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  1. New KMI Showroom & Schumacher Trim Challenge

    If you follow us on Instagram you may have heard that we moved into a new studio last month. We have been busy settling in to our new space where we are thrilled to have more room for our team AND our favorite furniture, accessories, fabrics and rugs! We are excited to share a few photos of our showroom today as we share one of the fun projects we worked on with Schumacher.

    A few months ago when Schumacher invited us to be part of their Trim Challenge, we were in the process of designing our new space so we were excited to be able to incorporate some pieces from their new Couture Trim line into our new studio. 

    We especially loved the Matrix Tape and Bell Fringe in Schumacher’s new Couture Line! We immediately thought they would be perfect together on white linen drapery for our showroom where we were planning to layer natural materials, vintage rugs and neutrals. 

    They were just installed and we are so happy with how they turned out. The white linen softens the large open wall space and the Matrix Tape and Bell Fringe tape used together create just enough of a vibrant, refined detail that easily blends with the rest of our pieces. 

     

    Thanks to Schumacher for creating fabric we love and for inviting us to take part in their Trim Challenge. We’re excited to share our workspace with you soon, and along with it, the second project we did as part of Schumacher’s Trim Challenge. In the meantime, for more Schumacher and more inspiration you can check out Schumacher’s Style Dispatch. https://app.robly.com/subscribe?a=188c6730649aa99caffa17f1c6949736

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  2. Colors of the Season: Blush & Burgundy

    We shared Emerald Green decor ideas for this winter season in our last blog post and now we are departing from the traditional holiday red to shades of blush and burgundy.  We love these colors because they work alone or together –  and mix so well with whites, greens, golds and silvers!

     

    Here’s a pairing of blush with warm whites and walnut wood tones from a recent bedroom project of ours….we love how calming and inviting this space is!

    Screen Shot 2015-12-15 at 3.12.29 PM

    {Blush Bedroom}

    Screen Shot 2015-12-15 at 3.12.04 PM

    {Shades of Blush and Warm Whites}

     

    Find your own winning combination to bring these on-trend colors into your home for a seasonal and feminine touch!  Here are some suggestions of blush or burgundy for Winter 2015-2016, including a selection from Kate Spade’s new rug collection and a Waterford decanter that will have you taking a second look at Waterford!  The muted tones will carry you well into spring and summer, while the deeper shades add a fun pop of holiday cheer!

    Burgundy and Blush

     

     

    Blush and Burgundy Finds

    1. Metal Frame Upholstered Chair in Dusty Blush Luster Velvet
    2. Victorian Mini Classics
    3. David Hicks La Fiorentina Dark Wine Pillow from PopOColor
    4. Kelly Wearstler Channels Lumbar Pillow from SparkModern
    5. Waterford Rebel Blush Decanter
    6. Murray by Kate Spade
    7. Linen Orianna Slipper Chair in Bordeaux

     

     

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  3. Colors of the Season

     

    After a busy summer and fall here at Kate Marker Interiors, we are taking the opportunity to share with you some fresh inspiration for colors that are trending now – but have the staying power to sail through any season!  While Pumpkin Orange, Rust Red, and Golden Wheat certainly convey  the coziness of Thanksgiving, we think the rich, sophisticated colors we will be spotlighting over the next few weeks may add a welcome twist to the conventional!

    Our first color inspiration, Emerald Green!

    Here is a snapshot of a dining room we created for a client – a dash of bold to keep the traditional furnishings fresh!

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    The exact shade we used above was Benjamin Moore’s Forest Green.

     

    Screen Shot 2015-11-23 at 10.54.44 PM

     

    {Benjamin Moore Forest Green}

     

    This next room is one of our all-time faves.  The green window treatments spruce up the neutrals for a stylish twist on a subdued Belgian look.

    Screen Shot 2015-11-24 at 8.45.50 PM

    {Via Veranda Magazine}

     

    This room is not for those who shy away from color but the charcoal gray walls balance the prints and bright colors for a cohesive look.

    Screen Shot 2015-11-23 at 10.57.33 PM

    {Via Better Homes and Gardens}

     

    Simultaneously sophisticated and adventurous, this room has us pondering the personality of (what we are assuming to be) the worldly owner.

    Screen Shot 2015-11-24 at 9.48.44 AM

     {Via MyDomaine}

     

    Here are some finds to easily add a dash of this energetic color to your own decor!

