Black Is My Happy Color

It has been a crazy busy summer here at 1865 City House! Why does summer fly and winter drag? In an effort to “catch up” I will be reposting a few of my favorite blog posts the next few weeks, just in case you missed any.  Enjoy!

I saw a girl wearing a tee shirt the other day that read “Black is My Happy Color” and I laughed because black is my “go to” favorite color. I remember my first black velvet dress at around age ten, I thought is was the most elegant thing I had ever owned. Maybe my love of black started then.

Today I strongly believe no interior is complete without a touch of black. It is a timeless color. Black always adds emphasis just like a black picture frame highlights the white mat and photo. Oddly it can make small rooms seem bigger, as the lines tend to disappear. Black will always add depth and can anchor a space like no other color.

There are many ways to incorporate black to your interiors. Consider adding accents and textiles in black when looking for a bit of drama or elegance.

Yes, I know, one of Benjamin Moore’s most popular colors is “Simply White”. However, pair it with black and you have a winning combination.

Opposites Attract

I was lucky enough to stay at my favorite hotel recently, The Edition in NYC.  Oh, how I love this place! While staying there I am always inspired by the interior design.  So much so, that in the moment, I am mentally redesigning every inch of 1865 City House.

What makes it so appealing?  It’s the repeated use of contrast.  Or in other words “opposites”.  Light colors with dark colors.  This is the best tool in a designers tool box!

Contrast works in paintings:

Renoir – At the Opera

Contrast works with food presentation:

Art of Food

Contrast most definitely works at The Edition:

Marriott International New York EDITION

travelforsenses

At The Edition light oak floors paired with dark wood entryways and beautiful dark oversized beds create contrast at its best.  The high contrast concept is implemented with variations on the same theme all throughout the hotel. Even the artwork is great vintage black and white photos in glossy white or black frames.

Here are a few examples of contrast for interiors:

Goodlifeofdesign

Kadvacorp

Decoist

Contrast (light vs dark) is important when designing a room.  It is an easy way to make a statement and add personality to your spaces.

Even monochromatic rooms can be visually exciting when paired with strong accents in constrating colors.  A room without any contrast can be quite boring.  I recommend taking a step back, or better yet photograph your spaces to ensure they are inviting, interesting, and have a good deal of contrast.  Often it is just a matter of adding a few dynamic colors to update the entire look!

You Had Me at Small Batch . . .

Just when I thought I knew everything there was to know about paint, Benjamin Mooore has introduced their “Century Collection”.

This stunning new paint line is pre-mixed, small-batch paint, in a soft touch matte finish. The depth of color is amazing!

There are 75 colors in this collection and even the paint decks are hand painted to give a true representation of the color.

Here are a few examples of the look:

 

 

 

Impressive, right?  The price is a little high, approximately $125.00 per gallon, similar to the cost of wallpaper for a room.  I can’t wait to try it!

 

Time to Fake It

June, so many beautiful and amazing flowers! Early last week I bought a bouquet of Peonies. I wish I had photographed them, so pretty! In my opinion Peonies are the frangance of summer! But alas all good things must come to an end. I awoke today to a vase surrounded by fallen petals. So sad.

I adore fresh flowers, my garden is planted with the intention of having cut flowers for display inside my home.

However fresh flowers and plants need tender loving care and have an expiration date:

This being said, I will admit to the purchase of fake flowers and plants. These beauties can fill up an empty space and require no care at all. However best to keep them on the small side, as it is harder to find larger arrangements that look natural.

Here are some of my favorities fakes:

Of course there is nothing like the real thing, but once and awhile it’s ok to fake it.

The Year Of the Succulent

It’s been building for some time now. Everywhere you look there are succulents on display.  Just yesterday I noticed a beautiful display at the hardware store and came home to find a furniture catalog in the mail – just about every display photo featured succulents! These lovely plants may just be taking over, we need to excercise caution!  Just kidding, but you could use them everywhere as they are quite beautiful.  Succulents are easy to care for and mix well with all decors.

House to Home

If your not sure what succulents are here is a brief description:

Succulent plants, such as Aloe, store water in their fleshy leaves. In botany, succulent plants, also known as succulents or sometimes fat plants, are plants that have some parts that are more than normally thickened and fleshy, usually to retain water in arid climates or soil conditions.
Succulent plant – Wikipedia
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/succulent_plant

I love to use them as a centerpiece:

Center Stage

As unexpected display in a dark corner:

Display

Or just about anywhere:

In Groups

Gardenista

Or all alone:

Too Cute!

FourWalls

If you are missing out on this great trend, don’t worry, you can pick up some of these beauties anywhere, even the hardware store!

 

You Say Minimalism, …I Say Maximalism…?

Ok, truth be told, I appreciate both.  Last year, I read and blogged about The More of Less, a great book by Joshua Becker about the joys of Minimalism.  It really inspired me! Recently I watched a great documentary, Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things, which I highly recommend!  It runs just a little over an hour, you can find it on Netflix.  As a result of this documentary, I am editing yet again; it must be a Spring thing!

However, anyone who knows me would probably not think “Minimalist”.  I always tell my friends minimalism means different things to different people.  Some people might think 6 pairs of shoes is excessive, some may think 6 is the bare minimum.  It’s all a matter of perspective.

Yet, Maximalism in design is on the rise!  Interiors are definitely becoming more layered and colorful.  Maximalism’s motto is “more is more”.  I am ok with this idea, but just remember there is a big difference between maximalism and clutter!  Be careful!  A successful Maximalist room is well planned, with special attention to mixing patterns , colors, and styles.
Here are some of my favorite minimalist and maximalist rooms:

Elegance

Manual 17

Designsponge

Eclectic

http://www.howtobuildahouseblog.com/combine-your-old-furniture-with-new-furniture/eclectic-living-room/

How would you describe your decorating, more minimalist or maximalist?  I would love to know!