Archive for ‘Cool Spaces’

July 30, 2014

We built a barn house! And here’s how it turned out

by Gillian

My last post about the house was back in April (eek!) and since then we have finished the house! We moved into it in June although there were still some punch list items that needed to be finalized. The exterior still needs some painting to the roof area which hopefully will be finalized soon, and the interior staircase has to be painted as well. But here’s our house tour…

The downstairs consists of open living/dining/kitchen area on one side and then a small mudroom, laundry, and powder room on the other side of the entry door. The beams are reclaimed from an old barn (unfortunately we couldn’t use the old beams from the barn we tore down because they had been treated with a chemical called creosote that would have been harmful over time).  These are one of my favorite features of the house because I really feel like it gives it so much character. Almost all of the furnishings in the house were purchased online with the exception of the sofa which we had to test out first.


I love how the floating shelves turned out in the kitchen. Since we’re only there on weekends we don’t need that many dishes so it works for us.


But there’s plenty of room in the island cabinets if we needed more space. And behind that door is a walk in pantry. (I wish I had all this extra space in my city apartment!)


Moving upstairs there are two bedrooms and a bathroom. Here’s the master bedroom. I wanted to keep everything very calm and peaceful. How amazing is my view!? When I wake up in the morning I can spot the deer grazing in the fields below.


Across from the bed is our home-made Jackson Pollack that the entire family helped to make. I LOVE how perfect it looks in here.


The girls room is gigantic! It’s the entire length of the house but it actually is perfect. They both have a full size bed plus all their toys and crafts are contained in this room so there is no need for it to trickle down into the living space. I installed an extra long IKEA desk so they can both spread out to do crafting projects and then when they are older homework.


When they wake up in the morning they like to peek out the window too and see what animals they can spot. Last week they saw some bunnies as well as a deer family.


In lieu of actual headboards I made these butterfly fabric wall frames to coordinate with the pottery barn bedding.


And the last room upstairs is the bathroom which is very difficult to photograph because of the tight space.


This vanity that I found online is great – so much storage space! Even with 4 of us sharing this bathroom there is plenty of room.


There is still a lot of exterior work to be finished including painting, installing the front door knob, and landscaping which we can’t start until early fall. Stay tuned for more updates and before and after photos.

April 10, 2014

We’re building a house! Part II

by Gillian

Last month I made a trip to the job site to have a look at the progress they had made since February. I was pleasantly surprised to see that it was starting to really look a house on the inside. The plumbing and electrical were completed and passed inspection so the house was insulated and the walls were up!  And we now have a front door (which will be painted later).

feb - march 2014 005

This is what it looks like when you walk through the front door and immediately turn left. Eric is standing in what will be the dining “nook”. Even covered in snow the view is breathtaking.

feb - march 2014 007

Along the back wall here is where the kitchen will be installed – the door to the right is the pantry.

feb - march 2014 008

Here’s the master bedroom, doesn’t look like much now but wait until I can really get in there!

feb - march 2014 002

The girls will be sharing this enormous bedroom, and they too have the same amazing view (but my back was towards the view in this pic). I have some DIY ideas on the brain for this space.

feb - march 2014 005 (2)

And here’s our incomplete deck. We still need to install the stainless steel cable railings. I am day dreaming about relaxing here with a glass of wine at the end of a fabulous summer day.


feb - march 2014 001 (2)

I was also able to finalize the kitchen layout and purchase the cabinets and appliances. Here’s a computer generated drawing of how it’s going to look:




On my next site visit in a few weeks I hope to see the floors, staircase, doors, window & door trim all installed! Maybe I will also be able to approve a color for the exterior of the house. Red of course, but there are so many variations. I don’t want something too bright, or too brown, and it has to coordinate with the existing 100 yr old barn in the back of this new house so it might be quite tricky.


