Posts Tagged ‘Remodeling’

Experiencing the Blogger19 Reunion in Memphis

August 4th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | 1 Comment

I recently returned home from Memphis, where I attended a truly eye-opening design event.  The Blogger19 Reunion, hosted by Brizo, was three full days of tours, projects, and a host of emotional experiences.  I was part of a group of designers and bloggers who also attended Brizo’s New York Fashion Week, and what an amazing opportunity to reconnect with old friends… and to see behind-the-scenes of the Brizo factory and the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and their related Target House.


St. Jude might seem like an unusual destination for 80 designers and architects, even if it’s in the same city as a luxury faucet manufacturer, but Brizo is a proud Sponsor of the Hospital’s work and one of its big fundraising projects, the Dream Home Giveaway.  Brizo not only invited us to see their factory, but also to witness first hand the philosophy and design concept of the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Facility and the Target House, which provides housing for families of those children undergoing extensive long-term treatment.

Brizo Blogger19

Brizo’s work with St. Jude and the Dream Home Giveaway is an extension of their forward-thinking approach to their business.  The brand is known for collaboration, not only with good causes like St. Jude but with fashion designer Jason Wu as well as with our group of bloggers.

This collaborative approach allows Brizo to stay on the cutting edge of faucet design, delivering innovative styles that include the features that designers and homeowners crave.  They are focused on increasingly sustainable designs as well as convenience and ease of use in the kitchen and bathroom.  Even if I didn’t already love the aesthetic beauty of their faucets and shower systems, their commitment to making the world a better and more creative place would earn my loyalty to Brizo as a brand.

Be sure to check back soon for more on my trip to Memphis and about Brizo’s work with St. Jude!

Streamlined Home Design Ideas for Comfort and Convenience

May 7th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

Good design is more than just a pretty face. Combining beauty and function into all your home’s decor and design schemes creates a more cozy and accessible environment for every member of your family. Innovative design features geared towards both comfort and convenience will also increase your home’s overall value. Here are a few tips to consider for your home renovations to ensure daily life more streamlined.

  • Easy Reach: Bending, stooping, pulling and pushing — adding these needs to simple tasks like cooking is inefficient and not very ergonomic. Features like pull-out drawers, eye-level shelves and custom closets make things not only more functional, but less cluttered and more visually appealing. Easy accessibility is key.


  • Motion-Sensitive Lights: Stumbling around for a light-switch is a pain, especially when your hands are full. Installing motion-sensitive switches will not only save time looking for a way to turn on the light, but save energy as the lights shut off automatically when the room is empty.
  • Mood lighting: On the topic of lights, replacing traditional toggle switches with more effective mood lighting will also save time and energy. Dimmer switches are easier to control and offer more energy-efficient options when you need a small dose of light. Introducing overlapping pools of light will create the most beautiful atmosphere within a space – large or small.

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  • Bathtub and Shower: Many bathrooms come with standard features that may not be useful to you, like the bathtub and shower combination common in most homes. If you find that you never use your bathtub, consider upgrading to a shower with improved features and controls….from steam to multiple sprays and get the spa feel you’ve been dreaming of.
  • Door Handles: Door handles are a nuisance when your hands are slippery and you need to get in a room. Remove old doorknobs in favor of more elegant handles that offer increased functionality and are more aesthetically pleasing.


Every home presents unique opportunities for streamlined and elegant design tailored to your lifestyle and needs. If you need some tips on how to add comfort and convenience to your home renovations, I’d love to help! Contact me at Interior Makeovers, Inc. for more information.

Stay Inspired! 

Photo Credits:
1.+2.) Houzz
3.) Pinterest

Large Kitchen Islands for Form and Function

February 26th, 2013 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

Home renovations that focus on the kitchen are a favorite among homeowners, and the kitchen is often cited as an area of the home in need of a makeover -both for function and aesthetics.  One way to add style and function to your kitchen is incorporating a large, multi-purpose island to the space. With an endless array of designs and kitchen layouts a large island will instantly improve the overall function of your home’s hub.

