Saturday Say It: Rewrite Your Life

Childrens Author Mo Willems Quote

“If you ever find yourself in the wrong story, leave.” —Mo Willems

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Design Diary: Architect Bill Boehm’s Kitchen

Here is a preview of a story that will be featured in this weekend’s “Kitchen & Bath” issue of Boston Globe Magazine, about the renovation of architect Bill Boehm’s own kitchen in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Architect Bill Boehm and his wife, artist Danielle Sauvé, used orange and yellow cabinetry to make their small kitchen pop. They knew when they purchased the 1,600-square-foot condo in a Cambridgeport multi-family home built in 1840 that the kitchen would need a major overhaul. Undeterred, Boehm made everything fit in the eight-foot-by-13-foot space, then colored it boldly.


Photo by Bob O’Connor

Behind the yellow door of the pantry (that’s Boehm’s 13-year old son, Theo; they also have a 10-year old), Boehm replaced sliders with a single glass door to the patio, so he could extend the counter, above which he added a pair of large windows. He used an oversize enamel sink (bigger than they had planned for) that he spotted on the curb four blocks away in the midst of the renovation. The counters are Silestone. The backsplash wall is done in soft yellow stacked horizontal tile. He skipped overhead cabinets, which take up a lot of space, in favor of stainless steel shelves from a restaurant supply company.

Boehm worked with Jamaica Plain-based contractor Carr Carpentry and Restoration on the project, which in addition to the kitchen itself, entailed to removing the wall that separated the kitchen and dining room. They were able to salvage the oak floor by simply refinishing it. They exposed the original beams, which had been hiding under old board and plaster, and added extras for necessary reinforcement. “The floor above was bouncy,” says Boehm.

The radiator was pushed aside to make room for the bay window and window seat, that looks out to the garden that Sauvé spends a lot of time tending. Above the radiator hangs objects from his travels, including a toy airplane made by Malawi children from when Boehm lived there as a peace corps volunteer, sandals his grandfather brought back from the Philippines 100 years ago, a mask from Mexico, and a cow skull Boehm found in Colorado.


Photo by Bob O’Connor

For the room’s palette, the couple were inspired by a photo of a yellow and orange kitchen with a mod sensibility. Boehm favors punchy colors in architecture. This goes for residential projects (like my friend Becky & Tom’s Back Bay home that Bohem designed) as well as public projects, like an after school center in Roxbury, in which he differentiated age-group clusters by colors—Caribbean teal, lime green, and juicy orange. For a community center in Mattapan he is working on, he’s using teal, orange, and ochre, set off against a warm gray linoleum floor and walnut-toned wood.

For the kitchen in his own home, Boehm and Sauvé chose Benjamin Moore “Orange Burst” for the base cabinetry and Benjamin Moore “Sun Valley” for the pantry cabinets. When he ordered panel samples for the cabinets from Boston Building Resources in Roxbury Crossing, Boehm says, “they were like, ‘Are you sure these are the colors you want?’ ” For the floor he went with linoleum in a saturated blue tone. It’s a material he uses often, since it’s available in many colors and patterns. Plus, it’s resilient, affordable, and has an eco-friendly, non-chemical makeup.


Photo by Bob O’Connor

See the full story online here or pick up the Boston Globe this Sunday.

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Designer Spotlight: Tilton Fenwick

Tilton Fenwick, the New York City interior design firm led by Anne Maxwell Foster and Suysel dePedro Cunningham is doing great things. Just four years after hanging out their stylish  shingle,this adorable design duo has just debuted a line of upholstered furniture at Target. Known for saturated colors and mixing and matching of patterned fabrics, this pair has fun and it shows.

I first met Anne Maxwell Foster and Suysel dePedro Cunningham at a lunch in New York hosted by Traditional Home for the magazine’s 2012 New Trad issue. Last year, when they traveled to Boston to promote their new Tilton Fenwick Fabric Collection for Duralee, I attended a dinner in their honor. I always have such a good time with them; lots of laughing.

Here is a sampling of Tilton Fenwick’s work—in case you haven’t seen it all over Pinterest already— as well as a selection of patterned upholstered headboards, sofas, ottomans, and chairs from the brand new Tilton Fenwick Designer Upholstery Furniture Collection for Target.











