DSH&G in Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles!


We’re loving the spread in the September issue of Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles featuring photos from this year’s Decorators’ Show House & Gardens. Whether you missed the run of show, or you just want to relive some of your favorite spaces in the Show House, check out these gorgeous shots!

Feeling inspired by a paint color, fabric, or accessory that would look perfect in your own home? Check out our resource guide to find out where to track it down!

An Inside Look At Landscaping


A French-inspired Decorators’ Show House wouldn’t be complete without a French garden! Veteran landscaper Ed Castro and his team at Ed Castro Landscape have designed some of the most beautiful outdoor spaces in Atlanta, and his Grand Lawn at this year’s Show House was no exception. We loved the formal but colorful look of his boxwood parterre garden. Read on to find out what inspired the look of this outdoor oasis.

For more information, visit www.edcastro.com.

It is always an honor to be a part of the Atlanta Symphony Associates’ Decorators’ Show House & Gardens. This year’s Show House presented an opportunity to showcase French-inspired architecture created by renowned residential designer William T. Baker. As we designed and implemented the landscape plan, we created an elegant installation that seamlessly tied together the landscaping and linear qualities of this magnificent home.

The symmetry of the house called for landscaping that created a formal balance of plants, forms, and textures.  It was essential for each side to be a mirror image of the other. We placed the perfectly proportioned plants symmetrically to resemble a château in the heart of France’s finest grandeur.

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The Grand Lawn, situated on the back side of Tuffeau.

Our charming French parterre garden was one of the highlights. The word parterre originates from the French word for partition. The structure of the boxwood parterre was our favorite element of the entire design. It looks effortless, but it actually requires quite a bit of time and some very precise measuring to ensure that the boxwoods are laid out symmetrically and squarely with the house.

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Ed Castro’s team created the meticulous boxwoods in this beautiful parterre garden.

We selected plants that would bloom in colors that coordinated with the interior fabrics and design of the kitchen and keeping room. In doing so, the lawn became an extension of the interior of the house and provided these rooms with a lovely vista. French hydrangeas and homestead verbena filled the garden with white, purple, and blue hues that complemented the interiors. Streamlined Dwarf English Boxwoods framed the garden, creating an orderliness that was in keeping with the grandness of the house.

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The blues and purples of the kitchen and keeping room inspired the colors of the flowers.

 

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Symmetry and clean lines were key in the design of the Grand Lawn – right up to the potted plants on the porch.

Of course, not every French-inspired garden has to be so formal. If you’re looking to add a little symmetry to your own outdoor space, make sure your structure is set properly and then have fun!  There are no rules.  You can fill the beds with herbs and veggies or your favorite summer colors.

It was a pleasure to landscape this distinguished home for such a meaningful cause. We are proud to bring elegant and sustainable landscape to Atlanta’s most beautiful homes and share our vision with you.

The Cigar Room: Old-Hollywood Swagger at DSHG


The basement of this year’s Decorators’ Show House featured plenty of guy-friendly rooms. We got a lot of feedback on the Cigar Room in particular, thanks to that lioness rug. Michael Habachy, creator of the Cigar Room, took the time to tell us how he created a warm, inviting space where a man would feel right at home, whether relaxing by himself or enjoying a drink with a few friends. 

And about that rug—believe it or not, Michael is a cat lover!

For more information, visit www.habachydesigns.com

It’s always an honor to be part of the Decorators’ Show House & Gardens because my wife and I love the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra!  This year I took on the ultimate challenge. I decided to work with a completely raw space so that I could customize every detail from start to finish.

The Cigar Room began as a small, white box. It was totally bare—no flooring, paneling, built-ins, or fireplace—which gave us artistic license to tailor the space for the homeowner. It was important that we capture the true essence of a classic gentleman’s lounge.

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Michael Habachy’s stylish, modern take on the man cave.

The design was inspired by old Hollywood glamour. I wanted to create an atmosphere that takes you back to an era that exuded luxury and sex appeal.  Every detail—from the vintage Cuban cigar boxes, to the black-and-white Hollywood star portraits, to the sound of Old Blue Eyes playing on the radio—contributed to my homage to this glorious past.

It all started with the pièce de résistance, the piece that I designed the whole room around: a midnight blue, hand-cut crystal Baccarat chandelier. Once this became the centerpiece of the room, no luxury could be spared! The Italian coffee table was made from an exotic Macassar Ebony veneer.  The side tables were inlaid with petrified wood. I also designed a custom laser-etched cowhide textile, which was upholstered onto the seat of an iron bench set by the fireplace.