April 4, 2014

Guest House Interiors: Part I

by Gillian

A few weeks I blogged mostly about the construction and exterior of the guest house at the farm that I am in the process of building. The vision for the interior is to have the main level feel open and airy, like a loft space, with the living, dining and kitchen areas all exposed. There will also be a powder room, mudroom, and laundry area on the main floor. Upstairs there are 2 bedrooms and a full bath. Each main room’s purpose it to maximize the spectacular view.

In coming up with the design for the space I wanted to play with juxtaposition a bit – the exterior is supposed to look like a barn (albeit modern) but I don’t really love traditional spaces I much prefer the modern look. So while from the outside the house might look a bit more traditional I wanted the interior to feel really clean and modern but with a twist. So I came up with a design I am calling modern industrial chic barn. In theory I would love to have everything white and cream and airy but with 2 small children and a dog who knows no boundaries that is just a fantasy. I created a style board that reflects the look I’m going for.

furniture & Lighitng


So now I’m just anxiously waiting until I can finalize the purchases and then coordinate installation once the construction is complete. I can’t wait to share the finished project with you all!

March 5, 2014

We’re building a house! Part I

by Gillian

Every summer my family spends a lot of time at my parent’s weekend place (which we call the farm). My brother and his wife come too and now that they have new baby we were simply running out of space for everyone. The house is from the late 1880’s so our initial thought to build up and make the attic a usable 2 bedroom and bathroom space wouldn’t work because the house structurally wouldn’t hold up. Fortunately, we have a lot of property so we decided to build a new house where an old existing barn garage and corn crib had been. We were just kind of throwing ideas out there and we weren’t going to start any construction until Fall 2104 but our builder told us he was suddenly available this winter and would be able to build us a house by June 1, 2014 so we jumped on the chance. It’s been a very crazy few months first trying to figure out what we wanted the space to look like – modern, barn-like, more traditional? Then trying to find an architect to draw up plans and get all our permits etc within a matter of weeks so that we could demo the old structures, break ground and pour concrete before mid November when the ground typically freezes. And then get the house framed and wrapped before the wrath of winter. Also, I should mention that the farm is 2 hours away from Manhattan so it’s been tough to make regular site visits and the majority of communication has been via phone and email with the builder and not face to face. Additionally, I would like to add that once you leave a big city everything moves at a snail’s pace. Nobody has any sense of urgency about anything and it can take days or weeks even to get an email reply. It’s not how I’m used to working and has been a very good test of my patience so far.

Ultimately, we decided to build a modern barn home to fit in with the existing old main house on one side of the site and an existing old barn structure that used to hold livestock. The most important feature of the whole new house is the view. We really wanted to take advantage of just how stunning it is. I am really looking forward to waking up to this:


In September this is what the site looked like – barn garage on the left and corn crib on the right (you can see the roof of the old barn in the background which is staying). You also may notice my dad’s baby – his 1967 Cutlass convertible which he calls “the ghost”. I’ll get back to “the ghost” when I fill you in on the interior plans.


In early October here’s what it looked like: old structures were demolished leaving the footprint for the new house.


Then while it was relatively still warm, the concrete foundation was poured:

fall-winter 2013 038

By the end of November the framing was up. And we already had the first of many snowstorms:


By Christmas the entire house was framed and they were putting on the roof. This was the first time I was seeing it in person and not just from photos and it felt so much smaller in person than it did on the floorplans.  During our walk through we noticed some things that we needed to tweak and some things that we wished we could but ultimately could not change. This is one of the main disadvantages of not being able to have regular site visits.

iphone 2013 005

This is the view standing in my new living room:

iphone 2013 002

In January the windows were in and the house was wrapped up for protection from this brutal winter we are having. Here’s the view from the main road looking at the front of the house:

February 2014 003

When I saw it in February they had started putting on the board and batten on the sides of the house.

February 2014 021

My next visit up to see the house is in a few weeks. I am expecting to see the electrical & plumbing complete, as well as the all the sheet rock which is going to totally make this shell feel like a real space. Stay tuned for more posts to see how the house is progressing along with my interior plans for this modern industrial chic barn house!

