Category Archives: Montage: Interior Design Trends

Montage: 14 Living Rooms With Televisions Above the Media Unit

It used to be that you needed an armoire or built-in cabinetry to house your TV. With the advent of the flat screen, armoires became obsolete and shelving didn’t need that bump-out. Of course, lots of people were (and still are I suppose) hanging flat screen televisions above the fireplace. I’m just going to leave that at no comment.

The current craze seems to be incorporating the TV into a gallery wall. This can work if you don’t mind the busyness, and if it doesn’t distract you when the television is switched on. Sometimes though, a TV hung on a wall can seems to float, even when surrounded by artwork. I think it looks better hanging above sort of shelving, credenza, or media unit, which grounds the space.

The 14 spaces below are a mix of approaches to hanging a television above a cabinet. One uses a dark wall to help camouflage the TV, while others incorporate the TV into a gallery wall. Some just have the TV hanging solo, with plenty of space around it, over simple shelving. I think all of these approaches of hanging the tv above a unit, whether the wall is left bare or decorated, work quite well.

If you are on the hunt for a cabinet, have a look at my past post 53 Credenzas, Sideboards, and Buffets, which I hope to update soon with additional options and new sources I’ve since found for purchasing TV units.

Green Media Cabinet With TV On A Gallery Wall

Skona Hem    Photo by Ragnar Omarsson

This contemporary green media unit offsets the black rectangle of the television and colors in the artwork on the gallery wall nicely in this Brooklyn loft. Using artwork as large as the television itself helps the television blend in.

White And Wood Living Room Designed By Amber Lewis With TV Above Credenza

Amber Interiors    Photo by Tessa Neustadt

This wood and white living room designed by Amber Lewis is perfectly restrained without being boring. The TV floats above the white and wood credenza. There is little embellishment, save for the dual finish of the furniture itself, the wood bowl, and plant, but the vignette looks beautiful.

Stylist Susanna Vento's ALl White Living Room With Gallery Wall and TV

Stylist Susanna Vento  •  Photo by Petra Bindel

Stylist Susanna Vento went with the minimalist white with some color pops theme in her own home. She incorporates the TV into a gallery wall using an asymmetrical arrangement of fun prints and family photos around the television. That there is a turntable below adds balance.

TV In a Gallery Wall Over A Floating Wood Credenza

Bolig Magasinet

Here the television hangs above the arrangement of artwork leaning against the wall on the credenza rather than hanging around it. That is probably the result of the slanted ceiling, but in any case, it works.

Scandinavian Style Living Room With TV Hanging Over Floating Shelf


A simple floating open shelf acts as a base for the television, while three simply framed pieces hang around it, plus some antlers for three-dimensional earthy interest.

Bohemian Living Room With Gallery Wall Bar TV Juju

Lonny March 2012

The TV seems to be a bit of an afterthought here, but it works above the dark chest, with a vibrant gallery arrangement stealing the spotlight on the adjacent wall.

Blogger Anne Sage's TV + Gallery Wall

Anne Sage

L.A.-based blogger Anne Sage goes for a narrow plain cabinets below the TV, with colorful artwork around it, and a mod brass light fixture above.

Wood Shelf On Simple White Cabinets Makes A TV Console

Stacey Kouros Design

The television is large but the niche in which it hangs is larger. I love how the cabinetry runs all the way across, and stays simple and low, giving the television plenty of breathing room.

TV Over Mid-Century Modern Credenza Fiddle Leaf Floating Shelves

Creative Director Christina Loucks    Photo by Heidi Geldhauser

The beautiful Danish modern credenza and fun articulated brass table lamp steal the spotlight in the lower half of the space, while the shelves above the TV draw the eye upwards.

White And Pale Wood Living Room With Makeshift Media Console


Simplicity reigns in this Nordic room with low white cabinets topped with a nice slab of oak. The TV hangs just a few inches above it. The leggy floor lamp and branches provide movement, drawing the eye to either side.

