MELISSA RAYWORTH, For The Associated Press | It’s a design opportunity that’s easily missed: Even the most stylishly decorated rooms often have bland wooden doors with cheap hardware.High-end designers have always made doors a priority, says Brian Patrick Flynn, an interior designer and founder of FlynnsideOut. “If you look at any Fifth Avenue apartment” in New York City, he says, “you’ll probably fall in love with their doors because they blend architecture with decorating and make it really special.”

But many of us ignore the doors in our homes, not realizing what a difference they can make to the look of a room. Whether your style is traditional or modern, subtle or bold, improving your doors can give your rooms an easy facelift.

Interior designer Emily Henderson, host of HGTV’s “Secrets from a Stylist,” uses doors as a canvas for anything from wallpaper or stenciling to textured paint or artfully applied gold leaf. Decorated doors can “bring a bit of surprise glamour,” she says, and highlight architectural elements.

But know what sort of change you’re looking for. “Sometimes you want your door to be disguised” and blend quietly into the space, Henderson says. Other times, you’re seeking a burst of color or texture to draw attention.


Painting with bold or contrasting colors can quickly make a door the star of a space, Flynn says. Try painting an entire door white and letting it dry for at least one day. Then put painters’ tape over the areas you’d like to keep as white accents, and paint the entire door another color (glossy black is great, he says). After removing the tape, touch up any imperfect spots with a tiny brush.

Another option that Flynn loves: Have doors upholstered with leather or geometric print fabric to add softness and style. Leather is easy to wipe clean, he says, and “if it ages over time, that only adds to the look.”

Bring the door to an upholsterer or do it yourself by wrapping the door in cotton batting and attaching fabric with a staple gun along the sides. Tap the staples with a hammer to recess them, then paint over them in a color that matches the fabric. You can also glue ribbon over the staples to hide them.


“Look at your doors,” says Los Angeles-based designer Betsy Burnham. “Do they all match?” If you want a cohesive style throughout the home, try painting every door the same color and accessorizing each with the same stylish hardware.

Burnham usually chooses white or off-white paint for doors and door frames, “but in one house I did all the doors sort of a khaki,” she says, “which was more modern.” If you want a bolder statement, she suggests painting all the doors a dark shade of charcoal and using oil-rubbed bronze doorknobs.

Henderson and Flynn agree that consistency is important for doors that all face the same hallway. On the sides facing into rooms, you can indulge your imagination. But for the sides facing a hallway, “it could look unintentionally messy” rather than creative if the hardware and paint colors don’t match.


Doors are a great way to personalize a space, Burnham says. A classic six-panel door has a very different feeling than a heavy wooden plank door with lots of dramatic hardware.

Front doors can be a great place to express your style. A custom-designed door with expensive hardware can have a huge impact and be worth the investment, Burnham says. One option is to “keep the house sort of neutral and do a pop of color at the front door,” she says. “We’ve seen red doors used really well. You could even do a bright teal.”

Inside your home, you can use doorknobs and other hardware “like jewelry,” Burnham says. Try crystal or chinoiserie knobs, oiled bronze metal hardware or shiny chrome, depending on your style. Lately, Flynn has merged fun and function by putting elaborate door knockers on bedroom doors.

If you want to highlight your home’s history or just bring a vintage look to the rooms, consider using doors reclaimed from older buildings. Flea markets and antique shops may have great doors for low prices. They can be accessorized with vintage hardware or new pieces in a vintage style.

But Henderson cautions that installation can be tough. “I’ve tried replacing knobs,” she says, “and it’s actually turned into a bit of a nightmare.”

Another nontraditional option: Use shiny, metallic paint or cover the back of a door with chalkboard paint so you can leave quick notes, scrawl grocery lists or let kids get creative.


If closet doors swing out into a small room, consider replacing them with bi-fold doors or pocket doors. Or remove closet doors entirely and turn the area into open shelving. To give it a finished look, wallpaper the closet interior and hang tieback draperies where the doors were.

