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I am a firm believer that the details make or break any space. In the world of kitchens, that means things like hardware, the backsplash and perhaps most importantly, lighting. Lighting is the too oft-forgotten jewel of the kitchen. It’s way too easy to be like, ‘OK, I’ve got the countertops figured out, the cabinet color is on point and the appliances are perfect.’ Yes, we all loooovee a good island. But then you can lose steam by the time it comes to choose your lighting. In this case, specifically pendant lighting.

As many decisions as there are to make when remodeling a kitchen, don’t let your exhaustion tempt you into an expedient lighting choice. I’ve been there (trust me I agonized over each and every decision I made in our kitchen and I’m still constantly tweaking). I know it feels easier to throw the first thing you see in your shopping cart and call it a day. But with a little patience and a visit or two to Pinterest, you’ll find the sexy pendent lighting your new kitchen deserves. To help you get started (see, it’s getting easier already!), here are seven examples that really knock it out of the park.

This first one is a perfect example of how a statement pendant takes a brutalist kitchen to the next level. This space is  minimal to the Nth degree with nothing but clean lines and sleek, hard materials, but the pendants’ bronze color and unique shape offer the juxtaposition that this space desperately needed.

Pendants are also the perfect way to create contrast in your kitchen. With so many kitchens going all white these days, you can throw a daring matte black light fixture in there to mix things up and stand out. The pop of black on the stools’ legs is a nice tie in. I might have gone for a black faucet though!

Or maybe instead of using color, you go for an unexpected geometric shape or some much-needed texture. This is still one of my favorite kitchens of late. Those sconces are seriously works of art (as is the whole house btw). I love that the geometric shape relates to the geometric tile backsplash.

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After a weekend of soaking up summer fun, friends and family, I feel like I’m emanating a warm, creamy glow. So rather than jump head first into Monday, I’d prefer to ease in, with dreams of golden sandy beaches, sun-washed destinations (like Puglia – seriously considering a trip next year!) and vacation vibes warming my bones. There’s something about a rustic pueblo look, a bit of Georgia O’Keefe in the desert mixed with seaside breeze that feels so delicious. While I’ve yet to finish my own house – though I’m trying desperately people – I promise – I now have a dream vacation home percolating in the back of my mind. Would you care to join in my daydream? Continue to scroll!

For more moodboard inspiration, CLICK HERE.

images 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10 / 11 / 12 / 13 

The post A Mid-Summer Moodboard appeared first on Apartment34.

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You know what they say, if you can’t do, teach. Well – I’ve never been a creator – at least not with my hands – so artists have always fascinated me. Where do they find their inspiration? How do they transform their ideas from simple thoughts into tangible works of art? How do you even pick a medium??

Thankfully, over the years I’ve met many an artist through this whole blogging gig and I’m lucky enough to call some friends. You’ve met amazing people like Windy Chien and Rebecca Atwood on this site. Today, I’m thrilled to introduce you to Tina Frey Designs. Her new San Francisco studio is officially my new happy place.

Tina Frey Designs is known for its brilliantly simple and modern designs in resin, but her expansive new studio in San Francisco’s Bayview neighborhood had me at hello. Featuring Tina Frey Designs, along with vintage finds personally curated by Tina, the studio encompasses a retail showroom, shop, Tina’s personal studio where she hand-sculpts each piece, and a warming hut where Tina’s team puts the final touches on each and every piece before they ship.

Where do you turn for inspiration?

I have always loved travel and find seeing new places, cultures, people, architecture, design, and nature so inspiring. There is inspiration wherever you look.

Where do you turn for mentorship? 

Since starting, I have discovered there are so many like-minded people who also started their own creative companies and it is a great network of supportive people and camaraderie and this has been the most fun and rewarding! We encounter similar challenges along the way and it is a great way to share our experiences and support each other in the process. They are all my mentor along the way.

What would you tell your 25-year-old self?

Don’t be afraid to pursue your dreams and think outside the box.

What piece of advice would you offer to other aspiring artists/designers/creatives?

Be prepared for hard work and perseverance. Always be creative with your own ideas, make good quality products, have great communication, and timely delivery to your customers, and you will be fine.

Tina explained that her intention is for her new studio to become a San Francisco destination where designers and design-lovers can experience and shop her pieces in person while discovering an ever-evolving collection of unique works by talented new and established makers. Well, I’m sold. You’re going to find me at her space on the regular.

If you’re in San Francisco, Tina Frey Designs’ new studio is located at 1485 Bancroft Ave, San Francisco, CA 94124, and is open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. To learn more and shop Tina Frey Designs, visit www.tinafreydesigns.com and follow along @tinafreydesigns.

