Posts Tagged ‘Design Ideas’

Hallways are Rooms Too: Design Them for Living

December 15th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

When thinking about design projects to tackle in your home, hallways can often be overlooked.  Unlike the foyer, hallways are typically thought of as transition spaces, but the reality is…hallways are rooms too!  The amount of foot traffic that passes through these corridors can rival 405 Freeway at times.  Aside from the occasional gallery of family photos, most hallways remain under-stated under-designed and under-whelming.  But the reality is these passageways have a loads of potential for creative expression and functionality and should be treated with the same love and attention as the other rooms in your home.

PicMonkey Collage_opt

Images Via: Decorpad and Pinterest

With a few key design elements you can turn a neglected hallway into a great looking space that you enjoy everyday during your “rush hour” traffic.

Add a Punch of Color:

Many hallways can seem small, cramped and dark. This can be a great place to go bold with some pops of color.  There are several ways to achieve this, depending on your comfort level.  From colorful artwork adorning the walls, to simply painting out the doors or walls in your favorite shades,  the hallway can benefit from a burst of color.   Consider introducing a colorful floor runner, painted furniture pieces or accent with colorful accessories.  A small console table with a bouquet of flowers, a colorful stack of vintage suitcases, or colorful frames for family photos can all add a touch of boldness to liven up your hallway.


Image Via: Elle Decor

Pinterest color hall

Image Via: Pinterest

Showcase Your Collectables:

I know a lot of us have some unusual objets which we’ve collected from our travels over the years.  The hallway is an ideal space to showcase those unique finds as they will instantly add to the personalization of your home and create points of interest or focal points. Whether it’s a quirky find from an antique shop or objects from exotic ports, find the perfect spot to highlight them down the hallway.

Rue Magazine Halway_opt-1

Image Via: Rue Magazine

Extra Storage:

No matter the home, extra storage space is always a welcome feature and the hallway can be a great place to find it.  Narrow shelves can be recessed into the walls to hold books for households of avid readers or to showcase anything from trophies to treasures.  Hallways near entrances can have unique coat hooks and wall-mounted mail sorters to help keep the home organized.  You can also take advantage of the space between studs in your wall and create small built-in cabinets that can store anything from rolled-up linens to seasonal decorations.

Pinterest Hallwya
Image Via: Pinterest
Transforming your hallway from a walkway to a utilitarian and functional area is a great idea if you have the space.  Console tables are an incredibly versatile addition to any hallway, and with the addition of a small chair can easily make a cute and functional desk area.  If you have a wide enough hallway or landing off your staircase, add a window seat along with bookshelves for a quiet spot to rest, reflect and read. 
Screen Shot 2013-12-15 at 1.40.26 PM
Image Via Houzz
There are so many creative ways to spruce up all types of hallways…so don’t let yours go to waste!
Call 310-788-0990 or contact me for additional design tips for your home or for help with transforming your space.


Design in Palm Springs: Desert Modernism

September 17th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | 1 Comment

I am  currently working on a re-design and renovation project in Palm Springs, California…and I’m loving it!  I particularly love the opportunity to work in the primary design style of Palm Springs: Desert Modernism.  A variant of a favorite design style, mid-century modernism, Desert Modernism is extremely prevalent in much of Southern California.  I think I love the simple elegance of the lifestyle most, where the exterior landscape becomes not just the backdrop, but the art of the home.



Like other modern styles, Desert Modernism makes use of straight lines and glass, which makes the space look bright, open, and clean.  Desert Modern style is further influenced by the particular challenges and benefits of living in a desert climate.  It’s not surprising in weather this warm that desert living is pretty informal, and the open interiors reflect this.  You won’t find much chintz or cluttered decor in this style; the rooms are designed to allow you to breathe and move around.  Too many details would feel suffocating in the hot desert climate.


This style isn’t barren, however.  Desert Modernism draws inspiration from the beauty of the surrounding desert, often featuring large windows and indoor/outdoor spaces to connect the home to its landscape.  Colors are often bright and airy neutrals, adding to the open atmosphere.  The limited color palette adds to the informal elegance that characterizes Desert Modernism.


