Design Diary: Scandinavian Style Kitchen Renovation by Helios Design Group

I write a lot of one page design columns for Boston Globe Magazine. This one, published last fall with photos by Jared Kuzia, is one of my favorites. A restaurant industry couple hired Ariel Roth of Boston-based architecture and interior design firm, Helios Design Group, to renovate their kitchen in Jamaica Plain in a simple Scandinavian style, with an eye on the budget.

Roth started by moving the exterior door to the patio (and swapping it out for a full glass version that lets in light) in order to fit cabinetry and a new Wolf range with red knobs on a previously blank wall. Speckled penny tiles from Discover Tile are a fun touch that add a bit of color and interest. Love the inky blue walls? It’s Farrow & Ball Stiffkey Blue. The color allows the cabinets to stand out.

Speaking of kitchen cabinetry, Roth collaborated with local eco-friendly business Boston Building Resources on the cabinetry design, and donated the old cabinets to them for repurposing. The surface of the cabinets are done in simple white laminate, moments of exposed plywood edges, as well as the modern cut-outs in place of hardware, make them interesting. Roth says, “The plywood accents developed as we went along. The homeowners were into it, so at one point had exposed all the edges. Ultimately we pulled back and use plywood edge accents.”

Scandinavian Style Kitchen Renovation Helios Boston

Photo by Jared Kuzia

The homeowners initially fell in love with a $2,000 light fixture, but it just didn’t fit into the budget, so they decided on this acrylic orb. It’s the Bel Occhio 16 pendant lamp by Pablo Designs.

The Compass dining table from CB2 designed by Ceci Thompson  has an engineered wood high-gloss lacquered top and a glossy powder-coated, radial-shaped steel base. The red molded plastic chairs with wood legs are less expensive versions of the Eames fiberglass shell chair by Herman Miller.

While you’re down there, check out the floors. Roth used Avenue 12-by-12 cork tiles from APC Cork. This makes a lot of sense since it’s low maintenance and easy on the feet (they spend a lot of time in here). It also brings in an element of warmth.

Scandinavian Style Kitchen Renovation Helios Boston

Photo by Jared Kuzia

The above photo shows the rest of the sink wall. Roth enlarged the window to let in lots more light. You’ll notice that some of the kitchen cabinets are door-less, specifically in spots that are harder to access. These cubby-style cabinets are lined in charcoal Formica. The countertop is a quartz composite. “It’s a plane of solid grey that looks pretty with the cabinets,” Roth says.

Scandinavian Style Kitchen Renovation Helios Boston

Photo by Jared Kuzia

The photo above shows the other side of the range, and the adjacent wall. The bookcase makes use of a shallow space—an existing chimney is right behind it. They reused their fridge, which is right next to the bookshelf, in case you’re wondering.

Scandinavian Style Kitchen Renovation Helios Boston

Photo by Jared Kuzia

The shallow shelf is perfect for cookbooks, and a makeshift bar.

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ARTmonday: Center for Maine Contemporary Art Online Auction

The Center for Maine Contemporary Art in Rockland, Maine is currently hosting an online auction on Paddle8 through February 28, 2018 at 5pm. All proceeds from the auction support CMCA.

Initially founded as an artists’ cooperative called Maine Coast Artists in 1952, the Center for Maine Contemporary Art functioned as a series of pop-ups for the first 15 years, having no permanent site. Early shows included works by Alex Katz and Louise Nevelson.

In 2016, the center moved to a new glass and corrugated metal space in downtown Rockland, designed by architect Toshiko Mori. CMCA remains a non-collecting institution, which means it does not maintain a permanent collection Instead, it shows work by national and emerging artists associated with Maine.

The auction offers up 50 works by 50 artists. Here are a few of my favorites. As they say, bid now, bid often here.

Center for Maine Contemporary Art Abstract Still LIfe Maine Artists

Emilie Stark-Menneg, Love Potion, 2017 • Courtesy of CMCA

Center for Maine Contemporary Art Abstract Landscape Maine Artists

Ingrid Ellison, Open the Floodgates, 2016 • Courtesy of CMCA

Center for Maine Contemporary Art Butterfly Maine Artists

K. Min, Summer #45, 2017 • Courtesy of CMCA

Center for Maine Contemporary Art Abstract Map Maine Artists

John Bisbee, Midsize American Grid, 2017 • Courtesy of CMCA

Center for Maine Contemporary Art Abstract Painting Maine Artists

Brooke Nixon, Snowy Day, 2017 • Courtesy of CMCA

Center for Maine Contemporary Art Nude Portrait Maine Artists

Elizabeth Fox, Changing Room, 2009 • Courtesy of CMCA

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Design Diary: Living Room by Meredith Rodday

Boston area interior designer Meredith Rodday, who you may know from her blog View From My Heels, transformed this formal living room into a light and airy space. I wrote about it here, in a recent issue of Boston Globe Magazine. I’ve included more about Rodday’s design and sources below. Photo by Jessica Delaney.

