The good news is that residential remodeling has begun its comeback, and Suellen Gregory, an interior designer from Richmond, VA, reports that her customers are now requesting monochromatic palettes in their homes. Looking at a single, soothing palette offers them relief from all the stresses we are under ITE (in this economy). Her people want to uncomplicated their lives with simple color schemes, like all pale blue, or pale green, or the white and gold shown below. Happily her customers are using Niermann Weeks in these remodels. In Charlottesville she placed our Bowfront Commode within the flow of curtains along a wall.
In another dining room our La Falaise Side Chairs await diners, while our Renishaw Commode nestles under the side rail, and a Monticello Armchair side flanks the door into the adjacent living room.
When you look at her website www.suellengregory.com, this tranquil green dining room is her own. She has designed all these rooms to smooth away the rough edges of stress.
The December/January issue of House Beautiful (www.housebeautiful.com) further reinforced Suellen’s comments. I spoke with several of the magazine’s “Next Twenty” hot new designers to watch.
Congratulations to New York’s Catherine Carlson, #2 on the list! Naturally I had to call her, since she had the good taste to include our Swedish Crystal Chandelier in her photo of a dining room. She did that room in tones of lime green. Generally her customers want to “come home and take a deep breath.” They are choosing colors that flow in the same values of pale greens or pale blues or pale pinks. For more information about Catherine, please go to www.catherinecarlson.com.
DC designer Sally Steponkus also made the “Next Twenty” list. Her room shot let you look through our Avignon Chandelier into a living room done in cool shades of greige, white, and the palest of blues. Her associate Heath Safferstone told me that customers in the last few years have wanted a neutral palette but with some contrast. Using primarily grays or whites, Sally and Heather have popped them with color accents, often in green or aqua. Sometimes they’ve even used gradations of earth tones. To see their portfolio, please see www.steponkus.com.
Finally I called Baton Rouge to speak with Ty Larkins about his spectacular new home. He so expresses the calmer side of my own esthetic, that I could easily move in with his family. The fact that Ty hung our Iron and Crystal Chandelier in his dining room just reinforces my pleasure.
Ty told House Beautiful that he uses similar shades of gray and khaki so “you float through the space.” Further, in his bedroom “the dark mahogany and the walnut bedside tables provide the kind of contrast you need with a monochromatic palette. I wanted to create visual harmony and serenity …, not visual boredom.”
After talking with these fascinating designers, I walked around our factory to see if Niermann Weeks is producing for serene, monochromatic palettes, and the answer is yes.
For example, Gunkelman Flesher, designers in New York and Minneapolis, commissioned us to make this custom chandelier for a home in Utah, to hang in its tall entry tower. Our finish of whitened silverleaf conveys will add a harmonious note. According to Andrew Flesher, “your spirit needs a place to rest,” which he provides with an interior environment of his favorite whites and neutrals. See more of his and Tom Gunkelman’s work at www.gunkelmanflesher.com.
Getting ready to ship from our warehouse, here’s a Maggiore Table customized with shelves and a smudgy Baltic white and goldleaf finish. It’s destined for a bedroom in New York City. Personally I can’t imagine a higher-stress place than that city, and I hope this couple’s new bedroom creates an island of tranquility for them.
An Eastern European magnate selected this pale blue and camel Fortuny fabric for his headboard. Framed within this dark cherry Arezzo Bed, his headboard and matching linens should lull him into a restful state.
Our upholstery shop is also working with calming earth tones for other homes. This Belvedere Club Chair on the left provides well-padded support, and the nubby texture of this tweedy fabric will comfort it’s owner’s hands. This Follot Chair on the right looks a little gaudier but I find its higher back more comfortable. I like a chair to encase me.
So stress-relief is the order of the day, as the house and interior design industries are coming back. Praise be! Designers and Niermann Weeks will happily work with this trend.