Posts Tagged ‘interior design’

Living Well- Tips For Making The Most Of Your Space In A Smaller Home

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A few recent projects have been for families downsizing to smaller homes. And while moving to a home you are excited about can be a blessing, it can sometimes be difficult to lose square footage.

 

It’s amazing all of the stuff we accumulate over the years. I feel like I am constantly cleaning out my house and I try to watch what comes in.

 

How to make the most of small spaces can sometimes be overwhelming , so I thought I would give six helpful tips to #LivingWell in a smaller home.

 

1. Clean Out and Keep Only What You Love Or Will Use.   Simple enough- Do you love it or use it? If not, get rid of it.  No more storing things you “might” need in the future or because you feel guilty getting rid of them.

 

2. Are There Pieces That Can Be Repurposed? If there is a piece you LOVE but don’t have a place for it, can it be reworked for extra storage? 

 

3. Look Above And Below. Look for ways to hide storage, such as using ottomans that open up, raising a bed a few inches to create more space underneath, or  adding built-in seating with drawers underneath.  I also love adding ottomans under an open console or coffee table- not only to work as a layering piece but as an extra seat that can be pulled out if needed.

 

 

An ottoman slides under a coffee table in a client’s Family Room- Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

Drawers pull out for extra storage in this window seat, Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

 

4. Simplify- When Looking At Your Stuff, Give Away The Extras Of The Same Items.  After all, you might need a few extra sets of sheets, but do you need five sets for the same bed? No- so give away to someone who can use them.

 

5. Think Long And Hard How Your Home Needs To Work For You and Delegate A Function For Every Room Or Unused Corner.  There is something refreshing about simplifying your life and surroundings. But with smaller homes, you need to think long and hard ahead of time to make sure the new home functions like it needs to for you.  If you see an extra corner, could you add a chair and floor lamp for an extra place to sit?

Or a custom banquette to create more seating around a breakfast table?

 

Photography by Jean Allsopp, Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

If working on a new build or renovation, hire a designer before the plans are drawn.  An extra set of eyes for how your family will live in the house is invaluable. Every square inch needs to work hard so you can have the pretty with a purpose.

 

6. Let Go Of The Guilt. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it is hard to get your money out of furniture and rugs (and even some antiques) when selling.  Just know this is the case and let go of the pieces…. Do not hold onto stuff for any reason other than you love it.

 

#LivingWell isn’t necessarily about having the best of everything- It’s about surrounding yourself with a home that brings you joy.  A place you love to make memories with family and friends.  

 

Downsizing can be a blessing if you allow it, as it is a way to lighten your connection to material “stuff” and create spaces that are customized and truly special to you.

 

Hope you find these six tips helpful to #LivingWell in a smaller home. Let me know what you think-

Dana

 

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Atlanta Homes & Lifestyle Feature

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As I am slowly starting to feel a change in the seasons, I was excited to see the September 2017 issue of Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles out on newsstands.

 

 

 

 

The issue features the Southeastern Showhouse in Atlanta that we participated in last spring.  As I blogged about here and here, it is a James Means’ house based upon Classicism and craftsmanship. The renovation/addition was by Yong Pak of Pak Hyde & Associates.

 

 

Designers from across the Southeast were asked to participate in this showhouse, and we were honored to be included. 

 

Here are a few of the pictures of our Mudroom space:

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Photography by Emily Followill

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

We could not have created our space without the help of so many.   A special thanks to the following vendors:

Travis & Co– Bronze Hands

Donna Hughes/ Bradley USA– Oil Painting

Parc Monceau– Anglo-Indian Console, Lamp

Baccarat/Rosse and Associates– Crystal in Butler’s Pantry

Huff Harrington– Louis Philippe Mirror, Barometer

J Douglas/Noir – Ladderback Chair

Donghia– Fabric on the chair

Stark– Sisal Rug

Circa Lighitng– Ceiling Flush Mount

Osborne and Little/ Ainsworth Noah– Roman Shade fabric

Pierre Frey/ Jim Thompson Showroom– Ottoman Fabric

Holly Hunt/ Jim Thompson– Throw Pillow Fabric

Clarence House/Jerry Pair– Throw Pillow Fabric

Schumacher– Roman Shade Tape

 

 

If you’d like to read more of the article, click  here.  I think you will enjoy it.

 

I am headed to a photo shoot so wish me luck.   Be sure to look at our Instagram stories as I will share some glimpses throughout the day.

