Bulletin Board: Holiday Style

Snow-white accessories, gift ideas for honey-lovers, a refreshing update, setting a pretty table, and more



The Schneiders — and their beloved dog, Finnegan Tigertail — enjoy the holidays in this cozy library in their Clarkston home. Create a similar look with the white accessories shown inside this section.

Change of Space

Starting a new chapter in this homeowner’s life required updating her home


This Beverly Hills family room and kitchen feature inviting new looks.

WHEN LINDA AYRES of Beverly Hills contacted Petrella Designs a few years back, her intent was to make just a few simple changes to the living and dining rooms in her 1963 Colonial-style home. Design firm owner Lisa Petrella, based in Troy, asked her assistant, Kourtney Shammo, to take the reins, sensing it would be a perfect fit between homeowner and designer.

“My grief therapist suggested I do some painting — use some new colors in my home,” recalls Ayres, whose husband had recently passed away. Five months later, Ayres embraced the idea. “Your environment — what you see and interact with every day — is one of the most important influences you have,” says Ayres, a former teacher and principal. “My home needed (to be) refreshed.” After updating the living room and dining room with a few key pieces and new paint colors, the designer and homeowner turned their attention to the kitchen, which was mostly pink and white, and the family room. “This space,” Ayres says, “is the hub of my home.” The women decided to open up the area by taking down a wall that separated the two rooms. “That made it all feel so much larger,” Shammo recalls. Then the magic began. New drapery and a kitchen window shade, a grayblue paint color (Silent Night by Benjamin Moore), an old teak table that underwent a pretty paint face-lift, an inviting sofa with polished brass nailheads, and a large piece of art (by Ayres’ daughter) round out the spaces. “Linda had a lot of cookbooks and wanted shelves to display some items, so we had that feature built into the island in a modern and contemporary way,” Shammo says.

Pendant lighting above the island in turquoise, gold, and sienna-orange is as colorful as the bluebirds and cedar waxwings that chirp outside the window.

Of note are custom pillows, whose fabric features an abstract bird motif, as well as ottomans outfitted with a feather pattern. “(My husband and I) always liked to watch birds, and I still do,” Ayres says, adding, “even more so now, from this nice spot.” She moved some of her bird feeders to an area outside her kitchen window, so she can see them when she’s cooking. Now that she’s able to entertain family, friends, and bridge players in a cozy, refreshing environment, Ayres says she loves her updates. “Kourtney had it all ready right after the makeover, with the lighting just so and everything looking beautiful. I came home and was so thrilled, I didn’t know where to look! Everything was just so beautiful.” — By Megan Swoyer

Interior designer, Kourtney Shammo, Petrella Designs; kitchen designer, Bella Cucina Kitchens; hardware, Water Street brass, Russell Hardware; countertops, Caesarstone quartz; backsplash, ceramic tile, Virginia Tile; table, client’s own, refinished by Designer Furniture Services; fretwork chairs, Hickory Chair; drapery, Great Plains, Far and Away; sofa, Hickory Chair, 9th Street, fabric, Pindler Richardson, gray; sofa pillows, Kravet Groundworks – Bayou Casino – Natural Gold, Samuel and Sons welt cord; ottomans, Hickory Chair, Charles Hassock, fabric, Jim Thomson Royal Ermine; modern wing chair – Lee industries, fabric, Pindler Albright – Lagoon; side table, Hickory Chair, Rye round side table–two-tone finishes; rug, Stark Carpet Adonica – Mediterranean; side table, Global Views; black lamp, Visual Comfort. Painting of woman, by the homeowner’s daughter, Bethany Britz, bethanybritz.com.

Dinner Bell

With the party season upon us, some of the subjects featured in this issue reveal their favorite tableware | By Megan Swoyer




























A. Hooker Furniture dining room Tynecastle ladderback arm chair, $344, Gorman’s, Troy,  Shelby Township, Novi
B. Jaguar Jungle plate by Lynn Chase, $349.95/place setting, Replacements, LTD., replacements.com
C. Martha Stewart holiday dinnerware collection, created for Macy’s, $13-$67, Macy’s, macys.com
D. Lenox French perle groove white 12-piece dinnerware set, created for Macy’s, $276/set, Macy’s, macys.com
E. Place card holders, $11.95/six, Crate & Barrel, Troy
F. Hooker Furniture dining room Tynecastle rectangle leg dining table with two 18-inch leaves, $1,384, Gorman’s, Troy, Shelby Township, Novi
G. Victorian silver-plated domed game bird platter, $595, Judy Frankel Antiques, Troy
H. Constellation napkin ring in red, $28, Kim Seybert, kimseybert.com


Red ilex berries. They’re on a branch and they work well in minimalist and contemporary tabletop designs as well as in more intricate, traditional centerpiece styles.


