GUEST POST: DESIGNING FOR MILLENNIALS

About Lisa Escobar

As a Las Vegas native, interior decorator and stylist Lisa Escobar has a wide ranging portfolio. She has consulted and managed high-end residential and commercial spaces involving custom furnishings and decorating, new home designs, on-the-strip condo transformations and even restaurant construction.

Influenced by the glamor of Las Vegas, Lisa adds flair and high-style comfort with her every touch. She was a finalist in HGTV’s Fresh Faces of Design contest, which highlighted up-and-coming designers in a variety of categories.

We’re seeing distinct home trends that are being adopted by Millennials. Many are choosing to rent rather than purchase, selecting smaller and more intentional spaces. In stark contrast to the “McMansion” trend of a prior generation, they exhibit a preference for function over the traditional trappings of luxury living, focusing on elements they deem essential in furnishing their space.

What types of essentials? Instead of seeking trophy pieces and changing décor to conform to the latest fads in pop culture, you’ll see them sticking to staple items. From a classic sofa (like this), to a pair of unique accent chairs (aren’t these perfection?) and perhaps a versatile cocktail table (here), these furnishings convey a sense of clean lines and good taste. The Millennial lifestyle clearly favors a transitional/contemporary look with an emphasis on function. This generational cohort is extremely mobile, so furniture designs need to be adaptable to different surroundings and layouts – from a loft with reclaimed wooden floors and an open ceiling, to a tiny city apartment.

So the challenge remains, “how do I select pieces that I like so much that I’m willing to have them travel with me?” As a designer, my answer would be to look for designs that stand on their own and don’t depend upon their surroundings to create the look. Seek items that combine classic lines with a cool, contemporary vibe.

One of my favorite new collections is Take Five from Lexington Home Brands. It offers a unique take on Mid-Century Modern design. With rich wood tones and amazing pops of color, the collection makes a dramatic design statement, regardless of the size of the room. There’s no doubt that you’d take this furniture with you wherever you move. The Broadway Hall Chest is my personal favorite. It’s the perfect piece as a bedroom dresser, media unit, dining room sideboard or even hall chest!

There is a great deal to be said about the Millennial mindset when it comes to interior design. Clean lines, contemporary styling, bold colors, functionality and adaptability are all terrific attributes. The key is to invest in quality pieces that will last, and select designs that you love enough to take with you. This generation’s approach to interior design is one that works for them. It’s also an approach that will work for clients of any age.

FURNITURE TO FASHION: EDITION 2

The impact of couture fashion on home furnishings has never been greater. Textures, patterns and color from the runway are quickly finding their way into home decor. This post will explore the inspiration behind some of the latest looks in interior design, and how those looks had their genesis in high fashion

CREATING INSPIRING GATHERING SPACES

As the holidays approach, many of us find ourselves looking to create the perfect gathering space.  In this post, we explore different rooms in the home and highlight essential design elements that make them comfortable places to entertain.

The Living Room

For the living room, we love using custom-configured sectionals.  Keeping the Halandale sectional in a neutral tone keeps the space feeling fresh, while its configuration offers open seating perfect for conversation.  It also allows guests to move freely around the room.

Employing a generously scaled cocktail table provides a common place for guests to rest drinks and for hosts to display favorite accessories.  We are particularly fond of the Stone Canyon cocktail table.  The table features a hand-burnished silver leaf metal base and silver travertine top, which ties-in the neutral hues of the room.

Incorporating a pair of ottomans and two accent chairs allows the space to be easily reconfigured to suit the number of guests and activities at hand.  One of our favorite products is the Wheatley Leather Ottoman.    Contrasting welts and decorative nailhead trim give the piece flair, while its casters make it effortless to maneuver.

Finally, we believe that every gathering space should have at least one statement piece.  One we love is the Cross Creek accent table, which features a petrified wood top supported by a hand-burnished, silver leaf metal base.  Since it is a natural material, each table is truly one-of-a-kind.

The Kitchen

Often the heart of the home, the kitchen is a natural gathering place, especially when preparing a holiday meal. Incorporating a large island workspace and pairing with counter stools allows the chef to engage with her guests while cooking.

