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Voltage 3209 Madison Rd. 路 Cincinnati OH 45209 路 p 513.871.5483 路 f 513.871.5540 路

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welcome to our house…

Molly Linch and Karen Linch Bradner Photo by Robin Victor Goetz

I’m not sure if you have it marked on your calendar, but January 22 was National Take Your Mother To Work Day. Well, maybe it was just my calendar and maybe it was just my mother and me marking the occasion, but nevertheless, it is an event I recommend you observe if you are fortunate enough to have a mother nearby. Let’s face it. Mom had me at “I re-read your article last night.” I’m used to the photos getting most of the attention, so her second run-through won her a firstclass ticket to a Housetrends photo shoot. Joining me in Geoff and Ute Coy’s Anderson kitchen, Mom watched as we staged the room with fruit and flowers and as Robin, our photographer, took painstaking care with lighting to get the 6 or 7 photos we needed. I was pleased that Mom got to meet a few of the wonderful people I have met through my work. Inside, you can meet a handful of them as well. Along with fine families from all across Greater Cincinnati, this issue celebrates contemporary—kitchens, baths and bedrooms with a modern flair. Plus for the more traditionally minded, there’s a great riverfront condo to check out.


Have fun looking!

Karen Bradner and the Housetrends staff


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14 features


Amberley traditional reinvents itself with a fresh, contemporary feel


CONTEMPORARY Housetrends staffers pick favorite contemporary spaces to build a virtual dream home

46 What we see


depends mainly on what

we look for. —FORTUNE Page 22


Is it the elusive American dream?


Empty nesters and artisans collaborate to create charming Walnut Hills condo


THE JOY OF RESTORATION Cincinnati Preservation Association’s 2013 Spring House Tour



A Kiss of Contemporary Anderson kitchen goes from traditional fare to modern flair

departments 14 FRESH FINDS

The latest finds in flooring, furniture and lighting


on the cover

Light floods into this contemporary Amberley Village kitchen through a large center window framed by natural stone and stainless steel and glass cabinetry. Photo by Robin Victor Goetz


more online

Bonus photos and features can be found exclusively online at Look for our mouse symbol.

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!"# %


! $% & & #$! ' ( # %% K G I C L E % M % @ H ? F D I J ? E I N C O

Photography Courtesy of Ross Van Pelt

The design, the products and the experience that let you fall in love with your home, again.

a member of ! "# %


! $ %& & # $ ! ' (# %% K G I C L E % M % @ H ? F D I J ? E I N C O

The Design Center of Cincinnati 21 Whitney Dr., Milford, OH 45150 513.707.1495 HTCI0213.048

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housetrends GOURMET

Berry Waffle Breakfast Sandwich Find this recipe at

Photo courtesy of Whole Foods

CORPORATE GREATER CINCINNATI Publisher Linda Bacher Editor Karen Bradner Contributing Writers Kelly Z. Clark, Alice P. Drake, Amy Howell Hirt, Margo Warminski Contributing Photographers Josh Beeman, Daniel Feldkamp, Robin Victor Goetz, Jeffrey Jakucyk, Don Miller, Craig Thompson Senior Sales Consultant Katie Coughlin

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

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 Color Technician Elvis Lim Production Coordinator Lisa Cavin Sales Production Mary Burdett Print Production Dawn Deems

VP of Interactive Media Ric Welker Website Development Sandy Sinex Digital Content Development Cassandra Snyder Advertising Designer Gina Miller Advertising Production Will Brewer, Connie Kimsey, Thom Miller Quality Control Supervisor Sandy Whalen Quality Control Heather Fox, Melisande Weidner Founder/Executive Publisher Sam Wilder

PUBLISHED IN CONJUNCTION WITH BUZZ PUBLICATIONS, LLC AND REACH PUBLISHING LLC. Š 2013 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, send a letter to Housetrends, Name Removal, 4601 Malsbary Road, Cincinnati, OH 45242.

Please recycle or pass this magazine on to another reader

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fresh FINDS

Aster pillow by COMPANY C The bright aqua background makes the textured ivory aster pop off the pillow.

Mini Olivia pendant by LBL LIGHTING Made from 100% recyclable plastic, the Olivia, designed by Koziol of Germany, is a magnificent and subtle design.

Vivian 2 glass tile by ANN SACKS This exquisite Beau Monde Glass is produced by water jet and fabricated with meticulous attention to detail. Shown here in marcasite—a rich soothing color that has a sophisticated feel.

Walnut Claude Special Edition Gossip Bench set from the Claude Modular Collection by JONATHAN ADLER Available in Walnut with brushed brass accents. Stack up to three 2-Drawer or 2-Door Units on top of each other. Mix the pieces in almost any configuration you desire.

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7813 Ted gregory lane in olde montgomery


Photography by Robin Victor Goetz


Providing comprehensive design, furnishings and installation service to owners of fine homes throughout Greater Cincinnati


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fresh FINDS

Aeros pendant by LOUIS POULSEN Designed by Ross Lovegrove, this pendant has an ethereal feel that gives the impression of being lightweight despite its size. Shown in gold sand, Aeros is also available in white.

Stash desk by BLU DOT A straightforward design approach results in a simply beautiful elemental desk. Pencil drawer can be assembled to either the left or right side.

