Posts Tagged ‘Living Room’

Before and After: My New Home Design Studio

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Working from home has been one of my biggest joys over the last 18 months. It was then that I left my 6000 square foot design studio for the comforts of our house. Since opening my business almost 19 years ago, I operated outside of my home with a design studio, and for years a retail store and art gallery. I couldn’t have imagined doing business any other way.

And I certainly couldn’t have imagined doing business in this space. Wow! Are you feeling inspired? Yeah, me either. We didn’t know when we started the renovation of our home, but the sunroom was going to turn into my new home studio! The rust-colored paint that reminded me a whole lot of the Texas Longhorns (an old Arkansas Razorback rival) and the aged brick floors weren’t exactly what I wanted to come to home (or work) to everyday.

And that 1970’s pass-through from the kitchen that made me imagine about what it would have been like to pass a 1970’s TV dinner into the sunroom to my family watching Three’s company or The Brady Bunch, didn’t make me automatically envision creating gorgeous client projects out of this space. But I knew this room had potential.

One thing this room definitely had going for it was tons of windows and lots of natural light. And the view of the pool and the golf course was a plus, even though the pool at that time, left a lot to be desired.

So after several years of stuffing down my desire to be at home more with my family, to not have to drive to the office after returning home from long trips away for work, and a longing to be at home for my daughter in the afternoons or when she was out of school , I finally decided why not work from home? After all, I was my own boss, so I was the only one telling me that it wasn’t an option. And this room suddenly became the perfect spot for our studio to relocate.

At that moment, I could imagine how a studio in this room could look and work. I love it when the picture in my head, comes to life in the “after” of spaces I design, including my own home. I just knew this room could feel like a glamorous hang-out that did triple duty as a family space, a work space and a pool-side party room. And now it handles all those activities and more, like a dream.

Amazing what fresh white paint, charming curtains and a few pops of bold color can do for a space, isn’t it? What once was Longhorns rust, is now crisp and clean with lots of bright white and blue. I think it even feels a little like Palm Beach, which is a perfect vibe for our 1960’s home.

I started by painting everything, even the brick floors, in America’s Cup by C2 paints.  The cobalt and white design is fresh, which is exactly what I wanted for my home office. We have a comfy seating area for client meetings with my Taylor sectional from the Tobi Fairley for CR Laine collection, and a pair of open arm chairs. On weekends these pieces become a lounging spot for my hubs or my teen and her friends.

I wanted to blend the blue from the rest of my home’s interior, with pink that transitioned to the outdoor space and also spoke to the pink in my dining room. I love how it feels a bit preppy! And those orange lamps are something I’ve had for about 8 years and couldn’t part with, so I made custom shades with one of my Tobi Fairley for Duralee fabrics and I am crazy about the result. The sitting area is also anchored with one of my rugs from my Tobi Fairley for New River Artisans collection. How better to sell my own licensed products than showcasing them in this space where I meet with clients?

Storage and organization are the most important factor when bringing your work into your home and this space had zero storage before the renovation. Now across from the sectional is this custom built-in that holds everything we need to function day-to-day!

We can give presentations on the TV, pull fabrics from the storage drawers below, and there are two work stations for my design team. We can close the recessed cabinet doors whenever the day is done and this room converts back to a family space for nights and weekends!

This long wall was a nightmare with openings, and doors and many other things interrupting the space.

Now it’s cohesive and extremely functional.  Those fun white lacquer and gold etagere’s from World’s Away on either side of the doorway are super practical, but chic. The baskets from Ikea hold all of the samples for our client projects, each with a little label to keep us organized. And the shelving frames the way into a vestibule to the Powder Bath, that services both my clients and my guests. I couldn’t resist using that little powder room nook to highlight another original piece of art, and I love how the art light makes the perfect little glow for getting in and out of the powder room at night.

And speaking of the powder room…the jungle-themed wallpaper and dark bronze “mushroom” sink pedestal were definitely not design details I wanted my clients or my guests to see. I didn’t even want to see them.

So I packed this Powder Bath full of personality with handsome David Hicks hexagon wallpaper, a custom cabinet painted in a great blue by C2 paint, and plenty of Kohler fixtures. The bright blue and white mixed with a hint of marble on the countertops from Dekton and hexagon floors from Daltile feed right into the studio color scheme and work seamlessly with the rest of my house.

And though we borrowed the leopard chair from my study for a fun little photo shoot (for my soon-to-launch new website), I didn’t want you to miss seeing the fabulous oval window I installed in the kitchen where the pass-through used to be. It’s one of my favorite architectural details in my home, and fits right into my gallery wall full of my original art collection. This fun array of color and composition is inspiration my team and I enjoy seeing while we work.

I couldn’t be happier with the outcome of my new Design Studio and being able to share it with my clients makes it that much better! Let me know what you think of the transformation in the comments below.

 

 

Before & After: My Living Room

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I’m living the dream in my new living room! What started as a beautiful light gray color palette is embellished with bright cobalt, deep plum, and a little bit of leopard print. Seriously, everyone needs a bit of Leopard print.