We particularly like the Merrick counter stools, which feature hand-woven rush seats and a lightly distressed, versatile Oyster finish.  The swivel mechanism and shaped metal back support make it as functional as it is beautiful.

As a bonus, the counter stools pair well with a bistro table, which can serve as an additional seating area if needed.  One of our favorite bistro tables is Hidden Lake from the Oyster Bay collection.  Its burnished stainless top ensures a durable surface, while its four drawers make it highly functional.  The table can accommodate up to six counter stools.

The Dining Room

A great dining room is often the result of a well-balanced design that is both stylish and functional.  In this example, the Drake dining table takes center stage with a lustrous walnut finish and brushed rose gold accents, balanced by the neutral Seneca side chair.

The Highland Park server offers plenty of storage, but also contributes to the ambiance of the room with its sophisticated step back design.  It also features hand painted gold accents, which ties-in with the detailing on the table and hardware on the chairs creating a cohesive look.

Outdoors

One of our favorite places to unwind and reflect on the day is around a warm fire.  Ensure a seamless indoor to outdoor flow and conversation by arranging a combination of chairs and loveseats to create an intimate space.

Achieve elegance by choosing pieces with exquisite detail.  We are particularly found of the Marimba firepit and seating group from Tommy Bahama Outdoor Living.  Hand-cast in aluminum, the group features luxe down throw pillows, all-weather fabrics and a graceful intersecting ring motif.  The ability to choose your own fabric ensures the group will reflect your personal style.

Regardless of your personal style, each of us has the ability to create a space that is both functional and stylish. By curating unique items and thoughtfully arranging your seating and accent pieces, your house becomes a home.

GUEST POST BY LISA ESCOBAR

Guest Post by Lisa Escobar of Lisa Escobar Design

About Lisa Escobar

As a Las Vegas native, interior decorator and stylist Lisa Escobar has a wide ranging portfolio. She has consulted and managed high-end residential and commercial spaces involving custom furnishings and decorating, new home designs, on-the-strip condo transformations and even restaurant construction. Influenced by the glamour of Las Vegas, Lisa adds flair and high-style comfort with her every touch. She is a finalist in HGTV’s Fresh Faces of Design contest, which highlights up-and-coming designers in variety of categories.

Working with men has taught me well what makes them feel at home. And Lexington offers the elements to create perfect men’s spaces.

As most people, I’ve been surrounded by men in the workplace my entire career. Spending eight (sometimes up to 12) hours a day in Las Vegas’ greatest resorts, nightclubs and lounges gave me tremendous insight to a male behavior.

When I started my design business in 2012, I thought I was changing spheres; maybe my feminine aesthetic would come out. But male influence remained strong and at the core of my design aesthetic. Coincidentally, men dominate my client list, which dictates how I curate spaces.

First off, it’s important to look at where men place value. My clients consistently request superior quality, high-end finishes, classic color
palettes, relatable scale, custom touches, functionality and a bit of technology. That sounds like a lot to ask for, and sometimes it can be. But when you know your product and audience well, the creative process can be a cakewalk.

My tried-and-true formula for designing for men follows five simple principles:

1. Compose a space rich with mature color schemes. 

Think sophisticated navy, aubergine, and graphite. Lexington’s Carrera Collection is a top pick; even the name evokes masculinity.

2. Use luxe materials (finishes and textiles) in the furnishings, wall coverings, and décor. 

This is where feminine qualities sneak in; after all we need to create some balance. Does mahogany, burl wood or weathered leather speak to you the way it does me?

3. Incorporate metallic elements. 

Subtle touches in hardware or strong influences make big statements. The Bel Aire Collection’s gold leaf detail is design perfection.

4. Give him an ultra cool accent chair.

What better place to relax than in a club chair or classic wingback?  Accent chairs can be both stylish and masculine without compromising comfort.  One of my favorites is the Balance leather chair.

5. Introduce at least one techy object.

An understated example would be the infrared SmartEye wireless controller on the Quantum Media Console. If he’s more daring, showcase his dream gadget as an art piece. Gallery-framed black-and-white photos add a classic touch if the gadget is too large to feature.

Thanks, Lisa for an inspiring post and unique point of view.

