28 February 2013

black crow studios & tracy hiner (things we love)

not so far back, i gave a shout out post of gratitude to the good people at grace home furnishings for supplying me with that amazing screen for my LCDQ window last may, but i only thanked half of the peeps responsible for the beautiful screen. today it's time to thank the other half, tracy hiner and black crow studios (only a year later... but hey, better late than never ;-)
tracy in front of her beautiful wallpaper. not only is she pretty and wildly talented, she's just totally awesome and one of my favorite people.
i met tracy a couple years back and instantly liked her (she's dog people after all- if you are one too, you know that carries a lot of weight), and though i knew she did some cool wallpaper, i only saw some smaller scale samples of her work, and i sort filed her wallpaper away as "someday, i'd like to use that".  it wasn't until i saw a full room installation by wendy schwartz at the greystone mansion de luxe showhouse did "someday" turn into "if i don't get to use that amazing wallpaper TODAY, i might die".  melodramatic, yes, but seriously, i was that excited about it, and you know us designers, we can be slightly melodramatic at times. (ok, all the time...)
wendy schwartz at the maison de luxe showhouse.
so when asked to do a window for the legends 2012 event a few months later, i knew exactly what i wanted to use- some kick ass black crow studios wall paper! only problem was is that i had no actual walls for wallpaper, hence the idea of an 8 foot tall screen to create a wall where there was none. i also knew i wanted to use sunshine and swimming pools for my color inspiration, so using tracy's watercolor wallpaper in beautiful blues was a no brainer. the rest was sheer delight...
more black crow studios wallpaper  in a beautiful room by the talented eileen kathryn boyd
after tracy and i talked about my concept, and she agreed to generously supply me with her paper for my window, i sent her a schematic of my screen and she sent me back a bunch of sample layouts to choose from. which wasn't easy to do- they all looked fantastic.
this was my favorite, but i decided it wouldn't effectively convey the water theme, since it looks more like an impressionist masterpiece. someday, i'm going to recreate the screen for my own home and use this layout. i freaking love it and still, a year later, dream about it.
this was the layout selected. watery and beautiful, and would read really nicely from the street- not of small importance for a widow display.
 then, a few weeks later, tracy delivered my wallpaper, and even helped me apply it to my screen!
the raw screen from grace home.
tracy used a self-adhesive, removable and repositional vinyl for the panels.
so easy, even a monkey could do it!
and taa-daa! the screen was finished, about 45 minutes later. would have been faster, but i'm a talker.
tracy and have since collaborated again on the original "memphis" wallpaper for my california home + design show house bath, and i can't wait to collaborate again and again in the future. she's a genius at what she does, and that inspires me to step up to the bar when i work with her- the results are always magic. keep an eye on black crow studios- i have a feeling the best is yet to come! and thank you tracy- your support and friendship is amazing! xo.
black crow studios collaboration #1
black crow studios collaboration #2- with many more to come! (photo by john ellis)

24 February 2013

house beautiful's “beautiful in black & white” chair scavenger hunt & free giveaway!

in celebration of house beautiful's march "color combinations" issue, editor-in-chief, newell turner, will be launching house beautiful's fourth annual chair scavenger hunt right here in LA!  giving you the chance to win one of 20 fabulous chairs by following along on twitter to be the first to find a chair hidden at one of various locations throughout the city of angels.
since LA is home to hollywood, HB decided to incorporate a movie theme "beautiful in black and white" to their hunt this year, with 20 two-tone chairs by some of the top names in the industry to be given away.  when i saw my chair, bernhardt's sleek 1930's inspired "connor chair", i was instantly reminded of the fabulous deco/streamline moderne sets of the films of fred astaire and ginger rogers, particularly "the gay divorcee". i mean look at the all the zebra in the GIF below! ok, i admit i also just loved the irony of the title and wanted to use it. so sue me.  ;-)
so how do you win this fabulous chair? simply follow @housebeautiful and the hashtag #hbchairs on twitter. on march 5th, i'll be tweeting clues about where you can find this fabulous chair to be placed somewhere in LA on march 6th or 7th, and house beautiful will be retweeting them to the world at large with teh hastag #hbchairs, so watch their feed like a hawk!
hollywood glamor, black and white goodness, house beautiful, maison21 and a totally gorgeous (and expensive) ABSOLUTELY FREE bernhardt chair. how can you resist? 
to recap on how to win a chair, here's the official rules, stolen from my delightful friend, jennifer mehditash, of dec-a-porter fame. (she said it so well, why reinvent the wheel? and funnily enough, she also chose fred & ginger as her inspiration too... my plagiarism was meant to be).

It's as easy as 1 -2 3 to be part of the "House Beautiful Scavenger Hunt" & 
here’s how it works:
  1. Follow @HouseBeautiful on Twitter for clues about where to find and win “your” chair in LA between March 6th - 7th. 
  2. Make sure to follow ME on twitter @maison21 and on March 5th, m21 will share the much needed clues on where to find this chair using the hashtag #hbchairs
  3. Stay tuned for House Beautiful's Pinterest Contest in which you will be asked to include at least one pin from this post!! 
  4. Follow us both on Pinterest too -> maison21 and House Beautiful

and i'll see you on the streets of hollywood! let's win some chairs!

