7 Questions Interior Designers Wish You Didn’t Ask

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Interior designers are absolute pros at answering questions to ensure their clients are informed throughout the design process. So many different scenarios come up during projects, from product delays to unforeseen construction issues, and designers are constantly thinking on their feet to solve problems and anticipate needs. That’s why they’re equipped with so much practical knowledge that anyone attempting to decorate a space could benefit from.

That being said, there are a few queries that designers wish you would reframe or just not ask at all. These seven questions below made that list, and the answers will give you some insight on how to trust the design process (or think more like a designer, if you’re tackling your own home makeover). 

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Will there be shipping delays? 

Truthfully, shipping delays are par for the course these days when decorating, and designer Caroline Kopp of Caroline Kopp Interior Design in Westport, Connecticut, says they’re just one aspect of why a design project can take longer than you might expect, even when you’re working with a pro. “Shipping delays or not, a whole house can (and should!) easily take a year or more from start to finish, particularly if you are working in high-end goods that are made to order,” she explains. 

When product availability causes issues with a project’s timeline, designers can work around these hiccups; just note that expediting things may come at a premium. “There’s a saying, ‘You can have fast, you can have cheap, you can have good — but you can’t have all three,’ and that definitely applies here,” Kopp says.

Can you tell me what my design style is? 

According to designer Jessica Dorling of Dorling Design Studio in Seattle, Washington, clients often have a better sense of their aesthetic than they may initially believe, and it’s all about trusting your gut when it comes to what you like, versus trying to label your aesthetic. “People sometimes think they don’t have a design style, but if you put two mood boards in front of them, odds are they’re going to prefer one over the other,” she says. 

While a designer’s job is, quite literally, to help you refine and focus your decorative vision, it’s always a good idea to do some work on your end finding “swipe,” or images of interiors that visually speak to you, whether on Pinterest, Instagram, Apartment Therapy house tours, magazines, etc. Organize these references however you see fit, but make sure they’re shareable because your designer is going to want to refer to them when pulling together moodboards and room schemes. There’s definitely such a thing as inspiration overload, of course, so don’t find so many images that it’s impossible to pull out the unifying threads that encompass your unique style. And when

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7 Ideal Car Upgrades For Your Next Road Trip

A road trip can be exciting, opening you to a world of adventure and possibilities. According to a recent survey, many prefer getting to their destinations via road. One factor you may consider while planning your trip is what automobile upgrades and accessories you’ll need. You may have been on the road a few times already yet have no clue where to begin, or perhaps you are excited about taking your first road trip. From small upgrades to major kits, making minor or significant changes to your car can make your ride more pleasurable. Not sure where to begin? Here are six ideal car upgrades for your next road trip.

  1. Comfy rooftop tent 

A decent tent is one of the most useful automobile upgrades for your next road trip. You do not, however, have to depend on one you can only assemble on the ground. Rooftop tents put a sleeping area on your car top, allowing you and your things to be raised while having a stable and warm place to sleep. There are various rooftop alternatives on the market, and you may find one that is ideal for you and your car to make the trip more pleasant. Even if camping isn’t the major feature of your road trip, it’s a cheaper option than sleeping in a hotel. 

  1. New lift kits 

If your road trip will include off-roading or traveling across rough terrain, it’s best to prepare your vehicle’s defenses. Upgrading your car with a fresh lift kit can be one of the most crucial modifications for navigating tough terrain. These kits help raise your car, letting you install wider tires, increasing ground clearance, and protecting the components beneath. Lift kits prevent uneven or rocky terrain from damaging your suspension system. Additionally, upgrading your lift kits allows you to safely and properly see beyond the road and off-road obstacles, which is particularly useful if you are off-roading. 

  1. Rain-repellent coatings

Rain and snow can increase your stress on the road by decreasing your vision and agility in an emergency. While keeping your wipers working at all times is useful, rain-repellent windshield coating can assist in keeping your windshield clear. You can apply a few rain-repellent coatings lasting at least a month. Others can be more effective and last up to six months between applications. Aside from improving safety and reducing accident risks, rain-repellent coatings can prevent rusting and other damages caused by snow and rain. 

  1. Smartphone mount

Using a phone while driving can distract you and pose some safety risks, making it essential to implement measures to reduce your likelihood of doing this during your road trip. You can start by assigning phone-related responsibilities to your travel companions. But what happens if you are driving alone and need your phone for information, messages, navigation, and perhaps your calls? Holding your phone in one hand while driving or looking at your phone in a center-console bin or cupholder can be distracting. For this reason, using smartphone mounts can prove helpful and

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More Than Madewell: 15 Similar Brands To Shop For Comfortable, Stylish, Wear-Everyday Pieces

What’s that thing called where the clock strikes midnight, you turn 30, and suddenly you’re like, “uh, where am I supposed to shop now?” If you’re like me, or Em, or literally anyone who has ever worked at EHD the answer has probably been “Madewell” – but what happens if you want to expand your options a bit?

THAT’S WHERE I COME IN, PAL! Today, I’m introducing you to 15 tried-and-true retailers at different price points who capture that same cool, effortless, Madewell aesthetic that we all know and love. Each brand is labeled with their available sizing – I’m recommending some businesses that carry sizes through 4X! – and I’ve also noted the price points (from $ to $$$$, to avoid any “Say Yes to the Dress” syndrome where you fall in love with something that’s not currently in the budget). Let’s begin with an EHD fav…

1. Ann Twill Straight Leg Pant | 2. Nera Sneaker | 3. The Merly Jacket | 4. Mamuye Classic Tote | 5. Ginnie Wide Leg Jean | 6. Harris Oversized Button Down Shirt

Price Point: $$
Sizes: XXS – 3X
Our Review: Ooooh, y’all are gonna love this one: ABLE is a sustainable brand working to create jobs for women…and their leather goods, jewelry, apparel, denim, and shoes are heirloom-quality at an achievable price, to boot. (Amy Poehler had it right: women do get things done!) Check out ABLE for quiet, cool, put-together looks and ethical Madewell lookalikes.

