1.05.2015

A Phased Decorating Approach

Sometimes, it makes more sense financially to decorate in stages. At my sister, Teresa's house, we have been making improvements over time.  Here, you can see the new Darlana Lanterns that were just installed over the island.

There were two recessed lights here that were slightly off center. 

 Rather than patching and painting the whole ceiling, we purchased these inexpensive ceiling medallions to cover where the junction boxes were moved.

Remember where we started? NO one liked me taking this photo.

And here we are now... after painting the cabinets, adding hood trim and hardware (more about that here). The chairs were from West Elm and the pedestal table was from Pottery Barn.  I like the black accents with the new lighter feel.
I remember reading another blogger's account of how she charges her sister for her decorating advice.  I would never do that. Families help one another.  Teresa gives me free business guidance all the time.

When I am at her house (like I was for a week over Christmas), I play around with her furnishings to freshen things up. 
 Putting things on trays, gives an organized look.

Notice the round light bulbs for a fun look.  There's no glass in these lanterns...which is good since glass is hard to keep clean in kitchens.  I know as I put these Vaughan Lanterns over our island two kitchens ago...and I was always climbing up to clean the murky glass.   
But I like the look, just not where there is steam and grease.  
It kills me when I see fancy crystal chandeliers in kitchens as I KNOW the owners must not cook much.


Here is Teresa's down stairs family room.

In the dining room, we recovered our mother's antique settee in linen and leather and now it's used as a banquette.

Next year, we are going to be making some minor updates to her living room next.  And probably add a window treatment over the sink...

But for now, Teresa, just enjoy your new lantern phase!

For many of my clients, we have a "phased decorating approach"...usually it's room by room.   Its helpful financially, sets goals and avoids mistakes.  Speaking of which, I'm working on a common decorating mistakes post.

Happy 2015 to everyone!!!

37 comments:

  1. I love everything! It is classic but not boring. Your mom's settee is perfect for the space and so personal. I put an antique garden bench in our dining room and it adds a touch of whimsy. Happy New Year!

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  2. I agree. Most of us do not live in the world of complete make overs. We need to do things in stages. Your sister's kitchen is a wonderful example. It looks great and will evolve. I also love the round bulbs! Had them in a chandelier a few houses ago!

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  3. This really is sage advise and having it come from an experienced designer like you brings even more merit to the idea. My husband and I are doing quite a bit of work in our family/play room. It has many outdated features, and we can't really afford to do an entire overhaul all at once. Instead, we are tackling it in phases and doing as much as we can ourselves. As we finish each phase, it gives us the opportunity to take a step back and reassess the next phase. Yes, it's taking longer than we'd like, but we are happy with the results thus far and by doing things in phases, it helps you save up for the things you can't do on your own.

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  4. I love what you did with your sister's kitchen! It looks warm, welcoming and updated! Your sister is very lucky to have you! ;)

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  5. stunning make over , even the granite counters look a different colour against the new cabinet colours - so elegant and chic !

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  6. Gosh, what a lucky sister you have!!! I've learned so much from you over the past year, but now that we're starting a kitchen remodel and all the decisions are crashing in, my knees feel like they're going to buckle. I've purchased my countertop material and cabinets will be ordered this week. Everything is so expensive! I'm kicking around the idea of getting a little guidance. It's not in the budget, but I would be very interested if you could email me and we could discuss how you work and how you charge. I look forward to hearing from you.

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    1. Hi Polly, you can email at madamepickett@gmail.com and we can come up with a plan that is cost effective for you. Thanks so much!

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  7. Mary Ann, the transformation is amazing! I love the gray island and the lanterns most of all, but it looks so fabulous all together...

    Happy Monday and ciao!

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  8. Love the lanterns and the kitchen is fabulous in white.