Let me help you embrace the informal beauty of Desert Modernism in your own home.  Contact me at Interior Makeovers, Inc. at 310-788-0990.


Photo 1 via Arcaid/Alamy

Photos 2 & 3 via Houzz

Reviving Wallpaper in Refreshing Ways

September 7th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

Modern wallpaper comes in such a wide variety of designs, colors, and even textures that there is a look and style for everyone.  I am a big fan of elegant treatments and interesting textures. Whether you are treating all four walls of your living room, or using remnant pieces for pops of color and texture ,there are endless ways you can create gorgeous effects with just a little bit of wallpaper in your home.

Step Up To The Challenge

I’ve seen plenty of creative painted staircases, so why not use wallpaper? A subtle design lends an elegant effect to stair risers, but you can also take the opportunity to let the bolder side of your personality shine through with a bright wallpaper pattern.

 Stair Risers

Behind The Scenes

Use leftover wallpaper pieces to accent shelves and even small table spaces. You can line inside table legs with strips of wallpaper. Clear gloss sprayed on top of wallpaper gives it a shiny patina and helps protect the surface.

 Wallpaper on Shelving


Choose a wallpaper design you absolutely love and frame it as large-scale artwork.  Using three large strips of wallpaper framed with molding or a large picture frame will create balance and cover most of one wall.  There is plenty of wallpaper available that looks like artwork, so this is an easy look to pull off.

 Framed Wallpaper

Lights, Action!

Cover your lampshade with patterned wallpaper using a spray mount.  It’s such an easy way to create the look of custom lighting, and you can tie it in with other wallpapered elements in the room.

 Wallpaper Lampshade

Dress Your Drawers

What an eye-pleasing treat to open a plain, old drawer and see a burst of color and design. Use wallpaper to line the bottom sections of kitchen, bath or office drawers.

 Wallpaper Dresser

Remember, your space should reflect your unique style and personality, and incorporating wallpaper into your design plan can help. For additional interior design trends, tips and ideas for your home or office, contact us at Interior Makeovers, Inc. by calling 310-788-0990.


Photo Credits:

1-3.) Houzz

4-5.) BHG

Luxurious Closet Design That Meets Your Every Need

July 11th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | 2 Comments

You can never have too much storage space in a home, especially if you tend to collect belongings.  While most home storage is designed to be purely functional and often hidden behind a closed door, one area of your home where you can invite some luxury into your storage is the master closet.

Luxury Closet - House Beautiful

The master closet is one of the most private areas of your home– so why not be as decadent and indulgent as you want in your design!  Here are just a few ideas for a master closet that will make you swoon:

  • Organization – You’ll want plenty of hanging space for your clothes, and the standard shelf and rod is not going to cut it for a well-organized space.  Custom-designing your closet with built-in storage that can efficiently display shirts, pants, suits, and dresses organized in color stories, will make your primping experience much more pleasant.  This usually requires multiple shelves and hanging areas expertly spaced to make the most of the square footage of the closet.  If you have ample space your  master closet providing multiple drawers will free up floor space in your master bedroom!  And if you must share with your husband (and most of us do) provide him with tie/belt hangers and built-in shoe racks to help keep the closet from becoming haphazard and disorganized.


  • Seating – Comfortable seating is an absolute must! Use a cushioned bench or a full sofa chair, depending on the space available to you.  Not only does this give you a quiet spot to relax, it also makes it easier to put on your shoes in the morning.


  • Lighting –  In addition to having general overhead lighting, consider track lighting to focus on your actual wardrobe. Wall sconces are another wonderful option for getting more light into this room.  Don’t stick with standard light fixtures, either; luxurious fixtures like an overhead chandelier can go a long way toward an incredible-looking space.
  • Full Length Mirror – You don’t want to leave your home with a missed button or a flipped collar!  Full-length mirrors are a must for checking your appearance before you head out.  Choose one with a frame so that it looks like a piece of art in your closet.
  • Vanity – Include a vanity that can be used to apply makeup and put on jewelry.  Ideally, the vanity will have its own lighting and a cushy seat as well as a well-organized drawer for holding your jewels and makeup.

