Letitia Little Interior Design

Posts tagged: contemporary



Color, Color, Color. We love it and can’t get enough of it this time of year. Whether we use it in large doses or small punches its essential to a well designed interior. Colors come in and out of favor but some are keepers such as blue and green. And they are trending right now as sea green and sky blue or as gem tones like saphire and emerald. The following examples  inspire  and rejuvenate.Century furniture-spring

This uplifting, traditional style living room is all done up in sky blue and spring green. It’s daring yet soothing at the same time. Green silk taffeta curtains and blue linen sofa contrast beautifully with the iron “branch” cocktail table and leafy print chair.Furniture is by Century, which always provides high style and timeless quality.


Rich jewel tones infuse this quartz surface with life and energy. Picture this as a counter top in a powder room-Wow! Semi-precious stone surface by Ceasarstone.

p22_Dolphin'sCove[1]Pastel, watery blues and greens are  soothing yet envigorating and very on trend right now, especially the aqua. You can almost feel the sea breezes; one could spend hours in this beautiful traditional dining room.



Here’s an exciting new look for  a Chinese lantern: emerald green. Just pure whimsy! by Charles Edwards.


The ever popular aqua is paired with orange for lots of energy in this contemporary sun room. Fabrics by Sunbrella are great for outdoor rooms and indoor ones as well. Great wearing and easy clean up.


Who is more on trend than Jonathan Adler? Unexpected combinations of color and patterns create excitement and fun.  Deep saphire blue sofa combined with softer blue chairs  look great on the black and white rug. Note the touches of brass for a change up in metals.

Letitia Little, Allied ASID, CID is an award wining interior designer in the Minneapolis, MN. Visit www.letitialittle.com.


Unusual Textures

Horse blankets,  flat weave carpets, well worn leather, native artifacts, reclaimed wood and  natural fibers provide inspiration for the ethnic influence in interior design. This genre has been around for a long time but  is enjoying a resurgence right now because of our desire for  unique, handmade  items that add texture  and interest to our homes.  Let’s take a look at some new “old” elements for traditional and contemporary interiors.artisan fab. - Copy

The new Nomad Chic Collection by Kravet showcases upholstery fabrics in ethnic patterns and colors inspired by nomadic cultures of the Far East.  These luxurious textures offer warmth and richness to any interior style.

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These handsome wood blinds set off the worn leather chairs and washed old wood table with its unique artifacts. By Hartmann  and Forbes.

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The marvelous texture of this “snakeskin” wallpaper combined with the horsehair bench is perfect for the new lodge look. Luxe Lodge wallpapers from Schumacher.

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Love this reclaimed wood mosaic from Ansum and Ash made of 79% recycled material from timbers, wine barrels, old beams and sunken ships. What  could be more textural than this.

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These tactile fibers beg to be touched. Sustainable fibers are woven into woven shades by Hartmann and Forbes.

Letitia Little Allied ASID, CID is an award wining interior designer in the Minneapolis, MN. for more info www.letitialittle.com.

DESIGN ELEMENTS- Upholstered beds

One of my favorite furniture categories is upholstered beds. They just say Luxury and Comfort. The bed is the focal point of the bedroom and an upholstered one is an opportunity to create a custom design statement. If you have a smaller bedroom you can use just the headboard and not compromise the interior design of the room.  Here are just a few examples that caught my eye.

 The “Chamber” bed by Hickory Chair has handsome contemporary senseabilities and makes a real design statement in this master bedroom.

Both the tufted headboard and footboard  curve inward slightly on this bed to create a cozy nest. The wood trim gives it a distinctive transitional feel. Talk about feeling pampered! by Century

This tailored bed is unusual with its softly rolled armchair headboard.  Heavenly! Great place to read your favorite novel on Sunday morning. by Hickory Chair. 

This magnificant bed with curvilinear upholstered headboard is the height of elegance and tradition. Now this bed feels like royalty.

“Candler” upholstered bed can be trimmed in grosgrain ribbon for an interesting twist to traditional styling. by Hickory Chair

  This wing back styled bed is handsomely tailored in Ultrasuede for a sleek, classic, contemporary look. By Kravet

Letitia Little is a licensed, award winning interior designer in Minneapolis, MN. For more info visit www.letitialittle.com.


