sss for concrete collaborative tile!

festoon, new LA event space // Shescorts Sherman Samuel

I am in New York at ICFF where we are officially officially launching the tile collection I designed for today!! It has been over a year in the making, I finalized the patterns in March of last year and the first production test run went right to install at the creative studio and event space of my friends at “Festoon“!

I was thrilled to create this series of five for Concrete Collaborative (, , , , ). With crisp patterns and clean lines, tiles are crafted using careful consistency and superior design. I have seen A LOT of cement tiles in my day and the quality is all over the map. CC’s quality really stands out and they are made locally in California so it was a no brainer. 

The tiles are ideal for both interior and exterior applications. My series of five consists of linear designs which can be combined and arranged to create endless pattern opportunities.

 

The tiles are created in a beautiful lilac hue that I used in Festoon, but can come in all Concrete Collaborative’s wide range of . I pulled a chart together of a few of my favorite color combos below.

 

And speaking of ALL those different pattern options that you can create, I’ve illustrated a few of my favorites below.

 

The curve of the arch my be my favorite but the stripes are modern and classic at the same time.  

 

 

The single line design creates patterns that are reminiscent of subway tile but with all the character and beautiful tonality of the encaustic tile, it is a major upgrade. A modern version of a traditional staple. 

 

Above are all ideas using just one tile from the series but the best part is when you mix and match the different designs to create repeat patterns or larger motifs that can read more as a mural. Here are a few utilizing the series to help get your creativity flowing with all the options.

 

 

 

I have put all the designs in my shop so you can find them easily but you can order them directly through Concrete Collaborative with their online shop . You can find them .

I can’t wait to see these in some of your homes. #sssxconcretecollaborative.

Photos of Festoon by

Samuel Family Fixer Lighting

We have officially moved back into #samuelfamilyfixer! The bulk of construction is done and while we have quite a way to go before it is fully complete at least we are in and I can’t tell you how relieved that is. Going into a renovation you always know it is going to be disruptive and tough at times but man, as soon as I see the finish line I can’t even remember how bad or how hard moving three times (once across the country) with two small kids in under a year, while doing a major renovation was. Ok maybe I still remember a bit, because PHEW, but those memories are now bathed in the glow of a REALLY beautiful home for our family which I think makes it worth it (I will let you know once we actually have settled in, because now it is project finish and furnish this baby.

One big part of a renovation that I get a lot of questions about is lighting. Lighting is SO important and when we first moved into our fixer the lighting situation was THE WORST. In the kitchen, for example, the only source of light was two outdoor/garage spotlights and even the bulbs were extreme on the warm side, casting everything that was already wood and warm into a low lit den of yellow. Clover’s bedroom and our master bedroom had no electrical for lighting at all, and the main living room had only recessed lights (which were again with the super warm bulbs and with a 19 foot ceiling I wasn’t about to climb up there to change the bulbs). So, during the renovation I had to create a major lighting plan as I was basically starting from scratch. Essentially there was no decorative lighting in the entire house which is a major bummer because they can totally make a space.

A few must haves on my list when talking light plan are:

  1. Ceiling fixture on a dimmer in the kids bedrooms and table lamps on the dresser.
  2. Ceiling fixture and sconces in the master bedroom
  3. Sconces or pendants at roughly eye level in bathrooms
  4. SO MUCH MORE LIGHTING IN THE KITCHEN. Ideally a mix of recessed and pendants as well as task lighting over the range and countertops
  5. Chandelier over the dining table
  6. Pendants in the living room and a mix of floor lamp and table lamps.

I ended up doing a mix of my go-to lighting vendors all over the house and I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to highlight them. Starting with . They are part of the Hudson Valley Lighting Group which is a go-to source for me. I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite Troy pieces here.

ALC // // // // // // // //

The lighting in the living room being all recessed can lights with no easy way to add more (it is a high peeked ceiling with no attic space above and I didn’t want to disturb the original wood paneling) I am turning to table lamps and dimmer switches to create a cozy space in the evenings. 

