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Housetrends greater cincinnati

greater cincinnati | march 2012 | Vol. 11, no. 1 | | $4.95

contemporary/ city living ISSUE

strengthening the core in otr

A Fresh Look on the River

| march 2012

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Interior Design & Furnishings l Remodeling l Show Gardens Garden & Summer Living l Kitchen & Bath l Garden Market












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Greater Cincinnati Publisher Linda Bacher Editor Karen Bradner

a letter from the editor

It makes me want to jump out of bed and get to work every morning, because I feel like I’m a part of something big. —Urban Architect, Mark Gunther, page 44


There’s a certain energy that accompanies living in the city. I’m not sure why. Perhaps when a cacophony of traffic, people, buildings, and lights replaces a front yard, people move a little faster and spend their days with a little more spark. At least that’s the way it looks to me, as someone who pops into town for an occasional night out. Urban folk are just a bit cooler by definition. After meeting the city-living families we feature in this issue, I was struck by the certainty of all of them that they were living precisely where they wanted to live. Barbara Hauser, who lives in Over-the-Rhine, might speak for them all when she says “I love the location. I feel like I’m in the heart of everything.” Hauser and a few of her neighbors are some of the best cheerleaders that OTR has going. They’ve opened their doors to us and allowed us to see just how this architecturally rich and demographically diverse area can feel like home to empty nesters, single women, and young couples with a 10-month old baby. We’ll also introduce you to a woman who has reinvented herself, to a certain extent, by moving from a suburban Victorian home to a Walnut Hills condo with sweeping river and city views. But if surrounding yourself with a nice wooded lot is more your style, take a look at the striking contemporary home that sits on 31/2 acres in Indian Hill. It’s a visual stunner. We’ve got a little something for everyone.

Contributing Writers Kelly Clark, Sarah J. Dills, Alice P. Drake, Christina Kleiner, Sue Trusty Contributing Photographers Chris Bucher, Dale Clark, Marc Cop, JE Evans, Robin Victor Goetz, John Magor, Sherrill Massey, Scott Pease, Joe Traina, Sue Trusty, Ross Van Pelt, Paul G. Wiegman Senior Sales Consultants Katie Coughlin, Michele Roth Kerley Sales Consultant Sandy McDonald For advertising information call 513-794-4103 E-mail: Write us at Housetrends Magazine c/o Karen Bradner, E-mail: Housetrends magazine is published by Buzz Publications, LLC in conjunction with Reach Publishing, LLC Visit, your destination for inspiration™

Corporate Corporate Managing Partners Robert J. Slattery, Kevin Slattery Senior Director of Graphic Services Gary Boys Creative Director Nina Kieffer Editorial Manager Karen Bradner Senior Graphic Designer Tara Burchfield Quality Control Deborah Bolig Color Technicians Elvis Lim, Melisande Weidner Production Coordinator Lisa Cavin Sales Production Mary Burdett VP of Interactive Media Ric Welker Print Production Dawn Deems Website Development and Prepress Systems Sandy Sinex Advertising Designer Gina Miller Advertising Production Ryan Adamson, Will Brewer, Connie Kimsey, Thom Miller Quality Control Supervisor Sandy Whalen Quality Control Heather Fox Founder/Executive Publisher Sam Wilder

Have fun looking,

Karen Bradner and the Housetrends staff Photo by Ross Van Pelt

Published in conjunction with Buzz Publications, LLC and reach publishing llc. © 2012 Reach Publishing, LLC Housetrends magazine is produced by Reach Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved. All logos and trademarks are the properties of their respective owners. We assume no responsibility for errors, inaccuracies, omissions or any inconsistency herein. Housetrends makes no warranties, representations or endorsements regarding any of the services and/or the advertisers, builders, designers or any third parties appearing in the magazine. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage or retrieval system, without the written permission of Reach Publishing, LLC except where prohibited by law. Reach Publishing, LLC reserves the right to edit, alter, or omit any advertiser. Back issues are available upon request for $5.00 per copy, including shipping. (Subject to availability.) To have your name removed from our mailing list, Please recycle or send a letter to Housetrends, Name Removal, pass this magazine on 4601 Malsbary Road, Cincinnati, OH 45242. to another reader

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greater cincinnati | vol. 11, issue 1







20 Clean and Simple Indian Hill soft contemporary speaks to minimalistic design

44 BUILDING TRENDS Strengthening the Core Why some people are passionate about living in Over-the-Rhine

10 FRESH FINDS The latest finds in flooring, furniture and lighting

33 Table Touches Eight tips you can use to set the stage for dining with style 58 A Fresh Look Downsizing allows a homeowner to enjoy a new point of view 67 Is You Is or Is You Ain’t My Artwork? Art experts weigh in with advice on buying contemporary art 94 Gadgets and Gizmos Power up your home with these tech-savvy products

77 LANDSCAPE TRENDS Spring Celebrations Area experts share their favorite spring flowering plants 87 DECORATING TRENDS Frankly Dear, I Prefer Contemporary Today’s contemporary window treatments are “simply” beautiful!

96 HOUSETRENDS.COM Contests, recipes, resources and inspiration 97 AD INDEX

on the cover

58 A Walnut Hills condo offers a bird’s eye view of cars along Columbia Parkway snaking alongside the Ohio River toward downtown Cincinnati. Photo by Robin Victor Goetz/ RVGP Inc.

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Outdoor Grill Islands, Fireplaces & Firepits  Hundreds of Outdoor Casual Furniture Selections  Premium & Blended Leather Sectionals, Sofas, Chairs and MUCH MORE!



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fresh findsfurniture

colors and shapes are a tell-tale sign contemporary style. Keep your life simple with these fabulous designs.

Bold of beautiful and

2 1


4 5 1 LeCirque Chair by Lazar available at, 2 LC2 Armchair by Cassina available at 3 Bixby Chair by Rowe available at 4 Seven Oval Glass Table by Calligaris available at 5 Monroe Dresser by Belle Meade available at

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fresh findsflooring

fresh start! Lighten up living space with contemporary comfortable and chic.

It’s time for a your flooring that is





1 Hickory 5-inch Engineered Hardwood Wide Plank shown in Fall Canyon by Armstrong available at carpetlandcarpetonecincinnati. com,,, 2 Betty Hand-Tufted Wool Rug by Angela Adams 3 Urbanite Porcelain Tile by Florida Tile 4 Bill Board Trek by Tamarian

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fresh findslighting light

See things in a different with the in modern day illumination. These designs are some of our favorites on today’s

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1 Monopoint Pendant shown in Barrel shape, Licorice Stick pattern, Coleus colorway with Silver finish by Tracy Glover 2 Phoebe Pendant by Stonegate available at 3 Tobia floor lamp designed by Carlo Zerbaro for Roche Bobois 4 Vertigo pendant by Corbett Lighting available at,

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Artisan Crafted Furniture made by hand one piece at a time. This is the secret to Blue Moon’s unique collection of home furnishings. Blue Moon’s artists bring creativity and skill to life when creating their signature pieces. Solid Wood, Hand Hammered Copper, Chiseled Marble, Hand Forged Iron, Mouth Blown Glass, Italian Leather – these are just some of the wonderful materials used to create the lines. Details, however, are what take the pieces to a new level. Whether it’s hand planed wood or a hand painted finish, the craftsmanship is what sets the furnishings apart. Complementing accessories also complete the look. An extensive line of table and floor lamps, wall art, mirrors, and accent pieces are available. This is quality furniture that is warm and inviting and definitely artistically inspired.

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Clean and Simple Indian Hill soft contemporary speaks to minimalistic design By Karen Bradner continued >

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described poetry as “the rhythmical creation of beauty in words.” Replace

“words” with “space” and you could be describing the creative process for one Indian Hill family when building their 6,000-square-foot contemporary home. The striking stucco and stone structure has a beautiful rhythmic movement about it and the homeowners are quick to describe their architect as the master behind the creation.

“Everything in this house has a rhyme and a reason,” says the husband. Architect John Isch, of RWA Architects, says his clients’ interest in good quality design played an important role in the process. “Their directive was simplicity in terms of form,” he says. “They wanted a contemporary flavor without a cutting edge aesthetic.”

