As a kitchen design professional, most of the emergences of modern trends, in my business, have been implemented in the homes of my client’s kitchens. Modern design has become much more main stream in the past couple of years than in years past. A clean line and minimalist approach define the design. The following details illustrate this in many ways.
Cabinetry – Light colored lacquer finishes combined with natural wood tones seem to dominate currently. Overly detailed door styles have been replace with slab panel doors and drawer fronts. Horizontal wood grains and textured melamine are also becoming popular as they seem to expand the perception of space.
In hindsight, becoming an interior designer was primarily just in my DNA and partly from having exposure to the opportunity. I had an unexpected and winding path, which has led me to the career I have today.
Growing up in rural Arkansas didn't provide an abundance of arts and culture. Yet, some of my most vivid memories are of my grandmothers amazing collections of art, antique furnishings and glassware. My favorite thing to do as a child was to wander into the formal living room and explore each and every piece of her collection. Her treasures had long since outgrown their allotted display space and filled every nook and cranny.
She and my mother were strong influences and they exposed me to various forms of visual and performing arts. Sometimes we traveled and other times I was content to live vicariously and just browse through her stacks of Town & Country magazine.
I always took an interest in spatial relationships, although when I was a young child, I had no idea what that phrase meant! This gene has clearly been passed down through the generations, as my mother still rearranges her furnishings and now my 5-year-old son asks to rearrange his room! I'll always remember as an aspiring designer, discovering my first childhood "floor plans" - that was a full circle moment.
Fast forward many years when I learned that there was a field of study and exploration called “Interior Design." I was working between college breaks for a family owned wall covering and window treatment business when I learned from their daughter, that she had studied interior design. I realized that this field captured all of my areas of interest.
I studied interior design at Oklahoma State and was fortunate enough to land my first job practicing what I had learned about the fundamentals of design; scale, proportion, and balance. Although this was great experience, this was not your typical high-end residential design firm... no, I was working for the United States Air Force! An unusual path, this experience provided European travel, which has become an important part of my development as a designer. My responsibilities for design and large-scale project management are skills which I still use every day.
As I learned about mid-century modern aesthetic at the Air Force Academy, designed by SOM (Skidmore, Owings and Merrill), I was surrounded by architects. This fueled my desire to learn more about buildings as an entire system. Back to school I went.
I earned my Master’s degree in Architecture at the University of Texas at Austin, focusing on Sustainable design. During graduate school I traveled to Asia and was heavily influenced by the refined Japanese aesthetic. This particular experience influenced my initial furnishings designs. I learned to ‘see differently’ as I designed and then built my three dimensional ideas. This was a great learning process, which put the practical aspects of design to the test. I am still ‘testing’ them today as I work at the desk I designed and built in school.
Shortly after graduation, I landed in a firm that was frankly, a terrible fit for me. Each architectural intern sat in their cubicle working away at their computer drawings. I missed the interaction with clients and the diversification of the work. Thankfully, that situation didn't last long and I realized that my true passion is in interior design. I love collaborating with architects, and working directly with clients to create and transform space. Thus, the beginning of Laura Britt Design…
Although I clearly have a modern architectural leaning, I still maintain a full respect for the quality and attention to detail of the antiques I was surrounded by as a child. My approach to design is to listen to the client's needs and desires and then use my “design filter” to create a space which is uniquely shaped and molded to each individual.
It is incredible how life can come full circle. And that’s exactly what happened for Tiffany McKinzie, owner of Tiffany McKinzie Interior Design, when the photograph of one of her recent projects made the front cover of the latest edition of Dallas Fort Worth’s Design Guide. Coincidentally enough, the client of the project featured on Design Guide’s cover found her while perusing through a copy of an older Design Guide.
“She was flipping through it and saw my ad, loved my photo and the fact that I also specialized in construction,” said McKinzie.
That’s right, McKinzie, rain or brutal Texas heat, is there every step of the way, from architectural drawings to being on site while the house is under construction. Her broad range of expertise makes her an idyllic interior designer, especially for those building homes or add-ons.
