Monday, December 24, 2012

Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas!

Sending out a big MERRY CHRISTMAS to all my blog friends! I have been absent from the blog world for the last month. Just an update~ I got sworn in as a NH State Representative on December 5th!
Swearing In day at the NH State House

I have also been  busy on the School Board as well as working 5 days a week at The Notchland Inn. My hours at the Inn have been severely cut as of  this week, and the NH House session starts next week. I miss my blog, though, and am hoping to be able to post at least once a week. It is such a needed respite from the real world.
The Notchland Inn, Hart's Location NH

For fun today, I am posting pictures of Christmas Trees! I love the ones that are whimsical and have themes.

An adorable tree by Tobi Farley

                                                 Hope you have a wonderful holiday! ~ Syndi

Monday, November 19, 2012

Brad Pitt ~ Furniture Designer!

                                                           via  Architectural Digest
      I was reading the latest issue of Architectural Digest the other day and low and behold there was an article about Brad Pitt: Furniture designer. Yes, that Brad Pitt!
    According to the article, Brad loves design from the Art Nouveau, Arts & Crafts and Art Deco movements. "I've been doodling ideas for buildings and furniture since the early 1990s, when I first discovered Mackintosh and Frank Lloyd Wright" says Pitt in the AD article."Actually, I found Wright in college. It forever changed my life."
     For those of you who are not design junkies, like me and Brad (though I bet he would rather be referred to as a  design connoisseur, here is a little design history. Rennie Mackintosh was part of a design group of four in Glasgow, Scotland. They met when they were taking classes at the Glasgow School of Art. Mackintosh married Margaret Mac Donald, and Herbert MacNair married her sister Francis MacDonald. These four became known as leaders of the "Glasgow School" movement. They worked on architecture, interior design, art and crafts (fabric designs , wallpaper, embroidery, furniture, paintings and accessories).  Much of Mackintosh's work combined his own designs with his wife's, whose work was full of flowing, floral styles which complemented his angular, straight-lined designs.
    Brad Pitt's furniture designs are composed of  both straight, angular lines and flowing, one line curves. When asked about the appeal of an uninterrupted line, Pitt explains that there’s a metaphorical element that’s difficult to articulate. “It started with my introduction to Mackintosh’s Glasgow rose, which is drawn with one continuous line,” he says. “But for me there is something more grand at play, as if you could tell the story of one’s life with a single line.” 
    OK, here is where Brad and  diverge. I always thought of the Glasgow Rose as a block design, something you would see in stenciling, or stained glass, not as a continuous line. 
    An important element of Glasgow style was the importance of Celtic imagery, with motifs and style of lettering inspired by carvings on seventeenth century tombstones. A very popular motif was a cabbage like rose, the 'Glasgow Rose' which was adapted from Aubrey Beardsley  and employed widely within Glasgow Style design. The Glasgow Rose was also adopted by English designers of stained glass, and furniture. (via

"There is something more grand at play, as if you could tell the story of one's life with a single line — from birth to death, with all the bloody triumphs and perceived humiliating losses, even boredoms, along the way," the actor said. (Wow Brad, aren't you the deeply philosophical guy. Who knew.) 
  Here are some examples of Mckintosh's work which inspired Brad Pitt:

The pictures above are from Hill House,
 a private residence designed by Rennie McIntosh at the turn of the  20th century
So now that you have read Brad's explanation of his inspiration, and have viewed some of the original inspirational  designs, now its time to look at Brad's new furniture line.... these are all from Architectural Digest

 via ADIn addition to the bed—only nine will be made, each in different materials—the Pitt pieces include a dining table, a cocktail table, several side tables, a few club chairs, even a bathtub for two in Statuario Venato marble.

This chair is covered in Patent Leather.

                                             This table base is covered in 24 kt Gold
via AD:  Many of the designs incorporate the idea of a single line. That line can be geometric, as in the case of a 17-foot-long wood dining table whose jagged base dramatically zigzags at unexpected angles. Or it can be sinuous, as with a glass-top side table that features a wispy spiraling metal base finished in 24K gold.

Here is my opinion of Brad's designs: They seem to draw their inspiration, not so much from the Arts and Crafts movement, but rather from a combination of midcentury  (reminiscent of The Eames designs) and "modern" furniture designs of the late 1970s, early 80s. (Think lots of chrome, brass and glass).  Honestly, the only item that reminds me of Arts and Crafts is the wooden table with the continuous angular wooden base. If you take a look at Arts and Crafts furniture, you will typically see heavy straight-line, angular wood.  Of course, he also says he draws influence from Art Deco, which did incorporate metal and glass into the designs. 
     I just do not see his designs becoming the new trend anytime soon.  I hope not. I would not buy one of these pieces, even if the cost was under $100. But that's just my 2 cents. What's YOUR opinion of Brad Pitt's furniture designs? Would you buy them for your own home?

(p.s.  I have no idea why blogger is changing the font size throughout this post!)

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Designing my Home Office (and winning the election!)

