Over the past 3 years the number of motorized window treatment options has exploded as the sizes, fabrics, remote control flexibility, and system reliability have increased. Where they used to be an infrequent choice of my clients, more and more they represent an option that most people consider - and many purchase. So I thought that I would cover the reasons that you might want to look into motorized window treatments for your next project.
One design question that many of my clients face is how they should approach decorating French and sliding doors. This can be especially vexing since doors are the entry to our living spaces and as such set the initial tone for a room's entire design.
Wallpaper is very popular right now, especially in small areas: entry ways, offices, bathrooms, and feature walls. Because of the increased popularity of wallcoverings I’m pleased to announce that I’ve added 5 new vendors to my original five vendors (denoted by*) so that I’m now sourcing wallcoverings from all of the following companies:
Call me to discuss the possibilities! You might be surprised at how some new wallpaper can really freshen up your home in lieu of just paint.
These days there are all sorts of avenues to look at to evaluate different interior design options; from the traditional furniture store showroom (like Ethan Allen and Jordan’s), to designer showrooms (like the Boston Design Center), to virtual reality software (see my previous blog titled - Have You Seen “Virtual Home Staging"?) and even some useful augmented reality (AR) applications are slowly making headway in the interior design space.
But there’s also another traditional design avenue that’s out there but sometimes overlooked; designing with miniatures – like architects have done for years.
One great source of interesting miniatures that will undoubtedly give you some design inspiration is the line of products from Rolife (sometimes found as Robotime who is the manufacturer for both Rolife miniature houses and ROKR 3D wooden puzzles). Now you’re probably not going to actually copy any of these decorating schemes – but they will give you some great ideas about colors, patterns, accents, accessories and knick knacks. (click on any photo to start the slideshow):
Additionally, if you're a person that likes crafting and making unique items, then you might even want to purchase some of the Rolife miniature rooms and shops to build. They’re very challenging and a great way to spend some quality crafting time.
For some reason many people have a hard time selecting the colors for their home. Based on my experience, this is because there are so many paint color options available and the decision to select a color lays the critical foundation for the rest of the design decisions. So it’s a big deal.
To help my clients address this, one of CSID’s main offerings is “Color Consultation”, where I use my years of design experience, the patented "Confident Color System", and computer renderings to create, and let you visualize, a harmonious color story especially for you - before actually putting any paint on your walls.
The patented Confident Color System is based on the science of the color wheel and on an in-depth in-person color interview with you. Our color selection process is totally about YOU, what you love, what feeling you want to evoke in a room, and what colors and items you already own and wish to feature.
After our Color Consultation has been completed I give you all the color information and you are then free to use either a painter of your choice or one of my vetted partners. It’s that simple.
So if you’re overwhelmed by all the color options – give me a call and I’ll help you make color selections that will delight you.
Like most websites, ever since we launched our Center Stage Interior Designs (CSID) website way back in 2001 we’ve tracked the statistics to see who our readers are, where they’re located and what they read. Recently we’ve had a few people ask who reads our site – so we thought that we would share some of our statistics from 2020 with all of you.
In 2020 we had readers from 58 different Countries around the world - with 89% or our readers coming from the United States and with the largest concentrations outside the US being in the following 10 Countries:
In the United States we have readers from all 50 States - with the largest concentrations being in the following 10 States:
Since our interior design services are located in Sudbury Massachusetts, our readers in the Boston metro area are of acute interest to us. These readers constitute 17% of all our readers – but actually account for 37% or our website’s page views – looking at more pages and staying on the pages longer. They are primarily located in Sudbury, Boston, Concord, Acton, Concordia, Maynard, Wellesley, Dedham, Newton and Waltham; which is great for us since all of these towns are close enough for us to actually be able to visit to help convert these readers into happy clients.
The 25 pages and blog posts that have people read the most over the past year are:
The majority of our users look at our site between the hours of 9:00 AM and 12:00 AM (midnight).
Most of our readers find us either by searching on Google (69%) or by previously having been to our website and coming directly to us (14%). A much smaller percentage (9%) find our website through Pinterest photos that our readers post in their online accounts.
The majority of our users view our website from their desktop computer (49%) or their mobile device (46%) using either Safari (44%) or Chrome (39%) browsers.
Hopefully this data shows you that you’re in good company as you view our Interior Design portfolio photos, or read through our Interior Decorating blog posts. Our wish is that they give you some information that will inspire your design vision and interior decorating activities. Wherever you’re from, we’re glad that you stopped by to look over our CSID website!
If you're located in the Boston Metro area - give us a call!
For the last half of 2020 my workroom has been buzzing with lots of activity since so many people have turned their focus to updating their homes this year. I'm very lucky to have so many new and repeat clients that want to work with me to transform their decorating visions into finished rooms. Here are some photos from a few of the projects that I have recently completed.
While you’re looking at the photos if you see anything that strikes your fancy, and you want to start a new project of your own, give me a call. I would love to work with you too! (click on any photo to start the slideshow):
So it’s that time of year again – time for “Small Business Saturday” - a day that’s been dedicated to supporting small businesses across the country since its inception in 2010.
But this year things are a little different given the stress that’s been put on small businesses during 2020 due to all the restrictions levied to combat Covid-19. Today supporting small business is more important than ever since many of them are teetering on the brink of failure.
