I was so excited to see that Chicago Home + Garden recently featured the home of the creative director of FLOR, a modular flooring company based outside of Chicago. This home was beautifully captured and photographed by the uber talented Chicago photographer Nathan Kirkman.  Chicago Home + Garden always features fine Chicago Design-I look forward to each issue.

Not only do I love the look of Flor, but also several of my projects, my own home, and now my own dogs (as part of the set) have been featured in their campaigns.  We actually have a shoot later this week with the FLOR Photography Crew at the home of one of my clients-sans dog models. And, one of my oldest daughter’s roomies was the model in their latest catalogue.  She had a blast at the shoot with our Wheaten Terriers, Jane and Frankie, but stole the show!

FLOR is a great solution for affordable, custom sized carpeting, and the broad selection is amazing.  The look of Flor trends toward modern with basics to suit any decor style.  I have the “Fine Feathers” pattern installed inside my offices. Having worked closely with Chip and Cynthia over the years, it was so much fun to “peek” into their home. It comes as no surprise that the home of this creative director in suburban, family-friendly Elmhurst would have a very midcentury look…I love it!

The look of Flor…

What an charming 1940’s ranch home.

Dying over this orange couch.

Love the original stove and oversized chalk board…perfect for a home with creative little ones.

Fabulous onyx entry table.

Such a fun room for the little guys.

I could get some serious R&R in this patio area…

Please visit the Chicago Home + Garden site for more images of this amazing home and much more!

Staying in Style in NYC

Posted By materialgirls | Aug 11, 2011 | 7 Comments | Category: Celebs, Dining Rooms, Floors

{Roofdeck…what a view!}

One of my former interns, Colette, recently moved to New York…so excited for her to start her post grad life!  She is currently seeking jobs and apartments, but she stayed with her mother for the past week in one of New York’s most fabulous hotels, the Hotel Surrey.  Located in a prime Upper East Side location, both Colette and her mom absolutely raved about it.  They have done quite a bit of traveling and said this was one of their favorite hotels they have ever stayed in.  Her mom will now be making any excuse to come back to NYC to visit Colette and her sister (who also lives in the Big Apple).

I checked out the hotel for myself, as I am heading to NYC for the BOD Conference and as a guest of Brizo during Fashion Week in September,  and it looks amazing.  Loving that roofdeck.






{Bar Pleiades}

{Bar Pleiades}

{Presidential Suite}

{Presidential Suite}

{Presidential Suite Bathroom}

{Penthouse Suite}

{Penthouse Suite}

{Penthouse Suite}

{Penthouse Suite}




Tags: , ,

There’s An App for That

Posted By materialgirls | Aug 07, 2010 | 4 Comments | Category: Color, Decorating, Design Bloggers, Design Inspiration, Floors, Furniture, Paint

I was poking around the App Store in search for some “design app” inspiration after rediscovering the “Ben Color Capture” app from Benjamin Moore that I downloaded on my iPhone sometime last summer.  Trying to sort through the melee of over 200,000 apps got to be quite tedious, so I took my query to Google. The top search result for “iPhone interior design apps” was none other than “15 iPhone apps for home design” from Apartment Therapy!  Looks like they beat me to it.  If you’re an iPhone user, check out these and other apps which are like having an arsenal of design tools literally in the palm of your hand.  And if nothing else, they are just simply fun to play around with.  Here are Apartment Therapy’s 15 best apps and their descriptions about each.  All available at the App Store on iTunes (or on your iPhone).

1. Color Capture by Benjamin Moore: “lets you snap a photo of anything at all and find a color match among Benjamin Moore’s many paint chips. Wow! Plus, it’s free.”

2. Sherwin Williams Color Snap: “gives you a color match, too, along with a complementary palette and a Sherwin-Williams store finder. This one’s free too.”

3. Mark on Call: “created by interior designer Mark Lewison, has tons of helpful features, including shopping lists, measurement tools, layout planners, and the like. All for $2.99.”

4. I.D. Wood: “is a pocket guide to woods, including information about durability, sustainability, and color. Also includes helpful info about cutting techniques and a nail size reference. $2.99.”

5. Home Sizer: “calculates square footage and construction costs for $2.99.”

6. Convert: “a unit calculator, comes highly recommended. Helpful for converting from metric when shopping for imported furniture. Costs $.99.”

7. iHandy Level: “s just what it sounds like. It turns the iPhone into a level. There are many level apps available, but this one comes recommended by friends. Great for hanging art! Free.”

8. eBay Mobile: “of course, allows you to track your auctions easily from your phone, so you won’t miss that perfect vintage kilim rug again. Free.”

