Christopher Porikos is an Interior Designer based in the Los Angeles area. He has a background in Retail Visual Merchandising and is educated in interior design. His love of design spans from traditional to contemporary and his style can be as eclectic or clean as the project requires. His unique eye for design comes from his lifelong interest in architecture, history, sketching, painting and the arts. www.christopherporikosdesign.com
Just hearing and saying the word Marsala evokes a sense of warmth, comfort and family. Smells of Sunday dinners with a table full of pastas fills the air with family and friends.
I recently worked with a repeat client to completely change the look and style of her kitchen. What was once a very outdated kitchen of the 70’s became a space that reflects not only the sign of the times, but beyond. Maple cabinets, white appliances paired with a tile floor and counters are no longer.
I love this space. It reminds me of an apartment I did years ago. It was a small studio apartment and I really needed to be creative with the space planning. This space is very bright and cheerful. Plenty of lighting is key to make this space function well. With tons of storage space, it allows both areas to be set up for multi-use.
In this sitting room, I really enjoy the sophisticated feeling brought about by the simplicity of the pieces used. The richness of the fabrics on the chairs and ottoman can be seen in any decor. I imagine Ernest Hemmingway chatting about one of his adventures over a glass of cognac with a colleague. The Zebra printed fabric on the ottoman can be comfortably used in a casual setting as well as a traditional one. Animal prints never go out of style, they only enhance the design plan. Now I know animal prints aren’t for everyone, but they do have a place in design and can be seen throughout design history.
What I Like About This Room
Over the last three years I’ve written about many things. From organizing tips to the next big color to designing with one color. But now I thought I would do something a little different. For the next few articles I want to show you some designs I really like and explain why.
We all want time and money saving tips to update any room in our home. We see so many ideas in magazines and on TV, which can be frustrating since they can cost so much. So let’s just tackle the kitchen today with a few simple tips to change things up.
1. Fresh towels. Adding a new set of towels will certainly update and make your bathroom feel new and fun. You don’t need a whole new set of towels, I talking about adding some on the towel rack for display, or just a few hand towels to dress up the counter or bar.
In this final chapter on moldings, let’s talk about base, door and window moldings. Many times here in Southern California our homes tend to be void of these architectural details. The average home might have the customary quarter round base molding from the builder, which is pretty basic, and nothing around the windows. This is a basic detail you might find in a custom or even high-end home. But these details are relatively easy to add for some creative interest.
As with the last article regarding the crown molding, you must first determine the best scale for your space. If you have average height ceilings, you don’t want to add too much. A base molding up to about 5” should give you enough flair and detail. This will still allow you to create a custom look with regard to the style and design. Pairing that with the scale from last weeks crown measurement will allow you to create that custom, updated feel.
If your design plan allows for it, window molding adds just as much detail as base and crown moldings. These, too, come in a variety of styles to compliment any home. The average width is about 3-4” wide. You can install with mitered corners or add a medallion in each corner for an even greater style.
Continued up from the base molding is the framing around the door. Since they usually run together, lets not ignore this detail. It is also directly connected in style with the window molding. The same rules apply here as well regarding the scale and installation as with windows. Just remember, all of these pieces can be found in any big box store as well as any specialty molding supplier.
To follow up the last blog about wainscoting, lets investigate crown moldings. When adding any trim to a room you must always take the scale into consideration. If you have a large room with high ceilings you can use larger pieces and even stack the pieces to create a very custom and highly dramatic result. Make sure the molding fits the style of the space and home. Also know when and where not to use moldings.
Many times we are in a space that is void of any type of character or architectural flair. Oftentimes, it may seem to be a costly endeavor to add such details. One way to add interest is to use architectural moldings or in this case; wainscoting. This is a relatively easy and cost effective way to add flair and/or interest to any room. It can be as simple as adding trim molding and then paint the middle section or to add additional panels as well.
Over the past few years, lighting has become a key element in design. Its not just used as a utility piece, but has become beautiful centerpieces and jewels for a room. You might need to decide how much or how little the chandelier will shine. Will it determine the style of the room or blend in? Since this is somewhat of a permanent piece, I would try to blend with the style of the house.
Many people set a goal in the spring to clean out the house, garage, basement, closets, etc. Some set super high goals and expectations and often fail. They make the attempt to clean out a room or two, get discouraged and stop. They haven’t made a plan or realistic goal for themselves. Remember, it’s a process. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was the clutter.
Many years ago the home building industry introduced these rather large homes that seemed to never end. These homes weren’t your stately Beverly Hills mansions, but new sub divisions with sizes ranging from four to over six thousand square feet.
One of my favorite design styles is that of The Hamptons in New York. The fresh, clean look is inspirational. The crisp feel of the light or natural colored linen slip covered over a soft cushy sofa or overstuffed chair really sets the tone. Paired with a beautifully dark stained plank floor or a whitewashed floor, lightweight linen or cotton drapery panels adds to the feel and atmosphere needed to achieve this look.
Not to be mistaken with Shabby Chic, the style is slightly more void of the floral, plaids and weathered looking furniture. You’re more likely to see traditional case good pieces in fused with lightly colored fabrics, some reclaimed pieces along with shutters or even wooden blinds on the windows. Here are a few tips to help you achieve The Hamptons look without breaking the bank.
1. Start with light colors. Use beige, sage green, pale green/blue on the walls.
2. Try adding wainscoting painted white for architectural interest.
3. Earth toned or light colors works well for window treatments in cotton or linen.
4. Pair linen upholstered chairs with a rustic or reclaimed wooden table in the dining room. Accent the table with glass hurricanes and candles for the centerpiece.
5. Wicker framed chairs with a great light upholstered sofa and a glass coffee table can work well for a living room. Add nautical styled pillows for accents.
6. Keep accents simple. Wicker baskets, plants, sea grass or jute rugs can finish off a space.
Just remember to be careful when designing your space. Never over do your style. You won’t achieve your desired look and will appear too trendy. Less is more in some cases.
This shade of purple is full of passion, pop and pizzazz! Orchid is a color rich and bright; it evokes radiance, health and happiness and even adds energy. Its various tones can range from a grayish purple to a purplish-pink to a reddish purple. It works well with the many shades of gray, black, white and ivory. It adds softness to room’s full glass and mirrored pieces. You can add this color to any room. A splash of color with pillows, rugs, throws will let you infuse this tone with out over powering or feeling too heavy. But if you’re feeling a little brave, why not add this color to a feature wall, rugs, bedding or even a chair. Any way you choose to add this color, rest assured you won’t be sorry.