Discover Your Element at The Godfrey Hotel in River North

The River North Design District (RNDD) is to partner with The Godfrey Hotel in Chicago for the 2021 RNDD Fall Gallery Walk.

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The Godfrey Hotel Chicago is an energetic boutique property in the heart of River North. The Godfrey’s striking cubist exterior houses a welcoming lobby, 221 spacious guestrooms, a boutique spa, fitness center, ground floor daily brunch restaurant BrunchRoom, and year-round rooftop lounge I|O Godfrey.

“Godfrey,” meaning “peace” and “welcome” in its Irish origins, characterizes the property’s hospitality spirit, and prefaces its motto, “Discover Your Element,” which speaks to The Godfrey’s individually tailored approach to guest service and hospitality.

Click here for special rates for the 6th Annual Fall RNDD Gallery Walk

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Chicago-based architecture firm Valerio Dewalt Train designed The Godfrey Hotel Chicago’s staggered steel truss structure—the first of its kind in Chicago—and its cubist-influenced façade, with taut cubist forms that jut inward and outward to reveal the sleek geometric steel beneath the surface. Inside, Gettys Design Group Chicago takes credit for an aesthetic influenced by River North’s abundance of art galleries, starting with a minimalist, oval lobby that greets guests with chic white marble, a recessed ceiling, and spherical light fixtures to make an impactful and uplifting first impression. Structural seating areas and intimate alcoves encourage guests to linger, while floor-to-ceiling windows let in natural light and views of River North. Striking light and design features adorn the hotel’s public spaces, as do austere stone thresholds, textured walls, and custom woodwork. Guestrooms feature a comforting minimalist aesthetic with rich, elegant materials, plush modern furnishings, purple and gray tones, and engaging geometric elements. Custom lamps, a mirrored closet door, and large windows ensure a light-filled space.

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When you stay at The Godfrey, you are just a short walk from some of Chicago’s major attractions, including the Magnificent Mile, Museum of Contemporary Art, the Riverwalk, and more.

At I|O Godfrey, guests can enjoy an assortment of Kitchen Cocktails – made entirely in the kitchen by mixology-trained chefs, globally-inspired shareable plates and sushi, and CBD-infused beverages.

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The Godfrey also hosts interactive annual events at the hotel’s indoor|outdoor rooftop, such as the upcoming Haunted Hotel – an event that combines a costume party and haunted house with themed frights in transformed hotel guestrooms.

Visit godfreyhotelchicago.com for more information.

Click here for special rates for the 6th Annual Fall RNDD Gallery Walk

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Posted in Chicago Hotel, gallery walk | Comments Off on Discover Your Element at The Godfrey Hotel in River North

Make the Kitchen the Heart of the Home with Cosentino

This is a guest post from one of the River North Design District’s (RNDD) newest Chicago design showrooms members, Cosentino.

The kitchen is now more than ever the heart of the home.

According to the Global Kitchen study, the kitchen has become a multifunctional and social space.

This statement is especially valid in these times of sanitary crisis and confinement. Now more than ever, the kitchen transcends the purely culinary space and becomes a space to share, work, chat, do homework and more.

The kitchen, as the center of life at home, is the space that best reflects the social changes and transformations we are experiencing: it projects our ways of life, how we are, how we behave and how we evolve.”

— Global Kitchen Study

The Global Kitchen study “The kitchen at the heart of the home”, prepared by the Silestone Institute, is an initiative by Cosentino to analyze the keys to domestic cooking in the 21st century.

According to the study, there is a marked tendency for the kitchen as a social space as opposed to less use as a purely “culinary” space. The kitchen welcomes more and more activities typical of other rooms in the home, until it extends to the living room to create a new environment of coexistence in the home.

Priorities when renovating a kitchen

What activities do we do in the kitchen? 

  • 43% use the kitchen to make the main meals.
  • 29% for meetings with guests.
  • 11% to work.
  • 17% for other tasks.

What do we prefer when we choose the design of our kitchen?

  • 5% prioritize functionality (make the most of space).
  • 1% savings (exterior light, optimal furniture for food preservation, A +++ appliances).
  • 12% the quality and durability of the materials.
  • 10% design and aesthetics (latest trends in colors, materials, etc.).

Today more than ever, we must stay at home, that’s why, we take the opportunity to continue enjoying the kitchen not only as a culinary space but also as a social gathering place where to share moments.

The Global Kitchen study, presented in 2019, is based on a consumer survey in 9 countries (Spain, Italy, the United Kingdom, Scandinavia, the United States, Canada, Australia, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates) and on the expert vision of 23 professionals from different specialties. 

To learn more about Cosentino and the products they offer, you can visit them at their River North Chicago showroom at 217 W Illinois or online at cosentino.com.

Posted in Chicago Showroom, Cosentino, kitchens | Comments Off on Make the Kitchen the Heart of the Home with Cosentino

6 Ideas for High-Functioning (and High-Design) Mudrooms

Mudrooms tend to be a catchall space in our homes whether it’s shoes, coats, laundry, or outdoor toys, it all lives in this space. And after a year at home, this room has seen more wear and tear than normal. So how do you keep your mudroom organized, functioning AND beautiful? 

We tapped into our design experts at the River North Design District to bring you 6 tips for designing a highly functional mudroom.

