|At Home With A Designer
An Interview with
Tricia Foley, author, editor, and product designer loves natural colors and vintage linens. She employs a simple decorating style that is both practical and personal.
Photo from the book
Showcased in the book, Designers In Residence, is a tiny doll house sized guestroom/outbuilding on her property in Long Island. It is a study in simplicity and restraint. In a garden setting with French doors, it was constructed from stock lumber and easily available parts.
The room welcomes guests all summer long with an interior in white, beige, tan, and other natural colors and accessories. She notes that "A classic neutral color scheme creates a soothing backdrop for the life you lead in your home, surrounded by the things that have meaning to you."
If you love the idea of simple vintage decor, you'll want to hear what else Tricia has to say about decorating...
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Q. What are some of the common decorating mistakes made by homeowners? What's your advice on how to avoid or correct those mistakes?
Tricia Foley: "I think that many people try to copy what's trendy rather than trusting their own personal style in decorating a home and then the look doesn't last. If you're really not sure about making decorating decisions, keep a file of pictures of favorite rooms culled from books and magazines to help narrow it down.
"In terms of color for walls, I always do a test patch and live with it to see how the color responds to the light and with the existing furnishings. It's also important to put it all together and make sure that your color palette is compatible and that you're not acquiring furniture and accessories in bits and pieces that don't work together. "
Q. What would be your recommendation for "what to do first" in a decorating project?
Tricia Foley: "It makes sense to follow the architectural style of the space. Determine the function of the room and really think about how you will use it. Then furnish it appropriately for those uses. Finally, layer on your own personal style -- not someone else's. Aim for personal comfort as well as visual appeal level."
Q. What tips do you have on themes, fabric and color choices, window treatments, furniture, etc. when decorating a long lasting room for a young child?
Tricia Foley: "First I would consider the existing style of the home. When working with a traditional home, I would tend to use a softer color palette that works with the rest of the house or apartment. If the family has a more modern sensibility, a clean bright color palette would be more in keeping with their aesthetic. There are so many wonderful choices available from mail order catalogs these days. You'll find furnishings that are affordable and have classic styling that can be used in children's rooms or family rooms."
Get tips on budget decorating, advice on starting out, and seasonal changes...
Designers In Residence
a book from the editors of Victoria Magazine
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