Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Design Boards: Material Girls Swank Lighting Decorating Contest

My choice of room for a TV show, to decorate for the Swank Lighting Contest hosted by The Material Girls, is the bedroom of Miss Betty Suarez, from The Ugly Betty show, certainly one of my favorites.
Betty is doing very well at her job, so much so that this year she is moving out of the colorful family home in Queens.
She found the perfect apartment in Manhattan, and she is very excited about decorating. She's pretty busy at her job at Mode, as she got a huge promotion and raise in salary. So she has hired me to decorate her bedroom.
I take my inspiration from all sorts of things, like this beautiful photo of a girl wearing pink and carrying blue hydrangea. I think Betty is very girly and this photo reminds me of the essence of Betty, sweet and colorful.
I start with paint color, choosing something in the green gray family, something soothing but not drab. I will wrap the room in this color, a signature look of mine, painting the walls, ceilings and trim all the same color and finish. New York apartments have old imperfect walls, and wrapping the room with one color in flat paint hides the worst of it.
Next I'll lay down a large rug, or maybe two. I like this cotton stripe rug from potterybarn.com, and could choose the green in an 8 X 10....
...but I think I'll choose the red, to be that surprise element, and red is a color Betty loves as you can see by her signature color glasses.

Color way choices will be inspired by this luxe Hermes throw that Betty got as SWAG from one of Mode's top advertisers. She couldn't afford to buy it even with her new raise, but since she works around beauty and fashion and a luxury market, she has come to understand and appreciate these things without it changing her down to earth values.This is a photo of Betty and her mother. She treasures it, as you all know that Betty's mother died when Betty was a little girl. I think I'll take the cue from this photo for the headboard for Betty's bedroom, and also from the flower print on the accent wall.Maybe this updated version of tufting would be just the thing, I would use pink leather...
...and I would upholster the inside of this headboard . I like this headboard, because it is like an embrace, perhaps the remembered embrace of Betty's mother.These are the night stands I picked out. They're made by an artist, so I can order a custom pair in a larger size. I think the graffiti is just the right nod to Betty being an urban New Yorker.
The Swank lamps being offered in the contest, would certainly be the perfect pair for the night tables. The Murano glass is the perfect foil for the funky graffiti.
Every bed needs a settee placed at the end of it, and I chose this bath tub settee for Betty. It is a reproduction of the one another New York girl had in her apartment...
...Miss Holly Golightly played by the wondrous actress Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast At Tiffanys. Both Betty and America Ferrara the actress, have so much in common.
Betty needs a book nook, and I'll place this one in a window, creating a window seat without having to do any building. New Yorkers change apartments at least six times in their lives, so you don't want to build too many things in, but rather be able to take them with you.
I think Betty will have some fabulous collection like these vintage telephones, since she's on the phone so much of the time! They would look great on her book nook too.
Now we come to fabrics, for bedding and curtains. I choose the textiles from Patricia Guild, because they are beautifully made, and have a wonderful color palette. The floral harks back to the floral on the accent wall in the photo of Betty and her mother.
I am also going to use the floral on white pattern, because it is very girly, in a modern and old fashion way, much like the personality of Betty.
I will use different patterns for each of the curtain panels, just as Tricia Guild suggests. I may sub contract the entire soft goods job to her firm.
Lots of toss pillows will be used, again in Tricia Guild fabrics.
Every woman needs a vanity, and I am going to do something very traditional like this for Betty.

I will use three of these delicious pink lamps from Swank, two for the vanity, and one on Betty's desk. They're made from recycled glass clusters, that look like rock candy to me. Simple and elegant white drum shades will be used.

Swank has another lamp that I would consider for another place in the room, the Peaches and Cream Mod Mushroom. It has a very voluptuous curvy form, much like curvy Betty.
Betty gets a super nice television in her room, on a sleek little TV stand. Maybe she'll watch the instructional DVD with her boyfriend, from the book my husband and I wrote called Gotta Tango.
Her desk will be a one of kind piece. It's something we'll shop for together. This choice isn't written in stone. Design proposals should be fluid works in progress based on the surprises and changes that always come with a project. This lovely desk is Italian from the 1950's via 1stdibs...
...but Betty and I may have lunch and go to the Brooklyn Flea, and search for a desk for her bedroom...
...and maybe look for a chair for her vanity and for her desk. I have a matching pair in mind, which might be hard to find at the flea market....
...so I think I'll get two Camille chairs at Perch, in white patent leather for Betty.
She's going to need a dresser, and what young woman wouldn't want this fabulous mirror dresser? It may not exactly be the hottest trend out of the box, but remember this is Betty's first apartment, and her first real money to spend, so she has some catching up to do with the past years trends. Besides she really really loves this piece, and I believe a client should get the things that they really love regardless of it being in or out. If it's in for you, then it's in.

