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from the designer desk of candace langan…

Taste designer Candace Langan has been working her yacht interior magic once again…  For the past few months she’s been on a sprint to help our California-based client and new owner of a classic super yacht reinvigorate the vessel and personalize for his chapter of ownership.

Our client acquired the then ‘Timoneer’ this summer and in addition to renaming her ‘Catalina’ he brought his western aesthetic to the 147′ yacht originally designed by Dubois Naval Architects with interiors by John Munford.  How did we successfully blend our client’s request for a California-clean palette and polite insistence for “no blue, please” with a classic cherry yacht interior?

Candace relied on a textured and neutralized palette with accents in tomato red and crisp browns to complement the rich wood tones.  Blue and white carpet came out and was replaced with a subtly patterned geometric rug.  Florals were replaced with a collection of small scale prints and textured fabrics.  Tufting was removed and replaced with tight backs on sofas and headboards.

Now, Catalina boasts a clean and textured canvas – ready for our client to personal with art and collections from his travels at sea.  All aboard!

Only the best,

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Yacht management firm Jon Barrett and Associates oversaw the refresh of Catalina and the hull painting in a warm Benjamin Moore gray.  Our client was so pleased with the new hull color we used it as a launching point for the interior color palette.

 

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The teak flooring was refinished and a new gray grout was installed to complement the  stainless steel accents around the flush floor lights, railings and diamond inlays found in the upper salon.

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Candace developed a neutral upholstery palette with accents in tomato red and crisp brown tones to complement the cherry interior.

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The Upper Salon allows guests a near 360 degree view of the horizon, whether at anchor, surrounded by gorgeous Bahama-blue oceans and islands, or sailing to the next destination.

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Polished perfection from bow to stern…thanks to the new Catalina crew.

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Below deck, auburn throw pillows give the Main Salon warmth amidst the softer hues in the chevron gray and cream fabric selected for the curved sofa. Custom-made window treatments in a subtle monochromatic pattern echoes the eggshell-striped shades specially made to fit the brass light fixtures.  The palette extends and evolves in the cabins, with warm red and leafy green accents.

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Cream and olive custom upholstered head and side boards makes for a serene atmosphere where guests can unwind in the evenings. The embroidered bedding from Sferra gives a luxurious feel to the stately guest cabins.

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how design works: post-project stories

A post project check-in

 

Earlier this month I had the pleasure of presenting alongside Jeff Soderbergh, Creator of Custom, Sustainable Furnishings, at the Newport Art Museum during Design Week.

DESIGNxRI’s Design Week is an eleven-day event that celebrates innovative design and architecture throughout Rhode Island. The fantastic team at DESIGNxRI offers talks, tours, luncheons and events such as the Drinks With Designers, where I discussed How Design Works and shared projects with unique challenges/solutions.

To prepare for the talk, I found before photos of three client projects that have been completed for a year or more now, then shared the before photos with my clients to jog their memory of the spaces pre-renovation.  Then, I asked them for insight on how the spaces were working for them now, compared to before, and posed these questions:

— How have the rooms changed your views/relationship to adjacent interior rooms? And to the exterior?
— How has the lighting/layout/finishing changed the way you use the space?
— What happens in these spaces now, when family and friends gather, that didn’t happen before?
— What work gets done in these spaces now, that didn’t flow as well before? Why?
— Any unexpected life moments with your children that have resulted from these improved spaces? With friends?
— Any aspect of the design that you were unsure of that you’re glad you incorporate?

The stories I received in response were generous, heartwarming and incredibly fulfilling as a designer.  Here’s one of those projects – a master suite in a whole house renovation that is living up to the promise of sanctuary for my clients.  And, creating sweet memories.

These client stories are a reminder that thoughtful design can transform our lives.  Sometimes the change is sweeping, sometimes it happens in small, incremental ways that add up to easier, meaningful living. Either way, design remains a powerful tool for better living.  How can it be harnessed in your home?

