Author Archive

Tobi TV: Rooms for Any Personality

Posted by


As an interior designer, I really think the best style for any home is one that reflects your personality and who you are! I love to work closely with my clients to make sure that every room in their home is a special reflection of them – what they like, where they’ve been, what their personal style is.

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 4.30.46 PM

It isn’t hard to do that in your own home, too! You just need to use patterns, colors, and items that really mean something to you and to members of your family. In this week’s video, I give you some tips for exactly how you can create those rooms that speak to you!

Wow! Do you see how you can use color, pattern, and detail to reflect who you are? Let’s look at those ideas one more time:

1. If you have a specific culture or ethnicity that’s part of your heritage, be sure you use any colors or patterns that are significant to you and will reflect that heritage. You want to show who you are with style and flair!

2. Patterns can also give clues to your personality, like using gingham and floral together for a traditional and nostalgic look.

3. If you have a favorite color, use it! There is no right or wrong color in design. If it makes you happy, it’s the right color for you.

4. If you’re a fashionista, flaunt your style! Go glam, make it retro, or use sleek European decor to show your fashion sense.

5. And if you want a serene space to help you escape from the world outside, use texture and color to create that calming retreat!

Using your background, your personality, and your favorite things really helps create a home that is uniquely yours! Tell me in the comments section below what you use in your home to show your personality!







Designers: Transform Your Business, and Earn CEUs!

Posted by


Too many interior designers are struggling with the business of running their companies – it’s a common issue for people who are creatives! We have the design vision and the skills to create stunning rooms, but too often we don’t understand, or want to keep up with, the financial and strategic planning side of our businesses. Does that describe YOU?

Let me help you! My Designer MBA course is the deep-dive business education that has completely transformed design companies across the country! Taking place Nov. 10-11 in Dallas at the historic Stoneleigh Hotel, this two-day live event will give interior designers like you the tools and confidence you need to professionalize your processes and to sell your services with rock-solid confidence. And for the first time, I’m now able to offer .8 CEUs for completing the course. That’s almost all you need for a full two-year recertification!

I have an accounting degree and an MBA, in addition to my interior design degree, and I have years of experience in coaching and teaching other designers how to improve and refine their businesses for maximum success! There are hundreds and hundreds of designers who have turned their businesses around with me – and I want that same success for you!

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 4.01.54 PMWhat separates Designer MBA from any other business course or event is that I am also in the interior design trenches every single day. I know how hard it can be – and I have developed Designer MBA to answer all of the pain points you can have as a designer. I’ll teach you to:

  • Charge what you’re worth
  • Get your financial house in order
  • Attract your ideal client
  • Market your business like a pro

Here’s what a few of our Designer MBA customers have to say about the course:

“Since attending Tobi’s event, I had a 500% increase in profits! What Tobi will spoon-feed you is a roadmap to making money.” Mara Malcolm

“Tobi is so generous with her time and her knowledge. I walked in frightened about the future of my business. I walked out a confident designer! I have the tools to restructure, and I am rebuilding for success.” Alison Johnston

“I would have paid twice as much for the results I have already reaped!” Suzy Watkins

“After returning from Designer MBA, everything has changed in my business for the better. I have been sprinting just to keep up with everything happening. Now my time is not wasted running around, but in meeting new, quality clients and closing the largest contracts ever!” Kim Layne Gonzalez

Let me give YOU the same results! Join me at Designer MBA! Learn more by clicking here.

Stop leaving money on the table, and start feeling empowered!







Before and After: Lighten Up

Posted by

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 2.20.06 PM

I love to transform my clients’ homes into gorgeous spaces that function for the way they live – and you know I love to bring a little color in at the same time! The Meadow View project, in particular, was a lot of fun because we reworked the floor plan to get rid of small and outdated rooms to make way for living spaces that really do work for my clients.


In the “before” photo above, you see the smaller living room before we incorporated a porch on the back of the house and moved the fireplace from the exterior wall to an interior one, allowing for more windows across the back of the house. With the porch on the outside of this space and a fireplace in the middle of the wall, there just wasn’t enough natural light coming in. This made the room really dark and the dated paneling on the walls in this room helped add to a more dreary feeling.

Before 3

I have worked with this family a long time, from my early days in design actually. And this family isn’t afraid of color at all. But they have three sons that are now grown and mostly out of the house, and the family needed updated rooms that are lighter and brighter. They needed spaces that are more open plan, perfect for entertaining at family gatherings and holidays.