November 18, 2013

Car Themed Baby Boy Nursery-Reveal!

by Gillian

A few months ago I wrote about another baby boy nursery project I was working on – this one was car themed. The room has been finished for a while but I haven’t had a chance to upload the photos yet…until now!

The client had chosen the Bo boo cotton fabric by Marimekko before we had even met so the whole room was worked around it. One entire length of window wall was treated with the fabric to create a floor to ceiling curtain effect. The rug is actually wall to wall carpet that we had cut to size. The client wanted an area rug that took up most of the floor space but left a border of wood floor and because of the size of the space this was a better option than a typical stocked area rug. DSC_7196-001I found these amazing vintage car prints on 1stdibs and we both immediately fell in love with them and knew they would be perfect.

The Presidio Glider from Serena & Lily was an existing piece from the client’s eldest child but we changed the fabric and had a custom slipcover professionally made. It completely changed the look of the piece. In fact all of the major furniture items were reused from the the baby’s sibling but with simple updates you would never know.


The dresser was also an existing piece but we gave it a bit of a facelift with these checked hand-painted knobs from Gracious Home


We had two of the large throw pillows custom-made with a great Lulu DK child fabric called Skittles in Blueberry and the other two woven pillows were from Dash & Albert that I found on Layla Grace. All are perched atop of a west elm daybed that was recovered with a custom mattress cover (not shown).


Even the closet interior got some love with these striped toy bins from Pottery Barn Kids.


I adore this stylish nursery for such a sweet family. I hope Nicholas enjoys his fabulous room as much as I do!

November 4, 2013

Baby of The World – Eli’s Room Details

by Gillian

A few months ago I installed my nephew’s nursery and good thing since Eli Wolfe arrived 3 weeks early!  I can’t wait to share with you all the adorable details. As I mentioned in a previous blog post I found the crib bedding which was the inspiration for the whole space.

photo 5 (2)

We decided to go with a blue, red & white color theme – the walls are a pale blue color (Benjamin Moore Breath of Fresh Air # 806); the handmade  wool rug is a super plush cream and light blue chevron that I found on Overstock for a steal ; the curtains are blue and white checked panels that I also scored on Overstock; the Ikea dresser is a deep peacock-blue; the pouf and storage cubes are red and the window seat cushion is multicolored.

Here’s what we started with:


I enlisted my sister-in-law’s help with putting together my 2nd DIY project – the window seat! I hunted down this discontinued fabric that I spotted online because once I saw it I knew it would be perfect for this room and I HAD TO HAVE IT! I mean could it be any cuter? Then I had a masonite board pre-cut at the Home Depot and then ordered thick foam online – also cut to my measurements. The bench is actually a bookcase from IKEA that we flipped horizontally.

photo 2 (2)

You basically just align the fabric and staple all the way around, and when you get to the corners you wrap them like you would a present. Cut off any excess and don’t worry about what the bottom looks like – nobody will see it.

aug - sept 2013 018I realized once we were installing that my measurements were a wee bit off so fortunately my brother’s friend was able to step in and help us cut the we are wrapping the fabric around a masonite board and foam cushion. Gotta love a staple gun!

aug - sept 2013 015

I used heavy-duty velcro to adhere the bottom of the cushion to the top of the bookcase and then popped in the clear red IKEA bins.



While we were busy with that Zach was in charge of drilling – he hung the curtains and then installed 5 wall shelves on either side of the window for our floating bookcase wall.

aug - sept 2013 016

I love that all the books will be visible and easy to find once his library grows.

photo 5

We then hung the swing arm lights on either side of the crib and then placed the focal point of the room – the world map mural that I found on Ebay.  The decal came in two sheets and I cut out each continent and laid it out on the floor before we began.

aug - sept 2013 008

aug - sept 2013 020

Eli has no excuse for not being a whiz in geography!

aug - sept 2013 023

The decals peel right off and were easy to move around and adjust.

aug - sept 2013 024

aug - sept 2013 028

How awesome did this turn out?? I am obsessed.

aug - sept 2013 037

aug - sept 2013 032

Here’s the baby-daddy testing out the Luca Glider that used to live in my girl’s room and the new and pouf .

aug - sept 2013 043

Here are a few of the personal details that help to make this such a special room. A custom mobile from Etsy to perfectly match the room’s decor.


