Trend Alert: Chinoiserie Chic

Chinoiserie: the imitation or evocation of Chinese motifs and techniques in Western art, furniture, and architecture, especially in the 18th century.


Some characterstics of Chinoiserie style constists of:

  • Upturned ends on tables
  • Bamboo furniture
  • Garden Stools
  • Ginger Jars 

CHINOISERIE is a French word that means “in the Chinese taste”. It describes a European style of decorative ornament that was wildly popular in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and still looks great today. Scenes of the Orient abound on textiles, wallpapers, pottery, porcelain, and lacquered and painted furniture. Owning a piece of Chinoiserie (or, “japanned” furniture, as some pieces were called) was the height of fashion. The interesting thing about Chinoiserie is the tremendous range and variety of Oriental scenes and fantastical decorative details.

Here are our designer’s top picks:

Here are some other images of Chinoiserie style:


Industry Ed with Richard: Kitchen and Bath Guideline Series

In this post we will discuss the NKBA Kitchen and Bathroom Planning Guidelines, by first stating the guidelines and then pointing out their importance and giving insight on solutions and practices based on my industry experience. Find out more about NKBA here.

The Guidelines (according to the NKBA)

Toilet Paper Holder

  • The toilet paper holder should be located 8″ – 12″ in front of the edge of the toilet bowl, centered at 26″ above the floor.

My Experience

  • Every toilet has a toilet paper holder but did you ever know there was a science to the placement of it? You will find, that at these dimensions, the toilet paper will be most easily accessible.
  • Depending on what may be on the sides of your toilet, placing the holder on either the left or the right is fine. Often times, the holders are mounted to the side of the vanities if that’s the only available space.
  • But where do you put your back-up toilet paper? If you do not have any immediate storage around your toilet, you should consider a cabinet above the toilet for toilet paper and such.
  • A toilet cabinet should be 57″ AFF (above finish floor).

Trend Alert: Intricate Color Palettes

Colors communicate aspects of a personality or brand and have the power to produce psychological and physiological effects.  In the design industry we are noticing a shift towards complex color palettes.  Designers like Kelly Wearstler and Jenny Komenda often are using unexpected color combinations in delightful ways. 
Here is an example of a complex color palette by Kelly Wearstler:
Here is an example of a palettte by Jenny Komenda from The Little Green Notebook:

Here are our designer’s favorite picks:

See more inspiration photos below!

History Lesson: Terrazzo Flooring

The name terrazzo derived from the Italian word for “terraces”. Terrazzo itself originated in the fifteenth century when Venetian marble workers started using discarded marble remnants to make floors. The marble remnants were originally used to surface the terraces around their living quarters, but were also known to be used in churches, libraries, government and commercial buildings. This method proved to be very versatile and timeless in its beauty, and today remains a popular contemporary flooring for interior and exterior use.

Benefits of Terrazzo Flooring:

Customization: Terrazzo is completely customizable. It comes in almost any color desired and can be laid out in any design. 
Durable: Ancient Terrazzo floors created centuries ago still stand in many buildings throughout Europe, the middle east and far east; sometimes even outlasting the buildings with which they reside. 
Sanitary: Terrazzo has a non-porous system that does not support microbial growth and does not allow accumulation of moisture, absorbs very little water, and has a high stain resistance. 
Low-Maintenance: The non-porous nature of  Terrazzo results in the surface only requiring minimal cleaning, and does not require the use of harsh chemicals. Also there are no grout lines for dirt to accumulate. And it will most likely never need repair or replacement.
Green: Because Terrazzo is made of recycled content, its longevity of material, low-maintenance, and durability make it a sustainable material and is eligible for credits under the LEED rating system.

Look at that tulip table! Check out one of our past articles on the history of the tulip table!

Throwback Bathrooms: What were we thinking?!

Last week we went through throwback photos of kitchens over the years. This week lets look through some perfectly funky bathrooms from the past 50 years! These photos are sure to make you ask “What were we thinking?!”


Many of us are very familiar with the 50’s bathroom, where the tile matches the color of the tub, which matches the color of the toilet! These bathrooms were very much color coordinating with all their plumbing fixtures.


Many of the same trends from the 50’s were carried into the 60’s, but here we start to see more colorful patterns in the wallpapers and fabrics, floating furniture, and wood paneling.


Getting into the 70s we see a shift in color palette. The colors become more muted, changing from bright blues, greens and pinks, to browns, mustard yellows and deeper greens. The plumbing fixtures changed to white, but the bathrooms themselves were not void of rich color pallets and patterns. CARPET is now introduced into the bathroom… but WHY?!


And on to the the 80s. The patterns here get a bit more choppy and geometric. Black becomes apart of the color pallet now. The tub has now become a focal point in the bathroom; and the use of the circle is used a lot, often times to make the tub stand out.


The bathroom is being brought into the bedroom. A trend I think quickly dissipated. The tub is still a major focal part of the room. Vanities are becoming much more user efficient; they are larger, have more compartments that are specific to items that might be put in them, and seating is incorporated into the vanity.