Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Dan Marty, a pleasant surprise.

I was flipping through my Western Interiors saying silently in my head "love it, hate it, love it" but then I got to the Dan Marty spread and I started screaming, "LOVE IT LOVE IT LOVE IT!" Dan Marty is a designer/showroom owner originally from Northern California. His style reflects his sophisticated and worldly upbringing as he went on trips to Europe at least twice a year growing up (psht, is that all?) with his family. He uses lots of eclectic antiques, yet his style is very original and surprising. This spread was of his apartment in Villa D'este in Los Angeles, an Italian Renaissance building built in the 1920's.

Here is the living room filled with eclectic style antiques and Chinoiserie accents.

The other half of the living room. I'm such a sucker for color but this room is mostly neutrals and I can't look away. There are so many subtle things going on here--the chunky sisal carpet, the three paintings stacked on each other, the blue and white urn on the brick hearth just to name a few.

Even though I can't stand the abrasive red color of those chairs, I still love this room. The framed antique maps mixed in with the drawings and the light yellow lantern over the gorgeous wood dining table.

This bamboo chest with the ebony lamp and pleated shade are like a work of art. J'adore.

Woah, Union Jack motif! I love the way he uses reds and blues...and antlers.

And at last the bedroom, I love the striped rug and my fave thing that you can't see is that he monogrammed the initials, DMD, on that blanket--it's genius. I love the inset arched moments on the back wall as well.

A lot of times, when you put lots antiques together it can either look too casual slash beachy, or too stuffy and museum-like. I think that Dan Marty conjures up just the right balance. He describes it as what "started out with a British Colonial feel, but I also mix in a French Indochine look." Take a look at his website too, it's amazing with so many things to look at: Dan Marty Design.

Alicia B.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Diane Von Furstenberg is my idol

My sisters have taken to mailing me little clippings of interiors, fashion, and other inspiring articles slash pictures. My most recent mailing was from my younger sister (thanks D!), of one of our favorite designers, Diane Von Furstenberg. It was an interview from the Wall Street Journal (boy, my sisters are into some serious stuff), called DVF: Mother of Reinvention about how she started in the fashion industry, her life, and her future goals (to pass the Design Piracy Prohibition Act). Born in Belgium, then moved to New York with her hottie new husband, Prince Egon Von Furstenberg who just happened to be the heir of the Fiat car fortune (they divorced 3 years later). Though she fell into amazing financial circumstances, she was determined to have a career. She said, "I think you have to want to be a success. It’s a lot of work and it’s a lot of perseverance." I've always liked her but now I'm in love slash awe.

This amazing dress is from her new collection. Love that hat.

Also from her new collection, how pretty is that dress? What a fun look.

This is just a rando pic of her in one of her beautiful dresses.

Mostly known for her signature wrap dress, she is constantly inventing and reinventing styles and coming up with new things. I admire her in so many ways. I love the fact that she wasn't one of those girls dreamed of becoming a fashion designer when they grew up because I certainly never wanted to be an interior designer until about 2 years ago.

DVF with her son, Alexander in 1970. So cute!

My favorite part of the article makes me want to totally throw out my old dreams of becoming a trophy wife on Park Ave. and instead be independent and successful. Did this get too girl-powery? Too bad. She says, "A man once told me, and his grandmother told him, you can lose everything in life, you can lose your health, your wealth, you can lose your partner, your child, you can lose your job. What you never lose is your character." Wise words Diane, wise words.

Alicia B.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Happy Friday--because I'm back.

So, I'm back! I have lots to catch up on and over 100 posts in my Google Reader (yikes-ville) to read. Are there new trends that I've missed? Are butterflies still in? OMG so much to worry about! Here are a few pics from my awesome trip to Miami with my sister! It was warm (mid 70's) but pretty much one big wind gust the entire time. I powered through though and burned myself to a crisp and added a few more freckles. YAY.

I found this ridiculously Miami looking office building near where we were staying. Mosaic tiles meant to look like water and these cool stairs were surrounded by a moat.

