Tag Archives: DWR

Get the Look: 38 Decorative Wall Hooks

We never seem to have enough hooks, whether it’s in the closet, on the back of the bathroom door, or in the kitchen, I’ve been meaning to add to by my desk for my tote bag too, instead of always draping it on the back of my chair. WIth the holidays upon us, not to mention what’s sure to be a snowy winter,  adding hooks to inside the closet, by the door in the entry, and pretty much all over the mudroom is always a good idea.

Here are 38 mostly modern decorative wall hooks from StyleCarrot partners and other shops, many fun, all functional.




S H O P P I N G 

1 Forged heart hook at House of Antique Hardware

2 Octopus hook at Wayfair

3 Minerva hook at Anthropologie.

4 Aquatic Life Starfish hook at Anthropologie

5 Mediterraneo wall hook by  Alessi at AllModern.

6 Cleaved Totem hook at Anthropologie

7 Rustic hook by Monroe Trades at West Elm.

8 Curve Hook by Normann Copenhagen at Gretel Home.

9 Wishful Thinking wall hook at Lulu & Georgia

10 Whale Tail wall hook at AllModern

11 Branch hook at Target

12 Birch coat hook by UrbanCase at 2modern.

13 Cisco Fox Wood wall hook at Target

14 Rope & Metal hook at West Elm.  

15 Hook by Line Depping + Wrong by Hay at A+R

16 Driftwood Wall Hook by Kiel Mead for Areaware at Horne

17 Arrow hook by Design House Stockholm at Nova68

18 Beslagsboden rounded coat hook by Smedbo at AllModern

19 Streamline hook at Anthropologie

20 Wook wall hook by Blu Dot at 2modern

21 Peace Hand wall hook at AHA Life.

22 Wall Cleat by Wrk-shop at A+R

23 Talking Heads hooks by ENO Studio+Sebastian Bergne at A+R.

24 Stropp copper & leather coat hook at Dwell Store

25 Spire gold metal wall hook by Finell at Lumens

26 Coatrack Dot hooks by Muuto at DWR

27 DUO wall hook by Blomus at 2modern

28 Dipped gold wall hook at H&M

29 Ready hook with mirror by Normann Copenhagen at Dwell Store

30 Slivered marble hook at Anthropologie

31 Leaning edge aluminum wall hook at CB2

32 Arrow wall hook at CB2.

22 Crew single wall hook at Room & Board.

34 Brass & Marble Loop hook at LaSelva Design Studio

35 Tulip hook by Arblu at YLiving.  

36 Breyman copper wall hook at Schoolhouse Electric

37 Birdie wall hook by Umbra at The Container Store

38 Glass knobs by Tom Dixon at YLiving

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Design Diary: Karen Swanson Masters Small House Living

New England Design Works kitchen and bath designer Karen Swanson is a master at small house living. She owns this perfect little house in Manchester, Massachusetts which I wrote about for Boston Globe Sunday Magazine “Small Spaces” home issue on June 7, 2015 in an article called “Party of Three,” photographed by James R. Salomon.

Swanson lives in this cedar shingled, 1,200-square-foot home (exactly 600-square feet on the top and 600-square feet on the bottom) with her daughter and son after downsizing from a 3,300-square foot place across town last spring. Swanson bought the house from an older gentleman, and it was kind of a disaster, with racoons under the floor, which was lumpy, but Jim O’Neill of O’Neill Fine Building squared her away.

As a kitchen and bath designer, she is adept at efficiently fitting everything one needs into the available space, which came in pretty handy. Small house living is a snap for Swanson. She says, “There were absolutely no compromises.”


That’s not to say there weren’t challenges to laying out the small house. The front door wouldn’t have closed if the sofa was even an inch longer. She chose the Bantam sofa from DWR not just for its length, but because it isn’t too deep, but it’s still comfortable. The Martini side table in antique brass from West Elm can be moved easily where needed. One of the great things about a smaller home, she says, is that she sees her kids a lot more.


