Posts Tagged ‘design blog’

What’s Keeping Your House From Being A Home You Love?

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Are you stuck knowing your home could look and feel so much better, but you aren’t sure what’s keeping you from turning it into one you love?

Or you can’t seem to find the motivation -or the direction- to make some much needed changes?

Life is busy and hectic and stressful.   I get it, as I sometimes feel the same way.

 

A Kitchen Completed A Few Years Back, Dana Wolter Interiors. Photography by Graham Yelton

 

Here Are A Few Tips To Turn Your Home Into One You Love:

1. Function-

With what I do day in and out, I am constantly reminded how a beautiful, well-functioning home- one that reflects you and allows you to breathe deeply- can change your life.

And your family’s.

I see it happen all the time, and it is one of the most rewarding aspects about what I do.

 

A client’s breakfast room was designed to seat family and many friends around the table, Dana Wolter Interiors

 

2. Personalization-

What makes you happy?  Are there specific colors that speak to you or photographs that make you smile every time you see them?

If you are ready for a house that looks and feels like home to you, now is the time to take action. Make the changes now that will allow you to feel good in your own home, such as your bedroom.

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

 
3. Hire A Professional-

If you are overwhelmed and drastically changing your home is more than your skillset can cover, hire someone who can help you.

We work closely with builders, architects, and the landscape designers to make sure every detail is thought through from the beginning to the very end.

Your project becomes our project. The majority of our projects are turnkey where we devise a detailed plan according to your needs and budget, and we implement it for you until the very last picture is hung.

Email us here  if you think we can help you create a home you love.  Let’s have a conversation about your goals so we can have a plan of action in place for you in the next few months.

Here’s to making your house a home, one step at a time-

Dana

 

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Design With A Deadline – Common Questions About The Home Renovation Process

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A few weeks ago we wrote the blog post, “Designing On A Deadline” (click here if you missed it). We received such great feedback that we decided to dive a little deeper into this topic and address a few common questions about the home renovation process.

Home Design With A Deadline – Common Questions When Starting A Renovation

When/How do I begin my project?

We often hear from our clients that they aren’t sure when or how to move forward with their project.

Reaching out to us via email or phone only takes a few minutes and from there, we will guide you through the entire process beginning with forming your entire team.  This initial step will ironically be the easiest.

How long will it take?

If construction and renovations are required, we will first address your needs and help you set a timeline.

Rushing the renovation process is never wise so sometimes pushing the deadline back on the front end allows more realistic expectations.  

I am also a big believer on not starting the project until the plans are complete.  Demo goes quickly but things tend to slow down a bit after this step.

Will we have to move out?

This is the number one question I am asked and rightfully so. Going through a renovation is daunting to some, but moving out of their home throws people for a loop.

The good news is depending on your project needs, moving out may not be required. We’ve renovated entire kitchens with the clients still living at home. It’s not always pretty, but it can be done.

If your renovation covers several main areas of your house, it’s possible to work in stages to avoid moving out. Just like we get creative with the design of our projects, we can also get creative helping you stay happy and comfortable- at home.

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

How involved will we need to be?

We understand that life is busy and adding extra tasks and decision making isn’t always ideal.

While some clients have more say-so in the selections, most want little involvement aside from the budgeting and approving the selections.

By intercepting daily decisions you may not know how to answer, we are hopefully alleviating stress from your already busy day. Our goal is to be our client’s advocate by making sure everything runs smoothly and correctly.

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

I hope I have answered some of your questions about renovating your home.  Whether your hesitation to begin your project has to do with timing, fear of the unknown, or an array of other reasons, take the first step.  I promise it will be worth it in the end.

 

Have a great day,

Dana

 

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Join Our Team!

Dana Wolter Interiors is hiring for two positions – a junior designer and a bookkeeper/office administrator.

Both positions require excellent organizational skills, people skills, an eye for detail, and experience in the related field.

Dana Wolter Interiors’ Design Studio, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Junior Designer Criteria:

Must hold a degree from an accredited Interior Design program

Two or three years experience within the field

Proficient in AutoCad, Sketchup, Microsoft Office, Photoshop, and Dropbox

Excellent grammar and verbal communication skills

Exceptionally driven and passionate about achieving excellence in your work

Full-time position; Salary based upon experience

Located in the Birmingham, AL area

 

Bookkeeper/Office Administrator Criteria:

Two years or more experience within the field

Part-time availability 

Proficient in QuickBooks

Experience in Studio Designer is a plus

Knowledge in filing tax documents

Excellent grammar and verbal communication skills

Exceptionally driven and passionate about achieving excellence in your work

Located in the Birmingham, AL area

Interior design Studio, Birmingham, AL

Dana Wolter Interiors, Birmingham, AL

 

We have a great group of talented people in our office, and if you think you would like to be part of the fun, email your resume and references to info@danawolterinteriors.com.  We look forward to hearing from you.

