Saturday, October 23, 2010

Tile and Wood Get Married At Home!

Dear Toni,
I read your newspaper articles in the Tri Valley Herald, which I enjoy very much.  Now I need a professional opinion.  The majority of my flooring is walk into the entryway which is 12' long, by 5' wide, and then the floor lengthens out to the left and right, which is the hallway on one side, and a short hallway to the kitchen/dining room on the other side, which is all tile.  The hall bath and laundry room are also tile.  The  living area, 22'X14'. is straight ahead, and is carpeted.  I wanted to remove the carpeting and extend the tile floor.  Of course, the tile is no longer being made.  My question.....should I extend the flooring with a complimentary tile, a completely different tile, or should I put down wood floors, since any tile I put down will not match either?  I have asked all my friends and get a completely different answer from each one.  I appreciate any help you can give me.  Thank you so much for your time.  
Sue Rainey

Hi Sue,
It is  always nice to hear that someone out there is reading me! Your question is "do I continue the tile from the entry, halls, bath and laundry into the living room area"?

Without actually seeing the space it will be hard to really address what would be best for you and your home. But I can take a stab at it here; I am assuming that all the existing Tile you mentioned is of one pattern/color, and unless you absolutely love that tile pattern/color and can find a good match, DON'T put down more of it.

Your living room space is graciously large, 22' x 14', I'd go with real wood because tile and wood always marry well together! Then I'd place a beautiful area rug in the living room under the seating grouping for warmth, sound absorption, and to add a bit of color and texture. In fact, to tie all the spaces together and to add harmony, you can order a "custom sized" area rug for the living room, entry and halls (because these areas are open to one another and can be seen together) all in the same or similar rug pattern. This will unify the spaces together beautifully.  See the picture for an example of tile and wood. They are both natural  green products that lend themselves well to one another.

Hope this helps you in your decision making process. If you need further assistance just give me a call and we can make a time meet so I can actually see the space and give you more options. (you can even invite all those friends to join us) This could save you hundreds of dollars in mistakes by the way.

Thanks again for reading and for asking such a great question.

Toni Berry
at Marie Antoinette Interiors

Sunday, October 17, 2010

When It Comes To Drapery; Don't Throw In the Towel!

While present at an installation of Roman Shade Valances in my client Teresa Smith’s family room, she mentioned that “someday in the future” she’d like to have draperies in her dining room and living room. With shutters on two windows in the dining room, Teresa thought no drapery was necessary. I expressed to Teresa that shuttered windows with drapery can still function and that the draperies would warm the room physically and esthetically. And while there were some draperies in the living room over the French Doors, they seemed out of scale and in the wrong color to enhance and showcase Teresa’s lovely furnishings, in particular a lovely little Harlequin Fainting Couch.

Living Room Before

Living Room After with Drapery
As I absorbed the colors in the art, on the furniture and in the patterned rug, it became clear to me that the color that should be at the windows in the form of draperies was a “Plum Raisin”. I asked Teresa if she had any thing I could take with me in that color so that when she was ready I’d have it in my studio as a reference to pull drapery fabric sample possibilities. She scurried around and said “wait I think I have an old towel in the garage in that color”. She gave me that towel and it sat for months on my work counter waiting for Teresa to call me back.

Suddenly while I was thumbing through fabric books for another client entirely, my eyes fell upon a “Plum Raisin” damask by Robert Allen that would be just perfect for Teresa’s living and dining room drapery. I quickly ordered a fabric sample memo and sent it off to Teresa in the mail with a note…”when you’re ready, this is the fabric!” More months passed and then the phone rang…”I’m ready…let’s do it!”

Dining Room Drapery Over Shutters Adds Softness
When we installed the draperies we were both so pleased. The color and the pattern of the fabric made the rooms come alive! Even the shutters looked better! And to think it really came about because she gave me that towel in just the right color!

As some of you know finding the right fabric takes time and patience. I love it when unexpectedly I find the perfect fabric. And I love it even more when my client trusts me enough to know when a fabric is perfect! So go ahead through me a “towel”, let’s see what I can make of it!

I Love Beautiful Drapery!

Here are some details of custom drapery; 

Large Scale Hardware For Large Room!

Hems That Break Like Men's Tailored Pants!

by Toni Berry of Marie Antoinette Interiors

Monday, October 4, 2010

A Teen’s Room IS Their Home!

Make no mistake; A Teens room IS their home, within your home! And they have some definite opinions as to how to decorate it!

As a teenager my room was decorated in Peace Signs, Peter Max pillows, orange bedspread and drapes and of course my favorite faux leopard skin Beanbag pillow! My mother loved that I took an interest in decorating the bedroom that my sister and I shared. She knew Fashion better than any woman I have ever known and she knew that my generation’s Fashion statement was coming through in my teenage bedroom’s décor. She let me decorate according to the latest Fashion trends and rarely stopped me from expressing myself in that way. And I did the same with my two children. I selected the furniture according to what I could afford, but the décor was all up to them and I believe that is how it should be.
And that is Pottery Barn’s philosophy too! Their marketing department is wise enough to know that teenagers want their own look, not just hand-me-downs from their parents or older siblings. Check out their web site or pick up the PBteen creative catalog filled with fabulous saturated colored walls and fun accessories for ideas. Why look at that, I see a lot Peace Signs and Beanbags as I leaf through the catalog! I guess Fashion repeats itself right?

Here are some design tips on helping (only if they ask) to decorate your teenagers bedroom.

• Start with a theme! Sport, music, favorite place, or passionate topic can be a theme! Use it for a springboard to decorate with your accessories and soft furnishings.

• Select the bedspread! With the theme in mind, choose spreads that will delivery a burst of color and vitality.

• Choose the wall and ceiling paint! Using one, two or three colors from the bedspread paint the walls and the ceiling.

• Pick the wall art! Murals make a huge impact. Large 6’ x 4’ ones give color and can double as a headboard, very cool!

• Add furniture pieces that function as sleeping, storage and work spaces! Bookcases, bed platforms, wall to wall shelving, and component type furniture is the answer to a well organized room.
A teen’s room is an expression of who they are, what they like and where they hang. It’s their home and no mistake about it!

By Toni Berry at Marie Antoinette Interiors
925-862-9064 or