By Amory Hofmann. Home Decoration. Published at Tuesday, May 07th, 2019 - 08:02:09 AM.
Chicago designer Rebecca Pogonitz, founder of GOGO Design Group, credits the Scandinavian appreciation for a simpler, more soul-nourishing lifestyle—often known by the Danish term ”hygge” (pronounced hue-guh)—for this move toward coziness and comfort. “My clients crave time for self-care and family,” Pogonitz says. “Many had this growing up but now find their family members arent together at home even for dinner. They want to recreate that human connection.” Now, this desire is finding its way into home design by way of spaces that are sometimes called “pajama lounges,” a cutesy name that suggests a room in which to gather before bedroom, literally in PJs or sweats. This space is usually closer to bedrooms, often upstairs, as an intermediate area for intimate evening hours after dinner and before heading off to sleep. “Its a place that has a totally different identity from a downstairs living or family room,” says Stephan Burke, a real estate salesperson with Cassis Burke Collection at Brown Harris Stevens in Miami.
Spindler is active in local preservationist and historic groups. But perhaps the most important connection she can make is with a capable contractor. While the exteriors of many San Francisco Victorians are protected by historic preservation ordinances, the interiors are generally not. Electricians and plumbers often suggest that the only way to update a Victorian is to tear out original walls. But Spindler knows it can be less expensive to drop pipes and other infrastructure straight through the homes balloon framing or to wire electrical lines through an attic than to tear out valuable, original plaster work. “The crazy things that people do to these poor old houses. The walls never look the same,” Spindler laments. She compares the work of contractors who skillfully retain old Victorian walls to that of arthroscopic surgeons, who use fiber optic technology and video cameras to avoid open surgery: “Its better for the patient in the long run.” While Spindler is glad to see more young people interested in historic homes, she acknowledges her niche is limited by the number of Victorians in her market, estimated to be around 7,500 single-family homes. “Its not a lot, and we lose more every year,” she says. “Theyre not making any more of them, obviously.”
Soffits are helpful when used to conceal mechanical systems and fill space in rooms where cabinets dont go all the way to the ceiling. But they also often present a choppy look and they can easily date a room, since most homes today use other methods to conceal HVAC and the like. Some homeowners may want to remove them if they serve no functional purpose. “A professional can poke a hole to see,” says Bob Zuber of Morgante Wilson Architects. “It may only be a few thousand dollars to remove them and finish off the top of the cabinets.”
Because of its typically small square footage, the powder room is hands down the most popular room to paper, Segal says. For dining rooms, he suggests going with a dressy paper to make it look special. Choose a calming pattern and color for a master bedroom, where the goal is to unwind and sleep. Los Angeles–based designer John McClain says the decision to use it in any space depends on both the room and pattern. “You love a jungle print but you may not want to lie in your bed and stare at it,” he says. The room where wallpaper seems least desirable is the kitchen, particularly when its filled with attractive cabinetry, appliances, and tile. Its also used less in bathrooms due to potential damage from steam and water, though certain vinyl and commercial papers may hold up.
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