Maine Style Graduation

Hello All:

My son Jack graduated from High School this week (thank God), and better yet…he is off to college next year! He asked for a lobster bake…he is a Maine boy after all.

I wanted it to be an elegant but casual event. I bought bandanas for the napkins, ‘How to Eat a Lobster’ plates,  14″ wide Burlap ribbon, shells and sea glass to decorate with. We set up rental tables with white linens, and white folding chairs in the backyard. My nephews hung white paper lanterns from the trees.

The Menu: Maine lobsters, grilled vegetable kebobs, salad and best of all my sister-in-law Tina, made one of her famous cakes!

Edith, my very clever sister, made name cards with “I know Jack is in the room when…” on the top, and each guest filed in something below. They were all very funny and it was a great ice-breaker for the cocktail hour!

My wonderful brother Andrew, from California made a video with clips from all of my siblings, nieces and nephews congratulating Jack and telling stories about him. My brother is an incredible web designer, the video was professional and was the hit of the party.

One of my clients loaned me a professional/industrial lobster cooker…Thank you Becky!

We feel so lucky that our family flew and drove to Maine from NYC, Florida, Virginia and Washington DC to celebrate with us.

Here are some of the photos from our “Lobsta Bake”

The Bar: very important on a hot day!


We hung 30 lanterns in the backyard and it was magical. At about 2:00 am, (when I was up, thinking about the mess downstairs) I looked outside and my yard was glowing. It was so lovely!


We had 40 guests…only 15 of which were not family.


Here is a close up of the graduate’s table. He had such a wonderful time at his party, he thanked me several times…this as we all know is rare for an 18-year-old boy.


I hope you enjoyed seeing our party. I am so exhausted, but it is worth it. Thank you for stopping by, I hope you like this post let me know by liking or commenting.

Best, Celia

Next Post: will be back to interior design!



Kitchen Update

Designing a kitchen for myself is not easy, I am a bad client!

I started this process with the desire for new cabinets. My old cabinets are 30 years old and very tired looking. The hinges do not match the hardware, and there are at least 6 coats of peeling paint on them. I intended to keep my granite, but found that the process of removing it and then putting it back after the cabinets went in was not cost affective (it was $2,000 more to put on new counter tops). As with all construction, one action leads to another. When the counter tops are removed they cannot save the backsplash. Do you see how things are adding up? Oh, and they cannot remove the sink from the granite to install on the on the new counters…really come on!

The project is adding up quickly. Well, it is too late now so I guess I better just enjoy the ride.

Here are the final choices…

brookshireThese are Shrock Cabinets and will be painted in Dover Grey.


The top cabinet will have glass doors and the interior of these cabinets will be painted blue

Benjamin Moore Wythe-blue
Benjamin Moore Wythe-blue

The new counters are going to be honed Marble.

carrara post

The stove wall (below) and backsplash are going to be nickel gap boards


Justine Hand (nickel gap boards)



The hardware that goes with my scheme (functional-vintage) best is this…

knob pulls

On Thursday my existing granite was removed, then all we had to do was demo the cabinets. This is what our kitchen looks like now.


photo (23)

NOW…doesn’t it look great?


I looked into the most cost-effective way to dispose of the cabinets, 1-800-got-junk does not give you estimates before they come, they said it would be $445 to dispose of the cabinets.

former kitchen

I sent them away that is just too much, so I broke down the cabinets and put them in this Bagster it was only $149.


If you are considering a renovation on your kitchen, stay tuned. Our next post is a guide to buying kitchen cabinets.

Thank you for stopping by. Let me know you like the post by liking it, or commenting.

Best, Celia

Fun & Inexpensive Father’s Day Decoration

Hello and Happy Father’s Day! Here is a cute idea that you can make with the kids for Father’s Day. It is so inexpensive, paper and string is all you need.

Hope you enjoy it!

Thank you for stopping by!

Let me know what you are doing for your father or husband.
I have a wonderful husband, who is a great father.

