Tag Archives: Frank Roop

Montage: 32 Interiors by Boston Designers, in Honor of Marathon Monday

Today’s post is in honor of the horrific explosions that occurred at the Boston Marathon finish line yesterday. (I live just a few blocks from that spot; thankfully my family and friends are safe.). I have pulled together an assortment of rooms designed by Boston interior designers. I’ve had the honor of working with all of them; these images are from stories I wrote over the years for various publications—Boston Globe Magazine, Boston Home, Stuff, and New England Home. And, of course, they were shot by our wonderful assortment of Boston-based photographers, and assigned by esteemed Boston editors, Anne Nelson, Veronica Chao, Rachel Slade, Brooke Foster, Erica Corsano, Paula Bodah, and Kyle Hoepner. Finally the homeowners–friends, neighbors, and others I’ve been privileged to meet, who have opened their gardens and homes to us.

After twelve years, Boston has become my home. It’s certainly my children’s home; they’ve lived here almost their entire lives. It’s been a wonderful time for us, free of tragedy after a very stressful few years in Washington, D.C. There for just a few years, but during both of my pregnancies, we suffered with the nation through 9/11, anthrax, and locally, the Sniper. I am sad that Boston has been marred by this tragedy now, on an iconic day. My thoughts are with the people who were hurt (and worse), and the little boy who lost his life too early. Thank you my friends who have been helping hold down the fort until I can get home, and thank you to my husband and his colleagues for their dedication.


Ana Donohue
New England Home


Lineage Restaurant – Alison Sheffield
Photographer Mike Diskin

annie-hall-s-+-h-kids room

Annie Hall – S+H Construction
Boston Globe Magazine


Brenda Be – Photographer Ben Gebo
Boston Globe Magazine

brad-walker-loft-kara-butterfield-jeff-osborne- Matt- KalinowskiI

Brad Walker, Ruhl Walker Architects
Photographed by Matt Kalinowski for Boston Home
Styled by Kara Butterfield & Jeffrey Osborne


Butz & Klug ArchitectureBoston Globe Magazine


Lisa Kreilling, LTK Interiors
Photographed by Trent Bell for Boston Home


Ritch Holben, Rh Design
Photographed by Keller + Keller for Boston Globe Magazine


Hacin + Associates – Photographer Clint Clemens
Boston Globe Magazine


Jeffrey Osborne, Hark + Osborne
Photographed by Josh Kuchinsky for Boston Globe Magazine


Karen Watson, Acorn Hill Design
Photographed by Diane Anton for Boston Globe Magazine


Joao Stefanon, JFS Design Studio
Boston Globe Magazine


Christine Tuttle – Photographer Eric Roth
New England Home


Robin PelissierBoston Globe Magazine


Erin Gates, Elements of Style
Photographed by Eric Roth for Boston Globe Magazine


Frank Roop – Photographer Eric Roth
Boston Globe Magazine


Duncan Hughes
Photographed by Eric Roth for Boston Home


LDa ArchitectureBoston Globe Magazine


Rachel ReiderBoston Globe Magazine

Andra-Birkerts 2

Avery True, Andra Birkerts Design
Boston Globe Magazine

700 Harrison Ave, Boston, MA; Stephanie Sabbe Interiors

Stephanie Sabbe
Photographed by Bob O’Connor for Boston Home


Shellie Donovan
Photographed by Eric Roth for Boston Globe Magazine


Kelly McGuill
Photographed by Eric Roth for Boston Globe Magazine


Andrew Terrat, Terrat Elms


Tom Murdough, Murdough Design
Photographed by Chuck ChoiBoston Home


Tricia McDonough – Photographer Michael Casey

107 South Street, Boston, MA

Studio Luz Architects
Photographed by Bob O’Connor for Boston Home


Kristen RivoliBoston Globe Magazine


Rachel ReidBoston Globe Magazine


Kristine MullaneyStuff Magazine


Sally Wilson, Wilson Kelsey Interiors
Boston Globe Magazine


Annsley McAleer – Photographer Ben Gebo
New England Home

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Montage: 32 Rooms with Blue Velvet Sofas

