Finding your special place!

Finding your special place!
European Weathered Styles from Rustic Roots – Leland, MI.  

Growing up in Australia is a different experience to most countries.  Young people typically attend college where their family resides,  then mostly likely, travel aboard before settling down.

There isn’t a huge emphasis of college sport like here in the USA. However, we do support our neighborhood or suburban teams.  I grew up supporting the Port Adelaide Football Club. “Never Tear US Apart” is the song we use from the aussie band INXS as the game’s commencement song. Cool right?

European Weathered Styles from Rustic Roots – Leland, MI.

Hanging out at my neighborhood was something Australians tend to do.  Local businesses became a social destination for most families and friends.  The Grange Hotel on the esplanade (pub) was a main attraction for the locals to socialize but thankfully, I wasn’t into beer as a teenager.

There was a particular book store in my neighborhood that focused on motivational, history, and alternative therapy books.  I remember the atmosphere to be soothing and uplifting.  In fact, this book store had an impacted on my decision to study applied science and to further educate myself in aromatherapy and massage therapy.

What I learned from Australia is the importance of  a neighborhood.  How you react and support local sports teams and business can create a healthy and more vibrant atmosphere. This reaction will then affect your living space and the objects you add to your interiors.

European Weathered Styles from Rustic Roots – Leland, MI.
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Leland, Michigan

My family and I are newcomers to Northern Michigan so we try to spend our weekends exploring the neighborhoods.

So far, discovering Traverse City and the surrounding counties are fascinating and very enjoyable.  The Great Lakes in Northern Michigan has the most beautiful landscape and towns.  Most towns are on the lakes so the scenic views are spectacular and most food service are outstanding.

Leland, Michigan

There is a town called Leland in Leelanau County which is only a 30-minute drive from Traverse City.  I keep coming back to Leland because this town is so special.  One of the most beautiful sections of the Lake Michigan is found in Leelanau County.

Leland takes you back in history…especially when you arrive in Fishtown. Rustic shanties that are now home to various shops have stood the test of time and give you a feel on how life was 100 years ago in the commercial fishing business. Leland is where you can catch a ferry to the Manitou Islands.

My Neighborhood Trends for Leland –

Rustic Roots

Cristin at Rustic Roots has exceptional style and taste.  Rustic Roots is primarily a women’s fashion store but has a boutique section of home wear and furniture.  Products range from table linens, throws, blankets, art, reproduction antiques, and accessories.  She does the” European Weathered” look very well.  Rustic Roots closes during winter, but you can visit one last time during Thanksgiving weekend.  (231)256-0054

European Weathered Styles from Rustic Roots – Leland, MI.

Benjamin Maier Ceramics

Benjamin is a true talent in contemporary pottery and ceramic art.  His pottery techniques and choices of colors perfectly represents Leland’s environment.  The price range is very reasonable for quality pottery and artwork.

Benjamin Maier Ceramics – Leland, MI.

Sporck Tileart

Sporck Tileart is in one of the Shanties of Fishtown.  This ceramic tile art store is a gem!  Leif is a genuine artist that can create outdoor scenes that captures the great lakes.  I especially like his selections of the Norwegian Fish Net Floats, which I want to convert them into light fixture pendants.  Close during winter but definitely a source you can use for restaurant or residential interiors.

Sporck Tileart, Leland, Michigan

Leelanau Books

This book store is special and reminds me of how it felt when I visited the book store in my neighborhood in Adelaide.  The interior design of the store is fresh and comforting and the service has always been pleasant.  Walking into this store with my children brings positive energy into our day. It’s the balance of good interiors, classical background music, good lighting, and kind people. Its open for business all year round and organizes children’s activities during the summer evenings while the parents have dinner for two in the neighborhood!

Building memories with my little girl at Leelanau books, Leland, MI.
Leelanau books, Leland, MI.

It’s important that no matter where you are to find your special place other than your home.  Escape from your world and enter someone else’s.  Finding your special neighborhood can be rejuvenating and to build memories that add meaning to your personal space.  AA

Driving to Leland is absolutely gorgeous. I am also loving this song  from Childish Gambino that I have been playing while in the car to Leland. The kids dig it too!

Designer Turns New House’s Space into a Home for His Family

Designer Turns New House’s Space into a Home for His Family


Picking up and moving your family halfway across the country is never easy.

Trying to make a new house feel like its home is even harder.

Traverse City Designer Angelo Adamo, with Angelo Adamo Design, had to do that a few months ago.  Now he’s taking us back inside his new house to give us some background on his eye on design.

Most often when new homes are built, they have an open kitchen area that extends to the living area,” Adamo says.

That open floorplan is definitely a selling point, but can also provide specific challenges for new homeowners.

“There are ways of separating the living area to the eating area, because sometimes it’s hard to do that in an awkward space if it’s a rectangle layout,” he says.

Adamo had that issue with his new home’s space, but he knew how to make the most of it.

