On our Turf Posts

Best Designed Restaurants in Atlanta

By: Stephanie Andrews

Dining out is ideally a fully immersive experience: the taste of the food and drink, the smells coming from the kitchen, and the look of the restaurant itself. Here in Atlanta, we have so many amazing places to eat that deserve a shout out. Here’s just a few of our favorites, with a focus on their design (rest assured, the cocktails and food are superb as well!).

Photo courtesy of Eater Atlanta.

AIX

This French restaurant is named after Aix-en-Provence, France, where executive chef Nick Leahy spent summers with his family. The food is a fresh, almost Mediterranean take on French cuisine with lots of seafood and olive oil. Ai3 designed this incredible establishment, noting “it feels like an escape; it’s a very curated experience, so that people feel like they are somewhere different in Atlanta and not somewhere that’s very predictable.” We couldn’t agree more.

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Ingram.

Golden Eagle

This place is just sexy. Soft, sumptuous materials create a moody and comfortable environment for unique cocktails and fabulous tapas. As Golden Eagle’s designer, Elizabeth Ingram, says it is “a swanky throwback to a bygone era of train travel, speakeasies, and extravagant late night parties.”

Photo courtesy of Kimball House.

Kimball House

Inspired by the Kimball House Hotel in downtown Atlanta (which no longer exists) and designed by Square Feet Studio, the Kimball House restaurant stands unique in its design and takes you on a journey to the past. As soon as you walk in, you feel the rich hotel lobby come alive from years before. Old fashioned fans that operate on a chain and richly painted wainscoting topped with embellished wallpaper make this space inspirational eye candy. Known for their delicious oyster happy hours and artisanal cocktails, it’s the perfect place to gather and enjoy the food, the company, and the interior design!

Photo courtesy of Noni’s.

Noni’s

This eclectically designed trattoria in Atlanta’s Edgewood neighborhood serves reimagined Italian comfort food with a full (and impressive) bar. The front section has a wood paneled lounge area with vintage furnishings that feels like the cooler version of your grandparents’ Queens, NY downstairs den (probably because the owner designed it after his Italian grandparents’ home!). The dining area is lined with live edge wood/tufted back booth seating, classic mosaic tile walls, and a photo shelf filled with old portraits (who are they?). These design elements, along with the cuisine, combine to create an atmosphere that is quirky and comfortable, yet elevated.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of all the beautiful restaurants in Atlanta, and to do justice to all the places we haven’t highlighted here requires many more blog posts — so be on the lookout for more! We’re working to show you new places as they open and develop as well as established classics that cannot go unnoticed.

Facebook Marketplace Is Open For Business!

By: Melody Richardson

With the increasing ease of online marketplaces, we noticed an opportunity to share more of our designs with the world. Enter the Balance Design Marketplace on Facebook. You can now browse our available studio items online and purchase them for local pickup. All items have been featured in our studio gallery, so you know how much pride we have in them!

This mahogany frame sofa is valued at over $10,000, but we’ve got it on the marketplace for a steal. It was a real privilege to restore this weathered vintage find to its full potential utilizing designer fabric and glossy paint.

This lovely art deco vase can brighten any space.

This custom lamp shade is one our favorite pieces — the copper accents in the fabric complement the resin of the base so beautifully. And it was hand made by one of our team members!


A custom velvet pillow and blanket ups the luxe factor immensely.

Since pairing this black fringe and smooth yellow velvet, we have fallen in love with using tapes in new and interesting ways!

These are just some of the items you can find on our Facebook Marketplace place. Check back often for updated pricing and new items!

https://www.facebook.com/pg/BalanceDesignAtlanta/shop/?ref=page_internal 

Be Inspired! 4 Mood Boards to Spark Your Creativity

By: The Balance Design Team

Anyone who has been to our studio has seen our inspiration boards. Each member of the team has a lovingly curated board above their workspace that serves as a source of inspiration for them as they work, and gives a glimpse into who they are. Come explore!

Jennifer’s Board

Not only do I love incorporating a mix of textures, patterns, and pops of color into all of my designs, I love being surrounded by these elements on a daily basis. My board encompasses images that make me happy, especially during these cold, dreary days we’ve had in Atlanta over the past few months. I tend to pin materials and images that have some natural element, whether it be a metallic wallpaper swatch that resembles the bark of a tree, or an image of an awesome piece of architecture surrounded by an even more inspiring landscape. My board is my window to look out of from my work area and an escape from my computer every now and then.