For a while I had been noticing gray sofas galore, but lately its been blue velvet sofas that have been standing out. Elegant but still cozy, they work in a variety of rooms, and seem just the touch of richness needed for this chilly winter week. There are some old favorites in here that I felt like I had to include (Frank Roop, Mary McDonald), but also plenty of new finds. Tomorrow we’ll take a shopping trip on the Interwebs to find blue velvet seating of our own.



Emily Henderson


 Rue Magazine


Monica Penaguião


 Home of interior stylist Jaime Lacasa
Photographed by P. Zuloaga for Elle Decoration Spain


Aman & Carson
Photographed by Pieter Estersohn for Elle Decor


Designer Frank Roop’s own home (also my neighbor in Boston)
Photographed by Eric Roth for Elle Decor

blue velvet sofa-Justin-and-Jeanne-Roebert

Hecker Guthrie
Photographed by Derek Swalwell (via The Design Files)

blue-velvet-sectional-Vancouver-loft-architect Omer Arbel

Architect Omer Arbel • Photographed by Martin Tessler


Victoria Hagan


Architectural Digest Spain (via ECLECchic)


Amanda Nisbet

blue-velvet-sofa-abstract-art-Petra Bindel

Photographed by Petra Bindel

Blue-velvet-sofa-home-of-designer-Ksenia Nikitina

Designer Ksenia Nikitina’s Moscow penthouse
Architectural Digest Russia


Annsley McAleer
(Boston designer and my neighbor)


 Brad Goreski’s home on The Coveteur


 unidentified (via Remodelista)


 unidentified (via MFAMB)


Photographed by Simon Upton for Elle Decor


Photographed by Mark Boston for Heart Home Magazine


unidentified (via The Brick House)


Elena Letteron • New England Home


D. Mesure Studio


D. Mesure Studio


Pauline de Rothschild’s library in House Beautiful


Martyn Lawrence Bullard


 Actress Romy Schneider photographed by Giancarlo Botti


 Mary McDonald


Designer Todd Alexander Romano’s apartment in NYC
 Thomas Loof for Architectural Digest


 Shoot Factory


Emily Henderson


Windsor Smith

•           •           •

S H O P  the  L O O K 


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Montage: 47 Bedrooms with Upholstered Headboards

As I’m wrapping up the details on Meredith and Daniel’s apartment, I’m also sorting through my overabundance of images in iPhoto. In the mass cleanup are a multitude of upholstered beds. If you recall, the design process started with the master bedroom, because Meredith had a specific look in mind. Said look revolved around a great upholstered bed. We opted for a silhouette with gentle curves, white canvas upholstery, and nickel nail heads. As you can see from these rooms, there are so many different variations on shape, pattern, color, and detailing. Tomorrow I’ll round up specific styles for you to shop.

Anthony Baratta

Tom Scheerer

Susie Sarlo – Beau Monde Interior Design

Katie Leede – Digs by Katie

Amy Lau Design

Photographer Eric Roth

M. Design

Jen Ramos’ bedroom – Made By Girl

Martha Stewart Living

Fawn GalliDomino Magazine

Elle Decor 

VT Wonen

Serena & Lily

Lonny Magazine

 Cole & Son ‘Palm Leaves’ wallpaper
via House of Turquoise

Living Etc.

