Many of my projects are older homes that haven’t been updated yet to best fit the needs of today’s modern family.
A lot of these homes have unused, outdated built-ins, and I thought it would be fun to look at a few ways I have recreated this type of space.
It’s amazing what a little thought and creativity can do to update and make a space work for you.
Here are a few examples:
We thickened the wall opening into the room so the new cabinetry reads more as a true built-in. I made the depth for this custom cabinet less in the middle (the doors slide open to reveal a flat screen tv ) while the side cabinets hold 13″ deep bookcases to personalize the space.
In one of my other projects, the sitting room had a deep, built-in computer desk. The desk wasn’t being used anymore and the room was pretty much just a walk-through space.
We decided to give this room a purpose by making it the husband’s sitting room, fitted with a bar and his own personal television.
I decided to go with a lighter wax on the bar wood to make the bar “pop” against the dark walls, and I also surrounded the space with a snakeskin wall covering. The upholstered doors are touch latch for easy opening-
What about your home? Do you have wasted, useable space hidden in your old built-ins?
If so, and you are ready to update your home, reach out to us here. We’d love to hear about your project-
Have a great day-
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With the start of a new year (and being home for three weeks after my surgery), I found myself looking for ways to improve how my home works for my busy family. Ways to accentuate living well in my home.
And while my to-do list grew quite long (turning my old office into a lounge space for me is near the top), I thought I would share a few easy ways to improve a home and hopefully your quality of life.
1. Paint a room– Nothing reinvigorates a space more than a fresh coat of paint. Paint fades and dulls slowly over time, requiring some TLC after numerous years of no attention. I suggest repainting the ceiling and trim at the same time because once the walls are repainted, the ceiling and trim will be noticeably dull.
2. Bring the outdoors in – With all of this cold weather we’ve had lately, cut a few branches from your yard to add some greenery and life into your home.
Winding branches make such a dramatic yet effortless statement that don’t need to be maintained like orchids or other flowers. The texture and scale that branches contribute to a space will add a beautiful layer to your existing design, AND it doesn’t cost a dime. It may not be summer, yet, but we can pretend it is almost here.
3. Closet consistency –How often do you stand in your closet thinking you have nothing to wear? The problem may lie in the fact that you can’t see half of what you own.
I recently tossed every single hanger in the house and switched to clear plastic hangers for me and color coordinated ones for my girls (and when they go back to school, the specific hanger goes with them). They come in several colors and the key is to buy each person their own color. Not only do these slim hangers take up less space in your closet, but they look nice and clean.
I pulled out a few things to give away, but the consistency in the hangers and hanging clothes by color and type made all the difference in the world. I’ve found myself spending less time figuring out what to wear because of this simple, esthetically-pleasing change.
4. Make a list of projects you want to accomplish – January is a great time to make a punch list of things you’ve been wanting to do around your home. I try to group alike tasks together and make a goal to complete a few each month.
For example, a client just contacted me about designing her Screened-In Porch so it would be completely ready for entertaining in the summer. We’ve done almost all of the other rooms in the house and this room was always put on the back burner.
On a smaller scale, maybe you have been wanting to switch out some of your light fixtures that are beginning to look dated or replace a Living Room sofa that has seen better days – add these to your master punch list and begin putting effort in getting them accomplished.
What will it take for you to live well, or should I say, live better, in your own home? Take a few minutes and think about it. I bet the answer is not far away.
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With two of my girls off at college and my last one leaving soon, I find my house starting to feel a little too big.
I love my location in Mountain Brook, AL, and my home that I put so much of myself into, but I hate the idea of unused space. I realize this is probably not my last house.
And like my empty nest clients, my next home will be one that will need to carry us through the final stage of life. Yet, I realize my needs as an empty nester will be different than those of someone with children living at home. So if you find yourself thinking like me, here are
Five Tips Every Empty Nester Should Know When Downsizing:
1. Not all of your furniture will fit in a scaled down home
This is a great time to think about the pieces your truly love and have meaning to you. Practice living well in this new home by simplifying, downsizing and surrounding yourself only with things you love and use.
