Browsing Tag

open space


Cool Cozy Luxury Interior with PH5 Pendant Lamps

cool cozy luxury open concept dining and living room :: photo from rum december 2009

This picture captured the best of an inviting home for me. It is perfect for entertaining and living. You get plenty of comfortable sitting spread around the table. I imagine the kitchen to be in front of the purple sofa (but I am not clues). Luckily for me, I should it to my husband and he loves it. I bookmarked it for our next home.

Louis Poulsen Fixtures

The PH5 and PH50 designed by Poul Henningsen for Louis Poulsen are not only superb pendant lamps, they produced a beautiful glare free illumination. The cones and the legs were carefully studied to produce a warm tone of light. The visible reflectors direct light both vertically and horizontally.

Remark that the fact there is 3 pendants over the dining table assures that they are no shadow on the table surface. I never tried it, but I feel that taking pictures in a dining room with PH5 fixtures will create better results than if you have a chandelier over your dining table.

Another element to consider when you are buying light fixtures for your dining room is the tone of light produced by the lamp. In any room where you entertain, favoring a warm tone of light ensures that people look better on photos. Plus, a warm tone creates a more inviting and intimate ambiance.

PH snowball designed by Poul Henningsen at muzede changa restaurant in Istanbul

Paul Henningsen also designed PH Snowball pendant for Louis Poulsen, which is another stunning light that produces gare free and even illumination. You can see it in the beautiful modern interior of Müzede Changa, a restaurant in Istanbul, Turkey.

I wish to thank the excellent kitchen designer Susan Serra for sharing on Facebook the cool cozy luxury open space dining and lounging room.

+ H5 Pendant Light $698 USD
+ PH Snowball Pendant $2200 USD
+ PH5 and PH50 designed by Poul Henningsen, manufactured by Louis Poulsen
+ photo: RUM Magazine december 2009
+ photos: Müzede Changa restaurant

HOME + GARDEN MODERN architecture

Lessons in Modern Architecture by Isay Weinfeld

brazilian modern architecture houses by isay weinfeld

The best architects and interior designers think outside the box to make their houses amazing. If you are planning a major home renovation, explore different options for your space planning before committing to a plan. Too many people rush to the construction part before resolving all the design issues. This is the main reason why renovations cost way more than the initial budget.

Before you approve the final plans of your house, take cues from these two modern design houses designed by a Brazilian architect studio called Isay Weinfeld. Except for the spiral staircase, these solutions could be implemented on a limited budget with a creative use of materials.

Open Wall

outdoor dining room for the brasilia\'s house by isay weinfeld

First, look at this amazing backyard of the Brasilia’s house. The spiral staircase to the terrace adds drama and elegance. The open window on the outside dining room is clever for three reasons:

  1. it opens the view to the water
  2. it eliminates the crowded effect that guests could have feel sitting next to the wall
  3. they achieved all that while sheltering the people  from the sun.

Furniture As Partition

bookcase partition :: isay weinfeld sumare house

Designed first years later in 2007, the Sumaré house illustrates how furniture can serve as a wall partition. The open bookcase allows the light to pass through the house but you still have the clear feeling of a typical corridor.

The bookcase partition design idea would nicely separate a living room from the entryway. In a bungalow, why not separate the private sections of the house (bedrooms, private bathrooms, home office) from the public areas (kitchen, dining room and living room) this way?

+ Brasilia’s house photographed by Leonardo Finotti
+ Isay Weinfeld
+ Via Blue Ant Studio


Social Kitchen Design for my Friday’s Quick Links 2009.03.06

The best trend that happen in kitchen design has to be the social kitchen. By social kitchen, we mean a kitchen space that acts as the hub of a house. You aim for bring the outside in and vice versa.

social kitchen designed by fuse interiors in Ireland

+ The excellent kitchen designer Susan Serra of The Kitchen Designer shares her top social kitchen design tips on Twitter. Go for a large kitchen door access for outdoor socializing. The glass wall with the sliding doors is the ultimate but classy French doors work as well. I love what the Dublin-based design studio Fuse Interiors did.


+ You have a narrow long space. Do not worry; it is possible to bring several elements of the social kitchen in a long narrow kitchen. Look at how Colin & Justin did it in one episode of Colin and Justin’s Home Heist. Here a butcher’s block doubles as an entertaining bar or buffet station. The lounge area at the back allows the cook to be with her guests without the kitchen feeling crowded.