To learn more about Lisa, view her website: http://lisaescobar.com/

or follow her:

Instagram: @lisaescobar and @allporju

Facebook: Lisa Escobar Design and All Por Ju

Twitter: @LEscobarDesign and @allporju

Pinterest: Lisa Escobar

LinkedIn: Lisa Escobar

ACCENT TABLES AS STATEMENT PIECES

Distinctive accent tables can be the focal point of any room; it just takes care to choose the right one.  In this post, we’ll explore accent tables and the elements that make them unique.

UNIQUE TEXTURE

These Hermes Reef accent tables feature custom fused glass tops.  The top surface presents soft undulations while the bottom introduces a distinctive organic bubble pattern.

Contrasting the glass tops are stylized Asian bases designed in hammered metal.  The juxtaposition of thick, textured glass against a linear frame truly creates a bold design statement.

COLOR AND SYMMETRY

Ottomans, when paired, create unique statement pieces.  A burnished rose gold finish on the Beldon Ottoman contrasts rich ruby hues, while subtler neutral tones highlight the refined detailing on the Mackay Ottoman.  Both uses of materials create an original look sure to generate conversation.

PATTERN PLAY

A bold, tufted leopard print grabs attention with this generously scaled cocktail ottoman.  A removable hammered copper tray brings out bronzed tones throughout the piece.

Classically turned legs add a sophistication to the piece, while a stretcher base creates a cohesive look.

DISTINCTIVE MATERIAL AND FORM

Leather bound rattan, cracked penn shell and woven raffia are materials that transform an expected piece into an extraordinary one.  Couple this with eye-catching form and you create a statement piece.  Whether it is the soft quatrefoil design of the Spar Point Chairside Table or the deliberate and intricate lines of the  Flamingo Octagonal End Table, each has a memorable shape.

Accent pieces can become statement pieces when original color, form and materials are utilized.

Which elements do you think turn an accent item into a focal point?

What are your favorite accent pieces?

TOP TEN BEDS FOR VACATION HOMES

OUR TOP 10 BED PICKS FOR A VACATION HOME

In this post, we outline bed solutions for guest rooms and vacation homes focusing on function, style and unique design features.

1. Island Breeze Rattan Twin Beds

The perfect solution for a vacation home needing extra sleeping space.  Leather wrapped bent rattan creates a sophisticated, yet exotic look.  Placed against light colored walls creates an intriguing contrast.

2. Sovereign Canopy Bed

In contrast to the bed above, this canopy bed’s design draws inspiration from island living, but features traditional turned posts and a sophisticated dark finish.  Pair with animal prints or a black and white color scheme to create a dramatic, campaign-like escape.

3. Urbana Bed

Reminiscent of a wave in motion, the sweeping profile of this bed is perfect for those looking to create a serene space in which to unwind.  Complete the look with neutral bedding and lightweight window treatments.  This bed is versatile enough to work in a penthouse or seaside escape.

4. Belle Isle Twin Headboard

Taken from the “Beach House” collection, it’s no wonder these are a perfect addition to a coastal retreat.  The beds bring the outdoors in by utilizing natural materials like reeded bamboo and bent rattan.  Bright tropical bedding completes the look.

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5. Paradise Point Bed

Transitional in design, this bed is sure to pair well with a variety of design asethetics.  A woven rattan panel is framed by a dramatic open fretwork design balanced by soft returns at its ends.  Paired with a spa color palette of light blues and greens creates a serene space.

6. West Indies Twin Headboard

True to their name, these headboards are certain to offer a dramatic island flair to any guest room.  Carved bamboo posts with chippendale inspired fretwork showcase the craftsmanship of the bed, while muted tropical patterns on the bedding create a sophisitcated, exotic space.

7. Orchid Bay Upholstered Bed

For those looking for durable, easy-to-clean furnishings, the Orchid Bay bed should be considered a top choice.  Its upholstered frame is made from a very popular and durable Polypropylene materal shown here in a soft lemon coloration.  While it appears to be woven raffia, this easy to care for material guarantees your bed will last for years to come.

8.  Mandarin Upholstered Panel Bed

The Mandarin bed makes a subtle design statement through its use of strong horizontal wood accents on an otherwise neutral frame.  Clean lines and a linen weave fabric blending shades of white and ivory create a serene ambiance.

