Madison Style at Home: Rustic looks go upscale for holidays with white, metallic colors

Silver Leaf antlers

A rustic centerpiece of walnuts and antlers in a birds nest basket. Antlers are a popular addition to current interior design, said Laura Groenier, owner of Silver Leaf Interiors.

Antlers, birch trees and accessories in white and gold. Remind you of the holidays? Maybe not, but at Silver Leaf Interiors they are some of the biggest design elements in home decorating. Adding a few touches of white and gold, or an antler or birch branches to a holiday display can be a new way to add a current touch to holiday decorating, said Silver Leaf owner and interior designer Laura Groenier.

“Whites are making a huge presence in all aspects of design,” Groenier said.

White pumpkins, real and artificial, decorate Halloween and Thanksgiving tableaus. White birch branches add a natural and modern feel to a fireplace hearth, or add a stark, contemporary look when birch branches are placed in a tall vase on the floor. Small, artificial antlers — some cast in gold or silver — can be placed on a mantle display, hung on a wall, fashioned into candlesticks or used to decorate the frame of a mirror.

“These rustic aspects gain a very modern feel when they’re whitewashed or cast in a metallic finish,” Groenier said.

In the Silver Leaf Interiors showroom, bunches of birch wood are stacked in a fireplace. The ends of the logs have been painted gold, a trick to make the branches “pop” and combine the gold and white design trends. There is still a prominent place for traditional fall decor colors of yellows, oranges and browns, she said. But when their designers are hired to help decorate a client’s home for the holidays, they frequently choose a white pumpkin over an orange pumpkin, or a birch branch over an artificial yellow leaf. And a few touches of whites and metallic can help highlight some of the traditional fall looks, she said.

Like many design businesses, Silver Leaf is busy over the holiday seasons.

“The holidays are always a time when people are interested in sprucing up their houses,” Groenier said.

The store will have Christmas decorations on display by Nov. 1, and their interior designers will typically start Christmas decorating jobs by mid-November. More clients are placing “holiday trees” in their homes as early as the beginning of November, she said. The trees will be decorated with Thanksgiving-appropriate bronze and mercury glass ornaments, perhaps interspersed with small sprays of autumn-colored bouquets. After Thanksgiving, the autumn sprigs can be taken out and replaced with evergreen sprigs and Christmas ornaments. The holiday trees are a way to enjoy a Christmas tree for a few extra weeks over the holidays, something some clients and especially their children are excited about, Groenier said.

Silver Leaf Interiors opened in 1990 in Northgate Mall and was primarily a custom framing shop. They expanded to interior design over the years and 11 years ago, Groenier built a new location on Sherman Avenue. The building is also home to Jeweler’s Workshop Studios. The Silver Leaf space houses their home decor store, a custom framing shop and an interior design business. Groenier and the staff interior designers work on new construction, remodeling projects, interior and exterior finishes and paint color selection.

“We do everything from major remodels to helping pick out sofas,” she said. The store’s online retail store launched a year ago. The website is an online store of all their household decor items, including many that don’t fit in the physical storefront.

“It’s everything we love and we just couldn’t fit in our store,” she said. ships throughout the United States. Local customers can buy online and have items shipped to the Silverleaf store for no cost.

More examples of natural design elements used in contemporary settings are on display on Silverleaf’s website under the collection “Luxe Lodge.”


Palm Coast City Hall project a boon for economic growth

With the economy choosing up steam, it’s not only private enterprise looking to relocate operations. This previous week saw the opening of Bunnell’s new city Hall complex and Palm Coast city Council approve the guaranteed maximum value of their personal government center. The moves echo a trend of improved residential and industrial building and could turn into significant economic drivers for regional organization. To get an concept of how the pace of economic improvement activity has changed, Beau Falgout, senior economic development planner for the city of Palm Coast, offers the neighborhood spin.

Beau Falgout

Do you count on the new City Hall complex to be an econommic driver for the Town Center development?

