This design studio boasts an angular cement structure with floor-to-ceiling sliding steel and glass windows that open up to the backyard for indoor-outdoor living. The guest bedroom on the top floor overlooks views of Beverly Hills and Los Angeles. This contemporary structure complements the main house that was designed and built 20 years prior to the design studio, but they work together seamlessly as if they were designed and built at the same time.
Also called sword ferns, Kimberly queen ferns (Nephrolepis obliterate) make elegant specimen plants, thanks to their straight, upright fronds. These nearly-carefree Australian natives are happy indoors if they’re kept in medium light and given sufficient humidity (if your air is too dry, try running a small humidifier nearby). Outside, they’re hardy in zones 9-11. Indoor gardeners love them because they help purify the air, but you can also enjoy them outdoors in warm weather months.
The Graham residence after the kitchen renovation by licensed contractor Chip Wade. As part of the renovation, Chip Wade added a garage door to allow for indoor and outdoor entertaining and tons of natural light. His design also included a custom concrete table weighing over two thousand pounds. The table also housed the cooktop and sink without exposing the working parts under the table, making for a clean look. With the addition of a garage door, a custom table and all new appliances, the kitchen area is now perfect for entertaining large groups, as seen on HGTV's Elbow Room.
Outdoor drapery helps blur the lines between indoor spaces and exterior porches filled with upholstery, swings and places for lazy napping next to the saltwater pool, all keeping a fresh, clean and neutral palette. And after the sun goes down, the party moves to the lakeside fire pit.
Everything is upholstered in Sunbrella, including the outdoor drapery, which all gets a heavy hose-down in advance of every visit. The couple and their guests can nap, lounge, party and relax there. We're told the lake is a jet ski drag strip on the weekends, so good spectator seating!
The modern living room of this guest house is reminiscent of a beach locale, with its relaxed furnishings, rugged tables and natural fiber rugs. To incorporate the modern, industrial design of the space, metal light fixtures were added to maintain the integrity of the design while helping to light the room. A sliding barn door cleverly conceals the entertainment center when it's not in use, and a Nano door opens poolside to open onto the patio where polished concrete floors continue out into the pool area help to make the seamless transition from indoor to outdoor.
Layers of light are as important to designing a welcoming outdoor living area as they are to indoor spaces. So, just as you might include recessed overhead lights, lamps and wall sconces in your living room, outdoors you can plan to brighten walls, landscaping elements and even overhead. In this project, landscape architect June Scott installed small directional lights in a large tree to create what she calls a “moonlight” effect. Additional fixtures graze the walls, “creating shimmering patterns.” She supplemented with candle lanterns around the perimeter — an easy and affordable option that works in any space, no wiring required.
Large expanses of glass are one key tool architects use to create a strong connection between a house and its surroundings. In this new house set on a vineyard, the team at Mihaly Slocombe strove to design a house that would “feel cozy when occupied only by our clients and their golden retriever, yet spacious during frequent visits from family and friends. The house also needed to establish a strong connection between indoor spaces and the natural environment.” To achieve these goals, the architects surrounded the living space with sliding and bifolding doors framed with western red cedar.
Composed of crisply-detailed, considered materials, surfaces and finishes, the home is a balance of sophistication and restraint. The two-story massing is designed to allow for a bold yet humble street presence, while each single-story wing extends through the site, forming intimate outdoor and indoor spaces. The upper story is clad in stucco, articulated as a floating white box, light in appearance and also acting as a veritable “tree house” for the children’s bedroom zone. The knots in the exposed portion of the wood add a desired texture and contrast to the clean and minimal massing of the white stucco.
Reinvent empty frames as illuminated sculptures with the addition of colored lights. For indoor use, standard vintage-style lights can be used to wrap wall-hung frames, placed near outlets. To help disguise extension cords, consider grouping several frames vertically, tucking the cord behind each frame, then into outlets near the bottom of the wall. For outdoor use, such as a repurposed wreath alternative placed on a front door, it's best to use battery-operated lights.
