About a month ago I sent out an email inviting people to have me to redesign the rooms in a day. I got three responses. One person telling me how awesome I did on HGTV star, another asking me if I were willing to go to New Hampshire to do it, and the one lady, who lived within miles of me and wanted me to really change her room in a day. Bingo! a prospect. There are a lot questions to be asked behind this concept… She wanted to know could a room really, really be done in a day? Well, I answered I did it for weeks while I competed on HGTV and enjoyed it! So yes, my new client it can be done in a day.
We set a date to meet and chat more. That is when I grabbed some shots of what I had to work with:
So yes…I do have to admit that I saw the house before the one day makeover began. I had to get over there to see if there’s anything that we need to order ahead of time. And in fact there was. We preordered the FLOR carpet tiles we used, the photography from pixelspin.net, and 3 of the pillows from Etsy. I did not take detailed measurements, (except an overall measure of the room to calculate how many FLOR tiles we needed) I did get a little excited and started a moodboard in Polyvore ahead of time!
BAM! I had a clear vision of exactly what I was going to be doing to her house. The original space lacked color and I knew that is exactly what she needed to bring the space to life. Me wanting to be super sure, super confident, and a little cocky, sent her this mood board. Her response not so good…
“I like the inspiration….but not a fan of the pictures on the wall and the blue chairs (and marbleized pillow).I would prefer a softer color chair.”
Translation – She is sticking to her love of neutrals and only wanted neutrals. Dammit.
Disclaimer: This happens all the time in design. As a designer, our goal is to see how far we can stretch our clients. But sometimes they know exactly what they want and what they don’t. BUT if you have a bomb ass designer, it should never stop them from doing their thing in your home, in your style, and within your reasonable budget.
So, Me not giving up I sent her this about an hour later…
She loved, no loved this one. BOOM!
I had THE vision, we ordered the carpet tiles, pillows and set an install date! I even took it a step further by doing a general floorplan.
We were set to start at 7am. But my life being what it is we had a start time of 8AM. with a pitstop at Starbucks, the preordered goods, me, and my lovely assistant/Dante/husband, got going.
Once arriving we took pictures, measured the room in detail, also measured the furniture, spoke with the homeowner about her expectations and exactly how she wanted the room to function and feel like. She wanted a room to where she can sit and entertain, drink wine and cocktails, and chitchat with her girlfriends. She has two children that she told me were not allowed in the room in its present state. (Which I found hilarious!)
The story is she did not want them to mess up her white furniture – totally understandable. I had to include the kids somehow in this design. The end result had to be less cold and more welcoming, especially for the kids. After all of the programing (a fancy design word that means getting to know the client) we hit the road.
9:15AM – We arrived at Target. Target was a must stop because they’re inexpensive and I was totally enamored with Nate Berkus and his new home collection. There I found trays, frames, a pillow (that gold and black one that is in the mood-board) and this…
We had just discussed storage for her liquor. She wanted something to conveniently and stylishly entertain her friends. This piece was a find because it was only $150, and I did not have to spend my limited budget on a big piece of furniture that would weigh down the room. BINGO!
Next Stop World Market- We new we were going to world market to pick up the chairs. There was also found baskets, pillows, seltzers for her bar, plates, glasses, and this fabulous accent table.
Well… it kind of look like an ethnic barrel that can be used as an accent table but it also has storage in it so it ultimately serves a dual purpose.
11:15 AM: We’re done with World Market and Target. We did very well in the two stores were able to knock out a lot of the bigger pieces. Plus we are WAY under on the budget. My truck was stuffed and the plan was to do a drop off at the clients home.
11:58AM: DETOUR. The Volo Antique Mall.
Antique shopping is a must when you’re redoing any space. You can’t just have new stuff in there. There’s no faster way to suck the soul out of the room then just a have new stuff in there. At the antique mall we found a vintage crystal decanter set, a couple sculptures, and a set of glasses from the 60s. Now we can do the first drop off.
