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How do I find a decorator or interior designer?

In a perfect world we?d all locate designers, architects and decorative painters by word of mouth. For now, you can rely on two great resources. The Franklin Report is the Zagat Guide of the decorating world, and includes write-ups on everything from decorators to upholsterers to architects. It also offers pointers about cost, how to talk the talk, and what some of the big trends are in various fields. The ASID, founded in 1975, has 48 chapters of members who?ve met their rigorous acceptance standards. See the ?Find a Designer? feature on their site to sort through 20,000 professionals by location, personal style, project size, budget, etc.

Once you?ve narrowed down your choices, do a little homework. Pull plenty of inspiration photos from books and magazines, make sure you have a strong grasp on your budget and priorities. Then when you meet with a design professional, check out their portfolio, ask about receiving renderings and billing before you sign on the dotted line.

(image and text from domino magazine)

Posted in uncategorized on May 02, 2006

Blog of the Week: Holly’s Plate

This week, it’s all about Southern hospitality! We’re taking a look at Holly’s Plate, featured blog of the week, to catch a glimpse of home decor from the perspective of Atlanta girl, Holly Allen. I caught up with Holly recently to ask her a few questions about her life and her blog so decor8 readers could learn more about what Holly’s dishing about on her plate these days.

decor8: Hey Holly. So, tell us about your blog. What’s Holly’s Plate all about?
holly’s plate: My blog chronicles my attempt at a well-designed life. It’s about the things I buy, the things I *wish* I could buy, and the things I’m inspired by … plus all the little stories that go with.

decor8: Why did you name your blog Holly’s Plate?
holly’s plate: I completely overuse the phrase, “… on my plate,” so it seemed only natural. Plus I was able to use that fantastic Kate Spade plate in my logo.

decor8: Why do you blog?
holly’s plate: I’m addicted. More than even coffee. I’m getting traffic from all over the world … Brazil, Paris, Montvale, New Jersey. It’s a thrill, truly.

decor8: What do you hope others tell their friends about your blog?
holly’s plate: That they simply must visit!

decor8: Where are you based and what do you really enjoy about it there?
holly’s plate: I live in Atlanta, Georgia, with my husband, Tripper, and my dog, Ed. The weather is warm, the shopping is great, the southern hospitality is alive and well and the sweet tea is to die for!

decor8: Tell us about your background, career…
holly’s plate: I started out as a sports reporter, fell backwards into a design job, learned a little HTML and somehow ended up as an interactive designer for The Washington Post! talk about a lucky break! I stayed at the post for four years and now work at the Weather Channel here in Atlanta. Ii’ve been blessed in the career department.

decor8: What are your hobbies?
holly’s plate: Yes. Tennis, shopping, funk class (I’m terrible, but it’s fun … with a k)

decor8: Do you have a particular design style that you prefer, and if so, what is it and why do you prefer it?
holly’s plate: I like a little of everything, so long as the overall look is classic and clean. I also have a fondness for polka dots.

decor8: Where do you look to for inspiration?
holly’s plate: I find a lot of inspiration in store displays. Anthropologie, Terra Cottage and Star Provisions do a great job. I check out lots of design blogs and I love Domino and the all the French magazines I cannot pronounce. I’m a fiend for tearing out pages! I’m often inspired by snapshots and well put together outfits. Finally, my mum is a wealth of inspiration for me.

decor8: What are some of your favorite designers?
holly’s plate: Kate Spade, Carolina Herrera, jh’io

decor8: What’s the first thing you look for the moment you step inside someones home?
holly’s plate: That’s an exciting moment for me. I think I’m looking for fresh ideas. I scan for the overall sense of style. I like the unexpected.

decor8: If money were no obstacle, where would you live and why?
holly’s plate: I’d have a lovely apartment in NYC and buy Sarah Jessica Parker’s house in the Hamptons. Furnished. The apartment in New York because I am and have always been in love with that city. That particular house in the Hamptons because I just saw the spread and it was delicious!

decor8: Describe the perfect weekend in Atlanta.
holly’s plate: With Tripper. Outside. Coffee in hand. I love an outdoor arts festival followed by a late lunch alfresco.

decor8: Are you nuts over any celebs?
olly’s plate: Yes, Sarah Jessica Parker

decor8: What is your dream job?
holly’s plate: Anything I’d be “tapped” for, say editor-in-chief of a world-class magazine.

decor8: Back to blogs. Since there are so many other there, what do you think is missing from blogsville?
holly’s plate: Hmmm. A blog about the trade secrets of the Anthropologie merchandisers?

decor8: Ha ha! Good one! And finally Miss Holly, what are the top 10 things you can’t live without?
holly’s plate:
10. Sidelong glances from my dog, Ed
9. “Sex and the City” reruns
8. Caffeine-free Diet Coke
7. Cheese
6. My raggedy green blanket
5. A digital camera
4. Mascara
3. Daily horoscopes as read by Jenny Livengood
2. Aveda Light Elements smoothing fluid
1. And of course, Tripper (love him!)

Thank you for stopping by to visit us Holly. decor8 readers, you can catch Holly’s Plate all week here on decor8 by clicking on her logo in the left column beneath “blog of the week”.

Posted in uncategorized on May 02, 2006

BlueFly – $15 Off for New Customers!

Have you shopped at Bluefly lately? They’re currently running a promotion to attract new customers, giving first timers $15 off their order. In a land where Thomas Paul pillows are already marked down to $24 and you can score Jonathan Adler and Dwell goodies at deep discounts, don’t pass up an additional $15 savings! Have you seen their delicious Emilio Pucci pillows? Yowser!

decor8 readers, use code AFF15 at checkout. Click here to save $15 off for new customers.

(images from bluefly)

Posted in uncategorized on May 02, 2006

Anthropologie for Spring!

Combining both inspiration from both faraway lands and the ocean floor, Anthropologie has done it again with stunning new items for the home. (I have to admit, some of these prices intimidate me a little though; I wouldn’t purchase a painting for nearly $1,200 alongside a $10 soap dish. What about you?)

Above image, top left corner: marine oil painting, $1,198.00. country manor flatware, $30. labyrinth park loveseat, $598. shell diagrams, coral, $398. pampas floor cushion, red $128. cutwork votives, small circles, $20.

Image below: marbella collection, all available in pink or turquoise. marbella candle plate, $12. marbella tumbler, $8. marbella soap dish, $10.

(images from anthropologie)

Posted in uncategorized on May 02, 2006


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