Framed Shanghai & New York prints hang above the glider.


An ever growing library wall filled with books and toys.




I love this room and I hope my nephew feels all the love that went into putting it all together.

August 22, 2013

Car Themed Baby Boy Nursery Sneak Peek

by Gillian

Greetings. So the past few months I’ve been working on 2 baby boy nurseries which are both revealing soon. Here’s a sneak peek at a sweet car themed room for a baby downtown. The client loved the car fabric from Marimekko so that was our starting point. We needed to have her existing Serena & Lily Glider recovered and throw pillows made for a day bed so I selected a cute palette of blues for both. In addition, I sourced a carpet that I turned into an area rug and found these incredible antique framed car prints (similar to the airplanes shown in the styleboard) which will hang above the  day bed. Here’s the style board I created which gives a pretty good overview of the room:


The curtains were installed yesterday:

photo 4

In the next few weeks I’ll be installing the area rug, hanging the art and putting the final touches on the space. Stay tuned to see how it all comes together!

July 9, 2013

Baby Of The World Nursery

by Gillian

I have some exciting news to share…I’m going to be an aunt to a baby boy who will be arriving around Halloween. I am super excited to meet him but also excited because my brother and sister-in-law have asked me to design the nursery. For those of you who do not know my sister-in-law is from Shanghai, where my brother met her, and they both love to travel so we’ve come up with a theme “Baby of The World” for the nursery.  Here’s a peak at the style board I’ve come up with:


I found these adorable crib sheets that were the inspiration for the color scheme.


The walls are being painted Benjamin Moore Breath of Fresh Air 806, and I found a great light blue and cream chevron rug that is going to work perfectly. I am going to hack an Ikea Expedit bookcase and turn it into a storage bench underneath the window for all the toys, as well as transforming an Ikea Malm dresser into a campaign style changing table. Above the crib we’re going to install a huge map of the world similar to this one so my nephew can dream of his future travels around the globe.

world map

I’ll be posting updates on my DIY projects and of course the reveal when we’re through!

June 4, 2013

The Evolution of My Living Room

by Gillian

A few weeks ago I told you all about my current obsession – Aerial Beach Photography for my LR walls. Well, literally the next day One Kings Lane had a Grey Malin sale and to say I was excited would have been a huge understatement. I immediately selected a print and added it to my cart and then patiently waited 2 weeks until it arrived. While I was waiting I did some research on framing. I wanted  a floating look, with super high shine and started reading about the different methods available. I decided to use Laumont Photographics after reading their reviews and speaking with a sales person there.  I opted for the “plexi sandwich – A premium mounting material, Plexiglas is a flat and smooth surface, is both archival and durable. The “sandwich” combination of front and back mounting acquires the look of  frameless “floating” presentation for your photographic prints. Face-in mounting is expertly done in the Diasec-style silicone based process, which provides a crystal clear appearance for your presentation. The back is then mounted to plexi and lastly, a backing brace is attached in order to hang the piece for display. Available in AR anti-scratch, clear, matte, UV (OP-3) and non-glare surface types.” The framing took about 10 days and I am thrilled with the results.


This is a side view of the piece – you can see the plexi is about 1/4″ thick and then there’s a wood mounting bracket attached to the back of the piece which mounts to a bracket on my wall. DSC_5922-001

And now that the art is up on the wall I’m ready to reveal my new living room. But first here’s a look back at what it looked liked when we moved in 5 1/2 years ago before kids. (Ollie was such a small pup)…

Living Room

Here’s what our living room looked like 5 years & 2 kids later….


