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modern living + innovative design + inspiring ideas

  • Design Tips: Zen Living in Style

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    Design Tips

    Image from Domaine Home

    Your home should be a place full of great style, clearly.... But it should also be a place where you can be at peace and relax. We want to share a few design tips for living a Zen lifestyle because your yoga class shouldn't be the only place you leave feeling serene.

    This home tour from Domaine Home is a perfect example of good design that is also calming. It's the home of Nashville designer, Benjamin Vandiver. The home is well curated, featuring mixed materials and of course botanicals.

    Domaine Home

    Images from Domaine Home

    DESIGN TIPS

    Fountains:

    The calming sound of water will provide the most Zen in any space. It's both a natural element as well as a calming sound. Worried about maintaining your modern design style? Well don't, because there's lots of indoor fountains to choose from that would be perfect for your modern home... And if you're trying to save a little energy, there are also stylish LED fountain options.

    Botanicals:

    Plants and flowers are the easiest way to add a calming effect to your decor. You can never go wrong adding natural elements like flowers and plants. Even if you don't have a green thumb, there's other ways to include this element. Check out the green leaf artwork below, for example.

    Natural Materials:

    Creating an environment with natural materials, like this drum shade chandelier below is a wonderful way to provide a little Zen to your lifestyle. It adds warmth and texture to your home style.

    Home Furnishings

    Here are a few product ideas from Euro Style Lighting to help you get started.

    1. Buddha Face Faux Stone 6 1/2-Inch-W Floor Fountain 2. Quoizel Zen Black with Tan Rattan Shade Pendant Light 3. Zen I 30" High Color Photo Wall Art

    4. Kenroy Home Bronze 5-Inch-H Four Section Table Fountain 5. Zen Ivory Faux Leather 26 1/2-Inch-W Club Chair 6. Kenroy Home Black Sierra Adjustable Water Flow Fountain

    Images: Domaine Home

  • Beautiful Outdoor Lighting

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    Outdoor Lighting

    Awww, the onset of Summer! To me it’s all about being outdoors as much as possible, even if that means taking my laptop out to work with me. I constantly dream of an outdoor patio that is just as functional and beautiful as one that you would create indoors.

    The same principles of design apply from functional space planning to beautiful décor accents and the important elements of lighting. A beautifully designed space without adequate lighting won’t be used as much as it should.

    Here are some of my favorite spaces and how they could be better designed with some beautiful outdoor lighting additions.

    Outdoor Design

    I absolutely love this space above! It’s the perfect combination of greenery, rustic outdoor furnishings and functionality. Nightime lighting is not seen from this picture, but it could be used with candles on the table and lanterns on the steps. Adding handsome outdoor sconces on the wood wall would give a beautiful designer look in addition to nighttime lighting.

    Outdoor Patio

    This outdoor living space is made functional with proper seating arrangements and lighting. These hanging lanterns are a perfect way to light the space!

    Outdoor Seating

    This fun and modern outdoor space is accented with bright pops of color and fun globes hanging like garlands from the “ceiling.” Create this look with Chinese lanterns.

    The courtyard from the top image is minimal and boho with colorful cushions and fun accent pillows. At night it looks like it may not receive proper lighting. Try adding some beautiful wall sconces throughout the space to achieve the look.

    Outdoor Lighting Fixtures

    1. This outdoor bronze wall light comes with a beautiful glass shade.

    2. I’m loving this more industrial outdoor lighting fixture. It’s both rustic and modern.

    3. This flush mount ceiling light would be perfect for an outdoor covered space.

    4. This more contemporary sconce would be so sophisticated at the entrance of a door.

  • Memorial and Landscape Design: Remembering Dan Kiley

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    landscape design dan kiley

    Image from the Cultural Landscape Foundation

    Despite its unofficial status as the kick-off to summer, Memorial Day claims a much more somber reason as its origin: it is the day in which we honor those who have given their lives while serving in the United States Armed Forces. 

