October 20, 2010

Green Living: J’aimerais un morceau vert de Paris!

Posted in art, decorating style, Green Interior Design, Houston Intertior Design Blog, Luxury for the home, Uncategorized at 8:15 am by luxuryforthehome

By:  Lauren Ballas – LEED AP

J’adore Paris!  I have been inspired by the city of love as it’s the hot spot for these vertical gardens.  They add artistic detail and eco-friendly intentions to any bland wall in a city.  The art form can make cities healthy, enjoyable and greener places!!!  I will be traveling to Paris, France the week before Christmas this year and can’t wait to keep my eye out for the vertical beauties!

The Musee de Quai Branly in Paris, France...Vertical Garden

On a smaller scale, with living wall art and sculptures you can enjoy the same effect in your own home.  It doubles as an air purifier and artwork!  My travels have inspired me to find different works of “living art” to go with your homes style!

Living Wall Art

Nature through and through!

The attention to detail in this piece is so enticing!  The color is subtle and the texture sooo rich.  Hang in the most popular room of the house so everyone can enjoy!

Living Wall Art

The Forest Floor!

The layers of plants are fun, flirty and fantastic in this living wall art!  It can give your home the forest floor effect and add natural color and depth to any kitchen or bathroom wall.

Vertical Moss Sculpture

Mimicking Nature with Sophistication!

I have been living in Sweden and visit the forest quite often.  I go specifically for the fresh air and scenery!  This sculpture has all the elements of a Swedish forest combined.  The forests are something out of a fairytale and so is this piece.

Just one of Sweden's forests!

Yes that’s me…The LEEDing Lady! I am living my own fairytale and enjoying all nature has to offer.

Concrete Moss Bust

When in Rome…

This living sculpture reminds me of my travel to Rome, Italy!  If you love traveling as much as I do, this piece would the perfect “green” addition to your home.


October 15, 2010

In Good Taste – Luxury Eco-Living

Posted in Design inspiration, Green Interior Design, Kitchen design, Luxury interior design at 8:13 am by luxuryforthehome

by Leslie Hassler

One of my most favorite posts this week was Wednesday’s post about Your Style With A Side Of Green.  While I was researching for our newsletter this week, I came across this home as featured in Veranda, the Eco-Manor.  Click here for the article, or here for EcoManor.  Enjoy these highlights –


EcoManor as featured on Veranda.com



EcoManor - Front Parlor as on Veranda.com



EcoManor Lively Living Room as from Veranda.com



EcoManor's princess bedroom as from Veranda.com




EcoManor's clean and fresh kitchen as from Veranda.com



Eco-Manor Veranda as from Veranda.com


Enjoy your home and your weekend.  We will see you on Monday!

October 13, 2010

Living Green: Your Style with a Side of “Green”

Posted in Design Case Study, Green Interior Design, Luxury for the home, Uncategorized at 9:07 am by luxuryforthehome

By: Lauren Ballas – LEED AP

A green home isn’t a mud hut with a chimney in the middle and it certainly doesn’t have to be the sterile type of modern design that we are seeing everywhere.  I am going to show you 3 case studies of LEED residences that don’t require you to compromise your style.  These studies should give you a taste of what a “green” home should entail!

#1 Rosewood Hills – Columbia, South Carolina  

Affordable homes that come in your style!

We all ask the question…will I be able to afford a green home?  This project is just one of many that focus on affordable LEED for Homes housing!  Pricing starts in the $170’s.  The developers included efficient irrigation, use of low VOC products, dual flush toilets, and high efficiency windows.  Even better, they integrated a program that educates the homeowners on how to operate and maintain their green homes! 

Rosewood Hills, South Carolina - LEED Gold Residences

Rosewood Hills Interiors, South Carolina – LEED Gold Residences

Above: Just look at these green homes!  At first glance, you wouldn’t believe they were Gold Certified LEED Homes.  The details are simple, yet highlight the ever so timeless colonial style!

#2 REAL Model Home – St. Petersburg, Florida

The builders’ goal was to show that a home of any style could be truly green!