 

Dana

 

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Dana Wolter Interiors. Graham Yelton Photography

 

 

I posted this picture Here on Instagram a few months ago, and I had someone comment they couldn’t believe this beautiful, functional room once served as a Garage.  Me neither…..

 

I realized that I should share some progress pictures so you can see the transformation.  Who knew a garage could look so good……

 

Before:

 

 

 

What do you see? I see a future family room. Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

After:

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography 

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

I love how this family took their home and made this room work for them.  The home functions for a large family, and they needed extra space to spread out and watch television.  

 

The Garage made the most sense, and with its doors turned into French doors and a back entrance reworked, the room quietly transformed.   

 

We added an extra-long sleeper sofa, so it is perfect for the times they need an extra bed, too.

 

So here’s to making the most of your home, one room at a time.

 

Dana

 

 

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Living Well: Tips On Incorporating A Mirror Into Your Interiors

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As I was going thru some photos of my work recently, I was reminded of something important…..

 

When hanging a mirror, not only is the placement important, but also be mindful of what it reflects.

 

 

See what I mean?

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Elton Photography

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Elton Photography

 

 

 

I also love incorporating a mirror in an entrance way when possible.  The picture of this foyer is from several years back, but I still love how it adds reflection and softness to the space.

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Jean Allsopp Photography

 

 

Hope these tips help when you are deciding where to hang a mirror in your home.   Have a great day, everyone-

 

Dana

 

 

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Remember me?!  

 

I am the one who used to blog, but then suddenly disappeared for a few weeks….

 

It’s never intentional.  Life gets busy- my mother has been sick again, I’ve been trying to spend more time with my family, and we’ve started a few new projects.

 

When I haven’t been with my family or working, I have been traveling quite a bit.  One of the places I visited last month was New York City.

 

As I made a stop into the Saks on Fifth Avenue, a transformation on their second floor knocked my socks off   caught my attention.

 

Saks- Justin Bridges Photography

 

 

Gone are the racks and racks of clothes on this floor- though they still have some active wear and accessories for sale.

 

It has become a Wellness Floor called The Wellery, and I loved what Saks has done with it.

 

In a world where I feel like I am trying to find a balance because I am being pulled in 10 different directions, I actually felt my blood pressure drop as I walked around.  

 

If it wasn’t for my girls urging me onto the escalator, I probably would have circled the space a few more times.

 

I don’t claim to be the most healthy, but I do love the thought of trying.  

 

With the exception of a juice bar, this floor has Everything.   From a nail salon, to bikes, to exercise classes, to salt rooms, to dermatology services, to gym bags and activewear, it’s all there.  

 

And it SPOKE to me.

 

I’ll take a green bike, please…. The Wellery, Saks Fifth Avenue, NY

 

 

 

JUST BREATHE……..

The Wellery offers Salt Rooms.  Has anyone tried this before?

 

 

 

The Wellery, Saks Fifth Avenue

 

 

It is such a new, innovative way to position a clothing store, but it got me thinking…..  

 

Health and wellness are not just what you eat and if you exercise.  Living Well is a way of life-  

 

I have talked here how a healthy lifestyle is one that encompasses all facets of your life, not just a few areas.

 

It carries over to how your home makes you feel when you walk through the door.  Does your home stress you out  or make you feel at peace when you walk through the door?

 

Living well is taking all of the chaos life throws at us and keeping it all in perspective.  

 

Keeping perspective when life doesn’t give much of one.

 

I understand- with a sick mom, children, and quite frankly, hip and female issues, life is not always rosy…

 

But I am going to continue working hard to be the best version of myself that I can be.  Warts and all.

 

So how can you live well?  Does it involve tweaking your home so it works and functions better for you and your family?  

 

If you need help creating a customized space, email us at info@danawolterinteriors.com.   We would love to hear from you.

 

Here’s to a well-lived life, despite all the chaos life may bring-

 

Dana

 

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  • If you’d like to read more about The Wellery, read this Domino article here.

In case you are wondering where I have been……

 

I fell off the blog post train the past few weeks, as I have been living on the road and out of a suitcase.  

 

We have been pretty busy with current projects, and with being out of town, my blog writing, the dog grooming appointments, and the cleanliness of my own house have fallen by the wayside.

 

Here is a glimpse into what has been going on with us…….

 

As I wrote here a few weeks ago, I was asked to participate in the Atlanta Home’s and Lifestyle’s Southeastern Showhouse in Atlanta, GA.  

 

We spent two days in Atlanta installing the Mudroom, Mudroom Powder, and the Butler’s Pantry.  Though it poured as we moved in, we had a blast.  

