Interior Design Photos on our web site

Interior Design Photos on our web site
For More Interior Design Photos: ^ Click Above ^ - Hundreds of Before & After photos

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

What color trends are popular for home decorating?

Are you curious what color trends are popular? Gray tones are big, with splashes of either camel or yellow.

Earth tones (such as green, brown, cinnamon etc) are always a safe bet. Colors found in nature are always a safe bet!

Tone on tone shades are popular because they're soothing and create a calm environment. Metallic and shimmer are big, such as crystal, mercury glass and stainless steel. This photo is from the Bernhardt showroom, which is an amazing furniture line.

This color trend of tone on tone is soothing and timeless.

The photo below shows artwork, in ever popular soothing green/blue tones. This year you'll see a splash of "artichoke hearts" added to the mix (Benjamin Moore). Any colors that feel "spa like", a soothing greenish blue, have always been popular and never seem to go out of style.
 Spa like colors (soothing blue/green tones) are always popular!!

This color trend of aqua, soft greens and blues never
seems to go out of style. People ask for it every year.

To know what color trends will be popular in the upcoming year, look at fashion magazines. The colors shown in magazines are often found in furniture, fabrics, rugs and all home decorating projects. 

Monday, October 24, 2011

What does it cost to reupolster my sofa? Is it worth recovering?

Sofa BEFORE reupholsterin
Greensboro NC Reupholstering AFTER 
Are you curious how much it will cost to reupholster your current sofa? Or whether it's worth recovering? Here are 5 tips.
  • If your sofa is comfortable & the right size for your room, recovering it will save both precious time & money.  
  • Sofas with hardwood frames & coil springs are definately worth recovering! They often have better construction than today's imported frames.
  • When you recover, you aren't limited to the small selection of fabrics the sofa manufacturer provides. If you're dealing with a great fabric source, the sky's the limit! You can specify color, durability, texture, etc.  Fabric is easier to select when they'll spread out bolts in the room.
  • You can change the look completely through new cushions, or by ommitting the skirt. We left exposed wood legs for this client, which made the room look larger.
  • A qualified interior designer can offer ways to add color, texture, or personality to the room, such as this vintage linen fabric and the soft chenille throw.  

This homeowner never liked their fabric (since they chose from the store's very limited fabric options). They did however love the shape & size of the sofa. 

Notice in the room makeover photos how the sofa looks brand new. For hundreds of room makeovers photos & designer room photos check out

We brought them a custom cocktail ottoman, custom window treatments, lamps, & new rug, all while still being under budget! Sometimes recovering your existing furniture can be worth while.  

sofa after 

If you love the comfort, size, or style of your sofa, it is probably worth recovering. It normally costs less than getting all new furniture, and you have more fabric options too! 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

How can I incorporate eco friendly green items in my home.

We'd like to share some photos on how to refurbish, reinvent, or recover your furniture! It's fun to create new uses for old furniture, or recover dated furniture. The photos below will astound you.

Yes, it really is the SAME chair! A little creativity and a gorgeous fabric goes a long way! You'll feel great about green living and doing what's good for the environment! 
AFTER (recovered chair)
reupholstered in luxurious chenille

new uses for old furniture 
Consider a bookcase makeover. Donate books so others can enjoy them.
Think of ways to change your furniture - can you remove the doors? Can you change the appearance by adding mirrors or faux painting? Is there a piece of furniture you rarely use that could become a bar or display area? See the above piece - which is now a functional wine bar.

By thinking of the environment and refurbishing old furniture, you'll create something you can enjoy.
Refurbishing furniture can become a fun family project, and creating something useful (such as the wine bar above) will allow you to make better use of your home.  

Friday, October 14, 2011

What size should art be?

People often ask what size their art should be. They worry that large art and accessories will make the room feel smaller. They'll hang 6 or 7 small items for this very reason. When we bring in a large piece of art,  they'll comment that the room "feels much larger". Perhaps it's because a wall that's full of lots of items can tend to feel cluttered, or perhaps it's because the correct size and scale helps balance the furniture. It is also helpful because tall items will draw the eye up (so the ceilings feel taller).

BEFORE with small art

After with larger art

If your wall is large, know that large art is the best choice. If it especially large, you could add a pair of vertical art pieces (see above photo).