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The Cigar Room’s crowning glory: a Baccarat crystal chandelier.

We finished the walls with gray lacquered paneling, accented by leather and brass nailhead trim. We chose a premium grade of walnut for the floors, laying them out in a chevron pattern with a border to evoke an Old World feel.

I wanted to give the smoking room a classic yet masculine edge, so I decided to take a risk and go bold with taxidermy. Little did I know that I would stumble upon an authentic lioness rug!  I am a cat lover, so it was important for me to find a taxidermy supplier who deals only with animals that have died of natural causes. The lioness ended up being one of the main statement pieces in the room, and a perfectly masculine way to finish off my Cigar Room.

Photo credit: Jeff Roffman

Double Shot of Design


If you’ve ever sat in a coffee shop, sipping a latte and fantasizing about recreating the experience in your own home (pajamas optional), you’re not alone. Sales of espresso machines have skyrocketed in recent years as more and more homeowners devote a segment of their kitchen—or an entire room—to enjoying a little coffee and a lot of relaxation. Janice Dietz of The Consulting House, who designed the Espresso Room in this year’s Decorators’ Show House & Gardens, knows a thing or two about designing a space that’s dedicated purely to a little slice of luxury. Read on to see how she created the Espresso Room, and see how you can create your own.

For more information, visit www.consultinghouseinc.com.

When I was asked to design the Espresso Room for the 2013 Decorators’ Show House & Gardens, I knew right away that it should have the warm, intimate feeling of a café. The homeowner requested an art deco style, so I incorporated some elements of that style that were subtle enough to avoid “screaming” art deco. Several elements in the room—including the custom cabinetry, the countertop, the custom five-piece crown molding, and the frame of the antique mirror—feature linear and geometric forms reminiscent of the art deco style.

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The Espresso Room

The other elements of the room that were paramount in shaping my design include the coffee silos, the tile and wood wainscoting, the chandelier, and the floating glass shelves. I knew from the start that I wanted to display the coffee beans in a unique manner. The silos I chose, which were purchased directly from Turkey, are fully functional and provide unique character.

When I found the tile for my wainscoting, I knew I had a winner. The purple reminded me of coffee beans and the tile shape was reminiscent of Turkish coffee houses, something that tied in the Turkish silos perfectly. It’s typical to see wood or tile wainscoting, but not a combination of the two. By combing both wood and tile, however, I created a warm, inviting atmosphere perfect for sipping coffee.

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The unique wood-and-tile wainscoting, and a glimpse of those Turkish coffee silos.

The front wall had to be distinctive without detracting from the rest of the room. I had these great coffee silos, but a long wall above the cabinetry also needed something special. Adding a crystal chandelier and floating glass shelves achieved the look I was after. They both served to add some color to the room, and the combination of the crystal and the spot lighting created wonderful shadows and reflections. The shelves were also interesting on their own as they were cantilevered out of the wall.

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Janice’s floating glass shelves

Dedicating  a room—or even part of a room—to relaxation, conversation, and a little luxury is important when considering the design of your home, and an espresso room is a perfect way to achieve that.  I hope I’ve inspired you to create your own in-home oasis!

Arranging Art: A Primer


Hanging a beautiful painting or photograph may be the perfect finishing touch for your space, but selecting the perfect piece can also be one of the most daunting tasks when it comes to designing a room. We asked John Fernandez of Fernandez & True Interiors for tips on choosing artwork for a space. We knew that John and design partner Jennifer True had chosen some of the most memorable art in the Show House—what we didn’t know was that the space was one of the trickiest spaces in the house to outfit with artwork. Yet John and Jennifer made it work by following their own advice. Read on for John’s account of how they designed their stunning Upstairs Master Bedroom.

For more information, visit www.fernandezandtrue.com

I want to share an important piece of advice I offer clients when it comes to selecting artwork for a space: Just relax.

Designing the Upstairs Master Bedroom at this year’s Decorators’ Show House & Gardens presented some challenges thanks to the sloping ceilings of the attic-style space.  We realized that regardless of the ample size of the room, the vertical portion of the walls end about six feet above the floor, leaving little room for art.

Fernandez & True upper master bedroom
We decided to keep the art and accessories (including the bulls eye mirror) at eye level to honor the ceiling slope of this attic bedroom.

