Homes of Harvest

by Lisa Stewart 14 Nov 2015

Fall brings pumpkin and apple picking, corn mazes, hay rides and harvest festivals. We take time to connect with family, relax, and have some fun. I love heading to the farm in the fall. As a kid we headed to the farm where my mother was born. My sister married a sheep rancher and my kids loved visiting their country cousins. And now my mother-in-law is living on a farm near her childhood home. 

Farmers work hard for the bounty they provide. Hours are long, often sunrise to sunset, and they rarely have a day off. Yet they are some of the most generous, giving and friendly people I’ve known. 

As the days turn cool and the leaves change color remember to support your hard-working local farmer. Give thanks and celebrate the harvest. 

Pictured here I’m enjoying the farm with family, and friends- even furry ones!

Lisa Stewart is an Interior Designer in Raleigh, NC.

Fall 2015 High Point Market - Bold Black Decorating

by Lisa Stewart 17 Oct 2015

Black is finally at the forefront of decorating fashion. I’m talking about a new feminine glamorous vibe with black as a major dramatic character. Not the weird 1990’s all black.

These photos were snapped in High Point during market. Notice the black walls are balanced by other strong elements. The table and headboard stand up to the black on their own. The metallic gold and silver accents help avoid the black hole affect and the dark brown woods add warmth.

My love of black comes from one of the best decorators I know, my mother. She has always said, “Every room should have something black.” I took that to heart years ago and painted feature walls and even ceilings in my home beautiful BLACK! Let me know if black is your next bold move. Beware, professional help is advised. 

Lisa Stewart is an Interior Designer in Raleigh, NC.

Little Girl, Big Dreams

by Lisa Stewart 12 Sep 2015

Designing model homes in China may not be every American child’s dream but for me it feels perfectly normal. Why? For one, as a little girl I adored visiting my dad at his commercial painting and decorating business where I first picked up my love for design. For another, I delighted in our family vacations, where our road trips across the USA and Mexico included destinations with endless fascinating things to explore. After our trips I would often go to our lake at sunset and dream of mysterious faraway lands beyond the horizon.

Road trips are a good metaphor for my life. Sometimes the roads I’ve chosen have led me straight to my dream destination.  Sometimes they’ve detoured to unexpected places, delaying when I arrive where I dreamed but showing me wonderful, unexpected things in the process.

The funny thing is that the dreams of my childhood are always echoed in my life’s journey. I’ve learned that no matter what happens I’ll find my way as long as I proceed with a thankful heart.  Here I'm pictured as a child in the 60's enjoying Chinatown, NY and then as an adult working in Beijing in 2015.  Who would have dreamed I’d be working in China? I did! Follow your dreams and give thanks along your journey.

Lisa Stewart is an Interior Designer in Raleigh, NC.

Historic Design Star Enid Marx (1902-1998)

by Lisa Stewart 15 Aug 2015

She failed at design school yet succeeded during the Second World War, while England was under threat from bombing. She thrived during a time dominated by male designers. She created striking, distinctive and timeless work like this whimsical print with dogs. During her 70 year career, she was an author and illustrator of children’s books, a book designer, a printmaker, a textile designer and a painter.

She brought good design to the common man for the first time by designing seating upholstery for the London Tube. It wore well and looked fresh even after hundreds of thousands of people sat on it as they went about their daily lives. Shown here is one of her fabric designs which remained in use for many years.    

She was a star that shined decade after decade. May we all rise above life’s difficulties and create a better, more beautiful world for those around us!

Lisa Stewart is an Interior Designer in Raleigh, NC.

News & Observer: Red, White & New

by Lisa Stewart 4 Jul 2015

This dramatic dining room catches your eye instantly at the front door. That’s exactly what this Cary couple wanted. Before, this boring beige room was never used. Now, everyone is drawn to this special space because it feels warm and inviting, like a classic steakhouse.

Download the article here.

News & Observer Design Master Class: Bold colors transform a blah room

Lisa Stewart is an Interior Designer in Raleigh, NC.

Preserving Inspirational History in Minneapolis

by Lisa Stewart 13 Jun 2015

As a child in Minneapolis I was awed by a beautiful art deco Manhattan style building across the street from the Swedish Institute on Park Avenue. The six story structure, designed by Martin Lindquist, was state of the art when its construction began in the late Roaring Twenties. Dedicated developers persevered during the great Depression to see the tower completed. Thankfully, the homeowners living there today are committed to preserving the quality, character and history of this unique cooperative complex.

In a recent trip to Minnesota I finally had a chance to tour this architectural wonder. The grand lobby and foyer still feature gleaming terrazzo floors, original walnut paneling, art deco woodcuts and intricately detailed carvings. Along with original light fixtures, the lobby is furnished with beautiful antiques and oriental rugs. The elevators, library and underground parking garage have also been meticulously maintained with many original details.  Thanks to the passionate homeowners this gem of a building will be treasured for years to come. Who knows, it may even inspire other budding architects and designers just like it did me!

Lisa Stewart is an Interior Designer in Raleigh NC.

Artisan Lighting Design

by Lisa Stewart 16 May 2015

These chandeliers are functional pieces of art!  Exquisitely hand crafted, each piece is unique.  Fashioned with natural quartz crystals, brass and LED lights, these sculptures are whimsical, earthy and modern. The artist, Christopher Boots, is driven by the love of nature and light. Trained as an industrial designer he is based in Melbourne, Australia.

Above the intriguing Prometheus pendant lights by Boots is crafted from bronze and quartz crystals. Below the Quadrix by Boots creates slices of light that emanate from mirror polished brass giving a 21st century takes on traditional lanterns. The wall sconce is Prometheus III.

Lisa Stewart is an Interior Designer in Raleigh, NC.

Spring 2015 High Point Market - Historic & Handcrafted

by Lisa Stewart 18 Apr 2015

Best in Show for Spring 2015 High Point Market goes to the Taracea showroom in the historic eight-story Radio Building that has been at the heart of High Point’s business since 1923. The former ground floor bank sets an interesting Art Deco background for the Taracea furniture made of solid woods harvested from trees in forests they own and manage. Taracea rightfully boasts about the artistic craftsmanship coming from their upholstery factory and hand-forged iron foundry.

The original bank vault with its 16-inch thick door weighing 24 tons is now a showroom for a Taracea bedding collection. 

Gifted and renowned glass artist Orfeo Quagliata partners with Taracea to create glass tabletops, lamps and accessories. This beautiful glass countertop bar is an example of his work.

Photos by Lisa and courtesy of Taracea and Oreo Guadliata

Lisa Stewart is and Interior Designer in Raleigh, NC.