Western Chic in Texas

Princeton is a small city located around 50 miles northeast of Dallas with a population of around 7800. Surrounded by the rural Texas countryside, many people in Princeton take their Tex-Western decor seriously.

So when this family decided to decorate, the challenge was to avoid the standard “Western” decor and create a fresher, more updated Western-Chic.

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Gray continues to be the perfect neutral for a transitional decor.  Here it serves as the backdrop on the walls and repeated again in the furniture and rug. Continue reading…


The Home of An Artist

When you decorate the home of an artist, the traditional design rules become more nebulous, and you become more open to exploring the bohemian.  At least that was the case with this artistic home of a dear client.

Like me, red is her favorite color, so it’s no surprise that she chose these 2 canvases from her many originals to display in her main living area.

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Continue reading…


50 Shades of White

A white room is indeed a luxury.  It’s also the ultimate in sophistication!  Unfortunately it does come with practical limitations, but if your circumstances allow you to surround yourself in white, you are indeed fortunate.

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Continue reading…


Updating an Outdated Living Room

When Ms D. called me to discuss redecorating her home she had been tired of living for years with dark walls, and ready for a fresh new look.

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The first thing we did was paint.

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Both walls and ceiling were painted with Sherwin Williams Sand Dollar SW6099, with accent walls painted in Koi Pond SW7727. Continue reading…


Decorating Around your Flat Screen TV

I have found that one of the biggest decorating challenges is how to decorate around the flat screen TV.

For years now, the TV has been as necessary in the home as a computer or a phone.  And for years now, it continues to be an often unsightly item in any decor!  But there are ways to decorate around it which help to camouflage the big black box and draw the attention away from it.

How you decide to decorate your TV wall will depend on several things…what the TV sits on,  the size of the TV, and the size and shape of the wall.  Here are a few ideas that might inspire you to think outside the box.

Hanging multiple frames is one of the best ways to surround the TV.  The trick is to create a cohesive gallery which includes the TV.   The frames can house family pictures, art, or both.

Continue reading…


Yes, You SHOULD Paint the Paneling

Believe it or not, there are still people out there that don’t want to paint the paneling!  So here’s yet another reason why you should.  I recently completed a family room that was stuck in a time warp…in large part because of the paneling!

My client calls this room the “den”.  It started out as a paneled room that was dark and outdated.  Fortunately, she was more than willing to paint…and it made all the difference!

Before

Before

We started by painting the room in a light, buttery color.

Although we did purchase new seating furniture, we reused the existing trunk for the coffee table, the end table and the Tiffany style lamps.  The built-in bookshelf was reconfigured to accommodate a new flat screen TV.

For the window treatment, we placed a woven wood Roman shade, outside mounted and all the way to the molding.  This made the window look larger and more balanced for the room.

The homeowner wanted to use her existing Tiffany style lamps, but they were a bit short.  Using a decorative box we raised them making them the right height, and increased the storage in the room.

The homeowner is an avid movie watcher and wanted to incorporate that “theme” in the room.  We accomplished this with art.

The biggest impact, however, was definitely created by painting the paneling!  It made the room feel fresh and updated.  So don’t hesitate…Paint the Paneling!!

Hope I’ve inspired.


Decorating a Family Room

Recently, I completed this casual and comfortable living area in Frisco, TX.

The homeowners had purchased the furniture from Rachel Benedict at Thomasville.  A gorgeous sectional in a light taupe leather, complimented by industrial inspired tables…including a bar height table with stools.  My job was to decorate it.

The room’s Transitional style is a total departure from the more Traditional look that  the homeowners are comfortable with.  The old world map provides that traditional element, while still moving  in the direction of a more streamlined, simple look.

The room reflects the homeowner’s love of travel and we personalized it with evidence of their trips.

Two rustic shelves display their collection of city cups…each reflecting the name of a city they have visited.

Both love taking pictures, so a few of their favorite photos were enlarged and framed.  These can be changed out every few months to display their latest adventures.

The time zones in 5 of their favorite cities…

Industrial jars filled with edible gum balls, Skittles and Jellie Beans…bringing fun and color to the space.  Below, the homeowner’s initials in monogram tins personalize the bar.