Our third-generation china, called American Sweetheart. It’s Depression-era china that enhances the table settings.


(Some type of) place cards. They’re an elegant and easy way to bring in your table theme, and to potentially give a small gift at the same time. I sometimes place a tiny pot of greenery on each plate, with the guest’s name incorporated.


My mother’s childhood dining table (Grand Rapids’ Berkey & Gay Furniture, 1920). To think of my extended family around the table, many of whom have passed, warms my heart.


My parents’ white Noritake wedding china or my grandmother’s vintage water pitcher. They add something special that simply can’t be found in something new.


Lynn Chase’s Jaguar Jungle china. The theme isn’t holiday, but the colors allow me to flower the table seasonally.


Bee Present

Concerned about pollinators becoming extinct, a teacher launches Bees in the D

Brian Peterson-Roest oversees these beehives on Cobo Center’s rooftop.


BRIAN PETERSON-ROEST is a busy guy. During the day, he’s a fifth-grade teacher for Rochester Community Schools. Nights and weekends, he’s a bee activist. Peterson-Roest was stung with the idea after visiting Battery Park in New York City, where urban beekeepers tend to hives. He brought the idea home and founded Bees in the D in 2016; since then, he’s placed beehives in community gardens and on rooftops across Detroit.

Q: Why bees?
 As a teacher, I was chosen to go to Beaver Island (Michigan) to take a class about beekeeping. I guess you could say I “caught the bug.” Later, I helped manage hives at Oakland University, and eventually got my own. The bees were there for me when I was going through a rough time; now I’m giving back to the bees.

Q: Why did you start Bees in the D?
A: After seeing beehives in Battery Park, I thought, Why not Detroit? The first year I had six hives, the second it was 29, and this past year it was 102.

Q: What are common misconceptions about bees?
A: People visit cider mills, where yellow jackets buzz around, and they think bees are horrible. Actually, those are (a type of) wasp. I want to educate people.

Q: Why are honeybees so important?
A: They’re instrumental for pollinating the plants we eat, but they’re important for other foods, too, like meat, because they pollinate grains and grasses that animals eat. If we don’t act now, they’ll be on the brink of extinction, and that will cause global devastation.

Q: Why are they at risk?
A: We’re a global society, and invasive species, parasites, and pests have weakened the bee population. Humans have also had an impact, due to (the chemicals we use when) we spray our lawns.

Q: What can we do to help the cause?
A: Plant wildflowers; they’re food for pollinators. Water is important to bees, too; install a birdbath or a water feature in your yard. And avoid insecticides and pesticides. You’ll be amazed at the difference bees will make in your garden.

Q: How can people help you?
A: We’re building a group of volunteers to tend our hives or help at events. You can attend our classes, or support us by purchasing T-shirts, lip balm, or honey or by making a donation. For more information: beesinthed.com — By Stephanie Vozza


All Abuzz

Make a beeline to these shops for honey-and bee-themed products â€‹| Product Styling By Tanya Zager Chisholm

Product Styling By Tanya Zager Chisholm

A. Bee’s Wrap sandwich wrap, $11.99, Leon & Lulu, Clawson
B. Joanna Buchanan bee cocktail picks, $78/six, Neiman Marcus, Troy
C. Mudpie Circa honey pot set, $22.50, Little Green Apple, Troy
D. La Rochere French bee tumbler, $60/six, Sur La Table, surlatable.com
E. Queen Bee Pillow, $85, MacKenzie-Childs, mackenzie-childs.com

The Organized Home

New book makes New Year’s decluttering resolutions easy to carry out

THE REAL SIMPLE METHOD to Organizing Every Room (Oxmoor House, $26.99) is a practical and inspiring handbook with clear checklists, practical tips, and gorgeous photographs to help you declutter one room at a time. Each chapter explains the items you need (and the ones you don’t) for setting up a well-organized home, and provides tips, strategies, and storage solutions. One of our favorite concepts? That nice-looking chair in your master bedroom isn’t a clothes rack. Consider it as — and treat it like — a comfy place to sip coffee in the morning! The book is available at Target stores, Barnes & Noble, and through amazon.com.

Let it Snow

ONE OF THE BEST WAYS to cast that special holiday glow in your home is with a focus on a monochromatic color scheme and unique textures. A truly captivating palette during the holiday season is the many shades of snow. Here, a flurry of products gets us in the spirit!