Victor chair by WEST ELM A sleek updated version of the classic wing chair, Victor is the winning seat. The buttoned version (shown) comes with four back buttons.

Poppy Droplets rug by CAPEL RUGS Droplets is a loop hooked construction, contemporary wool rug designed by Kevin O’Brien. The impression of movement through color is a playful idea for underfoot.

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fresh FINDS

Braided Velvet pillow by COMPANY C Velvet braided rows create a luxurious texture in rich colors that make you want to touch this decadent pillow.

Desmond screen by JONATHAN ADLER The namesake of this contemporary piece refers to Gloria Swanson’s character, Norma Desmond, in Sunset Boulevard. Shown in walnut veneer, the Desmond screen is also available in white lacquer.

Fez shade by FORECAST LIGHTING The captivating green glass and smooth pleasing shape of this pendant is a sight for sore eyes.

more online

Find more products exclusively online at Search: Fresh Finds

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Amberley traditional reinvents itself with a fresh, contemporary feel By Amy Howell Hirt Photos by Robin Victor Goetz/RVGP Inc. When newly empty-nested couple Bruce and Jenny decided to remodel their Amberley Village home, there were certain elements that simply had to go—like the purplish-pink toilet, countertop and flooring that filled an out-of-the-way half-bath, giving away the home’s 1989 construction. What they weren’t so sure about was what style should replace the dated look and define this new chapter of their lives and their home. ● The answer came a few years ago, when Jenny freshened the foyer by replacing two traditional table lamps with sleek shell-tiled wall sconces. Something about the modern simplicity spoke to her, and sparked an empty-nest makeover that, by the time it was done, included a powder room inspired by fortune cookies, a master bathroom that seems illuminated by drops of mercury, and a fresh, transitional design that celebrates the couple’s past, present and future. ● “As I’ve gotten older, I’ve felt like I just wanted a cleaner look,” Jenny says. continued >

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The contrasting textures of stone and glass make the dramatic center window pop.

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O J t r a r h g e b

t c t t t


i i W M c w a a

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Breaking from tradition

A refreshing revamp

Over the 13 or so years that Bruce and Jenny have lived in the Tudor-style home, they gradually edited pieces that didn’t reflect their personality. They un-screened a screened porch off the kitchen, redecorated the master bedroom and introduced hardwood flooring and a slab of smooth granite to replace carpeting and yet another, pink Corian countertop covering a wet bar in the living room. While they selected styles that appealed to them, Jenny says they always kept a cautious eye on what would sell, given the traditional style that has long dominated the local area and established communities like Amberley. “I was always drawn to contemporary but was being logical about resale,” Jenny says. But with those simple sconces serving as a muse, the couple began following their personal sensibilities instead. Working with interior designer Renan Menninger, owner of RM interiors, they created welcoming yet personal spaces where industrial, contemporary lines feel at home alongside traditional furnishings and keepsake art projects.

With the exception of the ceiling in the master bathroom—where a classic barrel vault was removed in favor of a dropped tray—the home didn’t need a structural overhaul, so the couple and the designers simply upgraded the home’s aesthetics, introducing a carefully curated combination of contemporary simplicity and organic warmth. Menninger remade the family room fireplace by covering the red brick with stacked quartz, and Drew Dearwester, co-owner of Switch Lighting and Design, updated the traditional stairwell with a cascading light fixture that he typically recommends for clients with downtown lofts or city views, not two-story Tudors in the suburbs. In the kitchen, bright modern finishes such as a clear-glass backsplash, stainless-steel cabinetry and a glossy white quartz countertop replaced the existing ho-hum brown cabinetry and checkerboard tile backsplash. Menninger added a natural stone finish above the cabinets to focus attention on the soaring window and wood-beamed ceiling, and brought in dark-stained oak cabinets, travertine flooring and linen blinds to keep the space from feeling overly modern.

OPENING SPREAD AND TOP LEFT: A cornucopia designed by Jenny and Bruce’s son, commands visitors’ attention in the living room. OPPOSITE AND BELOW: A blank wall in a lower level theatre/billiards area is converted into an inviting gathering spot. TOP: Ozzie relaxes in the dining room where a self-portrait by the couple’s son hangs on the wall. ABOVE: A light fixture rests on a contemporary side table.

continued >

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O a p t r

c w o l p e u W t p a s t

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OPPOSITE: Translucent resin panels, from 3 Form, provide privacy in the master bath. TOP LEFT AND TOP RIGHT: A pebble emitting an upward light source shines on a cluster of polished chrome shapes evoking beads of silver mercury. LEFT AND ABOVE: A cement trough sink, designed by Menninger, adds an earthy touch to the master bath.

Unexpected elements Of course a home is only as interesting as the stories it can tell, and there are plenty of conversation-starting features that inject personality into this home’s remodeled spaces. An interplay of clean lines and soft curves draws you into the master bath, where you then notice the crowning glory of this space—and arguably, the house. A light fixture resembling smooth metallic pebbles or drops of mercury provides general illumination in the space and serves to unite the industrial and natural elements. While the silver coating coordinates with the concrete countertops, modern drawer pulls and geometric tub, the organic shape also relates to the river rocks inlaid in the shower floor and the circular design on the resin window panels.