  • The Everything Island: I really love large islands that serve as the focal point of the kitchen. You can include the sink, counter space, wine storage or microwave if space allows.  Add a few stools and you have the ideal breakfast bar. It adds a distinctive look to a kitchen and welcomes everyone to join in on the fun.
  • Plan Appliance Locations Thoughtfully: Managing the traffic flow throughout a busy kitchen requires some careful planning. Space the work triangle so that appliances have ample clearance when open, never open into each other and the cooks have enough space to work side by side.
  • Cookbook Storage: If you love to cook like I do, open shelves are a great place to store cookbooks and other kitchen miscellany within easy reach. They will also add some great character and color to the kitchen area.
  • Lighting: For a more elegant touch, add glass doors and recess lighting to your island’s cabinetry. This is the ideal spot to display your favorite dishes and highlight your colorful pottery collection.  Multiple layers of  lights are both functional and mood provoking so add dimmers to those light sources.


When designing your kitchen and the island, think about how you really use this room, and how you can maximize the space – and make your island work for you. Are you contemplating a renovation for your kitchen?  I am always hear to help! Connect with me via Facebook or contact me via Interior Makeovers, Inc.

Stay Inspired!


Photo Credits:
Lori Gilder

The Allure Of Master Bath Retreats

March 18th, 2012 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

We all need a place to decompress and escape from the stresses of the day.  So why not pamper yourself in a luxurious Master Bath Retreat.  Whether your bathroom is extremely spacious or charmingly quaint, adding a little of that hotel luxury could be exactly what the Doctor ordered.    In this video I explain the trend in bathrooms right now. Have you been seeing this as well?

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Stay Inspired!




I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2012 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

5 Easy Ways To Freshen Up Your Home

August 22nd, 2011 by Lori Gilder | 4 Comments

Giving your home some TLC doesn’t have to cost a fortune or become a long and arduous process.  Here are some very simple and highly effective ways to freshen up your home any time of year.

The images posted below are from 5 highly talented Interior Designers…and dear friends!   (Enjoy the eye candy).

1.  De-clutter it! (Degree of Difficulty – easy)

Photo via Jonathan Legate Interior Consultation        Designer: Jonathan Legate

We build our lives, save our memories, and document every nuance of our children’s growth.  The next thing we know we’re inundated with stuff we’ve accumulated over the years and can’t part with.  Living in a home that is cluttered and disorganized will immediately drain your energy – without even realizing it.

To eliminate the mess and get you to a peaceful resolve start by going through every bin, shelf, drawer and cabinet.  Gather all the papers, old toys, books and back issues of magazines you haven’t used in a year – and get rid of them!  Don’t shuffle the clutter from one side of the room to the other.  Purge and remove everything from the space.  Only once everything is cleared away will you able to design, decorate and appreciate your space.

2.  Re-arrange it! (Degree of Difficulty –easy)


Photo via Richard W Herb and Associates                 Designer: Richard W Herb

Once you’ve de-cluttered your space start moving things around.  Take inventory of the furniture throughout your home and start experimenting.  Maybe your adorable bedroom chair would look even better in the living room, and those pair of table lamps would revitalize your bedroom ambiance.  Relocate the foyer chandelier in a sleek finish and re-introduce it in the dining room.  And don’t be afraid to swap out the accessories from room to room – you won’t need to spend a dime.

3.  Paint it or Paper it! (Degree of Difficulty – easy to moderate)

Photo via Leslie Fine Interiors               Designer: Leslie Fine

Invigorate your outdated family room and energize your bedroom with one of the new hot color trends of the season.  A fresh coat or two of paint can instantly change the mood, ambiance and energy of a room. Just remember when selecting paint colors for your home its imperative to know what mood you are trying to achieve, how you intend to use the space and more importantly which colors you really love.

Create a jewel box at home by installing wallcoverings in a favorite space.  Whether you choose to introduce subtle textures or bold patterns – wallpaper instantly infuses detail and character to your space.  The endless selection of raffias, silks linens and metallics are striking in both traditional and contemporary settings.