Only the best,

Patti-Signature-Top-Bottom-Margin-WEB

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locally grown

how an abundance of local talent was tapped for this custom cottage

Everyday we are reminded of the deep pools of design and artisan talent that reside in our tiny state.  (Earlier this week, I ran into three local artisans ready to excitedly share news of their newest projects/work during a 10-minute run into the coffee shop for a mid morning tea.  No August vacation time for these busy artisans!).
Many of the artists and craftspeople we work with went to RISD and are (thankfully!) staying in Rhode Island to launch their careers.  Others are coming from New York, realizing that there are contemporaries here with whom to collaborate, while enjoying the lower cost of living and seaside benefits of the Ocean State.   Like any state, we have our issues.  But access to world-class designers and artisans isn’t one of them.
With commitment, I’ve actively developed my working relationships with local artisans and craftspeople for the past 12 years of my business.  And now my fellow taste-designers are doing the same.  It’s become a guiding principal of our practice.
So nothing gives us more pleasure than these words from a client: “I really want to work with as many local craftspeople as possible on this project”.  Amen.  And so we did.
Here’s a pictorial review of this Little Compton, Rhode Island project and a shout out to the local artisans and craftspeople who helped make this interior happen.
Only the best,
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before & after kitchen interior design renovation
Studio Dunn walnut counter stools are pitch perfect in this simple and honest Kitchen.
Big thanks to Stephen Plaud for lending their craftsmanship to the Kitchen cabinetry.
And that’s a Dora Atwater Millikin painting peeking into view on the wall to the right of the Kitchen.
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Our friend David Ellison at Lorimer Workshop contributed his talent and unerring eye to the dining table, living room console and coffee table in the open Living/Dining Room.
We worked, once again, with O&G Studios and arrayed their chairs around the dining table, providing a no-worries approach to summer dining, just in from the beach.
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Lorimer Workshop‘s coffee table nearing completion at their shop.
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The coffee table at home in the Living Room.
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Lorimer Workshop built the console and the grasscloth covered parsons table, to perfection.
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The console at home in the Living Room.
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The restrained and edited O&G Studio‘s Atlantic Lowback chair is perfect in the lower level of the home.
O&G Studio‘s luggage rack is a welcoming and functional accent in the guest room.
Dunes and Duchess designs and creates their line of home accessories in nearby Connecticut.  Our client loves their Lakeside chair in this custom color and poppy upholstery.
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Whetstone Workshop created this newel post cap for us, to punctuate the walnut and stainless steel balustrade.
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Michael Boulay crafted this headboard and nightstand designed by our own Wendi Dicely Scalora.

Many thanks, as always, to the team of pros made this possible. With too many to mention, I’ll include just a few. To all others who contributed, we send our sincere thanks.

taste team members Wendi Dicely-Scalora, Kevin Baker and Ashley Delvecchio

Gibson Building Company, General Contractor

Stephen Plaud, Kitchen Cabinetry

Rustigian Rugs, Living Room Area Rug

Allied Floors, Countertops

Brassworks, Woodstove

Michael Boulay Woodworking, Bedroom Headboard and Nightstands, Sink Vanity (not shown)

Kyle Caldwell, Photography

before & after – a welcome home, at last

a historic gem regains its strength and stands ready for another generation

What does it take to purchase then restore a nearly one hundred and twenty year old home and make it conducive to modern life?    P  a  t  i  e  n  c  e.    There’s no other word for it.

Yes, it takes funds and a team of design/build professionals and a cadre of craftspeople and the support of a community (e.g. forgiving neighbors).  All of those components are mission critical, without a doubt.

But for a moment, I’d like to salute the people at the very center of it all.  The people who endured, the people who made endless decisions, the people who trusted and the people who devoted several months (ok, nearly two years) of their life to the project.  The people who invested in a historic home and in doing so, have ensured this part of our town’s history stands strong for another one hundred years.

The people who took several, continuous leaps of faith along the design/construction path: m y   c l i e n t s.

They deserve recognition and a sincere thank you from our community for their investment in one of our historic properties.  It takes an enormous commitment to take on and see through a project like the one you’ll see below.  I know, because I’d like to believe I’m there to help them along the way when faith is tested, tempers are short and renovation surprises seem to be around every corner.  It’s exhausting for them, and sincerely my pleasure to be involved in every aspect of the project.

