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Featuring classic patterns, dynamic modern designs and a mix of materials, wallpaper -which dates back to Egyptian and Roman wall paintings – is back.

Wall coverings in homes emerged in Europe during the Middle Ages, when the upper classes used intricate and decorative tapestries as décor and to minimize drafts.

The use of wall coverings boomed during the Renaissance with beautifully woven fabrics used as decoration on walls, tables and doorways.

Around this time, paper was introduced as a less expensive, more practical alternative to fabrics and tapestries.

This classic pattern – Antonelli Damask by Thibaut – lends a pop of color and a traditional touch to a marble-clad bathroom.

This classic pattern – Antonelli Damask by Thibaut – lends a pop of color and a traditional touch to a marble-clad bathroom.

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With glimmers of optimism in the economy, homeowners are more confident and ready to change their homes and experiment with different colors and design styles that reflect the following trends emerging in 2014.

Back to basics. Black and white will be popular for 2014. Both are timeless classics and can be easily juxtaposed with different colors and textures. Charcoal will remain de rigueur.

Pops of color. Vibrant hues such as coral, yellow-green and bright blue and green will dominate infusing vivid accents into neutral palettes. You can never go wrong with a blue and white combo.

A crisp blue and white color scheme is always in style, especially along the coast.

A crisp blue and white color scheme is always in style, especially along the coast.

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As the sister venue to Amaya restaurant at the award-winning San Diego-based The Grand Del Mar, Amaya La Jolla boasts many of the same fine design details as the resort.

One of our most recent projects, Amaya La Jolla is housed in a former art gallery encompassing 10,000 square feet. We designed it to complement the distinctive European style of The Grand Del Mar, looking to decorative Italian palazzos for inspiration.

Amaya La Jolla Veranda

The Veranda, with its open airy feel, evokes the ambiance of a coastal European town.

Palazzo style refers to an architectural style of the 19th and 20th centuries based upon the palazzi (palaces) built by wealthy families of the Italian Renaissance. The architects of these buildings at times, however, drew details from sources other than the Italian Renaissance, such as Italian Romanesque or the French Beaux Arts movement, Empire and Venetian styles. For example, the hand-carved arched lunettes above the outside windows exemplify the Beaux Arts movement, as do the decorative ironwork at the entry doors and the gates into the wine cellar. The hand-troweled plaster throughout replicates finishes found in Venice, as do the mosaic tiled floors in the front veranda.

The restaurant encompasses an airy, light-filled front veranda with an indoor/outdoor feel; an adjacent wine room and wine cellar; a main dining room; a private dining room; and a bar/lounge area featuring nightly entertainment.

Amaya La Jolla Wine Room

In the wine room, doors paneled with oil paintings of St. Mark’s Square in Venice, as well as a hammered tin ceiling, add to the room’s European feel.

Two of the most notably similar design elements found at both The Grand Del Mar and Amaya La Jolla are the abundant use of hand-carved stone and polished marble. The restaurant’s exterior features stone-carved arched pediments, and the interior entry vestibule features hand-carved stone columns. We worked with the same four-generation family of Italian artisans – used exclusively by Warren Sheets Design, Inc. – that we collaborated with for The Grand Del Mar.

Other design elements common to both entities include elaborate coffered ceilings, hand-painted frescoes, wrought iron doors, stenciled accents, custom iron and crystal chandeliers, mosaic stone flooring, hand-troweled Venetian plaster walls, hand-applied 18 karat gold leaf finishes from Germany, intricate hand-woven carpets and detailed millwork. Additional highlights include doors paneled with oil paintings of St. Mark’s Square in Venice and a hammered tin ceiling with hand applied bronze finishes in the wine room all constructed by personally selected top artisans with years of experience and stellar portfolios, as well as the very finest products and materials.

To further the restaurant’s warm, residential ambiance, we used an array of rich hues, including gold, ochre and aubergine, contrasted against rich cardamom rose and French plum colors – colors seen in vibrant and beautiful sunsets of the Umbria region of southern Italy.

Since Amaya La Jolla is located in a seaside village, we added coastal-inspired elements including oil paintings imported from Western Europe. The artwork has an airy, impressionistic feel and vibrant colors that tie into the restaurant’s beachfront locale.

Amaya La Jolla Vignette

Oil paintings imported from Western Europe accent the decor at Amaya La Jolla.

If you’re in La Jolla, stop at Amaya La Jolla for a delicious meal or simply pause in front to enjoy its detailed exterior. And then let us know which dining area, piece of artwork or design detail is your favorite.

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San Francisco: A Paradise for Shopping and Strolling

On August 21, 2013, in Posts, by Warren Sheets

This month much of the country is returning from summer travels, which makes me realize while I love to travel, staying home can be just as much fun. With this in mind, I’d like to share some of my favorite spots to shop and dine in my home city, San Francisco.

