holiday gift guide: for the foodie & for the traveler

we all have at least one foodie in our life who talks about ingredients we have never heard of, and has every kitchen gadget imaginable. if not this foodie, you definitely have the foodie in your life who loves food and every single thing about it, even if they might not have their cooking skills up to par just yet! either way, we found some unique gifts that will fit the bill this year!

  1. cookie stamps for a cute way to ‘trademark’ their homemade treasures
  2. cooking classes for the foodie who hasn’t quite mastered a certain cuisine
  3. big jug of organic maple syrup because maple syrup can be used in various recipes and is always amazing
  4. handcrafted blue net bag to display your produce or transport it home from the market
  5. smoked arbequina extra virgin olive oil for the foodie who knows the power of olive oil best
  6. keurig mini because honestly, we couldn’t live without ours and the pop of color makes it even better
  7. cheese survival kit complete with cheat sheet for storing, tasting, and serving
  8.  garden in a bag is an adorable way for a foodie to grow herbs on their kitchen windowsill
  9. green herbal tea kit for the foodie in your life who wants to try every tea under the sun
  10. cocktails by daniel boulud is a two volume collection; one for him and one for her

 

we all have that traveler in our life who we can’t even keep track of these days; whether it is that awesome job they took or their gypsy soul that keeps them from sitting still. it is hard to find them something unique and useful for their lifestyle, but we think we’ve found a good round up this year. hopefully you’ll agree!

 

  1. another destination pouch is a great gift your traveler can keep with them as a reminder of you
  2. african basket bowl is both beautiful and useful; and small enough to travel along if they like
  3. diana f+ is a classic and cool way for the traveler to capture all of their memories
  4. luggage scale to keep that impulse buyer and/or excessive packer in check while traveling
  5. standard travel umbrella in ultra compact case, complete with lightening bolt design
  6. 4 in 1 color blocked adapter for the traveler who never knows what country they will be in tomorrow
  7. f1 lift for baggage eye mask because if they’re going to look silly on the plane they might as well make a joke about it
  8. chalkboard globe for the traveler who gives many meanings to making their own map of the world
  9. compact blender and chopper for the traveler who loves to make their own creations anywhere they go
  10. 36 hours. 125 weeks in europe. may present itself as a challenge to the ambitious traveler in your life

 

holiday gift guide: for your boss & for the art lover

your boss will never tell you anything on their list, so you’re left to guess what they don’t already have and would love to receive this year. this can be tough, but thankfully we put some real thought into our top ten picks this year!

  1. owl-engraved desk calendar is a gorgeous and simple take on the expected new year calendar gift
  2. white whale mixers are bold in every sense; design, humor, and flavor
  3. miky ipad slipcase with cardholder and usb card holder is sleek and practical
  4. copper patina planter because how can you go wrong with a copper planter?
  5. pine made pie box for safe and chemical free transport of their beloved homemade pies
  6. brass magnifying stand is both aesthetically pleasing and useful in viewing the finer things in life
  7. wire pencil holder for a more industrial and stylish way to organize writing utensils
  8. black push pencil from the classic company, kaweco, comes a sleek mechanical pencil
  9. therm-o bottle is the ultimate eco-friendly, reusable bottle; featuring a removable tea strainer
  10. acrylic and gold tone stapler and tape dispenser would look great on any stylish boss’ desk this year

 

we know the art lover in our life doesn’t want for us to buy them art, but we still want to find that unique art related item that they never knew they couldn’t live without! we found some seriously artsy items we are particularly excited about this year!

  1. ancient kauri wood geo sculpture for the modern art and sculpture lover in your life
  2. modern art desserts by caitlin freeman pleases the eye and the tummy, if you’re ambitious enough to try
  3. paint strokes iphone case by rifle paper co. is the perfect pop of color and unexpected design
  4. antique style craft scissors because honestly, these are beautiful and we need them just because
  5. mirrored half circle garland for the art lover who could also use a little mirror action in their home
  6. rising of the setting sun painting by wayne pate for an affordable and cheery piece of art
  7. mini coloring book for the art lover in your life who enjoys drawing and/or coloring
  8. pantone inspirational color palettes for the art lover who truly loves color
  9. moca membership for the art lover who frequents the museum and would love to do so freely
  10. decorative hand painted arrow to serve an aesthetic and possibly symbolic purpose for an art lover

 

 

holiday gift guide: for children & for the animal lover

we can probably all agree that children are the most fun to buy gifts for, partially because we get to channel our own inner child and reminisce on our childhood holiday celebrations. while the options are endless, this can leave us overwhelmed as well, so we’ve gathered our top ten items for this year!