What will happen is the daytime visitors will boost and a lot of retailers and companies appear for that daytime population. And there’s usually some thing else happening in Town Center and I assume we’ll be portion of that growth in the region.

Quite a few enterprise owners have complained that the city’s sign ordinance makes it tough for their buyers to obtain them. What is the city performing to work with nearby business on the issue?

We revised our sign regulations with the Chamber of Commerce a couple of years ago. A lot of the challenges some businesses ran into is they wanted off-internet site signage and that is not anything the city allows. If everyone has a giant sign, it doesn’t make your small business much more visible, it just tends to make it a lot more cluttered.

I encourage companies that are having trouble attracting clients to speak to the Business Assistance Center and function with these counselors to see how they can drive far more enterprise to their areas. It appears like a sign is an uncomplicated remedy, but there may well be other factors that a organization can do.

As portion of financial improvement efforts, communities across the country have promoted the notion of being 𠇋usiness friendly.” Do you believe Palm Coast is a company friendly city?

A single of the items we did was open the Palm Coast Small business Help Center and that’s truly geared toward assisting firms. We also do a lot of targeted things, for example, the Palm, Harbor Buying Center redevelopment and factors like the loan assure program. These are issues we are carrying out to be an eye-catching spot so it’s not one particular thing. You really have to look at the portfolio of what we do in financial development.

What is your outlook for economic development by means of the rest of this year and into 2015?

I feel its going to be an very good finish of the year for retailers, from what I’m hearing. I believe we’re going to continue a steady achieve in the regional economy. It won’t be overnight like it was in the past, but we’re going to see a steady gain.

2015 sneak peak: Hot home decor color trends

“Color itself is like one of the senses, enhancing our world and our state of mind,” says Erika Woelfel, director of color at Behr Paints.

Homeowners can convey a variety of emotions in their favorite rooms by embracing different color palettes. From the sweet charm of pastels, to the comfortable ambience of neutral tones, to the majestic deep and bright tones, Behr Paints has pulled together trends to capture the balance needed to create inviting, inspiring and dramatically transformed rooms.

Behr’s 2015 Color Trends provide homeowners with inspiration and guidance for selecting the right color for their projects while providing a glimpse of how rooms appear in different tones. The top four on-trend color themes include:

Deep Dreams:

An invitation to a tranquil escape into a dreamy, mythical landscape, the Deep Dreams palette features tranquil colors like teal, charcoal and eggplant that offer an oasis of relaxation in a bedroom. Balance is created with white trim, gold metallic and pops of citron yellow in the decor accessories. Lush layers of patterned textiles invite fuchsia, bright green and purple into the mix. To achieve a Deep Dreams theme in your space, paint walls in BEHR(R) Paint Colors Liaison T15-1, Seared Gray T15-2, Essential Teal T15-3, Your Majesty T15-4 or Heritage Oak T15-5.

Frosted Pastels:

Pastel paints create stimulating environments when combined with zesty bright accents; the contrast of pastel and striking accent can be balanced by touches of mauve and black created by floor stencils, fireplace tile and window treatments. Take a modern approach to pastels with paints in BEHR(R) Paint Colors Dreamscape Gray T15-6, Secret Blush T15-7, Elusive Blue T15-8 and Dandelion Tea T15-9.

Social Brights:

A refined balance of brights and neutrals, lighter and darker colors, Social Brights features pure blue, red, purple and orange that feel energetic, draw attention and create a lively place for conversation. Shades of gray are the perfect balance on adjoining walls, trim or ceiling. Other intense hues make playful accompaniments in small decorative accessories for tabletop and shelving displays. Be inspired with BEHR(R) Paint Colors like Clarified Orange T15-10, Sonic Blue T15-11, Graphic Grape T15-12, Prime Purple T15-13, Super Hero T15-14 and Plastic Lime T15-15 that create a refined yet lively look.