9. Craigsphone: “is Craigslist’s mobile version for the iPhone, new this year. Would be great for garage sale weekends. Free.”

10. SwedeShop: “helps you stay organized on your Ikea shopping trips. Take photos, make notes, and tab the locations of all the items you’re considering. Given how frustrating it can be to navigate that store, this app seems well worth the $.99.”

11. Christie’s: “auction house has an app for those following auctions of their valuable big-ticket items. Great for serious collectors. Free.”

12. What the Font: “will identify any typeface. Just snap a pic of a poster, sign, or any other source for type, and you’ll get your font. Great for DIY projects! Free.”

13. EverNote: “an all-purpose organizational app, can become a great replacement for your giant design binders. Snap pics of fabrics, rooms, and furniture; make recordings and notes; map locations of your favorite stores and sales. Free.”

14. 3rd Whale: “helps you shop green. Find businesses, services, and contractors who focus on sustainability. Shop by categories, like “Garden and Landscaping” or “Green Power.” $1.99.”

Essie Inspiration…

Posted By materialgirls | Nov 23, 2009 | 6 Comments | Category: Art, Celebs, Color, Decorating, Design Inspiration, Floors, Kitchens, Living Rooms, Paint

Essie’s new flavorful Winter Collection has me smitten like never before… Mint Candy Apple, Lollipop and Rock Candy have joined the Essie line up and are far too fabulous to cover fingertips alone…

Don’t you agree?

Essie Winter Collection

Mint Candy Apple floors shine amid snow white subway tiles and lacquered cabinetry… I am eating this Windsor Smith kitchen up with a spoon! Delish!

Windsor Smith Kitchen

Sarah Jessica Parker packs a Lollipop punch in her Hamptons kitchen with Enzo Mari art and a glossy red island center.

Sarah Jessica Parker Red - Hamptons

Betsey Johnson, Eye Candy Goddess, coated her NYC Penthouse sky in Rock Candy-inspired hues… Can we blame her?

Betsy Johnson Living

I just love how a tiny .5 oz. bottle can inspire an entire room… Don’t you?

Essie Mint Candy Apple

{Images collected from Elle Decor and Elle Decor UK.}


Posted By materialgirls | Nov 22, 2009 | 5 Comments | Category: Color, Decorating, Design Inspiration, Designers, Floors, Living Rooms, Paint, Trends, Walls

As you know, I’m quite partial to brights, lights and whites… of neutrals and heather grays… but must admit, these slate-inspired spaces have me going to the dark side

Mario Buatta adds depth and elegance with his brilliant selection amid feminine, delicate decor…

Loving this seamless blend of ebony walls and glistening black flooring…

Crisp white linens set off soot-like surroundings oh so beautifully in this Domino bedroom…

Drama and glamour filled walls house this chic ebony and ivory tub just right…

This sleek backdrop is the perfect compliment to Vueve Clicquot hues and rustic wood floors…

Natural elements and fresh whites pair perfectly atop pitch-black boundaries…

What do you think? Time to turn in those pale walls for a little dose of drama?

{Images gathered from Apartment Therapy, Domino, Decor Pad and Living Etc.}

Totally FLORed

Posted By materialgirls | Aug 04, 2009 | 7 Comments | Category: Decorating, Floors, Furniture


Today I received a letter from a man who had seen a room of mine (pictured above) and was inquiring about the sofa.  It caught his eye immediately, he said, for the fabric reminded him of a sofa his family owned in his childhood home.  This man had not need seen the photo in a magazine or on my website, but in a page of the Flor catalogue.  It occurred to me that I too am often struck by certain pieces that are a part of catalogue sets….and not necessarily the piece that is for sale!  The Flor catalogue in particular does a fantastic job at creating unique and memorable sets.  These are some of my favorites that include certain standout pieces that sell themselves as much as they sell the rug!

I just love this photo from their catalogue.  It was actually just featured in CS Interiors!  Probably love it so much because I have in fact used these lucite chairs in a home of a client recently. 🙂


What a unique desk!  How beautiful is the bluish tone of the glass against the chocolate wall?  And the chairs really pull the two tones together nicely.  I saw this piece at the Merchandise Mart Antiques Fair in the Spring.  Some lucky person now owns it….


Love this lamp!  And loving the richness created by the dark stain of the wood combined with dark blue walls, paneling and door.


Fantastic chairs!


Such a great table and chairs…cool chandelier we’re getting a glimpse of too!