2. Your children may not want your discards
Newsflash….When you are cleaning out, chances are that if you don’t want Aunt Susie’s favorite chair, your children may not either. Give them the gift of deciding what they would like to bring into their home without the pressure of keeping a family piece. When it is time, savor the memories and let go.
3. Customize the home to you
Life is short and life is meant for living well. If you have always wanted a large storage closet for your china and silver, build it. Surround yourself and customize your home to what brings you joy.
And while your space may be smaller, this is a great time to upgrade your finishes and details. Thought out touches add value to your home and to your life.
For instance, the home below was for my empty nest clients. They did not want a breakfast room because they like to eat everyday meals around an island. I wanted them to really enjoy their kitchen and especially their island, so we focused on making the space unique and extra special for them.
4. Create dual purpose rooms
While you may not have children and grandchildren visit every day, you want them to feel welcome when they do. If your new home doesn’t allow for enough extra bedrooms, think dual rooms, such as an office or sitting room with a bed or pullout sofa in it.
For instance, we turned this garage into a playroom because my clients needed extra space for watching tv when all of their grown children are home. We added an extra long sofa that has a pullout sofa for family visits.
Just because you give up square footage when downsizing does not mean you should ever give up entertaining or hosting overnight guests.
5. Think Long Term
While you may be healthy now and still running marathons every few months, your forever home may need to transition one day to the later stages of life.
What will that mean for you? It may mean a master on the main or an elevator for upstairs’ access, limited stairs where possible, and a shower and tub that are easy to get in and out.
So here’s to living well in your home and making it unique to you. Life is about surrounding yourself with people and memories you love and enjoy.
If we can help you create the home of your dreams, call us at 205-938-4848 or email us here. I’d love to discuss with you.
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With as many homes I am in and out of, I see recurring problems that come from everyday life and living.
I love seeing a home transform from one that’s cluttered, dark, and doesn’t work for a family to one that allows them to Live Well in their home.
And while your definition of Living Well may be different than mine or your neighbors’, I’m giving a few tips to solve some common problem areas.
Clutter: Organize your home so everything has a place. Incorporate hidden storage where you can create a visual calm and remember to store alike things together.
If organizing overwhelms you, start by cleaning out a small space, such as the towel drawer in your kitchen.
2. A room that is a catch-all for stuff because it isn’t being used
Find a Purpose for every room in your home. No room should serve as a “walk-through” or a one that is used once or twice a year. Once you give the room a function, take a step back and assess the items in it. Do they bring you 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 home below that we worked on recently. The living room was never used, the family room wasn’t working for the family, so we flipped the two.
Because of where these two rooms are placed in the house, the family now finds themselves using both spaces on a regular basis.
3. Dark, cramped spaces that don’t function well.
Find a Balance with how your home flows and functions. To Live Well in your home, it should work hard for everyday living while easily transitioning to host a party when needed.
Does the kitchen allow for quality work space? Is there a place for guests to sit and linger? If not, it may be time to renovate your kitchen.
We took this outdated, dark, cramped kitchen and made it accommodate today’s living. By raising the ceiling, taking the sunroom into the kitchen space and adding a wall of hidden storage, we created a kitchen that is functional, bright and works hard for this family.
I also love adding a banquette when I can in a kitchen. It allows for more seating AND it adds a layer of softness to a room filled with many hard surfaces.
4. Spaces in your house that don’t feel like home
What makes you smile and brings you 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.
I hope these tips help you make an honest assessment about your home so you can find ways to add to your quality of life.
If you need help turning your house into one you love, reach out to us here. We would love to hear from you!
Here’s to Living Well in your home, whatever your definition may be.
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I’ve always been proud of how our designs change how people live- because they do. I’ve seen time and time again how a beautiful, well-functioning home can add to the quality of a family’s life and save them from costly mistakes.
While the reason we do what we do hasn’t changed, we gave it a name in early 2017. We added to our Vision Statement “To change people’s lives through the art of Living Well in their home.”
