Sunday, January 27, 2013

Designing a Pied-à-terre in Charlotte, NC

Just recently, a project popped up with a need for quick completion.  You see, a special client’s mother made a visit to our area and it was decided she would stay on indefinitely.  Being that her most of her furnishings didn’t seem to translate to her new space, we needed to address the task of getting things selected and ready for delivery, toot sweet! 

(Or as the French would properly say, “Tout de suite.”) 


The other part of the challenge was that her new home would be in a senior community where she would be able to have the peace of mind regarding day-to-day support.  Now, when we hear the words, “assisted living”, a lot of images may come to mind of an environment leaning a bit more towards an institutional feeling.  There certainly had to be another expression or description to use to add a little ‘joie de vivre’ to the process!


I decided if we referred to her new space as a pied-à-terre,(don’t you just love French phrases?), it might bring a bit more excitement and anticipation as to what her next chapter might be.  In reality, this term usually refers to a secondary or temporary residence.  It literally translates as “foot to ground” and I think in our more transient society, it can aptly be applied.  N'est-ce pas? 

I’ll quickly say there have been lots of improvements in the overall design and amenities for these communities. I also recognize the anxiety that can creep in from not feeling as if one is surrounded by the familiarity of home. There were certain creature comforts to be considered to help her feather her newfound nest and to allay any concerns.


Every room needs a starting point.  Being that our time was limited, and comfort and style were key, we pushed the envelope a little on the sofa budget.  This one was très bienn in so many ways!  It was lovely and we could purchase it off the showroom floor!


The embroidered flat braid, at the base, and the pillows make this more than a simple, blue sofa!

Jordt - Brookdale Home - Double Panels in LR (1024x723) (1024x723)

I did a quick computer rendering with some extra accents, tables, and window treatments, to show how a single window could be expanded with striped, linen panels.  Ssssh!  Don’t tell anyone these are of the ready-to-go type.  I’m a custom treatment fiend, through-and-through, but this wasn’t where we could throw caution to the wind on cost.  I’m flexible enough to know there have to be exceptions to some rules.


Panel Fabric

Jordt Master Bedroom Drapery Hardware

The drapery hardware provided flexibility for mounting in tight spots.  We also won’t have any side, light gaps.

Jordt - Brookdale Home - Living Rm Elevation (1024x724)

Another angle with different windows.

Jordt Entry Accents Concept Page

A great find on the showroom floor.  The price had been dropped to make way for a future shipment.  When you’re designing within budgets and swift, time parameters, you have to let go of some specific design “have-to-have’s” but a designer can still pull together a cohesive and beautiful design, if given the creative license.

Jordt - Brookdale Home - MBR Bedding

Her existing adjustable bed and headboard will be softened with a nest of sumptuous, affordable bed covers and pillows.  We’ll mix it up a little to make it her own.

Jordt Master Bedroom Lamp

Master bedroom lamp.  Ordered online.

Brookdale Retirement Pied-a-terre

You may have noticed how I kept the colors flowing through the three main areas.  While there may be some variances in shading, they prevent the eye from being jolted from color separations and it will allow her jewel box interiors to appear a bit larger.  I don’t know of any woman who wouldn’t appreciate that!

2013-01-26 16.36.46

The next step will be to find a few unique items for finishing touches.  A visit to one of our local vendor malls netted this lovely spice rack.  It will be placed on a wall, between a pair of windows at the dining table.  I loved the contrast of textures and it will be a wonderful conversation piece!

2013-01-23 10.38.30

Being that we were presented with mandatory gold-tone walls and a mocha-colored carpet, I think we’ll have created a sweet retreat where her visitors will be exclaiming “ooo-la-la” as they stop by for a visit.

For now, I’ll bid you adieu and . . .

All My Best

PS - If you’re daunted by the task of creating personalized, interior spaces, I’d love to hear from you!  You’ll have great options available.

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Drop me a line to find out more about my design services. Will you be ready for your project to be completed by spring?  Time to book that first meeting!

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