Monday, March 16, 2015


"OTF" is a production term which means "on the fly" and refers to interviews given, you guessed it, ON THE FLY.  If you've seen any reality shows lately or home make-over programs, interviews with participants that aren't produced and get immediate reactions, are OTF's.  To stir things up a bit I've decided to take you on the road with me from time to time, as my search for items for clients often take me to unique destinations.  Wonder where I found the wooden chest I turned into a filing cabinet and placed in a Manhattan apartment? What about the bedpost I purchased, repainted and hung as art in a living room in Southern California? Well, in ON THE FLY with PhD I'll show you not only where I found an item and what I did to it, I'll give you a quick tour of the area...from Dining to Designing, OTF with PhD will take you into the cool places I see everyday, show you how to spot unique items for your home (and how to make them even better) and point you to the best salad or burger in the area.  So, hey, wanna come with me as I show you a cool place, OTF?
I'm designing a quaint country home for a client in the Hudson Valley, so my search (and research) for quintessentially Upstate New York country items took me to the lovely village of Rhinebeck, New York this afternoon.  While I've been to Rhinebeck several times, pulling into the main village area on Mill Street (Rte 9) makes me smile every time.  It's charming storefronts, lovely restaurants, dutch-inspired architecture and incredible selection of antiques makes you forget the noise and nonsense of Manhattan just ninety miles south.  The town shied away from the attention it received a few years ago when Chelsea Clinton took over the area for her wedding, as her entourage pulled away in flashy limousines, the local lightening bugs and butterflies continued their smooth dances across the peaceful sky.  I can't wait to come back to continue my journey of discovering new treats in Rhinebeck!
WHERE I ATE: There are several great restaurants along Mill Street and Market (the streets intersect at what is known as the "four corners"), but I've found the best salads and burgers at Terrapin.  If you want to escape the cries of weekend ornery children, head left into the bar for great beers and burgers.  Another favorite is Aroi Thai where the smell alone makes one drool!
WHERE I SHOPPED: While there are many quaint antique and boutique shops peppered around Rhinebeck, I love diving into the Rhinebeck Antique Emporium where I found four painted farmhouse chairs for $45.  Also, one of my go-to finders-keepers stops is a short drive south into Hyde Park, New York where I love the over 250 shops in the Hyde Park Antiques Mall.
WHAT I'LL DO WITH MY FIND: These chairs are not only a great price, they will be the perfect addition to my "modern farmhouse" design scheme.  While many would love the scraped painted look they currently display, I will sand them and paint them in a high-gloss black (or bright red, I haven't decided) breathing a new, more modern life into these ninety year old chairs!
WORTH A PEEK: In the heart of Rhinebeck is the Beekman Arms, which advertises itself as the "oldest Inn in America" and has a bar worth perching at for just a few minutes.
HOW TO GET HERE: If you're visiting the New York city area, I suggest renting a car as there are so many charming towns and villages along the Hudson River there are too many to name, but if you're pressed for time, hop on Amtrak at Penn Station and for about $45 round trip, you'll enjoy a gorgeous two and a half hour train ride along the Hudson River.
For more information on this jewel of the Hudson River Valley, visit