The name Sukio comes from the Japanese word for "like" or "love" but now has become synonymous with what I find luxe, lovely, and too chic not to share! My aesthetic of choice: MODERN GLAMOUR – a style that marries multiple ideas, viewing traditional notions of glamour through a sophisticated lens. In a word, it’s sooo Sukio! - Desiré | @hellosukio

The Modern Glamour Guide, Sukio's New Tumblr

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ADE: An Essay on Modern Glamour

A recap of my POV

Residence by Kelly WearstlerResidence by Kelly Wearstler

When asked to label my aesthetic of choice, I’m quick to reference the modern glamour movement. I knew my taste in design was unusual, a hodgepodge of many styles, but it took research, reflection, and a book before I could properly name it. Barring the occasional departure (like yesterday's post), it's what you see here on Sukio. Modern glamour, a way to define the indefinable.

So, what is modern glamour?

Many would simply describe it as a new take on an old idea, i.e., "modern" as in new, current, or fresh - "to modernize". But my MIT-trained brain always views things differently. To me, modern glamour is merely the intersection of two contrasting styles: the sleek, clean, and edgy vs. the fanciful, decadent and exquisite. It is the delicate balance between the two that makes a space interesting and relevant.

Residence by Shaun JacksonResidence by Shaun Jackson

In short, modern glamour is controlled eclecticism. It's a style that allows designers to unexpectedly integrate, marry, and juxtapose the best elements of the design world, creating something wonderful in the process. But like all attempts at eclecticism, the task is tricky and can be downright daunting for many. Marian McEvoy may have put it best in her forward for "Modern Glamour: The Art of Unexpected Style":

It’s easier for a decorator to assemble a room in which everything matches than to concoct a space in which nothing matches but everything makes beautiful sense all together.

While experts like Kelly Wearstler can mix and match using natural intuition, others may opt for a more structured approach. Metropolitan Home’s "Glamour: Making it Modern" boils things down into a list of essential concepts (scale, palette, luster, antiques, Asiana, and multiples) and objects (staircases, fireplaces, drapery, chandeliers, mirrors, and daybeds). Helpful guidelines, but like rules, meant to be ignored from time to time.

Residence by Lee LedbetterResidence by Lee Ledbetter

The gist…

Modern doesn't mean austere or sterile and glamour doesn't mean frilly or overworked. It's a style that marries multiple ideas, viewing traditional notions of glamour, its shapes and textures, through a sophisticated lens. Mixing old with new, feminine with masculine, it conveys artful expression by way of interior design, creating not just a room, but a statement. It respects luxury and craftsmanship but sneers at the ostentatious. Modern glamour is powerful, not delicate or precious, and the chosen aesthetic of movers and shakers everywhere.

Ready to join the movement?


Images:, Elle Decor, Architectural Digest


Inspired By Earth Day: Retreats for a Modern Thoreau

I first learned of Henry David Thoreau and Walden Pond as a freshman in high school. I was a self-proclaimed tree-hugger back then, so his thoughts on man and the environment simply fueled my passion to save the planet. As an adult, I can more fully understand the philosophy behind his Walden stay - to simply observe nature and reflect. In honor of Earth Day, here are two locales perfectly suited for a modern-day, Thoreau-like sabbatical. And, of course, both are ecofriendly.

Fogo Island Studios, Newfoundland, Canada

Squish Studio, Fogo Island

"I love Nature partly because she is not man, but a retreat from him. "

Located along the north Atlantic, Fogo Island offers four artist studios as part of a program to promote habitat preservation and sustainability. Each structure is completely off-the-grid and perched along the island’s rocky coastline. Imagine what these views could inspire!

Squish Studio, Fogo Island

Squish Studio, Fogo Island

Squish Studio, Fogo Island


The Treehotel, Harads, Sweden

The Mirror Cube, Treehotel

"I have a room all to myself; it is nature."

The Treehotel in Sweden would definitely make my bucket list if I ever decided to create one. Each of its treehouse-like cabins is suspended 13 to 20 feet above the ground, offering fantastic views and sparse interiors (Thoreau would be proud!). My favorite room is the Mirrorcube. Its facade perfectly blends into the surrounding forest.

The Mirror Cube, Treehotel

The Mirror Cube, Treehotel

The Mirror Cube, Treehotel

Of course, we can't all scurry off to Canada and Sweden to be at one with nature, so, look for the everyday opportunities. From community parks to your own backyard, embrace and enjoy!