This is an apartment building. Yes, it's light turquoise. EESH. I'm just going to say that I didn't LOVE the Miami architecture. I respect the art deco as a movement, but it's not my fave.

One of many shots of the beach. Here's the coast guard--swoon. Isn't the color of the water amazing? It was like that the whole time.

Yup, this huge margarita happened. Twice.

Though I'm back in frigid New York, it's a gorgeous day. Since I have the day off (because I took it off) I'm going to finally go to the Met! It's been probably 9 months since I've been there and I need some art. What are your weekend plans? I'm also going to head over to the Architectural Digest Home Design Show on the Piers tomorrow. I went two years ago and heard a talk by Vicente Wolfe! Has anybody been yet?

Alicia B.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Welcome to Miami

SO, I'll be taking a little hiatus and going on a vacation with my younger sister to Miami. Life has been stressful so this is a much needed break. Here are some pictures of two amazing hotels that coincidentally we will not be staying at. (I know I ended the sentence with a preposition and I'm dead inside about it.) Miami has a crazy amazing art deco feel to it unlike any other; huge white buildings, florescent colors, and art deco architecture taken to an extreme. These two hotels, The Raleigh and The Delano really impressed me with their beautiful interiors and soothing color schemes.

The Raleigh. In the lobby somewhere--woah high ceilings.

A Raleigh bedroom.

Is that not the coolest looking swimming pool you've even seen?

Beach. Even their beach chairs and designed nicely. Can't wait to be there!

Cute curtains in the room. Cool color scheme.

Raleigh on the pool deck. Woah, should I change our reservation? I think so!


The Delano definitely has a distinctly different look. Crisp whites, and dark glamorous colors.

White on white.

Glamorous cabanas at nightfall. OOO romantic!

Rose bar. Perhaps we'll swing by there tonight. I love those chandeliers.

What a nice view. Can you imagine waking up there in your soft white marshmallow cloud of a bed and looking out onto the ocean? At the Delano.

Pretty little scene. Wouldn't you love to take your coffee (or cocktail) here in a two toned wing chair?

A secret source of mine (the beau went down about 2 weeks ago) said that the Delano has amazing gardens and pool deck area. It seemed like he was more impressed by it. I think we'll be checking out both areas though. I have to see that pool at the Raleigh in person. It looks like a shield! All these pics came from the websites of the hotel. The Raleigh and the Delano are gorgeous, you might want to check them out! Have a great week, and don't miss me too much. Be good to yourselves, I know I will be. Though I don't exactly tan, I'm going to give it my best efforts!

Alicia B.


Congratulations to the winner of the Shades of Light Floor Lamp Give-Away Contest:

Thanks to everyone who entered and Daly Essentials, please email me at aliciabdesigns@gmail.com with your address.

Alicia B.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Paula Deen Home Collection?

Is this real? Are all my dreams finally coming true? I can't remember where I saw this but I Googled it, and found a few articles about Paula Deen presenting her new home collection at the High Point Market, March 23rd! I'm practically out of breath with excitement! HERE is the article in Home Textiles Today online. Apparently she already has collaborated with Kaleen to put together her own line of rugs.

The new collection with include 25 fabrics and about 50 different pieces of furniture. Deen describes her own personal style as, "ranging from Asian-inspired to shabby chic." How cute is she? Paula describes her collection, "I like so many things, and if they are put together properly, it is stunning. Some of the furniture is shabby chic and has a distressed, casual look. We also have pieces that are solid wood that have more of a formal look. These pieces can be mixed and matched." By the way, when you read it, you have to read it with her amazing accent. Just a bit of advice.

Personally, the rugs aren't exactly my style but who doesn't adore Paula Deen? I love her cooking show; she's so funny, adorable, silly, and caring. I think I first fell in love with her when I caught her cooking show when she was making Ginger Bread Men/ladies cookies. She was making the cookie version of her husband come on to the cookie version of her! Amazed.