6 Mudroom Design Tips

Don’t Forget the Aesthetics

Studio Gild recently designed a mudroom in a lake home. The mudroom was designed in conjunction with the architect, Morgante Wilson. The bold blue storage cubbies and cabinets have a place for everything, including a sweet spot for the pup!

What’s one tip Studio Gild Design Principal Jennie Bishop would offer when it comes to mudroom design? “Don’t forget to make it pretty!”

See more here.

Photo by Mike Schwartz Photography

Add a Place to Wipe Your Feet

No mudroom is complete without a place to wipe your feet! Oscar Isberian rugs has over 5,000 rugs in stock 3×5 and under, many of which are samples that are under $50.

Visit their River North Chicago showroom at 120 W Kinzie or call 312-467-1212 for more information. 

See more here.

Make Sure Form Follow Function

Mudroom design has come a long way. Form follows function as they say, the primary function of a mudroom historically has been widely viewed as a utilitarian space for the daily rituals of laundry, dirty shoes and cleaning supplies. Form following these initial functions left a void in the space longing for a higher investment in quality products and materials and something more aesthetically pleasing, offering a wider range of use outside of the every day, such as potting, organization efficiency, outdoor gear, school supplies, etc. Now there are so many products and materials available for various functions and aesthetics that you can lead with form and achieve the desired function with a plethora of options from counter tops, wallpaper, tile, cabinetry, lighting and so much more to make the space beautiful and functional.

In this particular setting of high use, dirt and grime, it is important to carefully specify materials that will be able to withstand the wear and tear of our daily lives, such as a dog bath enclosure with ceramic tile, vinyl wallpaper, or Cambria quartz counter tops.

Shown here is Cambria’s, Ella Design. To note quartz is the most abundant mineral on the planet. Cambria Quartz is 100% non-porous, stain resistant, scratch resistant, and extremely durable. Cambria Quartz is 2x stronger than marble and 3x stronger than granite. Ella is an organic, subtle design with the soft tonality of a Statuary Marble, making it the perfect choice for any marble lover that does not want to deal with the maintenance of marble.

This Mudroom pictured below showcases how design can help you to capitalize  on organization and streamlining function, while accomplishing the  simplicity of clean lines and the finite details that truly make a space. This mudroom shows Cambria’s Smithfield design. It has an optic white background with subtle gray veining that flows throughout the surface.

See more here.

Combine it with the Laundry Room

The mudroom can be a key space for keeping your home organized. Komandor Chicago had an opportunity to create custom mudroom combined with the laundry room for a client from Breckenridge Colorado.

A Mudroom is the ideal place to store necessities that you don’t want to keep in the main kitchen and can be the perfect place for your washer and dryer too. Komandor Chicago created fitted storage with a closet, floating shelves, bench, drawers, shoe rack and dimmable lighted mirror. Storage, organization and practical features were the key to creating a dual functional space. They adapted laundry cabinets to the available space.

In terms of style, the cabinets of this mudroom/laundry room are blended with the style of the rest of the house. Designing this mudroom/laundry room represents a unique opportunity to reshape the space into a room that efficiently and effectively fulfills a client’s needs.

See more here.

Design with a Clean Space in Mind

Organization and the right storage is key to keeping a mudroom clean, functional, and aesthetically pleasing. Sarah Jacquelyn Interiors suggest that you don’t try to change your habits to suit what you think your mudroom should be. Instead, figure out how you use the space and design around those needs. If the first thing you do is set your keys down, make sure there is a logical place for them. This room is intended to be a catchall space, so make sure it functions like one. Use dark, non-porous tiles and grout to keep the room looking clean with less maintenance. Sarah suggests this dark hex tile from Roca Tile.

Get Organized

Just as eyes are the window to the soul, mudrooms are the preview of our homes. As we transition from outdoors to indoors, these spaces welcome us to a more intimate setting and offer us a glimpse of what is to come, a first impression. A good mudroom is a gatekeeper, it keeps us organized by having a home for all the items we bring in and out of our homes and by doing so, it keeps us organized, on task and on time. ARMAZEM.design offers closets and storage systems to suit your needs.

See more here.

Posted in ARMAZEM, Cambria, Komandor Chicago, oscar isberian, Rugs, Sarah Jacquelyn Interiors, studio gild, tile | Comments Off on 6 Ideas for High-Functioning (and High-Design) Mudrooms

How to Make the Most Out of Your Outdoor Living Space this Summer

Summertime in the Midwest is a precious time. We know it doesn’t last long, so we must take advantage of every minute and be outside as much as possible. Whether you live in the city with a small balcony or terrace, or you live in the suburbs with a spacious yard and patio, we have some great ways that you can turn your outdoor living space into an oasis and a great spot to entertain this Summer.

How to Make the Most out of Your Outdoor Living Space

Consider Porcelain Pavers

Daltile’s high-style TREAD™ Porcelain Pavers offer on-trend outdoor design in durable and long-lasting wood-look porcelain or stone.

The two centimeter thickness ensures that your outdoor spaces – from the patio and pool to the driveway and garage – will turn heads no matter your climate. Made from only three natural ingredients – clay, sand, and feldspar – porcelain is synonymous with strength. It is resistant to scratches and abrasion, has very low water absorption. And most important WILL NOT FADE!