Family affair All four family members, including two teenage sons, were involved in the design and building process. continued >

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Dark wenge wood was used to create a rich contrast next to the bamboo and anigre woods of the kitchen cabinetry. OPENING SPREAD: The dining room’s square table seats eight comfortably, so everyone can communicate at the same time. The room has square windows so the shape seems to fit the room. Photos by Scott Pease

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“It was the family decision to move and build a house,” says the wife, adding that they could have purchased an existing home and “just picked up and moved from this house to the next with the boys only needing to pack up their dressers.” But the family took a decidedly different route when they selected a foreclosed 3½-acre piece of land that was in a bit of a wild, overgrown state. “The first time we came here, my family thought I was crazy,” says the husband. But he knew just what a diamond in the rough this property, sitting on the edge of Indian Hill, could be. Eventually he was able to convince them that the lot would be a perfect setting once a bit of the brush had been cleared.

Second act The four had been living in a Loveland transitional ranch home that the couple designed and built shortly after they married over two decades earlier. They were ready for their second house to be their last house. “We wanted this house to fit our active family lifestyle today, yet be sized right and very low maintenance for our empty nester years ahead,” says the wife. The couple and their sons all agreed that they were drawn to the clean, simple lines of what some call a “soft” or “warm” contemporary. Once Isch gathered the rest of the family’s wants and needs he began to put their vision onto paper. During the process, the homeowners remember the architect showing them a feature which they credit for inspiring the look of the exterior. When asked to describe this significant feature, the architect says, “It’s an exaggerated eyebrow dormer with a curving wall containing a central circular window flanked by vertically proportioned rectangular windows that accentuate the curvature of the wall.” “The rhythm of that window made it all come together,” says the husband.

Building the vision Once design plans were finalized, Crapsey and Gilles Contractors moved the team into

OPPOSITE LEFT: The horizontal tiles in the kitchen were a selection inspired by the golds, oranges and reds of a sunset. OPPOSITE TOP, MIDDLE AND BOTTOM: About half of the furniture in the home was repurposed from the family’s previous home. Built-in cabinets display mementos and provide great storage for the family room. A spacious half bath sits just off the front foyer. THIS PAGE: The master bedroom and bath’s color scheme was inspired by ocean and sand. All photos this spread by Robin Victor Goetz/RVGP Inc.

continued >

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the construction phase. Groundbreaking took place in November of 2009. Isch says the process went smoothly, thanks to a good deal of interaction between the design and construction teams. “Everyone was on board to make the process as economical and efficient as possible,” he says. The family moved in during July of 2010 and final touches were completed by that October. Naturally, throughout the 11-month process there was a constant parade of decisions set before the homeowners. Fortunately, husband and wife were able to agree on most of their choices. “We’re like two peas in a pod,” he says. “There’s no ‘opposites attract’ here.”

Hometown getaway “The house needed to make us feel like we are on vacation,” says the wife. “We wanted clean lines, calm surroundings, and minimal clutter.” The couple also knew the important role color would play in creating their home-base retreat. Together they chose a color palette inspired by the ocean­ side getaways, with blues pulled from the water, beiges and tans from the sand, and oranges, reds and yellows from the sunsets. All these hues flow seamlessly from room to room creating a warm and relaxed rhythm.

When choosing the exterior color for the home, however, the process was a bit more trial and error. “How many thousands of colors did we look at?” the husband asks. Eventually, with both homeowners, the architect and the older son involved, the team managed to narrow the choices down to eight finalists that they felt would be complementary to the roof, windows, gutters and stone that were already in place. Finally, after testing all eight samples on the home they were able to agree on one color. As the painter began applying the chosen color to the façade, father and son pulled into the drive and it was immediately apparent that the color was something much brighter and louder than any of them anticipated. “It was more intense than we planned,” the husband says. So father and son went back to the drawing board and eventually mixed two colors together and got what they wanted. They sent the batch of bright paint off to the factory to have it retinted to their custom blend which they call a “muddy, mustardy yellow color.”

Thinking green A considerable amount of work was spent

to ensure that the home was built in accordance with LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) standards. Features such as the orientation of the house, geothermal heating and cooling, insulation methods, bamboo cabinetry, motion activated energy-efficient lighting, ultra-high efficient water heating, and low/dual flush toilets, all contribute to this home’s environmental sensitivity. Overhangs on the south facing exposure provide shading. Plus, Architectural Landscape Design enhanced the setting with plants native to Ohio which are known to be drought resistant. “It’s the attention to detail like this that make this house successful,” says the husband.

Enhancing the work ethic Having always lived in new neighborhoods as he was growing up, the husband remembers playing at construction sites and using scrap piles of lumber to build forts and treehouses. He wanted his sons to be hands-on in the building of their new home, driving nails and cutting boards. While naturally the carpentry crew did the bulk of the work, the boys were certainly there and involved—usually on Saturday and sometimes on Sundays. “Our older son was a willing participant

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Resources Architect: RWA Architects, Inc.; General contractor: Crapsey and Gilles Contractors, Inc.; Landscape designer: Architectural Landscape Design, Inc.; Landscaping: Evans Landscaping; Pool: Kramer Pools; Flooring: Cali Bamboo, installed by Schumacher; Carpeting: Carpetland; Kitchen cabinetry: A. Flottemesch and Son; Granite: NK Stone; Kitchen backsplash: Ann Sacks tile; Appliances: Wolf and Sub-Zero from John Tisdel; Barstools: Sticks Studio, Des Moines; Lighting: Fixtures from Switch; Halo recessed cans from Becker; Electrical: Advanced Electric; Lighting control: Lutron; Audio/video home automation: M. Alan and Associates; Plumbing fixtures: Keidel; Bathroom cabinetry: Crystal Cabinetry from Nisbet Brower; Living room accent walls: Modular Arts; Windows: Marvin Windows/Marsh Window and Door Classics; Garage doors: Overhead Door Co.; Concrete: Sardinia Concrete; Ceramic tile and stone: Schoenberger Tile and Marble; Geothermal heat pump: Climate Master/Osterwich Co.; Spray foam insulation: Mooney and Moses; Fireplace: Fireside Hearth and Home/IPS; Painting: Elmer Jones Painting; Lumber and interior trim: Nisbet Brower; Exterior finish: Stockelman Plastering

who was involved with every decision,” says mom. The son, who says he is “interested in how things flow” gained knowledge during this experience which helped him realize his interest and talents. Now a high school senior, this student plans to major in interior design in college and hopes to one day design upscale resort properties. His younger brother who needed a bit of coercion to get involved, didn’t fare so well. “We wanted them both to be part of the process and planning, but one got fired,” says the mother. “One survived the experience, the other one didn’t,” dad chimes in. From across the room the younger son says, “I liked the experience. I just didn’t like the work.” It looks like his new home began to make him feel like he was on vacation a few months earlier than the rest of his family. Now that’s someone who knows how to find his rhythm.


TOP LEFT: The eyebrow dormer was placed above the front entry and finished in stucco made primarily from locally derived components—a green feature. TOP RIGHT: Landscape designers enhanced the setting with plants native to Ohio which are known to be drought resistant. Photos by Scott Pease

BOTTOM RIGHT: The family spends a good deal of time on the open-air back patio, eating, reading the paper, watching television, or entertaining. Photo by Robin Victor Goetz/RVGP Inc.

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table touches Eight tips you can use

to set the stage for dining with style

Sometimes By Karen Bradner

it’s fun to make a fuss. When

you step out of your routine and take others along with you for the ride, wonderful things can happen. ✽ When hosting a dinner party, making extra effort with the dining room table lets guests know you value their company and sets the tone for the evening. If this all sounds like fun, we’ve got some ideas to get you started. Whether it’s a refresher on which spoon goes where, a few new company-worthy recipes, or decorative touches that take the excitement level up a notch, here’s a feast of ideas to inspire your next gathering continued >

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: tip1

P lace settings should be layered in the same order that the meal is served: soup bowls on salad plates on top of dinner plates. Include a separate salad plate if your dishes feature a sauce. New Wave collection photo courtesy of Villeroy & Boch

tip2 :


should be placed to the left of the plate and knives and spoons to the right. The idea is to work from the outside in, so the salad fork should go to the left of the water glass dinner fork, and the spoon to the right of the knife. Keep the blade of the knife pointing toward the plate.

wine glass


th d wi e o h s i kn are fin rk and

plates napkin dinner fork salad fork

u o y D i d w?

dinner knife soup spoon

fo you your icate g ss d n i n i acro plac y You l l y a b l gon 4 mea r, dia e h 10 to your t e e g h t o t om knife . te (fr a l ions) p t i r s u o o y ck p o’clo

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: tip3 Linens are a great

way to add a punch of color, although if the surface of your table is attractive and can take some drips and possible spills, it’s fine to skip the tablecloth. Rhapsody in Blues collection photo courtesy of Waterford Wedgwood

continued >

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tip4 :

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Use your

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Photo by JE Evans

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Photo by JE Evans

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Modern Graphic collection photo courtesy of Waterford Wedgwood


If you have a

glass tabletop, touch beneath it—like ribbons, flowers or glitter.

an interactive venue

Photo by JE Evans

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Stir is an intimate urban loft located in the heart of Olde Montgomery for hosting your private gathering or corporate event HTCI0212.046

Photo by JE Evans


The classic, simple rectangular folded can be placed under the knife and spoon or at the center of the place setting and topped with a place card or decorative accent. continued >

definition: stir (stur) noun - commotion, excitement • verb - mix it up, agitate


: tip6

consider placing a fun housetrends greater cincinnati 37

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between place settings for proper elbow room.