“It’s three spaces in one, and we didn’t want to lose a table that we cherish where we eat all the time, so I decided that we added a sectional that has beautiful linear lines that creates sort of an angle between one room and another,” Adamo says. “And then a couple of things like a bench and a table, instead of chairs, and the bench can go against the wall so it doesn’t provide a corridor. And then adding mirrors to the wall to reflect lighting and adding ambient lighting so when it gets a little darker, you have table lamps and light fixtures to enhance the light appeal.”

Another thing he had to keep in mind was the existing decor of the room.

“I went with neutral fabrics, it’s the detail for the architecture, the mill-work of the fireplace and the Brazilian cherry of the flooring, it’s very dark, so I went very neutral with the fabrics so the accent colors I got was through the pillows, and the wicker baskets, and the throws and the plants that I added. It all came together.”


When determining paint colors and lighting, Angelo says realize seasons and time of day make a difference.

“Go a couple of different times of the day and see how much natural light you get, because that will help you evaluate what you need to use for colors, whether you need to repaint a certain color whether you need to tone it down a little bit,” he says. “I added a chandelier in the living room to add a bit more substance to the height of the room.”

It was a chandelier that he moved from the dining room, and as a whole, he was able to make this house work with furniture and pieces the family already had.

“Take stock of your inventory so whatever you have that you want to bring with you, measure it, take photos of it,” he says. “Does it need to be reupholstered does it need a throw pillow on there? Does it need something to work in this new environment, and if it doesn’t, don’t hold on to it even if it has a sentimental value. Either create a space for it, or don’t bring it.”


From the beautiful outdoor spaces to the cozy living room and more formal dining room, Angelo had a vision, followed through and created a home that quickly made Northern Michigan home for his family.

“Putting your personal touch into, it is just the little things, it’s that processes, it’s the organizing of these processes that make a difference,” Adamo says.



Do you remember a song that had a profound influence in your life?  A song that would stick with you and have a huge impact on your taste of art, music, and fashion.  There was a song that changed my life when I was 8 years old.

This song was playing in the car while my parents drove me to school, but I wasn’t sure who the artist was. Then one night, this song appeared in the background of my dream. This dream was so intense that I still remember the feeling when I woke up with such adrenaline and visions.  I had asked my cousin and we tried to puzzle who this was.  I didn’t have a record player at that time in the early 80’s, so I had to wait to hear it again on radio.

Then the day came.  It was “In The Air Tonight”, by Phil Collins.

Model 2

When I was younger in Chicago during a modeling shoot for Jil Sander-  I was listening to George Michael during 1996-1998 

Instantly, I became a PC and Genesis junkie.  As a teenager, I would visualize the future while running down Grange and Henley Beach in my home town (South Australia) with my Sony Walkman.  Now, it’s the flashback of memories that helps me remember the times growing up in Australia.  This was when I was building direction, a picture of my next phase, a snapshot of who I want to be as a man.

Music can be inspiring and have an influence on our lives like the music of Phil Collins did for me.  I am living in the USA as a Design Mentor because of my abilities to remember elements that effects our emotions.  For me, design is more than an object or a thing. Design to Create Memories is my philosophy that I have established in the USA.  It’s the ability to connect to our senses to create an interior that relates to your story or perception. It’s design that goes beyond the things themselves, that looks at the individual, the needs of a changing world searching for new signals, as well as at beauty and emotion in the everyday things.

Asking your client if music had an affect in their lives can trigger memories of the past.  This can lead towards the types of colors, scents, textures, objects that have relevance during the programming phase of design.

I still enjoy listening to Genesis and it continues to remind me of my home in Adelaide. I can remember the ocean breeze, the pasta sauce cooking in mum’s kitchen, the sound of a cricket game playing on TV, and the music of Phil Collins on my CD player. It’s just another day in paradise for me!

Ange’s Top 11 Phil Collins/Genesis Songs

1.In the Air Tonight (PC)

2. You Might Recall, (Genesis)

3. Evidence of Autumn (Genesis)

4. Blood on the Rooftops (Genesis)

5. One More Night (PC)

6. If Leaving Me Is Easy (PC)

7. Follow You, Follow Me (Genesis)

8. I Don’t Care Anymore (PC)

9. No Reply At All (Genesis)

10. I am Not Moving (PC)

11. Its Gonna Get Better (Genesis)

Interior Designer Angelo Adamo Displays the Latest Trends in Outdoor Furniture

Interior Designer Angelo Adamo Displays the Latest Trends in Outdoor Furniture

Sunbrella Fabric Selections 2018 1…/interior-designer-angelo-adamo-displays-the-latest-trends-in-outdoor-furniture

If you’re dreaming about summer nights on the deck, you can plan ahead with Interior Designer Angelo Adamo.

Our favorite Italian-Australian designer is back to share all the trends for outdoor furniture after returning from a show in Chicago. Watch the video above for more information.

For more from Angelo Adamo, visit his blog at, or Angelo Adamo Design’s official webpage here.


