January 30, 2009

Mood Board - Living Room

Our client has some great existing furniture in the Living Room, so we already had a charcoal sectional sofa and a Le Corbusier lounge chair to work with. We're adding modern touches to create a sophisticated space for adult entertaining in this family home.

Mood Board - Master Bathroom

The existing tile in the Master Bath is a pale pink, so we're adding drama with a black and white color scheme.

Mood Board - Kitchen

We're working with an all-white kitchen with dark red tile countertops. The idea here is to add some brightness and color, freshening the red with touches of lime green and orange. But we've also added soft red to tie in with the existing color scheme.

January 28, 2009

Mood Board - Master Bedroom

In the Master Bedroom, we're working with a large suite, including a fireplace. Our client already has some large, dark pieces of furniture, so we wanted to freshen the room with lighter, more colorful pieces, while keeping true to the room's traditional bones. We also needed to transition to some pink tile in the Master Bathroom, so we added touches of soft red.

Mood Board - Family Room

For the Family Room in Pomegranate's home staging project, we're working with our client's existing beige sectional sofa. But most everything else will be purchased (or rented, if we can find similar products).

Mood Board - Girl's Bedroom

For this Bedroom, our client has an existing West Elm Overlapping Squares headboard (yum!), so this room almost designed itself around that great feature.

Home Staging Project - Inspiration Room

Here's the Inspiration Room provided by our client to help guide us through the home staging project.

January 19, 2009

Downtown Los Angeles Weekend I

We stayed at the Los Angeles Biltmore Hotel on Saturday night and spent the weekend exploring downtown. I'm so inspired by the architecture (it's one of the few places in L.A. where you can see old buildings). Went to Clifton's Cafeteria for breakfast and saw so many Art Deco structures with gorgeous tile detail like The Eastern Columbia Building. The Biltmore herself is a grand old lady of a hotel and served as our gracious hostess for the getaway.

Downtown Los Angeles Weekend II

January 13, 2009

Home Office Makeover - Mood Board #2

This is the second Mood Board for our Home Office Redesign project. Soon we'll show how, with a few simple ideas, you can take an office space from drab to fab.

January 09, 2009

Home Office Makeover - Mood Board #1

We're making over a home office to bring it from chaos and clutter to blissfully organized. We'll show you how in a few easy steps. Here is the first of two Mood Boards created for the office to help us plan the redesign.

January 07, 2009

Fabulous Budget Wedding for 100 Guests for $10,000 - Tip #1 - Feature a No-Host Bar

Don't subsidize the entire alcohol and beverage bill. This one tip will save you loads of money. Opt for complimentary champagne and selections of both red and white wine (and soda, iced tea and water) with dinner, but ask your guests to pay for their own bar bills if they want additional beverages. Our guests had refills of champagne and wine poured at the table, and if anyone wanted to, they could purchase additional beverages at the bar. Click on earlier posts and keep reading for all 10 Budget Wedding Tips.

Tip #2 - Negotiate Everything

Negotiate everything! – Wedding vendors of all types will try to get every last dollar out of you. Don't be afraid to tell them it doesn't fit your budget and they'll have to bring the price down. You can negotiate every detail of your wedding, from cake to linens to DJs to flowers. All you have to do is ask. We got $500 knocked off the top of one vendor's price within seconds simply by asking for it!

Tip #3 - Get an Off-the-Rack Dress

Go off the rack for your dress – No big poufy dress for me. I'd rather not look like a stuffed cabbage or the top of a S'More. My dress cost less than $200 at a boutique and it was slim, elegant, silhouette conscious and perfect for a summer wedding in L.A. Think "red carpet glamour" instead of "old lace."

Tip #4 - Book Your Photographer Last Minute

Book your photographer at the last minute (and book for only three hours) – Just as there can be travel deals for those who wait to book a trip until just before they go, so, too, can there be wedding photographer discounts. We're talking deep discounts here. We got absolutely first-rate, creative photography (two photographers for three hours for – are you sitting down? -– $450! Yes, that's right. We got that deal because we booked late and because we only booked her for three hours to cover the greatest amount of wedding activity.

Tip #5 - Have Your Wedding on a Sunday

Have your wedding on a Sunday, not Saturday – This is now common knowledge among those planning weddings, and it's so true. Our location offered a significantly better deal for Sunday.

Tip #6 - Order a "Retro" Wedding Cake

Think "retro" for your wedding cake – By having our cake made at a local Italian bakery, we got to have the three-tiered "vintage-style" wedding cake of our dreams deliciously hand-crafted for only $200! By choosing this option, you have to "break the mold" and not have a fondant-draped cake (as is the current vogue), but since my husband is Italian-American, we went for the classic, rum custard Italian wedding cake and it tasted – and looked – great!

Tip #7 - Make Your Own Invitations and Programs

Design your own invitations and ceremony programs -– OK, I'm a graphic designer, so this was a no brainer. Saved a ton of money, though. For those creatively challenged, you can buy invitation kits for do-it-yourself invites for about $35 at art supply stores.

Tip #8 - Make Your Own Favors

Make your own favors – As a wedding gift, my friend made the custom-designed chocolate filled hand-stamped favors herself. I came over and helped her assemble them so we got some great female bonding time, too!

Tip #9 - Find a Package Deal

Go with a package deal – We saved a lot of money by shopping the “wedding packages.” Just like in travel, where you always get a bargain when you bundle your air and hotel, you can have a “one-stop” wedding by booking your ceremony and reception at the same place. Your guests will love you for making their lives easier (only one place they have to park!), and you’ll find the price is right. Packages also usually include the services of an on-site wedding coordinator.

Tip #10 - Order Flowers from an Upscale Supermarket

Shop at an upscale supermarket in-store florist for your flowers – (Yes, the supermarket) for your wedding flowers. Many people don't know that some of the more upscale markets like Pavilions offer the same flowers (all florists get them from the same flower market, except the expensive exotics), the same service and attention to detail of any florist we've seen -- but at a fraction of the cost! They did everything for us, and all we had to do was have someone pick them up from the store. (Total cost for flowers, bouquets, centerpieces, boutonierres, etc: $350!)