1. connor chair, via bernhardt
2. gif via "everyone says i love you"
3. still via "2nd floor living

21 February 2013

it's in the details (what a difference a lil fabric makes)

i know i said i was going to stop publishing photos of this project, but i can't help myself. each layer we add in just gets me more and more excited. this week, we had designer's resource of the south bay out to install some curtains and cushions they whipped up for us, and i just can't stop staring at the instagrams i snapped.  what a difference a lil fabric makes!

no. 9 thompson 'seabra' for curtains. i showed matt and adam several options  for curtain fabric, but this was"the one" and i would have been crushed if they didn't select it. thank goodness, when they saw it, there was no question.  the hardware i specified in oil rubbed bronze to go with the old world vibe of the spanish revival architecture, but kept things modern with flat cap finials and tailored grommet tops. i love grommet tops as they make big fat loose folds to highlight the fabric, but are still clean and modern. props to john baker at kneedler-fauchere for making the yardage i needed happen- he went the extra mile.
in the dining room, we layered kravet "jethro" over classique tortoiseshell matchstick blinds.  exotic and cool (if i don't say so myself). 
the breakfast nook cushions are two flavors of perennials indoor/outdoor fabric.  we also have a chic blue & white duralee "suburban home" ikat for roman shades in the room, but a pic of that will have to wait until the big reveal. suburban home has tons of fresh prints at insanely good price points, btw- you can see what we selected in a prior sneek peek post here.
and of course, my favorite detail, two coordinating dog beds for 3 tiny chihuahuas and one lazy cat. ted and richard are demanding upgrades here at the atelier now that they've seen this.

17 February 2013

weekend pick (tales of the junque whisperer™)

while walking ted, i randomly found this crazy 1970's chinois-meets-deco floral screen at our neighborhoods's biannual weekend yard sale blowout, and it was the perfect addition to the corner of my client's living room (loving how the silver leaf brightens up the dark corner too).  you never know when you are going to find the right piece, so it pays to keep your eyes open (and your ears too, as you never know when the the junque whisperer™ will call).

16 February 2013

thanks, cr laine!

"the stripe is right" by holly mclay blalock for cr laine
my friend holly blalock of cr laine (love their furniture) posted the most fabulous olioboard today featuring my memphis wallpaper for black crow studios.  it's part of a competition to win a visit to tobi fairley's design camp, so if any of y'all are registered over at olioboard, would you do me a solid and help holly out? (or if you aren't registered, only takes a sec). the theme for the contest was "stripes", so i'm honored holly thought to use my crazy mixed-up stripe wallpaper!

thanks again, holly- we love it!

14 February 2013

valentine's love from the atelier!

yes, it's a rerun but these two are my sweet valentines everyday, so i decided to share them again (unmade bed and all). hope your valentine's day is filled with love too!


13 February 2013


i am very lucky to live in such a beautiful city.  that is all.

y'all have a nice day wherever you are too!

pic via my instagram feed

11 February 2013

thanks, kids! (m21 here, there, & everywhere!)

i just wanted to thank all you kids out there who voted for me in apartment therapy's annual homie awards. over 400 blogs were nominated and with your support we placed 16th- not so bad! i know many of you have been hanging out with me since the beginning over 5 years ago, and i can't express my gratitude for your faithfulness. y'all are the best.
and speaking of hanging out, you probably already know in-between blog posts you can follow along with me on my other social media outlets right?  i'm always posting sumthin' somewhere!  whether it's facebook, twitter, pinterest or instagram, you'll find general silliness and sometimes even designery stuff  at least one of them, updated several times a day (ps- instagram is now web-based for those of you who don't use it on your phone)
last, i'd like to thank cision navigator for naming me the top interior design blogger on twitter- i may not have been number one over at the homies, but at least i'm number one somewhere! thanks, cision! ;-)