The wall with the mural is the first thing one sees upon entering, so Swanson knew she wanted to make a statement on it. She originally imagined concocting a backlit forest scene based on the one in the restaurant at MoMA, but it proved too tricky. When she spotted this Kenneth James wallpaper mural at local design shop Watters & Brown, and realized the five strips that comprise the mural was the same size as her wall, she decided it was fate. Plus, at $350 she figured she could change it if and when she tired of it.

The oak table is Ethnicraft from Boston design store Lekker and the red chairs are the Sabrina chairs by Casprini purchased from Room & Board.”Red’s my favorite color,” Swanson says, “so they were perfect.” Plus, since they’re so light (they’re actually indoor/outdoor plastic chairs), they’re not difficult to wrangle when she has extra folks for dinner and it’s necessary to move furniture around to accommodate everyone.

The ceramic work artwork is by Next Step Studio, which Swanson discovered at the AD Home Show. Wall mirror from West Elm.


The galley kitchen is only 75-square feet but Swanson has all the storage she needs, and it looks beautiful. Despite the kitchen’s small size, it was  wide enough to make the cabinets on one side 30-inches deep (vs. the standard 24-inches deep). This made all the difference, especially for bulky items such as pots and pans, which all fit in one drawer. (Scroll down for the kitchen layout.) The floor-to-ceiling pantry also houses the toaster and microwave. She opted for a full size Wolf oven knowing she’d regret it if she went with a smaller model.


This is the kitchen wall one sees upon entering, and it’s visible from the living room, so it was important that it look good. The lift-up cabinets, which are 18-inches deep, store the food processor, stock pot, slow cooker, and such.The fridge is a 27-inch wide SubZero with two freezer drawers, which she adores. The cabinetry is painted maple and the pulls are from local hardware showroom Raybern.


The first design element Swanson chose for the house were the Walter Zanger glass tiles from Tile Showcase for the backsplash. The countertop is white Silestone. An inset stainless steel troughs holds wine, oil, cutting boards, and sometimes plants.


In order to ensure she’d have ample counter space in her small kitchen, Swanson decided on a two-burner induction cooktop. The stainless steel shelf holds all the everyday dishes and mugs, plus some food storage containers. Both the shelf and trough were fabricated at Weiss Sheet Metal, the same place that fabricated Julia Child’s kitchen now installed at the Smithsonian.


Swanson used a sink with an integrated drain board so that it could be centered on the window ,even though the sink base is not. This allowed her to squeeze an 18-inch dishwasher to the right of the sink.


White pendant light from Rejuvenation. Shelf from West Elm. Artwork from the local Montserrat College sidewalk sale. Polka dot Roman shade made from Scion fabric purchased at The Martin Group in the Boston Design Center.


Orla Kiely wallpaper (also from The Martin Group)  covers the master bathroom, which also functions as the first floor powder room. She designed the vanity for optimum storage, taking into consideration the variety of sizes of bathroom items, like soap, deodorant, and Band-Aid boxes. She placed the sink off center in order to maximize counter space.


The right side houses three drawers, each a different depth and the left side is a cabinet made to look like drawers in order to match the other side for a neat, symmetrical appearance.


The master bedroom is on the first floor; sliders open to the deck and backyard.Playing off the citrus hue of recently reupholstered 1940s chairs from local consignment shop Stock Exchange, Swanson used inexpensive yellow polka dot fabric from Calico Corners for the draperies. The Tripod table from West Elm, was previously used in her daughter’s room as a desk. She sometimes works here if the kids are watching television in the living room.


The kids bath on the second floor doubles as the laundry room. A fiberglass shower unit was originally wedged under the sloped ceiling. Swanson swapped it for a washer and dryer cleverly concealed by sliding barn-style doors. The oil painting, from local consignment shop Stock Exchange, pictures a pink house on the road to Plum Island in Newburyport, Mass.