This is the mirror I chose to hang above the dresser. The pink gives the shell treatment such a fresh and unexpected look. This mirror also references to the pink reclaimed glass lamps from Swank that I used on the vanity. The shells will remind Betty of Puerto Rico and the beaches there, the place where her family is from and a place she loves very much.I also chose some lady saints, some santos for the top of Betty's dresser, like these such as I have on top of my dresser. Again, it's a little nod to her heritage, and her background as a nice Catholic girl. I've chosen saints that are artful and pretty, so living with devotional art happens in a comfortable way. We don't want the girl to feel like she's a nun!Of course we have to do up a great closet for Betty. If Eva Longoria can have one, so can Betty!
But maybe all we'll get is a small New York City closet space, which I'll outfit with a good closet system.
Besides the fabulous table lamps from Swank, we need some overhead lighting, and some wall sconces. This vintage glass flower form Sputnik lamp is one exciting and pretty choice.Or perhaps this sweet white metal chandelier. I might repaint the yellow flowers. I'll have to wait and see what it looks like in the room. The little accent of yellow could work, and if not, there's nothing to it, to paint the flowers in the color of choice.
Speaking of color, these sconces can be ordered in any color, and I think maybe I'd try white, and hang them flanking the pink shell mirror above the dresser.
I'd like to choose some art work for the room too. I like these vintage travel posters from Puerto Rico, again a nod to Betty's heritage. I would frame them in white wood.

Betty gets her bathroom done too. Most New Yorkers just clean up the bathroom they get. Most old style bathrooms have wonderful elements, like white subway tiles, and hexagon shape tile floors. If you're lucky it still has a pedestal sink and a claw foot tub.
If the budget allows, and the fixtures are in bad repair, we might add a new tub like this. Of course, we'll install a fancy chandelier too!
Maybe Betty will like this one with the shade over the chandiler, as it's another hot trend that she would be attracted too. It's like a ballgown you'd see in Mode, but made for a chandelier!
I would add these Hermes beach towels for Betty's bathroom, again something she got from a SWAG bag at Mode.
Credits:
Forgive me if I don't do links. This took up most of my day, and I must move on.
Out of respect for Swank, the client, I purposely did not mention any other lighting company.
I did all my photo research and editing from Google Images, with the help of so many of you other fabulously talented bloggers:
  • Cote de Texas
  • Pigtown
  • Alkemie
  • Strangeclosets
  • Girl Meets Glamour
  • Studio Annetta
  • Decor 8
  • Hue Consulting
  • Material Girls
  • Swank.com
  • PotteryBarn.com
  • Perch.com
  • istdibs

You know how to do it, so go out there and find them!!!!

9 comments:

SwankLighting said...

V.V. this is fabulous. Thanks for posting it. Wow you really put a lot of work into this. So much fun reading it. And please do list the other lamp companies. We are a "seat of the pants" small company doing this as an early retirement thing... so we love decorative lighting whether it's ours or not. We blog about other dealers on 1stdibs and Bond & Bowery. Again... great job
Ed at Swank

Visual Vamp said...

Dear Ed,
You sure know how to make a girl blush (and feel good)!
Your lamps are so wonderful, and it was so easy to design a room around them.
The other fixtures are vintage from 1stdibs, and the sconces, well, I forget right now. The chandy with the shade is from Neiman Marcus.
Anyhoo, I hope you bring me luck and I win a pair of your beautiful lamps!

Cote de Texas said...

just beautiful. Ed is SO sweet!! dont' forget that Patricia Gray won two gorgeous lamps from him. I was with her when she did - we were like, wow!!! unreal! I hope you win. loved it. HI Ed!

Joni

Mary Kay said...

VV - I LOVE it! You are sooooo creative and have such a great sense of fun in your decorating. PS....Today I'm going to order new glasses :) MK

Fifi Flowers said...

WOW... wonderful round up for Betty... sumbit it to the network so we can see it completly done! FUN! LOVE Ugly Betty and what you have done for her!

Visual Vamp said...

MK - you would look great in Betty red glasses!
And Fifi, yes it would make a good story line, Betty getting her own place!
Thanks all for egging me on in my time wasting pursuits :-)

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