Frank Roop – Photographer Eric Roth

Palmer Weiss – TRADhome

via All Things Thrifty



Photographer Toby Scott

Piet Boon


Vanessa de Vargas – Lonny Magazine

Lotus Bleu Design

Mary McDonald – Domino Magazine

Photographer Carolyn Barber – House to Home

Celerie Kemble Interiors

Fawn Galli

Jonathan BergerHouse Beautiful


Burnham Design

Greg Natale

Delphine Krakoff – Pamplemousse Design

VT Wonen

White Webb

Firmdale Hotel

Elle Decoration Norway

Photographer Brian Park


Canadian House & Home

Photographer Carolyn Barber – House to Home

Atlanta Homes Magazine


Annie SelkeHouse Beautiful

Kevin Hart Interiors


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Montage: 47 Living Rooms with Chandeliers and Pendants

The renovations are finally finished in our condo, save for a few odds and ends and two extra dining room tables in the living room. I should also get around to sourcing a living room chandelier. I had the electrician add a box and switch for one in the center of the living room, between the rows of recessed lights. I originally thought I’d like a vintage sputnik, possibly in brass, but now I’m not so sure. Obviously a glittering crystal chandelier isn’t my taste, and a Lindsey Adelman fixture is way out of my price range. So, what shall it be? I found some gorgeous specimens on 1st Dibs, but I’ll save those until tomorrow. Meanwhile, let’s look at 47 different living rooms with various options, from contemporary creations and vintage sputnik to lanterns and Chinoiserie.

Alisberg Parker Architects

Julie Bowen’s home by Molly Luetkeymeyer of M. Design Interiors

Jenna Lyons’ NYC brownstone by Levenson McDavid Architects

Kelly Behun

Delphine Krakoff of Pamplemousse Design

via New York Times

Jean Louis Deniot

Frank Roop

Brad Dufton of Color Theory


via The Aestate

Shaun Jackson Design for fashion designer Michelle Smith of Milly

Tilton Fenwick

Amanda Nisbet Design

Design Within Reach

Jamie Drake Design Associates

Elizabeth Kimberly Design

Photographer Peter Margonelli

via Skona Hem

Melanie Turner Interiors

Photographer Francesco Lagnese

Jessica Helgerson Interior Design

via The Aestate

Photographer Susan Gillmore

John Willey of Willey Design


Clarisse Demory

via Living Etc.

via Living Etc.

Architects Found Associates

Julianne Moore’s NYC brownstone

via Inspace Locations

via Homes and Gardens

Photographer Simon Watson

Roman and Williams Buildings and Interiors

Photographer Francis Smith

Bolig Magasinet   |  Photographer Mark Roshams

Weitzman Halpern Interior Design  |  unknown

Steven Gambrel  |  unknown

Stylist Rosie Brown  |  Amy Butler’s home

via Living Etc.  |  via Inspace Locations

Abington Gallery  |  Photographer Simon Watson

Orrick & Company Architecture & Design  |  Photographer Philips Ficks


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Montage: 54 Kitchen Banquettes

Our Boston condo is under renovation. One of the features we are adding is a banquette adjacent to the kitchen area. It seems to me that there’s been a proliferation of built-in seating recently. Unlike the booths of the ’70s (I grew up with an orange and white vinyl booth in a kitchen with oversize floral wallpaper that had a gold, brown, and orange plaid border), today’s specimens are sophisticated and sleek.

Ours will be U-shaped (not ideal, but we’re dealing with a tight space), with a pale blue and taupe chevron upholstered seat-back and pale blue faux leather seat cushion. The custom table has a walnut herringbone-pattern top on a restaurant supply style stainless base. I’ll post a photo when it’s complete. (If I’m not dead first.)

In the meantime, here are 54 very fabulous banquettes. In addition, check out my piece “The Haute Seat,” in last Sunday’s Boston Globe Magazine.

