2010 Decorators Showcase: We’re In!Author:Nicole Powell
The showcase house is almost open and a bevy of designers have been rushing to add the finishing touches to their stunning rooms. From all the wonderful designs we are featuring a few of our favorites here.
Gregg De Meza: De Meza + Architecture+ Interiors:
Bathroom: Modernism Talks Back
First up is an elegant, modern and cheeky take on one of the hardest working rooms in any house—the bathroom. De Meza + Architecture + Interiors played nice with the traditional bathroom structure and original details while simultaneously bringing in some serious design gravitas with tiny black and white tiles custom designed to meticulously aggregate towards the shower eventuating in the sweet and iconic quote—‘wash behind your ears’. DMA’s use of traditional bathroom finishes (the black and white tile) in a wholly new way is truly innovative and while the tile pattern may steal the show, the rest of the space is detailed to perfection. A new vanity picks up on the detail of existing cabinets and a slider on the medicine cabinet glides open to reveal a curated collection of toiletries against a stunning yellow backdrop. DMA recognized the possibility of black and white and yellow being—well— black and white and yellow (oh my!) and so cleverly grounded it with a rich gray blue hue for the walls. The result is a sophisticated modern bathroom that lives comfortably in the skin of a traditional house.
Thaddeus Warren: Lushart Decorative Painting & Murals
Artist Thaddeus Warren made quite an impression with his ‘Quiet Room.’ The mural of conceptually rendered silk threads really tied together the beautiful art pieces on display, which read in a pop art meets apothecary sort of way. Most enthralling was the light fixture—made from real cocoon fiber, it illuminated genuine moth specimens that seemed to fly across the ceiling. The whimsical room was a special moment and a good reminder of the importance of fantasy and fun.
Will Wick: Wick Design
Guest Quarter at Mongibello
One of my favorites of the whole house was Will Wicks ‘Guest Quarters at Mongibello’ where I truly wanted to lay down for a nap. The room is able to truly get at what interiors can do. Wicks concept for the space was to create a clean slate that the entire collective consciousness could benefit from. A pared down aesthetic marks the room overall and lets the essentials speak loud and clear. A huge print of the sea underpins the tranquil feeling while the furniture seems to be less about decoration and more about facilitating contemplation and renewal. Wicks pairs the old bones of the house with a neutral palette and pieces that do well without superfluous decoration to create a calm, simple and ultimately successful space.
Kevin Hackett & Jessica Weigley: Siol Studios
Sacred Play: Childhood Re-Imagined and Sacred Place to Grow
A leader of the conceptual pack, Siol studios’ take on a children’s play space and garden is invigorating in its intellectual and conceptual development and execution. It is immediately obvious upon entry that this play space has been crafted for children—not for adults who happen to have children. The inviting environment is not only scaled to be comfortable for young children but the geometry, tactility, color, materiality and overall frequency of the room are meant to reinforce positive early childhood development.
The room underwent serious transformations including the addition of a curved stage and walls that serves not only as a place for play but facilitates a smoother circulation and incorporates soft geometry—central to important childhood development theory. Other major features of the room are a handcrafted built-in wood xylaphone and music making area as well as a closet that has been transformed into a tiny 6’ X 6’ cocoon lined with a soft luxurious pilled wool. The room opens to a small patio that Siol has revamped into a pint sized biodynamic garden/work area complete with a kid scaled, locally crafted (Willem Evett-Miller) cypress workbench where children can prepare, eat and compost the strawberries, chard and other vegetables growing in their own little garden. To top it off, sustainable technologies like a beautiful sculpture/windmill (which generates enough power to—at the very least, run the lights for the floor) and a water harvesting system punctuate the space and foster central values and an ecological education. In sum, the research, development and execution of this play space and garden are meant to tap into, nurture and develop the already existing potential of children.
Marion Philpotts-Miller and Jonathan Staub: Philpotts and Associates, Inc.
Marion Philpotts-Miller and Jonathan Staub have managed to mix up a delicious retreat in their room ‘Elemental Luxe.’ The duo has taken traditional Asian elements and lines, mixed them up with burnished silver, textured sisal and turquoise lacquer added a pinch of animal print and voila! A luxurious and cozy retreat that the designers describe as modern luxe and a room that you would be hard pressed to leave.
Frank Eddy: Neo-American Gardens
Entry Garden and Front Porch
And I couldn’t think of a more refreshing way to begin and end a trip than what greets visitors at the entrance. Two large sculptures—a collaboration between interior designer, Wendy Owens and artists Matt Catrino and Brandon Clark (who were in themselves refreshing…) stand on either side of the entry. The bases are made from salvaged wood extremeties culled from tables, chairs and other abandoned pieces of furniture and sourced entirely from San Francisco by the two artists—who claim trucking around looking for the discarded pieces is a great way to get to know the city. The metal spheres on top were imagined by Owens, who was inspired by stone well tops from the South of France. The sculptures juxtapose perfectly with the elegant clean lined garden that was rescued by Frank Eddy of Neo American Gardens and consists of boxwood and white roses (that Eddy claims will be in their full glory shortly) all accounted for the whole entrance is sure to make a lasting impression.
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