The Importance of Outdoor Living – Casual Market, 2018 Chicago, IL.

The Importance of Outdoor Living – Casual Market, 2018 Chicago, IL.

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Outdoor furniture has come a long way since I was a young lad in Australia.  I remember when my backside would sink into the striped sling seat of the folding chair and the steel frame would get too hot to pick up because of the brutal Aussie sun.  I still had a wonderful time playing cricket with family, but lounging wasn’t really a comfortable option. I would sometimes eat standing up!

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(above) new slat chairs from the market  (left) Aussie lawn chair that I grew up with 

The times have changed and so do our habits. With the amount of time we spend looking at devices, we deviate from the importance of nature and the environment that effects our well-being.  We miss the connection that the outdoor provides to our sense of smell, sight, sound, and touch.

CAVANNI DESIGN pillows – RIZZY HOME outdoor rug

As a principle designer, I encourage my clients to include an outdoor living plan with your interior finish schedule.  With the new trends in outdoor products, the living room can now extend to the outside without the concerns of maintenance, durability, and style.

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SUNBRELLA’S outdoor fabric collection –  Casual Market 2018, Chicago, IL.

I had the fortune to attend the Casual Market 2018 at the Merchandise Market in Chicago to do a trend report for Michigan’s News 9&10 segment “The Four”.   I was truly impressed by the quality of materials and fabrics that have become fashionable for outdoor living furniture.  Materials like soft marine rope, high density plastic resin, powder coated aluminum frames, recycled plastic fibers, high pressure laminate, braided resin, and galvanized steel, acrylic and polyester fabrics,  have changed the way we dine and lounge outside.  Manufactures have identified that the performance of outdoor products must be at a high quality, durable, low maintenance, and visually appealing.

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Our living rooms have extended outdoors due to the range of furniture that are available.  As part of the design process during renovating or building a new construction, it is important to include the design of the outdoor living environment into your interior design plans as well.  The finish and material selections for the outdoor living space will influence the interior because the outdoor seating has now become a permanent fixture to the floor plan. There is now a wide range of fabric and finish selections to choose from to coincide with the interior design.

(left) POLYWOOD (right) CANE-LINE

I have selected four furniture manufactures from the Casual Market that had exceptional styles, color and material ranges, and collaborative pieces that would blend with the current interior trends from the High Point and Las Vegas Furniture Markets.


A family operated manufacture in Syracuse, Indiana. Their products are trust worthy, durable, and reliable that can withstand all four seasons.  Their lumber is made from HDPR (high density plastic resin) which appears as natural timber.  UV inhibitors and stabilizers protect their lumber from harmful environmental degradation and, along with light stable pigments, run continuously throughout the material.  Polywood has an outstanding selection of the traditional Adirondack chairs, rocking chairs, swings, deep seating, and contemporary sectionals.  Polywood can be used for residential and commercial outdoors.



I was mesmerized by the European styles in the products from Cavanni Design.  Outstanding use of materials and fabrics that can also be used for indoors. Italian designed but manufactured in Ecuador, the beautifully created seating is remarkably comfortable and gorgeous to look at.  Cavanni Design brings a new level of style to outdoor living.



Cane-Line, a company from Denmark, manufacture products that are a lifestyle statement.  They accomplish this through the modern style, quality and–most importantly–comfort of their outdoor (and indoor) furniture. A product line called Moments is setting new standards for multi flexible design with its Scandinavian and elegant, transparent and minimalist design. It is produced with Cane-line Soft Rope and SoftTouch QuickDry cushions.  Cane-line takes the worry out of outdoor furniture with a maintenance-free approach, using quick dry foam for upholstered pieces, all-weather Cane-line fiber wicker, and a coated polyester sling material in their chairs, dining sets, footstools, and more.   The selection of colors is inspired through nature and the environment we live in.



I had always thought that there was a lack of elegant lighting to add to an outdoor vignette.  It became obvious that Les Jardins has improved this category and the direction for functional and multi purposeful outdoor solar powered light fixtures. Designed in France and assembled in Spain/Indonesia, their light box is removable and is designed to fit all canopies in their product line.  Great range of designs and colors make Les Jardins solar powered light fixtures a head of the rest!


Honorable Mentions


You can’t get better hammocks than La Siesta hammocks. Attention to detail is noticeable and their selections of colors and patterns are very good.  Headquartered in Germany, I recommend a La Siesta hammock under your tree.



I am proud to say that this North Carolina fabric manufacture is the trendsetter in outdoor fabrics.  Gone are the days where you only had a few solid colors and stripes to choose from.  It is apparent that Sunbrella’s creative team impacts the trends of most outdoor furniture manufactures.

Sunbrella Fabric Selections 2018 2



The selections of outdoor rugs have improved and Rizzy Home has a variety of unique patterns and colors that will complement the new furniture trends from the Casual Market.  Custom sizes are available.

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If you have questions regarding outdoor product and material trends, please contact Angelo at .