The oil-rubbed bronze finish of the new Anderson windows works nicely with the exterior trim, painted Benjamin Moore Gropius Grey, without being an exact match. The landscaping and back deck were already in place, along with creeping hydrangea on the rock ledge. The gravel yard means no lawn to mow. The persimmon front door hints at what’s to come. Swanson says, “I love that the house is subtle on the outside but inside there’s an explosion of color.”

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S H O P  the P O S T

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Design Diary: Tour The Verb Hotel in Boston’s Fenway

Last time I was in town I scored a private tour of The Verb Hotel with Elizabeth Lowrey, Principal and Director of Interior Architecture at Elkus Manfredi Architects and stylish lead behind the redesign of this humble-turned-hip Boston boutique hotel, just behind Fenway Park. The architects worked closely with the development team to embrace the area’s legacy .

Initially slated for a tear down—the hotel had become a HoJos after all—Samuels became disillusioned by the shiny new development happening all over the city and decided to re-imagine the 94-room mid-century modern hotel, knowing it would add character to the revitalized neighborhood.

The Verb Hotel first opened in 1959 as the Fenway Motor Hotel in a neighborhood that by the thriving indie music scene. Over the years a multitude of clubs popped up on Lansdowne Street, along with the alternative weekly newspaper the Boston Phoenix and rock radio stations.


Developer Steve Samuels and hotelier Robin Brown enlisted “vibe conservators” Stephen Mindich, publisher of the Boston Phoenix, and David Bieber, WBCN Creative Services Director to consult with Elkus Manfredi on the hotel’s new look and feel, which pays homage to the rock scene of the ’70s and ’80s. Bieber dipped into his enormous personal archives of pop-culture memorabilia which the designers used to decorate the lobby.


The two-story modernist building, designed by architects Irving Salsberg and Ralph Leblanc, went up in 1959. Elkus Manfredi Architects honored the original building, retaining the footprint of the motel and guestrooms. The feel is that of an authentic motor inn, including a courtyard pool and cars pulled up outside the rooms.


The team stuck to a pretty strict budget. Easy upgrades like colored film by Solar Graphics were applied to the new windows to add rhythmic pops of color. In 1959 when the original motel was completed, different colored stained-glass windows formed solid vertical lines on its structure. Eventually, these windows were replaced and the solid vertical stripes of color became irregular. When replacing all the windows for the restoration, Elkus Manfredi deliberately retained the irregular Mondrian-like pattern.


The architects dressed up a front façade with vertical wood siding and simple landscaping.


A circular skylight in the lobby lets in light and provides a glimpse of a new high rise across the street.

The Verb Boston Boutique Hotel Lobby Desk

The front desk is upholstered in tufted black leather. Amps and electric guitars are propped up beside it. Black and white geometric flooring by Mondo.

The Verb Boston Boutique Hotel Lobby Banquettte

The lobby, with its deep blue walls and tufted yellow leather banquette custom-designed by Elkus Manfredi Architects broadcasts that it is indeed a Boston boutique hotel. Authentic vintage music ephemera, curated by David Bieber from his own collection, include backstage passes from the J. Geils Band, and torn $4.50 ticket stubs to a Blondie show at the Paradise on Commonwealth Avenue. Framing done locally by Stanhope Framers. Triangular Island tables by Calligaris. Knoll Risom lounge chairs designed in 1943 by Jens Risom and sheepskin throw both from Design Within Reach.


Music posters and vinyl records along with a vintage jukebox.


Original brickwork was painted black using textured paint by Sherwin Williams.


If the lobby’s not crowded, guests can spin records on the yellow vintage Realistic-brand LAB 440 turntable. They’ve got 150 vintage local and national vinyl albums.


A display case in the breezeway connecting the main lobby with the guest rooms houses The Archives at the Verb,  curated from Bieber’s warehouse of thousands of pop-culture memorabilia.