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    Emerald Green Finds

    1. Green Malachite Pillow
    2. Agate Bookends
    3. Surrey Lamp
    4. Han Dynasty Horses, available through Kate Marker Interiors
    5. Magnolia Wreath
    6. Velvet Edlyn Chair

     

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  4. Effortless Chic: Kate Marker Interiors Debuts on One King’s Lane!

     

    Screen Shot 2015-09-01 at 12.13.21 AM
    We are so very excited to share our curated collaboration with One King’s Lane!  Kicking off on August 30th and continuing for the next month, shoppers on the site can scoop up malachite accessories, linen furnishings, brass lanterns, natural fiber rugs, spindle chairs, and so much more!

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    Screen Shot 2015-09-01 at 12.28.44 AM
    Peppered throughout the collection are our tips on achieving the look we love – classic sophistication that is approachable.  The nine tips complement the collection by providing insight on our signature look here at KMI…from styling a group of accessories, to investing in versatile seating options, and even sharing how to mix light and dark wood finishes.

     

    Screen Shot 2015-09-01 at 12.02.59 AM

     

    You may recognize some of the images paired with the tips from our Russell Residence project or our Willow Residence project, both of which encapsulate “effortless chic” and include many of the same or similar items from our OKL collection.

     

    Screen Shot 2015-09-01 at 12.04.25 AM

    Shop soon to get the very best of the collection before items sell out!  Products can be shopped via the Instagram link on @onekingslane

     

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  5. Playing Favorites

    Everyone plays favorites…at Kate Marker Interiors, we find ourselves constantly thumbing through the entire Benjamin Moore paint deck only to consistently arrive at a select few paint strips with colors that have never disappointed, whether it’s for an interior or exterior space.  Here is a shot of our favorite neutrals – whites, lights, and darks.

    Favorite Paint Strips

     

    Posted below are projects we’ve completed featuring these favorite Benjamin Moore colors from the strips above: Swiss Coffee, White Dove, Collingwood, Silver Satin, Classic Gray from the whites and neutrals.  Kendall Charcoal rounds out the group as our preferred dark gray.

     

    Swiss Coffee

     

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    Silver Satin

     

    Classic Gray

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    What are your favorite neutrals?  Let us know on Instagram @katemarkerinteriors! #kmisharefavoriteneutrals

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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  6. Traditional, Revisited

     

    Today we are sharing a before and after of a clients’ furnishings, largely traditional in style, and how they were given a second life to blend into a beautiful new custom home. This “new traditional” now reflects the clients in the best way possible – preserving what they had loved for years but reinventing it for the next chapter of their lives.  If you follow us on Instagram @katemarkerinteriors, we’ve tagged this our #estateonthelake project!

     

     

     

    -The New Look: Family Room- 

     

     

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    This room was given a soft, classic palette and the furnishings are nearly all previously owned pieces, just reupholstered (exceptions are the twin  blue chest of drawers flanking the fireplace). The solid fabrics in beige and blue balance the warm gold tones of the existing coffee table and mirrors, a blend of  classic and sparkle!

     

     

    -The New Look: Dining Room- 

    Slide4

    KMI_June2015_1013

    We love how this room turned out!  The herringbone floor adds a beautiful detail and the bold window treatments brings such a freshness to a stately room!  The rug, table and side chairs, light fixture and mirror were all brought in from the clients’ previous home.


    -Steps for Transitioning-

    We took several steps to give these furnishings a facelift while successfully blending them with new surroundings and pieces.  Here’s how:

    1.  Update color palettes

    Fabrics in peach and red were replaced with neutral fabrics – creams, beiges, and soft blues in the family room.  The gray grasscloth wall covering in the dining room grounds the space.  The wall color selected for this new construction custom home is very light – Silver Satin by Benjamin Moore, seen below.

     

    KMI_June2015_1008

     

    2.  Update patterns

    The navy and cream herringbone fabric on the side chairs and wingback end chairs in the dining room introduce a small-scale pattern in a classic palette.  Herringbone, while enjoying a surge of popularity, is always in style.

    A bold choice was made for selecting the window treatments in the dining room. The large-scale floral Schumacher pattern of cream and navy, seen below, give the space a great dash of energy while still pulling in the same navy from the classic Persian rug that the clients already owned.

    Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 11.37.39 AM

     

    3. Purchase new pieces to complement the existing

    A few new pieces (even accessories!) can instantly complement existing furnishings – whether it’s with color, shape or functionality.  As mentioned above, the two chests in the family room were new, adding  clean lines and their unique blue color to the overall scheme.  Modern lighting choices are always a great add for minimal space commitment but a large impact.  In the case of the family room, the popular Morris Lantern by Visual Comfort adds a geometric element.  The credenza in the dining room is both functional for storage and transitional in looks.

    Screen Shot 2015-07-28 at 4.09.50 PM

     

    4. Mix Metals

    Mixing up to three metals in a space keeps it from being too “matchy” and adds depth that straddles different design trends.  In the dining room below, we’ve mixed bronze, antique brass, and gold.

     

    KMI_June2015_1012

     

    We hope this provides a bit of inspiration for you to reconsider a piece of well-loved furniture that you were contemplating replacing because it’s original beauty has faded a bit!

     

    Check out our website soon for more pictures of this comprehensive project!

     

     

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  7. The Ghost Chair

    A clear chair?  Yep, that’s right.  Today’s blog is dedicated to a transparent chair, technically the Louis Ghost Chair, that has become a new classic!    It’s historically-inspired silhouette, unique name, revolutionary clarity, and the fact that it can hold it’s own anywhere, with anything have all contributed to it’s popularity.  Read on to find out why this chair is such a great piece for almost any room in the house!

     

    Louis Ghost Chair

    {the Ghost chair}

    -History-

    Introduced by the powerhouse French designer Phillipe Starck, the Ghost Chair (and it’s sister side chair, the Victoria), debuted over 10 years ago and they both have proven to have staying power.  The roots of the Ghost Chair go back to the Louis XVI chair, invented in the late 1700’s and featuring well-proportioned lines with slim, tapered legs and a round,  oval, or rectangular back.  These chairs of the Louis XVI are not overly detailed, unlike the previous Rococo era in France prior to their arrival.  The Ghost Chair is streamlined and proportional with a round back and actually made from injection-molded polycarbonate. Here’s an example of a traditional Louis XVI chair, courtesy of eBay:

     

    eBay Louis XvI Chair

     

     

    -Versatile Style-

    We love the Ghost chair for the many spaces it is capable of effortlessly enhancing, regardless of  lifestyles or living arrangements.  Take a look below – maybe you’ll be on the lookout for one or two of your own!

     

    Dining Room

    Dining chairs?  Yes! They haven’t met a table they don’t mix well with – Farmhouse to Tulip table, and everything in between.

    Katie Hackworth Design Ghost Chairs

    {polished + rustic}

     Katie Hackworth via The Rustic Modernist

    Luxe Home banquette with Ghost chairs

    {banquette with Ghost chairs}

    Banquette with Ghost Chairs via Luxe Home

    Bathroom

     Stack some fluffy towels for a functional display – steamy showers won’t be cut short!

    Ghost Chair bathroom

    {Victoria chair in bathroom}

    Terracotta Design Build via Houzz

     


    Playroom

    Easily wipe off those sticky fingerprints and spills from creative sessions in a kids playroom!

    Lou Lou Chair Kids Ghost Playroom

    Via Decorpad

     

    Living Room

    If your living area has a “dead zone” or just needs a little jolt of personality, add a Ghost chair with a throw pillow or small sheepskin!   So lightweight, it can easily be pulled up to the other seating area for accommodating conversation.

    Throw pillow Ghost Chair the Everygirl

    {throw pillow + Ghost chair pair}

    Via The Everygirl

     


    The Desk Space

    Whether it’s an office desk, kitchen work space, or even a nightstand doubling as a desk, the Ghost chair complements every time.

    Ghost chair night stand MyDomaine

     Via MyDomaine

    Screen Shot 2015-06-24 at 11.25.02 PM

    Via Apartment Therapy

     

    -Versatile Functionality-

     Because of the lightweight material, Ghost chairs can be used outside and are stackable! A nice break from the clunky brown or gray metal foldable chairs we all know – or for a special occasion like the image below.  Another great appeal is that because they are transparent and compact, they are suitable for small spaces by keeping it visually open.

    Ghost Chair Garden Party

     

     

     

    -As Used by Kate Marker Interiors-

    This gorgeous eating area maximizes space with the banquette while the transparency of the chairs allows several details to stand out – the metallic lattice wallpaper, geometric throw pillows, and carved wood of the table.  There is much to admire without looking fussy.

