Hamptons Home: Choosing the perfect fire feature for your backyard. The alluring fire pit is desired by just about everyone. A perfect addition to any home.

The allure of fire from either a fireplace or fire pit can consume any outdoor enthusiast endlessly for hours. It’s the idea of knowing that an outdoor fireplace will keep you warm in the colder months/evenings is something that is appealing to some of us, which is why this would be a good edition to any back garden.
The warmth, light, and sound of snap crackle amongst dancing flames can set a romantic mood soothing for conversation via an outdoor fireplace or gangbusters amongst party goers surrounding a fire pit. Both fireplaces and fire pits give off beneficial differences. Choosing the right fire feature for your own use in your own backyard may be an arm wrestle between the male and teenage image of a bonfire versus bonding through the night in front a fireplace with your loved one. Using an informative site such as may even help you decide on which type of fireplace is right for you.

Understanding these differences will help develop the theme, location, and commitment to building just the right outdoor living space. Choosing a designer who can build anything you desire is a blessing to the all-inclusive thought process. A designer will also be able to tell you what other features would look great in your backyard, whether it’s outdoor pergolas or fancy garden furniture. Besides money invested, it’s how your time spent outdoors will be invested. In our last handful of the grande outdoor kitchen and outdoor living designs, we built both fireplaces and fire pits in different locales on the property for completely different reasons pertaining to the likes, desires and must-haves of all the participating family members. Later we will cover fireplaces but today the fire feature chosen to anchor this luxury marble patio setting complete with outdoor kitchen island was a remote gas fired fire pit. “marble topped fire pit is the hit of the party. Clean and instant fire mesmerizes the crowd during all seasons all evening long.


This stone and marble-topped fire pit is the hit of the party. Clean and instant fire mesmerizes the crowd during all seasons all evening long.

Now you’ve chosen the type of fire feature you look forward to. You need to understand the special requirements for safety, aesthetics, and comfort.
Fire pits surrounding by sitting walls create extra sitting space as well as a windbreak defending the fire. Here we show the building of this tremendous stone and marble gas fire pit adorned to match the rest of the stone outdoor kitchen and marble patio.

Outdoor Living Fabulously designer and masterful Outdoor kitchen builder with over 12 Outdoor kitchens featured nationally in publications such as Signature Kitchen & Bath, Hearth & Home magazine and hardcover book BEST SIGNATURE OUTDOOR KITCHENS. Recipient of Award-winning outdoor lighting honors through AOLP. Association of Outdoor Lighting Professionals.. Go to Outdoor Kitchen Designer outdoor Kitchens -main site– outdoor lighting portfolio.

Michael is president and founder of THE OUTDOOR KITCHEN DESIGN STORE-

For more ideas on enjoying your outdoor space, read 45 Best Front Yard Landscaping Ideas.



2015 Hamptons Designer Showhouse featuring Stanton Carpet
Hamptons Mouthpiece visits the 2015 Hamptons Designer Showhouse presented by Traditional Home,benefiting the Southampton Hospital. featuring Stanton Carpet.
233 Old Sag Harbor Road
Sag Harbor, New York, 11963
Open Daily Monday to Sunday
Sunday, July 26 to Monday, September 7 11AM to 5PM
Admission is $35 and includes a Journal.
Tickets may be purchased at the door or may be purchased in advance.
No admission 30 minutes before closing.
No strollers, infants, children under 6, or pets are admitted.
House built by Christopher Tufo Design & Build

Over 25 designers have transformed this farm house into a beautiful summer retreat. The designers Abby Modell Contemporary Art Glass, Art Works & Designs, Inc., Baltimore Design Group, Barbara Page Home, Black & Poole, Brady Design, CricketsCrush LLC, Denise McGaha Interiors, Dyfari Interior LLC, Elise Som Design Studio, Elissa Grayer Interior Design,Flynnside Out, Gasper La Rosa Landscaping, Hagins & Mortimer Design, Katharine Jessica Interior Design, Madcap Cottage, Mancaves, Marlaina Teich Designs, Melanie Roy Design. Meredith Ostrom, Ovadia Design Group, Patricia Fisher Design, Robert Brown Interior Design, Scot Meacham Wood Design, Timothy Brown Studio, Tyler Steven Pankratz Design, Vintage Interior Design Inc.NHB_9096

