Entries from December 7th, 2016

introducing the trullbrook residence

Hi Hi, I’ve got a brand spanking new client project to introduce and I am pretty excited about it. You may have caught a couple small glimpses (here and here) on Instagram, as I have been working behind the scenes for the last couple months, but now that construction has begun I wanted to start chronicling the progress here for you to follow along! To give you a quick run-down on the project, it is a full gut renovation in a two story residence here in LA. There are 4 bathrooms and one kitchen which were dated and didn’t suit the homeowners taste, so we said BUH-BYE to it all. They brought me on board to design a home that better reflects their {realllly great} taste. To kick things off let’s dig right in with the heart of the home… the kitchen.


trullbrook-kitc-hen-plans2So this is how the kitchen looked when we began. Not bad at all, but the house is quite large and in proportion the kitchen was quite small and that is A LOT of wood. We are updating the appliances, getting a larger cooking area with a 48″ range and doing away with the stacked wall oven which further closed in the kitchen. From top to bottom… all of it is going.

trullbrook-kitc-hen-plans3trullbrook-kitchen-plansThe biggest change will come in the new layout. Taking out the wall oven and the peninsula will open up the kitchen into the “breakfast room” dining area, making it one big dine-in kitchen. We will be adding an island in the center and a custom built-in banquette where you now see the table and chairs.



As you can see, as-is the kitchen isn’t large enough for an island but it is large enough that it feels like it has wasted space in the center.

renovation plan


By removing the peninsula and extending the kitchen into the breakfast room we had a lot more room to play and now onto the really fun part…


kitchen-inspiration2 ktichen inspiration kitchen-inspiration5kitchen-inspiration4kitchen-inspiration3These are a few of my favorite kitchens that the homeowners also loved. The selection makes me SO happy and gave such great inspiration for the space. Even though they vary in style there are some common threads and each one has something uniquely special about it. My goal is always to create spaces with an unexpected element/something that makes it stand out from the norm or past projects and the client was clearly on board.

Kitchen one Designed by Stefani Stein, photo by Tessa Neustadt // Kitchen two by Amber Interiors, photo by Tessa Neustadt // Kitchen three by Anna Smith // Kitchen four Designed by Kishani Perera, photo by Joe Schmelzer // Kitchen five by Devol Kitchens

Here is a sneak peek at the finishes!


trullbrook-client-kitchen-finishes We started the design with a palette in mind… green, brass, white and some natural wood. I’ve combined modern and traditional elements as well as a mix of high and low to create the biggest design bang for their budget.

Instead of using green on the cabinets we decided to put it on the floor with Fireclay’s Brick Tile in “Northwoods”. The color is the most perfect shade of dark green with blue undertones. Then it came to the cabinets and countertops. To keep it classic we are going with white cabinets… and once again I am using SemiHandmade, they make high quality doors and drawer fronts that fit onto Ikea cabinets, giving the look of a more custom kitchen for much less than a true custom kitchen (see them in our house here and soon to be in our A-frame here), then a slab hunting we went. We slab shopped all over town and landed on the most beautiful (and unique) marble called “green tweed”. Choosing hardware & lighting was easy once I looked to Schoolhouse Electric as they are masters at modernizing classic pieces.

See I wasn’t exaggerating on their really great taste! The homeowner is also a friend of mine which is why she is letting me share all the nitty gritty renovation details and you can see more behind the scenes action on her instagram @jaimibrooks. Also, if you ever find yourself in need of someone to talk to, she is an incredible human and an amazing marriage and family therapist. Stay tuned for more from the Trullbrook Residence. x

Cabinet doors by Semihandmade // Pendants by Schoolhouse Electric // Sink from Ikea // Cabinet knobs by Schoolhouse Electric // Drawer Pulls by Schoolhouse Electric // Range by Thermador // Faucet by Waterstone // Tile  by Fireclay

work with me!

sss-hiringA few months back I posted that I was hiring for two positions and one was filled, but one remains. In the meantime our part-time studio assistant left for a full-time position so I am back to needing two new people! If you are design obsessed, highly self-motivated, and looking for a new creative job please see below.

JOB TITLE: Studio Assistant/paid internship


  • I need someone who is extremely organized, proactive/a self starter and creative thinking.
  • Basic knowledge of Photoshop and wordpress is ideal
  • Must be friendly, honest, highly efficient and have a can-do anything attitude.
  • Crafting/DIY/hand skills are plus
  • Must have your own car, and be able to work on-site in our Los Angeles based studio


  • order fulfillment
  • errand running/shopping
  • general studio maintenance
  • social media assistance
  • brainstorming
  • research
  • assisting in shoots

MORE DETAILS: This is a part-time Los Angeles based position, 15-20 hours a week to start, with room to grow quickly. The more someone can bring to the table, the more we can build a position around the right person. This is a highly creative workspace with constant needs in photography, writing, styling, crafting, designing, etc. so share any special skills you have!

TO APPLY: Please send resume/website/instagram + pinterest handles with an email to shop@sarahshermansamuel.com with “studio assistant” in the subject line.



JOB TITLE: Interior Designer/Creative Dynamo


  • Must be proficient with Photoshop, Illustrator, and Quickbooks. CAD and any 3D rendering programs are a major bonus.
  • Ideally you are blog, magazine, hgtv, DIY, and design obsessed. Someone that keeps up with what is happening in the design world and can get involved with the blog side of things in addition to interiors projects.
  • You must be able to go into a home take photos, measure accurately and create floor plans.
  • If you have photography skills and/or are a great copywriter, plus, plus!
  • Must be friendly, honest, highly efficient and have a can-do anything attitude.
  • Must have mad organization skills. You will  be responsible for project management, i.e. pay attention to the details and be able to keep track of client to-do lists, order and invoice tracking etc.