    Willow Residence Kitchen Ghost Chairs

    {willow residence project}

    Ghost Chairs Banquette Willow Residence

    {willow residence}

     

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  8. Kitchen Transformation!

    Today we are thrilled to share a dramatic Before-And-After project we at Kate Marker Interiors recently completed.  The chef-caliber kitchen is a far cry from it’s 1990’s predecessor, which was the complete package of warm golden oak cabinets, burgundy walls, a diagonal island with built-in cooktop and limited functional counter and eating space despite the open layout and generous square footage.  Can you picture what it probably looked like?  Okay, here’s the real deal, our  BEFORE!

     

    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 11.40.26 AM

    {the lackluster layout & dated color scheme was not passing muster with the chef}

     

    -What Had to Go-

    The client, a passionate cook, sought big changes to optimize overall functionality and establish a generous every day eating and entertaining space.  The original kitchen was an ample size but had some major drawbacks.  A poorly planned stovetop on the small island was a hazard to anyone seated at the island and the placement of a stainless fridge was the unfortunate focal point of the kitchen.  A diagonal (why was diagonal such a hit 20+ years ago?) walk-in pantry was also awkward in that it broke up the minimal counter space.

     

    -Reconfiguring the Space-

    With two little children, the client wanted a “work zone” but also an eating space that was still very much a part of the kitchen.  This was accomplished in two ways.  First, continuing the wood floor from the kitchen into the adjacent open-concept family room that had been carpeted.  This visually connected the kitchen and family room and allowed the kitchen to encroach closer to the family room by placing a large island in what would otherwise be wasted space between the two rooms.  Secondly, the plan for this large island was then swapped in favor of two islands!  The first island is in the heart of the “work triangle” with quick access to the fridge, range, and sink and the second island, complete with a counter overhang for bar seating, is very much in the hub of the kitchen but out of the way of food prep.

     

     

    -The Reveal-

     

    Whitetail

    {light and airy cabinets surround two islands}

     

    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.24.21 PM

    {lighting fixtures add a touch of sparkle}

    -The Distinctive Details-

    The walk-in pantry was removed  to allow for the eye-catching range and gorgeous backsplash tiles to become the new focal point centered along the far wall.

     

    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.23.42 PM

    {the honed granite counters on the prep island}

     

    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.25.18 PM

    {the backsplash tile is a raised ceramic}

     

     

    Honed quartzite counters on the perimeter are a soft complement to the artistic textured backsplash tiles in subdued greens and blues.

     

    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.25.01 PM

    {white distressed wood cabinets with honed quartzite counters}

     

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    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.25.31 PM

    {white farmhouse sink}

     

     

    -Bench Seating-

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    {counter bench}

     

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    The two counter benches are one of our favorite alternatives to traditional bar stools.  They are customizeable and comfortable.  Contact us at Kate Marker Interiors if you are interested in swapping stools for a bench or two – so many options to choose from!  Here are some other examples of counter benches for the look we love!

     

     

    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 9.59.08 PM

    {Source: 2 Ivy Lane via Houzz}

     

    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 10.02.30 PM

    {Source: Caitlin Creer via Pinterest}

     

    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 9.57.02 PM

    {Source: Tracery Interiors via Houzz}

     

    -Don’t Miss Out On This June Special-

    Pillow Promotion from our favorite Etsy shops

    PopOColor offers 10% for orders of $100 or more through 6/15 with the code “KateMarker”
    SparkModern offers 10% off orders through 6/30 with the code “KMIBLOG” (case sensitive)
    MotifPillows offers 10% off with code “KMI10”

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  9. The Lake Effect

    Soon the chatter of children in classrooms will move outside to fill the air around all things water- backyard sprinklers, neighborhood pools, resort lakes, ocean beaches. However one defines leisure in summer time, water seems to be a common thread that we gravitate towards…to splash in, gaze at, relax beside. Today we are revisiting a former project to bring you a dose of the Lake Effect, layer by layer. Here is our recipe to achieve the carefree atmosphere of the lakeside home.

    1 - Lake House

     

    – White, All White –

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    {White Dove OC-17 by Benjamin Moore}

    First, start with a crisp, clean palette of white. White reflects summer’s light and unifies an open floor plan, especially if the space is smaller scale. White depicts simplicity, and that’s what lake living should be.

    For our white, we painted all interior walls with Benjamin Moore’s White Dove. Note the use of shiplap to provide nautical detailing, reminiscent of the paneling of a ship.

