PACKING FOR PARIS

So while LA is drowning in rain, I decided to make a quick getaway for some French festivities with designer friends! I’m heading to Paris for the Paris Deco Off 2019 as well as Maison & Objet!

You might be wondering if my organizational gene makes its way into my personal life - the answer is yes!! Packing for the trip, I’ve been inspired by the latest street style trends in my instagram feed, as well as the fully packed itinerary for the trip. See what looks are coming along for the ride in my suitcase below, and stay tuned for all the fashionable #ootd posts in Paris - one of my favorite cities in the world!

Shop my suitcase below:


FRIDAY

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SATURDAY

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SUNDAY

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MONDAY

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SHOP TALK

New year, new shopping destinations? LA is ripe with new retail right now, with even more covetable shops coming as the year continues. Here are a few new and upcoming stores I have on my radar (get those credit cards ready!). Whether you’re shopping for some fashionable new accessories or for closet inspiration, these design destinations are sure to have what you’re looking for!



Dover Street Market

The ultimate shopping destination landed in LA late last year, further putting the City of Angels on the fashion map. Known as one of the most cutting-edge retail concepts in the world (other locations include Beijing, London, New York, Singapore, and Tokyo), DSM consists of store-in-store installations, unique collaborations, exclusive capsule collections, and art exhibitions making it a truly unique experience. This is the go-to shopping spot for hard-to-find fashion and items like Comme des Garçons tees, Chanel and Repossi jewelry, Gucci gear and limited-edition sneakers.

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Heidi Merrick

Running through Jan. 31, 2019, Heidi Merrick, who has a flagship in Downtown LA, is debuting her first pop-up store in Malibu. The collection of cool, California pieces offers classic lines and versatile silhouettes. Her feminine designs transcend time...and freeways! The pop-up also includes art installations from Dewey Nicks and Mona Kuhn, and black surfboards shaped by her brother, Britt Merrick.

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Everlane

Though an official opening date hasn’t been announced, the popular direct-to-consumer brand for elevated essentials is slated to open on Abbot Kinney sometime this year. Whenever it opens, I’ll be popping in for cozy cashmere sweaters and affordable tees.

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James Veloria

The high-end resale boutique recently returned to LA with a pop-up shop at Opening Ceremony in West Hollywood. The assortment is teeming with tons of designer vintage finds, including Tom Ford-era Gucci and celebrity treasures like Madonna's look from the 1995 VMAs.

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Palisades Village

It’s as if I rubbed a genie lamp, wished for all my favorite brands to come together in one walkable destination and they appeared! That’s how I feel about Palisades Village, which recently opened in Los Angeles’ Pacific Palisades neighborhood. Stores include A.L.C., Alo Yoga, Anine Bing, Cuyana, Fleur du Mal, Jennifer Meyer, Rachel Zoe, Towne by Elyse Walker, Vince, and Zimmerman, among others. I mean, does it get any better than that?! I anticipate many Saturday shopping trips here this year.

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The Webster

It’s not slated to open until 2020 (sigh), but I’m counting down the days until Miami’s luxe multi-brand fashion store opens at the Beverly Center, which has undergone quite the transformation. From The Row to Loewe, Maison Margiela to Maison Michel, The Webster is always at the forefront of fashion, and I can’t wait to see what the LA flagship has to offer.  

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TOP TRENDS FOR 2019

As we say “goodbye” to 2018, I’m reflecting on some of the best (and worst) trends that trickled into our wardrobes and homes. The past year offered some serious design highlights (hello, cheetah and check prints for days!) along with some lowlights (looking at you “dad” sneakers). Overall, there was plenty to celebrate in the design space and I’m looking forward to seeing what 2019 has to offer. I think we’ll continue to see the pendulum swing away from dramatic minimalism towards playful patterns, mixed materials, bold colors and maximalism. Here are five of my favorite New Year design trends.


Under the Sea

This past year, we got a glimpse of how the sea is making a splash in our style with the puka shell phenomenon. From anklets to earrings and embellishments to accent pieces, both mainstream and luxury brands adopted the aquatic trend. And, the fad is predicted to continue, only being further amplified by the Pantone Color Institute naming Living Coral the “Color of the Year.” A color that represents “playful expression” and our “innate need for optimism,” Living Coral is a “coral hue with a golden undertone.” There are a multitude of ways to bring the pink-red shade into the home: those who want to dive in head first can opt for a striking rug or statement accent chair (both great ways to add color to a closet), while those who prefer to just dip their toe in can achieve the trend with a charming vase or functional wall shelf. Either way, I “sea” this trend as a fun way to add a playful pop!

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Inject your space with some playful aquatic accessories.

Inject your space with some playful aquatic accessories.

Cozy up to living coral with a colorful accent chair!

Cozy up to living coral with a colorful accent chair!

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if you’re loving the color, don’t shy away from a fully saturated look! carrying the color throughout makes for a more modern, monochromatic look!

if you’re loving the color, don’t shy away from a fully saturated look! carrying the color throughout makes for a more modern, monochromatic look!


Shhh! Secret Storage Solutions

I’ve long been a proponent of having concealed elements in closets if square footage permits. We’ve put scarf racks in pocket doors, hidden hampers in drawers, and created a space for ironing boards to fold up. So, I’m thrilled that hidden storage solutions are expected to be popular in 2019. This trend is actually quite timeless and easy to achieve. A few of my favorite secret storage solutions are placing drawer dividers in the dresser to help organize folded garments, adding acrylic trays to drawers to hide accessories, and incorporating belt and tie racks to streamline access. Don’t worry, your secret is safe with me!

a concealed dottling safe room is disguised behind architectural paneling.

a concealed dottling safe room is disguised behind architectural paneling.

jewelry and other valuables are kept tidy and protected in fully lined and lockable drawers.

jewelry and other valuables are kept tidy and protected in fully lined and lockable drawers.

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Matte Black is the New Black

We’ve really seen it all when it comes to fixture finishes -- pewter, copper, brass, you name it. In 2019, we can expect metal fixtures to take a back seat allowing matte black to take center stage as the favorite finish. Equally edgy and elegant, matte black balances modern, timeless and industrial sensibilities while offering a fresh way to punctuate a space. Though often considered less versatile than metallic finishes, matte black can work as well with a crisp white space as it can with a muted pastel or vibrant-hued one.  Beyond the bathroom and kitchen, matte black elements -- from floating shelves to hang knobs to mirrors -- are sleek additions to a closet and vanity. In fact, testing out matte black in the closet is a great ways to decide if it’s worth investing in more costly decor like the kitchen faucet.

the “so black” birkin just goes to show this trend is being carried through every part of the design world! from fashion to home furnishings, it’s a clean, understated option that works with any style of home.

the “so black” birkin just goes to show this trend is being carried through every part of the design world! from fashion to home furnishings, it’s a clean, understated option that works with any style of home.

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whether you lean more traditional or scandinavian-chic, there’s a matte black option for everyone.

whether you lean more traditional or scandinavian-chic, there’s a matte black option for everyone.

