Urban Farmhouse Reveal: The Kitchen

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Hi Everyone. It's been a while since I posted about our Urban Farmhouse project. I finally went out to LA toward the end of last year and finished up the accessorizing and styling and shot the house for my portfolio. Now it's time to share.  First up is the kitchen. I absolutely LOVE how it turned out and am more than a little jealous of my clients' space.  If you recall here is the design plan from way back when. We switched out our satin brass knobs and pulls for chrome down the line, but otherwise it has remaind pretty much the same from the get go.

And here are some shots of the final product including polished chrome custom hardware from my Nest Studio Facets Collection.  I love the bespoke high-end look that the long pulls give and I am totally digging the waterfall edge on the island the two tone cabinets.  And it's especially fun to see when a sketch like the one above translates so well to the actual final product!

Stay tuned next week when I show you the living / dining space!

Whimsical Metallic Nursery

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Hi friends, it's Kate Cabiltes!

I am a sucker for a charming neutral nursery and this beautifully constructed sanctuary featured on Bungalow is a true stunner. Decked out in neutrals and pops of metallics, this whimsical gender neutral spot is put together with items that can last well beyond infancy. The ever popular peacock mirror looks good in entryways and bedrooms alike and I know very few toddler OR adult women who would turn away an elephant side table. The key here is choosing a palette (grey, white and metallic) and piecing together comparable amounts of each in varying shades throughout the room. The result is a soothing balanced oasis for you and your little one to enjoy...

Here's how to get the look in your nursery...

Peacock Mirror via Terra Nova Designs, Inc.
Neon Geometric Mobile via Lavender Kay Design Etsy Shop
Small Floppy Horse via ABC Carpet & Home
Metallic Pouf Ottoman via AllModern
Gray Geometric Area Rug via Wayfair
Comfort Square Arm Glider via Pottery Barn Kids
Ellie Side Table via Serena & Lily

Inspiration Image via Bungalow

- Kate

2017 Business Resolutions by the Numbers

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Time seems to be going faster and faster these days with little ones and definitive markers as they grow, become more independent and achieve new milestones.  It seems like just a few months ago that we moved into our house and I was writing my business resolutions post for 2016.  But here we are and it's actually a year later.

Let's see how we did in 2016.  My goals for the year were to launch two new lines of hardware, focus on marketing and PR, up my social media presence, and increase my sales by 50%.  Well, I think I actually came close to hitting all of those goals.  I launched one new line - the Reveal Series this year. I came close to launching two. The new stepped series took a little longer to develop and will be coming out in about a month!  I did focus a lot on marketing and PR as well. I hired a publicist and really got out there - meeting folks at trade shows, getting to know designers and even winning an industry award. I learned a lot about my product and myself in the process and have a much clearer vision of my company as a result.  I still have a ways to go on social media (doesn't everyone), but I created a Nest Studio Instagram account in March and to-date (not even a year later) have over 1800 followers.  As far as growth, I actually grew the company 59% this year and exceeded my 50% growth goal. Yeehaw!  I also achieved some other milestones that I didn't event set as goals. I hired my third employee making us a team of four moms, and I joined the Accelerator group at EO (Entrepreneur's Organization) which I have already learned so much from

My business resolutions for 2017 are much more numbers oriented and defined (perhaps due to my EO group).  Here they are:

Increase my revenue by 59%.  This may appear to be random number, but a 59% growth rate puts us at 10x our revenue in just 5 years. That is huge. And I hit that number last year so I don't see why it can't happen this year.  Increasing revenue means increasing sales - duh. And I have to do that by adding showrooms, making my existing showroom orders larger and more frequent, increasing my product offering, and growing awareness of my brand and products among our target market.  Hence the rest of the resolutions below.

Get to 10K Instagram followers by the end of the year.  This means 200 followers per week.  I realize that for some people 10K is not a huge number when it comes to Instagram followers but with the ability of Instagram to really target who I am reaching I feel like that it is both a significant number of people who will then know my product and also a doable number by the end of the year.

Sign on 12 new showrooms.  This means one new showroom per month. We have realized that interior designers are really our bread and butter and while more designers are sourcing and buying online, it's still hard to replace the showroom experience where you can see a lot of products in one place and in person.  Showrooms make up a large percentage of our sales (albeit the margins are lower) and there are certainly gaps in the markets that we have covered. We would like to fill in those gaps and see our product shown more widely around the country and internationally.

Launch 5 new lines.  As I mentioned the deco-inspired Step Series is coming out in a month.  Next up is our super-versatile Mod Series (which I can't wait to use in my own kitchen).  I'm also super excited to launch a ceramic hardware series in collaboration with Jonathan Castro Designs. After that our Angled Series (which will pair nicely with our Facets and Classic), and our Organic Series.  We also have a couple of other items we are working on which may or may not happen this year: another one-off piece similar to our Ram's Head pull but this time a peacock, and collaborations with a wood artist and jewelry designer.  Lots of things going - which is good given how long prototyping and production takes.

