Friday, April 06, 2012

Refresh and Renew- Spring Cleaning

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Well, spring is upon us and we all know what that means... spring cleaning. This international tradition is about refreshing and renewing our homes, not just getting out the Windex and calling it a day. Spring cleaning allows us to throw out the remnants of any unfinished projects, missed goals, and start fresh.

When I find myself in a darkly decorated (dark curtains, walls, furniture) room, I tend to feel lethargic and unmotivated. So, when it was time for me to start my cleaning spree, I traded my blacks for whites and my deep colors for those that inspire.

Barbara Barry gives us some great ideas for brighter designs with stunning linen fabrics. Try making some pillows with her Kravet fabric In Bloom or some new drapes with Linen Leaf. These linen fabrics are a wonderful base for a room that allow you to add your own accents.

Another staple of spring decor is, of course, flowers. For those of us who work around the clock, or those with bad allergies, running to the market to pick up a fresh bouquet of tulips every week just isn't going to happen. And that is why silk flowers are our best option. That's right, I said it...silk flowers. These arrangements are made to order and actually look and feel very realistic (none of that cheap waxy finish we hate). These brightly colored silk tulips are my favorite and make for a wonderful centerpiece.

So, overall, spring cleaning may not be the albatross you expected. Small and simple projects and additions to your home make a huge difference, now decorate with a spring in your step!

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Designer Spotlight- Alexa Hampton

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With one of the most recognizable names in the world of Interior Design, Alexa Hampton continues to amaze us with her tasteful and timeless designs. Alexa Hampton’s fabrics for Kravet bring a breath of fresh air to any room. The subltle linen Galena pattern is just one of many exquisite patterns in this line.
Following closely in her father Mark Hampton’s footsteps, Alexa’s tendency to bring comfort into a traditional design is hard to come by, making her one of our favorite designers. But we’re not the only ones who love her work! Hampton was selected by the Trowbridge House Foundation to be the interior designer for Trowbridge House, the official guest house for former Presidents of the United States in Washington D.C.

There’s no wonder why Cosmopolitan Magazine named her one of twelve “Fun, Fearless Females”! Cosmo wasn’t the only one to recognize Alexa Hampton for her work. Since 1999, she has been included in House Beautiful Magazine’s list of “America’s 100 Best Designers,” as well as international recognition from Architectural Digest’s “AD 100” every year since 2002. One of her most cherished accolades was the honorary Ph.D. she received from Moore College of Art and Design in June of 2009. 
 Alexa Hampton’s woven fabrics (check out this elegant pattern) for Kravet are under the label “Alexa Hampton for the Mark Hampton Signature Collection.” A more expansive line of fabrics, “Alexa Hampton Designs,” was launched in 2004 with new introductions in 2006 and 2010.  She also offers a collection of trim for Kravet which features aqua, blue, gold and orange tones (inspired by the Greek pantheon.) A beautiful example of her style is represented in this viscose and linen pattern. Not only does she master the art of designing fabric, but she has her own furniture, carpet, and lighting lines as well. 

Hampton is the president, owner, and featured designer of Mark Hampton LLC, the world-famous design firm established in 1976 by her father in New York City. I think we can all agree that this woman is a true inspiration to all of us in the design world. House Beautiful said it best in their June of 2002 issue, “Alexa Hampton is a modern spirit with a soft spot for old-fashioned good taste.”

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