Great chair from Flatrock, but wrong upholstery
Move-in of the furniture for this mountain designed home in the ski resort of Mammoth Lakes is not going to be until October, but the advantage of receiving the furniture now is that mistakes can be dealt with and by the time the furniture is installed, and all should be right with the world.
The rustic, hickory chairs from Flatrock were ordered in a black antique finish,
But, we ordered hides from Old Hickory Tannery to be sent to Flatrock to upholster the cushions. For some unknown reason, Flatrock chose to upholster the chairs in leather and send them out.
When receiving the chairs, the mistake was noted and, although Flatrock did receive the order with the correct information and they did receive the hair-on-hides, they did not offer any explanation. I have dealt with Flatrock for years (see Elegant Mountain) , so I expect no huge problems. Rather than send back all of the chairs, which would be a waste of time and money for all concerned, we asked them to ship us just the cushions upholstered in the hides and we will switch them out. The correction will have taken several hours of our time, and so far several weeks to actually correct, but the correct chairs will be ready for move-in. The cost of glitches like this are absorbed by me as the designer, so my staff and I always try to minimize any possible problems from the start. When furnishing a large home, mistakes can cost weeks of time and a lot of money – another reason to work with an experienced interior designer that can anticipate and then deal with problems!
Stain and Paint samples for Vacation home
Painted finishes with glazes fogged over, painted finishes that are rubbed through to stain beneath, lacquer finishes for tabletops, a flat catalyzed lacquer for the reclaimed wood and different levels of distressing – all required samples to get the perfect effect and work with other elements in each area of this mountain home. Communication of the desired effect can only happen with a painter that is also a craftsman. Chet Baker is the expert that I depend on for this type of work, and the cabinetmaker, David Kuznitz, was happy to know that his creation was in such capable hands.
After the clients saw the samples and made a few choices, a paint booth was set up in the gameroom of the house. All of the cabinet doors are set up on racks and are being distressed, stained and/or painted.
All of the bathroom cabinetry will be finished first, as it is desirable to have the cabinetry stained before any nearby tile is installed, so that the cabinetry is protected from the grout.
The cabinetry is being installed, so the space created for the refrigerator cannot be changed, however we were able to make a last minute adjustment. Karen decided that she would prefer a freezer on the bottom so that the shelves in the refrigerator could be full width, to allow for large serving platters. We only had a 42″ wide opening and there are really not a lot of choices out there that will allow for the installation of custom cabinetry panels. This Jenn-Air is just perfect. The doors are split on top, due to the width, but the shelving inside is not divided – the shelves span the 42″ width. Thanks to Rodger Bivens at Standards of Excellence in Reno for always being my fountain of up-to-date information on appliances we were able to switch from the originally specified Sub-Zero. Standards of Excellence has supplied most of my needs here in Mammoth for appliances for several years. Rodger personally visits me to keep my materials updated and check on the various projects. Since there is not a store that sells appliances within 150 miles of Mammoth Lakes, having a relationship with a knowledgeable, customer oriented company that can deliver is vitally important.
I just returned from the ICFF (International Contemporary Furniture Fair) show in New York City, where I saw this fabulous rug. Truly a new take on the traditional Oriental Rug, which I think could be great in the Iantuono’s rustic/contemporary home. Scraps from oriental rugs are dyed in a consistent colorway, such as the purple shown here. They are then sewn together with a great looking stitch and the rug is backed. Karen loves purple, so I thought of her when I saw this. This could be just the unusual item that we are looking for in the master bathroom.
The dining chairs will be custom upholstered, using Indian design rugs, such as these. The client found a great source on a recent vacation and called me to discuss the idea and also the size of what to buy.
I calculated that one runner, 30″ wide x 8′ would do one chair, so she bought ten runners, each different. We will pick out the style of chair next week.
My client loves to shop, wherever she is, for her new home and I love that she is so excited about the project. This may not be the ideal for a designer – we love to design the concept, present and execute. I recognize that every client is different and adjust as I go. Especially these days, the perfect client is the one that is excited and motivated to see a great result and is a pleasure to work with.
Wherever a designer may be, he or she has an eye out for items that may work on any ongoing projects. Whenever I am in New York City, which is every couple of months, I hit my favorite shops, vendors or the D&D building. On my last trip, ABC HOME, with floor after floor of furniture, lighting and accessories to explore, gave me new ideas and a few items to consider for this project.
I love the simple, clean lines of this console, that allow the design of the inlaid cork on the face to become artwork in a room. I could see using this instead of a traditional dresser in the ‘nature’ room, so dubbed by the client.
This side table would make a great nightstand for one of the rooms. The mix of steel and distressed wood is sort of industrial chic, but also works for a rustic/contemporary home. Definitely not traditional and little edgy.
