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  • Backyard Living Ideas - Outdoor Fire Pits

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     Backyard Living Ideas - Outdoor Fire Pits

    Outdoor living isn't just about a grill and a table and chairs anymore. Outdoor fire pits are gaining popularity and enhance your outdoor living experience. These days people have full-on outdoor kitchens and fully appointed outdoor living rooms and many outdoor spaces now include fire pits.

     Table Height Fire Pit in Outdoor Seating Area
    A fire pit can easily become the go-to spot for family and friends and are perfect for a lively fireside chat or a place to stay warm on chilly summer nights.

    This urban garden's seating area is the perfect place to kick back and catch up, and the fire pit is the right height to be used as a table when not lit.

     Built-In Concrete Banquette with Decorative Outdoor Pillows and Outdoor Fire Pit
    Some homes even have separate seating areas for fire pits and include built-in benches/banquettes (a perfect opportunity to accessorize with decorative outdoor pillows.)

     Outdoor Seating Area with Fountain and Fire Pit and Paper Lanterns in Trees

    Adding an outdoor fire pit can extend your outdoor living season, starting in the spring and go until fall (or later, depending on your climate.)  

    Adding outdoor fountains will provide the peaceful sound of trickling water while you watch the flames licking up from your fire pit. I love the festive touch of paper lanterns in the trees above the seating area.

     Cozy Outdoor Sitting Area with Copper Fire Pit, Party Lights and Decorative Lanterns

    String lights are a great addition to this outdoor seating area with a wood-burning fire pit.  The addition of decorative lanterns adds to the cozy ambiance.

    Some outdoor fire pits are great for toasting marshmallows, others are just pretty to look at, but all will help keep you toasty on cool spring/summer nights.

    Here are some great outdoor fire pits to consider when you're ready to add one to the mix:

     A Selection of Fire Pits from Euro Style Lighting

    1. Round Crystal Outdoor Fire Pit 2. Drop-In Tile Outdoor Fire Pit Table 3. Tereno Stucco Outdoor Fire Pit 4. Round Chat Fire Pit Table with Granite Top 5. Real Flame Gray Burning Fire Pit 6. Black Steel Basket Fire Pit

    Image Sources: 1st image: True North Architects 2nd image: Arterra Landscape Architects, photo by Michele Lee Wilson Photography 3rd image: Design Vidal, photo by Marcia Prentice 4th image: MTLA - Mark Tessier Landscape Architecture 5th imageDesign by Misha

  • A Mid-Century Modern Masterpiece

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     A Midcentury Modern Masterpiece

    The Stahl house (also known as Case Study House #22) designed by Pierre Koenig is a Mid-Century modern architectural masterpiece that cantilevers over the city of Los Angeles.

    Numerous movies have been filmed in the home and it is also a popular background for photo shoots.

    The Stahl house was part of the Case Study project sponsored by Arts and Architecture magazine in the 50s and 60s.

    Architects Richard Neutra, Ray and Charles Eames, Eero Saarinen and Pierre Koenig (among others) were tasked with designing homes that would bring modernist architecture to the middle class.

     Julius Shulman's Iconic Photo of Case Study House 22

    You've probably seen this photo of two women lounging in a corner of a room made of floor-to-ceiling glass with the lights of LA twinkling below. Yes? No? Maybe?

    Well anyway,it was this photo by famed photographer Julius Shulman that made the Stahl house one of the most famous examples of Mid-Century modern architecture.

     View of the Stahl House Hillside Site

    It took Buck Stahl, the owner of the home, several tries to find an architect willing to build on the challenging (that's putting it mildly) hillside lot before he finally found Koenig, and the resulting design is pure genius.

     Interior of Stahl House Living Area

    The 2,200 square foot, 2 bedroom home is an L-shape that is divided into public and private areas.  The public area is a single open space encased in floor-to-ceiling glass -- open plan living was a hallmark of the Mid-Century modern style of interior design.

     Peggy Olsen, Don Draper and Peter Campbell from Mad Men

    Naturally this style of  architecture was accompanied by interior design that mimics the streamlined look of its buildings.

    The acclaimed TV series Mad Men has brought back the popularity of Mid-Century modern lighting and furniture design and now it can be seen everywhere from residential to hospitality to commercial design.

    Clean lines, gentle organic curves and geometric forms are all characteristics of the style's modern furniture and lighting design.

    The style made use of traditional materials like wood alongside non-traditional materials like metal, glass, vinyl, and plywood.

    Here are some great examples of the furniture and lighting styles from the period:

     Selection of Mid-Century Style Furniture and Lighting

    1. Polished Chrome George Kovacs Arc Floor Lamp

    2. Limelight Modern Green Armchair

    3. Casa Vieja Turbina Ceiling Fan - 60" Oil-Rubbed Bronze

    4. Patron Grasscloth Centennial Modern Natural Sofa

    5. Vanguard Floor Lamp with Glass Tray Table

    6. Santi Modern Walnut and Cream Adjustable Barstool

    7. Cleo Modern White Glass 8 1/2-Inch-H Tech Pendant Light

    8. Tendy Pro Stack Walnut 31 1/2-Inch-H Set of 4 Side Chairs

    9. Astrid Contemporary Satin White Oval Dining Table

    Okay, all this Mid-Century modern talk is making me want to pour myself a cocktail and settle in for a Mad Men marathon -- how about you?

