Thursday, March 31, 2011

Confessions of a Designer: Bryn Dunn

By Ethan Lucas | At 1:16 PM | Label : , , , | 0 Comments
Bryn + me in New York

Bryn continues to amaze me with her design skills. She is truly so talented and her blog is one of my very favorites.  I look forward to reading it everyday. I have loved watching her business evolve and I get so excited every time she posts pictures of a new project. 

Here are her confessions of a designer. 

Working together to create a home is a very personal thing. My ideal client is someone I "click" with and can be candid with. Someone who trusts me to do my thing while I'm in their home, as if I'm just another friend or family member playing with their throw pillows. 

Desgin by Bryn Alexandra Interiors
Again, pick someone that you "click" with. It's also important to choose someone who has a similar style to you but will also help you make those more bold decisions when it's right for you and your home. Also, a designer should always ask you how you LIVE in the space, not just how you want it to look. 

Desgin by Bryn Alexandra Interiors
The biggest myth is that it is super expensive to work with a designer. Sure, some designers out there demand $5,000 upfront just to meet with them, but there is a designer or decorator out there for everyone and every budget. Ask for a flat fee if you are nervous about the cost of a designer; I always offer an hourly rate OR a flat fee per the client's preference. A flat fee is an easy way to budget for the cost of a designer.

Also, what a lot of people don't know is designers often pass on savings to their clients which greatly cuts costs in the long run. I give my clients a 25% discount on everything purchased to the trade (fabric, wallpaper, even lamps and accessories when I can).

Desgin by Bryn Alexandra Interiors
Communication! When working with clients, I will tell you if something isn't right for your space. But more importantly, you should always tell your designer if you don't LOVE something.

Pictures are key. The more pictures of the space, the better. The better quality pictures, the better. Also, I always ask my clients to send me inspiration pictures. This always helps me determine their style and the feeling they want to get with the space I am designing.

Erika of Urban Grace Interiors. She's one of the first designers I ever started to follow and I ADORE her (even though I've never met her). 

Thanks Bryn! Make sure you check out her blog here

Confessions of a Designer: Amanda Hill

By Ethan Lucas | At 8:09 AM | Label : , , | 0 Comments
I have had the pleasure of spending time with Amanda on various occasions and she is always a sweetheart. I love her personality! Her blog, business and store are proof that she is living her dream. 

Here are her confessions of a designer. 

My “ideal client” would have to be someone who trusted me, I don’t want a client who always goes along with every detail...don’t get me wrong sometimes thats just refreshing and easy but if they were all that way the job wouldn't be challenging! I want them to have an opinion because in the end it’s their home and they need to love it. I want to fight for the things that I believe will make that design perfect. I think you can only do this if there is trust! If my client trust me, they can take that leap of faith and believe that our vision for the space is going to happen and thats why they hired me.

Design by Amanda Hill

Although as a designer I can be versatile, I believe a client should pick a designer because they like what that designer does and they like their style sense. I really hate when I get a client who wants me to design a space that I can’t love too, it kinda feels like it’s not my best work! As designers this this can be frustrating. I want to put my name on spaces that I love!
I think the biggest “myth” about designers is that we all push the most expensive items in decor on you. Most of us are real people with real budgets too and we can find a balance that works within your needs. I love the mix of high and low prices items. You should spend your money on staple items like your sofa, bed, dinning set, etc. Fill in the blanks with all prices ranges, just make sure you only bring in things you love! As a designer I love to shop at Target too!

Design by Amanda Hill

To make the relationship easier between you and your designer, take the time to communicate often. If you are both on the same page at all times, your project will run more smoothly and get finished on a better schedule. {Notice I said a “better schedule” never gets done on time, just a better one :)} So touch base often!

E-Design’s are one of my most favorite! Mostly because 80% of it I can do in my PJ’s {don’t tell my clients} To have a successful outcome you need to be very thorough on the details of the space. Most of the time I will never see the space in person so I need ALL the nitty gritty. You have to be very honest too. I need to know how you really use the space and how you want to use it. All the stuff I would see if I were really there! As a designer I can tell a lot by being in your home, so for e-design the more info I can get the better!

Design by Amanda Hill
I love this question! If I were to hire a designer to help with my space and budget was no issue, I would hire Genevieve Gorder! I am pretty sure I have never met a space she has put her hands on that I didn’t love! If I hired her, I would just say “go for it” and walk away! Having total trust in her work would be easy....not to mention that her taste in fashion is right up my alley too! Love that girl, xoxo! 

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Adore Magazine!

By Ethan Lucas | At 6:16 PM | Label : , , | 0 Comments

Guess what..... 

My home was featured in Adore magazine. I'm so excited. The whole experience was so great. Thanks again to Jessica for taking the pictures for the spread.  

 You can check out the entire article here
By Ethan Lucas | At 4:00 PM | Label : | 0 Comments

Thanks to everyone who entered the Windows by Melissa curtain giveaway! The winner is Kelly!