Most of the green features in this home were designed around the climate, which I am sure those of us living in Houston can appreciate!  The design maximizes the natural light while minimizing the passive solar heating and additionally allows for natural ventilation.  The steady airflow reduces the need for air-conditioning and heating!  This strong and efficient home was built to withstand extreme weather and the insulation is even a soy-based formula!

REAL Model Home, Florida - LEED Gold Residence

REAL Model Home Interior, Florida – LEED Gold Residence

 Above: This beauty radiates an open seaside design with a hint of contemporary.  It’s the perfect place to feel safe, enjoy the warmth, and soak in the healthy environment…inside and out.

#3 Villa Trieste – Las Vegas, Nevada

As green as you can be!

Even though Pulte Homes had ambitions for Platinum, they did not have any intentions of giving up the wants and needs of homebuyers!  Technology permits these homes to have added energy efficiency which ends up reducing energy use by 55%.  The recycling program reduces construction waste by 75% and contributes to the affordability of the home!

Villa Trieste, Nevada - LEED Platinum Residence

Villa Trieste Interior View of the Study, Nevada - LEED Platinum Residence

Above: This Mediterranean style home doesn’t scream green at all.  The muted blues and browns give the home an open, cool, and calming effect.  Comfort and taste go hand in hand with greening your life!

The options for “green building” are endless; however, all you have to do is make smart choices and decide on what is important for your home.  Just remember, you don’t have to compromise “your style” in order gain a little “green”!

October 6, 2010

Living Green: 10 Ways To Design Your Utility Room

Posted in Design inspiration, Green Interior Design, Uncategorized at 8:37 am by luxuryforthehome

By Lauren Ballas – LEED AP

Living green doesn’t necessarily mean purchasing and using green products.  You can live green by introducing organized functional design into a new or remodeled home.

After living in Sweden and sharing a laundry room with an entire apartment complex, my frame of mind needed to change.  Here I am forced to do laundry in a 3 hour time period and in a dark basement.  This situation inspired me to draw up a design for a fully functional and luxurious laundry room, one that includes plenty of storage, hanging room and folding space.  Think about how much time we spend on designing our kitchens with the proper workstations!  Why can’t we apply “workstations” to the laundry room and make doing the laundry more enjoyable?

10' x 10' Laundry room, interior design by Luxury For The Home. The photo above highlights the shelving unit (back), ironing board station (left), and the laundry sorting bins (right).

1. The shelving unit goes from floor to ceiling to give you a maximum amount of storage after having folded laundry!  You can also opt to make the shelves removable to transport the folded laundry to the proper rooms!

2. The ironing board is built into the countertop so you never have to get out and put away the ironing board ever again!

3. Try organizing your loads with multiple laundry bins and label them…L – Lights, W – Whites, D – Darks and C – Colors!

Here we focus on the washer/dryer, folding counter (left), hanging space and windows!

4. Consider the energy star washer/dryers that are front loaders and are raised with extra storage.

5. There is never enough space for folding!  Make the folding counter 30” deep instead of the standard 24”.

6. Hanging space is crucial, so make sure you have different levels and heights for all your clothes!  Windows will instantly brighten up the space and make doing laundry more enjoyable.

Make the sink area its own station (corner).

7. Putting in a deep and wide bathroom sink in the laundry room is easier on the eyes than one of those gigantic sink basins!  This adds quality and style to your laundry room.  Locating the sink under a window will brighten your mood every time you go to do laundry!

Last but not least, we look at an air drying section (back), ceiling, fan and clerestory window (top back).

8. You can install a rack directly to the wall for hang drying clothes that you don’t want to shrink or are too delicate to go in the dryer.  There is a drain directly underneath to collect dripping water.

9. Consider adding a recessed ceiling to give you and the room a little more breathing room!  The fan will circulate the air to speed up the air drying process.  Keeping cool is always a plus in the laundry room!

10. The clerestory window gives you the luxury of diffused light and you don’t have to deal with the sun making the laundry room hotter than it needs to be.

Are you ready to fall in love with your home again?  Luxury For The Home will design solutions to make your life easier.  Call 281-701-2461 to schedule your appointment.