+ I love the look of a fridge hiding in a flat wall unit. But for practicality reasons, you need a 12-inch wide flat surface on the opening side of the door so you can deposit things when you get food in and out of the fridge. One solution is to integrate a sturdy pull out tablet on either side of the fridge. For more kitchen design tips, check out what Marissa Ponikowski wrote for about the Top Ten Kitchen Layout Mistakes.

+ Top Images from Fuse Interiors
+ Colin and Justin’ Home Heist TV show
+ Via The Kitchen Designer


Modern Take on an Old Barn Kitchen

converted barn in France on living etc august 2008 :: photographed by bob smith

This open-plan kitchen and dining room look amazing. It takes guts to design a black kitchen. It takes finesse to make it works.

Fashion designer turned interior designer Charmaine created a space that is airy and sophisticated in a house she shared with her husband and young daughter.

The Key Design Elements

Charmaine played with contrasts to add drama. The black cabinets and worktops act as the little black dress. The kitchen does not seem dark because it sits on a vast, light stone walls space. The high-gloss cabinets reflect the light while the waxed-concrete surfaces add textures.

The breakfast bar feels welcoming; it must be the hub of any dinner party. This kitchen proves that hard surfaces can produce a warm and modern rustic atmosphere, when used cleverly.

Congratulations to Charmaine and Paul on their beautiful renovation. If you wish to know more, Living etc. provides plenty of details on this barn conversion in the South of France. Do not be shy to adapt her great ideas.

+ Photographed by Bob Smith for the August 2008 issue of Living etc, pages 88-95 – rights reserved pictures

HOME + GARDEN MODERN architecture

Trend report: Pod living by Jade Jagger calls for stress-free entertaining

Pod living at The Jade 16 West 19 Street, Central Chelsea in New York

What is interesting about the Pod living concept is really the fact that you can quickly hide your mess by just closing the doors. It works like a charm if you suddenly have the urge to host a cocktail party at your place.

When you watch the media you feel that a key feature of the The Jade, a 57-unit condominium building in New York City is definitely the Pods. Developed by Yoo, a venture lead by John Hitchcox, Philippe Starck and Jade Jagger, the Pod is the realization of a principle we explored in my interior design education ten years ago.

What is the concept behind the Pod?

Enclosed within a single cube are meticulously laid-out utility rooms for the apartment. One Pod hosts the kitchen, the bathroom, the storage unit and even a washer/dryer closet as a free standing unit. Everything is hidden away with floor to ceiling doors. This design is tailored for small open space living.

If you are living in a loft, you can custom made your own Pod living. Choose the kitchen unit that you like, a closet for the entrance next to a storage unit. The pod does not have to be a perfectly rectangular shape either. This will give you more flexibility in the design of the space.

Like I said earlier, the Pod concept is nothing new. It has been studied before to find efficient way to live in small spaces over the modern eras. You can examine how luxury yacht kitchen units and RV are made to get ideas on how to place things in limited spaces.

Just remember that the idea behind the Pod is to centralize the utilities and to use it as a room separator. The more practical design will enable walking around the unit for all sides. Talk to kitchen cabinet makers to help you with the design of the unit. And make sure to include your contractor and your architect in the discussions for the technical aspects.

Not just for small kitchen

The bottom-to-top kitchen doors are not just for small spaces. You can build a regular size kitchen around that same principle. It looks sleek and neat. The door must disappear inside the unit while you are using the kitchen. The hardware is widely available nowadays.

My kitchen will be designed this way when we will be ready to build our summer house. My husband and I want a modern architecture 2-story house. I want as much as possible to integrate all the storage neatly around the perimeter of the house. I plan to use pod inspired block as room divider for the public area.

About Yoo

John Hitchcox is one of Europe’s most innovative design-based property developers. If you like design, Philippe Starck does not introduction with successful creations as diverse as packaging, everyday household products to restaurant interiors and hotel designs. Jade Jagger is a jewelry designer. Being the daughter of Rolling Stones rocker Mick Jagger and former fashion model Bianca Jagger, Jade is a globe trotter and a jet setter with an interesting life. Andy Warhol teaches her color theory when she was 4.

For my night post, I will introduce the second exquisite features of The Jade: its urban oasis roof terrace done in a totally different style. Be ready to get inspired by Ibiza, Spain and the Mediterranean hip lifestyle.

Learn more: The Jade 16 West 19 Street, Central Chelsea in New York
Learn more: Web site of Yoo