So, in keeping with Living Well in my own life, I thought it would be fun to look back at what 2017 held for me. Here is a recap- the good and the bad- that took place.
We began the year opening my new office in Mountain Brook, AL. I kept my office in my home for several years to stay close to my children, but now that they are older and my team has grown, it was time to move out. We are now in the heart of Mountain Brook Village, so still close to my own home which I love.
January also included installing our #DiamondsOfDesign vignette for the AmericasMart market in Atlanta, GA. It was their 60th anniversary and to celebrate, they had 10 designers from across the country create spaces based upon a style icon from the past 60 years.
Designers from across the Southeast were asked to participate in this showhouse, and we loved being included. The house is a James Means’ creation where his designs were based upon Classicism and craftsmanship. The renovation/addition was by Yong Pak of Pak Hyde & Associates.
Here are a few pictures from our Mudroom photographed by Emily Followill:
March came with a family trip to The Ritz Carlton St. Thomas for spring break. It was a much needed break, and the fresh air and scenery were exactly what I needed.
We were thrilled to learn in early April that we were a Finalist for the 2017 ADAC and Veranda Southeast Residential Designer Of The Year award.
Though we didn’t win, it was a fun few days celebrating and catching up with design friends.
2017 also included publications of our work. We loved this feature here in Charlotte’s Peachy Magazine featuring one of our designs from years’ past. It’s an example that good design doesn’t go out of style….
Mountain Brook Magazine featured one of my favorite renovations. The backstory to this project is a feel good story for all, so be sure to read here .
StyleBlueprint did a wonderful feature on our work. You can see the article here.
I also visited New York a few times for work and for fun. I love the city and find inspiration from new sources so easily there. When I was there in July, I drove over with my friend Vicki to see the Traditional Home Hamptons’ Showhouse in July. It was filled with amazing talent and every space was gorgeous.
I can’t leave out moving TWO of my girls to college. While it is always time for them to go back to school when the time comes (and this is Lucy’s junior year), it is still emotional for me. Not sure why- because they are doing amazingly well, but I just miss them.
I enjoyed showing their followers around Birmingham, AL. People are always pleasantly surprised to see how urbanized our city is and all that it offers in the Deep South.
We had several installations this year, and for our amazing clients, we are always grateful. Here are some pictures of a few of the homes(photography by Graham Yelton):
If you are still reading following me here on Instagram, you know I recently had hip surgery. It was a big decision for me to go through with it as I have had hip pain for over three years. Quite frankly, I just became tired of being in pain and not being able to walk long distances. It has been a rough few weeks, but every day I seem to be a little stronger. I just pray 2018 will be pain free and that I will be able to walk as far as I would like without thinking twice. I’ve learned it’s the simple things that I take for granted, like bending over to tie my shoes (I can’t do this for six weeks post op). If you see me walking into my office barefoot, you will know why.:)
And while 2017 has been a pretty good year for business and accolades, what I am most grateful for is my family. Living Well for me is enjoying my family and creating memories with them whenever I can. I recently turned an extra room in our house into a tv room, and I have loved watching all of the many movies we did over the holidays.
So here’s to Living Well in 2018, whatever your definition may be. If it includes transforming your home into one that works hard to live up to your definition, give us a shout here. We’d love to hear from you.
There is nothing I love more than when friends and family stop by at a moment’s notice.
Whether it’s catching up with a neighbor or an impromptu girls’ night, I savor these moments. The key to being prepared for unexpected company is to have a few easy tricks.
It’s not about stressing over how clean your house is or the fact that you may still be in your workout clothes from the morning. It’s about enjoying friends and family and the time you spend with them.
Your guests will only be as relaxed as you are, so don’t fret over the things you can’t control.
Here are five of my tried and true tricks to keep on hand for last-minute entertaining:
1. Keep a delicious dip in your freezer and crackers in the pantry. This way, all you have to do is pull out of the freezer and heat in the oven. Not only will your home smell amazing, but you don’t have to fuss with any dishes or prep work.
