Posts Tagged ‘Sanctuaries’

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Touching Base

July 22, 2016

Once again, it has been a while since I posted on my blog. However, I recently posted a lengthy newsletter that includes a recent interior design project that I especially enjoyed working on since it was new construction for some color clients I’ve had for over a decade. Now that they both retired and all of their children are grown, they down-sized into a lovely town home in a private development in Baton Rouge. The Living Room shown below opens into both the Dining Area and Kitchen. To see more photos, check out my latest Living Well Newsletter. This project is towards the end.

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It’s now been a couple of years since we’ve been using the new PPG Paints products and I can’t tell you how pleased with the feedback I’m getting. Both the Pure Performance and Manor Hall are premium products. The Pure Performance is VOC-free and covers exceptionally well. However, I’m thrilled to report that we’re now reformulating our really saturated Bright and Magical Gem colors into the Manor Hall product for these usually hard to cover colors. The “Hot Pink!” for instance, almost covers in one coat (in the old Lifemaster, it took 3-4 coats!). Now, we’re talking two coats, tops!

I’m also creating new colors almost weekly and there are some great ones so be sure to check the drop down color lists and if there are colors you don’t recognize that aren’t in your sets, please don’t hesitate to email me to find out more about them. Also, I usually post photos of the samples on my Facebook page. Two new ones you might like are full spectrum versions of Farrow & Ball colors I was asked to make: “Middleton Pink” (we kept the same name for now) and our “Verdant” is their discontinued “Chappell Green”. Both photos of the same sample below show how much the color shifts from green to blue.

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The same “Verdant” sample above and below shifts with the light.

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The samples below are of two new colors. The top one is “Kelly Green” and the bottom two are the same exact color sample (“Castle Piano Rm Green”) but with different lighting. These colors were created for artist Hunt Slonem’s 102,000 sq.ft. Castle in Scranton.

New Greens

Although these colors were initially created for special clients, these paint colors may be ordered by anyone and we’re having one of our “Blog Sales” so be sure to input the word “blog” in the discount box at checkout when you order online.  While you’re there, check out the fabrics and wallpaper that can now be ordered online. There are always discounts, but you need to email me with the quantity so I can give you the secret discount code!

I hope you’re having a swell (not sweltering) Summer!

smEllensig

 

 

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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: http://www.store.ellenkennon.com.

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

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2015 – Color(s) of the Year & House Beautiful’s “Fantasy” Issue

December 9, 2014

I usually post about the “Color of the Year” for each upcoming year long before now as believe it or not, it is by far my most popular post.  My “2010 Color of the Year” post had well over 7,000 visitors on New Year’s Eve alone. However, this year, I really dropped the ball and only just thought about it when I saw Color Consultant Amy Wax’s Facebook post where she created this collage of 2015’s top color picks:

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Color 911’s 2015 Color of the Year collage

Amy also created my favorite color app, “Color 911” which has won numerous awards. Although a great tool for designers and color consultants, it is also especially helpful for the “do-it-yourselfer” who is trying to put together a color palette. It is by far the most comprehensive and accurate app when it comes to color!

Interesting how close Pantone, AkzoNobel and Sherwin Williams are when it comes to their pick for 2015. Of course, if you follow fashion, you could have predicted something similar, no?

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These earthy reds are everywhere in fashion and according to Pantone, will be seen soon on sofas, carpets and other home furnishings.

I was asked recently what color I predict for 2015 and while I have no idea what the new trendy color is, I am focused on a color artist Hunt Slonem mentions in his new book, Where Art Meets Design. He described it as looking like “moss growing on the wall” and said the color was called “Old World European Chartreuse”. When I Googled it, I found this photo and fell in love! It reminds me of what I call “fairy moss” which grows in the woods on my property. When my daughter was a toddler, I would create little fairy houses in it. It’s the epitome of rejuvenation and the magic of nature, yet it has this old world quality about it. Although I have two similar colors, “Chartreuse” and “Jaunty Jen”, this chartreuse has that intriguing combination of gold and green which will be perfect as an accent wall in a new project I am working on with Sidney Coffee called “The Goux Roux”. The Goux Roux (Sidney’s take on “guru”) will be a sacred space that will host a variety of events. Located in an old fire station building on the grounds of Circa 1857 in Baton Rouge, the walls are all old brick except the back plaster wall where we will be installing a giant Buddha fountain.

"Goux Roux Green" will be the new name of this Full Spectrum Color.

“Goux Roux Green” will be the new name of this Full Spectrum Color.

