Posts Tagged ‘interior design tips’

We have recently begun working on the renovation of a client’s childhood home.

The wife and I met through one of my 3.5 hour consults as she was looking for direction for her family’s newly purchased childhood home.  During our conversation, I gave a few reasons as to why they should renovate to really make it work for their young, pet-friendly family. 

As a result, they hired us to select the interior finishes and lighting throughout.  

 

Dana Wolter Living Room

A Recently Completed Family Room, Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Though the bones of the house are good- and the memories even better- we are updating the house with classic, timeless materials and details. A

Our goal is a beautiful home with a casual, comfortable feel that only looks better with time. 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Lighting Detail

Dana Wolter Interiors, Interior Details, Graham Yelton Photography

 

The kitchen is completely gutted and is getting the biggest makeover.  A large window is being added because bringing in light was a priority throughout the house.

We are also updating the home with hidden storage (can you ever have enough?) and finding ways to make this new home work and function for them for years to come.

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Kitchen Renovation

Dana Wolter Interiors, Kitchen Renovation

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Renovation

Dana Wolter Interiors, Renovation

 

Stay tuned as we share our progress over the next few months. I can’t wait to make this childhood home into a space where this family can play, relax and enjoy each other. 

Have a great day,

 

Dana

 

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Creating An Inviting Foyer

The foyer is the first impression of your home when someone walks in, so I thought it would be fun to give you 5 ideas to create an inviting one.  After all, whether family or a visitor, you want your guests to feel welcome.

We recently began working on a new project and the entryway is one of the rooms that is part of the design.  It is a beautiful home and we are also making sure this home has the one thing I mention here.  

As I was assessing the best way to soften the entryway and make it look like the family has lived there for some time, here are some tips I incorporated. 

5 tips to making a great first impression in your foyer:

 

1.  Add some sort of seating to soften the space.

When there is room, I always try to add some sort of seating to a foyer.  It is a great way to soften a space while allowing a place to put on your shoes as you walk out the door.

 

How to create an inviting foyer

Foyer Ideas, Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

 

McAlpine Booth and Ferrier

A gorgeous entryway by McAlpine Booth and Ferrier

 

 

2.  Personalize the space

Add a favorite piece of artwork, a frame with a family photo- anything that makes the foyer special to you.

Artwork by my daughter (that I love) personalizes the entrance into my office, Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

 

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Foyer decor personalizes the home, Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

3.  Make the space functional

Make the space useful with hidden storage or a tray to catch your keys.

 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

4.  Include something green 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.

 

An inviting entrance sets the tone for your home, Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

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?  If we can help you create a home you love, email us HERE.

 

Have a great day, and cheers to your foyer making a great, first impression.

Dana

 

 

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It seems cold weather makes people want to stay in and nest, and what better way to freshen up your home than with some of my go-to accessories that will add warmth to your space.  

Here are five of my go-to accessories every home should have:

1. A soft, neutral blanket  

We use a lot of throws in our interiors because they instantly create a space that calls your name to sit down and relax.  Besides, who doesn’t like a blanket when curling up with a good book or watching a tv show?

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

2. Coffee table books

Books are a great way to add a collected feel to any interior.   I always enjoy looking at the books people display in their home because it usually says something about their interests.

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

3. A bowl to catch keys

If I am creating a vignette near a point of entrance, a bowl to catch keys or miscellaneous items is a must. It makes a place for the ‘clutter’ of life look beautiful while serving a purpose. 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

4. Living plants

Flowers, greenery, or branches always add life to any space.  My youngest used to say that flowers around our house made the house seem a little more clean.  Need I say more??

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

5. Art

Find art that speaks to you.  Art is a personal experience for everyone so finding pieces that touch and move you is important.

It’s also a great way to pull an interior together, such as how we layered this framed nude sketch against a Louis Philippe mirror. 

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Look around your home as you may have many of these accessories already.  If you’d like to discuss your home and your goals for it with us, we would love to hear from you.  Feel free to contact us here

 

Cheers to cozying up in your home while we anxiously await for the warmer days of spring.   Have a great day,

Dana

 

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I had one of my favorite clients reach out recently.   We helped their family build a beautiful home a few years ago, and she emailed saying they are looking at buying or building 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.  

 

Tips for making the building process go more smoothly: 

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 good 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 take time.   

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. You get what you pay for  

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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Living Well: 5 Easy Ways to Create A Home You Love (Without Spending A Dime)

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I sense a change is taking place… People are tired- tired of feeling exhausted, hurried and stressed.