Center Stage Interior Designs started in Sudbury 19 years ago, and during those years we've developed wonderful relationships with the other local business owners in the Interior Design and Home Décor industry; relationships that benefit all my clients since it allows them to use CSID as a “one stop shop” for all their design needs.
Some of my favorite Sudbury small businesses are:
In addition to my favorites, here in Sudbury there are lots of other great options to “Shop Small” at our local businesses. The best way to locate them is to look at the Sudbury Chamber of Commerce’s list of members.
So just remember, today, and every day, before you look elsewhere - you should really Shop Sudbury – especially if you want these businesses to be there in the future!
And, of course, if you need any decorating help give me a call at 978-440-7264 so that we can make your home cozy, festive and fun for the Winter ahead.
These days are a little crazy for all of us - especially since most of us are spending more time working from home while simultaneously juggling having our kids learning at home. What an adventure!
Since this is our reality I thought that I would share a few tips on how you can set up your home environment to maximize your work/learning efficiency while minimizing the stress that comes from having so many competing priorities in your house.
Lately I've been busy shopping for new furniture for several of my clients. Consequently I have been to many of the furniture showrooms and specialty stores in the Boston area, and during my travels I've run across several clever furniture ideas that I thought I would share.
1. Furniture that fits our digital world and our need for electrical power. Does the following scenario sound familiar? You haven’t updated your family room furniture in years, and there’s no way to power your electronic devices when sitting on the sofa or relaxing in your chair, short of unsightly extension cords.
If this strikes a nerve, you might want to take a look at some new low-cost end tables, like the one shown below that has a handy (and hidden) electrical port at the back. I found this end table at LazyBoy furniture when I was searching for a “power” footrest sofa for some elderly clients. This is a simple solution for your family room to keep everyone happy and well-charged. If you look around these clever “powered” tables are everywhere these days.
2. Nesting Coffee Tables. Although this isn’t a new concept, there are now many options for space-efficient and versatile coffee tables, like the round nested tables shown below, on the market. Some even come with marble or stone tops that add lots of versatility - the children can play and do writing projects, and your friends can safely set down a cup of coffee or drink. Yes, after Covid, we will eventually have guests in our homes again! Plus, introducing a stone top provides interest and dimension to your family room in addition to beautiful functionality.
3. Expandable Bench. I came across this clever bench at my local Jordan’s Furniture in Natick, MA, and thought that the idea was just ingenious. They show it at the base of a bed, but I can also envision it in a mudroom or entryway, neatly compacted down like in the last photo. The wood top would be perfect for you and your children to take off winter boots after playing in the snow. Then, when you have company and need to expand your dining room seating to accommodate more people, you can expand this bench to seat at 3 or 4 people. And look at the price Jordan’s is charging, amazingly low for such a versatile bench.
4. Space-saving console table with stools for back of the sofa. A year ago I blogged about the clever “Gathering Island” concept: “Furniture for Gathering in the Family Room”. Below is a photo of a similar concept, that I recently found at Jordan’s, where a flip top panel at the front is a terrific additional feature. You can put this piece behind a sofa that might be floating in the room, and then be able to work on your laptop while sitting higher than your family members who have scored the comfy sofa seats. Convertible furniture is really nothing new, of course, and college students and city-dwellers face this kind of challenge all the time when trying to determine how to live in an ultra-small space. For homeowners, however, we seldom think or look for adding space saving ideas to enhance our existing spaces. Additionally, if we are lucky enough to live in a moderate or large size house, we might not even contemplate googling “space-saving” furniture. (But then that’s what you hire me for - helping you envision the possibilities.)
5. Having it all in a coffee table. Upholstered ottomans in front of a sofa are very popular nowadays. Really, who doesn’t want to put their feet up at the end of a day? But relying on a tray set upon the coffee table to hold drinks and snacks seems like an unstable proposition for everyday use. Here are two coffee tables which combine the ottoman idea with the hard-surface idea. The first is from LazyBoy, with a pull-out table top, and I spotted the second, with a hard shelf, at Boston Interiors.
6. Another versatile coffee table. By now, you can tell I’ve been shopping for coffee tables, right? Here’s a coffee table I found at LazyBoy which beautifully combines the need for drawer storage of TV remotes and such, but still has a glass top for functionality and durability. It doesn’t dominate, but is a happy “supporting player” in a family room.
7. Storage ottoman that converts to a chair. This is a clever piece that I thought would be perfect in a family room or basement play room; found at Jordan’s. I can envision storing throws (or Legos and action figures or dolls) in the piece which would be easy to move around a basement.
I hope that seeing some of these clever furniture ideas energizes you to examine your own spaces, particularly your family room. Let’s face it – we are all spending lots of time at home as we get through the Covid morass, and this is the time to at least identify where you could be more comfortable and productive in your home.
You might not know it, but the furniture industry is booming during Covid - all the manufacturers are working, and interior designers (such as myself) are happy to help you make your home more comfortable and aesthetically pleasing while we ride this all out.
So call me, and let’s do a virtual walk through of your home, or a socially-distanced in-person visit.
Barbara Phillips, interior designer and owner of Center Stage Interior Designs, has delivered impeccable window treatments and design services to both residential and commercial clients in Massachusetts since 2001.