Studio Brunstrum
Land really is the best art.
If home is our safe space, then nature is our adventure. And this summer, we’re ready to explore! After a year spent within the confines of our homes, it’s no surprise we’re all itching to get out – to lounge, to travel, to discover, to play! We’re relishing the opportunity to feel free within the outdoors again and bring some of the magic of nature home with us.
Nature and interiors are often symbiotic, with an influx of recent wellness and home trends mirroring elements from nature. From color palettes to raw materials, to shapes and patterns – much of what we’re seeing is inspired by the great outdoors. We’re excited about the resurgence of a more simplistic and rustic style, and particularly thrilled about the emphasis placed on well-being within the home that stems from these trends. Incorporating natural light, the ability for open air and natural materials has an instant impact on both the aesthetic and feel of a space – increasing a sense of happiness and calm throughout.
So, our mission this summer? Be outside as often as possible. Soak up the sunshine, take trips to new places, stop to smell the flowers and appreciate the beauty of our surroundings. Use this season to reinvigorate your senses and figure out what elements of the outdoors inspire you most – then figure out a way to incorporate them into your home!
Susan, Kelsey, and Patti
The Studio Brunstrum Team
Line Leader
Soft Lines. The harsh impacts of last year have us craving all things soft and soothing – especially in our homes. We’ve seen a strategic step away from modern, clean lined pieces in favor of the soft and sculptural – especially in bathrooms. Sinks, faucets, even tile are adopting a rounder edge that feel inherently feminine and soothing. Combined with muted tones and matte finishes, we’re predicting softer lined fixtures are the next big trend.

Photos (left to right): Studio Brunstrum, Three Birds Renovations
Into the Woods
Refined Rustic. The shiplap-clad, Modern Farmhouse aesthetic feels outdated and overdone; but it’s more sophisticated older sister Refined Rustic feels soulful and inviting. This new look incorporates artisanal and modern pieces and places emphasis on environment focused architecture – using and re-purposing materials from the surrounding landscape and adding shapes and features that are present within that location. Warmer colors and “with the land” accessories and furnishings define the Refined Rustic look that harks back to traditional, country living off the land.

Photos (left to right): Unknown, Architectural Digest
Collection Connection
Wall Collections. Calling all collectors – break your favorite items out of storage! Wall collection displays correlate perfectly with your artwork to give your home a personalized touch. From the traditional plates and serve ware to the more unique urns, necklaces, or musical instruments – make space within your home for the items you like to collect and arrange them like you would a gallery wall – adhering to a hanging pattern or creating a mash-up of different sizes and shapes.

Photos (left to right): La Vie Boheme, Patterned Simplicity
Peachy Keen
Peach and Green. Apologies are in order if you ever made fun of your grandparents’ interiors – particularly their color palette or wallpaper. The combination of Avocado and Peach has been revived in the latest resurgence of “grandmillenial” style and it looks like it’s here to stay. This color combo is reminiscent of kitchen styles from the 50s and 60s, but plays nicely into the Rustic Refined trend as it feels inherently artisanal. To bring the trend into the 21st century, look for the color combo in exploded patterns or clean lines or build out the palette with a grounding neutral like navy or go even bolder with a bright like chartreuse or turquoise.

