February 7, 2010

8 Days Till Valentine’s! Are you Ready?

Filed under: Gifts, Holidays, Interior Design, Uncategorized — Tags: , , — michaeldelicio @ 1:45 PM

A fun and funky, yet sexy Valentine’s Day Gift:

Having trouble expressing how you feel toward that special someone? Trixie Delicious, (also known as the Vintage Vandal) can help.  This oh-so-sweet  cup and saucer, becomes really quite saucy in Trixie’s hands. Your intentions will be made very clear!


Wishing you a  HOT Valentine’s Day!

February 5, 2010

9 Days Till Valentines! Are You Ready?

Filed under: Gifts, Holidays — Tags: , , , — michaeldelicio @ 5:54 PM

Gift Idea of the Day: It’s time for …

A  TRULY  ROMANTIC  GESTURE! Heart of My Heart is from the art glass makers  Steuben Glass:

Its made of the finest crystal money can buy, it’s meant to be seen and it’s FOREVER!


More gift ideas below…

February 4, 2010

10 Days Till Valentines! Are You Ready?

Filed under: Holidays, Uncategorized — Tags: , , — michaeldelicio @ 11:03 AM

Valentine’s Gift Idea of the Day:

Valentine’s Day falls in the the heart of the coldest winter. Give someone that “warm fuzzy” feeling…literally. Very sexy, sensual, and chic.


This Faux Chinchilla Throw is from www.decorinnovation.com

The larger one (60″ x 86″) would be great on a bed!  Now we’re talking!

February 3, 2010

11 Days Till Valentine’s!

Filed under: Gifts, Holidays — Tags: , — michaeldelicio @ 11:34 AM

Gift Idea of the Day:

Candles are of course traditionally romantic, therefore perfect for Valentine’s Day.  But these by Barrick are a little more than just that. They’re elegant, modern, sculptural.   Almost too good to burn.  But go ahead…Valentine’s Day only comes once a year!


February 2, 2010

12 Days Till Valentine’s!

Filed under: Art and Culture, Gifts, Holidays, Uncategorized — Tags: , — michaeldelicio @ 4:07 PM

Gift Idea of the Day:

I find art to be a very romantic gift. These charming upbeat prints by Romero  Britto, (allposters.com) are sweet, but not sticky!  I would LOVE to receive all four of these, framed,to hang in a grouping.




February 1, 2010

13 Days Till Valentine’s Day

Filed under: Holidays, Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — michaeldelicio @ 4:41 PM

Valentine’s Day is less than two weeks away…ARE YOU READY?

I’m going to put up one chic, romantic  item for the home every day, for the next 13 days leading up to the sexiest, most romantic holiday on the calendar.

Here we go:

urban outfitters $38.00

Don’t you love the Red O ? ( O, baby!)  This is from Urban Outfitters, $38.00.

January 25, 2010

Adding a Hearth to Your Home

This winter has been a rude awakening! After several warmer-than-usual winters in the northeast, we’re having a good old fashioned, deep-freeze of a winter, like we used to have!   Instead of global warming, let’s just call it global weirdness!

One way to ward off the winter blues, and maybe even cut down on the heating bills, is to add a hearth,via a wood or gas burning stove.  If your house doesn’t happen to have a wood burning fireplace, there are more ways than ever to get some of that snap, crackle and heat into your  home, without the upheaval (and expense) of a major renovation.

Starting with the most traditional look, an old fashioned wood burning (or gas) stove adds so much coziness and cheer, without the undertaking of building a brick chimney and flu.  A gas or wood stove, does need venting, but it can usually be handled with a pipe vent, or chimney sleeve insert.  The traditional country look is surprisingly versatile fitting in and enhancing all kinds of living spaces, from a rustic cabin, to the most sophisticated contemporary home.

