I recently wrote about trends observed at January’s National Kitchen and Bath Show in Vegas. While I am passionate about wellness design (aka aging in place design or livable design), aging in place architecture is a close second. My friends and I were thrilled when we serendipitously discovered the Japanese Sekisui House Concept Home on the “other half” of the venue – the International Builders Show (IBS).

A 5,400 square foot home was constructed by Sekisui House’s wholly-owned US building enterprise Woodside Homes. Located 20 minutes from out venue, The home was dubbed “Chowa”. Chowa is an ancient Japanese term that refers to the spirit of balance, well-being, harmony and connectedness to nature.

The exterior of Chowa House.

There is so much more behind the Sekisui House’s fundamental philosophy of love of humanity. They strive to create safe, secure housing that will be handed down from generation to generation. The foundation of their thinking is “realizing customer happiness in a society where people will have a  100-year lifespan”. This is not only residential design for aging in place but being proactive about how to design quality homes for multiple generations. Their R&D Institute is Japan’s first-ever corporate research institute to specialize in happiness.

About the Sekisui House
The Sekisui House project took ten months from breaking ground to completion. Eight twenty-foot long shipping containers of engineered materials were shipped from Japan to the US. Framing was assembled in eight days with a 5 mm accuracy. Amazing!

The home was built using Sekisui House’s SHAWOOD laminated post-and-beam style frame metal-joint connection system. No circular saws were used in the construction of this home.

Sekisui House has delivered more than 2.4 million homes – more than any other company in the world. Chowa’s sustainable construction systems and techniques are proven to be more resistant to natural disasters than traditional building methods. They are built with the latest innovations in thermal insulation, air quality management, solar energy materials for net zero consumption and technology integration to create a health and wellness focused living environment.

For more information on residential design and livable design for aging in place, contact me for a complimentary consultation.

[SCHEDULE A CALL]  

The project started the way most things in life start (at least, the best things). With a search.

A search for the perfect chair.

The one that reminded me of my favorite chair; the one from my grandmother’s home. With its deep comfy seat and its soft rolled arms, it was a place to sit for half a minute, or maybe half a day.

But times changed, and so did our bodies and our needs. And so the search changed too. The chair needed a more streamlined silhouette. It needed just the right scale, and its legs needed to show just the right amount of wood.

And so, as the vision of that perfect chair became clearer in my mind, the search shifted to a workroom that could realize my design: that of an updated re-imagining of the chair I loved.

Today, the frame is still there, but with straight arms that give it a sleeker look. The legs are lovely, offering more of a reveal than just a hint of wood.

And its beauty is more than skin deep. The beauty of each bespoke piece lies in the way its arms, legs and back are customizable to fit your needs, effortlessly transforming my memory of a favorite into yours. Most importantly, these are pieces that work for every generation.

From this one chair a collaboration of customized heirloom pieces, including sofas, chaises and ottomans was born, ones that transports us back to homes we knew…the ones we loved.

Together, we will design pieces that transport you back to the home you knew and loved, personalizing everything from its structure to its upholstery to create a treasured piece of furniture that will be handed down from generation to generation. 

To make your appointment and begin the personalization process, please give me a call at 201.848.9797.

Or if you prefer to schedule a time online, please click here.

I love when clients have artwork that serves as the inspiration for a space. Most often they are sharing a piece of their unique story.  

It becomes more challenging when we seek out artwork for our clients. The process needs to be approached in a thoughtful, creative, and authentic manner that lends itself to sharing their narrative.  

Although art always is the “last piece of the design puzzle” we are asking questions from the very start that will lend inspiration.  It’s a process that needs to develop over time…not overnight. We make a point of learning about what our clients love…and hate. Discovering to where they have travel, how they spend their weekends, which books they’ve read and what shows they’re seeing. It’s how we can choose pieces that truly reflect them.  

And oftentimes, we create original art for them.

The importance of art in a room not only adds beauty to a space but intrinsic meaning to the homeowners.

It connects us.

Is it just me or does everyone feel a bit off kilter when they walk into a dark and cluttered room? 

And, how about when you enter a light-filled space, filled with earth tones like beiges and browns with muted cranberry accents? Doesn’t that make you feel a little more serene and stable?

It’s amazing the effect the right design can have on our psyche. Research proves how a room’s design influences and enhances people’s moods and emotions.

Fiori Interior Design takes that concept, blending your goals with your personal style to design spaces that elevate moods, improve focus and enhance efficiency. By bringing your favorite vintage or patina items into the design, we raise the bar, making your space infinitely more interesting and welcoming.

Harvey Cedars, New Jersey Beach House

The view from the Dining Room into the Living Room

I have a habit of redesigning homes in my head. So when my good friend, who happens to be a realtor, showed me this amazing home on Long Beach Island in Harvey Cedars, these images appeared in my head.

Starting with the dining area, I envisioned a classic round Saarinen tulip table surrounded by vintage wicker chairs.  

The living room is surrounded by a beautiful open staircase. The modern meets vintage theme continues. Grounding the area with a colorful wool rug, I (shamelessly?) envisioned one of our semi custom sofas, two wicker chairs and end table and a streamlined Serena and Lily coffee table. The lighting is from Design Within Reach.

And of course…no view is complete without a hanging daybed.  
You might just find me there this weekend.  

Zoffany wallpaper

A beautiful first day of summer! Fortunately for us, designing with florals are back…and they’re bigger and better than ever!

image

Inspiration board for a new beach house project.

There’s nothing more inspiring than a bright beautiful room to forget about the rain and cold weather! We love this cheerful room at last year’s High Point Market and can’t wait to be inspired again this April!

Inspiration for an upcoming spring project. Love this new Clarke & Clarke Matador Collection!

image

We love how this kitchen was transformed using bright and uplifting color… a reflection of the family that lives in this home.

According to a recent article in newsblaze.com, one of the trends that will influence US Homes in 2017 is titled “Modern Vintage”. They describe it as “contemporary furniture based on vintage styles”. This is not a trend likely to go away anytime soon. It includes items that have natural textures and are also durable, such as abaca, cane and rattan.

Newsblaze goes on to say “the desire to make the best possible use of natural and sustainable resources makes sense in the context of how popular upcycling and repurposing has become. Indeed, it may mean that 2017 becomes known as a revitalizing game changer in terms of what has become the throwaway society.”

I love this trend because it really allows you to layer personality into any project. (it also happens to strengthen our Design Principle #5: nature and sustainability!)

A few of our favorite websites for these kinds of finds are Chairish and 1st Dibs.

image