My lucky red Feng Shui closet

After I mentioned our red closet in last week’s post and explained how it has brought me so much luck after following Feng Shui recommendations, I received multiple requests asking to please show the closet.

In case you missed last weeks post, here is a quick recap. I hired a Feng Shui consultant to come and do a walk through of our house shortly after we purchased it (12 years ago). It turned out our “wealth area” on the Feng Shui bagua map was our master closet. At the time of purchase, the walls were never painted, just primed matte white and they were all scuffed up. The closet had cheap wire shelving along one wall and as soon as we moved in, it became an unorganized mess. I wish I had a before photo but I will tell you it was bad. 

Here is our closet today.

My side of the closet

Now, just to remind you, the closet is staged for putting the house on the market. It’s usually clean with very little clutter but not this clean nor this uncluttered. My shoes are stored in those hat boxes because they looked too messy on the shelves.

Hubby’s side of closet

The first change our Feng Shui consultant told us to make to increase the good vibes of our home’s wealth area was to paint the walls red. He then suggested cabinetry to keep it clean and organized. Finally, he advised us to keep symbols of wealth in plain view such as jewelry, a glass jar filled with coins, and vacation photos. We did every single thing he suggested and for the past twelve years I have won more contests and have had better luck than I ever had before. 

So there you have it. Our lucky red closet. 

Several of you also asked where the “wealth area” is located. I am not a Feng Shui expert by any means but from what I understand, the wealth area is the farthest left corner of the house (as you are facing the front door) and that is where our closet is located.

I’m going to miss several things about our current house but I think I will miss my closet the most.



The new Domino book and a GIVEAWAY!

Back in 2005-2007 I was huge Domino junkie. Domino magazine came out about the same time I was starting to get serious about interior design. I was taking design classes at a local college and devouring every shelter magazine and design book I came across. I remember how excited I was when the first Domino book came out. I read it cover to cover and studied it like a text book. Remember this was before Pinterest, Houzz and design blogs so it wasn’t all the easy to get pertinent design information.

Domino schooled me in design basics and explained with illustrations the difference between a chesterfield, a tuxedo and a camel back sofa. I learned how high to hang a chandelier and the names of all the different design styles such a Mid Century, Boho and Hollywood glam.

Now Domino has come out with their second book, Domino, Your Guide to a Stylish Home. Whereas the first book was a guide to make a home complete, this new book is a guide to make a home your own, decorating in your own unique style.


Domino’s new editor Jessica Romm Perez was in Boston with her team last week on a book tour and I had an opportunity to chat with Jessica about Domino and want to share with you part of our conversation.

Linda: How has Domino evolved since 2005 and who is your target reader?

Jessica: What was once just a print magazine has today evolved into three divisions. We have the magazine, the website and e-commerce. We are very fortunate in that our readers span all ages from early 20’s and up. We have our original loyal Domino readers who are now somewhat older as well as a new younger generation who mainly interact with Domino online, through social media and especially through our curated e-commerce site.

Linda: What do you think attributes to Domino’s huge success as a brand?

Jessica: I think one key to Domino’s success is that we are what I like to call “elevated approachable”. Unlike the other shelter magazines that feature somewhat unattainable rooms (for the average person), we feature homes that are livable and showcase how people really live. They are not perfect “show house” spaces but instead highlight the people who live there and reflect their unique personalities and show how they really live.

Linda: What is inspiring you today in design?

Jessica: Wallpaper, especially removable wallpaper, has really caught my eye. It is such a great way to add color and pattern as well as personalize a space. I am also loving the mixed metallics, the return of leather, painted cabinets and smokey colors with depth.

Linda: Speaking of color, what is your take on Pantone’s color of the year Greenery?

Jessica: I love it. So fresh and uplifting!

Linda: Where do you see Domino in 3-5 years?

Jessica: I envision more digital content, and evolving into more of a life style brand and not strictly a decorating brand. I see more content relating to food, entertaining, health and wellness.