And here’s what it looks like now…


I was tired of the browns and blues so to the shock of my husband I decided to go with greys & purples. But now that it’s all come together I think he actually likes it! If this wasn’t a rental apartment I would definitely have installed crown molding and probably changed out the parquet floors, and installed some more ceiling lights and….oh I could just go on and on…


April 15, 2013

Foyer Wallpaper

by Gillian

My foyer and living room are essentially one room so when I decided to redo the living room, I clearly had to update the entryway as well :).  I live in a rental apartment so there’s not too much I can do but, I think at a bare minimum you have to paint those horrible white walls and make it feel homier. We did change the paint from a beige to a grey but I still felt like my walls were lacking some personality. I love wallpaper and would probably wallpaper every room if I owned a place. Fortunately, there are tons of companies that are making temporary wallpaper targeted towards renters. I scoured the Spoonflower website to try to find a pattern for my one wall when you walk into my apartment. I purchased two swatches and polled everyone who walked through my front door.

Here’s option A

diamond_circles wallpaper by holli_zollinger for sale on Spoonflower – custom wallpaper

option A

And here’s option B

watercolor dots magenta on dark grey wallpaper by katarina for sale on Spoonflower – custom wallpaper

Option B

Personally, I liked option B but literally every person that came in liked option A so that’s what we went with. Here’s what our foyer looked like before…


And here’s how it turned out after the wallpaper was applied.

DSC_5366  DSC_5369-001  DSC_5374-001

I was under the impression the wallpaper was going to be some kind of peel and stick paper. This was not the case. The wallpaper arrived with adhesive already applied to the back of it. The wallpaper required much more work that I anticipated although it wasn’t really hard to do. Basically you had reverse roll the paper, soak it in water for 15 seconds, fold it like a book on itself for 1 minute and then hang it from top to bottom while smoothing out the air bubbles. It was definitely a two person job, one which my husband wasn’t too thrilled about doing, but it didn’t take long. It was about an hour to hang the paper (our wall is approx 12′ wide), then we let it dry for 3 hours and then with an exacto knife we trimmed the edges. I think it makes a pretty big impact on such a small wall.

April 1, 2013

Girls’ Room Reveal

by Gillian

I am so excited to share with you Grace & Charlie’s new pink princess bedroom. Here’s what their room looked liked before (I was anti pink when I was pregnant with Grace)


And here’s how their shared room looks now….






March 20, 2013

Girls Room Reno part I

by Gillian

My youngest daughter Charlie started climbing out of her crib when she was 19 months! While she was a pretty good escape artist I was concerned that she would injure herself so I reluctantly made the decision to switch her to a bed. Charlie and my eldest daughter Grace, who will be 5 in May, share a room that was decorated before Grace was born, so of course I wanted to seize the opportunity to redecorate. Grace had been sleeping in a bed that coordinated with the crib since she was 2 1/2  but I wanted something that was more girly that the girls could have for a while. I was going to keep their existing Moda Dressers from Room & Board, a cream colored area rug from ABC carpet that was still in relatively good condition, their modern luca glider, and an Ikea billy bookcase that I had wallpapered on the interior.

I found these Plain High Arch Upholstered Headboards online and that became the starting point for the design


I then came across this fun Pink Chandelier  that I knew would be the main focus of the room. Since we’re in an apartment rental I needed to find something that could be plugged in instead of hardwired into the ceiling

silly gypsy chandelier

Grace helped me pic this cute bedding from PBteen

PB teen bedding

And I also ordered these needlepoint heart pillows from PBteen

heart pillow

Cathy from Cathyscustompillows is making me these adorable PINK SUZANI CURTAINS


I found this hot pink mirror to go above the dresser from One Kings Lane

mirrorGrace requested butterflies in her room, so I’ll be working on a custom 3D butterfly project that I’ll share with you soon, as well as an existing storage bench that got new life as a dress up storage solution fit for a princess!

I will have actual photos of the room’s reveal once the curtains, mirror and art are hung, but in the meantime here’s the style board for their room.