 

 

Abbey at odds with the umbrella, and I think the umbrella may have won….

 

 

Monica and Abbey taking inventory

 

 

My goal was to make these small, but important rooms, feel true to the home.  The house is beautiful and  extremely traditional. Our rooms needed to blend into the architecture, but not at the cost of being boring.

 

 I wanted to create spaces that are functional- a place to catch your keys, use the desk behind the cabinet doors, etc.    

 

Layered, collected, timeless.

 

Here are a few pictures of our spaces for you to see.

 

Gorgeous console and lamp are from Parc Monceau. The Louis Philippe mirror is from Huff Harrington and the sculptural hands are from Travis and Co

 

 

 

Drapery panel covering a nondescript closet door. It also adds softness to the room while balancing the opposite wall.

 

I love the Tantalus and oil painting below from Parc Monceau.   If you haven’t been to their shop in Buckhead, you need to stop by.  

 

The Plateau is an architectural fragment I found at an antique store, and I had my marble guy cut a piece of Alabama White for the top.   It’s one of my favorite serving pieces in my own home.

 

 

 

 

Royal Standard china and Baccarat crystal

 

The Showhouse closes May 14th so be sure to catch it. 

 

After we installed our rooms, I vacationed in Miami for a few days with two of my girls.   It was Lucy’s Spring Break, so we took a few days to get away.    Feeling the sun on your back, and your toes in the sand, does a person good.

 

We loved DIRT in Miami- a fresh and healthy take on food

 

 

I came back Tuesday from Miami and left Wednesday for the opening of the show.  Abbey went with me and we had a blast.

 

 

It was back to work for a day while I was back in Birmingham, AL.  We had a site visit to select hardwood floor color, and we also began working on a living room design for a new client.

 

 

 

 

I then headed back to Atlanta for Design ADAC and for the Southeastern Designer & Architect Awards.

 

 

The Design ADAC panels were awesome as expected.  I especially loved the one with the Editors of Veranda  moderated by Carolyn Englefield.   I think I could have listened to Lisa Newsom’s stories from the past all day long.

 

  

As I wrote here, I was thrilled to learn we were a finalist for the ADAC & Veranda 2017 Southeast Designers & Architect Of The Year awards.

 

 

2017 Southeast Designers & Architect Of The Year Award

 

Rebecca and I before the party

 

 

 The Editor At Large interviewing me at the party

 

Phoebe Howard took home the Residential Designer Of The Year award, and my Birmingham, AL, friend, Jeff Dungan, took home the Architect Of The Year Award.

  

I have to give my team a huge shoutout.  They held down the fort while I was in and out of town, and I truly could not do all of this without them.  They are the BEST, and I am grateful for each of their gifts that they bring to our firm.

 

I loved being in Atlanta this past month, and always said that if I didn’t live in Birmingham, Atlanta is where I would hang my hat.  Not sure my husband would comply, but I can work on him…..

 

And while I have worked on projects in Atlanta in the past, I would love to do more work there.  If you have a project and you like our style, reach out to us.

 

I am back in Birmingham for a few weeks before I head out of town again.  I plan on catching up on work and cleaning my house :).  If I am lucky, my hands will end up in the dirt planting a few things this weekend.

 

 Stay tuned as we keep you filled in on some more exciting news….

 

Have a great day-

 

Dana

 

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We have some very exciting news to share….

 

We just learned we are a finalist for the 2017 Southeast Residential Designer Of The Year award.

 

 I try not to get too caught up in awards and accolades, but I do have to admit,  I am thrilled.   It’s an honor to be included in this esteemed group of designer friends and by judges I admire and respect.

 

 

 

2017 Southeast Designers & Architect Of The Year Award

 

 

 

I’ve listed the other finalists in the Residential category and have included their websites so you can learn more about those you may not know.

 

Susan Ferrier of McAlpine

James Michael Howard

Phoebe Howard

Joel Kelly Design

J Banks Design

Robert Brown Interior Design

 

 

If interested, you can read more about it here.   This award ceremony is sponsored by Veranda and ADAC and is Thursday, April 27th,  at the Southeastern Showhouse in Atlanta, GA.   

 

 

This is the Atlanta Homes and Lifestyle’s Showhouse I have been working on the past few weeks, and if you have a chance to tour it between April 20th and May14th, GO!  The home is beautiful and it is for a great cause. 

 

 

Take care and thanks for reading.  Have a great day, everyone.

 

Dana

 

 

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Are you ready to leave behind the stress you find in your surroundings and create a healthy, happy life that begins before you walk out your front door?