The Verb Boston Boutique Hotel Stairwell

Original brick walls were painted vibrant hues and treated to music-related stenciled sayings. Perforated steel railings custom-fabricated by MIW Co. Ipanema Multi-Bloom Pendant Lamp by Jonathan Adler.

The Verb Boston Boutique Hotel Stairwell

“If the music is too loud, you’re too old.”

The Verb Boston Boutique Hotel Stairwell


Photographs of numbers from Fenway park were pulled together to form the room numbers on hotel room doors.


Illuminated signs on black walls in the hotel lobby.

The Verb Boston Boutique Hotel Guest Room

Guest rooms are clean and crisp with integrated wood veneer headboards. Elkus Manfredi Architects designed the mid-century modern inspired furnishings, which were manufactured by Artco.


Framed Phoenix newspaper pages hang on the walls in each room.


Mid-century dot pattern drapery and a shot of pink from the window film.


Photo by Adrian Wilson

Like many boutique hotels, the contemporary bathrooms are simple but don’t skimp on amenities.
Tile by Dal-Tile.


The desk in each hotel room is equipped with a typewriter purchased on eBay. The desk chair is an armless Setu side chair by Herman Miller.


Best part: the hotel courtyard has a pool. The vibe is motor lodge, but really it’s like a hip resort, right downtown. Check out the green stands at Fenway in the background.


Period-appropriate colors were carefully chosen.

The Verb Boston Boutique Hotel Sign

The Verb Hotel, 1271 Boylston Street, Boston

Photos by Marni Elyse Katz/StyleCarrot

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S H O P   the   L O O K 

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Get the Look: 60 Modern Grey Sofas

Monage: 54 Living rooms with Gray Sofas is by far the most popular post on this blog, with twice the number of page views as the second most popular, Montage: 57 Plywood Rooms. Although I’ve recently updated the links for its companion post—Get the Look: 22 Modern Grey Sofas—it’s been over two years since I originally created it, so I figured another one was in order.

We have a grey sofa in the family room, and although it may not be as fashion forward as I’d like, it’s got clean lines, durable fabric, and big comfy cushions. It’s so long all four of us can watch television on it. We actually kind of built the room around it, insisting to our designer that the door to the study be extra narrow. (He wasn’t happy but obliged.)

Since everyone still seems to want to buy a grey sofa, here are 60 modern grey sofas you can shop for at 27 different stores, from minimalist modern styles to more classic tufted chesterfield sofas, with a few gray sleeper sofas thrown in. Price points vary, with ten styles under $1000 and many falling in the mid-range.


