Interior Design| What’s Your Design Inspiration? Reply

Have you ever said, I know what I want the space to look like, but I can’t seem to make it happen? . . .Today we are introducing a new blog series, Interior Design Guide, your guide to understanding how great design comes to life. Learn from professional interior designers some of the key processes of interior design, and how those processes lead to creating beautiful spaces.

Where do you find your design inspiration?

One of the first things your designer will ask you to do prior to your initial design consultation, is to collect photos that inspire you the most; whole rooms, objects, colors, fabrics, architectural details, etc.  Think of design inspirations as all of your favorite things; flowers, family heirlooms, nature, colors, textures, patterns, comfy clothes, cool crisp fresh air, summer nights, cherished memories, and on and on.  Design inspirations can be anything!  Sharing your design inspirations is key to understanding your style.

Photo courtesy of Corinne Gail Interior Design

Photo courtesy of Corinne Gail Interior Design

Inspirations are everywhere so be sure to notice the simplest of details. Glass table scatter translates into beautiful rich jewel tones, interesting geometrical forms, and brilliant bling…is there ever enough bling?

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Photo courtesy of Corinne Gail Interior Design

We love visiting fabric stores for inspirations…sometimes patterns speak most, sometimes texture and color combinations speak the most. Take time to explore the world around you.

Photo courtesy of Corinne Gail Interior Design

Photo courtesy of Corinne Gail Interior Design

Don’t forget to stop and take in the scenery along the route.  This lovely backdrop of the waterfall, natural textures, and woodland colors resonates a sense of relaxed serenity.  Can’t you just feel the breeze from the falls and the sun on your shoulders?

Designer Tip: Take lots of photos everywhere you go because you never know what will inspire you the most!

Once you have collected your photos, you will want to organize them. Organizing is easy. Just cut & paste your favorite photos from magazines, Pin photos onto Pinterest boards, or if you are tech savvy, create a Photoshop collage similar to our weekly Saturday Sampler, Interior Design Collections to Inspire.

We enjoy using Pinterest to explore thousands of photos because it’s quick, easy to use, and doesn’t require sticky glue.  We can also control client privacy by creating a “Secret Board“.  Secret boards are perfect for sharing photos that only clients and staff can see and pin to.  Our clients love working with us through Pinterest since it’s a great way to communicate our design ideas!

Designer Tip: Make notes on each photo about your likes or dislikes to share with your designer. 

Websites for inspiration

If you are not the “photographerish” type, there are plenty of websites out there that you can visit to find inspirations . . . Houzz is a popular and resourceful website that allows you to collect and share inspirational photos.  Remember, inspirations can be found anywhere, so be sure to visit a variety website genres; science, fine art, history, photography, fashion, etc., but keep in mind the copyright laws and don’t overstep your boundaries. When in doubt, get permission to use other’s photos!

What inspires you most? Share your inspirational photos with us, we would love to see them!

Best,

Corinne Gail

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Interior Design| How to create a welcoming guest space at home 1

Seems like yesterday (2012) when we originally posted this blog on Home Hospitality makeover – how to create an at home hotel experience guest room.

Since we are in the height of the travel season, we thought it would be nice to re-share our thoughts on creating the perfect guest space for your visitors, as well as some great preparing for and hosting house guest tips from Houzz .

You too can create a welcoming hotel like atmosphere for your house guests just by adding a few hospitality touches to the space.  Here are a few tips you can borrow from reputable hotels that will help make your home more welcoming and comfortable for your guests.

There is just something about a freshly made bed of crisp white linens and billowy soft pillows that screams luxury.  When choosing bed linens for your guest space, a higher thread count doesn’t always matter.  I good rule of thumb to follow is to select sheets of a minimum 400 thread count out of Egyptian cotton or Pima cotton. These are affordable, soft and very luxurious to the touch.

Comfortable bed pillows will make or break a restful night’s sleep and your guests may be most comfortable with a medium firm pillow, but it’s always nice to give your guests options.  Place a few pillows of different firmness with varying fillers on the bed to let your guests decide which one is right for them.

Keep in mind that travel restrictions and luggage limitations makes it difficult for travelers to pack all the comforts of home, so consider providing the convenience of a bathrobe and slippers for your guest’s use while visiting.