Burnham loves this idea, but says it only works if you’re someone who will keep storage areas neat. Many clients ask to have doors removed to expose open shelving, she says, “but it’s a really special client who can keep that looking great.”

One last bit of advice: If you do remove bi-fold doors, don’t get rid of them. They make great freestanding room dividers, Flynn says, especially if you paint or upholster them. In a bedroom that doubles as an office, “it’s a great way to delineate work space from sleep space.”


To see more of Trilogy’s unique designs and doors, visit our Instagram page.


trilogy-partnersWhen looking into a company within the Summit County area that’s reputable and can manage your construction work at a high standard, you will need some clear indicators. That’s why choosing a member from the Summit County Builders Association can provide you with the quality you need in getting the job done. One such member is our team here at Trilogy, and there are many reasons why you should a member.

  • Supporting NAHB at a local, state and national level, the Builder’s Association provides their time, effort and expertise in maintaining a higher standard.

  • In order to form an even stronger network, members recruit others such as contacts and colleagues. They’re then able to work towards their goals together.

  • Membership means that many will receive non-dues funding thanks to advertising and sponsorship.

  • With a group of resourceful individuals, you can get business and property tips from others invested in your success.

Viewing these reasons, it is clear to see why so many are choosing our services. Being an SCBA member allows us to attain and surpass a standard which we feel our customers deserve. When you have an idea of what you want for your property contact with us to see how we can help you.

Mike Rath is a member of the Trilogy Team and the president of the Summit County Builders Association (SCBA). He is now bringing the same dedication and commitment to the SCBA that he has brought to Trilogy Partners.

As a non-profit organization, SCBA is committed to maintaining an effective networking forum and progressive education regarding the building industry in the Colorado mountain region. The SCBA Board of Directors is the rudder of the organizational ship. With Rath at the helm for two years as acting President, there is great confidence his leadership skills will positively impact SCBA’s growth and the community’s awareness for the most sustainable path for home design, building and land development in Summit County.

Exciting plans are already in the works, as the new president lays the foundation for the SCBA this year. The Board already has a campaign in place to invite in more members from the region, unifying the progressive industry for the betterment of businesses and homeowners alike.

Secondly, Rath is thinking universal, as he was instrumental in designing a blog site for global marketing. Pay close attention Rath makes innovative decisions for the future of SCBA!


Ullr Fest, named for the Norse mythical god of snow Ullr,  is currently invading the streets of Breckenridge this week. The festivities began on Sunday and will conclude this Saturday, January 14th, with the Breck Chilly Chili Cook Off. Come out and celebrate Ullr Fest all week and make sure you don’t miss the Ullr Parade on North Main Street this Thursday starting at 4:30pm. There will be a lot of Viking hats for sure!



With over 12,000 attendees expected this week to honor the god of winter, Breckenridge will be the place to be! Winter in Breckenridge wouldn’t be the same without this fun tradition!

It is ironic that I first learned of the passing of Steve Jobs on my iPhone, one of the many products that he created as the CEO of Apple, Inc. I was saddened to hear about the loss and was a bit nostalgic as I reminisced about how I, like many, have grown up with Jobs’ innovative Apple products.

At the age of 21, Steve Jobs, started Apple, with fellow visionaries Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne. He has accomplished more in his 56 years than most men can accomplish in a 100.

We found this great quote on ArchDaily and wanted to share it with you.

“In most people’s vocabularies, design means veneer. It’s interior decorating. It’s the fabric of the curtains of the sofa. But to me, nothing could be further from the meaning of design. Design is the fundamental soul of a human-made creation that ends up expressing itself in successive outer layers of the product or service. When you’re a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you’re not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will ever see it. You’ll know it’s there, so you’re going to use a beautiful piece of wood on the back. For you to sleep well at night, the aesthetic, the quality, has to be carried all the way through.” — Steve Jobs

Rendering of the Apple Store in 5th Avenue © Apple. Via ArchDaily

Thank you Steve Jobs for making our lives a better place and you’ll surely be missed by all.


