Saturday, July 31, 2010

Design Tip: Finding Inspiration

Coming up with the design of a space can sometimes be tricky, but if you find an element that inspires you it will be a piece of cake! Inspiration comes from so many things that it makes designing truly fun and it can come from things you might never have thought. Something as simple as a flower has so much more to inspire the d├ęcor than just color. The texture of the petals and leaves can be brought into the space through fabrics, wood detailing and even rugs or art. The glossy leaves of a Calla Lily for example, can inspire lacquered furniture, mirrors on the wall and a variety of accessories that provide sheen. The soft petal of the Calla Lily could be represented in fabrics and textiles as well as showcasing a sleek minimalistic style of less is more. These inspiration examples from a Calla Lily are how it inspires me, but you may interpret the flower differently. That’s what makes it so fun, there are truly endless possibilities when finding inspiration.  If you have an item you love, but not sure how to best let it inspire your space, call us and we can help you to create your perfectly inspired room.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Big Success in Staging to Sell!

This was one of our latest "Staging to Sell" projects that we did in Phoenix, AZ.  This was a home on the real estate market that we staged to present to potential home buyers.  The budget was quite low on this project so we made the most of it by staging "vignettes".  A vignette is a collection of a few furnishings.  In staging a home for the real estate market staging is all about painting a picture for the potential home buyer.  Vignettes help serve this purpose as well as helping to showcase areas that are not easily defined.  For example, instead of furnishing a living room with a complete set of sofas and chairs you can create a scene with a seating area of two chairs like we did in this project.  As you can see in the photo's above the two wing back chairs, ottoman, end table, and lamp create a cozy conversation area and home buyers can easily recognize as a living room.  Utilizing a vignette in this room we also made the space appear larger by not crowding too much furniture in.  Even though this home was only about 1200 square feet, when buyers walk through the home they feel an open, spacious feeling, and they can now envision themselves living here.  The staging of this particular home paid of big time as our clients had multiple offers in the first 30 days!  A huge success in the extremely slow Phoenix real estate market!     

Friday, July 2, 2010

Bathroom Project

Here's a fun bathroom project we did. Sadly, I don't have before pictures of it, but it was built in the 1940's so if you can imagine it, it had old discolored white and pink tiles! All I can say is details, details, details! I just love how we mixed all of the glass tile and the classic travertine stone tiles and trim pieces together with the gorgeous onyx stone for the backsplash. Don't you just love the way the glass sparkles! We even completed the bathroom with a river rock path along the floor made of broken tiles to lead you into the bathroom.



TDH Bathroom



TDH Bathroom Backsplash



TDH Bathroom Floor


TDH Bathroom Detail

The Design House Pictures

Here are some additional pictures of some other various projects we've done.

After


After

Before


Exterior House Design

New Home Construction







This is a home we helped design from the beginning stages of construction, so we were involved in all of the material specfications and in assisting with the floor plan. At the end or the building process we helped stage this home so it would be ready for the real estate market.

Commercial: Centennial Park Plaza




In this project we worked closely with a local builder partnered with Ed James, an architect, to select exterior and interior building materials, lighting, and signage for a Mixed-Use building. There are commercial shops on the lower level with a high-end apartment village above.

Calm Reflections: A Bedroom Redesign

Bedroom Before



Bedroom After



Nightstand After



Bedding After


This was a fun bedroom update that we just finalized the finishing touches for. Our client was recovering from cancer surgery and she needed a room she could relax in. We helped her out by giving her a soothing color palette she could ease into recovery with and she is absolutely loving the results! We repainted with a pale blue to freshen up the walls and and had custom curtains and euro pillows made of a gorgeous paisley to go with her new luxurious cream bedspread. A great way to cut costs in designing a bedroom is buying a "bed in a bag" set from a store and designing accent pillows from a different bedset that will pair well with yours. The end result gives you a custom looking bedset while allowing you to save your pennies. We created a headboard illusion by placing two fabulous grided mirrors just above the pillows and flanked them with relaxing black and white flower prints; all of which our client can enjoy while she lays in bed due to the position of closet mirrors. Yes we made those old closet mirrors work to our advantage! I love how all the simple textures and colors flow together in this room to create such a peaceful environment in an interesting way!

