I don’t know about you but I can’t start my day until I’ve had a cup of coffee. That rich, aromatic smell of ground beans, the sumptuousness of adding thick creamer and sugar, the ritual of holding a hot mug and sipping until you’re pleasantly awake and alert. To create a coffee bar in your home, here are some ideas.
Choose whether to have a full-service coffee machine, French press, or single cup server like a Keurig.
Where will you locate your coffee bar? A dedicated set of shelves and counter space or a classy built-in are good options.
Providing a place to sit and talk or read while you sip your hot coffee is delightful for you and your guests.
Personalize your coffee bar for that down-home touch. What a great way to kickstart a fun day!
Kimball Starr designs welcoming homes with coffee bars throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and Lake Tahoe. Contact her today for a socially-distanced in-person or remote consultation!
Today we’re looking at designs created with concrete. “It’s too severe to be inspirational” I hear you say. Well, let me prove you wrong!
Many architects and engineers use the ability of reinforced concrete to produce structures of surprising lightness which, despite being made of masonry, barely appear to touch the ground.
Félix Candela was one of the earliest and best to focus on arches and vaults in the form of parabolas, efficiently directing the structural forces inside the material, which makes this 1958 Mexico City restaurant called Los Manatiales lighter still.
Cohen Chapel in Switzerland, built in 2017, both protects against the elements and invites elements in, with beams of light streaming down onto simple bench seats, surrounded by stratified concrete walls with a textural feeling, open to the sky at the top.
The unusual design of the chapel is a hideaway from the mountainous countryside, a way to focus on more spiritual concerns.
In the Louvre Abu Dhabi, light-colored concrete blocks seem to float weightlessly, while the stainless-steel-and-aluminum dome forms star-shaped patterns when the light shines through in a dazzling effect for this 2017 storied art museum in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates by Atelier Jean Nouvel.
Another of Jean Nouvel’s buildings is made of 539 disks, forming the walls and ceilings. Glass-fiber-reinforced concrete cladding consists of 76,000 panels, made from 3,000 master molds, completed in 2019.
Limited window glazing is deep-set, shading openings from the intense sun and protecting the art inside the National Museum of Qatar, in Doha, Qatar. Modern, bursting with style, uplifting, and made with concrete.
Kimball Starr designs stylish homes throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and Lake Tahoe, inspired by some of the most stunning architecture across the world. Contact her today for a socially-distanced in-person or remote consultation!
The world is opening up again as the global pandemic slows, which makes people want to travel more. I’ve enjoyed traveling to gorgeous Thailand multiple times in years past.
However, I’ve read Thailand is currently struggling with the biggest COVID-19 surge since India’s. My heart goes out to this beautiful country and their wonderful people. I wish them a speedy recovery, so that travelers could again enjoy views like these in the future.
Above, sunken seating with rows of colorful pillows perfectly matching the blue-green water surrounding it is a real wow-factor. Color is absolutely key to this Thai experience.
In the jungles of Northern Thailand, this hotel pictured above and below features a gorgeous infinity pool with a spa house at the head, where I received relaxing and nourishing treatments for skin and body. Ahhhh!
Below, this Thai reflecting pool shows off balanced rocks lit from underneath that appear to float effortlessly at sunset, contrasting the city skyline and modern buildings beyond. The warm color of the lit stones is energizing yet peaceful, stoking my desire to return again and again.
Kimball Starr designs inspired homes throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and Lake Tahoe, and visits Thailand whenever possible. Contact her today for a socially-distanced in-person or remote consultation.
Your inspiration today is breezy beautiful California Mission style. One of the main elements of Mission style is a gorgeous terracotta tiled roof.
Style wins: Delicate scrollwork instead of over-bearing metal, alongside wood box beams and soft puddles of drapery fabric.
Arched doorways and coffered doors are especially inviting into a Santa Barbara-style home.
White dining chairs and walls reflect light and provide a feeling of calm, under dark wooden beams and an elegant chandelier.
Mission embroidery and leather chairs are historically flavored, boasts interior designer Madeline Stewart of this LA home.
Cooling brick-colored tiles underfoot are tempered by faux animal skin rugs in white, a familiar feature of Montecito-style homes. What a relaxing space….
Kimball Starr designs Santa Barbara, Montecito and Mission-style homes throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and Lake Tahoe. Contact her today for a socially-distanced in-person or remote consultation!
In the summertime, I’m naturally attracted to outdoor seating that needs durable fabrics.
The best fabrics for indoor/outdoor use are solution-dyed. That means the color is injected into the threads during the manufacturing process, rather than laid on top. Here, we chose a pale blue color to match the blue of the water outside, which will never fade on this custom chaise long because of the solution-dyed fabric.
Solution-dyed fabrics hold up better against sun, water, mildew, and staining.
They’re also great for homes with pets.
Solution-dyed fabrics can be very soft, not like the old boat-house cushions you remember. Here, we chose multiple durable canvas-style fabrics to resist dirt and soil in this window seat.
Perfect for high-traffic areas, easy to wipe clean with a damp cloth. Lots of windows and sunlight, but paired with solution-dyed fabric, it will never fade, and cleaning food spills are a breeze, as you see on our custom-designed bright green banquette with hidden storage underneath.
Cool tones are really stylish this year. Experiment with color easily with Sunbrella throw pillows!
Kimball Starr designs homes throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and Lake Tahoe. Contact her today for a socially-distanced in-person or remote consultation!
In the spring and summer, my mind naturally turns towards the outdoors, and fair-weather pursuits. What a wonderful time to relax in an outdoor garden or garden-inspired room!
One such magical place is Filoli Gardens in Northern California. If you’re lucky enough to live close enough for a visit, you should definitely plan a day outing to enjoy the stunning curated views.
The Georgian-style terraces around the main house highlight sweeping views of the Santa Cruz Mountains, in contrast to the formal English Renaissance-style-garden to the south, featuring lush flower beds, yew-lined avenues, and a sunken garden, shown above.
Seasonal spring plantings include daffodils, tulips, and hyacinths, contrasted with blue violas, while the summer display presents zinnias, roses and salvias. This view is of the famous walled garden, with little vignettes to be enjoyed throughout the seasons.
If you can’t come to Northern California, celebrate your local environment by creating a garden room of your own. A wicker indoor seating area, surrounded by glass walls and protected views of your garden, yard, or perhaps a walkway towards a beautiful view outside your windows makes a perfect place to pause and reflect. Then no matter the weather, you can enjoy the space.
Kimball Starr designs homes that pair with beautiful gardens throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and Lake Tahoe. Contact her today for a socially-distanced in-person or remote consultation!