Succession Living

Excellence in Design Stands Time: Laufen Bathrooms #BlogTourNYC

By | #BlogTourNYC, Design Fundamentals, Multi-Generation, Succession Living | One Comment

Laufen Bathrooms: Wow.

Swiss manufacturer Laufen was one of our sponsors for #BlogTourNYC @Modenus. In today’s post I want to share some helpful links and my personal thoughts regarding the product and company. Spotlighting any brand on Couture Chateau is something I take very seriously as you, our faithful readers and clients know. Discretion does not shout from the rooftops. Trust is hard won.

Laufen Company

Click on this photo to be taken to Laufen’s page on their history. Well worth the time. I love how they steward excellence and human capital. It’s not just about product. It’s about people = true legacy.

That said, I am absolutely delighted to share today about Laufen. Their partnership with Kartell and Designer @palombaserafini is a win-win.

Laufen Product Designer

Click on this photo to be taken to an article on Kartell by Laufens’ website. It is a fabulous read into the partnership with Ludovica+Roberto Palomba.

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3 Reasons @WilsonArt Inspires as a Brand #BlogTourNYC

By | #BlogTourNYC, Design Fundamentals, Succession Living | No Comments

Three Reasons @WilsonArt Inspires as a Brand #BlogTourNYC

This past month during @Modenus Blog Tour we had a behind the scenes treat while at ICFF, my colleagues and I were introduced to the Student Designers sponsored in this years @WilsonArt Design Competition. As a benefactor brand (if I can use that terminology, mine, not theirs) I was impressed with the level of curated instruction and access WilsonArt brought to the table.

Here is a quick video on one of the competitors which I highlight. My sons are avid backpackers and hikers…hence this particular chair.

For a complete post from WilsonArt’s headquarters on the “Design Challenges” and Student Winner, Blossom, click HERE. Read More

Five Ways to Incorporate Steam Therapy in Your Ranch Property or Multi Generation Mountain Estate

By | #BlogTourNYC, Design Fundamentals, Income Property, Multi-Generation, Succession Living | One Comment

Fresh off Blog Tour New York, I am delighted to ponder how you, our valued clients and friends, can incorporate some of the products we had the honor of learning about first hand. Today’s post centers on one of the #BlogTourNYC sponsors: Mr Steam. We were treated to an incredible private steam at Aire Ancient Baths.

With Wyoming, Idaho and California Mountain projects swirling on summer drafting boards, my team and I discussed several ways we could incorporate this technology seamlessly into your multi-generational, multi-use, family ranch or mountain estate. We narrowed it to five (5) overall design schematics.

Let me know which you prefer and what your thoughts are. I love this part of being a Designer. As you well know, creativity and Read More

Luxury Design From Modenus Blog Tour During New York’s Design Week

By | Multi-Generation, Succession Living | No Comments

Designing space for your multiple generations is not always easy or seamless. Sometimes we find generations have different thoughts about style, function or even what constitutes Luxury Design in the moment. At Couture Chateau my team and I spend a great deal of time learning about the best design has to offer so we can educate you, our cherished client base. Once we educate, it’s time for edits.

facebook blog tour cover

Here is where wisdom comes in to play.

I like wisdom. It designs. It listens and learns. It also chooses. And edits fiercely.

How to share our newest discoveries so you can wisely edit? Tough call. There are so many. Over the next two weeks, we are compiling blog posts so you can glean the best and leave the rest. Here is a quick run down from our most recent trip.

Blog Tour Group

During Design Week, we traversed the country from San Francisco to New York courtesy of Modenus and touched base with:

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Blog Tour New York City

By | Design Fundamentals, Succession Living | No Comments

With great thanks, I am off to New York with Modenus for Blog Tour 2015. Make sure you are subscribed to Couture Chateau’s blog via email and follow #blogtour2015 #designeddaily & #legacylife for our succession minded design insights over this season.

Blog Logo

Couture Chateau LLC has the honor of being sponsored by several brands, all under Modenus’ Blog Tour NYC 2015 Banner

BlogTour-Badge-NewYork-eggplantincluding Laufen Bathrooms, Mr Steam, Wilsonart and Dacor Appliances, all linked. My team and I will showcase each of these in upcoming posts.

