Monday, January 30, 2012

For the Love of a Rug

It's no secret that I am all about art in a space.  I like to sneak it in wherever I can, especially if it's in a less obvious way.  In designing any space, whether it be for a commercial or residential client, or my own ever-evolving home, a little dab of an artistc element here and there will certainly do 'ya :) 
Much like my obsession with painted flooring (several posts back), this month's art element obsession is with rugs.  I'm sure this is due in part to freezing temps we have been having here in Colorado, since a rug can really warm up a space.  They not only make a room cozy, but they really complete the design in an area that looks wonderful, but is just missing something.  In just about every instance, a design plan is not complete until there is a rug in the room.  With that being said, consider making this necessary object a statement piece, either subtly or boldly.

Because rugs are such art pieces in and of themselves, why not treat them as such?  You wouldn't put a beautiful Pacaso painting on the floor and walk all over, right?  I know, not quite the same thing....  However, consider taking a well loved rug and put it on the wall!  I love that it brings a whole new textural element to wall art.  A unique and unexpected impact in the room, that looks as much at home on the wall as it does on the floor.

Can't decide if you like a certain rug on the wall or floor better?  Problem solved with this option.....

 Okay, so a bit much in  my book, but the construction of this piece is amazing!

If you are decorating from scratch in a room with a completely clean slate, you have the opportunity start with the rug, and then build the decor around it.  As a designer, I don't think this is going about a room the wrong way at all.  If there is a rug you have found that you absolutely adore and are totally inspired by it, using it as the first piece to the room design puzzle, is the best way to do it justice.  Starting a design plan with the rug first, is a great way to begin with a bold color, such as orange, yellow, or red and then add in pops of color with accessories around the room. Consider using neutrals on the walls in whites, beiges, grays, or coffee tans to make the dominant color shine throughout your space. The wonderful point about starting with the floor is it gives you a chance to build a room piece by piece, rather than getting overwhelmed with the rug, furniture, walls, and window treatments all at once!

Persian rug is always going to be in style and adds a classic and comfortable feel to a space  instantly.  Just like with wine and cheese, these rugs get better with age, although that an opinion based statement.  I also feel that not only do they get better with age, they do with wear as well.  A well loved and worn Persian rug has an appeal to it like your favorite torn and tattered t-shirt or old baby blanket. Having one in a room fills it with a sense of comfort and familiarity. 
A fresh take on the classic Persian has been created by rug designer Jan Kath, with his "Erased Classic" collection.  I'm a HUUUGE fan!  Kath incorporated motifs from Italian wall coverings and Indian saris when creating the pattern for these beauties.  The ornamental elements of the carpet are broken up so much so that  in some places, the patterns, which in their original form were repeated perfectly, seem to have been obliterated, soaked with acid and corroded.  Who would have thought that such a thing of beauty could come from the look of acid corrosion!?!  It's official, decay is now decadent!
I may be biased...but I think that Kath's  "Erased Classic" collection coordinates incredibly with La Dolce Villa furniture pieces, in that they share the same destroyed ornamental elegance.

These types of rugs take the typical carpeting characteristics of "plushness", "pile", etc. to all new amazing extremes!  Starting with the standard fibers that make up a rug like silk or  wool, tactile textiles may be made in wool also, but of the felt variety.  Felt rugs in flooring is far more sophisticated than the acrylic version of this fiber that is commonly used in crafts.  Felt rugs are typically made from an industrial felt that is not only offered in various thicknesses (which you wouldn't think was possible for felt), but is extremely durable.  The strength of it makes it a perfect fit as a flooring option, pair with that the color options, and best yet.. the precision way it can be cut to create immaculate designs, and you have a contemporary work of art right under foot.  This style is also a great option for using in a way of wall art.  Felt is for sure fabulous!

  When tactile textiles goes visual you get a 3D rug! The visual appeal of these are so incredible that they speak for themselves and beg for one to reach out and touch it!
Where there are injenuitive ideas in soft surfaces, there are sleek options too.  Some spaces are better served with a look that is less plush and more luxe.  Enter leather into the sphere of sophisticated flooring options...

 Kyle Bunting has been working with cow hides to create interesting rugs, wall coverings, furniture and art, with his team out of Spicewood, Texas.  They are recognized foremost for their collection of luxury hidecarpets and wall coverings, but also supply hides for architectural and upholstery applications. These floor coverings are a perfect pairing of rustic organic meets modern materialism.

When it comes to floors, the sky is the limit.  Think outside the box and use the floor space as art space.  You will be surprised how much in enhances the overall feel of the room and brings the style up to heights you never thought possible!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Built-Ins on a Budget

There is no mistake in the title of this really can have built in entertainment centers, libraries, etc..on a 'b' word..BUDGET!  We make it possible and beyond beautiful within even the most modest of budgets.  Everyone deserves a home they love and are proud of, with architectural elements that are as functional as they are fabulous.  There is also no sacrifice in quality either, we're talking real wood from real trees, not laminate or other artificial imitations.
I like things with substance, style, and class..both in design and in people :).  Which is why in many of my design plans I work in at least some kind of magnificent milwork.  To me a space exudes these aforementioned qualities once it's completed with creative carpentry.   If there is even a remote possibility that there can be a shelving unit or library, I am all about making it part of the plan!   

With my caviar taste on a peanut butter budget, I was faced with the dilemma of how to get a house that trumps the rest, without the exorbitant rate it typically costs to get it.  So I rounded the troupes, putting the A-team together consisting of graduates in Architecture and skilled carpentry craftsmen.   I conceptualize style and purpose of the structure, sketch it out, then pass it on the professionals to bring it to life!  It was like magic..what once was on paper was now a reality in a room!  