I do miss my handsome, sophisticated and funny father. Dad, I love you.

Happy Father’s Day.
Best, Celia

Winter Outside Bringing You Down? Indoor Spring Container Gardens Can Change That!


Step One: Choose your container, below are three of my favorites. Mason Jars, Glass Vase, Clay Pot, and Wood vessels.


Step Two: Add Potting Soil


Step Three: Split flowering bulbs and cat grass to fit the containers

Step Four: Fill in soil

Step Five: Brace/stake with curly willow

curly willow

Step Six: Top with moss (sheet, Spanish or reindeer), Water and Enjoy

il_570xN_234571065 live moss sheetmoss

Step Seven: Add birch bark, mini birds, nests and or mini eggs


When I do this project, I go to Skillins Greenhouse (my local greenhouse) and buy bulbs that are in bloom. If you are a true gardener you might want to plant and force your own bulbs.

Below I have the Step by Step directions from Better Homes & Gardens if you want to give it a try.

1. Plan ahead. In autumn, purchase bulbs from a garden center, nursery, or mail-order source. Plant bulbs of your choice in any type of pot with a drainage hole. Choose a pot that’s at least twice as deep as the bulbs to allow for proper root growth. Fill the pot half full of soilless potting mix.

Most bulbs will do well if grown in potting mix. Always start with clean pots and fresh mix.

2. Place as many bulbs as possible in the pot, without letting them touch. A 6-inch-wide pot holds up to six tulips, three narcissus (daffodils), or 15 minor bulbs, such as crocuses or grape hyacinths.

For a thick show, layer more than one kind of bulb in the same pot; place larger bulbs on the bottom and they’ll grow around the smaller ones. If the two bulbs you want to combine have different chilling and blooming schedules, plant them first in small plastic containers and combine them once they’re in bloom.

3. Cover the bulbs with potting mix, leaving their tips showing. Water the bulbs thoroughly. Label with name and date; loosely cover pot with a paper bag. Place in cool (35 to 45 degrees F), dark storage for chilling. See our bulb-forcing timetable for chilling time.

An unheated attic, basement, or attached garage makes a good chilling area, but monitor the temperature if the weather turns extremely cold. Another option is to set the pots outside in a 12-inch-deep trench, lined with pebbles to prevent the pots from freezing to the bottom. Cover the pots with 10 to 12 inches of soil, then 12 inches of dry leaves held in place with a plastic tarp.

4. Check moisture in pot periodically. Keep soil damp but not wet. When chilling is complete, you’ll see roots poking out of the bottom of the pot and green sprouts emerging at the bulb tips. It’s time to move the potted bulbs into a warm room.

5. When flower buds form, move potted bulbs into a sunny spot. Keep the soil damp. When flowers appear, move the pot out of direct sun to make the blooms last longer. After the blooms fade and wither, toss them (bulbs and all) into the compost. Most forced bulbs have used up their energy and won’t bloom again.

Growing in Water

Paperwhites and Soleil d’Or can be grown without soil. Plant them in pebble-filled containers with the base of the bulbs in contact with water at the bottom of the container. These bulbs don’t need chilling, but will benefit from a cool temperature (50 degrees F.) until the top shoot is a couple of inches long. At that point, you can move the plant into a warm, brightly lit area.

I hope you enjoyed reading this post and it inspires you to bring spring into your home.

As always thank you for reading my blog.

  • If you have any questions ask away, I will get back to you as soon as possible! 

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Thank you for your support.

Best, Celia

Photos: By Liz Donnelly (isn’t she amazing?)


Kitchens That Inspire Me

These are the kitchens that inspired my designs in 2012

I love these kitchens for their storage, islands, lights, cabinets, door styles, counters, back splashes, windows, floors and great design.

  • I am obsessed with the windows in this kitchen. They make me want to move into this house!



  • I like the way that the natural light bounces off of the counters and glass appliances. It gives the space a very light and airy feeling.


