Posts Tagged ‘bed & breakfasts’


Miss me? It’s been far too long!

December 2, 2015

I am so sorry to have not posted anything in months. It hasn’t been for lack of any news, I’ve just been busy juggling design projects and working on formulas for all 100 stock colors into the new PPG products.

I did just manage to post a newsletter today featuring Hunt Slonem’s new 30,000 square foot studio in Brooklyn, thanks to Marc Charbonnet’s photos and Jacqueline Terrebonne’s video interview for Architectural Digest.

If you need a little color therapy, check it out:

Living Well Newsletter

By the beginning of 2016 PPG will be changing out the tinting system for the Lifemaster, Diamond 350 and Fortis products to the VOC-free PPG tinting system, so if you have used these products in the past and need any additional paint, now is the time to order. To take the sting out, these products (if available–depending on your local store’s stock), I am offering a 20% discount. Just input “discontinued LM” into the discount box at checkout for Lifemaster and “discontinued D350” for Diamond 350 (formerly labeled Dulux Ultra). To order online, visit:

I’m anxiously awaiting more photos from Marc Charbonnet of his latest project in Old Brookeville, NY that I’ll be featuring in my next newsletter. He is such a talent and his new “Fierce Whimsey” style is quite colorful!

This weekend, Saint Francisville puts on it’s annual Christmas in the Country weekend, complete with a home tour to benefit the Friends of the Library. Two of my projects, Harmony House and Melody House are on the tour so I’ll be there showing them off and serving Bellinis! If you’re in the area, get a ticket and come by and see me! For tickets: Christmas in the Country Home Tour Tickets


TBT – Revisiting Old Design Projects

July 17, 2014

It’s another Throwback Thursday so I thought I’d share one of my most successful design projects, Shadetree Inn in St. Francisville, LA. I say it’s successful because my daughter’s Dad and former husband Kenwood Kennon no longer has to practice law for a living. He tells everyone he’s in “the romance business”. It also happens to be ranked #1 with 5 stars on Trip Advisor.

It all started back in 1993, shortly after our daughter Alexandra was born, when we decided to turn the upstairs of Shadetree Antiques where Kenwood lived before we were married, into our first B&B suite, The Loft. Within the first year, it was written up in Southern Living Magazine in their article “Eden in Louisiana“.

The Loft already had Adirondack charm with its Louisiana red heart cypress walls & ceiling, so we just added a wet-bar and an outdoor stair & balcony entrance and furnished it with rustic willow furniture.

The Loft already had Adirondack-style charm with its Louisiana red heart cypress walls & ceiling, so we just added a wet-bar and an outdoor stair & balcony entrance and furnished it with rustic willow furniture.

The Loft was booked every weekend, so we decided to turn an unfinished building on the property into what is now the Gardener’s Cottage.


The Gardener’s Cottage is nestled between a wonderful old cypress tree and the Shadetree Garden.

While we were building the Gardener’s Cottage, a friend said “you should turn the whole place into a B&B!” so with a little thought, we realized that to create another suite, all we had to do was close off a couple of doors to the shop, add a wall and wet-bar to close off part of the glassed-in front porch, and voila–The Sun Porch was born! I’m most proud to report that thanks to having a shop filled with furnishings and accessories, we were able to build, renovate, and completely furnish each suite for very little money. The Loft for $5,500, The Gardener’s Cottage, which included new construction of a living room, bathroom and porch, for $25,000 and The Sun Porch for $10,000.

ST SP Bath Web

The Sun Porch bathroom is the original shop bathroom. We just added a jacuzzi for two and had artist Nancy Buras Rothschild paint the walls to feel like you’re outdoors.