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Montage: 45 Striped Rooms

Years ago, one summer weekend when I opted to stay in the City over the Hamptons, I got really ambitious, and painted my little bathroom on East 87th Street with soft green and white stripes. Well, it was already white, so I only painted the green. Only? I measured, taped, painted, painted again, waited for it to dry, and peeled. Done before the boyfriend arrived back on Sunday night. I don’t remember what he thought, I guess it was fine, but I remember that someone else described it as looking like a candy store. I suppose, depending on what you keep in your medicine chest that could be accurate…

Photos: House & Home; Better Homes & Gardens; photographer Graham Atkins-Hughes; Skona Hem; VT Wonen; Pappas Miron; Skona Hem; Shelton, Mindel & Associates; unidentified; Alwill Architecture; unidentified; Amanda Nisbet; Country Living; Boundary Hotel in London; Commune Design; Amanda Nisbet; Lonny Magazine; Jenna Lyons in Living Etc.; M. Design; Mary McDonald in Domino; Eric Roseff; Domino; Kishani Perera; Frank Roop; unidentified; Elle Décor; Nathalie Vingot Mei; unidentified; Byblos  Art Hotel Villa Amista; Burnham Design; Eric Roseff; Julie Richard; Meg Braff; photographer François Halard; photographer Carolyn Barber; Re-Nest; unidentified; Wendy Blount; Terrat Elms; Markham Roberts; Apartment Therapy; Isolee; Forms of Design; Southern Living, Angie Hranowsky.


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Montage: X-Stools

As I may have mentioned, I’m in the midst of redecorating my bedroom and the room formerly known as the playroom. (Once kids are 8 they don’t need toys anymore, right?) This weekend the floors on our the main level are being refinished. The paint colors are chosen and the main pieces of furniture ordered. There are even a few key accessories waiting patiently to be placed. But I still need a couple of medium-sized items, like side tables and poufs or ottomans. I snagged three microsuede storage cubes at Target for $17.99 last week, in my exact colors (turquoise, violet, chartreuse).  Super cute and totally cheap. (Plus, the Star Wars costumes all fit inside one. Take that Vader.) To accompany the bedroom sofa, I’m debating between two of the same cubes in charcoal, a metallic silver leather pouf, or two X-stools covered in crisp white cotton duck, just like the sofa. An X-stool is incredibly practical  – it’s an extra seat, an ottoman, or topped with a tray, a side table. It’s also one of the earliest forms of furniture. In addition to its versatility and portability, I love its symmetry. It works in pretty much every room, and never fails to look great, and sometimes even pulls together an otherwise faltering space. Have a look at these rooms to see what I mean.










Photos: Tripod Agency; House Beautiful; Pamplemousse; I On Design; Greg Natale Design; Michael Cebula; Meg Braff; Nate Berkus; Jessica Lagrange Interiors in Traditional Home; Reed Krakoff in Elle Decor; photographer Mark Lund; S.R. Gambrel; Emily Summer Design Associates; Jonathan Adler; Amanda Nisbet; unidentified; photographer Peter Vitale; Moris Moreno Photography; Ken Fulk; Moris Moreno Photography; David Lawrence in House Beautiful; Domino; Kwinter & Co.; Domino; Frank Roop; Scott Currie in Elle Decor; Janine Carendi of Area; Lori Graham; Reed Krakoff; Kara Mann Design; Point Click Home; Walker-Warner Architects; Pamplemousse; Paul Whicheloe; Marshall Watson in House Beautiful; House Beautiful; Todd Romano; Janine Carendi of Area; Billy Joel’s home in Domino; Domino; David Jiminez; Elle Decor; Cookie; Apartment Therapy; Charles de Lisle Workshop; Nicole Hollis.


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Design Diary: Frank Roop’s Studio

frankPhoto courtesy of Stuff Magazine

Last year, interior designer Frank Roop purchased a 725-square-foot condo on Newbury Street to serve as his studio and office. I popped in last spring to go over the details on the gorgeous Nantucket house that I wrote about for the Boston Globe Magazine (and this blog). While I was there, I also got the lowdown on how he transformed it into a perfect workspace; one that showcases his signature style without overwhelming the designs he puts forth for his clients. I wrote it up as a Q&A for Stuff Magazine called
“Interior designer Frank Roop’s functional and fashionable studio”. And, I took extra notes and pictures to share here.