12:25PM The Drop Off
We came back the house stacked with goodies. The homeowner saw my bags and she immediately got excited again. I pleaded with her not to peek. But we all know that she did as soon as she saw my truck pull out of the driveway LOL.
1:02PM LUNCH On The Way to Ikea.
At this point me and Dante (my husband) are tired and hungry as hell. I have never had a sandwich from Potbelly’s taste so damn good in my life. We scarfed down our food cleaned up and hit IKEA.
My List: picture frames, pillow inserts, plants, and other decorative items.
A WORD: If you are heading to IKEA you must know tips and tricks, especially if you plan on taking yourself out there on a weekend like we did. First Off: You need to know where to park, I park in the lot right by the exit doors at the Schaumburg location. SECOND have a shopping list you already made via the Internet, and LASTLY know which floor is your stuff is located on. In Ikea its real easy to get sucked into to purchasing other items based on their oh-so-functional and pretty displays. People often buy more than what they really need.
Speaking of: peep the holiday table display I found there:
Two hours and 15 minutes later we walked out of there with our picture frames, pillow inserts, plants, a floor lamp, bulbs, and some decorative items for the homeowner. Plus those white sticks I saw on the on the table, those clear vases, and that candelabra from the holiday display for the Brooks’ household. See what I mean…We got sucked in.
3:57 PM Home Goods:
Within a block of IKEA is the Schaumburg is the Home Goods. Home Goods is a must stop on any makeover. They have all the cool accessories and other things that just puts any room together. This weekend, all we found was holiday decorations. EVERYWHERE! I was still looking for a lamp, a round mirror for her front entryway, and the centerpiece for her dining room table. And all I saw was Christmas ornaments. I managed to find a lamp that was perfect, a square mirror, and a collection of vintage candelabras that I could compose a stylish centerpiece out of. At the check out line I also picked up some coffee table books, and these cool wooden puzzle games (my way of bringing in the kids!)
At 4:26 I texted the Homeowner and let her know we were on our way back. I also inquired about tools that she may have.
Here’s another tip: when you’re doing a room makeover decorators often pack design kit. It often includes things like a hammer, drill ,double-sided tape, extension cords, lightbulbs, nails, picture hanging stuff, a sewing kit, craft paper, a tape measure, 5 hour energy, and a camera. – I left my kit right on my kitchen table.
5:15 PM One final stop – Ace Hardware. We picked up half of the above, but most importantly the 5 Hour Energy!
Dante and I were tired! I mean could fall asleep right there in the car tired! But we had to muster up a second wind because we had to install all of the stuff.
We arrived back at the location and begun the second unload and install….
Phew… 15 til 9 at night. After approximately 12 hours of shopping hunting, installing, and working away we’re here. What it looks like now
Do you remember the befores?….
The homeowner was amazed, she kept telling me how happy she was with the results. We did have some items that did not make the cut… Some of the frames, a tray, that target Nate Burkus pillow, the sculpture from the antique store, some items from Ikea, and those 60’s glasses. I found out later that those glasses were collectors items and they will be on sale on ebay soon.
Final Tip: When shopping for accessories I always get an overage, so my homeowners have a choice on what they keep during the accessorizing process.
We were so tired and hungry, and honestly I don’t even remember the rest of the night. On Monday morning we (Dante and me both woke up sore and still tired.
It all became so worth it when I got a text from the homeowner
“I love it so much…..did not want to go to bed last night, I just wanted to sit there and take it all in.”
BAM! – I would do it all again for a response like that.
Your Interior Designer/HGTV Host
Categories: Before and After, Chicago Interior Design, Client Stories, Design, HGTV, Ikea, Inspiration, Interior Design, Interior Design Projects., My Favorite, My Life, Shopping, Shopping Tips, Small Space Ideas, Small Spaces, Tiffany Brooks, Tips & Tricks of the Trade, you and your decor, you and your decor work