At the time, I had recently moved back down to Louisiana from Manhattan and was disillusioned with the field of interior design. I felt it was materialism at its worst (back in the eighties in NYC, mind you). After spending so much time in nature and immersing myself in new age books on color and healing, I focused my energy on creating spaces at Shadetree that would enhance their connection to nature and nurture the energy of love. After all, love is what life is all about, right? The Guest Journals were so profuse with glowing comments about how wonderful the spaces made them feel, that I began to look at being an interior designer with new eyes. I realized that it wasn’t at all about material things, it was all about the energy that you create in a space. “Magical” and “healing”, words used so often in the guests’ comments that my design career was reborn and I created a new brochure for myself with a collage of guest comments on the cover:

"Magical" and "healing" were the two words used throughout the Guest Journals.

“Magical” and “healing” were the two words used throughout the Guest Journals.

So here we are 21 years later and Shadetree not only books weekends in advance, but weekdays are also heavily booked. (To reserve, call Kenwood at 225-635-6116 or email We do get cancellations, so follow Shadetree on Facebook for the latest on cancellations.)

I am finishing up another project that will also be available for rent here in West Feliciana Parish within a few weeks. Named “The Bridge”, I have to say, it, too, will be quite magical! I’ll post photos very soon!

In the meantime, if I can help you create some magic in your spaces, email me!



Harmony House Ready for Guests!

June 17, 2014

So much for good intentions! It’s been two weeks since I set the goal to blog about old design and color projects on Thursdays. Although it’s not a Thursday, I wanted to follow up on my previous post about Harmony House, the house I created the architectural design of  that’s now available for rent as a private B&B retreat (private meaning you get the whole house to yourself!). I was there visiting the new owners yesterday who were putting the finishing touches on it for their first guests due to arrive this Friday, so I snapped a few photos to share.

You enter both houses from a large screened in porch, which many say is their favorite part of the house. I call Harmony House “Mon Soleil on steroids” because we added five feet to the width and eight feet to the length, a much grander staircase and a bay window in the living room.

HH Porch

The spacious screened porch is comfortable year around with its ceiling fans and fireplace.

 The extra width increased the ceiling height in the Living Room from 20′ to 23′ and it includes a kitchen and dining area with a staircase leading to a loft bedroom with two built-in Dutch beds.


The main living area is open onto a kitchen and has another huge fireplace that shares the same chimney as the porch fireplace.

HH Kitchen

The kitchen has all the modern conveniences and a huge island around the stove where everyone likes to gather at parties.

The Master Bedroom opens onto a spacious deck complete with hot tub and outdoor shower:

HH MBRMaster Bedroom walls, ceiling and trim are all painted “Edgewood Green”.

The downstairs Guest Bedroom has two twin-sized Dutch beds and with the added square footage, its size increased considerably from my little 7′ x 10′ guest bedroom, so that this one has a reading nook:

HH GBRWalls and ceiling are painted “Spring Green”. Trim throughout the house is “Edgewood Green”

The most spectacular part of Harmony House is the outdoor areas. I wish I could take credit for these but those kudos go to the previous owners. However, I supplied the willow furniture made by Fred Hunt of Broken Bow, Oklahoma who is now operating his own B&B ( He also made 20 pieces for Michael J. Fox’s Sharon, Connecticut home, thanks to their designer Marc Charbonnet who put together that sale for me!

HH deck

This covered deck is one of several decks.

HH OutdoorThe screened porch leads to an outdoor fire pit and picnic area.

As you might have imagined, this wonderful little oasis is deep in the Louisiana woods and has a 60′  foot bridge with a deck in the middle spanning a 150 foot ravine that leads to another house which is currently being spruced up for guests. Photos and more on “Melody House” soon! For more information on Harmony and Melody House, email Keith Koppens at, Vincent Chatelain at or Pam Randazza at

If you would like your own little sanctuary/retreat, that’s my specialty! I have taken these house plans and re-worked them for two other clients, so email me at


Throwback Thursday: Harmony House

May 22, 2014

For my second Throwback Thursday post, I thought I’d share a local project I’ve been helping with. Back in 1998, I was asked to design a house based on the design of my own home, but bigger. Part of my task was to come up with a plan to market and rent it out as a bed and breakfast.

