Dining In Colors | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

Eating is a story, not just a moment to fulfill a necessity. Every nation has special holiday dining customs and rituals. In the western world, we sit at a well decorated table and give our guests something stunning to look at while they gather to enjoy dinner. Your dining table should be colorful, inviting, extravagant (why not?) and especially filled with good food.

It is easy to set up a table with traditional dishware, crystal glasses and silver flatware, nothing to it. The challenge comes when you want to do something out of the ordinary, colorful and follow your instinct instead of rules. How a table that responds to these characteristics would look like?

First, create a color scheme, let’s say blue. It doesn’t mean everything on the table must be blue, you need to create a rhythm with complement or analog colors.
Vincent Van Gogh said: “There is no blue without yellow and without orange”. Right there is the answer. With a blue tablecloth, yellow and orange tableware will be perfect. Blue is a cold color, yellow and orange are warm colors. You have created a color temperature.

Start with choosing a theme for your table: Bohemian, bucolic, country and so on.
Then select dark, medium and light values of the color you plan on using.
Find some complement or analogue colors to mix in and to add rhythm to the table setting.
Mix and match the tableware as you like.

(Click on each photo to view it larger).

For this first tablescape the theme is Bohemian. I chose a white tablecloth as the base for layering all the colors. Two different colors tea tablecloth covered opposite corners of the table, one black with bird motifs and the other one in golden tones with classical motifs.
Playing with geometry and mixing round with square plates from various dish sets is fun. Mix vintage and modern plates, mix colors and shapes, no rules and surprise yourself.
I made the napkins from leftover material of various projects and closed them in brass napkin rings. Tea light holders made of rusted metal go well with brushed bronze flatware.
Glassware don’t match on purpose, but the greenish tone is their common denominator to other items on the table.
Prosecco bottle has an interesting Venetian embellishment. She is the autumn leaves lady that sometimes is on a wine bottle and sometimes is on a mirror somewhere else in the house. Her purpose is to embellish.

For the second Bohemian table, I have used a floral tablecloth, made of silk fabric in silver tone, as the base, then I cover it half way with a red voiles shawl. Each set of glassware is made of three different styles glasses and each set is made of the same three pieces. Even though, I chose a continuity in the glassware, I wanted my plate sets to be extravagant in style and colors. The silver flatware is a contrast to the gold wine glassware. I scattered some acrylic diamonds on the cloth to pick up light from candles and lamps outside the table. The table is set for two, it would be just the same for 4-6 or more people.

A dinner table is for food and conversation, decorations should be kept minimal and low to allow guests to see each other and talk across the table.

This will be the topic of my next TV Show: “Dinner At 7:00” produced under my label Valentina Design Universe.
I hope you have a splendid Thanksgiving. Ciao,
Valentina
http://www.valentinadesigns.com

Copyright © 2017 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

 

Valentina Cirasola transforms and creates spaces realizing people’s dreams in homes, offices, interiors and exteriors. She infuses your everyday living with a certain luxury without taking away a comfortable living. Valentina is well-known for bringing originality on any project and for thinking outside the box. Her interiors are not made with cookie cutters, only follow client’s inspiration, lifestyle and personality. She offers on-line design consultations through Skype and the traditional in-house consultations, helping people with their design challenge anywhere in the world. She is the author of three books, all-available on
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w
Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0

 

 

 

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Rounded | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

Going to Napa, the California wines’ valley  is a fun experience every time. Stores display unusual merchandise for those people looking for originality and at time a bit crazy too, but crazy in home décor is good. One or a few whimsical pieces here and there make a jovial, playful home. Colors and rounded shapes are more welcoming than straight lines or sharp corners, especially if kids are around.

I loved this pod chair. Not only is round, it swivels and is patriotic.  All black leather covers the interior of the pod. I would have liked it in all red interior.

(Click on each photo to view it larger)


In the same store, I found this very unusual table set made of hammered metal with golden beading. I wondered if this is only a decorative table set, or it is intended for food and if it is, how food would taste on metal. In the Middle Age, metal and wood were the only materials used to make plates, until ceramic was invented.

 

This set of lace tray and plates is magnificent, and the price is as well,  $525 each set, of my !!!

The visit could not be complete without a visit to at least one winery, where the round oak wine barrels, round shaped garden and beautiful flowers  greeted us.

Round shaped flower beds and a round fountain make an inviting courtyard.


Napa Valley is a country side, with a warm, sultry temperature, vineyards and wine makers populate the area. Here, days go by tasting wines, eating specialty food and international variety of cheeses. I think that’s the reason people are so relaxed here. Life is easier when it is not stuck in the same groove.