 All photographs by Trevor Tondro 

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S H O P  T I L T O N  F E N W I C K  at T A R G E T


1 Tilton Fenwick Shirred Border Bed in Jumana Yellow, $629.99-$729.99

2 Tilton Fenwick  Settee in Jumana Yellow, $699.99

3 Tilton Fenwick Skirted Ottoman, $429.99

4 Tilton Fenwick Cocktail Ottoman in Zulla Emerald, $429.99

5 Tilton Fenwick Nail Button Camel Back Chair, $399.99

6 Tilton Fenwick Nail Button Camel Back Chair in Jax Blue, $399.99

7 Tilton Fenwick Velvet Wingback Bed, $799.99-$884.99

8 Tilton Fenwick Tufted Arched Bed, $679.99-$779.99

9  Tilton Fenwick Skirted Chair in Sissy Purple, $429.99

10 Tilton Fenwick Skirted Storage Bench, $249.99


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ARTmonday: Last Days of Summer

A collection of images that evoke summer—beaches, road trips, watermelon, cocktails on the patio, swimming pools, and sunsets. Enjoy the last day of summer everyone.


Charlie Engman  •  Uprise Art


Euguene Richards  •  Artsy


Hwan Lee  •  Saatchi Art


Leah Giberson • Little Paper Planes


J. Adam Mcgalliard  •  Saatchi Art


Michael Northrup  •  Uprise Art


Mario Sughi  •  Saatchi Art


Bruce Weber  •  Paddle 8


Joyce Lee  •  At 60 Inches


Jonah Freeman and Justin Lowe  •  Artspace


Carolyn Monastra  •  Artsy


Life Through The Lens  •  Society 6 


Franck Bohbot  •  Uprise Art


Kirsten Sims


Pop Pop Photography  •  Society 6


Paper Whistle  •  Society 6


Michelle Fleck


Raymond  Meier  •  Vogue

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Design Diary: Sunshine-y House on the Bass River

I was very excited when photographer Dan Cutrona sent my photos of this Cape Cod cottage in South Yarmouth, which was featured in Boston Globe Magazine earlier this month.. It’s one of my favorites, and it has a swing. The all white space, punctuated with pops of yellow, is home to Newburyport-based landscape designer Trent Lloyd, and was decorated by her sister, North Carolina-based Alys S. Protzman of Alys Design. The decorating was done on a budget, which wasn’t too much of a challenge given that Lloyd favors on rustic simplicity.

Originally built for a sea captain in town and relocated to the banks of the Bass River in about 1899, the house was dark and cramped. Sticking to a white palette accented with yellow (Benjamin Moore “Bright Yellow,” to be exact), along with a few new upholstered pieces and plenty of secondhand finds, Protzman transformed the cottage into a happy summer retreat. The view is incredible; they can see the kids, who take sailing lessons, breeze by in the afternoons. The sliders open to a wide stair and brick patio.

Cape Cottage WIth Living Room Swing

Protzman’s sister and brother-in-law have three daughters, ages 9, 7 , and 4. The kid on the swing is the only boy cousin out of ten grandchildren. “There’s a lot of female energy around here,” she says. As for taking turns, each kid gets 20 swings before having to pass it on to the next. She adds, “It’s a fun way to keep the kids entertained during cocktail hour.” Protzman’s husband, who’s a woodworker, built the swing, and she painted it.

A cotton rag rug from a store in the Florida Panhandle covers the pickled white floors. The original floors were painted black with splatters of white paint. Seriously. They stripped them, and had to patch certain areas because the wood got so worn down. They stained the floorboards white rather than painting them. Protzman says, “The stain goes into the wood, so you’re less likely to see scratches; it’s more durable. Also rather than a monolithic white, it’s very beachy and driftwood-y, with a bit of warmth.”

The Restoration Hardware sofas are upholstered in an outdoor fabric by Perennials Outdoors, that feels like washed linen. Protzman commissioned an Etsy maker in France to create linen pillows with painted yellow circles. A carpenter for the contractor, LaBarge Homes, built the coffee table from reclaimed barn wood, and the tiny chairs came from the local swap shop. The table in the corner is a primitive, folk art style. Their mom jokes that it looks like it fell off a boat a hundred years ago.

A plain bulb fixture from Schoolhouse Electric dangles low, just above the side table, It’s an orangey yellow. Protzman says, “The yellows didn’t match perfectly in places, which Lloyd was a little concerned about it, but I think it adds depth; you don’t want to be too matchy matchy.”