Screen Shot 2013-07-11 at 6.44.23 AM

  • TV – A TV in the closet is a great way to know what weather and traffic to expect from the day as you’re getting ready.  No more running back inside for that jacket!
  • Coffee Station – For extra convenience, install a coffee bar nestled into a corner of the closet, especially if you’re like me and can’t live without those early morning cups.

 Closet with Coffee Bar and Television

For additional design tips and ideas for your home, be sure to visit me online at Interior Makeovers, Inc.. or call us at 310-788-0990. I’d love to help you create your ideal luxury closet space.

Photo credits:

1.) HouseBeautiful

2.) Pinterest

3. ) Decor Pad

4. & 5.) Houzz

Leave No Stone Unturned With These Pebble Inspired Design Elements

June 23rd, 2013 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

When it comes to finding ideas for the unique touches that set a home apart, I often like to turn to the outdoors for my interior design inspiration.  Trees and branches inspire intricate and elegant design elements, while flowers bring beauty and color into a space, but these are fairly common sources of design inspiration.

A favorite natural element that brings a sense of tranquility and stability to a space are rocks or pebbles.  Pebbles are often associated with babbling brooks, lakeside beaches and spa retreats, so if you bring pebble-inspired design elements into your home you can emulate some of this serenity.  Here are some great ideas for incorporating pebbles in your home:

  • Pebble Border – To provide a sense of calmness in your bathroom space, using a pebble accent for your walls is a great way to go. A simple pebble border that runs around the entire bathroom area is enough to provide a unique natural texture that complements your design.
  • Pebble Backsplash – You can also give pebbles a more prominent role in your bathroom design by using them in your backsplash. The thing I love about pebbles is that they come in a number of different colors and tones from light, medium or  dark designs.


  • Pebble Walls – Don’t be afraid to go all out- an entire wall of pebble tile is a great way to create a focal point in the bathroom. Here I incorporated stacked pebbles on all four walls of this poolside powder room.Choose other natural elements such as wood and stone to compliment it.

Screen Shot 2013-06-21 at 8.30.54 PM

9-14-pebble tile1

  • Pebble Floors – You can add a pebble border to your floor to add texture, or you can even create a pit of actual pebbles in which to place your freestanding bathtub for an added element of luxury. We incorporated this pebble floor below, in this master bathroom renovation.  My physician client loved the idea of the uneven natural floor underfoot as it tends to massage the feet at various pressure points.

Shower Materials73

  • Pebble Accessories – A clear bowl full of pebbles is an easy way to add a touch of natural beauty to any room.  You can also add a few pebble shaped candles to your design for a fun and unusual accent.


These are just a few ways that you can use pebbles as interior design inspiration. For more architectural interior design advice, visit me at Interior Makeovers.

Photo  1:  Pinterest

Photo 2: Lori Gilder/Interior Makeovers

Photo 3: Apartment Therapy

Photo 4: Lori Gilder/Interior Makeovers

Photo 5: Pinterest

Intricacy in Metal: The Work of Michael Aram

May 27th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

When I was in New York participating in #BlogTourNYC, I had the opportunity to visit the gallery of designer Michael Aram.  This talented artist creates intricate and organic metal creations for the home, merging art and function with the skills and passion he found while visiting India.

Michael Aram

His work brings the natural beauty of plants, feathers, and the ocean into delicately detailed metal pieces.  Much of his work serves a functional purpose in addition to an aesthetic one; his collections include products like picture frames, serving dishes, and candlesticks that can all be used around the home.  The pieces are made with traditional techniques by his own hand, which lends them life and personality even beyond the gorgeous details present in tree bark vases and the soft lines of a feather-inspired tray.

bark vases

Any of the pieces in Michael Aram’s extensive collection of work would make a delightful addition to a home design.  Imagine serving dinner and surprising your guests when the beautiful acorn sculptures nestled on an oxidized bronze leaf turn out to be the salt and pepper shaker.  You bring out honey in a goldplate apple with a clever arrow-shaft spoon, recalling the story of William Tell.  Bread is served in a metal basket made of silvery woven vines and leaves, and candles flicker from branch-inspired candleholders.