      I have been neglecting my poor little blog and it shows. I do have an excuse though. Remember that election last week? Well, I have news....I won! I am now a NH State Representative! That's in addition to being Vice-Chair of the School Board, Chair of a bunch of sub-committees and  Rep to the budget committee. Oh, and let's not forget my job as an Assistant Innkeeper! Whoops...I forgot to mention my husband, 3 kids and 2 dachshunds. Yup, I'm a little busy. But I do love my blog and my passion is art and design, so I refuse to give it up! I am committing myself to 2 posts a week right now. The NH House starts the next session in January, so I will just have to see how much time I can devote to blogging. Concord, the state capitol is 2 hours from my house, which means a 4 hour drive 3 days a week! Whoa..I will let you guys know how I manage (or not).
      Along with this new adventure comes an abundance of paperwork. My dining room is already overrun with all the stuff from my committee work. I would take a picture, but I can't find the charger for my camera. I am sure it is buried underneath the mountain of paper on the table! I have decided to move my office to my bedroom, so I have been spending the morning searching through pictures to get inspiration and ideas. I know I want it to be colorful..and organized...and cute. I will post pics when its done. Here are some photos to give you an idea of the things I like in a home office.

This is Erin's office. She writes one of my favorite blogs ...House of Turquoise. Love the patterns and colors. You can see more pictures of her house HERE

Love the cobination of blue, yellow and orange!


 Erinn Valencinch via HGTV   This is more neutral than the other pics, but I love the restfull feeling that is achieved with the use of the neutral colors.
Oh so pretty! via BHG

The Inspired Room
I am in love with the navy blue walls and the Anthropologie curtains in this room!
                            So which office is your favorite? I like elements from all of them!                                                 

Friday, October 19, 2012

Pink & Orange

A friend was talking about how ugly pink and orange look together. Of course, I immediately thought about doing a blog post on the combination of pink and orange in interior design.  So here are some examples:

A Blind Pash
Better Homes & Garden
I think that breaking up the colors with white is more restful. When paired together it provides a strong visual punch. I could see this combination working well in a girl's bedroom. Honestly, though, I don't think you will be seeing pink & orange in my living room!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Benjamin Moore's Color of the Year 2013 ~ Lemon Sorbet!

Benjamin Moore has announced its Color of the Year for 2013 and its called Lemon Sorbet.  According to Benjamin Moore: " Luscious lemon sorbet (2019-60), our Color of the Year for 2013, is the perfect transitional color between the mid-tones and saturated colors seen in today's home furnishings and the softer, lighter pastels which are emerging for 2013.

This beautiful yellow harmonizes with other trending pastels in the mint, coral, pink, blue, and vanilla families. Uplifting without being overpowering, lemon sorbet (2019-60)complements almost any color palette and provides a unifying element for diverse spaces. "

Looks pretty on the paint chip and in the collage, but how will it look on the wall, in real rooms? Here are some pictures. You decide.

Honestly? I am not too crazy about it. I remember about 20 years ago when pale yellow was the trend for living rooms and kitchens. I actually like it, it made the rooms bright and light. But this particular shade is just a little too bright. To be used as a neutral, it needs to be softer and warmer, in other words toned down a bit.
I did find it interesting to read that B.M. predicts an emerging trend toward pastels. I do like pastels, they can be fun to decorate with, especially if they are anchored by white and used as accent colors in a space. However, I would be hesitant to jump on the bandwagon and paint my living room Lemon Sorbet. I predict it will be a quickly passing trend, but it will be fun to see designers use it in their designs. 
 Here are some inspiration photos of the color yellow used in rooms. I chose the pics because I think they are examples of yellow used in pleasing ways. They are not painted with Lemon Sorbet.
House to Home
Pottery Barn

Country Living

Pantone recently announce their own 2013 Color of the Year ~ Monaco Blue. It will be interesting to see it paired with Lemon Sorbet. I think that Pantone has really hit the mark with this color. Stay tuned for a post devoted  to it!

So what do you think about Benjamin Moore's Lemon Sorbet?
 Are you going to use it in your home?

Monday, October 8, 2012

Fall to Winter in just two days!

The color here in the White Mountains peaked this weekend, on Friday to be exact. By Saturday the wind was blowing and the leaves were raining down upon the earth! Its amazing the difference a day makes. The colors were spectacular this year, but you have to catch it when they are in full bloom, because it doesn't last more than a few days!  These first few pictures were taken on Friday. It was a beautiful 80 degree day!

This is the view from my house,looking down my driveway.
                                            This is the corner of my property.
                                                 Here is the Pumpkin Witch!
       And this is what we woke up to on Monday morning! This picture was taken from Wildcat Mountain looking toward Mt Washington. Snow on October 8!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Whimsical Kitchens

                                             Diane Keaton's kitchen via Architectural Digest

Sometimes I get so tired of looking at blogs & magazines where everyone is trying to jump on the current trends. Kitchens in particular tend to start to look cookie cutter. I really enjoy finding kitchens that are a little outside the box, not on trend, and definitely showcase the owners own personality! Design doesn't need to be serious. It can be individual. It can include collections, artwork, color and unusual objects. It can be...WHIMSICAL!  I must say admire people who have the confidence to follow their heart and decorate with stuff that makes them happy. Today I am celebrating individuality and funky design choices!

via A Whinsical Bohemian

via Home and Decor

AZ Central
Design Art