White Living Room WIth Yellow Accents

Protzman arranged four swivel chairs around an old telephone cable spool used as a coffee table. She says, “It’s been a hit. You can swivel to the kitchen, or watch the sunset with your feet up; the setup allows for total flexibility, and the kids like to spin on them.” The idea grew out of not wanting a sofa backing up to the either the dining room or the kitchen.. She adds, “It might become my calling card. I’m so sick of pushing furniture against walls.”

Country Style All White Kitchen WIth Pops Of Yellow

In the kitchen, unfinished stools, $30 each from Amazon, got the same Benjamin Moore “Bright Yellow” paint as the lower bank of cabinetry (they kept the existing but swapped the hardware). The laminate counters were replaced with Silestone. Open shelving replaced upper cabinetry, hung against whitewashed shiplap, a material also used in the upstairs hallway. The carpenter built the freestanding Parsons-style island with IKEA butcher-block top. “It requires maintenance to avoid stains and cut marks,” says Protzman, “but my sister is fine with what she calls ‘texture’ in a summer house.” The vintage warehouse pendant is from Etsy.

Mixed Dining Room Seating In Cape Cottage

Protzman says that in trying to figure out what to do with this long and skinny space, they realized they could make it work as a dining room that would function as a multi-use space, for puzzles and projects too.

Lloyd wanted mix-and match-chair look. Protzman says, “It’s an arty collection of odd chairs.” Some are weighty; some minimal. There’s painted metal, chrome, and white leather, plus slipcovered pieces. The slipcovered bench from Serena & Lily is on casters, and seats two. Protzman found three painted blue ,metal chairs for $45 each at Scott’s, an antique mall  in Atlanta. The blue is the only other color introduced in the house.

Jeff Soderbergh, a Wellfleet-based woodworker, designed the 17-foot long dining table. It’s made out of board called “king’s wood” found in the home’s attic. (“King’s wood” boards were wide, choice planks saved to send back to the King, way back when.) Soderbergh didn’t sand the 15-inch wide boards, which were originally hand-planed, so the top is not perfectly flat. The natural curvature of the boards, the knots, and somebody’s hand-carved initials, were all left intact.

Since it’s just two-inches thick, he added an apron front for the illusion of heft. Lloyd loved the idea of doing an industrial leg, so Soderbergh sourced old, cast iron factory legs that say “Boston “on them, powder coated in white. The table was assembled on site; it took seven guys to carry the three sets of legs.

All White Cape Cod Cottage Stairway

Yellow And White Striped Tile Bathroom

This was originally a powder room with dead space, so they made it into an indoor beach shower. Lloyd and her husband are tri-athletes, so they made it into a steam shower. It’s large enough for the whole family and has a bench in there. As for the yellow and white striped tile design, Protzman says, “I thought we would put in a tiny touch of the nautical,; it reminds me of a sail.”

Yellow & White Living Room WIth Swing

During the renovation they added three sets of sliders to the exterior wall, really opening it to the outdoors. They replaced the windows over the sofa, but stuck to the traditional six-over-six configuration.

Capde Cod Cottage On The Bass River

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ARTmonday: 12 Empty Beds

I’ve spent the last five days resting, mostly. In my bed, in the guest room bed, on the sofa bed outside my bedroom. I think I’m finally feeling better. (I caught a cold from my son, who brought it home from camp.) I thought images of beds would be fitting for my circumstances. Hoping to move my body to the beach tomorrow, in an effort to enjoy the last few days of summer. Here are 12 paintings and photographs of empty beds.


Robert Knight




Dan Linden


Brigitte Yoshiko Pruchnow


Cassie Taggart

Kim Ohrling


Bonbon Moby


Ieva Baklane


Cassie Taggart


Shaun Lowe


Winky Lewis


Dan Wesker

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Sunday Bouquet: In the Weeds

Yellow Flowers In Glass Vase

 Yellow flowers from the yard. I think they might actually be weeds.

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Saturday Say It: Let’s Go On An Adventure

Wanderlust Quote By Julia Cagninelli

“Let’s go on an adventure”

Julia Cagninelli

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Foodie Friday: 12 Summer Cocktails

I’m not all that drinky. I’d rather expend calories on chocolate, and I figure I’m uninhibited enough. Although I rarely imbibe (though totally welcome those who do!), I have had a good sampling of summer cocktails this season. If I’m not drinking champagne, then I prefer a vodka cocktail with some sort of herb. I like to just ask the bartender to make one up for me, if there aren’t any on the menu. So far so good.