     

    – Organic Layers –

    2 - Lake House

    5 - Lake House

    {jute + wicker}

    Time to mix in some texture! Natural fiber rugs define a living or dining area and provide a grounded and versatile look. Wicker furnishings add to the relaxed vibe and blend well with upholstered or more industrial pieces. Well-placed woven baskets serve as eye-pleasing storage.

     

    – Color Splash –

    3 - Lake House

    {navy + green + yellow}

    Now add a dose of color. As we stated in our previous blog entry on May 20th, a trio of pillows liven up a room. The navy, green, and yellow seen here are an energetic combination and the green is continued through the open space on the statement-making twin tufted ottomans and fresh green plants. The striped swivel chairs and lumbar pillows balance the navy and yellow accents.   Each piece makes a splash against the soft backdrop of whites and neutrals.

    Peek at our previous blog post to check out some fresh summer color combinations here!

     

    – Finishing Details –

    4 - Lake House

    {layered accessories with a nautical vibe}

    6 - Lake House

    {vintage runner with original stair spindles}

    7 - Lake House

    {classic lantern with woven chairs}

    8 - Lake House

    {tufted daybed and swivel floor lamps are perfect for guests}

    9 - Lake House

    {table for ten}

    9 - Lake House

    {mid-century modern chair with wicker seat}

    10 - Lake House

    {rope pendant}

    The final layer tops the overall look by adding small touches of glam and interest.  A mercury glass table lamp and twin mercury glass jars add sparkle in the midst of the soft, natural materials in the rest of the space.  The glass cloches and glass hurricanes dress up tabletops without obstructing a view to the outside. The vintage Oriental rug in the entry is both sophisticated and timeless, it’s over-dyed colors adding a dash of drama.

     

    – Get the Look –

    Here are some products to give your home a touch of summer’s laid-back vibe, the Lake Effect.  For ordering, send  us an email at info@katemarkerinteriors.com
    Screen Shot 2015-05-29 at 12.48.40 PM

    Green Oak Pendant

    Green Malachite

    Green Malachite Pillow

    Yellow Pillow

    Velvet Citrine Pillow

    Navy Tashkent SparkModern

    Navy Tashkent Pillow

     

    Clifton Rug

    Clifton Rug

     

    South Seas Bar Cart

    South Seas Bar Cart

    Ariana Rugs Salmon Runner

    Vintage Runner

    – Take a Further Look –

    Dreaming of your own waterside escape yet?  See more images of this lakeside cottage on our website at Kate Marker Interiors Lakeshore Residence

     

     

    Pillow Promotion from our favorite Etsy shops

    PopOColor offers 10% for orders of $100 or more through 6/15 with the code “KateMarker”
    SparkModern offers 10% off orders through 6/30 with the code “KMIBLOG” (case sensitive)
    MotifPillows offers 10% off with code “KMI10”

     

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  10. Our Work – In Print!

    Kate Marker Interiors has long been a fan of the gorgeous interiors showcased in Luxe Magazine, a glossy design publication with pages of Chicagoland’s most beautiful homes. Imagine our delight when we were approached to have a project featured in their April issue! It is officially off the presses and on magazine stands – grab your copy for a close-up of this welcoming North Shore home!

    – About the Project –

    Tasked with creating a family-friendly, open space while staying true to the Lake Forest home’s Georgian Colonial architecture, the KMI team juxtaposed classic lines with fresh patterns and soothing colors. The busy lifestyles of this family of five were addressed by installing generous cubbies in the mudroom, sourcing stain-resistant fabrics for furnishings, and ensuring traffic flow would allow for entertaining and maximum functionality.

    – Wow Factor –

    Kate’s favorite touch was the crisp black and white dining room Pierre Frey wallcovering from Holly Hunt, made with embroidered fabric ribbons, achieving an airy yet bold look.

    Dining Room

    – Design Challenge –

    The long, narrow living room gained definition and seating with the addition of a Lillian August daybed. The versatile piece lends a touch of informality suitable for a young family.

    Living Room

    – Tips for designing with children in mind –

    No need to sacrifice the pretty things!  Here are some ways to accommodate toddlers through teens in your home decor

    -Use durable, stain resistant fabrics (Scotchguard, indoor-outdoor textiles)
    -Plan for easy flow of foot traffic
    -Add pops of pattern and/or color to keep things fresh (think ikat, chevron, herringbone)
    -Pair children’s artwork with an elegant frame

    pop of pattern

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