This year – 2014 – will be a year of looking up. Architects are inspiring us to new design heights with artfully coffered ceilings, repurposed or hand-hewn beams, vaulted groins, ornate medallions and dramatic moldings. Dallas architect Larry Boerder has been searching from the Fort Worth stockyards to dusty warehouses as far away as Pennsylvania to find age-old beams that add just the right dash of rustic warmth to a new or newly-redone home. He’s also working with local artisans to create highly detailed, deeply coffered ceilings that add texture and dimension to living and entertaining spaces. “The ceiling is just another part of the room that can be made to stand out,” Boerder says. “As an architectural element it’s very important that a ceiling be authentic and that it be done well. Faux is finished.”
What combines the warmth and richness of wood with the durability of hard surface flooring? Porcelain planks made to look like barn wood, knotty pine and hand-scraped hardwoods. “Dallas is a place where people want to live outside as beautifully as they do inside,” says Adrienne Morgan, manager for luxe design destination Patina. “The porcelain planks are just beautiful and come in sizes up to 36” long and 6” wide. They’re a very popular choice for places that may have water issues, like kitchens, bathrooms and pool decking.” Also on the top trends list this year are large format tile (24” x 24”) like Carrara marble. The huge squares minimize the impact of grout lines.
No cabbage roses here. Mom’s wallpaper has been replaced with updated designs like large-format damask in neutral tones and bold graphics reminiscent of mid-century modern. “The patterns are dramatic but the colors are muted,” says Danna Lockett, CEO of Texas Paint and Wallpaper, who adds that paint colors are following the neutral with a pop trend. “People want light and bright so pale blues and all shades of white are popular, especially for kitchens.” Also on trend are hand-painted papers like the glorious China scenes created by the renowned artisans at Gracie, who combine modern living with legacy craftsmanship. “The process of creating custom wall covering can be incredibly personal,” says Jennifer Gracie. “One of the most appealing aspects of our papers is that they are timeless and truly one of a kind.”
On the Surface
Ceramic tiles featuring a mélange of Spanish and Moroccan influences, marble tiles cut and assembled in a chevron mosaic, Brazilian quartzite countertops rich with veining, and hand-poured glass tiles with a wave-like surface are trending throughout high-end kitchens and bathrooms. “It’s all about texture,” says Jared Becker, vice president of design for Walker Zanger. “Rooms are bigger and more open, so surfaces with texture and color are a great way to anchor a design element.” Cool colors like white, dove gray and charcoal add a sophisticated spin to textured surfaces.
Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty is Dallas’ luxury real estate leader, with more than 200 agents in five offices located throughout Dallas-Fort Worth and access to the global Sotheby’s network, including more than 11,000 agents in 600 offices worldwide. CEO Robbie Briggs independently owns and operates Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty. For more information on escapes and second homes, ranch and land, and luxury homes in the Dallas-Fort Worth region and beyond, go to briggsfreeman.com.