December 3, 2012

Finn McDermott’s Giraffe Inspired Nursery

by Gillian

I will admit it…I love Tori Spelling. I hated her character Donna on 90210 back in the day, but ever since her reality TV show I have grown to really like her and her style a lot.  So, it was no surprise to me that the newest family member, Finn McDermott, has a super chic nursery which Tori & Dean recently showed it off. I love the unexpected color combinations and the nod to mid-century modern style.


Custom ducduc Regency Crib and Pebble Mattress

Tori found inspiration for Finn’s room from a vintage flea market find of a ceramic giraffe. I love the gallery of mixed frames on this incredible and bold wallpaper from Tempaper Designs.


This fantastic Custom ducduc Savannah Changer  has a retro feel. If you weren’t working on Tori’s budget this would be a great flea market find that could be transformed with a little DIY work.


Of course an important feature in a nursery is a rocker, Tori found hers at Anthropologie.  I love the small rope table right beside the rocker which is great spot to set down a bottle or burp cloth, and rope stool to rest your feet.  She continues her giraffe theme with a small patterned pillow on the rocker and the ceramic figures on the side table.


Tori found a great dresser in this vibrant orange from SPI Baby. If you’re working within a tight budget this is anther great opportunity to transform a flea market piece with a few coats of paint. To achieve this high gloss look send the piece out to be spray finished.


And she of course did not miss even the tiniest detail. A great flea market find letter “F” makes Finn’s room more personal, as well as what appears to be a home-made giraffe mobile.


October 11, 2012

The Modern Murphy Bed

by Gillian

I recently found myself in the ResourceFurniture showroom in midtown and was amazed at how incredible ALL of their stuff is. This showroom carries modern furniture from mostly Italian designers that has the “ability to transform a space with both beauty and functionality.” Almost every piece can transform into something else and becomes multi-functional which for small spaces can be life changing.

Some of my favorite pieces were for kid’s rooms. With the slightest pull of a concealed lever what looks like a wall opens up to become bunk beds! The front panel comes in several standard finishes but can also be customized with a pattern like the Lollisoft SD  shown here:

On the top of the unit is a flip-up shelf for linen storage.

The headboard flips up and folds down easily when stored.

The top rails also collapse and open in a snap, and the ladder just clicks right on.

Probably my favorite feature of the bed though, is that the top bed comes down at an angle making it easier to change the bedding. Is that insanely brilliant or what??

Here’s a single bed version with a desk unit that rises up from its standard position, and a twin bed that folds out below. No need to remove items from the desk top before opening the bed – everything will stay in place.

These pieces are high-end and look very well made. If you are working with a small space, or if you have a lot of guests who plan on staying with you I would strongly recommend that you look into this company. I can’t wait to use them for future projects.

September 20, 2012

Benjamin Moore Metallic Paint

by Gillian

A few months ago I read about a metallic paint line from Benjamin Moore that looked really cool.  (A Metal-Like Paint from Benjamin Moore – When I was considering revamping my hallway I recalled this article and thought that metallic silver stripes would really punch up the small space. I selected a color called Shyness (PT360) and the man at the paint store told me I needed to select a base color that would compliment the silver otherwise the metallic would not show.  Armed with my paint brushes, rollers, tape, and paint I set off back home to map out my design.

When determining the layout of my stripes I had to consider the fuse box which is located in my hallway.  I wanted to leave it white, so I determined the height of my stripes by the size of the box which is 10 1/2 inches. I borrowed a long level from my handyman and measured every 10 1/2″ up and down the wall. Then, using painters tape I positioned the rows of tape either on the interior of my mark (if the space was to be white) or on the exterior of the mark (if the space was to be painted metallic) and made sure the lines were straight with my level.  This definitely gets confusing so it’s a good idea to double-check the space in between each row with a ruler once you have completed a section. To make matters even more confusing I had to work around 5 doors and still try to make sure that each stripe lined up horizontally 360 degrees around the space. Make sure you rub the tape in place so you get clean, sharp lines.

