6 Things That Add Personality To Your Home

Posted by


The one thing that I want for all of my clients is to design a space that really fits their personalities – that is a showcase for who they are. We can do that with the colors, patterns, and styles that they love, but nothing adds a uniqueness to a room more than things that really are personal to the people living there! So here are my top 6 tips to help you add that personality to your home!


1. Original art. Art is a very subjective thing – one person viewing it can feel completely different about than another person who’s also looking at it. That’s what makes it personal! If you love a piece of original art – no matter who did it or how much it costs – then you should use it in your decor. Sometimes that piece of art can be the jumping-off point for the color palette of the room, too, like in the space I designed above. And remember, you can also use other forms of art, like sculptures, textile art, and more.


2. Things that you collect. I absolutely love my collections of jadeite and glass grapes – they mean a lot to me. If you collect something that you love, then show it off. Grouping those items together can make a style statement all their own, so think about clever ways to display those collections you love.


3. Books and more books. I read a lot – and I have a lot of books to prove it! I display my books on tables and shelves, and they really add color and a uniqueness to a space. But don’t just buy a bunch of books to put out in your home. Only choose titles that you really want to read – that’s the only way to show who YOU are and what you love!


4. Things from your travels. There’s nothing that will take you right back to that fabulous getaway than a memento or something that you purchased from a local artisan! Showcase that piece of Venetian glass, or the woven baskets from that small village – they are so much better than some mass-produced knick knack for adding your stamp to a room.


5. Custom creations. I create custom looks all the time for my clients, like bespoke sofas or a one-of-a-kind finish on the walls. There won’t be another one like it in their neighborhood, that’s for sure! So consider how you can create something that’s all yours – like the silhouettes I designed above of my client’s children.


6. A dash of fun. Consider this your permission to go a little crazy! Try something new and experiment with the fun factor. A little whimsy goes a long way in adding personality, that’s why I created a simple black border and a fun wall pattern in this little girl’s nursery. It’s fun, and it’s different!

Adding personality to your spaces not only makes them unique, but it’s magical to live in rooms that are filled with things that make you happy, or that remind you of a trip or someone you love! What do you think? What would you add to your home to make it your own? Let me know in the comments section below!







Follow Me on Pinterest

Tobi TV: 3 Ideas for Displaying Collectibles

Posted by


I love to collect jadeite, vintage cake plates, antique oyster plates, and glass grape clusters – they are all special to me and many of them have been handed down to me by family members! If you have a collection that means something to you, it’s great to share it with others by showcasing it in your home.

Collectibles can be anything from vintage china like Flow Blue to something like my client’s antique Russian boxes from her grandmother. Decorating your home with these special items can bring give your design a unique look, so don’t hide those precious treasures!


Some people tend to only bring out collections when it’s the holidays, to showcase special china or vintage silver. But I have three ideas for displaying your collections all year long – let’s take a look:

What do you think of those fun ideas? Let’s recap those tips for putting your collectibles on display:

  1. Put collections of small items, like my client’s Russian boxes, in a bold and beautiful cabinet to make a big statement.
  2. Use acrylic risers to add scale to your collections or put very important pieces under an acrylic box. Putting anything under an acrylic box makes it seem more important!
  3. Display your collections in one place. Spreading them out throughout your home diminishes their importance and displaying them together will have a greater impact.

Use these tips to help you create the perfect home for your cherished collections! And let me know in the comments section below what you collect and how you’re making a home for your favorite treasures.

Happy collecting!







For more tips and ideas, be sure to check out my YouTube Channel, featuring every episode of Tobi TV!

Follow Me on Pinterest

5 Business Lessons I’ve Learned

Posted by


When you’ve been in business as long as I have – over 17 years now – you learn some things along the way. I’ve learned from business experts, coaches, my dad, and so many others. But the lessons I really took to heart are the ones I taught myself, by making missteps, having to course-correct, or flat-out failing at something!

Those experiences may not be fun, but they do give you a real-world lesson. And they taught me that I can fail at something and come back even stronger. So here are the 5 lessons I learned the hard way over the years:

1. Bigger is not always better. I thought I had to have a big office and a huge staff to be taken seriously and to get everything done. I just thought that was what you did as a “real business.” Boy was I wrong. I’m now in a much smaller office (more about that in the future), and I not only have a leaner staff, but they are based in several different states, too! We are a much more efficient and cohesive team that functions at a high level with a lot of online tools. And business is better than ever!


2. Profit margins are where it’s at. I’ve told you over and over how I had to face some hard truths early on in my business, and get super-serious about my financials. And the one thing in that painful process that really rocked my world is the realization that profit margins are the key. Small business owners like me can fool ourselves into thinking we have a ton of money coming in. But once we weigh that against the expenses going out, or against our REAL hours spent on the project, we can get a cold slap in the face when we realize we aren’t making a 10th of what we think we are. I watch my margins like a hawk today!