The 17th Annual Summit County Parade of Homes starts tomorrow, September 17th and will continue on through Sunday, September 25th (weekends only). The Parade of Homes is Summit County’s premiere event and we are excited to be a part of it. Proceeds for the event will go to The Summit Foundation. The Summit Foundation “builds a culture of caring and giving by providing leadership and facilitation to create a community of donors who through their wealth, wisdom and work will establish a lasting legacy of generosity to support community organizations that foster Art & Culture, Health & Human Service, Education, Environmental Stewardship and Sports & Recreation.”

The Parade features residences, all located throughout Summit County, whose sale prices range from $670,000 to $4 million.  Highlighting both single and multi-family luxury homes, the tour typically brings in 4,000 people a year.

Trilogy Partners will be showcasing our remodel on Fairview Boulevard.

Below are some of the renovations we performed on the home:

Exterior updated to bring 1980s architecture into present day
Spectacular views of the Ten Mile range
Passive solar maximized
Upgraded interior finishes
Master bedroom redesigned
Extensive deck remodel


We are excited to be a part of this year’s 17th Annual Summit County Parade of Homes. The Parade of Homes will be taking place on September 17th, 18th, 24th and 25th from 10am to 5pm. This premiere Summit County event will feature 19 homes and multi-family structures ranging from $1 million to over $3 million. The year’s theme is remodeling, which we at Trilogy Partners has a lot of experience in. Our 382 Fairview Boulevard project is number 14 in the official Parade of Homes guide.

Proceeds for the event benefit The Summit Foundation and are $10 each and good for entry to all the homes. The Parade of Homes official program is available at most Summit County real estate offices, visitor information centers & City Markets. For more information please visit


Biking Lake Dillon June 3 2011

After being away for several weeks visiting friends, getting reacquainted with my mountain bike, and blogging from the road, I have returned to Summit County. My timing was paired to coincide with the return of real warmth after a long and snowy winter. The mountains are still covered with white, but the rivers and streams are bursting with melt water delighting the rafters and kayakers. Today there isn’t a could in the sky and the temperature is destined for about 70 degrees. And so the summer will flow here, as things go from white to green. For the next three months, the weather will perfect joy. So if you are thinking of a summer vacation destination, there’s plenty up here that we’d love to share with you. Clean air, sunshine, and perfect temperatures are only the beginning. For more information visit the Breckenridge Resort Chamber or the Town of Breckenridge website.


Cities are now home to a majority of the world’s population and are on the front line in the battle against climate change.  While action at the federal level in the U.S. has been painfully slow, cities in the U.S. are starting to lead by example at a local level. Cities must take an active role in helping their constituents (starting with themselves of course) to mitigate their impact on climate change as well as begin investing in appropriate climate change adaptation solutions.

I felt that it was time to do some analysis on U.S. Cities which are positioning themselves to be leaders in climate capitalism. I have used proxies and a methodology for ranking the largest cities in the U.S. based on a range of factors including political commitment (as measured by number of commitments the city has made with the U.S. MayorsCarbon War Room Cities ChallengeClinton 40, and ICLEI membership), green buildings (LEED buildings per capita), university leadership (AASHE membership/capita), transit access and use (range of metrics on heavy and light rail usage per capita), clean tech investment (venture funds based in city with clean tech investments in 2010) and energy and GHG emissions (from a range of sources)*.

The Top 10 Metropolitan Climate-Ready Cities in the U.S. are:

10.) Chicago

My recent rankings of low-carbon politicians was in part a tribute to the recently retired former mayor of Chicago, Richard Daley.  Under his leadership Chicago made major strides in becoming probably the greenest metropolitan city in the Midwest.  Chicago now boasts more than 300 miles of bikeways, 7 million square feet of green roofs and currently has more green hotels than any city in the U.S. (13).