“It’s like a piece of art on the ceiling,” Menninger says. “It pulls it all together.” Not to be outdone, a powder room just down the hall is another small space packed with character. The couple decided on a black vinyl wallpaper with charcoalgray circles meant to resemble a bird’seye view of a traditional Asian rice hat. Because the wallpaper style was named “Fortune Cookie,” Menninger encouraged the couple to run with the theme, complete with a “fortune” printed across the bottom of the mirror. Bruce and Jenny chose a phrase—“What we see depends mainly on what we look for”—that could be interpreted as a tongue-in-cheek nod to its own reflective surface.

Art from the heart Original artwork imbues a home with per-

sonality in a way that can’t be reproduced, and Jenny and Bruce are lucky enough to have pieces by their now-grown son and daughter—both grads of the School for Creative and Performing Arts—that exhibit talent and appeal beyond the merely sentimental. While their daughter’s influence can be seen in smaller pieces that dot the bookshelves, their son is responsible for large-scale, attention-grabbing artwork. An oversized cornucopia-shaped sculpture—which he made with carefully fanned slices of wood—keeps the beigecolored living room from feeling too traditional. In the dining room, a lighthearted self-portrait that’s paired with an asymmetrical light fixture adds intrigue to the classic dining room setting. continued >

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Welcoming entertainment While the kitchen, which opens to the family room, often becomes the hub during parties, it was important to Jenny for the finished basement to feel just as welcoming. “I wanted to make it a little more appealing to come down here and have drinks,” she says. While some basement lounge areas can feel like a dark pub, carefully placed lighting and natural, textured materials bring a boost of vitamin D to this space. The focal point is a kitchenette area that has a cheerful, Tuscan-like glow. Internally lit cabinets serve as bookends for a wall that’s finished with stacked quartz—left over from the upstairs fireplace—and randomly spaced reclaimed walnut shelves decorated with bottles of oil. Given the entertaining appeal of this lower-level space, which is complete with a pool table, refrigerator and freezer drawers and wine cooler, the couple finds their nest isn’t quite as empty as it used to be. “Our kids are now in their 20s, but they say, ‘You can never sell this house.’ They like coming over to hang out or swim in the pool,” Jenny says.

Designer: Renan Menninger, RM Interiors; Lighting: Drew Dearwester, Switch Lighting and Design; Contractor: J Michael Companies; Flooring: Louisville Tile; Kitchen cabinetry and countertops: Sims-Lohman; Kitchen backsplash: Dickey’s Glass; Kitchen sink: Norwood Hardware; Bathroom cabinetry: SimsLohman; Master bath sinks: Engineered concrete, Ohio CemTech; Master bath ceiling details: Drawing Dept; Powder room sink: Norwood Hardware; Bathroom faucets: Norwood Hardware; Bathroom mirrors: Designed by RM Interiors, produced by Dickey’s Glass; Powder room wallcovering: Donghia; Master bedroom design: Sandy Datillo, Ethan Allen

OPPOSITE AND LEFT: Glossy black walls add drama while fortune cookies add fun to the guest powder room. ABOVE: The master bedroom features a wall of windows that opens up to the lush garden and pool area.

more online

See more photos of this home at Search: Light Touches.

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dreams Let Louisville Tile help make your dream project a vivid reality. We are proud to offer the necessary materials to meet your needs— no matter how large or small your dream!


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VIRTUALLY con tem por ary

STAFFERS PICK THEIR FAVORITE CONTEMPORARY SPACES TO BUILD THEIR VIRTUAL DREAM HOME Thousands of photos cross the desks of the Housetrends’ editorial and graphic team each year. And even though most of us leave work and head to our traditional or transitional homes, we all stop and stare when a striking contemporary space is splayed across a co-worker's computer screen. These artful, yet minimalistic scenes seem to capture our attention and get us talking. › To commemorate this special contemporary issue, we’ve selected our favorite living room, dining room, kitchen, bath, bedroom, patio and façade—all collected from different homes in different cities—to create our virtually stunning showcase of contemporary tastes. › Sample it for yourself. If you’d like to see more, we’ll show you how to take a more in-depth tour.

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Photo by Daniel Feldkamp/ Visual Edge Imaging

I chose this kitchen because its furnishings are simple, elegant and timeless. I also like the translucent glass doors. Not only are they practical, they also diffuse the light, making it softer, which adds to the feel of the room.”


editorial proofreader

RESOURCES Designers: Susan and Matthew Ungar Architect: Jonathan Barnes Contractor: Long and Wilcox Cabinetry: Lumberjack’s Granite: Marble and Granite Works, Inc.

more online:

To see the complete story of this kitchen, go to and search “Urban Nesting.”

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could sit here for hours. It looks so peaceful and relaxing. I absolutely love the sound of water.”

advertising designer


Photo by Daniel Feldkamp/ Visual Edge Imaging



Landscape designer: Dwight Goodin, Paver Planet Landscape developer, plant installation, water features: Paver Planet Maintenance: Ohio Ground Solutions Plant supplier: Studebaker Nurseries Patio pavers: Basalt stone pavers, Snyder Brick & Block Cut stone work: Gregory Stone Landscape walls: Unilock, Area Wide Services Furnishings: Crate & Barrel

more online:

To see the complete story of this patio, go to and search “Nestled In Nature.”

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Bauhaus and how! I’ve always loved the clean simplicity of modern architecture. No frou-frou here. And the renovation is thoughtful, personal and unique.”

