decorating around tv's: part 2

Loving Ariana's previous post about camouflaging a big black television!  As much as we'd all love to have a proper living room with no TV, it's not always practical for everyone (especially us city folk who don't have room for a den).  The television has become the center of the American household, sad but true.

My dear friend, Charlotta, over at Space for Inspiration wrote us a little note about framed televisions mixed in with artwork and I agree, this is also a great idea!  And yes, Charlotta, I did a little homework and found some great examples.  Here you go!


The below two aren't framed, but they've done a great job bringing in some other dark frames that help the televisions to blend in more.  They trick your eye into thinking the TV is just another piece of art.

This is a great idea (if your walls can support it).  The wall is actually cut out so that the TV sits flat against it with the rest of the art.  There's no ugly obtrusion here, just a beautiful art wall!

I actually got this one on a website that manufactures custom television frames.  The mirror is made with a specific type of glass that hides the TV.  But when you want to sit in your tub and watch TV (so not for me, tub time is for bubbles and silence!) just turn it on and the image appears through the mirror.
So clever.  I also just really love this bathroom!


decorating "around" tvs

A good friend recently asked me how to decorate her living room wall with her husband's huge television. She's just re-done the majority of her apartment, but cant quite figure out how to decorate around the tv, so is left with a bare wall and a ginormous television. This is often a common problem for professional decorators and home decorators alike. Here are some examples of ways to treat a wall that harbors a (huhumm eye-sore) tv that we all have and love.

This room works because there are two focal walls. Granted not everyone can do this in their space, but if you can, choose chairs that swivel and pivot so both focal walls can be viewed. Also, built in cabinetry as done below work best to disguise a tv. But if you are on a budget, ikea has great units that can be painted to create a more custom and chic look.

This wall works because of the beautifully crafted cabinetry underneath the tv. Try a lamp and some pictures on top of the unit as done above with a dark lampshade to off-set the dark plasma screen.

via domino

This tv wall works because the tv is not the center of the wall and again the use of shelving draws the eye around the room. LOVE the un-finished wood shelves with the sleek cabinetry and Pucci chair! Its earthy, masculine and pulled together all at the same time.

via william abranowicz

This tv wall works because again the tv is not the focal point. Your eye moves around the wall because of the visual interest on the shelving and the contrast between the white shelving, minty wall and tv. Also a good idea is to wallpaper the wall behind a television or add some decals like those on etsy.



happy friday!

The weather is perfect, it's Friday afternoon and it's a holiday weekend!  Get out and enjoy the sunshine!



eclectic design

Hola readers! When Ali asked me to start blogging on Elegant Abode, I was A. a bit intimidated by the idea of blogging and B. concerned with contributing good content that would be useful to viewers. How does one differentiate them self in the world of interior blogging (and design) when there is so much great content out there? And what is it that people are looking for inspiration in?

It made me start thinking about my personal style and why I became a designer in the first place. I became an Interior Designer through somewhat untraditional means and have an eclectic, unique and ever changing approach to Interior Design. I believe that by designing within your budget and incorporating furniture, art and objects you love, not necessarily ones of a certain “look”, that you can create a home unique and personal to you. There is something to be said about designers who have the courage and taste to take pieces from completely different time periods, cultures, price points and styles and unify them into a room.

Below are some designers that mixed things up, went out on a limb and came up with something unique and fabulous. Hope this inspires you to do the same in your homes in a way that makes sense to your lifestyle and taste.


This is Katie Lee’s townhouse originally featured in the June/July 2008 issue of Domino magazine. Ive been in love with the look of this house for years and absolutely adore the mixture of girly chandeliers, modern art, French inspired furniture and cool modern appliances in this kitchen/dining room.

via Domino

Love the upper sophisticated wallpaper, floors and custom bedding mixed with colorful toys and floor tiles all kids have and love. And that artwork is just too fun!

Exposed beams, chandeliers, random numbers and pinball machines. Im in! Its so random yet it works together beautifully.

Love this funky piece of modern art with the sleek tile work and beautiful lantern. Also think this is so fun because the furniture is all different types of wood and metal.

Love how this designer did a great job balancing the room visually while mixing so many shapes and sizes of artwork and furniture.

Love that there is so much going on in the bathroom and yet it all works together in a quirky way. I wouldn’t think to put a spotted cowhide rug in an otherwise all white bathroom, but it really warms the space up and helps your eye travel around the room.

Love the mixture of the vintage furniture with modern art. I also enjoy the natural sisal runner on the stairs with the elegant chandelier.


please give a warm welcome

Hello readers, I would like to introduce you to my dear friend, Ariana!  She is one fabulous, classy lady and an incredible new mother.  I met Ariana two years ago while working together at a Manhattan based interior design firm.  I started my first day there and we became instant friends, perhaps because we have so much in common?!  While we grew up in very different places (she's a born and raised New Yorker and I'm from a small town upstate), our lives have way too many similarities.  We've both dabbled in advertising, marketing and teaching but ended up in interior design.  We are both Sag's with Virgo husbands (well, almost husband for me) and we will soon have the same initials (once I change my last name).  