If you haven’t seen the latest issue of House Beautiful magazine, be sure to pick up a copy. The theme is “Fantasy” and it certainly has filled my every fantasy in that it has an eight page article on Hunt’s new book which not only features me as his “color specialist” but has gorgeous photos of many of his colorful rooms painted in my Full Spectrum Paints!

House Beautiful article has an 8 page spread on "Where Art Meets Design" by Hunt Slonem

House Beautiful article has an 8 page spread on “Where Art Meets Design” by Hunt Slonem

To get you into the mood to create magic and fantasy in your sacred spaces, check out House Beautiful Editor Newell Turner’s description of the December/January issue which will be on newsstands through January.

Now, back to the 2015 Color of the Year. What’s your pick?

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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.

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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.

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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 (www.thepastureatwillowsranch.com). 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!

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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 keithkoppens@aol.com, Vincent Chatelain at vincentchatelain@hotmail.com or Pam Randazza at pamran@bellsouth.net.

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 ellen@ellenkennon.com.

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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.)

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“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!

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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.

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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.

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Happy Spring!

April 15, 2014

So nice to finally have some beautiful blue sky days! It’s been a while since my last post because I’ve been following my own advice from my Winter Living Well Newsletter which was to take advantage of the season to “go within“. We have had such a long winter and with all of the arctic storms we’ve all endured, being home bound has certainly had its advantages. We created six new paint colors! Ash, Dove, Smoke, Spanish Moss, Thunder Cloud and Pomegranate. All except Pomegranate are various shades of gray.

In the same newsletter, I also shared tips I’ve used to create the healing energy you feel when spending time in my little sanctuary in the woods. Besides finally being able to open our windows and breathe in some negative ions (i.e. negative ions are invisible molecules that, when we inhale them, produce biochemical reactions that increase levels of seratonin, helping to alleviate depression, relieve stress and boost our energy), you can also use quartz crystals and Himalayan sea salt crystals for ionizing and purifying your environment.

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Although raised Episcopalian, I love all kinds of religious artifacts: Evil Eyes, Angels, Christian crosses, Buddha heads and a collection of Quan Yin statues can be found in little altars all over the house, both indoors and out.

I have little altars everywhere, and you’ll see quite a few Quan Yin figurines and statues. The first time I ever heard the name “Quan Yin”, was from a healer in Mt. Ida, Arkansas. This woman is absolutely amazing! While you lie on a massage table, she pulls negative energy that has been stored in your body from emotional traumas. As she does this, she also tells you what she “sees” which can range from visits from loved ones who have passed on, descriptions of the emotional trauma that caused the body ailment, and in my case, she also relayed advice from Quan Yin. At the time, neither the healer nor I even knew about Quan Yin, who as it turns out is the most revered Goddess of Asia. Known as the equivalent of our Mother Nature and the Goddess of Mercy and Compassion, Quan Yin told me I was always giving, but it was important for me to learn how to receive because she said to receive was to “experience”. I didn’t think much about it until a week later, I received a demo CD, “The Tao of Healing” for our shop. On both the front and back covers, were images and descriptions of Quan Yin! Once I saw the spelling (there are several spellings since she is popular in both Buddhist and Taoist countries), I Googled her and discovered much more about her and realized that the beautiful three foot tall porcelain figurine in my favorite local restaurant was Quan Yin.  After telling the restaurant chef & owner, Philip Plaisance, what I had discovered about Quan Yin, he gave me the beautiful white porcelain figurine of her (in the photo above) as a house warming gift. (As it turned out, he had quite a collection of  Quan Yins but didn’t know why he was so drawn to her.) Since then, I have stumbled upon various Quan Yin statues in my travels and she now plays an important part in creating the healing energy of my home. 

Mantle at Mon Soleil

This photo taken by Anna Addison for an article in Houzz.com shows my most powerful altar which has three Quan Yin statues, in addition to Hunt Slonem’s Archangel Sandalphon painting, amethyst and clear quartz crystal clusters and a Himalayan Sea Salt crystal bowl/light.

Recently, Philip sold my favorite restaurant (The Oxbow) and gave me the wonderful porcelain Quan Yin (seen on the mantle) that I admired every time I dined there. I am so grateful for such an amazing gift!

Speaking of Hunt Slonem, his latest book, Bunnies, is now available on Amazon.com. It certainly deserves all 25 five-star ratings received as of this post.  It is a gorgeous book filled with beautiful images of Hunt’s bunny paintings and a forward by John Berendt (author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil) which is a fascinating description of how Hunt paints a dozen or so bunnies every day as his warm up before creating his larger paintings. Although there are book signings all over the U.S., the book is discounted considerably on Amazon and makes a stunning Easter gift.

