Saturday, February 18, 2017

Metrie Moldings, your imagination is not limited

The Authors library by designer Aly Velji
Credit: Felix O.B. at FXO Photography

Trim moldings to a room are like accessories to an outfit. They can adorn a plain Jane room and make it a true showpiece. Moldings offer interesting architectural detail that can make a dramatic difference. Your imagination is not limited- trim can be added to walls, to ceilings, around windows and doors, and along architectural features such as fireplaces, built in bookcases and kitchens. There are all kinds of moldings to purchase from paintable, stainable woods to pre-finished woods which do not have to be painted! So meet Metrie, a supplier and manufacturer of wood and molding who I was introduced to at the Kitchen and Bath Industry show in Orlando Florida (KBIS). Metrie is all about the details and is dedicated to creating crafted architectural elements and makes sure their product meets the highest standards for quality and design.

BlogTour KBIS 2017
Credit: Felix O.B. at FXO Photography BlogTour KBIS

At the KBIS show, Metrie had a special contest called #MyMetrieTrimspiration just for BlogTourKBIS 2017 participants. Here we are above:

For the contest, we had to post on Instagram what Metrie product most inspired us. I posted the above image and won an Apple Watch with a Lux Wood watch band. I have to say, I really really love my watch...thankyou so much Metrie, great contest idea!!

I will never look at moldings the same. Metrie displayed different ways to use moldings.

On a coffered ceiling around Light fixtures:

Moldings used as Clothing rods:

I love the dark painted moldings because it gives more visual impact. You can see that painting a traditional molding a darker color modernizes the look and makes a statement. Also, crowns that are very delicately carved and angled on the ends add a real touch of elegance when painted gold:

The Authors library by designer Aly Velji using the Pretty Simple Finishing collection. It has a very traditional and heavy wood detailing but he created a sense of modernity in the details. The ceiling treatment highlighted a unique way to make this library unconventional:

Designer Andrew Pike's take on the Very Square Finishing Collection for a wine cellar look was a fave. He used a rich gray color that gives a traditional stye a very modern feel.

You really can be imaginative and not break the bank. Just use moldings, Metrie ofcourse!

Thankyou to MetrieModenus and all our wonderful sponsors of BlogTourKBIS2017 #designhounds


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Friday, February 3, 2017

Why I cried at the DXV Design Panel 2017 announcement?

DXV Design Panel 2017 announcement
Credit: Felix O.B. at FXO Photography

Since I got home from KBIS, friends and family called saying, "I know something BIG happened but I'm not sure what, so what's going on?" I respond with a giggle as I know several photos on facebook and instagram have been posted dubbed "the many faces of Michele Alfano"..... What's so important that could make me break down in tears? 

DXV Design Panel 2017 announcement
Credit: Pamela Copeman

Tears of joy for sure on top of something my brother Scott said to me right before the announcement. He said, " I didn't know Dad was in the room." That hit me. I got all vclempt because we both admire our father who is a renown scientist in the field of optics. It was awesome to have Scott there by my side as I take a step forward in my career. 

Me and Scott Alfano
Me and my brother Scott Alfano
Credit: Pamela Copeman

Well I got over the tears and took it all in and I told my friends that it was announced that I was on the next DXV Design Panel 2017 among three other elite designers: 
 Kati Greene Curtis Corey Damen Jenkins and Alison McRae-Habermehl. They then ask, "What is DXV?"

DXV Design Panel 2017 announcement
Credit: Rebecca Reynolds

DXV by American Standard is a portfolio of meticulously crafted fixtures and faucets that celebrate and re-imagine design movements of the past 150 years. For the past four years, they have invited designers to create stages from one of these design movements and use their products and accessories to create beautiful environments that transport us back in time but used in a modern way. I was selected for the MODERN movement, no surprise there...and have already given in my #DXVTOPSECRET design. I am flying to Minneapolis next week to present my design to DXV! I am thrilled to have this huge opportunity to showcase my Architectural eye and be a part of DXV's history in inspired design to elevate the experience of everyday living - which is in my core beliefs as a designer. Here are some of the awesome designs from the past Design Panel 2016: 

Mid-Century Resort by Pulpstudio- Beth Dotolo and Carolina Gentry
Credit: DXV

 Contemporary Beach By Genevieve Ghaleb
Credit: DXV

 The Golden Apple by Richard Anuszkiewicz
Credit: DXV
 Southern Classic by Susan Jamieson
Credit: DXV

While at KBIS, we were introduced to DXV's new beautiful collections:

Their sleek and sexy Modulus suite of contemporary luxury bath fixtures and fittings highlights an urban point of view with European influences to offer minimalist, yet functional design. The graceful Modulus countertop lavatories are offered in a variety of sizes and configurations, including marble and concrete models.

