Floor Fashions: A Foundation for Vintage Design

By Annette Callari, ASID; CMG

kitchen_225Vintage design, in every way possible, is a hot commodity right now—and the momentum is growing. My daughter will be getting married this Fall and from the very start she wanted an elegant, rustic, vintage wedding. Those adjectives may sound like an oxymoron, but they really do work together. Picture the backdrop of a charming, rustic barn–and in the foreground, linen-draped tables dressed with burlap runners and colorful silk ribbons. Each long table, set on a carpet of lush grass, will sparkle with crystal goblets and champagne flutes, elegant vintage china, and dozens of colorful bouquets. Chandeliers suspended from ancient oak trees add the final elegant touch.

living_roomNow that you’ve got a vivid picture in your mind of how a wedding interprets vintage, let’s translate vintage to the home. What does it mean, how do you accomplish it, and how do floor coverings complete the picture?

Here are just a few bullet points that will guide you in the right direction if elegant vintage is your interior design choice:

1. Use a rich mixture of textures and finishes with opposite characteristics (ex: burlap with lace, wood against metal, stone floors covered with silky area rugs)

2. Select elegant pastel colors, or accents of bright “punch” colors against soft neutrals

3. Mix visual “weights” of materials used in a room. (ex: silk or sheer draperies with natural wood floors or beamed ceilings)

4. Use vintage fabric patterns mixed with sleek contemporary fabrics (Toile designs, Laura Ashley, Schumacher, or Brunswig and Fils vintage collection fabrics)

5. Choose your particular vintage era: 1940’s, 50’s, 60’s, or even 1970’s period furnishings.

bedroomTo hone in on floor coverings, there is an expert in vintage wood floors right here in Southern California. The Vintage Wood Floor Company can work with you to accomplish exactly the vintage foundation you are looking for. This company searches the world for floors with a history. The names of their collections pretty much define the “chapters” of their wood floor story: The American Barn collection, The European Estates Collection, The Vintner’s Collection, and The Rare Finds Collection. This Costa Mesa, CA based company has a romantic interpretation of their unique products that I found on their website:

“…Worn by the wind, tempered by time, our woods might come from a 200-year-old barn in Kentucky or even father afield. At the Vintage Wood Floor Company, we search the world for reclaimed woods with the kind of character that can only come from years of use (or, in some cases, years of neglect). If it looks to us like it can handle another hundred years or so of wear, we go to work creating floors, ceiling beams, wall paneling, and counter tops that not only speak to your sophistication, but tell a story of their own…”

nursery_225That description certainly weaves an aura of romance and intrigue, wouldn’t you agree? Your wood floor may just have a remarkable story behind it—a provenance rooted in history. Vintagewoodfloors.com is your point of origin. Explore and enjoy.

Art Inspired Carpet Tile Wins Gold

By Annette Callari, Allied ASID; IIDA; CMG

Charcoal_46-138_Pepper_Version2_Perspective_300Commercial grade carpet has exceeded expectations as to design innovation.  Actually, they had no choice—the world of architects and designers not only expect innovation, but demand it.  The “been there”, “done that” styles of a decade ago weren’t going to satisfy

A & D with simple color palette updates.  And as a result, manufacturers researched, surveyed, collaborated, and truly “listened” to what A & D needed.

Think about the types of projects that commercial designers and architects are executing:  high-end hospitality, world-class corporate buildings, edgy retail environments, state-of-the-art medical facilities—these are just a few examples of what is expected of them.  Carpet is not only one of the major tools of the designer’s trade, it is a staple. Carpet is the foundation upon which an entire design is built.  So when a manufacturer like Milliken introduced a library of patterns called “Art Media”, the A & D community was more than ready to embrace it.

Art-Media_Op-Art_Warp_SelectiveFocus_300Modern art techniques and media were the inspiration for this collection of carpet tile patterns.  Drip painting, action painting, charcoal drawings, chalk and graphite art, and “Op Art” were all interpreted into soft surfaces.  According to Milliken’s marketing division, “…The floor plane becomes a canvas for larger-than-life installation art…”    Consider the floor a giant canvas with no size limitations.  That’s exactly what Milliken intended when they conceived this new collection.

I am always on the search for something truly unique, and I found it in “Art Media”.  By the way, I’m not the only one who thought it was exceptional.  This year, the collection won the “Best of Neocon” Gold award (in the carpet tile category).  Well done Milliken.