 

After initially freaking out, I had no choice but to remind myself of my own rule—just relax.  I decided to ignore the limitations of the room. Instead, I selected a few favorite pieces from Spalding Nix Fine Art in Atlanta. Throwing caution to the wind, we hung large pieces just above the baseboards and over furniture, landing within inches of the ceiling slope.

Fernandez & True chairs and ottoman
This still life, entitled Trophies of the Hunt, is an oil painting on canvas mounted on a panel. The piece will make its movie debut this fall in “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.” We used it to anchor a cozy reading corner of the bedroom.

 

Keeping the art at eye level and below creates a sense of an uncontrived collection. When the scale of the pieces is a little “off,” the collection becomes more honest, less rigid.

Fernandez & True leather chair
The large Paris map and ancestral oil painting are quietly layered behind furniture. Considerations of scale take a back seat to the simple love of favorite pieces.

 

I love to layer. If a lamp or flower arrangement covers some of the art, it really is okay—a bit of mystery in your space is a good thing! If you find yourself question whether a piece is too big for the wall, my advice is to try it….that’s when the magic happens, and your room will start to take on a personality of its own.

Fernandez & True vignette
Groupings are a great way to fill a wall without the expected use of “one large piece.”

 

The secret to a room that feels natural rather than “decorated” is to allow for imperfection.

Great Expectations


One of the most surprising spaces at this year’s Decorators’ Show House & Gardens was the Upstairs Hall, designed by Traci Rhoads. We have to admit that when we saw the space while the house was still empty, we wondered exactly what kind of treatment the hall would get—the space is beautiful but limited in size. Silly us—Traci worked her magic and created one of the most unique, appealing spaces in the house. Who knew that a hallway could be such an inviting spot to sit and relax? Read on as Traci explains how she handled the challenges of designing her space, and see which elements were her favorite.

For more information on Traci Rhoads Interiors, visit www.trinteriors.net.

Being a part of the Decorators’ Show House & Gardens this year was such a gratifying experience. We were excited to be asked to design the Upstairs Hall on the third floor, but excitement gave way to anxiety as we started to realize the challenge that lay ahead. The first time I caught sight of the hallway that spanned the length of the third floor, the idea of taking on that kind of space seemed daunting, but I decided that our goal would be to design a space that conveyed a feeling of comfort, warmth, and relaxation

The hallway had three distinct spaces denoted by cased openings. We essentially chose to treat each of those spaces as an individual “room” to break up such a long distance:

Traci Rhoads upstairs hallway resized
Photo: Christina Wedge

I absolutely had to have kumquat trees in blue-and-white porcelain planters flanking the settee in the stair gallery. They were so unexpected and served as a great complement to such a bright space. They also hinted at the incredible views of the landscape outside. Luckily for me, my brother is a landscaper and shipped the trees from California just for the Show House. He was also kind enough to maintain them for me throughout the run of show, since an interior space really isn’t the ideal environment for citrus trees.

Traci Rhoads kumquat trees resized
Photo: Jeff Roffman

 

The selenite planter we found for the orchid arrangement pictured below was a true find!  Selenite is a natural mineral found in Brazil, and there was no question when we stumbled upon this beautiful white planter that it would be the crown jewel of that vignette.

Traci Rhoads selenite planter resized
Photo: Jeff Roffman

The stunning rock crystal lamps with 22-K gold accents (see below) were part of my personal collection of one-of-a-kind antiques. The round mercury glass mirror complements the lamps perfectly.

Traci Rhoads lamps and mirror resized
Photo: Jeff Roffman

I’m so grateful for the positive feedback that we received on the Upstairs Hall. Visitors repeatedly told us that it was one of the first hallways they had seen that invited them to sit down, have coffee, and read a book. To me this was the ultimate compliment for this type of space, and upon hearing such feedback, I knew we had achieved what we had set out to do.

Child’s Play


We love to look at photos of Clay Snider’s Child’s Room from this year’s Decorators’ Show House. The bright colors just put us in a good mood on this rainy afternoon in Atlanta!

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Designing with Scalamandré


This year’s living room was certainly one of the most show-stopping spaces of the house.  Outfitting such a large room might seem daunting, but veteran designer Patricia McLean was up to the challenge. Despite the sheer size of the space, she managed to create a living room that felt warm and inviting for entertaining family and friends. Patricia took the time to tell us how the fabrics and trimmings she chose set the tone of the room.