To complete your home hospitality make-over, add a couple finishing touches to the space such as a local event magazine, water, and fresh towels for your guest’s comfort and enjoyment while visiting.

Want to create the perfect guest experience but don’t know where to start?  Just let us know we would love to help!

Have a safe and happy Labor Day!

Corinne Gail

*We do not receive compensation for products or services mentioned in this article.

Interior Design | Stickley. . .Own a piece of American history Reply

We had the pleasure of hearing Stickley Corporate Historian, Mike Danial speak this past week at the Seattle Design Center to share inside history, craftsmanship and the evolution of today’s Stickley pieces. Many, many thanks to Mafi International for hosting such a fabulous lunch and learn!  Here are a few of our favorite pieces. . .

When we think of Stickley, we think of beautiful heirloom pieces crafted of fine woods and finishes.

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“There is nothing like the feeling of a chair started by mother nature and finished by the craftsmen at Stickley.”

A premier manufacturer of authentic furniture design, today’s Stickley encompasses over one hundred years of American artistry.

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Over 1800 fabrics and leathers . . .express your unique lifestyle.

Not your expected Stickley. . .it was a joy exploring the classical Stickley designs, marvelously modern furniture selections and designer rugs.

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Stickley Fine Upholstery.

This was one of our favorite showroom upholstered pieces . . . Just as soft to the touch and comfortable as it is beautiful!

We truly admire the high quality of Stickley craftsmanship, but love, love, love the fact that Stickley furniture pieces are hand made in the U.S.A. using only ecological practices from beginning to end.  Healthy living by design.

So what’s your favorite Stickley style?  If you would like to own a piece of American history, send us an email, we will be happy to assist you!

Best,

Corinne

*We do not receive compensation for products or services mentioned in this article.

Interior Design | How Do I Work with an Interior Designer? Reply


Author: Jessica Cross, Interior Designer, Corinne Gail Interior Design
You’ve decided to hire an interior designer. Now the question is, how do I get my ideas across for my space to achieve the look I’m going for? Or maybe you have no idea what you want your space to look like, you just know it needs a change. Going through the process with a designer allows them to help you discover what will best suite your needs. A successful project requires good communication.

Here are some guidelines from the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) to follow to help avoid disappointment or surprises:

  • Minimize changes to your plan. Changes or special requests can require any number of adjustments that will add time and expense.
  • Consider carefully and make notes before you call your designer. Repeating calls are inefficient, expensive and can slow down the process.
  • Stay flexible. Decide before meeting with your designer where you are willing to compromise and where you are not.
  • Avoid open-ended requests. Tell your designer up front what you are willing to pay for the total project.
Following these guidelines and communicating well will improve your overall experience with your designer. Both you and your designer will get the most out of the project and achieve the best result.
Corinne Gail Interior Design, “Designing positive spaces to inspire healthy living and nurture your soul”.
#CorinneGail

Interior Design | Should you Hire a Friend or Family Member for Your Design Project? Reply


Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Author: Jessica Cross, Interior Designer, Corinne Gail Interior Design
We all have friends or family who offer favors to us, and it’s great to have that resource available for our projects.  However, there are a couple things to consider before asking a friend or family member to help with your remodel or design project.
1.Tasks are usually worked on during their “free time” aside from their primary employment, and this means the project may not get completed when you need it to be, or worse case scenario the job is started but never finished due to other commitments.  Remember that time is money and the longer it takes to complete a job, the more money it may cost you especially if you have to live offsite during construction.
2.You may feel guilty asking for what you want and avoid hurt feelings by settling for what you get.  Settling will only cause negative feelings and tension between you, and in turn you run the risk of straining your relationships.

So, what should you do when you’re ready to get going with your design project? As much as we want to help out a friend or support a family member, it’s not always the best situation to enter into for either party.  Working with a professional interior designer can help avoid those fine line situations with friends and family.  Your designer will help you determine the best contractor for the job to keep your project on time and on budget.  Professional designers have the training and expertise to plan, schedule, execute and manage your project from start to finish, and will work closely with you to ensure your project is your vision.