Photo by JE Evans


Allow a minimum of 15 inches

: tip8


your guests arrive, sit down to check if anything on your table will obstruct conversations. Photo by JE Evans

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Fortessa SuperWhite™ Vitrified China

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Beautifully Easy Fruit Tart 1 sheet frozen puff pastry (½ of 17.3-oz. pkg.), thawed 1 package (3.4 oz.) Jell-O vanilla flavor instant pudding 1 cup cold milk 1 cup thawed Cool Whip whipped topping 1 square Baker’s white chocolate 1 cup quartered fresh strawberries 1 can (11 oz.) mandarin oranges, drained 1 kiwi, peeled, sliced and halved 3 tablespoons apricot preserves 2 teaspoons water Recipe and photo courtesy of Kraft Foods

Recipe and photo courtesy of Whole Foods

Instructions for completing the Baked Chicken and Fruit Tart can be found by visiting and searching: Table Touches

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4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided ½ cup diced red onion 4 to 6 cups (1 large bunch) loosely packed spinach (not baby), washed, dried, stems removed 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 2 ripe Anjou pears, peeled, cored and cut into ½-inch-thick slices 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped ¾ cup blue cheese, crumbled


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Baked Chicken Breasts with Spinach, Pears and Blue Cheese

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Vine Street

Why some people are passionate By Sarah J. Dills

On any given day, as long as the skies are semi-clear and the temperature is above freezing, the streets of Over-the-Rhine are bustling with lawyers, P&G executives, architects and entrepreneurs—the emerging faces of the neighborhood.

O Marc Cop

might be spotted taking his Belgian parents to Taste of Belgium for some authentic cuisine, Chris Heckman and Kristen Myers could be found pushing their son’s stroller

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Jackson Street

The Lackman on Vine Street

about living in Over-the-Rhine Photos by Chris Bucher

into Park + Vine, and Barbara Hauser may be seen grabbing a latte at Coffee Emporium on her way to work.

O These are just a few of the residents who

now call Over-the-Rhine home, and they are aware that their presence in the neighborhood is a small part of a big movement to revitalize the once damaged area on the edge of downtown.

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A deep history Over 150 years ago, German immigrants heavily populated the area located just north of downtown—separated from the city by the Erie Canal (where Central Parkway is located today.) The Germans began referring to the trip across the Erie Canal as going “Over the Rhine”— referencing the Rhine River in Germany. Over the years the demographics of the area fluctuated and the population drastically declined. Once home to almost 50,000 people, by the mid-nineties less than 10,000 residents lived in Over-theRhine. It’s no secret that the area has been plagued with turmoil in recent history. Drugs, poverty and crime escalated with riots bringing issues of race and equality to the front pages of newspapers across the country in 2001. Despite the controversy, Over-the-Rhine remained an oxymoron of such. Street after street of historic, untouched Italianate, Federal, Greek Revival, Second Empire, Queen Anne, and Renaissance Revival architecture kept a glimmer of hope and curiosity alive in this area of despair. Several concerned city officials and members of the corporate community gathered in 2003 to brainstorm ways

The buildings are no longer vacant,” Mileham says. “People are looking out the windows, people are on the streets. They are shopping and eating and enjoying themselves. It changes a place.


“Not only do we have all these great new residences in the neighborhood, but down below are wonderful commercial spaces that have become the new scene,” says Gunther. “It makes me want to jump out of bed and get to work every morning, because I feel like I’m a part of something big.” O According to Anastasia Mileham, the vice president of communications for 3CDC, the real estate development company has renovated 91,000 square feet of commercial space in Over-the-Rhine. O Both Gunther and Mileham agree that trying to define their favorite restaurant is like trying to pick a favorite child—but they are so happy to have that problem in the once vacant area of town.

bars & restaurants A Tavola Neapolitan pizza and Italian cuisine made from scratch daily using fresh, seasonal ingredients. 1220 Vine Street Abigail Street Stop in for a glass of wine… or the whole bottle 1214 Vine Street Facebook: Abigail Street Bakersfield Just opened in early February. Tacos, burritos and other Mexican-inspired street food. 1213 Vine Sreet Facebook: Bakersfield OTR Lackman 1237 Vine Street Lavomatic Elegant food in a casual atmosphere. Stop in between 11-3 on Saturday or Sunday for brunch. 1211 Vine Street Senate Where else can you have fresh market oysters and a hot dog named the Trailer Park? 1212 Vine Street

Taste of Belgium Home of the Liège waffle 1135 Vine Street

SHOPPING Atomic Number 10 1306 Main Street Cooknee 1150 Vine Street #11 Couture Couture 1315 Main Street couturecoutureboutique. Joseph Williams Home 1232 Vine Street Little Mahatma 1205 Vine Street Mannequin Boutique 1405 Vine Street Mica 12/v 1201 Vine Street Original Thought Required 1307 Main Street Park + Vine 1202 Main Street Sloane Boutique 1216 Vine Street

SmartFish Studio 1301 Main Street Suders Art Store 1309 Vine Street Switch Lighting 1207 Vine Street Urban Eden 1313 Main Street

ENTERTAINMENT Ensemble Theatre 1127 Vine Street Know Theatre 1120 Jackson Street Music Hall 1241 Elm Street

TOURS Queen City Underground 1218 Vine Street Segway of Cincinnati 1150 Vine Street #17

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Photo by 3CDC


Main Street

Vine Street

Photo by 3CDC

12th and Vine

Photo by 3CDC

A Tavola

to revitalize Over-the-Rhine, and 3CDC was born. The Cincinnati Center City Development Corporation is a private, non-profit real estate development company with a mission to strengthen the core assets of downtown Cincinnati by connecting the Fountain Square district, the central business district and Overthe-Rhine. Since 2004, more than $324 million has been invested in these three focus areas. According to Anastasia Mileham, vice president of communications for 3CDC, some of the heavy-hitting corporate alliances represented on the board of directors include Procter & Gamble, Kroger and Western & Southern. “Nobody wants to live in a crime-ridden area except the criminals,” Mileham explains of the group’s strategy to get people to move back to the neighborhood. “By purchasing vacant, vandalized buildings, cleaning them out and securing them, we’ve been able to get rid of the criminal element in our focus area.” The focus area of 3CDC’s work is from Central Parkway to Liberty heading north and from Elm Street to Main Street traveling east. While some people may still feel a safety concern when considering moving to Over-the-Rhine, all of the current residents agree that safety’s never been an issue. “I’ve always felt safe,” Cop explains. “I wouldn’t let my Belgian parents walk around alone on the streets if I didn’t think it was safe. They speak English, but they still aren’t from here. I can say the same for my children. They are adults, but they will always be my children.” Cop isn’t the only person raving about the close-knit community emerging in Over-the-Rhine. Old and young, singles and families—the demographic is as diverse as the architecture, the dining and the history of Over-the-Rhine. continued >