Shopping can be serious business. Fortunately there are plenty of spots to relax and unwind in San Francisco.

Shopping can be serious business. Fortunately there are plenty of spots to relax and unwind in San Francisco.

Start the perfect San Francisco day with a walk down Hayes Street, beginning at Franklin, then heading west. Don’t miss the wonderful boutiques and shops in the area, including some intriguing home décor shops as well as great restaurants and coffee shops. Highlights include:

  • PLANTATION – Distinctive home décor, including numerous accessories and tabletop accessories. 336 Hayes (415) 565-0888.
  • THE PAINTERS PLACE – Finely crafted custom framing – offering both classic and modern designs. 371 Hayes Street (415) 431-9827.
  • PROPELLER – A fabulous array of modern furnishings and hand built accessories for the home. 555 Hayes Street (415) 701-7767.

After touring the many shops on both sides of the street, unwind with an espresso, a special treat or brunch at:

  • LA BOULANGE – Famed French-style bakery and café. 500 Hayes Street (415) 863-3376.
  • STACKS – Fresh, simple and delicious American classics. 501 Hayes Street (415) 241-9011.
  • MIETTE – Fine cookies and other sweet confections. 449 Octavia Street (415) 626-6221.

Stacks logo

Another favorite place of mine to stroll and shop is a small shopping district San Franciscans refer to as “Sacramento Street.” Located at the base of Pacific Heights, this area is a bit more upscale than Hayes Street. Here you’ll find:

  • SUE FISHER KING – A sumptuous store filled with rich textures and colors as well as the very finest in home furnishings. 3067 Sacramento Street (415) 922-7276.
  • ANTHEM – One of a kind antiques, as well as eye-catching furniture, lighting solutions and tabletop accessories. 3274 San Francisco Street (415) 440-6500.
  • POETICA ART & ANTIQUES – Rare antiques, accessories and vintage furniture. 3461 Sacramento Street (415) 637-5837.
  • THE DESK SET – A full-service fine stationery and custom invitation boutique. 3252 Sacramento Street (415) 921-9575
  • HENRY BENGUELIN – Handcrafted fine leather. 3091 Sacramento Street (415) 292-7559.

For a late lunch or dinner, I recommend GARIBALDIS – the quintessential neighborhood spot. 347 Presidio Avenue  (415) 563-8841.

No matter what part of the city you frequent – from the upscale stores at Union Square or San Francisco Street to the thrift stores in the Mission District – San Francisco is a shopper’s paradise.

San Francisco is a great place to shop for home décor items.

San Francisco is a great place to shop for home décor items.

Each neighborhood has its own unique flavor – and treasures – so the next time you are in the city, do some serious exploring. And please stop by our design studio at 155 Connecticut Street and pay us a visit. We’re quite sure it will become one of your San Francisco favorites.

 

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Kootenai Estates, a breathtaking summer getaway in the heart of the Flathead Valley in Montana, welcomed such venerable guests as Will Rogers, John D. Rockefeller, Jane Wyatt and Charles Lindbergh during its heyday as a turn-of-the-century retreat for wealthy mining barons.

A hand-cut rock courtyard and fountain welcomes all to the 6,500-square-foot Lindbergh cabin.

A hand-cut rock courtyard and fountain welcomes all to the 6,500-square-foot Lindbergh cabin.

We have been closely involved in restoring this idyllic Bigfork, Montana, community, and a standout of our work here has been the transformation of the legendary Lindbergh Cabin, rumored to have housed the famous aviator when he visited the grounds in the 1920s.

In addition to the renovation of the historic 1906 Kootenai Lodge we described in our last blog, we helped refurbish and expand three original log cabins and built three new homes from the ground up. We are especially proud of our work on the expansive 6,500-square-foot Lindbergh Cabin, now a meticulously restored waterfront home.

Beautifully restored maple wood flooring and custom finishes highlight the cabin’s interior.

Beautifully restored maple wood flooring and custom finishes highlight the cabin’s interior.

This cabin was originally built in the 1880s and in definite need of some modernization when we embarked on rebuilding it in 2007. We restored the original residence and expanded it to include two new two-story wings. All the original hand-hewn logs were restored to their original beauty. To maximize the stunning lake views, we enlarged all the windows and doors. The original maple flooring was carefully refinished, and a massive exterior fireplace – comprised of indigenous chief cliff rock – was dismantled and relocated to adorn an accent wall and three interior fireplaces. The residence today includes a gourmet kitchen and breakfast room, formal dining room, elegant great room, walk-in bar, office, outdoor dining deck, a master suite with a private patio and a full ensuite bathroom for each of its five bedrooms.

A lakefront terrace offers sweeping views of Swan Lake and Swan River.

A lakefront terrace offers sweeping views of Swan Lake and Swan River.

