Today’s post is the first in a series about people in our local community. Alice +Bird Interiors are a design team from Kittery, Maine. Sara and Ann-Marie (aka Alice + Bird) were kind enough to take some time out of their busy schedule to answer a few questions about home design and their favorite local spots.
ND: When someone moves into a new space it can be overwhelming. How do you suggest making things seem more manageable? And what rooms would you conquer first?
You’re right. Moving into a new space can feel so daunting, so we usually follow this rule of thumb: Focus on what will satisfy your senses after a long day of transition. Wash your favorite bed linens, and feather that nest so that you have a cozy, warm spot to lay your head down. Organize your kitchen to the best of your ability so that you can nourish yourself through the process. Put on some jazzy beats to serenade you, and light your favorite candle so that your space starts to smell like home.
ND: Now that the cold weather is rolling in, can you give us some idea of how to switch over major living spaces to create a more cozy feel?
Think accessories. Changing out throw pillows, blankets, rugs and artwork can really transform a space. And the homeowner doesn’t have to spend a fortune on these changes. The whole secondhand, thrift shop, reuse movement can be an inspiring resource for people—without the high costs. Rearranging your space can also be a nice refresher for a new season. Pull those chairs a little closer to the wood stove, bring your furniture away from the walls to create a more intimate setting and get creative with lighting. The daylight is so limited this time of year, so add some twinkle lights to your space, even after the holidays. Something to make your room sparkle and shine through those dark days of winter.
Those necessities sure can fill up an entry fast, can’t they?! A simple solution might be to take a small piece of furniture with drawers or cubbies and place it in the entry. If the space doesn’t allow, a wall mounted crate with hooks might be the best bet. In our house it’s a large, old crock that holds all of the winter go tos.
ND: We are big fans of supporting local business. Where are your go to places for styling a home?
We love staying local too! There are some killer thrift stores on the seacoast that we frequent, most along Route 1. Here in town, there are great finds at Fair Tide Thrift Store or Leeward Landing. As far as new items, we love Christine’s Crossing in Rye, Red Bird Trading in Newburyport or Amy Dutton in Kittery for great furniture and accessories.
ND: This is not really a question, but a spot for you to shamelessly plug your business (which I think is fantastic). How do you help your clients and what sort of services do you provide?
Our main focus is interior architecture and design, but we also specialize in project management. Having the opportunity to be involved with a project from start to finish can be so rewarding for both us and the client. Our services include, but are not limited to: redesigning existing spaces, specifying new furniture and finishes, coordinating sub-contractors, providing technical drawings, seeing a project through to the end, providing exceptional customer service and creating environments that are both beautiful, functional and fun!
ND: What is your favorite place for a day trip in the area and why?
Cruising the Maine coast and poking around antique shops is one of our favorite things to do. Ogunquit, Wells, and Kennebunk are prime spots to dabble for that perfect treasure. We love incorporating old and new into our designs, so we’re often popping in and out of these shops looking for vintage black and white photos, furniture to refinish, or retro accents to style spaces with.
ND: If someone was coming to your hometown, Kittery, for the day, where would you tell them to go?
Oh! Where should we begin? We love talking about our dear town, Kittery. It’s gone through such a transformation over the past ten years, making it a true destination for out of towners and locals alike! Naturally, we’ll start with FOOD! We love food. The Kittery Foreside has some delicious options. Definitely go to the Black Birch. And eat their duck poutine. It’s amazing. And get a Maine Brewing Co. Peeper Ale. So good. Make sure to get there before 5, or after 8. Otherwise you’ll be waiting for a seat. Check out the Wallingford Dram for more good libations. And Lil’s for pastries. We happen to be fond of the almond croissant and the cinnamon roll. Folk and Tayla mac Boutique (coming soon) are great shopping spots, and a walk around that neighborhood is fun. When Pigs Fly restaurant and bakery is a sure win too, if heading north on Route 1. After all that food you’ll need a walk on the beach. Head to Kittery Point where you can explore the grounds of Ft. Foster Park or Seapoint and Crescent Beach.
Want to learn more about Alice +Bird? Visit them here.