I had an opportunity to speak with the builder Christopher Tofu of Christopher Tofu Design & Build about the design and layout of the home. This is Christopher’s first time working with the Hamptons Showhouse. His wife Hedy who is a Real Estate Broker with Sotheby’s International found out they were seeking candidates, so they submitted the house over the winter and the organizers decided this was the house and that is how it got started. What a beautiful selection, the more I look at the house the more I like it. There are 7 bedrooms and 7 bathrooms, the doors in each of the rooms are custom made and not your standard 1 3/8 door. You will notice that half of the house is vertical and the other half is horizontal…Christopher indicates that they wanted to break up the line and give it more of a Modern Style, stand out from all of the other Hamptons luxury homes, they wanted to be different. You can hear more of my conversation with Christopher in the video above. NHB_9467a

I then went to speak to Keith Baltimore the designer of the Master Bath, another one of my favorite rooms in this gorgeous home. It was a bathroom fit for a Hamptons Home, Keith said a bathroom fit for a Prince and Princess. I loved the shag carpet by Stanton Carpet, the stunning frameless shower doors who’s engineering I still can’t quite get my head around, the oversized Vanity Table that was the centerpiece in the room and the chandelier that was breath-taking. Keith’s room was 100% his personality, fun, engaging, stylish, approachable and comfortable. Keith suggested we should do the interview in the tub, but I was being a stick in the mud, next time Keith drinking Champagne of course….

Designer: Keith Baltimore, Carpet by Stanton Carpet
Designer: Keith Baltimore, Carpet by Stanton Carpet

I also had time to speak to Elissa Grayer whose room was Sponsored by Stanton Carpet. Elissa was responsible for the Foyer area, and the staircase to the upstairs..the grand entrance of the house. I loved it, it was warm and inviting, looked like a real family lived here. I think I’ve seen some familiar pieces of furniture in The Khazana furniture store so they must be on trend. I had an opportunity to sit and talk with Elissa about new trends in flooring and tips for homeowners seeking to add carpeting to their staircase. Elissa stated she uses Stanton Carpet all of the time for her clients because she loves the mix and match prints, and how they bring a room to life. I love the area Stanton Rug she selected it really stood out in this room. You can hear more of my conversation with Elissa in the video above.
Designer: Elissa Grayer,  Carpet by Stanton Carpet
Designer: Elissa Grayer, Carpet by Stanton Carpet

This Modern built Barn House is 6500 sq, ft, 7 bedroom, 8 bathroom house, on 3.4 acres complete with finished lower level, playroom, large exercise room, movie theatre, tennis court & swimming pool. The house is also equipped with exterior lighting, similar to what Lighscapes South Ontario offers, making the outdoor space usable at nighttime, making a great excuse for skinny dipping. The exterior lighting also highlights the beauty of the house and its gardens in the evening time when the sun goes down. Many homes this size feels cold and somewhat un-inviting, but this house felt very warm and comfortable. NHB_9069Overall my favorite designed rooms were the Foyer Area, the Dinning room, the Living Room, the Kitchen, the Master Bedroom, Master Bathroom and the back deck area, I love Frontgate and I am told they were a Sponsor for most of the outdoor furniture used. The living room is certainly one of the best rooms in the house as it provides such a calm and relaxing atmosphere but also provides a space where people can come together. They have some of the best accent chairs for living room spaces and the whole room is tied together so nicely. I would certainly replicate this look in my own home if I had the space!