NINA KIEFFER, creative director


Photos by Craig Thompson


Architect: Mitchel & Ritchey (original), Cleland Dowler (renovation); Landscape renovation: Eichenlaub, Inc.; Hardscape renovation: DiBucci Masonry; Staircase: Zottola Fabrication

more online:

To see the complete story of this home, go to and search “Worthy Cause.”

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ELVIS LIM, photo retoucher

Sleek. Modern. Spacious.”


Photo by Daniel Feldkamp/ Visual Edge Imaging



Builder: Doug Pund, Novum Custom Homes Architect: Sheri Scott Flooring: Fade Marble Lighting: Ferguson Furniture: Bova and Krispins

more online: To see the complete story of this dining room, go to and search “Best of Both Worlds.”

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Photo by Don Miller

RESOURCES Designers: Becky Cormier, Scan Design; Rita Bateman, Home Décor Consulting

My eyes are automatically drawn to the curve of the camel-colored sofa. I love how the furniture is strategically placed to take in the vertical grains of the sapele veneer covering the entertainment center.”

Contractor: Mike Franzek, Building Products Specialists


Furniture and accessories: Scan Design


more online:

To see the complete story of this living room, go to and search “Soulful Energy.”

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This bedroom screams, ‘I’m confident, I’m in control and I am worth every penny it took to make me look this way.’”



Photo by Craig Thompson


Photo by Josh Beeman

RESOURCES Interior designer: Liz Murphy, Liz Murphy Design; Contractor: Carl Lieberman, Lieberman Group, Inc.; Cabinetry and countertops: Leggett Kitchens; Sinks and faucets: Kohler, supplied by Crescent Supply; Mirrors: Electric Mirror; Wallcovering: Hobbs Painting; Flooring and wall marble: Athens Silver Cream, Ann Sacks; Stone pebbles: Pebble Tile, Island Stone, supplied by Ceramiche Tile & Stone; Cabinet hardware: Habitat Hardware; Accessories: Jonathan Savage Interior Design

more online:

To see the complete story of this bath, go to and search “Red Hot Wonder.”



Designer: Renan Menninger, Allied ASID, RM Interiors Bed and bedside tables: Designed by Renan Menninger, constructed by Don Justice Cabinet Makers

more online:

To see the complete story of this bedroom, go to and search “Speedy Recovery.”

senior graphic designer

I love how the courageous use of bold red on the walls in this bathroom creates visual excitement.”

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Getting Organized Is it an elusive American dream? By Kelly Z. Clark


Have fun by coming up with storage solutions that reflect your personality. —Stephanie Antunez California Closets

Photo courtesy of California Closets

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It’s hard to estimate just how much time and money is spent each year in the United States by those of us who dream of having a more organized garage, office, filing system, kitchen, closet or refrigerator. One thing, however, is certain: the solution to getting organized still eludes the majority of us, and it’s not because companies have yet to invent the perfect container, storage bin or closet system. In fact, over time we have been presented with a myriad of products, experts and storage companies just begging us to wage war on our messes! If you’re not sure all this really applies to you because your mother or best friend hasn’t mentioned your disorganization—don’t worry, they won’t. Chances are good they have their own issues in this area and don’t want to risk comparing continued > messes. 47 046-050 tUNV GettingOrganized.indd 47

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Consider the following statements and decide which are true for you: O

I can locate my birth/ marriage certificates and passport effortlessly.


I can find my 2000 tax return in less than two minutes.


Inviting company over for dinner means unearthing the dining room table and performing careful excavation of months of paperwork, mail, permission slips, homework, etc.


I rebuy things I know I already have because they seem to get misplaced.


I can park the number of cars in my garage that it was designed to hold.


I wear only 25% of my wardrobe because 75% is hard to reach, hard to see or hardly in style anymore.


I rent a storage unit to keep things I’m unsure I, or my family, will really ever want.


I actually use 80% of what I own at least three to four times a year.


Discover your happy place with an organized garage. —Kim Grosser Closets By Design

Photo courtesy of Closets by Design

Organization = Empowerment The number of statements to the left that apply to you isn’t important, but understanding the value of getting out from under your mess is life changing. And while our troubled economy is unsettling, it can have a positive effect on some of us. Some studies suggest that people feel a need to clean, organize and de-clutter their homes as a means of empowering themselves when they feel

powerless over their finances. Let’s face it, being unorganized costs money, not to mention the effort and stress it causes. Couldn’t most of us commit to having more respect for our homes, families and belongings by clearing our clutter and keeping only what we really need? Of course we could. So let’s get back to the basics and look at some very manageable approaches to getting started. continued >

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Giving everyone their own storage space minimizes the mess in a mudroom. —Beth Schramm C&W Custom Woodworking

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Three basic methods used by experts to get the ball rolling with their clients. These are intentionally simple so as not to overwhelm us or require a major life change to feel successful:


Work in a circle Starting by the door to the room, just move clockwise in a circle around the room picking up items and putting them away. This approach gives a method for how to proceed as you move through the space.


Flat surfaces first This is especially useful in a home office or kitchen. Focus on flat surfaces like the floor and countertops first and clear only the clutter you can see before you open any drawers or closets.


Centralize Use a central location like the bed, dining room table (or driveway if you’re cleaning the garage) to lay out all items that need to be sorted. While the items are on the bed or table you can see everything in one place at one time and begin to sort. This method also clears the mess from a room, giving fast results and a sense of accomplishment that can be motivating.