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  9. Mary Ann you always know how how to make something, fresh and updated yet simple and clean.... so talented!! xo

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  10. once again...perfection. I just giggled about the lanterns...remember how I told you that's what I wanted in my reno? as soon as you said i'd be cleaning them all the time I was like nancy, you have ocd with cleaning, listen to what she's telling you. still in love with the hicks pendants :) and the rest of the kitchen you helped us with. its my favorite room in our home :)

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  11. It does not even look like the same kitchen! Well done....I know she is thrilled. And charging for family? Nope:)

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  12. Hi Mary Ann, Your sisters house just keeps getting better and better! I love seeing the progress made overtime and I know she loves it when you come to visit! I was wondering if you needed another sister? Your decorating talents are endless and every room you touch is exactly perfect! xoxo Gail

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  13. A beautiful transformation! I love the cool color palette in your sisters kitchen - I bet she is so happy with what you've accomplished!!
    xo. Leslie
    Segreto Finishes

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  14. Mary Ann,
    I'm a big fan of phased decorating since it gives me time to think through my decisions. When I've tried to do it all at once I've made careless errors in judgement. Your sister's kitchen looks great.
    xo,
    karen

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  15. Bravo! Great kitchen update! Lucky sister!
    Cheers,
    Barbara

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  16. Wow! I had to go back and forth from the "before" to the "after" several times to take in all of the great changes! Totally agree with you about the free decorating advice for family - my sister and I have so much fun shopping and decorating her house together and it's refreshing to be able to give opinions without any filter :)

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  17. Wow! Gorgeous transformation! It's so hard to remember to take before pictures, but so glad you did. It's just beautiful!

    Pam

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  18. Oh so true. I'm doing my entire home in phases. So far phase one is working well. A little recovery time $, and phase two will start. i can't believe the difference some fresh paint makes, and your attention detail is key. I'm looking forward to your next post and seeing if I'm making any of the common mistakes.
    Sharon

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  19. Wow -- so pretty! Your sister is lucky to have you! We try to work on one room a year on our charmer 1924 built house, but some years repairs take precedence.

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  20. Looks beautiful...she is lucky to have your touch and expertise but sounds like you are lucky too to have her business acumen at your disposal.....I think doing things in phases is always a great idea because that way you do not make as many hasty decisions (which sometimes are mistakes)!

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  21. Maryann,
    Would you share If the cabinets were brushed or sprayed. Also, what kind of paint was used? Can I be your sister!!

    Karen

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    1. Karen, the doors were taken off and sprayed for an even finish. Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter in Semi-gloss. Good luck!

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  22. BRAVO!!!! what great idea for the lanterns!!!!!!

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  23. Wow! Great black&white minimalistic home design. Well done!
    Eva, SofaClean

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  24. So pretty! Love that kitchen! Happy 2015!

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  25. Nice job! The lanterns are fab, as is the whole scheme. Love the settee.

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  26. I love it! There seem to be more space and the lanterns are a really good touch :) Good work:)
    Sam

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  27. Not only are you a fantastic sister, you are the perfect houseguest. I love how this has and continues to evolve. You can stay with me, anytime.

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  28. Yes to what Linda said above and a big YES to the lanterns in the kitchen messeroo. I nixed lanterns in my work space, but added two of these http://www.1800lighting.com/Currey-and-Company/Corsica/item.cfm?itemsku=9229 over my baking center aka dine in portion of my kitchen out of the grease trap area. The seeded glass hides the flour dusting it might get, the antique mirror adds some glam. Those lanterns are lovely to look at but one must not cook...or must not cook while the maid is daily cleaning them!

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  29. Mary Ann, The lanterns are wonderful and I love her entire kitchen. Beautiful transformation.
    Hugs,
    Sherry

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  30. It really looks like a different kitchen! Gorgeous transformation and I love the lanterns. I have a similar one with no glass in my office and I love that it's easy to clean. Glass lanterns in the kitchen seem like two much work for me! Your sister is very lucky to have you!
    Shelley

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  31. Your sisters kitchen looks great..love the lanterns....It does make sense to do a little at a time...but its so much fun when you can do it all at one time!

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  32. this looks so good. can not believe its the same room. Charging your sister???? Seriously? God - I am just dying to know who it was. I don't even charge my friends!!!!!

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