Warm Traditions: Family Room Remodel

Before - Family Room



Before - Family Room



After - Family Room



After - Family Room


In the Family Room we designed a plan that took out our clients old fireplace and large unframed mirror and gave them a nice larger double tiered fireplace complete with an onyx stone surround. We went with a classic white mantle to offset the gorgeous but possibly overpowering onyx, and I think it was a great pairing. The new quarter sawn oak wood flooring in a gorgeous medium toned finish runs right up to the onxy hearth and was a complete opposite of the old carpet and tile they had. We also tore out the old medium oak railing and replaced it with a larger classically designed dark stained oak newel post with painted white balusters. The dark oak newel post and handrail help define the stair rail and add visual interest. Not to mention the two tone look of the dark railing framing the white balusters will allow us to go with either dark or light cabinets when we complete the kitchen remodel down the road.

As for the furniture we replaced the old worn out blue leather sofas with a medium toned brown tufted leather sofa set with custom cushions. As this family room that you see from the front door also serves the purpose of the main tv gathering for the family it had to function as such but also look it’s best. One of the few seating arrangement options was to have a sofa and a loveseat in order to fit the whole family and still be able to view the TV. Often times in a smaller room this will create a problem because you will have two large sofas that are the same color and they seem redundant and blah, plus we weren’t even able to break up the blahness by a sofa table because there wasn’t enough room. We fixed this dilemma by selecting a medium brown leather that had multiple tones throughout it, so even though it was one color of leather there is some visual interest. On top of that we removed the new leather sofa cushion shells and stored them away for safe keeping (those might come in handy one day with grandkids!) and had them reupholstered in a gorgeous green paisley with accents of gold to warm it all up. Add on the custom pillows with a knubby tweed and a stripe with fringe and you have a gorgeous sofa set that is not only appealing visually, but sturdy and functional to hold up with a family of boys!



Some of the “to do’s” we put on our list at the start of this project was to design a solution for more controlled lighting and to fix the interesting wall that separated the family room from the living room. As for lighting we installed some recessed lights, a new decorative ceiling fan, and an entry chandelier all which were installed with dimmer switches. As for the wall, the two rooms are connected by a large vault, but the wall that separated them only went up about 8 feet and then there was shelf space. On top of just being odd looking with a post going through it, the function of the family room suffered due to the fact that sounds would echo as they were watching TV or listening to music. So we designed a plan that took the wall all the way up and preserved most of the shelving space so that we could add visual interest by displaying accessories up top. Plus, on the living room side of the wall we were able to add some fun trim to the wall to give it a great look like it was always supposed to be that way (living room pictures coming soon!) So with the wall in place we were able to install some rope lighting up top to highlight those fun accessories we added. Then we took down the outdated family photos (new ones will be displayed down the hallway “gallery”) and replaced them with a fun clock and a large relaxing picture that just beckons you to walk into it!