Get into published in 3 shelter magazines.  This is the PR side of our business. Sadly, 2016 didn't see much in the way of publications (despite the publicist), but I'm hopeful that with new editorial contacts, and lots of new launches we will get some great press coverage in 2017.

That's about it.  I have some other projects I'm working on (like applying for and hopefully winning the Tory Burch Foundation Grant).  What do you have in the works business wise for 2017?  It's going to be an exciting year!

Stylin' Mamma: Sneakerhead

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

I used to walk miles in my three-inch heels.  Literally.  My second year out of college, my commute to work was a two-mile walk, and back in those days I wouldn't dream of messing up my look with tennis shoes, so I just walked in the heels I was going to wear that day.  

Up to 4 miles.  Every weekday.  In heels.

At some point I realized I was an idiot because: a) foot and back injuries, b) damage to my shoes (!), c) walking slow.  So I got some pink Adidas and rocked those for a few years.  Commute-only shoes, to be clear. 

Then I had kids and got wise to the sneaker game.  I am lucky that fashion kept up, too, and people like Phoebe Philo and Karlie Kloss started making sneakers cool again.  Now, my sneaks are my go-to picks on any given day, and my lust-list revolves around cool kicks.  

I don't need to tell you about the Stan Smith obsession sweeping the nation (see: every Instagram post ever).  Instead, for your browsing pleasure, a few more off-the-beaten favorites to take you from workout to work to play (and back again).
Adidas Gazelles (aka, not the Stan Smith)
Nike Blazer (that red shearling lining, though)
Superga Platform (stars!)

Bold Minimalist Dining Room

Monday, January 9, 2017

Happy New Years all, Kate Cabiltes again!

There are so many looks trending in the mid century or minimalist categories nowadays that it's hard to narrow down your scheme. This vignette captured by Brooklyn photographer Nicole Franzen emulates minimalist but bold with its contrasting blacks and whites and several large statement pieces. By focusing on the idea of "less is more" but choosing thoughtful furnishings and accents with unique quality materials, a luxe yet calm look is formed. Rattan or cane chairs look fresh with most any dining table and a light fixture consisting of multiple orbs can really ground a centerpiece. Adding an abstract painting and some fresh leaves can add a kick of brightness to your room.

Here's how to get the look in your dining room...

Satellite 6 Chandelier via Schoolhouse Electric
Neil Waters Bernegger Roots Painting via One Kings Lane
Kelly Lamb Ceramic Serving Bowl via Houzz
Odin Rectangular Extension Table via Design Within Reach
Safavieh Montauk Rug via Plush Rugs
Tayabas Cane Side Chair via CB2
Preserved Palmetto Frond Bunch via Terrain

Inspiration Image via Nicole Franzen

Re-thinking the kitchen

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you had a wonderful holiday season. It was a fun one for us - lots of family, lots of good meals and quality time. But I have to admit that I'm ready to get back to our routine and as with years past, I am so ready to take down the holiday decorations and get our house back to normal.  While spring and outside projects (painting! gardening!) are right around the corner, we still have a couple months of cold to trudge through. Aside from getting quotes on said outside projects, I am also focusing on a few interior projects over the next few months.  My big project is giving our kitchen a face lift.  If you follow me on social media you may have seen photos of my kitchen and thoughts on both cabinet paint color and hardware.  As a bit of a refresher, here is what the kitchen looked like before we moved in.

Here is what it looked like after we painted.

My main objective is to make the kitchen more useable and aesthetically interesting on a tight budget until I can do a larger scale renovation (including opening up the kitchen to the family room) 5-10 years down the line.  I have already added a farmhouse style island table that has made the kitchen way more useable.

Next steps are to paint the cabinets, replace the hardware, lighting and faucet and do a fun stencil on the floors.  Originally my thoughts veered in this direction.

But then I got sort of tired of the idea of white cabinets (which we had in our old house).  I had entertained a dark charcoal grey for the cabinets but realized that it was really competing with the black/brown speckled granite counters (not my favorites). Here is a photo of the test paint color and me testing some hardware options on a cabinet panel.

I then went back to the idea of white but still wasn't too happy with it.  That is when I came upon this concept image from Jenny Komenda.

I love the sage green. It feels modern yet classic. And I think the green counterbalances the red in the granite (sort of like how you use green concealer on a pimple).  I'm hoping it will make the counters appear more black than speckled brown.  I am going to do the uppers in white still and use some new hardware from my collection.  I also found these great barn lights that I think will spread the light out better toward the corners of the kitchen and plan to use a blackened metal finish on the hardware.

Its so funny - I went through so many iterations of kitchen cabinet colors and concepts but none of them feltquite right.  This one feels fresh and in keeping with the house.  It's nice to finally have a cohesive vistion. I can't wait to go paint shopping on Friday and get started on the project next week. Wish me luck!!!