hard-working mom, I decided to tap into her and her mother's sewing abilities to come up with gorgeous window treatments using the aqua damask. The other fabrics can be used to create art/inspiration panels  (that will be explained in detail below) or as a way to personalize the shelf unit by adding the fabric to the back wall of each shelf. Combining these colors and textures will work to truly soften and brighten this room.

 5-6. Represent the DIY inspiration panels that will serve not only as a functional wall piece which where to place pictures/fabric swatches or materials that inspire Joyce's accessory collections, but can also be used to display the newest creations.  The best part is that these inspiration boards will double as art pieces on the wall. The concept is very simple and includes a bit of DIY magic. However, it only requires two cork boards, a bit of colorful and punchy fabric and a hot-glue gun. Voila/art that doubles as function. What's not to love?

7-8. Represents  all of the functional and textural storage pieces to organize and store all of the seperate supply units.Joyce will be able to display her colorful beads using the mason jars and organize her spools of yarn using the wicker baskets. The use of the espresso colored ones will work to break up all of the light tones and combines with the espresso colored wood floors of her room.

9. Represents the gorgeous distressed finish I would like to see on Joyce's sewing desk. This furniture piece has the traditional and vintage esque lines  that would look so lovely in this distressed aqua blue. I also love the idea of adding vintage type pulls to it, in either a metallic gold or silver to tie in the sparkly elements of the chandelier as well as the sparkle found in the fabric for the curtains.  (Joyce and her hubby happen to be experts in distressing furniture so this project is perfect for them!)

10. Finally, along with the  chandelier and the window lighting (during the day)  Joyce will need added lighting in this room, especially at night. I loved  the finish of this  (looks-a-lot-more-pricey-than-it-cost) ceramic rose-colored lamp that I suggest be placed on the top of white Parsons' desk to bring in added lighting and a pop of great color.

Here is my suggested Floor Plan for this space:




 Here is Joyce's Testimonial in her own words:

"You have left me speechless. You listened to everything that I told you that I liked. Colors, softness, theme. This design board is just perfect!! I am in big need of an office/craft space for my growing business, and you have created a room where I will love to work in. Being a work at home mom can sometimes be stressful, and repetitive...a difference to when you work out of the home and you get a change of scenery. This space will be just the perfect 'change of scenery' that I'll need. Your written consultation is SO DETAILED! I did not expect that. From where to buy everything, to how to make certain pieces. I couldn't have asked for anything more. You have nailed it! I can not wait to get started on the room!! I will definitely share pictures once it is complete!! Thank you!!"

Here are some of the Before Pictures (of what use't be her lovely nursery):








Want to transform your own space on a budget? Please fill out my Decor Application Here or email me @ cestlavie.events@gmail.com.

November 5, 2010

5th Year Anniversary Bash

Pardon my mini-hiatus, the past two weeks I have been incredibly occupied planning and executing a  very special event, our 5-year anniversary bash. A glamorous, fun, and elegant night celebrating Love. Our Love.

With the help of my amazing friends and family, I have been extremly busy making this happen:













All of the delicious details coming soon...