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new printable: 12 Essential Questions to Ask Your Designer

I've released a new Printable "12 Essential Questions to Ask Your Designer" on my website.  You can download this as well as other great Design Guides by clicking the image below.

If you are already a subscriber, you will receive a link tomorrow in the monthly newsletter to access these guides.



leaping zebra office swag (psst it's a giveaway) & a new beginning

It's official.  I am moving to Arizona.  Crazy, right?  It still hasn't sunk in despite starting to sell off my furniture and collect boxes.  Why am I moving you ask?  Well, my husband prefers the West and I knew that eventually I would like to be back there too (I didn't know it would be so soon) so before my business became too embedded in Atlanta we decided to move.  I also have to mention that the impending anniversary of this & Atlanta spring winds with towering trees helped us along.

I am so sad to leave Atlanta and the strong and beautiful design community that is here, but I am always up for an adventure and a new home.  But don't fret, because ACL isn't moving, it'll still be right here at even if my view is a little different.  

I am still available for design services and especially during the transition, IDESIGN.  To learn more about my upcoming move sign up for my newsletter (in your mailbox on Wednesday).

Finally to the goods, I have a sweet Scalamandre mouse pad & tape measure for you with their iconic leaping zebra print.  Learn more about this print over on Heather's blog (it has a good story).  

So how to do you win this super-chic office loot? Here is how:


To Win:
2.  Leave a comment (with email address) on this post (below - not on FB).

Rules: One entry per person, but you can certainly get your mother and brother to enter for you.
All entries must be received by February 3rd at midnight ET.  Winner will be notified via Facebook.  US residents only.  If you are leaving an "anonymous" comment make sure your email is included so I can contact you. 

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Inspiration House

Tuesday evening I was invited to the press preview of the Cathedral Antiques Inspiration House.  You should visit yourself because while Atlanta has a lot of Showhouses, this one is certainly upping the ante. The color is vivid, local artists are represented, and the details are to-die for.
Love the art in the Library by Lindsay Coral Harper, she also has painting from local Emily Amy Gallery that could not be more perfect in the space.   

and the contrasting details on the curtains.

This paint color in Laura's room look liked a neutral until you stepped into the (white) kitchen and saw the contrast.  Is mauve the new neutral?

Lovely details in Ladies Retreat by Elisabeth Jordan.  When you visit, check out the towels she has in the bathroom- more details!

Silver-leafed ceiling, uh yes please!  And Susan Currie even re-grouted the existing moroccan tile floor to match the design.  

What's the first thing you notice?  For me it was the dark painted border along the edges.  Sort of like a drawing to create architecture in this room.  A pair of ladies were commenting how adept Chris Holt is at combining the new & the antique.  I love the custom combination of the upholstered bedframe with the iron canopy frame.  

A beautiful, colorful but serene gender-neutral nursery by Allison Harper & Nancy Duffey.  Chalk-board wall & wall lamps.  

While at the House, I also had the pleasure of visiting with friends Jennifer Boles of the Peak of Chic, Erika Ward of BluLabel Bungalow, and Ally of From the Right Bank, as well as friends who had decorated spaces in the House; Laura Walker Baird & Amy Morris and the editor of Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles the ever-charming Clint Smith.

If you would like to visit, the house opens to the public on January 29th and closes on February 12th.  For more information visit:

If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services.  

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best of atlanta craigslist edition 60

last week I told you this edition of Best of Atlanta would be a special one and maybe it would have been if I hadn't come down with food poisoning on Tuesday night.  So, my friends, another week it'll have to be.  Back to our regularly scheduled awesome pieces for your perusal.



I pin to relax

Its hard for me to believe that it took me so long to start pinning about 6 months ago.  Its also hard to believe that some people still aren't pinning.  Its hard to believe that somebody didn't think of this earlier.  But here we are and I love Pinterest.  Its my "water-cooler" break, my coffee break, my cigarette break.  I love Pinterest even though they lost about half of my pins.  total. bummer.  So if you want to pin with me, I'll send you a invite if you need one.  If love pinning like I do, take a minute to read the irreverently funny Design Blahg 10 Things Pinterest Should Be Doing Right Now- brilliant.  Here are some recent pins:

Source: via Capella on Pinterest

As a reminder to those that entered my IDESIGN Giveaway there is still time to get 30% off!  Don't miss out on a freshly decorated and designed space!

If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services.  

Check out my Pinterest boards for inspiration, brilliant ideas, and lovely spaces. 

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diy wallpaper stencil

I've had many a comments and emails about the "wallpaper" in my living room from my hour tour on Friday.  It surprises even some people that see it in person that its a stencil from here.  Insanely priced at about $35 for the stencil, a quart of paint, and an entire weekend (plus) for one wall.  This work is laborious, but the end result is dramatic and lovely and if you can spare a weekend or two I would absolutely recommend using a stencil.  I would not however, suggest this for people who are extreme perfectionists - it won't look perfect, if you look close you will see imperfections, mistakes, splotches, holes, and other undesirable attributes.  My husband wanted to paint over the very first portion we did, when the stencil was free of paint residue and the edges were sharp.  But I am impatient and pressed on knowing we couldn't make each line crisp because I wanted that wall done.  I wanted my living room back quickly.  I, of course was right once the wall was done you see the overall effect and not the imperfections.