                                                     GLAMOROUS GRAY, A CASUAL CLASSIC

Sophisticated, classic Gray. It’s a versatile and flattering color; looks good in formal interiors as well as casual ones. Gray is the new neutral and complements many different colors. Shown here with refreshing spring green.

This contemporary grouping of the dark geometric console, simple glass lamps with gray shades and minimalistic gray artwork, wouldn’t be quite as exciting without the subtle touches of green.

Spring green linen adds a touch of whimsy to the zinc velveteen, grey silk plaid and polyester floral print fabrics from Kravet and Duralee.

Handsome Tuxedo sofa with tufted back from Duralee Furniture looks smart paired with the white lacquered console from Century. The transitional styling fits into contemporary or transitional interiors.

This drum chandelier all in white, from Crystorama, is the newest look in chandeliers for casual classic dining rooms. Cover this triangle backed occasional chair from Duralee in the lime green linen and listen to it sing.

Love these silver gray mint julep cups with the artichokes added for fun! Put them on the white console table for a real pop of color.

For information on how to work with an interior designer click on  the Q & A tab above or visit my website at www.letitialittle.com


                                                        GLAMOROUS GRAY,  A CLASSIC

 When you first think of the color GRAY, gloomy winter days, dark storm clouds or foggy mornings might come to mind. But think again. In the world of interior design a Gray color scheme is sophisticated and elegant. Gray is the new neutral. Combined with almost any color it can be a backdrop or the main attraction. Pair it with silver for shimmer and glitz. Add a touch of white for crispness and a bit of glass for lightness. Be sure to add lots of texture for contrast and interest.

This classic channel backed “wing chair” looks handsome in gray wool flannel and silver nail heads. The dark wood furniture provides the perfect contrast. Very menswear. By Century

 Textures show up well in Gray because its strong yet flattering. Along with color, fabric is a main element in interior design and these elegant examples would add style and class to any interior. The silk damask, woven metallic, smooth vinyl, geometric white sheer, silver organza circles and rhinestone studded white silk are all so yummy! Fabrics by Duralee, Highland Court, Kravet.

I love this simple little drop leaf secretary desk in dark mahogany with its white interior. A great transitional piece, beautifully complemented by gray metallic wallpaper.

Looks great with this wool area rug by Davis and Davis. Can be custom sized and colored.

                                    Fabulous wavy striped and rippled silk in “Nickel” from Highland Court.

This amazing antiqued mirror drawer chest with silver leaf accents, by Century, adds a new dimension to gray!

I fell in love with these paper gardenias!   And they look fabulous in this antique silver urn.  Mat white is a new look in accessories. Watch for it.

Gray is timeless and versatile. I have pulled together formal, traditional design elements for this blog. Next time I’ll do casual, contemporary.

Letitia Little is a licensed,award winning interior desiger in Minneapolis, MN. Visit www.letitialittle.com for more info.

SPACES Magazine Screen Porch Article



Wicker isn’t the only option for porches. Letitia Little, a certified interior designer, turned her client’s screen porch into a contemporary oasis that is a little bit Zen — and a lot easy to clean.

“We wanted it to feel like you could use the furniture inside, too, with its clean, contemporary lines,” Little says. She also chose materials that can stand up to the elements — as well as the teenagers and dogs of the homeowner.

The home was built in 1925 but was gutted inside and has a contemporary style now, Little says. She wanted the porch to fit in.

“It’s a softer contemporary styling, with the browns and tans and oranges and earth tones of the rest of the home and a little bit of an Asian feel.”

The Lake Harriet house, which was the 2008 American Society of Interior Designers Showcase Home, has many grand elements, but the relatively modest, approximately 12×12 porch won a people’s choice award for its comfortable ambience.

“I kept getting people saying, ‘Oh, I could live here. I could sit in this room all day long — all I need is a cocktail and I’d be happy,’ or ‘I could see myself sitting here with an iced tea and a book all afternoon,’” Little says.

But when tour-goers saw how the screened room was furnished — a couch and chairs covered in rich-looking fabric, an elegant area rug, a ceiling fan and gauzy curtains— they were confused.

