Curate My Life Posts

Runway Inspired Looks From NY Fashion Week

By: The Balance Design Team

Designers in this season’s New York Fashion Week pulled out all the stops with their collections, presenting daring looks that have inspired us to rethink the status quo. If you’re looking to break away from the same old home designs, keep reading — we got you.

Artisan Graphics

The miner uniform inspired pieces in Gabriella Hearst’s ready to wear collection have so much life and story behind them that they are anything but drab. Many of these are hand-stitched in her home country of Uruguay, and focus on form and pattern. We are reminded of one of our constant sources of inspiration: interior designer Justina Blakeney. Both women celebrate strength through bold, graphic patterns, and have a global influence in their work that translates to unique and meaningful pieces.

Modern Swan

The Modern Swan, as Blue Carreon coined this season’s trend, is polished and grown up without being boring. We connected with Brandon Maxwell’s ready to wear collection, designed during a time where he “creatively, clear-headedly blossomed.” Smart lines, radiant hues, tailored but feminine with a touch of retro. We love this concept in the home as well, with uncomplicated silhouettes, plush fabrics, and saturated colors. So so fashionable.

Pretty Masculine

Several designers went for a feminine take on masculine style this fashion week, giving menswear a sexy, womanly edge. In interior design, we see this in the move away from mid century modern lines and towards more romantic and curvy shapes. The hourglass figure of this petite bench, for example, softens the masculinity of the wood grain and tweed upholstery.

Neutral Textures

An absence of color doesn’t have to mean a lack of interest. Neutral, monochromatic color palettes bring focus to materials and textures whether you’re layering a massive scarf over a sweater or a throw blanket over a duvet. Mixing stonewashed linen with sumptuous velvet and topping it off with unfinished natural wood creates a sensory experience that just begs to be caressed.

Wild Animal

Sometimes animal print can be a little much, but we are LOVING the use of animal motifs! Incorporating the animal, versus just its print, brings the drama with a level of whimsy we don’t often see in high fashion and modern design. Paired with bold color, this is a look that brings personality out of any piece.

Historical influence. Focus on the senses. Challenging gender. Celebration of nature. All this and more was on parade during fashion week, and we are here with an enthusiastic “YES!” Bringing dramatic fashion statements into your home isn’t as intimidating as it might seem. Find your favorite style and make it your own!

Eat, Drink, and Be Merry! A Collection of Delightful Dishes.

By: Danielle Clockel

Incorporating a curated and collected look in our designs is a priority we hold very dear. It’s what gives a home character, tells the story of the people who live there, and creates a truly unique and meaningful space. But this doesn’t just apply to large pieces of furniture; even your everyday china can be a source of wonderment and pride.

Marble and antique brass: is there anything more classically beautiful? A pairing like this makes a late afternoon snack as special as a gourmet French brunch.

We love the hand-painted look of these plates against natural materials. Bold colors can be less intimidating and easier to incorporate when used in small doses. Can you imagine this beautiful set proudly on display in a neutral kitchen?

Gathering pieces from different places and combining them is what makes a collection one of a kind. This black and white serving dish looks like it was made to go alongside this plate without being matchy-matchy. And those slender wooden spoons? We’re already imagining stirring our morning coffee lovingly with them.

We think people underestimate the power of a good tablecloth. Not the plastic-like, chipped, thrown-on textile of the kids’ table at family gatherings. We’re talking quality stonewashed linen like this deep dark masterpiece. This simple solid amps up the drama of lighter dishes and servingware, turning any meal into an experience on par with your favorite restaurant (decor-wise, that is — the food is up to you!).

In almost every culture around the world, sharing a meal is regarded as an act of love. We believe this applies to family, friends, significant others, and even yourself! What better way to enjoy your favorite food and drink than in a vessel you cherish?

A Lesson in Versatility: The Windsor Chair.

By: Danielle Clockel

The Windsor chair is a timeless classic originating in 17th or 18th century England (its exact birth is a bit of a mystery). Rather than being limited by the trademark simple-yet-sturdy spokes, the chair’s design provides a canvas for a multitude of styles ranging from traditional to modern. Here’s some of our favorites:

A. Comb back Windsor chair from Hive Modern.
B. Round back Windsor chair from Matthew Hilton.
C. Windsor loveseat bench from Palette and Parlor.
D. Windsor lounge chair from Moving Mountains.
E. Windsor arm chair from Palecek.
F. Curved Windsor chair from Room and Board.

Consider incorporating an incarnation of the classic Windsor chair into your own home for a curated, collected look that transcends trends.

Forecast: 2018 Interior Design Trends

By: The Balance Design Team

A brand new year means a fresh start for you and your home. We’re looking ahead to what we think (and hope) will pick up speed this year.