Mirrored  bar table as coffee table on wheels?  Gotta love that!   And how about the shape and simplicity of these sofas?  Fantastic!  Plus I’d love to see more than a glimpse of the dark brown/black sofa we’re seeing in the background!


Take a look at this drum-shaped coffee table as well as the end table in the corner.  And how could you miss the awesome chair?


I want more than just a glimpse of the fun and funky bright yellow accent wall in this dining room!


I love everything that is going on in this room…and the room peeking out behind it!


I love the cool “urban chic” effect of the exposed brick wall, sleek furniture and of course the bicycle hanging on the wall!


I can’t help but love these plush green velvet chairs and the pop of blue velvet pillows.  Wonder what the fun lucite table we’re getting a glimpse of is?


Bottom line:  if you see something you LOVE in a catalogue, whether or not it’s the product being sold, look at the resources in the back to find out what it is!  Or, just contact the referring company.  What do you have to lose?  We have found  and ordered the fabric for the inquiring man that inspired this post-  and he is now so glad that HE did!

Movie Mania

Posted By materialgirls | Jul 02, 2009 | 14 Comments | Category: Art, Decorating, Design Inspiration, Fashion, Floors, Furniture, Magazines, Movie/TV Sets, Walls


I must say I am somewhat of a pack-rat when it comes to design magazines.  I have stacks and stacks of Elle Decor, Chicago Home and Garden, Traditional Home…you name it.  This collection, however, is not amassed in vain.  I frequently hark back to past articles for inspiration or reference.  I stumbled upon this article from the January 2007 issue of House and Garden magazine.  One of the cover stories, “25 Fabulous Movie Interiors, And How to Make Them Yours” caught my eye.  Even though this issue was published over two years ago, the movie interiors featured are classics.  I thought I’d show you some of my favorites!

The room below is a modern day room inspired by the interiors in the 1971 film, “A Clockwork Orange.”  (The original set is the image in the upper left corner)  Of course I had to include this one, because orange is one of my favorite colors!  This mod-70’s look becomes uber-chic with the checkerboard vinyl flooring, Beethoven shade, and orange console.  Notice the groovy wall covering in the second image!


Clockwork Orange

Here are some of my other favorite movie interiors from the article.

25 Fabulous Movie Interiors

How great is the wall covering, the lamp, THAT COAT from “Conversation Piece?” Really though the Rothko on the wall makes it for me.

What do you think?  Do you have any favorite movie interiors that jump out at you?


Neo Con at the Chicago Merchandise Mart has descended upon us, and yesterday I participated in a panel discussion entitled “How to Use the Media to Build Your Brand” as one of Neo Con’s various events.  This presentation took place at the Atelier Lapchi showroom, which I have mentioned previously on MG.  It truly is one of my favorite showrooms in all of the Mart.  I have used Lapchi carpets throughout the homes of many clients.  Not only do they have unbelievable carpets and a phenomenal and knowledgeable staff, but also all carpets are made in a sustainable and ecologically friendly process!


All carpets are woven entirely by hand, a process that inherently eliminates toxic byproducts of factory manufacturing.  All wool used is shorn from ethically treated sheep, mild soap is used in washing, chemicals are avoided, dyes are eco-friendly, and bulk shipping minimizes transportation resources.  Additionally, Lapchi works with the RugMark Foundation to end illegal child labor in the hand-made carpet industry and to offer education opportunities to children in Southeast Asia.  Since its inception, RugMark has rescued over 3000 children from the illegal underage workforce.  (Shown above: Satori shown in Range Brown, from the Floral collection)


Lapchi is particularly known for its customization process.  Lapchi was established in 2001 as the first manufacturer of hand-woven carpets to organize their entire business around the creation of made-to-order, custom carpets.  (Shown above: Meadow in Goldenrod, from the Modernist collection)


Offering a range of colors, patterns and designs, the Lapchi carpet collection has styles that include: floral, contemporary, transitional, mid-century, tribal, Asian-inspired, classic formal, and modernist.  There is something for everyone at Lapchi!

Here are a few of my many favorites from the Lapchi carpet collection.


Nebulous shown in Blaze, from the Texere collection


Thalia shown in Frosted Green, from the Transitional collection

Beaded Curtain

Beaded Curtain shown in Driftwood, from the Mid-Century collection


Mughal shown in Sea Salt, from the Classic Formal collection


Mohave shown in Mist, from the Contemporary collection


Pinwheel shown in Hemlock, from the Modernist collection

Check out the Lapchi website for yourself to see these incredible works of art!  Can’t you just envision a room being created around any one of these carpets?

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