    To mark the day, we look at deceased landscape architect Dan Kiley, whose recently-closed exhibition at the National Building Museum chronicled the designer's work on some of the nation's most high-profile public spaces.

    lincoln center plaza

    Image from the Lincoln Center

    A modernist at heart, Kiley 's minimalist landscaping was durable enough to handle public use while remaining delicate enough to honor appropriately the space at hand. From the Saarinen designed Air Force Academy (pictured at the top of this post) to the Lincoln Center (above), he frames natural elements within simple, easy-to-read geometries. 

    gateway arch gardens

    Image from the Cultural Landscape Foundation

    We've talked about how contemporary water fountains can add a sense of cool and calm to your yard. The stillness of Kiley's reflecting pool at the Jefferson Expansion Memorial in St. Louis (above) takes it to another level.

    Likewise, we've spoken about how modern landscape lighting lets your enjoy your garden after dark. Kiley utilizes it to the clinical degree expected of public spaces:

    fountain place texas

    Image from the Cultural Landscape Foundation

    So as you head outside this Memorial Day - be it to a public park or a back yard barbecue - enjoy the relative calm of a well-designed outdoor space. And while you're there, take a moment to remember those who have fallen in defense of your homeland. 

    Images: Cultural Landscape Foundation, Lincoln Center 

  • NYCxDesign: Design Event Review

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    Design Event Rug

    Detail of Stephanie Goto's Language Rug via Dwell Magazine

    NYCxDesign, New York City's citywide design week, just wrapped up and it reinforced one well-established truism: this is a city that lives for cutting edge design.

    modern-credenza

    Image from ICFF exhibitor Moving Mountains

    Centered around the International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) and surrounded by smaller design events Wanted Design and Sight Unseen, NYCxDesign is a loose blanket that covers 12 days of breakout events, talks, exhibitions and parties across the city.

    Of particular interest to us was an LED light installation by Blackbody at the entrance tunnel of Wanted Design:

    LED Lighting Installation

    Lighting installation by Blackbody via Wanted Design

    Also on view at Wanted were innovative bathroom lighting ideas by Axor:

    Axor-Lighting

    Lighting by Axor via Wanted Design

    The 2014 installment of NYCxDesign certainly confirmed that contemporary lighting and design is as bold and brash as ever. Stark geometries are all the rage, handcrafted furniture is trending, and designers are doing amazing things with modern mini pendant lights.

    And while much of what was on view throughout NYCxDesign was in the conceptual and cost-prohibitive phase, it doesn't stop us from highlighting some like-minded pendants that are readily available today:

    Modern Pendant Lights

    Caycee Red 14-Inch-Wide Modern PendantPossini Euro Double Glass Swag ChandelierGray Knife Pleat Shade Chandelier

    By simply mixing, matching and clustering pendants like these, you can make them look as contemporary and high-concept as you want at home.

    Images: Dwell Instagram, Moving Mountains, Wanted Design

  • Stylish White Decor + Floor Lamps

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    White Decor

    Image from Stylizmo 

    I’m having a love affair with a color I’ve long ignored... White. Clean, crisp, bright white creating a stylish decor aesthetic. While some of you may shutter at the idea of white for reasons such as keeping white looking white, to a coldness the color can sometimes bring, I urge you to reconsider.  

    Maybe not on your walls, or your sofa, but how about a stylish white floor lamp?!

    Modern Decor

    Image from Stylizmo

    From modern to traditional, the amount of white floor lamps you can currently find is endless. Try an oversized white floor lamp at the end of your sofa or next to your office desk. What about a sleek modern floor lamp next to your favorite reading nook? And if you have a nursery I guarantee it’s just begging for the addition of a bright and bold white floor lamp.

    White Floor Lamps

    I’ve rounded up my favorites below, and I promise you’ll be seeing a new white floor lamp gracing my loft very soon!

    1. Jonathan Adler’s White and Nickel floor lamp is just begging for a Palm Springs mid century design to call home. 

    2. Jamie Young’s White & Raffia floor lamp is perfect for the traditionalist in all of us. Try this in a more formal living or sitting room. 

    3. The Drum Shade Floor Lamp is one of the most versatile lamps, place this just about anywhere.

    4. Now this Arteriors Home Floor Lamp is a showstopper that will stay with you for years to come. 

    5. The Weegee Linen Floor Lamp is an easy way to add a pop of modern. 

    Images: Stylizmo Blog

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