Living Well Newsletter
We have been enjoying Spring-time weather down here in Louisiana for quite some time. Flowers are blooming profusely and the beautiful weather is spurring people on to spruce up their homes’ exteriors. I see Nature’s colorful floral influence in the colors our clients are using to paint accents, like doors and shutters.
New Orleans post-Katrina is more cheerful than ever with all of the vibrant colors gracing newly painted exteriors. Husband and wife team, Daniel Dreher and Bhavna Mistry, both architectural designers, just finished painting the exterior of their newly renovated home in the heart of Mid-City near City Park. As you might expect from two very talented designers, theirs was no ordinary exterior color palette! They had me custom mix two new colors, “Chateau Dreher Blue” for the body and “Mistry Red” as window trim which they coordinated with four of our colors: Limone (trim), Citrine (alcoves), Peridot (fencing) and Chelsea Grey (base). When they were ordering, I couldn’t imagine how this was all going to work together, and was blown away by the results!
Bhavna’s sophisticated sense of color and pattern guided her creative response to a broad sampling of our Full Spectrum palette. Color selections including Citrine, Chartreuse, Mustard Seed, Pumpkin Spice, Slate, Tuscan Sun, Milk Chocolate, Parchment, Dusk, Bone, Classic Marc and Limone were used throughout the house. After completing an in-home consultation, albeit after the colors had already been selected and applied in most rooms, Feng Shui consultant Trisha Keel (www.tomorrowskey.com) told them the colors they were considering would be excellent choices to enhance their top-tier “Feng Shui Friendly Design” and that their own "sense" of what was right where was perfectly intuitive.
Daniel has since taken Trisha’s Feng Shui Practitioner Certification Program which combines the ancient Eastern metaphysics of Tibet, China, and the Orient with the most current discoveries of Western scientists’ quantum physics.
Daniel and Bhavna are the first clients to use a new product additive I recently created, “Fairy Dust”, which is a combination of cosmetic grade mica powder and quartz crystal powder. We added this to Limone, the color used in their Master Bedroom suite. The visual effects are very subtle. It is only when direct sunlight hits the wall that you will see subtle sparkles. However, the reason I came up with this idea comes from reading about the energetic properties of minerals and crystals. 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, so it amplifies the properties of the mica. There’s no better place to be forgiving of one’s flaws than in the bedroom, eh?
Master Bedroom walls painted with Limone mixed with our new "Fairy Dust" additive. Ceiling in Citrine.
Kitchen-Family Room Chartreuse Walls and Citrine Ceiling Create an Inviting Space
House Beautiful Magazine has been producing some wonderful new books. I have always tried to keep an extensive library of design books to use as inspiration, however, if I were to recommend one decorating guidebook, it would be House Beautiful’s The Home Book. Whether you are planning a major renovation or making small changes, it is a wonderful reference source with more than 500 stunning color photographs and over 400 pages of insider tips from top industry professionals on everything from proportion and flow to favorite colors. I ordered one on amazon.com after happening upon a book review on The Decorating Diva website highlighting the interview with me on “Creating a Holistic Bedroom”. I was interviewed a couple of years ago, but never heard back, so imagine my surprise and delight to see not only the interview, but also some of our paint colors!
For a more comprehensive color guidebook, HB’s Colors for Your Home contains 300 designers’ favorite colors (taken from HB’s popular monthly column). Our Mushroom and Buttercream are included in the chapter “Soothing Neutrals”. As you might expect from a magazine publisher, both books have several different indexes, for easy reference.
Although color remains the predominant focus of our business, not many people realize that we offer substantial discounts on furnishings, yet still maintain our quality of customer service. As an interior designer, I am able to offer an incredible selection of fabrics and upholstererd furniture, including Dino Mark Anthony, which offers a very custom Couture Collection for the most discerning and The DMA Collection for the more price conscious buyer. As someone who offers exceptional customer service, that’s what I look for when it comes to handling lines of furniture. In my 25+ years of dealing with sales reps, I have never found anyone’s service to match that of Peggie Rhodes; so it stands to reason why I choose to sell (and live with) the lines she has to offer. Peggie has recently started handling a new line of luxury bed and bath linens, Private Quarters (www.privatequarters.net/peggie) that she sells directly to the consumer. I have always said, if I had to leave my home for some reason (like my friends who had to leave because of Hurricane Katrina), I would be sure to take my bedding with me!
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Entry Staircase in Dreher-Mistry Home, showcasing Pumpkin Spice in the Front Foyer with Mustard Seed and Citrine in the Rear Foyer.
Since Trisha Keel is a natural intuitive, I asked her for feedback on our new Fairy Dust additive: “I can say that your paint's formulaic construction to include cosmetic grade mica and quartz crystal powder adds deliciously attractive earth energy. Earth energy is the energy of the female head of household. This energy is all about the full safety, sanctuary, and security of Mother Earth. It is this same energy that supports the energy of the male head of household - metal energy. Every bit of metal that was ever mined came from the breast of the earth. Every man that ever succeeded had the strength of his woman behind him. By adding the crystalline powder your paint effectively slows down any environmental energy that races too fast. It also speeds up any energy that's moving too slow. Finally, it lifts environmental energy that is too heavy. The seemingly magical effect of crystals is well known in feng shui. We are all attracted to them. The smartest man gives his woman crystals - diamonds, rubies, sapphires, emeralds - any old crystal will do. Daniel and Bhavna have filled their entire home with the color and energy of love. Anyone who uses any shade of your paint brings the same love and support to their home.”
Both Daniel and Bhavna have backgrounds conducive to trying such an experiment, as Daniel studied naturopathic medicine as a complement to his architectural endeavors. Bhavna moved to New Orleans from Bombay, India in her youth and grew up in New Orleans where she received her Master’s in Architecture from Tulane University. A fifteen-year career track with Harrah's Entertainment gave her the platform to lead design and construction projects on some of their most glamorous and award-winning casino and resort properties. Both are now continuing their passion for the built environment, working together on projects whenever possible under the guise of Bhavna’s newly formed company, Mistry Collaborative, LLC., while simultaneously launching new ventures, in ideation, design and development focusing on premier hospitality, entertainment and gaming venues. During the weekday, Daniel works with New Orleans-based professional corporation, Manning Architects (www.manningarchitects.com) and pursues creative projects under his own company, Tecreation In Space, LLC. Until their new websites are up and running, you can contact them via email: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
Family Room Close-up of Chartreuse Walls, Citrine Ceiling and Milk Chocolate applied as a unique accent to frame a special limited-edition collection of Mardi Gras Indian images by local photographer Joseph John.
The two small photos on the left show just some of the many colorful and creative touches Daniel and Bhavna put into their home. Kitchen banquette area has Chartreuse side walls, Classic Marc rear wall and Citrine ceilings.
With all of the savvy blogs out there, I was feeling my blog needed some major work. Now that the format I’m using is more user friendly, it is easier to navigate the different categories: Color, Company News, Design, Events, Furnishings, Good Causes, Great Books, Great Music, Great Places, Inspiration, Livin’ Green, Recipes, Spiritual (Age of Aquarius? We're living it!) and Talented People. It also has an RSS feed and a Twitter link! It has been such fun, I find I am writing in it much more often!
Until Summer, I wish you all what's left of a great Spring!
P.S. The transcript of the Creating a Holistic Bedroom can be found in our April 2, 2009 blog entry.
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