The city of Chicago is chocked full of remarkable young talent and I’m always thrilled to find something and someone a little bit different to showcase in my Buckingham Interiors + Design Showroom! The white brick walls of the showroom are a revolving exhibit of beautiful paintings and photography. Our newest exhibit was just installed this week and adorned with the beautiful work of Chicago Artist Allison Osborn!

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How fun are these painted “Rolling on the Decks” skateboards and just how cute is she??!?

Her work here, entitled “Pastel Cracks” is another fave of mine.

Allison Osborn grew up on the shores of Lake Maxinkuckee in Culver, Indiana. With views of inspiration always around her, she naturally gravitated to the visual arts. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting with a concentration in Curatorial Studies from the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA), where she graduated Cum Laude in 2011. I have had the opportunity to mentor and work beside another MICA Grad, Jessica Williams, within my firm before she relocated to NYC with her uber talented hubby, Luke. Sorry…I digress :)

In her career, she has participated in several group shows and has had five solo shows. In 2010, she exhibited at Chicago’s Harper Gallery. In 2012, Allison was voted Best Visual Artist in Chicago and was a National Finalist when competing in the RAW Artist Competition. She exhibited in 7 group exhibits at Robin B Gallery in Chicago in 2013-2014. Allison has collectors both nationally and internationally, including West Africa and London, and has been commissioned for custom pieces by NHL player, John Michael Liles and New York Yankee’s Owner, Jennifer Steinbrenner Swindal.

A pretty impressive resume I must say for a young artist!! I am so thrilled to share her work…we have already sold a work of hers!

“Blue Dream”

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This piece took my breath away!! Simply stunning. It was a perfect fit in the showroom.

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In the Artist’s Words:

“The relationship between the fluidity and rigidness within my paintings is meant to cultivate a feeling of the unknown – mixed with an emotional connection to color, texture, and chance. Just as one can find himself or herself lost when traveling without a map, it is my hope that one can become lost in my work while enjoying the colors, texture and shapes they encounter as their eyes roam the canvas. My paintings let the viewer decipher what is happening.”

“Crocodilly”

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“My work is created with a variety of paint colors mixed with a special admixture. When the paint and agent begins to dry, a unique reaction occurs. This reaction allows the surface of the painting to interact with the mixed media and creates a new surface all of its own. I utilize specific color palette combinations that I think best suit the landscape of the canvas. The medium, when complete, creates an explosion of color, allowing the viewer to see the uncontrolled and undulated work.”

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“Seafoam & Silver”

Seafoam & Silver

A trip to Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium inspired this masterpiece!!!

“Jellyfish”

Jellyfish

“The unexpected nuances that result recreate the landscapes of my early childhood – still waters, rolling hills, green pastures. I create my paintings for the love of solitude and exploration. They are my escape, a release of my emotions. It is my hope that my work creates a world on the canvas that both mirrors and exudes, the beauty of the world in which we live.”

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The depth and texture created in Allison’s work is truly remarkable.  Photos can’t begin to capture it!! Her work will be on display for the summer…Please stop by 1822 W Grand to check it out!!!

Hope to see y’all soon! xx





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Orange certainly IS the new black! I have always had a huge crush on orange. It just makes me happy.  It instantly makes a space positive, energizing and warm. I love combining orange with grounding colors such as brown, navy and tan, or together with turquoise and purple, it forms my favorite mid-century color combination.

But orange doesn’t like to be toned down too much. It commands attention! This vibrant hue is often a recurring color in many of my design projects…

This orange shaggy lamb stool (available from my BID Showroom in a rainbow of colors) was the perfect pop within a sea of grays in this serene bedroom sitting area.

OrangeLambstool

I couldn’t resist these fab Knoll upholstered orange Milo Baughman dining chairs for my own getaway home in Arizona…

AZDining

or these stunning orange accent chairs by Bradley upholstered in one of my fave Jim Thompson fabrics in this Chi-town Ritz Carlton Mag Mile high rise!!

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Whether using orange as an accent as I did within this Nantucket third floor guest nook using antique quilts…

OrangeCubby

or as a big WOW factor as in these orange Farrow and Ball ”Charlottes Locks” adorned walls of the Lake Forest Infant Welfare Show house I designed last year…

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You can’t go wrong with incorporating this fab color as exhibited in my fave Brunschwig & Fils fabric on my Rondelay.

And, of course at my Buckingham I+D Showroom in Chicago you can see orange waving out to you from every direction! Check it out my Rug Company pals!

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The latest item in the showroom to get an orange makeover via my go-to Orange Burst by Benjamin Moore
is this Mid-Century Modern beauty that we obviously use for BID parties and for some storage too :)

orangecab


 Grab yourselves a bouquet of some orange lilies or gerber daisies this summer and enjoy what we have going on in July! xx





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My girlzzzzz

My girlzz and me at The House of Rock in Santa Monica

I was recently asked to become a Silestone Trendspotter for 2013. As a HUGE fan of Cosentino- the manufacture of Silestone as well as its sidekicks Eco, Sensa, Prexury, Scalea and most recently Dekton (more about this fabulous product later) I was an immediate “YES!” As a Trendspotter this year I am lucky enough to be part of an interior design trio which includes Abbe Fenimore of Studio Ten 25 hailing from Dallas and Kerrie Kelly of Kerrie Kelly Design Lab in Sacramento. What a treat!