Once your walls are taped you’re ready to paint. I had to apply the base coat first and two coats of the metallic finish on top.  A tip I read about was “to remove the tape immediately after the last coat of paint is applied, while the walls are still wet. Waiting until the paint has fully dried may cause peeling and uneven lines”. While I followed those instructions I still had some paint that bled from underneath so once everything was dry I had to go back with a small paint brush and touch up some of the lines. It was very frustrating since I had spent so many hours taping to begin with.

I learned after the fact that the paint is really meant to be used for faux finishing – think textured walls – so unfortunately my walls didn’t come out the way I had hoped. You can see the roller marks and brush strokes within each stripe. 😦

Also, since this is an apartment rental the walls are not in very good condition and are not very forgiving. If you were going to attempt this paint in a well-lit area you must make sure the walls are skim coated prior to painting. Every crack, hole, or minor imperfection becomes glaringly obvious.

While in theory this project seemed like a good idea the end results were not what I hoped for.  Has anyone used a  metallic paint and achieved a smooth finish?  Since I did all the taping myself (except for the top row which I had to enlist my husband for) it took about 7 hours and the total cost was around $75.

After painting I added a few black and white family photographs, and covered a bland cork board in fabric (more to come on this project). I think the space looks better than it did before, but the roller marks still bug me. Does anyone have any tips on how to fix this?

July 16, 2012

My Design Inspiration

by Gillian

I love looking through design magazines and finding inspiration from other designer’s work. I think for anyone looking to decorate a room this is a fantastic place to start. Get a huge stack of magazines and tear out pages that speak to you – whether it’s a fabric, or wall color, a lamp or even the whole vibe of the space. Make sure you write notes on the page about why you like it so you can remember when you need to reference it.

Designer: Katie Ridder

Bedding: Leontine Linens

Bedside tables: Bungalow 5

 Carpet: Paul H. Lee Carpets & Rugs


Designers: Carol Egan & Wayne Nathan

Ant chairs: Arne Jacobsen

Photographer/Designer: Pieter Estersohn transformed an image he took in Udaipur into a giant mural

Crib: Netto Collection

Walls World Map:Hammacher Schlemmer

Cabinet and bench: George Nelson

Designer: Miles Redd

Wallpaper: Marthe Armitage

Bed: Ikea

Rug: Dash & Albert

All Images curteosy of Elle Decor


May 3, 2012

Grey for Babies?

by Gillian

In 2008, when I was pregnant with my eldest daughter Grace, I was planning her nursery and trying to find some adorable bedding and accessories. To my dismay everything for girls was PINK. I am not really a pink person and I just couldn’t imagine a pink room for her. I wish I had seen some of these incredibly chic grey palettes that have been popping up all over. I LOVE how sophisticated and modern they look, and they all seem to have a sense of calmness. Would you paint your nursery grey?

April 26, 2012

Ahoy Matey!

by Gillian

Nautical themed rooms are adorable for any little boy.  Pottery Barn Kids offers a huge selection of accessories to complete the look for your young sailor.






March 4, 2012

Chevron Heaven

by Gillian

I was recently browsing through Pinterest and came across a children’s bedroom with a chevron wall that I became obsessed with and absolutely had to have. My daughters’ bedroom is already complete so I didn’t do this in a nursery although I think it would be amazing in one. Instead, I painted the wall behind my bed in the master bedroom! This is what my bedroom looked like before…

My first step was to do some research online to try to find the easiest way to tackle this project as I am little DIY challenged. I thought using a stencil would have been the best way but, unfortunately, my wall is huge ( 17′-3″ w x 8′-6″ h) and I was unable to find a stencil in the right size. With some mathematical assistance from my brother, we were able to come up with the right proportions. I wanted my “V” to be fairly wide so there weren’t too many zig zags. We decided on 9 “V”s running horizontal and 6 white “V”s vertical. Each total “V” is 23″ from left to right and 7″ thick.