Some of the buildings stayed the same since 1892 or just about. The round paneling enclosing all windows makes nice details on a building that is otherwise square.  History and traditions is what I want to see when I get away from the city, skyscrapers and heavy traffic.

I think, I can live here, even without the sea. Ciao,
Valentina
http://www.valentinadesigns.com

 

Copyright © 2017 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

 

Valentina Cirasola is an Italian interior designer in business since 1990. She is passionate about colors and all expressive arts. She is a “colorist”. To her, selecting art and original pieces means to bring out the best energy of her clients and nourish their soul. She trots the world and loves writing travel notes, from which she draws inspiration to design her interiors. She is the author of her book on the subject of colors: ©Red-A Voyage Into Colors available on:
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w
Amazon: http://goo.gl/qNxXrB

Talking RED With Carra | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

This week, five years ago, I launched my third book: ©RED-A Voyage Into Colors. Many people interviewed me and cheered along with me.
Carra Riley was one of the kind and interesting people who interviewed me on Blog Talk Radio. Here is the link to the interview: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/carra-riley/2012/10/18/red-hot

(Click on each photo to view it larger)

©RED – A Voyage Into Colors- Author Valentina Cirasola

 

Carra Riley is an author, realtor and one of the most creative people, full of ideas I have ever met. She never stops at one enterprise, she has two or three already started and taking shape at the same time. Carra is a high energy, passionate person and I love her just because of that. Passion is a rare quality that makes the world go around. She connects the dots around the world and dodges Cosmic Cow Pie with her book full of solutions and practical advises for an organized and balanced life. After her Cosmic books and products, she developed the Transition Living Real Estate Team through which she takes care of seasoned people transitioning in their third and fourth age.

(Above: Carra Riley – Author, Photographer, Realtor)

Carra loves photography. Two of her photos were exhibited in a Russian Art Gallery during the Olympics in Russia 2014 featured in the “100 Wonders Of The World.” The exhibition was put together with the help of National Geographic, a unique way of re-examining the view of the world from the perspective of different societies and cultures, such as Russia, Germany, USA, Indonesia, Australia, Malaysia, Kuwait and even African countries.

(Above: Banana Flower taken in Wailea, Maui, Hawaii by Carra Riley)


(Above: Gallery for “100 Wonders of the World.” St. Petersburg, Russia)

Talking RED with Carra was fun and entertaining. She asked what the title of the book meant and I explained that my drawing on the front cover has many symbolisms. The heart represents all my passions tight by a leather belt to keep them from escaping. The three holes at the tops of the heart represent windows in my travels from which I have seen colors of other cultures, hence RED-A Voyage Into Colors. The red dot at the tip of the heart represents the heart itself kicking and shuffling all my colorful passions to make them happen and…. happen they did.

She went on asking about the meaning of the color RED in various aspects of life.
I introduced some concepts of RED used in marketing and sales, in decorating with Feng Shui theory, dos and don’ts of RED, how to polarize water, how to use it in our clothes and how to balance the red chakra.

Often one hour is never enough to talk about colors, but I was so grateful to Carra for this interview while I was launching the book. We exchanged our books, I was so happy to read her Cosmic Cow Pie, even happier about her book on CD I listened in the car during my long hours of driving.
Find her books here:  http://cosmiccowpie.com/store/book-and-cd

 

Cosmic Cow Pie Books – Author Carra Riley

Cosmic Cow Pie…Connecting The Dots by Carra Riley

Carra makes the world go around, she is a giver and a caring person. I am so happy to have connected online with her many years ago and still waiting for that moment when I will meet her. Ciao,
Valentina
http://www.valentinadesigns.com

Copyright © 2017 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

As a designer in business since 1990, Valentina Cirasola is interested in helping people designing their interior-exterior spaces with an overall feeling of peace, relaxation and harmony that will draw them home eagerly. She is always looking to add that special touch with original findings to the spaces she designs. Color is the focus of her business today, changing people’s energy and life force just by introducing them to colors they would have never imagined. Vogue Italia magazine, Gentry and many prominent magazines in California featured her work. She appeared on RAI, National Italian T.V. and on many local TV Shows in California. Her story continues.
Find copies of her book on colors ©RED – A Voyage Into Colors on
Amazon: http://goo.gl/qNxXrB
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

Bring Back Charm | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

Newly built homes might follow trends of the moment, but lack the charm of trims and custom millwork of elegant homes of the past.
Adding an arch, a niche, a wainscoting or various crown molding is not as intimidating as one thinks. I am working on a client’s home, it will be cute as a button when it will be finished. Adding the archway was easy even for the contractor. Between demolishing the existing door and building the new arch, took no time, just a day of work. It seems such a small detail, but the new arch is making a big impression in the room. The medium high kick board highlights the new distressed wood next to the tile planks. The cabinets with interior lights on both sides of the arch, seem to frame it.  The new corner block molding finishes beautifully the end of the crown molding, which doesn’t dead end in the wall. Before the arch, there was a door there, now both rooms look one entity, even though there is a change of color. That is called rhythm.