  1. metallic piggy bank is a funky take on the classic saving method we grew up with
  2. chalkboard door hanger because what kid doesn’t love to put a message on their door?
  3. colorful splash tray that a kid can imagine many uses for; food, junk holder, or pencil tray
  4. cardboard animal heads because they’re playful, eco-friendly, and animal friendly
  5. silkscreened kite for a day at the beach and a lesson in flight (and patience)
  6. multicolor pompom garland for a colorful and festive accent to be enjoyed all year round
  7. fashion designer kit for that stylish child that loves all of your fashion magazines
  8. sleep like a tiger is a new and adorable bedtime read that is sure to become a classic
  9. slim sonic toothbrush because kids love electric toothbrushes and now they’re super cool
  10. mr. food face plates which of course, reminds us of our beloved wooly willy toy

 

we all have an animal lover in our life, and we are proudly that animal lover who has dogs instead of children! we’ve rounded up our top ten picks for the animal lover in your life this year!

  1. animal prints because they’re totally adorable and would brighten anyone’s day
  2. vintage butterfly tray mostly because it is beautiful, but useful and unique as well
  3. dog grooming tools so the pups can always look and smell their very best
  4. soopertramp preppy dog collar for the sophisticated and stylish pup (matching leash available!)
  5. phoney baloney bacon & coconut treats because who doesn’t love bacon, especially when no piggies are actually involved
  6. cat tipi for that cat who needs a stylish abode to hideaway in after a long day of sun bathing
  7. dog peacoat because contrary to popular belief, some pups are sensitive to the cold
  8. turtleshell lidded candle serves as a decorative object when not in use
  9. fancy dog bowl for the design minded dog owner in your life who appreciates a good gingham
  10. bird by andrew zuckerman is an incredibly vibrant and beautiful book that anyone would appreciate

 

holiday gift guide: for the hostess & for your neighbor

as exciting as it is to host gatherings, we all know how much work it also includes, so we never show up to a party empty handed! see below for our favorite gifts for the hostess this year to show your appreciation!

  1. metallic zebra dish makes a glam catch all that can be used almost anywhere
  2. paper placemats for an interesting yet disposable addition to any gathering
  3. embroidered bucket is an adorable place to stow cooking utensiles or even makeup brushes
  4. dipped salad servers are eco-friendly and bring a pop of color to the table
  5. hand painted ceramic vases for the hostess who needs some creative storage
  6. baking kits from babycakes because if anyone isn’t obsessed yet, they will be
  7. photo tips towel for the hostess who likes to photograph her kitchen adventures
  8. soma water filter because we truly believe everybody on your list should have one
  9. sparklettes for a hostess to have on hand for any special occasion that arises
  10. test tube to spice rack is great for space saving, convenience, and display

 

we also like to show our neighbors some thanks for the holidays, just for being near and dear! below we have some no fail gifts that are perfect for someone you may not know so well!

  1. colorful backgammon set because nothing breaks the ice like a classic game
  2. antique mirror box to be used as a catch all or to hide away special items for safe keeping
  3. universe terrarium for the plant loving neighbor who appreciates good design as well
  4. vintage blue glass bottle is beautiful and can be worked into almost any style of decor
  5. brass plant mister because who doesn’t want to hydrate their plants in style?
  6. stick lighter to keep out on any table or windowsill without being an eye sore
  7. stargazer lights to accent any area of the home without feeling cheesy
  8. soap bars that might be too pretty to use but are great to have on hand for guests
  9. silver pyramid vase because this unique vase can serve many purposes
  10. incense for the neighbor who loves a wonderful smelling home

 

holiday gift guide: for her & for him

i am always keeping my eyes open for great gifts throughout the year for my friends and family. this way i avoid the mad dash and ensure that my gifts are truly personal for the recipient. when it comes down to the wire, it can seem so overwhelming and hard to find those unique gifts that will be most appreciated! don’t fret, we have done the work for you and rounded up so many wonderful and unique gifts this year! we will be starting with for her and for him, but have many more guides to come so check back for even more ideas.