4.  Welcome it! (Degree of Difficulty – easy)

Photo Via HGTV Canada      Designer Meredith Heron

Enhance the front entry of your home by exuding a positive energy and flow into your home – for health, happiness and prosperity. Sound good?

Start by simply creating a focal point or vignette somewhere in your foyer.  Perhaps a simple console table with a favorite piece of art hanging above, highlighted by a sophisticated table lamp – will evoke a positive feeling each time you walk through your door.  Take it a step further and add a small water element or a mirror on the wall perpendicular to the door.  This will help in create a well-balanced, healthy and prosperous life.

5.  Flower it! (Degree of Difficulty – easy)

Photo via Nest by Tamara              Designer: Tamara Matthews-Stephenson

Adding fresh flowers to your home décor or party table is the piece de resistance in any design project and an instant pick-me-up!

Next time you’re shopping for groceries or at your local farmer’s market pick up some fresh flowers and create some fun and unique arrangements. You don’t need to spend a fortune, just look for what’s in season, well priced and colorful enough to enhance your mood.  Place them in colorful glasses, pitchers, bowls or pales and sprinkle these arrangements throughout your home.

I do this as a weekly treat to myself – fresh flowers make me happy.

Stay Inspired!

Please leave your questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2011 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.


Lori’s Renovation Realites : Take a Vacation

August 1st, 2011 by Lori Gilder | 2 Comments

Today I thought I would premiere a new video series I am calling “Lori’s Renovation Realities.”  This series will give you valuable tips and inside information when renovating and re-designing your home.  Who out there would like to avoid the REAL reno disasters? Well then take it from me and watch!  Would love to know what you think?

…..and stay tuned for more of Lori’s Renovation Realities….

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Stay Inspired!



Please leave your questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2011 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.


New Remodeling Trends For 2011

December 2nd, 2010 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

Interior architecture and design is a continually evolving industry.  Just like fashion, we can’t help but notice the ever-changing design trends of the season particularly when magazines, newspapers and television shows keep us abreast as to what’s hot and what’s not from one year to the next.   Technological advancements together with popular culture tend to set the stage for these new trends in the home design industry.  Implementing every newest craze into your home renovation or design project isn’t what’s important – the goal is to incorporate those trends that have the staying power and that become the new lifestyle standard without ever appearing dated.

Whether you’re building a new home, renovating a charmer, or adding some extra space, homes are becoming smarter, smaller (than the Mc Mansions of years past) and simpler.  Easy maintenance, high quality materials and integral smart systems make for an easy transition for the changing family.  In many instances homeowners are adding some extra space in order to meet the needs of aging parents (or for themselves “aging in place”) and re-designing their home’s overall layout by incorporating subtle Universal Design principles. Creating more open and flexible floor plans with wider doorways, main floor master suites, and user-friendly kitchens and baths are becoming increasingly important to the Baby Boomers.

Kitchens are the core and heart of the home. And the truth of the matter is according to a recent survey conducted by General Electric 60% of homeowners are eating out less and spending more time dining at home – and more than half of them are actually cooking six to ten meals per week for friends and family.  This speaks to the overwhelming trend in creating the entertainer’s kitchen that is well designed, impeccably detailed and beautifully appointed.  So if you’re one of those serial entertainers and are planning a kitchen renovation, then its time to transform your kitchen into the hottest new restaurant in town!

The current scene is definitely green.  You can go all the way and completely reduce your carbon footprint or simply introduce energy-efficient windows, lighting, appliances and tank-less water heaters in your home renovation project. Utilizing recycled and sustainable products has never been easier to incorporate into your home remodeling plans.  Keep in mind that the green scene is here to stay and eco-friendly homes are important to Baby Boomers and GenXers alike.

This is a new era in the home building and renovation industry.  Keeping abreast of the home renovation and design trends and incorporating these new standards into your project – will keep your home in good standing should you ever decide to sell.