Potting mix that has fertilizer in it will give your houseplants or other container plants a good start. But eventually, the nutrients will either be used up, or they'll leach out after frequent waterings. When your plants are ready for a boost, apply a slow release fertilizer that lasts for several months, or feed more often with a liquid or water-soluble fertilizer. Stop fertilizing if your indoor plant goes into a period of dormancy for awhile.
These arrangements can be created by cutting succulents or planting living plants. If you choose the live option, fill the bottom of the container with a layer of rock. Fill with cactus potting mix and then add barrel cactus and hawthoria. White aquarium pebbles complete the look. "Purple agate, amethyst and porcupine quills add the sparkle and height," says Sara Fried. And don't forget to water: every two weeks about one tablespoon and keep your arrangement in a bright indoor spot.
Indoors, keep an eye on houseplants, especially any you kept outdoors for summer. Pests multiply quickly in the warm environs of a winter home. This vining violet is infested with spider mites, which are very difficult to eradicate on indoor plants. The white speckling on leaf surfaces is a clue mites are feeding. Webbing where the leaf attaches to the stem is another dead giveaway.
Bring your magical garden friends inside this winter with a little pine cone gnome, fairy and friendly elf. Hot glue a hazelnut to the top of a pine cone to create the head and body. Then cut out hats, mittened hands, scarves, beards and wings out of colored felt. Glue them to your pine cone friends and let them frolic in your indoor plants while winter is in town.
One look at this plant and it’s easy to see where it gets its name: ‘Red Congo’ or ‘Rojo Congo.’ New leaves are flushed with red-purple hues, while stems on new growth glow bright red. This is an upright philodendron that makes an ideal tabletop plant. Give it a spot in bright or low light, although brighter light yields the strongest leaf colors. ‘Red Congo’ is an air purifier, removing toxic chemicals from indoor settings. Use it in your bedroom to ensure fresh air for a good night’s sleep.
Imagine growing a lemon tree by the biggest, brightest window in your Victorian home, and harvesting the fruits to make lemonade for your guests. Once again, Meyer lemons are the choice of many indoor gardeners. Pretty in pots, the trees like full sun, potting soil that drains easily, and regular feedings with a citrus tree fertilizer. Keep them pruned to control their size. Once the nighttime temperatures stay above 50 degrees F, you can take your tree outdoors for the summer. Enjoy the fragrant blooms, but keep some bottled lemonade on hand for a while. The sweeter-than-most-lemons can take up to a year to ripen.
Sure signs for replacing a toilet include recurring clogs, porcelain cracks and scratches, and needing to replace too many parts in the tank. But these days, one reason reigns supreme for replacing the porcelain throne: water conservation. Toilet flushing accounts for nearly 30 percent of residential indoor water consumption according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). You can save $2,000 over the lifetime of the toilet in your home by going with a high-performance, low-flow option. That long-term savings trumps an inexpensive, temporary fix on an older toilet model.
When specifying upholstery for a beachfront house belonging to an active family, designers Betsy Burnham and Max Humphrey of Burnham Design opted to cover all the furniture in indoor-outdoor fabric. "Every piece is done in Sunbrella fabric — even the pillows and the custom area rug underneath. Outdoor fabric was the perfect choice for this room, which is "command central" for TV-watching and game playing.” And, they note, “In terms of the furniture plan, sometimes it’s dramatic to do fewer pieces and keep the scale large of each and bold; that’s the case here. We selected the largest sectional we could fit in the space and made sure it was super deep and comfy. We paired it with a large upholstered ottoman, which serves double duty as a coffee table and great place for everyone to kick up their feet.”
Create a beautiful piece of indoor or outdoor decor with a piece of plywood, a pile of sticks and some wood glue. Cut the plywood into a roughly pumpkin shape. Use wood glue to completely cover the plywood with rows of sticks. It's ok if the sticks hang over the edge of the wood a bit. Place weights on the sticks and let the glue dry for at least 24 hours. Trim the edges of the sticks and sand if necessary to create your refined pumpkin shape. Add a fabric leaf and display your pumpkin in your garden, beside your front door, or hang it on the living room wall.