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The international transplants Cop and wife Cristina Chuecos have called Duncanson Lofts home since they moved from Blue Ash in January of 2009. “We were fed up with the gardening, the snow and the leaves,” Cop explains of one of their many reasons for leaving the suburbs. “We were drawn to Blue Ash for the wonderful school districts, but after the children were out of school we started to consider a more urban lifestyle. “We both worked for Procter and Gamble, so we were downtown a lot. But our social life, dining, everything else happened in the suburbs. For a while, we had the impression that the city was rolling up the sidewalks at six o’clock in the evening, but when the revitalization started we were drawn downtown.” Cop, from Belgium, and Chuecos, from Venezuela, both had interests in old buildings and architecture. “I was a bit disappointed when we toured the lofts around Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Streets because

TOP: Cristina with Coby, Marc with Milou (after recent surgery) OPPOSITE TOP: Steps to rooftop deck

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they had covered the brick walls with drywall. All of the historical elements that I liked—the exposed brick, the original wood floors—had been covered.” Duncanson Lofts was a perfect marriage of historic charm and modern amenities. “This space gave us additional room, which can sometimes be difficult to find downtown,” Cop says. “We had to have a second bedroom for houseguests who can sometimes stay for long periods at a time.” The four-floor unit has an interesting floor plan that maximizes space in an unconventional way. The main entrance to the condo is actually on the third floor where the kitchen and living room are located. The fourth floor is home to the office and guest suite and has access to the rooftop deck. The master suite is on the second floor. Cop says after he got used to his bedroom being below the kitchen and living room, he really began to enjoy the privacy. “It is really our space. Nobody else is on that level of the house,” he explains. The first floor of the building has commercial space in the front and a storage/catchall space in the back where Cop has his wine rack and home gym. “We have an elevator, so the stairs were never much of a concern,” Cop explains of the mult-level unit. “We have a parking lot behind our building, and I just pull up with my car to the main entrance and into the elevator. I come right into my kitchen, so I really have no problem getting things in and out of the house.” Mark Gunther, of Wichman Gunther Architects, was creative when designing the floor plan for Cop and Chuecos’ four-floor condo. “We did an inverted design with an eye toward the sky— the rooftop deck and the city view,” Gunther explains. “The more appreciated space to live in was where the view was best and where there was access to the rooftop.” Cop says the views from his rooftop deck are one of his favorite aspects of his urban dwelling. “When it’s nice, we’ll sit outside and watch the lights,” he adds. While finishing the rooftop deck, Cop found 130-year-old newspapers stuffed in huge holes in the wall. “Of course they deteriorated as soon as I pulled them out because they’d been in there so long, but it was a neat sign of the age of my home.” Cop and Chuecos also became intrigued by an architectural detail of their building—a C on top of the fourth floor of the building. After speaking to people in the neighborhood and doing some research, they learned that the C stood for Elizabeth and Charles Chambers, the family who built the house in 1880. According to Cop, the downtown lifestyle is much more familiar to his life in Belgium than the suburbs ever were. “We love the fact that we are amongst people. Just during the time we were refinishing the floors in our condo, before we even moved in, I already knew more people here by name than I did after living in Blue Ash for nine years.”

Photo by Marc Cop


Resources Architect Mark Gunther, Wichman Gunther Architects Developer NorthPointe Group

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TOP: Chris, Otto and Kristen LEFT: Sitting room ABOVE: Teddy the cat near master bedroom FAR RIGHT: The view from the roof deck.

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To say Chris Heckman and Kristen Myers are passionate about the rebirth of Overthe-Rhine is an understatement. The couple’s relationship reads like a roadmap of downtown Cincinnati. They met and got engaged at Park + Vine. During their wedding at the Contemporary Arts Center they asked guests to make donations to the Cincinnati Streetcar Fund where they raised nearly $7,000. They settled into their condo on Sixth Street and began their life together. “Both of us grew up in the suburbs, but we really enjoy urban living,” Heckman explains. “We enjoyed living right downtown, but knew we would need more space if we started a family, so we decided to start looking around.” When the couple first saw their unit at Good Fellows Hall, they immediately saw potential in the volume of the space. “It is essentially one open room of living space. All of the windows along the south wall give a ton of light. There is nothing to block out the sun or the views,” Heckman adds. The only problem with the unit was the lack of a second bedroom, but Gunther was able to accommodate the growing family’s need thanks to one of the most unique features of the home. “The big wooden truss in Chris and Kristen’s condo is a very unique feature of that building because it’s not typical for that kind of construction,” Gunther explains. “It allowed us to have a lower level below without any support. We wanted to keep the truss because it led to a big volume space.

“When Chris and Kristen purchased the condo, they said one thing they were really missing was another bedroom. They loved the architectural drama of the space, but needed to resolve this issue. We were able to build the floor area from the truss to the wall and leave the main level open. It created the cool little space that is now Otto’s bedroom.” Otto, the couple’s ten-month-old, is just beginning to get his sea legs, but Heckman says he’s not too worried about all of the stairs in their home. “What’s that expression—necessity is the mother of invention?” Heckman jokes. “I guess we’ll get baby gates, but right now I just follow him around all day.” An elevator makes lugging all the baby gear around a breeze. “Unlike other babies we’ve heard about, Otto doesn’t really like being in the car,” Heckman adds. “Which is good, because we don’t get in the car much. When the weather’s nice we walk to Fountain Square or the library.” And while Otto’s still a little young to go with dad to work at Losantiville on Main Street where Heckman’s an industrial designer, it’s definitely something they’re looking forward to in the future. For now, Heckman is enjoying spending time with his son at home. “I really think standing in the extreme southwest corner of the living room and looking up at Otto’s room with the three windows and the huge beams is my favorite part of the space. There’s so much going on with the architecture and lines, I think it’s visually stunning.”

Resources Developer/contractor Bill, Otto and Bernie Baum, Urban Sites Property Management Architect Mark Gunther, Wichman Gunther Architects Living room rug Angela Adams from MiCA 12/v Lighting Switch Lighting and Design LED light support in kitchen Deluco Architectural Metals Clock over fireplace, Mid-century hutch and modern bath cabinet MiCA 12/v Nomad cardboard wall system Park + Vine Mid-century chairs Modern Relics Mid-century desk and file cabinet Algin Office Equipment Coffee table (Sitting room) Designed by Chris Heckman, Losantiville Ltd.; built by Deluco Architectural Metals Barstools and recliner Joseph Williams Home Fireplace screen Bromwell’s Living room mirror John Dixon

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Barbara takes advantage of southern exposure.

The working girl Barbara Hauser was born and raised in the suburbs of Cincinnati, but her parents’ Brooklyn, NY roots meant she spent a lot of time in the city. “New York was kind of a second home,” Hauser explains. “I’ve always enjoyed being in the city.” Hauser’s first apartment was on Fourth Street. She then moved to Prospect Hill. While looking for a home with more space, Hauser was introduced to the Lofts of Mottaini. “I love the location. I feel like I’m in the heart of everything,” she says. Mottainai is a Japanese term that expresses regret when something is wasted. The building was named for its LEED Green Certification. Hauser says finding a LEED certified home was very important to her. Gunther says he noticed developers looking to build green homes as the demand increased. “The marketplace was becoming more and more aware, so buy-

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ers wanted LEED homes,” he says. “It’s based on a point system, and a big part of the score is reuse of the existing building. They also look at external factors like where the building is located, is it in walking distance of shopping and dining, is there public transportation, is there a park nearby? All of those things add up to a greener solution.” Some of the interior elements that add to the home’s LEED certification are the bamboo and cork flooring, the screen panels made of recycled two liter bottles that separate the rooms, the quartz countertops, Energy Star appliances and low-flow toilets. “You don’t have to give up style to be green,” Gunther adds. Hauser loves the exposed brick, shelving units and sliding doors that give her home character. “I try to buy as many of my small décor items from local shops,” she adds. “And there are so many great shops to choose from. It’s so nice to have so many options within walking distance.”

Resources Architect Mark Gunther, Wichman Gunther Architects Interior planning Jodi Bruemmer, Studio Twelve12 LEED Certification planning Barb Yankie, Green Building Consulting Developer NorthPointe Group Rugs Angela Adams from MiCA 12/v Cabinetry Cooknee Euro Style Cabinets Flooring Bamboo in main rooms, Cork in bedrooms Lighting Switch Lighting and Design Barstools HighStreet Cincinnati Chandelier in dining room Arhaus Furniture Candles Joseph Williams Home

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Downsizing allows a homeowner to enjoy a new point of view By Alice P. Drake | Photos by Robin Victor Goetz/RVGP Inc. “I have exactly what I wanted and even things I did not know enough about to ask,� says a homeowner as she looks around her Walnut Hills home. F Views from her condo, both up and down river, are alive morning, noon and night. No matter where she stands, breathtaking sights greet her. The living room even has a corner wall of windows and a door that leads to a private covered terrace.

