Shop the Look: Melanie Turner's Sunny Yellow Dining Room...

Photo via  Verand

Photo via Verand

Much can be said about the beauty of Melanie Turner's interior design work. Her rooms seem to capture natural light in an almost ethereal way, adding vitality to each space. Of her many projects, one room seems to captivate fans more than most: her sunny yellow dining room. From the glistening chandelier to the squareback Louis XVI chairs, we agree that the room is a stunner. So... how do you achieve Turner's dining nirvana at home? We've gathered together what we feel are the key elements that pull this classically refined space together.

Get the Look: The Bold Blue Velvet Sofa...

While most homes are a sea of beige and cream and white, we hold no fear when it comes to choosing a bold blue sofa. I myself have an admirably fierce aqua sectional that makes no apologies for its fabulousness. 

So... how do you pull it off? Assess enough photos on ArchDigest & Pinterest and you'll begin to detect an undercurrent of themes. I'll share what I've learned: 

  • ALL BUTTONED UP
    The best of the bunch are tufted either on the back or on the seat - occasionally both, when Chesterfields are involved. Not only does this highlight the inherent qualities of velvet, it makes the sofas that much more inviting to sit on.

  • CALL OF THE WILD
    An element of the exotic seems to always appear nearby, either in the form of leopard, zebra or a tribal rug. It adds a much needed "we don't take ourselves too seriously here" vibe to the room.

  • MAX IT OUT
    You've chosen a bold blue velvet sofa. There's no hiding it. So roll with it, baby! Add accents and accessories and art to carry the eyes throughout the room. It enriches the look and reinforces your masterful style. Trust me on this one.

  • AU NATURALE
    In stark contrast to the richness of the saturated (and shiny) velvet, the most successful spaces soften the blow with the roughness of wood. Be it bleached floors, a Mid-Century accent piece or a wicker chair, something nearby is usually rocking a natural finish.

  • GO FOR THE GOLD
    Other metals may make an appearance, but it's clear that gold is the finish of choice for pairing with brilliant blue. From nail heads to frames, the warmth of brass and gold are a classic and timeless choice paired with saturated blue.

  • SHOW ME SOME LEG
    Skirts be gone. These velvet sofas all show a little (or a lot) of leg. Turned or tapered, chrome or mahogany, these blue beauties all eschew the idea of skirts

So...  how do you get the look in your home? Make the simple yet bold choice to commit to the saturated hue, then rock it like it's nobody's business. Are you a deep teal fan or is true navy more your game? Make that simple choice and the rest of the room will simply come together. Here are a few of my favorite pieces to pull this look off with aplomb. 

SHOP THE DEEP BLUE LOOK




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Shop the Look: Fabulous Floral Bedroom Walls...

Children's rooms are havens for young, unbridled imaginations. Chalkboard walls, storybook murals, decorative appliqués - they are all possibilities in rooms for tots. Those elements aside, I'm loving the idea of floral walls for achieving a feeling of creativity run wild. The resulting look is every bit as freeform and fun, but much more pretty and poised. Wild, overgrown, fabulous flora adorning the vertical planes of a room have the power to turn a simple white rectangle into a wonderland for a young mind. 

How do you balance cray-cray paper on the walls to achieve a sweet and sophisticated look? One word: restraint. A calming rug, floor to ceiling panels in a solid shade found from the wallpaper, bedding that balances the look, By keeping other textiles mild you can let the fun accessories for children play center stage. Silly accents, a cool chair, a funky lamp and a chic chandelier all come together to create a room that encourages childhood fantasy and daydreaming.  

Below I've put together a few of my favorite elements for a little girl's room that is sweet without being saccharine. The truth is, while this is written from the perspective of young design, these feminine pieces are perfect no matter your age (or gender, for that matter). These elements are the epitome of timeless chic. Below you'll discover my favorite Schumacher floral wallpaper as well as a few great Serena & Lily pieces. Tip: they have a sweet 20% off friends & family savings event happening all weekend. Use code LIKEFAMILY to save now through Tuesday. Hooray!

Now... on to this chic look:

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Get the Look: The Glamorous Feminine Vanity & Desk...

shop the look: the glamorous feminine vanity & desk...

The inspiring image of the Barbara Barry desk and Z-chair above isn't new, but it bears repeating if recreating this vision of a private paradise can be replicated. With a few key pieces (namely that iconic desk and chair) you can perch yourself upon the mod molded lucite and gaze out the window or at your own lovely visage and daydream. Or (as in most of our cases) work at your laptop. I dare say that whether you work, apply blush or pen thank you notes at this feminine station the task will be far more pleasant.