Nuanced Neutrals:

Weathered, rustic colors are the hallmark of today’s mid-range neutral palette, spotlighted in Nuanced Neutrals. This trend features dusty aqua paneling and light tan walls with the casual companions of charcoal, lively copper and citrus orange accents. Mix and match BEHR(R) Paint Colors like Blue Clay T15-16, Mocha Foam T15-17, Snap Pea Green T15-18, Mulberry Wine T15-19 and Peach Preserve T15-20. Touches of dusty earth tones ensure neutral rooms create a marriage of function and comfort for the ultimate in interior styling.


12 last-minute Halloween costume ideas

Dawn Dugle, The Clarion-Ledger11:23 a.m. CDT October 24, 2014

Have you found your Halloween costume yet?

If the thought of having to come up with something creative, or drive to the Halloween superstore this close to the Haunted Holiday makes you cringe, here are 12 ideas for last-minute costumes that you might just have at home.

1. Mummy

Wrap yourself up. Toilet paper is okay, medical gauze is better. But remember, after a few “adult beverages” you’re going to need to use the restroom. Plan accordingly.

2. Ghost

Take a sheet, cut two holes in it. No need to even do your hair.

3. Funny Beauty Queen

This is one of my favorites (making a 2-time appearance at Halloween). You use that bridesmaid or prom dress hanging in your closet. Then get 6 feet of a “wide” white ribbon for your sash. These can be bought by the spool at Michael’s or Wal-Mart. Write on the sash what you are the queen of. Some suggestions: Miss Informed, Miss Represented, Miss Treated (this one works well if you have a sling for your arm, and can paint a black eye on yourself), Miss Communication, you get the picture.

4. Pot Head

You put a pot on your head.

5. The Dude Abides

This one continues to be popular. To be The Dude from “The Big Lebowski” you need pajama bottoms, a white t-shirt, robe, flip flops and dark sunglasses. Enjoy the comfort.

6. Static Cling

Wear black. Pin socks to yourself. Costume in less than 5 minutes.

7. “Costume not found” costume. Or as Photographer Joe Ellis calls it: The Lazy Man Costume

White t-shirt + Sharpie = genius. (see picture in gallery above)

8. College

John Belushi’s iconic sweatshirt from “Animal House”. Make sure it’s blue.

9. Bag/Box of groceries

Build a “shell” out of brown paper bags, or a cardboard box, then hot glue empty grocery boxes: cereal, egg carton, milk jug.

10. Rosie the Riveter

Jeans, denim shirt and red bandanna. You can do it!

11. Miss America

You could wear that blue jumpsuit she wore, but seriously – make yourself a crown, carry a Red Solo Cup.

12. Cereal Killer

A favorite of my brother, you take an empty cereal box and carry a knife, or wrap a noose around it. In the event your friends won’t get it, write “Cereal Killer” on white t-shirt with Sharpie.

Dawn R. Dugle is the Community Engagement Editor for The Clarion-Ledger. She loves Halloween and would love to see your costume ideas:

Arthur Rutenberg Homes Million Dollar Ravenna Model Home Interior Design Images Released

ravenna model home professional images available

Lakewood Ranch, FL (PRWEB) October 23, 2014

Visitors to the model and the model’s website can now see the interior design details that went into creating a showcase for the Lakewood Ranch community. The professional images provide details of each room and illustrate the special features incorporated in every room in the home. The images also provide ideas for home decorating of different spaces.

The Arhtur Rutenberg Homes model home features a 4,540 square foot layout, 4 Bedrooms, 4.5 Baths, plus a Den and a Bonus Room as standard features.

Images of the rooms and exterior are available at the website by CLICKING HERE.

Visitors can also view the interior design details by visiting the model. Located at 16027 Topsail Terrace, in Sarasota, FL, the Ravenna model home is situated in the Vineyards in the Lake Club at Lakewood Ranch. The model home is open daily Monday – Saturday, 10am – 5:30pm, and Sundays noon-5pm.

This Tuscan-inspired, private club community of custom luxury homes features scenic lakes, decorative bridges, a unique one-mile long park and the Grande Clubhouse with day spa and concierge services. The Lake Club is just minutes from the Sarasota Polo Club as well as five premier golf courses, the Sarasota Cricket Club, and the white sand beaches of Florida’s Gulf Coast. The Lake Club is a designated “green” area of the Ranch, meaning that all homes meet standards for energy efficiency, clean indoor air, sustainability and drought-resistant landscaping.