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The Future is Bright

Statement light fixtures are predicted to illuminate spaces throughout the home in 2019. I recently shared some of my favorite closet lighting options, many of which will work well in the New Year and beyond. Boho styles like rattan chandeliers are sure to be a fashionable go-to for dining and living areas, while opulent crystal fixtures and geometric pendants will continue shining as closets’ pièce de résistance in many cases.

crystal chandeliers and pendants will always have a place in the home, and are the perfect way to elevate a glamorous dressing room.

crystal chandeliers and pendants will always have a place in the home, and are the perfect way to elevate a glamorous dressing room.

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sculptural pendants in mixed metals help to tie together any space, and help to instantly create visual interest!

sculptural pendants in mixed metals help to tie together any space, and help to instantly create visual interest!


If These Walls Could Talk

Mark my words: bold wallpaper will be exceptionally striking next year. From fearless florals to vibrant watercolors to animated animals, wallpaper is going to be huge. I’ve incorporated daring wallpaper in past projects like in Whitney Port’s closet, in which we lined one wall with the iconic Martinique banana leaf wallpaper found at the Beverly Hills Hotel. It’s a whimsical way to personalize a space and be a little playful, so a closet is the perfect place to do just that!

a creative way to tie together a design - put the pattern on the ceiling! This makes for a more boutique experience in the closet, and is a playful way to add a little personality to your space.

a creative way to tie together a design - put the pattern on the ceiling! This makes for a more boutique experience in the closet, and is a playful way to add a little personality to your space.

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LA CLOSET DESIGN X TANIA SARIN

If you’ve been following along on IG, you’ll know we teamed up with fashion influencer and content creator, Tania Sarin, to make all her closet dreams come true! With a moody aesthetic that’s all her own, and a super chic sense of style, Tania’s own personality served up plenty of style inspo for the space. Looking to showcase some of her most current pieces, Tania wanted a space where she could still entertain, shoot looks, and merchandise some of her favorite accessories. The added curve ball in creating this space - it also needed to serve as a bedroom for when guests are in town or friends need a place to crash!

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A first of its kind, we teamed up with AllModern to create this convertible closet/bedroom with an elegant sleeper sofa. They were also so generous in helping incorporate lighting, accessories, and other furnishings!

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The styling and accessories help to elevate the room, so it feels like an extension of the other living spaces. Meanwhile, smaller accessories are neatly tucked away in soft suede inserts.

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The space is a modern, almost masculine mix of dark woods and gold-tone finishes. Contrasted with velvety soft fabrics and a plush area rug, the design is the perfect complement to her tailored mix of clothing and accessories.

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A curated collection of bags (all shapes and sizes!) are neatly displayed in a custom wood cabinet. Each cubby is an opportunity to merchandise with her pieces, and less structured totes are hung from hooks.

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We incorporated floating shelves for a boutique-like display of Tania’s favorite boots and shoes! In this way, her accessories become artwork for the space, and immediately inject her personal style.

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The closet came together as the ultimate chic retreat for Tania! She can dress in here, have friends over, and enjoy being in the space! Three of her favorite prints found the perfect home above the sleeper sofa, and help to showcase her signature style in an artful way. Stay tuned for a full feature in the upcoming issue of Angeleno Mag!

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‘TIS THE SEASON FOR WINTER WEARABLES

The holiday season is here, and whatever the weather where you’re traveling, you’re sure to encounter some wintry accessories! I’m often asked for the best ways to store soft and delicate sweaters, among other winter wear. I decided in advance of those new cashmere socks and gloves you’re likely to see in the stocking this year, it’s the perfect chance to put together a few storage solutions that will keep your knits and furs looking their best and winter ready for many years to come!

SCARVES

Whether small silk squares or oversized chunky knits, scarves can be a beast to properly store year-round. As is often the problem with these smaller, less used accessories, you might be tempted to toss them all in a drawer and deal with them again next year! I would argue if you can’t find the perfect one (and we all know the accessories make the outfit), you’ll never wear it! Try instead a partitioned insert that will keep your cozy knits separated by style, or a simple scarf hanger that can accommodate multiple scarves at a time! If you have extra wall space, consider a towel bar or staging rod where you can hang neatly. And, if you’re looking for more of a closet upgrade, you can also incorporate a designated pull-out for all your patterned scarves and pashminas so they’re tucked away nicely, and look beautiful every time you open it up.

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SWEATERS

Who doesn’t love a cozy knit around the holidays (or all year long)?! The trick is protecting them from damage while they’re stored away. Some can hang, (on a special sweater hanger) without fear of stretching, but others need additional protection. If you’re dealing with more delicate duds, consider a leather storage box or an enclosed cabinet. If you’re storing on shelves, I recommend folding and sorting by weight and color!

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HATS

Even Santa needs a place to store his hat 364 days of the year! Depending on the style, you might want to keep them in their original boxes, or nest them together on a shelf! I often opt to store these on the highest shelf of the closet, so no space goes to waste, and you’re not climbing a ladder to access items you need every day. Plus, they can look great displayed around the closet! If you have a larger collection and room to spare, I also love creating a statement hat wall that fills the space with instant personality. You could even do this in a bedroom or hallway.

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GLOVES

Another small accessory that you can never seem to find when you need them! Never leave your gloves in the bottom of a bag, or they’re gone forever. The best way to keep a pair of gloves at the tip of your fingers is to designate a spot in a partitioned insert or tray. Take them out, wear them, and return them to their home where they live for the remainder of the year.

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FURS

Furs (even Faux) are not only an investment accessory, but require an investment of time to maintain. If you want your stoles and coats to look their best for generations to come, the best solution is a designated, temp-controlled cabinet. Smaller accessories should always lay flat, in a soft, lined drawer or shelf to avoid crushing! Luxury pieces require luxury care, and you’ll be happy you did when you can still wear that timeless coat twenty years from now!

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COZY UP YOUR CLOSET

The chill in the morning air here in Los Angeles has me wanting to curl up under my covers. Anyone else? It has me thinking there’s a misnomer that if we’re cozy we’re sacrificing style; but this season’s snug offerings are teeming with fashion-forward elements that can heat up homes and wardrobes, alike. Here are a few ways to winter-fy your life!

Winter Whites

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What’s better than winter whites, really? Oh, how I adore the crisp, clean look of chunky white sweaters, sleek white booties or a chic beret (thanks to Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex for making the historic headwear especially relevant!). White is an equally bright and inviting addition to the home -- whether a neutral throw blanket draped on the sofa or a plush pouf in the closet -- that can effortlessly transition through the seasons.  

ALLSAINTS Vries Dress

Barneys New York Pom-Pom-Embellished Wool Beret

Jenni Kayne Alpaca Basketweave Pillow

World Market Cowhide Pouf

Gianvito Rossi Pointy-Toe 85mm Leather Block-Heel Bootie


Snuggly, Stylish Fabrics

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If you’re going to be bundled, you might as well do it in luxe fabrics that feel as good as they look, right?  Shearling, wool, fur and faux fur are heating up winter fashion finds -- think Max Mara’s Teddy Coat  (THE jacket of the season!) and rabbit fur earmuffs -- and home decor -- from comfy wool chairs to chunky sheekpskin rugs -- allowing you to feel wrapped in warmth...and luxury.  