Confessions of a Designer: Caitlin Creer

By Ethan Lucas | At 2:16 PM | Label : , | 0 Comments

I feel so lucky to be able to call Caitlin a friend. When I was first thinking of staring my business I took her out to breakfast and asked her question after question. She was so gracious and has always been so helpful in mentoring me with my business and blog. She is seriously talented! I think she is such an amazing designer and truly a wonderful person to know.

Here are her confessions of a designer. 

I love working with clients who have an idea of where they want to go with a room. Even if there is only one element they are bringing to the room I think the better sense a client has of what they want, the better the outcome will be. Even though we are hired to be the expert, at the end of the day, the client is the person who will live in and utilize their home day in and day out so the more input they have, the more suited to their lifestyle the design will be. While some clients can get over involved, I generally love having a client who gets excited about the decisions we are making but is also open to taking a few risks and letting me stretch their design sense a bit. 

I think an ideal client is also someone who is realistic about their budget and what they are comfortable spending. Sometimes clients have grand dreams about what they can or want to spend, but at the end of the day that is not realistic and it ends up being a stressful situation for both the client and designer. 

Interior by Caitlin Creer
I think the personal relationship you have with your designer is as important as the match up of design styles. A designer should definitely be picked because you admire their style and what they have showcased in other projects. It pays to do your homework before hand and research who and what your options are when working with different people. It is also really important to establish a pattern of communication with your designer and be reasonable about timelines for them to follow up with you and respond to your needs and questions. On the same note, remember that you are not the only client and respect the demands on their time. 

Interior by Caitlin Creer
That it will cost you much more. I usually have much better and more affordable resources for items than my clients do and in the end they probably end up spending what they would have paid retail or a little more but they get the guidance and input of a professional. 

Interior by Caitlin Creer

I always tell my clients to be honest about their opinions. My feelings are never hurt if an idea is turned down and I would much rather have my clients communicate their concerns durning the process than to end up unhappy with the end result because they didn't open their mouth during the design process. It is also important that clients be honest about what they are really comfortable spending and what their budget can accommodate. 

 Interior Board by Caitlin Creer

I feel like the outcome of e-design projects is most successful the closer you stick to the plan that you are presented with. There are inherent challenges with e-design so it is also important that you communicate clearly and don't forget the details. I also think you need to keep in regular communication with your designer. If they send you a concept and you don't respond for a a week or two, your room has been put on the back burner by that point. 

Interior by Caitlin Creer

This is so hard. I love Lee Kleinhelter for her fun and Crisp Aesthetic but I also like lots of layers and accessories which is why I would love to colloborate with someone like Betsy Burnham

Thanks Caitlin

For Sale

By Ethan Lucas | At 6:53 AM | Label : | 0 Comments

My mom purchased two of these beautiful dresser/chests for her bedroom and the color is a little off. So we're trying to sell them. If you live in Utah and are interested check out this ad

Confessions of a Designer: Emily A. Clark

By Ethan Lucas | At 4:00 AM | Label : , | 0 Comments
Emily has brought her business and her blog so far. I can't wait to see where she goes! She is so talented and each of her interiors are clean, crisp and so so beautiful. I love her style and she continues to amaze me with each new project. 

Here are her confessions of a designer. 

The ideal client, to me, is one who is open to trying new ideas that may even be a little out of their initial comfort zone.  It doesn't really have anything to do with budget.  They trust me to see the vision for the overall space, even when they can't.  And, most of all, we have good, open communication with each other.   

To a certain extent, I think it's important that the client's and designer's personalities mesh.  I think it's a good idea to have an initial phone call just to make sure you "click" and are both on the same page.  It's great that a lot of designers now have blogs.  Not only is it a good way to see their work, but it gives potential clients a chance to learn more about them (personally and professionally), what they like, their design preferences, etc.  

Interior by Emily A. Clark

I think a lot of people are intimidated by the thought of working with a designer because they feel they won't have any control over what happens, that their ideas won't be heard, and that they'll be way over their budget.  As with any profession, there are always those "horror stories" of jobs gone bad, but I think it's feasible for anyone to work with a designer, as long as they find a good fit.

Interior by Emily A. Clark

Communication!  That goes for both sides.  The client needs to be really open about their likes/dislikes, budget restraints, and expectations.  On the same note, it's really important that the designer be up front about their services, pricing and any limitations for the project.

Interior Board by Emily A. Clark
 I think it's all in the details.  When someone comes to me for help through my online design services, I try to give them a complete plan so that they know exactly where each pillow and accessory should be placed.  Once you develop a plan for an online client, they're really on their own when it comes to pulling it altogether and shopping.  That's why it's so important to be specific so that it's feasible for them to do the work themselves.

Famous designer: Candice Olsen
"Real-life" designer: Sherry Hart of Design Indulgence (Not to say that she's not famous, of course, but I’m thinking I would have a shot at affording her over Candice!)

Thanks Emily! Make sure you check out her blog
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