Here are 10 of the really important design elements that everyone needs in to make their bedroom a true “design statement”.

1. A Statement Nightstand

Make it interesting and unusual—not just that same old skirted table from the 1980’s.

2. A Striking Mirror

Something like this stunning antique that really stands out against all of this white. But it doesn’t have to be an antique, a painted mirror in an unusual color works too.

3. Vibrant Art

A stylish painting adds a bold accent to any personal space.

4. Comfortable Throw Pillows

Plush bedding includes comfy pillows. Please not too many. No one wants to spend hours taking then off at night or putting them back on in the morning. Remember “less is more”.

5. A Distinctive Headboard

In this bedroom the headboard is almost the entire wall. Really unusual headboard treatments are the latest design must.

6. A Stand-Out Rug

With a great rug, who doesn’t want to just hop out of bed and wiggle your toes in it.

7. An Eye Catching Light Fixture

Want your bedroom to be truly romantic and glamorous, add a chandelier. A little glitz goes a long way in making this bedroom really spectacular.

8. A Personal Library

Even if you are hooked on “Nook”—-Everyone needs a variety of reading material in their bedroom for those nights when it’s hard to sleep. Besides, books always make a room look cozy.

9. A Cozy Seating Area

Some comfy chairs to curly up in with that great book or just to watch TV are a necessity.

10. A Pop of Color

Bold fabrics or art always add interest to any room. Don’t forget to add color even in your bedroom.

Thanks for reading my blog. Hope you enjoyed it and remember





Transform that dated ranch-style house into a rocking mid-century dream with just the wave of your design wand.

The kitchen is usually the first room a homeowner wants to work on.

It originally had dated wallpaper and cabinets. The homeowners removed all the walls between the kitchen, dining and living areas to create a totally open space. A new island was also added.

Folding windows connect the indoor and outdoor entertainment areas.

The entry originally also had really dated wallpaper, pale green carpet and a metal banister.

The wallpaper was replaced with crisp, pale gray paint. The railing was modernized with satin nickel hardware and glass.  Lastly, the green carpet was replaced with maple hardwood.

The front doors horizontal lines and the clean lines of the glass really scream “simplicity”. To add to that mid-century look, nothing says it more than a wonderful black and white photo.

One of the original bathrooms had a very awkward floor plan and really tired floral wallpaper along with institutional, cold and unflattering lighting. The wonderful, over-sized window looks out onto a tranquil rock garden complete with a large Buddha statue. It has that “at home” spa quality.

Finally, the last room to be renovated was the family room with a traditional and tired, off-center fireplace that had to go. 

In its place a contemporary fireplace that is centered on the wall was installed. Now the room has a sophisticated neutral palette with warm gray wool carpeting.

Most houses really have pretty good “bones”. So out with the dated features and in with the new, crisp and contemporary ones.

Thanks again for reading my blog and remember to “always color outside the lines”.




Want to make improvements in your home. You are not alone. Most homeowners desire to remodel stems from one of the following five causes.

1. Improve the look and function.

Make you house truly your home by doing something.  If it is only painting or adding some new furniture— that’s a start. But why not love where you live? If major changes are in store, then hire a professional to help you through it.

2. Space optimization and better storage.

Whether in the kitchen, master closet or anywhere in the house, functional spaces that keep everything organized and create additional storage are every homeowners dream.

3. Improve energy efficiency.

Often the problem is improperly sealed windows or an inefficient heating and air conditioning system. But upgrading to more efficient products is a must for many homeowners. If you are not sure about your homes performances, have a professional do an energy audit.

4. Incorporating new technology.

Perhaps new technology is a new media room, wireless network or simply automated blinds. Technology is different for everyone.

5. Upgrade appliances.

New appliances do not always mean a full remodel unless, the new ones are a different size. It is very difficult to install a 48″ Wolf range into a standard 30″ space. Depending on the age of your home, there could be cabinet size issues.

Is there a renovation in your future? What’s your reason?

Thanks for reading my blog and remember “always color outside the lines”.







We really don’t follow a secret rule book when it comes to design guidelines. There are no hard and fast rules that dictate what we do as designers. We often use our intuition and experience to guide us but often it is just how the final room look in our mind that determines what we do.

Here are a few trick that anyone can do to help them develop a designers “eye”.

1. Resist the urge to over do a theme.

The “beach house” look is a very popular request. The standard hallmarks: beadboard, blue and white color theme, driftwood, sailboats painting. Just try not to draw too heavily on the standard clichés.

