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Pet Friendly Design

The wagging tail that greets you at the door; A best friend curled up at your feet by the fireplace; The loving rub against your leg as you are making your coffee.  For many people, pets are what make a home feel like home.

So many times when I am designing for clients, they ask me to take their pets into consideration.  We all want our houses to be beautiful, but they need to be durable enough to withstand the daily wear and tear of real life.

Here are some of my go- to tips for creating a pet friendly home:

(Whether you explore one or all- you will see a difference)

Durable Paint– Specify eggshell walls and semi gloss trim the next time you paint.   It will make cleaning up the mess from all of the “rubs and shakes” much easier.  Water and dirt are much more likely to stain a matte wall than one with a more durable finish such as eggshell, satin or semigloss.

Resilient Fabrics– Choose fabrics that have tighter weaves and are easily washable.  In more casual spaces, I often suggest slipcovers. I am not talking about the sloppy sofa you had in college- upholstery lines have really improved the look of slipcovers.  These days, you often can’t tell the difference between a slipcovered sofa and a skirted upholstered one.  A versatile upholstery option, slipcovers can be easily washed or switched out 10 years down the road when they get too worn.  They can save money in the long run!

Washable Coverlets– when I am away at work, my labradoodle often likes to sneak up to my bedroom for a mid- day nap.  I know this because my bed sometimes doesn’t look as smooth as it did when I made it that morning.  The indention from where she curled up at the end of the bed is evidence!   Good thing I have a washable coverlet to keep my bed looking clean and new.

NOTE: this is not my pup...just another adorable one. (still haven't caught her in the act:)

Old Wood Floors– If the style of the house allows, nothing hides dirt and scratch marks more than an old wood floor. Not only are they beautiful, the give off a very natural and relaxed look. Often times, reclaimed wood comes from old barns…if cows can stomp on it, why can’t your pets?

Comfortable/custom dog beds– there are a whole host of fabrics that allow you can customize your dog bed to fit the look of the room.  I recently had my upholsterer make a new cover for an old LL Bean bed that needed a little TLC.   This will certainly make your pet feel like the king or queen that they are! People always comment on coordinating dog beds.

-Fiber Protection– Protect your upholstery investments with Fiber Shield. Many people don’t realize that for around $150 or less, you can treat your fabrics with a stain guard that has a warranty for up to 10 years.  Without changing the look or feel of the upholstery, you can protect against spills and stains.  I do this for clients all the time.  They all agree that it is totally worth it!

See? You can live comfortably with pets…AND look fabulous while doing it!

A day in my life…

Life as a designer is action packed.  Anyone who knows me (and my profession) well can tell you that I am constantly on the move!

If I am not in the office designing floorplans in CAD and pulling together fabric/furniture schemes, I am attending on site meetings with clients and contractors, sourcing unique furniture from local antique shops or researching new materials in trade showrooms around town.  And…of course, there are the installations. Full of organized chaos and absolute fun.  I love creating a total transformation and making my clients gasp with delight when they enter a newly designed room for the first time.  That is what my job is all about!

As I am on the move, I often take pictures with my iphone to document the things I love.  It may be as simple as a new line of hardware I am digging, or a newly installed room that was worth the hard work.  As I am scrolling through my pictures, here are 10 things that I have been loving recently:

*caution: some may be blurry*

1. Awesome new wallpaper by Schumacher

2. Gorgeous ikat pillows and navy velvet headboard in a recent guest bedroom install-  more pictures to come soon!!!

3. Drooling over this new hardware line: customize your hardware with any leather from the Edelman line! How stunning is this?

4. Had to include these beautiful bracelets I bought my sister for her birthday.  Stop in at Vermillion- they have amazing jewelry. These beauties make me want to design a room in a palette of turquoise, deep blue and gold.

5. Picking out frames for a set of 6 antique botanicals.  The gold fillet really makes it feel special.

6. Love everything about this picture: my sweet little nephew who was born this July, my beautiful niece Lulu in her pink tutu, and the colorful pillows by Schumacher and Groundworks

You can’t really see the Verellen sofa- but it is fabulous as well!

