Monday, January 31, 2011

A giveaway & your tour of the NYIGF

I spent all day Saturday and Sunday at the New York International Gift Fair  which opened this weekend. Here's your tour...

There was quite a buzz over the Dunes and Duchess candlelabras, sconces and hurricanes. Here's the Dune with his gorgeous Duchess! Their newest colorway, coastguard orange, caught my attention, was ordered and will soon be sitting in my office in the form of a lamp! 
Mr. Brown, the little sibling to Julian Chichester, made a debute at the show. This furnishings line is considered to have English informality with a modern day touch. 
Julian Chichester never disappoints. There were loads of new pieces to the line-up. 
Tritter Feefer Home Collection was absolutely fantastic. Loved several of their American made pieces. Any of these side tables would be great in a living room or as a bedside table.
Sister Parish Design a line of accessories, wallcoverings and textiles just launched this weekend! I liked their dog collars and leashes. 
Bartlett Crater, the granddaughter of the late Sister Parish and Libby Cameron, a former protege, are the creators of the line and the authors of this book. They took the philosophies of Sister Parish along with some of the biggest interior design names and all weighed in on topics such as small spaces, the under-used dining room and anchoring a room. 

I'm giving away one autographed book to one lucky reader!  Become a follower and leave a comment, also feel free to tweet about this giveaway!  I will annouce the winner this Wednesday!    
What pieces speak to you? Enjoy your week! 

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Two tickets to Paris

My husband and I are heading to Paris this spring, for the first time! Interior design and lifestyle bloggers, followers and readers are a savvy group of individuals! I'd like to tap into your recommendations for places to eat, where to shop, sights to see, hotels with lobby's that will have me standing in awe and where I'll find the best croissant! Tour guide, good idea?
I'll be sharing my trip with you...images of architecture, inspirational photos of interiors and all things fabulous! 

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Side table selection

I'm designing several spaces right now that are in need of stylish side tables...two master bedrooms, a "lady of the house" sitting room and a "modern day" formal living room. Here are some possible considerations...loving them all!
This Greek key table is a favorite of mine (it's in my home!)  
All tables: Worlds Away (to the trade)
Do any strike your fancy? 

Monday, January 24, 2011

Whipping up a meal

I know my way around a kitchen, I would not be shaking in my high heels slippers to whip up a fabulous meal for a chef or the future princess of England! I've got some sure fire recipes, yet I'm always creating new ones or looking for new ones to try. This weekend I had fun cooking some meals from Katie Lee's The Comfortable Table.
I cooked her meatloaf sliders to rave reviews! (She calls it "manloaf"...that it won't take long for a proposal after whipping up this recipe...actually, I think it's because she is gorgeous, talented and knows how to cook that she won't be single long!)

Looking for a cookbook that offers yummy recipes, complete meal plans down to the music selection, photos of what you'll be making...The Comfortable Table is a sure winner!

I make homemade meals on a near daily's enjoyable for me, but most of all it's about creating memories and traditions in my own home. There are certain meals, entrees or nibbles that the mere mention of, conjures up amazing memories of sitting around a table with family and friends.

Do you like to cook? Do think of cooking as creating traditions in your home?

Friday, January 21, 2011

A peak into a client's foyer

This is a sneak peak at only a small portion of a client's foyer. When designing a space, I always first consider how the room will be used. Their foyer is not entered into from the front door on a daily basis, as they have a mudroom off of the garage that serves as the family's main entrance. Since the mudroom sees the daily use, we were able to push boundaries in this space and do wool carpeting to help with sound quality and to offer comfort under shoe-less feet.       
Carpeting: Patterson, Flynn & Martin (to the trade)
The hardwood flooring has a wood inlay with is exquisite! We wanted to enhance the banding so we did the custom size carpeting on the inside of the inlay and ran it up the is quite striking!     
Wallcovering: Lee Jofa (to the trade)
Urn: Elegant Earth (to the trade)

I highly recommend asparagus ferns...they grow like weeds with indirect light exposure, look beautiful and are easy to keep alive.    
Bench: Lillian August
Pillows: Legacy Linens (to the trade)
Frames: Custom 
We framed some maps from the homeowner's travels...from where they met in Greece (how exciting, right?) to some of their favorite destinations. The antique bench's imperfections are what make it perfect in such a polished space.     
Frames: Bella Fiore (to the trade)
Gold tray: Bungalow 5 (to the trade)
I will show the entire space in the future, as I'm having professional photos taken soon. Wanted to show you a touch of my work, outside of my own home. Have a great weekend!

