Tag Archives: Sean Litchfield

Fine Print: Erin Gates’ Elements of Style Book

Erin Gates sent me an advance copy of her new, very first design book, Elements of Style: Designing A Home & A Life. I’ve been browsing through it for the last couple of weeks, thoroughly enjoying the photos of the rooms she decorated for herself and clients, studying her style charts, and catching up on her life. The tone is easy, breezy, much like her blog, with plenty of personal tidbits interwoven through her design adventures and accomplishments.

Erin’s come a long way since I first met her, on assignment for Boston Globe Magazine in early 2009 after she sent me scouting shots of  the place she and Andrew rented in J.P. It landed her on the cover, and it’s still one of my favorite stories, not just because Erin and her house looked amazing (thanks Eric Roth for the excellent photos), but because Erin was full of enthusiasm and money saving tips.

Her blog and business have exploded and her design skills honed, while her excellent attitude and work ethic prevail. Congratulations Erin Gates!

erin-gates-book-cover

Elements of Style: Designing a Home & a Life by Erin Gates
Available October 7, 2014 (Simon & Schuster) $22.14

•      •      •

erin-gates-book-bar-1

Photo by Michael Parteni

Erin’s used this buffet over and again. She bought it for $75 at an estate sale and painted the inside turquoise (you can see that iteration in Erin’s place in Jamaica Plain, which I wrote about for Boston Globe Magazine, March 2009.) She went orange for the South End. Now it’s lined with malachite wallpaper.

•      •      •

erin-gates-book-sputnik-dining-room

Photo by Michael J. Lee

This is my favorite room. I’ve long been a sucker for a library dining room with Saarinen table and a fireplace. The sheepskin rugs nesle perfectly into those acrylic chairs from IKEA. The client stuffed the fireplace with little logs, which add some rustic texture; plus the circles are an excellent contrast to the stripes on the rug.

•      •      •

erin-gates-book-buddha

Photo by Michael Partenio

A sunroom with violet ikat cushions on barley twist chairs and Buddha on custom made brass base.

•      •      •

erin-gates-book-dining-nook

Photo by Michael J. Lee

Love this cerulean blue wall behind the banquette upholstered in the ever popular Chiang Mai print by Schumacher. Those Cherner chairs work well with the fabric’s twisting design and earthy colors.

•      •      •

erin-gates-book-dining-room-chart

Erin provides some charts with formulas for achieving different styles.

•      •      •

erin-gates-book-paint-colors

Erin’s favorite paint colors. You’ll have to buy the book to get the exact names. Ok, I’ll give you one: Benjamin Moore Palladian Blue.

•      •      •

erin-gates-book-girls-bedroom

Photo by Michael Partenio

I love how despite the graphic black & white rug and bedding, Erin’s guest room is totally feminine. Pale pink walls (Benjamin Moore Blanched Coral), a starburst mirror, and mirrored side tables will do that. Swiss dots + a boho throw + Nordic rug + Hollywood Regency glam. And somehow it all works.

•      •      •

erin-gates-book-masculine-bedroom

Photo by Michael J. Lee

This bedroom is interesting too, with its tufted headboard, chocolate brown linens, Asian-themed toile wallpaper and fretwork bookshelves, plus a leopard print bench.

v

erin-gates-book-boys-nursery

Photo by Sean Litchfield

Nursery with a black accent wall went viral on Pinterest.

•      •      •

erin-gates-book-kitchen

Photo by Michael J. Lee

Oh, this Madeline Weinrib rug again, this time in brown. It seems to work everywhere! (Tip: IKEA makes a black & white version.) I generally don’t like tan stone (only contractors do!) but Erin makes it work in this space where they’re stuck with it.

•      •      •

erin-gates-book-garden-patio

 Photo by Sarah Winchester

Erin’s parents Connecticut home. I wrote all about her mom’s garden for Boston Globe Magazine, April 2013.