Our “First Encounter of the Design Kind” was two weekends ago when we attended the fabled Los Angeles hosted Dwell on Design. Our experiences were vast and equally as inspiring….as Trendspotter’s our first order of duty was to spot and to call out our favorite trends-that is anything that I couldn’t keep my eyes off of. Suffice it to say that I had my head barely screwed on straight after our first day. Here are some of my favorite items from all over the map (quite literally)….

Modern Art is NEVER not trending!

Modern art is never NOT trending!

Artist, Staci Cross carried by Saatchi online. Colors to die for! This piece has so many things going right for it COLOR, texture and fabulous abstract design…I also noticed that the palette has a lot in common with the latest and greatest hot Silestone colors that I glimpsed while I was in Spain at the Cosentino Headquarters this spring….

Biggest

Unique volcanic glazes make up these East meets MidCentury Modern pottery pieces by Josh Herman Ceramics.

Midcentury Modern is a current design trend embodied here with this dynamic pottery and sculpture where nature and the east all combine

Imagine one-or more-of these textural Josh Herman beauties atop one of the new “Nebula Code” suede or leather finish Silestone products as a buffet or countertop? Textural and tactile, with his signature volcanic glazes and modern, natural forms, Josh Herman’s one-of-a-kind sculptures and vessels express a true collaboration between the artist and his medium. I say true that and yes please :)

I. Gotta. Get. Quick!

I. Gotta. Get.

“It takes Moxie to shower out loud.” says Kohler of its latest innovation. This showerhead + wireless speaker delivers up to 7 hours of music, news and more by pairing wirelessly with your device enabled with Bluetooth technology. It never fails that I acquire a new list of design “needs” whenever I see the latest cool goodies-darn you Kohler!

Household gadgets have gone all colors of the rainbow!

Color is now officially EVERYWHERE…and just when I thought that red was the craziest color for a vacuum cleaner this lineup from Panasonic appeared around the corner. I think it is safe to say that pushing one of these babies around may make one feel a little bit better about the daily drudgery of cleaning our homes.

Devine Color-super creamy paint

Ultra-creamy paint hues which will make your walls glow + a new way to explore

Devine Color Creamy Wall Coatings claim to be more than just paint. They like to say that “it is paint illuminated!’ Their color illuminating formula is infused with premium- quality pigments that embrace light and let true, rich, radiant color shine through. Devine color is luxuriously creamy and coats walls abundantly with a soft, lush finish that is durable washable and zero VOC. Add to all of this their “Discovery Cards” that step away from the traditional fan deck to see color in a whole new light. Each card features a boutique collection of colors artistically arranged around a viewing window that makes it easy and intuitive to compare shades and discover new paint combinations. I was thrilled to find out that this is a Chicago based company. I am anxious for my very own collection of “Discovery Cards” coming my way!

Check out this "Seat Ball!"

Check this out! A street football “Seat Ball”made in Guatemala

Dwell onDesign was a feast of the very trendy hand-crafted and bespoke furnishings, accessories and artifacts that brought out many first time exhibitors. While I was immediately attracted to this seat/ball/I wasn’t sure what by its use of woven materials it was an amazing surprise to actually experience sitting on this street football “Seat Ball.” The interior houses a european football and the springing, bouncing vibe when you sit down makes you laugh out loud! When I mentioned that I wanted to purchase a pair (in the multicolored variety) for my Buckingham I+D Showroom, the Fabrica owner + designer said “You what?! You will?!” Fabrica is design for HAPPY PEOPLE as they say on their website and I am very happy.

 

Table made from salvaged remains from the Golden Gate Bridge

Own a tiny piece of history from an enormous architectural feat

And last but not least I have to get in a plug for the huge trend of repurposing architectural elements into furnishings and accessories. I like to call these pieces  ”modern art ” although they are made from vintage or antique remnants. Repurposing is a way to decrease the amount of salvage that is tossed into scrap yards and it allows us to remember something that may have had a very different past life. This table base was sculpted from portions of the pedestrian handrail replaced due to deterioration in 1993 from the original Golden Gate Bridge completed in 1937. Each of the pieces created by The Golden Gate Bridge Furniture Company is of limited number. Richard began his business with a 12′ long, 1000 pound handrail section! The table shown above is unusual for him as most side and coffee tables are topped with glass. The repurposed (note a trend!) top is mango wood that shows off in its graining a subtle nod to the color of the bridge element. The historical perspective and this talented man’s vision and artistic abilities really define a true American spirit.