We ditched the dark 70’s wood paneling and covered up the brick fireplace to wrap the room in a beautiful light gray and bring some life and light back into this space.

As you can see, 1970’s was alive and well in this “Before” space. The paneling was dark, the brick, while cozy, felt heavy with the dark beams and minimal lighting. Even the floors were dark! I covered the brick fireplace for a few reasons. First, I felt that adding a wood panels would help the space feel more modern. Second, this is the only place for the TV to live in this space, and the brick did not provide somewhere to hide all of the wiring needed. So all of that now lives neatly tucked away behind the panels! We added a beautiful surround and hearth top from Dekton by Cosentino to give it that little touch of glamour.

Now the floors are a lighter wood with a chic grey octagon rug in a David Hicks pattern from Prestigue Mills.

If you remember from my New House Diaries blog posts, my living room is long, and best suited for multiple seating arrangements. Here you can see a handsome area with the white sofa, newly upholstered tub chairs in my Duralee Spencer fabric, and someone can easily pull up one of my cobalt blue India ottomans from CR Laine to join the conversation! The floral drapery and ikat pillows bring the bright cobalt in without being too bold, and those custom, silk, plum-colored lampshades layer in my accent color on this end of the room.

You see that little pass-through to the wet bar with those charming shutter doors? Yes, I closed up that lovely hole in the wall and I’m not the least bit sad about it!

Now I have the perfect place to hang this original piece by Jane Booth that heavily inspired my color palette! My dogs and I love to sit on this gray velvet sofa which creates a second seating area where once again, you can pull up one of those great India ottomans to rest your feet and see the TV perfectly from here!

I removed those large open bookshelves and replaced them with smaller built-in units with octagonal detailed doors with antique mirror  to house all of the AV equipment on one side and provide great storage on the other side. Making those units a bit more narrow allowed for more space around the window so I could create yet another seating (and work) area!

These lounge chairs and ottomans are a great place to cozy up for a conversation, and during this time of year, to open Christmas presents!

And behind the chairs I tucked his great oval desk and pair of klismos chairs. Perfect for doing a little bit of work on my laptop in the morning with light streaming in from the window, and even better for putting together a puzzle or a mean game of scrabble on family game night!

I couldn’t be more thrilled with my new living room! And if you include the fun retro cushions I made for the hearth, I can seat at least 20 people comfortably in this room for holidays or entertaining friends. The color palette feels effortlessly chic and everyone can really spread out and take advantage of this large space. I’ll be walking you through more of my before and after reveals in my home soon so stay tuned!

 

 

 

 

 

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!

xo,

 

 

 

 

 

Before and After: Dreamy Living Room

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I used bright and bold colors in so many rooms of my fun farmhouse project that I knew I wanted the more formal living room to be a little soft and dreamy. So I toned down the palette with gray, lavender, and of course the aqua that is used throughout the house. The velvets and patterns still pay homage to the farm theme, but it’s a bit more sophisticated with those amazing French doors and the coffered ceiling. And don’t you just love that chandelier made from vintage milk bottles? That’s a nostalgic touch for this family that I knew they would appreciate.

Since this was a new construction project, we were able to add those architectural elements right from the beginning, and they really make that more formal statement in the room.

Here’s another up-close view of that fab ceiling!

The art helped set the tone for the room, with a more subtle and quiet look than some of the other rooms in the home. I used traditional furnishings, too, with updated forms like the sleek cocktail table to keep it from being too formal.

But the surprise in this room is where I hid the television. You can see the inset panel in the wall above where the TV was going to be housed.

In the “after” photo above, the television is hidden behind panels of art that are hinged to swing open! That keeps the TV out of sight until the family is ready to watch it. And aren’t those chairs fun? I love a good wing chair and I spruced these up with new fabric and a kicky lavender color.

What do you think about this serene living room? And what about that hidden TV? Let me know in the comments section below!

xo,

 

 

 

 

Before and After: The Old Main Suite

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A few weeks ago, I showed you one of two luxury suites I was asked to design in the Chancellor Hotel in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Today, we’ll look at the before-and-after of The Old Main, the second suite I created for this gorgeous boutique!

This suite’s name was inspired by Old Main, a historic architectural landmark that’s also the oldest building on the University of Arkansas campus. Old Main, built between 1873-1875, is the grand dame of the U of A and its bell towers are recognizable by all university alumni.

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Using this iconic Arkansas architecture as the inspiration for this suite makes such a connection with all those who will stay in the hotel either from our state or that are alumni of our university.

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And how could I begin to design The Old Main Suite without giving a nod to the traditional University of Arkansas color – RED? So yes, you will see “Razorback Red” all over this suite, but I was going for a mix of sophistication and varsity style here with handsome checks, plaids, and textures.

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Luckily, the owners completely gutted the original rooms to create this huge suite – which gave me quite a blank canvas to work with!

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Using velvet and suede in the space to resulted in a warm and cozy retreat for Razorback fans on game weekends, alumni visiting throughout the year for special University events, or just guests visiting Northwest Arkansas.

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So what do you think of this revved-up red suite? Would you use bold color like this in your home? Let me know in the comments section below!

xo,

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