While we have moved in, we are being super strict with ourselves and our stuff and only bringing into the space pieces we either absolutely need or love (ideally both but really I can’t wait to ditch the grass bottle drying thing from our countertop. tick tock clover your bottle days are almost over). With that in mind, our the house is relatively still empty, but slowly I have started to move some things in, little corner by little corner and this one in the living room is getting my nesting vibes going.

In the living room I turned to Troy lighting because of their large sculptural table lamps and with the incredibly tall ceilings I wanted something chunky and substantial. The was such a great fit. They look like I could have picked them up at a vintage shop which helps to balance out the mod characteristics of the credenza to create the more collected feel I am always after. I added some of my favorite ceramic pieces to sit along next to them in an artful moment that has me really excited to start furnishing and styling the whole house. 

If you don’t know of Troy Lighting you can check out their full collection and I love following them on to see how different designers and interior junkies style the pieces in their own homes (or homes of clients). This post was done sponsored by Troy Lighting however all thoughts and ideas, as always, are my own.

// // // F //

Kitchen Update and Kitchen #2 Design!

This post was done in collaboration with Cafe Appliances

YOU GUYS!!! THIS IS IN MY KITCHEN RIGHT NOW! And I feel so grown up, well almost. There is still a lot of finishing work to be done in the space. Outside of this stunning view is still a bit of a disaster, but I couldn’t help but share an update.

Our kitchen renovation in LA was done on a shoe string budget. We did all the work ourselves, outside of the marble countertops (which was our splurge) and just re-used the previous owner’s appliances. They were generically fine, but they were not “me”. But…in this house I am getting my dream (this with the Brushed Bronze hardware SWOOOOON and the and the ), and really making this my kitchen utopia. I will have my first kitchen island, my first pantry, my first larger than a 30” range. It is all happening. I will do a whole post on how we divvied up the work between our GC and us for this renovation but we saved in this kitchen by doing boxes and my cabinet doors, which we also installed ourselves. This kitchen, along with most all of my projects, is a true mix of high and low and somewhere in between.

Here is a peek at the other side of the room. If you have been following me on my IG Stories, you will have seen all the steps we’ve taken so far to get the kitchen to this point. Five months in the making, but it is starting to look like a real kitchen. Above is where we were just a couple days before the move, the new windows made an incredible difference in opening everything up, and the old small dark kitchen isn’t even recognizable.

And while things are wrapping up in the main kitchen why don’t we just jump right into the design of kitchen number 2! That is right, our #SamuelFamilyFixer has two whole kitchens and I am not mad about it. Two kitchens might sound ridiculous and extravagant but things are bigger in the midwest. ha The house we bought already had two full kitchens. One is on the main floor (where our living room, dining room and bedrooms are) and the other is in the lower level along with another living area, two bedrooms and bathroom. This floor will partly be my home office while the kids are so little, as well as a dedicated place for guests. (Our first time having an actual guest bedroom! Who is coming over?!). So while we do not need a second kitchen, we inherited one and now I am counting all the reasons why I am pumped to have two kitchens.

Let’s be honest, two kitchens is a designers dream! Double the finishes, double the fixtures, double the appliances! All those extra design decisions have me giddy. Twice the chance to put your own style into a kitchen and maybe explore another side of your personality.

Work/Life separation. Once I get my local Michigan design team up and running, employees will be able to enter the office from the lower level without having to go through the rest of the house and we will be all set with our own Shescorts Sherman Samuel Inc. office complete with its own kitchen.

Entertaining! Having two kitchens is also an entertainers dream. Extra oven space for big dinners (Thanksgiving at my house this year!), and even for smaller parties, I could mess up the lower level kitchen and use that area for prep behind the scenes while keeping the main kitchen clean where the guest are.

So let’s take a look at what I have planned for kitchen #2

When it came to the main kitchen there was no doubt I wanted it bright and light and you already know how thrilled I was to come across and their Matte White finish and their customizable hardware. They are appliances that stand out as a stylish design feature instead of just a utilitarian necessity. So when it came to designing the downstairs kitchen it was a no brainer to bring in Cafe again, however instead of the Matte White I got the Matte Black and they ended up being a big piece of inspiration for the whole {second} kitchen.

