Posts Tagged ‘Style’

4 Ideas for Metropolitan Style

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Modern design enthusiasts may think they will only find “big city” style in places like New York, Los Angeles, or Chicago. But you can get the chic and sleek look you crave, no matter where you live.

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Right here in Little Rock, Ark., I harnessed that city style for my Riverside Penthouse project, and I’m going to show you exactly how you can use these ideas to give your space a modern look and feel.

That entryway is metro marvelous! Here’s another look at a few tips that will give you a lot of big city style:

  1. Think glam: A velvet and vinyl banquette will definitely add that sophisticated city look to your home. It’s perfect for entertaining or having a few friends over for cocktails.
  2. A gorgeous marbelized wall covering in every shade of blue from cobalt to ink will make your space feel penthouse perfect. And it offers ready-made art, as well!
  3. Black-and-white striped marble floors would make a jailhouse rock – and the high-gloss makes them super-chic.
  4. Blue suede doors would make Elvis proud – add some glass doorknobs and they are definitely fit for a King.

A great city view is a bonus, but even if you live in the suburbs, these tips will help you feel like you’re living large in the big city.

Stay colorful!







Instagram Inspiration: Style Spotted

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Lam Bespoke - Elle

I absolutely love designing furniture! I’ve always created custom looks for my clients, but having the chance to develop new pieces for great partners like CR Laine and Woodbridge, is like being a kid in a candy store! But the best part is when I see what other people do with my designs – what colors they use and what fabrics they choose. Like the great spotted leopard look on my Elle chair from CR Laine, above, that’s on the retail floor of Lam Bespoke in Houston!

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I was also so honored to see that designer Ashley Gilbreath used my Marguerite armless sofa from CR Laine for her room in the Southern Living 50th Anniversary Idea House. I salute that navy color, Ashley!

Once a Tree Furniture - Taylor

Check out the sophisticated modern vignette that Once a Tree in Canada created with my Taylor sectional from CR Laine, above! I’m ready to sit down and enjoy a cocktail in this chic setting!

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And I absolutely LOVE the fabric that Dana Merrill chose for my Alexander chair from CR Laine – it looks amazing in her client’s dining area!

Thanks again to everyone who has supported me and my partners by using our designs in your stores and projects! It really is a dream come true.







Tobi TV: Out-of-the-Box Rooms

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People today want their houses to support the way they live – they don’t want to just fit into the same old box! That’s fun for designers like me because we can be creative with how rooms are used, like turning dining rooms into libraries, or basements into home theaters.

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So think about how you live today – what do you like to do? What hobbies are important to you and your family? And how can your house support that? Let’s take a look at a few of my recent projects for some great ideas out-of-the-box spaces:

Wow! What did you think of that “twirling room”? It’s a fun space, but it serves an important purpose for that family. So let’s recap those ideas:

1. If someone in your family has a sport or activity that’s important to them, switch up a room to help support that. No, that doesn’t mean you want basketballs flying around a tiny extra bedroom, but it could be a trophy room, a room with a putting green, or a studio for yoga or ballet.

2. Rooms for creative hobbies are so much fun! Think about a craft room, an art studio, a recording studio, a writer’s den or anything that works for you and your family members.

3. Outdoor spaces can also support the way you want to live! Have a garage you aren’t using? It could be a potting studio, a kid’s playroom, or a place for your teens to hang out. Or turn your patio into the outdoor kitchen and family room that you’ve always wanted. The sky’s the limit!

I hope this is making you think about your home in a very different way. How would you transform a space in your home into an out-of-the-box space? Tell me in the comments section below!








Moving Out!

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It’s finally here! This is the week that I move out of that gorgeous, exasperating, and soon-to-be fabulous home that you see above. Renovations will start next week – which is incredible!

I know I’ve been talking about this “new house” for what seems like forever, but it’s time to get the show on the road. And I can’t wait! I’ve told you how I love the “bones” of this house, but it’s just a functional disaster. With the help of my amazing contractor, we’re about to transform the house into my dream home!


So what do we have in the works? As you can see in my marked-up drawing above, we’re going to gut the kitchen and the master bathroom on the ground floor. We’re also switching the study and the dining room, and transforming that study into a library.


On the second floor, we’re going to redo all of the bathrooms and – this is my favorite part – we’re adding a yoga/workout/massage room! I can’t wait for that!

But this week, it’s all about packing up my house and moving some of it into storage and some of it into a condo that we’re renting during the renovation. Moving can be such a crazy time, but I’ve developed some great systems for packing things up, and I thought I would share them with you here!


Tobi’s Moving Tips

1. Systemize it. This is so key. I not only put room names on every single box (dining room, bedroom, etc.), but then I also number them. That way, I know for sure that I have 15 boxes for the living room and 10 for the guest room. You don’t want to lose a box along the way!

2. Add color. Also consider color coordinating your boxes. It’s easier for the movers if they can quickly see that all the boxes with a yellow stripe go in the kitchen and all the boxes with a black stripe will go in storage.

3. Lists are your friend! Be sure to not only put numbers/room names on each box, but to keep an inventory list of what is in each of the boxes. It never fails that the one thing you’re looking for is in the last box of 30 that you open.

4. Valuable advice. Put your jewelry, expensive objects, important papers, and computers in your own car. Those valuables can (and should) be handled by you rather than a moving company.

5. Use your luggage. Be sure each family member has one suitcase for “immediate need” items like toiletries and a couple of changes of clothing, and use other suitcases to pack up your closet.

6. More is better. Get way more boxes than you think you’ll need. Because you’ll probably use them all – and you can return what you don’t use to most moving companies.

The key to a quick and easy move is to really plan and get organized! So now I’m off to finish packing up before the movers get here! And I probably need more packing tape. Yikes!







Tobi TV: Mixing Classic Furniture and Modern Art

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One of my favorite things to do as an interior designer is mix classic and modern styles – especially with furniture and art. Modern art keeps any traditional setting from getting too formal or stuffy, and the classic furniture lets the art really play a starring role.

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At the recent High Point Market, I used classic forms to create my new collection of updated upholstery for CR Laine, which mixed perfectly with my new line of modern artwork for Soicher Marin! So how can you mix up this magic in your own home? Let’s take a look at some ideas:

That’s a perfect balance of classic and contemporary! Let’s review those tips again:

1. Contemporary art can jazz up any room, especially when it has a classic look like a Sheraton-style sofa to play a supporting role.

2. If you have a feminine and curvy form on your furniture, like on my Lucy bed, consider using bold modern art like black brushstrokes to add a balancing touch.

3. A camelback sofa is a timeless design form, and when mixed with a watery blue modern print it creates a very dynamic duo.

4. In some cases, you may want the classic look to be the star of the show, like in this Greek bust. So give it a great understudy like these very simple black-and-white characters.

Don’t be afraid to experiment with mixing two distinct design styles – you’ll end up with a look that’s all your own!