Photos (left to right): Elle Decor, Avalana Design
It’s a common misconception that “curating an outdoor space” only means focusing on a backyard (or roof/balcony if you’re a city dweller). While that’s often the largest and most exciting space to work with, it’s important to put effort into your “curb appeal” as well and show some love to the front of your home – after all, it’s the first impression of your space! To assess the state of your front exterior, focus on these six key areas to see what might need an upgrade:
  • Numbers: Your address should be visible from the street at all times of the day! Make sure you have the correct lighting to keep it visible at night.
  • Front Door Color and Style: Nothing dates a house more than a front door in need of a good coat of paint/stain. Keep your door fresh with new paint for the summer or go bold and paint it a bright color. If you’re making architectural changes to your home, make sure your door style is congruent with the rest of your exterior.
  • Lighting: In addition to proper lighting for your address, assess the lighting on the rest of your home and the pathway to your front door. Both are important to create a welcoming environment.
  • Landscaping and Floral Containers: Well-kept landscaping and florals help transform your house to a home, making it feel welcoming from the outside and giving it some personality and life. Make sure your containers are congruent with the architecture of your home.
  • Mailbox: When was the last time you gave your mailbox some TLC? Does it need a fresh coat of paint or perhaps just a good clean? Your postal worker will thank you!
Subjectivity – the theme of Chicago-born and LA-raised artist, Christina Quarles’s new exhibit at the MCA. Quarles’s work is defined by ambiguity that seeks to dismantle assumptions, creating a sense of organized chaos that draws from her experiences growing up as a queer woman from a bi-racial home. Contour lines and the use of both the surface and edge of the work crash into the boundaries in art and her life, exploring dislocation, power and the concept of identity. The exhibition at the MCA marks the largest display of her work to date, combining a selection of work created within the last three years as well as a new, large scale installation that explores the history of art and painting. The exhibit is on display through August – get your tickets here.
I headed off in the third week of May to Kentucky as it has been too many years to count since I had last spent time in the state of bourbon, horses and art! My son, Matthew, and my friend, Connie, made for wonderful travel companions!. We stayed in downtown Louisville at the 21C Museum Hotel for a bit of our art fix. Owned by Steve Wilson and Laura Lee Brown, it was the first of their nine boutique hotels that have a portion of their extensive contemporary art collection on display. We were honored to have a private tour with the Museum Director and fell in love with the solo exhibition “Still Life with Content” by African artist, Wim Botha. And then of course, we sipped our way through the Kentucky Bourbon Trail! There are 38+ distilleries on the Bourbon Trail, we had a tasting at five and thank goodness had the foresight to hire Mint Julep so we were not doing the driving or the scheduling! We experienced a broad range of distilleries- large, small, well-known and up-and-coming that included: Angels Envy, Kentucky Artisan (home of Jefferson Reserve), Makers Mark, Bardstown Bourbon and Stitzel-Weller. Together, we bought over 12 bottles of bourbon that are hard to find in either IL or CA and learned all about the ABC’s of bourbon making. “A”- it must be made in America, Kentucky in particular. “B”- it must be made in a new charred oak barrel and “C”- it must contain at least 51% corn.

We also spent a few hours at the Louisville Sluggers Museum and Factory and learned all about how bats are made for Major League players as Connie’s dad played in the Minor League as a young man. We drove to Lexington for a day and had and early morning private tour of Mill Ridge Farm- where each year some 65-95 foals are born and raised until they become yearlings and are sold at auction. We also spent time at Hermitage Farm (the same owners as the 21C Museum Hotel) and had a private dinner in the Main House with Chef Tyler McNabb. This dinner occurs once a month on Sundays for 30 people and is hosted by Steve Wilson and Laura Lee Brown; he indulged us in discussing the artwork throughout the home! While Matt has been to the Kentucky Derby a few times, neither Connie nor I had, so we also spent an afternoon at Churchill Downs and took a Kentucky Derby Tour and attended an evening of races. Sad to say, I was not a winner!
Our latest obsession? The Metallic Ombre II wallcovering from Philip Jefferies. Both textural and metallic, the specialty paper is inherently cool. Certain to make a statement, it’s amenable to a myriad of aesthetics and gives that bit of “oomph” all interiors need.
Malibu Rising – Taylor Jenkins Reid.
New York Times best-selling author Taylor Jenkins Reid (Daisy Jones & the Six, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo) has done it again! She once again immerses her readers in the glamourous and fast-paced world of her subjects – this time the four Riva siblings as they host their annual end of summer party. The offspring of world-renown singer Mick Riva, each of the adult children has become famous in their own right, marking the party as the can’t miss event of the season – until it all goes up in flames. The novel follows the secrets and lies of the Riva family and their guests as years of family tension come bubbling to the surface and ignite a flame with disastrous consequences. Fast-paced and fascinating, Kelsey is halfway through and can’t put it down!
P.S. – Keep an eye on the Studio Sketchbook for the Studio Brunstrum Summer Reading List!
Industry Update
Businesses and industries are still experiencing repercussions from the pandemic – and the interiors industry is no exception. Delays are frustrating in any context, but we’re doing our best to maintain transparency amongst our clients and vendors and work to mitigate delays where possible. We’ve curated a rough estimate of delays across product type here. We thank you for your patience and continued trust in Studio Brunstrum as you welcome us into your homes.
Out of Office
The Studio Brunstrum will be closed on Friday, July 2nd ahead of the 4th of July weekend and will re-open on Tuesday, July 6th after the observed holiday. Happy 4th to all!
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