Block molding are small details with large power, they finish corners so beautifully. (Photo below: Decorating Ceiling Tiles)

(Photo below: Crown Molding Corner Blocks Lowes Sheltylvratt Net Pinterest)

In the photo below is explained how easy it is to design and elegant ceiling crown molding with a bunch of strips stacked together in an artistic manner. (Photo below: TheJoyofMoldings.com)

What else can we do with crown molding? Frame a mirror.
(Photo below: http://www.kts-s.com/kts/53083/how-to-frame.asp)

We can frame a door with simple molding and corbels, producing attractive classical details with an old charm, even if it’s only one doorway as shown in the photo (By: Full of Great Ideas – http://www.livingho.me)

 

Wall frame paneling – simple molding can be arranged to mimic ornate profiles and add the illusion of wood paneling, just like those used by the British in the 1750s. (Photo found on: http://www.buzzfeed.com)


Tall Baseboard –After World War II, houses went up like mushrooms. Society had the need to rebuild infrastructures, homes, schools, shops and everything else. To give way to fast building, beautiful details of past architecture were not important anymore.  Layering various pieces of molding with different feature, such as a flat plank with a decorative cap molding and quarter round pieces, is very effective, it defines the room by adding a regal look and value to the house.
A tall baseboard can be made with flexible skirting as this one in the photo below.
(Photo below – https://www.wmboyle.co.uk/product/sx118-flexible-skirting)

 

 

Upgrading the home with small details such as crown molding will increase the value of your property and will be your home, personalized to your taste, not the builder’s taste. Ciao,
Valentina
http://www.valentinadesigns.com

 

Copyright © 2017 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

Valentina Cirasola transforms and creates spaces realizing people’s dreams in homes, offices, interiors and exteriors. She infuses your everyday living with a certain luxury without taking away a comfortable living. Valentina is well-known for bringing originality on any project and for thinking outside the box. Her interiors are not made with cookie cutters, only follow client’s inspiration, lifestyle and personality. She offers online design consultations through Skype and the traditional in-house consultations, helping people with their design challenge anywhere in the world. She is the author of three books, all-available on
Amazon: http://goo.gl/qNxXrB
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w   

 

 

Art Of Puglia: Taming A Stone | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

“It is warm to the touch and feels like a skin of a woman” says Renzo Buttazzo, Italian sculptor of a particular stone found only in Lecce, in the deep region of Puglia, South-East of Italy. I had the opportunity to interview him and a world of beauty opened up to me.
(Click on each photo to view it larger).

(Above: Renzo Buttazzo – Italian sculptor)

Renzo Buttazzo calls the stone an “unstable precariousness”. Inspired by the simplicity of walls in the Puglia countryside, which were built only with stones stacked one on top of the other without mortar, Renzo designed a piece of stone furniture the same way. Each piece of stone he carved, hovers over the other, he stacked them like the walls in the country securely standing for centuries under all-weather conditions. The design style he chose refers to the square shapes of ‘70s.

(Above: “Yang” Stone Furniture)

Renzo Buttazzo started carving Lecce Stone at age 19, when his path was clear to him. He wanted to create something spectacular with his hands. Experiment after experiment, he changed the way to carve a stone. Renzo empties out the block of Lecce Stone and creates from the inside out. He doesn’t use the traditional method of carving and shaping a block of stone into a figure or an object, as it has been done with marble and granite for so long. Lecce Stone, Renzo explained, is a soft limestone, as ancient as 4 million years, yellowish in colors, warm to the touch, contains fossils, water and sand, basically the memory of past lives that have touched it.


(Above: “Aurea” Table)

He went on saying the stone produces natural and magical games of light. He was the first to create stone lamps that, in his imagination, it’s not necessary to turn on. Texture and fenestration he creates in the stone lamps receive the sun light in various time of the day, making beautiful fluid shapes on walls and surfaces, enough to free the viewer’s imagination. In the morning, the lamps are sculptures and in the evening they become lamps.

(Above: “Dormienti – Vulca” Light Installation)

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(Above: “Meltemi” Lamp)

His way of carving the stone inside out was so innovative to get the media interested in his work and at only age 38, the President of the Italian Republic nominated Renzo Buttazzo:
“Cavalier of the Republic” for artistic merits, a rare award to receive in Italy.