To meet more inspiring designers and makers CLICK HERE.

original photography for apartment 34 by andrea posadas creative

The post Meet the Maker: Tina Frey Designs appeared first on Apartment34.

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If you caught our last home tour, you were as probably as delighted by the deliciously light and bright vibe (and alllll the Apparatus light fixtures) as I was. It’s as if that house just exudes a warm glow. But then I spied the beauty of a home I have for you today. This one takes an equally neutral color palette in a very different direction. But I’m equally as in love.

While this home is also light and bright, it is decorated in a gray-scale that offers a more stark, cool feel. But I am definitely feelin’ the minimalist, highly curated vibe.

One of the biggest differences between our previous home and this is the floors. This home’s white washed floors – the classic mark of Scandinavian style – create the monochromatic envelope upon which everything else sits. All the dominate furniture pieces are in shades of black and gray. The accessories, like vintage African cloth-covered pillows and antique stoneware, are in warm shades of brown create a soft contrast to the home’s hard lines and cool tones.

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‘Tis the season to dream. Dream of white sandy beaches, dream of rosé, dream of cool summer breezes and the perfect setting from which to enjoy them. And I think I’ve officially found my dream setting, though sadly it belongs to someone else. But I can certainly drool over this seriously stunning and picture perfectly neutral home from afar (as well as add this to my future vacation house muse file).

This light and bright abode has all the things. The perfect amount of Scandi-inspired design. I know we’re supposed to move passed it and embrace color and terrazzo and print and pattern and drama and I just can’t! I can visit those space and appreciate those spaces but this is the home I want to live in. Monochromatic, calm, soothing, serene.

That dining room table and matching benches are particularly special. Is anyone else catching the brass detail on the cross bars?

Custom storage in the entry is so good.

As is built in seating. I couldn’t find a way to fit it into our house, but I think a built in section will be a requirement in my future dream vacation house. The more times I type my dream vacation house the more likely it is to actually happen, right?!

Do I spy shiplap done in an exceeding modern way? The brass sconce and ceiling lights, the clean lined coffee tables, and built in seating keeps this room from going too country. Instead it takes on a modern, beachy feel. I’m certainly feelin’ it.

A bedroom with all the hygge vibes for the win. Also note that pendant light is from Ikea. Proof positive that you can definitely go with a high low mix. I’m also into that circle effect behind the bed. It’s an easy way to create the feeling of a massive headboard and some fun visual interest (how I applied a similar idea in my son’s room is here).

This lovely space is proof that you don’t need to get overly fancy in the bathroom. Also I really wish I knew the source for that awesome sconce. And I wishing I’d tiled my backsplash. Maybe it’s not too late…

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After of a dose of the Texas heat in Austin last week (are you following all my recaps on Instagram Stories yet??), all I can think about is outdoor dining. Those balmy evenings, perfect for endless late-night hangs and glasses of rosé, are really is the best thing about the summer months. I don’t think I’ve ever met an outdoor dining situation that I didn’t like. As soon as I finally finish my the inside of my house, I’m going to be starting on our yard, so I figure it’s never too soon to start banking inspiration.

Who says you have to hop a plane to a far-flung destination to feel like you’re on vacation. A reclaimed wood table and benches, woven mats and vintage wicker chairs will immediately give you the island vibe.

I’m really digging the look of the desert inspired yard. A simple white table is paired with stools (the ones above are actually concrete side tables – virtually indestructible – & you can get them here) for an individual seating place for each guest. A woven end chair softens the look (one like this would work well). The table is a high-gloss white wood making it pop against the sand and also makes it very easy to wipe down!

And who says you have to actually set an outdoor dining table. Why not just put a giant cheese board down the middle. Your guests can grab and nosh as they please. A self-serve drink station is also never a bad idea. A gorgeous stone-topped outdoor dining table makes it easy to create a beautiful setup. A simple wipe with a damp cloth and you have all the decorating you need.

What say you? Does one outdoor dining style speak to you more than another. It’s usually too cold in San Francisco to eat outside in the evenings but we head to wine country next week and I’m planning to pack some pretties to set a gorgeous table – just because I can!

For my favorite yard design inspiration, CLICK HERE.

For outdoor dining recipe ideas, CLICK HERE.

For my favorite summer cocktail, CLICK HERE.

images 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10

The post 10 Idyllic Outdoor Dining Ideas appeared first on Apartment34.

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Before I really kick this post off, let’s just address the elephant in the room. Obviously, I’m a very big neutral gal. I love a good white room with mile-high ceilings. Or maybe a home with just a touch of color by way of a gorgeous pastel shade. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely think you can have fun with color in whatever space you’re decorating, but mama’s comfort zone is this side of neutral and minimal.

