Video Tour Of One Of Our Recent Projects! Master Suite

Video Tour Of One Of Our Recent Projects! Master Suite

I am so excited to show you the transformation of this master bedroom and bathroom space that we recently completed. Our homeowners were troopers as they were both working from home in adjacent bedrooms during the construction of their project.

When I first met with these homeowners and toured the master bedroom and bathroom, it became clear to me that they were looking for a much more luxurious master suite space.

The bedroom was dark, and my homeowners wanted to update everything, including adding a luxurious master bath. The original master bath was very small and dated with a very small window and a very small master shower stall with no light. After reviewing all of my client’s needs, I created a design that would transform the space into a luxurious master bedroom and bathroom suite.

We needed to create some additional storage space in the two existing small closets without adding to the room’s space. We added some additional space by incorporating a small jut out in the bedroom that currently held a dresser. So, we had to do our best to create useful storage and meet the needs by reconfiguring and customizing the space.

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The master bedroom design included additional lighting, fixtures, a new color scheme, new carpeting, custom window treatments, custom bedding, and new furniture. This beautiful blue and white color scheme is classic and has created a restful environment for the master bedroom suite. When designing custom bedding and window treatments, we can design all the details of every piece, including trim, cording, filling, and the exact size of every pillow. We could bring in color, texture, and pattern that complemented the design by choosing beautiful designer fabrics. In the Master bathroom, I wanted to create the feeling of a luxurious spa-like bathroom. Beautiful porcelain tile was used on the flooring. I created a custom shower with the same porcelain tile, designed niches for storage, shower seat, and added beautiful gleaming chrome fixtures.

I designed the vanity with plenty of storage and included quartz countertops, under-mounted sinks, beautiful high-quality lighting, and tall mirrors to elongate the space. Custom window treatments here were designed to tie in the custom fabric work in the adjacent bedroom. Of course, my team of highly skilled craftsmen pulled together to implement this design with high-quality artistry, right down to the final details. I am so happy to share this quick video tour to show you the transformation of the space. Check out the before and after. My videographer added in my quick “demo day before video” to show you the transformation.

Also, I am thrilled to share this quick testimonial from my lovely client:

“A renovation project can be a daunting task, but Gia and her team make it as easy and painless as possible! Starting from the initial tour of our space, Gia was extremely knowledgeable, professional, and equipped with ideas on how to best reconfigure our space to meet our needs. At every phase of our project, from design to planning, selecting fixtures and finishes, construction, and more, Gia was always accessible, communicative, and kept the project on track, on time, and on a budget! Her team was highly skilled and respectful of our home as they worked keeping things neat and tidy despite the typical construction environment. We are beyond thrilled with our finished project and appreciate how smoothly and professionally Gia and the team got us to the finish line. I especially loved how Gia guided my choices on fabrics and other finishes without imposing her own preferences; she even said, “I can tell you if these will work together, you have to decide if you like them!” and that allowed me the space to choose finishes I really loved, knowing that the overall design would still work. I highly recommend Designs by Gia!” …LC

Thank you, LC, for the great testimonial! I enjoyed getting to know you and your family and enjoyed creating this luxurious space for you!

Until Next Time,
Gia

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Tips For Surviving Your Bathroom Renovation

Tips For Surviving Your Bathroom Renovation

When it comes to renovating, the bathroom is one area that homeowners are excited about transforming. When designing a bathroom, many homeowners find out that having a well-thought-out professional design is the key to a successful project.

Unfortunately, some homeowners realize this once their renovation is well underway and their project takes longer than necessary. Either way, a bathroom renovation can take a toll on your everyday life. Here are a few tips to surviving your bathroom renovation.

broken floor tile

ONE

Do not start construction unless you have a professional design. A bathroom renovation is complicated, oversimplifying the process because you don’t know all of the details you need to know to design space can cost homeowners enormous additional time and money. The best way to succeed with the bathroom renovation is to capitalize on the experience of the pros and know that your design will work and accomplish your goals.

