Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Featured Listing- 190 Edwards St, Portland ME

Located in the lovely Rosemont neighborhood of Portland is 190 Edwards St, a 3bd 2bath home that was a joy to stage. I love it when homes are in move in condition, it makes my job easier.
Listed with Glenn Reeves of the Maine Real Estate Network glenn@themainerealestatenetwork.com
MLS/Source ID: 1027038
Breakfast Nook

Dining Room with Large Window Seat

I love deep spice colors, for they are rather nuetral and pair well with other colors.
I left the living room rather open, as its large enough to fit a number of different furniture configurations. I have a hunch when this listing sells (quickly) I may keep the bench for myself and not put it back in my warehouse.

Fiore Interiors is a residential interior design company in Portland, Maine. I (Vanessa) also own my own staging inventory. Applying good interior design principles to homes yields better results than style "advice" from people not in the design field. Makes sense, doesn't it?
For more information, contact info@fioreinteriors or 207.318.0795

PSO Designer's Showhouse Preview Party-Celebrating the Arts in Maine

Click to Enlarge Full Screen (to see your invitation!)

Now, what to wear?

Sunday, August 21, 2011

A Designer's Yard Sale...sort of...

Every now and again I sell off excess inventory. I don't like using the same pieces over and over again.
Here is what is currently for sale:
This is a gorgeous French Style, uber heavy armoire. You can use it as a closet or elegant way to hide a tv. it has pieces for both.
New it would set you back over $3500. I think $900 is reasonable for used. If you have an offer that you think is reasonable, let me know.
The bottom portion has drawers behind the doors. The upper portion as a removable closet rod for hanging clothes OR a wooden insert that can fit DVD components and a TV. It has removable outlets inside it for cord control.
Overal dimensions: 88" high 27" deep 50" wide
The top piece is 56 high, bottom piece is 32" high. The two pieces are currently connected but come apart for moving. Its made WELL, heavy beautiful wood so it needs to be moved in two pieces.
If you are wanting to put a TV inside it, here is the interior space: 22.5 deep width 45.5 subtract 2" for outlets 48" tall not including curve.
Color is much deeper and richer than the photos.
YOU WILL NEED TO BRING MOVERS. Preferably 2 guys with moving straps. I like to use a local moving company, they are priced awesome and have moved this before. localmuscle@gmail.com, think the owner is Alex.
It is currently in my storage unit on Read St between forest and ocean. It is available by appointment only.

Also for sale, dining set that expands to seat 6. dimensions and details to follow. Solid wood, I LOVE THIS SET, antique from the 1920's. The legs do not detach so it makes home staging cumbersome for me. Comes with 4 side chairs and 2 arm chairs. one side chair and one arm chair need reupholstering. I think the whole set would look great reupholstered. Solid wood, no veneers, I can help load. $275 very VERY firm on price.

You can contact me via: info@fioreinteriors.com OR the old fashioned way: 207.318.0795
Thank you!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Designing around children...the 4 legged kind.

Bella and Cole, A (designer) Love Story.

What do you do when you have two friendly, rambunctious dogs and an ambitious remodeling project? Enlist the help of an interior designer who understands both aesthetics and function.

Here are some helpful hints from a project in Orange County, CA.
(Hi, do you have cookies?)

I love using darker grout as it is less likely to show dirt.

Lovely new kitchen, down to the the granite and backsplash. The wood floors, however....

 Are tile! Yes, tile. Those wood floors are tile. They are made in both Italy and China (guess which is cheaper and which is higher quality?Yep). Using this type of type of tile requires a PERFECTLY level floor because we didn't use grout. A good tile installer is a valuable asset and often a rare treasure.
Cole, seen above, likes to swim in the pool and bring all that lovely water inside. The rug sample he is posing on is 100% tufted acrylic. While it looks like wool, it's actually indestrucible, much like the one Bella is modeling below:

Not all man made rugs are the same. Some off gas (which is bad), others at Home Goods fall apart in weeks. If the rug is going to receive high traffic, let a pro guide you. Its worth the extra time to learn. The rug above still looks new (a couple years later).
The "formal" living room is very hard to damage. We added quite a bit of lighting to balance the dark colors. The palette of chocolate, cream, blues, and bronze tied the first floor together.

Formal drapery can also be a challenge with pets and children.

In the dining room we used exquisite faux silk panels. If anyone tries to tell you that silk drapery can be easily cleaned, fire them immeadiately. It is VERY difficult to find a company that can properly dry clean silk. Hence, faux silk which is easier to clean and much harder to get dirty! We did sheer panels that had a chocolate background with blue pattern. Since dogs like to look out the window and protect their domain, accept the fact their fur is going to rub against the fabric-and design around it! Which we did.