  • I also love this slick and cool window above the sink. When I build a house I am going to add this style window as a backsplash in my kitchen.


  • This kitchen has such a simple and clean look to it.


  • I love this space, the floors, the open barn concept and the large island.


  • The detail on the bottom of these cabinets is so beautiful. A very nice touch in a small kitchen.


  • I adore this kitchen. I think the dark honed counters are great with the dark floor and white cabinets!


  • The storage in this kitchen is fantastic!

I hope you enjoyed seeing my kitchen muses.

I am so looking forward to my 2013 projects. I love that the friendships that are formed when working on projects are personal as the homes themselves.

I hope you will enjoy going on this journey with me!

If you are not following our blog please put your email in the follow box and you will never miss a post.

Thank you for a great year…I look forward to getting to know more of you this year. I also want to thank my followers for everything!

Happy New Year, stay tuned for photos of the New Year’s Eve wedding!!!

Best, Celia


  • House Beautiful
  • Better Homes and Gardens
  • Dwell

Amazing Kitchen before and after photos

My favorite day of each project is the day we reveal the results to the homeowner. We bring our team in to clean, arrange furniture and hang the artwork. We put together all the elements that we have been collecting and transform the house into a home.

Each project starts with a dream. We take this dream and turn it into a wish list. Once we have priced out the wish list (in a line item format), we turn this into a list of must have items. The process is very important. We have to help the homeowner bring their dreams to reality; sometimes reality is more expensive than we think it is going to be. Doing renovations or building new homes tend to be more expensive than we think they ought. It is important to have all the numbers and feel comfortable with your budget before any work actually begins.

These are photos of a recent kitchen project I completed. The home owner is a dear friend of mine and I have spent a lot of time in her kitchen. We removed their unheated sun-room and added a larger room that opens into the kitchen. The home owner wanted a light and bright space and I think you will agree this is an amazing transformation.

Before the kitchen was custom oak cabinets, the quality was not bad but it was very dark. The cabinets and shelving covered the entire wall floor to ceiling. It felt like a cave.

The ceiling was also oak…a little too much oak, after all it was not a wine barrel!

After the renovation we have a wonderful space full of light. 

 We added…

  • New windows – this is very important in a home built circa 1900
  • Off-White Candlelight Cabinetry
  • New lighting from Fogg Lighting… the pendant lights look fabulous
  • Restored the original wood floors, weaving in new wood in the sun-room
  • Granite chosen by the homeowner
  • Back-splash by Paul G White
  • New appliances


The white wall of cabinets housing the refrigerator is the same space as in the photos above.


Here is the before and after of the new stove wall. The back-splash is where the door to the deck used to be!

Gendron Office 044



The sun-room was small and COLD… wow look at the difference. Once they have decided what the primary use of this space is going to be, we can pick out some new furnishings.


Gendron Office 051


LDP_8135-Edit-Edit-Edit LDP_8156-Edit

I love my job and I am so lucky to work with such a talented team of professionals and wonderful clients!

Special thanks to Dennis Tefft, Debbie Fogg , James Cerino East Bay Builders, Eliot Hull , Anne Sowles , and as always Liz Donnelly .

Best, Celia

PS If you like this post and would like to see more like this let me know by LIKING the post, If you have something to tell me please do so by commenting, and finally if you do not subscribe to our blog…please put your email in the follow box.

Kitchen Flooring Has Come A Long Way

Kitchen how the options have changed. We have come such a long way in terms of the choices available to consumers.

One can find a great selection in each catagory of kitchen flooring, from wood to tile.