Pantry drawers allow you to reach things in the back just as easily as in the front. —Michael Saunders ShelfGenie Photo courtesy of Shelf Genie

Keep up the good work and keep rolling with these tips: Set a timer to keep yourself on task. Do NOT let each phase of the project go on for too long and become overwhelming or risk going unfinished. It’s also motivating to play “beat the clock.” Live the mantra “a place for everything and everything in its place.” When every item has a “home” there’s no reason to set it down any place else. Don’t keep things just because they cost you money—but do consider how many hours you work to buy things you don’t even know you own or never use. Similar items should always be stored together close to the place they are used most. Getting organized doesn’t begin with a shopping trip, so don’t buy storage containers until you know what kind you need and how many. If you buy too many

you will keep more items than you need; buy too few and the project won’t get completed. Don’t confuse rearranging and tidying up with organizing because really getting organized generally requires getting rid of things. The most important thing is just to get started and remember that “good enough” really is. If there’s one thing we should know by now is that there’s no silver bullet when it comes to de-cluttering and organizing. Commit to being willing and you will be able to do it!


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National Wood Flooring Association

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Closets byDesign


Too much to do and not enough time? A lifestyle management company, the Proficient Assistant can accomplish the many tasks you simply do not have the time for. Love your house... not your clutter. We can do a simple reorganization of your pantry or a complete redesign of any room in your home or office. Jen Adams, 513.604.1707

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Empty nesters and artisans collaborate to create charming Walnut Hills condo By Karen Bradner | Photos by Robin Victor Goetz/RVGP Inc. You get it as soon as you walk in the front door. This is a home where each accessory has meaning and is placed with great care. Nothing is done haphazardly. Silver collectibles, crystal decanters, photos and books have been artfully clustered throughout the space by someone who has an impeccable eye for detail. Typically these scenes are the result of a skilled interior designer’s touch, but in this case the artist behind the look is someone who might just have missed her calling. F While her retiree husband golfs, Kay decorates. Her elegant Walnut Hills condominium is evidence to that fact, and it’s a passion she is all too happy to share. Whether you’re a daughter, friend, family member or passing acquaintance, it doesn’t matter to Kay. She’s happy to help “anywhere that I can get in.”

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ABOVE: A barge moves along the Ohio River, adding to the majestic view. OPPOSITE: Occasional chairs are sprinkled throughout the home, providing plenty of seating combinations when the couple entertains.

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Pleasures and treasures To find the materials she needs, Kay often relies on her favorite source: “I’m in heaven in antique stores,” she says. As her eyes scan her living room she points out a few of her favorite finds, which are placed alongside family mementos. “Every accessory I have here is really important to me,” says Kay. “It has a history. Whether it’s my history or someone else’s. Every piece has a story.”

Starting a new chapter A couple of years ago, with three daughters grown and out of the house, Kay and Jim decided it was time to move from their Hyde Park home to a space that would require less maintenance and allow them to winter in Florida without worrying about frozen pipes back home. In June of 2011, they purchased a firstfloor condo with sweeping views of the Ohio River. It was imperative to both Jim and Kay that their new home had easy access to a yard. Jim enjoys reading the paper outside even in cooler weather. Plus, this particular property has a pool, which is the perfect lure for the couple’s seven grandchildren who can simply cross “Mimi and B’s” terrace and go through a nearby gate to swim. Clearly the couple loves when their grandkids come to visit, but Kay says “They can come in and just ruin the whole place in about ten minutes.” But she is not complaining. It’s a perfect arrangement as far as she and Jim are concerned. continued >

OPPOSITE: This view greets visitors at the front entry. ABOVE: Blue is one of Kay’s favorite accent colors. TOP RIGHT: A wet bar is tucked away between the entry and the living room. RIGHT: A warm and spacious bathroom makes guests feel welcome.

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Open up and say “ah!” Although the home looks pretty close to perfect now, this is a far cry from the condition of the place a little over a year ago. When Jim and Kay first encountered the space, it had a very different look. The fixtures and finishes were outdated and the floor plan felt closed in. Natural light was only available in the master bedroom and living room; everywhere else it was lost. Their immediate focus was opening the floor plan to brighten up the place. Fortunately, they knew just the right person to handle the job.

Foregone conclusion The couple originally met contractor Mike Graf over 4-1/2 years

ago when he did a bit of woodworking on their previous home. As soon as Kay and Jim bought the 2,500-square-foot condo, “There was no question Mike was going to do the work,” says Kay. “We interviewed no one else. Talked to no one else.” Graf, whose passion is woodworking, loved working with the couple. “They kind of gave me free reign to run,” he says. In September of 2011, work began with three weeks of demolition. Much of the material was donated to the local non-profit reusable building supply company, Building Value. “Once we saw the structure and support beams of the building we made the design decisions,” Graf says. Because they wanted to run light and sound systems through

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LEFT: The view is the star of the show in the living room. ABOVE: A casual dining area was placed between the living room and the kitchen.