  1. easterly blanket in citrus, white, and graphite is a bright way to stay cozy and warm
  2. metallic handwoven palm bins for a twist on her usual storage basket
  3. stackable wooden vases to fit any size bouquet you might give her alongside
  4. body milk that smells amazing, dries fast, and isn’t shiny; perfect
  5. handmade oversize scarf in cheery colorways to bring a bright pop to a gloomy day
  6. earbuds with gold accent cage is the perfect little touch of elegance for her ears
  7. metallic flash tattoos if she tends to break and/or lose jewelry too often
  8. marbleized box so she has a beautiful place to hide away her jewelry
  9. porcelain tray for a beautiful jewelry tray or general catch all
  10. sequin baskets for storage or even plants if she loves all the sparkles

 

okay, we all know women can be difficult to shop for, but most of us can agree that men are even more so! most guys don’t care so much for things that are more beautiful than useful, so we search high and low for the perfect item he can use but will also think is totally awesome.

  1. sleek tube of dice for the man in your life who loves to play the odds
  2. plaid bow tie because honestly, what guy wouldn’t look dapper in this?
  3. wooden watch for the trendy man who also loves the environment
  4. usb message in a bottle is the perfect way to give a love note to your techy man
  5. handrail grill for the man who loves to grill but doesn’t have much outdoor space
  6. hammer bag because we could all use some organizing assistance sometimes
  7. shaving kit to add a little bit of lux to his daily, or weekly, routine
  8. figue noire candle for the man who loves a great, yet masculine, smelling abode
  9. whiskey & cards set because game night and a stiff drink to sip go hand in hand
  10. ereader book cover to add a classic touch to your man’s ipad or kindle this year

art house: klari reis

you can’t get more colorful than klari reis, and her newest ongoing collection, entitled petri dish paintings, is the most vibrant yet. we stumbled upon klari’s work via her fun blog, the daily dish 2013, where she is featuring a different petri dish painting everyday of this year. when most of us think of a petri dish, we probably get grossed out by the thought of multiplying bacteria, but one look at the mesmerizing paint colors in one of klari’s petri dishes and you’ll fall in love! klari uses reflective epoxy polymer to depict electron microscopic images of natural and unnatural cellular reactions. the effect is hopeful, almost playful, belying the serious nature of the subject matter. pictured below is a selection of a few works from her ongoing collection, petri dish paintings, but don’t stop there. check out her fun website to see her other collections, 99 apothecary bottles, and street anatomy, as well as over 300 petri dish paintings.

via the daily dish 2013

via klari art

our week

with the real fall weather here this week, we’ve all got cozy and warm on our minds! from comfort foods to new throws, and our next book to hide inside with; we are all soaking up the gloomy weather and gearing up for the holidays! we still can’t believe next week is thanksgiving. time to get serious about our holiday shopping lists!

‘this week we decided to all snuggle in the puppies’ cage, how cute are we?!’

you’ve still got time to order these festive straws for thanksgiving

especially with this rainy weather, we need this gold throw, right now

forever feeding our wanderlust addiction, we’re excited for this new read

just into the shop this week is this vintage, german brass light fixture

we need one of these, way better than just our puppy cam

this is a great list of vegan thanksgiving recipes to accommodate all of your guests

this cut out book of olafur eliasson’s home is incredible and so intricately detailed

vintage + smokey + ombre = perfect decanter and glass set for the holidays

if you’re near the southbay this weekend and thinking of a puppy, stop here

aesthetically speaking: thanksgiving tablescape

when creating beautiful tablescapes for the holidays, i love adding elements of color, whimsy and personal details to liven up a traditionally formal setting. no one feels comfortable in a stuffy environment. have fun mixing elements that create conversations between guests. much like my design philosophy, I believe that layering various textures, colors, patterns and off beat details creates not only a unique and interesting setting, but it also creates a celebratory atmosphere for your guests to enjoy. don’t be afraid to think outside the box and break the rules a bit. work with volume, finishes and height to give your tablescape a lift with lots of beautiful dimension. this keeps the eye dancing across the table.

this year we wanted to ensure that we stayed focused on food, laughter, and budget! a unique and beautiful table can certainly be set on a budget without appearing so in the least. first of all, your table should represent your own style while fitting the holiday theme, so you probably already have pieces in your home that can be used. think vases, boxes, trays, and candles that you have in various areas. we highly suggest gathering all possible accessories in your home before purchasing anything. second, decide on a color scheme appropriate for the holiday, or your own personal spin on a holiday color scheme. this year we are really loving the metallic pops and decided on an organic and neutral palette including amber, gold, orange, green, and purple. the easiest way to add color to your table when trying to keep within budget is beautiful flowers, fruits, vegetables, or gourds. we loved the addition of petite pears and artichokes to simple flower arrangements. also remember, you don’t want to block the view across the table with an oversize floral arrangement, and with small children it can be easy to do! so keep your floral arrangements simple, but with the right pop of color. see below for photos and more information about our thanksgiving tablescape, including links to purchase every piece!