 Best part was, money was still left over to fill the whole thing up with gorgeous goodies!  A LOT of books are needed to get a library wall fully filled in..however, a lot of money is not a requirement.  Total cost for all those books in the library pictured above was under $50...seriously.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Why Not Wainscot?!

What looks better on your walls than wainscoting?!  It's a timeless look that has been around since the 17th century and is still going strong today.  That's a long lasting style in my book and a safe route to take in your own home.  So if you're the type that fears change for the possibility of it ending up looking dated too soon, this is the updated your walls are begging for!  With so many styles of this type of paneling to choose from, first consider the overall feel of your home you would like to represent.  In a moment I will describe the different types of wainscoting and the decor styles they best correspond with.  Until then, lets take a look at why wainscoting is even in existence and the historical significance of it.  According to the holy grail of online knowledge..Wikipedia..The original purpose of wainscoting was to cover the lower part of walls, because homes were constructed poorly and were often affected by rising dampness in the walls. Today, wainscoting is decorative of course and I certainly advise against it not be used to cover up damp walls where mold will be growing!  ...That's not exactly the decorative wall treatment anyone wants :) 

Wainscoting began in the 17th century and was pretty much always floor to ceiling (this is still my fave), in the 18th century it changed to various heights on the wall, most popular being 3-5feet high.  This is when the chair rail became a hit (typically at a 3ft height).  Everyone has an opinion on chair rails it seems like, since this is my blog I am going to freely share mine!  I'm not a fan of a traditional 3ft high chair rail, that to me seems dated.  I like 5ft or higher.  But who knows, maybe in a few years the 5ft will feel like the 3 ft does to me now?!  At the end of the decorating day, if you like the 3ft, 5 ft, or all the way to the ceiling, go with what you love most because they are all in style and will always be in style.  So it's a personal preference and a win/win decision.

Wall Paneled: this is where the wall itself is smoothed out (skim coated) and used as the 'back board' look of the paneling, so it's painted the same color as the raised wood rails.  It's the most inexpensive route to take, but is also fairly versatile.  This could easily be used in any area of the home.
Flat Panel/Board and Batten: A thin wood is paneled on the walls (this is the board part of 'board and batten'), with raised wood rails attached to the surface of it and evenly spaced out (batten).  This is also versatile for use in any space.  One way we like to use this style is in a slightly more contemporary approach by placing the wood rails in a the pattern of a grid. Of all the wainscot styles, this one and the wall paneled version, are the more casual options. Flat panel wainscoting is also referred to as shaker style. 

Beaded Panel/Beadboard: This is when thin lines are grooved out of the board.  Bead board can be used as the backboard in the board and batten style paneling, or can stand alone as it's own style.  It works well as a wall covering (best up to 5 ft tall), but can also be a good look in a kitchen,bath, or laundry as a counter backsplash.

Raised Panel:  This is a favorite of mine and is also the most traditional version, although it can be used with just about any interior style.  Raised paneling mimics the design on most interior doors, but the pattern potential is pretty much limitless.  It's a dramatic, yet timeless look to take it all the way up to the ceiling, my fave, or can also be in a 3ft-5ft height, trimmed out with crown molding.

As a full service interior design team, La Dolce Villa has talented carpenters and milworkers on staff, who can get the job done beyond your expectations and for much, MUCH less than you would ever think was possible.  Phil, who leads the carpentry portion of our team, has a college degree in Architecture, several years of experience trained under the best, and a true passion for his craft.  All of this shows in the incredible end result of any style of wainscoting, built ins, etc.  Because our craftsmen are in house employees, we are able to design, build, and finish the work for unbelievably low rates not offered by any other trained professionals.  We believe that everyone deserve a home they truly love, with a level of style and unique design that only we can provide, regardless of budget limitations.  As a company, our main goal is to design, plan, and execute high end design at a below average rate.  Our formula to do so works and our results show it.  

Contact us today for a free consultation to see how we can transform your home!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Wine and Design

What could be better than when two great things come together to make something even more wonderful?!  That is the opportunity La Dolce Villa has been presented with, which we of course couldn't pass up. We're so excited to announce that our newest boutique venue for our furniture line will be available at Tana Dolce in Castle Rock!  Although the names may seem well planned out for this scenario, it was truly just ironic.  The owner of this fab Wine Bar, Delicious/Cute Desert spot, and Small Plate Menu venue..fell in love with our furniture design aesthetic and knew it would be a perfect fit to retail! Of  course, right?! :)

Tana Dolce is located right in the heart of the historic area of Castle Rock  The two story building exudes all things warm and wonderful, and is loaded with character.  The owner, an interior design enthusiast with a passion for Italian, has poured her creativity into every square inch of this location.  Her love for the look and authentic Tuscan feel shows in every way.  Sprinkled throughout this great spot will be a specially designed line of La Dolce Villa pieces, made exclusively for Tana Dolce.  What can you expect to see of ours there??.. All the touches of artisan skill, detail, and unique flair that we're known for, catered to fit with the feel of this space.  All will be available for sale, but we also let you try before you buy!  The cozy and conversational seating arrangement within the space, will be intermixed with case goods we've designed and made by hand, to coordinate effortlessly with their surroundings.  The feel is Tuscan with a slight shabby chic influence.  We took the owners inspiration for it and created this inspirational design board to help encourage some creative ideas for the pieces we're providing. 
With such an amazing set up and scenario as this, we would love to celebrate it and share it with our fans!  I'm thinking a soiree of sorts would be a great way to go about this ;)  Where there is wine, there should be great design, right?!


Tana Dolce in Castle Rock, CO is currently undergoing and exciting redesign and is closed until the beginning of February 2012, to accommodate all the mess and noise that comes along with that.  They will be re-launching their fab new digs in February.  Stay tuned for more info and exact dates :)