Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Greenery - This Year's Pantone Hottie

The Icon of Spring 

Think expansive lawns, leafy forests and fertile fields ripe with new growth. A vibrant shade with a tinge of yellow, Pantone's pick for the 2017 color of the year evokes rejuvenation and a revitalizing spirit, a reconnection with nature. 

It's easy to welcome this color in home decor where large windows and open spaces allow you to let the outside mingle with your interior space, enriching the ambience of the room. Just like a sky blue, greenery is a color that's ever present - especially if you live in a tropical climate or on a golf course! 

Abstract fun with eel cabinet pulls in peacock colors.

For the Birds
Designing product with this color holds a unique fascination for me where I look to the animal kingdom for inspiration. Peacocks, birds of paradise and teal ducks all sport feathers in this particular shade of green. From a creative viewpoint I love the boldness of the color and immediately want to pair it with rich saturated blues adding purple and aqua for some extra kick. 

Both exotic and mesmerizing this color scheme can have the same effect on a room's decor. It also has a masculine appeal, maybe deriving from the phenom that only males wear this magnificent plumage. Men definitely like to put blue and green together, probably a taste ingrained from childhood. Certainly it's the traditional color combination of choice for decorating boy's rooms.

Always Eye-catching                     
We have and continue to apply this radiant color palette to many of our products, including cabinet knobs, furniture and lamps. Whether it's a paint finish or silk, it all comes together in way that never disappoints. There's no doubt "greenery plus blue" has an electric magnetism that speaks for itself.
Pictured above:
Petit knobs command extra attention mounted on painted medallions.

Pictured left: 
Pixie Lamp with silk shade 22"h

Pictured below: 
Barcelona dresser with unique cabinet hardware and finials

But then again, I'm reminded that I also enjoy seeing this bright "greenery" color as a stand alone star with warm earthy browns and beige tones as the supporting actors. 


Jitterbug coffee table 
with cabriole legs 
mimics the plumage of 
a green winged teal bird. 


Friday, April 28, 2017

Color and Pattern Placement - the key to what's trending in Home Decor

Wall covering mimics the artwork on a Susan Goldstick Casablanca bed.
I couldn't help getting a little excited as I leafed through the May issue of Elle Decor magazine. Manufactures are displaying some pretty daring ads, crossing new boundaries in design. Just as you see in the world of fashion, the emphasis on bold and colorful prints is huge! No doubt the boho look has taken the home furnishing industry by storm. Be it botanical, graphic or abstract, there's no bias toward a particular color, but more like a new freedom on how it's all put together.

Rythme sofa by Roche Bobois
Leopold chartreuse wall paper Designers Guild
The Sky's the Limit
It's a risk-taking I haven't seen in years. Furniture, wall coverings, flooring, bedding... every designer is doing an interesting twist with color blocking and pattern. Chairs and sofas are upholstered in multiple fabrics mixing bold splashy prints with solids while intense colors like chartreuse and magenta have a dominance in floor and wall coverings.
Surya Bombay Ivory Fuschia round rug 8'
Heart and Soul
Of course I'm loving it all. This new trend speaks to the very essence of my design sense touching on passion for color and strategic placement of patterns. Using decorative hardware in an arbitrary fashion just adds to the fun and is a key component in many a Susan Goldstick furniture design where a knob or finial is sure to pop up in the most unusual places.

10" Birdie finial stands in the corner of the Ritz media cabinet where multiple paint finishes come together.

Birdie finial loaded with dots sits in the corner of a Barcelona dresser where the ledge is covered in artful scrolls. 
Erte Knob sits amidst energetic artwork on a  Barcelona bed headboard.. 
Next of Kin
So how do I take my designs a step further and join the momentum that's got the home furnishing industry immersed in this new explosion of color, pattern and design? Let's just say I'm exploring an exaggerated style of decorative hardware that I envision on both cabinetry and furniture.  For now I call it the super knob... coming soon.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Decorating with One-of-a-Kind Finials

 How to use a one-of-a-kind knob or finial in a decorating scheme can be puzzling. Of course there's always a cabinet with a solitary drawer that can use some spiffing up or a bare newel post at the end of the staircase. That's the easy stuff.
 I'm always amazed at some of the creative ideas that arise when trying to figure out how to use or where to put that one precious item that you're determined needs a place in your decor.

