Archive | April, 2012

Housing Works Design on a Dime Event NYC – Elizabeth Taylor

29 Apr

Partnered with the Hearst Design Group, Housing Works hosted their 8th annual Design on a Dime!

The event ended yesterday and there were sale showcases of designer and celebrity vignettes featuring donated and new merchandise.

All products sold helped the homeless and low-income New Yorkers living with HIV/AIDS (housing to be completed this late Spring).

One vignette was so beautiful, homage to Elizabeth Taylor, my favorite!

I’ll let the photograph speak for itself!  Anyone would love this in their space!

I had a wonderful time!

If you are interested in donating or volunteering, here is their website:  www.housingworks.org.

Letia 🙂

Lara Spencer, Design on a Dime Event Co-Chair, with Good Morning America co-host Sam Champion.  

The Little Bathroom That Could! Be Wonderful!

28 Apr

Eljer Vintage AdverismentPerhaps you can show us a bathroom makeover with a specific budget, how it can go a long way with the right selections and make an impact?

I said “Boy…… do I have the perfect bathroom in mind!”

Loving the challenge, I wanted to think of how I was going keep the bathroom’s charm!

It’s in the design, right! Let’s say the bathroom is small, how small?  In and out, one at a time…kind of bathroom!

To give you an idea, it’s 1950’s styled bathroom.  This is the time period where the kitchens were in that mustard or avocado green color!

It is so common to find a 1950s bathroom decorated in pink, blue or peach-colored  tile. This bathroom was all pink, with a burgundy floor!

Don’t laugh..some of you have had a mint green colored bathroom in your lifetime. You just don’t want anyone to know, as with others  –  they’re quite actually proud of it!  They will tell you it’s vintage in a minute!

So let me give you some trivia, why Pink?

Pink was THEE representative color of the 1950s.  It’s popularity is attributed to First Lady, Mamie Eisenhower, who loved the shade so much it became known as “Mamie Pink”.

She even decorated the presidential bedroom in it, right down to the monogrammed wastebasket.  Reporters even started calling the White House the “Pink Palace.” And when she was staying in an adjoining suite at a Denver Hospital, where Ike Eisenhower was recovering from a heart attack.  It was said that she even had a pink toilet seat flown in.   I’ll leave that alone…no comment!  Later on  through the years new design colors followed, like blue, peach and the infamous mint green!

Lowes Home Improvement Warehouse

So my home improvement store choice for this project was Lowes.  Reasonable prices for getting the materials needed for this bathroom renovation.

I’d picked out the tile, determined to make the bathroom seem a  little larger that is it really was.  The space was small and when you included the tub, you had 4.5 feet of standing space.

So a complete tear down, remember the hampers in the wall? Well gone!  The huge tub, what we called a real tub (built like a truck)! Gone!  The old-time mirrored medicine cabinet in the wall?  Gone!  And last but not forgotten, the old exhaust fan, which sounded like you were in the airport, ready to take off!  You know what I mean, especially when you turned off the fan, as the blade is slowing down to stop – you can still hear the clinking with a ding, ding knock sound!  🙂

Great memories, but it all had to go!  A deadline of 5 days turned into 10 days.  The first day of construction, we had a minor delay – which ultimately worked out to my advantage; for I took some more time to think about making a few changes and finding a mirror.   Whether to get a traditional vanity mirror insert or stick to my instinct and get a classy mirror; which still reminded me of the 1950’s.

The construction workers were very talented and did great tile work.  There were some miscommunications with the head contractor; which I am not used to; so I found it a bit frustrating.  I’m used to having a certain kind of energy, anticipating the client’s reaction and having the crew’s chests sticking out, often about the great work they’d performed.

For this job, it was a little nervy, however everyone was professional; which is very important.  Don’t get me wrong delays and changes are to be expected when doing a renovation.  When asking when the work will be finished, remember it is a projection, you should add a week or two to the date stated; in order to get a real sense of the time you are going to be inconvenienced.

Now… if you have surprises.  Then there’s bound to be more money to be put out, so be ready and extra time will be added to the projected date….definitely to fix those surprises!!! 😦

It was a bit different for this renovation, the home was renovated a few years back (including the electrical) – however this bathroom was not included in the renovation.   Memories, kept the owner from changing the bathroom (sometimes we like to hold on to memories for a while and leave things just as they are!).

