Howard Magazine, October 2008
We’ve all done it. You go to a friend’s house for dinner and as you walk into the dining room you think, Hmm, I’m not sure I would have painted the walls THAT color. Or, perhaps you’re at a neighbor’s house warming party and while you may like the celery hue the master bedroom is painted, you wonder if you’d like it in your bedroom.
Baltimore Sun, June 11, 2008
Baltimore Sun, March 30, 2008
Whenever you’re redecorating or furnishing your home, everyone wants to know what’s “in” for this year. Whether combing through the elegant – yet unrealistic at times – ideas from the pages of Metropolitan Home or gaining inspiration from Oprah’s more practical home décor guru Nate Berkus, we’re all looking for ideas to transform our home into a showpiece that’s sure to be included on the next neighborhood home tour.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, February 2008
It’s quite rare when you buy a house – especially an older one – to find one that is perfect in every way. Almost always, you have to make a sacrifice here and there. Maybe you love the number of bedrooms and bathrooms but the kitchen is original ‘40’s, or the house is perfect inside but lacks a backyard or parking.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, January 2008
When I heard that PBS' insanely popular show “Antiques Roadshow” was coming to Baltimore last summer to tape three episodes for the new season, I had to be there. Who hasn't watched this show at some point and been captivated by the interesting items that are appraised and anxiously waited for the appraiser to reveal the true value to the owner? Responses range from “Oh, my goodness, I had no idea it was worth that much” to “That's it? Why have I been hanging onto this piece of junk?” The unscripted responses on the show have become so popular that the television show “Will and Grace” even dedicated an episode spoofing the surprising responses shown on “Antiques Roadshow.”
Mason-Dixon Arrive, October 2007
Watching the leaves on trees and shrubs transform from summer’s green to vibrant gold, orange, red, burgundy and purple is an annual rite of passage and signals the onset of autumn. As you drive around the region this time of year, myriad colors appear, painting a tapestry on the Mason-Dixon landscape.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, October 2007
Just about every political discussion these days covers a topic growing in importance by the minute – the environment. Thanks to the Oscar-winning documentary film, An Inconvenient Truth, more and more Americans have become aware of the responsibility we all have to protect our Mother Earth. However, politics is not alone as an aspect of everyday life that has been affected by the importance of talking about the environment. Art, too, can open minds and generate passionate discussion on this emotionally charged issue – one that touches every human emotion.
Annapolis Capital, Fall 2007
“When you live on the water, the outside is more important than the inside. Everything here is about the water,” says Jon Coile, who, along with his wife Wendy, lives in a gorgeous custom-built waterfront home situated on a two-acre private peninsula in the Maynadier Creek portion of the Severn River. Although the couple’s home looks like a modest Cape Cod upon arrival, one step inside reveals a sprawling home where every detail was done with the waterfront view in mind.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, September 2007
There’s no denying that over the past few years, the kitchen’s importance in the home has grown exponentially. What used to be an area reserved for cooking meals for the family and subsequent cleaning of the dishes has evolved into the emotional and spiritual center of the home, a place where couples get together to review their day, families gather for quality time while kids do their homework at the kitchen table and friends gather during dinner parties and holiday bashes. Even in homes with cavernous dens and dining rooms, more often than not, family and friends end up in the kitchen, sipping a glass of wine and enjoying conversation. It’s this movement to the kitchen that inspired a Baltimore couple to renovate their outdated kitchen and create a space that’s both elegant and comfortable for today’s lifestyle.
Annapolis Capital, Fall 2007
When you live on the water, the time outdoors is the most precious time. Whether it’s entertaining friends with an outdoor cookout or simply enjoying a cool drink as the stresses of everyday life slip away with the sun, having an inviting, relaxing space outdoors is paramount. Cooler temperatures – and the lack of mosquitoes – make autumn the perfect time for al fresco dining, especially if you have a patio heater or fire pit to keep you warm, and more and more homeowners are now treating the patio as an additional living room.