Anthropologie Wool Losange Chair

Bari Lynn Rabbit Fur Ear Muffs

Max Mara Teddy Bear Icon Coat

Pottery Barn Sheepskin Rug

World Market Blush Mongolian Lamb Fur Throw Pillow

Weather-Proof Prints

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Classic cold-weather prints like Fairisle, houndstooth, tartan and dark florals are trademarks of the season that stand the test of time...and the dropping temps! These enduring winter motifs are found across fashion pieces and home decor: Heritage items like the iconic Burberry Check scarf, which is made at a 200-year-old mill in the Scottish countryside, and Fairisle sweaters -- like this one from LOVESHACKFANCY -- that stem from a traditional knitting technique popularized in the early 1900’s, are classic and chic cold-weather staples. Those wanting a more modern-day motif can opt for dark florals. This wallpaper, which is perfect for a powder room or closet, and this blanket, which adds a punch of flower power, are the ultimate contemporary cozy home additions.

Burberry Classic Check Cashmere Scarf

Ellie Cashman Design Dark Floral Wallpaper

Giuliva Heritage Collection Linda Tie-Waist Tweed Coat

LOVESHACKFANCY Cropped Fairisle Sweater

Preen By Thornton Bregazzi Lace Flower Quilted Eiderdown

NOLA

If you’ve been following along on insta, you’ll know that I just returned from a birthday celebration in the Big Easy! It was the perfect getaway amid the holiday season, and was full of Southern entertainment and hospitality. See below a full guide of some of my favorite spots and the looks I sported around town:


 
@augustasagnelli

@augustasagnelli

Coat: Stella mccartney, bag: dior, dress: chloe, boots: ysl (hair + make-up: @binacalinettehmu, Photographer: @augustasagnelli

Coat: Stella mccartney, bag: dior, dress: chloe, boots: ysl (hair + make-up: @binacalinettehmu, Photographer: @augustasagnelli

@augustasagnelli

@augustasagnelli

 

CAROUSEL BAR - Recently restored to its original glory, the Carousel Bar at the Monteleone is a French Quarter staple! Stop by for a drink and a quick trip back in time!

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PONTCHARTRAIN HOTEL - Another history-filled hospitality staple, the Pontchartrain hotel is full of fun little corners to lounge and indulge in the libations!

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HOTEL PETER AND PAUL - Set in a former church, dating from 1860, this chic spot gives new life to the simple southern styles you expect from New Orleans. Enjoy some contemporary cocktails in the bar/cafe!

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ACE HOTEL - The fresh and fun Ace near Bourbon St features 5 restaurants! You’ll never have to leave the hotel to get a taste of the Big Easy!

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@augustasagnelli

@augustasagnelli

@augustasagnelli

@augustasagnelli

blazer: stella mccartney, top: rag+bone, pants: helmut lang, boots: gucci, bag: louis vuitton, sunglasses: celine

blazer: stella mccartney, top: rag+bone, pants: helmut lang, boots: gucci, bag: louis vuitton, sunglasses: celine

 

MAYPOP - Something you’ll only find in a city this vibrant - “Asian-Southern Fusion”.

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BYWATER - A classic comfort food menu in an interesting, vintage-inspired setting!

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ORPHEUM THEATER - Originally designed in 1918 as a Vaudeville theater, this is the perfect place to see a show and absorb all the culture of New Orleans, from world-class ballet acts to solo instrumentalists.

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SPOTTED CAT MUSIC CLUB - This is one of those places that has seen it all! A self-described “weathered and intimate” jazz bar featuring live local acts!

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Shorts + blazer: balmain, bag: dior, boots: gucci, top: cushnie

Shorts + blazer: balmain, bag: dior, boots: gucci, top: cushnie

@augustasagnelli

@augustasagnelli

 

ASHLEY LONGSHORE STUDIO GALLERY - If you’re looking for a fun place to peruse some art, or want a funky accessory to dress up your space, this is the perfect spot to pick up a piece of New Orleans attitude to take home with you!

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FRENCH QUARTER ANTIQUE SHOPS (VINTAGE CHANEL!) - As a city steeped in trade history, the French Quarter is FULL of fine furnishings and one-of-a-kind antiques. You can spend days browsing everything from home decor to vintage fashions and accessories!

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EFFERVESCENCE - Champagne and small bites - need I say more?

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AUCTION HOUSE MARKET - A fashionable food hall with both Southern and International options!

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@augustasagnelli

@augustasagnelli

@augustasagnelli

@augustasagnelli

poncho: chloe, bag: dior, boots: chloe, pants: helmut lang

poncho: chloe, bag: dior, boots: chloe, pants: helmut lang

 

SALON RESTAURANT by Sucre - This sweet spot knows the meaning of the phrase “treat yourself”. With colorful confections, and elevated decor, there’s something for any foodie or design freak.

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WILLA JEAN - This retro-chic restaurant serves up the one thing you can’t leave the South without — biscuits.

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NOLA MUSEUM OF ART - If you’re feeling like you need to walk off all that fried food, the NOLA museums have their fair share of world-class collections to visit.

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BOTANICAL GARDEN - Any trip to New Orleans wouldn’t be complete without a restful walk through the city’s garden. Stop and smell the flowers in this serene retreat from all the city’s activity!

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STYLISH STOW AWAYS

The holiday travel season is upon us!

This means we’re all once again digging through our hall closets and garage storage to find our favorite carry-on bags… well, not all of us! Some of the most practical specialty closets I’ve been commissioned to design over the years are for stowing away luxury luggage! If you thought it was important to have a place to protect your shoes and handbags, you’ll understand why clients are starting to dedicate space for their suitcases. Traveling for the holidays can be stressful enough; the last thing you want to do when packing for a trip is spend precious time trying uncover a suitcase in a cluttered storage area. And, contrary to what you might think, finding functional ways to store them doesn’t have to require a ton of space. If you can get creative, and dedicate an area the appropriate size for your suitcases, it can make packing a breeze!

Here, I’m going to show you a few of my favorite ways to stow away your precious cargo in style, whether you have a whole room to dedicate, or you’re already using every square inch of space!:

SHOW THEM OFF

What we often forget when trying to store luggage - these trunks and travel bags are MEANT to store things! Therefore, they don’t have to take up extra, unnecessary space. If your closet is already bursting at the seams, consider incorporating your luggage as decor in the space. If you have nice travel accessories, they can be used to keep seasonal items out of sight, and become the focal point of your closet (or any room in the house)!

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USE THE SPACE ABOVE OR BELOW

Often, clients just aren’t making the best use of their existing space! They hesitate to store anything on the top shelf of their closets, for fear of not being able to reach. The same can be said for the space under your hanging clothing - you’re afraid if you store anything here, you’ll forget about it and it will be lost forever! These are both real concerns, but luggage is the exception! Take back that underutilized space by tucking your travel bags away, out of sight, but still within reach. Next time you’re packing, you’ll have everything you need right there in your closet.

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CREATE A LUGGAGE CABINET

Clients often forget that nothing about their closet is set in stone! It might require a few touch-ups, but adding/removing shelves and rods are simple solutions that can exponentially improve the functionality of the space. This is a room where you’re usually starting and ending every day, and it’s worth a little investment to make that experience run smoothly! If you’re storing large suitcases in a basement or separate area of the house, I would recommend a little reorganization, removing a couple of shelves, and designating a space in your closet or dressing room to keep them close!