My sudden interest might be due to pinning all the yummy looking summer cocktails for Matouk’s Cocktail Hour Pinterest board. I’ve even started one of my own: Cocktails Pinterest board. Here are pretty summer cocktails that I’m tempted to try before the season is over. (Guess I’ll be kind of tipsy this week.)

To start, a creation called the Elderbubble Champagne Cocktail from my ever lovely friend Chantal Gordon and handsome husband Gordon Benoit, who mix drinks and grow plants in their funky backyard (check it out here), and document it all on their blog, The Horticult. The Elderbubble Champagne Cocktail is a recipe from  The Bubbly Bar, written by  Chantal’s friend, Maria Hunt, aka The Bubbly Girl. This champagne summer cocktail is first on my list.


Elderbubble Champagne Cocktail   •  The Horticult


Peach & Vodka Sparkler With Rosemary  •  Verses From My Kitchen


Grapefruit, Fennel & Mezcal  •  Coco + Kelley


Rhubarb Granita  •  Lamponi & Tulipani


Peach Jalapeño Margarita  •   Dessert For Two


Sour Cherry Gin & Tonic  •  PBS


Cucumber Ginger Mocktail  •  40 Aprons


Gluten & Sugar Free Figtini  •  Tasty Yummies


Watermelon Lime Mint Agua Fresca  •  J. Chong Studio


Summer Prosecco Sangria  •  Eye Swoon


Vodka Lavender Lemonade  •  The Effortless Chic


St. Germain Mojito  •  A Beautiful Mess


Strawberry Blood Orange Rum Punch  •  Bojon Gourmet

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Style Right Now: Slouchy Sweaters with Skirts

There’s not much better than a chunky knit over leather leggings in terms of casual fall style, except maybe pairing said chunky knit with jeans. A chunky knit sweater works well with a fitted, short or mid-length skirt too. Even a cropped sweater with a maxi.

But what about wearing a slouchy sweater with a looser, longer skirt? An untucked cable knit sweater with a plaid midi? I wore a look like that to a college interview, thinking I was very collegiate. (Yes, an ivory A sweater with a plaid midi skirt. Hey, I got in and went to that school.)

I’m not sure I can pull off that look today. Actually, I’m certain I cannot. But on some of these women, the style looks modern and fresh. I’ll stick to chunky cable knits with jeans and leggings, but please, if you can go pair slouchy and slouchy, please do. Here street style photos of slouchy, chunky knit sweaters paired with a mix of skirt styles.


Cable knit sweater with plaid mid skirt and washed out red sneakers.
Vogue Taiwan


Slouchy grey ribbed sweater with just-above-the-knee skirt and ankle boots.
Who What Wear


Chunky gray turtleneck knit sweater with killer bob.


Slouchy cable knit sweater and sky high slit skirt.
Who What Wear


Chunky blood red knit sweater and pink horizontal stripe midi skirt.
Casting Director Natalie Joos, Paris  •  Carolines Mode


Slouchy pink sweater and asymmetric mullet skirt.
Net-a-Porter Fashion Director Holli Rogers
Paris Fashion Week SS14  •  
Vanessa Jackman


Nautical stripe crewneck and blue floral print skirt.
Milan  •  Carolines Mode


Red athletic inspired mock turtleneck sweater and tweedy midi skirt.
Stylist Ursina Gysi, Paris Fashion Week SS13  •  
Vanessa  Jackman


Cable knit cropped sweater and panther print midi skirt.
Net-a-Porter Fashion Director Holli Rogers
Paris Fashion Week SS14  •  Photo by Diego Zuko  •  Harper’s Bazaar


Chunk grey slouchy sweater and elongated pencil skirt.
Net-a-Porter Fashion Director Holli Rogers, Paris Fashion Week SS14
Photo by Diego Zuko  •  Harper’s Bazaar


Slouchy grey V-neck sweater with over-the-knee black boots.
London Fashion Week SS14  •  Photo by Diego Zuko  •  Harper’s Bazaar


Winter white slouchy knit sweater and wispy mini (or is that a shirt tail?)


Cable knit crewneck sweater and midi skirt.
Stylist Martha Ward, London Fashion Week FW14  •  Vanessa Jackman


Chunky gray cableknit sweater, midi skirt and curvy heels.


Chunky black knit sweater and eyeball print skirt.


Tan knit wide neck sweater and blue and white circle skirt.
Florence  •  The Sartorialist

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