Jessica Alba's Turquoise Office At The Honest Company

Lonny   Photo by Jessica Sample

In Jessica Alba’s office at The Honest Company the TV has been framed in wood. I’m not sure that was necessary—it may be drawing more attention to it than acting as a camouflage.

New Darlings Living Room With Moroccan Rug And TV Over Mid Century Credenza

New Darlings

This neutral living room belonging to the bloggers behind New Darlings has a lived-in feel with a Danish modern vibe. The neutral colors and clean lines mean the TV can hang where it needs to. The plants, wall hangings, and patterned rug take the focus off the expanse of black.

Living Room With Dark Blue Walls And Library Card Catalog As A Media Unit Plus Gallery Wall


By painting the wall a deep, dark blue, the black television blends in. Incorporating the TV into a gallery wall with artwork hung practically level above and beside it keeps things on an even keel.

Neutral Living Room With Flat Screen TV On The Wall

Lindye Galloway Design  •  Domino  •  Photo by Jasmine Star

Orange County California interior designer Lindye Galloway skips the fanfare and simply mounts the television over a snazzy chevron credenza. The room is tailored and neutral, so the large black rectangle isn’t much of a distraction.

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Montage: 15 Modern Wall Fountains

When I drove past the newest shopping center on the corner of a busy intersection in Delray Beach last week I wondered, “Why does every halfway decent collection of stores (that is to say, glorified strip malls) have a fountain?” Indoor malls have long traditions of water features. I suppose the rushing water is relaxing. That doesn’t address the existence of the requisite stone fountain on the outer edge of a shopping complex of a busy suburban intersection. Only cars can see it and nobody can hear it. (Pause while I Google.)

“Why do malls have fountains” is a popular search (the first few hits are about some woman who fell into a mall fountain while texting though). According to National Real Estate Investor, mall fountains are good gathering places and apparently shoppers associate them with cleanliness. Some surveys show that fountains make for better ambience and better ambience increases sales. So there you have it.

I have plenty of memories throwing pennies into mall fountains as a kid. It’s still a thing. In 2008, patrons tossed $30,000 into the fountain at the Mall at Short Hills in New Jersey, which the company used for charitable donations. Perhaps a backyard fountain could replace the GoFundMe or Kickstarter campaign you’ve been contemplating.

On the heels of these scintillating tidbits of knowledge, I am following up with some actual high end, contemporary water features. Last year I did 20 Reflecting Pools + Fountains; this post concentrates solely on modern wall fountains. If you don’t have the dollars to hire a landscape architect, here are some roundups of readymade models: 20 Modern Outdoor Water Fountains and Top Outdoor Wall Fountains for 2016

Contemporary Water Feature Wood Slat Garden Wall With Stainless Steel Fountain

David Harber

Contemporary Water Feature Wall Fountain

Alchemie Landscape Architecture

Contemporary Water Feature Stone Wall Fountain

Randy Thueme

Contemporary Water Feature Red Wall Fountain


Contemporary Water Feature Wall Fountain Pool Lighting

Anthony Exter

Contemporary Water Feature Modern Wall Fountain

Rolling Stone Landscape

Contemporary Water Feature Wood Wall Fountain

Utopia Landscape Design

Contemporary Water Feature Orange Wall Fountain

Moose Country Gardens

Contemporary Water Feature Contemporary Wall Fountain

Lutsko Associates

Contemporary Water Feature Mirrored Wall Fountain

David Harber

Contemporary Water Feature Contemporary Vertical Wood Wall Fountain


Contemporary Water Feature Contemporary CorTen Steel Wall Fountain

Urban Exotic Landscape Architects

Contemporary Water Feature Contemporary Wall Fountain

Debora Carl

Contemporary Water Feature Contemporary Wall Fountain

Luciano Giubbilei

Contemporary Water Feature Wall Fountain Made With Gutters And Buckets

Elle Maison

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Interiors: 12 Bedrooms with Abstract Art

Lately we’ve been working on clearing out and tidying up our bedroom. We’ve been talking about doing a renovation down there for years; the bedroom itself is too large and the bathroom is too small (and too blah). And, I really, really, really would love a bathtub.