Key Attributes:

  • UV Resistant
  • Stain Resistant
  • Scratch Resistant
  • Freeze/Thaw Resistant
  • De-Icing Salt Resistant

Variety of Installation Options:

  • Raised Pedestal – Perfect for rooftop decks & balconies in the city!
  • Loose Lay in Grass
  • Set in Compacted Sand
  • Set on Gravel
  • Traditional Tile Install/Mortar to Concrete Substrate
  • Convert Existing Wood Decks

Learn more here.

Install a Smooth, Non-Slip Floor Tile For a Seamless Transition from Indoors to Outdoors

Abaco In & Out is the first smooth anti-slip floor tile from Roca Tile, providing a seamless transition from indoors to outdoors.

The In&Out finish is the result of the Roca Group’s commitment to R&D. The innovative manufacturing process developed provides a silky, and at the same time, non-slip surface, making it suitable for exteriors. The smooth surface is ideal for indoors, outdoors and facades. Available in a wide color range of neutral and rusty hues, it also features decorative lines with reliefs and organic or geometrical effects. Available through their Special Order Program and arriving this summer.

Learn more here

Choose the Right Outdoor Furniture

Chicagoans can make the most of their outdoor space by making sure it’s outfitted for all kinds of uses – from eating to entertaining to personal rejuvenation. Most people think of seating first and foremost, but there is also dining and side tables, lighting, rugs and planters to make the exterior of a home as livable as the interior.

Ligne Roset just created a new section of their store on Wells Street in River North, Chicago dedicated to celebrating outdoor living. Whether it’s a terrace, yard, balcony or rooftop, outdoor areas should be set up to be easily rearranged and reconfigured to support many different uses. Also, carefully consider the finishes of your outdoor furniture to make sure it truly stands up to the elements and the test of time. There have been great strides in technology to create strong, durable materials with a soft look and feel. Make sure your seating has proper drainage (like the Ottoman Outdoor collection designed by Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance with its clever hidden spout through the seat) and is as comfortable as you would expect any indoor seating to be (like the cloud-like Serpentine seating by Eléonore Nalet).

Creativity shouldn’t stop at the door – there are incredibly talented designers creating unique, eye-catching, and comfortable outdoor products for your space.

Learn more here. Or visit Ligne Roset at 440 N Wells to check out their collection in person.

Bring the Entertainment Outside

Consider a way to add another dimension to your outdoor spring and summer fun with an outdoor audio and video system, installed by Barrett’s Technology Solutions.

The most popular outdoor entertainment solution is audio. Whether you like relaxing background music, rock and roll, or have audiophile golden ears for your eclectic music collection, there’s an outdoor audio system that will satisfy you. Your speakers can be heard and not seen with discreet buried subwoofers and satellites, or you can have the equivalent of tower speakers for outdoors with a powerful punch that makes a statement.   

Don’t stop at audio for your outdoor entertainment. Today’s outdoor TVs offer more options than ever before. And they can be weatherized to protect against heat, cold, humidity, and even bugs. The latest models go big with an 86-inch screen, 4K resolution, and the latest HDR technology for high contrast vivid pictures. Outdoor TVs also pack special screen coatings and high-brightness capability for outdoor viewing in bright lighting conditions.

Now is the perfect time to extend your indoor audio and video entertainment outdoors. Reach out to Barrett’s Technology Solutions at (630) 898-2850 to get started. 

Learn more here.

Posted in Barrett's Technology Solutions, Daltile, Furniture, Ligne Roset, Outdoor design, Roca Tile, Technology, tile | Comments Off on How to Make the Most Out of Your Outdoor Living Space this Summer

RNDD Welcomes Reveal Design

The River North Design District (RNDD) is excited to welcome Reveal Design to our organization.

A Chicago Landscape Design & Build Boutique

Reveal Design is a full-service landscape design-and-build boutique based in Chicago, Illinois. Established in 2011, their work focuses on creating thoughtfully designed outdoor living spaces that combine style, purpose, and functionality. From intimate garden balconies and full-scale residential landscapes to multi-unit urban complexes looking for outdoor solutions, each project is customized to meet our clients’ individual needs and tastes.

We believe the exterior is just as important

— Reveal Design

The Practice

Reveal Design is a full-service landscape design-and-build boutique based in Chicago, Illinois. Established in 2011, their work focuses on creating thoughtfully designed outdoor living spaces that combine style, purpose, and functionality. From intimate garden balconies and full-scale residential landscapes to multi-unit urban complexes looking for outdoor solutions, each project is customized to meet our clients’ individual needs and tastes.

The Process

Reveal Design offers initial on-site consultation free of charge. Most of their designs are developed through a two-phase process complete with enhanced visual models and three-dimensional presentations to give clients a clear picture of the finished product. Phase 1 focuses on the client’s style, desired function, and rough budget. Phase 2, refines these details and selects plants and materials based on the client’s tastes and maintenance desires. Reveal Design is client-focused in their objectives and openly discuss all aspects of the project from inception.

The Service

Reveal Design aims to provide lasting outdoor retreats. Their creativity and dedication to client service sets them apart from the larger design outfits. Clients can have as much or as little involvement in the design process as they desire.

Examples of their services include:

  • Front, side, and rear yard landscape installations
  • Rooftop Decks, pergolas, planter boxes, and customized screens
  • Organic vegetable and food production spaces
  • Exterior lighting and drip irrigation

Welcome to RNDD

Please help us in welcoming Reveal Design to our River North, Chicago design community. To learn more about their company and services, or to schedule a consultation, visit revealdesignchicago.com.

