The sky was a gorgeous blue the day Executive Editor Nancy Claus and I headed into the City to meet with the dean of the New York School of Interior Design and three instructors/interior decorators at the prestigious, near-century-old school. With us was a box full of some 100 submissions from more than 30 local designers and architects who had entered Westchester Home’s first annual Home Design Contest. The NYSID graciously had agreed to help us judge the entries. “This will be fun,” Dean Ellen Fisher declared.
She was right. For about three hours, we sat in a room and happily examined every entry, freely commenting on what we saw. Did the judging get heated? Were there many disagreements? A few fisticuffs, perhaps? No way. It was all very civil—and illuminating. I loved sitting in a room with smart and articulate professionals, listening to them discuss the many different works. I was impressed by how quickly they could see small details in a room that delighted them (e.g., funky sconces in a staid bedroom) or disappointed them (e.g., a piece of art hung slightly too high). And I was thrilled to discover that our tastes weren’t that dissimilar. We agreed on most everything. Perhaps that’s not so surprising. After all, outstanding work tends to, well, stand out. You need only look.
And we looked—and saw 13 designs that knocked our socks off, from a fabulous sleek bath to stunning traditional living rooms. Indeed, we were so smitten with three traditional living rooms, we decided on a three-way tie. To see the award-winning designs, turn to page 48. And, oh yes, if you want to meet the winners of our first Home Design Awards, we will be honoring them at a cocktail party on January 26. For more information, visit westchestermagazine.com/design2012.
I love plants. I can’t imagine a home or office without some green. Whenever I step into a florist shop to buy some fresh-cut flowers, I seem to walk out with a potted plant, too. No wonder plants vie for space in my home on my very crowded window ledges. And when it’s cold outside and the trees are bare and the sky often gray, a little green inside may do some good. Turn to page 72 to see what beautiful green plants you can bring into your home—now. Indeed, I’m going home now to make some more room on my window ledge.