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CREATE A CUSTOM LUGGAGE CLOSET

This is definitely the way to go, if you have the space to allocate! Whether it’s converting a linen or hall closet, or designating an area of your dressing room, custom suitcase closets are the perfect way to stow your luggage in style! Designed to fit everything from totes to trolley bags, these spaces can incorporate custom lighting, hooks, staging areas, and a place to pack. No more trekking to the corners of your home every time you need to pack a bag!

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LACDx Curated Closet Gifts

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It’s official…I’m in the holiday spirit! Who else is ready to enjoy the plentiful parties, presents and good cheer? As we approach the most wonderful time of the year, I’ve got gift giving on my mind. There are so many fun gift guides out there, but sifting through them can take longer than checking off the nice and naughty lists. So, this year I thought I’d share some ideas straight out of “Closet Design Bible” (which, by the way, makes a stellar stocking stuffer!). The coffee table book is chock full of gift ideas -- from everyday essentials to pretty, decorative pieces -- for your family and friends that won’t break the bank.  I’ve curated a few of my favorite pieces from CB2, WestElm, and the like to implement my ‘Tips’, and divided them into four categories — Not so Basic Black, Brass and White Marble for the Masses, Coming Up Rose (Gold) and Shades of Silver and Gray. There’s sure to be a selection to complement any look! Happy gifting!

Not-so-Basic Black

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We all have that person in our life who believes black is superior to every other color. Fortunately, you don’t have to default to a basic black present. How about this marble tray that can serve as a display for flowers and candles or even a holder for jewelry? The tray is also a chic catchall for your man’s keys and coins. Check out chapter 17 -- “The Man Cave Closet” -- for more guy gift inspiration.  A couple easy closet upgrades that are often overlooked are switching out dresser handles and enhancing a blank wall. These marble handles can easily elevate dresser drawers while this notched marble wall hook can be used to stage outfits on an empty wall. Need an unexpected stocking stuffer? LA Closet Design’s purse pillows are perfect for your handbag-hoarding friends.

Brass and White Marble for the Masses

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Marble and brass used to be the ultimate luxury materials. Today, they are more accessible, meaning there’s plenty to pick from beyond countertops and bathroom fixtures (those aren’t exactly presents that can be wrapped and tied with a perfect bow anyway). A trash can is certainly not a conventional gift, but this glam brass wastecan gives trash a truly luxe look. This clever clothing rack made from industrial pipes is a stylish space-saver and great for showing off special wardrobe pieces. We all know the gal with a lot of fashion goodies, and these glass and brass linen-lined shadow boxes hold keepsakes and accessories while adding style to shelves, dressers and vanities. We created similar built-in glass displays in Khloe Kardashian’s workout closet for her athletic accessories (flip to chapter 16 -- The West Coast Workout Closet” -- for a closer look).

Coming Up Rose (Gold)

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As rose gold continues to reign supreme among home decor hues, the holiday season is an ideal time to gift your rose gold-loving girlfriends with something special.  As someone who knows all too well the importance of good lighting, I think one of the best gifts you can give is this sensor mirror, which combines state-of-the-art tech and a functional design to provide optimal lighting for primping.  Know someone who could use some hanger help to better streamline her closet? These elegant copper hangers add an element of design while also organizing the space. Peep chapter nine -- “The Tailored Dressing Room -- for more on keeping hangers consistent.  I’m also a fan of these antique-inspired wall-mounted shadow boxes that can be used for displaying jewelry or mementos. Meanwhile, these wing bookends are ideal for the bookworm in your life. Don’t they just scream “take a shelfy!?”

Shades of Silver and Gray

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It’s no secret I’m obsessed with gray and anything that falls into the mirrored and acrylic categories. If you’re searching for a gift for a fellow gray fanatic, look no further. For starters, this velvet tufted pouf can work as a seating area in a closet or another room in the home. Know someone who has frequent out of town guests? This acrylic luggage rack with leather straps is as fashionable as it is functional! I also adore these acrylic wall shelves that can be suspended in a closet or elsewhere and used for everything from holding beauty products to displaying art to showcasing succulents. Need a unique, yet practical stocking stuffer? LA Closet Design’s purse hook works on the closet wall or underneath a shelf to keep handbags from hitting the floor. Chapter six -- “The French Manor Closet” -- shows how to hang multiple purses in the same space. They work for scarves, too!  

LET THERE BE LIGHTING!

We’re heading straight into winter, and that sadly means darker days. So, here’s a bright idea: invest in some good closet lighting so you can really see your most prized possessions! While natural light is always ideal, when there’s less daylight, it’s necessary to supplement with alternatives. And, your closet is one area you definitely shouldn't settle for bad fluorescent lighting. So, here are a few options for illuminating your closet:


Recessed -- Recessed lights are nice options for the closet as they create ambient light, dispersing it throughout the space or directing it to highlight a specific item or section. The downside is that overhead lighting may not effectively illuminate every corner of the closet. So, it’s nice to integrate other lighting, like hanging rods, to maximize radiance.  Be sure to select a color temperature bulb between 3000K and 3500K to emit a crisp, white light.

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Chandeliers and Pendants -- When it comes to dressing room lighting, function doesn’t require sacrificing fashion. Not only does a statement fixture like a chic chandelier or polished pendant over an island or ottoman emanate lots of light, it creates a glamorous focal point. The “Hallie” crystal chandelier (Lamps Plus) is the perfect example of a classic crystal chandelier that can elevate any closet, modern or traditional!


Sconces -- While many closets don’t typically have a ton of blank wall space, one way to take advantage of that area if yours does is to add a sconce. It provides additional lighting and adds a captivating design element. Sconces are also one of the more economical ways to enhance your space’s luminosity.

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DECORPAD

DECORPAD

DECORPAD

DECORPAD


Concealed  -- One of the more clever ways to add light sources to your dressing room is through placing them in targeted locations that can amply spotlight a specific area. I love the idea of adding LED lighted hanging rods, uplighting, in-cabinets/drawers and mirrors with a backlit frame. These options tend to be practical, energy-efficient, low-maintenance, inexpensive and effective, yet subtle.

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Q+A: GIULIANA RANCIC

Recently, I got to catch up with one of my all-time favorite clients, and talk all things fashion and beauty at the launch of her new skincare line, Fountain of Truth! Giuliana Rancic represents the modern on-the-go woman, and is the perfect voice to take over the beauty industry with her new, all natural line of skincare products. Not only is her new line going to improve your skin, the packaging itself makes for perfect shelf candy when displayed in your bathroom! I decided to find out more about Giuliana’s mission with Fountain of Truth, and how it fits into her routine.


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How does skincare fit into your daily routine / How do your products streamline this process?

Having a clean skincare routine has always been very important to me, it’s one of the reasons I founded Fountain of Truth. I had a hard time finding what I considered to be a non-toxic skincare line that also treated the appearance of fine lines, discoloration and other skin issues. Therefore, I committed myself to creating my own clean products and sharing them with people of all ages. I think it is necessary for consumers to know exactly what is inside the products they are using. That is why my eco-luxe beauty line is Clean. Beautiful. Truthful.

What role did packaging play in the new line of products?

I feel like the packaging can tell a lot about a brand and I wanted my skincare line to look simple, natural and elegant as well as being able to be a beautiful display piece on a vanity. The rose gold hardware really pops against the white bottle and the simple black writing brings it all together. This is one skincare line that really dresses up a bathroom counter. Everyone is loving the packaging!