Friday, January 14, 2011

My foyer's new look

Truth be told, since the day we moved into our home I have never liked the contrasting marble on the floor of our foyer which is about 20' long by 13' wide.                                   
Finally in December I got around to tackling this design "flaw" and had a custom size area rug made. I used a very large remmant and had it cut to size. Remmants are excellent options for creating custom size rugs! Not only am I thrilled with covering up the contrasting marble, but I love the way the space feels brighter.      
Since this space sees a good amount of traffic I went with seagrass carpeting. Seagrass is durable, easy on the feet (sisal and jute are too rough for my liking), works well for a home in the 'burbs and looks stylish when pulled together with other elements of the foyer.   
What design challenges have you had to work with in your home?

Monday, January 10, 2011

Planning for a 5th birthday!

My daughter will be turning "5" in March. This weekend we booked the venue for her "Barbie" dream castle party. Her celebration will be at the historical 1838 Lyndhurst castle designed by famed architect, Alexander Jackson Davis

As you drive on the 67 acre estate in a distance you see the castle. Her party will begin with a 30 minute tour of the castle and will be about where Barbie sleeps, eats, gets dressed (wink, wink!)    
Below is the carriage house, all gatherings are held here or at a small room in the guest house. The Lyndhurst is for touring only, no functions inside due to preservation efforts. 
The archway leads to a courtyard (where we'll play games, weather permitting.) 
Now, before you start tossing snowballs at me for such an extravagent site. I am thrilled to help (in some small way) with the continued preservation of such an architectural gem. I also love exposing children to architecture. And, at a $100 room rental fee it is significantly cheaper than most kiddie party venues. ($100, is if you have a family membership to Lyndhurst.)

I'll be coming up with ideas to transform this space. One of the reasons I start planning early is so that I don't make last minute budget busting decisions. With plenty of time ahead of us, I can explore all options for creating a special "5th" party.   
Her princess party and her tiaras and tutus party (and here, tiaras and tutus) will certainly whet your palette for what is to come. Do you "sink" your teeth into party planning?

Thursday, January 6, 2011


Whether elaborate or simple, attention to a ceiling really elevates the design of a room.

Recently, I added trim work to the ceiling of my son's roomIt has taken the appeal of his bedroom to the next level. Here's an image before the trim work was installed four inches from the where the wall and ceiling meet. I did this style of trim to keep the eye traveling around the perimeter of his room.  
Compare the two, the trim work finishes the room. When you walk into the room it is very striking. 
This trim work was done in my dining room. I wanted every single detail to be addressed to really create an impact and to make a grand statement.    
This is the ceiling in a client's home. We did a coffered ceiling and added a medallion to her dining room. The room was instantly transformed and looked stunning before we added one piece of furniture. Due to the high ceiling we were able to do the coffered look, whereas in the above photos with eight foot ceilings that would not have worked. 
Do you consider ceilings in your design?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Goodbye mirrors

How one small change (and a can of paint) can transform a space...    

When we moved into our home this is what our kitchen looked had a mirrored backsplash (all I can say thank you...totally not my style!) This image was taken while unpacking. Our kitchen is a decent size (24'L x 10'6"W) and is flooded with natural sunlight (6 skylights and six windows) why the mirrors I wondered?      
The white and gray marble backsplash, along with Benjamin Moore's Bunny Gray (my favorite shade of gray) helped me to achieve the crispness I desired. See how this small adjustment transformed the kitchen? If Viking's St. Charles steel cabinetry peaks your interest, check out their website

Will you be tweaking any spaces in your home in the new year?  

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy 2011, Happy "1" Hamptontoes!

With each passing year I am amazed by the brevity of time. Not only does today mark the beginning of 2011, but it also marks Hamptontoes one year anniversary! A year has quickly passed since I sat looking at this fireplace, started blogging and hoped that you'd enjoy my musings. 
Original artwork

Blogging has become a part of my life. I enjoy connecting with like minded individuals. I eagerly read your comments to "hear" your thoughts, enjoy receiving your e-mails, love visiting your blogs and mostly, forming friendships that have enriched my life. I truly appreciate each and every one of you. Thank you for sharing your valuable time with me on a regular basis!

Here's to you having a 2011 filled with sheer happiness and great health! Tell me, what are your desires/dreams/goals for the new year?