09 February 2013

grace home furnishings

two weeks ago, i attended a luncheon to celebrate a highlight video produced from last year's legends of la cienega design festival, and was reminded of all the fun i had last year creating my window display at gray morrell. i met so many great people during the festival, and forged many new friendships within the local design community, and it made working on my window one of my (many) highlights of 2012.
me, relaxing on a hot summer's day in custom swivel barrel chair inside the beautiful grace home furnishings showroom. you can tell this photo was taken a while ago as it's not quite shorts weather right now!
one of the friendships i struck up was with the nice people at grace home furnishings. when i was stuck trying to make the screen that was so essential for the backdrop of my window display, grace home furnishings graciously (sorry 'bout the pun) stepped in and made the most amazingly beautiful lacquered wooden screen for me. i was so relieved as i had thought of building it myself and was terrified that my homemade 8 foot tall screen would topple over and smash about a bazillion dollars worth of antiques. the screen grace made me was so well made, in additional to being beautiful, that i think it would have stood even if we had an earthquake! and they made it in the extremely tight timeline i was working under.
my window would have looked like le poo-poo without that amazing backdrop of the grace home screen with tracy hiner's fabulous watercolor panel insets. grace home truly has my eternal gratitude for going above and beyond the call of duty!
GH's avery cabinet, inspired by a piece spotted in london.
i've always ben a fan of grace home's polished style, first posting about them in 2008 featuring their hayworth nightchests as one of my all time favorites. grace home has a knack for producing some the prettiest mirrored furniture pieces around...
visiting the showroom always provides design inspiration- the showroom vignettes are  consistently  some of the loveliest in LA.
masculine and mirrored don't always go together, but grace home manages easily with their vendome  cabinet, another of my favorite pieces in their own line.
grace home definitely isn't short on glamor... bed and slipper chairs are lovely examples of their high luxe aesthetic.
it's also a great place to grab accessories and gifts- roger and michael have a great eye, so you can't go wrong.
pretty doesn't mean it can't be family friendly- i loved how this young girl made herself at home while her parents shopped. 
i'm a big kid at heart, so i was THRILLED to receive two coloring books and a t-shirt during my showroom visit. ted and richard would now like their own branded coloring books by the way.
the highlight of any store visit is meeting gracie in person- i mean we've all seen her in the ads in  every design magazine, right? and let me tell you, she is a charmer!
design lovers, if you find yourself in LA, do yourself a favor and stop into the showroom in brentwood. you'll be glad you did!

04 February 2013

i just can't help myself- another sneak peek! (oh & be a homie, wouldya?)

i know, i know-  i said no more project sneak peeks, but i'm so proud right now i'm fit to bursting!  my amazing clients matt and adam sent me the above snap of a window screen they sourced and DIY'd themselves, and i couldn't be more thrilled with the results. at the beginning of our project, i proposed a screen to provide privacy from the street for their large and unusually shaped front window but my custom sources couldn't give us the moroccan/mid century vibe we wanted for a realistic price, so i was a bit stumped on how to make it happen. obviously no cheap shoji-screen was going to cut it  but those kids wren't going to let my idea go without a fight, so adam ended up finding the perfect vintage-inspired decorative screen online, and then matt thought of using the light filtering vellum he uses for his amazing photography as a privacy film, and bam, the perfect solution was created.  and don't get me started on the cuteness of of the gallery wall they installed this weekend in their hallway but we'll save that for the final photoshoot.  i love working with creative peeps, and sometimes it takes a village to decorate a house so i couldn't be happier with the results of our creative collaboration... in this case, 3 minds are waaaay better than one!

click on the house to help a homie out!
and on a totally different subject, i need YOU to collaborate with ME so i don't get embarrassed over at apartment therapy's annual homie awards! voting started last friday, i've made a good showing so far thanks to my delightful facebook and twitter friends, but the blogs who actually deserve to win are starting to get out the vote, and i'm dropping like a stone (insert sad trombone sound). my friend emily, the fancy schmancy HGTV star, casually mentioned the awards on her blog today and leapfrogged over me, (and about a dozen others) to take 1st place- which she totally deserves, mind you- but still, we'd like to at least make a good showing by not finishing in the bottom percentile.  so if anyone reading this would like to throw me a pity vote, i ain't too proud to beg! and the best part is, that while you take pity on me, you can actually vote for all your other favorite blogs at the same time- they are all on the list!  and i should know- i spent a good portion of friday night nominating all my friends and faves!  (including matt & adam who deserve your vote not only for matt's awesome food blog, matt bites, but also for that rad screen that made me so happy this weekend! they are under best food photography on a blog, btw).

now go cast your pity vote for me, and all the other blogs who actually deserve to win, and thank you for your support!

and this time, i'm for serious- no more sneeks!  ;-)  oxoxo!

01 February 2013

it's in the details (a mini-lighting installation sneak peek)

i know, i know, i practically never post and here i am busting out two in a day, but i am so excited that i had to share:  my amazing clients, matt & adam, just had their handyman install the sconces we picked out together last weekend, and the transformation is unbelievable.  it took a while to find sconces that provided the right size, scale and drama factor, plus worked with the house's 1927 spanish revival architecture, and didn't require that matt & adam try to sell one of their adorable little dogs to pay for them, but we found them, and they are perfect! now i just need to stop sharing these lil sneak peeks before i've shared the whole project and there are no surprises left! (i guess there will be some left- i think we'll all be surprised when i figure out what the heck to do with all the niches in matt & adam's living room! ;-)

oh- i also bought them this brutal style sidetable on scowters.  the minute i was emailed the picture to do my post on our sale, i knew this bad boy had to be mine! i was skerred when i posted it, i'd draw too much attention, but i was like a madman with the refresh button during thursday's sale and scored it!  it was meant to be.

oh wait- i forgot i had a before pic, as matt & adam found the place when they purchased. we lightened and brightened the wall paint color, and painted the beam and mantel a darker brown to closer match the newly stained floors (the color they were before was unfortunate, to say the least- not to mention the dead matte finish). and since many of you have emailed to ask, the sconces are not vintage, but reproductions, purchased from crown city vintage lighting in the pasadena antique center. a teensy improvement on the existing sconces dontcha think? wtf were those, anyway?