LINEN at The INTERIOR EDGE DESIGN FIRM

•August 2, 2021 • Leave a Comment

An Environmentally Friendly Fabric

The Interior Edge is committed to desiging natural environments for healthy,
happy living. Linen is an exciting part of that picture and can easily find its way into
many of our interiors, whether it be used as draperies, upholstery or other.
A natural fabric, linen is versatile and durable, adding comfort and
thermal insulation to any room. You’ll feel a touch of luxury wherever it is found. It’s
also breathable, absorbent and hypo allergenic.
Made from the fibers of the flax plant, linen’s the most natural fiber in the
world to grow. Easily pleased, it requires little water or chemicals to grow. Every
part of the plant can be used and the plant itself is both fully recyclable and fully
biodegradable.
Not to mention its simple majesty as it grows in the fields. Each flower
blooms for only one day. So each moment must be savored.

Here at the Interior Edge, we are quite excited about a wonderful line of linen
called Two Sisters Ecotextiles. They have been offering high-quality,
environmentally sustainable fabrics for almost two decades.
Check out their website for inspiration for your next home project :
https://www.twosistersecotextiles.com/collections/all/use-upholstery
We’d be happy to help you integrate linen and other natural materials into
your living spaces. Give us a call !

#theinterioredge #luxurybeyondexpectation #joanneriley

What Was Old is New Again at TIE!

•December 18, 2020 • Leave a Comment

Thirty years have come and gone and throughout them all, the Interior Edge Design Firm has been creating new spaces and places…interior spaces (homes, rooms, offices, etc.) and exterior extensions of indoor spaces (terraces, verandas, balconies, pool areas—the possibilities are endless). Our clients are sometimes new ones, but often, they are ones who have worked with us time and again over the years, as they change houses, renovate and update rooms, build additions or just want change in their living and work spaces.

What makes our clients keep coming back to us? What draws new clients to us?  What makes the Interior Edge Design Firm unique? What is our brand?

Lately, I have been contemplating these questions in a philosophical way.  As the Interior Edge’s principle designer, the relationship with my clients, the art and science of interior designing and the management of my company have always been my focal points. While this may sound obvious, it is an act which requires both reaching out to others and plunging inward deeply into each project. I bring not only my competence as a designer, I also bring my heart, my soul, my enthusiasm, my warmth and my love. Characterizing and articulating what makes that process one-of-a-kind (which, indeed, it is) requires another gesture, that of pulling back, taking a bit of time and distance to look at the big picture. 

My first observation is that a kind of alchemy takes place. The answers to the questions involved in the design process are felt intuitively by all the actors involved. Putting it all into words can sometimes seem elusive….Hence, the need for a more philosophical approach…

This time of pandemic has brought a halt to the traveling I do so love. Reaching out, exploring, visiting family, discovering new people and places have been core elements in my life, my design process, in the designs themselves.  I have had to put all that aside for the moment. Despite this loss (or because of it!), a new space has opened, giving me the opportunity to consciously seek the answers within myself to these questions of branding and to pick up my pen to tell you about it. 

Up until now, I have gone about trying to define the undefinable in a number of ways. I have worked with coaches ; I have written down all kinds of things. I have spent numerous hours meditating…and whatever else I could imagine would help this concept to flow freely…

I can now tell you with certainty that my work as an interior designer, the Interior Edge Design Firm’s brand, is uniquely unique. It is, in so many ways, the product of who I am.  I am constantly educating myself because I super, super love anything to do with interior design and the materials in the spaces that we live in. The things that we bring to those spaces, how  people change the actual architecture of the house and work space, the dynamics of what goes on between “stuff” ( fixtures, furnishings and equipment) and the aliveness of the people and participants in the space all fascinate me. That fascination is a vital part of the process. And, indeed, this is where the design process begins. 

But how does it continue? What happens when a really great designer and really great clients come together and allow themselves to be authentic ? Each one of us energetically makes space for the other, for the newness which comes in the process of meeting, together transforming spaces and places. This energetic space, like the physical space, must feel right—not too much, not too little—just right. True collaboration begins. And then, things start to ‘flow’.  

This flow of energy is often intuitive. Sometimes words don’t need to be spoken. It is a process of give and take and, little by little, we (the partners in the project) begin to feel a new energy in the space being designed. It is ‘coming alive’, taking on a life of its own. We all feel the magic which lasts throughout the years…

I have been  graced with so many wonderful clients who have opened themselves up to me in their own ways and I to them and together we have created multitudes of amazing interior spaces, each one precious.