Here is my family’s favorite dip recipe, courtesy of the Junior League of Birmingham’s Food For Thought cookbook. FYI- it freezes wonderfully, too.
Hot Bacon and Swiss Dip
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, soften
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 cup grated Swiss cheese
2 tablespoons chopped green onions
8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled,
1/2 cup crushed Ritz crackers
Soften cream cheese in a mixing bowl. Add mayonnaise, Swiss chases, and green onions; mix well. Transfer to a baking dish. Top with bacon and crackers. Bake at 350° for 15 to 20 minutes or until bubbly and serve with crackers or Fritos.
2. Have cloth napkins pressed and ready. No thought or effort required – It is as simple as pulling them out and displaying with your hors d’oeuvre of choice and wine.
3. Light a nice candle– I love a good candle and am constantly changing out the one in my kitchen. Find one that speaks to you and enjoy it.
4. Keep a good supply of simple, clear vases of different sizes tucked away for entertaining. These are great for filling with grocery store flowers or branches from your yard for a last minute arrangement. Sprawling branches make such a beautiful, effortless statement, and according to my youngest, flowers make your house look cleaner. Who knew!
Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography
Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography
Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography
Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography
5. Slow down and give your guests your undivided attention. Put down the cell phones, send the children off to play or to do homework, and make your guests feel like you have time for them (no matter what fire you might be in the middle of putting out). Be present and enjoy your visit!
With the holidays approaching, I hope some of these tips will help ease the stress of the season. I’d love to hear your tried and true hospitality tricks.
Cheers to living (and entertaining) well,
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The foyer is the first impression of your home when someone walks in, so it needs to make a good one.
After all, whether family or a visitor, you want guests to feel welcome.
We recently began working on the foyer of a current project. It is a beautiful home and while we have finished up several rooms in the house, we are now focusing in on this space. As I was assessing the best way to soften this room and make it look like the family has lived there for some time, I thought I would share some tricks with you.
Here are five tips to making a great first impression in your foyer:
1. Add a piece of furniture and or seating (preferably something with fabric) to soften the space.
2. Make the space personal- Add your favorite piece of artwork, a frame with a family photo, etc….
3. Make the space useful- Depending on the size, create a place to sit to put your shoes on, or at the very least, add a tray to catch your keys.
4. Include something fresh such as flowers or a plant.
5. Layer the space with accessories to create dimension and to make it look like it has been collected over time.
Below is a video I shot a few years back with Wendy Garner talking about how to transform this overlooked space. Click here to watch for a few more tips for your foyer.
So, what does your foyer say about your home? Does it set the tone and catch your eye, or is it a “catch-all” area you want to hurry your guests through?
Have a great day, everyone, and here’s to your foyer making a good first impression.
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If you love Instagram as much as I do, be sure to follow along with us this weekend as I take over Traditional Home’s Instagram feed later today.
I am excited to share pictures of my weekend and show you around my hometown of Birmingham, AL. People are always pleasantly surprised to see how urbanized our city is and all that it offers in the Deep South.
I am going to share a few of my favorite places to eat, shop, and relax around town. You can see my Instagram account here and can follow along on Traditional Home’s account here.
Stop by and say hello. I’d love to hear from you-
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I have been talking a lot lately about the importance of making your home your own. #Livingwell and creating a home around what is important to you.
A bedroom is the perfect room to create a spot to call your own – a place that allows you to relax and surround yourself with things you love.
I’ve come up with six tips for creating a bedroom special to you. Here goes:
1. Use colors that SPEAK to you: I normally keep colors in the bedroom soft because I need tranquility in my life (Ha!), but if a bright color speaks to you, then certainly use it.
2. Mix your Furniture Pieces for a Collected Look. Gone are the days of matching bedroom sets, so mix your finishes.
3. Layer- Bedrooms can have quite a few hard surfaces, so it is important to add softness through a rug, window treatments, pillows, bedding, etc…
4. Incorporate things that you love, such as favorite photographs and artwork.
5. Keep it simple… Don’t clutter or overcrowd your bedroom with too much stuff. Make sure the room can breathe, so you can as well.
