Tag Archives: home design

The Right Rug

imageFinding the right area rug for a lovely Hamptons living room took me a while. A full day of watching as rug after rug after rug was peeled back from the pile and hoping against hope that the next one would be it….. but no….
It needed to be a perfect blend of a specific color palette I was working in,  have a large but soft pattern and a luxurious hand loomed quality.
The end of the day was nearing and I was looking at the bottom of yet another pile when the shop owner went the extra mile to open something that had just come in and… It was perfect! The right colors, a soft pattern and a real quality look and feel. The right rug can be a focal point at times but mostly I am looking for something to enhance a mood without making that bold a statement. Something that is harmonious with the fabrics, wall treatments and art and calmly anchors the room. Something that draws you in but doesn’t hold the eye.
This beautiful rug is from the fine folks at Peykar in Westbury, New York, and the client and I find it to be exactly the right rug.

Summing Up Design and Construction Week

show collage 4So what is Design and Construction Week? Let me sum it up with this little equation: Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) + International Builders’ Show (IBS) = Design and Construction Week.

As a new member of the K+BB Editorial Advisory Board, I made my best effort to walk the entire show, seeking out beauty, function and innovation. I really enjoyed the fabulous booths from some of my industry favorites like Kohler, Wellborn, Robern and Brizo. I also loved the retro Merillat kitchen set up as a mid-century modern photo booth. A show highlight for me was finding the booth featuring the Falmec Mare E.Ion hood that I helped to select as winner of the Kitchen Product of the Year in the K+BB Product Innovator Awards. Another highlight came on Thursday morning. During a light drizzle, I took the bus ride out to The 2014 New American Home. The home was fabulous! Although a two story, indoor water fall may not be practical for most of my market, I was inspired to see some stunning wall treatments, innovative outdoor living spaces, beautiful baths and …you guessed it… an open kitchen plan.

Now for my show favorite, and let me say it is true I might be biased in favor of certain lines. I have long been a fan of Thermador . From the introduction of the pro grand range and refrigeration columns through to the steam ovens, coffee systems, and now the frameless induction cooktop series, I have enjoyed showing my foodie clients all that this line has to offer. My unabashed enthusiasm for this appliance company with the tag line “No Dinner Party Too Large”  has actually led to a position on their design council and I couldn’t be more thrilled!

Thermador + Bosch + Caesarstone + Genius Design of Mick de Giulio = One Killer IBS Booth!

So, yes, happily biased, but all that aside, the IBS booth featuring Thermador, Bosch and Caesarstone, designed by Mick de Giulio was amazing! The simple, clean lines, open flow and textural choices were stunning. I especially loved the use of polished steel in one of the Caesarstone countertops. I really enjoyed watching Chef Kyle create the perfect tuna bite on the new induction cooktop with accessory Teppanyaki pan. I enjoyed eating it, too! Relaxing in the lounge area adjoining the functioning kitchen, I took in the Caesarstone presentation of the “House Beautiful Kitchen of the Year Retrospective”. It reinforced all that I believe about kitchen-centric design. I have always felt that open kitchen plans honor the foodie, the entertainer and most simply, the family.

So I will close with this equation: Open Kitchen + Innovative Design + Friends and Family = Good Living!

Because design is simply everywhere…

design perspective 3

According to Miriam Webster design is a verb, defined as : to plan and make (something) for a specific use or purpose.

Why do I love being an interior designer? Well, because design is simply everywhere, in everything we see, everything we use…

The past few weeks brought a set of ups and downs that had me looking around long and hard for directional cues. Breakdowns in technology hardware and software had me assessing the benefits of purchases to upgrade my tools like never before and really focusing on what design really means in my world.

Early this week, working on the total renovation of a kitchen on suburban Long Island had me assessing the needs of a family with young children, drawing out the space, providing computer aided drawings, and offering algebra advice to the daughter of a client.

Spending time with Andrea, a man from Italy, here in the US to establish a brand presence for an Italian cabinet company had us talking universal design, changing lifestyles, durability of materials, cost factors and the emotion that an interior creates when we are in it. We spent time walking the kitchen showrooms of the A&D looking for innovations and making comparisons in the myriad of products meant to enhance the enjoyment of this all important room.

Attending the “What’s New, What’s Next” event at the NYDC had me viewing the latest and greatest at some of the designer showrooms and I learned from a colleague that “slipper chairs” were actually designed for women in corsets to be able to reach their feet to put on their slippers. Form following function…….

An internet twitter chat yielded a great conversation on the benefits of radiant heat. A company called Warmboard has a newish product that actually performs well with wood flooring. I find this to be truly innovative and a great benefit in the kitchen. I have always loved toasty toes and the ability to design a cabinetry filled room without the encumbrance of baseboard heat. Truly a good design.

