Best of…

Sunday, June 22, 2008 | Category: Design Inspiration

It seems like most people have their own personal style that they can pin point through a room in a design magazine (hence why we keep tear sheets all over the house for inspiration!) There are times when you are looking through House Beautiful and a room just screams (insert name here). I have binders full of these room photos. They are designs that reflect my personal style, favorite colors, desired pieces of furniture, and contain my favorite room arrangements. I think everyone can admit to gawking over a spread in Elle Decor wishing it was his or her own!

Well Lauren and I are here to show you our favorite rooms broken down into nine categories…it’s great eye candy, trust me, and gives you a little insight into our personal style and how we would choose to decorate our homes if money was no object and we could design in any way we chose (disregarding husbands’, boyfriends’, and roommates’ opinions)…It’s so interesting that everyone has their own ‘”look” and opinion on how they would design their own house…what is your preferred style?


#1- Best of Living Rooms

{picture via Cote de Texas as seen in Paper City Feb. ’05; photography by Tria Giovan}

This living room is the home of one of my favorite Houston designers, Renea Abbot. Cote de Texas has blogged about her several times, and I just absolutely love her aesthetic. Clean, simple, clutter free (yes in a perfect world), and of course, glamorous.

{photo via Alkemie}

Alkemie did a great post of Molly Simms’ NYC Soho Loft as seen in In Style Home. I love her living room and that color scheme is to- die- for.

{photo by William Waldron}

The above two pictures are of Candice Bushnell’s NYC apartment done by Forristal Smith Interiors (as seen in Elle Decor Sept. 2006). You might recognize the bottom picture from the cover of So Chic.

{House Beautiful Nov. 2007}

This is the living room of an apartment Celerie Kemble designed for House Beautiful and the developers of 10 West End Ave. in Manhattan. The entire apartment is amazing, but I am drawn to the living room in particular. Natural rug, great art, cream sofa, blue and white accents, perfection!

{photo via Style Court}

Cindy Crawford’s Living Room designed by Michael S. Smith is a room that I always come back to. A big part of me would love to live in a Spanish bungalow with saulsilito floors, cream walls, and comfortable furnishings in sunny California. This living room is what I have always associated with California Style (until I watched the Real Housewives of OC- eeeek).

I couldn’t resist posting this picture via Desire to Inspire of David Jimenez’s Kansas City home. His whole house is amazing, but this space has all the elements that I adore…a little Dorothy, big mirrors, neutral sofas, pink flowers, lucite/glass, and that touch of animal print.

#2 Best of Master Bedrooms

{Joe Nye, House Beautiful Oct. ’07}

Ahh, I love everything about this bedroom. I am obsessed with Manuel Canovas’s “Bragance” on the windows and the paint color. P.S. the bedding is currently on sale at WSHome. MOM- BUY IT!

{picture via Cote de Texas as seen in Paper City Feb. ’05,; photography by Tria Giovan}

Another Renea Abbot creation (her own Master Bedroom).

{photo via My Notting Hill}

This is my favorite canopy/headboard/bedding combination as seen in House Beautiful, March 2008(designed by Amanda Nisbet).

{Miles Redd as seen in Elle Decor Nov. 2006}

Miles Redd at his finest! The two kickers for me…pink peonies and the walls!

A bedroom by Kelly Dub. IF I had a “W” bumper sticker on my car (you Texans know the one) it would stand for “Wearstler”. I still love the grey and yellow color combination even though my closet is probably so over it, but I can’t stop buying it!

#3 Best of Master Bathrooms

{photo via Mary McDonald’s Website}

Mary McDonald is a personal favorite of mine, and this bathroom just speaks to me. It is simple, without being stagnant, besides who wouldn’t like a chaise lounge in their bathroom?!

A client brought in this tear sheet and I just fell in love with this bathroom. I personally like totally separate his and hers vanities.

#4 Best of Kitchens

W again, this time “back in black,” okay, sorry, super cheese. But OMG, who does an all black kitchen?! Only her, and it’s fabulous, especially if you had *loads* of china & crystal to display behind the glass doors and could run around in couture all day.

{Traditional Home May ’08; designer: Kathy Manzella}

Black La Cornue cabinets with brushed nickel trim, I can not even fathom the expense, not to mention that the rest of the kitchen is done in SieMatic cabinetry from Germany.

{House Beautiful, August 2007; designer: John Oetgen and Ann Sullivan Kitchens}

Posted on this one before (I love the entire house), this kitchen had to grow on me, but what I love the most is the wallpaper on the ceiling- one day I will convince a client to do this.