Give-away contest for the floor lamp ends today at 8PM EST. HIT IT, Y'ALL.

Alicia B.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Round Mirrors over the Mantel? I'm in!

Yesterday I was scanning through Elizabeth Dinkel's Portfolio, which I highly recommend, I'm going to have to add her to my inspirational designers folder, and I came across the picture above. I absolutely loved the round convex mirror over the fireplace mantel. It is over-scaled, and has amazing depth. I got curious about this idea of round mirrors over fireplaces; so many people put flat screens which makes me shudder. Take a look at all the different styles.

Todd Romano uses a round mirror in this large and elegant dining room. I like how it is a faded white color and blends into the wallpaper.

This mirror is quite traditional, as are many round mirrors. It is small but clearly the attention should be paid to the large chandelier in the room by Shiela Bridges.

Isn't the wallpaper in here stunning? The flat mirror and the flat fireplace look so pretty on the wallpaper. Just STUNNING. Designed by Nathan Egan.

That's right, there's a mirror there! Leta Austin Foster used a sunburst mirror. I love the dark reds in this room, it's actually calming feeling. And the apple green ceramic stools really balance it out.

This is from Eddie Ross's portfolio. This entire wall is basically mirrors and actually the traditional mirror breaks it up a bit.

I think I love everything about this room, from my dear Domino. This looks like an over-sized pocket mirror, and is hanging on a chain (from Ballard Designs).

Also from Domino, a pair of round mirror with a pair of scones next to it. I love the asymmetrical look to this with pairs.

What a gorgeous scene from Living etc. A pretty and neutral living room livened up with a fabulous mantle display and a Venetian mirror--leaning.

I'm a traditional kind of girl and love to have a gorgeous painting over the mantle, but I think that a round mirror or regular mirror as well is a fun alternative. A mirror adds the illusion of space to a room and a round mirror in particular can add a focal point to the room. Too bad for me I don't have a fireplace in my little apartment but I will be putting a mirror in my foyer to make it look bigger!

PS-ONE DAY LEFT to enter the floor lamp give-away contest! CLICK HERE if you can't be bothered to scroll down.

Also, thank you to My Design Secrets for the guest blog yesterday!

Alicia B.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Guest Blogging at My Design Secrets!

Missing me today? Earn back my love by going to My Design Secrets where I'll be guest blogging! Find out who my design inspirations are! Also you MUST enter the free give-away contest, one post beyond this.

I love the punches of bright green in this room designed by Jamie Drake.

Have a Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Alicia B.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Amazing Giveaway: Shades of Light Fleurette Floor Lamp!

Want to win something? Of course you do! This week I'll be doing a give away for one of my favorite stores: Shades of Light. They specialize in one of my fave things: lighting; but they also have a gorgeous selection of home accessories, furniture, rugs, and more! Remember when I blogged about them for my selection of great and affordable floor lamps? See it HERE if you missed out. Well ever since then, I've been in love with their line--check out their website HERE for more great things. They have a blog as well--Inspired Spaces.

Enough gushing--back to the giveaway! The item we're giving away today is the Fleurette Floor lamp above (shade not included). This lamp is perfect for right now as it reminds me of spring. It's also fun, organic and very beautiful. These are the rules: To enter the contest you must comment to this post by Thursday March 19th 8 PM EST. Type the name of the lamp (Fleurette) and what you're looking forward to most for spring, besides the possibility of winning this great floor lamp. Winners must be in the lower 48 states only, and of course, only one entry per person. I'm not allowed to win, so give it your all!

Since the shade is not included, let me suggest these:THIS one is great for spring! Bright and happy. The Cotton Duck shade.
I love this pattern of the Modern Damask Drum Shade.

I'll announce the winner as chosen by random.org on Friday March 20th. Good luck everyone! PLEASE NO ANONYMOUS COMMENTS

If you like this lamp and want to see more of Shades of Light's products, please visit their website AND their blog! Be careful though--everything they have is something you're going to want!

Alicia B.