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Should I choose a solid fabric or a print for window treatments?

Unique valance in beautiful linen fabric, Oakridge NC
The above valance is in a beautiful linen print, which we were able to recommend because the client's existing sofa, chairs, and rug all blended well with it. 

If you do go with a print on the window treatments, it's important to have the relief that a solid fabric allows. Notice how the king duvet color is solid white, and the chairs are also a solid instead of a print. 

When selecting a fabric with a print, there are numerous things to ask yourself: 

1) Is it possible to find a combination of colors that blend with the combination of colors in your current fabrics or rug?  For example, say your chair fabric is camel, brown and green. The window treatment fabrics that are available might have the wrong combination of colors, (such as camel, brown and turquoise).  Since you did not buy the fabrics at the same time, it might be impossible to find a beautiful coordinate. 

2) Is the size and scale of the print good for the size of the room? Example - a room with tall ceilings might require a large patter repeat.   

3) Is the fabric timeless or trendy? Is it so busy that it demands too much attention? 

A solid is best on the window treatments, because there is so much fabric.
Prints are normally best on small chairs or pillows, so you won't tire of them. 
4) Will you tire of the fabric?  Solid fabrics or tone on tone fabrics are safe options - for the long run. 

A window treatment can be timeless for 15 to 20 years, if you find a fabric that is not trendy, and one with colors that you love.  For more window valance styles, type "valance styles" in the search box.

Friday, September 23, 2011

How much to invest in furniture for a room.

When furnishing your home, keep in mind that if it's done correctly, you'll love it for years, think of it as an investment. It's best to buy what you love the first time, and avoid impulse buys on items that will have to be replaced! 

Clients are often excited to tell me "we still love everything in our home!" (referring to items we added years ago). That's a sign of a good investment, and here are a few tips to help you achieve this.

First and foremost - Prepare a list with specific goals before you shop. When you search for items you should have a clear goal for an exact spot you need to fill should know in advance what size, shape, scale, color, & texture you need, and stick to it, don't purchase things on a whim! If it's your taste, and you're still in love with it after a week, you'll know you weren't just influenced by your mood on a particular day. 

Steer clear of "themes" and anything that's trendy. Example - the Ernest Hemmingway look, that came on strong a couple of years ago, then went out of style fast.

If you want to make a statement, do so through pillows, art, or small items that can easily be changed. Stick to luxurious textures and colors instead of prints for the main items (like a sofa or window treatments).

Furniture, window treatments & accessories give this room a welcoming look
Furniture investment budgets vary per person, you'll need to set aside a budget for furniture, rugs, window treatments, and accessories. There is nothing worse than a huge home that has the "unwelcoming" or "unfinished" feeling. Talk to a qualified interior designer, after a home tour they can give you a good idea of what you'll need to invest in furniture.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Should I get a slipcover or recover? Before after photos

Are you wondering where to find a slipcover for your sofa? A slipcover might seem like an ideal solution, after all, manufactureres advertise that you can wash it. However, there are several factors to consider when deciding between a slipcover and recovering a sofa.

Our client wanted to replace her slipcover, since the slipcover was often crooked or wrinkled, with the skirt dragging the floor. The client said they never used the room, because the white fabric wasn't very inviting and it showed stains too easily.

We recovered this sofa in a durable chenille, and we omitted the skirt. Notice how the room feel more open without a skirt dragging the floor. Our designer fabric on the throw pillows gave the room the "punch" it needed.

Sofa Recovered

Same sofa with a slipcover

Last but not least, be sure to go with a fabric supplier or interior designer who will spread the bolt out across the sofa, to make visualizing the end result and easy decision! It's impossible to know how it will look if you're dealing with a small fabric sample.

Using a slipcovers versus recovering a sofa is a matter of preference. But there's one thing for sure, if the fabric isn't durable you probably won't use the room.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

How to add color to a room? See designer room photos.

Are you looking for ways to add color to your rooms? Color can be achieved through art, window treatments, pillows, rugs, and yes, even walls! There's no need to stick to "neutrals only", if you pick soothing colors that you won't tire of, the sky is the limit!

BEFORE - this room was begging for color!