6. Find a place to sit. While you don’t want to overcrowd, I always try to add some sort of sitting in a bedroom. A place to lounge if you aren’t quite ready to curl up in bed.
A leather or upholstered chair to cozy up in to finish that book you started are pieces that can enhance a bedroom space and make it feel like your very own private suite. #Livingwell in your home by making it your own.
Bedrooms should have all things in it that you love. It should be the place you cannot wait to get to at the end of your day or sneak off to when you just need a moment to yourself.
If you want help or need guidance on how to make your bedroom feel like its very own getaway, email us here.
Here’s to creating a bedroom you love and #livingwell in your home.
Pets are part of the family, and #LivingWell with a pet means creating durable, pretty interiors that can withstand the wear and tear that comes from them. Interiors you can enjoy with your pets, family and friends.
Ask my dog, Bitsy, as she is sure to show you how she has free rein in my home.
If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably seen on my Instagram stories how I refer to her as Waldo- you never know where she may appear- but it’s always in a comfortable spot.
Pets need to be taken in consideration when designing your home. Yes, you can have a gorgeous, jaw dropping home the entire family can actually live in, including them.
Here are a few tips for worry-free living with your best friend:
1. God-made materials, such as natural stone, only become prettier with a little wear and tear. Scratches, etching- it’s called patina.
2. When selecting fabrics, choose ones that have a high durability rating. If it doesn’t have one, have the fabric treated.
I use this trick- a lot. Let me show you a few examples…
3. Incorporate antique and semi-antique rugs. Needless to say, if it has lasted a hundred years or close to it, it can stand the wear from a pup.
Maggie was quite the model when shooting this home. She loved to be where the action was (and on the rugs).
What can I say? Some can easily claim a favorite spot of their very own. Isn’t he the sweetest?
Where’s your pet’s favorite spot to perch, or is he even allowed on the furniture?
Here’s to #LivingWell with pets. After all, they are part of the family, and a home should be enjoyed by all.
Have a great day-
To see what we are doing on a daily basis, follow along-
Fall is here and with the holidays around the corner, people are ready to make changes to their home.
If this includes you, I want to remind you about the 3.5 hour consult I offer.
While we mostly work on full room or turn-key projects, this one-time service is for the client who needs direction and help making decisions, but likes to take that information and do the legwork themselves.
It has gone over really well, and the clients who have invested in this consult with me have been surprised over the amount of detail and information that comes with it.
Matter of fact, I have helped people not only rework rooms and the types of furniture to buy for the spaces, but others have used this service to select the finishes and paint colors for homes not yet under construction.
Whatever your needs may be, you have my undivided attention to accomplish all we need to do during our time together.
Here’s how the 3.5 hour consult works:
You send a list to me 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 discussing your project. We can discuss design dilemmas, furniture arrangements, fabric swatches, paint colors, to knock down a wall or not– you name it.
The more legwork you do before our meeting in knowing what you want to accomplish, the more productive our time will be together. We will make a Pinterest board with 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 notes on what was discussed and a list of the suggestions from me. This allows you to maximize your time with me while I 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.
I had one last week and the client sent me this email afterwards. She said it was fine for me to share, so here goes:
Hi Dana, I just wanted to thank you again for yesterday! As I drove home, I literally felt less stress in my body having so many decisions made that I am excited about! You offer a wonderful service and it fit my needs perfectly. I look forward to really seeing the transformation take place! Thank you again and have a great upcoming weekend!
If you think this service can help you, email us here. I would love to talk with you.
Have a great day,
P.S. I post pictures on social media that don’t always make it onto my blog, so please follow along.
With the devastation we’ve had lately from floods and Hurricane Irma, I’ve been reminded of the importance of home. I’ve realized I take for granted having a roof over my head, a place to retreat from life.