Annapolis Capital, Fall 2007
With all apologies to baseball, mom and apple pie, there are few things more American that going to the movies. Heading to the movie theater, getting a tub of hot buttered popcorn and a soda and sitting back in a relaxing stadium-style seat in an air-conditioned theater is an enjoyable way to spend two-plus hours. However, with rising ticket prices – not to mention the prices at the concession stand – taking a family of four to the movies can turn out to be quite an expensive evening, not to mention the inevitable arguments over which movie to see. Luckily, there is an alternative: how about capturing that movie theater style viewing right in your own home with your own popcorn? Well, it can happen.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, June 2007
The aging Baby Boomer generation has garnered a significant amount of press the past few years, as the “graying” of this large segment of the population will have an important effect on several areas – medicine, Social Security and housing, among others. Those entering their early 60s seem to dominate the news, but we don’t hear so much about their healthy elders, those who shaped the Baby Boomer generation. These are our parents and grandparents, those who are still actively pursuing their passions, be it arts, culture, politics or fitness. They mix and mingle in all manner of classes and activities to keep their minds open and fresh. They debate politics, they discuss movies and books, they work out and travel. These are the types of people you’ll find in today’s retirement communities.
Baltimore Sun, May 6, 2007
Each year, my friends and I escape Maryland’s sometimes rough winter and rent a house in the Caribbean or Central America, and, although we usually rent a house on the beach a couple of steps from the surf, we always book a house that has a fabulous pool. Not a simple round pool to cool off in, but rather a pool that exudes relaxation, one that goes on endlessly, a pool that is so wonderful that guests end up spending most of their time poolside instead of on the beach.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, May 2007
The 70th annual Maryland House and Garden Pilgrimage’s (MHGP) statewide home tour continues this month with a stop in Baltimore County’s historic Glencoe on Saturday, May 12 from 10am to 5pm. While all the segments of the MHGP’s tour are fascinating, what makes the Baltimore County one truly unique is the mélange of different structures - everything from a 230-plus-year-old farm to the smallest post office in the United States to the home of the inventor of shredded wheat.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, May 2007
For many Mason-Dixon area residents, a rite of passage each year in May is the abundance of fascinating home tours that focus on architectural heritage, glorious home interiors and picturesque gardens in full bloom. A new entry this spring is Doorways to the Past, a home and garden tour centered on Historic Glyndon, Baltimore County’s first historic district.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, February 2007
When homeowners Jeanne Paynter and Jim Farley decided to spruce up the kitchen in their 1920s Roland Park house, they had no idea where the project would lead them. Little did they know that a planned one-room renovation would lead to a nine-month project that would include a substantial addition to their home, doubling its size. As with any renovation, there were obstacles along the way, but when you’re dealing with a historic home set in a tony neighborhood, the list of challenges grows. Luckily, the energetic couple, interior designer and contractor were up to the task.
Baltimore Sun, October 15, 2006
Reaching a milestone birthday can elicit myriad emotions and actions. Sometimes, turning 40 or 50 can cause you to do impulsive things (some good, some bad), throw a big party or take time to reflect on your life. For one Baltimore City homeowner, however, turning 40 had a different effect.
Baltimore Sun, June 11, 2006
Ask anyone who has bought a home, and you’re likely to hear that the search was exciting, nerve-racking and possibly exhausting. Finding just the right house can take a while … especially if you don’t know what you are looking for exactly.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, May 2006
In celebration of its 300th anniversary, a walking tour of historic Rockland Village in Baltimore County will be held on May 20 as part of the Maryland Home and Garden Pilgrimage. Rockland Village – the oldest continuously inhabited mill village in America – was first inhabited by the Susquehannock Indians and was surveyed in 1660. In 1706, Richard Gist had 200 acres surveyed and patented as “Turkey Cock Hall,” which remains today. The tour will include the Rockland Grist Mill, Stone Row (a group of eight four-story stone houses built between 1820-1830), several historic homes along Falls Road and Stone Mill Road and the Rockland Tavern, which in 1950 was converted into a single residence and is now the home of Thomas Bruggman and his wife, Julie. Bruggman, a 26-year resident of Rockland Village, is co-chairperson for the Rockland Village tour.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, May 2006
Spring means the arrival of many things – flowers, baseball, warmer temperatures, our feathered friends and longer days. Another annual pastime this time of year is home tours where generous homeowners open their doors to the public so that home and garden enthusiasts can take a peak into some of the area’s most glorious homes for inspiration and ideas, while helping preserve and restore architecturally significant properties in the State of Maryland.