AFTER High Point home with custom drapes and art
Colorful artwork and fabrics are a great place to start the design process. In the photo above, the five foot tall painting adds quite a punch! The burnt red linen window treatments add color, and they make the window feel larger. On the leather sofas, we added ultra suede pillows with zippers. They're machine washable for a "child friendly" room. Last, the art gave us the inspiration for a soothing new wall color. This High Point, NC homeowner was thrilled with the functional aspects of the window treatments, since they can be closed at night for privacy. The room is now full of color due to the wall paint, art, window treatments and pillows.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

How can I decorate on a budget?

People often ask, how can I improve my home on a budget? The answer: don't waste money by adding more accessories! If you look around your rooms, you might see lots of things which were perhaps a bargain, which you hoped would solve a blank space.... but $39 here and $49 there can really add up! Instead of adding lots of little items from stores, it's better to have a design professional bring you one nice piece that's perfect for the space, if it's the right size, shape, and colors, you won't want to keep buying more. 

Know that designers have access to merchandise that is not available in local stores, and a qualified designer can provide the perfect size, shape, color, texture, subject matter and price.

It's important to have a plan, and make sure that items viewed from adjacent rooms look nice together. If your home "flows" from room to room, it will feel more cohesive.

When shopping, have a specific goal in mind, look for items that have an exact spot in the home. This will help you avoid impulse buys.

Last but not least,  avoid lots of little items, which tend to feel like "clutter".

AFTER, colorful original oil painting


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Ready for a man cave upgrade? See these photos!

Do you have a man cave or a fun "retreat area"? Know that art, furniture, fabrics, rugs, can really make a room, even if it doesn't have great architecture. A flat screen TV will cause it to be a well used room, so be sure to think about how you wish to use the space, compile a list of needs, or ask a qualified interior designer for design advice.

AFTER with flat screen TV(above photo)
The chairs can be placed where the ottomans are, (it was just moved this way for the photograph).
Due to their sources (sold to the trade), interior designers have access to great looking fabrics, furniture, art, floor lamps, and more. By doing it right the first time you'll actually save money! And, keep in mind that some bargains can be mixed in with high quality pieces, for a nice overall look.


Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Do the paint colors in your house flow? Before heading to the paint store, read these tips!

Before heading to your local Greensboro paint store, think about whether your rooms have a nice flow. A great way to achieve this is by repeating a paint color in a rug, art, or accessories. A basic example is shown below, the walls in the kitchen repeat the fabric color in the adjacent room.

Maria Killam

For more unique ways to add color and flow to your home, click here to view the  “color transformation” section of our web site. It shows a variety of ways we've added color to Greensboro, NC homes.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

See how this window treatment style provides privacy, yet doesn't block your view!

Our pleated valance hung above the window creates the illusion of height, to make the french doors seem much taller

This Greensboro NC client’s windows looked bare before we added a valance over the windows. The window treatments made the ceilings feel much taller.

 Window valance and drape added to this Greensboro Country Club Home

Notice how the chaises looks once we reupholstered them, and added custom throws & decorative pillows. The customer had asked if we could make them a "comfortable pair of chairs for reading and relaxing", we pointed out that they could save a great deal by recovering what they already had, (by bringing the second chaise from an upstairs room). This created symmetry and made the alcove functional.

Greensboro NC Custom Window Treatments and Fabrics

Below: Before we added roman shades & recovered furniture.
The seamstress used bronze silk for the valances

AAA Bedroom before romans
before adding a window valance and recovering chaise

Our custom valance in a vacation rental property hides the traverse rod 

For many more before and after photos and window treatment ideas, check out the web site at
Need a window treatment for a large window or a unique shaped window? Our seamstress workroom can create unique & stylish valances and window treatments for the Greensboro, NC area.

Friday, April 8, 2011

How to do a room makeover on a budget. See these designer fabrics & window treatments.

Whether it's a designer fabric on a pillow, a custom window treatment, or a unique oil painting, one upgrade can make an average room much more interesting, and you can still stay in budget. At least one thing should have a “wow” factor! 

Designer Fabrics
The designer fabric on the pillow (above) is an example of how to create a more upscale look in an average room. 
Before heading to the fabric store, pull magazine and web site photos to find a representation of the styles you like.

Custom window treatments can add to the overall look of the room. Notice how these custom drapes frame the window, and make it feel more cozy. See our web site for many more window treatment ideas from Greensboro NC homes!  