How do these places and spaces continue to vibrate with the energy we have created together during the process of interior design? Clients have shared with me how some of their magical moments have manifested themselves…

One client told me about her son who wrote his essay to get into Harvard. It was all about the best place he never travelled to. My clients and their children go on a lot of nice trips, but the place he chose was the banquets at the kitchen table.   He wrote the most beautiful prose, how sitting there with his brothers and sisters and mom and dad changed his life. It was a place which was always safe to go to. That’s a magical moment for an interior designer for sure 🙂

Another client told me his story as we got onto the elevator. We had just finished a project in New York City and he was helping me with my many designer bags. Then he turned to me  and said » we no longer want to live in the city where we  live and we are  going to make this in our main home »….powerful transformation ! That’s a magical moment!

 I hope you  know the wonderful feeling of magical, mysterious moments, in any and all contexts, whether it be with your partner, your pet or your home.

If you need any help creating (and re-creating) living spaces and places, let us know.  We’re always here for you and ready for the magic!

The House that Built Us!

•December 18, 2020 • Leave a Comment
The Houses That Built Us
During these times, so many thoughts about home have crossed my mind, as I’m sure it has for all of you. I am lucky enough to have moved into a new house during the pandemic. It was a welcome change for me because we sold our family estate last year and I had been hunting for exactly the right place until I found it. I call it a 1980’s museum. It needs a total redesign and redecoration. What fun!
 Part of what I love about it is that there is a 100 acre organic farm in front and a 200 acre public reservoir behind, just steps away. The other part that I love is that it is a miniature version of the two houses I grew up in. 
 Until I was about 14 years old, we lived just outside New York City,  in a Dutch colonial home. It definitely informed my sense of design because it was so grounded and steeped in tradition. My mother is very stylish and did a lot of the decoration work, although she also hired an interior designer for the challenging living room that was front to back and had a passage to a sun porch. That was my brother’s room because there were 6 of us children and our grandfather lived with us most of the time.
 I would watch from the stairs quietly when the designer came in to the house, so no one knew I was there as he would discuss ideas with my parents. I was maybe 8 or 9 so I am not entirely sure how much I understood at the time, but I definitely felt the impact of everything he and the design did.  The design complimented and respected the architecture’s traditionalism but also had a great mediterranean flair with carved spanish linoleum tiles. The area was a pass-through, but with two chairs flanking the fireplace, it was also a truly cozy place to sit. It also served as our staging area for the Christmas tree, which was always large and wide, and touched the ceiling, making a grand feeling every year with 6 children’s toys under it at Christmas time. So much about the stability of that house and living in that space stayed with me for many years, even after moving out of New York City, to Western Massachusetts.
 We moved to a 144 acre plot of land where my parents, with the help of an architect, built an amazing house. It was unique and contemporary, and way ahead of its time. We all had our own rooms that we got to design ourselves, which I think is an important element in any child’s life. Of course, we were guided, but we had a lot of creativity and fun in deciding the image that we wanted. My room had black and white psychedelic wallpaper with a hanging desk made of the spanish linoleum tiles left over from the house in New York. There was also a huge paragon shaped window, directly to the right of the desk, which I would often look out and dream of far away places.  Both of those houses built me and go a long way in explaining my design sensitivities and affinity for both super traditional/transitional styles as well as eclectic and contemporary styles. Both made me feel at home, which meant feeling comforted and creative.  Moving into my new home, it is time to incorporate the two houses that built me and really go all out in expressing my soul’s contentment. It is certainly a wonderful bare palette at the moment and I will be sure to keep you updated along the journey!  I hope your homes are serving you during this time and for a long time to come. Never underestimate the power of a beautifully built environment. Until soon I hope!

Love and light,
Joanne

“Of the five senses, smell is the one with the best memory”
– Rebecca Mcclanahan

We design to create beautiful environments for our clients, and so much of the final product and feeling associated with it can be attributed to the sensory experience of a space. Part of our process if to engage and soothe the senses in the home, otherwise known as sensory design. Over the next several weeks, we will be sharing how we design for each of the five senses and how we incorporate them into interiors, starting with smell.
 Scents can be alluring or unpleasant, mysterious, familiar, over-powering, or welcoming. We have strong reactions to and relationships with different aromas that are physical and often deeply personal, and how humans relate to fragrance has a long history. Ancient cultures would use essential oils and burn incense, for cultural and ritualistic purposes. Eventually, fragrances became more commercialized and now scents can be found in almost all environments and products we use. Aromas have become a strong sales and branding tool, whether it’s the captivating fragrance at a boutique hotel or our loyalty to the fresh smell and cleaning power of Pine-sol. We all have our preferences and it’s quite common for us to keep our favorite scents around our living spaces in the forms of candles, sprays, and diffusers. Automated scent and essential oil diffusers are now becoming quite popular in people’s homes: lavender for sleep, ylang ylang for stress relief, and peppermint for energy, to name a few. These applications fall under what is commonly known as aromatherapy, which offers healing and holistic benefits, but have you heard of aromachology?
 Aromachology is the study of how scent can impact us on an emotional level. Scent can trigger powerful memories and can influence mood, emotions and behavior. Studies show that parts of the brain which govern alertness and concentration can be influenced positively or negatively by scent and aromachologists blend essential oils to create “behavioral fragrances” to establish positive effects of aromas on our behaviors and emotions. Knowledge surrounding scent is still in its infancy and the future applications of these studies are quite exciting!

