Inspired by Calm, Casual Interiors

October 26, 2011

EST Magazine makes me happy. Mainly because I’ve been into black and white interiors lately, not that I’d ever try a 100% b/w monochromatic scheme at home, but because I absolutely love the idea of bringing more black into my home to warm it up for winter. Especially soot black, that gorgeously yummy matte — it’s a favorite of mine at the moment and I’m trying to think of what I can paint to include it in my living room scheme. I already brought in a big recycled rubber tote for my living room for storing magazines and a matte black Eames rocker… So I’m thinking what else can I add. Which brings me to EST magazine – it’s packed with ideas for those of you who want a calm, casual interior. Sand, charcoal, dove gray, navy blue… all paired with cream or pure white. Heaven.

Inspired by Calm, Casual Interiors

EST just announced their 3rd issue that just rolled out on monitors worldwide and of course, I’m smitten… Look at that table above – could it be much better than that?! I use PTMD paints out of the Netherlands because they are mostly chalky neutral colors and recently I painted a wooden bookcase a medium gray matte and I love it. I mean, I really, really love it. There is something so tactile and real about chalky surfaces on furniture and walls. I’m not sure how well it will hold up over time (I may need to add a clear top coat) but for now, I dig it completely.

Inspired by Calm, Casual Interiors

From LA to the Hampton’s, from the inner city of Melbourne, Australia to Scandinavia — you can find lots to make you drool this month in EST. But I want to focus on the black I’m seeing in so many of their spreads… Gorgeous!

Inspired by Calm, Casual Interiors

Did you notice the huge white paper lantern above? It may be one of those cheap ones from IKEA… and if so, what a great idea to add painted on details – spots, stripes, anything goes. Love the black organic spots! By the way, that table above is the exact gray I was telling you about – that is the color of my bookcase.

Inspired by Calm, Casual Interiors

Inspired by Calm, Casual Interiors

Inspired by Calm, Casual Interiors

I’m really into feathers and anything in black white and or/brown that looks very modern but also Native American. A headdress, antlers, reindeer furs, feathers, a dream catcher in white… but all very muted and organic looking. I first noticed one of my favorite Danish stylists using them in her home about 5 years ago and started to like it then but most recently, I’m finding Native American influences in design very fresh and beautiful. It seems that Europe gets more in touch with this trend than we do in America and I’m not sure why. I think we may associate it with the typical Southwestern style in the rust tones with blue and yellow… but in Europe, particularly the Netherlands and Scandinavia, they interpret Native American style into something quite amazing — they make it very neutral and tactile and pay special attention to the details. I find it completely inspiring.

Inspired by Calm, Casual Interiors

Inspired by Calm, Casual Interiors

Inspired by Calm, Casual Interiors

If you recall, I first told you about EST when they launched, and I loved what I saw, but most like digital magazines you wonder if they’ll have what it takes to stick around or if they’ll just become another e-mag that looks and feels like everything else on digital newsstands. EST is different and they are really proving it – their consistent, gorgeous editing and fresh, clean take on design is both inspiring and motivating. I can’t wait to see how far they go and how popular they become – they have the potential to be a huge success and hopefully, if you like what you see, you’ll become a regular EST reader and support them. Enjoy!

(images: est magazine)


  • Reply cottagefarm October 26, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    wow! spectacular. thank you for the post… im pouring over the pages now

  • Reply Angel Y. October 26, 2011 at 9:00 pm

    This may be my favorite interior post ever! I am in love with all of the blacks, grays, and whites. These are perfect for an amazing winter.

  • Reply Tinachicky October 26, 2011 at 9:12 pm

    OMG, I LOVE these! They are inspiring me to want to redo my whole house! LOL. I am seriously thinking of painting my bedroom to a gray color (I have white wainscoting on the bottom 1/2).

    Thank you for the inspirational photos.

  • Reply Seventeendoors October 26, 2011 at 9:33 pm

    I will definitely check it out. I love the first image in this post..

  • Reply Kinga October 26, 2011 at 9:33 pm

    I LOVE black. I’m always drawn to it and fought it a little but in the past year or so I have really embraced it. Black is in almost all of my artwork and I have two large pieces of abstract art in my 600 sq foot loft that are black (and I have white walls)…I can see people evaluating them when visiting and I never ask but always wonder what others think of black. I think it’s bold and it can be an anchor in a room…Love Love Love! Thanks for sharing this!

  • Reply tinajo October 26, 2011 at 9:35 pm

    Oh my goodness – the second pic took my breath away. How I´d love a place like that – so beautiful! :-)

    The other pics are lovely as well. Seems like a great magazine! :-)

  • Reply Judy Sitzer October 26, 2011 at 9:36 pm

    I love all of this. Thinking of painting my nightstand charcol or black. It looks great. Do you know what kind of paint I could use to paint a white paper lamp? Would it matter since there is a light bulb inside?

  • Reply susanne schmid October 26, 2011 at 10:09 pm

    black and white is great. I love the eye-catching effect.

  • Reply A Plum By Any Other Name October 26, 2011 at 10:47 pm

    I love chalkboard paint! I painted a table with it and will write descriptions of the foods I’m serving when I entertain. Love it on walls, too.

  • Reply Jessa October 26, 2011 at 11:09 pm

    Black and white are my favourite!!! Love these especially the kitchen!

  • Reply Nikko Moy October 27, 2011 at 12:05 am

    Love this! Completely my style. Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply Rick Shaver, PleasantLivingHome October 27, 2011 at 12:05 am

    Yes,yes,yes. Black and white. I had a small chair covered in black and white houndstooth in my bedroom when I was a kid and that’s where my love affair with black and white began. And as much as I love every color in the spectrum, one never forgets his first love.