Elissa Grayer, Tamara Stephenson, Libby Langdon, Ayme Sinclair
Elissa Grayer, Tamara Stephenson, Libby Langdon, Ayme Sinclair


All photo by: Kurt Leggard of Photography by Kurt
Video editing: Photography by Kurt

Hamptons Home: Five Simple But Creative Ways To Declutter Your Home
It may take a few days, weeks, months or even years to accumulate. However, sooner or later we all at one point have clutter. Sometimes the clutter can be so overwhelming that there don’t seem to be an end to the mess and chaos. There are times where creating clutter is understandable, especially if you know that it is only temporary. For example, if you are planning on moving house, but it is not yet ready to move in, you’re going to have boxes everywhere and items around the house. But this is why many people opt for the idea of using self storage units until everything is ready to be transported all in one go. If this sounds like something you would be interested in to help declutter your home, no matter the situation, looking into something like keepsafe storage perth will be a good first step to take in making your home clutter free.

Don’t let the mountain of clutter intimidate you. Try to spend just five minutes a day on clearing clutter. Then spend five minutes the next day clearing some more clutter. It might even be a good idea to consider storage units if you have a large excess of stuff. It will take time but it will be worth it in the end. Here are some fantastic ways on how to organize your home, eliminate that mess and get more space in your home.


  • Imagine how clean and spacious your home will become. Visualization is a very powerful method for inspiring motivation. Take it room by room and only keep items that belong in that room. Get rid of what doesn’t. But how, you ask?

  • Everything in its place. Try to pick say five things and find a place for them. These must be items that you actually use on a regular basis. Only use the item when needed and immediately return it to the place it belongs. This will become second nature. For example, you will find yourself not wanting to leave that pair of scissors on the TV because they just don’t belong there. Do this for every item in your home that you use regularly. Do this a little at a time so it does not become overwhelming. Pat yourself on the back for starting the decluttering process.

  • Clear out your drawers. Start in any room and choose one drawer, any drawer. Then dump the contents onto a table. Make three piles: 1. A pile of things to throw away. 2. Things that actually belong in the drawer. 3. Things that belong somewhere else. First throw away the stuff from the first pile. Don’t wait because you may change your mind and keep things that only add to your clutter. Clean out the drawer and put stuff from the second pile neatly into the drawer. Immediately take items from the last pile and put them where they belong.

  • Designate one area for any incoming papers. Paper accounts for a whole lot of clutter. They are placed just anywhere, on counters, in drawers, in our cars and on tables. The places and possibilities are endless. Is it any wonder we can’t find anything? Here’s how to solve the problem of paper clutter. Get all of your paper and place storage containers, then choose to designate a few hours a week to work on shredding any unwanted paper. Then place any paper, whether it is letters or receipts (this is a big paper clutter contributor) into an inbox. You can buy an inbox from any office supply store. Continue to work on getting rid of papers you absolutely do not need.

  • Schedule time for decluttering. Don’t feel like doing a big decluttering session right away? Then plan a time in the near future. Maybe next weekend, or a few hours during the week? Whatever you decide, stick to it. Plan to take a trip to your local charity to donate any clothes you haven’t worn in a while and items you do not need. Use storage containers to store these items until you are ready to donate them. Don’t feel bad if you do not declutter as much as you planned. Instead of beating yourself up, pat yourself on the back and congratulate yourself on a job well done. Plan to do the same again the week after.

  • “The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak—–A Quote by Hans Hofmann, Introduction to the Boostrap, 1933”

    Featured images:
    • License: Image author owned
    • License: Image author owned

    +Jodi Call has an impressive collection of bed, bath, kitchen and home furnishing decorum needs that can be found at

    Hamptons Spotlight: Ronald McDonald House of Long Island Project Design 2014 Last week I was invited to a special Bloggers day to see The Industry’s first permanent show house. Many designers from around the country volunteered their time, talent and resources to Phase II of the Ronald McDonald House of Long Island, Project Design 2014. The Ronald McDonald House of Long Island gives comfort and shelter to families experiencing the pain of having a sick child in local hospital facilities. A “home away from home”, the House provides the parents and siblings of these children with a temporary haven in a secure and comfortable environment among other families sharing a similar burden.