Corinne Gail Interior Design, designing positive spaces to inspire healthy living and nurture your soul.
#CorinneGail

Interior Design | Empty Nest Design for the Northwest Reply


Author: Jessica Cross, Interior Designer, Corinne Gail Interior Design
As the children in your home leave the nest, it’s time to re-purpose some of your spaces. Maybe you’ve always wanted a craft room or that TV room. Whatever that need is, Space planning and reorganizing your home to fit your new needs can be a challenge. Sometimes all it may need is some new paint and a different arrangement of furniture. Or you may decide it just needs a complete remodel.
Corinne Gail Interior Design has helped many couples flip their spaces to fit their new needs. We offer personalized and professional designs that will leave you with a relaxing home you’ll love to show off.
#CorinneGail

Interior Design | Home hospitality make-over… Reply

You can create an inviting atmosphere for your house guests just by adding a few hotel touches to your guest space.  Here are a few tips to help make your home more welcoming and comfortable for your guests.
Nothing speaks home more than a freshly made bed of crisp white linens and billowy soft pillows.  When choosing bed linens for your guest space, remember that thread counts matter and I suggest looking for a thread count of 400 or better. Although not all 400 thread counts will feel luxurious to the touch, I suggest feeling the fabric before buying.  In addition, pillows will make or break a restful night’s sleep, and choosing the right pillow can be tricky…guests may be most comfortable with a medium firm pillow, one that is not too soft, and not too firm.  Some hotels place a couple firmness options on the bed to let their guests decide which one is right for them.
Keep in mind that travel restrictions and luggage limitations makes it difficult for travelers to pack all the comforts of home, so consider providing the convenience of a bathrobe for guest use while visiting.   There are many bathrobe options available in one-size fits all that will fill the order for most guests.
To complete your home hospitality make-over, add a couple finishing touches to the space such as a local event magazine, water, and fresh towels for your guest’s comfort and enjoyment while visiting.

Design Soup | National Energy Awareness Month Reply

Saturday, October 1st – Monday, October 31st, 2011
The month of October has been designated as the time to make smart energy choices that will help support our economy, protect our environment, and help move us towards energy independence.  Simple everyday usage changes at home can make a huge impact on your energy consumption and utility costs.
We all know that turning back the thermostat, replacing old drafty windows, and using fluorescent bulbs can help keep energy costs down, but some of those changes can be spendy to say the least.  A less expensive route as simple as replacing faucets with water saving aerators, water conserving showerheads, and switching out that water guzzling toilet tank to a high efficiency toilet (HET), can save the average homeowner approximately 39,000 gpy (gallons of water a year) and that means saving $$ too.
Choosing the right product is key and it is important to know how to choose.  When talking water consumption, you should know that (gpm) stands for gallons per minute.  Fixtures are classified by how many gpm they allow through.  For example, an average faucet 20+ years ago was rated at 3.0 gpm as compared to today’s aerating faucets that are rated at 1.5 gpm.  To put that in perspective, changing from a 3.0 gpm to 1.5 gpm can save approximately 17,700 gpy (gallons per year).  Also, that same era showerhead consumed 5.0 gpm compared to today’s 1.5 gpm – that’s over 25,000 gpy saved!
Probably one of the most advances in water conservation has been in toilet design.  Toilets are rated by gpf (gallons per flush).  A 20+ year-old tank was rated at 5.0 gpf…yikes!  That is a lot of water for one flush!  But that was then this is now…today we have different flushing options to choose from.  The most common toilet on the market today is a 1.6 gpf (comparing the 1.6 gpf to our antique guzzle commode, there is a savings of over 25,000 gpy). The newest designs on the market consist of toilets with 1.28 gpf and 1.0 gpf.  Although water conserving designs, a few of these lower gpf models may be less effective when it comes to flushing…if you get my drift!  My best advice is to ask me first of course, but if I’m not available, you should always look for the WaterSense label on the packaging.
Just remember that there are many, many, quality manufacturers out there to choose from when it’s time to switch to aerating faucets, water conserving showerheads, and High Efficient Toilets.  And with a little knowledge you will be able to make smart energy choices that will help support our economy, protect our environment, and help move us towards energy independence. 
Together we can make a difference!