Thursday, October 29, 2015

Ok, my title was a bit corny, but so appropriate right…?

I have somehow collected a ton of stairway inspiration while living in a 1-bedroom apartment. Dreaming, one might say, but take a look…

White Spiral Staircase

Source: Planete Deco

It’s not just the stairs that are brilliant in this all-white home. Those dark floors! That skylight! I can’t imagine a more perfect studio space.

Black Stairs Inspiration

Sources: Archi Lovers, Dering Hall

How about going bold with a black staircase or awesome pattern…

One is so simple and the other so loud, yet both are classically cool.

Modern Staircases

Sources: Arch Daily, Dezeen, Tree Hugger

Concrete and wood is a favorite pair of mine.

I’m also enjoying these two examples of pale wood staircases. The one of the left is so wide and I love the sitting area at the landing in front of those huge windows. Take a look at the one on the right, how about a garden under the stairs…?!






Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Sight Unseen Shop

Once you start shopping on-line, you never go back. At least that’s what happened for me.

The internet opened so many doors for me and has introduced me to so many people. But maybe one of my favorite parts about internetting is all of the design resources, from all around the world.

Like the Sight Unseen Shop… This online magazine also has a shop. And while they’re present at many design events and provide frequent pop-up shops, it’s awesome that I can shop from this perfectly curated collection based in NYC.






Tuesday, October 27, 2015

If you’re loving your dark, moody Halloween decor this month, you’re not wrong! Go with your gut and keep the drama in your decor year-round.

Here’s some ideas…

Bugs Decor

Source: Ellos

Bugs are always a fun choice. You can add a little more plastic spiders during October, but why not include these not-so-furry creatures somewhere in your decor year-round?

It’s like adding a little life to your home without having to care for it.

Modern Skull Decor

Source: The Chic Street Journal

This is just too obvious, skulls always look great in any vignette. They add drama and a little darkness, both of which I’m a BIG fan.

It could also be my Latin half speaking to me… death is not perceived quite the same as it is in the US. Rather than something scary, the Latin culture views it as special and something to be respected.

Are you a little more feminine than dark, no Latin genes in ya? Go with a metallic skull and a softer palette of decor surrounding it.

Halloween Design Style

Source: Elin Lannsjo, Polyvore, PopSugar

Don’t want actual bug-style decor in your home, but want something similar… How about those spider-leg wall lights?

Or, maybe just go with a dark color palette and use a little more black in your interior architecture.

The gothic aesthetic is beautiful year-round. It doesn’t necessarily have to be gaudy and full of tapestry… This simple bedroom style is gothic, yet still a little modern in its minimalism.

Black Townhouse Architecture

Source: The Ultralinx

Hell, step outside your home and go dark with your architecture.

This townhouse looks like the moody, odd one of the bunch and I think that’s awesome.






Monday, May 25, 2015

Hermosa Subscription Box

In addition to a full service architecture and interior design firm, the couple behind Studio Argente has also developed a design shop which includes a bi-monthly subscription box.

Farnaz and Steve Reneker’s beach-side warehouse is located in Hermosa Beach, California where they host monthly events to explore new ideas in design, art, culture, and lifestyle. They give back to the community by donating proceeds to local art education programs.

Which makes this design-lover subscription box all the more cool. While you’re supporting Hermosa Design to continue doing good work for their community, you also get some pretty cool stuff delivered to you.

Hermosa Subscription Box

I received this box full of beautiful things that help my everyday routine look better. My first subscription box came with a tote bag, matching wallet and a very sleek thermos. I love them all and actually use it all, unlike other subscription boxes I’ve signed up for.

Head over to Hermosa Design for more information on what they do and to subscribe for their design delivery…






Thursday, February 26, 2015

I’ve been working on my place for almost a year now, re-designing it and making a small 1-bedroom apartment look rad. Most importantly, feel like home. Toward the end of this process, I wasn’t interested in spending any more money, but I had several pieces of art that I really wanted to display. I knew if I framed them and maybe bought a couple more, I could create a gallery wall. I even had the perfect space, a long hallway with an empty wall.