How do you store/organize your skincare/cosmetic products currently?

I have all six of the Fountain of Truth products on a pretty personalized marble tray displayed on my bathroom counter. I love how nicely the rose gold pops against the white marble. It’s so chic! The rest of my beauty products are neatly organized in bins and placed in drawers that are handy to access while I’m getting ready for the day.

In your next closet, how do you see your vanity / skincare station being incorporated?

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I would do something similar to what I have now, since I love my current set up and find it really easy to apply my skincare and makeup. I would for sure continue with bins, trays, and other tools to keep everything very organized. I find getting rid of clutter in your bathroom and closet and having things organized and neat starts the day off on the right foot.

How does the Fountain of Truth line reflect your own personal routine? Your own style?

The Fountain of Truth collection reflects what I use most in my day to day life. There is an elixir, moisturizer, hand cream, night cream, honey glow mask and a cleansing balm which I believe are the core necessities for a simple yet effective skincare routine. I have been using the Fountain of Truth skincare line for the past year and it has completely transformed my skin in the best way possible. I have less lines from using it and my skin has never been so hydrated and dewy. Every morning, I wash my face with the Take it Off Cleansing Balm and follow that with The Truth Elixir and the Good Day Soufflé. At night, I use the cleansing balm to wash off my makeup and then I love to indulge in the Honey Glow Mask a few days a week followed by The Truth Elixir and lastly I never forget to slather on a thick layer of the Dream Cream Overnight Repair Mask. It is so incredibly hydrating and I wake up with dewy, glowing skin. It’s amazing! I also always have my Youth In Hand cream in my bag and we purposely made it 3 ounces so you can travel with it and not worry about having it in your bag when you go through security at the airport. Love everything about that!


AND we got to talk closets! Giuliana describes the need for a more functional, effective, and beautiful set of skincare products - all the same considerations she’s taking into account thinking about the design of her next closet! If you haven’t seen the last space I designed with her, see the full tour.

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MONSTER MANIA


Halloween is such a fun time of year -- the candy, the costumes, the celebrations. But, this year, I’m embracing the creepy, crawly season with some non-frightful high-fashion! Menacing monsters, blood-curdling bugs, spine-chilling serpents and scary skulls are all part of this season’s spooktacular style. So, here’s some inspiration to get you into the Halloween spirit...no tricks and no costumes required!

Fendi’s monsters have been woven into the house’s collections for seasons. Though they’re more sweet than sinister, they can certainly raise a few hairs. Seen on bags (often, discreetly), tees, shoes and, perhaps most notably, as bag charms and keyrings, Fendi monsters aren’t just critters that hide under our bed.

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FENDI

FENDI

Bugs and serpents are another Halloween horror that have crawled into more everyday fashion. Alexander McQueen brings beetles to life with printed dresses and chunky jewelry, while Gucci’s snake print has slithered onto everything from bomber jackets to totes to sneakers.

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GUCCI

ALEXANDER MCQUEEN

ALEXANDER MCQUEEN

A combination of chilling critters and ultimate chicness, jewelry designer Daniela Villegas's hand crafted, one-of-a-kind pieces draw from nature. Available at Just One Eye, the pieces feature everything from a quail skeleton made of 18-karat rose gold atop a tourmaline gemstone and accented with white diamonds to an 18-karat rose gold beetle medallion necklace embellished with champagne diamonds and multicolor sapphires to an 18-karat spider rose gold necklace adorned with opals which represents luck, abundance and creativity.  

DANIELA VILLEGAS

DANIELA VILLEGAS

DANIELA VILLEGAS

DANIELA VILLEGAS

Spiders and spider web-inspired threads and accessories are slowly creeping into wardrobes. From Alaïa’s cutout booties to Vetements playful Spiderman-print glove-sleeve jersey dress, even to fine jewelry, this trend is a web you might want to get caught in!

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VETEMENTS

ALAIA

ALAIA

PRADA

PRADA

They may be morbid, but skulls in fashion are as timeless as they are terrifying. A signature of Alexander McQueen, the brand has made haunting hollow heads totally chic. Scarves, leather goods and apparel can’t escape the house’s trademark symbol.  360Cashmere also doesn’t shy away from skulls, adorning their cozy, cashmere sweaters with them. And, iconic housewares brand, Fornasetti, reproduces opera sensation, Lina Cavalieri’s face on everyday objects like candles and plates, giving elegant decor surreal style.

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Alexander McQueen X Damien Hirst

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Fornasetti

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Dolce&Gabbana X SMEG

House of Monsters Fridge

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360 Cashmere

These monsters make a modern appearance in the home, and especially the closet! When fashion and funky interiors intersect, you’ll see the same skull patterns and moody materials applied to the interior finishes. What better place to get inspired and assemble the perfect fashion-forward look for that Halloween party (or any day for that matter)?!

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INSERT PHOTOS

DRESS UP YOUR DRAWERS!

We all know the saying “a place for everything, everything in its place”, but what if there isn’t a place for everything?! You open up a deep drawer and spend precious time digging around looking for a matching sock or untangling a knot of necklaces! One of my favorite features in our custom closets are the custom drawer inserts we do for our clients’ various accessories. These are a solution I like to recommend for a wide array of storage needs, and can work in any space! You don’t have to do a total overhaul to make your morning routine a little more enjoyable. Custom inserts can make the most of any closet, cabinet, or piece of furniture! AND with the wide selection of materials available, the inserts can look like they were always there, or you can opt for a bright color that will pop and make you smile every time you open a drawer.

If you see something you can’t live without, or have a custom inquiry, send us an email! info@laclosetdesign.com

HANDBAGS

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What better way to compliment a stunning handbag collection, than with a clutch drwaer?! Don’t let these puppies loose in a drawer to get wrinkled and scratched. Give them the love they deserve with a soft-sided insert that will keep them perfectly preserved and displayed!

What better way to compliment a stunning handbag collection, than with a clutch drwaer?! Don’t let these puppies loose in a drawer to get wrinkled and scratched. Give them the love they deserve with a soft-sided insert that will keep them perfectly preserved and displayed!

CLOTHING / LINENS

socks, underwear, and lingerie are trouble areas in every closet… until you partition your drawers! don’t struggle to find a matching pair ever again! plus, opening a drawer like this first thing in the morning is sure to put you in the right mood to start your day.

socks, underwear, and lingerie are trouble areas in every closet… until you partition your drawers! don’t struggle to find a matching pair ever again! plus, opening a drawer like this first thing in the morning is sure to put you in the right mood to start your day.

the smaller the item, the smaller the space! Custom inserts can be configured to accommodate anything. so no matter the need, everything is sure to fit.

the smaller the item, the smaller the space! Custom inserts can be configured to accommodate anything. so no matter the need, everything is sure to fit.

organize your linens by creating a space for each - separate towels and blankets from sheet sets and pillowcases so you always know where to go.

organize your linens by creating a space for each - separate towels and blankets from sheet sets and pillowcases so you always know where to go.

JEWELRY

give yourself the experience of browsing a luxury jewelry store every time you open your drawer. your glittering gems will always pop against a classic black velvet.

give yourself the experience of browsing a luxury jewelry store every time you open your drawer. your glittering gems will always pop against a classic black velvet.