We stocked the bar with the basic necessities (minus the alcohol…well ok, we got some wine!).  In the corner, 2 industrial crates display their collection of Coca Cola bottles.

I loved decorating this room!  Hope I’ve inspired!


New Accessories…New Look!

Its no surprise that accessories can make a huge difference.  In fact, oftentimesall you need to do to get a fresh look…and sometimes a whole different look, is to change your accessories.

And by “acccessories” I include art, lamps, pillows, rugs, etc.  All of the “jewelry” that is not furniture.

Recently, we transformed a client’s home doing just that.  We selected key pieces to add to her existing decor.  They made all the difference! 

Before
  • New lamps.
  • New art for over the mantle.  The existing one was too small.  We custom framed a photograph that had been taken by her dad…very special.
  • New throw pillows.  We  used patterned pillows to bring in some color and solid pillows in a light tone to “lighten” up the room.
  • A floor plant was added to “soften” the “hard” lines of the leather sofa back.
  • An area rug was also added to identify the seating area and to add more color.
  • But the most dramatic, was the installation of the very large antique miror, flanked with matching candle sconces.  Big “art”, big drama! 

After
Same room, different angle.
After
In addition to accessorizing, the library also got a new coat of paint. And I don’t need to tell you what a difference paint can make! 
Before
After

In the words of my client:  “I KNEW the rooms had potential…”. 

Yes they did.  And yours do too.  Hope I’ve inspired.

Till next time,

Alba

 


A Living Room Redesign

I have a very dear friend that I met 10 years ago when I first arrived in Dallas.  For years, I’ve told her that, if she let me, I could make a big difference by simply rearranging her furniture, art and accessories in her family room.  But, although the reasons have always been valid, the answer has always been no.  Until last month!  You can imagine how excited I was.

Before

The goalTo spruce up and refresh the room using the existing furnishings and a limited budget for essential items  that would give the biggest impact.

 

The execution

  • First, we added an area rug.  I’ve said it a million times,…they make a huge difference in how a room looks and feels.
  • The furniture was rearranged and placed around the perimeter of the area rug, creating a warmer, more cozy conversation area.
  • New art was added…a great way to bring a big change to the decor.
  • New throw pillows.  

Other than that, it was just a matter of proper placement. 

After

 

 The room looks great, and although you can’t really tell from the pictures, it feels larger too. The rug makes it feel warmer and more comfortable.  Best of all, my friend loves it.

After

 

Another example that…its not what you have the matters… it’s how you place everything that makes the biggest difference!

Hope I’ve inspired,

Alba


The Chartreuse Ottoman

I recently completed a family room that I had SO much fun designing.  Of course, I can honestly say that I love ALL of my projects, but very now and then, I get the opportunity to work with someone who is not affraid to be bold…and I get a chance to step outside the box.  

That was the case with Mrs. A, who did not disappoint me when she agreed to this amazing chartreuse ottoman that I found at the Dallas World Trade Center.  I just knew she would love it.   Isn’t it fun!   It’s a beautiful chartreuse leather, tufted to perfection. It serves as the coffee table and it’s definitely the room’s “wow” factor.  

Before, the room felt dark and didn’t look cohesive.  That needed to be remedied, in addition to a handful of requirements necessary for better function.  One such requirement was adequate seating to accommodate frequent entertaining.

The 2 upholstered chairs are recliners (facing the tv for comfortable veiwing), but also perfect for reading and relaxing.

This family loves to travel, and they have special connections to Dallas, San Francisco, New York and London.  A clock for each city/time zone was hung over the bar.  The 5th clock is labeled “Somewhere” with the hands permanently at 5:00 pm.

Pictures of family travels were enlarged and hung behind the bar, providing for great memories.

 

 

Between the 3 dogs, the large family and frequent entertaining, it was important to find an area rug that could be easily cleaned when soiled.  The perfect product was FLOR carpet tiles.  I used 2 different tiles to create an interesting pattern, one solid and one with a loose stripe.

So here’s the bottom line…Mrs A’s favorite part of the entire room?…the chartreuse ottoman!  Yaaaeee!!!

Till Next Time,

Alba