In interiors in general I always like the mix of old and new and layering in different textures to create a space that even if it is brand new, feels like there is a story behind it. The Matte finishes on the Cafe Appliances take it from going too modern and sleek and in my opinion give them some soul that when paired with the metallic hardware, it is like they already have my signature style built-in. When thinking about a backsplash, I am looking to use tile to bring in something with a vintage look to balance out the new cabinets, hardware and countertops. The artwork above, by Sharon Etgar, the Zellige Tile and the Cafe Appliances together perfectly convey the overall vibe of what I am shooting for in kitchen #2. Which I am hoping will be like the artful little sister of kitchen #1.

And here is what started with…

Above is a before photo of the kitchen. So far we have demo’ed everything out and installed some over that lovely yellowed floor. A few things I wasn’t loving were how the fridge and range sat right next to each other, crammed in the corner and the off center island is also making me twitch a titch. So far, we have demoed out all the cabinets… my dad re-used them in his wood shop, and we gave the appliances to my aunt who is updating her old kitchen.  Poof, we have a blank slate. We are planning to move the range location to dead center on the back wall so it creates a central focal point and I’ll be doing my favorite trick of maximizing the visual and countertop space by installing the and forgoing a full sized fridge (it is the second kitchen after all).

So what do you think? Two kitchens, too crazy? or genius? I am team whatever makes you happy, kitchens are personal! And your kitchen or kitchens should be a reflection of you. That is why I was so happy to partner with Cafe Appliances as that is what they are all about.

This post was done in collaboration with Cafe Appliances. All thoughts, ideas and swoons are my own.

For more on our #samuelfamilyfixer check here.

MAIN KITCHEN: // // // // Calacatta Marble Backsplash // //

SECOND KITCHEN: // // // // // // //

Bri’s low-lift kitchen reno

I am often asked for advice on how to update kitchens on a budget or without too much work and with this kitchen we pulled out all the tricks. It is the kitchen of , we gave her kitchen a major upgrade with almost no heavy lifting and I’m here to tell you all the secrets.

First thing first, we got pretty lucky… when Bri and I met to chat about what she wanted to do in her kitchen, the first thing I checked was who made her existing cabinets and we both celebrated when we found out it was already an Ikea kitchen. The reason for the big celebration was because that meant we could use the doors and drawer fronts that I designed without having to change out any of her cabinet boxes (which also meant we didn’t have to touch the beautiful marble countertops either).  All we had to do was swap out the Ikea doors and drawer fronts for the ones for a different look. It really is the ultimate Ikea hack.

When Bri bought the house it had just undergone a complete renovation. The finishes were well chosen for a flip so while they might not have had a ton of personality, the kitchen wasn’t offensive in anyway. There was already the great marble countertops (remember how when I did her dining room we added an overhang behind the range so we could add a seating area with stools?) but when paired with white semi-gloss flat cabinets, white shiny subway tile, and brushed nickel/stainless hardware, overall the space was pretty cookie cutter. It didn’t reflect the personality or style that Bri is known for.

Another simple way of updating a kitchen that we’ve all heard 100 times, but if you haven’t tried you will be surprised as to just how much it works, is switching out the cabinet hardware. The silver ones she had were nice and modern but by using a more unique shape and color, the whole space fees more bespoke. We used the hardware I designed for in the , and .

Next was where things did get a little construction dirty but for a full kitchen update it was pretty minimal and only took a couple days (like 3!). We had her backsplash demolished and re-tiled with this stunning . It is a cement tile with a brass inlay and after mulling over the backsplash tile for months, we saw this one and knew it was it. I then created a more unexpected pattern using them vertically on one half and horizontally on the other half, having the pattern meet in the middle on the diagonal.

And finally, in order to utilize some vertical wasted space, we added a above a bank of cabinets to give her some extra surface area for storage and utility items.

If all that is still too much for your budget or time commitment and you are desperate for a change in the kitchen… lay down a new rug, and pick some fresh flowers for an instant kitchen pick me up.

Shop the look:
Cabinet Doors by On Ikea Cabinets // Hardware by // Tile by //  //  //
Pink vase by //

Images by

Here’s a look at a couple side by side before and afters.


