Studio Brunstrum
Self-care is giving the world the best of you, instead of what’s left of you.
The Winter Blahs always seem to hit the hardest in February; the joy of the holidays and the hope of the new year are in our rearview and the promise of spring isn’t quite visible yet. February is often gray, slushy, and cold; it’s also the point in time our resolve to stay with new habits begins to weaken and we often start to question our own sanity when we were making our resolutions. This February has the added anxiousness of waiting to get vaccinated and the far-out glimmer of hope that life will return to normal in the warmer months.
This year, we’ve decided to tackle February head on and send the winter blahs packing. We’re renewing our intentions, hunkering down in our homes and focusing on self-care to get us through the rest of this winter. So, we encourage you to check-in with yourself and your loved ones and renew the promises you made when quarantine started almost a year ago. Reset your intentions and focus on being your best self – it’s never too late to start a new habit or pick up a new hobby.
Our February mantra? If it makes you happy, do it! This month is all about YOU.
Susan, Kelsey, and Patti
The Studio Brunstrum Team
Color Inside the Lines
Dual Color Palettes. Color continuity is back – and we’re loving it! For so long, each room in a home worked off a much larger, varied color palette, often creating spaces dubbed “the green room” or “the purple room” to differentiate. While we love the use of bold color, the use of 1-2 base colors throughout an entire home creates flow and continuity, often lending a more soothing and calming feel to the environment. We’re not saying to limit your color palette, rather choose two simpler grounding colors throughout and let the rest of your palette be sprinkled in as accents to create a feeling of stability – something we could all use a bit more of these days!

Photos (both): Studio Brunstrum
Cabinet Confirmation
Built-In Cabinetry. Another trend to come out of the pandemic? The resurgence of built-in cabinetry. We’ve pulled out more built-ins than we can count over the past 5 years, often replaced by free-standing etageres or bookcases. Well, we’re here to say built-ins are back, but they’ve come with an upgrade. The cabinetry of the past was chunky and often stained to match your floors, with cabinets deep enough to house the TVs of yesteryear. Lately, we’ve been custom designing built-ins as a solution for additional storage space but keeping them clean-lined and functional. The best part? Built-ins aren’t one-size fits all; they’re able to be completely personalized to the needs of your home.

Photos (left to right): The House of Silver Lining, Studio Brunstrum
Light Bright
Art Lights. Art lights aren’t just for art anymore; they’ve become a useful additional light source and can be used more liberally in a myriad of rooms. Think kitchens, hallways, bathrooms, over bookshelves – you name it! We love the clean-lined look of art lights that won’t compete with a statement chandelier or floor lamp, providing more light to a space without having to add boring cans or track lighting.

Photos (left to right): DigsDigs, McGee and Co
A Nod to Mod
Modified Arm Styles. Arm styles on upholstered furnishings have been fairly standardized for years – you had your select styles to choose from (English, Track, Sock Rolled) and that was it. Recently, we’ve been seeing an influx of unique arm options- often taking a traditional style for a chair or sofa and modifying it to create a more interesting visual (e.g. – adding a double scoop, simplifying the pleats on an English arm, or modifying the slope of a rolled arm). These updated arm styles help create a more varied visual within a room – you don’t want all of your upholstery to have the same type of arm!

Photos (left to right): Chaddock, Burton James
Photos (upper, left to right): Crate and Barrel, Jihan Shanum
Photos (lower, left to right): Instraieur, Unknown
We’ve all felt the need for our own space this year, be that a place to work, relax, organize or escape. Screen dividers are one of the easiest ways to divide an open space, allowing a larger room to become multi-functional and giving some much-needed privacy as we continue to work and learn from home. Screen dividers, like built-ins, aren’t one size fits all – the first step to choosing the right divider for your space is to determine why you need it and what you are trying to accomplish:
  • Is it to divide a larger space for privacy?
  • Is it to act as an architectural element/backdrop?
  • Is it to draw your eye upward when you enter a space?
  • Is it to fill a corner and act as an accessory?
Screens can be upholstered and substantial, architectural and industrial, functional and blended into the rest of the room, or simply decorative. We most commonly use them to create more individualized spaces within the home, letting the space determine the size and style.
We’ve found ourselves excited about pottery lately – so this month we’re featuring two of our favorite ceramicists:

Chicago-based ceramicist Sarah Hicks creates stunning sculptural pieces and objets d’art. Juxtaposing the whimsical and elegant is her specialty, inspired by shapes and patterns that occur in nature. Born and raised in Missouri to a family of artisans, Sarah grew up learning textile and building arts, imparting her with an appreciation for the handmade. Earning her Bachelor’s from the Art Institute of Chicago, she’s exhibited her work both locally and nationally, bringing her signature zippy style to galleries across the country.

Maine-based ceramicist Elizabeth Benotti specializes in handmade, porcelain pieces focused on quality and meaning. She believes the vessels we use throughout our home are far more than just art on display, but rather reflect the stories we share with others and the memories we hold onto. After earning her BFA from UC Boulder, she attended the Mendocino Art Center in their Resident Artists Program. Her pieces offer a textured subtlety, with an emphasis on simplistic patterns and earth-toned palettes. We also love her line of unique ceramic lighting!
Antique mirrors are back and we’ve been sourcing them more than ever before – as backsplashes, cabinetry insets, layered mirrors, and statement accessories. Our go to source? Lead N Glass – a local, family-owned glass business that’s been creating custom pieces for over 30 years. Installing antique glass is extremely delicate – it takes expertise and craftsmanship!

Photo: Jamie Naugle Interiors
We’re enamored with the new line of teak tiles from Indoteak. Created from 100% reclaimed teak, the tiles are available in multiple shapes, styles and custom colors. Designed in collaboration with Erin Adams, the first-of-its-kind teak tile is extraordinary – look for it in one of our upcoming projects – perfect for a bathroom, entryway or kitchen!
The Four Winds – Kristin Hannah. We normally feature books we’ve read in our newsletters, but when one of our collective favorite authors comes out with a new novel, especially one that’s been named one of the most anticipated books of 2021 – we can’t help ourselves! We figure this way we can entice you to read along with us! Kristin Hannah’s latest release, The Four Winds, follows the life of Elsa Wolcott and her family through the Great Depression. In Hannah’s infamous style, the story focuses on the environment (in this case, the Great Plains in 1934) as much as those who live in it. The novel details the life and death decision Elsa must make for her family – to fight to survive on land that has been devastated by drought and famine, or to go west and gamble in search of a better life. The Four Winds is a true testament to the American Dream during a time of great divide in our nation, depicted through the eyes of a mother who will work to keep her family safe at all costs. We can’t wait to read it!
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