Grant K. Gibson

YOU’VE GOT MAIL

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I found this treasure of a mailbox after a client meeting the other day.  Hard to believe something like this exists in a major city like San Francisco.

I loved the overgrown ivy surrounding the simple white mailbox.   Its seemed like such a nice way to be greeted when going to “get the mail”.  Don’t you think that receiving junk mail and stacks of bills would somehow feel enjoyable if you lived here?

WESLEY THE WESTIE

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Summer is here and Wesley has been settling in nicely.  Its hard to believe that he has only been living in San Francisco for four months.  He is just part of the family now -  and the perfect addition.   A day doesn’t go by when I don’t think of my old boys, Campbell and Wallace.  I often imagine that they would have all been great friends.   It’s hard to figure out exactly what goes on in the head of a dog, let alone a nine year old rescue.  So lately, he has been experiencing a lot of “firsts”.  Not sure if he has ever played by a pool for an afternoon or run into the ocean, but he seems to really be enjoying all of his new adventures!

IKEA

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Going to Ikea is like going through a maze.  I try to plan my visits on a random weekday afternoon around 2 or so to minimize the madness.  I can’t imagine a Saturday afternoon with the crowds and check out lines!   I always seem to be able to fill a shopping cart with random things (possibly things that one doesn’t need). The reward at the end of the adventure is the treat of frozen yogurt.  Sometimes it’s the little things that cost 99 cents that really make your day.

THE TAYLOR INSPIRATION

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Last weekend, the San Francisco Chronicle featured a tribute to the iconic San Francisco designer Michael Taylor in the Home Design magazine.

I was honored to be included in a section by Anh-Minh Le titled, “The Taylor Inspiration”, sharing how I take inspiration from Michael Taylor in my own work today.

You can link to the whole article HERE

THE TAYLOR INSPIRATION

Even 28 years after his death, Michael Taylor’s work still inspires designers. He advocated – and in some cases initiated – a host of decorating ideas that continue to fill the pages of shelter publications. Local interior designer, Grant K. Gibson shared a room from his portfolio that echo Taylor’s approach.

“What I learned from Taylor was not to be afraid of mixing high and low. He had Cost Plus, I have Target! I have been using Target shades since my first San Francisco Decorator Showcase space 10 years ago. I was a little bit nervous about that, as the Showcase is thought of as very high-end design. But I like the way that bamboo and natural-fiber window treatments add texture and diffuse the light very nicely, and the look is tailored and handsome. I don’t think you would guess that these shades cost $40, especially since they are in the same room as antiques collected during trips to Paris.”

“Taylor also favored mixing pieces of different styles and periods – way before the ‘eclectic look’ became a thing. He didn’t believe that any particular period was more beautiful than another. This living room illustrates that point, with a Swedish Gustavian-style chair, tablecloth edged with a Greek-key pattern, neoclassical artwork, faded Oushak rug, wicker basket as a planter and English roll-arm sofa upholstered in natural linen.”

“Of course, you can’t talk about Taylor’s design without talking about his use of plants indoors. Not just small potted plants – he went big. My take on this concept is the fiddle leaf tree in the corner. I love the height, and the way it introduces something natural into the design.”

WESLEY GOES TO NEW YORK

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A few weeks ago, Wesley took his first plane trip across the country to New York.  He couldn’t have been any better or more well behaved.  Now he is all ready for his next adventure.  I think that I was more nervous than he was about traveling!

LIGHTING

 

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I am picky when it comes to lighting.   Lightening can really make or break a whole room.  Too much light can be harsh and offputting.  Not enough light: you can’t see anything or appreciate the space.

I like to think of lighting as works of art or pieces of jewelry for an interior.

We found this antique French lantern and are having it wired for a client’s pool house.  Maybe I will get invited over when the project is complete for a dip in the pool!

SHOWER TILE

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Summer is here and we have numerous projects under construction to keep our office on our toes!

This is a peek of a new shower that we are working on with a client.  The Waterworks wall tiles are all handmade.  I love the way each tile is unique and has a slight variance in color.  If you look closely, you can see pale blues and greens.  This adds an organic feel to a space.  One of my favorite materials to use on a shower floor is a honed marble mosaic.  It’s like a little foot massage in the shower every morning!

SMASHED ROASTED POTATOES

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People often ask where I learned to cook.  My grandmother and mother were both amazing cooks and I have such fond memories of time spent with them in the kitchen as a child.

 
When I was a teenager, one of my best friends in New York did a lot of catering for events and parties.  I spent hours in her kitchen helping and immersing myself.  While our cooking styles and flavors are very different, I always love asking her for new ideas and secrets.  I love listening to what flavors and spices she is using and then taking her ideas and changing things around a bit to customize the recipe to make it my own. This is a potato recipe that has recently turned into a huge favorite.   I made them last weekend and am already craving them again!

SMASHED ROASTED POTATOES

I like using baby Yukon Golds.  But you could use red potatoes too.
Boil the potatoes until they are almost soft (keeping them a bit firm is ok – as they are still going to cook longer in the oven).
While the potatoes are boiling, preheat your oven to 400-450 degrees.
Lay the potatoes out on a parchment-lined baking sheet.   (At this point you could wait and continue the rest of the cooking for a dinner party and serve them hot).   I then use a water glass (nothing fancy) and a press down each potato until it is slightly smashed down.  Drizzle with olive oil.
Bake for 20 minutes.  (Toss them and check on them after about 10 minutes.)   The skins should get nice and crispy.   Finish with coarse sea salt and pepper and a fresh herb.  I have made them a few times with flat leaf parsley.  This weekend I had chives.   You can also add some roasted garlic for a nice kick.

Enjoy!

PEONIES

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So sorry for the silence on the blog these days.

It seems that there aren’t enough hours in the day.  The last weeks have been filled with some fun adventures.  A bit of traveling and a lot of great new projects at the office.  I took this photo a few weeks back of these fabulous peonies.  I just love the vibrant pink against the blue and white vase.

Hope that you have a great week.  I promise to update again soon!

OUTDOOR ENTERTAINING

INTERIORS SPRING 2014

Interiors Magazine asked me (along with the great Lulu Powers and Hutton Wilkinson) some of our favorite outdoor tips.  I thought that with summer around the corner, I would share my ideas!

“I try to always keep things simple, not fussy, so that people can relax and enjoy themselves.  And I tend to focus on the basics: Instead of 100 dishes, narrow it down to just a few; have a signature cocktail; and set up a buffet so that guests can serve themselves.  It helps the host be less stressed!”