After winning the Gold for this room from Kansas City Home Design magazine’s Design Excellence Awards, I received a lot of questions so I thought I would answer some of them here!

I always try and bring the outdoors inside as it is important not only for the sake of an interior design but for good health.  Whether it be stone, trees, marble, cotton, silk, shaped woods, metals, etc., such materials promote a hearty closeness with nature and an opposition to the slick materials man has created.  Even Fung Shui encourages using those elements for a balanced life.

I always try to look at a space with new eyes and thought with this room, ‘Who said these bookshelves had to be used for books?’  With that, we ripped them out and brought the outdoors in.

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"BEFORE"

"BEFORE"


The stone fireplace was a work of art hidden behind a wall, ordinary shelves and a dull palette. The unusual solution for a couple that loves the outdoors?


"BEFORE"

"BEFORE"


Bring the outdoors in!  Birch, oak and walnut trees now complement the natural beauty and colors and veins of the rock. The tree’s hand-made leaves colored in coppers, golds and silvers echo the metallic embroidered silk drapes and luxurious custom love seats. Now let it rain or snow outside all it wants.


"AFTER"

"AFTER"


To create your own oasis plan a natural stone wall or floor for rich texture for the eyes and feet.  For placement, let the rock ‘speak’ to the stonemason.  In this room, I used soft cottons and lush silks to contrast the roughness of the stones.  For depth and a directional change, real trees, grasses and twigs add a fascinating interest and color.  If you choose to do the same, just be sure your pieces are free of any critters.  Though Fung Shui encourages live plants in all rooms, I think dried naturals can be beautiful in addition to.

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Bring in a bowl of beautiful rocks, shells, small sticks or pinecones you have collected.   Let your children add to the bowl so they can contribute and increase their observation skills while playing in the sun.


I found this head of Quin Yin while shopping with my friend in Seattle. Carried her home on the plane. She is 45 pounds and just fit under the seat in front of me.

I found this head of Quin Yin while shopping with my friend in Seattle. Carried her home on the plane. She is 45 pounds and just fit under the seat in front of me.


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Detail of the hand-painted leaves.

Detail of the hand-painted leaves.


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