Posted in Landscape Design, Reveal Design | Comments Off on RNDD Welcomes Reveal Design

Roca Tile Shares What’s New in Tile Trends in 2021

The River North Design District (RNDD) is excited to welcome our newest member to our Chicago design community, Roca Tile. Their stunning River North Chicago showroom is located at 215 W. Illinois in the heart of the design district. They offer a wide variety of ceramic and porcelain tiles for multiple applications.

Roca Tile USA is an offspring of the Roca Corporation. It is a worldwide leader in manufacturing, distributing, and marketing high-quality ceramic and porcelain tile under two brands Roca and United States Ceramic Tile. The company’s product range offers solutions for multiple uses, from versatile wall tile to highly resistant indoor and outdoor floor tiles, including single colors, marble, wood, concrete, fabric, decorative tiles, and a wide array of complementary pieces.

Being the tile experts they are, we asked Roca to share with us 3 of the top tile design trends they expect to see more of in 2021.

Shape and Movement

We’re seeing organic, undulating shapes not just with tile, but everywhere, from cups to carpets, mirrors to makeup packaging. There’s a long-standing connection between organic, biophilic forms and the subtle use of natural shapes to enhance human connection to nature and creativity (think everything from the work of Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí to the undulations of a curved couch). And after 10+ months of being confined indoors, we’re looking for all the nature we can get. While biomimicry—the design strategy that imitates uses, forms, colors, and more that are found in nature—has been on the rise as an interest in sustainability has grown, we’re seeing it combined with celebratory colors in unexpected places, such as a coffee table or pillow, reported Architectural Digest.

— Roca Tile

We love the mix of bold colors and shapes in this home bar by Crimson Design Group using Roca’s CC Mosaics Gray & White Mosaic on the floors.

Oversize Rectangular Tile for Bathrooms

There are a lot of reasons to consider large rectangular tiles in a bathroom. Fewer grout lines mean less cleaning and less visual clutter. Plus, the large-format tile can help visually expand a small space. We’re seeing large tiles used in a variety of classic patterns, such as herringbone, stacked and brick. If you’re considering large rectangular tiles for the bathroom floor, try going with a matte finish, which provides some slip resistance.

— Roca Tile
Pictured: Roca’s Seattle Blanco 12″ x 24″ & 24″ x 48″ UP

Metallic Tile Accents

One way to jazz up bathroom tile is with a punch of shiny metal. Several tile companies offer tile in silver, bronze and other metallic finishes. And while covering an entire wall in gold tile might not be the way to go, integrating just a few metallic tiles can have a captivating effect.

— Roca Tile

Pictured here is Roca’s Rockart collection which offers a plethora of metallic styles, perfect as an accent or full installed on an accent wall.

Please join us in welcoming Roca Tile to RNDD! You can view their entire collection online at www.rocatileusa.com or visit them in River North at 215 W Illinois, Monday through Friday from 8am to 5pm.

Posted in RNDD Members, Roca Tile, tile | Comments Off on Roca Tile Shares What’s New in Tile Trends in 2021

6 Design Tips for Creating a Family Friendly Kitchen

We all know the kitchen is the heart of the home. But for families with children, it is also the epicenter of the home. It’s where we cook, eat, do homework and gather together. But how do you design a kitchen that can accommodate all these activities, stay organized and look good? 

We tapped into our River North Design District network to bring you 6 tips for designing a family friendly kitchen. 

Add a Touch of Color and Personality with Tile

Add a touch of fun to your kitchen design with the Block Picket series from Roca Tile. This ceramic wall tile provides different options of colors, finishes & patterns and is ideal for kitchen backsplashes or dining nooks, adding color and functionality to your space. 

Bonus tip: let the kids help you pick out the tiles to include the entire family in the design!

See more here.

Opt for Kid-Proof Countertops and Cabinet Fronts

eggersmann introduces FENIX core, an incredible family friendly surface and cabinet front. This impermeable FENIX finish has anti-bacterial and mold-resistant properties. The easy-clean material is resistant to scratching and abrasion as well as to aggressive acid-based solvents and household cleaners. FENIX is water-repellent, hygienic, and anti-fingerprint and heat-proof up to 302° F, making it an exceptional choice for kitchen counters and bathroom vanities.

See more here.

Design with the Kids in Mind

Staci Munic Interiors was brought on to give this family’s suburban kitchen a nip and tuck to bring it into the new decade. The cabinets and appliances were in good shape, but the backsplash was a bit busy and the countertops were dated. The kitchen also needed new lighting and furniture.

Staci and her team decided to color block the kitchen by painting the upper cabinets – out of the kids reach – and island white and touched up the lower cabinets – within kids reach – in the existing brown finish. They swapped out the speckled granite countertop for Cambria Britannica Warm Matte Quartz – one of the most durable countertop options –  and added a full height backsplash. Quartz is low-maintenance and antimicrobial, making it a popular choice for family kitchens. They also mitered the island countertop edge to 2.5” and added extra seating. SMI replaced the cabinet hardware with a curated combo of matte black and satin brass, changed out the lighting and furniture and gave the entire room a new paint job. The result- a beautiful eat-in kitchen with open sight lines to keep tabs on the little ones, ample storage, kid friendly surfaces, and extra seating options for homework.

See more here.