Then with the help of my detail-orientated husband (and a few cocktails) we first cleaned the wall of all dust and then mapped out the points on the wall starting in the upper left corner. We put a dot of colored chalk every 7″ from the ceiling down to the baseboard and every 11.5″ across from left to right. Then with a chalk line tool, we snapped a straight line from the ceiling to the baseboard. We repeated this process 17 more times across the whole width of the wall. With a ruler, we would check after each time we snapped a chalk line making sure there were 11.5″ between dots. Any imperfections would have thrown off the whole stripe. Then with FrogTape we connected the dots in a “V” formation. This part of the process took about 4 hours to complete.

On day 2 we took an exacto knife and cleaned up all the peaks of the “V” making sure they were crisp and also checked to make sure each line of tape was pressed securely to the wall so no paint would bleed through. With a baby wipe we cleaned the walls again removing the chalk dots and the vertical chalk lines that we used as our guide. Then it was finally time to paint! With a small roller, I painted only the larger section of stripes in Benjamin Moore Decorators White (my wall was already Benjamin Moore Bird’s Egg Blue which I wanted to show through underneath).

This is what it looked like after one coat of paint. I ended up using 2 coats of paint because some of the blue was showing through.

It took about 2 hours to paint the stripes (so a total of 7 hours from start to finish) and a total cost of $70 for materials. Once the paint was dry I removed the tape with the help of my 3 yr old and I was left with a perfectly crisp chevron wall which I adore. (My daughter told me it looked magnificent!)

This project was not difficult, but it was time consuming and requires a lot of patience. Since my husband and I didn’t kill each other doing this, maybe he’ll be up for another project next weekend.

January 19, 2012

Color Of The Year 2012: Tangerine Tango

by Gillian

Back in early December Pantone declared Tangerine Tango #17-1463 their color of the year for 2012. Representative of the energy boost we need to forge ahead this fiery hue does just that. Now I am certainly not suggesting that you paint your entire room this bold shade but consider using it as an accent wall, or if that is too much use it in throw pillows, a rug, table linens, art, accessories, or appliances. Pantone – PANTONE Color, products and guides for accurate color communication.

Blue and orange are complimentary colors and work so well here to make a charming and cheerful nursery from DwellStudio | SKYLINE LT. BLUE CRIB SET – For Boys – Baby.

And for the grown ups….

This is a HUGE color commitment as not only have they painted the walls but the ceiling as well! I do love the mirrored effect of the high gloss though.

The blue sofa and side lamp help compliment the bright walls.

Sept/Oct 2011 |

Tags: ,
January 14, 2012

Bunk Room

by Gillian

I am a city girl. I grew up in Manhattan and I plan on living here forever. However, sometimes I dream about moving out of my small apartment into a spacious house just so I can have a bunk room. Just think how much fun the kids would have on a sleepover! Here are just a few of my favorites…

Eve Robinson Associates Inc.

East 67th Street Apt

Steven Gambrel

Ship Themed Guest Room

M. Elle Design

Rustic Chic in Idaho

December 9, 2011

Treat Your Ceiling Like a Fifth Wall

by Gillian

People often overlook the potential of their ceiling, ignoring it and leave it white and bland. Instead, think of your ceiling as your fifth wall. An easy cheap fix is to paint it a similar shade to your walls. To do this mix a 1/4 wall color with a 3/4 white paint for a beautiful seamless transition. In a bedroom try painting your ceiling a with a hint of sky blue for a peaceful and visual space while you’re lying in bed. To add even more punch wallpaper your ceiling! Pick a bold design and your room will instantly feel higher as the focal point of your space will become your ceiling.

(close up of ceiling in photo above)

For children’s bedrooms I love to have something visually stimulating hanging from the ceiling. Try colorful paper lanterns for girl’s room or flying airplanes for a boy. Think about how much time your little one spends lying in crib; shouldn’t they have something beautiful to look at too?