#5 Best of Dining Rooms

I LOVE DINING ROOMS! Are they rarely used and meant for show? Yes! But what a show they can put on! Instead of writing about each individual Dining Room I can pretty much sum up what I like…hand painted wallpaper, tradish table with unexpected chairs, ballgown curtains, a statement mirror, to-die-for chandelier, and fabulous fresh flowers and branches (I try very hard to keep fresh flowers on my table even if I did spend $65 on hydrangeas last week…oops…the only reason I can confess to this is because I know my husband couldn’t make it through a quarter of this post).

{Mary McDonald}

{Suzanne Kasler via Cote de Texas}

{via Style Court}

#6- Best of Entryways/hallways

I have no idea where I got this picture…if it is from your blog, please let me know!

I’ve always had a weakness for black and white checkerboard marble floors…and mirrored furniture, and antique mirror…

#7 Best of Home Offices/Libraries

{Joe Nye, again}

This is one of my favorite rooms ever, it young and fresh but still sophisticated.

This Jonathan Adler designed library {via Brilliant Asylum} has been ingrained in my memory for quite some time. It is the first time I can recall seeing those fabulous chippendale chairs.

{Bazaar, June 2007}

Aerin Lauder’s Dressing Room that happens to have the most fabulous desk I have ever seen!

{photo via Maison21}

I was so excited when I saw Maison21’s post on Carrie’s Vogue Editor’s office in SATC. Someday I will have a pair of Dorthy Draper chests to call my own.

Actress Sarah Wynter’s office as seen in In Style. I love the chair and touches of Tiffany blue.

#8 Best of Outdoor Spaces

I really think I need to live in California….

Designer Windsor Smith outside her home.

{photo via Style and Grace}

#9 Best of Children’s Rooms

One girl, one boy.

{photo via my little apartment}

This Katie Ridder designed room just makes me swoon!

Tory Burch’s sons’ room…what really caught my eye is the parsons chair.


#1 Best of Living Rooms

This Manhattan apartment decorated by Brian McCarthy is one of my favorites! Maybe it’s the greek key pattern o
n the pillows that really gets me or perhaps it’s that velvet espresso sofa with the geometric trim….not sure but I do know it’s fabulous! Love the antique mirror on the wall with the landscape painting over it.

I’m sure you remember this Living Room from Elle Decor…I love all of the plush velvet fabrics everywhere and those colors- WOW! What a perfect balance between lots of neutrals and colors that provide a lot of punch.

I could vacation in this Living Room. Talk about relaxing! I love blue and green together with just a sprinkle of brown added to the mix- very chic! That lamp is one of the best parts about the room

#2 Best of Master Bedrooms

So this bedroom is a bit more modern and simple for my taste- but I LOVE all of the bright colors in here. I am a bit more traditional than this and usually require a good amount of pattern in my room but this variation of solid colored fabric really makes a statement and works great. The benches at the end of the bed are adorable and what a perfect mix of sleeping and lounge areas. Nice multi purpose bedroom!

This bedroom from Traditional Home is more my style- I am all about the glam as you are probably catching onto by now…that, and cool hues (are you seeing a pattern here?) I love all of the convex mirrors randomly placed on the wall and that chaise lounge- unexpected, and a new spin on the usual bench at the end of the bed…Elements in this room that I can’t live without- tufting, silk drapes, crystal lamps, a pretty paint color, and a huge duvet… I think me and this room are meant to be!

#3 Best of Master Bathrooms

This Master Bath is nice and simple. Can’t remember what magazine I tore this out of- woops! I try not to go too ornate and distracting in a bathroom because I (personally) want it to be very calming, but at the same time luxurious. What a great view you get from this tub- and a chandelier in a Master Bath is a must have! (for me at least) The dark wood grounds the bathroom a bit and gives it a heavier element which it needs.

#4 Best of Kitchens

Another Traditional Home photo- I love the black granite and carrara marble checkerboard floor- it gives the otherwise simple kitchen some added panache! The chandelier is very eye catching and the cream cabinets (as opposed to bright white) warms up the kitchen a bit more. The great thing about this kitchen is that you can add in another accent color to liven it up- do a vase of fresh brightly colored flowers or if you wanted to keep it classic and simpe, nix the color altogether!