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if you’re not one to shy away from color, opt for a classic hue that will make you happy every day. it’s a simple way to incorporate color without being distracting, as only you will know it’s there when the drawers are closed!

if you’re not one to shy away from color, opt for a classic hue that will make you happy every day. it’s a simple way to incorporate color without being distracting, as only you will know it’s there when the drawers are closed!

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SUNGLASSES

keep your sunnies from getting scratched! there’s literally nothing worse…

keep your sunnies from getting scratched! there’s literally nothing worse…

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what a treat, to see your selection without having to fumble through cases that all look the same!

what a treat, to see your selection without having to fumble through cases that all look the same!

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MAKE-UP

separate the function by partition, (or drawers, if your collection is large enough)! Here, we separated each drawer by lips, face, and eyes. Then, broke down the organization within each drawer by brand and product type.

separate the function by partition, (or drawers, if your collection is large enough)! Here, we separated each drawer by lips, face, and eyes. Then, broke down the organization within each drawer by brand and product type.

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GADGETS

keep your devices tucked away and fully charged at all times, by installing an insert with an electrical outlet! This is a necessity for any busy professional, and helps you to disconnect when all your devices are in a drawer for the night.

keep your devices tucked away and fully charged at all times, by installing an insert with an electrical outlet! This is a necessity for any busy professional, and helps you to disconnect when all your devices are in a drawer for the night.

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ACCESSORIES

belt cubbies keep your buckles looking new, and everything untangled!

belt cubbies keep your buckles looking new, and everything untangled!

keep a drawer of daily essentials in a closet or piece of furniture near your front door! here, you can keep extra pens, sunnies, paper, and more for easy access at a momen't’s notice on your way out the door.

keep a drawer of daily essentials in a closet or piece of furniture near your front door! here, you can keep extra pens, sunnies, paper, and more for easy access at a momen't’s notice on your way out the door.

curate a display of some of your favorite go-to accessories together in one drawer! here, the client put his favorite pieces in the top drawer, so they were always accessible.

curate a display of some of your favorite go-to accessories together in one drawer! here, the client put his favorite pieces in the top drawer, so they were always accessible.

outfit the drawers of your baby’s changing table so you never again have to shuffle through the mess while your baby is waiting!

outfit the drawers of your baby’s changing table so you never again have to shuffle through the mess while your baby is waiting!

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WEST SIDE COLOR STORY

As designers, inspiration can come in many forms! I often hear people say Fall is their favorite season, and we go out of our way here in SoCal to get a glimpse of the Fall colors before winter strikes. In the spirit of the changing seasons, I decided to break out a few fall colors of my own. Last week, while launching Closet Design Bible in New York, I had a chance to hit some of my favorite haunts, as well as check out a few new spots. The city is full of life and character, and what better way to pay homage to everyone’s favorite season than to draw inspiration from the vivid colors all around. And for anyone who thinks the city is nothing but gray, think again! See the full color story below:

 
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Whether it’s a deep stain in a dream dressing room or a velvety soft shade on your new coat for the season, this rich red tone is just right.

brandy brown

brandy brown

bit of blue

bit of blue

 

This is one color that has no season! It goes by many names — sky blue in summer, ice blue in winter, but I’ll take more than just a Bit of Blue any time of year!


 
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For anyone who thought pink had no place in the fall palette, stop and smell the Café Créme! Somewhere next to nude on the color spectrum, this shade brings Cali cool to the East Coast.

cafe creme

cafe creme

oyster gray

oyster gray

 

Possibly the perfect go-to grey, this humble hue can go uptown modern or downright rustic depending on the application.

 

Don’t let the end of Summer make you blue! But if it does, make sure it’s Deep Teal. This saturated shade just goes to show how cool colors can take a rightful year-round spot in the wardrobe.

deep teal

deep teal


 
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twilight mauve

twilight mauve

 

This isn’t your grandmother’s mauve lipstick! The moody purple Pantone color combines the neutral appeal of grey with a lovely pale lavender that can’t go wrong.

 

No Fall palette would be complete without an earthy orange. Autumn Maple makes us remember why we fell in love with Fall in the first place!

autumn maple

autumn maple

lead crystal

lead crystal

 

Believe it or not, grey has temperatures, too. I’m rounding our the group with a cool grey complement that embodies timeless elegance. Take it home or wear it well, Lead Crystal is a gem of a color.


NYC: A DESIGNERS' GUIDE

This week I’m in the Big Apple for my NYC launch of CLOSET DESIGN BIBLE, and I’m soaking up all the energy and inspiration that inevitably comes with a visit here. I don’t have time to make it to my favorites or to check out all the hot new haunts, but in the spirit of being here, I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite design-driven hotels, restaurants, boutiques and cultural attractions across the city’s top neighborhoods.


Lower East Side

Hotel: The Ludlow Hotel  -- Adorned with factory-style casement windows, red-brick facade  and a lofty industrial vibe, this gritty-meets-chic boutique hotel feels quintessentially NYC.

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Restaurant: Russ & Daughters --  For a classic NYC-style bagel and lox breakfast, this fourth generation, family-owned eatery and shop delivers the ultimate East Coast deli experience with classic counters and wood serving platters.

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Boutique: Moscot -- This 100+ year old eyewear boutique is the go-to spectacle shop for those in-the-know. Blending traditional with a hipster edge, getting glasses and shades here is a true NYC experience only enhanced by the cool, vintage displays.

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Cultural attraction: Tenement Museum -- A National Historic Site, the Museum's two historical tenement buildings were home to an estimated 15,000 people, from over 20 nations, between 1863 and 2011. Tours spotlight apartments that recreate immigrant life in the 19th and 20th centuries, which give you a new appreciation of small spaces, even by today’s standards!

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Midtown

Hotel:  The Whitby -- From the famed Kit Kemp, The Whitby is impeccably designed, fusing contemporary design with traditional elements. And, the location can’t be beat with Central Park, museums and world-class shopping steps away.  

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Restaurant: The Polo Bar -- Even after being open a few years, this is still a hot ticket in town. The food is excellent and the Ralph Lauren decor, inclusive of plaid pillows, equestrian artifacts and mahogany walls, is even better.

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Store: Bergdorf Goodman -- Chloe, Gucci, Prada...oh my! It doesn’t get better than this iconic multi-level store that was established in 1899 and maintains many of its original details.  The stunningly-designed retail institution features everything from gowns to sportswear to home decor. And, the shoe department alone is a sight to be seen!

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Cultural attraction: The Museum of Modern Art is a midtown-must! In addition to featuring incredible art, the MoMa store is the best place to scoop up cool finds and unique gifts.

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SoHo

Hotel: 11 Howard -- This cutting-edge Scandinavian designed hotel has my heart. From the clean lines to the bathroom’s marble countertops and brass hardware to the cozy, perfectly-pink throw blanket, this place is a design-dream! PSA: You can purchase the blanket which makes a great throw!

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Restaurant: Le Coucou -- It’s no coincidence one of my favorite downtown restaurants is located in 11 Howard. Though grand and glamorous, this lavish, candle-lit French eatery feels totally intimate.  