Dana 

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When Back To School Means It’s Time To Assess Your Home

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My mother always said that with the exception of my sister and two of her grandchildren being born in August, nothing good ever happens in this month. I am starting to think she may be right.
 
The fun of summer has worn off, it’s hot outside, and our houses are a mess from children being home all summer or from moving in and out of dorms, apartments, etc…
 
I’m not a negative person and I hate to say it…. August is kind of a yuck month.
 
But now that the kids are headed back to school,  it’s time to focus on things we’ve put off the past few months. I’m using this momentum to assess and tackle areas in my own home that need updating.  Here are a few tips if you want to do the same.
 

Survey How You Feel About Your Home

Does your home make you breathe a sigh of relief?

When you walk into your home, what feelings and emotions are evoked? Are they feelings of contentment and relaxation or anxiousness and dread?

If you answered the latter, it’s time for some change. Your home should be a restful retreat where you can make memories and host gatherings with family and friends. 

Start with a calming, neutral palette with layers of texture as we did below. 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Emily Followill Photography

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Jean Allsopp Photography

Does your home function for you and your family?

What stage of life are you in? Life transitions usually equate to transitions needing to take place in the home.

Have your children moved out and you are a new empty nester (if so, I can relate),  or are your kids older and what worked  a few years ago no longer does?

A house once full of active children and their friends that served your lively family so well can now feel lost.  It’s time to reinvent your home so it functions for you in this new phase.

Clients who hire us for these specific needs want to re-do their bedrooms, tackle the guest bedroom, and make the famous ‘playroom’ more of a mature den for casual lounging as we’ve done here:

Bedroom, Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Does your home reflect your personal style and lifestyle?

Whether you have more formal or casual taste in style, your home should follow suit.   Below are examples of both formal and more casual interiors – which one speaks to you?

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

If you feel like your home doesn’t make you happy, function well (read more on this topic here), or reflect your personal style or lifestyle, we can help. Give us a call (205.938.4848) or email us here.

 

Have a great day,

Dana

 

If you would like to see more on a day to day basis of what we do at DWI, join us! We would love to meet you!!

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It’s amazing what a little vision, new furnishings, fresh paint, and a great floor plan execution can do for your home and for your psyche. I thought I would share a few homes of clients where we began their home design with a deadline. 

 

Home Design with a Deadline

Each of these families wanted to update their interiors for different reasons, but all had a common goal- to be finished by the holidays.

Believe it or not, if you want to enjoy new furnishings, art and accessories by Christmas, it’s time to call us now .  It takes a few months for orders to be processed and constructed.

There is no time like the present to get started, and I hope these projects inspire you to do the same.

 

Project #1

These clients  had recently moved into their home and needed new furnishings, window treatments, art, and accessories  for several rooms.  

In their breakfast room, we incorporated their table (which they loved), refinished their cane-back chars, and added a showstopping, extra long custom banquette to the wall of windows.

Because we started working on this client’s home during the middle of the summer, and the Christmas deadline was in the forefronts of everyone’s mind, we made sure everything was finalized and ordered by the end of August.

As the holidays approached, we completed minor renovations and cosmetic updates just in time for the furniture to be installed.  What a treat for this family to enjoy their first Christmas in their new home.

Before:

After:

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Project #2

This next home had plenty of square footage, but because of the columns and off-center fireplace, a sofa would not fit in their family room.  That’s right – there was not enough space for the family to sit comfortably.

As I blogged about here, we completely reworked this room.  It transformed into a beautiful, functional space where the entire family (pets included) can enjoy together.  

Before:

 

After:

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

While we were working on the home, we decided to rework the foyer as well.  

You know me-I love creating a sitting area when possible because it instantly invites guests to come in, sit and visit.  Wait until you see the ‘after’ – it is unrecognizable!

Before:

 

After:

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

If you are ready to update your home with the goal of enjoying the redesign by Christmas, call 205-938-4848 or email us here.   We would love to discuss your project with you. 

Have a great day –

Dana

 

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While our interior design office is always available through our website, email, and multiple social media outlets, we now have an office phone number to make us even more accessible. 

 

Give Us A Call: 

New Number – 205.938.4848

 

Whether you would like to discuss a new construction project, replacing your home’s dated furnishings, or scheduling a 3.5 hour consultation, reach out as we want to hear about your home and your needs.

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Give us a call as we look forward to hearing from you soon.

Dana

 

If you would like to see more on a day to day basis of what we do at DWI, join us! We would love to meet you!!

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3.5 Hour Consult- Is This Service For You?

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With warm weather here and people ready to make changes to their home, I want to remind you of the 3.5 consult service I offer periodically.