I've given you a range of options for recreating this amazing look at home. For me, it's a look that is timeless and will always make you smile. We all deserve to carve out room in our homes to make a small little "nest" for ourselves. This could be in an office, a nook in a hallway, a master closet, a spare bedroom or even as a behind a floating sofa solution. Regardless, carve out a space for YOU and relish in it. You deserve it. 

Now... go be girly, glam and gorgeous. It is your birthright. 

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Shop the Look: Effortlessly Feminine Interiors...

One link on pinterest led to another and another and ultimately I chased the rabbit down the hole to Bijou & Boheme's home tour on Style Me Pretty. I've loved Christine Dovey's look since I very first set eyes on her site, but seeing her home in detail was a delicious treat. This home has been featured here and there on other sites, but any kitchen with an Empire style crystal chandelier over the island and gold fixtures at the sink deserves to be showered with an excess of public praise. 

Christine's family-friendly home is dripping with style and radiates feminine chic in the most relaxed fashion. Soft textures, golden accents and undeniably romantic elements are presented in a very approachable manner. Fortunately, you too can take a bit of Bijou home via a few well selected accents. Here are my favorite selections for achieving her livable chic vibe:  

Shop the Look: Pulling Your Home Office Together in Seven Chic Pieces...

Running a business (and a life) from home has so many perks. One of my favorites is the opportunity to carve out a space that is absolutely special for all of those "power hours" spent at the laptop. When someone asked my top 7 "musts" for a spectacular home office, I went to work sourcing accents, lighting, rugs and (you guessed it) a desk + chair combo that sets the tone for success. Here's what I'm loving...

1. A Boss Babe Desk

As the centerpiece of your workspace, the importance of your desk simply cannot be underestimated. What I love about this beauty is the expansive surface, those nearly invisible drawers and the obstructive base, giving you flexibility to extend your legs. And... let's face it, parchment desk with brushed brass legs is the ideal balance of modern & super chic.

Shop it here >>

2. The Perfect Perch

Personally, I love to use armless chairs in my office. They allow you to fully sit or just perch on the edge for a moment. More importantly, the absence of arms allow for maximum freedom of movement. This French-inspired chair with hand-turned legs is absolutely perfect.

Shop it here >>

3. Lovely Lighting

A pair of lamps is a fantastic way to provide task lighting and reduce the eye strain of a too-bright laptop monitor. I am smitten with this brushed brass circular lamp that is both a statement piece and an efficient use of surface space at the same time.

Shop it here >>

4. A Space Softening Rug

One of the benefits of a super plush rug is the impact it has on the sound in a room. Especially in a smaller home office, a super thick sheepskin rug "grounds" the acoustics while also serving as a visual anchor and a soft surface upon which to walk.

Shop this one >>

5. Glam Bookcases

Order is key here, but we still want things to be glamorous, right? This is where a gorgeous gold bookshelf comes in handy. This gives you a showcase for books, decor, photos, posh office supplies - you name it. My take: add a pair of these on a wall for maximum visual impact & endless styling possibilities.

Shop it now >>

6. A Room Brightening Mirror

One of the best designer tricks is the use of mirrors to "double" the size of a room & add more natural light. This beautiful Venetian version has feminine details and - quite frankly I've been obsessed with this particular one for a years. It is the ideal accent above a desk or on a side wall to add light, life and beauty to your room.

Shop this beauty >>

7. Finishing Touches

It's the little things that make life great, right? For me, this means killer accessories that I just LOVE. From sexy gold link bookends to bold brass trays, details really do make the design. I love to infuse my office with stunning decorative "objets" that offer great functionality. This quartz-adorned storage box keeps things tidy while making an ultra-glam statement.

See it here >>

I could go on and on about great accents & key pieces of furniture, but the only true guideline is to furnish your home work space with whatever makes you happy, productive and comfortable.

We are all so unique, and our workspaces should be as well. I crave a space bathed in natural light and a window for gazing, but I have good friends who love a cozy dark area where they can concentrate. And since this is "your" space, don't be shy about getting real with yourself on what your idea of the perfect home office could be. This is a really wonderful room or nook for letting your style shine and making bold decisions. Want a chandelier? Add that. Crave minimalism? Let your inner queen of mod shine. You do you, is my advice.

Whether it's a small corner of your bedroom or an entire room, make it yours & make it personal, make it marvelous!

