Posts Tagged ‘light’

Tobi TV: 5 Ideas to Take Your Rooms from Day to Night

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I love selecting the perfect outfit for events and when I travel, and a look that will take me from daytime meetings to evening parties is a real winner. Planning that perfect room that will take you from day-to-day living into evening entertaining is equally important! It’s smart to think about the function of a room, and the furniture, as you plan your home design.

The living room in my Riverside Penthouse project, featured in Rue Magazine, is another great example of day-to-night design. It’s perfect for the family during the day, but makes a great statement for evening entertaining. Let’s take a look!

Don’t you just love that space? So fun and functional! Let’s recap those tips for a day-to-night room:

  1. Choose a durable sofa that can withstand the kids during the day and adults (with wine!) at night. The velvet sofa in my client’s home withstood 50,000 double-rubs on the durability test, so I know it will work.
  2. Try a great cocktail table that can hold flowers and incidentals in the daytime but will turn into a bar for evening entertaining.
  3. Choose art for your day-to-night space that will look bright and cheerful during the day, but will lean into moody hues when the sun sets.
  4. A soft and durable rug that the kids can play on in the daytime, and is easy to clean after the party at night, is perfect for a transitional space.
  5. Golden lamps will softly glow during the day and will bring the glam at night!

See? It’s just as easy to plan a room design that moves from daytime to night as it is to plan your day-to-evening outfits! Let me know how you use transition and function in your home by leaving me a comment below!







Tobi TV: 6 Ways to Light Up a Room with a Chandelier

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Every room needs that touch of jewelry, like a stunning chandelier! Whether you choose a brightly colored lantern or a multi-tiered crystal design, a chandelier can really make a splash while it also lights up the room.


There are so many fabulous designs available today, in every type of material from metal to glass to shells to wood. You’re sure to be able to find something to brighten your home that also fits your style! Let’s look at some of my favorite chandeliers:

Aren’t those gorgeous? Now here are some tips for getting the perfect chandelier for your home:

  1. Look for unique designs or materials, like the cascade of glass balls on the elegant chandelier I chose for my client’s formal dining room.
  2. The traditional Empire style chandelier is very popular, but it’s also a classic that has been around for decades. Look for the timeless design in updated modern shades and materials like turquoise, coral, or even black. It’s the perfect combination of contemporary and traditional.
  3. The right material can make a formal design look more casual, so don’t be afraid to consider a chandelier in a family room, a great room, or any other casual space.
  4. Found the perfect chandelier, but it’s the wrong color? Go bold with a bright new color – you can spray paint an existing fixture to be any color you need – even if it’s crystal! Think out of the box to get the look you want.
  5. An over-scaled light fixture can help make a larger space seem more intimate, so be sure you’re choosing the right scale chandelier for your space.
  6. A chandelier is really one of the places I like to splurge in a room. At least in a couple of important spaces in your home. So spend what you can to get a great look. It will be worth the money!

Use these tips when selecting that perfect chandelier to light up your home! And be sure to pass this video on to anyone you know who is looking for that just-right light fixture or just loves learning new ways to make their home chic and unique.

Until next time!







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

Before and After: A Grown Up Space

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Working on spaces for clients who have young children can be a challenge. If you’re a parent yourself, you know how quickly a gorgeous sofa can be destroyed by juice and dirty shoes, or how great accessories are just toys in a little person’s mind. And it’s not like it’s our fault as parents. We’re so busy trying to keep our heads above water most of the time, we can’t even think about our homes and keeping them clutter-free, right? So when I have the chance to take a client’s home from kid zone to grown-up space, I love it! I know it’s going to make a big difference in everyone’s quality of life and stress level.

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As you can see above, my clients in this project had some well-loved pieces of furniture, mixed in with a whole lot of toys and play areas. They wanted to take back their living room, and make it a chic space where adults could hang out, have great conversation, and enjoy some “me time.”

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I added in a lot of built-in cabinetry to hide toys, books, and clutter, to help these clients to keep the space fabulous and clean. I also lightened up the color palette, allowing the natural light to really shine through the living room.

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Dark draperies, muddy colors, and well-used items from the before image above needed to go, especially the tired furniture.

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And the furnishings I brought in have family-friendly fabrics on them, so kids don’t have to see this room as a no-go zone. They can still run through or play in this room without leaving marks and dirt that can’t be cleaned up.

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I also edited down the amount of accessories in the living room, taking out the candles, more traditional elements like the fabric runner, and knick knacks.