9. Pritchards Bay Panel Twin Headboard

Inspired by the island of Bermuda, these beds feature decorative lattice and a woven raffia panel.  The crisp white finish allows for seamless integration into nearly any style home and highlights the chosen accessories and bedding.  We particularly like the bright colors introduced by the zig-zag pattern on the bedding and ottomans.

10. Barrington Upholstered Platform Bed

This bed defines luxury through its clean architecutral lines and thoughtful nailhead trim in a Greek key design.  Coupled with an upholstered headboard and footboard in a cobblestone pattern in rose gold, the bed exudes relaxation.  Perfect for any modern retreat.

Whether it be a coastal retreat or penthouse, we hope you’ve found inspriation in our favorite finds.

What do you look for when furnishing a second home?
What is your favorite bedroom piece?

REPOST FROM CATHERINE AUSTIN’S BESPOKEN BANTER BLOG

Last month at High Point Market, I was delighted to be sponsored by Lexington Home Brands. Thier immense showroom was beyond impressive and I came across several pieces in their various collections that would be “statement” pieces for any space.  In interior design just like in fashion, a statement piece is the most interesting, attractive, and eye-catching element of a space that typically reflect the personality of the owner. The selections below show the versatility of Lexington Home Brands. There is something for every interior….from a sophisticated city dwelling to a charming beachside villa. Here is my “Top Ten” list of pieces that would steal the show in any room…

1. ARIA CHEST

Tangerine leather is accented with mahogany trim in a dark walnut finish; solid brass hardware in a bright brass finish; and 5 drawers –the top drawer felt lined with a divided jewelry tray.

2. HANCOCK SOFA

The luxurious channel back styling has a 70s vibe, yet still feels current today. The tight treatment on the back and seat cushions provide great comfort and clean, crisp styling that will be enjoyed for years to come. Brightly colored accent pillows provide rotating art on the blank canvas.

3. BANNISTER GARDEN CONSOLE TABLE

The contemporary tree branch design on the base was inspired by the Australian Boab tree. The top is solid travertine in a soft demilune shape.

4. MANDARIN RED DESK

Inspired by a Cartier jewelry box, the dry-brushed mandarin red finish is accented by silk-screened gold tooling, complementing the brushed brass finished legs.

5. PACIFIC ISLE MEDIA CONSOLE

Select hardwoods in a black finish outlined with gold striping. Two pairs of doors open the reveal two adjustable shelves on each side, with three center drawers. Polished brass hardware. Includes infrared SmartEye for media remote control. Also comes in red with black striping.

6. BRENTWOOD WRITING DESK

Functional as it is glamorous, the writing desk features sophisticated gold leaf accents and clean contemporary lines. It has three full extension drawers, including a pencil tray in the right drawer and a drop-front keyboard drawer in the center with an ergonomic palm rest.

7. BLACK SANDS CHEST

The four drawer night chest takes inspiration for Africa’s Ivory Coast, with an intriguing shape and elegant pendant drawer pulls.

8. SEA MIST WRITING DESK

Sea mist faux shagreen divided top, drawer fronts, side and front panels with ivory finish on the frame and fretwork. One full-extension file drawer accommodates letter/legal files, 4 storage drawers and lucite and chrome bar pull hardware.

9. PARCHMENT DESK

Reminiscent of a vintage Karl Springer piece, the three drawer desk sits on a brushed brass base.

10. ABBOTTS LANDING FOLDING SCREEN

The three decorative fretwork panels subtly suggests a room divider or adds height and interest without blocking light.

Lexington Home Brands is a global leader in the design, sourcing, manufacturing and lifestyle marketing of upscale home furnishings. The Company’s award-winning product line of wood, upholstery and outdoor living designs encompass the industry’s most diverse range of styling, featuring recognized consumer brands like Lexington®, Tommy Bahama Home®, Tommy Bahama Outdoor Living® and Sligh®.

With a history dating back to 1903,  the company’s expansive product line includes wood and upholstered furniture across a wide range of styles.  Residential products are distributed in the U.S. and internationally through a network of independent furniture retailers, interior designers and design firms, trade showrooms and select Internet retailers. The Company also produces home furnishings for contract, hospitality and commercial use. Headquartered in High Point, NC, the company has showrooms in High Point, New York, Denver, and Las Vegas. The Company is privately held by Sun Capital Partners, based in Boca Raton, FL.