After 1

As you can see in the “after” photo above, enlarging the space by taking in the previous porch, adding new windows with transoms, moving the fireplace and freshening up the walls and ceiling with new moldings and paint really transformed this space. You would swear the ceilings are taller, too, but they are still just 8 feet. Amazing, right?  Giving the walls a gorgeous soft neutral tone and then layering in pops of red and turquoise for great added color was just the right amount of freshness this room needed.

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 2.20.15 PM

Of course we didn’t forget the large-screen TV and plenty of seating, making this room perfect for football days with their three adult sons and guests. By reworking the layout of the home, we were able to design rooms that make sense for these clients, and that give them a lot of comfort and style!

Don’t you just love a fun “before and after”? I’ll be showing you more of these in the coming months – some of them will be even more dramatic than this one! And let me know in the comments below what was the most surprising to you about this family room transformation!









New House Diary: Master Bedroom Inspiration

Posted by

New House Diary

The renovation is well underway at my house – with walls being torn down and floors ripped up. I LOVE this part of any project, but it’s especially exciting when it’s my own home!

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 3.06.50 PM

This week, I wanted to give you an idea of the inspiration for my master bedroom. The photo of the renovation above is actually looking into the master bathroom, but you can see the old bedroom reflected in the mirror. So what is inspiring the new look for that bedroom?

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 3.21.50 PM

Well it may surprise you, but these chairs from the living room of my old house are a huge inspiration for my master bedroom! First of all, they are upholstered in my signature color – and they are actually a signature piece for me. I absolutely can’t part with them, so they are going into the master bedroom in this same fabric. I thought about recovering them, but I just couldn’t do it.

They are inspiring the color palette which we’ll talk about soon, but it will be quite different than the living room they came from. These chairs really speak to how I want to live in my master bedroom. My husband hangs out in the living room or the sunroom, but for me, it’s the master bedroom that is the hub of the house! It’s where I work, it’s where I watch TV, it’s where I spend time with my daughter. So there has to be comfortable seating in addition to the bed, and these beauties look fabulous whether someone is sitting in them or not.

desk at bedside

And as I mentioned, I also love a place to work in my bedroom at times, whether it’s going through emails on my laptop or writing thank-you notes. So I can definitely use a work space in this room. I’m considering a desk as one of the bedside tables. I use this tactic often when I need to have both work and sleeping zones in the same room and I don’t have space for a separate desk area.

built ins

Finally, I am most interested in storage in my master suite. Nothing stresses me out more than clutter. And while I have been living in my home pre-remodel, there are definitely some parts of the room where things have tended to pile up.

So I will be adding a storage cabinet in the corner for all those “things” like books, magazines, stationery, and anything and everything else that migrates to my bedside table (and the chair in the corner and the floor) so that they have a place to be that also won’t add visual or mental clutter. It will be a cross between a closet and a built-in cabinet not unlike these pretty built-ins I designed in the corner of my client’s living room for the same reason. Don’t you love how they are a gorgeous way to hide stuff behind closed (and frosted) doors?

So those are my top inspirations for my master bedroom and I can’t wait to tell you more about how this room will come together with fabulous color and gorgeous pattern. Stay tuned…









Bold and Beautiful Banquettes

Posted by

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 2.51.28 PM

I am a huge fan of a banquette – you know those built-in booth/bench/sofa things. Yes, those! And banquettes are multipurpose pieces that are definitely in vogue today, popping up in just about every room in the house. In some ways they make us nostalgic, reminding us of our grandmother’s kitchen, or maybe a favorite meal in a diner.


There are so many great functional reasons to use a banquette, too! For example, they can add extra storage in the kitchen or dining area.

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 2.52.32 PM

They also provide a lot of extra seating, and give you a great way to repurpose space that might not otherwise be as functional.

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 2.53.18 PM

It isn’t just casual spaces that can use a gorgeous banquette! I loved creating the super-glam version above, with tufting that went right up to the ceiling.


Or how about this high-fashion version in stark white with nailhead trim on the base? I loved how it looks against the black-and-white floor and the rich blue on the doors and wallpaper!

Screen Shot 2015-09-27 at 2.52.07 PM

Banquettes are great in other living areas, too, like in the reading nook I created for a client above. It was a great way to take advantage of the space next to the fireplace instead of just using another boring old cabinet.

Do you love banquettes as much as I do? Which one of the banquettes I designed above is your favorite? Where would you use one in your home? Let me know in the comments section below!