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It doesn’t mean they’re gone! There is now a place for everything in the shelves and in storage hidden behind those fabulous doors in the built-ins. When company is coming, it’s easy to hide the clutter quickly to keep the space looking gorgeous.

So what do you think of this before and after? What tricks do you use for grown-up spaces in a home with kids? Let me know in the comments section below!







PS – Did you know that I can give YOU a great design for your home through my edesign program? Inbox Interiors is a great way to get a “Tobi look” on a budget! To learn more, just click here.

Designing a Kitchen that Works for You

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Tobi Fairley Kitchen 4

The one room of a house that people ask me about most is the kitchen. Kitchen design is a real art – and function is the most critical part of the equation. Having a kitchen that works for you is even more important at this time of year, when you have holiday dinners to plan and treats to prepare.

You really have to have a kitchen that fits your cooking style, and that can be different for each person. Some people like to entertain, but not necessarily create their own dishes. And still others would prefer to cook and bake all day long. To design a kitchen that’s perfect for YOU, here are a few of my favorite tips:

Function First. Too often people jump right into the color of the cabinets and the type of flooring without really considering the layout and function of the kitchen. You’ve probably heard about the “triangle” that’s suggested for efficient work spaces, and you do need to minimize the length between the stove, sink, and refrigerator so your kitchen really works for you. It’s a classic design layout for a reason!

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Invest Wisely. Kitchens can be incredibly expensive depending on the materials and options that you choose. You should use your budget as wisely as possible to get the most for your money. I always advise my clients to invest in appliances first – they are the workhorses of the kitchen, so get the very best quality you can afford. My partner company Thermador, for example, has outstanding products that offer innovative ideas for real cooks. They are an investment but if you really are going to be using them daily, they are so worth it!


Cabinetry Counts. The second most important thing to invest in would be your cabinetry so it will stand up to the daily wear-and-tear that comes in a kitchen. One trick that I think is key for a functional kitchen is to be sure the cabinets go all the way up to the the ceiling. You want to take advantage of every square inch of storage, and having an open space between your cabinets and the ceiling does nothing for you but gather dust! A great step stool, or library ladder, will help you reach those top shelves.

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Remember the Details. Too often, those little details can spell big trouble if you don’t consider them at the beginning of the design process. For example, where will you store the garbage cans? Where do you need extra outlets? You should also think about how you use your kitchen and what details would be key for you. You could have a storage drawer for baking essentials, counters near wall ovens for placing hot dishes right out of the oven, or even pull-out baskets for fruits and vegetables. Those details will make all the difference.

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Lighting! This is the one thing that people often don’t plan correctly in the beginning, and then have to try to correct later. Lighting is critical to a great functioning kitchen. Remember to think about where you need task lighting, how many overhead lights you want, and where you may also need under-the-counter lights and if you want any of these on a dimmer.

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Investing in your kitchen is a wise decision! So use these tips and ideas to get the most out of your investment, and to give yourself a gorgeous and functional kitchen for years to come.








Tobi TV: The Importance of Lighting

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Lighting is one of the most important things to think about when you’re creating a functional home. You need to consider every task that will happen and the mood you want to create for each room, and then ensure that you have lamps and layers of lighting fixtures that fit all those needs!

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The right light can cast the perfect glow in a room, but the wrong one can drive you crazy. So let’s take a look at a few of my bright ideas for lighting up your home:

Now you can see how lighting can really make a difference! Let’s review those tips one more time:

1. Light is so important in a kitchen, especially over any work surface, like an island. Pendants direct a lot of light, so I love to use them wherever tasks and preparations are critical.

2. In a living area like a family room, light for things like reading and needlework needs to be brighter. But you also need softer lighting for watching TV, talking with friends and family, or to create a quieter mood.

3. Bedside lighting is really important in a bedroom, particularly if you like to read in bed. And be sure that light is within easy reach! I love swing arms lamps for this reason because they can pull over for the perfect placement.

4. In a dining room, I like to provide a chandelier over the table that will light up the table when dining. But don’t forget to put it on a dimmer. And I also love to use lamps on a sideboard for a softer glow.

5. In the bathroom, you want to have plenty of bright light to help with makeup application and getting ready to head out for your day. But be careful not to place a light directly over your head! It’s too harsh and will cast unflattering shadows.

I hope these tips have helped you see the light! This is one time when you really do want to steer clear of the “dark side!”