This is facing the opposite direction but you get the idea…

And let’s not forget about what we did in the dining room right next door…

 

Read all about the dining room here. 

And her back yard patio, here.

A new LA Event Space, Festoon!

EXCITED does not cut it with this one and that is because my excitement is three fold. Wait maybe four fold, or five… I lost count. Let’s see, Number 1: My friends that are the talented trio behind everyone’s favorite wedding site, just opened their very own studio/event space… ! It is on the west side of LA, which us west side gals were always desperate for (so much schlepping to the east side for parties). Number 2: I designed the kitchen and front bar/flexi-space with a multitude of different types of events in mind and I kind of want to call it my other LA house (I’m not alone MyDomaine wants to live there too). Number 3: I got to use the cabinet door line I designed with Semi-Handmade for the kitchen cabinets (with Ikea boxes) and my hardware collection that I designed for Park Studio!  Number 4: It is the debut install of my own line of concrete tile that I designed for ! Number 5: Creative spaces are so rewarding to design, seeing all the different types of parties, workshops, pop-up shops that have already come through the space and how they use it is incredibly fun to witness and be a small part of () See yes, definitely at least five fold. Now onto the space and all the yummy details…

Oh hi Amanda, Kristina and Jillian, aka and boss ladies. That lounge area they put together is all kinds of stunning and totally my color palette du jour.

Sofa:  | Lounge chairs:  | Bench:  | Floor lamp:  | Rug:  | Planters: West Elm | Plants:  | Florals:  | Side table: | Coffee table:  | Lounge chandelier:  | Woven pendants:  | Rattan side table:  | Rattan chairs:  | Macrame wall hanging:  | Framed art:  for West Elm

There was previously no kitchen in the space, so we had to build out a new one. Like I said above, I used my line of Semihandmade doors for Ikea cabinets in the the kitchen and my SSS x Park Studio hardware (we have added appliance pulls and additional sizes  which we got to use on the refrigerator above). Both are modern versions of classic designs that match the 100 layer cake/festoon aesthetic perfectly. And like I mentioned… Festoon is the very first place I was able to install my new line of that I designed for . It’s a series of 5 designs that you can use all together, as shown above, or create patterns with the various designs. The countless different pattern possibilities alone have me SO excited to start using the tile every where I can. The color is a subtle lilac that borders on a warm gray but with just a touch of purple that reminds me of the color of the mountains around the desert in Palm Springs. The tiles are made to order so the color is completely customizable as well (more on the tile line soon!).

Now onto the front of the house… When you first walk into Festoon you are greeted with a wide open space. It is a studio, it is an event space, it’s an office, it can be whatever the heck you can think of… it is available to rent. Most importantly, the space had to be flexible to house all those different kinds of functions. By building out cabinets and running a countertop along the whole back we created a versatile backdrop that could become a buffet, the back side of a bar, a wall for display or paired with the island look like a kitchen. A subtle custom blush venetian plaster was applied to the walls and three pairs of brass sconces extend over the countertop. I also designed the large island to be moveable (it’s on large caster wheels) so they can take it out of the main area to make room for larger events or reposition it around the space for different uses. A bar, a work table, a dessert buffet, a check-out counter, you name it. The front side of the island houses more cabinets so when facing out it can also serve as a large credenza/versatile furniture piece. I had make a custom size tile and mixed a few different finishes along with different colors to create the pattern on the back side.

There she is! Hope you enjoyed the tour and if you’re in the area definitely book an event at  (and please invite me so I have the excuse to come back).

Photos by

Lounge and dining design: 100 Layer Cake | Kitchen and Bar design: Shescorts Sherman Samuel

Kitchen cabinets: IKEA with   doors and   hardware | Tiles:   | Sconces:  | Bar Stools:  | Sofa:  | Lounge chairs:  | Bench:  | Floor lamp:  | Rug:  | Planters: West Elm | Plants:  | Florals:  | Side table: | Coffee table:  | Lounge chandelier:  | Woven pendants:  | Rattan side table:  | Rattan chairs:  | Macrame wall hanging:  | Framed art:  for West Elm  | Dining tables and chairs:  | Dining room prints:, framed by 

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