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The homeowner searched high and low throughout the east side of the city for a condo, knowing that she wanted to be close to downtown, but did not want to traverse over a bridge to get there.

This chic new space is a result of a professional relationship between the homeowner and Randy Bassel­man, senior designer at Evolo-Design. Basselman helped freshen up the homeowner’s 14-room Victorian in Wyoming before the decision to sell after her family lived there for 34 years. Basselman says that in the previous house he and the homeowner were already contemplating mixing old elements with new, a style he deems “new traditional.” He explains the concept by saying, “It is a mixture of different aspects from different periods brought together.” The homeowner searched high and low throughout the east side of the city for a condo, knowing that she wanted to be close to downtown, but did not want to traverse over a bridge to get there. She looked at about 30 condos, narrowing down her decision until she found the one that was in her price range, and more importantly, could renovate to fit her own taste. The winner was this Walnut Hills two-bedroom, two-bath condo that was built in 1963, with its most recent update having taken place in the 1980s. There was carpeting in the main living areas and bedrooms, white laminate cabinetry and vinyl floors in the kitchen and bathrooms. The homeowner knew she wanted a contemporary look with stainless steel and frosted glass, so Basselman ran with her ideas and brought many new elements into the mix. His crew gutted the entire place, exposing the original parquet floors, and opening up the 9x9-foot enclosed kitchen to the dining room and foyer. They also removed walls to the study, replacing the side from the foyer with French doors that can be shut and curtained over for privacy and the other side with custommade barn doors that close off the living room.

OPENING SPREAD LEFT: A sweeping city and river view is the star of the show in the living room. OPENING SPREAD RIGHT: The curvilinear vintage sofa was given a second life with fresh and textured fabric. OPPOSITE: On a wall adjacent to a window with an expansive view of northern Kentucky, hangs a painting by a Covington, KY artist, David DeVaul, titled Reflections on a Starry Night. ABOVE LEFT: The kitchen’s backsplash is made of dimensional panels, which come in 4x8-inch sheets that create texture and pattern. ABOVE RIGHT: Nestled inside the study’s bookcases hangs SelfPortrait in Los Angeles, a collage and oil on canvas by one of the homeowner’s favorite artists.

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A great backdrop The home’s palette was kept neutral to a certain extent because of the spectacular views, with bold statements of color here and there in artwork and accessories so that the living areas aren’t too bland. A lot of the pieces offer a contemporary color selection that gives it a fresh look. Basselman credits the homeowner with an open mind and willingness to make changes that were not necessarily within her comfort zone. “She made a lot of decisions and had a lot of trust in me,” he says. The mix of old and new continues with the furnishings. Some of those newer pieces, such as the Tibetan rug now residing in the condo’s den, had previously been purchased for placement in the Wyoming house’s living room, while new favorites were added specifically for the new condo. One of the most intriguing items is the curved, two-piece sectional placed in the living room. The 1940s, Dunbarstyle sofa is roughly 100 inches long, so it does not overwhelm the space, but rather resembles a selection of sculpture. The item, which was found in a vintage shop, used to be clad in black leather, but the homeowner reluctantly allowed it to be purchased and reupholstered. Christopher Helgeson and his talented team at Orange Chair, Inc. covered the sofa in a cream-colored, bouclé fabric

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selected by Basselman to give the piece dimension with a pop of texture. The curve of the sofa mimics that of the foyer, making it feel like it was created to fit the room. “I was unsure about the sofa, but now I adore it. It works so well with everything,” says the homeowner. As Basselman says, “We repurposed the space for today’s lifestyle.” With that, the space offers the idea of an open concept with walls to delineate separate environments so that each area is not too exposed to the next. Built-ins throughout the condo were added for extra storage.

The right touch A tactile approach was used for the square patterned, thermoplastic panels for the kitchen backsplash and the wet bar in the living room. With its shades of gray and white, the tile reflects the metallic look of the stainless steel appliances and pulls. The wood used in the barn doors is also found throughout the condo in the built-in cabinetry in the den, floating shelf in the dining room, hood over the range, and wall of the wet bar. With its linear movement, the wood grain brings out the beauty of the parquet floors, whose pattern ties in nicely with the tile of the kitchen and wet bar. Even the dining room table placemats feel right at home with the geometrical dimensions seen throughout the condo. Both bathrooms prove that the rooms don’t need to be large to be grand in order to garner attention. In the guest bathroom, with its wavy tile walls, the mirror was hung away from the wall to give depth to the area. Space was appropriated from the master bedroom for the master bathroom to house the functionally beautiful built-in. With a mix of closed wood and frosted cabinetry and open shelving with an exclamation of red paint as a background, that built-in makes a statement without overwhelming the room. That red was taken from the surprise dash of color discovered upon installation of the sink cabinetry, with its bold interior hue. “I am so excited about my new home. My daughter said that it feels like she is on vacation when she visits,” says the homeowner.


Designer: Randy Basselman; Contractor: Evolo-Design; Flooring: Refurbished and refinished by J.P. Flooring; KITCHEN: Cabinetry: Brookhaven, Evolo-Design; Countertops: Hanstone Quartz in white cotton, KBR Fabricators; Backsplash: Teton in etched silver by MDC, Evolo-Design; Sink: Kohler Vault undermount, Ferguson; Dishwasher: KitchenAid; Cooktop/oven and microwave: Electrolux; Refrigerator: KitchenAid counter depth, all appliances from Custom Distributors; BATHROOM: Master cabinetry: Kohler vanity and medicine cabinet, Ferguson; Master sink: Kohler Persuade, Ferguson; Faucets: Symmons, Bona Hardware; Ceiling fixtures/sconces: Access Lighting, Evolo-Design; Paint: Jeff Collins Painting; Hardware: Bona Hardware; Furniture: Vanguard Furniture; Vintage pieces upholstered by Orange Chair, Inc.

OPPOSITE LEFT: Hanging Forms (top) and Red/Gold Composition #2 by Carol Redmond are displayed next to a secretary that bridges the space between the dining and living areas. OPPOSITE RIGHT: Doors between the study and the living room slide closed when additional private sleeping quarters are needed. BELOW LEFT: Qatar tile from Porcelanosa gives the hall bathroom’s walls a flow all their own. BELOW MIDDLE: Much needed storage space tucked into the wall of the master bath by the design and construction team. BELOW RIGHT: From the desk in the master bedroom an appealing view of Walnut Hills and Clifton invites daydreaming.

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Untitled by Jim Dine. Photo courtesy of Keny Galleries

My Artwork?

is you is or is you ain't

Art experts agree: when buying contemporary art for your home, you should buy what you love. But, as with life, how do you know if it’s true love or just a passing fancy? By Nina Kieffer

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Sleeping in the Forest by Argentinian artist Sol Halabi. Photo by Dale Clark.

Your home is a labor of

love. To create an environment that

embodies your outlook on life, you sweat the details: flooring, wall and window treatments, lighting, furnishings, accessories, color schemes. But of all the objects that make a home a truly enjoyable and interesting space, nothing contributes more impact than original art. And contemporary art, with its immediacy and current perspectives, speaks volumes about the personality of a home and its inhabitants.

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Painting at left by Penny Haynes, painting at right by Frank Sinatra. Photo by Chris Bucher

The sum of its parts Contemporary art is relevant to our lives, and generally has something to say beyond the visual elements of the work. Not that the visual elements aren’t important. What the work conveys visually impacts us as much as the message. An immediate visceral response, whether positive or negative, tells us much about how a work affects us on a subliminal level. We might not know what it is that we instantly love or dislike about a piece of art, but there are forces at work called the formal elements of art (line, shape, color, value, texture, space, mass and volume) and the principles of art (movement, emphasis, unity, harmony, variety, balance, contrast, proportion and repetition) that artists employ to influence the viewer’s observation of the work. Content (subject matter), style, and medium also interact with these visual cues, along with the artist’s intention and skill. Although knowledge of art theory isn’t necessary to look at art or even to appreciate it, experts agree that if you are going to buy art, you should educate yourself about it in order to help make intelligent purchasing decisions. You can’t invest too much time on homework and legwork.