 If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services.  

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my atlanta house tour

I've finally got around to photographing a few rooms in my home.  By showing these to you I am also exposing my neuroses surrounding my inability to design my own space.  For clients, I make decisions quickly and determinedly - but in my own home I can't hang art on the walls.  For my clients I have a clear design vision from the start but my own home is a mix-mash of styles and items I love but simply don't go very "designerly" together.  I fear a completed and cohesive space because I know I'll redesign the room the minute it was finished.  I am afraid I disappoint people when they visit "a designer's house".  I have heard that I am not the only interior designer with this issue, but seeing other beautiful homes of designers I think I actually may be.

My house is always "in progress" but here are a few shots of what it looks like at this moment of time.

the living room:

See the fireplace surround before

the bedroom:

He is not normally allowed on the bed, does he look guilty?

A designer nightmare: a single offset window.  
Right nightstand tutorial: Here
Fabric covered lampshade tutorial: Here

the dining room:

kilim pillows are for sale in my shop

If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services.  

Check out my Pinterest boards for inspiration, brilliant ideas, and lovely spaces. 

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best of atlanta craigslist: edition 59

Next week will be a very special edition of Best of Atlanta...

 If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services.  



so much more than a mirror

While at Scotts this weekend, we stumbled on this vendor - Mirrteque.  My client, an extremely handy DIYer was about to attempt an antique panelled mirror at home and so this booth really drew us in.  While Mirrteque can do beautiful antique mirrors - what was really interesting was their imprinted designs.  These are works of art and can not just be considered a mirror.

All product images are from Mirrteque

My client is has started her antique mirror project - I'll let you know how it turns out.

If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services. 
Check out my Pinterest boards for inspiration, brilliant ideas, and lovely spaces. 



a new sedona bathroom

This was an interesting project for me, this Arizona Master Bathroom.  It was a complete remodel and at the clients preference, they worked with a local project manager to carry out the details.  My job was to create a new space plan - involving adding a bath and enlarging the shower and to specify major materials.  

We kept the bathtub open to the bedroom, so you could relax in the bath and enjoy the awesome views out of the bedroom window, but the pony wall hides the tub while in the bedroom.

Entrance from Master Bath, you can see that beams remained the same, while the built-ins were removed and closet hidden from view.  A new, more open closet was designed to maximize their space.

Vanity, after trying to preserve the original vanity the client choose a new vanity in this color to go with the seagrass stone top.

In the shower we choose a vein-cut stone in varying widths for the new, larger shower.  There is a small shower ledge- large enough to place a few products or a prop a foot on, but not taking up valuable shower space. 

If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services.



best of atlanta craigslist: edition 58

If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services. 



handira: wedding blankets

These moroccan wedding blankets are intensely romantic and feminine.  Woven from wool, Berber brides' families weave these as part of the pre-wedding ritual in the Middle Atlas Mountains of Northern Morocco.  Called Handira, these blankets are thought to be a blessing and to bring good luck to the newlyweds.  So it is no wonder that Westerners are clamoring for one of their own.

I am too faint of heart to have put this on the floor and under a dining table no less, but I suspect this may have been done only for the photo.  

You could use one when you entertain...

If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services.

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look down

I had a client say to me yesterday that he didn't want a rug in his bathroom because it would cover up all the money he spent on the floor tiles.
Michael Smith Kitchens & Baths
Maybe, but don't you need something to catch your eye and make you notice?

If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services. 

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creating architecture

Many times, despite how well you can decorate a house, what it is missing is architectural detail - trim, molding, soffits, coffers, fireplaces, columns, and you essentially have a sort of white box.  Quite common in new buildings, the details are left out in favor of expediency & frugality.  Here are some ways to add those details in after the architecture and construction are complete.

1. Add beams, imagine this room without those great ceiling beams.  Boring.  

1. Paint it on, paint decorative molding or trim in about any design you want and voila!

3. Paint window trim black - add interest and attention to your windows

4. Add a coffered ceiling

 If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services.  You can also follow me on twitter & see what I am saying on facebook.

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best of atlanta craiglist: edition 57

Mid-century Sofa
Pair of Blue Chairs
China Cabinet - Paint it and use mirror spray paint on the side panels, it'll sing.
Table & Chairs - a year ago I wouldn't have thought twice about this set, but recover those chairs in Albert Hadley Fireworks in black & white.  Scratch that, I want this.
Brass Side Table 

If you'd like help designing a home you absolutely love, contact me about design services.



all-time most popular post: farmhouse table

I've always loved farmhouse tables and I knew when I moved to Atlanta that I wanted to build one - because I found an awesome site that taught you how to do it.  I could customize the size to whatever I needed and since my dining room is a little narrow for a normal width table - I could fit the custom built one in along with 8 people (10 with a squeeze). 

The post on my Farmhouse table is one of my all-time most popular posts, you can read it here: Farmhouse Table Post

I am now selling that table, so if you are interested check it out.  

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