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Boutique: The Apartment by The Line -- SoHo is dotted with incredible shopping, but one of my must-visits is this unique concept store that you enter through an unsumming door. Head upstairs and find an impeccably designed apartment with every item for sale. Modern rugs, lighting, candles and clothes are styled to a T.

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Cultural attraction: Jeffery Deitch Gallery -- The founder of Deitch Projects, Jeffery is a staple in the art community. I adore his curation of provocative pop-culture pieces that always make a powerful statement and his gallery is always a fun experience.

AI WEIWEI AT DEITCH GALLERY

AI WEIWEI AT DEITCH GALLERY


West Village

Hotel: The Jane -- Originally built as a hotel for sailors with cabin-like rooms, this bohemian boutique hotel transports you back in time, while offering a refreshingly timeless experience.

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Restaurant: Waverly Inn -- This exclusive townhouse-style eatery owned by media mogul Graydon Carter, is the perfect place to enjoy a cozy meal. The low-lighting and lots of little tchotchkes are all part of the homey ambiance.

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Boutique: Aedes Perfumery -- This niche shop stocks the best fragrances in the world. Not only does it smell amazing, the moody, almost gothic space brings together the best small and unknown perfumers from around the globe.

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Cultural attraction: The Whitney Museum -- Not far from the Village, the Whitney has become one of the world's leading museums of 20th-century and contemporary art, exhibiting promising and influential artists. The building itself is rather sterile, but the views from the top are some of the best in the city!

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Williamsberg

Hotel: Williamsburg Hotel -- Nostalgia meets modern at this hip Brooklyn hotel. A mix of design details like architectural fixtures, artwork from locals and custom toile-inspired Flavor Paper wallpaper designed by Mike Diamond of the Beastie Boys, makes for a memorable stay. And, not to mention, the rooms’ floor-to-ceiling 10-foot window views of Brooklyn and Manhattan.

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Restaurant: Lilia -- A visit to NYC wouldn’t be complete without an indulgent Italian feast and this is just the place to do it. The modern, monochromatic space shows a bit of restraint, while still feeling comfortable and intimate. Reservations are tough to get, so pan ahead!

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Boutique: Bird -- This longrunning shopping staple first opened in 1999, pioneering stylish storefronts in Brooklyn. The store makes you feel like you’re enveloped in nature with wood-paneled walls and plenty of plants. In addition to being the first LEED-certified retail store in NYC, this is the place to find of-the-moment-fashion from designers like Isabel Marant and Rachel Comey.    

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Cultural attraction: Brooklyn Botanic Gardens -- Just a short cab, Uber or bike ride away, this beloved Brooklyn attraction is the best place to wander and enjoy the expansive outdoors. With acres of beautiful and unique plants and flowers, the gardens are a reminder that nature is near, even in this urban concrete jungle.

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WILD WILD WEST

They say everything’s bigger in Texas and now spending a few days in the Lone Star State, I can see why. Hair, houses, personalities, and of course, closets are all supersized in this statement-making southern state. I’m in the middle of my launch events for CLOSET DESIGN BIBLE, and we’re making stops in Dallas and Houston this week! I’ve also done a few Texas closet projects and it’s always exhilarating to have an opportunity to design in such grand spaces. Let’s just say gold walls and mirrored islands are just the beginning — in honor of my visit, I thought I’d share some of my favorite over-the-top Texas spaces!

It’s always nice when a client wants to take risks, and do something original! This gold glam closet we designed for one of our TX clients does not disappoint, and just goes to show that they really do it bigger in Texas!

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Another favorite from the Lonestar State, this fabulous 2-story Chanel-inspired closet takes glam to another level (literally)! With a black lacquer finish, checkered marble floor, and monogrammed inlay, this closet really brings the idea of “shopping in your closet” to life!

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To see more of the iconic Champ d’Or Estate in Hickory Creek, TX, visit Elle Decor!



My timing here in Texas couldn’t align better with one of the top fall trends hitting the streets: western wear.  Rodeo-ready threads like denim on denim, buckles, bolos, fringe, turquoise, rhinestones, cowhide and endless iterations of cowboy boots are making a strong statement this season.Isabel Marant, Dsquared, Alberta Ferretti, Veronica Beard, Ralph Lauren and Etro were just a few of the brands that showcased giddy-up garb in their Fall 2018 collections. Whether you’re inspired by the influence of Westworld or the need for the good ol’ all-American aesthetic, it’s time to saddle up in style.

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RHINESTONE COWBOY

DOLCE & GABBANA

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WILDERNESS HAT

DIOR CRUISE 2018

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ROCKSTUD DENIM SHIRT

VALENTINO

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STUDDED PANTS

ISABEL MARANT

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TEXAN LEOPARD

DOLCE & GABBANA

KEEP YOUR STYLE IN CHECK

Fall is in the air! With the first day of autumn just a few days ago and October around the corner, I’m daydreaming about how I’m going to wear my warmest wardrobe pieces. One of the season’s trends I’m most looking forward to incorporating is classic fall fabrics and prints like checks, plaids, houndstooth, tweed and herringbone. These classic prints have long been a staple of handsome home decor as well, and I’m excited that they’re circling back into the closet again! Traditional English interiors and equestrian wear have taught us these prints are conservative, even masculine. But as our homes have evolved, and modern trends have taken hold, checks and plaids have been reinterpreted to add a touch of masculine warmth to any room - and now fashion is following suit (pun intended).

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Fall 2018 runways were a mashup of men’s suiting meets grandma’s garments with designers like Balenciaga, Fendi, Michael Kors, Prada, Saint Laurent, and Versace all embracing the fall fad. Now, the trend has trickled down and we’re seeing it in every form: straight leg pants, relaxed blazers, pencil and pleated skirts, chunky knits, sleek outerwear and even shoes and bags.  

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fendi

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versace

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altuzarra

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michael kors

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louis vuitton

dior

dior

What’s great about this print trend is that it’s timeless, effortless and you probably already own an item (or five) in your closet. So, whether channeling Cher Horowitz and wearing head to toe tartan, taking a page from the men’s playbook with a glen plaid double-breasted coat or iterating a more modern styling of oversized houndstooth, it’s all game.

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Checks and plaids work well in the home, too, and can make it truly feel like the fall season. Try mix and matching prints and textures with throw pillows or reinterpreting a space with a new bench or chair or updating your bedding for a re-imagined sleeping space. If you’re checking into this trend for the long haul, consider a plaid tile pattern, or a statement wallpaper to warm up a room! The possibilities are as limitless as the number of lines on a tartan suit.

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VERSACE ON THE FLOOR

I’ve been really into nostalgic prints and patterns lately. So in honor of the Emmy win for one of my favorite shows this season, The Assassination of Gianni Versace, I want to take a look at one of the iconic designer’s trademark prints! I recently shared my adoration for all things Toile de Jouy,  and now I’m gushing over Greek key, or meander/meandros as it’s sometimes referred. The iconic symbol has been used throughout fashion and home design for decades; but, long before it appeared on dresses and dressers, the decorative border constructed from a continuous line, shaped into a repeated geometric motif, was an emblem found on sculptures, tombs, carvings and buildings from early civilizations.

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In today’s style scene, Versace is the (Greek) keyholder of this timeless print, a trademark iconography for the Italian fashion house. The legacy brand’s Spring 2018 Tribute collection was stunning and immediately caught my attention. The collection honored Donatella’s late brother, Gianni, and pulled from the house’s archives, blending bold, colorful plaids and wild animal prints with classic Versace touches like gilded embellishment and, of course, the meander motif.