TWO

Prepare for the fact that you will be without a bathroom for the entire renovation. In past blog posts, I’ve talked about the process of deciding where to start in a home renovation. A second-floor bath renovation might require plumbing and electrical work that affects the downstairs rooms under the bathroom. So if you have two bathrooms aligned on the first and second floor, any work you might’ve done on the first-floor bath might be affected when you’re renovating the second-floor bath. So if you can start upstairs, most of the time, that’s your best bet. If you can do one bathroom at a time, this will still leave you with a working bathroom throughout your renovation project. If that remaining bathroom does not have a shower or a tub, you’ll have to make plans accordingly.

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THREE

Many of my clients decide to do a few bathrooms at the same time to be more efficient. This is an excellent option if you can live offsite for the duration of the project. If you have that option, consider doing more than one bathroom at a time, making the process more efficient, which could provide some cost savings in the long run.

FOUR

Don’t underestimate the amount of time that it takes to do a bathroom renovation. Most people assume that because the bathroom is one of the smaller rooms in their home, that it will be a quicker process than it is. Your bathroom is put together like a jigsaw puzzle. One element goes in, and then the other element fits into place; only then can the next step be taken. So numerous things really cannot be done at once. Also, you can only have a few people working in the bathroom because of the amount of space that there is. This makes the project more labor-intensive, causing it to take more time. Also, elements like a custom shower require several steps. Templating a custom glass shower enclosure can only be done after all of the tiles are in place, then those custom-sized tempered glass pieces can be cut and sized accordingly before installation. So there is some waiting time between templating and the installation. These elements make the process take longer and can be frustrating when you don’t understand the logistics that go into a bathroom renovation.

FIVE

I understand that you might see lots of framing, plumbing work, and electrical work before you start to catch a glimpse of the finished project. All of these elements are necessary to complete a bathroom renovation, and they take time. Understand that you will not see the transformation in the early stages of your renovation.

SIX

Your bathroom renovation might affect some areas in the rest of your home. We’ve already talked about adjacent areas being affected by the possibility of plumbing and electrical. However, the process of renovating a bathroom requires space. A bathroom usually doesn’t have a lot of additional floor space. Therefore tools, materials, and lumber needed for your project cannot all be stored in the bathroom space while the renovation is happening. For our bathroom projects, we time our deliveries knowing exactly what we need on-site to save space and keep things organized; however, even under the best circumstances, carpenters need lots of tools and supplies to do their job. We always discuss with our clients before starting our renovation to let our clients know what to expect and prepare the job site to minimize the impact on our clients.

SEVEN

The idea of a beautiful new bathroom can be very exciting. You will be tempted to buy accessories, towels, and all kinds of elements to go into your new space throughout the process. Your designer would be glad to assist with these details, and this will provide you with the best possible finishing touches to your project.

EIGHT

Renovations take time, and sometimes unexpected elements pop up during construction and demolition. These things can extend your project time. When starting the bathroom renovation, don’t give yourself unnecessary deadlines. If you plan on having house guests for Christmas, a wedding, or any other hard deadline, you should begin the process of talking with a designer at least a year or so ahead of that deadline. You are allowing time for the design process, contractor scheduling, ordering materials, and of course, the actual renovation processes. You don’t want to be rushing the final finishing when investing in a bathroom renovation.

NINE

Enjoy the final results. Your bathroom renovation is something that you will enjoy for years to come. With proper planning and implementation, your bathroom project will exceed your expectations.

Until Next Time,
Gia

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Tips For Starting Out Fresh In A New Home

Tips For Starting Out Fresh In A New Home

As an interior designer, I’ve had the privilege of assisting numerous clients in getting settled into a new home. Whether that is an existing client or a new client, people consider hiring a designer to figure out their new spaces. It’s an exciting time to start fresh, but it could be a monumental task. Not only are you weary from the process of shopping for a home, buying the home, and packing. You now have to think about how you’re going to use that new space and how it will work for your family.

The design of the new home might be very different from your existing space. And you might not have spent a lot of time in this new home as of yet, so it can be hard thinking about how you want to use the different areas and how they will function for you. You also might be thinking about how you can use existing furniture pieces in your home. Do you need to buy new things? Will your area rugs fit in your new furniture arrangement? What about window treatment? If you have time, should you attempt any projects before moving in? These are questions that run through every homebuyers head when thinking about making that transition to a new property.

broken floor tile
Add rich color.

