The holidays, with the festive decorations and sparkling lights, often create feelings of warmth and vitality while evoking memories of cherished times spent with family and friends. Likewise, the natural world provides a unique color palette and new textures during the winter months. Despite the cold, sometimes dreary days that winter brings to the Northern hemisphere, there is also much beauty to be found. For instance, the absence of leaves and lush undergrowth focuses more attention on the artistic features of bare branches, the bright feathers of a cardinal or the deep reds of winter berries.
Although the origins of Thanksgiving are disputed by various historians, we do know that it was President Abraham Lincoln who made it an official holiday in 1863. Since that time, Thanksgiving has evolved into the celebratory feast that most of us enjoy with family and friends. Regardless of its history, we appreciate the opportunity to pause and reflect about the many things for which we are thankful. We’ve asked a few members of our interior design team to share something they are thankful for that relates to their profession, whether a current trend or timeless design element.
We most often think of brands in terms of products, but every organization has a brand whether self-defined or by default. Simply stated, your brand is the personality of your organization and the promise to your consumers. An effective brand identities your values, defines how they are communicated and reflects the emotions and experiences consumers will have when they interact with your business. One group that handles branding particularly well is the hospitality industry. Most hotels and restaurants create a distinctive brand identity to differentiate their services and spaces from others in the marketplace.
According to CNBC, many smaller US cities that have attracted large numbers of millennials have also become magnets for older adults. This certainly appears to be true for our own local city of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, as well as the neighboring town of Lititz. In both cases, new age-qualified apartments and condos have come on the market in the past few years with additional offerings being contemplated or already underway. Our team is excited about this trend which provides a myriad of opportunities to help people of all ages, and especially older people, remain engaged and actively involved in the evolution of our cities and towns.
During the warm summer months, some of our favorite spaces to design are outdoors—porches, patios, courtyards, dining terraces, pool decks and rooftop gardens. The finishes, furniture, lighting and accessory options for these spaces are continually expanding and evolving, allowing for greater variety and creative approaches.
A particularly fun aspect of designing outdoor spaces is that you can really pop up the color. If there’s one space where you can feel free to go bold, it’s outdoors! Outdoor living spaces also work well with whimsical touches like a dragonfly pattern or quirky garden statue. However, it’s important to follow a few basic design principles to create inviting outdoor spaces that people will want to use and can access comfortably.
Interior design for senior living has changed significantly in the last several decades. While many people associate senior living with the sterile environments of the mid-century nursing home, the reality is that today’s senior living facilities are more closely linked with hospitality design than with hospital design.
Work your way. Sit your way. Learn your way.
Learning commons, maker spaces, break-out rooms and HOMAGO (Hanging Out, Messing Around, and Geeking Out)—these are just a few of the terms to describe rapidly evolving educational spaces. Critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity are the four C’s of 21st century learning. Furniture manufacturers have developed a wide array of innovative selections to help create zones that foster these skills and allow students to work, sit (or stand) and ultimately learn in the manner that works best for them.
In 1987, Ronald Reagan was our president, Margaret Thatcher was elected Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Alan Greenspan took over as chairman of the Federal Reserve Board. American Motors was acquired by the Chrysler Corporation, Microsoft released Windows 2.0 and Fox Broadcasting made its prime-time television debut. We listened to some of the top hits that year by Whitney Houston, Madonna and U2, and flocked to the box office to see Lethal Weapon, The Princess Bride and Dirty Dancing.
And in 1987, the first interior designer was brought on board at RLPS! The goal to provide a full range of integrated architectural and interior design services remains our mission today. A few of our interior designers shared photos of themselves in 1987 for the header photo above.
There are several theories as to the origin of Valentine’s Day. The Catholic Church recognizes at least three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus, two of whom were martyred on or around February 14th. The holiday may also have been initiated as a Christian alternative to a pagan festival associated with fertility. Although the roots of Valentine’s Day may not directly relate to the love and romance we associate with February today, a few of our designers are sharing some of their most beloved current trends or design elements that remind them of the spirit of the holiday.
Since our team works with a lot of senior living communities and college campuses, we are frequently challenged to provide design solutions to make individual residences “live larger” than they really are. Incorporating ample storage is critical to achieving this goal. Finding the right storage solutions is particularly of interest this time of the year when many of us strive to declutter living spaces in our homes. There are so many options out there, it can sometimes be overwhelming, but here are a few guidelines we have developed for these critical functional spaces.