Tag Archives: Furniture

Titanic – Did It’s Interior Trends Also Sink With The Past?

The Titanic, the world’s largest and most luxurious ocean liner, was traveling from England to New York when it struck an iceberg at 11:40 p.m. on April 14, 1912. It sank less than three hours later, with the loss of all but 700 of the 2,208 passengers and crew.  This past weekend marked the 100th anniversary of it sinking. It’s a very sad yet historic day.

I often wondered what the interiors really looked liked in person. The rich patterns, the texture of the fabrics, the glow of the massive chandeliers. What was the difference between 1st class and 4th class rooms? Are the styles still a part of interiors today?

Take a look at the some interior photos starting in order with 3rd class, instead of the usual 1st class.


3rd class dining room


1st class dining room


1st Class dining room made up for dinner

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Tub chairs,  (also called barrel backs) in the 3rd class dining section are still being used today with many modifications. It’s a very functional chair often seen in public areas.


Here is a leather and fabric upholstery design sold today that reminds me of the Jacobean style chairs in the 1st class dining room.  This style will always be relevant in traditional interiors.


3rd class lounge


1st class writing room and lounge


1st class writing room made up for passengers Luncheon

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3rd class accommodations

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1st Class Suites

It’s so amazing how old black and white photos versus sharp color photos have such a shroud of mystery and nostalgia associated with it.

Only Two Bathtubs
Although most passengers had to share bathrooms (only the two promenade suites in first class had private bathrooms), third class had it rough with only two bathtubs for more than 700 passengers.

image2 passengers working out in the gymnasium. We’ve come a long way baby!


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Titanic art: vintage posters, letters sent while on board, the last photographed image and random photos taken on board

Art.com sells over 300 prints related to the Titanic.  It makes me wonder what images will be sold of 9/11 a hundred years from now, 50 years, even 10 years…  Is this morally right? After all, these are lost lives we are talking about.  I don’t know. I’m guilty of finding this tragedy fascinating, mysterious and or course sad, but I’ve always been intrigued about it’s interiors and how passengers lived on board.  That’s why the color visuals of James Cameron’s, Titanic still captures me to this day…and yes, the Romeo and Juliet spin he attached to it made it all the more appealing.


2nd class suite images

3d Color Simulations of various rooms

10 Facts About the Titanic You Didn’t Know

First Ladies Guide to Furniture and Accessory Shopping

Cotswold Marketplace had their “Friends and Family Night” last night AND my dear dear friend and fellow designer, Rosa Dest celebrated the opening of her new home furnishing and accessory retail space. I was a newbie to the Marketplace so I had a blast, along with meeting some wonderful NEW friends.

(Pictured Left to right) MarketPlace owner Melissa Vandiver, Multiple Blessings owner Caroline Simas, Dest Interiors owner Rosa Dest and Traveling Penny

Here I am with (left to right) Cotswold MarketPlace owner Melissa Vandiver, Multiple Blessings owner Caroline Simas and my friend Rosa, owner of  Rosa Dest Interior Design.imageSo what does shopping have to do with Michelle Obama?  Last night, I shopped, celebrated, worked and took photos, all while “bearing” arms – literally – in the middle of winter. Just like Mrs. Obama, I jumped at the chance to show off my “guns”.


After arriving, I made a bee-line to Rosa’s space. The first thing I noticed was the striking reddish orange wall – Tangerine Tango, which is the “it” color for 2012. Ough-la-la…It’s vivacious, sophisticated, warm and inviting.  On the focal wall, Rosa taped off alternate blocks in a matte and gloss finish which created more depth and interest than just a solid color.


The rooster behind me is an original oil painting – the details and colors are Ah-M-A-Z-I-N-G! I’m photographed with the artist below. Why does this space resonate with me?  It’s not just one style but a beautiful blend of modern day elegance peppered with a liberal dose of global character.

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Congratulations on your NEW venture Rosa!


After I left Rosa’s space (with my new bag) I had to check out some of the other spaces and THAT’s when I met Caroline with Multiple Blessings. She has a niche market, creating original inspirational products in unique packages for companies as well as designing and painting them.

