Posts belonging to Category Home Design



A SUMMER QUIZ

“Your home is your personal canvas – a place for celebrating Beauty”.

 

Here’s a little quiz I’ve put together, to re-vitalize your home decorating skills during these hot, lazy summer days.

Please note, this is intended to be fun!

Even better – your answers will not be graded.

 

Question #1:

Summer is the worst time of year to even consider an interior design project.
T or F

False. If you are thinking of re-decorating, or having a picture perfect new dining room by the holidays, NOW is the time to kick things into high gear!

Especially if your plans involve anything custom, or lining up vendors and/or contractors – you need to plan several months ahead.

Why?

Most workrooms and manufacturers have a cutoff date for the holidays. If you wait too long, your dream project simply won’t happen in time.


Question #2:

The best, and most obvious, reason to hire an interior design is because you can afford to do so. T or F

False. The best reason to hire an interior designer is when you’re feeling completely overwhelmed, and short on time & ideas.

Not to mention having access to a much broader scope of resources, for whatever your heart desires.

By the way, if you love interior design and are always re-arranging things in your home, check out this link – especially if you frequently worry “Am I doing this right?


Question #3:

Working with an Interior Designer can sometimes lead to bargains. T or F

True. Some designers will pass along showroom discounts; other times, you might be lucky enough to score exactly the item you are looking for – on Sale – at an exclusive designer showroom.

(more…)

HOW TO WRITE YOUR BIO – WITHOUT USING WORDS!

Did you know that your home is a reflection of who you are? 

Yes, it’s literally like looking in a mirror.

Except that, you won’t see your face staring back at you.

What you WILL see is different aspects of your personality and all phases of your life – up until this point in time.

Pretty cool, huh?

The way you furnish your home, it’s like writing your bio.

But instead of words, you’re using color, texture, and various materials and furnishings to tell the story of who you are.

It is a story, by the way.

And it’s the perfect Bio.

Who better than you to tell it like it is?

Keep reading to see how you can write your story.

 

Look to the Past

It’s hard to escape the past.

We have memories –good and bad – that follow us wherever we go.

The secret is to delve into those memories and recapture moments from your past that complement how you live today.

If something no longer serves you, remove it.

Whatever resonates – keep it.

Like it or not, your home reflects all the different stages of your life.

It’s what made you who you are today.

 

Embrace the Present

Good design tells a story and it’s one that engages and envelops you.

(more…)

HOW TO ACHIEVE INNER ‘SERENITY’

“TO:  The Supreme Pontiff Julius II           

FROM:  M. Buonarroti, artist

RE:  Interior Decorating

Most Holy Father,

It grieves me that your Holiness is unhappy with the progress on the Sistine Chapel.

Admittedly, it’s taken a little time and we’re into a slight cost overrun, but Your Holiness must admit this isn’t something that can be done with a numbered kit.

It’s hard on the neck, too. And, while you don’t do the shopping,You must know the price of fresco colors is out of sight! A couple more years should do it.

Your obedient servant,

Michelangelo

P.S. I beg to point out to Your Holiness that there is nothing in the contract about scraping the sash in the Vatican Refectory. As I’ve said before, I don’t do windows.”

(From an ancient account in Rome’s Vatican Library. Date has been effaced, but is believed to be circa AD 1510)

 

Yes, you read correctly.

This excerpt was written by that Michelangelo, the one of Sistine ceiling fame.

I happen to love this quote!

It’s a page straight out of history, yet – despite the passage of 500 years – not a lot has changed.

It could just as easily have been written yesterday.

Truth be told, the first time I heard this was at a meeting, where the speaker read it aloud before a room full of interior designers.

You can be sure it got a good laugh.

However, I think just about anyone can relate to Michelangelo’s words.

For example, if you’ve ever taken on a project that ran into cost overruns, or was not completed on time, this letter will sound painfully familiar.

Then there’s the part about the “numbered kit”.

Did such a thing even exist back then? (Apparently so).

What Michelangelo was basically saying, was that painting the Sistine ceiling was not just any old work of Art.

His letter makes plain that this was part of a very involved process – one that could not be rushed.

(more…)

HOW TO ACHIEVE ‘PEACE OF MIND’

According to a recent study “the state of your home has a direct impact on your Relationships, your Self-Esteem & your overall Happiness”.

