Friday, April 16, 2010
I actually like that the dominant color in the living room is brown. The pops of coral and turquoise are really allowed to stand out against the natural rattan furniture, sea grass carpet and mocha sofa (made far more interesting with the contrast white piping). For me though the star of this room is the lighting: that coral bamboo chandelier is divine! Note too how Amanda made two different table lamps feel like a pair by having the white table lamp's shade trimmed out in a turquoise to match the other's base. The lucite console table is a great modern contrast to the more traditional, Pottery Barn-esque upholstery.
I'm not normally a fan of panelling, but I do love the casual, rustic touch white-washed panelling brings. It's a classic, "cottage" touch. I also like how Amanda used bamboo as a curtain rod. This is an inexpensive trick that would bring an organic touch to any space. If you're looking to up the glamour factor, I'd spray-paint the bamboo in a high-gloss color (white, black, red or coral would all be classic choices).
Simple, floating shelves are a great way to maximize display and storage space in an awkward spot underneath the stairs. I know I said to back off on the coastal chotchkies, but a few of your favorite pieces, when displayed together as a collection rather than scattered randomly about, is fine -- especially when the rest of the house isn't drowning in starfish, coral and boats. I also rather love the mermaid perched on the lowest shelf.
This dining room is probably my favorite area in the great room. Not only are those dining chairs totally covetable, but the coral motif in their backs is such a great way to reference Amanda's coastal inspiration without being too obvious. The nailhead details on the seats are another sophisticated touch that dresses up the overall feel of the space. I also absolutely love the built-in bar area, with the turquoise countertops and glass-fronted cabinets. I only wish Amanda had painted out the cabinet backs in turquoise as well (though maybe that would've been overdoing things...).
What I think makes Amanda Nisbet such a talented designer is her attention to detail. Everything in this shot works together beautifully -- yet it's deceptively simple. The grasscloth's yummy chartreuse color (much more unexpected in a beach cottage setting than blue and yet still very breezy and coastal, I think when done with neutrals) is picked up in the contrast welt on the chaise (the oval shape of which I love), the striped lamp shade, and the trim on the curtains. The framed bathing costume as art is a great touch and easily replicated on the cheap.