Make Space for Gathering

Family friendly kitchens come in all shapes, sizes, and styles. ARMAZEM.design lives and breathes kitchens. Through experience they know that all families are different, therefore they are all looking for custom design solutions to meet their needs. However, all family friendly kitchens must also be conducive to gathering, creating, and sharing. Functionality is an imperative consideration during the kitchen design process. What all families want is a space to create healthy, delicious, and beautiful food, but most importantly a space to share and congregate in in our daily routines; after all the kitchen is the space where life happens.

See more here

Select Kid Friendly Furniture

Add sturdy, comfortable, and easy to clean leather counter or bar stools to your family friendly kitchen. The family can cozy up to the chef in the Calvin Counter Stools from Arteriors and available through Casa Bella. The curved shape makes it easy to keep little ones inside and the leather surface makes them easy to wipe down. And added bonus: these stools are perfectly scaled to tuck away under your countertop when not in use so no one can trip or stub their toes when running in for dinner.

See more here.

When it Comes to the Kitchen Island, Go Big

A modern kitchen isn’t just about cooking. You want a space that brings the family together and inspires quality time. The kitchen should be a central hub for family members to connect and create together. The creative heart of any family kitchen is the kitchen island. Larger islands not only give you more prep space, they encourage the rest of the family to come together. One could be cooking while the other is doing homework or working on an art project. Komandor designers are coming up with storage solutions such as pull-out spice racks, hidden bins for recyclables and caddies for pots and pans. Everything will be organized and easy to find exactly when you need it. According to Komandor, the perfect family kitchen should be clean, organized, simple and comfortable. 

See more here.

Posted in ARMAZEM, Casa Bella, eggersmann USA, kitchens, Komandor Chicago, Roca Tile, Staci Munic Interiors, tile | Comments Off on 6 Design Tips for Creating a Family Friendly Kitchen

3 Innovative Technology Solutions to Enhance Your Home

Today’s smart home technology solutions offer a far more intuitive experience than simply setting your thermostat or locking your windows. Systems have become much smarter, faster and easier to use. And they can truly enhance the security, function and aesthetic of your home.

We asked our RNDD Members to weigh in on what they think are the best – and most innovative – home technology trends out there.

Protect Your Home with a Smarter Security System

With all the new technologies available, you can now monitor your home’s environment thanks to companies like Barrett’s Technology Solutions. Water and humidity sensors can tell you about a leak long before it becomes an expensive problem. Temperature sensors can go beyond your smart thermostat, informing you of an issue with your wine room or a potential problem in your kitchen. Intelligent carbon monoxide sensors can notify you of a potentially deadly situation before it becomes a danger. 

What about those window, door, and motion sensors? Use them with smart cameras that can trigger recording on motion, and you can know precisely what is happening. If you’ve ever been anxious by a door alarm that went off in the middle of the night only to discover that the wind moved the door just enough to trigger it, with a smart camera, you could know that your house was safe – or if swift action is needed.  

Smart locks can provide a slew of benefits. It’s like access control for your home. If you need to let someone in temporarily, you can give someone a temporary code or access via a smartphone app. Want to lock your doors automatically at night? Just add smart locking to a bedtime routine that locks all equipped doors and sets the alarm on your command or on a schedule. Add smart capability to your garage doors too. You can program your garage door to close automatically after a time period with no motion, check to see if it’s open anytime through your smartphone, and open and close it remotely for a package delivery. For peace of mind with your family, smart locks can also tell you if your kids got home from school when you’re not there by identifying who unlocked the door. 

If you are looking to incorporate smart home security features like these, contact Barrett’s Technology Solutions: Technology, Entertainment, Audio, and Automation Experts in the Chicago area.

Learn more here.

Enjoy Your Home with an Enhanced Outdoor Entertaining Space

With a year of pandemic under our belt and many, many hours spent at home with family, everyone is looking to expand their usable square footage and at-home entertainment options.  And as warmer weather approaches and the possibility of a more “normal” summer gets closer, people are looking to their outdoor spaces as a safe place to gather with friends and family.  Adding speakers and televisions is a great way to enhance the function of your outdoor environments.  By adding some new audio/video elements the back patio can be a welcoming place to watch a movie with the family, have all the kids’ friends over for a BBQ where they control the music, host a lively cocktail party with a few friends, or watch the game with the guys and a few cigars.

New equipment from top quality manufacturers have made this all possible while still maintaining a sophisticated aesthetic.  No longer are outdoor speakers limited to soffit mounted boxes or obvious “rock” speakers.  Modern outdoor audio packages hide easily in the landscape and can provide high quality, high-performance sound.  Outdoor TVs used to be regular displays mounted in huge, clunky, weather-tight enclosures.  Now they are weather-proof displays that look identical to any TV you could buy off the shelf.  These TVs are equipped with special filters that allow you and your guests to watch the game or catch up on your Netflix binge no matter the outdoor lighting conditions.

Jason Lehnhardt Consulting provides technology design and consulting services to the luxury residential, hospitality and light commercial markets.  Jason has 20 years of experience designing sophisticated automation and entertainment systems and works tirelessly to represent his clients’ interests as an independent and trusted advisor. For more information visit www.jasonlehnhardtconsulting.com

Beautify Your Home with a Digital Art Platform

An innovative Technology trend for 2021 is a digital art platform called apollo. Apollo Digital Art encompasses a native app, an art collection, an e-commerce platform, and a community of like-minded collectors. This unique ecosystem allows for seamless discovery and acquisition of artwork from creators around the world.