A huge thank you and shout out to the team of completely inspirational, supportive and FUN group with whom I had the opportunity to share the week with. Trendspotting with y’all was a BLAST! xx

Nicole Janok, Sharp PR, Patty Dominguez, Cosentino NA, Yours Truly, Abbe Fenimore, Studioten25, Kerrie Kelly, KKDL at the ASID Design Awards Gala. Biltmore Hotel, Los Angeles

Nicole Janok, Sharp PR, Patty Dominguez, Cosentino NA, Yours truly, Abbe Fenimore, Studio Ten 25, Kerrie Kelly, KKDL

Happy 4th of July to you all! Here is to a weekend of family, fun and fireworks!

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I confess…it is not over for me.  I love the heartfelt messages from my oldest brother, our daughters, and hearing that our son liked his edible fruit bouquet. I thought that he would mock but he and his roommates dug in. Healthy choice, no?.  Thank you boyfriend’s of my girlz that you provided amazing flowers and dinners and gifts:)

What better way to perpetuate and  to celebrate the holiday of love than by featuring red and pink interiors?  As seen from the photos below, red and pink can be used in virtually any space, from a small scale to a large scale.  Floors, walls, doors…you name it, red and pink have got it covered. Did I mention that my gift of choice was a bevy of Lush bath bombs? I am addicted!

Pairing red and pink with white or black are traditional combinations, but I love the unexpected color combinations- pink + gold, red + yellow, red + light blue, pink + blue, pink + yellow.

Take a look at some of my Valentine’s Day inspired picks below! I am hoping that we can keep the day going for awhile here…..

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Pinterest

Pinterest

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My very own kitchen.  Images from Rue Magazine .

Photographer Werner Straube





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{Chinchilly, Essie}

{Buckingham Interiors + Design}

Fall has officially come to Chicago, and chilly it is!  Today it barely broke 60 degrees and what does cooler weather mean besides boots, scarves and jackets?  Autumn nail polish, of course!

Today was the first time I got my autumnal manicure/pedicure for the season, and what better color to choose than Chinchilly by Essie!  I discovered this color around this time about two years ago, and it has been a cool weather staple ever since.

Here are some of the colors that I am look forward to painting my nails this fall, and in the spirit of MG, here are some cool interiors to go along with them!

{Carry On, Essie}

{Lonny Magazine}

{Very Structured, Essie}

{Elle Decor}

{Glamour Purse, Essie}

{Rue Magazine}

{Power Clutch, Essie}

{Lonny Magazine}

{I Break for Manicures, OPI}

{Architectural Digest}

{Suzie Takes the Wheel, OPI}

{Decor Pad}

{Roadhouse Blues, OPI}

{Decorpad}

{I Eat Mainely Lobster}

{Architectural Digest}

{Are We There Yet}

{Decorpad}





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You may have picked up by now that I have a slight (ok maybe more than slight…) obsession with orange.  Not only have I used this punchy hue throughout my own home, but it has also made its way into many of my projects, both commercial and residential.  Something about this color really strikes my fancy, for it has both a lively vintage quality yet also a sophisticated modern feel.  Furthermore, it can be paired with many other colors to create a dramatic effect (my favorite combos are orange and gray, orange and purple, orange and pink, orange and brown and orange and cream).

{Orange in my own home}

{Orange in Buckingham Interiors + Design space at Merchandise Mart Antiques Fair}

I was browsing Lonny’s online photo gallery and I was pleased to see just how many spaces used orange in some way, either big or small, and in many different rooms, from bathrooms to workspaces.  Check out some of my favorites!





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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.”





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While perusing the cosmetic department of Bloomingdale’s SoHo the other day, a friend of mine spotted possibly the hottest, coolest most exciting pairing since Brad and Angelina: Jo Malone + Farrow & Ball.  Well…maybe not quite to that extent.  Nevertheless, I can’t stress enough how much I love the sophisticated and classic look of Farrow & Ball paint and wall coverings as well as the fresh, intoxicating, sexy scents of Jo Malone.  Both self proclaimed “British lifestyle brands,” the two joined forces to bring F&B’s signature colors to Jo Malone’s signature scents in the form of scented candles.  Don’t they compliment each other perfectly?  Both the scents and colors of these respective brands are classic, timeless and sophisticated.

Find the Farrow & Ball Jo Malone collection at Farrow & Ball showrooms as well as Jo Malone stores. (And perhaps some Bloomingdales too?)





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Gleaming, glowing, glossy and bright… These walls are anything but understated and I’m infatuated with every inch…

Never afraid to color outside the lines, Miles Redd allows sapphire to shine

Where was this room when I wrote Purple Rain? Check out these glossy, bold boundaries… Yum!

Jonathan Berger gave this late-19th-century Brooklyn home one jaw-dropping entrance with Benjamin Moore’s Razzle Dazzle… Wowza!

Laquered loveliness… This space couldn’t be more fab if it tried.  Loving this high-gloss blue amid black, white and yellow…  Fierce.

{Images gathered from Architectural Digest, House Beautiful and Head Over Heels.}





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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.}

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