About Arthur Rutenberg Homes

Arthur Rutenberg celebrates over 60 years in the homebuilding industry and has been a respected name in Florida homebuilding since 1953, when he built his first home upon the four “cornerstones” that would make him legendary: design, craftsmanship, service and responsibility. Today, Arthur Rutenberg Homes, Inc. is one of the largest networks of independently owned and operated homebuilding companies in the nation, with franchised homebuilders throughout Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee and Ohio.

Inside Ultra-Luxury Kitchens: Trends Among Wealthy Buyers Who Rarely Cook

One evening about five years ago, the Long Island-based developer Steven Klar hosted a small dinner for friends in his swanky Manhattan penthouse. There was no special occasion, he says, other than trying out a few wines and food cooked by Daniel Boulud, the chef Klar hired to cater the evening. “Daniel was very happy and said he wanted to move in because he enjoyed cooking so much in that kitchen,” Klar says.

Though Klar hasn’t cooked regularly since his Army days 38 years ago, when he worked in a kitchen that served 1,000 men (eggs to order, birthday cakes for officers), he nonetheless put a commercial-grade kitchen in his penthouse, which he purchased as a raw space for $4.5 million in 1993 (it’s on the market now for a list price of $100 million). Since, he says, multiple chefs have catered private dinners in his home. His kitchen is stocked with two Sub-zero refrigerators, two Bosch dishwashers, and a Scotsman ice maker. It also features a butler’s pantry, or secondary kitchen. And the six-burner commercial grade Russell range has a barbecue that vents outside. “I can barbecue in the apartment—on the 73rd floor,” Klar says. (His wife and housekeeper use the kitchen, too.)

On the luxury market, a kitchen fully loaded with the latest and greatest appliances and gadgets is a strong selling point—even for wealthy buyers who rarely cook. “The trend that I’m seeing is that when people entertain in these apartments they hand the kitchen over to a hired chef or a hired caterer,” says John Burger, the Brown Harris Stevens agent who is selling the $85 million apartment which comprises the entire 18th floor of Manhattan’s Sherry-Netherland on 5th Avenue overlooking Central Park.

Perhaps this helps explain the rising popularity of the butler’s pantry, sometimes called a scullery, or secondary kitchen such as the one Klar has. “People use it for catering large events, as a secondary kitchen, to help handle the load of a large party,” says Newell Turner, editorial director of the Hearst design group, which includes Elle Décor, House Beautiful, and Veranda. “We also see people using it as a small kitchen for themselves, when it’s two people, and they don’t want to dirty the larger kitchen.”


As the housing recovery continues, clients are interested in bonus kitchen features like larger pantries. wine refrigeration, and high-end appliances, a recent American Institute of Architects survey of popular kitchen and bath features shows. Luxury brokers say that the most important features buyers want in a kitchen are an open layout, quality appliances, and smart home technology that allows owners to control their homes via an iPad in the kitchen. Also popular: multiple dishwashers, refrigerator drawers (which look like normal cabinets but pull out to reveal cold lettuce), warming drawers that keep food hot, and gadgets like in-wall cappuccino-makers and wine-pouring devices (Dacor makes one that dispenses wine via tubes–somewhat like soda–while pressurizing the bottles so they stay fresh). “People see a kitchen that has expensive products and they recognize the rest of the house is done well, too,” says Harald Grant, a Sotheby’s broker who sells high-end homes in the Hamptons.

In terms of design, the all-white kitchen remains popular among buyers, brokers say, although designers who’ve tired of white are steering them toward a new, darker look: inky black, charcoal, indigo or chocolate brown cabinetry. Christopher Peacock, a luxury cabinet maker who was at the forefront of the all-white trend, is now pushing dark. Peacock says his clients are more interested in quality materials than cappuccino makers. “As people re-do their kitchens, they learn that sometimes gadgets are just gadgets,” he says. His clients are selecting exotic-looking stone for their countertops and choosing special flooring. “Carrera marble is still very beautiful, but people see it everywhere, so they’re looking for more exquisite marbles that have a little more color and a little more drama and are a little bit more daring.”