Oversized Florals

Big, bold blooms have long been on our radar and we love the drama that they bring to a room. The contrast of clean lines and florals in this dining room is GORGEOUS! This look can be applied to every type of room, giving a each space a touch of modern femininity that can be balanced out with more masculine finishes and furnishings.

Shadowy Paint Colors

Our designer Elisabeth has been looking at this photo every day this month as inspiration for her own home. She’s been really into all-white walls/trim/ceiling and how beautifully it adds cohesion to complex architectural geometries and celebrates art and rugs. She says, “Unbeknownst to me, however, this was not the popular opinion at our home so I had to recalibrate…I buckled and bold it is! We are considering Knoxville Gray by Benjamin Moore which despite the ‘gray’ in its name is really more of a dusty slate blue-green.” Also integral to this look is to paint the trim, or even the ceiling and floors the same vibrant color like shown here — something we have adorned in many of our client’s dining rooms and libraries. To 2018…let’s dare to bring in more saturated color!

Terra Cotta Floors

We like a floor with character: patina concrete, historic hardwoods, even cobbled stone or brick. Moving away from all sleek everything, we think things are gonna get a little rough around the edges this year in the best possible way. Not only are terra cotta brick floors rich in tradition and history, they’re also rich in color! That warm, earthy hue and textured surface gives a neutral modern room a needed cozy factor.

Natural Materials

This year we expect there to be a continued rising interest toward eco-consciousness and decorating with items that are made of sustainable materials and have an organic and minimalist feel to them. People care about where their furniture comes from and how it’s made. Wicker and rattan furniture with modern and curved edges creates a softness and a visual airiness to spaces. Plus, it’s durable enough to handle the wear and tear of family life.

A New Look at Repurposing

This doesn’t mean turning a pallet into a headboard, but instead utilizing vintage furniture in different ways for the home — a return to quality materials, thought out in new ways. This isn’t really a new idea or “trend” but we see it as a reinvigorated movement. What’s better than a beautiful textural dresser made into a functional bathroom vanity? Or a worn glass-enclosed bookcase used to store cookbooks in a kitchen? Whatever the piece or the need, we hope to see a significant move away from big box stores to pieces that tell a story.

And finally, @%# trends! Be authentic to yourself and if it happens that you love the latest color, hate floral wallpapers, or need to have terra cotta floors, then make it so! Design Pulp’s mission is to show you what we find and appreciate (or not!). Ultimately, only you will know if something appeals to you as a long lasting treasure or a one night stand. Even in our design studio we find that while some of us love one new thing, others feel less than enthusiastic about it. We can’t wait to see what you design this year!

A Balance Design Original: The Grain Console

By: Elisabeth Paulson

This has been FUN. When I joined Balance Design nearly seven years ago, I met Stephanie Andrews (founder and chieftain) who could not have been more eager to expand her interior design business with innovative and creative designs. I grew up in the Northwoods of Wisconsin with an artist mother and a woodworker father, so I was profoundly excited to get on board. Throughout these years, Balance Design has pridefully designed custom pieces for our clients including bars, beds, and bookcases beyond. It was time to do something for ourselves…

We started with a console. Oh, the meager console: a room divider, a platform for the perfect lamp (or the mail-plop, or a mint julep). We thought, “Let’s make this better.” We live in “Intown Atlanta” as they call it, which is a series of connective neighborhoods surrounded by parks, each with its own identity. Old homes with bountiful character but not a lot of space. These are the homes that we cherish with our beloved clients to carve out memories. They deserve a perfect console, we say! It began, as so many things do, with reducing the scale, sketching a design, and finding the ideal craftsmen.

Utilizing our current gallery motif, “Modern Gothic,” our team challenged the current modern-means-straight-lines-only trend and added some curve appeal along with DRAWERS (did I mention drawers in a narrow console?) to create this doozy of a table. Harnessing our self-coined, “City in a Forest”, we have no shortage of native and unique species to build from. In this design, we capitalized on the beauty of the Mighty Oak. Michael Scialabba from Scialabba Construction in East Atlanta (also my ‘hood, represent), helped us procure the most incredible finish: inky-black lacquer with a series of lime wax which enhances the grain and luster of natural wood. All this plus v-notched routed detail, brass footings/hardware, and an uber-shiny gem tone on the inside of the drawers ( Auric by Sherwin Williams – my current fave). We have a winner, folks.

We are proud to introduce this piece, completely customizable in size, to you and yours. This is the first piece, hopefully followed by many more, in a collection we are calling “Grain”: a celebration of materials and natural processes that provides some honest-to-goodness furniture pieces that celebrate our unique habitats. We’ve got prototype 1.1 in these photos and in our window at our studio/gallery at 1653 McLendon Avenue in Candler Park. Thank you for your support so we can make more and more. We’ve got you, Atlanta.

All photos courtesy of the infinitly-talented Danielle Clockel for Balance Design.