While the projects we work on are full-service interior design,  this one-time consult is for the client who needs a plan for their home but likes to do the legwork themselves.

It has gone over really well, and clients who have invested in this consult have been surprised over the amount of detail and information that comes with it.  

Matter of fact, I recently ran into a client who hired me for this service for her home a few years ago.  She said she is slowly working through her list as her budget and time allow, but she is LOVING the big changes happening to her home.

Some people have used this service to update their home, and others have used it to select the finishes, countertops and paint colors for second homes under construction. 

People have even flown in to meet with me (or driven all night when their flight was canceled) for this consult. 

Let us help you with the details and finishes for your new home, Dana Wolter Interiors

 

Whatever your needs, you have my undivided attention for 3.5 hours to help you accomplish all that we can in this timeframe.

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

How The 3.5 Hour Consult Works:

Our team will have you send a list of all you would like to discuss and accomplish during our time together.  Once we make an appointment,  I will then spend 3.5 hours of uninterrupted time answering any question you can possible think to ask me.  We can discuss design dilemmas, furniture arrangements, fabric direction, paint colors, to knock down a wall or not– you name it!

I will give you specifics of what to look for when shopping for your home, and I will take detailed measurements so you won’t have to worry about coming home with the wrong size sofa, ever again.

After our meeting, you will receive a detailed synopsis of what was discussed and a list of the suggestions I made when discussing your project.  

This allows you to maximize your time with me while I take notes and write down all the specifics for you to implement at a later date.

This service is a great way to invest in your home by making sure what you are changing and buying is right for the space.  It also allows you the freedom to work on your project as your time and budget allow, all while following professional advice.

If you think this service can help you make your home the place you dream, email us at info@danawolterinteriors.com.   I would love to talk with you.

Cheers to making your home one you love, one step at a time……

Dana

 

I post pictures on other social media sites that don’t always make it onto my blog, so please follow along.

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Interior Design Tips – You Asked And Dana Answered

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A few weeks ago, we asked our Instagram followers to submit design questions they wanted me to answer. This was such a fun way to see what people need help with or where they need help in their own home. From favorite colors to determining a budget, the entries covered the spectrum. 

Here are a few of the design questions with Dana’s answers:

 

Q:What Are Your Tips For Styling Vignettes – Especially Long Buffets or Dressers?

A: When styling your home, adding layers is really what brings everything together and breathes life to each space.

Incorporating art, antique mirrors, live greenery, and books will make your home come alive.  I often time like to prop up a small piece of art in front of a mirror which adds interest and depth without taking away from what the mirror has to offer.

For longer spaces – like a buffet or dresser – less is more. Play up the scale of the piece by added a long container and simply fill with pretty green moss or stack collections of your China and serving pieces for a more collected look. 

Watch my Instagram Stories today for more tips regarding this question!

Ready for entertaining, Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Q: Are Dark Painted Interior Doors and Trim Timeless or Trendy?

A: Dark painted interior doors and trim can add a beautiful layer to the right home.  The architecture and style of your home is the main variable as to whether this look is in keeping with it. 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Q: Are Murals or Mural Wallcoverings a Trend?

A: If done properly, murals can be a stunning addition and a classic touch to a room. From custom French murals like de Gournay  to a bespoke, hand-painted artisan design,  finding the right option in the right room is key. 

 

Q: How Do You Measure a Rug For a Room? 

A: I wish there was a tried and true answer that could be used for every room in your home but so many variables come into play when determining the perfect size rug.

Floor vent locations, furniture layouts, and paths of travel are some of the many factors we consider. If possible, you want to try and avoid half of an upholstered piece hanging off of the rug.

To make your spaces feel bigger and allow the most open furniture plan, error on the larger size and come off each wall equal distances. 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Q: How Much Does It Cost To Hire A Designer?

A: Pinpointing an exact price to hire a designer is nearly impossible due to all the variables and project requirements. Interior designers charge differently – some charge a flat fee while others charge hourly.  

Like anything, you get what you pay for with a designer. If one is significantly more than another, it is usually because they are offering more detail in scope of what their services will cover. Finding a designer whose work and process speaks to you is the key to a perfect fit.

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

Whether you are in the middle of a project yourself or have one you’ve been thinking about starting, I hope these answers guide you to achieve your dream home. If you need help with your design project, email us here

Feel free to ask me more questions in the comment section or reach out on social media. I may address your question in our next installment of ‘You Asked, Dana Answered’ as I enjoyed writing this post.

Have a great day,

Dana

 

We post pictures on other social media sites that don’t always make it onto my blog, so please follow along.

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With the new year in full swing and people ready to make changes to their home, I want to remind you of the 3.5 consult service I offer periodically.

While the projects we work on are full-service,  this one-time service is for the client who needs a plan for their home but likes to do the legwork themselves.