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

2011 Home Design Color Trends

November 12th, 2010 by Lori Gilder | 1 Comment

As a Designer it’s so important to be well versed on all upcoming home design and renovation trends – from building trends to paint colors and everything in between.  Benjamin Moore’s 2011 Color Forecast was released to Architects and Designers last month – and I wanted to share their findings with you.

Each year the color expert team at Benjamin Moore declares their predictions for the upcoming year by tracking the more recent social, cultural and political conditions and how they directly impact fashion and design trends.  What they discovered was an overwhelming desire for a sense of balance coupled with four underlying themes: The Farm, Order, Escape and Tribe.

1.  The Farm
There is a major focus on hearth and home for obvious reasons and most are anchoring themselves within a new reality.  Earthy colors straight from the farm will be dominating interiors this year.  Just take a look at your local Farmers Market for inspiration.  From earthy browns, buttery yellows and milky whites – to tomatoes, pumpkins and greens.

Also look for handcrafted fabrics, burlaps, tea-stained materials, and all types of petrified, bleached and natural woods – which suggests a return to life’s simpler things.

2.  Order
We are craving a sense of balance and order from the chaos of the past couple of years.  This is interpreted by infusing red, blues, yellows and greens to juxtapose with more monochromatic variations of black, white and gray.  Geometric patterns with crisp stripes, dots and spirals uplift our spirit and improve our mood.  These days it’s all about making ourselves feel happy.

3.  Escape
The world has been a little harsh lately so escaping into a dream world full of hope and optimism for the future– is extremely appealing at the moment. The dreamy glamour of sheer draped fabrics, metallic finishes and softened textures coupled with a more pale, frosted and opalescent color palette can be just the remedy for overcoming adversity.

4.  Tribe
A focus back to our ethnic communities and much like the farm, we are aching to return to the simpler things in life yet in a more soulful way. The spicy color palette of the land such as rich berry, cinnamon, saffron and fire orange are anchored with bronzes and charcoals.  There is a huge focus on patterns, stencils, hand embroidery and beading,

So how will you seek that order and balance in your life?  Will you be returning to the hearth, escaping into your dreams or focusing on your community when gathering your home design inspiration for this year?

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.

A Dressing Room Closet Built For Two

October 26th, 2010 by Lori Gilder | 2 Comments

Planning the perfect closet is never an easy task particularly when you have to share with your spouse.  Often one partner has more “inventory” shall we say than the other and rarely are they willing to give up an inch of linear space.

In one of my projects the layout of the master bedroom – simply said just doesn’t make sense.  Currently the original dark, dingy and window-less walk-in closest is located on an exterior wall, which faces the beautiful lush back yard. The single windowed master bath looks directly onto the neighbor’s house.  From a planning perspective it only makes sense to flip the master bath/closet layout in order to maximize the lovely view to the lush yard from a new master bath – and plan for the new closet/dressing room where the old bath was located.

Gutting and shifting the walls to create a bright and spacious master bath and his-and-her closet and dressing area will take this master suite from the ordinary to the extraordinary.  It’s about creating a perfect blend of practicality and luxury in the master bedroom suite.

Keep these ideas in mind when planning the perfect closet for two:

  • Don’t feel you need to use up every inch of wall space by sacrificing natural light.  Adding windows or skylights will display your wardrobe clearly.
  • Strategically position full-length mirrors to reflect some of that natural light – and to catch a good glimpse of yourself.
  • Keep as much inventory as possible in plain sight.  Make sure its well organized, color coded and easily accessible.
  • Separate the his from hers – and provide enough space to meander through the shelves and racks.
  • If space allows provide an island for plenty of extra storage.  It’s also a terrific surface area for changing out your handbags and organizing accessories.
  • Provide a make-up vanity area preferably near a window for natural lighting.
  • Don’t forget good general lighting coupled with recessed lighting to highlight your hanging wardrobe.  Using dimmers will add that extra touch of ambiance as well.