Be sure to follow Lexington’s Inspired Design Blog and connect with them on FacebookTwitterPinterestYouTubeInstagram and Houzz.

For more of my design inspiration, please follow along on InstagramPinterestFacebookTwitter and subscribe to Bespoke Banter….Thanks for reading and please visit again!

LUXE LIVING: OYSTER BAY BY LEXINGTON HOME BRANDS

As an interior designer, I am often asked to create serene havens for my clients where they can relax and leave their daily stress behind. They request casual yet luxurious spaces that reflect their personalities where they can enjoy their family and friends. I was delighted to be sponsored for High Point Market this spring by Lexington Home Brands and see the debut of the Oyster Bay Collection that perfectly embodies this lifestyle.

“Given the immense pace of life for today’s professionals, it’s hardly a surprise that comfort and relaxation are at the top of the list when shopping for home furnishings. At the same time, these consumers want to showcase their success and personal style, while creating a fashionable space that serves as an invitation for entertaining. In designing Oyster Bay, we drew inspiration from the Hamptons, which embodies sophisticated living at its best, while retaining a casual vibe and comfortable relaxed demeanor.”- Phil Haney, President and CEO of Lexington Home Brands.

Two of my favorite pieces are shown above. The curvilinear lines of the Hempstead Mirror are accentuated with a small nailhead detail. The stencilled pattern on the Brookhaven Hall Chest makes it an ideal focal point for any space.

Lighter wood tones, natural textures, and a palette of ivory, taupe and grey are used throughout the collection to evoke a laid back sophisticated vibe. This “luxe transitional” style blends classic elements such as button tufting and turned legs with more contemporary features like burnished stainless steel tops and geometric metal bases. The Seaford Chair pictured above is an example of mixing a contemporary water hyacinth frame and a classicwing chair silhouette. The Deerwood Side Table adds an industrial feel to give the collection a bit of edge.

The new textiles include geometrics, stripes, menswear-inspired fabrics, and luxurious textures such as rich oyster grey leather. The fabrics along with the various furniture styles are equally at home at the shore or in the city. The geometric shapes of the Saddlebrook Cocktail and End Table provide a pleasing juxtaposition to the more traditional diamond-tufted Greenport Sofa.

Custom hardware in antique pewter pairs beautifully with the lightly distressed wood base and stainless steel top of the Hidden Lake Bistro Table. Merrick Swivel Stools combine rush seats with metal and wood. The versatility of the collection merges the best elements of luxe traditional and casual transitional.

To learn more about the new introductions, be sure to follow Lexington’s Inspired Design Blog and connect with them on FacebookTwitterPinterestYouTubeInstagram and Houzz.

To see what captures my eye at High Point market, please follow along on InstagramPinterestFacebookTwitter and subscribe to Bespoke Banter….Thanks for reading and please visit again!

SPRING INTO SUMMER: PART TWO

In part one of this post, we looked at the contemporary lifestyle setting: Tres Chic.  In part two of the series, we look at a new traditional setting: Royal Kahala Black Sands.  Both achieve a serene ambiance, but take two very different design paths to get there.

Classically designed, this outdoor living space exudes refinement.  The neutral tones used in the area rug, sofas and swivel chair allow the colors of nature to take center stage.  The pops of color achieved through the pillows, flowers and table accessories keep the group from feeling overly formal.

Deep seating, plush pillows and incredible craftsmanship make this outdoor seating area feel like it belongs indoors.  Taking a closer look at the artistry of the pieces, we notice an interlaced scroll motif beneath a protective glass top and a complex hand-finish that radiates deep umber colorations.

      

Adding an element of new-traditional styling are versatile bunching tables.  They can be used individually as end tables or grouped together to create a cocktail table.  A custom tortoise shell finish on aluminum takes the look to an entirely new level when contrasted with its leather-like wraps.   A herringbone pattern top in all-weather wicker completes the piece.

   

The next setting achieves tranquility by utilizing an octagonal fire pit that offers both warmth and soft lighting.  Four swivel chairs frame the firepit providing comfortable seating and easy conversation.  The interlocking x-pattern ties the group together and creates a designer look.