By making fine art accessible to anyone, Apollo opens the market to new audience and creates opportunities to connect artists with a new generation of customers. Apollo disrupts the way we see and buy art. To find out more on how to get Apollo in your home contact Centaur Interiors.

Learn more here.

Posted in Barrett's Technology Solutions, centaur interiors, home automation, Jason Lehnhardt Consulting | Comments Off on 3 Innovative Technology Solutions to Enhance Your Home

Spring Home Refresh: 8 Fresh Ideas for Putting New Life in Your Home Design this Spring

With Spring comes new life. And after the year we’ve had, we could all use a little rejuvenation right about now. After months of cold and snow, it’s time to breathe new life into your surroundings. For the majority of us, our surroundings consist mostly of our homes. As we are still spending much of our time at home, why not invest a little time and elbow grease into giving your home interior design a refresh for the new season.

We asked our RNDD Designers, Showrooms and Partners to provide some easy tips for sprucing up your home design this Spring.

Maximize Closet Storage Space

Get organized this Spring with custom closets from Komandor Chicago. As the season change from Winter to Spring, it’s important to pay extra attention to your closet. It’s more than just switching out your winter wardrobe to spring attire, it’s also the perfect time to take a closer look at your closet and maximize your storage space.

Komandor’s closet systems provide the ideal structure to hide or highlight your belongings and wardrobe. Make your closet space your own with custom shelving and rods to keep each item in perfect order. Choose from variety of elegant finishes, colors and hardware accessories to make your closet efficient and unique to your personal style. Komandor has many closet system solutions to suit your needs. From built-in wardrobes to the innovative create-a-closet.

Learn more here.

Give Your Pillows a Spring Makeover with New Upholstery

Hope is on the horizon! 2021 has set the framework for change and growth, and with Spring just around the corner we find ourselves purging the past, and grasping to the things we know and love.

In that spirit, Staci Munic Interiors has a design tip to bring some new life into your home this Spring: Re-upholster those forever items, and add some “oomph” back into those pillows.

With so much extra time spent at home, our furniture has definitely been feeling the love. They say if you love something, don’t let it go, and why should you? For this design project Staci and her team incorporated a custom bathroom bench, custom pillows and had the client’s existing headboard reupholstered, all with Pindler and Kravet fabric, and Phillip Jeffries Wallcoverings. Now thats a wrap!

See more of this project here.

Lighten Up Your Bedding

It’s time for a bedding refresh! Welcome a new season with lighter bedding in a range of luxe fabrics and unique patterns from Room & Board

Shop new blankets and coverlets here.

Try a Floor to Ceiling Refresh

Our homes have been used more than ever this past year. The floors and rugs have been subject to more traffic, furniture has been put to the test and lights are getting a work out. So why not freshen up some of these most used items? Centaur Interiors has three easy changes that can give your home a refreshed look for the Spring:

  • Rethink your rugs – This is an easy way to refresh the home without replacing all of the furniture. Switching out the living room rug could have a huge impact!
  • Consider refinishing your wood floors – Wood flooring trends are a lot different than they were 10-15 years ago. A dramatic but not super invasive makeover could be refinishing your floors to a beautiful, modern light grey wood
  • New light fixtures – Furniture is changed out often enough, but have you thought to change your light fixtures? The fixtures overhead can sometimes be forgotten. Frequently viewed fixtures like the kitchen or dining room could be great places to refresh the home.

See more here.

Get Your Entry Way Ready for Spring

April showers bring May flowers, and rain jackets and umbrellas! ARMAZEM.design offers ingenious solutions to keep your foyers organized (and dry!) this Spring.

Resembling cut branches, joined by a central axis, the Zweig Coat Rack by Brazilian designer Rejane Leite is the perfect addition to any foyer. This coatrack has organic lines, it comes in a variety of finishes and it is a perfect transition piece from outdoors to indoors. (top left photo)

As part of ARMAZEM’s new collection, they are introducing the Arvore Generosa Stand, by Pedro Useche this piece not only offers a welcoming composition but versatility, it can be used as a stand, coat rack and side table. (top right photo)

Lastly, meet the Dix Suit Rack by Latoog. This masculine suit rack blends the clean organic lines of Brazilian design with the nostalgia of a vintage piece once common in households. This suit rack is unique and functional, it has a hanging area plus designated spaces for shoes and accessories.

Learn more here.

Try a Home Technology & Entertainment Audit

Spring is the perfect time to start evaluating your home technology and automation systems so everything is updated, functioning, and ready for summer.  However, figuring out what is available in the market, what you really need, and what it should cost can be an intimidating and frustrating process. This year consider having an independent technology consultant perform a home technology and entertainment audit to help you make educated decisions and get what you want for a fair price.  Like a fiduciary, a true technology consultant acts as an independent advisor, only making recommendations based on your best interests.  A consultant will sit down with you to identify problem areas in your existing system and discuss new trends in home technology and entertainment that could be integrated into your current systems. He or she can then assist you in finding a qualified installation contractor or work with your existing contractor ensuring a properly designed, installed and functioning system.

Jason Lehnhardt Consulting provides technology design and consulting services to the luxury residential, hospitality and light commercial markets. Jason has 20 years of experience designing sophisticated automation and entertainment systems and works tirelessly to represent his clients’ interests as an independent and trusted advisor.