 

I thought I’d take a moment to explain the inspiration behind Designer-in-a-Box – specifically the three packages that I offer.

Let’s begin then, with the very first tier, the one I call Peace of Mind.

Why that particular name? Where did it come from?

Well, perhaps this describes you…

Is your home filled with furniture you bought years ago (in college, maybe?), or with things that someone else chose?

Maybe even leftover from a previous relationship?

So, here’s the thing.

If your home no longer reflects who you are, it’s like dragging a heavy weight around with you every day.

(Remember that study? Your happiness depends on this!)

Now, change the picture.

Visualize yourself coming into a home that truly supports your health and well-being and reflects the essence of who you are.

That is what I call Peace of Mind.

And, as I’ve mentioned, Peace of Mind also happens to be the name of the intro package I’ve created for my ultimate DIY interior design program– DESIGNER IN A BOX.

Of course, these words could mean something else entirely.

(more…)

CELEBRATE YOUR INNER DESIGNER

Next week marks the annual observation of our national holiday – the 4th of July.

For many of us, that means barbecues and fireworks – traditions we’ve held onto since childhood.

But sometimes, we tend to forget what the holiday is all about.

July 4th  is also known as Independence Day.

As you know, this harkens back to a time in our nation’s history when we first declared our independence from the mother country.

The signing of the Declaration of Independence made this moment official.

Webster’s Dictionary defines independence as:  1.The state or quality of being independent; freedom from dependence; exemption from reliance on; self-subsistence of maintenance; direction of one’s own affairs without interference.

As you can see, there are many ways to declare ones independence.

Most of us have approached this phase of our lives during our late teens and twenties, when we tend to break away from our parents influence and strike out on our own.

Others, such as my grandparents, declared their independence by leaving behind their homeland, and immigrating to the United States, dreaming of the possibilities for themselves and their families.

Independence, after all, is all about Freedom.

(more…)

IS DESIGNER IN A BOX FOR YOU?

If you’ve been reading my blog lately, then you know that I’ve been gearing up to launch my brand new Interior Design Program DESIGNER IN A BOX.

And I’m guessing you have some questions.

Perhaps the most pressing one – correct me if I’m wrong – is this:

How do you know if Designer in a Box is right for you?

Well, here’s a hypothetical scenario:

Let’s say you’ve decided to redecorate your living room and create a space that is invitingly cozy and comfortable and reflects everything you are passionate about.

So, you head over to your favorite big-box furniture store that is currently having a big Sale.

An eager and attentive salesperson comes to your aid, and ultimately convinces you to buy a beautiful white, leather sofa.

You are certain this is exactly what you need.

A few days later, the sofa is delivered to your home.

You’re surprised to learn that it is a little large for the space – you thought it was such a perfect fit!

And while you still think the sofa is attractive, you’re not quite so sure anymore that you’ve made the correct choice.

So you call your mother, and some friends.

(more…)

HOW TO BE A SAVVY DESIGNER

In the past few months, the hotel where I routinely stay in Asheville, NC, has undergone a complete overhaul – taking the newly remodeled lobby entrance from drab to “wow”!

At least, that was my first impression, upon entering the revolving front doors.

I thought the new décor was fun and vibrant, and instantly uplifting.

Later, I asked my fellow attendees what they thought, and the response was surprising.

“I think it’s ridiculous,” said one person.

“It’s stupid,” said another. “It isn’t safe.”

I saw immediately what was going on.

“Ah,” I said. “That’s the thing – it’s the difference between aesthetics and function.”

As an interior designer, I had initially observed the lobby from purely an aesthetic viewpoint.

But for those who’d actually been lounging in the chairs and sofas, their discomfort level was intense.

“The ottoman is too small & squishy for a big person,” was the explanation. “You could roll right off it.”

“Not to mention the chairs in the dining room,” someone else chimed in. “They’re much too small!

She predicted they wouldn’t last more than a year.

I was then reminded of the previous evening.

While seated in one of the deep, cushy sofas in the bar area, I had been acutely uncomfortable – unable to lean back against the pillows without my feet dangling off the floor.

My back was tired.

In other words, even though the aesthetic – or visual – experience might be a huge WOW, if the design isn’t also working from a functional – or practical – standpoint, then it has failed.

As an interior designer, these are the things I know.