Custom Window Treatments in Greensboro, NC


Thursday, March 24, 2011

How can I hide my flat screen TV? See these photos!

People often ask how they can hide their TV, saying they don't want it to feel like the focal point. With today's thin flat screens, it really doesn't need to be hidden, after all, we all have televisions! But if it truly bothers you, here are 3 ideas:  

1) Place the TV behind a folding screen, see top photo below.  

2) "Recess" the TV into a niche in the wall. If extra depth is required, the adjacent area must be a garage or a closet.  This requires a contractor who can do framing and sheetrock.  

3) If it really bothers you, you can even purchase sets that look like a mirror or art, which magically disappear for TV viewing. You often see those on Candice Olsen's TV Show about design.

4) For a quicker solution, you can simply "ground" the TV by placing a console under it, so it doesn't look like it's floating on the wall. An accessory or plant can help detract the eye (bottom photo).

5) Last, it helps to get hanging brackets that hang several inches closer to the wall than others. Now that it's Football season, embrace the TV, we'd miss them if we didn't have them! 

Flat screen TV hidden by leather folding Screen

Flat screen view with folding screen open

For many more photos & ideas for hiding TV's, be sure to click on the search words below. You can hide your flat screen, or detract the eye from it, or place it next to a major focal point. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

For window treatment ideas and photos, see these unique designer options.

Roman Shades and Valances, Greensboro NC
We have many ideas, once we learn your needs for adding color, texture, or function, we present the best options and spread the fabrics out in your room!

These Window treatment styles and fresh ideas were a big hit at the Greensboro NC Southern Ideal Home Show (photo above shows two of many options). The bottom valance is a mock roman shade, which we can also make as a roman shade that raises and lowers for privacy.


FIve tips & photos for upgrading your kitchen on a budget.

 Ready to update your kitchen but not sure where to start? Here are some ideas, which vary from somewhat expensive to very reasonable, when budget is key. 

1) Add a splash of color through bar stools
painting the bar stools was a great way to add color
Recovering the seats in yellow
cheered up the look of these bar stools

2) Insert glass into upper cabinet doors. Then, add lights inside.  

Notice the glass doors - upper left corners

3) Update the accessories - sometimes that's all that is needed for a huge impact.
Notice below how we changed the room by reducing the number of items on display! 

before updating accessories 
4) Replace the hardware. Vary the sizes and shapes, add handles as well as knobs.

5) Add crown molding to the top cabinets

Have fun with it! Don't assume you have to do a major remodel in order to create major impact. These before and after photos are just a tip of the iceberg of the various ways you can update your kitchen on a budget.

What size and shape table does my dining room need? Eight tips for getting the right size and staying within budget.

Furniture from High Point, NC 
  •  To select the correct size table, draw the width and length of your room on 1/4" graph paper. This will allow you to see how different options would work while you are furniture shopping.
  • An oval dining table (see above) often works better in a space than a rectangle.
  • pedestal table is better than four legs if you're cramped for space.  
  • Keep in mind that if your room is small, it's better to go with a smaller table, you can always extend it with leaves on occasions.   
  • You need plenty of room for people to back up their chairs. Allow at least 40" from the table to the back of the chair (when the chair is pulled out so they can stand).
  •  Consider your budget! It might be wise to only replace those pieces that will make the most impact. In the photo above, notice how the upholstered chairs make quite a statement. We offer this chair individually, for those who wish to replace the host and hostess chair only. If you're on a budget,  make sure you'll have funds left over for items that will create the most impact, such as drapes, paint, and art. 
  • If you have an existing buffet or hutch, consider painting the hardware in silver leaf or bronze. 
  • Furniture stores charge a large restocking fee, it's best to measure for the right size and consider your budget before heading to the furniture store.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Candice Olsen explains drapery fabrics and wall colors.

candice olsen room

Candice Olsen Design Candice Olsen really hit the nail on the head. She confirmed something that will will help a lot of people, as long as they take note of her suggestion before heading to a paint store. The host of a popular HGTV show was interviewed by the Wall Street Journal March 10, 2011. She explained that she doesn’t choose the paint color first when designing a room. She recommends selecting fabrics first.

