Archive for April, 2013

Modern Storage : Dream Closets


“Spring Cleaning”!  is here and once the weather becomes warmer and the days longer we yearn for organization of our space. Winter creates this sense of hibernation, of status quo, and now Spring is here and we feel the need to de- clutter, to organize, re-evaluate and  sometimes, purge. More often this begins with the “purge”, we look around and determine what we need and what we do not need anymore, be it clothes, books, furnishing, objects…basically anything that when we look at it we say “do I need this?” as we whisper to ourselves, maybe again…”do I really need this?”

It begins with a bag or a box and a fierce motivation to be productive, to rid ourselves of unwanted items and inevitably, make room for new ones.  Part of this purge is to create space for that new item, new piece of furniture, new wardrobe, new shoes… We have to be honest and admit that we like new things…

There is also a desire to organize the spaces we do have to create more efficiency… more space…

I think one of the most essential elements to a home is Closets. What “type A” organizational type does not love the words “walk in closet”. It has  a symphony of possibilities. Well appointed closets make us feel grown up and “together”.

When I am designing a new home or doing a renovation I always ask my Client to highlight what is most important to them in their home and a vast majority say ” more storage”, be it closets with built in shelving, a Kitchen island with large pull outs or a Pantry or Cabinet that conceals all their belongings behind a luxurious piece of furniture.

In these images presented   are custom closets in two of my NYC Projects: Both Modern and both offering the client space, ingenuity, function and beauty. I designed specific areas for every item of personal clothing, shoes, accessories. When you enter the closet you are able to find things quickly and store things in their place. It becomes an oasis of calm in comparison to a chaotic world. It can be used as a dressing area along with providing storage. The boxes within the closet that is dark wood, only takes that organizational aesthetic to a new level.  Without being obtrusive, these boxes are elegant and also maintain a sense of privacy and safety for fragile items.

The glass and white  closets are a window to the heart of a truly organized and pristine vision for a closet. Beautiful crisp  shirts lined up with space in between to avoid any wrinkles is really a dream . In the way that the storage boxes conceal, this glass front creates a display case for the belongings inside.  Storage areas are a necessity to an efficient space that works with you, not against you. Having   functional and well designed closets  are a luxury and essential for the maintenance of a well run home.

As a Designer we must tap into the needs of our Clients and Closets are primary in their vision for a  wonderful  space.

For a Complete Visual Tour of ORA studio’s Projects

Click Here to Get Inspired:


Science of Color Part 3: Color and Texture

LR 40 Mercer dinig tableBLOG

When looking to add color in a neutral room a carpet is  an effective tool to introduce . When designing in a minimal style you have the freedom to inject color through objects and artwork and carpets and floor coverings. Not only do carpets add color but they provide a tactile and textural addition to your space. They are seamless and therefore unify spaces, but also can be used to mark off zones, or areas of activity. They permit versatile solutions for our interior design due to the colors, textures, and finishes they come in.

In  Contemporary Design, there can be a more minimal and neutral palette in the furniture selection, lighting and wall coloring. This leaves the door open for Art and Objects that have a bold color and also different texture. In a room that may seem more stark, a carpet is an accessory that adds depth to the space and  also luxury. In the image presented here, this loft style apartment  is  one of our (ORA studio) Projects in Soho NYC. It  has an open floor plan and a neutral palette . I wanted to show some separation of space and also inject color into the room. The carpet underneath the Dining Table is multicolored and  multi patterned and works well with the table and chairs. It is thin enough and has the correct dimensions to create the illusion of a separate Dining Room although there is no separation  by walls. A carpet in a high quality material such as silk or wool also elevates your space and adds a dose of luxury. Not only does it protect the floor but also can serve as an investment much like a piece of Art.

Carpet selection can be daunting especially when examining what color would be best suited. First you have to think about the room and what it will be utilized for. The carpet in this image is for a Dining area with an adjacent Living Area. The table is a light grey and has some pattern and the Dining Chairs are white and chrome. With these colors as the reference point I needed to choose something that was  complementary and also worked well with the other furniture in the space, as it would be next to the Kitchen area and Living area. I also needed to think what colors would be best with this much light in the daytime and evening exposure as well. The patchwork of colors and patterns   give an ethnic feel to this contemporary room. The color palette of the carpet adds depth and also adds life to the Dining table and chairs.

The omnipresent color in this carpet is blue. Blue is the most common color used in interior design – it relaxes and refreshes, it provides for a feeling of safety, clear thinking, diligence and organization. But blue is a cold color, so balance it warm or neutral colors. The grey and white colors of this space are a wonderful counterpart to the carpet and its bluish theme. this also brings the aspect of color to another level.

I want to  talk briefly about Analogous Colors. These are  Colors that are next to each other on the color wheel. Teaming analogous colors like  red and orange, green and blue – creates visual harmony in a room. As you can see in the image, this is exactly why this carpet is successful in this space. The blues and greens of one of the panels works well the  reddish orange of the others. The placement of the more neutral beige and grey toned panels highlights the bolder colored panels, thus creating a focal point.

The impression of a color and the message it conveys is of utmost importance in creating the psychological mood or ambiance that supports the function of a space. In this case it is a Dining room, a focal point of entertaining,  of family and friends meeting and sharing a meal. Every item that is placed in this space takes thought and care. This carpet is a welcome addition and also acts as an artistic piece to enliven and enrich the space.

As we continue on in the series, the Science of Color,  I encourage everyone to think about how color affects you in your home. Where is the space or room that you feel best?

Stay tuned for further exploration into the world of Color!

For a Complete Visual Tour of ORA studio’s Projects

Click Here to Get Inspired: