Monday, December 28, 2009


I always keep an eye out for discounted design books. I happened to be in an office supply store and found this Metropolitan Home book called Renovate. It was shrink wrapped so I couldn't see what it had to offer but since it was on clearance for a few bucks, I figured it was worth the risk. I was pleasantly surprised by all of the inspiring photos inside regarding giving new life to an existing space. The style is mostly the transitional and contemporary styles featured in the loved magazine. If you happen to come by it, I recommend picking it up or you can get it for a meager price on Amazon here.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

I hope your Christmas is wonderful! This fog is as close as we get to a White Christmas where I'm at in California.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Rocking Out

I was looking on DWR's sight and stumbled onto their rockers. I love rocking chairs. The rhythmic movement is very lulling and great to relax in. I found two in the more contempory styles DWR likes to showcase and two that didn't quite translate well.

These two looked fairly comfortable and inviting:
These two don't look quite right. The Eames chair looks like it's had wooden skis attached to its legs!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Turquoise It Is!

Pantone has announced the 2010 color of the year: Turquoise! This calm and relaxing color follows on the heels of 2009's Mimosa yellow. Turquoise brings thoughts of tropical waters and coconut scented breezes. Enjoy!

Read the full article here.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Today marks the 1 year anniversary of the official blog of Rebecca Ward Design: Design R!
Thank you to all my readers for your input and comments. I hope you have found this interesting so far and the days to come. Cheers!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Christmas is coming...

So since the Christmas shopping season is officially open, I thought I would share a few places that are great for little gifts and stocking stuffers.

Top of the list I put Restoration Hardware. Every year I am surprised to find fun gifts that are reasonably priced that are usually have something for people of all ages. Such as...

Just to show a few...

Also worth stopping by are Pier 1 Imports and Cost Plus world Market. They always have surprises waiting for me. I bought myself a bauble ring from Pier 1 of all places! Both usually have little gifty items great for filling up those stockings.

Happy Shopping!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Another one down...

I was so sad to learn today that the December issue of Metropolitan Home will be the last one to arrive in my mailbox! I have gleaned so much inspiration from it over the years. If you have never read Met Home before, I encourage you to pick up their last issue.
Here is a link to the NY Times article about Met Home's death and the many others recently including Domino and Southern Accents.
On a more positive note, Elle Decor seems to be surviving thus far these economic times and plans to publish many issues to come.
I have been enjoying Luxe Interiors and Design which is the child of Western Interiors and Design and Luxe magazine which merged earlier this year.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Another Letter

I have written before about my love for letters, monograms and initials used as art. I found another one. This month's Restauration Hardware catalog features this:
And how appropriate that it is the letter "R"! (I'm sure it had nothing to do with the "R" in "Restauration"

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Circular Seating

I saw this living room in this month's issue of House Beautiful and found I had to share it. The semi-circle or horseshoe of seating within the window bay is so charming and inviting. It looks like a good place to curl up with a book or socialize during an evening party. The fresh green fabric is nicely complemented by the medium stained wood floors and chocolate pillows. The dark lacquered trim around the windows disappears as you look out to the lovely view. This seating area gets high marks in my book.

Friday, October 16, 2009

What is the NCIDQ exam? What is an Interior Designer?

Two weeks ago, I took one of three required NCIDQ exams to become a certified interior designer. I have had many people who are not familiar with the acronym ask me what it is and why do I need to take exams.
I think the first question that needs to be addressed is what exactly is an interior designer and how does it differ from being a "decorator"?
The NCIDQ website offers some great answer to both these questions.
Here is their definition of an interior designer:

NCIDQ Definition Of Interior Design

Interior design is a multi-faceted profession in which creative and technical solutions are applied within a structure to achieve a built interior environment. These solutions are functional, enhance the quality of life and culture of the occupants, and are aesthetically attractive. Designs are created in response to and coordinated with the building shell, and acknowledge the physical location and social context of the project. Designs must adhere to code and regulatory requirements, and encourage the principles of environmental sustainability. The interior design process follows a systematic and coordinated methodology, including research, analysis and integration of knowledge into the creative process, whereby the needs and resources of the client are satisfied to produce an interior space that fulfills the project goals.

Interior design includes a scope of services performed by a professional design practitioner, qualified by means of education, experience, and examination, to protect and enhance the life, health, safety and welfare of the public. These services may include any or all of the following tasks:

  • Research and analysis of the client's goals and requirements; and development of documents, drawings and diagrams that outline those needs;
  • Formulation of preliminary space plans and two and three dimensional design concept studies and sketches that integrate the client's program needs and are based on knowledge of the principles of interior design and theories of human behavior;
  • Confirmation that preliminary space plans and design concepts are safe, functional, aesthetically appropriate, and meet all public health, safety and welfare requirements, including code, accessibility, environmental, and sustainability guidelines;
  • Selection of colors, materials and finishes to appropriately convey the design concept, and to meet socio-psychological , functional, maintenance, life-cycle performance, environmental, and safety requirements;
  • Selection and specification of furniture, fixtures, equipment and millwork, including layout drawings and detailed product description; and provision of contract documentation to facilitate pricing, procurement and installation of furniture;
  • Provision of project management services, including preparation of project budgets and schedules;
  • Preparation of construction documents, consisting of plans, elevations, details and specifications, to illustrate non-structural and/or non-seismic partition layouts; power and communications locations; reflected ceiling plans and lighting designs; materials and finishes; and furniture layouts;
  • Preparation of construction documents to adhere to regional building and fire codes, municipal codes, and any other jurisdictional statutes, regulations and guidelines applicable to the interior space;
  • Coordination and collaboration with other allied design professionals who may be retained to provide consulting services, including but not limited to architects; structural, mechanical and electrical engineers, and various specialty consultants;
  • Confirmation that construction documents for non-structural and/or non-seismic construction are signed and sealed by the responsible interior designer, as applicable to jurisdictional requirements for filing with code enforcement officials;
  • Administration of contract documents, bids and negotiations as the client's agent;
  • Observation and reporting on the implementation of projects while in progress and upon completion, as a representative of and on behalf of the client; and conducting post-occupancy evaluation reports.
And here is their definition of the exam:

