Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Feels Like Home

Home is a very special place for us. We spend a lot of time there and it should reflect our personality as well as our comfort. When we entered this beautiful older home, we were greeted by a warm and charming woman. The home itself had a lot of interesting detail—just not the warmth or the character of the people living there. This special client was having a very important party soon to honor her daughter’s book being published and her doctorate degree. We just knew that this important occasion had to be hosted by a room that reflected this family.

The challenge was to provide a space that felt good. We knew that this room was used on a daily basis—and that it was a room for TV watching. Everyone’s needs were taken into consideration and we set to work to make it impressive for guests while comfortable for everyday use. Working with this family was always a pleasure. We coordinated our efforts with craftsmen who helped us accomplish some of the repairs. We reframed some of the beautiful artwork. We added new furniture and accessories.

When we added the finishing touches, the daughter said: “We have lived here a long time, and thanks to you, it finally feels like home.” Now that is what makes our job worthwhile!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

2010 Philadelphia Magazine Design Home

I couldn’t wait to share this good news with you! I have been selected to be the designer for the 2010 Philadelphia Magazine Design Home. Not only is this a great honor—the proceeds from tours to this home will benefit the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House and I am proud to be a part of this wonderful cause. The 2010 Design Home is being built by Philomeno and Salamone—one of the area’s most prestigious builders. It is located on Gypsy Hill Road in Lower Gwynedd on a beautiful wooded site called Gray Fox Farm. It is an incredible house with just under 12,000 square feet of indoor living space and a gorgeous pool and outdoor living space planned as well.

Last week Marian Conicella, the publisher for Philadelphia Magazine welcomed me and my fantastic team of designers, executives from Philomeno and Salamone other Corporate Sponsors at a Kick Off meeting for the 2010 Design Home at the Magazine’s headquarters. I have the pleasure of working with Sherry Litwer, Philadelphia Magazine’s Design Home Project Manager. With my designers Jacqueline Bazar and Lindsay Quinn we have already formulated some great ideas to make this feel like home. Joselyn Philomeno, the designer from Philomeno and Salamone will also be working along with us to make this project extra special. I will keep you posted on the progress of this lovely home and I look forward to seeing you there next September!

Julia’s Room

Our lives are enriched by our clients. Julia’s story is one that touched us deeply. I would like to share it with you. After many years of preparation and planning, John and Bernadette welcomed Julia into their home. She spent the first eight years of her life in China. When the proud parents heard the news that Julia would be a part of their lives, there were so many preparations that it was overwhelming. We have enjoyed working with this delightful couple for over 11 years—in two homes in this area and a shore home. This was an exciting addition and we were committed to making it a fun and cozy space for everyone.

As these things happen, we had only just begun Julia’s room and playroom when John and Bernadette got the word that they were to travel to China to bring Julia home. We were determined to do whatever we could to make this a great homecoming. While they were gone, we were able to finish her bedroom. It was such a delight to hear how good it felt for everyone to have Julia’s room settled and ready. This room is just lovely and one that Julia can grow in to. Our sincere congratulations to all of them! What a beautiful family!

Monday, November 2, 2009

A Family “Living” Room

We have many rooms in our homes that have special meaning to us. However, the one that seems to be used the most by everyone is the family room. It is usually conveniently located right next to the kitchen and has the biggest TV for family movies and shows. Yet sometimes this room is simply functional.

When we first saw this room, it did not match the warmth of this wonderful family. It had a challenging ceiling line and an inefficient use of the space. By adding a spectacular wall of bookshelves, and a cozy stone fireplace, we were able to take this room from ordinary to fabulous. The new seating arrangement was conducive to enjoying the fireplace and the TV at the same time. The bookshelves provided the perfect opportunity to display the children’s artwork and other special family treasures. Adding some silk greens gave it the life that it needed.

Adding panels to this window not only elongated the window--they also gave warmth and pattern to the long wall. Fabric cuts down on the echo in a large room with high ceilings as well. We enjoyed watching the excitement of this family as they settled in a true “family room.”