    Project Design 2014 is a groundbreaking initiative in the design community created by KRAVET and Anthony Baratta, the original designer of the house and creative director for the project, New York Cottages & Gardens gave their support in this project for the house to receive a top-to-bottom makeover by leading design taste masters. There are many sponsors that made this project possible, some of those sponsors included Stanton Carpet, AERIN, Kravet Inc, Planet Fitness, Ralph Lauren, Accents et details, Avanti Furniture, Benjamin Moore Paint, Behr’s Furniture, New York Design Center,Serena & Lilly and many many more…

    The Project Design program is the largest redesign RMH-LI has seen in its 28-year history. The interior design-led initiative began through a partnership with global fabric provider Kravet Inc. and NYC&G magazine. The goal was to provide a calm and restful healing environment for families experiencing the pain of having a child in area hospitals. More than $4 million in design, labor and materials were donated to complete the makeover of 42 bedrooms, eight kitchens, several common areas, laundry rooms, fitness center and meditation room. DSC_8498

    During my tour of the showhouse, each room I visited I felt the love,compassion and complete joy that each one of these very talented designers poured into the redesign of their room. The passion and attention to detail was so prevalent that it brought tears to my eyes. It was wonderful speaking with many of the designers and listening to their reason for participating in this project was so emotional. To hear them tell me about their design and what they were seeking to achieve for the family that would be staying in their room was beautiful. One of my favorite rooms was designed by Input Creative. This room was designed for the inquisitive mind, the designer tells the story of an old japanese fable that shows a child going through a journey and coming out victorious. The room was full of bright bold happy colors, full of wonder to escape into a world of make-believe. There was so much creativity put into the design and I knew any family staying in this room would feel at ease after a very long day at the hospital. click on the video…

    Libby Langdon’s Outdoor Lounge was of course breath-taking, it is colorful, happy and joyful. I felt relaxed and comfortable and the landscape design was perfect.

    Libby Langdon, Outdoor Lounge
    Libby Langdon, Outdoor Lounge

    The collaboration of ideas are cohesive throughout the house. Each room is unique and has its own character. There is a room for every mood and that is what makes it so special. The organizers and designers really put their whole heart into this project, and you could feel it in each space you visited from the Laundry room to the Rooftop Lounge.

    Rooftop Retreat..Suzanne Costa
    Rooftop Retreat..Suzanne Costa

    The Tower Lounge nicknamed the “Rabbits’ Run” designed by designers Danielle Colding, Drew McGukin and Young Huh was exactly what they intended the space to be, a place where families could bond and share in their healing process together. Both Children and adults can safety access a wonderland where everything makes complete sense. The designers created a setting not only vivid but also thrilling different from imagined places with each mise en scene delineated by surfaces painted and papered.

    Dcdny, Young Huh,Drew McGukin Interior Designers,
    Dcdny, Young Huh,Drew McGukin Interior Designers,
    Their goal was to create a child-friendly, warm and hopeful environment for children to play and families to gather in a kind of sanctuary transcending time and place where loved ones share in the healing process.
    Dcdny, Young Huh,Drew McGukin Interior Designers,
    Dcdny, Young Huh,Drew McGukin Interior Designers,

    The Ronald McDonald House will sometimes house families from other countries and designer Bonnie Steves had that in mind when she designed her Hello New York room. The colors were vibrant, bold and the room just made you joyful. The bathroom was playful and designed for both a child and the parents… Bonnie love of bright bold colors is displayed throughout the entire suite, from the lime green toilet tissue to the bright bold blue walls. She brought the NYC attractions in her art design on the wall to share with the families who might not have time to visit these attractions during their visit. What a beautiful gift to share with these families to help them escape from a gloomy long day and relax in this fun and playful place.