Learn more here.

Bring the Outdoors In

Looking for a simple way you can refresh your home design in one weekend? Sarah Jacquelyn Interiors has you covered.

Refresh your home this spring with a fresh coat of paint! Beautiful earthy tones like Aegean Teal 2136-40 bring the outdoors in. This intriguing mid tone creates a natural harmony within the space while bringing in a touch of color. Sarah suggests pairing it Potters Clay 1221 as a fun complimentary color. 

Plants are one of Sarah’s favorite ways to refresh the home for spring. Having plants indoors is great for your health by improving concentration and productivity. Plants bring a sense of calm and peace to the space, reducing stress and booting our mood. This spring, bring the outdoors in and create a garden oasis in your home.

See more here.

Try Some Beautiful New Bedding for Spring

Color, patterns and crisp white linens can bring new life to your home this Spring. Find these and more at The Luxury Bed Collection.

Vintage chic meets experimental colors; pop art gives the queen of flowers a whole new look. This opulent ROSEMARY bed linen by Christian Fischbacher is a reinterpretation of one of the world’s most traditional motifs. (top left photo)

A touch of Luxury: CLASSIC STREIFEN / CLASSIC KARO is a pure satin quality with its characteristic soft hand and brilliant shine woven from the finest cotton. The play of matte and glossy surfaces give the bed linen its special appeal. (top right photo)

NEWTOPIA stimulates dreaming: Is it the view through a kaleidoscope into the sky or through the geometric glass panes of a greenhouse in the botanical garden?

See more here.

Posted in ARMAZEM, centaur interiors, Chicago Luxury Beds, Jason Lehnhardt Consulting, Komandor Chicago, Room & Board, Sarah Jacquelyn Interiors, Staci Munic Interiors | Comments Off on Spring Home Refresh: 8 Fresh Ideas for Putting New Life in Your Home Design this Spring

How COVID-19 Will Impact Home Design Trends in 2021

2020 was a year of new experiences when it comes to our home. First time working from home. First time attending school from home. First time cooking 3 meals a day at home, 7 days a week. You get the picture. 

Although the end of the pandemic might be in sight, the impact it left on how we design our homes is one that won’t go away any time soon. So what exactly are these new home interior design trends to come out of the COVID-19 pandemic? We asked our RNDD Designers, Showrooms and Partners to weigh in.

Workspace All Around

Dedicated workspaces for everyone in the family have become a design must-have sprouting from the COVID Pandemic.  Whether it be a well-appointed office space for an executive working from home or a fun functional space for remote learning, well planned workspaces are essential.  Even as we move back to our new normal, these spaces allow for flexible work from home at any time, for any reason. 

Mia Rao Design has compiled the “Must-Haves” when designing a home office or remote learning space in your home.

For the home office, built-in filing, space for a printer, ample desk area, integrated data access and a door for privacy are all must-haves. The functional aspects are key, but a pleasing design aesthetic rounds out the perfect home office. This includes built-in shelving which makes for a great zoom backdrop. The remote learning space should include plenty of workspace, a charging station, storage for supplies and a corkboard to display work. There are two key differences: a location that is quiet, but where mom and dad can keep a watchful eye and an injection of fun!

See more here.

Modern, Adventurous Interior Design

Working from home and staring at incomplete house projects, or simply dreaming up a design refresh has become very common throughout COVID. What Encore Gallery has found is that people are becoming more adventurous in their home design.

There has been a trend of getting away from plain white subway and going for more bold colors and unique sizes and shapes. You no longer have to guess how something would look in your space as you will likely find a photo posted by someone who has ventured off the beaten path, which coaxes rehabbers into trying something fresh. Although there is still a place for farmhouse design and traditional subway tiles, many have chosen to go the opposite end of the spectrum and are opting for more modern designs.

Generally speaking, there has been a huge uptick into more modern aesthetics, a trend that really was validated over the past 10 years or so with the dominance of quartz countertops in kitchen construction versus more traditional granites. This is now carrying over to whole house design, and with the introduction of new gauged porcelains (porcelain slabs) into the tile industry, the combination of modern counters and modern tiles has solidified a foothold in kitchen and bath renovations.

See more here.

Entertaining Spaces in the Home

Spring is in the air! And in some ways 2021 feels like Spring – there is a renewed energy in the air, buds are coming out as we emerge from our social bubbles with enthusiasm and optimism about the future. As friends and family get their COVID vaccines, our sense of hospitality is starting to reawaken. We are eager to welcome people back in our homes or to join them for a night out to enjoy their company. At Armazem, they believe that in 2021 people and businesses will focus on reopening their doors and making their guests feel invited. Either in their homes, or at a restaurant, bar or café they believe this year people will reconnect and gather with those we have missed. So why not get your home entertaining-ready? ARMAZEM.design is proud to unveil the Brick Sideboard Bar for all things entertainment; and the Ninho Armchair whose design was inspired by the sense of protection and embrace offered by a nest.

See more here.