It has gone over really well, and clients who have invested in this consult have been surprised over the amount of detail and information that comes with it.  

Matter of fact, I recently ran into a client who hired me for this service for her home a few years ago.  She said she is slowly working through her list as her budget and time allow, but she is LOVING the big changes happening to her home.

Some people have used this service to update their home, and others have used it to select the finishes and paint colors for second homes under construction. 

People have even flown in to meet with me (or driven all night when their flight was canceled) for this consult. 

Let us help you with the details and finishes for your new home, Dana Wolter Interiors

 

Whatever your needs, you have my undivided attention for 3.5 hours to help you accomplish all that we can in this timeframe.

Dana Wolter Interiors

 

Here’s How The 3.5 Hour Consult Works:

I will have you send a list of all you would like to discuss and accomplish during our time together.   We make an appointment, and I will then spend 3.5 hours of uninterrupted time answering any question you can possible think to ask me.  We can discuss design dilemmas, furniture arrangements, fabric direction, paint colors, to knock down a wall or not– you name it!

I give you specifics of what to look for when shopping for your home, and I will take detailed measurements so you won’t have to worry about coming home with the wrong size sofa, ever again.

After our meeting, you will receive a detailed synopsis of what was discussed and a list of all of the suggestions I make for your project.  

This allows you to maximize your time with me while I take notes and write down all the specifics for you to implement at a later date.

This service is a great way to invest in your home by making sure what you are changing and buying is right for the space.  It also allows you the freedom to work on your project as your time and budget allow, all while following professional advice.

If you think this service can help you make your home the place you dream, email us at info@danawolterinteriors.com.   I would love to talk with you.

Cheers to making your home one you love, one step at a time……

Dana

 

I post pictures on other social media sites that don’t always make it onto my blog, so please follow along.

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One of my favorite clients reach out recently; we helped she and her husband build a beautiful home a few years ago and she emailed saying they are looking to build a second home.

I couldn’t help but smile knowing she enjoyed the process and wants to do it again. They put together a great team who worked hard to build a beautiful home, and I thought it might be helpful to share a few pieces of advice so you can do the same.  

 

Tips for making the building process successful: 

1. Put together a talented team 

I can’t stress enough how important it is to hire a builder, designer and architect that are known for what you are trying to achieve.  It isn’t enough to hire who your neighbor used- look at their past work, check their references, and search them online. 

Your team should increase the value of your project while saving your sanity.  Again- they should make your life easier and be good stewards of your money.

 2. Make sure the aesthetic of  your designer and architect appeal to you  

Even creatives with a well-versed portfolio still have a certain look and tendencies (including me).  In the end, you have to feel comfortable in the home.

Just as important, make sure you like their personality and can trust them.  They are going to be dealing with your money and you need to be okay sharing details about how you live.

3.  Wait to break ground on your home until your plans are finished 

Do Not start the building process until the plans are finished.  If you don’t wait, I can promise the demo will go fast but it will come to a screeching halt.  Be prepared as it takes time to draw detailed plans. 

Dana Wolter Interiors

A recent project as it was being built, Dana Wolter Interiors

4.  Quality takes time  

Quality takes time- there is a reason the room with custom cabinetry, draperies and millwork looks so good.   Details customize a home, but they don’t happen overnight or through the internet.   

Cabinet detail in a master bath renovation, Dana Wolter Interiors

Prepare yourself now- there will be a setback somewhere in the building process that will delay the project.  The weather won’t cooperate, you will hit rock when excavating, etc…  

5.  Talk budget early on 

No one enjoys sharing their personal business, but it is important to have a budget in mind or a realistic expectation of what your project will cost.  

Know your building budget (and furnishings’ budget) at the beginning and be realistic about what it can afford you.  

Talk to your builder about the exact finishes the allowances will buy you, and see what is realistic for what you are building.   Also, the more finishes and specifics you can finalize during the bidding process (know exactly the type of countertop you want to use, what line of plumbing fixtures, etc…), the more it will save you with add-ons at the end.

6. Details make a home  

Not all architects, builders and designers are equal and there is a reason everyone doesn’t charge the same.   If detail is important to you, make sure you hire a team where it is important to them.

7. Let your home building team do their job  

You hired your team for a reason, so let them do their job.  If you can’t visualize a detail, trust that they can. This means trusting their judgment over your friend’s, your mom’s, etc….

8. Save enough money to furnish the home and be realistic as to how far that furnishing budget will go  

The last thing you want to do is build a beautiful, brand new home and for it to echo because you are not able to furnish it properly. 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors as seen in Traditional Home

 

I hope these eight tips are helpful and make the building process more enjoyable and fun.   

If you are interested in learning about the design services we can offer you when building, email us at info@danawolterinteriors.com.  We’d love to hear more about your project.

 

Dana

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