1 Carmichael Loft Sofa by Gus*Modern, $1,999 at 2Modern.

2 Jacksonville Convertible Sofa II by Gold Sparrow, $360.99 at AllModern.

3 Sterling Sofa by BD Fine, $1,985 at Burke Decor

4 Boyd Sofa by Pinch, $5,110 at The Future Perfect. 

5 Avec Tweed Sofa, $1,399 at CB2.  

6 El Rey Sofa by Haute House, $4,399 at Horchow


7 Livingston Sofa, $1,299 at West Elm

8 Morgan Sofa by Bensen, $3,811 at Lekker. 

9 Folding Sleeper Loveseat, $479 at Urban Outfitters.

10 Bryson Sofa by Klausner, $928.37 at PureHome

11 Bram Grey Leather Sofa, $3,799 at Room & Board

12 Bradley Loveseat by International Design, $919.99 at Wayfair.

13 Capri Convertible Sofa by Lifestyle Solutions, $599.99 at Bluefly. 


14 Alicia Charcoal Velvet Sofa, $2,792 at Mitchell Gold+Bob Williams. 

15 City Gym Sofa  in Faribault Wool Blankets, $6,100 at Matter.  

16 Vera Sofa, $2,898 at Lillian August.

17 Madison Sofa by Moe’s Home Collection, $1,099.99 at AllModern

18 Larkin Sofa, $2059 at Ballard Designs. 

19 Lampert Sofa, $3,895 at Jonathan Adler


20 Rue Apartment Sofa, $999 at CB2. 

21 Finn Sofa, $899 at West Elm

22 Spruce Street Sofa, $2,450 at Serena & Lily.  

23 Swept Sofa by BluDot, $1,899 at YLiving

24 Spencer Sofa, $2,234 at Ballard Designs. 

25 Ploum Sofa by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec at Ligne Roset.


26 Patrick European Velvet Button-Tufted Sofa, $1,839.99 at Overstock.

27 Sophia Sofa by Moss Studio, $3,198 at PureHome

28 Anderson Sofa, $769 at Urban Outfitters.

29 Hunter Lounge, $1,912 at Mitchell Gold+Bob Williams.

30 Kensington Sofa, $3,795 at Jonathan Adler

31 Arden Sofa, $2,800 at Jonathan Adler.


32 Chester Tufted Sofa, $1,199 at West Elm

33 South Beach Sofa, $1,877.99 at Overstock.

34 Foliage Sofa by Patricia Urquiola for Kartell, $3,850 at YLiving

35 Archive Sofa by Gus*Modern, $2,413.95 at Burke Decor

36 Velvet Settee Loveseat I by Skyline Furniture, $556.99 at Wayfair.

37 Belem Sofa by Didier Gomez at Ligne Roset.

38 Parlour Sofa, $1,699 at CB2


39 Grey Leather Tufted Chesterfield Renaissance Sofa, $3,359.99 at Wayfair.

40 Silvertone Sofa, $2,499 at Horchow

41 Limbo Sofa by Pianca $3,596 at YLiving

42 Halsten Sofa, $3,850 at Serena & Lily.   

43 Mikayla Granite Grey Stone Wash Linen Sofa,$1,288.79 at Overstock.

44 Carol Grey Velvet Sofa by BD Fine, $1,770 at Burke Decor


45 Ciudad Sofa, $1,199 at CB2.  

46 Nolee Folding Sofa Bed, $699.99 at World Market

47 Twilight Sleeper Sofa by Flemming Busk for Softline, $2,100 at DWR.

48 Pennie Sofa by Bethan Gray, $899 at Crate & Barrel.

49 Wireframe Sofa by Sam Hecht for Herman Miller, $5,149 at YLiving.

50 Miramar Slipcovered Sofa, $3,750 at Serena & Lily


51 Chateau d’Ax Positano Leather Sofa, $4,200 at Bloomingdale’s. 

52 Bonnie Studio Sofa by BluDot, $1,399 at 2Modern

53 Brooklyn Grey Suede Nailhead Sofa, $2,099 at Pottery Barn

54 Pacific Heights Sofa by Zuo, $2,490 at Bluefly. 

55 Oslo Sofa by Muuto, $4,195 at YLiving.  

56 Playground Daybed by Eilersen, $2,499 at YLiving

57 Hanover Sofa, $3,550 at Serena & Lily


58 Nyle Sofa, $899.95 at Pier 1

59 Windsor Sofa by Irving Place, $3,995 at ABC Carpet & Home.

60 Harbord Sofa by Gus*Modern $1,999 at YLiving

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Get the Look: 42 Modern Desks For Your Home Office

I’ve been so focused on Florida (though not nearly enough, as I’ve yet to order rugs, shades, or decide on the pink problem in the bathroom), that I’ve neglected organizing and upgrading in Boston. Coming back in the fall from the Cape, I’m always bothered by the amount of stuff we have. Too. Much. Stuff. It’s particularly striking because not only is the place on the Cape a lot bigger, being a house instead of an apartment, it’s white and virtually empty.

Here, in addition to crown moldings and bookshelves lined with coffee table books (one of the best perks of being a blogger), there’s , well, everything. The piles of dishes still not put away from the bar mitzvah in February (because, after all, we’re having another one this coming February), our bicycles in the living room until it gets too cold to ride and we store them, etc.