None of us are promised a perfect tomorrow, so why are we waiting to create a home that makes us feel comfortable, happy, and protected?
My heart goes out to all of the people across our country having to start over and rebuild. Now more than ever, it is important to #Livewell by creating a home you love- one that makes you want to retreat to from the craziness of this world.
It’s deciding what makes you happy and taking the steps to create it. For instance, is family important to you? If so, think about creating a gallery wall of your favorite family photos.
I do this all the time- I’ll designate a specific hall, a wall, or both in a home where photos can be displayed. Here are a few from a couple of my projects:
For some, #LivingWell might be having friends over. Casual impromptu dinners are always great, but don’t be afraid to pull out your china, silver, crystal. If using these things brings you joy, pull them out-stop saving them for tomorrow. Let’s enjoy today.
I love to create a spot somewhere in the home that clients can call their own. A cozy corner that calls their name.
A cute couple I helped with a design/build liked to sit at their island for their meals. If you are going to sit at the counter for a few meals each day, why not make it functional and pretty and unique?
For today, I hope you are inspired to find ways to turn your home into one you love…….
Here’s to creating a home you enjoy and can #livewell in–
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.
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?
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-
I’ve been little sporadic blogging this summer, but that doesn’t mean lots of exciting things- personally and professionally- haven’t been going on. I don”t know where to start, so I thought I would give a few highlights.
I have been super focused right now on packing up my middle daughter, Ellie, and moving her into college TOMORROW. Lots of mixed emotions as I don’t think a move with my second child will be any easier than it was with my first.
We are doing a mix of custom and store bought finds for her dorm room. I’ve tried to spend a little more on the items that can be reused and go more for “look” on the basic items.
The girls want to be surprised, so they haven’t seen anything yet. I am a little nervous about not having feedback from them but I’ve had a hip, college intern this summer who approved. Hopefully, they will feel the love that has gone into creating their room by this old, not so cool (at least in my daughter’s eyes) mom.
I will try to share some picture on social media so you can see how it turned out. Be sure to follow along here on Instagram……
Our office closed the week of the Fourth of July and I headed to the beach. My oldest, Lucy, is working in New York this summer and Ellie was at the lake, so Danny and I took Ann and friends to Watercolor in Santa Rosa, FL, for the week.
I loved having some time (well, as much as they would give us) with these girls, and the rest was good for all. The one on one time with my hubby was icing on the cake.
It’s a good thing we rested as my team and I came back to a huge install. This is a new construction we have been working on for over two years, and the cute couple, who built their forever home, were moving in that week.
The scope of the project covered all of the finishes/ details in the house, and the beginning of the summer included lots of attention to making sure all went seamlessly. We selected all of the upholstery, furnishing, accessories, window treatments, etc…, for the entire downstairs and a few things in the media room. The home is stunning with custom touches throughout.
It’s these custom touches that make a house go from pretty to pretty incredible. Lots of fabric cuttings going back and forth, creating a “catch your eye” focal point in each room, blending of finishes, making sure everything works with the piece next to it without being too perfectly matched….. You get the point. It’s custom what we do and attention to detail is our specialty.
It’s been a fun project as we’ve blogged about it here if you’d like to read more.
I headed to the Hamptons at the end of July to celebrate the opening of the Traditional Home Showhouse in Southampton. It was a lot of fun and the two homes are gorgeous. Lots of stunning details shown on Traditional Home’s Instagram here. Be sure to look for more pictures of the homes in next summer’s issue.
We’ve also been diligently working on a few new rooms that have been added to the scope of a current project. It is a stately house with great bones with a cute, active family that lives in it. Lots of beautiful stone throughout- but it needed some softness and layers and unique details added into the mix. We’ve brought in an architect to make the rooms flow better. It doesn’t matter how pretty a space is if it doesn’t function well for your family. Right??!
Stay tuned as we are sharing some exciting news soon. In the meantime, wish me luck moving in my girl.