The article reinforced some good old fashioned advice. Don't back yourself into a corner! If you pick the wall color first, you could shop to the end of the earth to try to get the rest of the room to 'make sense'. This is the case even if you paint with neutrals (such as taupe or camel), because those colors have certain tones that won't work with many fabrics.  It's definatly easier to prove this point in person, when I hold fabrics up to the wall color. Many of them will look blah, and only one of them will look stunning. We stock thousands of drapery and upholstery fabrics, and unique designer fabrics for pillows, so we can eventually make any wall color work. But imagine the possibilities if you decided on your favorite fabric first?

Candice Olsen room
Select fabrics FIRST, then wall paint
A summary of her interior design tips:
  • choose fabrics first, paint last 
  • north or east rooms do well with warm colors
  • if your art or fabrics are bold & bright, the walls should be subtle

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Do it yourself tips for a bedroom on a budget.

Headboard from House and Home Canada
Bedroom on a budget

Ready to decorate your bedroom on a budget? Select from our gorgeous fabrics & make this do it yourself headboard. We can provide instructions that make it easy!
  • Replace your lamp shades for an instant update. 
  • Paint an unattractive dresser or nightstands in silver leaf or bronze. 
  • Add a burst of color along the edge of your drapes.
  • Devote a weekend to paint the walls - this creates maximum impact!
  • Add a window valance. See our web site for style & shapes. 

Bedroom paint walls
window seat, valance, and fresh wall paint

Know that wall paint can make a TREMENDOUS difference. If you pick a soothing color such as the one above, you can transform your room in one weekend.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Upholstered headboard versus wood–which is better?

When looking through magazines, you’ve probably noticed the variety of upholstered headboards. I have one, which I love. Here are six advantages to an upholstered headboard (in comparison to a wood headboard):
headboard camel
This upholstered headboard allowed
the homeowners to decide the exact height they
 wanted the headboard to be.

upholstered headboard white
This upholstered headboard gave the room a clean
metropolitan feel, the tall height created a stunning focal point. 
  1. You avoid the “matching set” look. It’s a nice change to mix in fabric instead of more wood. It adds texture and color.
  2. The room will look more spacious - beds that have a footboard often "cut off the room" and cause it to look crowded
  3. It's easier to make the bed with a headboard only (no more tucking in sheets and bumping your knuckles)! 
  4. Comfort, especially if you're tall. You no longer have a footboard you'll kick during the night, or hit with your shin in the dark.  
  5. Cost – normally a high end upholstered headboard is less expensive than a high end wood bed
  6. An upholstered headboard is comfortable to lean on. That's our favorite thing about upholstered headboards, - for reading  or TV
  7. The money you'd spend on a footboard can go to a beautiful bench at the foot of the bed, a great place to place your duvet or bedspread.  
It's personal preference of course! If your room is very large (not narrow and long) then concerns over being spacious would not be necessary. 

The only concern I’ve heard about upholstered headboards is durability, if that is a concern, consider ultra suede or sunbrella fabric. Ultra suede is extremely durable, and luxurious to touch! To see more headboards from Greensboro, NC, check out our bedroom photos!

Click on these two links for lots of beautiful BEFORE and AFTER transformations, many with upholstered headboards:

Can I paint my kitchen cabinets? See this Greensboro kitchen photo.

If you are tired of dark cabinets, and want to paint them, know that you can keep a little variety.
Notice the island and stove area are still stained in the kitchen below.

cabinet BEFORE
Before (above) this Greensboro homeowner did not like the peachy tone of their kitchen cabinets. They requested a warmer wood tone that would compliment the tile backsplash, which we provided (see after photo below).
cabinet after

Although some people swear it’s a “sin” to paint over wood, my opinion is it depends on the durability factor. If it’s done properly, so it won’t scratch off, then it can save people from costly remodels.
It depends on several factors – such as if you like the quality of your cabinets and if you’re happy with the current layout of your kitchen. If so, you can avoid a complete remodel. There are faux finish applications which are extremely durable when done by the right professionals.  This  Greensboro NC homeowner is  thrilled with their “like new” kitchen cabinets!

Above we show 3 different paint colors on kitchen cabinets, notice the base color in the background. 

To update or remodel a kitchen on a budget, click on this link - lots of amazing tips & photos!!