Shelby’s Board

If my board was a haiku, it would probably go like this:

textures draw me in
coastal nod to Florida
rough feel, soft colors

Being able to look up from my work and see a combination of deep teal (my spirit color), vintage rugs and textiles, and masculine components constantly inspires me. It’s a mix of my south Florida roots, love of well-made furnishings, and sensible-yet-sophisticated style.

Melody’s Board

My board is my essence: whimsical, feminine, and global with a nod to modern. Except for a brief two years as a child, pink has always been my favorite color. I am constantly inspired by its versatility and love to find new and unexpected ways to use it. I am also drawn to fluidity — as texture, spatial orientation, or otherwise. Of course, my Turkish heritage is a powerful source of inspiration to me, and Istanbul is the city where old meets new. I try to incorporate that harmony into all of my designs.

Danielle’s Board

“Doom, gloom, and floral print” is pretty much my entire brand. Skulls, flower arrangements, and a more than a few references to my love of all things dark and dreary populate my board. (But also: eyeglasses and donuts!) I like to think of my style as Victorian meets industrial: a mix of curves and delicate details with dark metals and warehouse windows. Think of a tea party with The Sex Pistols — it’s about like that.

It’s inspiring to look up from our work and see a collection of clippings, textiles, and tiles that we love and feel connected to. You know what’s even more fun? Moseying over to a coworker’s desk to get a different perspective and see what they’re inspired by — sometimes we find just the thing we need to break that creative block!

What Our Clients Are Saying: #bdhomelove

By: real life Balance Design clients!

As part of our February home love celebration, we asked a few of our clients to send us a photo of their favorite spot in their home and let us know what they love about it. Unsurprisingly, they did not disappoint!

The Light-Filled Sitting Room

Photo courtesy of Sandra Goulding.

Warm and cozy elegance comes to mind for our family room. Here, a delightful mix of light neutrals and blues work together to lighten up and soften the darker and brighter shades of the room. When open, the drapery frames the views of the outdoor world and allows the natural light to flow into the room. When drawn, the soft and light panels provide a beautifully calm and soothing layer of privacy, accented by the striking Greek key detail where they join together and the warm glow of light from the lamps. The perfect cocoon for a solo night at home and a warm, cozy gathering spot with beautiful views no matter how warm or cold the temperature outdoors.

The Playful Art Corner

Photo courtesy of Loren Pratt.

My living room nook brings me joy — I love the playful sophistication of the artwork, mobile, and accessories. I love all of the textures, colors, and shape variations. This spot warms my heart and makes me smile. Special thanks to Balance Design for the gorgeous painting, chic floor lamp, luxe pillows, and versatile side table!

The Serene Bedroom

Photo courtesy of Jill Wasserman.

Of all of the spaces and projects Stephanie and her team have been a part of in our home, one of my favorites is my serene bed – and the stunning photograph that hangs above it. Riffing off of the luxurious silk duvet (used as an accent throw) from Turkey, the scheme of warm colors contrasting with cool and crisp ones creates an instant sense of contentment. And the whimsical glass gourd bedside lamps always make me smile. For several years, we struggled to find just the right art to hang above the bed. Then, one day when we were at Balance Design, I saw this photograph. When I was a teen, I fell in love with the famous Andrew Wyeth painting, “Christina’s World.” This photograph seemed to speak to Christina’s longing, answering as I imagine Wyeth would have, with simply the passage of time and cycle of seasons. It was a natural fit above the bed, tying the room together unexpectedly and absolutely.

The Cozy Breakfast Nook

Photo courtesy of Monica Neal.

My kitchen nook has been an empty space in various homes I’ve occupied over the last few years due to multiple re-locations for work. When I was ready to commit to furnishings and design, I contacted Balance Design, who had so graciously assisted me in my first home 16 years ago. I was looking for a stylish yet comfortable gathering spot where casual dining and conversation would be facilitated by design. Additionally, this is my go to spot for perusing the newspaper with coffee on the weekends, and where I am happy to perch in quiet contemplation. I’m inspired by the bold colors complimented by the various seating textures, and relish the coziness of the space.