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It’s clear the classic symbol has transcended time, cultures, and geography. In fashion, particularly as it relates to Versace’s recent collection, Greek key is one of the most versatile prints out there, working well in every color, as an accent and alongside other patterns.

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In home design, Greek key is also an important aesthetic, adding subtle, yet impactful architectural interest. A rug can create dimension, a dresser may introduce a global sensibility and a lampshade might bring a much-needed pop of color.

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CRAZY RICH ASIANS

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OK, so I know we've all been inundated with the “Crazy Rich Asians” commentary, but I wanted to share a thoughtful analysis with you guys.  As an Asian-American, this film really resonated with me on so many levels (beyond swooning over Henry Golding and style crushing on Gemma Chan). Growing up, there were few, if any, movies where I thought, “wow, she’s beautiful, fabulous and successful, and she looks like me.”  It was a lot of Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan action films and Margaret Cho comedies, all off which spoof Asian culture rather than celebrate, or at least accurately reflect it. Even today, we see shows like “Fresh Off the Boat” depicting Asian immigrants, which inaccurately illustrates the culture, and doesn’t holistically represent the values and realities of Asian-American communities.

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So, in “Crazy Rich Asians,” to witness Asians portrayed as part of the fabric of our society -- funny, beautiful, human -- was refreshing. Seeing my existence acknowledged and earnestly represented was really poignant for me. And, to see Asians drive the narrative and hold lead roles -- two elements that have not previously existed in American cinema -- was powerful and inspiring. While the film did spotlight wealthy Asians, I appreciated how the film crystalized a lot of misconceptions and thoughtfully represented the values that Asian families, particularly those with resources, instill, like being respectful and humble.

The film also serves to underscore the significant spending power of Asians and their impact on high-end design. In fact, a recent Nielsen report found that in “2017, the group's buying power hit $986 billion, about 6.8 percent of the U.S. total. That number is expected to grow to $1.3 trillion by 2022.” Those stats are just a sliver of their global spending power.  

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And, of course the fashion wasn’t bad (hello, Giambattista Valli, Dior, Prabal Gurung, Missoni and Marchesa!).  Asian influence has a long-history of propelling style and luxury, and their dollars often drive the designs we see coming from pervasive brands like Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Prada, etc. These dominant brands often draw on cultural influences and collaborate with world-renowned designers/architects to create experiential shopping experiences that attract Asian buyers. In this way, we have “crazy rich Asians” to thank for a lot of the colors, patterns, and shapes we see on the runway, and, subsequently in retail spaces, interior design, and eventually, the closet!

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Speaking of the closet, I’ve had the privilege of working with incredible Asian clients, including a client who hails from Hong Kong, but moved to LA to attend UCLA (get it, girl!). Her stunning closet and collection of handbags leave little to be desired!

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See the full space here!

I sincerely hope this film continues to initiate an important dialogue and help break down barriers, combat stigmas and stereotypes, and encourage inclusion.

SECRET STORAGE WEAPONS

Closets (conveniently) hold clothes. That we know. But over the years, I’ve worked with clients to turn dressing rooms into so much more than a spot to stockpile garments. From storage to safes to stripper poles, the sky’s the limit when it comes to the fun things you can conceal in a closet.

Let’s start with some of the more obvious items:

Hampers  -- We’ve come a long way from the days of plastic floor hampers. Today, hampers come in all shapes and sizes. And, with functional design, they can easily be concealed in a pull-out cabinet, retracting as if it's not even there. Don’t let dirty duds compromise your dressing room’s mojo!

Hampers -- We’ve come a long way from the days of plastic floor hampers. Today, hampers come in all shapes and sizes. And, with functional design, they can easily be concealed in a pull-out cabinet, retracting as if it's not even there. Don’t let dirty duds compromise your dressing room’s mojo!

PULL-OUT CABINETS  -- IT MAY SEEM LIKE A SIMPLE SOLUTION, BUT A PULL-OUT CABINET CAN BE A CREATIVE WAY TO STORE ANY COLLECTION WITHOUT EATING UP VALUABLE REAL ESTATE IN THE CLOSET!

PULL-OUT CABINETS -- IT MAY SEEM LIKE A SIMPLE SOLUTION, BUT A PULL-OUT CABINET CAN BE A CREATIVE WAY TO STORE ANY COLLECTION WITHOUT EATING UP VALUABLE REAL ESTATE IN THE CLOSET!

Safes  -- Safes in closets aren’t new; but they’ve really evolved in terms OF design and technology (hello, biometric entry). Now, you can store your pricey pieces in stylish, state-of-the-art safes that blend seamlessly into your dressing room. (Courtesy of brown safe)

Safes -- Safes in closets aren’t new; but they’ve really evolved in terms OF design and technology (hello, biometric entry). Now, you can store your pricey pieces in stylish, state-of-the-art safes that blend seamlessly into your dressing room. (Courtesy of brown safe)

Ironing boards  -- Ironing boards are bulky (and, not the most attractive piece of equipment). But, if you have the space, a pull-out ironing board that tucks away is a great option to keep your closet looking  crisp . Besides, where better to iron your garments than in your closet?

Ironing boards -- Ironing boards are bulky (and, not the most attractive piece of equipment). But, if you have the space, a pull-out ironing board that tucks away is a great option to keep your closet looking crisp. Besides, where better to iron your garments than in your closet?


A few of the more innovative items:

Jewelry cabinets  -- I love helping clients finds ways to store jewelry in their closet. Whether a pullout drawer with custom inserts or a standing cabinet with hooks, there are a multitude of creative ways to store and conceal bling beyond the typical box.

Jewelry cabinets -- I love helping clients finds ways to store jewelry in their closet. Whether a pullout drawer with custom inserts or a standing cabinet with hooks, there are a multitude of creative ways to store and conceal bling beyond the typical box.

Washer/dryer  -- Washer/dryer hookups aren’t typically installed in a dressing room, but for those designing a home or closet from the ground up, this can be a great way to keep the space streamlined and the flow of the home  clean.

Washer/dryer -- Washer/dryer hookups aren’t typically installed in a dressing room, but for those designing a home or closet from the ground up, this can be a great way to keep the space streamlined and the flow of the home clean.


Lastly, some of the most inventive:

Stripper pole  -- Yes, you read that correctly. For clients who want to make their closet a little more risqué -- whether a stripper pole or wet bar -- we’ve made it happen. Whatever your fancy (or fantasy!) nothing’s impossible.

Stripper pole -- Yes, you read that correctly. For clients who want to make their closet a little more risqué -- whether a stripper pole or wet bar -- we’ve made it happen. Whatever your fancy (or fantasy!) nothing’s impossible.

Safe room / panic room  -- Whether dodging a tornado, robber or zombie (eeek!), some of today’s most advanced closets offer secret safe rooms. This  Pacific Palisades pad  has a safe room that can double as a seasonal closet. Obsessed!

Safe room / panic room -- Whether dodging a tornado, robber or zombie (eeek!), some of today’s most advanced closets offer secret safe rooms. This Pacific Palisades pad has a safe room that can double as a seasonal closet. Obsessed!