Trending – Tiny Tile

Tile mosaics, and thus tiny tile, have been around since before the fall of Pompeii…

image via

However, the little tiles had to be hand cut, and the mosaics carefully assembled by hand.  All of which made them a luxury item for centuries.

These days, the advent of new, computerized manufacturing techniques have made teensy, tiny tile increasingly easy to produce in a uniform manner.  Some of these tiles are no more than 1/4″ to 1″ square, and come pre-assembled on backing sheets which significantly reduce the labor needed to install them.

This has made it ever more affordable to cover entire floors and walls with beautiful mosaics made of ceramic, porcelain, and even glass tile.   You can see more examples on my “Trending – Tiny Tile” board on Pinterest.

Personally, I love the shimmer of the glass tile mosaics, especially the metallic ones.  There is something so magical about them when the light hits just right.

How about you?  Have you seen a tiny tile installation recently?  What did you think?

Happy Friday everyone!  See you next week!



Ariele Alasko of Brooklyn to West

The ear-jarring purr of a chop saw… the unmistakable scent of freshly cut wood and sawdust…  Oh, yeah.  Bring it on.

There are special properties to wood that remain hidden unless one physically works with it, gets one’s hands dirty, breathes that dust, learns that grain, that temperament, that joy…

Ariele Alasko, of Brooklyn to West, understands.  This New York City-based artist – furniture maker, photographer, sculptress, blogger, cook – takes salvaged wood & reclaimed “junk” into her Brooklyn home and out of those castaways makes this delightful stuff.  Her work is a living example of why home furnishings should be hand made. Read the rest of this entry »

Trending – Vintage Lace

I traveled to North Carolina last week and, as I always do, I stocked up on fashion magazines for the flights.  It’s my little “hey, I’m going to be stuck in a cramped seat on a crowded flight for way too long” indulgence.

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Valentino Spring 2012

As I flipped through magazine after magazine, a particular trend caught my eye.

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Louis Vuitton Spring 2012

Designers were embracing lace.

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Dolce & Gabbana Spring 2012

A LOT of lace.

Which means that the current trend for vintage lace in interiors is only going to get stronger.  But how do you embrace the look without going full on frilly?  Here are some suggestions….

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Care to Dance? – Exquisite Surfaces Reclaimed French Oak Flooring

As a young(er) woman, I often thought of someday running off to France to live in an old chateau for a year or so.  I’m not sure what I thought I would actually do once I was there – probably eat a lot of pain au chocolat – but I always dreamed of dancing around in a room amidst crumbling plaster and ancient wooden floors.

Ah, let the dancing commence!   This lustrous oak herringbone parquet, which might have been reclaimed from a Parisian apartment, country dwelling, or even – be still my heart – a creaky old chateau, is now available in the U.S.!

Imported by Exquisite Surfaces, this antique French oak flooring is not only beautiful and steeped in history, it is also FSC certified!

I love the juxtaposition of centuries old oak boards with sleek, modern walls.  Each element enhances the other so well, creating a harmonious whole, don’t you think?

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Working Wednesday – Blue Floor

A client and I are considering a blue floor for her laundry/sewing room.  She is a little wary of the idea (it IS a commitment), but I’m really falling in love with the cheerful combination of white, wood tones, and ocean blue floor.  Take a look…

via Metropolitan Home

via Desire to Inspire

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Real Wood from Fake Neighborhood

Can you see the 1.7 million square foot building in this picture?

How about if I pan out a little bit?

See it?  Next to the bridge?  No?  Well, see that big neighborhood right in the middle of the shot?  OK, now look underneath it… Read the rest of this entry »

Vintage Swedish Rug from Mansour

I just ran across this rug and had to share.  Be prepared to scroll a bit…

If that isn’t a whole lot of vintage Swedish design deliciousness, I don’t know what is!  Of course, at 9’8″ x 23′ (!), I’m not really sure how many homes could accommodate it, but I bet it would look amazing in the right setting.

Currently available from a curated collection of vintage Swedish Kilim rugs by Mansour.

Trending – Penny Tile

Usually when I post about a design element I believe is trending it’s because I’m seeing it more and more in magazines and other design forums. However, in this case I decided to write about one of my favorite looks more because I’m seeing an increased interest in it from my clients.

Penny rounds, and their design sibling “hex tile”, have been around for over a century, as anyone who has been in the lobby of the old apartment building, or the bathroom in an older home would know. Recently there has been a revival in interest for penny rounds, whether for reasons of nostalgia or the fact that just so darn cheerful looking. The great thing is, they can also be very sustainable. Here are some of my favorite looks:

image via Apartment Therapy


I’ll start out with, Savoy, a pretty ceramic version with over 20% recycled content from Ann Sacks. Read the rest of this entry »

5 Unusual Reclaimed Wood Floors

Reclaimed wood is HOT right now.  Whether it’s an old factory floor, wood from a crumbling barn, or ancient floorboards rescued from homes slated for demolition, people can’t seem to get enough of the stuff.  And I think that is GREAT!  Not only does it save precious resources to re-use these materials, it also gives interior spaces more character than they could possibly get from some glossy, mass produced product straight off the shelves of the local mega-building store.

But what if even barn wood doesn’t have enough quirkiness for you?  What if you want to have something nobody you know has yet?  Well, maybe you should look into one of these unusual reclaimed wood floors:

Wine barrel flooring by Fontenay

1.  Wine Barrels - Created out of salvaged wine barrels, this flooring still bears all the stamps and other markings from its previous life.  Now you can eat off the floor and read off it too!

Trestle flooring by Trestlewood

2.  Train Trestle – There was once a gigantic train trestle (bridge) that spanned across Utah’s Great Salt Lake.  Rendered obsolete by the construction of a solid fill causeway in the 1960′s, the wood sat dormant for years.  Recently, a salvage operation began rescuing the tens of millions of board feet of Douglas Fir, much of it given a unique look due to  “pickling” for almost 100 years in the briny water.   I love the gray streaks in the flooring above.  Here’s a little video that will give you a good idea of how enormous the trestle was: Read the rest of this entry »

Trending – Glass Tile Floors

Glass tile is becoming increasingly popular for bathroom and kitchen backsplashes, and we are even starting to see it used in place of wallpaper in living rooms and bedrooms.  People can’t seem to get enough of the beautiful depth and color you can achieve with it, and sustainably minded designers like myself can’t get enough of the inherent recyclability of glass in the bargain.  So perhaps it was inevitable that we would want to continue to expand on the idea by trying it out on floors too.  Take a look at these installations and then tell us what you think.


Oceanside Glasstile

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