“People would say, ‘Oh, my gosh, it’s just screens. Are these fabrics going to be all right? Do you have to keep bringing them in and out?’ ” says Little. “I said,‘Nope, it’s carefree material.’ ”

The cushions of the teak loveseat and armchairs, as well as the curtains, aren’t typical patio furniture selections.

“The fabrics are all acrylics, which are fade-resistant and water-resistant,” Little says. “Acrylics are relatively new in the design business, and now they come in really fun, interesting fabric patterns and colors. They don’t look like something you’d choose for a piece of furniture that you can put out on the patio, but you can.”

Durable materials make up the other pieces in the room, too. “The cocktail table and end tables are made out of vinyl-wrapped aluminum. It doesn’t matter if it gets wet,” Little says.

The rug can also withstand the elements. “It’s a faux jute rug that is made of polypropylene and can be hosed off,” she says.

Even the ceiling fan could take on Mother Nature.

“You can’t just put any electric thing out there — it has to be approved for outdoor use. The woven wicker fan is damp rated,” Little says. The pieces were tested plenty during the five-week tour. “There were some pretty good storms during that period — blowing wind, rain, dirt — and it all cleaned up beautifully,” says Little.

The room wasn’t just about looking good, though. The homeowner planned to use the space frequently during the warm weather months. “I picked out a nice little game teak table with four chairs because the client wanted the opportunity on a summer morning to go out there and read the paper and enjoy his coffee, and he was also a bridge player, and he wanted to play cards out there in the evening,” she says.

In fact, seating was a big challenge in the little room. “It’s not very big, so then trying to get enough seating in there for at least four people to sit down, and then the game table and chairs, that was a trick,” she says.

“What’s nice is with the contemporary styling on the armchairs, they’re open, which feels more airy. It doesn’t look so crowded as it might if it were all wicker. I think the effect is open and spacious.”

She dressed the room with accessories that go well in an “outdoor” room.

“Lanterns are a really fun accessory for outdoors, whether it’s on the patio or a screen porch,” Little says. “I’m just crazy about lanterns, especially hurricane lanterns. And then the wind won’t blow the candles out.”

Other finishing touches include bamboo stalks in metal containers and a variety of potted plants. For Little, it was about including a mix of texture and color.

“You’ve got the faux jute rug, the woven chocolate-brown aluminum tables, the warm teak, the acrylic tan fabrics that look like cotton duck, pillows of heavier texture, the bamboo, the houseplants, the wicker ceiling fan, the beadboard,” she says. “Having a lot of contrasting textures adds to the interest, as well as the colors.”

Of course, the setting helps make the room special, too, which is true of all porches.

“It’s on the main floor, but the walkout level is underneath it, so it feels like you’re sitting out in the trees,” Little says. ✴ Molly Guthrey is a Pioneer Press reporter and frequent contributor to Spaces.


GLAZED FLOOR AND WALL TILES are coated with glass-forming minerals and ceramic stains. Can look like real stone, marble and slate without the expense. Suitable on floors and walls.

PORCELAIN TILE COLORBODY™ is the densest of all tile types and has a color-through body. It has <0.50% water absorption. Porcelain can withstand temperature extremes, heavy foot traffic and may be used indoors and out. Has the look of natural stone and is easy to clean. Needs no sealing.

MOSAIC TILE is usually 3×3” or smaller and is available in glazed ceramic, glazed porcelain, unglazed ColorBody ™ porcelain and glass. Provides the use of  two or more colors in a tile design.

NATURAL STONE is beautiful , durable and enduring. Stone naturally lacks uniformity and contains wide variations in shade. These aspects enhance it’s natural appeal.


Field Tile makes up the bulk of a tile application. Generally offered in neutral colors.

Accent Tile provides a color accent to Field tile. Comes in bright , vivid colors.

Decorative Tile is coordinated with field tile featuring colors and relief.

Trim Tile matches field tile and comes in special shapes for special purposes ie: corners, floor and wall transitions.

Letitia Little is a licensed, award winning interior designer in Minneapolis, MN. Visit www.letitialittle.com for more info.

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