As luck would have it, the local historical society’s annual Audubon Pilgrimage home tour was scheduled about the same time as the construction completion date, so we came up with the idea to turn “Harmony House” into a decorator showcase house as an added bonus to the tour. We named it “Harmony House” since several designers had to work together due to it’s open floor plan.

The large one-room living, dining, kitchen area has a staircase leading to a loft bedroom upstairs. The designer for downstairs wanted mustard walls and the designer for the loft upstairs wanted red brick walls, but there was no way we could use both colors together as there was nowhere to stop one color and start another. Personally, I thought both colors were too strong for the huge space. To compromise, we created “Terracotta Sand” which worked beautifully with both designers’ fabric choices. (This was before I had my line of Full Spectrum Paints.)


“Terracotta Sand” walls & ceiling with “Edgewood Green” trim, which brings the outdoors in.

Since then, the house was bought by one of the B&B guests and recently sold back to the original owner who plans to rent it out again as a bed and breakfast. He hired local painter Mike Small to repaint everything, using the same colors, but this time the colors have my full spectrum formulas!

Today I got to see once again what a huge difference full spectrum makes in not only brightening up the place, but also in the way the energy shifted. I’ve had countless psychics, channelers and regular folks like you and me rave about the great energy radiating from our paints and this project is a perfect example. Dr. Doreen Virtue in her book, 21 Days to Improve Communicating with Your Angels, says one of the first things you can do to purify your home so that angels will want to come in, is to paint your walls!


Since the beginning of Full Spectrum Paints, I have visualized and prayed that everyone who comes in contact with them is joyful and balanced.

Mike Small, who is doing a fabulous job painting, also gave me a couple of painting tips I’d like to share. He said when painting with an eggshell finish, it’s important to paint “wet on wet”, meaning to start rolling the walls while the paint from cutting in is still wet. This avoids lapping or flashing. He also said he adds a little bit of water to the paint when touching up. Having never used our products, he’s loving both the coverage and application of our products and is using all three finishes from the Diamond 350 and Lifemaster product lines. Locals, Mike can be reached via his cell: 225-245-1269.


The former Harmony House owners used “Terracotta Sand” again in their new home shown here because not only did they like it, but it also happened to blend in perfectly with the already pickled cabinetry! Since the rest of the trim was white and nothing special, we minimized it by painting all walls & trim the same “Terracotta Sand” in an eggshell finish.


Catching Up!

March 27, 2009

Just when I promised myself I would post more often, an entire week has gone by!  I have been working on my Spring newsletter and am anxiously awaiting photos from our featured clients, architects Daniel Dreher & his wife, Bhavna Mistry, of their newly renovated home in New Orleans.  They not only used our paints inside and out, but were the first to use my new “fairy dust” concoction of mica powder and quartz crystal powder in their Master Bedroom suite!  The visual effect is very subtle, but the way it affects the energy of the space is most interesting.  Mica not only creates luminosity, but it also magnetizes or attracts into it denser or limiting energies (heavier energies).  According to the book, Love is in the Earth, it not only has been used to treat insomnia, but it also provides for self-reflection, allowing one to recognize flaws yet remain in a heart space to continue to love despite the flaws, allowing one to recognize that “in each person you see but the reflection of that which you choose to have that person be”.  Quartz crystal is like a receiver and transmitter.  Together with the mica, they receive or pull out discordant or inharmonious energies and the color of the paint transmits its energy back into the space.  So for instance, if you were to use pink in someone’s bedroom, it would pull out any inharmonious or unloving energies and transmit that energy back into the room.  Again, the visual effects are very subtle, as we use cosmetic grade mica; but when a wall painted with paint with our “fairy dust” additive is hit by direct sunlight, it glissens, evoking images of Merlin’s cave! 