Renovation aside, our biggest problem in the bedroom at the moment is our bed. We have the world’s worst mattress. The so-called memory gel, plush top mattress has a topography that rivals the most mountainous regions of the land. My husband jokes that he’s sleeping in a canoe. There’s a berm between us.

We tried a mattress from Casper, one of those new mattress companies that deliver memory foam mattresses in a box. It arrived incredibly quickly and seemed to be quite well made, but it was just too firm. I awoke each day with aching hips. (Insert old person joke here.) So we sent it back with hopes to try another.

They offered to send us a plush mattress topper to ease its cement-like quality, though I declined. (They arranged for pick up, no fuss no muss, so if you like firm mattresses I highly recommend them.) I think we may try a mattress from Helix Sleep next. Not only do they sell mattresses in different firmnesses, they custom make mattresses with different qualities, split down the middle. You and your partner take a little quiz and they create just the mattress type you like/need. Kind of fun.

My kids are obsessed with memory foam sleep products. Pillows, beds, mattress toppers. Just yesterday my son was asking for a memory foam sleep topper. I suppose I should do some research on sites like the Sleep Judge to find something that makes sense, maybe for our bed too. (Once we ditch our current wavy mattress.) Apparently there are different prescriptions depending on whether you’re a side sleeper, back sleeper, etc. Same goes for mattresses. Consumer Reports here I come.

In the meantime, now that the crap is cleared out of our bedroom we’ve been focusing on what art to hang. Lucky for us we have enough of a surplus that we have choices. I’ve long thought about doing a wall of nude paintings and drawings in the bedroom. Something dreamy and romantic. We also have a lush abstracted green landscape that looks great in there.

I kind of wish I could be the person who is restrained enough to hang a single minimalist statement piece of art. I’ve notice that the most sophisticated contemporary bedrooms have clean lines and very simple, graphic abstract artwork. The kind of artwork I love to admire, but when push comes to shove, I often have trouble purchasing. And then where would I put all the other art. Perhaps a dinner party art sale is in order? Here are a dozen examples of perfectly appointed bedrooms with abstract art.

Neutral Bedroom With Abstract Artwork

Photo by Gaelle LeBoulicaunt  •  Lonny

Masculine Bedroom With Abstract Artwork

Designed by David Netto

Black Bedroom With Abstract Art

Farrow & Ball

Neutral Bedroom With Abstract Artwork


Neutral Bedroom With Abstract Art & Glam Chandelier

Architectural Digest

Bedroom With Abstract Artwork


Ashley Hicks Own Bedroom Masculine Tailored Bedrooms

Photo by Richard Powers  •  Vogue

Masculine Bedroom With Abstract Artwork


Contemporary Neutral Bedroom With Abstract Art

Architectural Digest Espana

Purple Boho Bedroom With Pattern Mix And Art

Design by Kelly Wearstler  •  Photo by Melani Acevedo

Masculine Bedroom With Statement Art

Design by Champeau & Wilde  •  Elle Decor

Blue And White Bedroom With Abstract Artwork


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Montage: 15 Kitchens Mixing Sconces And Pendant Lights

Sconces as kitchen lighting are a thing. Brass sconces even more so, though many of the examples I found sport matte black metal sconces. The most popular places to mount said sconces are over the kitchen sink or over the also mandatory open shelving.

Mixing metals is key to this look. For example, brass sconces with a matte black pendant light, as Boston-based interior designer Jen Cavorsi did in her recent kitchen renovation that I wrote about in Boston Globe Magazine last month. (First photo below.)