#5 Best of Dining Rooms

I tend to design my own house slightly more on the feminine side. I can’t help it- I am a girly girl at heart. This was one of my favorite Traditional Home articles because it was designed for the Traditional Home Women Showhouse. Scott Laslie, its designer, imagined that a Marie Antoinette/Carrie Bradshaw type girl would be living here. This room is completely my style- it’s sophisticated, elegant, and feminine without being too stuffy, uptight, or over the top frou frou. I love the geometric chairs and the murano glass chandelier. The fresh flowers break up all the blue and brown so it doesn’t get too matchy matchy.

#6 Best of Entryways/hallways

Did you ever read the Mindy Weiss article in O at Home a few months ago? I have featured her bedroom before on our blog and her home is beyond fabulous! I can imagine this space as an entryway. I love the idea of staggering random portraits on a wall. I have always wanted to do it in my own home but feel that this my end up getting a little pricey for me! Maybe it can be a work in progress…and that tufted velvet chair…tres chic!

Here comes that checkerboard floor again! I love this entry that was featured in Traditional Home…probably because I love mixing the old with the new- the antique secretary paired with the sleek and modern Panton Chair…I love this juxtaposition!

#7 Best of Home Offices

This Elle Decor study comes from the same home that I featured above with Bedroom #1. The colors are hard to see in this photo but they are very “icy” colors- cool blues, grays, blacks, with crystal and silver accents. I love the velvet pillows and the relaxing mellow color scheme.

This was actually a media room in House Beautiful but I can see it more as a cozy dark library/study with this being the seating area. The robin’s egg blue armoire could hold old books and/or hide office supplies. I love those drapes- they are made of Donghia fabric-Omen Damask- yummy!

#8 Best of Outdoor Spaces

Checkerboard floor…hmmm I see a pattern here! I have posted on this one before so I think it’s pretty apparent how much I love this outdoor Living Room space by Miles Redd featured in Domino.

#9 Best of Children’s Rooms

One of my favorite kid’s room that I have seen is this one out of Traditional Home. I love dark brown in a boy’s room…it’s just such a different take on the normal navy and red decor. It brings a bit more maturity to it- makes it a lot easier when they start getting older and don’t want the themey room anymore- you wouldn’t even have to repaint!

This is my favorite girl’s room…I love all the pink paired with brown- I know that maybe it was an overused color trend a few years ago but I still think this room is adorable. They seem to be carrying out a lot of home trends here- ikat pillows, greek key rug, metallic side stool….if you got me a queen sized bed for here, I wouldn’t mind living in it!

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12 Comments to 'Best of…'

Cote de Texas 23 Jun 08 at 6:47 am

fabulous!!!!!! so many great, great rooms and so many are favorites of mine too. the kids rooms were wonderful!! love this one, girls!

Alkemie 23 Jun 08 at 8:44 am

WWOOOWW!! I really really LOVED this post! Both of you chose so many fabulous rooms and many are favourites of mine as well. You’ve really outdone yourself here!

Lauren 23 Jun 08 at 5:03 pm

It was so hard to pick just a few rooms! I know there are some great ones out there we left out, but it was fun to put together!

Paloma 23 Jun 08 at 6:16 pm

What a fantastic post! I really enjoyed reading about your picks. So many great rooms.

Anonymous 23 Jun 08 at 10:54 pm

Loved this! What a great collection of rooms!!
Sally Wheat

coco+kelley 24 Jun 08 at 6:29 am

an amazing round up ladies!! i’m saving some of these rooms for later inspiration… and i loved that you picked ones that i wasn’t already familiar with! i have to say that any room with those dorothy draper dressers will automatically be my favorite 🙂 keep up in the inspiration!

diana @ please sir 24 Jun 08 at 11:20 pm

Great eye candy for sure! I love the kid rooms!

franki durbin 25 Jun 08 at 9:16 pm

you do realize it would take me a month to compile mine, right? nice roundup of your faves. It does make me wish I could sit long enough to compose such a post!

Ann 26 Jun 08 at 8:39 am

So many eye candies in just one post. I love it!!! Very very nice to look at and wish we all could create our own dream rooms and spaces. Thanks for taking the time to share.

house painter 30 Jun 08 at 12:50 pm

interesting topic , I would like to read more on this topic and house paint .

designista 09 Jul 08 at 8:15 am

I love your blog! The round entry room is Tory Burch’s apartment in NY. It is from a book called Vogue Living (great book btw!) Such great images…I recognize so many.

simply seleta 18 Oct 08 at 4:24 pm

I know this post is four months old, but I just had to say I LOVE IT! I loved each and every picture. I even borrowed a couple and will be linking to you later in the week.

What a fabulous blog! Such stylin’ divas over here!

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