Investing in your Happy Place

According to Ligne Roset: ‘staying home is the new going out to a fancy place’ and ‘a place to live becomes a place to love.’ For them, the idea of making home your ‘happy place’ is not a new one, and they pride themselves on helping customers create a home that’s equal parts livable and inspiring. Now, this idea is catching on in a real and tangible way. Chicagoans are taking investments they may have used for vacations or excursions outside the home, and instead investing right back into the interiors and exteriors that have had to work much harder for them over the past year. We’ve seen a lot of upgrades in these areas:

  • indoor and outdoor dining set ups for at-home cooking and eating with the family
  • multi-functional spaces such as living rooms becoming a place for work, play, and relaxation
  • bedroom upgrades to truly make this room a personal oasis – in some cases the only room in the house where the office doesn’t creep in with new work from home arrangements

To help make the design process as collaborative and enjoyable as possible, Ligne Roset created a new Design Center at their Chicago store and are in the midst of unveiling a stunning floor display with a new outdoor corner specifically designed for Chicago clientele inspiration.

See more here.

A Reliable Home Network

If it hasn’t become all too clear in these times, we are all very dependent on our data links to the world at large. From online shopping to Zoom video conferences, our home networks have become vital links to staying connected with everything important in our lives. While the effects of the pandemic and Zoom calls will subside over time, there’s no question that reliable connectivity is and will continue to be a necessity.

With all the strain current home networks are under, it might be a good time to review your system. Is it keeping up with all the high-resolution video streaming for video conferences and entertainment? Are your security cameras delivering you a quality feed when you want to see something? If not, you might be in need of some upgrades. Barrett’s Technology Solutions can help provide a professional home network installation to keep your home connected in the fast lane.

See more here.

Home as Sanctuary

The pandemic has given a new meaning to the phrase, “home as sanctuary.” Yamini Designs has found in the last year that clients have been craving comfort, stability, and functionality within their living spaces. They seek warmth and solace but also a feeling of productivity and organization. A healthy environment with a focus on nature, greenery, and multiple light sources is also a much sought after design requirement.

Here’s how Yamini Designs provided a Logan Square client with some of these nurturing attributes within their home.

  • Warmth and Texture: Yamini and her team imbued this living and dining space with velvets, patterns, warm metals, and rough hewn wood textures, providing a feeling of comfort, safety, and stability.
  • Nature Inspired: Golds, greens, and browns, the colors found in nature, as wells as live plants and branches bring the outdoors into an enclosed city row house with limited windows.
  • Multi-functional: The living room, with an easy-to-move cocktail table, does double duty as an area for yoga in front of the fireplace, and the dining room serves as a stylish and clean-lined WFH space. 
  • Dedicated Lighting: A combination of ambient and task lighting contribute to the functionality and overall feeling of this home. Here, a mixture of recessed lighting, lamps, and decorative light fixtures support all the tasks to be accomplished in this COVID era interior. 

“Our living spaces sustain us. Whether they are used for work, play, or rest, they need to be functional, beautiful, and nurturing environments.”

Yamini Hingorani

See more here.

Functional Storage

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the home has become more important then ever. Many people begun working from home and have had to adapt existing space into a makeshift office or build out a new home office. According to Komandor Chicago, future home designs will likely move away from the open floor plan trend. Instead, designs will create pockets of privacy for working, studying and zoom meetings.

And one of the most important design features in these spaces? Storage. Functional storage. In a world where two week quarantines are recommended after potential exposure to a virus, having ample storage spaces for groceries and household goods – in addition to office supplies – is essential.

See more here.

Clean, Durable Surfaces

Cambria Quartz Surfaces is the highest quality Quartz in the market. Family-owned and American-made in Lesuir Minnesota. Cambria is the only vertically integrated quartz company and control the process from the excavation of Quartz in their own mine in North America to installation. 

Being vertically integrated, they have complete control of the manufacturing process thus ensuring quality control and bringing the best new designs to life. Cambria Quartz being completely non-porous, Cambria cannot harbor any bacteria which makes it easier to eliminate germs from the surface which is of the utmost importance during an international pandemic. Rest easy knowing you can spill a glass of wine on the surface and it will wipe clean as the day it was installed. And after the year we just had, who hasn’t suffered a few wine spills?

In addition, Cambria develops new innovations all the time and regularly launch new designs. In 2020, they launched 34 new designs, 6MM material thickness, and true book-matching ability. So you can protect your home from common germs and bacteria and reduce maintenance without the sacrifice of quality design and application restrictions.

See more here.

Left Image: Cambria Material Designer: Design Tuttoilmondo, Photographer: Ryan McDonald, Design: Skara Brae, Polished, Application: Book-Match.
Right Image: Designer: Margaret Naeve Parker, Photographer: Aaron Dougherty, Application: Vanity with Integrated Sink, Rose Bay, Matte

Outdoor Space Enhancement

Millie Rosenbloom, a top realtor with Baird & Warner has noticed a big trend already this year towards outdoor living space enhancement. People who have realized they are going to be home a lot more at least in the near future have looked for ways to enhance their outdoor space.

One of Millie’s favorite examples of this trend is from Centaur Interiors, a fellow RNDD Member. Centaur has been working on outdoor kitchens, media setups with TVs and lounge areas, and play spaces for kids to keep them entertained while at home. One amazing project Centaur recently finished involves a built-in play set and play house plus seating for adults. 

See more here.

Posted in ARMAZEM, Barrett's Technology Solutions, Cambria, centaur interiors, Encore Gallery, Komandor Chicago, Ligne Roset, Mia Rao Design, millie rosenbloom, Yamini Designs | Comments Off on How COVID-19 Will Impact Home Design Trends in 2021