Fully furnished with custom finishes, this one-of-a-kind residence now features a lovely entry courtyard and fountain, as well as a full-view lakeside terrace with a commanding vista of both Swan Lake and Swan River stretching all the way to Crane Mountain. The home is accented with beamed vaulted ceilings, rustic timbers and rugged stone throughout. The other homes at Kootenai Estates are similar in style, with traditional log architectural accents that pay homage to the Old Montana West.

The project is still a work in progress and marks the dramatic transformation of “The Kootenai Camp,” a former destination for Anaconda Copper executives and their families into a collection of custom, multi-million dollar homes.

Indigenous cliff stone from the cabin’s massive original fireplace accentuates an interior wall.

Indigenous cliff stone from the cabin’s massive original fireplace accentuates an interior wall.

When complete, all the homes – both old and new – will masterfully echo the traditional Adirondack Camp style architecture of this original turn-of-the-century retreat.

For more images of the Lindbergh and other homes and this gorgeous Montana property be sure to visit its website. We also have photos of our work posted on our website and Facebook page.

 

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Summertime brings to mind one of our most intriguing projects: Kootenai Estates in Bigfork, Montana. Situated on 42 pristine acres on the majestic Swan Lake, this is an idyllic summer getaway in the heart of the Flathead Valley surrounded by a national forest.

A refurbished 10-foot-deep covered porch with sweeping lakefront views surrounds The Lodge.

A refurbished 10-foot-deep covered porch with sweeping lakefront views surrounds The Lodge.

This project, now underway, marks the transformation of a once turn-of-the-century retreat for wealthy mining barons into a collection of custom, multi-million dollar homes, and currently consists of the renovated historic lodge, three restored and expanded log cabins, three new homes and an expansive swimming pool and Jacuzzi area, complete with a pool house and open decks. When complete, the property will encompass 42 custom luxury homes (25 of which will be located on Swan Lake, Swan River or Johnson Creek), a fitness center, a small museum and more. Ten of the homes will be masterfully refurbished and enlarged original log cabins; 32 will be brand new.

The story of Kootenai began in 1906 when a pair of Anaconda Copper Company executives – Lewis Orvis Evans and Cornelius “Con” Kelley – acquired 2,700 acres of wilderness in northwestern Montana. Between 1914 and 1928, they created a sprawling vacation resort for friends and family, business associates and company executives.

The Kootenai Lodge was designed by Kirtland Cutter in the iconic Adirondack camp style of the early 20th century.

The Kootenai Lodge was designed by Kirtland Cutter in the iconic Adirondack camp style of the early 20th century.

We embarked upon this project in 2005 with the initial task of restoring the main lodge, built by the Anaconda Copper Company as a hunting lodge. Originally designed by architectural pioneer Kirtland Cutter in the iconic Adirondack camp style of the early 20th century, the storied 14,000-square-foot log lodge had welcomed such venerable guests as Will Rogers, John D. Rockefeller and Charles Lindbergh over the years. Famous Western artist Charles Russell etched playful images into the concrete of the lodge’s ample courtyard.

When we undertook the lodge restoration, each original log had to be restored and stained. The charming original waved glass windows were removed, then carefully repaired and painted. Since some of the building’s original river rock foundation was deteriorating, it had to be carefully rebuilt on the same footprint, using Cutter’s original blueprints to ensure accuracy. In addition, we reconstructed the main staircase, re purposed the original rock maple flooring, converted the massive central fireplace into the best pellet stove and installed all new lighting fixtures. The lodge is a gathering spot for residents, and also used for special events and parties, so the interiors had to be comfortable yet appealing. With this in mind, we carefully furnished the lodge with custom window treatment, area rugs, plush furnishings and fine accessories – all carefully selected to reflect the era and style of the lodge.

The Lodge interior at Kootenai Estates is characterized by exposed cedar logs.

The Lodge interior at Kootenai Estates is characterized by exposed cedar logs.

Now an anchor of the Kootenai Estates community, the lodge is U-shaped and wrapped by refurbished 10-foot deep covered porches with sweeping lakefront views. The interior of the sprawling main hall is characterized by exposed cedar and timbers, soaring 30-foot-ceilings, a restored original billiards table and a grand piano. An adjoining media room – equipped with a 60-inch flat screen television – transports guests to a more modern day era. In the adjacent lounge, a gorgeous bar features glistening copper counter tops.

Our overall approach was to gently blend the past with the present, remaining sensitive to the building’s history, while updating it with the comforts of today.

The massive original fireplace is made of indigenous stone.

The massive original fireplace is made of indigenous stone.

The lodge has been designated a National Historic Landmark by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and offers a beautiful example of turn-of-the-last century rustic log architecture.

For images of the lodge, the gorgeous Montana property and exquisite homes at Kootenai Estates, be sure to visit its website. We also have photos of our work posted on our website and Facebook page.

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