White might be simple, but never dull.

Sunday, July 20, 2014


Tour a Coral Gables Home Designed for Indoor-Outdoor Living by Charlotte Dunagan

Posted July 16, 2014 in Top Designers At Work by @Dering Hall
In this Coral Gables homes, interior designer Charlotte Dunagan embraces the indoor-outdoor lifestyle that the area is known for and provides a nod back to old Florida. Designed for a family relocating from South Africa, the home feels comfortable and effortless and is perfect for entertaining.

This old Florida-style home was given a metal roof and generous balconies and porches.

A tropical twist on contemporary living room. Dungan used a neutral palette; she mixed Anglo-Indian pieces and slipcovered upholstery  in neutral colors, using outdoor fabrics so that they can be easily maintained.

British colonial cane chairs, a tufted ottoman and comfy lounge chairs create a conversation spot off the living room. 

The custom made dining room table is surrounded by upholstered Thomasville chairs. The custom, herringbone rug was conceived by designer, Charlotte Dunagan.

 In the family room, custom sofas lend a tropical vibe adorned by a seagrass rug. 

The kitchen features custom cabinetry and leather-finished countertops. Rattan barstools offer seating for casual dining. French doors lead to the outside patio pool area for additional entertaining. 

Crisp white millwork contrasts nicely with the hallway's rich, wide planked walnut floors. 

This outdoor conversation area  provides a table and benches for outdoor entertaining. With easy access to the pool.

For more information visit:


Easy Living with Tui Lifestyle

Posted July 17, 2014 in Behind the Design by @Dering Hall
Designing model residences offer unique challenges and opportunities, allowing designers to stretch the bounds of creativity while still needing to make the space feel livable. For a series of model apartments in Pasadena, Tui Lifestyle created easy, elegant design schemes, showing the timeless style of their comfortable furnishings.
Classic mid 20th century style chairs and twin storage units keynote the modern scheme created for this inspired, generously proportioned living room. The massive sofa becomes a design statement with a range of pillows adding texture and color to the overall design of the room.

    Ethnic patterns in the carpet and pillows lend interest and authenticity to this contemporary living room where the main pieces are in soothing neutrals.         
The lighting, seating and other elements are perfectly orchestrated to offer home owners and guests a space for both contemplation and easy relaxation and conversation.

      Deftly incorporated notes of blue enliven this neutral toned bedroom. Needed interest is further provided by the textured rug, also in neutrals. 

The fabric slip covers that envelope the dining chairs are a grace note that offer a somewhat traditional counterpoint to the stark contemporary dining table.

     Sometimes it is the art.  Sometimes it is the furniture. Sometimes it is the accessories. But in this smartly styled bedroom it is the rug and the pillows on the bed that add color, texture and style to the comforting neutral scheme that the designers created. 

   This superbly designed kitchen is perfect for the gourmet in each of us….however prolific. Compact, but with a full range of appliances, counter space and storage amenities it also offers easy access to the general living areas beyond. 
A patterned rug, a high tufted headboard and a massive plant that is almost sculptural are all that is needed to give this bedroom its unique appeal. The designers also made smart use of modernist seating and a strongly proportioned chest. 

Monday, November 4, 2013



Get creative with your ceilings! 

Gone are the days when preference was given to only white

plain white ceilings. 

Since my last ceiling post, I discovered hi tech stretch ceilings for homes with lower ceilings.

The stretch ceiling system originated in Europe over 40 years ago mainly as a solution for damaged ceiling. While the vinyl stretched ceilings from High Tech Ceiling still solve a multitude of problems, there are now used for their remarkable aesthetic and luxurious appearance. These amazing ceilings can be installed almost anywhere, come in a wide variety of colors and are made from an eco-friendly material.
In the kitchen
In the living room, reflective lacquer stretch ceiling - to increase the illusion of height and size
Even in the bedroom - get dramatic with color!

 Hide popcorn and damaged ceilings with no mess

Allow recessed lighting in condominium
Allow thermal or sound insulation
Add an incredible effect to the room
Bacteria and mold resistant

Quick, easy and clean installation
Even in stretch lacquer black, for additional bedroom drama
Or try matte stretch ceilings for a zen ambiance
Allows recess lighting in a lower ceiling, enhances your living room.
Check out all the projects designed by Hi Tech Ceiling on their houzz page:

Sunday, November 3, 2013



S+A designed this hotel and private club for the London-based Soho House group. Sited in a densely-populated area of Miami Beach, the project involved the restoration and retrofit of the historic Sovereign Hotel (1940) along with a new 15-story oceanfront tower. Overlooking the ocean, Soho Beach House includes 50 bedrooms, a private beach, a Cowshed Spa and gym. Amenities include two pools, indoor and outdoor dining, secluded gardens, a screening room and Cecconi’s restaurant, which is open to the public.

S+A’s design promotes indoor-outdoor connectivity with spaces flowing from street-facing entry court to the pool, garden, dune and ocean beyond. Separate topographies are vertically and horizontally layered within the site’s narrow open space. The extended historic courtyard is covered with a 100 foot long retractable awning, a technical feat that allows the courtyard to be both indoor and outdoor, and effectively houses Cecconi’s. 

To make the most of the limited space, the site is terraced up toward the beach dune in a manner that frames the pool deck. A suite of outdoor public spaces on the second floor similarly projects toward the ocean, capturing a terrace beneath the volume of the new tower. The tower’s two-story penthouse creates the final topography: staggered patios are tucked beneath a protective concrete canopy, creating a multilevel outdoor living room.

The Soho Beach House project is discussed on houzz:

More about Shulman + Associates on Facebook:

Monday, April 8, 2013



The drama of the movie, Key Largo, set in an earlier and far different times, has given way to a Key Largo with a tranquil, laid back lifestyle that has kept Miami-based designer Michael Wolk’s clients, returning for many years to the same home. The retired New York City couple use the place, in a private gated community, as a summer retreat. Recently they called on Wolk and his team to spearhead a total renovation of the 25-year old, 3,500 square-foot home. The idea was to increase the living space and to update the overall look and style of the deliberately low key d├ęcor.

Throughout, Wolk used a combination of old and new furniture, much of it his own designs, keeping the mid-century modern look and the neutral color palette that his client favors intact.

As always the success of any renovation is measured by the happiness of the homeowners – who, in this case, plan to return to Key Largo and their greatly enhanced home for many years to come.

Built on stilts as a precaution against flooding from the adjacent waterway, the two story house had an atrium that client had their designer close in, along with a porch that essentially added another room. A big part of the renovation was a much-needed redo of the master bath.

More interiors by Michael Wolk Design Associates on Facebook