Sunday, December 18, 2011

Motiv's new digs

My husband Bill and his partner Paul launched Motiv almost a year ago and they have finally moved into their new space after months and months of being in temporary space. The new space which I helped conceptualize with them is in South Boston, and the bones of the building were so fantastic that they just had to make this their new home. They wanted to keep an open floor plan for the most part which would mean that many of the staff that had previously sat in offices would now be in open plan workstations - this seems to be the most difficult shift for any company from a culture standpoint. We selected a clean, simple and contemporary designed workstation from Enwork which resulted in being the only new furniture that was purchased and all of the filing was existing, so by selecting white it blended in perfectly with the interior architecture. The existing filing added some warmth to the color palette as did the big bold punches of orange! We felt that with the gray and white backdrop of the space it could easily handle a little crazy color to keep things fresh and inspiring to the visitors and staff alike.

Congrats to Bill and Paul and all at Motiv on an exciting first year!

Motiv: This is what they do: We utilize marketing insight; design expertise and consumer-centric thinking to help our clients' master the challenges of change and innovation in today's marketplace. See more at

The office has under 20 employees so having a receptionist was not necessary. The entry to the space is bold and sets a tone for the rest of the space. And no, they do not have the tiniest employee on earth, that is simply my son drinking on the run as we visited the space.

 The existing files create separation from the corridor and main circulation space and also add some warmth. As does the surprise pop of color at the back wall again.

 View into the kitchen from the workstation

View of a typical four pack of workstations. All of the furniture except
the pods are existing. The wall blinds are full automated and a really cool new
product to be launched soon, not sure what I can say about it except that it
looks fantastic and they were installed as a part of a research project by their client. 

   Bill's office which still needs some wall decorating help from me (at some point.) The kids are trying to take over here - nothing like visiting daddy at the office!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Displaying Art

One of my favorite British magazines is called "Living etc" (I get it online through the fabulous digital magazine website Zinio along with a slew of other magazines) and they had this great article on different ideas for displaying art. When I break down a room, it really is that the beauty in it comes from a sum of the parts, not one particular one. So that naturally puts the pressure on someone like me to make sure that all of the details from paints, furniture, lighting, art and accessories are all perfect in that room. But knowing how best to display art in different rooms and homes is part of this whole puzzle to beauty. I've always loved the mix of photography and art on a wall in mismatched frames, but I also love one giant feature piece of art when called for. As far as I'm concerned there are really no set rules except for knowing what height to hang art at and a good eye to decide what will work best for particular space.

Love this corner concept with a great mix of etchings
and photography

This canvas make a statement sitting on the floor
and works perfectly with the mix of old and new 

 I've actually done something similar to this before for
a client - having a canvas painted to suit a room
and hung it like a headboard to define the bed space
 An otherwise blank wall is filled here from floor
to ceiling just about with one large photograph
separated into four pieces to make a fun vertical
This would be a great spot for family pictures too
and the stairs make it easy to view all of the pieces
upon ascending or descending.

Pretty silhouettes in a structured layout
but different sizes perhaps for a kids room
The pop of color in the matting makes all
the difference here and if they were all in
black and white it would feel quite different

I love this look, mixing art and photography all in the same
frame for the most part, but different sizes. Just wait until the kids
are older so that they don't rip the lower ones off the wall!

BIGGER is better in this case and the clean lined
sectional with a low profile is perfect to show off
these gorgeous art pieces.

And if you're into a "do-it-yourself" project take a peek at a few pictures that I added to my living room recently. I wrapped the Ferm Living tea towels around Artists canvas' and they look nothing like what they are intended for. They are fun and playful and added some interest to this wall at a super low budget cost. Now I would have hung these a tad lower, but I am trying to keep some sweet little grubby toddler paws off them for now.