Linda: Lastly, what three things should someone spurge on in their home?

Jessica: A good sofa, the best light bulbs you can afford, and good sheets and towels.

I really enjoyed speaking with Jessica and now the best part! I have a signed autographed copy of Domino’s brand new book to give away. Just comment on this post and you will be entered to win. (US only please). For extra chances to win follow me on Instagram and tag two friends in the comment section under the domino book photo.

Winner will be announced this Sunday the 18th just in time for Christmas!

Four fabric trends from the London design shows

As a decorator one of the things I like most about design is choosing fabric. I think most designers do because it’s one of the fun parts of design. Fabrics can be the inspiration and starting point for the whole project.

While I was in London with DesignHounds we attended four different design shows and invariably it was the fabrics that caught my eye. Some of it was really unique, some of it was traditional but with fresh colors and some of it was just plain “out there”.

Here is a sampling of four trends I saw at the London design shows.

  1. COLOR: Rich saturated color was on display at many of the booths and I noted Orange is still going strong.
Backhausen: Linda Holt Photo

Backhausen: Linda Holt Photo

Bluebellgray (show below) displayed brightly colored water color fabric and you can purchase their bedding through Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s.

Bluebell Gray


2. Graffiti inspired fabric has been trending for awhile now as I wrote about here  and I saw plenty of it at the London shows. One of the largest displays was Blackpop.


Blackpop is a UK company that creates “fabric and furniture that punk up the rich tapestry of the past to create opulent richly figured patterns”.

Blackpop: Linda Holt Photo

Blackpop: Linda Holt Photo

Although the designs are contemporary the fabrics are traditional opulent velvet.

This settee from Dare studio reminded me of an artist’s drop cloth.

Dare studio: Linda Holt Photo

Dare studio: Linda Holt Photo

Below is one more example from Arley House of digitally printed graffiti inspired  fabrics.

Arley House: Linda Holt Photo

Arley House: Linda Holt Photo

3. Kaleidoscope inspired. Besides graffiti inspired fabrics I saw a several booths with kaleidoscope inspired fabrics. Printed on soft velvet the colorful fabric below is from up and coming textile designer Ewelina Mlynarek for Designers Atelier.

I have memories of owning a kaleidoscope as a kid and this fabric drew me right in.


The designer told me the fabric was indeed based on a Victorian kaleidoscope.  Here it is below shown on a chair.


Linda Holt Photo

More kaleidoscope inspired fabric was spotted at Ana Romero. This one almost has a kaleidoscope meets snake skin vibe.

Ana Romero: Linda Holt Photo

Ana Romero

4. Traditional fabrics in updated colorways. After seeing all the wild statement fabrics it was refreshing to come upon the fabric company Moon. Established in 1837, their traditional Scottish wool plaids and tartans were displayed in updated and fresh colorways.

Moon: Linda Holt Photo

Moon: Linda Holt Photo

Moon: Linda Holt Photo

Moon: Linda Holt Photo

4. Technology. At the London shows I spoke with several designers who use the computer to aid in the creation their fabric designs. One designer has taken computer aid a step farther and has the computer determine the design!

BeatWoven is a fabric company that creates fabric based on a computer program that translates and then weaves musical notes directly into the fabric.

BeatWoven fabrics :Linda Holt Photo

BeatWoven fabrics :Linda Holt Photo

Each of the fabrics is woven from a different symphony or song. The fabric below is Tchaikovsky’s composed works from The Royal Ballet’s  “Sleeping Beauty”.


and this one below was created by translating Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No.2


Pretty cool…right? Imagine how perfect this fabric would be for a musician or music lover.

No matter what your taste in fabrics, there really was something for everyone at the shows. Which one is your favorite?









What were those designers thinking? The Hampton Designer Show House

Before I was in the design business I would visit show houses and look at the rooms simply from a personal perspective. If the room happened to be decorated according to my taste and done up with colors I liked I would declare it a hit. If it was anything else, I would immediately dismiss it as ugly. I was quite the critic!