Hunt Slonem Bunnies

Some of Hunt Slonem’s bunny paintings featured on our “Coral” wall color that was featured in New York Magazine.

Hunt Slonem Bunny Paintings-Ogden Museum

More Slonem bunny paintings on our “Monteverde” color that was featured in the Ogden Museum Exhibit & CBS Sunday Morning.

If you’d like samples of our new colors, just email us and we’d be delighted to send them out to you: ellen@ellenkennon.com

Happy Spring, Happy Easter & Happy Passover! May all the seeds you planted this past Winter blossom into your fondest dreams!

P.S. About the healer I mentioned. I not only felt light as a feather afterwards, she was able to rid me of a pain I had in my hip for years. It has now been over a year and the pain has never returned! She is very private, but if you are interested in seeing her, email me for her contact info.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Chartreuse, Spice and All Things Nice!

May 29, 2012

I’m thrilled to report that Interior Designer Barry Johnson (of “Barry’s Babylon” color fame) was quoted in the June House Beautiful Magazine, naming our “Chartreuse” as his favorite healing color in the article where designers shared their favorite “life-changing colors” (color #5). Here’s Barry’s quote in HB:

“This color is about birth, growth and nature. It’s the color of new leaves. Chartreuse can be very acid but this is more of a soft yellow-green, Easy to work with. I see it in a Master Bedroom with creamy linens and a touch of coral. It would bring in some life.”

I created my full spectrum version of Akzo Nobel’s “Color of the Year” for 2007 and named it “Chartreuse” because it is the perfect balance between yellow and green. It is actually more traditional than the name suggests and I’ve used it recently on a couple of projects down here to brighten up spaces that had lots of dark wood (floors, beams, etc.).

I recently recommended it to Courtenay Dunk, author of the wildly popular SpiceLines.com Blog, when she sent me this photo of her office, saying that she was having trouble selecting a new wall color because all the samples she tried tended to have a greenish cast. In addition to her divine red & white chaise longue and rug, the only other major color in the space was her turquoise desk chair.

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Courtney’s “before” photo of her office.

As soon as she said “turquoise”, Chartreuse immediately came to mind. I also figured if the light in the room tended towards green, why not enhance it and go with a green.

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All photos are courtesy of Courtenay Dunk, SpiceLines.com.

The turquoise in the recesses of her bookshelves needed some special attention since the shadows affected how the colors we tried (Turquoise, Tiffany Turquoise and Eco Hues’ Peacock Blue) looked. We ended up going with 75% of the Peacock Blue formula, which turned out to be a gorgeous color and perfect with the Chartreuse.

When I first heard from Courtenay, I was immediately intrigued by her website, SpiceLines.com, in her email signature, so I visited it to discover a treasure trove of information about spices, cooking, exotic places and more! Courtenay describes herself as “obsessive cook, style fanatic, avid traveler, reluctant writer, food photographer when the light is right”, and as you can see by her photos, she’s quite the talented photographer!

When we finally talked over the phone, I asked her more about her office. She explained that this is where she writes her spice blog and her grandmother’s chaise longue is where she has tea most afternoons (and sometimes a nap). Books on the shelves are about spices, herbs and cooking. Objects have been collected on her travels.

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All photos courtesy of Courtenay Dunk of SpiceLines.com

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On top of the Tibetan chests there are jars of rare Indian peppercorns Courtenay picked up in Paris. “This is ‘le sniffing bar,’ where I try to keep my sense of smell honed by inhaling the scent of different spices everyday. Right now I’m trying to distinguish between varieties of peppercorns grown in different regions without looking at the labels.” 

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The Buddhist Lohan is a beneficent figure whose presence bestows good fortune. 

Courtenay’s blog is far more than an interesting read. She also helped a coffee grower she met in Veracruz who was about to go out of business, turn his business around! You can read about it in her post, “The Butterfly Effect“.

Here’s what she says about her new Chartreuse office:

“I love your Chartreuse so much that I haven’t hung a single picture on the walls. It’s soft and lively at the same time.  When I’m working in my office, I feel as if I’m bathed in a gorgeous light that relaxes and recharges the spirit.  The modified Tiffany blue is like a little glimpse of the Caribbean.  It’s a more electric hue which really makes the inside of the bookcases pop.  The two colors are fantastic together, especially with the red in the upholstery and the Moroccan rug.”

If you’d like a hand-painted sample of Chartreuse, email me at ellen@ellenkennon.com with your address and we’ll get one right out to you!