 

 

Your environment is one of the seven top causes of stress, and your surroundings attribute to your health just as much as what you eat,  who you surround yourself with, how much you exercise, etc…

 

 

Think about it…   If you try to eat healthy, exercise, get good sleep, does it make sense to spend the majority of your time in a a space that is cluttered, dark and disorganized?

 

 

A healthy lifestyle is one that encompasses all facets of your life, not just a few areas.

 

 

Don’t get me wrong…..There are days when your house is going to be a mess.  I have had people in and out of my home quite a bit lately, and with the holidays, mine is now.   Too many children pulling things out and not putting them up.

 

 

But the difference is that when you have a mess in a healthy home, it is because things are out of their specific place versus having things randomly lying around and piling up.

 

 

 

Take a step back from your home and make an honest assessment about how your home makes you feel.   Does it bring your joy and peace?

 

 

 

If you find your house a place of uneasiness, apply these few tips to your home and see if you can figure out why :

 

  1. Organize your home so everything has a place.  Incorporate hidden storage where you can create a visual calm and store alike things together.

 

You would never know it, but the hidden door under my stairs allows for all kinds of storage for my family.

 

 

 

 

 

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Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

 

2.  Find a Purpose for every room in your home as no room should serve as a “walk-through” or a room used once or twice a year.   Then take a step back and assess the items in each room.   Do they bring your joy or are they useful?  If neither, it is  time to give them away or throw them out.

 

 

This may also mean switching rooms around, or changing how the furniture is arranged in a room.

 

 

Take this room in this cottage below that we worked on a few years back.  It was a walk-through room, a catch-all, and the it was the largest room in the house.  

 

 

By changing the type of furniture placed in this room, we were able to create a place to sit and relax, play on your phone, read a good book, etc…  The chaises draw you in to sit and stay for awhile.

 

 

 

 

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BEFORE

 

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

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You can see more Before and After of this house from this previous post here.

 

 

 

We did the same thing with this home.  The biggest room in their house was the “walk-through’ room.  It was rarely used while this family of seven used a small sitting room off the kitchen to watch tv.

 

 

 

BEFORE

BEFORE

 

 

 

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What you can’t see in this picture is that we tucked a television on a side wall that can be pulled out when needed.  Our goal was to create a family-friendly space for this family to enjoy while keeping it formal enough to serve as a living room if needed.   Mission accomplished!

 

 

 

3. Find a Balance with how your home flows and functions.   Your home should work well for everyday living and be able to transition to host a party when needed. 

 

 

4.   What makes you smile and bring your joy?  Whether it is a sparse room, layered objects, bright colors, or a wall filled with books, use discernment in adding these touches to your space.   Find ways to add what makes you smile to bring you Warmth and Joy in your house.

 

 

 

Elle Decor, Photography by Alyssa Rosenheck

Chad James Interior Design, Elle Decor, Photography by Alyssa Rosenheck

 

 

If you need help into turning your house into one you love, reach out to us here.   We would love to hear from you.

 

Here’s to a healthy, happy life-

 

Dana

 

 

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With the new year just a couple of days away, I thought it would be fun to look back at 2016.  This year has been a good one for us in so many ways, and here is a recap of a few things that took place:

 

We started the new year finishing up #ProjectExpansion for some favorite clients.   They have a cute story as to why they needed more space.  You can read about it here and here.

 

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FOYER-BEFORE

 

 

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FOYER-AFTER Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

 

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FOYER-AFTER

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors Photography by Graham Yelton

FOYER-AFTER

 

 

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FAMILY ROOM BUILT-IN -BEFORE

 

 

FR Built-in. Still needing glass doors installed

FR Built-in before the glass doors were installed

 

 

 

The kitchen in this home has been shared so many times on the web, yet very few people have seen the “before” pictures.   It was quite the transformation.

 

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BEFORE- KITCHEN

 

 

 

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BEFORE- KITCHEN

 

 

 

This is the photo that has been shared numberous times on social media. It's even been referred to as the "poltergist" picture with stylist Monica Stewart making an appearance. Dana Wolter Interiors

This is the photo that has been shared numberous times on social media. It’s even been referred to as the “poltergist” picture with stylist Monica Stewart making an appearance. Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

January began with a feature in Birmingham Home and Garden magazine.   This home was approximately 12 years old and it needed an update.   We took several of the rooms and dramatically changed them.    Here are a few of the before and after pictures:

 

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BEFORE- MASTER

 

 

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AFTER- MASTER BEDROOM Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

 

BEFORE

BEFORE- LIVING ROOM

 

 

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AFTER- LIVING ROOM, Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

You can read more on the transformation of a few of the rooms here, here, and here.