Surrounding yourself with a home you love and feels good to you is more important now than ever before.   A place to relax and close out the chaos of everyday life.

Here are 5 easy ways to create home you love (without spending a dime):

1. If you don’t love something in your home or aren’t using it, get rid of it.  Clean out, pare down, and keep only what speaks to you and brings you joy.

End of sentence.  Period.  

 

2.  Assign a purpose for every room in your home.  Every single room, even the little “catch-all” closet.     What exactly is the closet going to store?

 

3.   LIVE in your home and ENJOY.   No more off-limit rooms or saving your china just for special occasions…   Use the dishes one night for dinner, just because…..

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4.  Make your home a reflection of you.  Do you like a little edge but your home doesn’t quite capture who you are or how you want to reflect your style?  

Take some time to think through what makes you smile, what helps you relax, what is important to you.  Once you discover what these are, find ways to incorporate into your home.

A rosary given by a special friend is incorporated into my Living Room Decor. Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Our pet fish has some flowers added to his home, Dana Wolter Interiors

 

5.  Create a space somewhere in your home that makes you feel calm and relaxed.  It doesn’t have to be big space- maybe it is a corner in a room with a chair, a blanket, and a table to place your morning coffee.  

My spot is on my kitchen banquette, where I drink my morning coffee, every single morning…

 

Kitchen banquette, interior design, Dana Wolter Interiors

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Don’t get me wrong.   I am the first to get caught up in everyday life.  Little things, that in the big scheme, don’t mean much.

But if we can make simple changes to our home that impact our quality of life so we live well in our home, isn’t this a good thing?

Hope these 5 easy ways to create a home you love helps you enjoy your home a little more.   Let me know what you think-

 

dana

 

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Building or renovating a home is a huge investment with your time and more importantly, your money.  

And when a client hires us, we work to protect their investment and become their advocate, all while investing their money wisely and (hopefully) taking away the stress. I often see the same pitfalls to avoid when renovating or building.

Here are 5 must-follow tips on building or renovating a home:

1. Order the Size Window the Architect Specs   Sometimes in the bidding process, it’s discussed replacing a custom window with a standard size one to save a little money.  

Don’t do it- window size, type, and placement are extremely important when building a home, and this small change can dramatically alter the look of what has been professionally drawn.

2.  Buy Right the First Time.  Let’s face it….Life gets busy and all of us have good intentions to go back later and switch something out.   I know building can be draining and tiring, but once you have moved and settled in, the last thing you want to do is spend money to replace something.  

Buy the best you can afford on the front end and you will enjoy it for many years to come.

3.  Use Classic Building Materials  Save the trends for things that are easy to switch out such as pillows and accessories, and keep your building material finishes classic.   You will thank me in the long run, especially if you decide to sell.

4.  Set Money Aside for the Furnishings  Budget appropriately for the building process (this is another post I need to write) and be sure to leave enough money to properly furnish the home.  

Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography

 

Dana Wolter Interiors. Graham Yelton Photography

5.  Think Long Term on Your Needs  How long are you going to live in this house?  If you plan on staying for five years or more, you need to take into account what your needs will be down the road.

Are you an empty nester building your final house?  Be sure to think ahead on bedroom placement, stairs and other simple things that could be a hindrance down the road.

A custom-designed #island for an #emptynester couple, Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton
Photography

Do you have children who will be teenagers in five years?  If so, they (and their friends) will only grow bigger and need more space..  

Be sure to think long term and hire the best architect, designer, landscape designer and builder your budget allows.   I promise you that in the end, it will save you money and hassle. 

If you are building or renovating and would like to discuss your project with us, email us here.   I would love to talk with you.

Have a great day-

Dana

 

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Potential clients will often reach out to us for different reasons.

Sometimes they can’t quite put their finger on why they aren’t happy with their home, but it is intuitive- it feels like wasted space or it’s dated or just not quite right.  

Some are even embarrassed to have visitors over because of how it looks.

You can’t put a price tag on some things, and a home that offers a place to retreat is one of them.

Here are four ways to create a home you love:

  1. Have a well-thought out design plan created for your home.  After the purchase, furnishing your home is the second largest investment you will probably make.  

Furnishing a home isn’t cheap, and you want to make sure you are spending your money wisely the first time….  

You see- designing a home is an investment, so hire a professional to give you a detailed plan on how – and where- to invest in the furnishings of your home.

