- Thoughts, Tips, and Trends in Interior Design -

Exciting News For The New Year

Posted on Friday, January 16th, 2015 at 3:30 am
New year, new ideas.
We have decided to spice things up and we are now sending out a newsletter periodically.
The newsletter will include a variety of design tips and tricks. You’ll receive ideas on how to create beautiful rooms, learn about my “must-haves”, find out my favorite paint colors, and so much more.
In the first newsletter, I give a few tips on how to make a dramatic impact in a room.
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Dana Wolter Interiors

You won’t see this information anywhere else from me, so sign up now.   The newsletter is ready to be sent, so to receive it, please click here.

Have a good one,
dana

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Five Things To Avoid When Working On Your Home

Posted on Wednesday, January 14th, 2015 at 3:30 am

There are a few things when building, renovating, or just plain working on your home that, in my book, you want to avoid.

 

Here is my top five list of things NOT to do to your home:

 

1.  Do not plant landscaping that is too small.

There is nothing worse than driving by a beautiful home where it’s obvious they have invested wisely in the materials chosen, only to see a bunch of dinky plants surrounding the beautiful structure.  Yes, plants grow, but by the time some plants are finally a decent size, five years have passed.   Buy larger when it comes to plants that are slow growing.  I promise, this makes such a difference.   See below how landscaping that is invested in can add to your home’s aesthetic.

 

 

Newman & Cebulak

Image from Architectural Digest via Pinterest

 

 

2.  Never buy a piece only because it is on sale.

Do you love the piece or did you buy it because it is a good deal?  If it is the latter, you bought the sofa, bookcase, bed, or whatever it is for the wrong reason.  Never, I repeat, never, buy a piece just because the price is good or because you need something to fill a space.  If it is for one of these two reasons, you will eventually tire of it and you won’t enjoy it in your home for very long.

 

 

3.   Don’t buy an entire room off of a showroom floor and never match all your furniture.

Regardless of your taste- modern, traditional, or transitional- you always want your home to look like it has been collected over time, even if it was installed in the same day.   This leads me to the next point of making sure you don’t match your furniture. There can be an overlap of the same material for continuity, but make sure you have a mixture of elements in the room to cause a little tension in the space.   Use a mix of upholstery, stained wood, painted wood, glass, iron , etc….

 

foyer by mcalpine booth & ferrier

Image from McAlpine Tankersley

 

 

4.   Do not have a room that doesn’t serve a purpose.

Do you walk through a room, only to have it be a “catch all” or a place to host guests once a year?  If so, you are missing out on a room you could be enjoying, and you need to rework this space.   Gone are the days where rooms sit unused or are “saved” for special occasions.  Repurpose a room and ENJOY it.

 

5.   Don’t wait for tomorrow to pull your home together and make it a place for you and your family to make memories.

Money does not necessarily guarantee good design, so don’t wait until tomorrow to make your home something you can be proud of and enjoy.  Stop comparing your house to your neighbors’.  Instead, focus on making your home a cohesive safe haven to build memories for you and your family.

 

 

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Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

Are there others you would add to the list?   If so, let me know. We love hearing from you.

 

Have a great day, everyone-

 

Dana

 

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2014, Thanks For The Memories

Posted on Wednesday, January 7th, 2015 at 3:30 am
Goodbye 2014, Hello 2015! Do you have plans for the new year? http://mydoubleliving.blogspot.com/2015/01/goodbye-2014-hello-2015.html

Image via mydoubleliving.blogspot.com

 

It’s hard to believe that 2014 has come and gone.  As I reflect on the past 12 months, there are so many moments to celebrate.

 

First and foremost, THANK YOU for being a part of such an amazing year.   Thank you for sharing my work, encouraging my work,  keeping up with my work, and more importantly, trusting me to come into your homes and change how your home functions for your family.  I love what I do, and am blessed by your encouragement.

 

At the start of the 2014, my goal was to simplify.  For me, that meant eliminating distractions for the essential, trading chaos for peace, and spending time doing what’s important.  My favorite moments this year were spent with my family.  I simplified best during our vacations together to Mexico, to the beach,  and to New York. There is nothing that makes me feel better than when we are all together and away from everyday distractions.

 

family

 

One of my biggest accomplishments this year was being named one of Traditional Home’s Designer’s to Watch in 2014. It was a huge honor and one  I am very proud to be included.

 

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New Trad’s Designers To Watch in 2014

 

That honor led to me being a part of the Hunter Douglas/ Trad Home contest to vote for the New Trad Designer that best matched their reader’s style.

 

By creating “real homes for real life”, my goal has always been to blend comfort and elegance through layering textures, making the most of light, and combining modern, antique, and classic elements.

 

Thank you for choosing my style as the one you liked the best.