ONE

Thoroughly document your new home. Take photos and measure rooms; look at the existing condition in the new home so that you can make a plan before you move. Create a plan of where things will go and what needs to be done in each space. This will help you wrap your head around the numerous tasks that need to be accomplished before transitioning to your new home.

TWO

Decide how you want your daily life to function differently in your new space. Perhaps you have a larger kitchen in your new home and want to new space to be more of the heart of your home. Will that kitchen function the way you need to function as is, or are there other changes you will need to make in the space. The kitchen is one of those areas where numerous tasks are performed daily. Additional space in the kitchen, a larger room, doesn’t always add up to a more functional kitchen. Think about what you are trying to accomplish in your new home and whether or not it could be done with the existing kitchen, or you might require a renovation.

THREE

Look at the storage in your new home. Again larger spaces don’t necessarily add up to better storage. You might have to rethink the way that you store things in your new home. For instance, your existing home might have a large linen closet. Your new home might be larger but without a needed linen closet. You might have to make up for that storage by adding a closet or a piece of furniture that will function as that much-needed linen in storage.

FOUR

Involve a pro before you make expensive mistakes. The most common costly mistakes are jumping into a renovation without a design, purchasing random pieces of new furniture without a well-thought-out plan, selecting new paint colors before you know what will be in the space. These are just a few examples of mistakes that new homeowners make in the early stages of homeownership. It’s understandable because it can be exciting to anticipate moving into your new space, and you want to design and decorate as quickly as possible to settle into your new home. Time taken to review and think out an overall design plan could save thousands of dollars and could produce a more remarkable result in the end.

FIVE

Once you move into your new space, it might feel and function differently than you initially thought it would. Don’t rush to make significant floor plan changes before moving into space, or at least until spending a considerable amount of time in the space.

Until Next Time,
Gia

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Creating An Interior Design Plan For Your New Home

Creating An Interior Design Plan For Your New Home.

If you are one of the many people that have recently purchased a new home, congratulations on your new home! Purchasing a new home can be a stressful process. Once you finalize your purchase and begin moving into your home, you realize that there’s much that needs to be figured out. There are so many projects that you would like to do. Whether it’s completely renovating your new home’s kitchen and bathrooms, renovating the entire home, changing paint colors and finishes, or furnishing a room or perhaps your entire home, the process can be overwhelming.

Where do you start? What do you tackle first? You immediately begin making random purchases of furnishings or window treatments, and then you realize that you don’t know what else will happen in each room. Hopefully, this is where you stop and get help from a pro. When I work with new homeowners, I help them put together a plan of action for their new space.

broken floor tile
Add rich color.

Here are a few tips that can help you along the way.

ONE

It’s easy to go into your new home with lots of ideas and thoughts about what you could do. Still, somewhere during the early stages of that process, unexpected repairs might come up. New thoughts and ideas about furniture arrangements or renovation come up, which sometimes leads to being more overwhelmed. Think about your goals for your new home. Is this a home that you plan on staying in for a while? Is this a home that you plan to live in for a few years and then move on to something else? Asking yourself these questions will help you figure out just how much to tackle and where you should put your design and renovation money and efforts.

TWO

Know what items you can’t part with. Are you bringing your existing furnishings with you to your new home, and will they work in your new floor plan? Whether you plan on designing your entire home when you move in or over some time, it helps to know what items you currently own and which are important for you to keep. Existing items can be worked into your overall plan.

THREE

Be realistic about how much work or renovation can be done on your home before you actually move in. If you have the luxury of a bit of time after you purchase your new home, you might own an additional home that you can stay in or be planning on moving into your home after a little renovating. Think about the types of projects that you might be able to do during this time. Depending on the home and the types of products you have in mind, something like sanding and refinishing the home’s current wood flooring might be easier done when the home is empty. This is also a dusty, messy project with lots of polyurethane fumes. Suppose this can be done before you move in, great. However, if you plan a more extensive renovation that might involve the rooms that have this existing flooring, you might not want to tackle this project before the renovation. It’s important to know where you’re going with the project. Doing things in the correct order is essential concerning the process of construction, preventing costly backtracking later. Also, sanding and polyurethane floors might not take too long, but a longer lead time is needed for the finish on your new floors to cure. If the furniture is moved in too soon, the new finish will be ruined, so be sure you have a realistic idea of how much time is needed for projects before you move in.