Seeing Aram’s work in person is even more incredible than the online images.  His collections were displayed in a renovated Chelsea Carriage House Showroom, which was the perfect location to set off his ornate pieces.  We had the privilege to hear him talk about his work, his inspiration, and the life-changing trip to India that started it all.  The love he has for his work shows in his speaking as well as in the final products, and it’s inspiring to see.

Aram Talking


Aram gift bag

I would love to hear your thoughts on Michael Aram’s work and how you would use his products to add enchantment to your own home!

Stay Inspired!

Meeting Amanda Stone Talley: Vibrant Artist, Vibrant Work

May 20th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

While I was in NOLA for the KBIS show last month, I had an opportunity with a few of my other designer friends to visit a local New Orleans artist: Amanda Stone Talley!  She is a huge talent so it was quite a thrill being invited for a tour of her spectacular carriage house/gallery/ home studio for a cocktail (or two) to see where she lives and works and to admire her incredible work!

Studio from Amanda's website1


Amanda Stone Talley

A peek inside her studio where the magic happens.

Amanda creates vibrant abstract pieces with a lot of energy.  Using flowing, intertwined lines and harmonious colors, her pieces have distinct character.  The strength of her lines is reminiscent of Picasso’s work.  All of her pieces manage to feel carefully crafted while still encapsulating a highly kinetic sensation; your eyes flow along the twisting lines as you get drawn deeper into the piece.

Decor Pad

Her work lends itself well to contemporary design, and I’m not the only one who thinks so.  Several of her pieces have been translated into fabric and wallpaper designs that are perfect for the home!  The paintings themselves provide quite an impact within any space it occupies. I recently introduced a client to Amanda’s work and they are now considering purchasing one as the finishing touch to their renovation in Palm Springs.

Amanda Stone Talley Wallpaper

Amanda herself has the energy and engaging nature that you see and feel in her paintings.  She warmly welcomed us into her home, gallery, and studio and she was incredibly charismatic in her presentation of her new wallpapers.

Carmen Christensen's pic

Myself, Andie Day, Amanda Stone Talley, Meredith Heron, Carmen Christensen in the Studio

Amanda Talley

Amanda rocked this frock by tying a few yards of her fabric around her neck…instant sophistication.

If you like Amanda Stone Talley’s work as much as I do, I would love to help you redesign your home with her pieces.  Contact me at Interior Makeovers, Inc. to learn more.

Stay Inspired!


Photo Credits:

1. Amanda Stone Talley

2,4,6. Lori Gilder

3. Decor Pad

5. Carmen Christensen


World Tour of Design: Ireland

May 5th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

In this week’s World Tour of Design, lets hop over the pond to the Emerald Isle to take a look at the beautiful design and architecture of Ireland.

Ireland bursts with loads of tradition and culture with an architectural interior design that encompasses many warm and expressive decors. From the quaint thatched roof cottages to the large churches, castles, forts, school houses and even converted lighthouses, Irish design is characterized by an almost whimsical connection to their rich history and a practical grounded connection to the land. With the Gaelic and Celtic cultures, homage is naturally extended to wholesome expressions and strains of Irish religion.

Irish Cottage

Traditional Celtic knotwork and Irish interlace stand as basic symbols of decor in many Irish homes. The designs are intricate and flow fully around picture frames with traditional pictures of history and family.

Irish linen consists of sophisticated, usually reversible patterns regarded world over for its fine weaves. The unique Jacquard and Damask weaves represent outstanding craftwork found in pillow cases, bed sheets and duvet covers.


Today’s modern country styles rest on rustic backgrounds of the lush, green “Emerald Island” concepts that have characterized rustic Irish life.


The Irish House and Home architectural interior design magazine promotes a look of feminine textures and layered neutrals augmented by emerald green – this year’s shade picked by Pantone. Calm color palettes include whites, neutral grays and soft lavenders with colorful stripes extended to accessories. Kitchen designs appear with urban retro looks that engage vintage furniture and ornate candelabras with attractive untreated wood surfaces.

Irish Interior Design

Contact me at Interior Makeovers, Inc. by calling 310-788-0990 for help designing your own home with Irish flair.

Stay Inspired!


Photo Credits:
2 + 3.) Irish House and Home

4.) Houzz

The National Kitchen and Bath Association Turns 50 This Year!

