Elegance: What is it and how do we know it when we see it?

Elegance is a powerful term. When something or someone is referred to as ‘elegant’ it is heard and received as one of the highest of compliments. This is particularly true in the world of Interior Design. Ours is a visual medium. Our eyes know it first but it’s our subtly refined sensibility, our sense of artistry, culture and intellect that forms and informs us best and shapes our appreciation for design, materials, color and arrangements. As we in the design community are essentially, as I often say, ‘in the business of beauty’, having others call our results ‘elegant’ is not only important, it is paramount.

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The Quest for Calm that ‘Home’ Provides

Fast paced modern living means most of us long for an oasis away from the outside world, a place apart, a place we call ‘home’. Home is our personal space, our quiet zone, where we can completely relax, decompress, and otherwise remove ourselves (albeit temporarily) from the challenges of the day. The phrase ‘feeling at home’ refers to that notion. Feelings of comfort, warmth, and calm that thoughts of home conjure, are so essential to our well being and ultimately to our overall peace of mind.

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Continuing the conversation on color usage or lack thereof in American residential interiors, it seems very true that the ‘color’ palette most commonly preferred is a quiet neutral one. White itself gets dissected endlessly and carefully for its subtle shading choices (warm, neutral or cool). One single light neutral tone for all public space walls is often the choice to support all other design decisions.

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What is it about differences of culture that makes the people of Morocco or India, for example, want to surround themselves, wear and live with radiant colors? In Mexico the people love bright colors in all aspects of their lives. But in America we often prefer more muted tones; earthy and quiet.

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Plaster as a wall material has been used for centuries…even Millenia. Mixing color pigments into plaster before application is as beautiful today as it was 1.000’s of years ago. Drawing patterns on interior wall surfaces as decoration has also been seen for Millenia but has become regionalized over time

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Everyday is an Opportunity to Learn Something New

For many of us the hunger for knowledge, the pleasure of learning, and the need to satisfy intellectual curiosity is much greater in adulthood, than it ever was during our younger school years. Maturing into adulthood reveals our world to be an infinitely more fascinating place than our younger selves could have appreciated.

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Creative design from the South

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