At Home

Dirty Business

Yesterday it seemed the most trafficked rooms in the house were also the most neglected. No more. Utility rooms have become chic and central to an orderly life.

Heaps of dirty clothes, legions of mittens minus partners, drippy umbrellas! It’s not pretty. In the spirit of a new year with organization once again topping our resolution lists, utilitarian spaces are gaining attention. Next to open kitchens and porches, in fact, such multi-purpose rooms are de rigueur in new house construction. “I’m hearing it all the time,” says Providence-based…

Vintage Rooms

Cellaring your wine with some help from the pros.

Wine cellars, old as the hills, are the country’s newest trend. Haute or humble, these unique spaces channel sunny vineyards and make every gathering a celebration worth toasting. » Creating a wine cellar » Bordeaux Country » Urban Legend » The Collector: Louis Mueller

Designer Genes

They share looks, but what about taste? We visited mother and daughter designers at home to determine how alike—or not—their decorating style really is.

It’s no surprise that a visual achiever like Karen Vaughan (facing page), proprietor of the popular Newport shop that bears her name, would have a similarly talented daughter. But interior designer Kim Kirby (this page), of Kim Kirby Interiors, also in Newport, is no clone. True, our snooping revealed more similarities than differences. But, in the end, these high-drive women…

Kids’ Play

Gone are the country decals of long ago, the fussy wallpapers that screamed nursery. Today’s best children’s rooms are positively posh and ultimately livable.

Kids’ rooms are going to ultra-stylish new heights, and raising the bar are rooms like these Portsmouth beauties. Of course, in such a chic new house (architectural design by Newport Collaborative Architects, construction by Parker Thompson), you’d expect no less. Providence interior designer Nancy Taylor, who’s responsible for the interior detailing, didn’t scale back when it came to putting together…

Sky Boxes

City dwellers are used to having their heads in the clouds, so it’s no surprise their private hideaways are finessed terraces and sunny roof decks.

There’s something magical about a garden-like idyll that soars above traffic. If you’re like us, you’ve spent years craning your neck to get a better peek. This summer, though, we toured a handful, and what did we find? You don’t need a gargantuan space to enjoy Mother Nature. Here’s the lowdown on some lofty lairs that lack for nothing but…

Port of Call

New Bedford is having a heyday. And there’s no shortage of treasures for seasoned antique hunters, flea market fans and art lovers alike to discover in this burgeoning city by the sea.

New Bedford is barely a heartbeat from Providence and Newport, but it feels light years away. Maybe it’s the parking, which is readily available. Or, perhaps, the shops peddling antiques and salvaged architectural goods by the mile. The galleries are abundant and rich. The food is delicious: fish and scallops tumbled right from the sea and onto your plate. And…

Season to Taste

Heady herbs are summer treats we should have close enough to pick fresh at a moment’s notice.

As old as the proverbial hills, herbs influence everything from favorite cuisines to premier toiletries. And without trying to replicate Sturbridge, you can grow your own. n Simply incorporate a few in the flower border, tuck a handful in the vegetable garden or fill a container for the deck. Requirements vary according to the herb but not much. In general,…

Show Time

Part scavenger hunt, part marathon and the rest circus, The Brimfield Antiques and Collectibles Show is chock full of treasures and more thrilling than the big top. Best of all—no waiting involved—the remarkable week-long event is kicking off another colorful season this month.

Held three times a year in what used to be the drowsy village of Brimfield, Massachusetts, this humongous week-long tag sale consists of some twenty-three individual shows known as fields, each with a name and each jammed with hundreds of dealers. This month’s show runs Tuesday, May 13 to Sunday, May 18. Opening days for the fields are staggered, allowing…

Drama Queen

Orchids, less finicky than you imagine and worth every penny, are available in myriad colors, sizes and shapes to chase those winter blues away.

Charles Darwin, Georgia O’Keeffe, Raymond Chandler and Rex Stout are just a few well-knowns from a long list of orchid fans. With more than 100,000 available hybrids, there’s a flower for every taste. And not unlike the world of roses, every enthusiast has favorites. What sets these beauties apart is that most cultivated orchids are epiphytic. Translation? They grow on…

Treasure Hunt

At Home

In Warren, historic buildings and shops intertwine up and down streets George Washington once traveled on a visit to Rhode Island. One of the oldest communities in the state, Warren has a past that includes agriculture, shellfishing, boat building and textile manufacturing. Ever-evolving, the town has become a fertile hunting ground for antiquers and flea-market junkies. Zigzag about in search…