Thursday, February 18, 2010


A picture is worth a thousand words. Just look how this spiral staircase is enhanced by the repetetive design of the wrought iron. Below,the balustrades also have an interesting effect.

Different parts of the staircase give designers the opportunity to infuse different materials for interest: metal, wood, and paint color. Below we see how the introduction of fabric beside a window can enhance the architectural features of the panes.

Side panel draperies are a wonderful vehicle for color blocking. Not only do the panels enhance the height of the room, draw your eye upward, but give the chance to add bits of color for accent. A large scale pattern with the architecture would have worked equally as well. The secret find of a large pattern fabric is the way the print becomes altered when shirred.

Sometimes, its important to know when not to add anything.... "less is more", take a look...

The next two photos show how just simple paint can define shape and space. All this oval tray ceiling needed was a color.

The same is true for the mud room next to this kitchen. The use of a high contrast color next to the moulding and a strong fabric pattern on both window and seat cushion invites you in its direction, stands up to the kitchen area and gives a visual anchor to the space.Who says a mud room can't look fabulous!

Don't forget about ceilings! They are a very important architectural feature and the most underused surface. We've seen color blocking above in the kitchen, but what are some of the other ways to treat a ceiling? Below is a combination of wallpaper and wood separated by moulding.

If you don't want to tackle a whole room, start out with a powder room and use your imagination! Before we move outdoors, sometimes certain accessories can provide architectural elements. In this photo a mirrored screen is used to divide a space, how unusual!

The last few photos show how landscaping can enhance a property. The use of greens, water, stone, and wood create a majestic and magical atmosphere. The one rule of thumb about landscaping is this...... never think of landscaping as parseley around a turkey.

Some advice if you are considering using wrought iron around a pool, for decoration or simply for safety.... NEVER use white. It does not harmonize with nature and just sticks out like a sore thumb. Below you will see wood arbor squares which work nicely with the slate tiles. Notice the clever way the boxwood plantings are framed around the pool.

The last photo below is just a great example of all the elements working together.........

If you are interested in reviewing my older posts or my favorite websites, go to I love all your comments, hope you enjoy!

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