Posts Tagged ‘Design’


“Like so much else in life, luxury is relative. When it comes to interior design, the concept is often invoked, but its meaning can take many forms.” These words for ELLEDECOR Magazine’s “Luxury Survey” have made us reflect on what luxury means to us. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner there is no better time to delve into the concept of luxury.

Probably most homeowners would agree with ELLEDECOR’s findings that 68% of respondents said “quality beats everything else in determining what constitutes true luxury.” However, that begs the question: What is quality?

Is quality using high-end materials? Great craftsmanship? Is it exclusivity or brand recognition? Obviously these things play a role in quality but for quality to truly lend itself to luxury we argue there is an additional element. True luxury is a feeling. It is personal and should make you feel special! So, luxurious touches might be a certain fabric that transforms when upholstered onto your great-grandmothers chair or turns a plain window into something extraordinary with window treatments. It might be the addition of badly needed accessories or a lush rug that defines your space and pulls a room together. When these things make you feel something special we have taken quality and turned it into luxury!

Call us when you are ready for a touch of luxury in your life!

The Look: Summer Chic

We have another article in Your Home Magazine! This link takes you to the online version of the magazine where you can peruse at your leisure. For the July issue we were asked to talk about summer style. Here in southwest Florida we embrace “summer chic” year round. Read the article below to find out how to pull this style together and prevent an overly “beachy” look. We aim to give our clients a cohesive look rather than matchy-matchy. If you need help with a summer chic look in your home give us a call!

Get the Look

Mid-Century Modern

Hi, all! It has been quite busy around the studio but we are starting the year off strong! This month’s issue of Your Home magazine featured our article on Mid-century modern style. This link takes you to the online version of the magazine where you can peruse at your leisure. Our next article will be featured in March and will cover Asian influences on style. As always, our aim is to share industry trends and give you ways to take your home from “now” to “wow”! Give us a call if you need help with the “wow” factor!


mid-century mod

Trend Spotter: The Garden Stool

Stool - styled  What’s not to love about the garden stool? Practical and eye catching at the same time, this little piece is a hot item! It comes in every color imaginable and so, so many styles. Garden stools are an extremely affordable way to add a bit of whimsy, that pop of color, a bit of charm…really, just about any style you are aiming for can be found in a garden stool! Here are some that we love (notice our obsession with metallics lives on)!

    metalic garden stool stool - Blue Stool - yellow Stool - Melon Stool - Gold Stool- Metallic

Are you looking for just the right garden stool and needing help to pull together a style that works for you? Give us a call!

Holiday Hospitality: Mood Lighting

Life is a whirl-wind right now and our little office is so busy! We had good intentions with this series of hospitality helps but the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas is rapidly disappearing. Sometimes even among the buzz of holidays and crowds a small change, a flick of the switch even, can make all of the difference. Today we want to talk lighting.

Planning a party involves so many things; the menu, the guest list, the right mix of music, in all of the bustle don’t forget to make a plan for your lighting! Lighting can make the biggest difference at your party and there are a few things to think through. When you stop and consider your lighting, think through how you want people to feel as well as how your party will function. Different types of lighting have different purposes and should be considered in your overall lighting plan. You have indirect/overhead lighting (think chandeliers and ceiling lights), task lighting (this would be pendant lighting over counters and bar areas) and accent lighting (decorative lamps and wall sconces) to work with. Having your lights on dimmers can be quite helpful but if that is not the case you can still play with what you have to find the right mix for your shin-dig.

Below are some fun and festive lighting fixtures that show examples of each type of lighting.

Overhead Indirect Lighting:

indirect 3indirect 2


chandelier 3





























Task Lighting:

pendant 3pendant 2pendant

















Accent Lighting:

accent lamp 2accent lamp 1Wall sconce 2
































As always, if you are ready for a fresh look and need a hand, give us a call!

Ready for the Holidays: The Bar Cart

Tis the season for all things holiday hosting related! Whether you play host to family or friends (not that these groups are mutually exclusive), in-town or out of town guests, a house full of kids or an evening full of cocktails, hospitality is the name of the game. For the next few weeks we will provide you with helpful hostess tips so you can pull off the perfect party and maintain your sanity. To start off we present the bar cart!

The bar cart is making a come back! It is a great way to gather drinks in one area and (literally) cart them to an area where your guests can help themselves. Keeping it well stocked ensures a carefree party so that you can concentrate on other things, like you guests! With the variety of carts available, there is certainly one out there to fit your style and party needs. Between parties the cart can stay stocked for the random holiday cocktail visit or decorated with family photos and cozy memorabilia. Here are some of our favs!


bar cart

 Butler Bar Cart 1bar cart - gold bar cart - sea foam green

Do you need help finding just the right bar cart? Give us a call!

Trendspotter: Industrial Chic

The Industrial look is making a come back and is ready to  revolutionize your home. Now, if you are having visions of your warm and inviting space turning cold and sterile – never fear! This Industrial Revolution has been given a bit of chic style that has transformed from cold and impersonal to clean and sleek and full of personality.