Note: all of these items are from LuxeDecor, an online purveyor of incredible home decor, furniture, and accents. In my experience, if there's an interior design brand you adore, they have it. John Richard, Arteriors, Berhnardt, Safavieh, Surya, Tommy Bahama, Uttermost... the list goes on. Plus, they have free shipping on most items, which (hello!) is fabulous. They have long been a secret resource of mine for lighting, rugs & other design elements. Now my secret is out ;)

Get the Look: High Impact Living for a High Impact Life...

Well hello there, new year & new attitude. I don't know about you, but January has been a series of small battles. Never one to back down from a challenge or let it fully overtake me, I feel re-energized and ready to stand up to whatever this new year offers. In keeping with this can-do attitude and fierce outlook on life, I channeled that vibe into a sleek & chic living room design. A serious dose of color and a major shot of glamour, this space radiates confidence and healthy self-esteem... just like you. Remember, every day is a new opportunity to reinvent yourself, to be the person you aim to be, to reach for the goals you burn to achieve. Seize those moment of ambition and purpose and don't let them go. 

 
 

What to Wear: New Year & Beyond...

New Year's Eve

Oh, holiday glamour! One of the perks of being a girly girl is the opportunity to dress up. The key is to not overthink your look. Keep your regular vibe and just add a bit more verve, a bit more shimmer and a bit more shine. Love a faux fur jacket? Rock it with a sparkly dress on NYE and jeans next weekend. A gold clutch is just as killer with denim as lace. Diamond (or faux diamond!) stud earrings pair just as well with your yoga mat as they do high heels. And that gold clutch? You know you want it for those nights out and for special occasions. Invest in classic keepers and you'll never, ever regret it.

The key here, ladies? Wear what makes you FEEL good. It might be your favorite black skinnies or even a fuzzy blush sweater that drapes just right off the shoulders. It might just be a fragrance that makes you feel like a bombshell. If it makes you feel gorgeous, wear it! Here's what I'm loving for New Year's Eve which will easily slide into the wardrobe to mix & match with other staples throughout the year.

WHAT TO WEAR

Shop the Look: Rent the Runway (just in time for NYE!)...

Always craved a Marchesa or Carolina Herrera dress for a special occasion? Eager to get your paws on a luxurious mother of pearl encrusted minaudiere with a sky high price tag? Aching to wear Ben Amun's opulent jewelry? Frankly, girls, there's no shame in borrowing these objets de' lust for a single night for a small fee. I'll be the first to share that I've used Rent the Runway and other sources for short term loans on designer goods when in a sartorial pinch. Allow me to share a personal story...

Several years ago I had a charity luncheon to attend at the Ritz. I was expecting my youngest and was just starting to "show" in my clothes. Suddenly my closet full of dresses seemed like a cruel joke. Nothing fit, but I knew my shape-shifting middle would continue to grow over the months ahead.

Do I invest hundreds of dollars in a fabulous dress for a mere 3 hours? One that would never fit again? Sorry. That's not money well spent in my book. I did what any resourceful girl would do. I found a fabulous Dolce & Gabbana grecian style dress on RTR and had it shipped out pronto. I even opted to have a backup style sent  just in case option 1 was a bust. I had my choice of fabulous (read: brands you already adore) dresses for less than a dry cleaning bill. What a steal! And shipping back was as easy as tossing it into a prepaid envelope. They do the dry cleaning for you on their end. Stress free fashion at a fraction of the cost. This, dear friends, was an eye opener and a great solution that day for me. 

While this was my one experience with the fashion rental program, it has always put me at ease to know that a luxurious dress awaits if needed. I can see myriad situations in which having options sent to my doorstep would save me from rushing about town in search of "the perfect" dress. This is especially necessary if the outfit in question is not truly an "investment" but more of a single serving outfit. Think: destination wedding, spur of the moment photo shoot or even just an event on the calendar that inspires you to be a bit... different. 

How does this affect you right now, right here, today? It turns out there is still time for you to find a dress (or four) and have them shipped out in time for NYE. You can even toss in a fabulous handbag and the baubles and bling of your dreams. I have to say, this is a smart girl's solution to what can often be the high pressure of a big night (or day) out. My selections arrived right away and appeared to be brand new. 

While I believe it's important to invest in building a wardrobe that works for you, there will always be situations that arise that leave you looking in your closet facing the oh, so common "I have nothing to wear" dilemma.  Having a trusty backup plan (like a virtual Rachel Zoe) will put you at ease and make navigating the fashion waters so much easier. What I really love? They allow customers to upload pix of themselves in the rentals and the reviews & comments are VERY candid. You'll be able to determine if a dress or playsuit runs small or if you should plan to order a backup size. 