 

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The project that won me this incredible honor- Dana Wolter Interiors

 

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Another glimpse into it- Dana Wolter Interiors

 

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Dana Wolter Interiors

 

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Dana Wolter Interiors

 

In August, I updated my website and that was a huge feat, to say the least. We took my old one, added to it, changed it around, and uploaded a lot of new projects.  It was quite a process and if you’ll remember, I compared it to birthing a baby.

 

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Another exciting opportunity I had this fall was serving on a panel at Traditional Home’s “What’s New, What’s Now” event at the New York Design Center.  Over 70 showrooms participated in the event that featured product introductions, informative lectures, and book signings.  I had the privilege of joining Traditional Home Senior Design and Market Editor Tori Mellot in a panel on mixing traditional and modern design.

 

panel

 

There is a lot of talent in the city I call home, and I was honored to be featured in Birmingham Home And Garden’s, Birmingham Style, that was published in October. If you haven’t already purchased this book, do yourself a favor and buy it.

 

Birmingham Style

 

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Dana Wolter Interiors Photography by Jean Allsopp

 

The year ended in a wonderful way by me winning the “New Trads at Home” Pinterest Sweepstakes. Inspired by The Vulcan, I used pieces from Alabama artists and Ethan Allen to recreate a recent install.

 

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Dana Wolter Interiors

 

As I say goodbye to 2014 and hello to 2015, I am grateful for all the memories, and I am looking forward to what’s to come.

 

designer bags and dirty diapers: Goodbye 2014, Hello 2015

Image via Designer Bags and Dirty Diapers

 

Please let us know if there is anything in particular you would like for us feature on the blog.   After all, you are who we write for, and who we hope to inspire.

 

Have a great day,

 

Dana

 

 

 

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Don’t Forget To Vote- Pinterest Sweepstakes

Posted on Friday, December 12th, 2014 at 3:30 am

To those of you who have voted in the Traditional Home/ Ethan Allen Pinterest sweepstakes I posted last week, thank you.

As you recall, I based my board on the room below that I designed for a family.

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Please continue to vote thru December 20th, and you can do so at  http://newtradsweeps.com/.

Each vote enters you in for a chance to win a $2,500 gift certificate from Ethan Allen.   The more you vote, the better your chances to win, and nothing would make me happier than for one of my supporters to win a nice gift card!

 

Ethan Allen Sweeps_Wolter

Thank you for your support and let me know if you are the lucky winner!
dana
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Lake House Retreat

Posted on Wednesday, December 10th, 2014 at 3:30 am

With the weather turning colder, we are excited to be working on a renovation/addition to a condo at Lake Martin.  Yes, it’s still cold there, but at least it allows us an opportunity to think of summertime fun.

 

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This retreat will have a new kitchen, bathrooms and outdoor living spaces. We are designing a custom banquette for the kitchen and the side porch to allow for lots of seating for family and friends.

 

Our client’s focus is all about making memories instead of being worried about making a mess, and we couldn’t agree more. The lake is supposed to be a place for less stress and more fun.

 

With a house full of children and grandchildren, we plan to use a lot of outdoor and durable fabrics.

 

As you can see below, our color inspirations are gray, plum, taupe and cream.

 

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Stay tuned for more updates on this project.  Have a great day!

 

dana

 

Please don’t forget to vote for the Traditional Home/ Ethan Allen Pinterest Sweepstakes at http://newtradsweeps.com/. Check out the last blog post if you missed the information about this contest.

 

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Family Room Recreated for Traditional Home/Ethan Allen

Posted on Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014 at 3:30 am
Remember the post a few weeks ago on social media where we asked you for your favorite Alabama landmark?
We did so because Traditional Home asked us – and five other designers across the country- to create a virtual mood board on Pinterest of a room inspired by a local landmark.   I chose the Vulcan in Birmingham, AL, and based it on the room below.
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I recreated this room by adding a little iron by Lucy Smith, some Alabama artwork and fabrics by Arthur Price and Coleman Taylor, and a few Ethan Allen pieces.   I included paint samples, fabrics, and accessories to create a classic design for modern life, one that embodies the Traditional Home “New Trad” aesthetic.
TradHome_Final_Pinterest
I was very honored this summer when, because of all of you and your votes, I won the Traditional Home contest among all of the Trad designers for 2014.   I would be grateful and humbled again if you would take a second and vote for my board. http://newtradsweeps.com/ .
It’s quick , it’s easy, and best of all, you register with each vote to win a $2,500 gift certificate to Ethan Allen.  You can vote once a day and voting ends December 20th.
Thank you, my friends.   Let me know what you think!
dana
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Giving Thanks

Posted on Wednesday, November 26th, 2014 at 3:35 am

 With my favorite holiday a few days away, it always makes me reflect- as it should- on the many blessings I have.

Sure, my life is not perfect.   I have trials and tribulations that come up like all of us do. Lately, I have been dealing with a labral tear in my hip, but aside from day to day stresses, I have so much to be thankful for in my life.

And while I have so many blessings, there are many wonderful people out there that I am grateful for- family,  friends, clients, and people I work with on a regular basis.