Mason-Dixon Arrive, March, 2006
When you think of getting out the good china to set the table for a gathering of friends or family for a dinner party, you’ll likely consider your wedding china or other everyday china that you certainly wouldn’t use every day. One of the most collected china lines in the country for 70 years is definitely not your grandmother’s dainty Limoges. Fiesta dinnerware adds more than a dash of color to the dining experience, offering a dizzying number of colors that turn the formal dining room table into a rainbow of bright colors.
Baltimore Sun, January 29, 2006
Much has been written about the rising home costs in Baltimore City and how homebuyers are discovering the advantages to city living – well-built historic homes, endless entertainment opportunities and a short commute to downtown’s business centers. However, as more homebuyers made this discovery, prices continuously climbed – especially in desirable neighborhoods such as Canton, Fell’s Point, Federal Hill, Hampden, among others – to a point where being able to afford a home in Baltimore City was becoming increasingly difficult. On a positive note, this trend also encouraged those “on the fence” about buying a home to make a move … and fast.
Baltimore Sun, January 8, 2006
When Maureen Mooney visited Baltimore in 2002 to scout out apartments to rent, she met an interesting woman who showed her an apartment that was painted purple. When she declared that it was “Purple … for the Ravens,” Mooney wondered if moving from New York City to Baltimore was such a good idea. Little did she know that two years later she would be buying a beautiful stucco home on Hampden’s “Pastel Row” that is painted, yes, purple, a color she now loves.
Baltimore Sun, January 15, 2006
One of the more interesting aspects of Baltimore City is the incredible sense of pride that neighborhoods have for their community. Newcomers to Baltimore immediately recognize the fact that many of their neighbors are third- or fourth-generation Baltimoreans, unlike many other major metropolitan cities. Patterson Park homeowner Laureen Brunelli was born in Baltimore but moved away as a child; however, the charms of Baltimore brought her back to Charm City … with a little urging of her parents.
do! magazine, December 2004
The living room has traditionally been a place to relax, unwind and enjoy conversation with friends and family. Comfortable furniture combined with exquisite furnishings help set the mood, which can be elevated with a roaring fire in the fireplace. While a fireplace’s primary goal is to help shake off winter’s chills and lower heating bills, a tastefully decorated fireplace mantel can transform the fireplace from simply a heating element to a star showpiece.
Baby Steps, October 2004
When you were expecting, you rushed out shopping for nursery décor and were captivated by adorable nursery furniture and accessories. Cribs and changing tables were surrounded by baby ducks and bunnies with soft, pleasing colors – yellow, pink and blue – adorning the walls. Plush blankets and soft pillows comforted your baby and gave you a warm feeling every time you walked into the room. A cute nursery is fine, but what happens when the baby is no longer a baby and suddenly those baby ducks and bunnies now look out of place? As much as you want to change the look to fit a toddler’s personality and interests, you may be worried about spending a lot of money on the redesign knowing that when Junior reaches age 6, he will want another redesign to show off his love of sports.
Baltimore Sun, September 2004
“Last night as I lay dreaming of pleasant days gone by
My mind being bent on rambling to Ireland I did fly
I stepped on board a vision and I followed with my will
And I shortly came to anchor at the cross of Spancil Hill”
—“Spancil Hill” by Michael Considine
do! magazine, July 2004
“When I told people I wanted to make a house out of straw, the typical response was, ‘You mean like the house in The Three Little Pigs that got blown down by the Big Bad Wolf?’ There were many naysayers, but I was determined that I was going to do it no matter what,” says Gary Zuker, a man determined to make his dream come true. But it didn’t come easy.
Baltimore Sun, March 2004
To most of us, the kitchen is more than simply a place to prepare food. It’s a place we start our day at the coffeepot trying to wake up and the place where everyone seems to be at the end of a party. To homeowners who have aspirations to be the next Emeril, the kitchen is their studio — a place where they create culinary works of art.