After a rest from the decision-making, we’ll resume later this fall to furnish and decorate their historic house by the sea, now ready for the next hundred years.

Only the best,

patti watson interior designer taste interior design decorator rhode island boston

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An addition to the back of the home created a family room and 2nd floor bedrooms, completed with fireplaces.

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Karl Sauerbrey, architect, envisioned a solarium on the west side of the home while extending the front porch to the back yard.  The enhancement enables our clients to nearly walk around the entire perimeter of the house on the porch.

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The north side of the porch now extends to the side door into the Kitchen, ensuring an easy flow from inside to out.

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A new dutch door at the front provides the same sea breeze into the Living Room the original door did for a hundred years.

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The once remodeled Kitchen was reimagined with custom cabinetry, soapstone countertops and beadboard ceilings.

 

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The beadboard ceiling extends into the Mudroom and a brick floor was chosen to resemble that of an original porch floor, now incorporated into the interior.

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Historic elements like the newel posts, balusters and rails were restored to nearly their original beauty, save a few nicks here and there.

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The bathrooms express my client’s whimsy and love for pattern.

 

Many thanks, as always, to the team of pros made this possible.  With too many to mention, I’ll include just a few.  To all others who contributed, we send our sincere thanks.

Karl Sauerbrey, Architect

taste team members Kevin Baker, Julia Reinalda and Michaela Doehler

Yankee Housewrights, General Contractor

Jutras Woodworking, Kitchen and Mudroom Cabinetry

Zuerner Design, Fireplaces, Master Bedroom and Bathroom Cabinetry

Michael Boulay Woodworking, Library and Music Room Cabinetry

Valen Coble, Front and Side Dutch Doors

Atlantic Landscaping, Land and Hardscaping

Aaron Usher, Kevin Baker and Reagan Baker, Photography

Artist Spotlight: The Fab Five

new show opens August 11th and features the work of five fabulous women

Our final show of the summer season opens August 11th and we’re brimming over with work from five fabulous and innovative women.  Join us Thursday night, August 11th to experience truly outstanding works of art, from these exceptional women — Kelly Jo Shows with her eclectic series “Portrait of an Artist”, local mixed-media artist Christian Potter DruryKaren Murphy and her oil seascapes and our longstanding favorites Dora Atwater Millikin and Kelly Milukas.  Read on for a sampling of their work and stop by Thursday evening, August 11th and throughout August to be inspired.

See you soon at the gallery at taste.

Only the best,

Patti-Signature-Top-Bottom-Margin-WEB

P.S.  In other exciting news, we’ve added a gallery of artists and their work to our website! Click or stop by to view our artists’ pieces on-line, or in person at 17 Narragansett Ave.

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Inspired: Grasscloth & Raffia

timeless texture for walls and beyond

 

It’s always a relief when a design element we love stands the test of time and elevates from trend to timeless.  This high regard for a material gives us permission to continue to use an element we rely on to add character and texture to a room.

Thankfully, grasscloth has safely settled into this category.  I’ve been using grasscloth on walls for years now.  (If you’re a client, you may be nodding in agreement…yes, Patti did encourage me to incorporate grasscloth when we did the Powder Room/Dining Room/Foyer years ago…).

Today, we’re happily awash in textural choices ranging from chic grasscloth to nubby and natural raffia.  The options are endless, especially if you add a second dynamic such as a custom-painted pattern or interspersed metallics. The range in color offers another variation, from natural earth tones to dyed saturated palettes.

And, we continue to explore the surfaces we can apply this fantastic texture.  Lately, we’ve lined bookshelves and cabinets and covered furniture ranging from simple tables to more challenging bureaus.  It’s rare that an interior we’re designing doesn’t include at least one element of grasscloth or raffia, and there’s no end in sight.