    Bonnie Steves Interior
    Bonnie Steves Interior

    The stunning kitchen & dining area transformation at the 2014 Project Design Ronald McDonald Show House was created by Long Island designers Vasi Ypsilantis, owner of Poggenpohl Long Island and Margreet Cevasco contemporary space features several design and architectural details that accentuate the room and offer a dramatic outcome: the enhanced coffers created to offset low drop ceilings, energizing green wall color, whimsical chandeliers, cerulean sliding pantry doors that make a bold statement alongside classic white European frameless cabinetry and state-of-the-art stainless steel appliances.
    Photos courtesy:Margreet Cevasco & Vasi Ypilantis36376597b70211a43305c6e26573f585
    The kitchen layout functions to support both cooking, storage and eating at any hour of the day or night and multiple integrated appliances complete the design. Additional shelves were built-in to the expanded pantry so each family can store grocery items.The adjacent dining area with cozy banquette seating offers a soothing home-like setting that helps guests unwind and offers a moment of relaxation. “If we can allow families caring for their children in the neighboring hospital some comforts of home and a living space that supports them, then we have achieved our goal,” said Margreet Cevasco.b4fd0bde2800dbcba0d2a374577a0964

    The Designer Showcase Open House is open to the public until Sunday October 19th 2014. Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for students and children under 12. The Ronald McDonald House of Long Island is located at 267-07 76th Avenue, New Hyde Park, NY. The proceeds of this fundraiser will ensure that RMH-LI’s programs and services continue to assist families in need, regardless of any financial constraints they may have. After the 19th of October, these rooms will be occupied with families and I wish I could be there to see the look on their face when they open the door to these beautifully designed rooms. May God help them through this very challenging and difficult time in their life. I pray that when they open the door to these rooms they feel the love and compassion that went into the design.

    How can you help? Everyone can do something, kids can draw pictures for those children who are having a difficult time right now. The Ronald McDonald house could use donations either financially or volunteer. Please visit the website for more information.

    2014 Hamptons Designer Showhouse is still Open until Labor Day
    There are 2 more weeks left to see the 2014 Hamptons Designer Showhouse…if you are looking for something to do in the Hamptons.
    I had the pleasure to tour the 2014 Hamptons Designer Showhouse on the opening day, and I was very pleased. Every room was cohesive with a theme that seemed to be comfort, warm and inviting. I felt the warmth of each room I visited and most of the designers did an extremely wonderful job at making their rooms look like actual people would live in the house. I ran into the lovely and talented designer Libby Langdon, and we chatted about the house and whats new at Libby Langdon Interiors. Congratulations Libby on the Libby Langdon line be picked up by Walmart.

    I loved majority of the rooms in this year’s Showhouse, but my favorites were The Great Room, designer: Patrik Lönn Design
    The Living Room: Lillian August Furnishings + Design
    Bedroom II: Phoebe Howard
    Lower level Lounge: Loria Design Group

    This is a must see if you live in the Hamptons or if you are visiting the Hamptons this month. The 2014 House was built by Paramount Custom Homes and the 2014 designers were:
    Allison Hennessy Design
    The Alpha Workshops
    Anne Tarasoff Interiors
    Bakes and Kropp
    Caleb Anderson Design
    Ciuffo Cabinetry
    Delrose Design Group
    Elsa R. Soyars Interiors
    Eva Art & Design Inc.
    Gil Walsh Interiors
    Greg McKenzie Design
    Henry & Co Design
    India Hicks
    Kate Singer Home
    Katie Leede and Compan
    Lillian August Furnishings + Design
    Loria Design Group
    Lucille Khornak Photography
    Mabley Handler Interior Design
    Mark Borghi Fine Art
    Mark Humphrey Gallery
    Mecox Design Services
    Melanie Roy Design, LLC
    Patrik Lönn Design
    Phoebe Howard
    The Rinfret Group
    Tobi Fairley & Associates

    The 2014 Hampton Designer Showhouse Presented by Traditional Home, Benefiting the Southampton Hospital: located at: 408 Pauls Lane, Bridgehampton, New York
    Open Daily Monday-Sunday until September 1st 11am-5pm
    Admission is $35 and includes a Journal.
    Tickets may be purchased at the door or may be purchased in advance.
    No admission 30 minutes before closing.
    No strollers, infants, children under 6, or pets are admitted.
    House built by Paramount Homes of the Hamptons, Inc.