When we redid the kitchen in our bungalow in Chevy Chase we put three industrial style chrome and ridged glass sconces in; sconces would have looked fantastic over the sink. In Boston, we’re recessed lighting only, though I suppose we could add kitchen island pendants.

I’ve been starting to think about what to do for lighting in the Florida condo. It’s a tiny kitchen. There’s a bright recessed light over the sink. And a bare bulb jutting out of the ceiling with exposed wires in the middle of the space. I sort of forgotten that I needed a fixture until my mother-in-law asked what was going on there.

So, I’ve been perusing kitchen ceiling lights from Lumens and such sites for practical ideas. I don’t think a pendant would work in the center of such a small space—it will have to be a flush ceiling mount fixture—but I wonder if a sconce could work over the sink. 

In any case, that’s a whole other conversation. Today it’s 15 kitchens that successfully incorporate both sconces and pendant lights.

Brass Sconces And Hardware in Kitchen With Black Floor

Boston Globe Magazine  •  Photo by Jessica  Delaney

Designer Jen Cavorsi used matte brass sconces from Schoolhouse Electric over the sink (notice the coordinating brass kitchen faucet too) in her own kitchen in Milton, Massachusetts. Across the way, a butcher block slab on metal legs is illuminated by a black and brass globe pendant from Rejuvenation.

Black Sonces Over Open Shelving In Grey And Wood Kitchen


Textural wood kitchen cabinetry with a Mission feel have marble countertops. A glossy grey subway tile backsplash sports a trio of matte black metal swing arm sconces, and that same Rejuvenation pendant complete the look of this new but personality-filled kitchen.

Brass Ball Sconce In Grey Kitchen With Wood Island And Hex Tile Floor

House Beautiful

Grey cabinetry looks gorgeous with brass hardware in the kitchen. White and clear glass globe pendants with a brass hanging rod coordinate with cute brass ball sconces hanging over the sink. Note how the large hex tile flooring makes an asymmetric border against the dark wood slats.

Martha's Vineyard Contemporary Kitchen With Black Sconces Cathedral Ceiling Mezzanine

Architectural Digest

An art collector’s home on Martha’s Vineyard plays off the wood slat cathedral ceiling with wood slat flooring, brown chairs, and black sconces mounted to the wood trim of the mezzanine. Four of the skinniest cylindrical pendant lights I’ve ever seen hang over the marble topped island.

Brass Sconces In the Kitchen

Design Manifest

In this kitchen designed by the blogger behind Design Manifest has brass sconces over the sink. Grey cabinetry gets brass hardware and there’s a brass faucet as well. I’m not crazy about those brass lanterns above the island style table, but perhaps they’re salvaged from a dining room of yesteryear. If so, extra points for being green.

Brass Pendant Light And Chrome Sconces In the Kitchen


Personally I could do without the floral Roman shade, but the aged brass pendant light over the black painted island is a nice touch. Chrome sconces add light over the farm sink with an fancy polished chrome faucet. Marble countertops and light grey cabinets are classic perfection.

Black Sconces Over Green Tile Backsplash In the Kitchen


Black scones and blackened metal vintage style pendant lights over the island add age and interest, as does the rustic wood ceiling, to the shiny new seafoam tile backsplash and hunk of stone on the island.

Accordion Sconces And Glass Globe WIth Brass Pendant Kitchen LIghting

Bliss at Home

A shiny new kitchen reno by the Bliss at Home blogger sports brass hardware that updates standard white cabinetry. Floating shelves in black with brass brackets coordinate with the kitchen’s lighting choices: a polished brass pendant hovering inside a glass globe, a black ceiling fixture over the table, and accordion sconces over the shelving.

Matte Black Sconces Copper Cylinder Pendants Kitchen Lighting Design

unidentified source

In this rustic-meets-modern black, white, and wood kitchen, vintage style swing arm sconces hang over open shelving (a popular look of late), while shiny copper cylinders with bare bulbs are suspended from a distressed copper rod above the rustic wood dining table on industrial metal legs. A black bentwood dining chair adds a mid-century touch. Finally, those limed oak floors reign Scandinavian supreme.

