Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Guest Post: North Fork Design Co.

Caitlin Flynn and Elyse Parkhurst of

For this month’s guest post, I would like to introduce you to North Fork Design Co. of Boxford, MA. Design principals Caitlin Flynn and Elyse Parkhurst are in the process of re-designing a bath at Glen Magna Farms in Danvers, an early 1800 country estate owned by the Danvers Historical Society which is currently used as a special event venue.

photo courtesy Glen Magna Farms

This grand mansion has entertained many guests over the years, and is in need of a bit of updating, both functionally and aesthetically. It will be completely transformed by a team of design firms this fall, and will be open to the public for a two week Holiday Showhouse starting December 1st through December 15th. Designer Bath was happy to be asked to sponsor this local renovation project, including supplying fixtures for the space that North Fork Design Co. is working on. I asked Caitlin and Elyse to share a sneak peek of the design plans they have put together for their project.

Glen Magna Showhouse Update ...

We are so excited to be collaborating with Designer Bath on the Guest Bathroom of Glen Magna Farms for the Designers Holiday Showhouse!

BEFORE PHOTOS: The Guest Bath at Glen Magna

photos courtesy North Fork Design Co.

At our initial visit to preview the property, we immediately saw the potential that the guest bathroom had. With the beautiful trim molding and clawfoot tub, we began the process of working though our ideas and inspiration to make the space feel clean and refreshed. We could already envision the impact that new flooring would have on the space.

drawing courtesy of North Fork Design Co.

We decided to propose our take on a classic black and white tile floor, using a black hexagon tile and white offset border. With the help of Wm. Smethurst and Son, Inc. in Malden, we will be adding a granite tile “carpet” in front of the sink that has a water jet engraved image of the famous Derby Summer House, which is located on the grounds of the property.

The Derby Summer House // photo credit David Bohl
courtesy of Glen Magna Farms

By taking the classic mosaic styles, reversing the contrast and having the black be the main mosaic color with a white offset border, we will create a fresh perspective on a classic look. 

design proposal courtesy of North Fork Design Co.

The bathroom is also receiving some incredible upgrades with the addition of several new fixtures, which are being generously donated by Designer Bath. It has been a pleasure to work with Jason Sevinor, who has had some wonderful ideas of which fixtures would be most appropriate to make our design vision for the bathroom a reality. The existing sink and toilet are being replaced by the Porcher Sonnet Petite Console, and Calla II Toilet. We are also installing a range of chrome fixtures from the Gatco Charlotte line. The existing shutters on the window are being removed, to make way for a tailored roman shade, which is being made in a classic yet elegant striped fabric. With the addition of beautiful time-­honored bath fixtures and accessories, the space will be reintroduced as a handsome space that feels cohesive. 

image courtesy of Danvers Historical Society

“It’s an honor to be a part of the team in charge of giving new life to the Glen Magna Show House. North Fork Design Co. has great plans to make our plumbing fixtures come to life. We can’t wait to see the finished results!” 

– Jason Sevinor, President Designer Bath  

For Showhouse Gala Event and ticket info, click here.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Back to school for designers ...

“Continuing education strengthens the interior design profession by improving individual attitudes, competencies, knowledge and skills in specific subject areas essential to interior design. Learning experiences focus on the individual and involve activities that encompass thinking, doing and reflection.”

Students are heading back to the classroom this month and that includes interior design professionals. Each year, designers must earn CEUs (Continuing Education Units) in order to comply with ASID (American Society of Interior Designers) membership requirements. As an ASID Industry Partner, we are proud to be able to present learning opportunities to local design professionals. We have come up with a schedule of informative “Lunch + Learn” sessions that take place in our showroom, and have also teamed up with ASID New England to offer presentations off site that both educate and inspire.

Here are a few classes scheduled for this fall ...