2. The art of arranging furniture on a rug.

All on: The rug is large enough to place all the furniture legs on top. “Bigger is Better” and therefore a more luxurious look. Just make sure you have at least 12″ to 18″ of floor showing on all sides.All off: In small rooms, keeping all legs off the rug is a cost effective choice. Just don’t pick too small a rug. It can really look skimpy and insignificant—an afterthought. It really should touch or be under the front legs of all the furniture. It also ties the seating arrangement together better if at least the front legs are on. This especially looks great layered on another rug. 3. Pick the paint color last. 

Many people want to paint first, before any of the rest of the room is decided and before they move in.

There are thousands of paint colors in every shade, tint and tone. Each one looks different from room to room depending on natural and artificial light. You want a color that best complements your furnishings, artwork, and rugs. At least have a plan when it comes to paint. Decide on some of your furnishings first and then pick a paint color that complements them.4. Hang art at the correct height.

Galleries and museums hang artwork so that the center of each piece is approximately 60″ from the floor. This should also be the case in your home. The average human eye level is 57″.

In rooms with really high ceilings, there might be a tendency to hang the art higher. Please resist the urge. There is nothing worse than looking up at a beautiful piece of art.

5. Float your furniture.

Don’t push everything up against the wall. Remember that conversation groupings make for a cozier feel than shouting at your company from across the room.

Also, you don’t need to fill up a space with lots of furniture. Spend more of your budget on fewer but better quality pieces.

Gracious living means space to maneuver with ease.

6. Add layers of lighting.

Designers build layers of lighting to create interest, variety and drama. In a room where everything is lit evenly, nothing stands out.

General ceiling lights that enables you to clean the room is first. Then second is task lighting, like lamps, for reading. Finally, adding accent lights that highlight a focal point or artwork are added for drama. Stay tuned for my next six decorating tips coming soon.

And always remember to

“color outside the lines”





When you hit a design dilemma in your home and think “something just isn’t right” then take you cue from what photo stylists do to solve the problem.

You will be thrilled with the results.

1. Use a color thread throughout multiple rooms to bring unity to connecting spaces.

You don’t have to use the exact colors in each room. Using various hues and applying layer of color make the rooms flow naturally.

2. Add a pop of red.

Just a hint of red is all you need to grab your attention and make your room more interesting. You don’t have to love the color to appreciate it in small amounts.

3.Less is more.

Don’t over accessorize every square inch of your home. Just like looking in the mirror and taking off one piece of jewelry– the same applies to accessories in your home.

4. Display your collections in one place.

Your collections spread out all over the room looks like clutter. They have much more impact and importance when grouped together.

5. Buy bouquets of the same flower.

Don’t buy those prepackaged flower bouquets with a mix of colors and different flowers. A group of one kind of flower with have more impact. Carnations are even back in style and are inexpensive. You can have a fresh arrangement all the time.

6. Go graphic.

When possible add wallpaper, stencil or paint a graphic on the wall.

7. Add real greenery to a room.

The room breathes. Live plants bring the outside in and improve the air quality of the room. A real plant adds life to a room.

8. Use white towels.

There is something so pristine about white towels in a bathroom. It says your home is really clean. Why not try some of these ideas to give your home that styled magazine polish and finesse.

Let me know what you think and don’t forget to









Well, maybe not really bullet-proof but upholstery that will stand up to wear from kids and dogs. The kind of upholstery that looks really great and comfortable and doesn’t look like it is make out of granite.

Technology has really helped when it comes to fabric. Engineered textiles look increasingly like their natural counterparts but they can withstand wear and tear better. Many natural materials are nearly as durable. It all depends on what you choose.

The engineered fabrics that stand up the best to kids and pets are the ones originally designed for use on the patio.

But don’t be afraid to use indoor-outdoor fabrics indoors. The look is great and no one can tell it was originally intended for outdoors.

Solution-dyed acrylics are your best bet for a soft and supple feel. Popularized by Sunbrella and often referred to generically by that name, these textiles are available in a wide variety of colors and patterns that mimic everything from tweeds to velvets. They resist fading and spills. Even chlorine bleach won’t damage them.

Ultrasuede is another fabric that you can spill anything on it and it doesn’t stain. It is often used in commercial installations because of its durability and stain resistance.

Leather, especially distressed leather, will help you not worry about stains or scratches. The blemishes on distressed leather only add to its charm and helps hide a multitude of sins.

Of course, slipcovers solve lots of problems. Especially ones that can be thrown in the washer are a lifesaver if you have kids and pets. Many cotton fabrics or cotton/synthetic blends wash beautifully. Just make sure that the fabric will not snag or fray too easily.

Even if the slipcover is labeled “dry clean only”, you might be able to launder it. Use cold water, gentle cycle and avoid the dryer. I usually let mine dry a little and put it back on the furniture damp so it will form to the piece.