(more…)

INTRODUCING: DESIGNER IN A BOX!

Are you ready to create the home of your dreams?  

Well, what if I told you there is now a fabulous on-line tool that can help you do just that?

I’m thrilled to announce my brand new Interior Design program – DESIGNER IN A BOX – the Ultimate DIY Course for designing your own home!

A little over a year ago, I came up with the idea to introduce an Interior Design program in the form of an on-line tutorial.

“Wouldn’t it be great,” I thought, “To have an on-line tool that helps you design the home of your dreams?”

The creative wheels have been turning ever since.

It’s moments like these that remind me why I created this program in the first place. 

It’s because I truly believe everyone deserves to have a beautiful home!

Not only that, I believe access to professional interior design advice should be readily available and affordable to anyone.

In order to do this, I realized I would be sharing a lot of information that includes not just the A,B,C’s of interior design but also insider tips, worksheets and plenty of personal advice.

I specifically tailored this Home Study Course towards anyone who is a little more “hands on”, preferring to handle much of the design work yourself while having access to professional advice along the way.

My intention with this program is just that – to help you create a beautiful home that supports and nourishes you in every aspect of your life.

So, how do you know if Designer in a Box is right for you?

(more…)

DO YOU PAY THE TOLL?

On December 29, 2011, Seattleites found themselves with a new Toll Bridge.

While the bridge itself wasn’t new, the toll was.

For those not familiar with the Seattle area, we have two bridges that span Lake Washington – connecting the city, itself, with the suburbs and outlying areas.

I think it’s safe to say that hundreds of thousands of commuters rely on these bridges every single day.

So, enacting a toll was a really big deal.

Here’s what has happened since. Many commuters have simply refused to pay the toll. Instead, they are driving well out of their way and finding alternate routes.

They either travel across the second bridge – whether or not it is convenient to where they live or work – or they circumnavigate the lake completely.

What surprises me most about this, is that the folks who have chosen to drive around the lake or find alternate routes, don’t seem to be concerned about the extra distances they’re driving, or the additional expense for gas.

Meanwhile, for those who opt to pay the toll, the route into the City is straight sailing all the way – a huge improvement over snarled traffic jams that used to be the norm.

Of course, whether to pay the toll or not, that’s up to the individual and their unique circumstances.

In the end it’s all about choices.

The analogy here, is that we often make similar decisions when it comes to buying new furniture – whether to go all out and invest in superior quality and a better experience – the equivalent of paying the toll – or settling on something more affordable that fits our budget here and now.

(more…)

HOW TO DECORATE A LOG CABIN

In my FREE Offer “7 Ways to Create Harmony in Your Home”, I discuss the need to honor the architectural style of your home.

I also emphasize the need to keep in mind the century in which you live! 

What do I mean by this?

This past weekend, I realized I had the perfect example to share with you, sitting right in my own back yard, so to speak.

You see, my family owns a log cabin nestled in the woods.

This log cabin gives the impression of being straight out of “Little House in the Big Woods” – the acclaimed series of books by Laura Ingalls Wilder – although, unlike the cabin in the book, we do have electricity and running water.

Even so, it’s quaint and rustic, and cozy all in one package.

So, how does one decorate a log cabin?

How does one honor the unique style of architecture in such a home?

To my mind, the name alone evokes images of a quaint and rustic lifestyle, and that is a good place to start.

The location of the cabin also figures in and is always an important consideration. In this case, it’s in the woods – as I mentioned – with a river outside the front door.

In the off-season, the heat and water are turned off, and even though the climate is generally mild it can still get very cold and damp inside.

(These are always things to think about, regardless of where you live).

All of this would suggest nothing too fancy.

With that in mind, one could easily focus on the rustic style and invoke a traditional lodge look with lots of wood furnishings and chintz, and maybe a set of deer antlers above the stone fireplace.

I think you get the picture.

The interior is dark, by the way, due to all the logs that make up the frame of the cabin.

At times, adequate lighting is a challenge, especially at night.

One trick I’ve used to lighten things up, is to offset the darkness with creamy white, and other light colors – in the sofa cushions, towels and linens, and colorful throw pillows.

Another approach is to furnish the place with cast-offs from a previous residence.

You know, those things that many of us tend to have around the house that still have some life in them, but no longer serve a purpose?

(more…)