I’ve been promising my younger son that I would work on his bedroom. Meaning, I would clear out all the outgrown clothing and extra bedding I’ve been keeping in there. Done! He has the upholstered armchair that I used to nurse them on when they were babies. It’s taking up a ton of space that would be better used for a desk. He’s starting to get a fair amount of homework, plus, like me, he’s very organized, so I think he’d love to have drawers where he can store supplies.

Our other son has a little desk from IKEA, which when it’s cleared, he actually likes to use (not for homework, though). When he was away at a boarding school program this summer he lived in student housing, with a room furnished in typical dorm style (by a company like Peelmount) that outfits dorm rooms with sturdy wood beds, desks, and dressers. It’s kind of incredible that those designs haven’t changed, in like, ever. Blocky oak stands the test of time, I suppose. In any case, I’m not looking for anything as practical as all that. A small, affordable, modern desk is all we need.

Here are 42 modern desks, almost all of them well-priced (and one very extravagant example).







S H O P P I N G 

1 Soft Modern Writing Desk by Sauder, $210 at All Modern.

2 MICKE desk, $49.99 at IKEA

3 at All Modern.

4 Phillip Desk by Arteriors Home, $2,520 at All Modern.

5 Finch Desk by Gus Modern, $1,044.75 at Burke Decor.

6 Half Pipe Writing Desk by Offi, $899 at All Modern. 

7 Ayers Writing Desk by Reual James, $1,338 at All Modern.

8 Jacques Desk, $3,495 at Jonathan Adler

9 Homework Desk by Niels Bendtsen, $1,595 at DWR.

10 Reef Writing Desk by Tema, $720 at All Modern

11 Paul McCobb Style Birch Desk, $2700 at Chairish. 

12 Pilson Paprika Desk, $199 at Crate & Barrel.

13 Eames Desk Unit (EDU) by Herman Miller, $1,419 at Room & Board.

14 Rustic Storage Oak Desk, $499 at West Elm.

15 Radford Adjustable Desk in White design by Safavieh, $495 at Burke Decor.

16 Offi Wave Writing Desk, $999 at All Modern.

17 Royal Blue Vintage Campaign Desk, $795 at Chairish.

18 Executive Desk with Cabinet by Jesper Office, $2,374 at Bluefly.

19 Shutter Hall Desk, $1,350 at Furniturea.

20 Marco Desk, $799 at Crate & Barrel.

21 Delphine Desk, $1,950 at Jonathan Adler

22 Hanh Left Desk by Euro Style, $552 at Burke Decor.  

23 Eames Desk Unit (EDU) by Herman Miller, $1,419 at DWR.

24 Contrast Drawer Desk by Assembly Home, $369 at Urban Outfitters.

25 Slim Desk in Orange, $449 at Room & Board.

26 Nelson Swag Leg Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller, $2,149 at DWR.

27 Mid-Century Desk in Thai Blue, $399 at West Elm.

28 Cant Writing Desk by Blu Dot, $599 at All Modern.

29 Poltrona Frau Fred Desk, $ stat Switch Modern.

30 Format Desk by BDI USA, $1,299 at All Modern.

31 Green Josephine Desk by Cost Plus, $199 at World Market.

32 Reclaimed Pine Cross Base Desk, $499 at West Elm.

33 Manon Desk by Italian Modern, $539.99 at All Modern.

34 Reale Desk by Moe’s Home Collection, $781.76 at Bellacor

35 Junction Desk by Gus Modern, $1,255 at Burke Decor.

36 Emmerson Reclaimed Wood Storage Desk, $1,299 at West Elm.

 37 Scrub Desk by Autobahn for De La Espada, $5,185 at Matter.

38 Fairfax Desk, $495 at Serena & Lily.

39 Companions Writing Desk by StudioIlse, $3,145 at The Future Perfect.

40 Lark Desk, $695 at Serena & Lily.

41 Pontus Desk by Pinch, $11,257 at The Future Perfect.

42 Remix Desk by Gesa Hansen , $3,065 at Matter.

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