May 27, 2015

Dwell on Design - Social Media 101 Panel - Join Us

So excited to be able to share with you all that I am going to be on a fabulous panel this weekend.
With so many incredible choices of CEU accredited talks taking place during Dwell on Design in Los Angeles this Saturday, I know it will be a hard choice, but you must come to mine!!

Our talk, which I will moderate, will focus on Social Media 101 and highlight both the impact of Houzz as well as Instagram as two key platforms to build your design business and brand identity online.

Let me share a little about the panelists..


You may have seen Roxie around town snapping creative images for her favorite social media platform of the moment, Instagram. As a digital storyteller, she's the social media director for Communication Arts + Design, Inc., PR account supervisor, and a blogger. She's a contributor to the Huffington Post and passionate about telling compelling narratives on a variety of platforms. As Snyder Diamond's social media manager, she produces content for all their social channels including curating digital partnerships with top brands including Miele, Viking, Sub-Zero Wolf, Hansgrohe, KWC, TOTO, among others.

Roxie earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in American Literature and Culture from UCLA and also received a degree in Theatre Arts.


Laurie B. Haefele, Associate A.I.A, ASID, NKBA, has specialized in innovative kitchen and bath design since 1997. She is known for her extreme attention to detail and knowledge of the latest trends. She is also celebrated for her versatility and range of style. Laurie’s dedication to excellence began with a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture from the Pratt Institute and a Master’s degree in architectural history and theory from UCLA.

and last, but certainly not least..


Christian May is the founder of Maison21 Interior Decoration, a Los Angeles based interior design firm specializing in eclectic, modern interiors. The Maison21 design philosophy blends vintage with modern, and color with pattern, to create a chic mix that is unique to every client. Christian believes that while design is serious business, there is no reason it can't be fun as well. His long running design blog, Maison21: Decorative But Not Serious, is dedicated to that credo.

Christian was a featured designer for Legends of La Cienega 2012 and 2014, as well as the Small Space Big Design Hollywood Showhouse 2012, and his work has been featured in numerous publications, including the Los Angeles Times and California Home + Design magazine. He has a line of custom wallpapers with Black Crow Studios, and a line of modern custom cowhides for 27 Ground available through Woven Accents.

and well, I will be keeping them all in line and sharing a little of my own design reach through the use of The Internet! 
Hope to see you all there 

Saturday, May 30
1:00 pm
Room No.: 
Event Type: 
Conference Track: 
CEU Credit: 

Dwell on Design LA (DODLA), May 29-31, 2015 is America's largest modern design event attracting more than 30,000 attendees during Dwell Design Week in Los Angeles, CA (May 21-31, 2015). The event, held at the Los Angeles Convention Center and produced by Dwell magazine, showcases new design ideas, products, and services in conjunction with world-class design speakers, exhibitions, & home tours. More than 400+ national and international exhibitors across all home design categories participate and over 200+ design leaders will present this year. Among Dwell on Design’s industry partners this year are the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID), the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA), the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), the United States Green Building Council (USGBC), and many others.


Jennifer Mehditash

Owner, Lead Designer
Mehditash Design & Dec-a-Porter Blog

Laurie Haefele

Haefele Design, Inc.

christian may

creative director

Roxie Sarhangi

Huffington Post Contributor, Social Media Director/PR Account Supervisor
Communication Arts + Design, Inc.

May 14, 2015

Before and After: Designing a Home in Darien, Connecticut (Part 1)

Three years ago, I was asked by my clients to visit this home with them in Tokeneke (Darien) Connecticut. With a very distinct architecture, and gorgeous sprawling backyard, this was the perfect setting for their growing family once they would decide to leave Manhattan, and move to the suburbs to raise their children with more space and comfort.

Tasked with making this feel more like a young family home, we decided early on that there needed to be plenty of color and patterned papers and textured elements to help achieve that very desired end result. We needed to take into consideration that for now, this was to be their second / weekend home, and for that we needed to be considerate of making as many cosmetic changes that were necessary to make it feel like home, without taking on the bigger more structural renovations such as the Kitchen and Bathrooms which we would tackle once the move to the burbs was a more imminent decision.

I thought it would be fun to share with you some of the Before and After shots of my interior design for this home, to show just how much can be achieved with the direction of an interior designer on your project. 

Beginning in the Kitchen and Great Room, we knew that we wanted to complete a total gut renovation in this space, but for the time being, as the family used the home we decided that simply giving it a fresh coat of paint, including the island and bar area would help tide us over until we were ready to make that final decision.

Not a modern kitchen by any means, I was very happy with this compromise.

The original home owners used this room with a very different layout. However, we wanted to maximize causal seating for great TV viewing and eating all centering around this Great Room.

Again, we wanted to respect the original architecture and maintain some of those elements in the design even if only for the time being, but still allow for the family to make use of the views to the gardens from every window and feel very child friendly.

With an eat in kitchen. living combination.. this room allowed for the family and friends to be together while entertaining throughout both the winter and summer months.

We included the desk area off the kitchen with the same tones of yellow, 
so that all the areas worked together and became one happy room!

From the desk, you would walk through into the Dining Room ..

With some vintage finds, such as the crystal chandelier which was taken from the Waldorf Astoria Hotel before the remodel of this landmark began .. two sconces and my favorite pieces in this room, the pineapple alabaster lamps that we found on a trip to an antique store in Stamford.

The antique rug was a perfect fit from ABC Home and brought in many colors that we needed to soften the existing wood floor which would otherwise be slightly overwhelming and not provide the "beachy" feeling my clients desired.

Not to be forgotten.. the Powder Room is another key area, albeit small, that we had some fun in.

We were able to use the existing wainscoting and fixtures, but by adding this Cole and Son wallpaper, we brought some color and playfulness to this powder room.

I hope you enjoyed Part 1 of this Before & After series of my clients home in Darien, Connecticut.

Please come back in a few days, when I will take you upstairs into the bedrooms to share some more of the fun we had here.

All images: John Gruen - Styling by Raina Kattelson

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