Now that I am educated to the design process and I have friends who participate in show houses, I look at the rooms with a totally different perspective. Such was the case at last weeks Hampton Designer Showhouse. Some of the rooms were simply beautiful and appealed to the masses. They were decorated in soft soothing colors with tasteful accessories that were appropriate to the Hampton location.

Design by Kate Singer, Linda Holt Photo

Design by Kate Singer, Linda Holt Photo

Some of the other rooms were very well done they just happen not to be my taste. Ironically it is those rooms that I give the most thought and attention to. I try to guess what the designer was thinking. I want to know what their inspiration was for the room. There are so many moving parts and decisions that go into creating a show house and sometimes the designer has to use what is available even if it’s not their first choice. I learned this when I participated in the One Room Challenge which was a virtual type of show house.

So no matter if I was a fan or not, I studied the rooms and here are a few of the common threads I observed within all the rooms of the Hampton Show House.

TEXTURE: This was my number one observation. Rich luxurious textures were a major theme within the house. I keep hearing opulence in interior design is making a comeback and many of the show rooms proved this to be true.

Melanie Turner Design, Linda Holt Photo

Melanie Turner Design, Linda Holt Photo

Giant over scale chunky throws were in many of the rooms adding luxurious layered texture as well as thick textured carpets, fur, grass cloth covered walls and sumptuous fabrics. This room, designed by Melanie Turner, was my favorite room in the house. The fabric she chose for the window treatments was riddled with holes which added even more texture to her all white room.

Melanie Turner Design, Linda Holt Photo

Melanie Turner Design, Linda Holt Photo


Get out your giant knitting needles and get to work!

How cool are those giant cable knit pillows against the faux bois wallpaper?

Mabley Handler Design, Linda Holt Photo

Mabley Handler Design, Linda Holt Photo

The master bedroom designed by Mabley Handler was a sumptuous retreat filled with luxurious textiles as well as a shiny silver dresser, sleek leather chairs and textural grass cloth clad walls. Notice too the statement chandelier which looked like a wedding cake. The layers hanging down are fabric. I loved this room and had to use restraint because I wanted to touch everything, lay on the bed and roll around on the rug.

The black and white bedroom below designed by Elsa R. Soyars was interesting. Not only was it filled with lot’s of different textures like the sculpted rug, a velvet bench with a fur throw, linen and silks, it also featured a black macrame hammock directly next to the bed. This was one of those instances where I would have loved to ask the designer her thought process on the hammock (as well as her placement of a life size deer on the opposite side of the room).

Elsa R. Soyars

Elsa R. Soyars

STATEMENT LIGHTING:Big statement lighting is nothing new but this show house had some very unusual pieces.

Notice the big chunky macrame table skirt adding even more texture to the mostly all white room. Speaking of white rooms…the majority of the walls in the show house were either painted white or covered with grass cloth.

Marie-Christine Design, Linda Holt Photo

Marie-Christine Design, Linda Holt Photo

Another primarily white room with a chunky throw, pillows, a thick textured carpet and a geometric statement chandelier.

Statement lighting was in every single room including a powder room so small I couldn’t get a photo of much more than the light and a tiny glimpse of the ceiling and wallpaper.

Steven Stolman design, Linda Holt Photo

Steven Stolman design, Linda Holt Photo

LACK OF BRIGHT COLOR AND PATTERNS: With the exception of the powder room above and the master bathroom (below) there was very little color or pattern in the house. I would say the master bathroom though had plenty of both color and pattern for the whole house!

Tilton Fenwick, Linda Holt Photo

Tilton Fenwick, Linda Holt Photo

I will leave you with my final image of the kitchen. Just like the proverbial wedding gown at the end of the fashion show, the kitchen is the room that set the tone for the whole house. White, bright, beautiful and a wonderful mixture of textures.