“I definitely went all out.  My studio is simple and clean, with notes of exotica, pops of color, and a lot of texture. It communicates my aesthetic, but is neutral enough so that the design doesn’t overshadow my presentations to clients.”

The space originally housed three separate offices. Roop kept a plan with three distinct spaces, but opened up the wall between two of them,  adding large custom metal-and-glass doors. That’s where his desk and computer are. He presents design concepts and swatch boards in the adjoining room with the fireplace. The third room is a work area for making models, with doors he can shut if it gets messy.


Roop’s desk is vintage Danish from a dealer in Paris. The wall behind the desk is a high-gloss lacquer with “a million coats of paint” that were sanded between coats and then sprayed with a high-gloss finish. Roop adds, “It took about a week to do that one wall.” The stripey painting is by local artist David Moore, represented by the Kidder Smith Gallery.
Roop-office-detailsLeft: Roop often uses vintage Curtis Jere wall sculptures. An array of sea anemones hang behind his desk. (He used similar sculptures above the desk in the Nantucket family room.)

Right: Detail of the overhead light fixture that he designed. About it Roop says, “It is essentially a light box made of silk with top-stitched suede tape.”

roop-bookshelfLeft: These open rectangular bookshelves hang on the wall to the left of  Roop’s desk. He used similar shelves in his home too.

Right: Roop favors fancy minerals as objets d’art. The hunks here are actually slag glass. (I scoured ebay for a hunk (of glass) of my own as soon as I got back to my computer.)


Right: The main room adjoins Roop’s office. The walls are covered with a superfine hemp cloth in a neutral color, which is important because he displays the design boards on the ledges here. The wall behind the fireplace is a micro-mosaic tile in a polished white Carrara marble that’s sort of sparkly. The Plexiglass globe chandelier is from an antique dealer in San Francisco.

Top right: A mesmerizing slab of rock with clear crystal formations, from China, sits on the mantle. Bottom right: Another painting by David Moore hangs above a decorative screen with nail head detailing.


Left: “My super-duper high-end treasure is this ’60s-era George Nakashima coffee table.” 

Right: Roop designs most of the upholstered pieces in his projects. This chair is one of his early prototypes. He also designed the star side table with a shimmery veneer that’s made from paua shell imported from Hawaii. When the Nantucket client saw it, she insisted on having one too. The star table in Nantucket has more of a bluish tinge.

design displayThe presentation ledges. These boards are for an over-the-top condo in Miami. I got a sneak peek of the photos, but sorry, can’t share them yet! They’ll be published in a national glossy soon.


Details from the inspiration boards. Shiny, velvety, nubby, geometric, metallic. Delicious. The colors and textures are pure Roop, but revved up to stand out in South Beach.


“I love light fixtures – I think of them as sculpture.”


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Montage: Wall Sculptures

Since I’ve been writing a lot about Frank Roop lately, I’ve become a bit obsessed with Curtis Jere wall sculptures. A couple of weeks ago, while sitting innocently on the sofa with my computer, I began searching for examples online. 1st Dibs, too expensive, obviously. Ebay, full of options. I cavalierly bid on about half a dozen different Curtis Jere and Curtis Jere-inspired sculptures of the leafy variety. (I’ve been particularly taken with the spray of trees Frank put in this little Morroccan reading nook in Nantucket. I like the “raindrops” style too, but they’re pretty pricey.) I’ve bid on stuff before. Never won a thing. So maybe the economy isn’t so great right now. Maybe people aren’t shopping wildly for vintage metal artworks. OK, so I won four auctions. New sculptures have been arriving pretty much daily. I’ll photograph them and give you a preview later this week. Maybe you’d like one for your own house? Here are some images for inspiration.

The one that started it all.









