Swimming Pool or Lagoon? | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

At this time of the year, with the summer heat in full bloom, the only container I can think of is a pool in the garden containing a large body of cool, blue-green water where I can refresh my brain with a simple dip.

A “Swimming Pool” is a structure, basin, or tank which is intended for swimming, diving, or recreational bathing which contains water more than 24 inches deep at any point. This is roughly the description given in the book of building codes. Before December 14, 2006 building a swimming pool was fun and free of constrictions, until one-day things changed to complicate our lives.

Now every swimming pool installed, built or substantially modified after that date, must be equipped with one or more approved pool alarm which are capable of detecting a person entering the water at any point on the surface of the pool. The alarm must be audible at the poolside and other locations on the premises where the swimming pool is located, unless the swimming pool is equipped with an automatic power safety cover, then the alarm is not required.

A barrier of at least 4 feet high completely surrounding the swimming pool and obstructing access to the swimming pool is the next most important rule to know when building a swimming pool. Rules don’t stop here, we have been gifted with many more, but these are the two most important rules that will protect the homeowner if a group of strangers decides to jump the fence, take a dip in the pool while the homeowner is gone, act stupid and one of then drowns. Raising fences around the pool gives a sense of double seclusion more than the first fence built around the perimeter of the house and if you ask me is an unattractive feature. However, since the only thing we can do is to respect the rules, matter as well create something attractive and easy on the eye.

Just remember, if you are adding a swimming pool to increase value of your property, stop right there. The next buyers might not share your same interest in the pool and perhaps are looking to get a huge backyard for growing food instead. You never know. If you are building for your own pleasure, do it.

A few years ago I created a set of drawings for remodeling the exterior of my client’s home. The remodeling was mostly aimed to have an attractive swimming pool for entertainment right outside the kitchen. In my concept drawings there was just about everything the client wanted. My list might help someone reading me in this moment in building their own pool space.

1. Next-door neighbors was curious about the affairs of others and looked in my clients’ back yard to find his own amusement. Tall trees would block the curious neighbors and at night the in-ground lights would not make the trees a dark presence.
2. During the day a livable stoned terrace area would provide a secluded area for sunbathing, reading, relaxing. At night, warm LED light would highlight the terrace area creating a cozy ambient where friends would sit comfortably on cushions, converse and sip a cool drink while the illuminated pool would be the centerpiece.
3. I planned for solar panel to warm up the pool water when needed.
4. Marine sails over the lounge area offer a good amount of shade.
5. The space was large enough for plenty lounge chairs aligned all around the pool.
6. Planning an illuminated swimming pool complements the house and adds safety. I even planned an island of flowers protruding on the water and stairs to help kids get in the pool.
7. Of course I planned an attractive tall fence all the way around the pool.

This is what the client wanted and received. This project in the Tuscan style was developed on-line and I never got to see the finished project. I am always happy to follow the client’s desire and dreams, that is what a designer should do, but if I ought to make a swimming pool for myself I would opt for a lagoon, with large rocks, water fall, tall trees and illuminated lush vegetation. Ah, let’s not forget the music! Good food, cool drinks and fun friends will follow. Ciao,
Valentina
http://www.valentinadesigns.com

Copyright © 2014 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

ValHatCelesteStampValentina Cirasola has been in business as a designer since 1990. She has helped a variegated group of fun people realizing their dreams with homes, offices, interiors and exteriors. She is a designer well-known to bring originality to people’s homes. As an Italian designer and true to her origins, she provides only the best workmanship and design solutions. Author of three books all-available on
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Garden Art | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

Sure this is true, as my found picture says (author unknown), but what else does one need besides books and a garden? Maybe wines.
(Click on each photo to view it larger).

 

Cicero

 

Garden styles are various and personal. My personal style of garden is a bit rustic, not too manicured and a lot of whimsy. After I create the garden bone, I build around this structure often with recycled items. I find it very easy to create garden art re-using and repurposing items that already had a previous life. You would be surprised how an old bathtub or furniture, such as a unique coffee table, baby crib or an iron bed can be transformed into a beautiful piece of garden art. Just use your imagination and garden art can be almost anything.