FOUR

Creating an overall color scheme and design for the entire house is a crucial step that often is skipped when you are tackling one room at a time. Creating a cohesive interior design of your home requires a thorough plan connecting all of the spaces in your home visually. Without this, even the most beautiful rooms can feel disjointed from one another when walking through your home. Creating a color scheme is not as simple as choosing colors that match, as your home will involve thousands of finishes and fabrics, all of the various tones of color with multiple undertones and sheens. Also, creating a color scheme is not just about using paint colors. Often homeowners choose paint colors at random only to find it a stumbling block later in the design process when adding furnishings and window treatments. A cohesive well thought out design plan will become a roadmap to success with the interior design of your home.

FIVE

Get a feel for your new space. Sometimes it’s easy to get excited about designing your spaces, and you try to replicate a room that you’ve seen or design ideas from a home that you love. Your new home is as unique as you are. Some design ideas will work in this home, and some will not. The colors that you use at your former home will not look the same in this new home, the colors that your friend used on her walls will look different here in your new home. Good design is a result of combining ideas that are harmonious to a home’s architecture, lighting, view floor plan, needs, desires, and personality of the current homeowner.

SIX

Get help from a professional designer early in the project. A professional designer can help you develop a plan of action for your home, including a phased plan of action that makes sense for your goals. Establishing a relationship with a good designer from the beginning of your project will help you make the best decisions and create an interior design plan that you love right from the very beginning.

Until Next Time,
Gia

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Should You Stay In Your Color Comfort Zone Or Explore New Possibilities?

Should You Stay In Your Color Comfort Zone, or Should You Explore New Possibilities?

A thought that goes through almost everyone’s head while attempting even the simplest decorating project. Colors are very powerful, and the possibilities and combinations are endless. For many people, choosing color combinations can be a very scary process. You will wonder if you want to commit to a color. Will you still like it in a few months, a few years? Will it go out of style? Will it go with existing furnishings? Will you have to change other things in your home if you add this new color? So many questions often lead to being paralyzed, and you retreat to what your color comfort zone might be.

So how do you decide if you should take the plunge and explore some new color possibilities or if you should stay where you are most comfortable? This is something that designers deal with daily. Every client brings with them a new set of feelings regarding color and a new standard of what they might be comfortable with when it comes to color selection. In my experience, there are numerous reasons that someone is comfortable with color. Exploring why someone is comfortable with specific colors could provide some answers and some guidance.

broken floor tile
Add rich color.

Why are you comfortable in a certain color range?
Possible reasons might be…

• Color creates a strong psychological effect you might be drawn to certain colors for that reason. For instance, green can be very comforting and soothing; this is why you see it in many doctor’s offices. So, it’s no surprise that you might be drawn to these colors because of how they make you feel. Red can be a very exciting color and can stimulate the appetite, so it is usually seen as being used in fast food company logos.

• You have a particular memory or experience that has given you personal feelings about color. Perhaps you have a strong aversion to a particular shade of green because it reminds you of a tile in a specific kitchen where are you may have spent a very unhappy time in your life. By all means, do you want to avoid colors that tie in and remind you of bad experiences? As a designer, I’ve learned to ask the right questions while creating a color scheme for someone, sometimes knowing what colors people hate can provide me more information than what they like.

• Are you comfortable with a certain range of colors because you are afraid to make another choice? This is often the case for many people. They might’ve gotten used to a small range of neutrals not because they love neutrals but because of the fear of committing to another range of colors. Suppose someone does want to explore the possibilities and likes the idea of breaking out of the comfort zone of neutrals. In that case, this is great information for me as a designer as to what type of color scheme they would be comfortable with and how to use color for their project.

• Look at your closet for inspiration. If your closet is filled with clothing and accessories that are brightly colored, and your home is filled with safe neutrals, you might just be intimidated about how to use color in your home. Using color in a room design can be much more complicated than putting together an outfit, as there are so many dimensions and surfaces that make up a room that requires particular color choices. All of these surfaces have different textures, and so any attempt at matching these colors is exactly always falls flat on its face. Therefore, a thorough understanding of the color value and color undertones is required to pull together colors on so many different surfaces harmoniously. Unlike when you’re pulling together an outfit, and you only have a few pieces to coordinate.