9.) San Jose
This may be among the most surprising cities to make the Top 10 as San Jose is not known (yet) for its leadership in climate protection.  However, in 2007, the San Jose city council approved a Green Vision which seeks to “transform San Jose into the world center of Clean Technology innovation” and to demonstrate that the goals of economic growth, environmental stewardship and fiscal responsibility are inextricably linked.”  It didn’t hurt San Jose in my rankings that I counted the number of clean tech funds in each city that invested in 2010. Of course being near the epicenter of Silicon Valley San Jose ranked #1 in our list in this category.  Also you gotta love cities that take the bold step of setting big hairy audacious goals and transparently track their performance against them.

7.) Philadelphia (tie with New York)
Like San Jose, Philadelphia has taken the appropriate step to develop, track and transparently report its sustainability performance against forward looking targets.  Greenworks Philadelphia established 15 sustainability targets including energy, buildings, GHG reductions, waste, transit and agriculture among others.  Along with Seattle and New York, Philadelphia was listed by Fast Company, as a leading city in the U.S. for its aggressive GHG reduction targets.

7.) New York (tie with Philadelphia)
Conservative Mayor Bloomberg is a strong advocate for climate leadership and, once again, advocating setting targets and tracking performance. In a recent Clinton 40 Climate meeting, Mayor Bloomberg noted: “If you can’t measure it you can’t manage it.”  New York of course is the envy of most cities in the U.S. when it comes to accessibility and use of rail transit (ranking #1 on transit/capita in this study). It is also the most dense city in North America.

6.) San Diego
Another West Coast city less commonly ranked amongst the top 10 on these lists, San Diego has been making great strides in transitioning to a low-carbon economy.  San Diego intends to take advantage of its great climate and abundant sun by adding 50 megawatts of renewable energy by 2013 (much of it being new solar capacity) while achieving a 50 megawatt reduction in energy use through efficiency and demand side management measures.  San Diego also has a 3-line, 82 kilometers light rail trolley system which has 90,000 daily trips.

5.) Denver
One of the U.S. cities I have had the pleasure to live in, Denver Colorado is famous for its mountain views and big skies.  Denver has made great strides over the past 10 years towards becoming a recognized U.S. leader in the transition to a low carbon economy.  In 2009, former Denver Mayor Hickenlooper was awarded the US Mayor’s Climate Protection Award for Denver’s Fast Track light rail program.  According to a city press release, Denver’s Fast Track “is the most ambitious transit initiative in U.S. history… building 119 miles of new light rail” within just a few years.  Along with strong sustainability objectives, Denver is projecting a 37% increase in job growth by 2030, showing that the low carbon economy is alive and well.

4.) Washington, DC
While our federal law makers and senior political leadership based in Washington have seriously underachieved with respect to progress towards the low-carbon economy, the City, or District I should say, has earned this top 5 position.  Staying on the topic of public transit, DC residents are the 2nd most active users of rail transit in the U.S. and the 3rd highest per capita (behind New York and San Francisco).  The D.C. government has committed to reduce its emissions 30% by 2020 and 80% by 2050 (over 2006 levels), has passed a strong green building code, is 2nd in the country in green roofs (behind Chicago) and is 3rd in the nation in purchase of renewable power.

3.) Portland (OR)
The perennial favorite in all sustainable city rankings, Portland has many admirable features that demonstrate a commitment to the low-carbon economy.  I have been to Portland dozens of times and I can’t get enough of it.  For a relatively small city, it has an impressive public transit system, several (4) universities actively committed to sustainability and an amazing number of LEED certified buildings (127).  With so much going on for them, it is no wonder Portland aims to be “the most sustainable city in the world by investing in high performance buildings and green streets, ecosystem restoration, businesses that create sustainable economic opportunities for all, green and healthy affordable housing, and social equity policies and practices.”

2.) Seattle
Seattle, another Pacific Northwest city used to being on sustainability city rankings, usually behind Portland, occupies second place in this ranking.  Former Mayor Greg Nickels actually launched the U.S. Mayors for Climate Protection (which earned Seattle an extra point in my system).  The Seattle area has 6 universities committed to the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) and is home to the Bainbridge Graduate Institute one of the first and best MBA programs in the world dedicated exclusively to sustainability education.  Seattle has among the most LEED certified buildings in the U.S. (132), has an active clean tech investing sector, and is home to the country’s first major utility to become carbon neutral.

