6 Reasons to use Custom Built-ins over Pre-made Manufactured Furniture

Custom built-ins can offer many decorating solutions that prefab furniture cannot, and can add beautiful design features to your home.


  1. More storage space than ready-made;


This home office is in a small home and a small room and the owners needed a lot of storage for samples for the business. We would not have been able to get the amount of storage needed if we went with ready-made furniture. There are file drawers under the window seat that doubles as seating for the room. When the work day is done it can be used as a den for watching TV.


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How to Choose the Best Exterior Paint Colors for Your Home or Business

One of the best ways to add enhancement, resale value, and curb appeal to the exterior of your home is by choosing the right paint colors.

As a licensed Interior Designer, the biggest mistake I see homeowners make when selecting paint colors for their home is that they don’t take into consideration the style of the house, type of roof and the roof color. The money can be well spent if you pick the right colors for your home, or a costly flop if you choose the wrong colors, bringing down your home’s property value as well as your neighbors’.

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12 Interesting Facts About Elsie de Wolfe, the woman Credited with Making Interior Design a Profession



Photo: Elsie de Wolfe

After reading about Elsie de Wolfe life, I amazed the similarities not only in our last name but in our design philosophies. And so much of my own design style was unknowing influenced by Elsie, such as a love for French furniture and Louis XV antiques, leopard prints, trompe l’oeil, slipcovers and painted furniture. I should not have been surprised as Elsie has influenced so many designers since 1907 when she decided to change the dark and gloomy Victorian standards of interior design, opening up a new standard of design that is still in practice today.

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What could be the answer to accessibility problems facing the handicapped, senior and transgender population?

As the debate over transgender bathrooms rages on, what I see is that a bigger problem is being ignored and that maybe both issues affecting a much larger sector of the population could be helped at the same time.

As the mother of a daughter with a traumatic brain injury a disability that had confined her to a wheelchair, getting out and about became a challenge. I needed help with her in the bathroom and if I was with a female aid not so much problem we could use the woman’s bathroom and I was able to bring my helper in with us.

But because of the waiver that she was on the staffing agency said I was not allowed to bring the certified nursing assistants (CNA) with me out into the community to go to her doctor and therapy appointments, stores or restaurants. The only way to go out with her would be to have my husband or a male friend which made it difficult to use the woman’s or men’s restroom. Places like Target that had family/handicap bathrooms were few and far between.

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Communicating with an Interior Designer about your design style, budget and needs for your design project:

Naple Bay Kitchen

Great communication between the client and the designer is important to a successful design project;  it saves both time and money for both the designer and the client. Give as much thought and research to what you want and like as you can, before the first meeting with the designer.

Communicate what you like and want in your project;  spend time collecting photographs, clippings and color chips, and samples that explain your taste and sum up how you would like your home to look and feel. Do you like plaids, floral, stripes or solids, bold bright colors or neutrals? Clean lines or lots of detail? Are there special needs or time restraints? Maybe you not sure what you do like but know what you don’t like, this is all important information to communicate to your designer.

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How Interior Designers Charge for Design Services and Interior Furnishings

 Interior designers use a variety of fee structures and, as with other professions, base their fees on variables such as if they are licensed interior designer or unlicensed, years of experience, education, geographic location, types of expertise, professional reputation and client demand. Most designers charge using one of the following fee structures or a combination to suit a client’s particular needs and type of job:

floorplan with fabric


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Rebounding for Better Health and Healing from Lymphoma

What is the RX for good mental health, lymphatic drainage, aching sore muscles and over all better health? More motion! And what is more fun than rebounding! Especially when your time is very limited and you just don’t have time to go to the gym, the beach for a swim or go for a long walk. When I am on a design deadline or I am writing and putting out a blog post I love to take breaks throughout the day even if it is for just five minutes on my rebounder.

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Model Lindsay  wearing workout outfit made from recycled plastic bottles  by Threads 4 Thought available at Wholefoods Market or go to www.threadsforthought.com  for a retailor near you.

Pacing briskly for 1 minute each hour cuts stiffness and soreness in half, Mini boosts of motion boost the output of pain-soothing hormones and rev blood flow to flush pain-triggering inflammation from tissue.

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Four R’s of Green Design=renew, reuse, recover, and recycle


In the 1980’s when I was working at my first design job out of college I had a lot of clients moving to Florida from the cold winter states to retire. They needed to furnish their winter homes and were looking for a lighter Florida look that was different than what they had lived with in their northern residences.

They wanted to get rid of all the good dark furniture that they had and buy light mica laminate furniture that was becoming popular at the time. One of the problems with that thinking is that the budget that they had to work with would not go very far to furnishing their new place and they would be replacing good quality solid wood furniture with toxic laminate furniture. Also what would happen when all the custom mica laminate furniture was not trendy anymore? It would end up on landfills!


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Disclosure Policy

Dear Readers,

I think it is important for anyone reading this blog to know where I am coming from and why I am writing and sharing my ideas for design and healthy living, and to disclose how I make money or more like don’t make money.

At this time I do not make any money from my blog for endorsements and recommendations and I promise I will let my readers know when or if I ever do. I will promise to disclose freebies if someone where to send me a product to try out, not all bloggers do but they are not me. The http://Federal Trade Commission has rules about paid for content, and so do search engines like Google. It is important for me that you trust what I write about, sometimes it will be factual, backed up by data and sometimes I will be just stating my opinion.

I started this blog to drive readers to my Interior design website www.dewolfeinteriors.com and to showcase my design work and portrait paintings and attract new clients. I have been a designer since 1984 when I graduated from college and landed my first job as a designer working for Burdines department store. I worked as a director of design for Bloomindales department stores before opening my own design business. I worked as an interiors designer until March 18, 2010 when while at a client’s home I received a call that my daughter was in a serious auto accident and was at the hospital.


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Green Design, Chinese Laminate Flooring and Chinese Drywall what is the connection?

Buyers Beware There is a saying “what you don’t know won’t hurt you,” but when it comes to designing and building a healthy home what you don’t know can hurt you and your family. And if you have small children it can have a profound effect on their health and development. Depending on the amount and type of toxins in the home and the amount of exposure, some toxins can lead to anything from asthma, allergies, neurological problems, disabilities, cancer and even death.

Environmental issues are becoming more important to consumers and more people are becoming aware of the term “Green Design”. Some people are aware that the air quality in their home is 3 times more toxic than the air quality outside their home, mostly due to increased advertisements for home air cleaners. But what most people don’t know is what causes the toxic air and how to prevent it, or that in most buildings the air pollution is actually 5 to 10 times more polluted than outside air even in the worst cities. There are air cleaners and environmental companies available to help remove some of the toxins once they are already in the home, but they can be very expensive. It is more cost effective to keep the toxins out of the home, to begin with.

rosedale terr stairs

But How?

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