the sound-deafening cement ceiling, Graf’s team coffered it to a height of 9’3”, allowing space for the mechanics. Most of the exterior doors and windows leaked. Graf’s team replaced one wall of windows and the rest were adjusted with a tight fit. One oversized rectangular room was converted to a separate bedroom and study. It was Kay’s idea to separate the rooms with pocket doors to allow light from the study’s wall of windows into the bedroom. The front entry changed slightly, but the kitchen was a complete rearrangement that came from inside Graf’s design-rich mind. “I drew most of it for them,” he says, “but some of it we did on the fly.” A considerable number of those “drawings” were actually sketch-

es done on Skyline napkins by Graf in collaboration with Kay. “We used to eat lunch at Skyline at least three times a week,” she says. “He blew up like a balloon.” Graf, now back to his trim pre-project weight, agrees as he looks across from the dining room to the kitchen space with pride. Although his design skills are something he says he “picked up along the way,” Graf’s real claim to fame is his woodwork. He was the artist behind the custom-built kitchen and bath cabinetry, cooktop mantle, raised paneled walls, intricate door casings and stately crown molding. The contractor points out that the kitchen features a three-piece, 8-inch deep molding and the foyer showcases an 8-piece crown. continued >

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Glossy gift Another creation of Graf’s team is an impressive cooktop mantle that makes a grand statement in the kitchen. Tucked inside is a tile backsplash that the contractor gave as a surprise gift to his clients. Graf explains that he wanted to create a backsplash to be the perfect complement to the cabinets. “I knew that Rookwood was the right option. It’s customizable. I saw the possibility. They can make what the customer wants. My customers want what they want. A lot of times, that’s not available on the shelves.” Kay says that she and Jim had no idea that it was Graf’s intention to buy them the backsplash. When they met with Sarah Gardner, a designer at Rookwood, Kay remembers she kept pushing to get the color and texture just right. Bringing the team’s vision to life was Rookwood’s talented glaze chemist Jim Robinson. “We wanted more white. More crackle,” Kay says. “Mike and I created that color together. It’s the first white crackle that Rookwood has done. They named the glossy color ‘Snowflake.’”

Cincinnati’s own Rookwood Pottery traces its roots back more than 100 years. Visit to learn more about the company’s history and recent resurgence. Rookwood also offers free studio tours every Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. Tours last approximately 30 minutes. Call 513381-2500 to reserve a spot.

continued > OPPOSITE: According to Kay, this sitting area that was created off of the kitchen, really makes the whole space function well. ABOVE: The contractor’s gift to the homeowners, a Rookwood backsplash, can be seen beneath the cooktop’s mantle.

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Staying in touch Even though the construction wrapped up in June of 2012, Mike is not totally out of the picture yet. In fact the contractor recently became engaged (to Sarah from Rookwood!) and there’s talk that there might be a June wedding at Kay and Jim’s place. And while the couple says this place is it for them—they are staying put—it doesn’t take more than a few seconds before Kay adds, “Well maybe…I might want to do another.” It’s a safe bet that antique stores and Mike Graf haven’t seen the last of this particular decorator. Designers: Homeowners and Mike Graf; Contractor: Graf Construction and Remodeling, LLC; Flooring: Mansion Hill; Kitchen, master bath and powder room cabinetry: Custom by Graf Construction and Remodeling; Kitchen countertops: Imperial Danby marble, Mees Distributors, Inc.; Kitchen backsplash: Designed by Sarah Gardner, Rookwood Pottery; Kitchen and bathroom sinks and faucets: Hausman Plumbing; Appliances: Keidel; Bathroom countertops: Thasos marble, Mees Distributors, Inc.; Painter: Forest Snell; Wallcovering and faux finishes: Larry McGruder, Kurtinitis; Furniture: Select pieces from English Traditions, Quince and Quinn, Wooden Nickel; Upholstering and chair refinishing: Unique Furniture Enterprises; Lighting and accessories: Palette Studios; Window treatments: Slats

TOP LEFT: This guest bedroom and Jim and Kay’s master suite are on opposite ends of the condo. LEFT: Interesting wall angles, such as these in the master bedroom, are found throughout the home. ABOVE: Tux, a 7-yearold Havanese, soaks up the sun.

more online See bonus photos for this feature at Search Eyes for Details 64 056-064 tFEA EyesForDetails.indd 64

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A Ki of Contemporary Anderson kitchen goes from traditional fare to modern flair

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y By Alice P. Drake Photos by Robin Victor Goetz, RVGP Inc. Geoff and Ute Coy had lived in their Anderson Township, custom-built home for over two decades when they decided it was time to update the kitchen to provide more space for friends and family when entertaining. “It was a fluke that I ended up going to Howard’s Kitchen Studio,” says Ute. “I was around the corner and decided to go into the showroom. Right away I had a great feeling after meeting Mark (Kaplan, owner) and I was extremely pleased with the results.” continued >

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Much needed updates The main push to remodel came when the couple’s cooktop stopped working. Ute looked around and realized the oven was on its way out and she had always hated her refrigerator, findings that soon snowballed into a major overhaul. “I wanted more appliances, but also more functional appliances,” explains Ute. “My husband was okay with the old kitchen, but he does like it when I am happy,” so the remodeling began with a lot of help from Geoff. In fact, Geoff not only installed the cabinets but also did almost all of the work himself and acted as the general contractor. He created the bump out, moved the window up in the dry bar area, removed old cabinetry and tile floor, reworked the plumbing and more. Ute notes that her husband’s deep involvement definitely was vital to things running smoothly along with Sandee Daye, CMKBD of Howard’s Kitchen Studio. “She was wonderful with any questions,” says the homeowner. Ute found that she really wanted a warming drawer behind her when she was using the cooktop, so one was installed in

the island, which also allows seating for two. She also thought it was not necessary to have the double ovens next to the cooktop, so they were positioned next to the dry bar. “I wanted the ovens out of the way because you put food in there for a longer time and I did not need to be able to access them while I was using the cooktop,” Ute says.