Photo by Liz Donnelly
  • Wood is hot at the moment. We have wonderful options in pre-finished wood flooring today, and they withstand heavy traffic and water. They also help blend into the rest of your home if you have hardwood flooring elsewhere. Above is a kitchen we did on the coast of Maine.
Long and large Limestone tiles laid in a brick pattern…I love this look. It is such a clean and chic option
  • Stone offers great durability and is an excellent choice for heavy traffic areas. Ceramic tile is equally strong and offers numerous colors and textures.
  • I  love the new options in terms of tile size and shape. The largest tile size used to be 12×12, now you can get 24×24, 12×24 and even 9×6 harlequin diamonds.
  • We also have the option when it comes to installation, now we lay tiles in numerous patterns.
  • I love the natural look of limestone in kitchens, but it must be sealed twice a year because it is porous.
Cement tiles, offer a matte or honed finish and wonderful patterns
I love the pattern these tiles were laid in. It is a wonderful way to weave the colors of the natural stone together.
  • Cork is also a fabulous option; it is a very versatile material and comes in a number of colors and patterns. It is also water-resistant and reduces impact noise. It also warms up the spaces it is used in.
Cork in a herringbone pattern…wonderful!
Cork tiles come in fabulous options
  • Vinyl Flooring is very resilient and is the best option if you are looking for a budget friendly option.
These 18×18 Chilewich Plynyl tiles are so cool, it makes me want to use them somewhere.

You do not have to make kitchen flooring boring, it is one of the major components in the design of the space. It is worth spending  the money to do it right the first time.

I have worked with many home owners who tell me that they have re-done their kitchen floors but were never happy with them because they settled for the least expensive option.

My advice is…

  • If you do wood flooring use pre-finished, it is amazing! I have two active dogs and two sloppy kids and this is the only flooring that can withstand our punishment.
  • Wait and do your flooring when you can afford to do it the right way!
  • Think outside the box…vinyl flooring can be cool and hip…look for woven finishes.
  • Talk to your tile store about interesting patterns and ways to lay the tile you are interested in.
  • Consider a border laid around the room of tiles in a contrasting color or lay the center tiles on the diagonal and set the border tiles in the standard manner.
  • rectangular tiles can be set in a brick, herringbone, basket weave and stacked pattern…be creative!
  • Use the internet to research flooring before you go shopping, a little knowledge goes a long way! and are great resources.

If you have any questions, comments feel free to ask me! I love your questions. Also if you do not already follow our blog please sign up! It is easy put your email in the follow box!

Best, Celia

Easy Step by Step Before and After Living Room



Before photo 2-look at the flooring and chair placement

This was an interesting project. I loved the home owners they are very nice people, but it was clear that the home’s decor reflected the husband more than the wife. This was the first house that they had purchased together. My goal was to make it their dream house. The bones of the house were very good…this is always a help when designing a space.

This is what we did

  1. Painted out the built-in bookcase to lighten the room (In this case the walls were in perfect shape and a nice color, I would normally paint the walls and trim, paint is the best way to change a space)
  2. Refinished the hardwood floors
  3. This home had 5 different flooring options on the first floor in an open floor plan. I recommended replacing some of the flooring with hardwood to match the existing hardwood and tie the spaces together.
  5. We replaced the two oversized leather sofas with one sofa and two swivel chairs.
  6. We brought in a great rug from Home Goods (inexpensive and fun)
  7. We used their existing coffee table
  8. We organized and displayed things that they treasure in the newly painted built-We added lamps and side tables
  9. We added fabric…cushions, pillows, Ottomans, curtains and roman shades…this really warmed up the space.


After Shot 1-by Jamie Salomon
Built-in after shot…white makes a big difference
Photo by Anne Sowles
New shades, cushions, pillows and ottomans transform this space
Photo: Jamie Salomon
After Photo: New seating area the flooring is now wood!
Photo: Anne Sowles

If you are looking to change your home, paint the walls and trim, dress your floors-refinish, recarpet or cover, change the lighting, if you can buy new furniture great but conside reusing what you have, paint it or recover it!

I hope you like this post. CLICK on the follow button and never miss a post! Also let us know your thoughts and comments. Thank you for reading and being a part of Celia Bedilia!!!

Best, Celia