•      •      •

erin-gates-and-andrew

Photo by Michael J. Lee

Erin and Andrew Gates with the doggies.

•      •      •

G E T  the  L O O K

[show_shopthepost_widget id=”309060″]

Leave a Comment

Filed under . REGULAR FEATURES, Fine Print

Design Diary: Victorian Townhouse by Evolve Residential

Earlier this summer, Boston designer Tom Egan of Evolve Residential sent me photos of his business partner Josh Linder’s 609-square foot, parlor-level condominium in a 19th century Victorian townhouse in the South End. We had hoped to feature it in the Boston Globe Magazine’s upcoming “New England Traditional” home issue, but alas, Josh sold it and moved out. But, lucky me (and you), I can feature it here. It’s amazing, and of course, Josh and Tom did all the design work. Here’s the grand tour:

evolve-living-room

The bones of the 145 year-old condo were beautiful and retained all of the traditional elements one associates with 19th century Boston homes: high ceilings, bay windows, crown moldings, and paneled doors. Yet it had been turned into a hodgepodge mess over the years. In addition to restoring the historic details, they tweaked the layout to suit 21st century living (an-suite bathroom, Poggenpohl kitchen).  The paint colors, fabrics, and furniture are a dynamic mix of contemporary and traditional. The living room is painted in seven shades of gray!

The sofa was custom made to follow the lines of the bay window, and is upholstered in a plush strié velvet. The walnut barrel chairs are by Flexform from local furniture store, ShowroomThe target painting is by Michael Hoffman, represented by nearby gallery, Jules Place.

evolve-living-room-candlesticks

The antique petite neoclassical Biedermier walnut chest of drawers is gorgous. They found a fabulous pair of French Baroque style mirrors from the 1940s; one’s in the living room, the other in the dining area. I asked about the funny little men on the chest. They answered, ” These little cuties are an antique pair of porcelain white monkeys from antique vendor in Los Angeles.”

evolve-dining-area

To the left of the fireplace they designed a custom banquette to function as a dining area and work space. Brass Irwin Feld “stiletto” ottomans upholstered plush pleated velvet are an unexpected contrast to the Saarinen pedestal table, and a feminine counterpoint to the black tufted leather banquette. To the right is the master bedroom. I love the tall, panelled door, which is painted in Benjamin Moore’s “Polo Blue.”

evolve-banquette-detail

A nice closeup of the other French Baroque style mirror. Look in the mirror for a glimpse of the kitchen.

evolve-entry

Check out the table (on legs!) in the entry. Tom says, “It’s our absolute favorite piece in the entire residence!”  It is a 1940s polished metal German prosthetic style skeleton leg table with a thick Lucite top. Whoa. The Osborne & Little “Trifad” wallpaper composed of metallic interlocking Chinese keys is one of my favorites. The floors are dyed black and finished with an ultra-matte polyurethane.

evolve-gray-bedroom

In the master bedrooom, the walls are covered in a grey textured fabric which has been paper-backed and applied like wallpaper. They did not reveal where that funky chandelier is from . . . Love the ikat pillows and thick drapery.

evolve-dressing-room

Here’s Josh’s closet. Jealous?

evolve-closet-detail

Hi shirts and suits match the decor : )

evolve-kitchen-sink

The chocolate-colored kitchen has grasscloth walls. Tom says, “It adds a beautiful texture with a subtle iridescence from the various colored grass strands running throughout the paper.”  As to its practicality, he notes that covering the grasscloth with a thin coat of matte polyurethane creates a wipe-able surface. Good to know.

evolve-kitchen-glass-door-fridge

The cabinetry is Poggenphol. I love how it’s slotted under the eaves. A table lamp makes it so cozy. What’s above the fridge?  A built-in Miele espresso machine!

evolve-outdoor-space

There’s also a lovely little deck.

evolve-south-end-towhouse

Photos by Sean Litchfield

3 Comments

Filed under . REGULAR FEATURES, Design Diary