The NCIDQ Examination and Certificate

Completion of the NCIDQ Examination recognizes that an individual has met minimum competency standards to protect the health, safety and welfare of the public in the practice of interior design. NCIDQ's role includes the establishment of standards for the certificate which includes minimum qualifications for education and experience and the administration of a minimum competency examination.

Passage of the exam is a requirement for licensure in all NCIDQ member jurisdictions. The exam also serves as a qualifier for professional membership within interior design organizations and, for non-affiliates, represents a voluntary individual accomplishment.

Candidates receive an individual NCIDQ Certificate number when they successfully complete the examination cycle, except for Texas candidates who are required to apply for the examination through their state board. In order for Texas candidates to receive their NCIDQ Certificate number, they must apply to NCIDQ once they passed all exam sections. The Certificate identifies the qualified practitioner, ensures recognition of expertise and assists development and self-improvement through the individual's understanding of a body of knowledge and a set of professional standards.

Friday, September 11, 2009

School of Hope

About 2 years ago, I did some volunteer work on a school down in Tijuana, Mexico called Colegio de la Esperanza. It was a La Rosa Blanca Workshop hosted by the Americas Foundations and Ilan-Lael Workshop. We worked with artist/designer James Hubbel and landscape architect Ilisa Goldman on a most beautiful school created with mosaics and fluid organic building shapes. It is always a work in progress and there were many jobs to do: tending the gardens and landscape, tiling the interior and exteriors of the buildings, pouring concrete for walkways and stairs, etc. These photos will give you a look at what a beautiful school it is turning out to be on top of a hill in an impoverished city.
There are so many children in Tijuana and young families and a lot of them don't go to school. Every student at the school is sponsored and they receive a good education with a huge exposure to the arts, not only visual but performing. All materials used for the job are donated. If you are interested in supporting this school or foundation or a student, you can go through the website or here for a student.
Photos by Rebecca Ward

Making Progress

Since so many of you ask about what I'm working on right now, I thought I would show you. This is one of my clients right now that is pulling together pretty well. It's a remodel of a condominium. The major design challenge for this project is: WHITE. This client loves white. She currently has white carpet, white walls, white vertical blinds, white tile countertops over white cabinets. She mentioned that when she moved in and had the walls painted white, she made sure it was pure white and not an off-white.This, of course is unacceptable in my book. Everything looks so monotone and bleak. So we are incorporating hints of color in the neutral cool tones and natural woods and stone. Implementing these in a clean, contemporary look I think will achieve the same aesthetic the client likes about the color white with adding some life and interest to her home.
I'm very excited about using large grey limestone tiles on the fireplace wall. Grey limestone is probably my favorite of all natural stones. (What a surprise coming from someone whose favorite color is grey!)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Bamboo Wallpaper Revisited

I remember as a kid, studying the bamboo wallpaper that the original owner of my parents house had put into the dining room and the shiny metallic bamboo wallpaper in the bathroom and not caring for it at all. The wallpaper was from circa 1979. I was a more than a willing helper to my mom in stripping the hideous paper from the walls (or painting over it as we did in the dining room - whoever installed it never wanted that sucker to come off those walls!)

Here we are 30 years later and I'm about to commend some bamboo patterned wallpaper from Farrow&Ball! Is it my tastes that have changed or are these patterns significantly better than they were 30 years ago? It's probably both. I will say that the color choice given here are much more diverse and fun than the originals I loathed. Check out some of the fun patterns and colors!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Hurricane Season

West Elm has these wonderful hurricanes that keep catching my eye! These would look great on any coffee table. I think I have to put them into the "must have" category.
I also love how they show them being used as a vase. So versatile!
Images from West Elm

Monday, August 24, 2009

Pottery Barn Fall Line

I was invited on Saturday to preview the new fall line at Pottery Barn. They have their new 'Vintage Style' that resonates a comfortable Napa Valley look. Everything is rustic with some actual imported French country antiques among their accessories.

Here is a sampling of my favorites:
I would love to have a drafting table like this, even though I do most of my drafting on the computer. It's great to have the space to layout a project.
I loved these burlap pillows that every coffee lover should have
I thought these were a good deal at 6 for $99
This is a gorgeous rustic peice that i woudl love to take home!
I love that this bench can be used as an coffee table too!
Images from Potter Barn


Looking through Gump's fall collection and furniture sale they have going on right now, I was really drawn to their benches. They have such charm! They would make a great statement in any entry.
This next one is more of a sofa or setee but I still love it!
Images from Gump's