But our greatest similarity has to be our love of interior design and our decorating style.  Just like me, Ariana leans more toward neutral colors and natural, calming interiors.  And since we work so well together, we have recently decided to join forces and combine our design talents into one firm, fittingly named, The Elegant Abode.  We are very excited about this new venture and cannot wait to get started!

As an added bonus, Ariana will be joining me here on the Elegant Abode blog to contribute to our daily inspirational posts.  She has sensational taste for interiors and I'm sure you will love her wit and charm.  I know that you will enjoy what Ariana has to bring to the table and we will certainly keep you updated on our new firm, The Elegant Abode!

framed in nature

As the wedding grows closer and closer, I am obsessing more and more about the details of the big day.  Am I forgetting anything?  Do I still love my decisions?  What will the weather be like?  Is everything going to come together alright?  I am getting less sleep at night and my mind is constantly running through the things I need to get done still.  So, in my (very little) free time, I'm jumping through my fave wedding blogs to see if there's something I'm missing.  During my browsing, I came across this stunning photo shoot on Inspired by This. Isn't it beautiful??  I love the hanging framed desserts and I'm obsessed with the china!

images via Inspired by This


kitchen love

There's pretty much nothing I don't like about this kitchen!  The cabinetry is gorgeous, that blue is perfect.  I love the way the stove sits back in the little nook - keeps the messy cooking somewhat hidden - and the stove itself is so cute!  There is plenty of open shelving and storage to display wine and glass canisters.  And who doesn't love a farm sink?!  Beautiful...


lazy sunday... maybe not

Well, it's raining again today in NY, what else is new??  And between this groggy weather, an amazing wedding I attended Friday night for a close friend and a fun family bbq yesterday in Long Island, I am completely exhausted.  I would love nothing more than to listen to Bruno Mars "Lazy Song" and follow his lack-of-schedule but I have way too much to do!  The wedding is officially less than two weeks away and it's go time. So, I will look longingly at this photo for a few short moments and then I'm off and running.  Happy Sunday!


elli popp

So, I'm officially getting a niece come September!  I'm so excited as this is the first time I will become an aunt and have already warned my preggo sister-in-law-to-be that I will be spoiling this little pumpkin like crazy and would love partial weekend custody (she thinks I'm kidding).  Aside from the usual aunt duties, I have been asked to help out with the nursery when the time comes so I'm looking for all sorts of pretty inspiration.  Just came across Elli Popp and I am instantly in love... these wallpapers would be absolutely adorable in a little girl's room!



While we're enduring so much rain this week, can I just cuddle up in here and take a nap until Saturday?


random art

I'm looking for inspiration to rearrange the art on the wall behind my dining table.  The wall is painted a blue-grey color and I've been collecting a bunch of random frames to paint white and hang randomly.  Also working on gathering a combination of paintings and photos, I love a mismatched look.  So, I've been going back to old images I saved a long time ago on my old computer (I apologize, I don't remember the sources of a few!) and have found a bunch of new photos that look really beautiful.  Here are a few of my favorites!

via Lonny

via Lonny

Just for fun!  So cute, who needs frames?
via Rue

Okay, the actual photos creep me out a little in this one, too many David's and David want-to-be's.  But love the frame display...
via Lonny


words of wisdom

pb+j sushi

Those close to me know that I have the appetite and cravings of a five year old child.  I could pretty much live off of cereal (I mean breakfast, lunch and dinner) if it were healthy.  And before I found out I have several food allergies, yeast being the top one, (horrible, I know) I used to eat peanut butter and jelly almost every day for lunch.  I've tried eating my PB+J on a yeast-free wrap, it's just not the same!  Other "meals" I wish were in the healthy category: macaroni and cheese, hot dogs (until I stopped eating meat) and of course, ice cream.  Do I actually eat like this?  No (except for my bowl of cereal for breakfast every day) but a girl can dream, right?

So, when I found this cute idea on Lilac and Grey I felt I had to share it with those who can eat bread and love their PB+J.  

2 slices white bread-crusts removed
Peanut Butter

Cut crusts off the bread and with a rolling pin smooth out and spread pb&j, roll and cut.


lazy sunday

I recently found out about the off leash dog areas in Prospect Park in Brooklyn, how have I lived here for five and a half years and not known about this??  So, we woke up super early this morning - it's only allowed before 9am - and headed over the Brooklyn Bridge with friends + our dogs + their dogs.  There was running, ball fetching, lake swimming, trail walking and some serious playtime with about 100 or so other dogs.  Much fun was had by all followed by extreme exhaustion (at least for me and my man).  Came home, passed out and now enjoying the rest of my lazy Sunday.  I may not have children yet, but what a great Mother's Day with my pups!


modern mexico

In the spirit of Cinco de Mayo, here is a home designed by a talented Mexican design duo, Martinez & Sordo. Why not grab a margarita and imagine you're on vacation in this beautiful villa they've created.

I love how the exterior is a modern white box while the verandas bring back the traditional Mexican, rustic feel.  I could sit there all day long.

These wooden doors are amazing, they make it feel a little "Alice in Wonderland" in this gigantic room, but they bring in so much history and beauty.

Wishing I woke up with this view every day...


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