This is why we do what we do! Helping our clients create the relaxing, rejuvenating, comfortable home environment they’ve always wanted is our whole purpose, and hearing from them just how much of an impact their revitalized spaces have on their lives is what our dreams are made of. What’s your #bdhomelove?

What We Love About Our Homes: #bdhomelove

By: The Balance Design Team

Throughout the month of February, we’re celebrating the love of one’s home, no matter what form it takes. To kick things off, each member of our team chose the spot (or item) in their home that fills their heart with love and appreciation. As expected, the results were as diverse as each of us!

Stephanie’s Home Love

One of the most exciting things about design is having a concept or detail you really connect with, and then working to bring it to life in the entirety of the space. This was certainly true for me when I redid my master bath shower — I saw a photo in a magazine of an all black tile shower with a curved curb, and I fell in love with the art nouveau look. The process of getting my own classic black hex tile to line up perfectly was tough, and it took a lot of time considering it’s a detail many people would probably overlook entirely, but I adore it. Along with the natural stone black mica tile walls, my shower is a completely unique and refreshing experience in my morning routine.

Danielle’s Home Love

My philosophy is this: if you don’t love it, don’t let it in your life. This goes for clothes, people, art, and especially furniture. Sometimes this means having less than you expected, but as a minimalist and anti-materialist I believe this makes the things you do have all the more meaningful. Couple this philosophy with my love of sustainability and resourcefulness and you’ve got a gal who will visit the same thrift store every weekend for six months waiting for the perfect piece to appear on the floor. Sometimes, however, that perfect piece just falls into your lap. This incredible mid century credenza was left on the sidewalk outside my building one Saturday morning. As I passed by on my morning walk with my dog, I was immediately skeptical that it had been abandoned. Surely no one would leave behind such a beauty! Certainly the rightful owners would appear shortly to load it onto some unseen moving truck. But no, this did not occur, and after 20 or so minutes of a covert stakeout from the lobby of my building, I pounced. Now this lovely lady graces my living room and proudly displays some of my favorite antique cameras, cast iron kettle, collected/gifted art, and a very tiny TV. In a home full of rescued, refurbished, and 100% secondhand furnishings, she fits right in.

Melody’s Home Love

Dubbed the “Turkish Room,” this is my absolute favorite spot in my house. It is my quiet place early in the morning to sip my coffee, and my safe space when I want to feel closer to my mother. I can feel the love in this room each time I set foot inside. Normally, I’m the person who feels like the more color the better, however the creamy color palette in here is perfectly ethereal. Each and every item has significance to my family; certain pieces my parents collected through their travels, while others have been handed down in my family since Ottoman times. They give this room an energy that is full of heritage, tranquility, and love. While a lot of people may love to celebrate the new things in their homes, in this case I celebrate the old.

Shelby’s Home Love

In the past year, we acquired an antique upright piano and it has really transformed my outlook on our home. We are limited on space, living in a mid century ranch, but I really loved the idea of creating a music area in my home. The front room off of our living room currently hosts this 1970 Emerson upright piano, which sits across from a mid century credenza that houses a small bar and my husband’s record player. (Did I mention we painted the room studio green by Farrow & Ball? Major upgrade.) This small space brings me joy and encourages me to not only cherish my space but to learn new skills — and playing the piano is on my list!

Jennifer’s Home Love

When I think of the one space in my home that brings me the most joy, I actually find myself gravitating outdoors. Our back deck has become an extension of both our living and dining areas, especially during the warmer months. I find gardening to be very therapeutic, and a collection of mix-match pots and tranquil fountains have become the perfect vessels for designing little vignettes that are easy to maintain. By pairing brightly colored annual and perennial flowers and plants together in varying heights and textures, we’ve been able to create the perfect backdrop for attracting as many butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds as possible. The addition of the fountains this past summer and the soothing element of sound they provide has only added to the tranquility we find ourselves craving after long days spent indoors.

Whether your happy place is a whole room, a special piece of furniture, or even an outside area, your home should bring you peace and happiness. We’re taking this month to celebrate all the things we love in our own spaces — what’s your favorite spot in yours?