I really love  this modern rustic look.  Here a niche is turned into a warm focal point with a small stove. This stove is from Yeoman Stoves



This classic, but simple stove blends well with the upscale surroundings.  It looks to me as if the hearth box was built especially to house the stove. The stove is from www.wendronstoves.com



In this case, tradition has been followed to the letter, and to very good effect.  The Hearth and stove are diminutive in scale, and both up plenty of warmth, in the style of the room, and the temperature! The stove is from www.livingstone.ie



I don’t think of myself as a “country gal”, but this is country style I could live in, and happily.  A warm fire, big comfy chairs, white washed walls, good reading in reach.  I wouldn’t move till spring! Best Accessories: Pitcher of flowers, friendly pooch. Image via  Country Living.

living-room-dunn country living


The stove below is from Jotul.

jotul f400


Wouldn’t it be great to have a nice hearth in the kitchen? A gas stove in particular, doesn’t take up much space.  That’s because it may be placed closer to a wall, because the gas fire doesn’t radiate heat as much as a wood fire. The stove is from Morso

Morso stove via housetohome


Moving on to a more transitional look, this Jotul model, with it’s racetrack oval shape has a hint of Art Deco, and comes in a brilliant collection of colors, as in these two photos below.   The quality is top notch! This room with a blue stove shows that you don’t need much, as long everything is JUST SO. Minimalism with a little rustic warmth. The blue and red stoves are from Piazzetta

robeys.com blue


Robey's piazzetta-e905-wood-stove


“To infinity, and beyond!” (as Buzz Lightyear would say…) Just because wood is an old fashioned energy source, doesn’t mean a wood stove has to LOOK old fashioned!  Here are some modern and even futuristic styles for the hard core modernist.



The stove above is the Bocaccio by Koppe

Oooh, my favorite show is on! Not much of a plot…


The stove above is the Dadoo from Wodtke.   The one below is the Piko from Austroflam.



Really quite elegant: This stream lined stove is the K6 Steel from Meunkel Design.



If this is all too much for you: too expensive, space consuming or just too much trouble, there are gel fuel burning fireplaces that you can literally, buy, bring home, and start up, no venting, no nothing!


Don’t expect a roaring fire, and you won’t be roasting any wieners either.  But they’re very decorative, highly available in a variety of looks, and visually warming. And when you move, you can pack it and take it along!

cube in roomCUBEINAROOM094804958tpwj6gw78w5976ppw94g76w49hgnw4567gh467jg-5896g35896fjw976

This is the Cube gel fuel fireplace from EcoSmart.

cube fireplaceCUBEdordoruvmsoeituvsnrutsoirvnoerituvbsotiyliertyvbl8ibylirybl8ebyleybleytvp348975fph93875g3o934865

I like the way the flame is reflected in the metal surround, increasing the warm glowing effect. This is the Zeta Fireplace from EcoSmart.

eco smart zeta fireplaceECOSMARTGELFIREPLACEoieuro57fw938h57ow38fhq3958q395h8o348957fh3o5gf38w45fh35

The Vidro Stainless Steel Ventless Fireplace from Blomus (below) hangs on the wall, just like a mirror or framed art.

blomus's vidro


This is as traditional as you could ever wish.  But shop carefully: Beware of cheesy looking fake logs.  Some can be really well done, very beautiful and real looking.  Others, not so much.  This is the Glendora from Southern Enterprises.



Here’s a sophisticated concrete look, very transitional. The Zephyre from www.sunjelfireplaces.com


The Fire Feature:   Some artist/designers have completely left behind the “fireplace” concept, and are creating “fire features”  Most often used in public spaces, I’d  love to some of these ideas adapted for residential use.

Anne Colombo, of Colombo Construction, Brooklyn, NY is a leader in this  design form.   Some of her designs are poetry in fire.

by anne colombo

anne colombo


Here’s to the pleasures of the indoor life!

Good food and friends, a warm fire to gather around…You  may even  stop wishing for spring.

January 2, 2010

Beach Cottage Bingo!

I’m a very happy designer! One of my favorite clients just bought an old wreck of a beach cottage on Cape Cod Bay, and I get to help re-design it! It’s great to be involved from the get-go, so that I can help to make sure everything looks great at the end, and meshes together, in both function, and aesthetics.

700 square feet of beach side heaven, waiting to be rehabilitated! OH JOY!

It's all about the views!!

It's all about the views!!

Here’s what we’re working with. As you can see the views are magnificent. From the living room and kitchen, you get the full Cape Cod, beach side experience. Inside, the finishes are a cross between “Ode to 1970’s” and the Addams Family. Lots of formica, rust, water stains and old chipping linoleum.

Not to worry! With Jac Augat, our trusty contractor at our side, we’re going to roll up our sleeves and get to work!