Veronika Miller, founder and hands on heart behind “the world designed” blog tours has toured the world covering brands, new product releases, interiors, trends, food, and of course design.

Dacor Range

Dacor is one of the Brand Sponsors for Kips Bay and Blog Tour NYC. I am beyond excited to see this piece in action, being a ‘range girl’ myself. The Kips Bay Showhouse installed this Dacor 48″ Gas Range, # RNRP48G. We will see it live on Thursday.

How excited am I? Incredibly. When the itinerary arrived two days ago, packing went into full swing. New York has a special place in my heart. Our first son was born at Lennox Hill Hospital and my husband and I lived and worked in New York two separate times in our 20’s for about 4 years.

We called both the upper east side and upper west side our homes. The dumbest thing we ever did? Not purchase the flat for $350K in the Musicians Building where we lived on West 67th just off the park….live and learn….#selah…. In my heart, it’s one of the reasons I am so passionate about legacy, succession and property as part of a beautifully designed life.

Our first official day will be with Dacor at the Kips Bay Decorator Showhouse. Make sure you are following us on Pinterest, HERE and HERE.

Kips Bay

Also, Facebook’s Couture Chateau Page HERE.

facebook blog tour cover

We are on Twitter @couturechateau and Instagram @annlmcdonald as well.

Releasing safe travels, laughter until we can hardly breathe and joy overflowing…


Ann McD.


Discretion is Missing: Why Legacy Philanthropic Lifestyle Design is A Lost Art by Ann McDonald

By | Design Fundamentals, Extended Absence, Multi-Generation, Succession Living | 2 Comments


  • the quality of behaving or speaking in such a way as to avoid causing offense or revealing private information.

There is something to be said for not shouting the price. Legacy Philanthropic Lifestyle Design understands why.


the price high of course, the value is honor paid to craftsmen and women who steward their best gift for beauty

There is also something to be said for understanding the cost. Legacy Philanthropic Lifestyle Design understand how.

Ann McDonald Humanitarian Work Amor Ministries in Mexico

we bring water to a camp out of the country so volunteers can serve others

There is a difference. Wisdom contains it.

I am from the Bay Area these days, less travel, more home. More virtual, less hustle. As a Decorator by trade, Designer by heart, I watch and long to pour into my clients and friends the lessons learned at discretion’s feet. The blessings that discrete curated processes of design provide to life and limb, mind, body and soul.

Curated discreet spaces. The kind that hold and nurture not the kind that scream and shout. The kind that build legacy and curate hope, not the kind that scream “look at me, I’m designed!”, the kind that breed safety and acceptance not the kind that shout judgment and condemnation.

Couture Chateau Alternate Ad Picture for Brandon

custom crafted from antique historic columns it brings discreet soul to new construction

Space changes us. Designed space really changes us. Cathedrals and prisons are designed spaces. Ponder that for a minute. At the core, someone somewhere understood that space designed changes people.


If I could give my next gen Designers one thing: Discretion. If I could give my “why isn’t my design business working” friends Read More

Decorating a Family Trust Owned Property, Solving Problems Virtually by Ann McDonald, IIDA, NAPO

By | Design Fundamentals, Extended Absence, Income Property, Multi-Generation, Succession Living | No Comments

How We Decorate a Family Trust Owned Property over the Internet

Decorating a home is complicated enough. Add some storied family history, a new family member, a new board appointed trustee by way of Grandfather and the next generation with ideas of green vegan living in a changing environment and the mix can become toxic. What was once a lovely destination cabin on the remote plains of the middle west used for hunting and fishing is now the epicenter of Family Battle Chapter #13, all over a set of Quilts and the next phase of use: green living.

Log cabin ranch-style behind pines

Capable of destroying legacy and leaving shrapnel for generations, this simple plot is enacted hundreds of times over in varying degrees in board rooms and over skype calls in Small Family Foundations world wide every month. Does not matter if it’s the America’s version of the middle west or a Yurt in the middle of Turkey. Seriously. The issues are the same. Legacy intersects children with trustee and/or wife  and/or over authority and stuff. The story is as old as Abraham. Older actually… Read More