Ferm Living tea towels available through "Lekker" in
the South End. I got mine on "Joss and Main"
on one of their sales.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Just Cruizin St. Armands

Wouldn't I love to be cruising around in St Armands, Sarasota right now! I have been to Florida, but never to this very unique little area where a brand new Just Cruizin (My brother-in-law and sisters company blogged about before) store has been opened by a good friend of theirs, Kari. Kari contacted me to help her create the first Just Cruizin store here in the U.S., and with my intimate experience on the last store, it was really easy for me to visualize how we could turn a very narrow and awkward retail space into a clothing store gem! And to top it off we did this all remotely, over many emails and phone calls. It is always great to have a trusting client and an imaginative one, but pulling this off was still a real challenge with the budget and timing involved. The first spark of inspiration was the old Terrazzo floors for me. They could have looked a little retro but in this instance, but they almost look like a sandy beach and are just the perfect warm gray color to be a natural backdrop to the subtle colors of the Just Cruizin relaxed clothing. We essentially kept it simple, with some magic with the space planning to visually divide the long linear space up with the retail displays and also a cool simple color palette, accented with a warm natural clay brick wall. And the fun Ikea pendants looked incredible, yes, those gorgeous pendants are from one of my favorite budget stores and they cost well under $300 for all three! so if you're in the area and need some great south African cool clothing, the store is on the St Armands Circle. Now I just need to make my way down to St Armands to see Kari and the store in person finally...

I just love these display pieces. Naturally the large mirror
was placed over the table to create more depth visually and the 
casual bench displays play to the whole laid back feel

Kari looking fab in her Just Cruizin!

The floor plan concept of dividing up the space to create special
places to lay out merchandise interspersed with hanging rails, makes
one forget that the space is so long and narrow

Thursday, September 15, 2011


With all of the recent buzz over Missoni as they launched their line with Target this week, I had to take a look to see what else this Italian house has been working on. Needless to say I also had to make my own personal trip to 'Tar-jey' to see what leftovers I could find after the goods were launched this Tuesday morning. I did get a cute pair of rainboots for my little girl and knit top with very little pattern for myself, as I am actually not a big pattern person when it comes to clothing. I was afraid that everyone would be wearing these zigzag prints in a nanosecond! A close friend who was there in the morning chaos and told me that everything was cleared off the shelves in minutes and then the girls with mountains of Missoni in their carts began trading. Yup, she had to trade with them to get things that they didn't want. It sounds crazy but it is true. Never mind the website crashing that was still not working properly yesterday, so if you want that cute Missoni iphone cover, you'll just have to wait.....

So after browsing the Missoni Home website this morning, I was intrigued by their line with great textures, colors and studies of contrasts. These items are not part of what is being sold at Target, but simply items that are part of their latest collections.

Love the big "H" at the headquarters
Interior shots. Missoni lines tend to be curvy and paired
with the Knoll Tulip chairs, the look is lovely and modern
I believe that this is their outdoor space at MH. They have an outdoor
line so I am not sure if this is for employee use, maybe a little
afternoon siesta here?
Color and textures are gorgeous, in moderation

More gorgeous textures, patterns and color

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Still loving Dwell Studio

When I think of Dwell Studio, I think of 'birdie' prints and baby rooms mostly, but really loved their small but interesting line of (adult) pillows, home decor, furniture and rugs which I stumbled upon while looking for new trays for clients for coffee tables and 'conversation ottomans.' I'm still on the tray hunt, but true to Dwell Studio style, the lines are clean, colors are crisp and designs are contemporary and fun. I'm loving the fun stripes and orange in the mix, for when I'm feeling brave with color!
Batavia Citrine and Azure Pillows


Gold Ribbons and Silver Triangles drinking glasses

 18x18 Labyrith Lacquered Wood Tray
Mayfair Bed, now I feel like I need a new bed

Vintage Blossom Persimmon and Azure Pillows; Labyrinth Persimmon Pillow

 Draper Stripe Persimmon Rug and Gate Ash/Cream rug

Draper Stripe Poppy Duvet Set