White Living Room With Colorful Art By Boston Designer Meredith Rodday

Jessica Delaney Photography

“I’m not known for formal rooms,” Rodday told me. As such her signature style of light colors with a coastal touch, was just what the homeowners were looking for.

They started by painting the room Benjamin Moore “Navajo White” to tie it together with the home’s family room. Using the warm, creamy white as a base, Rodday added soft white upholstered and warm wood pieces, a dark grounding coffee table, and pretty artwork for a pop of color.

All the fireplaces in the home had awful green marble, which Rodday replaced with classic Cararra marble. The blue/grey veining is reflecting in the gray striations of the Restoration Hardware Nahla rug , which adds a touch of interest but keeps things neutral.

The Lee Industries sofa is upholstered in Serena & Lily washed linen in sand. The McGee & Co. Blaine armchairs have a wood frames with a driftwood finish that adds a bit of earthiness. The baluster profile and finish tie into the Arteriors Everett table. Its oxidized iron-clad surface and base connects with the dark color of the large cocktail table, custom covered in navy Phillip Jeffries Juicy Jute grasscloth.

“The room is very large,” Rodday says, “We needed an anchor on the fireplace, which is off-center, and this worked well.” The Visual Comfort Morris chandelier with polished nickel finish further establishes the center of the seating area, without blocking the artwork.

The colorful artwork cements the focal point for the seating area and is the jumping off point for the accessories which bring color into the room. The piece is “Sapling Grove” by Peter Batchelder, an oil on canvas from Powers Gallery in Acton, Mass.

The indigo leafy vine pattern of the Belgian linen drapery, Novella by Massachusetts textile designer Ellisha Alexina, stands up to the painting without overwhelming it.

Rodday used the fabric for a throw pillow too. Other throw pillows include, from left to right, Susan Connor New York in Madu, Zak + Fox in Postage, Peter Dunham in Kashmir, and a cognac leather McGee & Co. pillow. The brushstroke lamp is by Jana Bek.

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Just In: 2017 Best Nine Instagrams

Happy New Year to everyone. I thought I’d share my top nine most liked posts on my three Instagram accounts this year. I hope you’ll follow me if you’re not already. And have a happy and healthy celebration tonight.

I’ll start with my main Insta account @StyleCarrot. As you can see, Boston cityscapes, Globe Magazine roundups, and the Women’s March. And, obviously everyone loved the hot cocoa bar at the Ritz Carlton.

2017 Top Nine Instagrams StyleCarrot

Next up, @StyleCarrotCurates, where I post art that I see and live with.

2017 Top Nine Instagrams StyleCarrotCurates

First row: Leslie  Graff painting from MassArt Auction; Lisa Houck, Cindy Clements,Roberta Nigro Hall, Beca Piascik at the SMFA Sale; Babette Herschberger’s abstracts in “The Texture of Light” show at da Fonseca Contemporania in Ft. Lauderdale. Second row: Kristen Texeira at Room 68 in Boston; artist Joe Digg’s studio; Duncan Johnson at Kobalt Gallery in Provincetown. Third row: Linda Cordner’s encaustics and more at a  Provincetown pop up gallery by Beth Kantrowitz of BK Projects;Watercolor and embroidery by Regina Jestrow in “The Texture of Light” show at da Fonseca Contemporania in Ft. Lauderdale; prints pinned up during open studios at Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown.

Finally, this past summer I started @StyleCarrotCape to capture all my great Outer Cape finds.

2017 Top Nine Instagrams StyleCarrotCape

First row: A Truro guest house in the native mid-century modern style; The Canteen restaurant in Provincetown; works from a printmaking class at Fine Arts Work Center. Second row: Budd Hopkins painting at PAAM; wood sculpture by Damien Hoar da Galvan at Castle Hill auction; the jetty to Long Point. Third row: Boston Globe Magazine’s holiday gift guide featuring Twenty Boat rum from South Hollow Spirits; a gray day at Provincetown harbor; and back in Boston trying a smoothie at Juice Press to quell my craving for a smoothie from Chequessett Choc0late.

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Design Diary: Christmas Scheme by Marc Langlois

Boston-based interior designer Marc Langlois created this Christmas scheme for a family in Wellesley, which was published in the Boston Globe Magazine last month.

Neutral Christmas Tree Decor Marc Langlois

Photo by Michael J. Lee

Langlois runs fresh greenery throughout the house, and even coordinates the wrapping paper with the overall design scheme. The theme, starry night, is done in a tone-on-tone palette of gold, silver, and white. Langlois collects ornaments at craft fairs throughout the year, and uses twinkling white lights. The tree, a fancy fake one from Frontgate, is actually pre-strung with the lights.

Mac Langlois Living Room

Photo by Michael J. Lee

M E R R Y   C H R I S T M A S

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