A visit from my daughter’s family to celebrate some family milestones had us enjoying the large scale beauty of Oheka Castle, designed for Otto Kahn as a true single family palace before the Great Depression, and appreciating the design of Central Park, with play grounds, ball fields, food carts, restaurants, nature conservancy and much to amuse worked into the 778 acres centrally located in my favorite city. I also thought about someone actually designing that brightly colored sippy cup that kept the spring water from pouring all over my grandson’s jersey.

So where did that leave me? Loving the career I have chosen and excited about my new computer, printer and in particular the new version of software I have chosen that will aid me in presenting my room designs to the clients I serve.

HouzzTV “Small Kitchen Gets Big Kitchen Style” featuring Toni Sabatino

Creating dream kitchens for single family palaces is a good portion of my work. Giving that expansive feel to a smaller footprint is a challenge I enjoy as well. To do that I really need to feel how you function. I want to feel how you live and interact. I want to create a space that has room for kids’ art, pet bowls, Costco runs, phone chargers, PTA calendars and still suits all your entertaining needs. I want to know who is cooking what and when so we have a tv for the morning news or easy access to the outdoor bar-b-q. I want to know if wine storage is important or if a built-in coffee system would really make your kitchen special and keep you from running out to Starbucks in your yellow fuzzy robe! Feeding our family and friends really feeds our soul and makes us happy. I want to help you outfit your kitchen to make the most of home celebrations and everyday living.
So, here I am with Ellen, talking about how we made her kitchen function for her specific needs.
My great appreciation for the work of Rick Spence and deepest thanks to the team at Houzz.com for featuring me in this promotional video.

Inspiration….. when to go custom……..

waterjet custom tile
I love texture and I love shine…….I am looking forward to posting about this kitchen renovation project when it is done but just had to offer a peek of what is in store……
This custom waterjet glass tile created by Ray Bernard of Finishing Touches in Huntington, NY, is just what we needed to put this kitchen over the top. Sure there are all sorts of inlays and herringbones to do in a backsplash but this art deco inspired glass pattern is clean, shiny and truly out of the ordinary….

JUST LOVE!

TONI SABATINO toni@tonisabatinostyle.com 516-972-5455

Glitterati…………

glitterati 1Glitz, Glam, love it all!

broadway light

These piecesJeffrey Alexander hardware will be starring in an apartment renovation on the East Side……..Supported by lush fabrics and carpets……..sure to be a hit.

TONI SABATINO                         toni@tonisab.com

516-972-5455

houzz interior design ideas

A Touch of Whimsy…….

whimsical bath 3
Playful lighting can really add character to a space. “Woodland Pixie” is what comes to mind….just skipping along….spreading magic dust…….

TONI SABATINO                      toni@tonisabatinostyle.com                        516-972-5455

New Traditional….. Toni Sabatino Style

New tradional crystal pendantnew traditional in CT backsplashNew Traditional is my way of giving traditional an up-to-date vibe without trying to hide it’s conventional nature. In this Connecticut kitchen remodel, I gave a nod to time honored crystal lighting by using a pendant that displays the crystals in a new way. We also took that tradtional classic of crackled subway tile and made that new  by adding a contemporary linear strip of stone and glass. The result?

New Traditional that honors the past but brings the present into view….

TONI SABATINO     toni@tonisabatinostyle.com     516-972-5455

houzz interior design ideas


Window Seats

wall unit with window seat 006Window seats have always held a certain charm to me. They remind me of a childhood I would like to have had! There is some unexplained expectation the outside world offers from the comfy safety of that vantage point. Awkward walls, due to doorways and traffic flow that cannot hold a couch or pair of chairs can become a focal point by adding some shelves and creating that cozy extra seating that is perfect for sitting and dreaming on a rainy day…………

TONI SABATINO

toni@tonisabatinostyle.com

516-972-5455

New Year…..same old stuff?

Bookshelf Laurel Hollow family roomI love display. (definition: to present or hold up to view)…and I love to arrange the display…. The actual arrangement makes each one of a group or collection special. Looking through your stuff and invigorating a room by creating  a display area is a great way to celebrate your life and the  New Year. Select the items and then create an array that draws the eye by varying the height and color and make something visually interesting. Artful arrangements of books, photos, momentos of travels, musical instruments, trophies, sculptures, teapots or even antique iron doorstops can be an effective way to give a space an air of intimacy and truly make it personal and inviting. Here is a collection of objects I have had the pleasure to display in a bookshelf I felt would add warmth and declutter a family room mantle. I hope you are inspired to go up to the attic or down to the basement and pull out that stuff you secretly love but have no idea what to do with………

TONI SABATINO          toni@tonisabatinostyle.com           516-972-5455