Rustic Kitchen With Vintage Metal Lights And Kilim Rug


A faded kilim adds a spot of color in this white kitchen with butcherblock countertops and rustic wood ceiling. Vintage white metal lights in just slightly different styles contrast the clean white cabinetry and painted white wood floor.

Blue Kitchen Cabinetry Glass Globe Pendants Rustic Wood Floor

Rue Magazine

Interior designer Melinda Faranetta goes for on trend deep blue kitchen cabinetry which stands out against well-worn wood floors. The honeycomb backsplash is a touch of modernity while a black metal sconce contrasts the curvy glass pendants over the island.

Blue Kitchen lsland Brass Chandelier Kitchen Design


Interior designer and “Real Potential” host Sarah Richardson opted for a crisp and pretty cobalt blue, white, and brass scheme in this kitchen, mixing romantic brass chandeliers with mini clear glass globes over the island. There’s a brass sconce tucked between the cabinetry on the wall, but it’s actually for candlesticks.

Rustic Green Island In White And Wood Kitchen

Vintage Whites Market

In the simple cottage-style kitchen belonging to the bloggers behind Vintage Whites Market, a distressed green island and a line of wood cabinetry gets a white ceiling fixture and a pair of polished chrome swing arm sconces with dome-shaped shades by Rejuvenation.

Old World Brass Globe Pendants And Black Kitchen Cabinets With Brass Hardware

Rejuvenation Lighting 

Old World brass trimmed milk glass globe pendant infuse a travelled feel into this kitchen with black cabinets with metal hardware and basic white subway tile. A brass swing arm sconces add extra light over the sink. Note they didn’t go for the brass faucet, opting instead for a contemporary chrome style.

Modern Mediterranean Kitchen In Black White And Wood By Jessica Helgerson

Jessica Helgerson Interior Design  •  Photo by Lincoln Barbour

Jessica Helgerson nails it in creating this modern Mediterranean kitchen with a well-traveled feel. Black cabinetry is rendered seamless paired with a black range, while brass hardware and aged brass dome pendant lights add even more richness. The lustrous wood island with barley twist legs is a piece of furniture and the Mediterranean tiles make you never want to take your eyes off it.

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Montage: 18 Winter Tablescapes With Holiday Centerpieces

I’m not into holiday decorating, and not just because I’m Jewish. I just don’t see the value of buying and storing extra stuff (clutter!) that is only used a few weeks a year. I remember going into an off price chain store a couple of years ago and being visually bombarded with turkey fingertip towels and the like. Nobody needs those. There are better ways to use both natural resources and money; plus, they’re just ugly.

Seriously though, I don’t mean to be Scrooge-y. I love flowers, garlands, candles. Such winter holiday decor is beautiful. I especially appreciate Scandinavian style accents — Moravian stars, white candles, pine tree springs, sheepskin, and all that. And while I personally don’t favor red, there are plenty of ways to incorporate red flowers and berries into winter tablescapes that look pretty and fresh.

Branches studded with berries standing solo in clear vases are stunning. A simple, wide red ribbon around a white ceramic vase looks pretty as a centerpiece. Plenty of tapered candlesticks and votives. Evergreen garlands. All of these items help create more naturalistic winter feel during holiday time. Here are 18 winter tablescapes with centerpieces geared toward Christmastime decorating.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes Scandinavian Greens

Sarah Winward  •  Honey of a Thousand Flowers

A simple evergreen garland, plain glass votive holders, and black candlesticks make an elegant rustic winter tablescape.

winter-tablescape-photo- marianna-jamadi-tinsel-&-twine

Tinsel & Twine  •  Photo by Marianna Jamadi •  via Ruffled

I’m not sure what kind of flowers these are, but the wintry white blooms mix well with evergreen sprigs and look beautiful in a silver pot. Fluted votives and gold-rimmed goblets add more shine and show that mixing metals can be done tastefully.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes


Red berries on branches in a clear glass florist’s vase adds Christmas color color without confusion.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes

Martha Stewart  •  Photo by Eric Piasecki

I’m not a fan of the poinsettia, but I love the way the large blooms are placed around the based of tapered candles on this classic but simple holiday table.