as we said before, pick a color scheme that fits the holiday as well as your own sense of style. we personally love amber and gold so it fits perfectly into our thanksgiving color scheme! plus, have you ever realized how much warmth it really brings to the table? it is so important to create a table that feels warm, comfortable, and inviting. that was very important to us with this set up; to be very well thought out, but still casual and cozy. i mean, we are all about to eat too much so we should be comfortable, right? one way we like to achieve this atmosphere is by mixing vintage pieces and new pieces together. vintage pieces always add in unique character, and if you are hosting new guests they are great conversation pieces!

a great examples of mixing vintage pieces with new pieces is our vintage gold greek key tumblers paired with these new amber glasses. we love this antique persian inlaid box for the incredible details and the fact that it ties in our color scheme perfectly, decorative boxes are great for purely aesthetic purposes, or even for after dinner mints, matches, stirrers, or toothpicks even. we aimed to keep our tablescape at a generally low height with the exception of a pair of brass candle sticks and our brightest pop of color, our orange roses!

we’ve always had a love for gold flatware, so we were very excited to see that west elm was carrying modern, gold flatware this year! not to mention the coordinating chargers and napkin rings, that tied our gold detailed napkins in perfectly! we layered these gold pieces on a woven placemat, with a cocoa dinner plate, and these gorgeous scavo salad plates for neutral elements and casual textures.

always be sure to mix in organic and living elements to your tablescape. and instead of the typical centerpiece, we opted for a looser interpretation of one, by gathering several elements in a beautiful grouping.  we love this traditional pumpkin from pottery barn, and gourd from crate and barrel, as elements to be kept for years to come! the artichokes and succulents were sourced from a local market and add the gorgeous deep purple that compliments our warmer tones so well. we also used a vintage drip glaze bud vase that was similar in color and scale to the pumpkin and gourd for texture variation, and of course a place to hold our buds! the mercury votives were found at pottery barn and add that pop of metallic and amber we love! and we just cannot leave out our vintage brass peacock who adds so much character to our table.

my last minute tip? have champagne or wine already poured in glasses just before guests are ready to be seated at your holiday table. it adds an extra sparkle and elegance to welcome them as they sit down for a night of toasting and giving thanks.

trade secrets: kitchen renovations part three – cabinetry and hardware

here we meet again for part three of our kitchen renovation series! if you are just tuning in, be sure to check out our part one and part two. today we are going to talk all about cabinetry and hardware!

cabinetry style is another area that will depend greatly on the style of your home. first, know the style of your home – traditional, modern, contemporary, rustic, craftsman, tudor, modern industrial, etc. then decide the style of cabinetry that works best. most traditional cabinets have raised panels with multiple levels of molding, and possibly an arched detail. while contemporary cabinets tend to be simpler, usually with a flat panel and single level of molding, also called ‘shaker’ or ‘mission style’. more modern homes can get away with shaker style cabinets or even completely flat and solid cabinet fronts. for craftsman style kitchens, of course shaker/mission style is appropriate, but we love a good beadboard detail or glass uppers with a craftsman style pane design. there are endless options for cabinetry styles, but below are some of our favorites.

kitchen cabinet styles via

once you have decided on the proper style of cabinet, we suggest that you consider the finish. we are loving a great high-gloss, bold paint color for kitchen cabinets, and this is something a buyer can always easily change should you chose to sell your home in the future. don’t be afraid to stray from the expected stained wood or white painted cabinets, but definitely try out some paint samples before committing! the beauty of boldly painted cabinets is that you can keep the hard surfaces, like the counter and backsplash, simpler with neutrals. this allows you the versatility to change it up yourself in the future with a fresh coat of paint, but as mentioned before, is a safer bet for resale considerations. see some of our favorite examples of this below!

private residence kitchen design by kishani perera inc.

private residence kitchen design via

not sure if you will tire of the color you choose for your kitchen cabinetry? we understand, vibrant green cabinets are a big commitment! don’t be afraid to paint different areas of cabinetry different colors. we are loving darker lower cabinetry with white uppers, a contrasting painted island, glass uppers with a painted interior, or even a slightly different style of cabinetry in different areas of a large kitchen, as seen below!