Cabinet satisfaction The house is a cedar stone, traditional and the Coys did not consider their tastes to be contemporary. However, Ute was adamant about having light colored cabinets with flat panels, a look that offers a contemporary flair. “I hate cleaning and I especially hate cleaning grooves of cabinets,” she says. “I do like the flat front doors because they have a cleaner look and I definitely didn’t want to go with all dark cabinets.” With the exception of the island and dry bar by the double ovens, Ute’s wishes were fulfilled. Daye made sure of that. “We used a rift-cut, quarter-sawn white oak which is quite an unusual wood. Not too many cabinet companies offer it, but the graining

OVERLEAF: A window above the dry bar offers an abundance of natural light to the area and the extra room created plenty of opportunity for a round table with seating for four. OPPOSITE TOP RIGHT: Geoff discusses world events with his granddaughter Brooke in the adjacent family room. OPPOSITE BOTTOM: Vertical pulls are the only hint as to which doors conceal the refrigerator/freezer columns. ABOVE: Collectibles have space to shine in a display area above the dry bar.

continued >

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is very pretty,” she says. “I suggested that cabinet choice to the Coys because Ute wanted something different and was very opposed to dark cabinets.” Another bonus of flat-paneled cabinetry was discovered later on when the Coys’ now 10-month-old granddaughter was learning to explore her surroundings. “She can’t open the lower cabinets because she can’t get her fingers inside the panels,” explains Ute.

Favorite option “I love the added space I gained in cabinets with taking them up to the ceiling changing the layout,” Ute says. However, she zooms in on the dry bar as her most favorite part of the kitchen. Daye explains, “The dry bar is the first thing you see when you walk into the kitchen and Ute wanted that to be a space for entertaining rather than just part of the kitchen.” The area was created by removing a wall and cantilevering a bump-out to gain roughly 2 to 3 feet of breathing space.

Working around the vaulted ceiling created an interesting challenge, but by creating the cantilevered bar area, the problem disappeared seamlessly. Ute did not want all cabinets in the upper portion of the dry bar, so an opening was crafted to display revolving knickknacks that can change with the seasons. The lone row of upper cabinetry offers frosted glass panels with doors that slide up and lock in place, garage door style, in order to display glassware during parties. One funny aspect of the semi-revealing frosted glass is that not only are the wine glasses apparent, but so are the sippy cups they keep in that cabinet for their granddaughter. “Yes, the joke is that you can either grab a sippy cup or wine glass for your drink, but the sippy cups are much smaller,” Ute says with a smile in her voice. The bottom portion of the dry bar houses two integrated refrigerator drawers, which Ute exclaims is “the best thing I added.” She says that family or friends

can easily grab drinks from the refrigerators without having to invade the main kitchen space. She also likes that the drawers can be loaded with fruits, vegetables and more for convenient snacking during Thanksgiving day preparations.

It’s the small things The lighting scheme in the kitchen offers the four layers needed to provide the ample amount of brightness: task lighting, ambient lighting, accent lighting and decorative lighting. For over the island, three domed, frosted glass pendants add a subtle touch of light. Those same types of pendants can be seen in a staggered pattern above the round glass table in front of the dry bar. The design was restricted by the slope of the vaulted ceiling therefore a traditional chandelier would not do, so the staggered pendants were a clever solution. Ute really loves the teal paint color that flows from the dry bar area into the continued >

TOP LEFT: Ute and Brooke check out the refrigerator for afternoon snack options. TOP RIGHT: The bold glass tile backsplash of the dry bar is used as an accent over the cooktop. OPPOSITE: Cabinetry pulls are placed horizontally to look cohesive with the appliances.

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adjoining great room. “The color picks up the blue tones in the granite and tile backsplash,” she shares. The Thermador columns were placed opposite of the usual refrigerator-on-theright, freezer-on-the-left configuration because Ute thought it was more convenient to have the refrigerator closer to the island and cooktop. The freezer side is next to the pantry, so food is also easily accessible from that side as well. Ute shares that she is “not a huge microwave person,” but conceded that it is still necessary to have one in the kitchen. She does mention that during construction, however, she was forced to use a microwave, along with a griddle, wafflemaker and skillet in their lower level. “We have a sink down there, too, so we just had to move the basics downstairs. I cooked every night,” she says, noting that she did not even use paper plates, but rather washed dishes by hand after every meal. She laughs when she shares that the couple even had a dinner party during construction! “We made do. I used a simpler style of cooking that was a little different than what I usually do.” The whole project needed to be completed in order for the Coys to host a bridal shower for their daughter, but that was not a problem. “Everything went incredibly smoothly. Everything came in on time and it only took three months to complete,” says Ute. That statement is definitely music to the ears of homeowners, contractors and designers everywhere.