• Do you really love the color selections in your comfort zone? Sometimes you will find that you really do love the colors that are in your comfort zone. If you find that you love a color palette of neutral tones, then by all means, if you love neutral tones, use them. Neutral tones can also be tricky to combine, you might have a room filled with neutral tones, but they still do not work well together because of the undertones, so not all neutral tones work together well.

A well-developed color scheme can genuinely make or break the finished look of a space. I hope these tips will help you decide if you should stay in your color comfort zone or explore some new possibilities.

Until Next Time,
Gia

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Common Pitfalls When Furnishing An Entire Home Or Room

Common Pitfalls When Furnishing an Entire Home or Room

You might be excited about furnishing that new home or perhaps just furnishing your living room or Master bedroom.

Whether you’re furnishing an entire home, one room, or a series of rooms, furnishing a space can be quite complicated. It involves a thorough and detailed plan consisting of what the space will look like in the end. Homeowners sometimes attempt furnishing on their own, not understanding the complicated yet important details of proportion, balance, and scale when furnishing a space.

broken floor tile

Quickly realizing that is not the simple task they had envisioned. No matter how large or small your budget is for furnishings, you want your purchases to stand the test of time both in style and durability. You also want the space’s design to be cohesive, reflect your personality, and work well with the rest of your home.

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Here are some common pitfalls that homeowners often fall into when attempting to do this without the help of a pro.

ONE

Purchasing furniture pieces before having an overall plan. It is easy to get excited about starting the process of furnishing a space, but the place to start is with thorough planning before any shopping or purchasing begins. It is only after thoroughly planning out the area that purchases should begin. Knowing how all furnishing will not only look good but function well in the space is essential. Properly planning out walkways, traffic flow, and planning out space for tasks is crucial in developing any space plan. Planning out the entire area first allows you to make changes and visualize the room with your new furnishings. It also gives you a perimeter of size, shape, and scale to guide you when making those furniture purchases.

TWO

Selecting fabric, colors, and finishes individually. The mixing of fabrics, colors, textures, and other material finishes can be complicated. A professional knows how to do this efficiently, knowing where the room is ultimately going and how different finishes and patterns will work together. When homeowners attempt this, they can be easily swayed by salespeople whose primary goal is to sell a product. It’s also very easy to choose the most beautiful sofa or fabric without really knowing how it will work with all of the other elements in the room or home. Buyers remorse will start to set in once you begin to choose the other elements in the space and realize that you have unknowingly designed yourself into a corner. A well-designed plan will help you select finishes, colors, and fabrics strategically, giving you the confidence that you will have a cohesive look when your project is complete.

THREE

Feeling like you need to pull together a professionally designed look without a pro. Today many aspects of the design process are over-simplified. Homeowners are led to believe that it’s fast and easy to get professional level results independently, with just a few trips to the store, certainly not the case. Regardless of the size of your project budget, you want to be sure you get the best possible results by hiring a pro.

FOUR

Buying items yourself.  The reason professionally designed rooms look so beautiful is because many items that go into the space are custom or customized to the designer’s specifications. For instance, when designing custom pillows, upholstered pieces, or window treatments, we can choose the exact trim or decorative details and decide on those details’ precise placement.

Many designers have trade accounts with manufacturers that often quality pieces and a higher degree of customization on products, which results in that customized look. Even when purchasing a stock piece that you can find for yourself at retail, it’s always best to have your designer do the purchasing. Eliminating ordering errors since your designer is familiar with the process and ordering direct doesn’t guarantee better pricing. Timing of deliveries and storage of furnishings until you are ready for them can also be an issue. When working with a designer, items can be consolidated and delivered when ready for the whole installation. That is not possible when ordering numerous pieces from different vendors at different times, each with its delivery schedule.

Those are just a few of the most common pitfalls that one can fall into when attempting a large furnishing project without a designer’s guidance and expertise.

 

Until next time,
Gia

 

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How To Make A Luxurious Bed

How To Make A Luxurious Bed

How to make your bed? One question that I frequently get asked as a designer is how to decide what goes on your bed, how to make your bed, and what...

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