Art school confidential The more art you take in, the more you will discover what kinds of art and artists appeal to you. A plethora of contemporary art venues exist in museums, art galleries, art fairs and temporary pop-up

Not just a pretty face But, what, you may ask, is contemporary art? Literally, contemporary means present-day, current. However, different organizations variously define contemporary art as art produced since World War II or the 1960s or 70s. The Cincinnati Art Museum pinpoints 1960 as its starting place for contemporary art, according to Associate Curator of Contemporary Art, Jessica Flores. Flores notes that there is confusion among the public over the term. Many think contemporary is synonymous with modern, although modern art is generally considered to be art produced from the late 1800s through the 1970s that breaks with traditional art forms and techniques of the past. (Examples of modern art include Impressionism, Cubism, and Abstract Expressionism.) Art historian Marilyn Stokstad comments that by the 1970s, all the rules had been broken, signaling the end of an era. Because abstract art was such a high profile example of modern art that is still prevalent today, many people erroneously believe that abstract art and contemporary art are one in the same. Although abstract art can be contemporary, all contemporary art is not abstract. Some define contemporary art as any art that is produced by currently living artists, but a common thread running through much contemporary art is social consciousness, a connection to some social issue such as imperialism, global trade, feminism, AIDS awareness, etc. Flores believes that the value of contemporary art is diminished when it does not include an element of present day concerns and issues, which acts as a reflection of our current culture and the human condition.

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exhibits. Museums and art galleries work constantly to entice the public with events of all stripes: special exhib­ its, openings, artist meet and greets, lecture series, perfor­ mances by musicians, danc­ ers and other artists, socials, docent- and curator-led tours, trunk sales and more. When you travel out of town, make it a point to visit local museums and galleries. Analyze art that appeals to you. Take a moment to look carefully. What is going on in the artwork? What do you see that makes you think that?

What aspects do you find interesting and/or enjoyable? No observation is unimport­ ant. Each is a valid response to the work. Looking at art that you don’t think you’ll like is anoth­ er great way to develop and hone your tastes. What is it that you don’t like about it? Does it have any redeeming qualities in your eyes? What are they? Engaging with others while looking at art can be enlight­ ening. It’s amazing what other people see. Listening to oth­ ers’ perspectives can broaden your own. Share your art jun­ kets with family and friends. You’ll learn something about yourself and them. Art history books are a good resource, and you can spend many a pleasurable hour brow­ sing through the art section of your local bookstore and museum gift shop book selec­ tions. The continuum of art history is long, complex and interconnected. Developing a background in the evolution of art will help you to understand why and how art has come to be what it is today. Much art is a response, on a personal and historical level, to the art that has come before it. There are also many books on the market that provide advice on buying contemporary art, for example “The Art of Buying Art: An Insider’s Guide to Collecting Contemporary Art” by Paige West, an avid collec­ tor who developed her passion into her own gallery, website and this practical book on

ABOVE: Painting by Robert Livsey Wells RIGHT: Photo by John Magor

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Suzanne Fisher, a resident of Fairview, has been making art her whole life. She is a painter and a mosaicist. Her latest creations move towards abstraction in her combination of acrylic paint, mosaic and collage on large wooden panels that are then flooded with resin. Initially inspired by Monet’s waterlilies, the panels are a magical organic world, a joyful, optimistic retreat from the troubles of modern life. About her art she says: “What motivates me is the artistic journey I have embarked upon through my paintings. Where will the next piece take me? Each completed piece suggests the next challenge, the next problem to solve, the next step to take. It is a way of learning about oneself, through the medium of art. I create because that is my way of being in the world, that is my way of connecting with myself. I create because it makes me feel whole, it connects me to my 3-yearold self, the toddler who spontaneously took scraps of colored felt and glue and put them together on a sheet of typing paper. It is magic to create something wonderful out of little scraps of everyday waste deemed no longer worthy. Making art is making magic.” what to collect, how to collect it and how to incorporate it into your home. Many museums have “Friends Groups” for museum members. These organizations are like clubs that organize events such as visiting private collections and artist studios, behind the scenes gallery tours with curators and other art experts, cultural outings to other art venues and more.

Fisher’s work can be found at Art Design Consultants, Inc. and at BELOW: Daybreak by Suzanne Fisher

It’s a great way to meet other art enthusiasts and develop those all-important contacts with those in the know. Art auctions are a fascinating way to educate yourself on what people are paying for art and what art is on the market in your locale. Many auction houses post results of past auctions on their websites, as well as pieces available for purchase in upcoming auctions. As you delve into experiencing art, you’ll learn to assess its qualities and become more comfortable discussing it with others. Your personal taste will become more manifest. You may already have inclinations and interests that you can now identify, quantify and justify. continued >

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The things we do for


In an austere white and glass building on the edge of downtown, ADC (Art Design Consultants, Inc.) perches on the top floor with a commanding city view. Litsa Spanos, President, spent 18 years in the Pendleton Center before relocating here two years ago, and the joint has been hopping ever since. ADC is all about bringing art and people together. A customer appreciation party and a UC Faculty and Staff Art Show are just some of the lively recent events. With the DesignStar program, Spanos lets Cincinnati’s best designers loose in the gallery to create temporary showcase rooms using ADC art and the latest furniture and design trends. The boudoir, the home office and the living room were all unveiled to appreciative audiences last year, and remained on view for a month after. This year, DesignStar rooms will incorporate Feng Shui (on display and open to the public through the end of March), a French pied-a-terre (unveiling April 19) and an outdoor living room in early summer. The gallery also hosts weddings, fund-raisers and other events in a space capitalizing on a stunning evening panorama. When not busy throwing parties, Spanos helps residential and corporate clients find just the right art for their spaces. Her goal is to ferret out what her clients truly love and are comfortable with. She’s a firm believer in surrounding oneself with beautiful things without guilt, and knows nothing beats the intensity of original art for making a space come alive. Spanos likes to visit the homes of her clients to get a feel for their style and personality, then bring in art that she thinks would be a good fit for the home. She prefers taking the intimidation of “artspeak” out of the picture and strives to bring art to everyone who appreciates it by debunking the myth that good original art is inaccessible or too expensive. She notes that local talent and emerging artists aren’t always out of range.

TIPS from Litsa Spanos for buying contemporary art:


Buy what you love. It doesn’t have to match the sofa.

Put your trust in solid, professional advice.


Don’t be intimidated by art—open yourself up!



Let yourself be free to look at new things (like abstract instead of representational.)

Art Design Consultants, Inc., 310 Culvert Street, 5th Floor, Photos courtesy of Art Design Consultants, Inc.

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Eliminating buyer’s remorse Good art is always an investment, just like a major piece of furniture. Like any other investment for your home, you should always buy the best quality that you can afford. It’s also important to buy the best example of that type of work that you can, and to buy innovative rather than derivative works. Cultivate relationships with experts you can trust. Other collectors, art brokers, dealers, and curators all have unique perspectives and specialties. Reputation is important. An expert you trust can help school you in the ins and outs of buying art for the long term (it’s not an easily liquidated commodity) as well as recognizing art that is not just the latest fad, but can withstand the test of time. One of the beauties of purchasing contemporary art is that in many cases, you have access to the artists who created it. Getting to know living artists, discussing with them their motivation, techniques, history and artistic struggles will help you develop a meaningful affinity for particular artists and their work. It is entertaining to get online and read about what is happening in the world of the art glitterati—who is Charles Saatchi insulting now? What outrageous prices are being paid for high profile works of art? And although the Internet is useful for many of the tasks involved in purchasing art, like keeping you apprised of events, reading pertinent

blogs and visiting websites of museums, galleries and artists, most experts advise that you only purchase art that you have seen up close and in person. Importantly, you don’t have to be a millionaire to buy good art. Collecting art used to be the province of the wealthy, but today art galleries abound, as do talented artists creating exceptional, unique artwork. Art that speaks to you and is in your budget exists and is readily available. Art buying is dependent upon other personal factors such as the size and style of your home. Some galleries will bring art to your home so you can see it in your native environment. Some also have programs for trusted clientele that include installing

a potential purchase in your home for a period of time to make sure it is a good fit for you. If you arm yourself with re­search, knowledge, experience, exposure and trusted advisers, it will aid you in your quest to recognize and acquire the art that you truly love, and surround yourself with, for years to come.