A. AFX ash mini pendant, $238, Ferguson, Troy, Ann Arbor
B. Natural sheepskin pelt, $149, RH, Troy
C. Everest leather chair in Wellington natural, $4,299, Arhaus, Troy, Ann Arbor
D. Martha Stewart Collection 50 x 60 marled basketweave faux-fur pom pom throw, $140, Macy’s, macys.com
E. Winter sunset pillow, $88–$128, Anthropologie, Troy, Birmingham, Ann Arbor
F. Eva round vase, $99, Arhaus, Troy, Ann Arbor

Come Together

City Modern blends a little old with a lot of new

SOMETHING OLD AND SOMETHING new come together in City Modern, a new Bedrock development in Detroit’s iconic Brush Park neighborhood. Four historic mansions anchor the development, and they’re being restored to create seven living spaces. New carriage homes, townhomes, and apartments are part of the project, which will provide about 400 residential units. The goal was to design a community that complements the existing architecture and looks as though it evolved organically over time, says Melissa Dittmer, chief design officer. Here, she shares a behind-the-scenes “tour” of this new mixed-use development.

Q: What was the vision behind City Modern?
A: We wanted to create a community where residents can age in place. A future resident could grow up in a carriage home, move into an apartment, and later purchase their own townhome. We also intentionally focused on incorporating affordable housing, creating a mixed-income community that offers a multitude of amenities.

Q: What inspired the colors, materials, and finishes?
A: We started with extensive historic research. During the first phase, we researched historic images, construction methodologies, and period-appropriate colors. To substantiate our research, we met with representatives from Detroit’s Historic District Commission. We also reviewed community-authored historic guidelines and suggested color palettes. Integral to our architecture design process was significant community engagement, which included over 60 community meetings in partnership with the Brush Park Community Development Corp.

Q: Why is Brush Park the right location for this project?
A: Brush Park is centrally located between Detroit’s Central Business District and the Midtown community. Residents are within walking and biking distance from just about everything the city has to offer — sports arenas, cultural amenities, employment opportunities, recreation on the riverfront, retail, and restaurants. Despite its prime location, Brush Park has experienced widespread vacancy for the better part of the last century; City Modern will begin to transition the neighborhood toward higher-density urban living.

Q: What amenities will be available?
A: The retail development will be a very important part of the project as we move forward. When the Brush Park neighborhood was in its prime, the streets were lined with single-family homes, offering a small amount of retail for residents. Our City Modern vision includes ground floor, corner retail that will offer neighborhood services for the entire neighborhood — like dry cleaners, pet groomers, a shoe repair shop, and a coffee shop. 318 Edmund Place, Detroit, citymoderndetroit.com — By Stephanie Vozza

POSITIVE VENTING: A Harris Poll survey conducted by Erie Insurance (erieinsurance.com) reports dryer fires cause 15,500 home structure fires, 29 deaths, 400 injuries, and $192 million in direct property loss each year. They suggest opting for a straight, metal (instead of foil or plastic) dryer duct.

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PEWABIC EXPANDS: Pewabic Pottery (pewabic.org) in Detroit recently unveiled a new Tile Studio, the first physical expansion of the historic production space since 1912. The 2,500-square-foot addition was designed by inFORM studio and built by Sachse Construction, and showcases beautiful new iridescent Pewabic tiles.

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MATERIAL WORLD: IPatty Weir, longtime employee — and, now, owner — of Haberman Fabrics (habermanfabrics.com) is happily ensconced in a new location at 1060 W. Fourteen Mile Rd. in Clawson. She says plush velvets and textured wovens are in for pillows and draperies, “and watercolor florals offer pops of color.”

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NO PLACE LIKE IT: Humble Design (humbledesign.org), the Detroit-born nonprofit that transforms empty houses into well-furnished homes for those transitioning from homelessness, now has a TV show, “Welcome Home.” It airs on Saturday mornings at 9:30 a.m. on The CW Network.

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VISIONS OF SUGARPLUMS: You’ll sleep better knowing your child’s crib, bed, or mattress from Delta Children (deltachildren.com) exceeds, by far, federal and state safety standards and testing requirements. With models that convert to accommodate every stage of growth, you can count on getting years of safe, restful sleep.

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DREAM IT, AND THEY’LL MAKE IT: Scalamandre, maker of textiles, wallcoverings, and furniture, presents Scalamandre By Design, which allows clients to custom-design sofas, chairs, and more, all bench-made in North Carolina. Visit Stark carpet (starkcarpet.com) in Troy for more information. — By Honey Murray

Have news that pertains to the design industry that you’d like to share?
Send a note to: MSwoyer@hour-media.com.