Let’s talk about the design which is very simple; giving you the sense of new, but an old classy feel:

  • White tiles were laid in a subway style design around the entire perimeter of the bathroom 4 ft from the floor. For tub area, the tiles were placed all the way up to the bathroom’s ceiling; giving height and depth.
  • Multicolored glass tiles were selected as an insert border, placed the entire perimeter of the bathroom.  I carefully chosed a glass tile, which had squares of white, celandon, light beige and clear.  By having the clear glass included; whatever ensemble chosen, the color would be picked up and reflected.
  • Flooring was also a white mosaic tile, giving an old edge.
  • Modern pedestal sink, no cabinet to give more room and a slightly higher energy-efficient toilet (16.5 from the rim), to also add the appearance of height.
  • Art Deco inspired light fixture with the option to brighten or dim.
  • Dual shower heads and new hardware design for sink and tub.
  • For a feminine touch, a mirrored/crystal shower rod with matching hooks for magazine photo. Then changed for a masculine touch, a curved shower rod with silver hooks and barber styled accessories.
  • Lastly, a vintage styled mirror.  Glass edge of mirror embossed with leaves, picking up from the same colors of the multicolored glass tiles.

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HGTV Magazine

How much did I go over the budget  $54.37!  I am happy about the outcome!

The goal was to use a local improvement store, not too much over the top detail,  deflect the size of the bathroom, stick to the budget, make an impact and most of all…SAVE MONEY!  Everybody is happy!

Related articles

Letia 🙂

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HGTV Magazine, Food Network Magazine published by Hearst Magazines Division, Hearst Communications, Inc. © “HGTV” and associated marks and logos are the registered trademarks of Scripps Networks, LLC and are used under license. All Rights Reserved.  Design by Letia Mitchell LifeStyle & Design LLC., Contruction by Metro USA Construction of Jamaica NY, Bathroom materials purchased at Lowes: American Olean, Aquasource, American Standard, Booz.  Benjamin Moore Paint – Halo OC-46.    Marshalls® for bathroom ensemble.  

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are Engaged! Who Told You?

13 Apr
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt at the Cannes fil...

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt at the Cannes Film Festival

You’ve probably heard already!  They’re engaged!!

Nah? Yes!

Have they been together 6 years or 8 years?

There’s six (6) children!

He’s been married once before.

She’s been married twice before.

Committed?  Yeah both are!

Do they care what the media think?  I think not!

Are they just not a completely sexy couple?  I am afraid so, off the Richter scale!!

Are they happy?  Ay Yeah!

Does Jennifer Anniston have to come up in every conversation, when you say Brad or Angelina?  No….but it’s just public practiced!   So yeah!

So why don’t we wish them the best and give them a huge CONGRATULATIONS!   When you know it’s right, it’s right and I guess the time is right!  Besides they “get” each other and once you have that with THEIR chemistry…then it’s bound to be a home run!  Right out the park!!!!!!

Congratulations to them both and their family!   If you had the opportunity, what would you say to them both….about their pending nuptials?

I would say….Kudos and congratulations to you both, taking the Hollywood stuff out of it, just be the best for each other – family is so wonderful!   Would I love a wedding invitation?  Of course!  🙂  We just have to wait and see where/how the wedding will be!!

Letia 🙂

Angelina Jolie Engaged (huffingtonpost.com)

Bathroom Tile – Beginning of a Renovation

9 Apr

Decisions, decisions!

I’d spent 2 hours today deciding the tile for an upcoming project.. it’s renovating a very small bathroom.  How do you keep the character of a bathroom, making it seem new? I am gearing towards modern with a classic edge; defining an old feel.

Tomorrow I will meet with my contractor with some sample selections, view paint colors and discuss the budget.  Due to the size of the bathroom, white will be the overall color.  The goal is to make the bathroom seem bigger with an offset of a dynamic paint color that pops.

I’d selected an octagon white mosaic tile for the floor.  A 3×6 subway tile for the wall.  As a Plan B decision a 6×6 tile for the wall also and finally glass tile in neutral colors intended to cut for inserts also on the wall.

When deciding on your selections, always look for an open box of the tiles you are interested in.  Once opened, you can buy tiles separately.

The prices can range from 45 cents to as high as over $125.00; depending on the choice and type.  If there are no open boxes, ask for a sample.

Once you take the tiles home; you can make a decision. First, ask about the store’s return policy before purchasing the tiles.  Just in case you change your mind on your choices, you want to make sure you can return them.

Oh! Also have a budget and stick to it.   Yes, always have a budget, having no budget is like a prescription for overspending!

I will keep you posted on my progress with the bathroom!  It’s spring and if you are planning also to do a bathroom renovation, start looking at some tiles to see what’s your taste!  Make sure you measure to get the square footage to factor in the costs.  🙂

Happy Easter!!!!