We’ll keep exploring the possibilities and continue to joyfully incorporate this newly minted timeless element into our interiors.  Inspiration follows…

Only the best,

Patti-Signature-Top-Bottom-Margin-WEB

Using textural naturals is a great way to create an interesting neutral background that lets bolder furnishings and accessories shine in the foreground .grasscloth---neutrals-fanned

Textures vary from smooth to nubby and everything in between.grasscloth---smooth-to-nubby-texture

Creative use of color can accent bookshelves, furniture and walls. Neutrals as a backdrop create a rich contrast against dark furnishings. Bold expressions of color allow for a grand statement.grasscloth---trio-samples

Classic blue grasscloth finishes a modern console in this coastal home.01B-before-&-after-living-room-gold-award-taste-interior-design-coastal-seaside-home

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These custom nesting tables used neutral shades and complemented the client’s existing navy sofa, lightening the ambience in the room. grasscloth-nesting-tables

A grasscloth covered coffee table, complete with a mitered design on the top and ten coats of hardworking varnish, sits proud in the gallery at taste.

(And, has beautifully stood the test of time after several taste cocktail parties.)grasscloth---gallery-thibaut-table

One of my favorite Dining Rooms, with shimmery grasscloth above the chair rail.  There’s no wall too big or too small for these versatile wall coverings.A taste-interior-designer-dining-room-artwork-photography - Copy

 

For something a little more powerful, consider hand-painted wall coverings.grasscloth---patterns

Patterns and play with contrasting colors can make a statement to small rooms or even grand foyers like this entry hall and two-story stairwell.foyer-after2

The gentle colors in this floral-patterned grasscloth contributes to the elegance in this powder room.grasscloth---patterned-bathroom

Open Gallery Night, May 26th, 5 – 8 pm

Memorial Day is just a week away!  To kick-off the summer, the gallery at taste will host monthly Open Gallery Nights beginning next Thursday, 5/26 from 5pm – 8pm.

Next week we will feature three artists in collaboration with Candita Clayton Gallery.  Like me, Candita is dedicated to discovering and promoting both emerging and mid-to-late-career artists from Rhode Island, and believes that art should – and can – be accessible to everyone.

This month’s featured artists are Jenny Brown of Rhode Island, Estelle Chojnicki of Rhode Island and Rebecca Mickelburgh of the United Kingdom. We’ll have select pieces on display in our gallery.

Mark  your calendars for Thursday’s Open Gallery Night. If you can’t make it next Thursday, stop in Monday – Friday from 9-5 and Thursday & Friday nights from 5-8 throughout the summer.

Only the best,

Patti-Signature-Top-Bottom-Margin-WEB

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Jenny Brown is an artist living and working in Providence, RI, whose primary mediums are drawing, collage and works on found paper. Her work brings to life a mythical world of sea creatures and forests, realized through her love of paper ephemera. Jenny studied art at Bennington College and received her MFA from School of Visual Arts. Recent shows include “Here” at Lore Collection in Providence, RI, and the Silpe Gallery at the Hartford School of Art in Hartford, Connecticut.

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Sea Peach by Jenny Brown

 

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Having art in her blood from her name sake Grandmother, Estelle had always dabbled in art. Attending Munson Williams Institute for the summers while residing with her Aunt in Utica, New York, many exclaimed that she should be an artist. Throughout several moves and raising her children, her art has been an outlet to express that which lies within. The colors of her paintings are drawn from the memories of the corn fields, the fall of the autumn leaves, and the harsh winters of Central New York. While the energy comes forth from her travels from New York to Paris, from East coast to West coast, and points in between. The canvas remains the outlet of her abstract expressionism and up to the interpretation and the imagination of the viewer to enjoy.

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Prairie by Estelle Chojnicki

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Rebecca was brought up in the Kent countryside from a young age and has been inspired by her natural surrounding and animals and wildlife in general.  Her palette knife paintings come from enjoying the odd gin while painting, and a unique ability to paint vibrant colourful paintings while maintaining the form and integrity of her chose subject. Rebecca studied Art at Kent Institute of Art and Design and went on to achieve a BA with Honours at the University of the Arts London (Formerly Chelsea College of Art and Design)  She paints professionally from her Studio in the beautiful Scottish Borders, and exhibits across the UK and America.

Rebecca Mickleburgh - Lobster Leviticus

Leviticus by Rebecca Mickleburgh

Artist Spotlight: Meet Vanessa Piche

Oil Paintings for the Coastal Home

 

As daylight continues to extend into the evening hours, my thoughts have turned toward last summer’s monthly open houses and the cheerful conversations and laughter shared by all who visited. Not only did we enjoy hosting pleasant company and showing off our new space, local artists featured on our gallery walls joined in on the festivities.