We are the internet window for The Mews, one of the premier antique showrooms in the Southwest. Opened in 1992 in the heart of the Dallas design district The Mews quickly became a favorite haunt of local interior designers.With more than 80 dealers filling 25,000 square feet across two buildings it is now presented here to serve designers worldwide.
We are excited to have Helene Terry of Bentwood Luxury Kitchens report LIVE to us from the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show (KBIS), which is taking place from April 24 to 26. The Kitchen & Bath industry's main event is an inspiring, interactive showcase of everything new, where the brightest and best assemble to spot trends, experience product introductions and find the practical solutions and valuable connections that will take them into the future. Always on the leading edge, KBIS is your innovation resource for staying current, competitive – and profitable.
Terry shared a few pictures (snapped from her Blackberry) of SubZero-Wolf's new showroom in Luxe Home:
And just look at one of her incredible finds she sent in from the Kohler showroom! "Even though Kohler owns Ann Sachs, they also have their own custom tiles in three showrooms. The tiles are manufactured on the east coast and can be shipped directly to designers throughout the country. I thought the mirror made with their tiles was unique," said Terry. Unique indeed, huh?!
Stay tuned as Terry brings more amazing finds LIVE from KBIS! Design Guide will also be doing a recap on this event.
Have you noticed the shift to mobile, modern gardens lately? They’re everywhere! Whether it’s a “how-to” on making your own, where to purchase tools and materials, or what plants are suitable for this application, we are fascinated with this movement. It seems like everyone’s trying to be “green” in their own way, no matter where they live. So, when you say you want a garden it doesn’t have to mean one of those high-maintenance English or French gardens that require a full-time gardener for upkeep (although they are gorgeous!).
In case you haven’t noticed, big chunky wood is all the rage. While we all know that a thick solid slab will create a jaw dropping dining table or desk, did you ever consider it, for example, as a floating counter? Or if the space allows, how about a beautiful slab placed vertically as a room divider or half-wall? Some pieces are so darn pretty that they beg to be mounted to a wall with no particular purpose at all…art, if you will.
Whatever your ambition, Big Mango has the slab. Acacia, Tamarind, Teak, Iron Wood, Coffee Wood and Jackfruit are the most common wood species in our collection. Choose your favorite piece and we’ll cut it to your specified size and re-finish it just how you want it.
For tables with bases (dining tables, desks, consoles, etc.) we use a mix-and-match approach. We offer a few really interesting options for bases, including stumps from rare woods and vines, as well as modern and contemporary bases from steel and wood. If we don’t have a base that’s perfect for you, then we are happy to refer you to an artisan for a custom job. However you choose to mix and match, Big Mango’s process allows you to tailor your tastes to your table.
Here’s how it works:
Choose the length and finish:
Slab in re-finishing process
Awnings are beneficial in many ways. They provide permanent shade in the summer sun from harmful UV rays, as well as offering sturdy protection during rain showers. More importantly, they are a beautiful design element! Practical, tasteful and sustainable, an awning can be an elegant enhancement to any entry.
Check out these stunning, intricate creations by Iron Age Studios. They certainly know the art to making a grand entrance - pun intended.
Transitional style seems to be in the spotlight, when it comes to the feel of homes. Clients are desirous of a comfortable yet a classy look that negates the more museum-type showcase of a more traditional home.
“When it’s all said and done, everyone wants their space to be customized and unique and really say something that they can identify with,” said RSVP Design Services Principle Designer Rhonda Vandiver White.
Churchill Linen Bed
And So To Bed has 40 years of great rapport and trust as a European brand of handmade bedroom furniture, bringing the finest collection of furniture designs for traditional and transitional luxury lifestyles.
Their Churchill Linen Bed was recently name top 100 of “must haves” in your home by a regional home design magazine.
“It symbolizes the blend between a turn of the century gentlemen’s club and the luxury of modern textiles, perfect for today’s transitional interiors,” said Larry Button of Larry Button & Associates LLC, the exclusive U.S. distributor of And So To Bed.