Alfresco dining takes on an air of sophistication by keeping a foundation of neutral tones enhanced by subtle paisley patterns on the cushions, pops of orange hues through the patio tile and flowers, and a border of lush greenery.

      

Taking a closer look at the furniture detailing, one notices graceful scroll patterns merging with quatrefoil designs to create a unique, yet timeless dining surface. The chair features turned legs and a scroll pattern on its back, giving the setting a cohesive look.

Relaxation is taken to a new level with these refined lounge chairs.  Classic turned legs and scrolled arms are enhanced with a neutral base cloth and subtle pin-stripe motif.  Paisley kidney pillows complete the traditional aesthetic.

In addition to frame shape, color and fabric also influence the feel of a group.  This traditional color board, for example, showcases classic paisley patterns, menswear-inspired pinstripes and light-toned fabrics that allow you to dress the timeless group up or down by changing out the pillows and accessories.  This palette is ideal for those looking for a great base upon which to build.

Contrary to the first color palette, the next color board takes on a bolder personality with a mixture of patterns and orange hues.  Note, in the example below, the awning stripe on the two accent chairs below enhanced by the paisley pattern kidney motifs.  Blending classic patterns with a vibrant burnt orange creates a cohesive, yet conversation-starting look.

Regardless of preferred design aesthetic, everyone can create a functional and stylish outdoor space by incorporating deep seating, color and craftsmanship into their desired space.  Looking for more inspring outdoor spaces?  Check out our Outdoor Living Board on Pinterest or our Tommy Bahama Outdoor Living Gallery.

Now that we’ve shared some of our outdoor environments, it’s your turn.

What are some of your favorite color palettes to use outdoors?

What elements do you translate from indoor to outdoor?

SPRING INTO SUMMER: PART ONE

With spring officially here, let’s get ready for the warm weather by exploring our latest outdoor living collections.  In this two part series, we’ll look at Très Chic, a contemporary outdoor collection and Royal Kahala Black Sands, a new-traditional collection.

Très Chic: Refined Contemporary

Sculpted in hand-rubbed teak and brushed stainless steel, the sinuous lines of Très Chic redefine the allure of inspired contemporary design.  The recurring horizontal slat motif imparts a clean, sophisticated Pan Asian vibe to the collection, while the sweeping arc of tall canopy screens offers an iconic statement of style.

The outdoor living space features deep seating in a neutral color palette, which allows the teak to take center stage.  The sofa’s splayed arms and the cocktail table’s distinct curvature soften the overall feel, while horizontal slants keep it feeling contemporary.   Side armchairs have a suspended effect achieved by following the shape of its brushed stainless frame.

The oval cocktail table incorporates stainless steel spacers to create a floating effect between the oval rings.

The serpentine chaise is a signature design in the group.  Sinuously shaped teak is suspended against a polished stainless steal base.  Paired with tall canopy screens that mirror the overhangs of the home, they offer shade and make a bold design statement.

The first of two dining arrangements, the rectangular dining set has a decidedly linear profile; softened by stainless steel stretchers and gracefully-shaped chair arms.   Pendent lights and pops of greenery complete the curated look.  Choose to incorporate benches instead of side chairs to achieve maximum seating.

Although linear from its profile, the tabletop features serpentine lines that highlight the warm wood grain of the teak.  A brushed medallion etched with the Tommy Bahama monogram accomodates an umbrella stand.

Contrasting the linear rectangular dining set is a more intimate round table featuring a modern stretcher base, which accommodates an umbrella base.  The horizontal slats of the dining chairs contrast the radial pinwheel design of its top creating a captivating setting.  Accessorized with clean white accents, the setting is refined, yet contemporary.

Finally, the lifestyle is pulled together with a neutral, spa-inspired color palette.  Neutral tones are used in conjunction with coastal blues and soft greens creating a relaxed foundation from which to layer color and pattern or maintain a casual simplicity.

Look for part two of this post where we explore our second outdoor introduction: Royal Kahala Black Sands.  Looking for more outdoor inspiration?  Check out our Tommy Bahama Outdoor Living board.

Until then, what elements do you like to incorporate when creating outdoor spaces?

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