Kitchen designer: Sandee Daye, CMKBD, Howard’s Kitchen Studio; Contractor: Geoff Coy; Cabinetry: Mouser, Howard’s Kitchen Studio; Flooring: Finishing Touch; Countertops: Emerald pearl granite, Modlich Stoneworks; Backsplash: Mees Distributors, Inc.; Sinks, faucets, lighting: Ferguson; Cooktop, oven, refrigerator: Thermador, Howard’s Kitchen Studio; Paint: Sherwin Williams Bayside

TOP LEFT: The pendant shades are easy to replace should the homeowners want to change the color or shape. LEFT: The double ovens were moved away from the cooktop to give the cook plenty of room to maneuver.

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Š2013 California Closet Company, Inc. All rights reserved. Franchises independently owned and operated.

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The Joy of Restoration

By Margo Warminski, Preservation Director | Photo by Jeffrey Jakucyk

Cincinnati Preservation Association’s 2013 Spring House Tour on Saturday, April 27 from 1 to 5 p.m. will feature the Rauh House in Woodlawn. One of the first International Style residences in Ohio, this Modernist landmark has been saved from demolition and has been restored by CPA. 78 078-079 nFEA JoyOfRestoration.indd 78

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The house was built in 1938 as the rural estate of insurance executive Frederick Rauh and his wife, Harriet. The Modernist masterwork of architect John Becker, it is built of white-painted cinderblock with a flat roof, rear terrace and attached two-car garage. The 8.5-acre site incorporates features designed by landscape architect A.D. Taylor, who also designed the approach to Union Terminal. Almost demolished during the 2000s real estate boom, the Rauh House remained vacant for six years. The house suffered from deterioration and vandalism; the wooded grounds were platted for building lots and trees removed. In 2011 the house was saved from demolition and purchased by the daughter of the original owners, who donated it to CPA with funds for a full restoration. The meticulous restoration combined traditional craftsmanship (three-coat plaster) and modern technology (geothermal, high-tech insulation, top-of-the-line appliances). The parquet floors, glass block, paint colors and steel casement windows match the originals. Missing built-in storage units were replicated, and a hard-to-find square tub was located for the master bath. Elements of the landscape plan also were restored and trees planted. The Rauh House is being nominated to the National Register and will be sold with covenants protecting the historic features and the land, which cannot be subdivided. CPA is proud to be the steward of this Modernist treasure. “A visit to the Rauh house makes a powerful case for the importance of preserving modern buildings,” said Paul Muller, Executive Director of CPA. “Standing in the house, you experience firsthand the thrill of the new and the delightful integration of the site and building.” In the words of Professor Patrick Snadon of the University of Cincinnati, “The Rauh House project marks the first major restoration of a Modernist residence in Cincinnati. Becker’s Rauh House is thus doubly innovative: avant-garde in its own time and a pioneering Modernist restoration today.”


Advance purchase required. Purchase tickets by calling 513-721-4506 or online at Cost is $25 for CPA members and $30 for nonmembers. Cash, checks, Visa and MasterCard are welcome.

E Sharon



Ch es te rR

Sheffield Rd

Trillium Trails Wildflower Preserve


Grove Rd

Rd ter es






Glendale Mi lford Rd

Wayne Av e

Riddle Rd

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WOODLAWN Glenwood Gardens Park




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Congress Ave

WILL CALL will be at the Rauh House 10068 Leacrest Road. PARKING will be available at 10000 Leacrest Road at the corner of Grove Road. FOR MORE INFORMATION, call 513-721-4506.



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AdvertiserIndex AE Door & Window Co.........................................65

Hagedorn Appliances..............................................34

Apollo Draperies Inc...............................................32

Hoffman & Albers Interiors.....................................19


Howard’s Kitchen Studio.........................................77

Bath Inspirations......................................................20

The Howland Group LLC........................................2

Bluford Jackson & Son, Inc......................................51

Ideal Cabinetry Design............................................54

Bova............................................ between 66 and 67

The Joseph Auto Group.........................................84

California Closets....................................................75

Kelly Bros. Home & Design Center........................17

Champion Windows, Siding, Patio Rooms...............53

Kemper Design.......................................................32

Sibcy Cline Team Hackett Roe................................76

Cincinnati Entry Point..............................................13

Leisure Pools of Ohio.................................44 and 45

Stained Glass Overlay.............................................51

Cincinnati Home & Garden Show.............................6

Lighting (one) of Cincinnati......................................18

The V Collective/The Kitchen Design Studio...........11

Cincinnati Stoneworks............................................20



Closets By Design...................................................52

McCabe Select View.................................................4

W. Stephens Cabinetry & Design............................34

Custom Distributors.................................................5

Mont Granite, Inc...................................................35

Watson’s.................................................................21 Please visit our advertisers and let them know you saw their ads in Housetrends.

The Designers Consignment...................................83

No Limits Landscaping, Inc........................................7

Designs on Madison................................................17

The Palisades of Mount Adams................................67

Distinctive Patios.....................................................82

Perrino Landscape Inc.............................................66

Evans Landscaping...................................................81

Pizzelii Brick Oven Pizza..........................................80


The Pool & Spa Warehouse....................................55

Florida Tile..............................................................51

Proficient Assistant...................................................52

Graf Construction...................................................66

Robert Lucke Group...............................................33


Ryan’s All-Glass.......................................................10

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 © 2013 Reach Publishing, LLC Housetrends magazine is published by Buzz Publications, LLC in conjunction with Reach Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Housetrends Cincinnati  

March/April 2013

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