With this knowledge, our goal is to take your home décor beyond the traditional and add a multi-sensory experience. Stay tuned for the upcoming sensory experiences in our next monthly newsletter!
 

Travel to New and Creative Environments Online 

One way we have been getting to flex our design muscles while staying home during these wild times is by going back to our past and playing games! Specifically, one game has engrossed us, The Sims Freeplay compatible on almost all mobile devices and tablets from EA games. If you don’t know the franchise The Sims games focus on simulating life, allowing you to take control over a vast number of characters, play out daily life, drama and challenges, and work towards big goals and aspirations. One huge aspect of the game, a component that has played to the series success, is the game allows players to create custom homes and rooms, with tons of furniture and decor options! 
 As you can see from the promotional video it’s not all building and design, the game challenges players to explore the virtual town they’ve been put in charge of, build up community lots like Fire Stations, Parks, and Museums, and create a dynamic neighborhood filled with different characters and homes! Hard work put into helping sims achieve their goals is rewarded with expanded decor and home furnishing options and more resources to build bigger homes with! It’s been a really great way to get our minds to shift gears, giving us a fun platform to play with design and express our unique creative vision for each sim we create.

We’d love to see how you are using games to keep yourself active and engaged with design, send us your favorite “Sims” creation so we can feature it in our next newsletter! If you aren’t sure where to get the game follow this link https://www.ea.com/games/the-sims/the-sims-freeplay where you’ll find more info as well as links to find it on the App Store, Google Play, and even Amazon Apps. So stay safe, stay home, and stay creative!
Check out the Sims Freeplay promotional video to get a feeling for how the game looks and the general idea.

The Importance of HOME, especially now…

•March 14, 2020 • Leave a Comment

As many of you know, I often keep my distance from the negativity of the news. This doesn’t mean I’m cut off from news-breaking events because the people around me are always happy to share the major and many of the minor events we hear about via the media.

The spread of the Covid-19 virus has led to many questions and changes. 

Last night at yoga class, I realized that half of the usual participants were absent. The teacher announced we would not use props. « Yikes » cried my stiffness! I was mortified by this news and my body was in pain. However, the teacher then went on to say that we could use them if we wanted. I quickly took supports to help me. This moment between no props and props ‘at my own risk’ reminded me of the delicate balance between not going around oblivious (which could lead us into dangerous situations !) and consciously making our own decisions in the present moment.

None of us have lived through a “plague ” before. So it’s difficult to know exactly how to act. As usual, we should check with our hearts, minds and souls, as well as with the people we trust. Then we must make our own choices, doing what resonates best for each of us, in the most conscious of ways.

So, these last few days and weeks have been a time of questioning, a time of slowing down, moving about less, coming into contact with fewer people. As this has been happening, it has occurred to me that this is a propitious moment to contemplate the value of HOME. 

So, how exactly do we characterize the feeling of ‘HOME’? I believe it is a place where we can put down our fears, sleep, breathe and relax. It is a vital soul space, allowing us to feel less stressful, to find the beauty in life.

I am delighted to become more conscious of the fact that my home is a safe, comforting and loving place. I hope that my clients also feel safety, comfort and love in the homes we have created together.

HOME is a work in progress.  It is both a physical and a human environment. Bringing intention to those spaces helps our lives to vibrate there in the most vital of ways. 

One of the ways I work on this is through the use of essential oils. When cleaning, use oils so small hands and paws stay safe, even if you use other products as well. Decreasing the use of harsh chemicals and increasing the use of natural ones is a great way of increasing energy in your home. 