1. Phoebe Pant | 2. Nico Chunky Cardigan | 3. Double-Button Shirt | 4. Indigo Dyed Crosby Half Zip Pullover | 5. Button-Back Crewneck Sweater | 6. Britt Work Jacket

Price Point: $$$
Sizes: XXS – XXL, 24-33, 0-14
Our Review: If you also love scrolling the Alex Mill website, it’s for a good reason: this is some LEGACY good design. The team behind the scenes? Alex Drexler (the OG, who started selling shirts in 2012), Somsack Sikhounmuong (the former Creative Director of Madewell and J. Crew), and, uh, Mickey freakin’ Drexler (founder of Old Navy and Madewell; former CEO of The Gap and J. Crew). If you’re missing the Madewell and J. Crew of yore – you know, the kinds of clothes with clean colors, simple silhouettes, and fresh, delightful details – THIS IS WHERE THEY’RE ALL AT NOW. You’re welcome! (The back on that white shirt? Worth a peek. And that button-back crewneck sweater comes in solids, too!)

1. The Pool Boy | 2. The Beat | 3. The Extra Extra | 4. The Easy Breezy | 5. The Deep End | 6. The New Age

Price Point: $$$
Sizes: XS-XL, 24-34
Our Review: That yellow striped button-up inspired this entire post, actually! A few weeks ago, I mentioned that AYR’s button-ups were the best out there (this is coming from a gal who name-drops two Madewell pieces in her author bio) and it turns out that a lot of you

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A Warm and inviting Swedish Home with Low Angled Ceilings

This week, I’m taking you on a journey around Scandinavia. On Monday we were at a Danish cabin beside the Kattagatt Sea – and today we’re peeking inside a house near the shore of Lake Mälaren, Sweden. Dating back to the 1700s and measuring 70 m2, the house is an upside down one, with a kitchen, bedroom and bathroom on the ground floor and the sitting room and home office at the top off the house. 

Bathed in warm golden sunlight (I love the way the light has been captured), the style is clean and simple, yet inviting thanks to relaxed open shelving, a blend of furniture and a big, plump sofa (I’d be perfectly happy to sink into that today and hang out in it for the rest of the week!). Perfect inspiration for anyone dealing with low angled ceilings! Enjoy the tour! 

A perfect spot to hang out after a day on lake Mälaren! 

FYI it looks like that pot on the stairs has been placed there for the styling (it would be tricky to get around it otherwise! To be fair, the Mimosa does look beautiful even if it’s not so practically positioned!

I love the red chair in the kitchen – there’s something about throwing something completely different into the mix, it adds an element of surprise which is always good in an interior. 

Is there anything that stands out to you?

Incidentally, I have never been to Mariefred, but it looks lovely from the pictures – see what I mean here! I’ll be adding that destination to my travel list for a holiday on lake Mälaren! Maybe see you there? 

Feel inspired by other apartments with angled ceilings today:  

You can also see how I created storage under an angled ceiling in my bedroom and attic – still thrilled with it today! 

Kram! See you Friday! 

Niki

Photography courtesy of Historiska Hem (which house is currently for sale – tempted?). 
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Spec Home Webisode 06 | Bedrooms and Bathrooms

We all know in our own homes the bedroom is much more than a place to lay your head. It’s the place where you reflect on the day before sleep and a place where you plan for the day just after waking up. It is the space where you recharge physically and mentally. It is perhaps one of the most important spaces in the home.

Starting in the primary bedroom, Shea explains “the goal in here was to keep it serene but honor the rustic nature of the rest of the home.” Playing up the rustic side of those is the wide wood paneling running the height of the walls and across the ceiling. The wood features lots of character with knots and holes, “we didn’t want it to be smooth, clean, and modern,” Shea adds. A thin layer of Natural Tan in Sherwin Williams amplifies the character of the wood by not masking the flaws. “You’re getting the softness from the light, putty color and getting the rustic texture coming through.” Exposed wood beams were custom stained to match the ceilings in the great room.

McGee & Co.’s linen-draped Henrietta Bed was the perfect companion to the space, though with the soaring ceilings the headboard didn’t measure up. “We added large-scale artwork above it in a pair and it perfectly fills that space,” Shea explains. “If you’re working with a bed that has a lower height, you can fill the height visually with artwork above.”

The drapes in the primary bedroom are a shade off of the wall color, creating a beautiful tonal moment that’s a “calming feeling,” explains Shea. The Shade Store drapes are Linen Flat Roman in Natural on the smaller windows flanking the bed and Linen Tailored Pleat in Natural on the larger windows.

One last tip from Shea before we move into the primary bathroom. “I often see people place their rugs in their bedrooms way too close to the nightstands. The goal is to fill and ground the room. When you pull the rug down, you give more visual interest at the foot of the bed which makes your room appear larger,” she explains.

Inside the Spec Home’s Primary Bathroom

Inside the Spec Home’s Guest Bedroom and Bathroom

Inside the Spec Home’s Nursery

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