BELOW: Sculpture by David Hostetler. Photo by J.E. Evans


Art Design Consultants; Art History by Marilyn Stokstad; Cincinnati Art Museum www.cincinnatiartmuseum. org; Dayton Art Institute; James Gallery www.james ; Keny Galleries; Muse Gallery www.amuse; The Art of Buying Art: An Insider’s Guide to Collecting Contemporary Art by Paige West; Visual Thinking Strategies

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Spring Celebrations Area experts share favorite spring flowering plants By Sue Trusty

Ah, spring! After months spent indoors we can’t wait to hear the birds sing, to see the colorful blooming bulbs, trees and shrubs, to smell the blossoms! ✤ One of the best ways to celebrate a sunny spring afternoon is to stroll the paths at one of our public gardens. And who better to recommend spring flowering plants that will thrive in our area than horticulturists from these gardens? continued >

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landscapetrends Fantastic Flowers Everyone loves daffodils (Narcissus sp.). According to Kathy Burkholder, horticulturist at Ohio State University’s Chadwick Arboretum and Learning Gardens, you can extend the bloom time in the garden by choosing early, mid, and late blooming types. Another advantage is that daffodils are shunned by rodents that dig up and eat other types of bulbs. Daffodil


Photos by David Gardner courtesy of Chadwick Arboretum

Kathy lists pansies and violas as favorite cool season annuals for sunny locations. “I prefer violas over pansies,” she says. “They have smaller blooms, but more of them.” She especially likes the Sorbet series of Viola. Photo by Sherrill Massey courtesy of Chadwick Arboretum



One of Kathy’s favorite perennials is Jack Frost Siberian bugloss (Brunnera macrophylla ‘Jack Frost’). The spring flowers are blue, but this plant is grown just as much for the bright silver marking on its leaves, which brighten up shady gardens throughout the growing season. Photo by Sherrill Massey courtesy of Chadwick Arboretum

Jack Frost Siberian Bugloss

Jack Frost Siberian Bugloss

Margie Radebaugh, the director of horticulture and education at the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pittsburgh, loves lungworts (Pulmonaria hybrids). These, too, are shade growers that have colorfully marked leaves. Photo by Paul G. Wiegman courtesy of Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens



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Lenten Rose

Lenten Rose

All of our experts highly recommend the Lenten Rose (Helleborus orientalis). Terrific under trees, this plant tolerates dry shade. Evergreen foliage remains perky throughout the winter. Flowers appear in winter, lasting through spring.

Steve Foltz, director of horticulture at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden, praises Purple Smoke false indigo (Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’), a native plant for full sun. It grows a three-foot, tight round mound of fine textured blue-green foliage. Showy flower spikes shoot above the foliage in May. “This is one of the best—if not the best—Baptisia on the market,” he says.

Chris Jensen, horticulturist at Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark in Dayton, likes crocus. He especially likes the late-winter blooming Crocus thomasinianus, which are affectionately known as “tommies.” This crocus species is famous for being squirrel resistant and self-sowing. “It spreads like crazy,” Chris says.

Photos by Sherrill Massey courtesy of Chadwick Arboretum

Photo courtesy of Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden

Photo courtesy of Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark

continued >

False Indigo

Crocus (plain)

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Witch Hazel

Witch Hazel ‘Arnold Promise’

Wonderful Woody Plants The early-spring blooming witch hazel shrubs are a favorite of all our experts. Chris knows his witch hazel well—there are over 100 varieties planted at Wegerzyn Gardens. “Hammemelis x intermedia ‘Pallida’ is one of the best,” says Chris. “It has strong, light yellow flowers with incredible fragrance. It’s a heavy bloomer, on a good sized shrub.” Witch Hazel photo courtesy of Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark Witch Hazel ‘Arnold Promise’ photo by Sue Trusty

Dwarf fothergilla (Fothergilla gardenii) is a small shrub on which the flowers look like creamy white bottlebrushes at the ends of the stems, appearing before the leaves in April. Steve points out that Dwarf fothergilla also has one of the best fall colors of any shrub, turning from yellow to orange to red all on the same plant around the end of October. Photos courtesy of Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden



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Spring Gardening Events at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden 2012 Landscaping for the Homeowner Series Every Wednesday from 7–9 pm. Classes are $10 for Zoo members and $14 for nonmembers. For additional information or to register, please call (513) 559-7767. Zoo Blooms April 2012 Zoo Blooms kicks off this spring with a combination of more than 100,000 tulips, more than one million daffodils, hyacinths and other spring bulbs, flowering trees and shrubs exploding with color. There will be a special Daffodil Show on April 14 & 15. This event is FREE with Zoo admission.

Spring Grove Dogwood

Tunes & Blooms April 5, 12, 19 & 26, 6–8:30pm Each Thursday in April beginning at 6pm the Cincinnati Zoo will feature FREE “Tunes & Blooms” concerts—a collection of Cincinnati’s finest and most respected music veterans playing together in the Zoo’s beautiful gardens. Tip-Toe through the Tulips Luncheon April 18 Dine amongst the tulips, take guided tours throughout the gardens, and view a presentation by one of the Zoo’s expert horticulturalists. For questions or to purchase your tickets, please contact Allison Gibbs, 513-487-3327 or allison.gibbs@

Spring Grove Dogwood

The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden 3400 Vine St., Cincinnati, Ohio 45220 (800) 944-4776

Our native flowering dogwood (Cornus florida) is one of the most spectacular spring flowering trees when planted in rich, welldrained soils and protected from the hot afternoon sun. Spring Grove Cemetery in Cincinnati, Ohio selected a truly beautiful specimen that they named the Spring Grove Dogwood. Photos courtesy of Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden

continued >

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Spring Grove Dogwood, fall color

According to Steve, “Most flowering dogwoods sport a single blossom on the end of the stem. The Spring Grove Dogwood has multiple blossoms making for a spectacular show in the spring. In the fall you are treated to a display of burgundy red leaf color that lasts up to three weeks. Bright red fruit is a bonus.” Photo courtesy of Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden

Yoshino Cherry

Cherry blossom viewing is a traditional rite of spring. According to Steve, “There are many different types of cherries, but in my opinion Yoshino Cherry (Prunus x yedoensis) is the best. Its light pink flowers are a fond farewell to winter and a welcome to spring.” Yoshino Cherry takes full sun and stays around 20 to 25 feet in height and spread.

Margie likes the cornelian cherry dogwood (Cornus mas), which presents bright yellow flowers in March. The foliage is a glossy dark green during the summer, the fruit is bright red and develops in the fall along with a wonderful red fall color, and exfoliating bark is an interesting feature all year long. Photo by Paul G. Wiegman courtesy of Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens


Photo courtesy of Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden

Cornelian Cherry Dogwood

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Frankly DeaR, I Prefer

Contemporary Today’s contemporary window treatments are “simply” beautiful!

By Kelly Z. Clark


many fashion and home decor trends, our window treatments have run the gamut from complicated

creations to simple statements. In the past we’ve seen elaborate curtain designs that incorporated yards and yards of fabric lavished with embellishments, and presented on stately curtain rods with carved finials. These window treatments were almost as opulent as a ball gown. Just ask Scarlett. Scarlett O’Hara was a complicated Southern belle who lived a charmed life, so it’s no wonder she wore her grand window treatments when she fell on hard times. And many can remember the classic Carol Burnett Show spoof of Gone with the Wind, where Carol also dons her window treatments, but includes the huge curtain rod as well. There’s nothing simple about that.

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decoratingtrends The simplicity of today’s contemporary trends in window treatments wouldn’t do for Scarlett, but for many of us the look is a welcomed change. According to Millie Hammond, senior stylist for Fabricut Inc., a worldwide distributor of decorative fabrics, people have embraced the cleaner aesthetic of contemporary design as their lives have gotten busier. Companies like Fabricut are working hard to provide designers with contemporary fabrics and accessories their clients will feel at home with. For those who prefer the non-custom option, retailers are also offering contemporary ready-made window treatments.