Rustic Winter Tablescapes Holiday Table Settings

The White Buffalo Styling Co.

A black and cream buffalo check runner pairs perfectly with wood slice chargers and forest green glass, not to mention handpainted deer napkins. The winter centerpiece consists of oversize pinecones, greens, and a hurricane lamp.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes

Better Homes & Gardens

I put together a similar arrangement this summer on the Cape, cutting white roses from my rose bush and pairing with pine tree clippings from the forest.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes

Good Housekeeping  •  Photo by Michael Parantino

Peppermint striped runners made from ticking fabric laid across the table vertically provide a cheerful backdrop to this red and white Christmas table setting complete with shiny red  winter berries in white vases of varying heights.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes Plaid Tablecloth

City Farmhouse

Jen from the City Farmhouse det her Christmas-themed dining table with a fringed plaid blanket (I had one of these as a baby, too bad it’s long gone), a potted mini evergreen tree, lanterns, and woodland creature.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes

Marigold and Mint  •  A Blog Named Scout  •  Photo by Belethee

 Seattle florist Marigold and Mint created the cotton flower  centerpieces for this Seattle dinner party that celebrated the cozy Danish concept of hygge.

DIY Winter Flower Arrangements And Holiday Centerpieces


Blogger Victoria McGinley created this simple DIY Christmas centerpiece using  a clear glass cylinder vase, one bunch of white roses, a bunch of Ilex berries, evergreen clippings from the Christmas tree, and a red and white ribbon.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes Scandinavian Greens

Martha Stewart

A mix of vintage and new vessels holds white spider mums, seeded eucalyptus, and blue Atlas cedar branches frosted with silver floral spray paint. Cluster them as a centerpiece or set them in a row down the middle of a table for a Scandinavian style setting.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes Lush Dutch Inspired Florals

Sarah Winward  •  Honey of a Thousand Flowers

Winter citrus, privet berry, and amaryllis centerpiece on rustic wood table set with organic white ceramic dishes and pewter candlesticks gives this tablescape the feel of a Dutch still life painting.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes

Salt Harbor Designs  •   Millie Holloman Photography

The Wilmington-based event planners used cylindrical, Christmas tree shaped topiaries and white candles in a row down the center of an extra long table.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes

Annabode + Co.

Denver-based interior designer Anna Smith made the black and white striped runner out of wrapping paper, then layered brass candlesticks, mercury glass votives, and an evergreen garland down the center of the table.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes In White With Greens

Floral Designs by Lee

White spider mums, greens, and branches topped with a silver ribbon makes for a petite but multi-level and economic centerpiece.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes In White With Greens

Flowers for Everyone

The simple Nordic winter vibe is very popular in Australia too. One can send a gorgeous bouquet by Flowers For Everyone of crisp green and white flowers in a cardboard box.  This one has Singapore orchids, roses,  lisanthus, lime chrysanthemums, native green brazillia berries, and adorable little bundles of cinnamon sticks.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes


Topiary trees get red and white ribbons for a joyous Christmas touch while burlap accents infuse a rustic feel to this traditional but still fresh holiday table.

Winter Flower Arrangements Holiday Tablescapes With Succulents

JL Designs  •  Photo by Leo Patrone  •  via Be Inspired PR

Mini succulents in low  vases mixed with bright red blooms make for a festive and fresh modern table setting at Christmastime. 


Better Homes & Gardens

Pretty Christmas floral arrangement features red and white amaryllis in a white pitcher tied with a ribbon.

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