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Her work sings “goodness and sunshine”.

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Caroline! You are a Rock Star Girly! Your designs make me happy. Maybe too happy – I just fell in the candle holder) and that’s before the wine))  Umm, cozy!

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This is a shoppers haven. At every turn there’s more to feast your eyes upon.


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Modern, graphic, oversized wallpaper designs for sale.


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Thanks again for the invitation Rosa.  Trust me, I will be back))))

Charlotte Nibbles, pay them a visit – 200 North Sharon Amity Road, Charlotte, NC 28211

Later last night….



How To Take Home Staging to a Whole New Level

So who would want to pack and unpack  just to pack and unpack again and again? Meet Shelia and Peter Potter!  They take the notion of Home Staging to a whole new level.  AND I LIKE IT! I want to be just like them when I grow up. Ha!

Mr and Mrs Potter "The Ultimate" Home Staging couple in Charleston, SC

Their recent story in The New York Times article, Creating Instant Old-Money Patina, really caught my eye.  They are well known in Charleston, South Carolina for staging properties to sell.  In fact, you could say they are also the care takers of the homes they stage.  Not only do they have the skills for designing homes with their traditional flair, they also reside in the homes they decorate using all of their own furnishings!

The gilded shield mirror on the top right was purchased for 50 bucks in a consignment store.  That’s another prime example of how you can mix reproduction designs with antiques and no one (other than a trained eye) would be the wiser.

What makes this a perfectly staged room? First, it’s light and airy with a restful vibe, 2/ it has neutral tones with just enough color to keep your interest, 3/ there’s absolutely NO clutter and 4/ the furniture is cleverly placed for a spacious appeal.

The black and white mirror was purchased for $75.00 at a thrift store in New York

There are three condo units within this building and the Potters moved into the 2nd floor. It sold after 4 months.

I think this building has true Charleston charm!

The building below is my favorite exterior home the Potters occupied.  It was actually owned by a friend going through a divorce.  I like how the hedges are part of the gate.

Below: Outside of the bitter sweet history of plantations in Charleston, SC, this Greek Revival antebellum home is decidedly stunning.  It was built by a planter in 1853 and it had 2 guest houses, a pool, and a maze of fish ponds.  The Potters lived in it for 1.5 years until it finally sold for 4.5 mil in 2005.

Care to read their full story and view more interior photos and homes that the Potters have staged over the last 14 years? Check them out here!

Discover more images of the beautiful homes of Charleston.


Inspiration for a Romantic, Timeless and Classic Bedroom

Interior Design / PCL Interiors,   Photo Credit / Clear Sky Images

Last Sunday marked the close of this years Southern Spring Home and Garden Show in Charlotte, NC.  As one of the participating IDS Interior Designers, I must admit, it was crazy fun and admittedly a little stressful at times.  Preparing for the installation can be a little daunting as I juggle coordinating all those little things that go into designing a room for a show along with trying to maintain the everyday tasks of the business. Thankfully, somehow it always works itself out.

This is my third time participating in the show.  The first time I designed a delightful outdoor veranda, and the second time a fun hang out retreat for tween girls. Both resulted in 1st Place awards (YES, a shameless plug)!

This year I had to participate, not only for the promise of brand exposure, but because  each room was to be inspired by a novel of our choosing.  My imagination soared instantly!  Since my space was designated as a bedroom, I selected The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger as my inspiration for the romantic depiction of how a timeless love parallels a timeless design. There’s a balanced mix of vintage traditional and current modern design elements in the space.

There are several elements introduced that were indirectly inspired by the novel.

1. To represent many meetings by Henry and Claire in the meadow – an introduction of organic materials like the branches, tree bark, fresh flowers and fresh willow branches. I also commissioned an artist to paint a landscape scene on canvas.

2. Torn wallpaper liner on the walls to honor Claire’s craft as a paper sculptor

3. A stack of books covered in wrapping paper serve as a table near the chaise and represent Henry’s profession as a librarian.