BELOW: The designer chose white draperies to add to his calming palette of grays, creams and browns in this condominium. Photo by Joe Traina

OPPOSITE top to bottom: Fabricut fabric samples: Fresh Prince, MacGyver, Mad About You, Sister Sister, Tomko. Photos courtesy of Fabricut

It’s too loud, can you tone it down, please Color is what has changed most significantly in fabric designs for contemporary settings. By just reducing the number of colors in a fabric, manufacturers have captured designs that are more fitting to the quiet, serene look that is so popular today. Fabric with a large-scale design can appear somewhat understated and fitting to the scheme when the number of colors is limited and the tones are muted. Even intricate patterns such as Fabricut’s “Sister Sister” and “MacGyver” have a contemporary vibe when they are presented using simple, muted color combinations.

OPPOSITE FAR RIGHT: This tone-on-tone treatment between the window treatments and the walls is a striking look. Photo by Joe Traina

continued >

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ABOVE: Designer Roller Shades offer features such as batterypowered motorization, a cordless lifting system and a comprehensive fabric collection. Photo courtesy of Hunter Douglas

RIGHT: Silhouette window shadings in Chateau fabric feature richly textured vanes with a coordinated colored face sheer. Photo courtesy of Hunter Douglas

OPPOSITE: Soft stripes in neutral shades adorn this breakfast room. Photo by Johan Roetz

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For those who prefer to limit their use of patterns, you can never go wrong with a solid curtain panel. Trendy colors range from white/cream to organic shades such as mushroom, jute, gravel and ash. What makes solid curtain panels so visually desirable is the use of fabrics with a texture. Linen weaves are hugely popular and can be nubby or smooth, weighty or very sheer. Emphasize the texture of the fabric by choosing a color that is similar to the wall color—either a shade lighter or darker and see how the texture of the fabric becomes even more noticeable and interesting. This works very well with velvet fabrics also.

Less is more in the actual design too, of course, so rather than pinch pleats or overlaying swags, the top of contemporary treatments feature straightforward folds attached to slick, unobtrusive drapery hardware (curtain rod, rings and finials). If it sounds too simple to be stylish, it’s not. The contemporary person will appreciate the restrained, classy presentation and how it becomes a beautiful element within the room.

Pull the shades Not a fan of curtains, but still want a window treatment? Shades and blinds lend themselves beautifully to contempo-

rary rooms because they are streamlined and can fit within the window. Fashion aside, blinds and shades are also functional treatments that provide light control and privacy. Hunter Douglas’ design trend expert, Sally Morse, recommends the Silhouette and Pirouette shade systems to finish a contemporary window. To play up the contemporary look, Morse says, “If it has a slat, vein or louver, always select the wider slat for the cleanest look because you will have half as many slats and a better view to the outdoors.” Morse also suggests that you can use the optical illusion created by the horizontal lines of shades and blinds because they tend to continued >

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elongate the look of a window when your eye follows the horizontal line. “No one ever asks for their windows to appear smaller,” Morse says. Morse also suggests the Skyline Gliding Window Panels which are super sleek and can be used to dress even the largest window expanse. These sliding panels are installed on a two-channel track that can split and open in the center or at the left or right side of the window. Hunter Douglas offers a large selection of sheer and opaque fabrics for the system in natural and woven grass options. Believe it or not, roller shades have made an impressive comeback. If the last time you saw a roller shade it was white, plastic and in your grandma’s house, then you will want to see the latest in this window covering. Today’s roller shades come in a plethora of custom fabrics that include organic, woven looks and textured finishes that result in an uncomplicated but “wow” appearance for windows. So maybe Scarlett did get her curtain “swag” on, but today’s contemporary window treatments are so classy and stylish, they’re enough to rival Scarlett in all her ball gown glory.


Hunter Douglas available locally at,, Fabricut available locally at,,,, TOP: A linen sheer is always a classic choice. Photo courtesy of Fabricut BOTTOM: Pirouette window shadings resemble the classic look of a hobbled Roman shade, but offer 21st-century light control options. Photo courtesy of Hunter Douglas

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Heat in style

Heating your home takes an artistic turn with these customizable thin-film artworks use far infrared technology to heat a room. RADIANT ARTWORK HEATING PANELS by Prestyl are available in a variety of custom colors and standard prints and graphics. The prints can be wall or ceiling mounted and come in a range of sizes.

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Cleaning has never looked so easy. More homeowners are doing away with noisy, hand-held vacuums and installing central vacuum cleaning systems. These systems are designed to remove dirt and dust from your home and send it through tubing in the walls to a storage receptacle in a garage or basement. You can even install built-in dustpans. CENTRAL VACUUM SYSTEMS from M.D. Manufacturing, Inc. are available in three models.

Drive-in, at Home

This state-of-the-art television can hold its own against Mother Nature. The Storm can withstand extreme temperatures, from -30째F to 140째F. Thanks to exclusive technology, the television provides a clear picture in direct sunlight and its anti-reflective tempered glass reduces glare. STORM OUTDOOR TELEVISION by Seura is available in three sizes: 42-, 47- and 55-inch.

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the market the market the market the market the market the market BOLLA Brushed Nickel

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The Ascent at Roebling’s Bridge









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visit us online! ... our objects, bibelots, whatnots, and knickknacks say the most about who we are. They are as honest as a diary.



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this hand-blown glass Cairn Table Lamp from Tracy Glover Studio Valued at $667

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AdvertiserIndex 20th Century Cincinnati................................64

Ethan Allen.....................................................7

A & S Lighting Center...................................95


Pendery Construction, Inc.............................54

Anthony Flottemesch + Son.........................29

Exciting Windows! by Kim Lyon....................30

Perrino Landscape Inc...................................82

Apollo Draperies Inc.....................................98

Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery.....56

Proficient Assistant.........................................37

The Appliance Loft........................................65

Floor Coverings International........................13

Renaissance Garden Ornament.....................36

Arch Design Window Door Co....................55

Florida Tile....................................................95

Robert Lucke Group.....................................57

Auer Kitchens...............................................92

Galleria Cabinetry.........................................97

Rustic Refinery..............................................36



Ryan’s All-Glass.............................................41

The Palisades of Mount Adams......................31

Bath Inspirations............................................74

Hagedorn Appliances....................................74

Sacksteder’s Interiors....................................84

Blinds Plus…and More!.................................32

Hoffman & Albers Interiors...........................15

Schumacher & Co........................................29

Blue Moon Home Furnishings........... 16 and 17

Holly Rebensdorf Interior Design..................54

Stained Glass Overlay...................................95

Bluford Jackson & Son, Inc............................76

Howard’s Kitchen Studio...............................83


Bova...................................between 82 and 83

Ideal Cabinetry Design..................................40

Taft Museum of Art.......................................39

C & W Custom Woodworking.....................42

Kelly Bros. Home & Design Center..............64



Kenwood Tile & Stone Design Center..........54


Champion Windows, Siding, Patio Rooms.....93

Kitchen Solutions..........................................86

Cincinnati Home & Garden Show...................2

Krispin’s Contemporary Furnishings...............42

Cincinnati Stoneworks..................................56

Legacy Kitchens............................................76

Coldwell Banker West Shell.............. 18 and 19

Lighting (one) of Cincinnati............................30

Cooks’ Wares...............................................39

Lighting EFX...................................................4

Custom Distributors...................................100

Magnolias on Main........................................14

Designs on Madison......................................40


Distinctive Patios...........................................28

McCabe Lumber...........................................43

Don Justice Cabinet Makers..........................66

McSwain Carpets & Floors............................85 Modern Wood Elements...............................11

DZIN Home Furnishings & Interior Design........................................28

Please visit our advertisers and let them know you saw their ads in Housetrends. This index is published as an added resource. The publisher does not assume responsibility for errors or omissions.

President and CEO, REACH USA Robert J. Slattery © 2012 Reach Publishing, LLC Housetrends magazine is published by Buzz Publications, LLC in conjunction with Reach Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved.

No Limits Landscaping, Inc............................75

25 Years of Custom Cabinetry and Architectural Woodworking 11928 Montgomery Road, Suite 8 (near Fields Ertel and Montgomery) HTCI0212.055


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Celebrating 39 Years



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Cincinnati’s only luxury appliance “showroom within a showroom” • • • • • • • •

Live product demos Open to the public Ongoing cooking demonstrations 42 name-brand appliances to choose from Consumer rebates on most appliances Builder & designer discounts to all On-site delivery and installation We know appliances – inside and out. We will help you make the best choice for your lifestyle needs. • Visit our closeout centers in both showrooms for great deals on new products

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Cincinnati Housetrends  

March 2012 Issue