    Image Sources: Image 1: Homestation Magazine, Image 2: Nalata/Nalata, Image 3: archdaily, Image 4: Comfy Arts, Image 5: decoist

  • 4 New Pendant Lighting Ideas

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    Lately I've been thinking about new pendant lighting ideas -- undoubtedly you've seen pendant lighting popping up in kitchens, dining rooms and living rooms, but what about other rooms in the house? Hallways, stairways, bathrooms and bedrooms all need love too!

    Here are some pendant lighting ideas for inspiration:

    1. Foyers and Hallways:

     4 New Pendant Lighting Ideas

    Pendant lighting is no stranger to foyers and hallways, but how about groups of pendants? It’s a fresh take on the typical chandelier.

     3 Large Globe Pendants in a Foyer

    2. Stairways:

     Pendant Lights at Different Levels Hanging in a Modern Staircase

    Much like hallways, pendants are a staple lighting technique in stairways. Pendants hanging at different heights along the path of stairways really engage you on the climb up or down.

     Industrial Chic Pendant Lanterns with Rope Cables


    3. Bedrooms:

     Pendant Lighting Idea - Hang Pendants Next to Your Bed

    You can use pendant lighting in place of bedside table lamps in the bedroom. This is an especially great move for small bedrooms where space is at a premium or you have bedside tables that are on the small side. I love the idea of grouping pendants alongside the bed.

     Chrome Globe Pendant Replaces Bedside Table Lamp

    4. Bathrooms:

     Pendant Lighting Ideas for the Bathroom

    Why stick to using the traditional bath bar or sconces to light your vanity when you can use pendants? One of my pet peeves is a recessed light mounted directly over the sink (it casts harsh shadows on your face) – using a pair of pendants on either side of a vanity mirror shines light on you from the sides, which is eminently more flattering.

     Industrial Chic Pendant Lights in Powder Room

     Mini Pendants from Euro Style Lighting

    (1) Possini Euro Design Zuri Chrome Mini Pendant (2) Possini Euro Engels Black with Smoke Glass Pendant Light (3) Feiss Blufton Bronze Mini Pendant Light (4) LBL Isla Clear Modern Pendant (5) Tech Lighting Fire Amber Glass Mini Pendant (6) Franklin Iron Works Edison Warm Bronze Mini Pendant Light

    These are only a few pendant lighting ideas so next time you are installing (or just switching up) lighting, use some out-of-the-box thinking when choosing types and locations for your lights, you might just come up with something amazing!

    Image Sources: 1st image - decorpad 2nd image - Interiors by Studio M 3rd image - John Maniscalco Architecture via contemporist 4th image - SB Architects 5th image - Lawson Robb 6th image - Kelly Hoppen 7th - image Centsational Girl 8th image - Eric Olsen Design

  • Top Picks For a Modern Sunroom

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     Top Picks For a Modern Sunroom

    The ultimate modern sunroom can be a simple glass box.

    The next best thing to having a space outdoors, is having a sunroom with a beautiful view of the outdoors. Whether you living in warm or cold climates, the modern sunroom is a great option.

    Here are  my top picks for sunroom style:

    Whether you're avoiding natural elements like the cold, or you just prefer staying indoors, the following images are sure to inspire...

     A Mid Century Sunroom

    Don't forget modern lighting, even in the sunroom.

    The mid-century modern home above does it right. They furnished their sunroom to work during the day or night. 

    Remember to include modern lighting, such as floor lamps so you can enjoy the room at night as well. When you're done reading, turn off the lighting and enjoy the starts...

     Modern Sunroom with Live Edge Wood Coffee Table

    Treat your sunroom with modern outdoor chairs and textiles to match your home style.

    There's a couple ways to approach the design of your sunroom... You can make it a part of your indoor home, like the space we just talked about, part of your outdoor space, or both... Like this space above.

    Along with mostly indoor furnishings, you can also add one outdoor element like a modern outdoor chair to really tie the indoors and outdoors together.

     A Sunroom Used as a Dining Room with Acrylic Louis Ghost Chairs and Crystal Chandelier

    Why not make the sunroom a modern dining room?

    Lastly, I love the idea of doing something unexpected like using the sunroom for a modern dining room. Add some acrylic dining chairs so you don't distract from the outdoor view, and hang a crystal chandelier to sparkle against the sunlight during the day and the stars at night...

    Images from Dirtbin Designs, Blood & Champagne, Refinery 29, Planete Deco

  • Cool Ideas for Hot Fireplace Design

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     Cool Ideas for Hot Fireplace Design

    Modern fireplace design .

    It's cold here in Southern California! We're finally getting some rain to help with our drought... Let's warm up a bit with some fireplace style.

    The first time I saw this modern, eclectic home, I stared for a while. That fireplace, those colors and the plants! 

    This cool home above is a perfect example of how much impact your fireplace style can have on the rest of your home design. But it doesn't have to be gold to make an impact... Let's look at a few more ideas below.

     Fireplace with Tile Front and Rustic Wood Mantel

    Simple design can mean big design.

    While this space above is much simpler than the eclectic home up top, it still carries with it a lot of style.

    Most fireplace finishes are rather simple, but this space above goes bold with tile pattern and ultimately makes a huge impact on the rest of the room.

    Important details, such as modern lighting and planters, will help take this design to the finish line.

     Ideas for Working and Non-Working Fireplaces

    Ideas for working and non-working fireplaces.

    Lastly, I love a clean, modern fireplace designs like the two above... But I also love non-working fireplaces and the different ways you can style them.

    Whether you're styling a working or non-working fireplace, remember that what surrounds them is just as important as their architecture or what goes inside. Even minimal styling can go a long way to finalize your fireplace style.

    Images from Apartment Therapy, My Paradissi, Emmas Design Blog, Freun Devon Freunden, Domaine Home

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