Monday, May 7, 2012

Inside Info: House Beautiful's 101 Designer Secrets May 2012 Issue-

You won't go to "Club Fed" for reading the House Beautiful  May 2012 round-up of 101 Designer Secrets, by Lisa Cregan. Inside information is what Dovecote Decor's clients are looking for, and I selected some interesting solutions for our demographic--younger families that educate themselves through design media and know how to search for product and ideas online. Here are the Cliff Notes directed towards our clientele with some super stylish design concepts, on a budget.

image and instructions via Lansdowne Life
Marshall Watson said: "To give rooms architectural detail when they don't have any, paint a 1/2" to 2"lining stripe around the ceiling and up the walls in the corners. It's a rich touch, a way to get a lot of look with just paint." This conveys brilliant style and detail on a dime. Paint and mirrors are a budget friendly way to add interest, architectural detail and light.

Barry Dixon recommends: "Slather a reflective, glossy glaze on any lower ceiling to create the illusion of height. Conversely, if a ceiling seems too high in a space us a matte-finish paint, preferably in a cola or darker tone, or cover the ceiling with raffia or a paper." Often times a high gloss paint shows imperfections in the ceiling or plaster. The ceiling above from the Kipps Bay Designer Showhouse in 2008 uses a vinyl stretchy product called Extenzo.

I love this look, and James Dolenc's simple solution to a common quandary will send you running to the nearest hardware store: "3M Command Strips are fantastic to use when hanging art over mirrors, millwork panels or vintage wallcovering."

I have always lived in bright colorful spaces, so I agree wholeheartedly with Richard Keith Langham's dictum: "I get bored without color in a room. Interesting, strong, clear colors are easier to live with in the long run than pale colors. People always think it's the opposite, but in actuality soft colors get boring much quicker." Again a big mirror brightens and expands the room and makes the sofa look like it is floating in front of another space. 

I love my living room fabric so much, this photograph became my logo. Orange is my favorite color and it wanders throughout my house, so I loved Stan Topol's quote about how to use color to create flow in a house: "....I recently did an orange foyer. I chose a particular shade of orange because my client has brown hair, and brunettes look great in orange. Then I took that exact same orange--not just any orange, that exact shade--and ran it through the house. It keeps popping up in different ways. A color has got to move--it can't look like it's landed." 

Alexandra Angle suggests: "If a great art collection isn't in your budget, hang a framed cutting of a beautiful fabric or wall paper." 
via better decorating bible blog
Framed panels of vintage papers are less expensive than doing a whole room, and adds major bang for the buck. I enjoyed the video with designers Alexa Hampton, Miles Redd, Jeffrey Bilhuber, Mary McDonald, Nick Olsen and Lindsey Coral Harper. Click HERE for the link

More Later! 
Liz Morten

Visit Our Online Store or call us for items you liked at market. 


  1. Great post Liz...I love these simple design tips that designers have learned through their considerable experience. Many times we see things in magazines that we like and have a hard time replicating them at home. It's these "tricks of the trade" that bring the look full circle.

  2. Oh, Liz, this is such a gorgeous post. Pinning on this one for sure.
    I LOVE the mantle idea! Command Strips here i come. And you added a room by one of my longtime design crushes, Richard Keith Langham!
    I am in Heaven here. Thank yo for sharing.
    Happy Monday.

  3. Liz all of these designer tips are excellent, very practical for so much punch!


    Art by Karena

  4. I just loved that feature in this issue. Thanks for backing them up with gorgeous images, too!

  5. Great design tips and examples!! 3M Command Strips are the best friend of every mother with children at boarding school or college!!

  6. Wonderful post. And Barry is such a smart and friendly person.

  7. Love that bedroom with the high gloss ceiling which adds such polish!
    Great tips~ from great images~

  8. I love the living room it's just like a first class condo unit.

  9. I Am going to try this.Awesome!! Love the creativity!

    3m command & Dip Sets

  10. nice article, using great equipment to renovate a house will fasten your work, besides it will produce you with smooth result!


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