1.) San Francisco
Where do I start?  I believe it all starts with political leadership and commitment. San Francisco is one of only three cities which made the final screening who are members of the U.S. Mayors for Climate Protection, Clinton 40, the Carbon War Room and ICLEI.  Like Seattle, it has a very proactive university community with 11 members of AASHE and is also home to Presidio Graduate School, another one of the first and best dedicated sustainable MBA programs in the world.  San Francisco also has the largest number of LEED certified buildings per capita in the U.S. and has an active clean tech investment community. It is home to probably the largest impact investment conference in the world, SOCAP.   San Francisco ranked in the top 3 in every category I evaluated and deserves to be crowned the “coolest” Climate-Ready City in the U.S. for 2011.

Here are the breakdowns of the ratings on each category for the top 10 cities.

Political Commitment (1-4 points) University Rankings Transit Rankings Investment Rankings Green Building Rankings GHG Rankings Cumulative Rankings
San Francisco, CA 4 1 2 3 1 1 1
Seattle, WA 4 3 3 3 3 3 2
Portland, OR 3 2 6 None 2 2 3
Washington, DC 4 8 3 5 5 8 4
Denver, CO 2 5 8 None 4 4 5
San Diego, CA 3 4 7 None 6 6 6
New York, NY 2 9 1 2 10 5 7
Philadelphia, PA 3 7 4 6 9 7 7
San Jose, CA 4 10 10 1 8 9 9
Chicago, IL 2 6 5 None 7 10 10


In a previous post I highlighted some of the politically elected leaders, conservative and liberal, who have been taking bold measures to transition their countries and communities towards a low-carbon future.  Some of my top 10 included previous and current U.S. Mayors who are active in theU.S. Mayors for Climate Protection initiative.  This is a group of mayors which now number more than 1,000 who have committed their cities to be leaders in the “war” on climate change as my friends at the Carbon War Room would say.

What is most important about this quest is that if we refocus our efforts on the right solutions soon enough, we can mitigate the worst of climate change while actually improving our city economies and growing corporate profits.  Hunter Lovins and I recently published a book entitled Climate Capitalism to share stories of cities and companies around the world who are profiting from that transition to the low carbon economy.

Just last week, the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) announced the launch of its CDP for Cities Program.  At the launch, London’s Mayor Johnson commented: “Cities are firmly at the vanguard of the global charge to deliver large scale carbon reductions and energy efficiencies. In seeking to set the pace and work together, cities have immense clout to stimulate low carbon world markets to unleash economic opportunities for their citizens.”

*No ranking is perfect and I hope to improve on this in coming years and also to do separate rankings for small and medium sized cities.  Of course it would be ideal to find or to generate standardized baseline GHG emissions for each city which hopefully the CDP for Cities will eventually generate.  Also ICLEI and the C40 just announced plans to create a city-based global standard for reporting GHG emissions which should make comparisons in the future much easier.

Please provide us comments on our rankings including suggestions for cities not ranked or new variables we should include for the next iteration.


Boyd Cohen is the CEO of CO2 IMPACT, a carbon origination company based in Vancouver, Canada and Bogota, Colombia. Boyd is also the co-author of Climate Capitalism: Capitalism in the Age of Climate Change.

Over the past decade we’ve seen the cost of construction rise steadily until two years ago, when sub contractor labor rates flattened and then began to decline. From a pricing standpoint, this is certainly the best time to build a mountain house in years. What kind of savings are we looking at?  My estimate based on current quotes from subcontractors would be 12-15% although the amount could be higher depending on materials and construction methods employed. In real terms, that’s enough savings to pay to furnish the home, and add a solar array for sustainable energy independence. Bottom line. If you’re thinking of building your dream home, despite what all the economic pessimists might have to say, this industry expert believes the time to begin design is NOW!

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