A little pattern can make all the difference in a room.

It doesn’t just have to be from upholstery either. Pattern can also liven up cabinetry and wood furniture.

Take a walk on the wild side.

Who doesn’t love a splash of animal print? Especially when it is just a tiny splash.

Or how about an animal print in an off beat color–like these carved ottomans covered in blue leopard velvet in an otherwise brown room?

That special secret!!!

This bright white breakfast room conceals a secret. The high backed chairs hide their pattern. revealing it only on the inside.

Nail It.

How about a striking but subtle pattern of nail head against a stark white background of this chest.

Carve it up.

A carved blood red cabinet can’t help but be the focal point in this very exotic, black room. The intricate carving provides all the pattern required.

Curiosity cabinet.

A beautiful inlaid cabinet of mother of pearl and ebony add an exotic air to this room.

The more, the merrier.

A different black and white pattern on every side of the chair—-shocking!!! Throw in a black chair with a red seat for good measure and you have a fabulous collection and a beautiful room.

 So, go out and pattern up your rooms. Be brave and “may the (design) force be with you”.









Every year, Pantone (the color people) surveys the globe and crowns it’s Color of the Year—– the hue predicted to make a big splash in the months ahead. For 2014, the color is Radiant Orchid, a vibrant shade somewhere between fuschia and violet.

Orchid is a feminine color, but you don’t have to be female to like it or wear it. It’s a fun color and great to wear.Once you start seeing any color in women’s fashion, you can be assured that soon to follow is in interiors. There was a lot of fashion windows in London last year showing orchid.

“It is a beautiful color—such a vibrant, romantic color. It complements many people’s skin tones. I’m sure we will see a lot of it at the Acadamy Awards” says Nancy Woodhouse, senior designer for Gabberts.

 Designers have started asking for orchid tones in fabrics and wallcoverings.

Orchid is a good complement to other currenly popular colors in interor design, including the greys and browns. Radiant Orchid is a magical and captivating cross between fushia and purple.
Because these shades tend to dominate spaces, try introducing them in small doses and pairing them with darker funishings and colors.Or try Radiant Orchid in a lighter tone for the walls. Here it is mixed with stark white.

So for the after New Years “pick me up” why not buy an orchid for your table in Radiant Orchid and see how you like it.



My clients are always asking me “what are the new treads in interiors that are coming up” So lets talk about some of the upcoming trends for the new year 2014 as seen at High Point Market this last October.

As far as color goes—purple, blues and grays are in. Gray is the new neutral to look for next year.

So if cool colors like purple, blue and gray are in then what about metals finishes!!!

BRASS is definitely on the rise. After all those years of removing every trace of shiny brass from your home and replacing it with oil-rubbed bronze–brass is back. This is one way to warm up a room that is painted in cool colors.

Shagreen is a growing trend. This is really faux shark skin with a fancy name. It has been around for some time now having resurged from the art deco era of the 30’s and 40’s.Here is what shagreen looks like up close. It can be dyed any color but white, celedon and of couse gray are the most popular colors for shagreen. 

And the most important new tread is Mid-Century Modern. If you wait long enough everything recycles– even the stuff us baby boomers grew up with in the 50’s. But the look is really fresh and new. People are loving the clean lines and simplicity of mid-century. 



Poor ceiling!!!! They are often the forgotten and negleted area of the room. All the time they have so much potential. Treat them like they are the fifth wall and paint them.

Warm colors tend to advance and cool colors recede, so if you want to visually raise your ceiling height then stick to cool tones. On the other hand, if you have high ceilings and want to make your room more cozy then paint your ceiling with a warmer hue.

When selecting a ceiling color, take a cue from a color the appears somewhere else in the room. You will create visual harmony and your eye will move around the room.

Here are 7 rooms that feature a ceiling color. So get out that paint brush!!!

Use color to accentuate interesting architectural features in your home. This room has lots of contrast and really holds your interest as you take in all of its  elements.

Here is an example of how you can visually lower a tall ceiling using color. With the hot pink ceiling color extended down the wall a foot , this room has a fun fibe and feels like a cozy sanctuary.

This watery blue is another soothing color that is perfect for any room. Pair it with white, tan or gray for a crisp, calming look.

Many people are just plain afraid of a little color. Here the ceiling color coordinates with accessories and fabric to tie the room together.

With a little creativity you can add  real “pow” to a room.

In small rooms, a great way to achieve a sense of spaciousness is by painting the walls and ceiling the same color. This actually makes the space appear larger because there is less contrast.

So LOOK UP and consider the possiblities. Ceilings have told me they are tried of being painted white.