April 26th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | 1 Comment

After returning from the exciting #BlogTourNYC event and The Kitchen & Bath Industry Show also known as KBIS, I was able to see some emerging trends and new products in the industry and enjoyed the opportunity to spend time and exchange ideas with the incredibly talented designers.  The National Kitchen and Bath Association, which was also a Sponsor of #BlogTourNYC, has outdone itself with KBIS 2013, and with good reason: this year marks the NKBA’s 50th anniversary - and they are celebrating in NOLA!


NKBA began as the American Institute of Kitchen Dealers in 1963, intended as an organization to help designers, builders, and other industry professionals communicate and learn from each other.  In the past 50 years, they have grown to an organization of nearly 60,000 members while still staying true to their original goal.

In fact, thanks to KBIS and the NKBA I was among eight designers invited to the show to design and present various spaces geared to a specific demographic using a new interactive and experiential platform called QueX Technology.  (More on that in my next post).


Consumer education is a major goal of the NKBA, and one of the points they have stressed through the BlogTour is that they want consumers to understand the true value of working with a design professional.  With the increasingly easy access to design resources like Houzz, HGTV, and even blogs like this one, the DIY trend has blossomed among homeowners who want to create a whole new look for the home.  If you have a strong grasp on color theory and psychology, small home upgrades like painting are pretty straightforward, but there are numerous small and subtle factors that affect what works and what doesn’t work within a space.

The trained design professional, especially one with extensive experience, has encountered these challenges and caveats and knows how to work within a space making it the best it can be.  A picture of your dream kitchen online or in a magazine is incredibly inspiring, but a trained designer will guide and execute all the elements of the project customizing that design – geared specifically for their client.  This ultimately creates a truly successful project -while saving you time-money-and stress!

Stay tuned for more information from the KBIS show and the Design Studio work I did there!


Photo Credits:

1.) KBIS

2.) NKBA


Jenn-Air’s Luxury Appliances Add Must-Have Functions to a Kitchen

April 13th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

After the breakfast at the Poggenpohl showroom in the beginning of #BlogTourNYC we were able to make our way through the Architectural Digest Home Design Show, Jenn-Air, another sponsor of the tour had a huge presence at the show.

photo 1

I spent some time in the Jenn-Air booth looking at the variety of top-of-the-line appliances on display, which included some beautiful wall ovens and a stunning, slightly arced stainless steel downdraft hood that retracted back into the countertop when not being used.


The Jenn-Air Accolade downdraft vent combines exquisite style and innovation.  It is constructed of glass and stainless steel, and when operational, the glass panel washes LED lighting over the cooking surface.  The hidden controls help contribute to its sleek and modern design.

Seeing all these luxury Jenn-Air appliances took me back to my childhood for a moment, remembering when my parents remodeled the kitchen of our home back in the mid-70′s.  As a part of the renovation, they installed the Jenn-Air  indoor barbecue.  Not the most popular appliance to add into a kitchen then, but growing up in Winnipeg Canada where the sub zero temperatures  would plummet to 40 degrees below zero on any winter day, I guess you could say that barbecuing indoors was a way for us to extend our very short summer season – or so we believed.

photo 3

Well Jenn-Air has come a long way since then.

They displayed several luxury specialty appliances at the show, including a wine cooler and their new built-in coffee maker.  Incorporating a few of these innovative appliances into your kitchen renovation will set your kitchen apart from the rest…just like the barbecue my parents installed into our family kitchen just a few years ago.  .

House Beautiful 2 (1)

Jenn-Air is a highly respected company for luxury appliances and their products have been featured in many prominent kitchen designs, including the House Beautiful kitchen I mentioned in my last post.  At the show, they not only had their booth, they also showcased their appliances Jenn-Air Master Class Culinary stage, where they sponsored a series of Master Class Studio seminars.  All told, it was an incredible experience to see the new products and innovations coming from Jenn-Air!

Thank you Modenus and the #BlogTourNYC Sponsors Poggenpohl, Blanco, Silestone, Miele, Mr. Steam, Du Verre, Barber Wilsons, Jenn Air, Victoria + Albert Baths, NKBA

Stay Inspired!


Fourth Photo via House Beautiful