I am also grateful for my children’s teachers, coaches,  and friends, as they play such a large part in influencing my girls.

Image from Gimme Some Oven via Pinterest

 

Thank you, thank you to all my clients and readers. Your support and encouragement mean so much.

 

Wishing you and your loved ones a happy and meaningful Thanksgiving,

dana

Thankful Chalkboard Art Art Print

Image from Society6 via Pinterest

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Inspiring Tablescapes for Thanksgiving Entertaining

Posted on Friday, November 21st, 2014 at 3:43 am

Are you ready?

 

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and there’s no time like now to start hammering out the details.

 

If you are like me, you haven’t done the first thing to prepare are determined to make the festive day smooth and stress-free. After all, the holiday is about coming together and giving thanks for all we are grateful.

 

BUT…….. Long before the food is served, your table will make a first impression.

 

Some of the loveliest tables aren’t necessarily about the china or silver, but rather the natural elements that suggest the occasion.  I love fine china and silver as much as the next person, but what really makes the table for me is a thoughtful arrangement, place cards, or special linens.

 

As mentioned in a previous post, unique napkin folds are an simple way to add elegance to your table.  If you haven’t already, watch this video  as I show how easily napkin folding can be done in a unique way.

 

Below we are sharing some of our favorite tablescapes from Pinterest.

 

 

Green and white plethora of pumpkins

Take advantage of what nature provides. The varieties of pumpkins, gourds, and garden plants lend themselves to beautiful arrangements. Image from The Daily Basics.

 

 

I love the mixture of colors, tones and textures at this table. Image from Martha Moments.

 

 

Handmade place cards are such a nice, detailed touch. Image by Cottage and Vine

 

 

Instead of place cards, why not use words that are reminiscent of Thanksgiving such as thankful, grateful, appreciative and fortunate. A wonderful way to bring the Thanksgiving spirit to your table. | The Glamorous Housewife

Instead of place cards, use words that remind you of giving thanks. Image from The Glamorous Housewife.

 

 

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It’s important to remember that you don’t have to break the bank to create a memorable setting. Image from Griffanie.

 

 

Beautiful and simple are the words for the day.   Here’s to getting your table ready to give thanks,

 

dana

 

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Wednesday Wisdom- Classic Materials Are The Way To Go

Posted on Wednesday, November 19th, 2014 at 3:30 am

Happy Wednesday!

 

I came across this quote from Billy Baldwin and I love it.

 

honest room quote

 

 

I have always been a believer in using classic materials and finishes throughout a home.  Mother Nature knows best, as a room filled with classic materials is always up to date.

 

 

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Image from nicety.livejournal.com

 

 

The finishes you choose for your next project can make or break certain design elements. Floor and wall coverings can greatly influence the style of a room.

 

Nothing is prettier to me than an old piece of marble. Marble is wonderfully rich and can turn any room into a dramatic showcase. The more it is used, the prettier it becomes.

 

 

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The old marble brought this fireplace back to life while creating a timeless look. Image from Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

Wood is also a classic material that I love. I have been embracing it in an even bigger way this year with it appearing in all forms of interior objects from furniture to lighting to flooring.

 

 

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I love the classic look of the dark wooden staircase against the white walls. The wood is original to the house. Image from Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

Natural stones and materials are the way to go. By investing is these practical and gorgeous elements, you are sure to have a timeless room that you love!

 

 

Enjoy your day,

Dana

 

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Two Quick (And Pretty) Ways To Fold The Holiday Napkin

Posted on Wednesday, November 12th, 2014 at 3:30 am

It’s that time already!  Can you believe the holidays are here?!

 

Radio stations are playing Christmas music,  and lights and greenery are hung.

 

We thought it might be nice over the next few weeks to offer a few quick tips on how to simplify this crazy time of year.

 

Homes will soon be filled with festive décor, food, friends and family, and hopefully our tips will help you not stress enjoy this season.

 

Today, I am sharing a TV segment I taped a few years back for  NBC-13  Birmingham with David Lamb on a few easy ways to fold napkins.  David and I had a lot of fun perfecting the art, and I promise, if we can do it, so can you.   Take a look:

 

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Little tricks – from hand-written place cards and unique napkin folds – can help make for memorable meals during the holidays.

 

Watch this video to see how easily you can add elegance to your table and set the scene for a delicious feast.

 

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This is my Thanksgiving table from last year. Notice how the folded napkin is a small detail that makes a beautiful statement. Image from Dana Wolter Interiors.

 

I hope you found this post helpful.  Stay tuned for more holiday entertaining ideas.

 

Ready or not….. Tis the season,

dana

 

We will be announcing the winners of the “Birmingham Style” book giveaway Friday so stayed tuned for that as well. In case you missed the giveaway details, check out my blog post from last Friday. It’s not too late to enter!

 

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Here’s to getting through this joyous (and certainly hectic at moments) time of the year,