On another note, I will be driving my daughter and a friend up to Natchitoches this afternoon, so although things are usually slow on Friday afternoons, I will forward my phones and my former assistant, Teresa, will be able to input paint orders remotely.  By the way, Teresa is the general manager of The Myrtles Plantation, which is considered one of the most haunted houses in America.  It is a B&B with a restaurant on the grounds, and may soon appear in a reality TV series!  While guests come to Shadetree, the B&B where our office is also located, for romance; The Myrtles’ guests come for the ghosts and according to Teresa, they are some interesting folks to say the least!  I’ll keep you posted on the reality show progress!

Oh, and in case you are wondering why Natchitoches?  Alexandra (of “Alexandra Blue” fame), will be attending LSMSA next year, so we’re going up for testing and auditions to determine which classes she’ll be taking.  I’m already on a Yahoo parent’s group which has been most helpful, as this will be her first year away from home and I’m already missing her! 


Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

September 3, 2008

Received word late yesterday that our house is in great shape.  We just have a few trees down on our property, but not any that are as dear as some (like the live oak off the deck).  Thank goodness we left before the storm because I hear both St. Francisville and Baton Rouge look like war zones and everyone there is having a really hard time without power.  Our power is projected to be back on at our office later this week, so we will return as soon as we get word.  Teresa is on standby to get out sample orders as soon as it goes back on.  Power at the house always takes more time since we are a little further out.  But, thank goodness our office is located on the grounds of Shadetree B&B, so we’ll be comfortable staying there. 

Thanks to all of our friends and loyal paint customers who have expressed concern over our situation.  We are very thankful to have so many wonderful people inour lives.  God bless you all!

Our tollfree number seems to be working again:  877-877-7628 and although a bit noisy in the lobby of the Peabody, their internet service is great!  Also, I noticed they received quite a few bad reviews online from previous guests, but our stay and their employees have been fantastic!


Happy Paint!

June 25, 2008

When I started this paint line seven years ago, it was the quintessential cottage industry.  My office was in my upstairs loft and I kept pitchers of paint in my laundry room where I poured all those little 2 oz. jars.  I personally painted all of the sample sets (of course, they were quite small back then) out on my deck.  I kept the gallons lined up on shelves in my hallway which was actually more like an altar, complete with church candles.  I would sit on a stool in front of them and visualize that everyone who came into contact with our paints became joyful and balanced.  

Well, today I still like to work out of my home, but the “official” office is at Shadetree, a wonderful space in the main cottage of Shadetree Inn, the bed & breakfast I helped create 15 years ago.  Now that our palette has grown to over 90 colors, and then there’s all the custom colors we have created, there are just way too many gallons and pitchers of paint to keep in my laundry room.  However, I still keep visualizing and praying that everyone who comes into contact with our paints is joyful and balanced and it is so wonderful to get feedback that it’s working!  Here’s a recent testimonial that’s certainly boosted interest.  As it turns out, unbenownst to me, one of our customers, Terry Sapienza, is on the Washington Post Home Staff.  Every week, they talk about various ways to improve your home.  Here’s a quote from her poston June 12th:

“Last year, I painted the inside of my linen closet with “Cameo” from Ellen Kennon paints. The brand is a “full-spectrum” paint, which is supposed to absorb light and change as the light changes in the room ( The colors are beautiful. It was a little pricey (I think a little over $60 a gallon – don’t tell my husband!), but I loved the color and it was such a small space we didn’t need much, so I splurged. And I’m so happy I did – I love it! It’s soft and light, a whisper of a pink that I feel happy about whenever I open the closet.”

(Of course, our paints are closer to $50 per gallon than $60)  We all know that certain colors promote cheerfulness:  Yellows & oranges to be specific.  But pink isn’t usually thought of as one of the cheerful colors.  It’s comforting and nurturing, and has recently been used in prisons to tamper aggression.  So, I’m thinking, surely my prayers are working! 

So next time you order paint, if you mention you want “Happy Paint”, we’ll give you $5 off per gallon.  I hope you are having a Happy Summer! 

P.S. have you seen our “Photo’s & Reviews” page lately?  We are constantly adding new photos as we get them–which I have to say is mostly from posts on the GardenWeb and HGTV website decorating & color forums. Thank you loyal paint customers who have become my friends!