Our job: Making Decisions. His job: Ripping Everything Out, and  Putting it all Back Together!! FOURPHOTOSABOVE;slreikf;peromitvpesotujnvso;erlnutsoeritu;or8iyunrotiyusoriu;sotiyoeioidhodhgoihgoighodighosghosi New Oak_Solid_Wood_Flooringbabyroom-paint PAINTANDOAKTEXTBELOWiurnv984ytidfn9v8ityhglsoienuvao8typbeifhnvp9rojfv84ruvifuybuo9a8oevr8iebyilurvyn

Once the chipped, discolored linoleum and old kitchen cabinets are out (there are only 5 of them!) new oak floors will go in throughout. Then two coats of a fresh beachey pale aqua blue paint on the walls and white on all the trim and ceilings. PAIN

I LOVE Amy Butler’s fabric designs. Her fresh, uplifting patterns and colors, at once both nostalgic and modern,  strike the perfect mood for our little piece of heaven by the shore.   Take your pick.  Anything from Amy’s August Fields  Collection( below) will work beautifully for new cushion covers for our two mid century lounge chairs.  I have a hankering for the pattern on the bottom left called Ivory/Bright Buds.

August Fields Wild bouguet AMYBUTLERFABRICSslkejrfoelnolritjnvseougvsorintvyuhvsleroivtynsleiiysoerikdfunsodifkhjvlosijfodivosihvosidhvllkdfjldv

The single largest piece of furniture in this tiny living room will be the sofa. But it needs to be big enough for three, and very comfy. I’ve selected the Willow Sofa in Spruce from Crate and Barrel. Its clean lines and color (close to the wall color) will keep this full size sofa from appearing to take over the space.

Willow2SofaDesoSpruceS9midcenturychair2-286x300 SOFAANDYELLOWTABLEoirtujvoriutnso;eirug fjkv9oitubilfjlfjlsdkjlsdhlsdlsidhlsdhlsdhlsdhglshglhriupwjkj5tnuotjvoi

This little yellow square table from Ikea, is great to use in multiples. Two together make a coffee table. They’re SO light and easy to pick up and move  around, which makes them very versatile. They’re even lighter on your wallet at $7.99 each! Target does a great job with this 33″ Round Gerber Ottoman. They have it in several pretty color ways. I think the Surf is perfect for this project.

lack-yellow-ikea-300x300gerber-round-ottoman-surf1 SOFAANDOTTOMANslfkpesorjgw09rujoe9rugjseoriusoeriugseorguhslirgusifseriyb9seirerli0e9tu09jt8[0r8ysoidfjoxdiflxdij

Isn't this area rug from Anthropologie stunning?!  It's called the Vernal Cusp Rug and it has just the light , happy,summery look I'm after. vernal cusp rug anthropologie VERNALCUSPRUGsldfk0eorjw03v9tutp034p97tuoer8uvwn9per87tyoq98bybqv98t6vao98387

Every beach cottage needs a little wicker. The Bali Pot Belly Lamp Table from  Walmart, provides a little hidden storage as well as that "tiki bar" vibe.  Mai Tai anyone? Target does a great job with this cream and white CurvedTableLamp.Verywhimsical, functional,and the price is right. 31BYH0qVZML._AA400_Bali+Pot+Bellied+Table LAMPANDWICKERENDTABLElskdfjseropiugjvs;eonrtuv94p8t;iadnjvvo9e84v7tnualeo9t7usvpe0;9toy

All of the pillows are from www.pillowsandthrows.com, their Modern Collection. They have an excellent assortment  of well priced beautiful pillows. These are from Koko Company, Thomas Paul and Room Service. lidjoiug soirg srhgslrughlhglshglkrugh,dh,jdhg,jdfh,djgh,djfg,djfg,djfgjdhfgdjhfgjdfgdjhfgjdhfgjhdfgjsgfkjsdgfjgfjsdgfvueiuec ivkivyhst-81115173642111_2082_195470987thomas paul starburst pillow SEPARATINGPILLOWSdkfjoeirutnpsirutsnpirutosirugsiurybvisuertyiaberytvpnirybthpisruynvuyrhvlhblisruyb soilurgy bpi rom service deluxe regency in turquoiseyhst-81115173642111_2082_185738549 FOURPILLOWSFROMPILLOWSANDTHROWSlsikmw[e08t405ot8qh304t8wjh0o597two9h4o57w9476w4976wp49b576u4