Now that's Clever
I'm always thinking of ways to display our finials. Hand sculpted, hand painted and standing 8" in height, they're truly works of art.  I remember  I happened to come across these large 5" jacks in a store and thought they would make great pedestals - an unusual display and very effective.
Another time I thought it would be cool to put a finial in a glass bowl, similar to an aquarium affect.  I think I borrowed the idea from a restaurant that had a single gerbera daisy resting inside a glass jar.

There's always the grand way of displaying a painting from a cord using the finial as the anchor. This works well with a knob too if you use a dowel screw. I am often quick to point out that our tiebacks make great hooks for hanging jewelry, evening bags and the like.

Doors that pull open and close such as closet doors are perfect for our knobs, pulls and even finials. This Jumbo Isabella finial is attached to a French door.                                                                             

I've even tossed a knob into a stash of collectibles from anything to shells, rocks, beach glass, etc. Believe it or not, the knobs look right at home in a grouping of found objects!

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

A New Twist For Our Jitterbug Desk

I've been eager to create a furniture piece that juxtaposes rich colors with wood stains, particularly a weathered wood or wired brush effect.

I've seen a little bit of this concept here and there but mostly with latex or chalk paints and nothing particularly interesting about the furniture piece itself.

So the opportunity to create our Jitterbug desk with this concept was an exciting challenge. I love when a customer is receptive to trying something completely fresh and new. The desk was the just the right project. It offered perfect placement for our jewel tone color finishes which I mapped out on the drawers and curvy cabriole legs, We left the greater surface areas such as the top, sides, back and chair well for the wood stain treatment. My cabinetmaker even used a different wood for these areas so the grain would be more pronounced.

At first my customer was concerned that we may be compromising too much of the piece to wood grain and not leaving enough for our signature paint treatments. But I assured her that the desk would have a good dose of artwork including her favorite rose and mosaic patterns that she specified.

I absolutely love the paint color palette. Ruby, deep gold, amber and silver look awesome with the gray tones of the wood stain. We made up congo light knobs and pulls in a custom color scheme that added a nice contrast with the drawers.

Choosing between knobs and pulls was a tough
decision and I eventually decided to use a
combination of the two.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Revisit Beach Bungalow Kitchen Makeover

It's been 9 years since our friends purchased a beach house.  It was a pretty basic bungalow in need of some updating, particularly the kitchen. Every time I looked at it, I tried to imagine our paint finishes on the cabinets. Up until this point, all of our projects were furniture pieces, nothing larger than a bed or an entertainment unit. Painting 4 sides (yes the edges are included in the process) of 15 cabinet doors plus 4 drawers was a huge undertaking for us. But I was eager to take the challenge and made a proposal.

The plan included  a new finish on the cabinets, new hinges, new gorgeous knobs (of course) and a faux granite paint finish on all the trim that surrounded the cabinets and the tiles. It was truly a gamble for both of us. Although I was confident that the outcome would look good, I was almost clueless as to how the logistics would play out and how I was going to tackle each step.

Over the river and through the woods
For anyone who understands Stinson Beach and the proximity to San Francisco is probably aware of the long and winding cliff side roads. Remember the Michael Douglas's roller coaster ocean drive to see Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct? This journey to the beach became part of the project routine.

So first I hired a person to go out to the house and remove all the cabinet doors and take them back to his shop to sand them. Then he brought them to our furniture paint shop for the priming and painting. It was a little overwhelming at first. Every inch of our workshop was occupied with a cabinet door.