My personal tip: Choose a few different dresses so you have variety and options. 

Those of you with insatiable fashion appetites will likely be tempted by their Unlimited program. Three designer rentals per month for a mere $49 with unlimited exchanges. This seems to be focused on accessories only (bags, scarves, sunglasses & such). If you're a trend-loving girl and have to have the latest looks, this program might appeal to you. But be smart: some of these ongoing subscriptions could tally up more for you than simply purchasing those Alberta Ferretti sunglasses on your own. Plus, I prefer to own my luxe. Look sharp, yes, but spemd smart! 

Happy hunting, ladies! 

Shop the Look: Girl Boss...

Since we recently flashed back to the days when the glossy red paint on Tamara's Manhattan penthouse was still drying, it seemed only fitting to look back at her Jimmy Choo loaded closet and personal style at the time. Sky high heels and curve-hugging dresses are the name of the game. 

In the spirit of #girlboss madness and celebrating modern moguls, this is one damsel who has never been one to signal distress. Tamara's look always exudes power and strength through her femininity. While I don't always agree with her sartorial choices, she rocks girl boss better than just about anyone on the scene. There are no tomboy looks here, that's guaranteed. And certainly no lack of glamour and edge. 

Want to recreate the footwear-loving vixen's look? Three carefully chosen pieces will do the trick. A curve-hugging jade dress, glossy black stilettos and an achingly beautiful panther bracelet. You'll have to add the animal magnetism yourself, alas this was nowhere to be found for sale online. ;)

SHOP HER LOOK

Jimmy Choo Abel Black Pumps  //  Roland Mouret Jade Dress // Roberto Cavalli Gold & Black Crystal Panther Bracelet

Shop the Look: Tim Clarke's Desert Rose...

The vision: make it feel as though you've just stepped into the cool shade, far away from the heat of the Nevada desert. Designer Tim Clarke has done much more than this with is very atypical (or at least anti-stereotype) Las vegas home for Lori and Jeff LaPour. Scalamandre, Fortuny and Ralph Lauren play alongside quietly sophisticated Baker upholstery.

It is described as "tempered Vegas" by the designer, but the French influence is undeniable. Like an old pedigreed chateau, there's nothing overtly showy about this home. Instead it is dripping in quietly shimmering chandeliers and exceptional aged finishes and furnishings that look like family heirlooms.

My favorite feature? The folding doors that allow the dining room to suddenly be completely merged with the serene outdoor garden. Dreamy! 

As I poured over the images it occurred to me that a few key elements "made" the space work. Each room features a chandelier, many spaces are grounded by quietly luxurious rugs and the European influences continue on from there. Here are a few pieces I've selected to help you infuse your space with the same quiet sophistication Tim Clarke has achieved for this lucky Las Vegas couple. 

Shop the Look: Tamara Mellon's Sleek Manhattan Apartment...

Photo of Tamara Mellon's Manhattan Apartment via  Harpers Bazaar . Artwork by  Guido Mocafico

Photo of Tamara Mellon's Manhattan Apartment via Harpers Bazaar. Artwork by Guido Mocafico

We can't think of anyone who radiates sex appeal quite like high-heeled fashion mogul Tamara Mellon. With all the controversy surrounding her sultry Manhattan apartment designed by Martyn Lawrence-Bullard, it seemed the perfect time to reflect upon what makes this space so intriguing. But first... can we have a moment to reflect upon the good old days when she & her million dollar designer were besties and this penthouse was her proud sexy high rise perch? It was an icon meets tastemaker moment we'll not soon forget, but it seems these two would rather move past it and forget it ever happened. Lawsuits are such a nuisance, no?

Back to the glory days of this over the top space that suited her as well as a pair of sky high black patent stilettos... Is it your typical penthouse? Clearly not. It is very much a mix of Ms. Mellon's rebellious edge and Martyn's "designed with a wink" style. From a sultry leopard rug to a 70's worthy white leather tufted sofa, this is a home designed to be a fanciful escape for this high-wattage fashion icon after hours. It says come hither. It declares you are dripping with confidence and not afraid to show it. It is clearly a space that suited her at the time they collaborated on the space. 

Want to channel your own American Gigolo (Gigolette?) style? Here are a few key pieces to help you recreate the vibe...