Hello 2015: Creating a Home you Love

After reading this excellent post by Mommy Chic interior designer Kathryn Miller, a few things are going to happen. 1) You will be ready for a weekend in Santa Barbara (and a margarita!) 2) You will fall in love with Spanish architecture and design (if you haven’t already), and 3) you too will be inspired to add more color and texture to your home. Thank you Kathryn for this journey down gorgeous lane. xx

The start of 2015 has me reflecting on the past year and refreshing my personal mindset and goals for the year ahead. But it also has me thinking about my career and design philosophies- more specifically, I have asked myself: How can I continue to grow and change creatively?
This year I want to challenge myself to take more chances with color, pattern, and textures. Over the fabulous December holidays, one of the places we stayed was the Canary Hotel in Santa Barbara. I was insanely attracted to the Mediterranean vibe and Spanish architecture that inspired the finish out and design of the Canary (along with most of the Santa Barbara architecture and buildings): every area of this hotel was unique and authentic. Of course, this was not to be outdone by the fabulously fresh margaritas off the lobby at Finch & Fork.
drink After wading through all the nooks and crannies of The Canary I reflected on how their design techniques allowed the hotel to stay so visually fresh and calm – while still exploding with color:

∆ the walls were all a neutral, clean paint color.
∆ the ceiling beams (which were exposed everywhere) were simply stained.
∆ the pattern and color were pulled together using: textiles, art, hard finishes, and furniture.
∆ even though all of the above is Basic Design 101, many places fail to execute properly. The Canary did not fail – it excelled.
canary1 After staying in this room (pictured below) the creative juices were flowing. I immediately began scheming with a client to recreate the look of The Canary’s guest room bed, featuring the canopy valance as its show-stopper. Surprisingly, the ceiling height in the room was nine feet (at most) but the room did not feel too tight or crowded with that style of bed. Prior to being in this room I may have thought (after staring at dimensions and numbers on a paper floor plan) that this would all feel too tight – but in fact, in person, it did not. Cozy, yes. Crowded, no. Execution of the design is key; this is a great example of using creativity to maximize the impact of the space. And real life can trump floor plans.

canary2 Having the opportunity to travel, sightsee, and stay in unique places offer so many opportunities to experience the beauty all around us. It is nice to reset and prepare for this next year in design (which I am fortunate enough to call “work”) with the ability to continue to grow and experience new frontiers. So, as I get into 2015: pulling together different design boards and room schemes, I will remind myself to evaluate more pattern play where needed and to continue to keep my eyes open to experiences and new ideas.

Let’s do this, 2015! I’m ready for you.

with love,

Image Credit: Kathryn Miller, Canary Hotel Santa Barbara
Kathryn Kathryn completed her degree in Interior Design at the University of Alabama and then worked for award-winning interior designer Charlotte Comer of Charlotte Comer Interiors and Collectibles in Dallas, Texas. Kathryn believes the influence of the California lifestyle and the coast’s natural beauty has augmented her passion to bring beauty and balance into the home. For more information, check out Katheryn Miller Interiors & Design. For more design tips by Kathryn, click here.

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