contrasting cabinet colors via

painted interior of glass cabinets via

you don’t even have to use paint at all to mix it up! instead of wood, consider using metal cabinets, either stainless, brass or zinc, to create a unique look in your kitchen. additionally, there are unusual stain options available such as a cerused finish which really brings out the grain of the wood, or various colored tints. white washed cabinets are beautiful in the correct setting, and we are really loving a grey stain in the kitchen these days. or go vintage, and bring in reclaimed wood for cabinet facing for a warm space! see below for examples of these designs.

steel framed cabinetry via

 

cerused kitchen cabinetry via

grey cerused cabinetry via

grey stained cabinets via

we also love straying away from traditional matching upper and lower cabinetry by using different styles for each. if you need the storage of uppers, consider using glass front cabinets for an interesting contrast. if you are particularly neat and don’t need quite as much storage, you should consider open shelving in place of uppers. consider wood, metal, or even brass shelves for a great pop. or simply go without any upper storage and let your backsplash do all the work! you can also get more creative with your cabinet door fronts and add in beautiful, yet simple details as shown below.

glass uppers with solid lower cabinets via

contrasting cabinets and island via

wood shelves in place of upper cabinetry via

industrial brass shelves in place of upper cabinetry via

wire cabinet detail via kishani perera blogcabinet detail via

custom cabinet detail by brad caplow via kishani perera inc

and we just can’t talk cabinetry without sharing this kitchen design we swoon over regularly. if you have the fitting style of home and budget, we urge you to seek options truly outside of the box. the result can be a beautifully unique kitchen!

unique cabinetry and hardware via

last, but certainly not least, is hardware. hardware is the easiest update for any kitchen. there are endless options, from your basic polished chrome knobs and pulls, to the quirkiest of bronze animal heads! don’t be afraid to be bold. we tend to enjoy vintage hardware in new kitchens, as well as large and out of scale pieces that add a bit of drama and quirkiness. also you can mix it up with knobs on cabinets lets say, and do handles on the cabinet doors. also take placement into consideration. there’s the traditional placement, top corners of the lower cabinets, lower corners of the uppers, but here again, you can add some interest by going against the grain. we love doing center pulls, either on the doors themselves, rather than the frame, which we also like, or doing extremely large knobs in centers of the doors. keep in mind the finish of your cabinet hardware doesn’t have to match the finish of your sink faucet or even your interior door knobs, but all of the kitchen cabinetry knobs and all pulls need to be the same finish throughout the kitchen. see below (and above) for various installations of hardware that are great examples of placement and styles.

private residence kitchen design by kishani perera inc.

identical pull on drawers and cabinets via

vintage hardware in private residence by kishani perera inc.

after you have an idea of the style of hardware you like, consider hinges as well. all photos above have concealed hinges, but you certainly don’t have to hide them! we are loving exposed and offset hinges that match the style of your hardware. it is great in any style of kitchen and just adds a little more character that we personally can’t resist right now. our absolute favorite is the icebox latches and hinges shown below. while a more subtle detail of the traditional brass hinges add just the right pop to the cabinetry.

exposed, offset ice box latches and hinges via

more exposed ice box latches and hinges via

brass hardware and exposed hinges via

be sure to subscribe to our blog to follow our complete kitchen renovation series! and please feel free to leave any questions in the comments below! we know we can’t cover every detail, and we love to hear from you!

our week

with six creative and curious minds in the kpi office now, we are constantly coming across miscellaneous things throughout the week that keep us inspired, make us laugh, tempt us to make unnecessary purchases, or seriously make us wonder how we have made it this far in life without the newest genius gadget! so we have decided to join in the blogger crowd and share with you all of things that got us through another crazy week at the office! you can keep up with our three adorable pugs, learn some of our fave sources, see what the kpi ladies do in our free time, and anything that made us smile!

our sweet petey says ‘fine, i will take your bed since you took mine’

seating cards can be such a simple yet personal part of a dinner party. great roundup here

check out these amazing sculptures shared by mr. finch

still obsessing over this mid century spiral pendant we recently acquired

we’ve been designing so many bathrooms, and would love to find a place for this fixture

incredibly unique and beautiful hand-cut artwork

someone in the office had to have these cuties for overnight holiday guests this year

recently seen in our feature in lonny mag, we are loving lulu & georgia pillows right now