 

 

In February, I hosted a party for Southern Living‘s Design Conference that took place in Birmingham, AL.    There’s nothing like a party to make you do a few things around your own house, and it was just the kick in the pants that I needed.

 

party photo with emblom

 

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

watermark fr

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

It was a lot of fun as designers across the country came together for a few days, and I was glad they were able to see all that Birmingham, Al, has to offer.

 

 

Southern Living also included me in their April issue with a feature on using lavender in your home.

 

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In October, Flower Magazine used my home as a backdrop for a Fall feature.

 

 

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Flower Magazine

Flower Magazine

 

 

I was also asked by Coastal Living‘s Ellen McGauley and Southern Living’s Zoe Gowen to take part in a panel for ADAC on how to use social media and technology to grow a design business.   Designer Cortney Bishop from Charleston, SC, joined in on the fun with us.

 

2016 Discover ADAC _ Creating Signature Spaces_Thumbnail_800 x 100010

 

 

While there, the Editor-At-Large followed up by asking my thoughts on how ADAC is a great resource for designers.

 

 

Editor At Large Interview with Arianne Nardo

Editor At Large Interview with Arianne Nardo

 

 

The last quarter of 2016 did not disappoint, either.   We announced we are moving our office into the heart of Mountain Brook Village in Birmingham, AL.   We are finishing up a few details now and will be in by the first of the year.

 

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I was THRILLED to have one of our favorite kitchens for amazing clients in the Holiday Issue of Traditional Home.  This was such a fun project for clients who trusted my vision, and the detail and customization in this home truly paid off.

 

 

November/December 2016

November/December 2016

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

 

 

dana wolter interior photography by Graham Yelton

Dana Wolter Interiors,  Photography by Graham Yelton

 

 

You can read my blog post here to learn more about this project or click here to see the actual feature in Traditional Home.

 

The feature of my house in the November/December issue of Southern Living was a ton of fun.  We photographed my home for Christmas in the summer and with the Southern Living elves setting everything up, it was as easy as it could be.

 

They spoiled me and I was missing their help when December rolled around and it was time to decorate again.    You can read the 10 page feature here.

 

 

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Stylist Buffy Hargett did an amazing job on the flowers and decoration

 

 

 

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The Southern Living team

 

 

As I look back at 2016, I cannot forget the online mentions and other amazing projects we have been part of this year that I did not highlight.   I am having several projects photographed in a few weeks we have designed this year, and I cannot wait to share.

 

Thanks to all of you for following along on this journey.   I have met some amazing people because of my job and am grateful to those who have trusted us with the investment of their home.

 

But more importantly, watching how an organized, functional, healthy home changes how a family lives is truly the best part of my job.

 

Here’s to a happy, healthy, blessed 2017 for all-

 

Dana

 

If you are looking to transform your home or looking to start anew, reach out to us here.  I would love to discuss your project and see how we can help you.

 

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Southern Living Christmas Feature- Behind The Scenes

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Christmas came early for us when Southern Living published a feature on my home in their December issue.  While the issue is now out on newsstands, I thought it would be fun to take a look behind the scenes.

 

I had the best time this summer shooting with them, as their team is so much fun.  We had these polite, young men and ladies who helped us decorate, and guess what?   They did not complain once. 🙂  Christmas decorating made easy!!   With Christmas a few weeks away, I sure could use their help now.

 

Their team came in for a week in August to set up and shoot, and with a 10′ Christmas tree delivered directly from North Carolina, we decorated, Southern Living style.

 

The talented photography team

The photography team with stylist Buffy Hargett pointing out something specific

 

 

Buffy and I decided to keep the colors simple- gold, white, with touches of purple. Lots of greenery and white flowers- We were going for texture and unique ideas versus busy and color.

 

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Love Buffy’s idea of a Eucalyptus garland draped over my bed

 

 

 

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Boxwood garland holding up an angel over my Family Room mantle

 

 

Look how gorgeous this mantle arrangement is in my Living Room that Buffy and her team created.   It was stunning and I wish I could have kept it alive to enjoy a little longer.

 

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Close up of the arrangement

 

 

The feature ended up being several pages and shows different spaces throughout my house.  It is interesting, too, how some of the colors in the rooms read differently in the magazine versus in person.

 

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Photograph of my upstairs’ landing in the Southern Living December issue

 

To see more photographs, pick up the December issue now.   I hope you see something that inspires you this holiday season-

 

dana

 

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