Photos: Frank Roop in Metropolitan Home; M. Design; Design Within Reach; Curtis Jere on Flickr-monkeysox; unidentified; Frank Roop in Boston Globe Magazine; David Jimenez; unidentified; Jamie Bush; Shiny Gorgeous Things; photographer Jason Madara; Shoot Factory; Room Envy; unidentified; Apartment Therapy Norway; unidentified; The Parker Hotel, Palm Springs on Flickr-georgiarae; Frank Roop in Elle Decor; Flickr-polycystin71; Flickr-Stewf; “Sculpture Group Symbolizing World’s Communication in the Atomic Age” (detail) Harry Bertoia at The Smithsonian – Flickr-davidgalestudios; Flickr-beeeeel.


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Get the Look: Frank Roop Style DIY

Loved the Nantucket house we toured this week? Designer Frank Roop reveals ten insider tips that you can pull off yourself, no matter what your budget.

curtains daybed

Cover cushions in contrasting fabrics. Instead of re-upholstering your whole piece, slipcover just the cushions, in a contrasting color or coordinating pattern. Roop, who covered the cushion of the daybed in the living room says, “I love that it looks almost like a mattress.”

Choose pieces that do double duty.
Invest in pieces like x-stools, cubes, and poufs that can be dragged from room to room and used as a stool, side table, or ottoman. In the living room, Roop designed x-stools upholstered in a silk canvas fabric.

Cut and sew pre-made curtains for a custom look. Buy inexpensive panels in different colors, cut lengthwise in thirds, and have your dry cleaner sew back together for a new, multi-colored effect. Roop had three soothing colors of linen stitched together to create the living room curtains. In the sitting room off the dining area, he had three different colors in varying horizontal widths sewn together for a more stripe-y effect.

br lamp

Trim lampshades with ribbon. Use a glue gun to affix grosgrain ribbon around the top and bottom edge of a run of the mill lampshade for a custom upgrade. Roop has all his lampshades custom made – the one on the vintage Danish chandelier is trimmed in suede while the linen shade in the master bedroom is trimmed with grosgrain ribbon. curtains and lamp

Frame far away trinkets. Be it a kimono from your trip to Japan or a feather you plucked off the ground in the Everglades, framing a sentimental piece preserves memories and adds an exotic touch. Roop had a child’s dress that the homeowner brought back from India framed for her daughter’s room.

Put new tops on old bases. Swap out a ruined tabletop with a remnant slab of stone, or top a wooden cube, stone pillar, or other architectural gem with a custom cut piece of glass. For the sitting area off the dining room, Roop designed a Moroccan-shaped lacquered base to which he added a bronze top that is stamped with a Moroccan pattern.

entry tableUse natural objects as accent pieces. Celebrate simplicity by displaying a specimen that occurs naturally in nature, like a gnarly hunk of driftwood , a chunky mineral, or a spiky piece of coral. Roop filled a huge clamshell with hydrangea and placed it on the dining room table with a piece of old driftwood, on a brightly colored runner. In the entry, a simple glass vase is filled with branches beside a piece of quartz.

Collect pieces of the similar objects in the same color. No matter how mundane an object may be, a grouping in the same color scheme elevates then from plain to polished. In the kitchen, the homeowner displays blue and green seltzer bottles she had been collecting over the years.

mosaic Paint old furniture a spunky new color. Any old piece of furniture can be transformed with glossy paint – try chartreuse, tomato red, inky black or bright white. Roop had vintage faux bamboo chairs (the homeowner loves faux bamboo) re-lacquered in celery and reupholstered in a neutral stripe for the dining room.

Use several small mirrors to make a mosaic. Instead of hanging one large, pricey mirror, collect a number of small ones, and arrange in a mosaic pattern for maximum impact. In a niche off the entry, Roop hung mirrored-back sconces in a bulls-eye design to echo the round mirror off to the side.



Montgomery Curtains (www.montgomery.co.uk/) offers made-to-measure and ready-made curtains and accessories.

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