With a lovely time had by all, I’ve decided to continue with Open Gallery/Studio nights this summer. Look for upcoming dates, beginning Thursday evening, May 26th, just before Memorial Day Weekend.

Our July Open Gallery/Studio night will feature the talented Vanessa Piche of North Kingstown. Her coastal landscapes provide a calming essence and a warm quality to our gallery vignettes and would be the perfect addition to private collections. Below, find a sampling of Vanessa’s pieces the gallery at taste will be showcasing.

In other exciting news, we’ve added a gallery of artists and their work to our website! Click or stop by to view our artists’ pieces on-line or in person at 17 Narragansett Ave.

Only the best,

Patti-Signature-Top-Bottom-Margin-WEB

Vanessa Piche

 

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“Each painting is a conscious creation that feeds my soul. Paint on the brush and strokes on a canvas are just as important to me as air in my lungs and water to drink. The creation process is like planting a seed…something beautiufl grows out of your initial inspiration that makes people stop, look and connect with the world around them.”

 

Vanessa is a passionate Plein Air artist who captures her emotional response to the world around her. Citing “nature as her temple” and painting as a “self reflective practice,” she sees each painting as a conscious creation that feeds her soul. Vanessa competes in nationally recognized Plein Air competitions around the United States and her paintings are in private collections around the world. In 2015 she won the Making Waves Volvo Ocean Race Art Competition and was the 2015 U.S. Artist for Volvo Ocean Race. She spends most of her time painting in New England, Maryland, and Indiana. Vanessa resides in North Kingstown RI with her husband and daughter.

 

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Vanessa Piche – Before Sunset – Oil on Panel – 11 x 14 inches

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Vanessa Piche – Morning Autumn Ranch – Oil on Canvas – 24 x 12 inches

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Vanessa Piche – Quiet Marsh – Oil on Panel – 8 x 10 inches

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Vanessa Piche – Galillee Wharf – Oil on Panel – 8 x 10 inches

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in the home stretch

three projects nearly ready for the summer season

Spring is in the air and that means we’re busy finishing summer homes for the now in-sight season. I admit, I love this next six week period leading up to Memorial Day.  A deadline junkie, I thrive in the final days of finish construction.  We’re up to our necks in finishing details, questions, problem solving and client pleasing.  And the builders, artisans and craftspeople we rely on are right there with us.  These are the days that test productive collaborations.  Inevitably what binds us during trying moments is our shared unending commitment to quality – even in the face of a looming deadline.

Here’s a sneak peek at three projects entering the final finish phase – each is a hive of activity right now.  Many thanks to Dave Brown, Steve Demetrick and Bob van Cleef for leading the crews at each of these homes.  It may look like there’s still lots left to do, but that’s all part of the exhilaration in the coming few weeks…

Stay tuned for finished photos later this summer after our clients return from their winter roosts and settle in for the summer in their new spaces.

Only the best,

Patti-Signature-Top-Bottom-Margin-WEB

#1.  A restored cottage by the sea for oh-so fabulous clients and their daughters.

picture-window-with-view-bedroom-east-sideA view to the sea.

library-2A view to the Dining Room.

brick-accentAn orderly laundry area takes shape.

shower-tile-placement-master-bathThe master shower nearly complete.

 

#2. A chic pool house for long-standing and long-appreciated clients.

pool-house-main-room-counter-sink-and-pendantWalnut trimmed cabinetry in the Kitchenette.

pool-house-bathroom-tile-vanityTerrazzo countertops in the Bathroom.

pool-house-main-room-crystal-knob-hardwareFinishing touches in glass.

pool-house-main-room-tile-floorA glass mosaic floor resembles the pool itself.

#3.  A historic home designed for a fun loving family who loves to throw a party.

brick-layoutBricks are carefully laid out and prepared for installation on the mudroom floor.

built-insBookcases are completed and nearly ready for our client’s collection.

kitchenNext to go in: everything, including the Kitchen sink.