3. Think local. Now I love the major shelter magazines more than you can imagine, and they are always my goal for publishing. But sometimes we forget that our local magazines are fabulous vehicles for getting published, too! In fact, they can often bring in more clients for a designer than one of the national magazines. So even though I will always earmark projects for submission to the premier magazines, I really love to support my local and regional publications, too. In fact, as I always say, At Home in Arkansas really helped me get to where I am today!


4. Niche is key. If you’ve spent time with me, or read this blog for any length of time, I know you’ve heard this before. But defining and refining what makes me different from other designers and businesses was the key to everything for me, from getting covers of publications, to forging new partnerships, to attracting new clients across the country. In the early years, I wasn’t clear on that niche. It took me a while to really settle into what was my “sweet spot.” That happens for a lot of us, we’re afraid to be pigeonholed. But being clear about what makes us different is really what sets us apart!

5. Leap into new ideas. This one is actually already part of my DNA – I love to come up with new ideas and strategies for my business. But where I’ve made missteps in the past is on not pulling the trigger! Whether it was fear or overthinking, I’ve missed out on some really great ideas that I then saw someone else execute and put out sooner than I did. And good for them! However, it did teach me to trust my gut and leap when I have a great idea. After all, if it doesn’t work, I’ll have another good idea to replace it!

What do you think about the lessons I’ve learned? And what are the most important lessons you’ve learned along the way? Let me know in the comments section below!







Follow Me on Pinterest

Before and After: Updated and Edited

Posted by


I love starting a project where the “bones” of the house are all in place, but it just needs an update to bring the design into a more modern look. My clients for this project were moving into a fabulous new home, with gorgeous windows and beams in this living area. Look at that view through the windows in the photo below!


But the floor left something to be desired, and the fireplace was a visual mess. The clients told me they wanted a gorgeous space that reminded them of their favorite boutique hotels – very clean and edited.


The blue in the modern art was a jumping-off point for me, so I layered in gorgeous blues that were only slightly lighter or darker, and added in neutral tones in the tables and rug.


The dark and dreary fireplace and mantle you see above got a major update, which also lightened and brightened this wall of the room.


And a bit more color was introduced with another stunning piece of art over the fireplace. I love how it draws the eye up with that pop of pink! And then on the opposite wall I added another original artwork, framed by stunning white lamps. The two lucite tables also keep the room serene and edited.


So what do you think of this modern update? I loved the blue tone-on-tone vibe in the room – and so did House Beautiful! This project was featured on its cover just a few years ago. Let me know what you think about the redo in the comments section below!







Follow Me on Pinterest

Shopping Guide: All Things Orange

Posted by

All Things Orange

Is there a more iconic color for fall than orange?! It’s the color of pumpkins, changing leaves, and gorgeous sunsets – and it just happens to be one of my favorite colors!

Everyone needs a bit of this “happy color” in their lives, whether it’s in the home, or something fabulous to wear. So here’s a great shopping list that focuses on everything orange – snap up something for yourself today!

Happy Shopping,






  1. Tangerine Pagoda Mirror– Add a pop of color and chinoiserie style to your design with a gorgeous titian-toned mirror!
  2. Tissue Weight Wool & Cashmere Scarf– It’s all about the details in your home decor or personal style, so let this beautiful orange scarf add the perfect finishing touch to your fall wardrobe!
  3. David Yurman Albion Petite Citrine Ring– Beautiful stones come in all colors, including this lovely citrine ring from David Yurman.
  4. Orange Lidded Urn– This beautiful urn is a great way to add a pop of orange to your home without having to commit to the color year round.
  5. Personalized Passport Case– Travel in style this holiday season with a fun tangerine passport case, and you can even add your monogram!
  6. Tory Burch Eau de Parfum Rollerball– Beautiful floral peony notes blended with citrus tones make this perfume perfect to stash in your purse for quick touch ups!
  7. Pedi Replenishment Kit– This kit can turn any Clarisonic into an at-home pedicure machine to heal your dry winter feet.
  8. ‘Laurel’ Scented Candle Jar– Light up this lovely orange candle with a grapefruit and oleander blend scent to start your fall season.
  9. Tory Burch Collins Double Wrap Watch– Orange really is the happiest color! So always be on time and have a smile on your face with this beautiful orange double-wrap watch.
  10. Prada ‘Candy’ Eau de Parfum Spray– This sweet scent from Prada is perfect for your fall wardrobe – a beautiful mix of caramel and vanilla fragrances you will love!
  11. Astor Clutch– Bright and functional, this orange leather clutch with a detachable crossbody strap will send your outfit over the top!
  12. Dorien Gourd Lamp– Fall is here and it’s time to add some new colors to your home decor. Try a burst of orange with a pair of fabulous gourd lamps to light up your home!
  13. Manolo Blahnik Tondala Suede Ankle-Wrap Sandal– Autumn is all about adding in warmer materials like suede, like these gorgeous heels with a gold buckle!
  14. Equestrian Throw, Orange– Snuggle up with your loved ones as the nights get cooler with a beautiful equestrian-inspired throw in autumn’s favorite color!
Follow Me on Pinterest