Dream Outdoor Space + MDD

I was asked by the folks at Bravo’s new hit show Million Dollar Decorators to create a dream outdoor space based on this inspiration image- a city roof deck perfect for lounging and dining. The timing is perfect since it’s finally outdoor weather here in the Northeast! Now, they said I could make it any shape, size, etc. so my layout is based on something similar tot his but with a more rectangular shape….

I immediately knew I wanted something modern but with a hint of tradition, black and white with a bold dash of color.  As most of you know, I’m very inspired by Mary McDOnald’s style and I think this space kind of reflects her glamour with my own personal love of laid back living. So here’s the board I came up with….

And here’s my concept for a layout- dedicated spaces for lounging, sunbathing and dining- what more could you want in a roof deck (well, in previews for this week’s episode, I know Martyn thinks a pool would make it “delicious”!)

Here are the sources and notes for the board above!
1. Hedges planted atop side walls.
2. Back pillows of banquette in white Sunbrella fabric trimmed in Kravet Coral outdoor
3. Banquette seat cushions in Perennials Big Stripe in Black Tie.
4. Wally Wall via Design Within Reach.
5. Planter via Design Within Reach.
6. Custom designed banquette by Erin Gates Designs.
7. Banquette pillows in Trina Turk Fronds Outdoor fabric through F. Schumacher.
8. Dining Chairs by Obrien Ironworks.
9. String lights (woven into trellis above dining table) via Restoration Hardware.
10.  Lanterns above dining table via Tazi Designs.
11. Fire table via Restoration Hardware.
12. Stone greyhounds via Restoration Hardware.
13. Dining Table via Restoration Hardware.
14. Chaises via Janus et Cie.
15. Garden stool via Mecox Gardens.
16. Chaise lumbar pillows in Perennials City Kitty.
17. Chaise in coral Kravet outdoor fabric piped in black Kravet outdoor fabric.
18. Retractable awning above banquette.
19. Outdoor rug via Home Decorators Collection.


  1. Lovely outdoor space! Great job. I was a little curious about your title though; I work in the pharmaceutical industry, so whenever I see “MDD” I think ‘major depressive disorder’. Glad I was way off :)

  2. Hah! Guess your great re-caps caught their attention! It was really fun to see your sketch, too. As a spacially-challenged person, these visual queues are so helpful to understand how a look really pulls together.

    I hope you share more of your real-life projects soon!

  3. I am surprised you were not more original. Copying ideas already seen on the show? huh? You are in the Northeast, right? Why not create something with that sensibility?!

  4. It’s very pretty but I don’t think fire table in 85 degree weather. It looked good in Courtney Cox’s place that you featured 2 weeks ago but that is a bigger area. A Northeast rooftop is much smaller. Nice for the fall though.

    I saw your tips in Better Homes & Gardens this month.

  5. Erin, this translates into a very underwhelming post. I get that #MDD is sinking in ratings and reaching out to big name bloggers such as yourself. You shouldn’t underwhelm your readers and water down your brand. You are not a designer by trade, and it shows into these types of posts. I urge you to sticking to what you know, your readers will be happier.

  6. Haha. The ” you aren’t a designer by trade” made me laugh out loud! I had a rough day, so I enjoyed the silly, and utterly incorrect comment.

  7. Last year we won a decking contest from trex – we live in Lincoln Park in chicago and have a totally urban rooftop deck. Eddie Ross was assigned as our designer and the actual deck construction (reconstruction) starts next week. We are pumped and my design concept for the extras is totally similar to this – lots of seating, big planters, and black and whites for the fabric. Love your inspiration/layout!

  8. Regardless of how “delicious” the pool would be, how the hell do you engineer after-fact-fact for a pool?? can that even be done without major support from below? Cannot wait to see what you come up with!! would love to see you on Bravolicious!!!

  9. OMG- literally, I fell asleep the other night watching the episode with Tamara Mellon and then had a dream that I lived in her RIDICULOUS NYC apartment and was having a super glam party in her outdoor space. *dream on sista* haha!
    But I love what you did here!!!!!! GORG!

  10. Love that you went with coral, black & white. Of course, I could be kinda partial, since that’s the color scheme I chose for my front porch. Nice job.

  11. I am going crazy over here. I just had a discussion about this same subject with my father and he wouldn’t believe me. With your blog I can prove him I am wright and he’s wrong! Thanks

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