7 Apr

In observance of Passover and Easter, sending everyone well wishes to enjoy your holiday with your family and friends!

Just rushing to deliver the Easter eggs that I’ve filled with candy for the Easter Egg Hunt tomorrow!

So you know, M&Ms has Easter chocolates in peanuts and peanut butter!  I’d sample quite a few!  🙂  Out the door!!!

Letia  🙂

Oprah’s Lifeclass with Tony Robbins! Biggest Classroom in NYC, Radio City Musical Hall!

3 Apr

Press releases and small talk about OWN Network, not favorable!  What is?  When you are building a network, you are bound to have setbacks and mistakes.  However, Ms.  Winfrey – practices what she preaches…..you learn from the mistakes and make changes!

However, there is one thing that hasn’t change – is her wish to make the world better.  To teach and let people know that you can grow and still make the effort to change.  I always say that change is good; it puts you in a place that is uncomfortable and forces you to do things differently!

Last year, Oprah Winfrey introduced her Lifeclass Series on her network, OWN; sharing her ideas and thoughts of the things she has learned during producing  the Oprah Winfrey Show!

As if that wasn’t enough, she is taking her teaching on tour!!  Taking her talented and inspirational friends to show us in a personal way that it can happen….CHANGE!  I wanted to be part of it!

I was granted the greatest opportunity to attend!!!!

It was such a very exciting week in NYC,  Figure Skating in Harlem was honoring Vera Wang at the Wollman Rink in Central Park, along with Rhonda Ross and Ellen Lowey – where  Diana Ross was in town to celebrate with her daughter.

Then you have Oprah at CBS Studios, guest on the CBS Morning show with Erica Hill, Charlie Rose and her dearest friend Gayle King  – promoting her Lifeclass event being held at NYC’s Radio City Music Hall and discussing her team’s new strategy for OWN Network.  Here I was back and forth, each minute as important as the minute that passed, I was coordinating the finalization of a job; which went from a 3 hour job that turned into 6 hours!  Let’s say you would think I was cloned, but I was able to get everything done (the check ins, will calls and authorizations).  SUPERWOMAN!!!

There were two classes to be held at Radio City Music Hall!

I choose the evening class!  Tony Robbins was the guest speaker for the evening class and let’s say the evening was intense; like a rock concert full of excitement!   Mr. Tony Robbins equals INTENSITY.

Let’s say if you were coming to class, with pen and paper to take notes…it was not that kind of class!   Jumping, laughing, yelling was being done……a complete wake up session.   Oprah also was very enthusiastic and so helpful in getting you to know whatever you are afraid of it, you can definitely overcome to achieve.

“The past does not equal the future, unless you live there!”

To watch the live stream for the event, you can click this url: Oprah’s Live Class with Tony Robbins.

By all means, you don’t have to miss out on the classes, there are more scheduled throughout the year , just log on to www.oprah.com for listings and if you want more of Mr. Intensity Tony Robbins, he has a new show on the OWN Network!

Well my adrenalin never subsided; here I was around 1 am in the morning near 42nd Street and who could n’t ignore acting like a tourist!  With a quick bite to eat, getting M&Ms at their signature store and me chanting YES, YES , YES and YES among a bunch of strangers;  I would say that I had an awesome evening!

Thanks Oprah!!!!

 Letia 🙂

Photos courtesy of Letia Mitchell LifeStyle & Design®

NYC’s Architectural Digest Home Show 2012!

3 Apr

Domoore Designs

Well, it’s came so fast and now it’s over!  I waited anxiously!  Each year for the ArchDigest Home Show!  Crowded?  Yes! People excited? Yes! The expectancy was fulfilled admirably, we had so much fun!  My daughter, Camille, family friend Roger (who is also my creative designer) and I had a ball!!!!!

Looking for the latest secret finds, new creative ideas and meeting wonderful people!  Designers, vendors and businesses from all over came to this one location on the Pier 94, next to the Intrepid!

The best surprise, was putting a full fledge bar in the middle of all!  So … we all decided to have a cocktail! After that, everything looked extra special and let’s say my mood was taken up a notch  on the happy scale!

DIFFA!   The dining was superb….my favorite The Interior Design house for all past celebrities, we loved the best!

Remember, your space can be anything that you want!  ANYTHING!  Enjoy the pictures!

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Letia 😉

Photos by Letia Mitchell LifeStyle and Design®  Elizabeth Taylor Chair design by http://www.domooredesigns.com.

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