Mixing wild branches with plastic shelves is another twist on rustic/contemporary. I like the fact that it is white, too.
Before ordering the tile for the master bathroom, I wanted to see the Walker Zanger Sobu tile grouted. I thought the grout could really change the way it looks. Since this will be a wainscot all the way around the room, it will be a strong element.
I had Richard Baldassi, the tile contractor, order a sample and then grout it four different ways. We used two light colored beige grouts, the darkest brown available and black. The black (lower left corner) disappears and allows the look of the tile to predominate.
I am not confident about using this material as the tile contractor has tried to contact Walker Zanger repeatedly for several weeks and has yet to get a single call back with information on exactly how to install this tile. We were not even sure how to grout it, as the tile showroom had originally told us the tile did not use grout but epoxy. We came to find that the normal grout works just fine but now we are concerned about using this material as the sink splash. I have taken my sample and wet it down to see what happens. Although we are certainly not using it in the shower, I have my concerns for the sink splash and tub face. If Walker Zanger does not follow up soon, we may have to reselect. What a shame!
This vacation home in Mammoth Lakes will have a lot of wood: wood floors, wood ceiling and wood paneling. I think it could be overwhelming, but the client just loves texture. Drywall is not a favored surface. Wallpaper, however, can add fabulous texture and enhance the rustic style of the home, while visually lightening the house. The paper we are using in the dining room, the game room, the hallways and many of the ceilings is this Japanese Weave from Phillip Jeffries, LTD. I particularly like the way the dark and light strands are interwoven, which will be a great tie to the wood wainscot in the hallways.
This beautiful paper is made with hand pressed silk leaves, dried and randomly hand placed to emulate the look of gently falling leaves. We may use it in one of the guest rooms, dubbed “the nature” room by the client. If we use wallpaper on the ceiling, it will probably be a light colored Japanese weave.
We are having a rug sale event at our studio on July 2nd, 3rd and 4th and would like to invite everyone! We have a few tips on what to bring to help make finding the perfect rug an easy experience:
1. MEASURE for the sizes that you need before you come. You can see here what a difference the right rug makes!
2. Typical rug sizes are 2′ x 3′, 2 1/2′ x 4′, 3′ x 5′, 4′ x 6′, 5′ x 7′, 8′ x 10′, 9′ x 12′, 10′ x 14′, 12′ x 15′, 12′ x 18′. This information will help you decide what will best fit your areas.
3. Bring a FLOOR PLAN, FABRIC SAMPLES, WALL COLORS, AND/OR A PHOTO OF THE ROOM to assist in your purchase.
4. In a dining room, both the table and chairs should sit on the rug, even with the chairs pulled out from the edge of the table. Typically, the rug should be at least 24″ wider than the overall table width and length.
5. In a living room, we often like to have the feet or leading edges of our main furniture, especially the sofas and chairs, on the rug to create an anchored feeling. This may allow a space to feel larger. However, there are times when “floating” a rug more to the center is appropriate.
6. In a very large room, more than one rug can be used to separate the space. The rug designs should be different enough in pattern and/or colors to prevent a “matchy” look, add interest and visually create an identity for each area. The type and quality of the rugs, however, should be similar.
7. Consider the SCALE of PATTERN that would be most appropriate in the room. If all of your fabrics on pillows and drapes are a small scale, or very busy, a busy rug pattern may only confuse the eye. A larger scale pattern with more open ground may set off furnishings better than a busy print. Then again, more intricate patterns tend to create a nice backdrop, allowing other features to grab the attention first. Your PHOTOS will be invaluable in allowing us to assist you with this decision.
8. Plan on having rugs that will be placed in heavy or medium traffic areas hand-washed at least once a year. Never use methods such as dry cleaning, machine washing or steam cleaning. Rotate once a year.
9. When buying a handmade rug, make sure that it does not have a cloth backing. Generally, this means that the rug is not knotted but tufted and then glued. This type of rug tends to give off an odor and also will deteriorate over time and during cleaning.
10. If you have an old handmade rug that seems worn, don’t just throw it away. It may turn out to be valuable. Bring a PICTURE to the event and we can review your options with you.
11. Area rugs are a great way to START or FINISH your room. We don’t follow any rules here. Both work well and we design using both techniques.
While I cannot recommend specific fixtures for the bathrooms until we have a better handle on the cabinetry design, I want to give Karen a few suggestions and build our own catalog to work from, when the time to design comes. In our effort to blend the rustic with the contemporary, it is hard to say whether the light fixtures will be very rustic with other contemporary elements in the room OR whether the light fixtures will be more clean in line with a rustic vanity. We shall see……