I am going to miss her infectious laugh and the relaxed feel she adds to the house. Wondering if crying when dropping off college kids is embarrassing to them. I am only asking for a friend 🙂
Have a great day and thanks for reading,
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A client reached out to us about helping them with a few rooms in their newly purchased home. One of the rooms they commissioned with us was the Dining Room.
The house is a typical 80s style house on a stately lot, and I wanted to add a little edge and detail through the interiors. A Dining Room is often nondescript, making it important to layer so it feels soft- and special.
Here are a few of the “Before” pictures:
We kept the wall color and her buffet, but everything else was a clean slate.
The goal was to make it feel warm, casual, and dramatic. Maybe it was the mood I was in, but Cocoon was the word that kept coming to mind.
We decided to drape two of the walls in the room with a sheer that blended into her newly painted walls. I wanted this room to draw you in, just as a Dining Room should.
I went with an upholstered table to add a little more drama and softness in the space. I also love the touches of black and gold throughout.
After adding a table as big as the room could hold for maximum seating, there was room for a piece of furniture between the windows, but we had to watch its depth.
I decided to go with an Etagere to give her a place to stack her china, crystal, and serving pieces. Who says these type of pieces have to stay hidden in a cabinet or drawer?
The Etagere added a little more of a casual feel to a typically formal space, and it will look better and better the more pieces are added to it.
So here’s to making your home feel like a cocoon; warm, inviting, and a reflection of you. If we can help you turn your house into a home you love, email us here. We would love to hear from you.
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Are you stuck, knowing your home could look and feel so much better, but you aren’t sure what to do?
Or you can’t seem to find the motivation or the direction to pull your home together?
Life is busy, and hectic, and stressful.
I get it, as I sometimes feel the same way, too.
But I am constantly reminded how a well-functioning home, one that reflects you and allows you to breathe deeply and relax, 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 well-designed, high-functioning home, can change how you live and enjoy life.
If you are ready for a change for you and your family, now is the time to do it.
Let us help turn your home into one that works well for your needs. And, quite frankly, makes you feel good to be in your own home.
The majority of our projects are full room or turnkey projects, where we devise a detailed plan according to your needs and budget, and we implement it for you.
We specialize in new construction, beginning with the schematics (many times I am hired before an architect has put pen to paper) to hanging the last picture on the wall. We work closely with the builder and architect to make sure every detail is thought through, from the beginning to the very end.
Your project becomes our project.
We also offer another service for clients who need direction and help making decisions for their home, but they like to do the legwork themselves according to their timeframe and budget. Our one-time, 3.5 hour consult service, is the perfect way to devise a plan tailored specifically for your home.
It has gone over really well, and the clients who have invested in it have been surprised over the amount of detail and information that comes from our meeting. Matter of fact, I have even gone on the road -and in the air- to offer this consult.
If you think we can help make your home the place you dream, why are you waiting?
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org . 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 detail at a time-
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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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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-
If you would like to see what we are doing on a daily basis, reach out to us. We’d love to hear from you-
I am working on a new project where the house is a beautiful shell but the interiors are a little tired.
The house was furnished over 15 years ago and it is time to freshen things up a bit. Things have changed-a lot-in the last decade. Children have left the nest in this family and grandbabies are now on the way.
They have hired us to update the furnishings in several of the rooms, and I see this home beautiful and functional for the couple who can easily throw together on a whim a casual dinner party for 20. One that has quality finishes, materials, and details but where the future grandparents don’t have to worry about sippy cups and Goldfish Crackers ruining their pretty things.
I have been asking lots of questions on how they live, what they want this house to give to them.
The answers always seem to keep coming back to the same things- a placing to make really good memories. A place that feels like home.
While we are incorporating their great artwork collection and several pieces that are special to them, I have turned to Pinterest for a little inspiration.
I love the warmth of the old wood with the charcoal doors and clean, crisp walls.
The house is going to have a “collected” feel- a mix of new pieces in with a few new antiques and existing pieces they love.
A cocoon-like feel with draped walls and custom upholstery pieces.
Stay tuned as I will keep you posted on how this home progresses. Have a great day-
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