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

 Think long term with your investment and life.

2.  Include pieces that speak to you and that you love.  When we begin a turnkey project, there is a lot of conversation with our client about their dreams, what’s important to them, etc…  Your home needs to be a reflection of you and what makes your heart happy.  

3.  Give a room a purpose, and work the furniture around it.  Unfortunately, you can’t have a home that feels good and works for you unless it works for your needs.

 Cant figure out one?  Contact us here to assess your needs and to help you invest your money wisely.

4.  How can you add to the quality of your life through your home?   Do you want to expand your circle of friends and want to invite more people over to dinner on a regular basis?   Great- let’s make sure your home will flow like it needs to do so.

 

Dana Wolter Interiors

Life is too short to not love the place you spend the majority of your life.  Your home should be a place that feels good, rejuvenates you and gives you a place to restore and rest.

Here’s to making your house one you love-

Dana  

 

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We Are Hiring!

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We’ve have lots of exciting things going on and it feels good to be growing….

 

We have two positions available in Birmingham, AL, so if you are the perfect fit for our firm, let us hear from you.

 

Project Manager- The criteria includes:

Full Time position

Interior Design Experience a must

AutoCad, Photoshop, and SketchUp proficiency are required.

Must be motivated, organized, articulate, and detail-oriented.  

Excellent written and verbal skills, a professional demeanor, and exquisite taste for our custom projects.  

Salary based upon experience

 

Marketing Intern- The criteria includes:

This internship requires someone who writes well, is excellent with social media, and is organized with the task at hand.    You must be articulate, savvy with technology, have an eye for design/art, great with a camera, and proficient in WordPress.

 

If you meet these qualifications, email us your cover letter, resume and references to info@danawolterinteriors.com. We would love to hear from you and know why you should join our team-

 

Dana

 

 

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We are thrilled to share some exciting news with you…..  

Dana Wolter Interiors has been named a Finalist in the Southeast Residential Designer Of The Year Award. This accolade is sponsored by ADAC and Veranda magazine.

This is the second year in a row we have been nominated for this amazing award, and I am grateful to my hardworking team and the judges Clint Smith, Victoria Hagan, and Tom Kligerman for noticing our work.

Needless to day, we are over the moon.

Stay tuned as we will keep you posted on social media. The awards ceremony is April 26th at the Southeastern Showhouse, which we leave today to install our space. Wish us luck with the install – with three cars full and a carrier making a delivery, we look like we are moving in to stay.

Have a great day, everyone!

Dana

 

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Do you ever wonder how we use so many beautiful, neutral fabrics in our projects and question how they look after a busy family lives in the space?  
 
Many times when we are in the furniture and fabric phase of a project, clients immediately want to steer clear of anything that remotely looks too ‘light’ in color because of children, dogs, and just life.
 
They have valid reasoning for being concerned; I’ve raised three daughters and know how that goes. But like everything else, technology with fabrics and their durability have come leaps and bounds from where they used to be.  
 
Here are four ways to make neutral upholstery more durable in your home:
1. Treat the neutral fabric with a stain resistant
In this Living Room, we had all of the upholstery treated with a stain resistant formula before being upholstered. It’s important to look at each fabric’s durability when creating a room so it can work hard for your family if needed.
 
Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography
 
2. Include commercial grade fabrics in strategic places
Another trick we use is to find contract-grade fabrics that do not look or feel commercial. We have found fabulous looking velvets and linens that go through rigorous testing to guarantee they are stain resistant, durable, and have a high rub count.
 
Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography
 
3. Add a blanket or quilt as an extra layer of protection
Often times, we have quilted throws made to perfectly fit a piece of upholstery. This allows the throw take the brunt of the activity and it can easily be removed or dry cleaned.
 
This Schumacher velvet and Jerry Pair leather add to the durability in this room. Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography
 
4.  Incorporate a leather or faux leather into the room
This buttery faux leather that resembles some of the attributes of leather can look stunning and function perfectly in a kitchen or breakfast room.
The technology makes it easy to wipe down without stains or harsh chemicals, so no worries about fingerprints or stains on this custom banquette we designed, either.
 
Dana Wolter Interiors, Graham Yelton Photography
 
Next time you are faced with the fear of choosing new fabrics for your home, don’t immediately shy away from light upholstery. Remember, the key is to look at its makeup so it can stand up to everyday life.
 
Here’s to living well with neutral upholstery,
Dana
 
 

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