Giardino Notte

Trellises or other walkways are ideal to create secluded area with a romantic atmosphere, or to divide a path from another scene; statues of cherubs and angels with fountains are perfect to recreate a classical style garden, bridges and lanterns for a Japanese style, just to name a few.

Wall of plants

Specific plant will determine the style of your garden from tropical to nautical theme, or wildlife habitats.

FAMILY

Metal is not a strange material to include in garden art, it offers many possibilities for benches, arches and sculpture. I would suggest large pieces of metal sculptures, the small things get lost between the foliage. If the metal sculpture gets rusty, don’t worry it looks even better showing the patina of the time. For metal gazebos it might be better to use aluminum looking like old metal, it is less expensive and durable. Personally, I am not into simulations, I prefer the real things, metal must be metal, stone must be stone and wood must be wood. One last thing, have you thought of mirrors as garden art? Keep in mind not to place a mirror directly in the sun, it will catch fire and burn the house down, but placed anywhere in the shadow, under the eave and between heavy foliage will double the beautiful image of your garden.

Mirror

(Exqui Image – Liguria, Italy)

Have you thought of what you might see reflected in the mirror other than the opposite image of your garden? I saw myself as an Opera singer in costume warbling my voice out loud while putting flowers and leaves on my face as make-up. Ciao,
Valentina
http://www.valentinadesigns.com

Copyright © 2013 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

ValentinaBlueStampAs a designer in business since 1990, I am interested in helping people designing their interior and exterior spaces to add that feeling of peace and relaxation everywhere.
Find copies of my three books on

Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0
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Up In The Air Or In The Ground | Valentina Cirasola | Interior Designer

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We have been accustomed to create gardens and orchards in the ground. Getting down in closer contact to the ground I think is very spiritual. While we attend our garden on our knees we can touch nature with our hands, shape it to our liking, mix the color we prefer and perhaps listen to our favorite music on the iPod. I find gardening time very relaxing and a good way to do some thinking.

Unfortunately a couple of months ago I fell in the street on hard concrete and seriously injured my right knee, lucky me I did not break it, but here I am two months later I still cannot bend my knee to go down very well and my garden as been suffering. As a designer the natural thing for me to do was to research on raised gardens or finding some easy solution for clients who have knees or back problems. I found this attractive creation designed by Patrick Morris called Sky Planter, which can be used indoor for fussy plants and outdoor to save our back.

It is made of ceramics, locks the plant and soil into the place and hang from a ceiling or wall-mount. A reservoir hidden in the top waters plants gradually. I also found the easy reach, the ultimate Pulley System for any plants! I think this is such a brilliant idea for any flowers, vegetables and cooking spices. The pot can even be raised up and down to put the plant in the sun when needed and in the shade when the sun get to hot. Take a look of the video by clicking on the following link:

 

At the Orticola Garden Trade Show in Milano last month, I saw gardens on rotating stairs like a Ferris wheel, easy to attend and to water as the plant comes around. For those people who live in the city and don’t have much space for gardening, I found the eco urban garden, called the “Cavalier”, made by Paris based designers Az & Mut. Hand-made in France, the products are made from a composite of 70% flax fibres. Pot cavalier is designed to be slung over the balcony railing, holding itself in place without any other hardware. The pots are light and frost-resistant.
(photoimage © designboom © morgane le gall )

The same designer came up with the idea of the “Danseuses” a lamp shade that balances on its two cut edges. It can be used either lying down, between plants to emanate a very delicate glow in its surrounding space or hung onto a wall, or suspended looking like many dancers (danseuses). They are made of bleached flax fibres and ecological resin.
(‘danseuse’ image © designboom © morgane le gall)

It is my pleasure to bring you ideas and novelties. Let me know if I can help you with some exteriors or interior solutions. Ciao, Valentina
http://www.valentinadesigns.com

 

 

 

Copyright © 2011 Valentina Cirasola, All Rights Reserved

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VC10Valentina Cirasola has been in business as a designer since 1990. 
She has helped a variegated group of fun people realizing their dreams with homes, offices, interiors and exteriors.
 She designs landscape and hardscape as a complement to the residential design concept as a unity. She is the author of three books available on
Amazon: http://goo.gl/xUZfk0
Barnes&Nobles: http://goo.gl/q7dQ3w

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