Bedroom Blues No More! – A Bedroom Remodel

Bedroom After



Bedroom After



Bedroom After



Bedroom After


Bedroom Before



Bedroom Before


Bedroom Before

As you can see in the before and after photo’s, this Master Bedroom took on quite a transformation with our designs. Some of our clients favorite things were wood moldings and trims steeped in traditional design, wallpaper, and love for the color blue. So what better way than to incorporate all of the things she loved than into her bedroom remodel! It was a great project and we were fortunate to have clients that like I said before actually like wallpaper and weren’t scared of it. And Yes! for all of you skeptics out there – wall paper is back! And what a wonderful wall treatment it is. Just don’t picture the old wallpaper of the past. In looking for wall paper look for new designs and use it sparingly, don’t just cover your house from top to bottom in it! So with that being said, we quickly took down the old wallpaper and choose a lovely blue metallic damask pattern and designed wood panels for it to go into. We then paired a slightly lighter blue paint with it for the walls and a gorgeous cream for the moldings. This allowed us to utilize a fun cream media armoire with the rest of the dark cherry stained furniture we selected. And again, Yes! of course you can use two different furniture finishes in one room – it adds to the interest! And with the armoire paired with the cream moldings it all flows together – the luscious cream offset by the dark cherry, delectable! And to finish the room we redesigned the old useless bay window into a comfortable framed window seat complete with a comfy cushion, pillows, and gorgeous silky balloon shades as window treatments. And to tie it all together we custom designed this gorgeous bedding set. The blues and dark stylized floral motif with gold accents just livens up the whole room. And paired with a gorgeous rug that seems to be made just for this room highlights the new wood floor. Yep, I think we pulled off fabulous with this room, and our clients won’t be singing the “bedroom blues” any more!

A Touch of Modern: Family and Sunroom ReDesign

Family Room AFTER



Family Room BEFORE


This was a great project where we were very excited for the opportunity to utilize our talents to produce a modern design, which sadly isn’t often in Utah. And on that subject, don’t be afraid to think outside of the box! You really don’t have to have the same style your neighbor has! If you like a different style, or even think that you might, go for it! As for our client she wanted a unique style and was having a hard time transitioning from the rustic traditional Utah style into a more natural modern design. She was doing a great job on her own and just needed a little bit of a push to get to the next level. I think we helped her out in finding her niche in her new style, and I know she would agree too! There will be more phases to this project soon to follow as we are working in stages with our client because this project is going to be a large remodel later on this year (check back soon, the results will be awesome!). But for now all our client needed was a quick fix so to speak, with us helping out with new paint, purchasing some furniture for the sunroom, and accessorizing. And yes! I think as you can see, a modern style doesn’t have to be cold and drab, splashes of color with natural elements are keys to success.

Out with the Old and in with the New! - A Family Room Remodel

Family Room - After



Family Room - After

Family Room - Before



Sliding Glass Door with Curtains- Before



Sliding Glass Door/Doggy Door - Before



Sliding Glass Door/Doggy Door - Before



Chair and Desk area - Before


This family room was a bit tricky since the home is a split-level, and there's a foundation wall that runs halfway up on the outside walls. You can see this wall in the before pictures where it is painted red. Other obstacles we had to overcome in designing this room was the multi-functioning room this was and the small size of it. Our clients used this room as family gatherings to watch tv, study the scriptures, do homework and work at the desk area, as well as a doggy commuting point in and out of the house through the sliding glass door. Plus, the size of the room is pretty small, so fitting in enough seating for the whole family and having it function for all of the activities taking place in this room was a bit of a challenge, but I think we pulled it off!


As a solution for the new tv the family bought and the foundation wall I decided to design custom built-in cabinets to house the tv and media components, as well as books, movies, and family photo's. I designed the cabinets so that they actually went over the foundation wall so that it wasn't an issue anymore. So the back of the cabinets on the bottom are actually only about half as deep as the cabinets on the top, which is just enough space for storage of DVD's and other smaller items. Then we specified a gorgeous leather sectional to seat all of the family and a nice smaller scaled comfortable side chair in a durable fabric to add some pattern and pizazz.


One large design issue we needed to address in this project was the sliding glass door. This was only used for the doggy door, a the family had another back door in the kitchen, only a few feet away. So the door was permanently closed up a few years ago with a doggy door and then covered with red curtains. We addressed this by installing a functioning double door, with nice panels in which we cut out a door for the doggy in the center. We completed the transformation by painting the doors a darker neutral color that complimented the wall color beautifully so that it blends in and isn't as stark as using the white trim paint for the door that many people would have done. As for the window we added some nice trim to it as well as the doors to give it that finished look. Then we completed the transformation with some a custom balloon roman shade.