  • Sourcing/Shopping
  • Moodboard Creation
  • Assisting/production of photo shoot
  • Ideating and executing blog posts
  • Keeping my head on straight (and the calendar)
  • Client visits, taking measurements and creating floorplans
  • Contacting vendors and clients
  • Note taking and to-do list making
  • Proof reading
  • Taking a project from design to install

MORE DETAILS: I am looking for a part-time designer to begin with (3-4 days a week, but am flexible for the right person), to work out of our Los Angeles studio. I am also open to working with someone on a project by project basis. You will be working closely with me but must also be able to work independently. This is a small studio so you must be comfortable, and thrive, wearing multiple hats in a fast paced environment.

TO APPLY: Please send resume/website/instagram + pinterest handles with an email to shop@sarahshermansamuel.com with “Interior Designer” in the subject line.


Arhaus New Storefront

arhausarhaus-shop-picks2-640 Last week I drove up to Thousand Oaks to check out the newest Arhaus location on opening day and I shopped ’til I dropped! Well almost dropped, luckily there was a Chipotle right next door to keep me going. The new space is two full floors filled with, what I’ve come to learn are, pretty special pieces. Being opening day, there was quite a buzz in the air and all the employees were eager to help and tell the stories behind various pieces I was interested in. For example, I learned all about the Mexican artisan behind the hammered copper tables and how each one is hand hammered over 2,500 times!

arhaus-shop-picks4-640arhaus2The thing I like about Arhaus (you may remember I got one of their sofa’s for the A-frame) is that they don’t represent just one aesthetic. It is mix of many different styles, so my Arhaus sofa could be styled completely different and look just as at-home in someone else’s space. Here are a few things I came away from the shop loving.

arhaus-shop-picksMing Chair // Brass Tray // Sheepskin Chair // Sheepskin // Upholstered Bench // Copper Pedestal Table // Brass Frame Chair // Hand Knotted Rug // Glass ball Vase // Emory Sectional // Slab Coffee Table

I could have camped out on that emory sectional all day and that sheepskin chair was pulling hard on my heart strings.

This post was created in collaboration with Arhaus. All thoughts, ideas, and furniture coveting are my own.

DIY Credenza

sss-studio10ssss-studio6While furniture hunting and shopping for the studio, I couldn’t quite find the right credenza to fit the space that didn’t come with an insane price tag so I looked to ikea, per usual, and started doodling in my notebook to design a piece using their “besta” cabinets as building blocks. I wanted there to be storage, be a certain length and height (tall enough to be a workbench height) and not look like straight out of the box ikea.

diyz-app-640As you might be able to tell, if you can decipher my chicken scratch, I came up with a couple different ideas, one with shelves on the sides but the open sides ended up being the winner. I then took my sketches to the computer and drew it out to scale to make sure I was happy with the proportions etc. Once I got it exactly how I wanted it, I took my plans to the lumber store, selected 2 pieces of high quality birch plywood (4′ x 8′) and had the on-site milling cut it down to the sizes I specified below.


plywood-credenza-diyOnce I got everything back at the house, I assembled the Ikea cabinets and measured out where I needed to use the router to create channels for stability, I did this at every joint where the vertical boards intersect with the horizontal boards (As shown in the image below, highlighted in blue). Also, you will see that I assembled and built it upside down and then flipped it over once it was finished.


plywood-credenza-diy1plywood-credenza-diy2I used a scrap piece of plywood and clamped it down to the board to use as a jig while using the router and lied the top and bottom board down next to each other so I could easily make sure the lines would match up exactly.

I used a 3/4″ bit and sunk it down about 1/4″.

Once I created all the grooves it was time for assembly.

plywood-credenza-diy4I used wood glue in every joint and then secured everything with screws. A LOT of screws. I used long cabinet screws where the horizontal boards capped off the vertical board so it would sink deep into the vertical (while still remaining hidden). OH and make sure to use a drill bit to pilot the hole before screwing in to make sure the boards didn’t split. I used shorter screws when attaching it to the base of the besta cabinets so they wouldn’t show through on the inside.

For the legs I notched a 3″ groove (using the router again) into the side of each of the legs and glued and screwed in the 3″ x 60″ support piece. This piece is crucial for stability but also is nice and hidden giving the illusion once it is standing that the credenza is balancing on just the thin boards as legs.

DIY credenza // ikea hack // sarah sherman samuelAnd finally, I flipped it over, finished it with a clear coat and called it done! I am super happy with how it turned out. Hello beautiful modern credenza/workbench.

Taking on projects like these can look intimidating but coming up with the idea is 90% of it and the other 10% is just knowing how to use the tools (o.k. and there’s a lot of math in there too). There is a new app called DIYZ  that recently came out which is full of information and guidance to help you tackle DIY home improvement projects with more confidence and I found some great tutorials on tools. Pictured on my i-Phone above, you can see an entire dedicated story with step-by-step instructions on how to use a drill. Which if you don’t happen to have a wood working dad that taught you a big bag of tricks, you could probably benefit from. The app also has full projects outlined with how-to videos and it also includes a handy tool & material list where you can choose exactly what you need, with links to order it online and have it delivered right to you (the amazon prime fanatic in me LOVED that). You can download the app on iTunes here or on Google+. Happy DIY-ing.

Supplies and Materials list:
2 4’x8′ sheets of 3/4″ high quality birch plywood
Wood Glue
Measuring Tape
Table Saw (or have the main cuts done where you buy the plywood like I did)
3 Besta Cabinets  (in high gloss white)

This post was done in collaboration with DIYZ. All thoughts and ideas are my own.

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