Bakes and Kropp Design, Linda Holt Photo

Bakes and Kropp Design, Linda Holt Photo

Bakes and Kropp, Linda Holt Photo

Bakes and Kropp, Linda Holt Photo

So there you have it. My take on the 2016 Hampton Designer Show House. I hope you enjoyed my virtual tour.







Friday’s Photo: Sleeping with the family

One of my favorite things about going to High Point Market and visiting the different show rooms is seeing how the rooms are styled. The designers are so creative and I always see something unexpected and unique. Continuing last Friday’s Photo theme of wall murals I spotted this idea at Universal Furniture.

wallpaper family portraits

portrait wallpaper at Universal Furniture

I know it’s not for everyone but I thought it was a cute idea for a child’s room. It would be hard to feel lonely when the family is watching over while you sleep. Having the actual wallpaper made would be a huge commitment but another idea would be to cover the wall with either cork board or foam core. Then using adhesive spray (for the foam core) or pins (for the cork board) attach the images. When the fun had run it’s course just remove the foam core or cork board and the walls are back to the origional state.

Have a good weekend!

It took 11 years but I finally have a decorated dining room

As is true with many designers, our own home often takes a back seat when it comes to decorating. Between client projects, blogging, family obligations and an overall busy life it’s a wonder anything gets done at all. Case in point, my family room was filled with junky/yard sale furniture for over two years after we gave almost all the origional furniture to my son for his apartment. It took the public pressure of the One Room Challenge to finally kick my butt into gear to getting it decorated. (the six week deadline almost did me in but at least it got finished)

I also have a few other unfinished spaces in my house and the dining room was one of them. You see, I never got around to buying a carpet. It’s not that I didn’t look, it’s just that every carpet I liked was either the wrong size, too high of a pile or over budget.

Last January a perfect solution presented itself when Karastan Carpet, one of our Modenus Blogtour sponsors for KBIS, explained to us that any of their wall to wall carpets could be cut and bound to just about any size. Eureka! Wall to wall carpet is often a more affordable option than a large area rug and the fact that I could have it cut to a specific size was even better.

Due to allergies and a dog that sheds like crazy, I wanted a 100% wool low pile carpet. Karastan has so many great choices but in the end I chose the Woolston Plaid in Domino. It arrived last week cut and bound to my exact size specifications and I am thrilled! It’s a black and white grid pattern and here is what it looked like as soon as we laid it down. (The edges have since relaxed and it lays flat)

dining room before

Karastan Woolston Plaid carpet in Domino

I am now happy to say I have one more completely finished room in my house.

dining room with black plaid rug

Linda Holt Photo

My new gallery wall from Fracture is on the adjacent wall and if you want to read my blog about the process of mounting images on glass you can read it HERE.

Gallery wall

Linda Holt Interiors

Now I just have the the master bedroom and guest room left to tackle. Oh well, one room at a time….unless of course we move which is a continuing topic of conversation.

How about you? Do you have any unfinished rooms in your home?

Friday’s Photo: Look how wealthy I am!

What material possessions do you think of when you imagine great wealth? Luxury cars? Second (or third) homes? Designer clothing and jewelry? Fabulous art? I bet the one thing that doesn’t come to mind is a dining room sideboard.

Back in the 1850’s the dining room sideboard was the ultimate trophy to show off one’s wealth. The more intricate and lavish the carvings the more impressed your dinner guests would be. It was the 1850’s way of showing the world, “look how wealthy I am”!

1850's oak sideboard

1850’s Pennsylvania sideboard Museum of Fine Arts Boston

Intricately carved fruit, birds and animal heads added to the wow factor and expense of the piece. The sterling silver urns and tea sets completed the look. Today, we have moved on and replaced side boards and silver tea sets with other possessions as a way of showing off our wealth. It is fun though to look back on history and see how trends have changed. I wonder what prized possession of today will be passe in the next hundred years?

Have a great weekend everyone!

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