Essential oils are powerful and can be used in different ways and different situations (for example, some are great for cats and dogs, others are bad for them). Find out more about them by clicking this link to my source :

Link: http://www.ourlemongrassspa.com/14396/

Spending time in the kitchen is another way to make your house more ‘alive’. Baking is a happy soul place for me. Cookies, cakes, muffins, anything I can bake! If you’re looking for gluten-free sources for ingredients or like the convenience of mixes, try this website :

LINK: https://glufreegan.com/recipes/
LINK: https://glufreegan.myshopify.com/

In Addition, there is a daily email sign up for getting natural ways to kill virus and support your immune system every day using easily available ingredients. Here’s the sign up:

LINK: https://drsdetox.com/antiviralvid

So, in this moment of change, don’t panic. Inform yourself, bring that information to your heart space (a great thing to do in that place we call ‘HOME’!) and consciously make the decisions that are right for you! 

Please feel free to contact me if you have questions or inspirations concerning your house and home. I’d be delighted to be part of the transformation!

Love and light,

Joanne

Office:860.233.4244 or 212.560.0533/ Cell:860.916.2547

JR

Interior Edge Published in Russia!

•October 14, 2017 • Leave a Comment
The Interior Edge: Published Internationally, Again!

The Interior Edge is so proud to announce that Joanne Riley, ASID and guest designer Janice Olson, ASID have been published in Russia! This is a great addition to our international recognition, having already been published numerous times throughout western Europe and China. Thank you all for being part of this amazing journey with us! Here is a szall excerpt from the article on Houzz: 

View the full article here!

Valentines Newsletter

•February 19, 2017 • Leave a Comment
Dream Big! Love Magnificently ♥ Live with Luxury beyond Expectation! 

 
Another favorite holiday! Thanksgiving and Valentines day top my list!
I was recently asked to make amateur videos for HGTV’s House Hunter Renovation as part of the interview process. They gave me questions to answer and one of them was to speak about my favorite client. I only have favorite clients now because about 10 years ago my Dad taught me about the 80/20 rule and I decided to only have clients that were excited about what we were doing, knew the value of my work and treated my staff with gratitude.

None the less I had to pick one. I picked one that stood out from a while ago. I remembered a client that called me one snowy February day and he wanted to give me as a Valentine’s Day present to his wife. We talked for hours because the whole east coast was immobilized. I was intrigued that he thought of design as the greatest, most loving gift he could give his wife.

I was hired for the project and we had an amazing ride! We would meet in a motel room because their house was completely gutted and although I do have an office in Ct. it was not that close to the shoreline where the house was. This couple lived all over the world and brought richness of spirit, fun and adventure to the project. I love clients that have imagination and those that have none at all. This woman had a clear feelings of what she wanted and I could see it so I could supply the vehicles (fabrics, wallpaper, lighting, etc.) to make it a reality.

Each room of this unassuming house transported you to another country or place they had collected memories from. It was not your average project, it was a creative journey that they wanted in order to complete their lives in. It was designed, built and dreamed of with joy and love as it had started. They lived there as their second home until the husband’s death. His ashes were spread there because “it was his favorite place to be”. Life doesn’t get much better than that!

As the years have gone by I agree, design, living well, having not only what you need, but “luxury beyond expectation”** is the greatest gift. Maybe not for the reasons most people may think, but I think it is the greatest gift because you get to be heard at your heart level and it is translated into something physical. I have come to know my place in the design world, it is to create that magic one person (family) at a time.
Happy Valentine’s Day!!! I send a true loving spirit to your homes and family!!!

**Luxury: the state of great comfort and extravagant living
**Beyond: happening or continuing after
**Expectation:belief about (or mental picture of) the future

In my Travels…

The Clark – Japanese Impressions
When I am in Massachusetts this museum is in my backyard, how lucky is that!

I went to this exhibit with my Mom, who was a docent for many years and has always been an educated art lover. Growing up in NY she would take my brother and sisters and I to the many museums on a consistent basis while growing up. I can not say

we really were thrilled then, but most all of us make a living in the an artistically related field, so I think it was well worth it.

My niece, Gillian Riley, the amazing conceptual artist was also with us. The details and history of the process and prints themselves were definitely highlighted with a variety of eyes on them. Take someone you like and /or love to a museum soon!

The Exhibit runs through April 2nd:

Japanese Impressions is the first exhibition at the Clark to focus on the Institute’s permanent collection of Japanese prints. The exhibition spans more than a century of Japanese color woodblock printing as represented by three generations of artists who produced prints from the 1830s to the 1970s.


What’s new in TECH related to Interior Design….

 
My entire career I would say, “Someday I will be able to put something on my head and project out the images I see, making it so much easier for people to decide what feels right for them!” Well that day is just about here.

One new amazing technological avenue that I have been exploring at The Interior Edge is the use of VR (Virtual Reality) and AR (Alternate/Augmented Reality) tech! Augmented Reality (AR) is a live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented (or supplemented) by computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data. It is related to a more general concept called mediated reality, in which a view of reality is modified (possibly even diminished rather than augmented) by a computer. As a result, the technology functions by enhancing one’s current perception of reality.

