Studio Brunstrum
And the world spins madly on.
It’s hard to believe it’s already October – before we know it stores will have holiday décor in the windows and we’ll be struck by the beauty of the first snowfall. My brain is having a hard time processing that 2022 is around the corner – the beginning of a new decade in January 2020 seems like both yesterday and a lifetime ago.
We’ve all endured quite a bit over these past months and years leaving me to marvel at the fact that the world does simply keep turning; I’ve found myself not marking the passage of time like I usually do. There are days when accomplishments feel muted, celebrations come with a mixture of excitement and trepidation, and life seems to be happening around me. There are others when I feel a renewed sense of stability and find pleasure in simple moments with family and friends. But even in the happy and hopeful moments, I still feel as though I’m unable to categorize or measure these last two years.
My goal for October is to do just that – catalogue this passage of time and quantify things I’ve achieved, memories that are significant, and people that are the most important. I want to be able to calculate my Lifestyle ROI – so I can look back and say “wow – I’ve experienced all of this”.
So, how do you calculate your Lifestyle ROI? It’s a bit different for everyone. For me, it means journaling (i.e. – list making) times that felt special: vacations I took, cards I received from friends and family, photos I love. It means looking through cookbooks to see all of the new recipes and tried and true favorites I’ve made to comfort myself and others. It’s organizing my closet and donating what doesn’t fit or I no longer like – letting myself discover a new “me” that has emerged through hardship. It also means taking stock of my home environment – acknowledging what furnishings and accessories have brought me comfort and what is tired from overuse.
Everyone’s Lifestyle ROI will be different – as it should be! I hope this process can bring us all a bit of happiness and remembrance, finding joy, accomplishment and comfort in the time that has passed. Realize that you’ve done more than you think in the past two years and look forward to what’s still yet to come.
Susan, Kelsey, and Patti
The Studio Brunstrum Team
Rustic Roots
Rustic Ceramics. We’re taking it back to our roots, with basic, hand-crafted ceramics becoming a major staple in kitchenware and accessories. Simple shapes, glazes, and patterns are being utilized to create everyday pieces that add a rustic feel to your home. These ceramics bring an earthiness to our interiors, reminding us of what’s possible when we slow down and use the materials that surround us everyday as we’ve been doing for thousands of years. There’s beauty in the simplicity of a well made ceramic bowl, mug, or vase.

Photos (left to right): Unknown, Pamela Makin
Colors Cues
Warm Colors. We’ve talked about color a lot lately – and for good reason! Bold colors have come back with a vengeance, most likely to combat the Covid blues and blahs we’ve been feeling. This season, we’re seeing an increased emphasis on deep, warm hues – like caramel brown, pumpkin orange, rustic red, and golden yellow. Colors that inherently feel “Fall”. A fairly versatile color group, they can be used to ground a color palette or add bold accents – the choice is up to you.

Photos (left to right):Cleo Scheulderman, House and Garden
Storage Wars
Subtle Kitchen Storage. We all bought additional kitchen gadgets and appliances to encourage ourselves to quarantine cook more right? That wasn’t just us? Kitchen renovations have been one of the most requested project updates in our industry in the past year – with an emphasis on correcting a lack of functionality and storage. When we’re considering storage for a new kitchen, we can’t forget about those appliances. One of our favorite ways to “hide” appliances is to create an under counter storage shelf. That way they’re not taking up valuable cabinet space and are easy to use and put away without creating a mess. The clear counterspace of your dreams just became a reality!

Photos (left to right): Unknown, Studio McGee
The Shagreen Show
Shagreen Leather. Leather lovers, raise your hands! A Fall wardrobe staple and a year-round home staple, leather is a classic for a reason. But even classics are susceptible to trends from time to time! We talked about patent leather earlier this season but have noticed an abundance of shagreen leather as well. We love the subtle texture the pebbling adds, giving it more depth and character than a traditional leather. Great for upholstery (ottomans, headboards), accents (rug binding, pillows), or even wallpaper, shagreen leather is just as versatile as its predecessor.

Photos (both): Edelman Leather
Photos (Top, Left to Right): Chaddock, Made Goods, A. Rudin
Photos (Bottom, Left to Right): EJ Victor, Century Furniture
What’s the difference between an occasional and accent chair? Absolutely nothing! Accent chair is the colloquial name for an occasional chair, but they’re relatively interchangeable.
Occasional chairs are one of our favorite ways to add personality and style to a sitting area. Often used in larger rooms – living rooms, family rooms, lower levels, occasional chairs serve the functional purpose of adding more seating. They shouldn’t function as the workhorse in the room like your sofa, nor do they fit the lounge chair resume. Occasional chairs should be used on occasion – contributing more to the aesthetics of a space than the longevity.
With that in mind, have fun with your chair choice! Choose a striking shape (we’ve been loving the resurgence of art-like geometric chairs) and go bold with color and fabric choice. Upholster the chair in chartreuse leather or mauve mohair – it should be a fun accent piece. Beyond that, there are no rules, except to keep proportion and balance in mind with the rest of your furniture. It should be eye-catching, while still helping to pull the room and floor plan together.
Susan attended the Other Fair Show- Chicago last weekend with her friend Brenda Mauldin and discovered a myriad of new, up and coming artists; painter Pier Wright was one of the standouts! A transplant Midwesterner, Florida-born Wright earned a BA from Kalamazoo College and an MFA from The Art Institute of Chicago. Now living and painting in the Leelanau Peninsula on Lake Michigan, Wright also operates a small gallery representing ~10 artists a year. His own collection of paintings feature a stunning collection of bold and bright abstract work that he’s currently experimenting transitioning onto glass. His paintings are included in several high-profile collections across the country, including the Abercrombie & Fitch Home Office, Harper College, McKinsey & Associates Chicago and NYC offices and multiple SAP offices throughout the country. Check out his work here.  
Thanks to the New York Design Center, we got a sneak peak of Ann Gish’s upcoming collaboration with the Met – and we’re dying to see more! The collection, inspired by the vast art collection at the Met, will include a stunning array of bedding and pillows in prints and patterns inspired by the art at the museum. Knowing Ann Gish (they’re Studio Brunstrum go-to vendors), the collection is sure to be exquisitely fabulous and luxurious. We’re on the edge of our seats for the official launch!
Apples Never Fall – Liane Moriarty.
Liane Moriarty (Big Little Lies, Nine Perfect Strangers, What Alice Forgot) has done it again – and it may be her best ever! This time she brings us into the drama and mystery surrounding the Delaney family after their mother goes missing. As former tennis stars and owners of a renowned tennis academy, the Delaney’s biggest disappointment is that none of their four, now adult, children went pro – even if their parents believed none of their offspring had what it took. Manipulating time and point of view as only Moriarty can, we’re taken through the perspectives of each family member as they try to discern what could’ve happened to their mother – especially as they begin to connect the dots between her disappearance and the complete stranger, Savannah, who knocked on their door a year previously with sad story and friendly smile. Does Savannah have something to do with Joy Delaney going missing, or does this mystery lie in long buried family secrets? Kelsey devoured the book in a few hours – it’s perfect for a cozy Fall morning, perhaps with some apple turnovers or apple butter?
High Point Market
We’re going to High Point! We’re thrilled to be headed back to Fall Market in High Point, NC this year – in person and with Design Trust! We’ll be out of the office Monday, October 18th – Wednesday, October 20th. As the largest furnishings industry trade show in the world, we can’t wait to see what inspires us from vendors new and old all across the world. Stay tuned for our takeaways in upcoming Reveries and Sketchbooks.
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