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(Above: “Maui” Floor Lamp)

Nature of Puglia, his native region, where he lives and creates, the shapes of the olive trees, Karstic rocks of Puglia, coral reefs and the basin of the Adriatic Sea, are all the elements contributing to his inspiration. Touching his sculptures, which is something Renzo encourages to do, will give the visitors the right sensation of the stone’s fluidity, the warmth and the sensual shapes he attributes to the stone.

 

(Above and below: “Merlera” Sculpted Wall)

The sculptor loves to empty out the stone with ancient chisels to make it as light as possible, thus no one piece he crafted is equal to the other. In fact, when he receives an order of a large number of wall sconces, or lamps for the same interior, each piece looks different. The attention to details he puts in his work makes every piece original and highly appreciated.

(Above: “Ovo” Bath Tub)

Due to its versatility, Lecce stone is used for interior applications, usually left at its row state, as it keeps the house warm in the winter and cool in the summer. The formation of a slight layer of mold protects the stone under any weather condition when used for exterior applications. From the steppe to the desert, Renzo produced exterior decorations for a church in Russia, buildings in Canada and in Dubai. He produces sculptures, lamps, wall sconces, and even stones furniture for famous resorts and hotels around the world.
He loves to talk about his stone lounge chairs for swimming pools, the “Mareposa chaise longue”. At the end of the summer, when people and noises are no longer there, the undulated chairs remain on the swimming pool as soft, silent sculptures of flying ribbons.

(Above: “Mareposa” Chaise Longue)

Renzo collaborates with various glass, wood and metals artists. The “Zeus” table created with metal legs, Lecce stone top and a crack made on purpose to be filled with liquid copper was a great hit at Milan Furniture Exhibition and sold immediately.

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(Above: “Zeus” Table)

Molten glass at the highest temperature mixed in with Lecce stone, burns the stone and creates unpredictable shapes. Once the glass cools, it separates from the stone and voila’ two objects tamed to the will of the artist are born with distinctive characters.

(Above: “Velata” Bowls)

Vulcanization is Renzo’s way to shape volcanic black stone and incorporate it in the Lecce stone to create dark-light effects and original rhythms.

(Above: “Niura” Sculpture – Vulcanization)

I asked him about his future projects. He wants to fight globalization by returning to the origins. With the help of the European Community Renzo has plans to teach his art to youngsters, teach how to work all materials nature produces, teach them to appreciate the history of Italian craftsmanship and the value of creating objects by hands, making sure the posterity will keep the art alive. Creating a piece art, also means knowing how to sell or place it in the right interior, with the right client that will appreciate it.  To his teaching he wants to add market studies, philosophy of understanding world customers and their needs. The duty of an artist is to hand the past to new generation to build their future.

(Above: “Vulca Casa” Lamp)

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(Above: “Reef” Vase)

(All photos are property of Renzo Buttazzo – permission to use them granted).

 

Renzo Buttazzo concluded our conversation by saying he creates for himself first to satisfy his needs. Customers take home his passion, his love and his emotions. Ciao,
Valentina
http://www.valentinadesigns.com

Copyright © 2017 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

 

Valentina Cirasola is a designer in business since 1990. She is interested in helping people designing their interior and exterior spaces with an overall feeling of peace, relaxation and harmony that will draw them home eagerly. She is always looking to add that special touch with original findings to the spaces she designs. Color is the focus of her business today, changing people’s energy and life force just by introducing them to colors they would have never imagined. Vogue Italia magazine, Gentry and many prominent magazines in California featured her work. She appeared on RAI, National Italian T.V. and her story continues. Find copies of her book on colors ©RED – A Voyage Into Colors  and  the rest of her books on
Amazon: http://goo.gl/qNxXrB
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

Layered | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

Season is changing. Time for coziness, fireplace, hot cacao, and earthy food is coming. If I had a winter chalet in the mountain, I would decorate it just like this place with only small variations.
I would layer walls with images and objects of mountains and lakes, games and fish. The décor of the room would be layered with leather, plaid fabrics and Kilim rugs.

(Click on each photo to view it larger).

 

I would design a massive fireplace layered with stones and wrought irons.

My chairs would be very comfortable and spacious. I would want them made of rawhide, wood and heavy decorative nailheads.

 

All the interior floor would be rough distressed wood, layered with stenciled images of nature.

I would want an interior cascade ending in a pool where to relax with a colorful cocktail and a game room in the same area.

The entry door, of course, would be decorated with a heavy wood handles.