Apps such as Adornably, which Ikea first released works like this:
” When you placed the company’s catalog anywhere in your home, it could appear as one of a few different pieces of furniture on your iPad screen. In a long line of borderline useless augmented reality apps, this simple experience felt like magic.

Now, entrepreneur Marc Lebovitz is expanding on that same idea with his new startup, Adornably, a company centered around a new iPad app. After downloading Adornably and creating a free account, you can lay any magazine on the floor of a room and Adornably will use it to scale a virtual image of that room in your iPad. From there, you can shop from a number of furniture options to virtually redesign your space.

Virtual Reality by contrast seeks to immerse users in a fully present experience, often removing them from the environment they are in entirely or overlaying such immense visual detail that the user experiences more than they see. This effect is also often achieved using simple smart device apps as these have open up a huge new potential in both these tech industries by giving rise to cheap and high quality devices for the public where as in the past even basic VR systems could cost up to a million dollars.

For more information on the quickly growing VR Tech world check out this article:
https://www.wired.com/2016/04/magic-leap-vr/

For more information on AR tech and the Adornably App check out this article:
https://www.fastcodesign.com/3024113/this-crazy-app-makes-a-magazine-an-interior-design-tool

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January Newsletter

•January 19, 2017 • Leave a Comment
“In a world filled with snow, be the red house.” elle decor
GRATITUDE, LATITUDE & LOVE:

Happy Holidays from The Interior Edge


WOW! 2016 was a blur…I must say my personal and professional year was as event filled as our nations. It was filled with heart warming events such as: 

 
Working with my very FIRST client’s son, his wife and beautiful baby daughter!
What an honor to be continuing my practice with the next generation, it fills my heart!
 
On the other end of life, I had the high honor of seeing out a client that I had the pleasure of working with on three houses, over a 20 year span. She was pretty astonishing. As an interior designer you have to momentarily rise above the actual needs, wants and desires of client s and open your heart to see how people really live. What was immensely obvious as we did this home was that she was going to live there consciously and also die there. I was humbled to design, with her, the final room she would breathe in and ascend from. It would have been a scary and overwhelming task had it not been with this client. She had a faith that was unshakable! When you are guided by that, it is easy to bring the rest of us along so we can shine. Words really do not express my gratitude for this important project.
 
Come to think of it, a common thread in my clients is that they have a real desire to thrive and live a full spectrum life and have their environments truly support them in that! Thank you all for the privilege of having me go on the ride with you and I hope 2017 brings you everything you desire and more!!!

Love and Light,
Joanne
IN MY TRAVELS…

Musee Jacque-mart Andre Paris

Most of you know I love to travel and every year you will find me in Paris as well as anyplace else I can put on my agenda. My oldest sister lives in Paris so I have been going there for over 30 years and was very surprised when we arrived at this magnificent museum that I had not gotten there sooner. It was worth the wait!

The Musee is located at 158 Boulevard Haussmann 8th Arrondissement of Paris The museum was created from the private home of Édouard André (1833-1894) and Nélie Jacquemart (1841-1912) to display the art they collected during their lives.


Édouard André, the scion of a Protestant banking family, devoted his considerable fortune to buying works of art. He then exhibited them in his new mansion built in 1869 by the architect Henri Parent, and completed in 1875.

He married a well-known society painter, Nélie Jacquemart, who had painted his portrait 10 years earlier. Every year, the couple would travel in Italy, amassing one of the finest collections of Italian art in France. When Edouard André died, Nélie Jacquemart completed the decoration of the Italian Museum and travelled in the Orient to add more precious works to the collection. Faithful to the plan agreed with her husband, she bequeathed the mansion and its collections to the Institut de France as a museum, and it opened to the public in 1913.

Special Thanks

Thanks to all the many contractors, artists, designers, graphic artists, architects, trades of all kinds that make me look good and a special thanks to Samantha Ritch-Porio who continues to be a force to be reckoned with on all fronts! She is getting her MBA, has 2 children and a husband and works for us with precision and love!!!

Left: Samantha Ritcher-Porio  Top Row: Susan Robinson, Bill Riley, Jennifer Heustice  Bottom: Thomas Buffo, Mary Beebee, Ramona Eldridge
Joanne Riley, A.S.I.D.
THE INTERIOR EDGE

Alice in Wonderland Published on Houzz

•December 2, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Silver Leaf!

•November 1, 2016 • Leave a Comment

•June 17, 2016 • Leave a Comment