4. The clock has no hands because after all, time means nothing when you constantly involuntarily disappear at any given moment.

5. So, I blinged it out with chrome, silver and mercury glass to represent the current time

6. Charles Eastlake chaise and side table represents traveling back in time for a traditional style.

Out of 6 designer rooms, my design received 2nd Place and The People’s Choice Award!

Boulevard Home Furnishings Bazaar provided that adorably stunning french inspired canopy bed. Thanks Cynthia!

Luxurious Silk / Wool combo area rug – can you identify the silhouette of a sexy female body in the rug? Stark Carpet Outlet Tim, you ROCK!

Courtesy of Sally: Fine Italian bedding and linens from DeWoolfson Linens.

Close up of Duvet bedding and paint swatch in PCL Interiors design

A BIG thank you to Joan! Painting and precision wallpaper lining installation  Joan’s Designer Wallcoverings

Gotta love Sherwin Williams paint colors Oyster Bay (walls) Retreat (trim work).

Installation and painting of baseboards and crown molding by Eric and Carrie of Shy’s Design and Construction. Trust me, they do way more than this. Contact them for ANY construction needs.

Kim at Crate and Barrel provided the cordial side bar table. Perfect for any style room.

Bronze tone and cut glass pendant light fixture from Lighting and Bulbs Unlimited in Matthews.

Artist Rosalia Weiner of Home Art Designs.  Heavenly!!!  I commissioned Rosalia for three designs.

1. The love was certainly put into the “L-O-V-E” art on canvas. The branches and bark represent their frequent encounters in Meadow Lark, Claire’s parents backyard.

2. Over the bed is an acrylic painting on canvas, also inspired by Meadow Lark.

3. Most dramatically, on the wall, hand written excerpts from Henry’s love letter to Claire are artfully depicted in Spanish and English on the paper liner.

Thanks to my Jr. Designer Sam Monds, two student designers Raissa Zharoff and Angela Peck and my work room fabricator, Maria Orloff for two custom pillows.

Chrome garden stool from West Elm.

ALL the FRESH fabulous floral arrangements provided by Do A Little Floral in Huntersville, NC.

I certainly hope the images from this room and this great design idea will inspire you to take  elements from a novel and recreate them in your favorite room in the house. Have FUN!

Stylish Applications for Chalkboard Paint!

2009 Southern Spring Home Show - A Teenage Girls Retreat

In 2009 I designed a hang out for tweens and teenage girls at the Southern Spring Home and Garden Show with a slant towards the Hollywood glam of yesteryear.  I had a blast, of course.  Any design project where I get to play outside the box is sure to be a GOOD time for me.  Although this space was created a couple of years ago, every element is just as relevant today. If you want more images and discussion on the overall design of this room you can go to an earlier post. For now, focus on the rear wall design created out of black chalk board paint and a decorative custom stencil for edging.  Grant it, when we think of chalk board paint, we instinctively think of a child’s room; however, there are also many more uses for it in adult living.

See what I mean in the follow photos:

by A Few Things From My Life

Photos by Faiella Design

By Laura Leiss Interiors

Paint your fridge with it.  Especially if it’s time fore a new one.

Courtesy of Stella Interiors Blog

Okay, so it’s GREEN chalk board paint.  It was such a clever use I had to include it.

A lot of work went into creating this masterpiece, but it was SO worth it.

Found on The Daily Dish, photographer by Tony Soluri and interior design by Thomas Britt.

From Cathie Filian’s Blog

Even the simplest of applications such as, a kitchen back splash, makes a BIG SPLASH on the entire room’s design.

The design can reflect a romantic mood shown here in Jenna Lyon’s austere   bedroom as posted on the Moodboard.

If you change your mood you can change the design of your furniture

Image By Deep Fried Kudzu

Write you notes on a plate painted in chalkboard paint.

Not So Idle For Hands, via A Perfect Playroom

You get the picture. Think outside the box and get to painting. And please send pictures, I’d love to share them.