Style is taking its cue from fruit this week, introducing creative and fun ways to literally add some freshness and flavor to your home or office decor

Steve Sue, the founder and Chief Lemon Head of Lemonade Alley, recently asked me to speak to the kids in this entrepreneurship contest about designing their lemonade stands. I was happy to do it because it involved three things I love: design, charity and kids!

Can you guess the No. 1 tip I gave them? Hint: Think outside-the-box designer look. If you said it was coming up with a creative, cohesive concept, you’ve been paying attention.


This week’s column was inspired by lemonade, so here are three examples of how decorating with fruit can add touches of creativity and cohesiveness to interior designs.


In the Manoa residence I shared with you last week, I wanted to tie in the warm dining room with the cool kitchen. On the kitchen island, I made a playful arrangement by mixing a bowl of white ceramic lemons with a single fresh yellow one. This mix echoed the home’s modern style in the coolness of the white, while bringing in warmth with the earthy brown vessel and fresh lemon.

In a Waialua beach house, I again used lemons on the island, only this time the vessel was the attention grabber. Placing the lemons in a glass fish not only echoed the ocean theme, it also created a super easy, whimsical display that was practical because the family loves to squeeze lemon onto the fresh fish they cook.


Finally, in one of the lunchrooms at Y. Hata & Co., I placed a single chrome dish with fake green apples as a low-maintenance centerpiece for this commercial space. The color tied in with the apple-green color of the core value boards I designed for the walls, drawing the space together and giving it a modern, fresh appeal.


Being creative and cohesive with your space doesn’t take a professional. As I pointed out in my design workshop with the kids, anyone can do it. For Lemonade Alley, my daughter Nicki’s team, Celestial Citrus, is planning a creative, cohesive futuristic stand in silver, black and yellow, along with a lemonade that is out of this world.


She’ll be part of this one-day contest to see who can raise the most money for their charity. Kids from kindergarten to 12th grade will come up with their own lemonade recipe, design and create their own lemonade stand, create a business plan and present a sales pitch to the judges. It’s a really great all-around competition.

The contest takes place in the Pearlridge parking lot between Uptown and Downtown on Saturday, April 12 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., when all the teams will be selling their lemonade. You can find more information at

Cathy Lee is a home style expert, speaker, president and designer of Cathy Lee Style. Her redesigns of residential and business spaces have been featured in local and national publications and on HGTV. reStyle Hawaii, her new-concept furniture and home accents store, is open daily at 420 Keawe St. in Kakaako. For more information and inspiring photos of design projects visit