The living room drapery was also faux silk. We did pattern on these windows as all the upholstery was solid.

Sit, Bella. Good dog!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Inexpensive Backsplash Solutions-Tips from a Maine Interior Designer

I am often asked about backsplashes-are they really that important? YES. Yes they are. How clean is the wall behind your stove right now? That's what I thought....

Home sellers are often trying to improve on a budget. My #1 recommendation is to use the simple glass tile to update. Several recent home staging clients asked for other ideas,so here are my favorite alternatives:
Bead board/wainscoting, use sparingly!

TIN and painted tin-don't do the fake tin/plastic adhesive tiles, either. Do the real ones they are not expensive. Great improvement on a budget.

Monday, August 8, 2011

The New Normal:Sofas-Tips from a Maine Interior Designer

Last week I worked with a client on space planning a large room. Part of the challenge was the amount of SPACE that large rolled/puffy sofa arms require. Did you know that a track or small arm on a sofa will save you between 12-24 inches of space? Multiply that times the number of upholstered pieces you have in a room...that is how your room got so small. Put your furniture on a diet...
The Griffin Sofa by Ballard Designs will seat just as many people as the larger sofas, but the design itself is why the overall dimensions are smaller (slim arms/back).

The Landon Sofa by Pottery Barn

The last five years has brought about a change in upholstery styles. I am seeing two very defined trends-one celebrates clean, modern lines without sacrificing comfort and tends to be smaller scale, the other incorporates vintage/historic inspired style but less fussy.

Bromeliad Sofa by Fiore Interiors

I was pleasantly surprised by the latest bix box catalogs-Ballard Designs, Pottery Barn, and West Elm. Normally for "big box" stores I head to ZGallerie. Nice to see the rest catching up. The New Normal is now mainstream, ie safe.

Pottery Barn finally got on board with the Chesterfield! I have been blogging about this style sofa for a long time! Catch up  here.

Even the slipcovered look is now more tailored. Solano by Pottery Barn

Your local retailers should have styles similar to the above, in a choice of fabric/leather/configurations. If they don't, email me for advice/direction ( info@fioreinteriors.com)

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Los Angeles Glam or Casual Maine Interior Design?

The Answer is BOTH.
Good design can accomodate and create seperate design styles, often using the same materials.
Introducing Michael Jon Designs fabric at Fiore Interiors.

I traveled to (BACK) to Los Angeles a couple times this summer, and as always I stop into design centers and hipster design boutiques that cater to celebrities/designers. While traveling to the markets in North Carolina, Las Vegas, and New York is great-the strongest trends originate in smaller Hollywood boutiques FIRST. Then they filter through the manufacturers,simplified a bit more for the masses (more on that tomorrow). The photos above and below and from a hipster places that must remain anonymous...
Very glam Hollywood which is their signature look that didn't surprise me. What DID surprise me was the fabric!
MJD, or Michael Jon Designs is an affordable fabric/textiles manufacturer located in Los Angeles. I have an account with them, and go to them for durable, basic fabric. This year they debuted a very fashion forward, colorful collection that I adore.
The fabrics are still AFFORDABLE and DURABLE...so hipster style without breaking the bank...unless you are shopping in Hollywood and still paying $4000 for a sofa (see why I won't mention the boutique!).

Here are some of my favorite new patterns:

Ok, the red and orange is not for everyone, but add the orange and red accent pillows to a chocolate or khaki sofa=amazing.
And yes, I am confident this fabric line is suitable for New England. Durable solids and textures, fun patterns, and beautiful color to warm us during cold winters.

The MJD website is here. It's not easy for consumers to navigate which is why I own sample books. Please contact me for further information.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

PSO Designer's Showhouse Lobster Bake-Portland, Maine

Empty House Party & Lobster Bake
   Good Food
+ Interior Design
+ supporting the Portland Symphony Orchestra
=Great Event I hope you can attend!

Wednesday, August 3, 5:30 – 7:30pm, $40. per person. Bernie’s Foreside Restaurant presents a festive outdoor Lobster Bake and Empty House tour of 149 Western Promenade, the Portland Symphony’s 2011 Designers’ Show House.

Lobster, Chicken or Grilled Vegetables (please select at time of reservation)

Menu also includes: Corn on the Cob, Coleslaw and Potato Salads, Blueberry Cake and Strawberry Shortcake, Beer, Root Beer, Lemonade
For reservations, please contact the PSO office at 773-6128 ext. 311 or email events@portlandsymphony.org.

I have included some teeny images of what being installed this month...can you guess WHERE it is going? You might be able to if you attend the event!

Hope to see you there...