For more information, visit mcleaninteriors.com. 

The first step in designing the Show House living room was the selection of the iconic French blue and taupe silk—made by revered textiles producer Scalamandréfor the vast windows.   The walls had been painted Agreeable Gray by Sherwin Williams before we moved into the space. The soft gray of the paint color was beautiful, but the room still needed to be coaxed to life. The exceptional stripe of the Scalamandré fabric, with its undulating weave and subtle coloring, was the perfect solution. The draperies bring warmth and life to the vast windows—which, by the way, measure 25 feet high and almost 15 feet across! The rest of the palette sprang from there.

Scalamandré is known for its beautiful French trimmings, or passementerie. Notice the silk braids and cords used on the drapery, pillows, and upholstery. As you can see in the photo below, the club chairs are treated with fringe at the skirt and silk cording on the cushions.

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Club chair

 

The antique French daybed is a celebration of all the fabrics and trims. It stands tall, anchoring the room. The striped exterior adds character while the silk velvet inside the frame melts at the touch.

 

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French daybed (and a glimpse of those amazing curtains)

The tall wooden chairs are covered in a deep gold velvet and finished with a silk tape that dances between spaced nailheads. The clover pouf holds its own, as do the oval French benches (pictured below) in regal cut velvet Pomfret.

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French benches, covered in luxurious velvet

 

I hope you enjoyed the living room at this year’s Decorators’ Show House & Gardens, and that my Scalamandré-influenced space will inspire you to see your room’s details as miniature works of art!

COLOR! Bright Ideas from Bryan Allen Kirkland


One of the most memorable rooms in this year’s Decorators’ Show House was the Grand Staircase, designed by Bryan Alan Kirkland. Bryan’s bright and bold approach to his space got so much buzz that we asked him to write a guest post for us.  Bryan kindly obliged, and naturally, he chose a topic that he knows a thing or two about—color.

For more information about Bryan Alan Kirkland, visit www.maisonatlanta.com/home.php.

The choices in today’s world of interior design are practically endless.  It can be overwhelming, so try approaching your space the way you would approach your wardrobe—it’s like selecting your outfit for the day.  There’s no limit to the colors, textures, finishes, or accessories you choose for your home’s wardrobe.

So many people are afraid of color, and that apprehension is sometimes reflected in the fabrics and paints in a home.  Instead of allowing a bright palette to intimidate you, take a moment to understand that color can actually be inspirational, uplifting, exciting, and downright welcoming in a well-appointed room.  If you visited the Decorators’ Show House, you can probably guess that I personally love to work with color.  As a designer, there is nothing quite as satisfying as selecting a palette of several tones and knowing how to make them all pop—with the right balance, of course.

In my designs, the textures and patterns found in fabrics and wall coverings can coax a subtle color palette to life.  The living room pictured below seems grand despite its small size, thanks to the color palette and details.  I even blended the art work to coordinate seamlessly with the rest of the space.  Notice that the lighting features the same tones as the walls, an effect that balances the final product.

Bryan Kirkland yellow living room

I love to play with just one color in a space.  A monochromatic palette can lend a soothing, romantic mood without screaming color.  In the master bedroom pictured below, I placed the subtle color of mauve on the walls, trim, ceiling, and even the furnishings.   I complemented the color with soft grays and off-whites to complete the design.  If you know what kind of mood you want to your space to have, you can choose any color you want—the sky is the limit!

Bryan Kirkland mauve bedroom

Thanks to years of design experience, I’ve become very adept at using intense colors.  Strong color has a place in today’s interiors.  It’s not for everyone, but if you want your room to make a statement, bold color can definitely get the job done.  If you want to use a more neutral palette, try adding a pop of black and white, or experiment with a splash of bright color.  Be bold, take a chance, and remember that it’s all in the details.  If you visited the 2013 Decorators’ Show House, you probably remember my space, the grand staircase.  The strong color made a statement that I am definitely not afraid of color.

Bryan Kirkland orange grand staircase

When you decide what works for your home, take a step back and throw caution to the wind.  Go bold!  Go color!

Landing Pad


These are just a few of our favorite places to relax in the Show House. Tell us, which was your favorite?

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Grand Foyer by Musso Design Group
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Grand Staircase by Bryan Alan Kirkland Designs
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Pied-à-terre by Des-Syn
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Sitting Room by Peace Design