Thursday, Sept. 19,  4:00pm – 5:30pm
215 Andover Street, Peabody

Client Magnetism or “Authentic Charisma” has a lot to do with profits and the sustainability of your business. Charisma, one of the strongest forces in human nature, contributes to all things we choose. Guest speaker Angela Merola has worked with thousands of individuals to jump start their charisma. She has created an easy 3-step process to find and strengthen your exclusive “authentic charisma” to attract the clients you really want. Walk away with new tools, enhanced charisma and a new perspective on how to translate that into all forms of communication. Angela will be giving away one hour of free coaching to three members of the audience, so dont miss out on what is sure to be an engaging – and rewarding – afternoon.  .2 CEU credits

This course will be followed by the ASID NE Excellence in Design Awards featuring a slide show of submitted design work by ASID NE members along with an awards presentation by Design New England editor Gail Ravgiala. To register to attend both, click here.

Join us for our “Lunch + Learn” sessions

Check out our Design Seminar page on this blog for information on the following CEU presentations:

Tuesday, Oct. 29th  11:00am – 1:00pm
Designer Bath showroom, Beverly

Why Therapeutic Modalities should
be Integral to Bathroom Design
presented by Bain Ultra

Wednesday, Nov. 6th  11:00am – 1:00pm
Designer Bath showroom, Beverly

Incorporating Universal Design into
the Bathroom presented by ROHL

We have other educational events in the works, for both homeowners and design professionals, so check back often.

Excellence in design is a direct result of informed and thoughtful decisions. We hope that our seminar series becomes a valuable resource in your design tool kit.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Designer Bath’s Summer by the Sea

Secret Cove: Old York’s 24th Annual Decorator Show House
photo credit: George Barker

As the Marketing Director for Designer Bath, I try to come up with engaging ways to highlight the fabulous products that we offer through our Beverly showroom. We have had a lot of fun in the past being a part of interior design shows (Wenham Museum’s North Shore Design Show in 2011 and 2012 and the Junior League of Boston Show House last fall), so this summer we headed north and spent five weeks in Kittery Point, Maine to take part in the 24th Annual Old York Decorator Show House.  Secret Cove seemed like the ideal summer getaway to set up bath vignettes that could tell a more complete design story than a print ad or facebook post. 

Trio Design: Katherine Hawkins, Yvonne Blacker, Rosanne Palazola

I joined forces with two of my designer friends, Katherine Hawkins and Rosanne Palazola, to form Trio Design so that we could tackle a number of spaces as a team. Katherine designed a glamorous teen girl’s bedroom with a mermaid theme (Syrena’s Room) and I designed the en suite bath to complement her space. Rosanne designed the “Poolside Portal a mudroom made modern, stocked with all that one would need to enjoy the home’s stunning salt water pool, and I designed the adjacent Petite Powder Room.” Collaborating with other designers on a show house project was both fun and inspiring! Below are photos from the two baths ... 

{ Syrena’s Bath Before }

{ Syrena’s Bath After }
photo credit: Eric Roth

The challenge for this bath was to change out the existing formica counter and relatively small sink with a larger scale vessel that would still fit within the footprint of the original cabinet base, which happened to be sandwiched between a window and shower wall. Since Katherine has always been a fan of the Moon sink with accompanying glass counter from Vanico-Maronyx that is on display in our showroom, I placed a special order for a custom sized version for Syrena’s Bath.

The pearl shaped sink paired with a shapely faucet from the Brizo RSVP collection (adorned with Swarovski crystal finial) seemed very appropriate for a teen girl who loves the natural beauty of the ocean, along with all that sparkles! The Brizo RSVP collection was featured throughout the bath to complete the look, from mirror to robe hook to towel bar to tissue holder, even the tank lever was swapped out (it makes a huge difference!) Borrowed from our showroom, a three-sconce light fixture from Hudson Valleys Basking Ridge collection illuminated the newly painted room (Farrow + Ball Manor House Gray on the walls, Borrowed Light on the ceiling, and Pitch Blue on the vanity and linen closet shelves). The look of the smooth glass counter top was extended with a glass tile backsplash (thank you Weaver Brothers of Lynnfield).

A delicate sea fan fabric flat fold roman shade at the window, plus a shimmery silver mermaid tail-like shower curtain trimmed in seaweed green (both via Acorn Interior Design Center) were additional custom touches that spoke to both the young girl and the growing teen of Syrenas Room.