The most interesting part of the design is how one can experience the product. Jean-Jacques Lhenaff , VP of Lixil showed us how the solid surface tray is designed to perfectly fit on the counter and then can be stored over and inside the wall hung storage unit below. A very thoughtful design. 

The sinuous shape of the Modulus tub is perfect for soaking.  I love the floor mount tub filler, its so sculptural! 

The Modulus faucet below comes in different finishes and a single mount version too as shown in black below. Notice the hammered ring? 

 The ring has an assortment of finishes and you can add it to the faucet and tub filler. Love that little touch of detail! 

Thankyou to DXV, Modenus and all our wonderful sponsors of BlogTourKBIS2017 #designhounds


To get a daily dose of design, find MoD Design Guru on

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Products promote partying, and less working in your Kitchen

If kitchens are the heart of the home, then KBIS is defining the way Americans live. At the KBIS 2017 show, top brands showcased their concepts and innovations of every area of kitchen design. I'm seeing more and more how technology is pushing the boundaries of kitchen design and more brands are coming out with products that make your time in the kitchen more enjoyable. Brands like Thermador, Grohe, American Standard, Wilsonart and Wellborn Cabinet were showing products with personality that help you do less work, and more time to party, enjoy and hang out in your kitchen. 

Grohe Lady Lux Foot Control 

Grohe's mission is to enhance homes with products that provide exceptional quality, technological advancements, and precision engineering. Their new Grohe Lady Lux Foot Control allows you to get the most out of your kitchen with a tap of your foot! The faucet is turned on with a plate under the counter. No hands necessary to operate the faucet! This new hands free faucet controller saves water, reduces the spread of dirt and germs and is great for aging in place as well! You can take charge in your kitchen and pay more attention to your guests! See the video below:

Grohe Essence

Bring some personality and color into your kitchen too. The Grohe Essence new kitchen faucet available in April 2017 offers a nylon hose with multiple colors to choose from. It has a comfortable spout and a dual spray faucet with a useful toggle function making it seamless to switch from spray to regular water flow.  The hose is interchangeable, so get a few colors to change out for your parties!

American Standard  came out with a faucet that dispenses water to your exact measurement. If you are making dinner and talking with your guests, you don't have to think. The kitchen faucet thinks for you! See the video below:


Thermador Culinary Preservation center

It is Thermador's ingenuity and quality craftsmanship that resonates with culinary enthusiasts. They "share the exceptional" by being committed to the cooking experience. The Thermador Culinary Preservation center fits any lifestyle offering ultimate configurations. Side by side you can build in a freezer- refrigerator combination next to towers of wine that has separate zones all built in -  great home personalization making it easier for ultimate entertaining! 

Star-Sapphire dishwasher

The new Star-Sapphire dishwasher offers real dish care solutions! The flexibility to entertain is here without restriction. Their new slim top rack can fit those large spoons and cook tools that you usually have to clean by hand. They call it the entertainers drawer and it will save you time! What I'm also excited about is the blue accent of light which you can use to set a cool vibe in your kitchen. Both of these new innovations enhances the experience of entertaining. 

Ultra Matte Laminate Stone 

Wilsonart laminate can now rival stone head on!  Wilsonart's mission is to give alternate surfacing options that provide customers with choices of design, performance and price. Their new Ultra Matte Laminate Stone finish really looks like stone.  The corner engineering is unbelievable. I love stone but if you cannot afford it this laminate offers performance, scratch resistance and Antimicrobial protection. The technologies built into this laminate will make your life easier just like other solid surfaces! 

Wellborn cabinet

Wellborn Cabinet features product lines that offer cabinetry for every room for everyday living. I fell in love with this modern curio cabinet that can house all of your cooking essentials and bar all in one! These kind of storage solutions help you maximize your total home living space.

The interior blue was stunning against the natural wood shelving and trays!

Thankyou to our BlogTourKBIS by Modenus sponsors - ThermadorGroheAmerican StandardWilsonart and Wellborn Cabinet  who offered us surprise and delight with innovative solutions for your kitchen!

To get a daily dose of design, find MoD Design Guru on