Whether you’re planning a closet/dressing room that takes your breath away or a highly practical well-organized closet for two – use these principles to help guide you through the planning process.

Finding Your Kitchen Style

September 21st, 2010 by Lori Gilder | No Comments

Committing to a specific style of kitchen can be an overwhelming decision to some.  It’s not only an expression of your personal style it is also a reflection of the overall architecture and design of your home.  So when you begin the process of selecting the style of your kitchen, make sure it fits in seamlessly to its existing environment.  In other words – an old-world Tuscan style kitchen would stick out like a sore thumb in a sleek and streamlined contemporary home.

Since the kitchen is the hub of all activity and tends to relate from one space to another it’s very important to consider how the kitchen materials, details, shapes and cabinet styles relates and transitions from one space to the next.

Smaller kitchen spaces tend to call for cleaner lines and less detail and ornamentation in its design style – where a larger more spacious kitchen area could definitely tolerate more detail.

I always advise my clients to research all the kitchen design magazines – on and offline – and to focus on the specific styles of kitchen cabinets, counter tops, backsplash materials, flooring and appliances that really speak to you.  Creating that inspiration file will serve as your starting point – in fact, you’ll begin to see your design style begin to emerge.

So how do you know which kitchen style best suits the style of your home?

Consider these guidelines when doing your research.

Colonial Style Home:

  • Shaker, country or traditional style cabinetry – stained maple or painted wood kitchen cabinets in green, blue, cream or grays.
  • Keep the cabinetry design simple and avoid heavily decorated embellishments.
  • Wood floors, and fireplaces are characteristic of Colonial designs.
  • Natural countertop material such as soapstone, limestone (dense) and butcher block will lend some authenticity to the kitchen.
  • Simple backsplash tiles without patterns.

Colonial Style Kitchen

Classical Style Home:

  • Country and traditional style cabinetry – stained or painted woods of birch, maple and pine.
  • Rectilinear design and slight ornamentation keeping symmetry in mind.
  • Can be an unfitted kitchen with free-standing furniture, balanced by natural materials and warm neutral colors of cream, browns and greens.
  • Stone or wood floors were indicative of the classical style.
  • Wooden butcher-block counters are also indicative of this period.

Classical Style Kitchen

Arts and Crafts Style Home:

  • Stained or painted flat panel and bead board (inspired by the Shaker period) styled cabinet doors constructed of oak, maple and ash are characteristic of the period.
  • Introduce plain glass or colored glass to lighten up the darker stained cabinetry.
  • Stone materials with similar characteristics and tone to limestone or soapstone will lend credibility to the Arts and Crafts style.
  • Oak and slate flooring were typically used in these kitchens and are still perfect for today.

Arts and Crafts Style Kitchen

Mid Century Style Home:

  • This is where the fitted kitchen is at its best – with long runs of base and upper matching cabinetry with integrated appliances.
  • Can take the design a little retro incorporating either painted or wood slab doors and drawers.
  • Clean lines and simple ceramic tile or wood floors.
  • Backsplashes can be finished with clean machine cut tile, brick, stone or even stainless.

Mid-Century Style Kitchen

Contemporary Style Home:

  • Crisp clean and sleek rectilinear lines inhabit this kitchen.
  • Wood cabinetry either natural or stained a deep rich tone adds warmth and drama to the simple lines.
  • Woods, stainless steel, glass, and quartz countertops are characteristic of this style.
  • Typically cooler and more neutral tones but a jolt of color adds some added drama to the space.
  • Texture and interest is created by a combination of materials and surfaces.

Contemporary Style Kitchen

Whether you’re traditional or contemporary always pay attention to the integrity and the architectural style of your home – and borrow elements from a few of them to represent your kitchen style.

I encourage you leave questions or comments below this post, and fill out the form on the right hand side of this page to receive your free copy of my special report: “15 Money Saving Strategies When Planning Your Home Renovation”

Article by Lori Gilder, Architectural Interior Designer, Los Angeles, Ca. © 2010 Lori Gilder. Interior Makeovers Inc.