Peacock and Turner say that the open kitchen is also on the way out. “The wall has gone back up because nobody really wants to live in the kitchen all of the time,” Turner says. In its place he is starting to see kitchens that include some of the elements of the open kitchen, such as seating, or even fireplaces, but that return to the enclosed space it once was. Brokers, of course, say their clients want nothing but an open kitchen right now.

All this emphasis on the kitchen is a reversal from earlier days, when cooking was viewed among the wealthy as drudgery to be left to the staff. “This socio-economic level of resident did not gather in the kitchen in the 1920s,” says Burger, the Manhattan broker. And their homes reflected that—kitchens were enclosed or, in New York, relegated to the back of the apartment or townhome, where they could vent out to the backyard. As a result, some of the most beautiful, expensive, and historic homes on the market don’t even show their kitchens in the marketing materials.


Los Angeles’s Legendary Beverly House, for instance, the former home of William Randolph Hearst that is listed for $135 million with Jeff Hyland of luxury brokerage Hilton & Hyland, features a huge, updated, commercial-style kitchen with a walk-in refrigerator and breakfast tables, as well as two adjacent breakfast rooms, but the photograph is not included in the marketing photographs of the otherwise grand residence. Another of the most expensive listings currently on the market, Los Angeles’ Singleton House ($75 million) still has its original 1970s kitchen and also doesn’t feature it in the advertising materials.

 “If you are looking for that open family-kitchen room, you are not going to get it in the older home,” says Jade Mills, a Coldwell Banker Previews International agent. Mills noted that one Los Angeles home priced around $60 million with the disadvantage of an enclosed stainless steel chef’s kitchen has not sold. “And I think that’s because people will look and say the kitchen is too enclosed.”

Halloween Costume Ideas 2014 Do-It-Yourself Costumes for Women

Halloween costumes for women 2014

People love to buy costumes, that is a fact. More and more people every year flood stores, shops, and on line websites to snag that perfect costume before they are all sold out. However, these costumes can be expensive, and many people have come to the conclusion that maybe spending money on something you will only wear one day to a year, maybe even once period (depending on how much weight you put on in one year) is not really worth the amount of money you may spend. Costumes can be fairly cheap, but they can also cost up to several hundreds of dollars, and maybe that just is not in your budget this year. There are many do it yourself ideas for Halloween when it comes to costumes, and with many items that you may already have lying around your house, perhaps you can save more money that you think this Halloween season. Less money on a costume means more money for candy, so here are some great tips for home made costumes this spooky year.

Costumes like a bag of jelly beans, Care Bears, mummies, vampires, monsters, Barbie, crayons, and more are all great costumes, and we can tell you how to make every one. By blowing up balloons and slipping into a clear trash bag, you can fill the bag with the balloons and tie it off to look like a perfect bag of candy. A Care Bear costume is as easy as making bear ears out of felt (in the right color of course), buying a colored shirt, and drawing your Care Bear symbol on a white piece of fabric and attaching it to the shirt. You will have to work on your Care Bear Stare, but it is an easy costume that is very recognized from a distance. Becoming Barbie (or Ken) is another easy experience, and all you need is a large box to decorate like any character from Barbie’s world, dress yourself just like them, and slip the box on top of yourself, making sure one side is cut out so people can see in (and you can see out).

Other costumes are made from toilet paper with food coloring added, like mummies and zombies. You can paint yourself totally green (make sure you have got old clothes you would not mind ruining), don a helmet, and be a toy soldier for Halloween. With more green paint and an odd shaped lid for your skull, you can become Frankenstein’s monster in a snap. Crayons are a great home made group costume, since all you need is colored long johns, letters made of felt, and a matching party hat. Putting “Crayola” on your costume is the hardest part of this get up.