7. If you are wondering, this is the only baby I have right now:

I was changing the sheets at the beach and turned my back for one second….this is how I found her! All wrapped up.   Hey, at least she has good taste in coverlets!

How can you resist that face? I sure can’t.

8. Tile selections for a fun couple in Durham

9. After a long day, nothing is greater than having a glass of wine with this guy:

10. And when I am not working, I ride elephants travel with my husband.




Stay Tuned!

LC Interiors has been busy with so many fun projects.  In the past year, we have helped design custom homes, renovation projects, residences in lovely neighborhoods as well as commercial projects including a restaurant and a dental office. We are currently photographing all of the spaces to update our portfolio- so stay tuned!

In the meantime, here is a collage of one project we have been working on with a fun client in Raleigh. We are in the process of updating their living room. Our color scheme is creams, browns and turquoise with pops of coral.  It is going to look fabulous!

See the floorplan below:

And last but not least…some of the beautiful accent fabrics:

Object of Affection

Accessories are a girl’s best friend.  In fashion, interior design and (let’s be honest- our love life), we look for those special additions to feel complete.  I will leave the fashion and love life tips to someone else- so let’s focus on those fabulous accessories that are a “must” for the successful design of your home.

Accessories have been on my mind lately.   This summer has been filled with project installations and I have been out and about finding the perfect accessories to give each room the “finished” look I desire.  “How important is it?” you may ask …or…”What types of items will really make a difference?”

Here are some key things to note when accessorizing :

Keep it clean and simple.  Some people can go overboard with accessories, so try to narrow things down and only use interesting and complementary pieces.  For example: on a coffee table you can place a beautiful tray layered with a vase of flowers, stack of books and an antique box.  The box can hold smaller items that don’t need to sit out all the time such as pens, paper, remote controls, etc.  There is an art to making things look eclectic and layered without feeling cluttered.   In many situations, less is more.

Listen to the space. Accessories are a great way to infuse personality to a room.  You can add pops of color with books, throws and pillows.  An architectural object can add style to an otherwise bare tabletop.  Have one large empty wall?  Group together smaller pieces of art to create a gallery look.  It is all about elements working together in harmony.  In many of my pictures, you will see that the accessories often pull the room together and make the room sing.

Make it personal.  Add a bud vase with a fresh flower by your bathroom sink.  Make sure your favorite reading chair has a comfortable (yet stylish) throw blanket close by that you can snuggle up with. Place your favorite photo in a special picture frame next to your bed.  These small touches will make your house feel like a home.

Bali Beauty

I recently traveled to the gorgeous, lush island of Bali located in Indonesia.   It is on the other side of the world- so I knew it would be different; however, nothing could prepare me for the spiritual and artistic richness that is intricately woven in the natives’ everyday life.  For anyone who loves the arts, Bali is the place for you.  The island truly takes on a life of its own, and creativity is found everywhere- even in the most unexpected places.  A simple home to them is an interesting study of eastern architecture to us.  A daily handmade offering of flowers may be a ritual to them, but signifies an intrinsic part of their beautiful culture to us.  Even the curvaceous rice terraces, the fruits of their land, have a picturesque quality that should be on the cover of a magazine.

Everywhere I looked, beautiful things were being created.   I visited craft villages that specialized in textile, furniture and jewelry design.  It was so inspiring to see things made in such an honest, open and simplistic form.  Bali is specifically known for its batik fabrics.  These fabrics are hand woven and dyed creating beautiful patterns and forms. Most fabrics these days are machine woven, so I loved seeing the rare art of hand weaving in its true form.  I was in heaven! Bali is also known for its teak furniture.  I passed down roads full of people making beautiful furniture of exceptional quality with great prices. Don’t worry- I kept a running list of new vendors to offer my clients.

I believe it is important for designers to stay inspired.  I continually read design magazines and books, but nothing drives my creativity quite like traveling.  As I moved from the mountains to the shore on Bali, color palettes seemed jumped out at me from the natural landscape.  From the moss growing on an old stone building, to a unique hotel design, to an old wood carver arduously working on his next great “piece”, I found inspiration everywhere.