KITCHEN INSPIRATION PHOTO: Here's the look we're after for the kitchen. Simple, bright, cheerful, old fashioned. BEFORETHEASPACkdujoeiruygvnsirvguvsilerhgvlsihgslirghlsiurghvlsuhgvlsirhgvsliughvs;liuEOVERTHERPHOTO demakerealestate.blogspot.com KITCHENINSPIRATIONPHOTOsldfk;meprigujslnigulxodfigufaoeiseir67tvq3p94vbyut98es4b7tvl9ae8or

i This cottage will be used as a part time rental, so practicality is paramount. I've selected Kraft Maid Thermofoil cabinets in a bead board style door, which is low maintenance, and very sturdy. The counter top will be Sile Stone in color Dali. Sile Stone is a man made composite material that is as hard and stain resistant as granite, but available in colors not found in natural granite, like sky blue and white. There are marbles in these fabulous colors, but they're soft and porous, and prohibitively expensive. Solid composite counter material provides a perfect blend of light color and functionality.  Hooray! ASPECEHFOWIEFYHIUFHELIHLIUHLSUHFIHNDKVJIEURKHFLSUDFHLSIURGFVBKSJFIEURO98SUKYLEICBI8YAIKKSIU ND_WHdali from silestone CABINETANDCOUNTERlzkdrjp0w34957twvo94857wvp39457wp0597tpw94587tnbpw958b7nwp4958

To provide a little blast from the past, I've selected old fashioned diner furniture for our sweet old fashioned cottage. My client spent the happiest summers of her childhood on this beach, so I like the nostalgia that this look brings with it. I also love bright colors and unbeatable durability and comfort. These are from www.pastense.com

main RETROCHAIRSANDTABLElkdrrj0w34978twn958qn7tw09678wp597wv057650p67w590perik-ert89b-[0r9ty-[bjr5

Here's a colorful finishing touch. These vegetable printed kitchen towels from Crate and Barrel. are pretty enough to frame...REALLY! Check it out. TOWELSBELOWEJFOIFVFHKUDFHKIUDJHFKSURYIURYFHOELIRUYHGVLIERUHVLIEUHFVEILUHVILUGLSIEG LSL src="http://www.gaitainteriors.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/SalsaStripeDishtowelsBCOB09-250x278.jpg" alt="SalsaStripeDishtowelsBCOB09" width="300" height="houghts" />TomatoOrngRadishDshtwlsS10

KITCHENTOWELSABOVElrij09otun;odirtgw09;nseyugijn[v9;yubgtivjse95[057ug; ifgbs'o;retunaogvb;tnva;olgivunb

I'll be spending most of the winter months thinking warm thoughts of sun and sand. Maybe it will help to keep away the winter chill! In any case, I'll keep you posted on the progress, and let you know how it all turns out.

If you'd like to rent this Brewster, Cape Cod house during the 2010 summer season, email our rental agent (and contractor!) Jac Augat at jacaugat@yahoo.com or call him at (508) 776-6624


So here's a little something to dream on, during the chilly, post holiday days of winter.


December 11, 2009

Gifts for the Home: Too Good to Give Away!!

Filed under: Gifts, Holidays, Interior Design — Tags: — michaeldelicio @ 3:05 PM

When you’re shopping for holiday gifts, don’t forget that most wonderful, lovable, adorable  person of all…YOURSELF! OK, I guess you’re friends and relatives deserve a little love too.

Here are some gifts that are just too good to part with. Once you get them home, they may never get wrapped and delivered, unless your loved ones have been VERY,VERY GOOD!

silver plated hurricanes pott barn


These Silver Edged Hurricane Lamps from Pottery Barn would look great in any setting, any time of year. During the dark winter months, they answer that need for a little extra sparkle.





The Land of Warm and Cozy: Natural Birch Pillar Candles from Pottery barn.  The Alexis 18″ Pillow from Crate and Barrel feels as good as it looks.  I’d like two, please.

Nothing is richer, warmer or more of a classic than these Vintage Velvet Drapes from Restoration Hardware.  I LOVE this particular color (Birch). Drapes as a gift?  Sure, why not?  Especially if YOU”RE the recipient!  You’ll thank yourself, every day, all year round.restoration hardware vintage velvetRESTORATIONHARDWAREVELVETCURTAINSkdjfoirtje09tuwe89rtunw4589v7ytnq384t7rhn85ty7w894ythp9nv8e576n49586t7y

The Amberly Mirror from Home Decorator’s with it’s  golden accented antiqued mirror frame can fit in, and add a dash of glamour to any setting, modern or traditional. Throw a log on the fire, and wrap yourself (and a friend) in a luxurious cashmere throw. Restoration Hardware does an excellent job with this one in several great colors. GREAT GIFT!!
amberly mirror home dec
cashmere throw, RestHard

On long winter evenings, these amber and red tones will take the out the chill. Four or eight of these Mercury Tea Lights from Pottery Barn make a great gift.  And I’ll take a dozen of the Amber Goblets by Villeroy and Bosch from Macy’s.   They’ll add a pretty dose of color to my holiday table.
mercury tea light holder pottery barn
giftcollector.com villeroy and bosch

I love these teal and brown espresso cups (Yedi House Classic from Amazon.com) with this teal blue single serve espresso maker form Nespresso. I have this coffee maker, and I love it. It was my present to myself, last year!

Yedi  house classic amazon.com
/>NESPRESSOMACHINEmwoeirj9e58tyhe9f85ntynpw9587tvnm8tunv598tpw9458tnv p8o

So  when you’re making your holiday list, and checking to see whose been naughty, and whose been nice,  think of this: Who’s been nicer than YOU??

So put yourself on that list, and pick out something really special…one for them, one for you, one for them, one for you…



December 2, 2009

Guest Blog: Why We Don’t Like Matchy Matchy

Filed under: Color usage, Fabric Usage, Furniture, Interior Design, Paint, Wall Decoration — michaeldelicio @ 1:48 PM

By Caitlin Pitt

Pick up any of the hipper (or recherché, depending on your viewpoint) design rags and you’ll see at lot of looks. What used to be called “eclectic” is “classic” now; combining periods is the baseline. Elements of glamour (eg ormoulu and brass) that used to be old are new again. Corian is the new marble. Colors that once ‘clashed’ now ‘sizzle’.

You’ve seen everything, and you’ll see everything. But the one thing you won’t see is “matchy matchy”. At least not in this decade.

First, the definition. The Urban Dictionary (www.urbandictionary.com) defines “matchy matchy” as, “…used to describe an outfit that is too coordinated and consists of too many of the same types of colours [sic], patterns, fabrics, accessories, designer pieces, thematic elements, etc. Can also be used in reference to interior design…”

The expression itself embodies a mild though mocking rebuke of the old aesthetic. Even if you don’t fully understand the concept you can tell there’s something undesirable going on here. But matching is a hard habit to break! Nevertheless, when you let go of the compulsion, you’ll be surprised to find that a whole new dimension of beauty and richness awaits.

Here’s what I mean. Take, for example, this nice room here. Nothing bad one can say. It’s a comfortably appointed, calming, traditional room. I have seen this room, or a close cousin, in a thousand homes. I’ve seen this room in every city in the US. Even in the homes of very-this-century people.

Traditional Matchy

It’s certainly lovely…but is it interesting? Stimulating? Enlivening?? There is little or no acknowledgment of the intervening 150 years of design history and innovation anywhere here. Edith Wharton likely would be as comfortable in this room as my grandmother would’ve been.

Now let’s look at these rooms.

Are they transitional? postmodern? what? To say they’re “eclectic” sounds quaint, or maybe ironic, kind of like calling large item collection day at the dump “a hodgepodge”.


One common feature of these rooms is that the scale of the elements is similar to classical decorating. You’ll note that the stone sculpture above is nearly the scale of a painting that might hang over the bed in a modern room. The bronze silk upholstered X bench at the foot of the bed is a common enough item, albeit one with more “pop”. But five or ten years ago, would one have seen this bronze paired with the yellow lacquer nightstands? And stones above the bed? No, this is definitely a new way of putting things together.

Mixy 1

Here, there are lots of different colors, periods and styles, but no over-sized pieces or oddly mismatched items, such as a cherry Queen Anne stool or a 70s redwood tree stump coffee table. This room also has pairs of items that do match, lending the room a pleasing symmetricality. Would we have seen this room in the 70s or even the 90s? Likely not.


In this room, there’s very little to match – another great strategy. All-one-hue rooms with different components in various tones or values is another, more subtle, way to avoid matching too much. This room encompasses traditional, classic, modern and contemporary elements with a minimalist aesthetic and looks “mixed” rather than “matched”, but quietly so.

The point is, in this day and age there are so many ways to achieve stylishness living, and only a tiny subset of these requires that all of the elements match. Today, “go together” can mean combining similar elements in unanticipated ways just as easily as it can mean containing disparate elements within a classical framework. Whichever way one wants it, the result is distinct, crisp, provocative – and new.

Happy Decorating!


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