    Rick Shaver, PleasantLivingHome

  • Reply Renee October 27, 2011 at 12:21 am

    Great post Holly, I agree with you about the black and white, love it!

  • Reply Penny Patten October 27, 2011 at 1:59 am

    Black white and gray are great together, I like the matte as well. I could tell by your post how excited you were with your painting and decorating!

  • Reply Cindy October 27, 2011 at 2:04 am

    Wow. Somehow I missed EST, but these photos have me counting the seconds until I can go click over. I just love how soothing all the rooms look. Especially that grey and white bedroom. Heaven.

  • Reply Melissa de la Fuente October 27, 2011 at 2:41 am

    Ahhh….I am so with you. Loving those trends as well and loving these calm interiors. Thanks for this hun…

  • Reply patricia October 27, 2011 at 4:13 am

    How beautiful!! This reminds me of my teenage fascination with black and white. In contrast to my friends, I had only white furniture and black and white accessories—no other colors at all. I always felt so calm there.

  • Reply Tracey Fisher October 27, 2011 at 5:06 am

    Wow. This is a great magazine. Holly, I agree the matte black is brilliant. I have a sideboard painted with black milk paint that needs a fresh coat but I think I’m going to go with that chalkboard black..this weekend.

  • Reply srinivas October 27, 2011 at 6:59 am

    its really looks Rich feel and totally its wonderfull

  • Reply Itziar October 27, 2011 at 7:28 am

    Thank your for discovering such a great e-mag!
    Love it

  • Reply Hannah @ Sparrow + Spark! October 27, 2011 at 8:44 am

    I love this so much! I’m reading it now actually (multi tasking!).

    I love the black and white and the chalk and the last photo with the brown paper!

  • Reply Eeli October 27, 2011 at 9:18 am

    Beautiful grey shades! Black, white and grey color make me feel very calm and I get inspired to use it in my every day life! I am enjoying the BYW class, thank You Holly!

  • Reply Mimi October 27, 2011 at 11:51 am

    Love the black and white rooms. The gray bedroom is lovely as well!

  • Reply Trina October 27, 2011 at 12:29 pm

    i’m still madly in love with blackboard paint. it’s been around for awhile now, but i just don’t see it going anywhere anytime soon.

    it looks especially amazing on furniture, like a dining room table or a desk – the kids – or you – can doodle and eat/work at the same time!

    easy clean up too. :-)

  • Reply Kathryn October 27, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    I love Black and White, it’s just a shame our house is too shaded to be able to carry off a dark colour!

    Must go and check out the magazine, thanks Holly!

    Kathryn xx

  • Reply Jenni October 27, 2011 at 6:34 pm

    I’ve been messing around with the idea of chalkboard paint….this makes me want to just go for it!

  • Reply Barbara October 27, 2011 at 7:22 pm

    Love the blacks and grays! These colors are suprisingly very warm and soothing together! Great post! Stop by, Im having a giveaway :)


  • Reply desiree - vosgesparis October 28, 2011 at 12:03 am

    tht little table is gorgeous I have the same in grey chalk paint with a white painted french mirror on it… but I feel tempted to paint it black … even if I already have lots of black in the home ;) Black is beautiful!

  • Reply Coco October 28, 2011 at 12:14 pm

    Lovely post again. I’m in love with black and white interiors for awhile now. Next year we want to plaster our walls in the living room and I definitely want one black chalkboard wall! I’m going for the biggest wall so you can see it from the kitchen as well and on the same side we have our television so the tv will blend in (the wall) more and not being such a big ugly object anymore…
    The rest of the living room will be white and I’ve plenty of colorful objects to not make it too boring looking ;)

  • Reply Mia October 28, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    I am so wanting to paint a wall of chalk board! I even have a quart of paint (that I have had for 2 years!)… just can’t figure out which wall. I love seeing that furniture can go against the wall!

  • Reply amanda October 28, 2011 at 5:02 pm

    great ideas!

  • Reply Karen October 28, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    I really love the way this looks. The possibilities are endless using chalk paint. You always create the best posts.

  • Reply Patches October 28, 2011 at 10:45 pm

    Lots of inspiration here! I love those rings on the wall – wooden circles maybe?

  • Reply Jules @ Lovely Las Vegas October 29, 2011 at 9:33 am

    I love the chalkboard paint so much I requested my husband include it in the buildout of his professional office space. It has been a fun and unique addition to his office for the past couple of years! We use lots of different (pastel) colours of chalk for added effect.

  • Reply Kat October 30, 2011 at 2:27 am

    Hi Holly
    What you said about Americans not necessarily interpreting native American style & craftmanship in the same way as Europeans, struck a chord – sometimes we are too close to see the value of what heritage brings & how it can be reapplied – I think it happens with Britian too – as I often think the Japanese take British things and make them more appealing – just wanted to share,
    Luv kat

  • Reply Isabela October 31, 2011 at 2:28 am

    Beautiful environments ….
    Very cozy!

  • Reply april November 22, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    i just bought a house and this is my inspiration for decorating it! please can someone tell me where i can find that black super comfy looking couch! xoxoxox love this

  • Reply Lexi November 22, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    ok, so that amazing grey color on the table needs to be on my wall asap. can you disclose the name/brand/color so i can immediately follow your lead? i’m in love with cool greys right now, so this post was amazing eye candy :)

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