Start incorporating this look into your own home by adding things like seating, accessories, coffee tables, side tables/storage, and of course, lighting!










mini light

stool 2table




















coffee table 2coffee table 1










light fixture rusty clock light light fix








Mesh light fixture




















































Do you need help finding industrial looking items to add to your chic look? Give us a call!

A blast of color!

Color can transform a space from “Eh” to “Wow”! We have been pinning lots of fun color schemes lately. Here are some color blasts that we are crushing on.

Amazing how funky, bold wallpaper transforms the classic kitchen to something unique!


Painting the back of these bookshelves blue distinguishes the accessories and adds so much to this office.

Grouping like colored things also adds some interest to a space. (Fun note: This is book wallpaper)

This traditional looking navy blue is lightened up with white stripes (or is the crisp white toned down by the navy?)















Follow us on Pinterest to see what else we love. Whether your color style is bold or subdued, if you need help with color in your home call us for a free consultation.



Choosing an Interior Designer

You know your house needs some fresh eyes to take a look — some new ideas, cohesive designs, and a unique perspective. Giving your home what it needs might mean choosing an interior designer. What are some of the things that an interior designer does?

  • An interior designer provides comprehensive design advice for your home. An interior designer provides advice on placement of existing furniture and pieces. Additionally, he or she will offer you a better understanding of your own style, taste, and some suggestions for improving the look of your home.
  • An interior designer provides a plan. He or she will come up with a plan for your home that includes purchase of pieces and work that needs to be done (such as wallpapering or painting).
  • An interior designer executes the plan. He or she will purchase materials and furniture and oversee the work as it’s being done.

Choosing an Interior Designer

Yes, interior designers do all of these things. But, how does one choose an interior designer? What makes an interior designer great to work with? Here are just a few of the things I believe makes a great interior designer — this is how I operate my business; these are my values.

  • Choose an interior designer who listens. A great designer will listen to what YOU want and complete a plan that reflects your values, style, and taste. What do you envision? Your designer should be able to know and understand who you are and what you see for your home.
  • Choose an interior designer who will commit to staying within budget. Your designer should be ready, willing, and able to remain comfortably within your budget. If an unplanned expense arises, she will inform you immediately and come up with creative solutions to get back on track.
  • Choose an interior designer who will happily provide a long list of former clients who will serve as references. Any designer who has been in business will have lots of references happy to speak with prospective clients.
  • Choose an interior designer willing to do the leg work. No matter what  your budget, your interior designer should be willing to go the distance for you — finding the perfect piece to go in your home, following through with installation, and completing the work that needs to be done in the way that you have requested.

These are just a few of the things that make an interior designer great! Figures out what you love, and communicate it to your designer. Make sure she listens and executes the plan in a way that meets your needs and stays within budget. As always, feel free to contact me for a free consultation! I’d love to help you create your dream home!

Pretty alone does not cut it – Design needs to work for my clients!!

Muffy Gill Funky Flamingo Studio Smiling

Muffy Gill is all smiles in her newly-designed Funky Flamingo Studio.

Steve Jobs, the brilliant businessman, designer and inventor who passed in 2011 said, “Design is a funny word.   Some people think design means how it looks.   But of course, if you dig deeper, it’s really how it works.”   (Wired magazine, Feb., 1996.)

Claudia Leah of Decorating Den in Naples likes that quote because it sums up her design philosophy.   She truly listens to her clients and works with them to create spaces that are both beautiful and functional.

“Job’s design idea came after going to a kitchen appliance store.   He was drawn to brands that had a very clean, stainless steel look,” says Claudia.  “He liked that look and started introducing it into his own designs.   He switched to black, white and silver.  His laptops kept getting thinner and thinner.   They kept getting sleeker and more functional.

“That same theory can be applied to the interior design field.  Good design is not just about being pretty.    Rooms must also allow for the traffic pattern and usage.  For instance, a couch in the middle of the room might look good in a magazine, but if there’s no place to plug in a lamp to read it’s not functional,” Claudia explains.

Claudia recently helped a local artist, Muffy Clark Gill, redesign her Funky Flamingo Studio, where she creates beautiful batik art.  This is a good example where function outweighed beauty.

Working with a limited budget Claudia created a workspace and storage area that fit Muffy’s needs as a busy artist.   There are cupboards, shelves and storage bins to hold all Muffy’s artist’s supplies and large uncluttered work areas where she can work more relaxed.

“I needed space to store all my stuff,” says Muffy.  “Claudia came up with a perfect arrangement that has increased its utility and made me very happy.   It’s now the studio of my dreams.”

Claudia is very straightforward with her clients because she knows what works and what doesn’t work.   Tactfully she points out the pitfalls of their own decorating ideas if they’re not practical for the space.

“When the project is completed I want my client to say, “I’m so glad I followed your advice.   My space looks beautiful and it’s completely functional too.”

Claudia (left) and Muffy (right) show off the new and improved studio.

Funky Flamingo Studio before makeover.

Decorating Den

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Claudia Leah, IDS
Decorating Den Interiors
6062 Taylor Road, Unit 501
Naples, FL 34109


Remodeling and Home Design