Images: (1-4) Bent René Synnevåg, (5-8) Peter Lundstrom, WDO | Treehotel
Quotes: Henry David Thoreau


Friday Fashion: Shanina Shaik in Spring Looks by Dior

Shanina Shaik for Harper's Bazaar India

First, it was Jasmine. Then Joan, Liu, and, most recently, Cara… Now, there's Shanina – the newest addition to Sukio's model watch. Her striking features and killer legs, as noticed in Jason Wu's spring show, instantly inspired thoughts of "Who’s that girl?!?" Since then, Shanina's made more and more editorial appearances. Here she is looking modern-yet-glamorous in Raf Simons first prêt-a-porter collection for Dior. Keep an eye out. This girl is going places!

Shanina Shaik for Harper's Bazaar India

Shanina Shaik for Harper's Bazaar India

Shanina Shaik for Harper's Bazaar India

Shanina Shaik for Harper's Bazaar India

Shanina Shaik for Harper's Bazaar India

Gorgeous right?

Images: Pascal Chevallier for Harper's Bazaar India


Interiors: A London Townhouse With An Artistic Twist

Back to our regularly scheduled glamour...

London Townhouse by Francis Sultana

I have some MAJOR problems with this London Townhouse by designer Francis Sultana—primarily, I can't stand how fabulous it is! As a minor offshoot of that, I had a difficult time whittling down the number of images for this blog post. In the end, I decided to simply feature the living, dining, and kitchen spaces - an area that could probably fit my condo three times over. The home is not only spacious, but filled to the brim with modern furniture and art. Two words: Gimme, gimme!

London Townhouse by Francis Sultana

London Townhouse by Francis Sultana

London Townhouse by Francis Sultana

The home's owner, architect, and designer worked closely to balance art and furnishings with renovations and historic details. The homeowner, a Hong Kong–based art collector, notes, "When you’re privileged enough to live in a building with this heritage, you have to do it justice." Mission accomplished! The approximately 180-year-old house looks fresh and modern while maintaining its classic good looks.

London Townhouse by Francis Sultana

London Townhouse by Francis Sultana

London Townhouse by Francis Sultana

Images: Luke White, Architectural Digest


Out and About: Room & Board Hosts HGTV’s Danielle Colding

Danielle Colding, Washington Fine Properties Home & Design Weekend

The DC design scene was bustling last week – from the opening of the much-blogged Design House to Washington Fine Properties' Home and Design Weekend. The latter event featured discounts, raffles, and workshops, including a session led by Design Star-winner Danielle Colding. The weather was absolutely perfect, so I hurried down to our local Room & Board for a chance to meet Danielle and soak up her design wisdom.

The workshop took place on Room & Board's top level, which offers fantastic views and loads of gorgeous sunlight. With a small vignette of furniture as both backdrop and teaching aid, Danielle dispensed tips on color, styling, and other design principles before taking questions from participants.

Danielle Colding, Washington Fine Properties Home & Design WeekendDanielle Colding, Washington Fine Properties Home & Design Weekend


Design tips by Danielle ColdingDanielle Colding, Washington Fine Properties Home & Design Weekend


Here are a few takeaways from the presentation:

Design tips by Danielle Colding

Danielle began her design with an emerald green small-scale sofa, one of my favorites since it appeared in Room & Board's window several weeks ago. She tempered the bold color with the understated pattern and texture of velvet throw pillows. Other textural elements included an area rug, hide stools, and side tables made of reclaimed wood.


Yellow, Danielle's choice accent color, was introduced by way of a small table lamp. She explained how you can carry color throughout a space with subtle touches. For example, yellow makes another appearance in a book jacket on the coffee table.


Design tips by Danielle Colding

Danielle also emphasized mixing and matching different materials and styles. Accessory selections included sinuous vases by Eva Zeisel and a rustic metal sculpture. We fell in love with the Nebula Bowl by Tony Wurman. It resembles glass but is actually made of hot glue. Super light and pliable, you can literally fling it like a Frisbee!

When asked where to find more fab accessories, Danielle shared a list of personal favorites. They're definitely worth a look! Also, be sure to check out her website,, to see her design principles in action.

Resources for Accessories,Danielle Colding

Images and typography: Sukio