 

 

The exterior of the chalet would be layered with the suffuse light of lanterns and the ground would be layered with bright and cheerful beds of  black-eyed Susan.

 

 

But this is not my chalet, it’s one of Bass stores and I fell in love the first time I visited it. I thought, If I will ever own a chalet, I would decorate it just like it, warm and cozy. Ciao,
Valentina
http://www.valentinadesigns.com

 

Valentina Cirasola transforms and creates spaces realizing people’s dreams in homes, offices, interiors and exteriors. She infuses your everyday living with a certain luxury without taking away a comfortable living. Valentina is well-known for bringing originality on any project and for thinking outside the box. Her interiors are not made with cookie cutters, only follow client’s inspiration, lifestyle and personality. She offers on-line design consultations through Skype and the traditional in-house consultations, helping people with their design challenge anywhere in the world.  She is the author of three books, all-available on
Amazon: http://goo.gl/qNxXrB
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

 

In Company Of Aura House | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

In September, a few years ago, Eleyne-Mari Sharp interviewed me on her
Color Healing Radio and we spend a pleasant 30 minutes on a video call talking about colors and my new book: RED-A Voyage Into Colors.

(Click on each photo to view it larger).

©RED – A Voyage Into Colors- Author Valentina Cirasola

(Above: Eleyne-Mari Sharp – Author).

Eleyne-Mari is an author, a certified color therapist, the director of Aura House School of Color and Light, founder of Color Therapy Month, the “Rainbow Writing” method and she organizes courses to become Color Expert. http://www.aurahouse.com  –   www.colortherapyschool.com

 

Eleyne-Mari can teach how to write and shout our feelings to the full moon; she is a Lightworker and through her podcast series, she “celebrates conscious writers who are actively using their words to elevate the vibration of the planet”, in her words.

As a spiritual person, she teaches self-love, forgiveness and how to rise above difficulties. Using color therapy or crystal bed therapy, she promotes clarity and healing.

Just like myself, she loves water and says: “I am drawn to the energy of water and have always found it difficult to leave a bath, a pool or an ocean for some alternate playground.  Water is transforming.  It stirs up the inner waves of my emotions. It cleanses my angst”. I cannot agree more with her.

Her radio programs include: Colors for Meditations, Sunday Colors, Color Angels, Heart Day and Full Moon Color Healing Circles, Color Calendar and many others, which can be found here:  http://www.aurahouse.com/color-healing-radio

Our conversation started with telling the experience of my years in the fashion industry as a designer and owner of my fashion company. Through the video call, she could see the color palette I was wearing and, of course, she asked me if I gravitate around those colors. It was a mix of aqua-blue, light-dark blue, light grey and a very small amount of white. The palette is very soothing and I wore it for the interview on purpose, to stay calm and collected. It is also a great palette for a blond with blue eyes. Knowing the power of colors will put us in a better attitude and better situations.

She went on asking me about my colorful interior design career. She wasn’t surprise to learn I use colors to my advantage when I want to be seen or disappear in the background, when I want to be cheerful and bring optimism in my clients’ homes, or when I want them to make decisions. Every color has a purpose.

Eleyne-Mari lived in Italy some time ago, where she admired the freshness of food and, most of all, how important it is for Italian to have colorful food on the table. She was curious to know about my experience with food and if it had anything to do with me writing two cookbooks. Aside from the fact that colorful food is joyous to see, its colors help balancing and nourishing the chakras, I said. Passion has its own color, without it, life has no spice. Being passionate about food and loving my native land of Puglia were two reasons I wrote two cookbooks.

Here is the link of that fun 30 minutes colorful interview:
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/colortherapy/2014/09/01/the-color-calendar

Eleyne-Mari closes all her communications by saying a “Rainbow Blessings”. I say, let nature inspire you, be in tune with its glorious colors and just copy it.

I love to remember events, situations and people my life brought me, great people, colorful people, each with a message. Thank you Eleyne-Mari. Ciao,
Valentina
http://www.valentinadesigns.com


Copyright © 2017 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

 

Valentina Cirasola is an Italian Interior Designer working in the USA and Europe since 1990, specializing in interior and exterior, color analysis, kitchen, bath, wine cellar, and outdoor kitchen designs. Often people describe her as “the colorist” as she loves to color her clients’ world and loves to create the unusual. “Vogue” magazine and many prominent publications in California featured Valentina’s work. She also was seen on RAI – Italian National TV and has made four appearances on T.V. Comcast Channel 15. Author of three published books, the latest ©RED – A Voyage Into Colors is on the subject of colors.
Amazon: http://goo.gl/qNxXrB
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

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