Brizo’s RSVP 18 inch towel bar with Swarovski crystal finials
Silver gray Zenith towels from The Turkish Towel Company 
“Summer’s End giclee on canvas by Tracy Finn

Brizo RSVP tank lever and toilet tissue holder
white Zenith face cloths from The Turkish Towel Company
bath accessories from Blue Peacock Home
floral arrangement by Laura Thomson Design
Designer Bath spa robe hangs on Brizo RSVP robe hook
– photo credit Rosanne Palazola – 

linen closet accessorized with bath decor from Blue Peacock Home
Zenith towels and makeup wash cloths from The Turkish Towel Company
– photo credit Eric Roth –

{ Petite Powder Room Before }

The smallest room in the York Show House was the first floor powder room. The original space was functional if not fashionable. My plan was to transform this tall-thin room into a glamorous show-stopper. My muse was the Jason Wu for Brizo collection. After attending the Jason Wu Fall 2013 fashion show in New York last February, I was inspired to create a room that paid homage to his design aesthetic.

Once again, just the counter was replaced (this time with honed absolute black granite from Glenville Surfaces) and a small round sink (hammered copper in brushed nickel from Native Trails) was installed. The Jason Wu matte black SmartTouch technology faucet made a sleek designer statement. The temporary floor covering, a silver snakeskin leather, was my version of a runway-ready high heel, fabulous to look at, but more for show than practicality.

featured from the Jason Wu for Brizo collection:
faucet, soap dish, cabinet knobs, tank lever and trash barrel
Peshtemal towel from The Turkish Towel Company
paint: Dimity and Strong White from Farrow + Ball
accessories from Blue Peacock Home

The inspiration behind the room: Jason Wu Fall 2013 collection

Native Trails hammered recycled copper sink
in brushed nickel with tear-drop drain

bold black stripes paired with lace patterned fabric makes a strong
but feminine impression in the Jason Wu Fall 2013 collection

my signed print from Jason Wu and Brizo was
by Rosanne Palazola for the show

wall shelf and soap pump from the Jason Wu for Brizo collection
silver wrapped soap and owl jewel box via Blue Peacock Home

Integrity lighted mirror by Electric Mirror
– photo credit Eric Roth –

PROBLEM + SOLUTION: Without enough wall space to light a vanity mirror on either side with wall mount sconces (most flattering for the face) a self-lit mirror from Electric Mirror solved the final design challenge for the Petite Powder Room. Many visitors to the show inquired about this unique piece. We have a number of Electric Mirror products on display in our showroom. Stop by and see them! 

I wasn’t the only one showcasing a Designer Bath makeover at the York Show House this summer. Pat Finn of Finn-Martens Design turned a blah Master Bath into a serene spa-like oasis.

Master Bath before with “just for show” red soaking tub (not plumbed!)

{ Master Bath After }
photo credit: Eric Roth

Towel warmer via Designer Bath
Native Trails Vessel Sink

{ Master Bath Vanity Before }

PROBLEM: the sink bowl was positioned on the wrong side of the vanity, under the corner of the window leaving no room for a mirror directly above.

Maestro Sonata vessel sink from Native Trails

SOLUTION: Pat also chose a Native Trails hammered copper sink in brushed nickel, this time a vessel version paired with a tall lav faucet from American Standard. She placed both on the right-hand side of the vanity allowing the mirror to be positioned above the sink instead of off to the side. A neutral – but warm and beautiful – stone counter from Cumar Marble and Granite combined with an amazing metallic leopard print wallpaper (Ocelot from Farrow + Ball) and architectural shutters from New England Shutter Mills made this large master bath finally stand out and get noticed. 

With Pat Finn of Finn-Martens Design

To see more of Pat Finn’Master Bedroom Suite and Porch” visit her website gallery pages.

To see my Trio Design partners colorful and creative York Show House spaces, visit our show house blog page.

For more info on Secret Cove: The 24th Annual York Decorator Show House, visit the Museums of Old York website.

And mark your calendar for the first two weeks in December when Designer Bath will be featured in the Danvers Historical Society Designers Holiday Show House at Glen Magna Farms in Danvers. We just couldn’t resist another show!

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