Painting the cabinets was part one of the project. It was back to the beach house to sand, prime and paint all the trim. Then I had a contractor haul the doors and drawers back to the house where they were installed with new hinges. Oh yeah - I even got my cabinet maker in Los Angeles involved because we decided to create a door to cover the open shelving where pots and pans were stored. It was another journey to the beach with my handyman for the installation of the new door.

The Best Part
One of the nice aspects of the kitchen layout was a huge skylight that ran the length of the counter tops. It couldn't be a more perfect setting for our paint finishes and knobs where the cabinets dazzle from dawn to sundown.

 Happy Outcome
What I didn't know was how everything would hold up over the years. One can imagine how pleased I am to report that the paint finish shows no nicks, no scratches and most of all no fading!The amber color is still rich and vibrant. The knobs and cabinets are  just as lively as the day they were installed. The kitchen is happy as ever.

The Makeover Formula
Nothing too outlandish, my friend wanted the paint finish to have the feeling of exotic wood. So we chose the amber paint treatment which is softer than copper, and more exciting than brown for the cabinets. I created the fantasy stone trim  in light and subtle tones bringing in some of the other colors in the room.
Having a little bit of fun, we selected 2 different knob styles with an emphasis on shades of mustard gold with silver accents. .Both the Congo Lights and the Nu Sunflower knobs have topaz crystals that offer a pop of shimmer.

Monday, May 16, 2016

When the Ocean Meets the Sand

While leafing through a recent Elle Decor magazine I couldn't help but notice that just about every product advertisement focused on a blue and taupe color scheme. Furnishings, floor coverings, tiles and home accents, whether it be a rug or a sofa, you would think there was a  manufacturers' conspiracy to dish out a version of this color combo.

It reminded me of a comment that I heard from an interior designer who was helping a couple decorate their living room.

A little unsure about the designer's fabric recommendation, they questioned if blue goes with beige to which the designer remarked, "Does the ocean go with the sand?" I absolutely love this analogy. It makes me crack a smile whenever I think about the question and the retort. The popularity of this color scheme in interior decorating has obvious psychological impact. The visual of ocean and sand offers a wide scale of moods that swing from calm to exhilaration - something to reach everyone's comfort zone.

This motivated me to look through our product lines and was happy to see that blue was plentiful in shades of light to dark. We have a lot of fantastic blue color combinations, but not quite anything that offered the blue and taupe package.

So I did a little tweak with our popular Tiki knob and pull in light sapphire and lapis. I substituted the olivine crystal with a light smoke topaz and was amazed at how changing this small detail brought me closer to the ocean/sand scheme.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Soft Wisps of Color for 2016

At the beginning of the year I always like to think about the celebrated Pantone pick and how I can use it in a Susan Goldstick creation. This year the Pantone mystics selected 2 colors to share the annual color of the year spot. Rose Quartz and Serenity Blue were chosen for their balance of comforting warmth and cool tranquility that offer a sense of  peacefulness.
French bridal bouquet with blushing pink and blue

It's funny how I don't immediately conjure up a vision of these colors together in a singular theme.  It must have something to do with the little girl pink and the little boy blue that makes me want to separate them as an either-or choice.

But then I think about country french motifs and how romantic and spirited these colors can be when they collaborate effectively in contemporary decor. 

2" diameter Mini knob style 7 pink 
2" diameter Mini knob style 7 blue

A Pretty Surprise
Looking through our archives of custom painted furniture and cabinet knobs, I was reminded that we've used a pink and blue color scheme in several product designs. We blended  pale shades of pink, blue and yellow for the lustrous paint finish on this Bolero dresser. Our mini knob style #7 shows the theme in 2 ways reversing the background colors and the "M&Ms". Each looks pretty yummy!

Fabulous fabrics, wall coverings and furnishings in these soft wispy colors will soon hit the marketplace. I'm especially eager to integrate the new pantone hotties into our product lines including knobs, pulls and decorative drapery hardware. A color scheme that speaks beauty and serenity is bound to grow a fan base that will thrive beyond 2016.

Hand painted Bolero dresser 45" w x 34" h x 22" dp has a quiet elegance in this soft color palette.