OK, now that that’s off my chest, I do realize that not everyone wants to live in shades of beige. And since summer is often the most colorful season, I thought what better time to dive into a bit of color inspiration. If I were to add color to a space, I like to go soft, muted route (hello all the subtle blues and greys), but today is about stepping up and sharing where others have dared to go.

Case in point—furniture. If I were thinking about how and where to add a sprinkle of color to a space, the sofa or an accent chair are your gateway drug of choice. Both of the examples above are velvet because texture is always good too, but whatever you choose to do in your space doesn’t necessarily have to check both the color and the texture boxes. Bottom line is if you prefer a neutral color on the wall, but want to add a little pep to your color scheme, the sofa or an armchair is definitely something to consider.

Now onto paint. This may seem bold, but a well-thought-out accent wall can work very nicely (hello Sunset Bungalow).

Let’s be real, that pink kitchen is wild, but I appreciate the sentiment. It’s balanced well with the remaining charcoal cabinets and lighter floors. Will I be doing this in home anytime soon? Probably not, but doing a two-toned kitchen is definitely a trend du jour and I’m a fan. If you ask me, the bolder color of the two should reflect your family’s vibe. If that’s a crazy pink, go for it!

I also like what’s happening in the green accent wall in the home office above. The idea of keeping all your main rooms bright and white but then adding a dramatic color gets an A+ in my book. It’s a great way to anchor a space that resides off your main living area. Also, I want to take a minute to ogle that black framed glass pocket door. That is definitely a detail I’d add to my home in a minute.

And of course, let’s not forget about art and accessories.

These are the things that make a space unique to you, so don’t shy away from colorful or abstract art, plants, rugs or a few colorful accessories that give your home that dash of spice. This pink chair is another fantastic example of boldly hued furniture. I’m this close to considering one of my own…

So what’s the verdict on color? Are you guys on board? Believe it or not, putting this together may have inspired me to add a little more to our home.

For more innovative color ideas, CLICK HERE.

images 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6

The post 6 Examples of Summer Color Inspiration appeared first on Apartment34.

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As I’ve worked on our house, (slowly and surely, slowly and surely), I’ve come to appreciate really well-made furniture. Pieces with craftsmanship, major style, and most importantly a soul. Yes, I agree that it’s quicker, easier and most often cheaper to grab something online, but these days I’m looking for pieces that I will want to hold onto for years. So when I saw the studio tour of Sawkille Co. in the latest issue of Rue Magazine, my heart skipped a beat.

As soon as I happened upon these images, I realized I already knew Sawkille Co’s work. I’ve seen their pieces pop up in many a gorgeous home tour (you can see a lot of them right here). Co-owner and lead designer Jonah Meyer puts a stunning minimalist bent on traditional Shaker furniture-making. The bar stools, chairs, and case goods offer a perfect mix of tradition with a distinctly modern vibe.

But it makes sense. Jonah Meyer has a fine art background, having studied painting and sculpture at RISD. After college took up residence in upstate New York – a hotbed for makers and craftspeople. Reason number 1,000 I really need to take a trip out there! What was originally a self-taught side project, Jonah’s furniture making began to attract the attention of friends and family and over time he and his wife Tara (now Sawkille Co. creative director) saw an opportunity to turn their passion into a business. Their production shop is now located in the Mid-Town neighborhood of Kingston, NY. Today, all of the Sawkille Co. furniture is handcrafted using sustainably forested material and their studio is a no-waste facility.

But their showroom is just as beautiful as the pieces it houses. The ceiling dates back to the 1940s. Jonah added plastered walls and a mix of raw and whitewashed floors.

It’s a little hard for me to decide what I love more. All this gorgeous natural light or Sawkille Co.’s stunning pieces. I’m so obsessed with this bed. But what I really love is discovering the fact that American traditions like furniture making continue, in a fully modern way.

To check out the entire profile of Sawkille Co. in Rue Magazine, CLICK HERE.

photography by gentl and hayers photography for rue magazine

The post Designer Files: A Modern take on American Tradition appeared first on Apartment34.

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So I was looking back through the site the other day and I realized I have never shared a definitive guide to lounge chairs. I guess after 10 years, I can’t remember every post I’ve ever written. And while we’ve chronicled many a beautiful outdoor space, finding a perfect lounge chair can be a bit of a challenge.

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A 250-year-old farmhouse, with a sea view, stunning gardens and a beautifully refined sense of rustic design? Count me in.

This home, built in 1770 sits on Gotland island off of the Swedish mainland.  A popular summer destination, Gotland has many amazing historic buildings that date back from medieval times. But this incredible home has been updated for how we live today and I’m obsessed.

Swooning over the light butcherblock atop the kitchen island.

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