Art Wall / Pretty Haute Mess

Let’s take a step back… This is my first gallery wall and I’m pretty excited about it. All through college, and even after, I’ve never really settled into a place because I never knew how long I was staying. Turns out I was right, I’ve had about 15 apartments since moving to Los Angeles in 1996.

But that’s not the only reason I’ve never had an art wall… I’ve also never had a clear enough sense of my own style to even make art purchases. So, the work I’ve done to the apartment feels especially good because it’s the result of finding my own design personality over the last few years.

Turns out, the extra money spent on framing and purchasing a couple more pieces of art, was totally worth it. It made everything else I had done throughout the apartment suddenly feel complete. The long, empty hallway made the whole place feel unfinished. I decided to not look at it as just the hallway, but as an opportunity. There’s wall space there, use it. So I did and I’m really happy with the result.

Art Wall / Pretty Haute Mess

I didn’t use any of those cool tricks, like putting up construction paper, marking spots and then nailing. Nope, that would be smart. My method was simply arranging and re-arranging the art in Photoshop. Once I was happy with it, I sent a picture to my phone and kept that nearby as I nailed. I started with the large piece in the middle and worked my way out on either side.

Don’t be fooled, while this may seem like it went smoothly, there are several holes behind some of those pieces.

Your takeaway from this post should be:

  1. Hang art on your walls.
  2. Use whatever method works for you, even if that means no method at all.

If you’re interested, here are the different sources for each piece.






Tuesday, February 3, 2015

You guys! I woke up at 1:30am, which is per usual lately (although sometimes it’s 3:30am, but I digress)… Opened up Instagram, like I do. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I love the internet.

Modern Living Room - Bemz

All images by Bemz

Whether I’m finding new friends in the design world or discovering awesome new resources, I want to marry the internet. Scrolling through Instagram I found Bemz, a brilliant company that allows you to customize your upholstered Ikea furniture (and lots of other stuff in your house).

I was especially excited because the second week I bought our sofa, Miss Jolie (our cat) puked and I cleaned it so emphatically, I rubbed the black right out of the sofa cover. So then, I took off the whole chaise cover piece and took it to the cleaners. They of course completely fucked it up and the bottom corner pleats have never hung right, nor do they fall all the way to the ground anymore.

More recently, I got a dollop of white paint on top of the middle back cushion, Miss Jolie has puked a few more times and she’s destroyed the back left corner because I don’t trim her nails enough. The sofa is so comfortable and the color black successfully made it a little more modern, so I love it. But damn I wish I could get a new cover….

Pink Sofa - Bemz

Modern Kids Room - Bemz

Of course, Ikea still sells the EKTORP series and several (horrible) cover options, but no more black. I actually love it in white, but I have Miss Jolie and Sir Bishop (our dog)… so that’s a big NO. So, I can’t just buy a new black one…

UNTIL NOW, thanks to Bemz! They even have several different options in black that come in different textures and types of fabric. My current sofa cover actually looks a bit more like super dark grey or even a black’ish-blue due to the course texture, but it was the only “black” option.

Bemz even does bed skirts, bed spreads, bed frames, headboards, ottomans, poufs, drapery, cushions and chairs.

Bed Skirts - Bemz

Now, before you get all excited, there’s more. Bemz has partnered with some well known textile designers to create custom covers in really cool patterns, such as Marimekko! These are a bit more expensive, but so worth it!

Marimekko - Bemz






Thursday, December 4, 2014

This is the workspace of Swedish illustrator Sara N. Bergman. When your office looks like a super cool residence, you’ve officially made it. Keep that job forever.

atelier / Pretty Haute Mess

Since Bergman is a successful independent artist, I think that’s what she plans to do…

Clearly, this talented artist has interior design skills as well! I just can’t get over the tile wainscot on a brick wall! Holy shit.

atelier / Pretty Haute Mess

atelier / Pretty Haute Mess

atelier / Pretty Haute Mess

Images from Nordic Design