• All About Lighting

    Lighting can be so much fun, and is a key element in design that can make a home feel custom.  There are a few key things to consider when choosing lighting.   Today,  we will focus on variety, sizing, and light output.  

    Here is a dining room from our Modern Eclectic post, with a nice large fixture:

    And pendants from the kitchen:

    I challenged Alex to come up with her ultimate lighting scheme for a home and I did the same.  

    Just like furniture, I don't like the lighting to "match", or all be from the same family.  It looks like a builders special.  Below are couple of examples of coordinated lighting, whose styles and material are not a perfect match. The first I put in a dining room.  The room has navy blue walls, so the white looks WOW.

    Keeping with the gold and white scheme, I put these sconces in the powder bath.  Love the glass tail on the sconce!

    This beauty goes in the den.  Though it's more old world and french, I love that it is different and still ties in with the white and gold.

    In the same open concept room, these lanterns hang over the kitchen island.  The mix of contemporary and old world works and is so interesting!

    And now Alex's turn:

    Personally, I love bold fixtures that are a mix of classic and modern.  The shape of this fixture is more modern than I typically go for, but nevertheless, it is gorgeous. The opaque glass in combination with the gold and black offers awesome contrast.  I could see this over a dining room table, or in a living room.

    This pendant reminds me of a street light, the hearty black looks great with the brass details.  I could see these hanging over a kitchen island.

    Lastly, I picked out this sconce.  It reminds me of a pearl earring in a gold setting, and would look wonderful adorning the wall of a dining room, or powder bath.

    FINAL TIP: Consider the size and light output:

    A wall I run into again and again with client's is the "dreaded Pottery Barn." Their fixtures look great and have a great price point, but when you really look at what you are getting it's usually too small and has low light output.  The one below is a great looking light, not a bad size at 28" (still too small for me), but only uses three 60 watt candleabra bulbs.  I wouldn't be able to see what I was eating with that little light!

    Thanks for taking the time to check out some of our favorite lighting fixtures, and hints and tricks.  Lets us know which are your favorites down below!

  • Trends 2017

    Trend alert: Just as with fashion, home styles change often. I'm old enough now to giggle to myself when I see styles coming back around with a new twist. It seems to me that we just divested ourselves of all the polished brass fixtures and door knobs and here comes gold again with a BANG.

    This time around it's brushed instead of polished, but I AM IN LOVE!! I put a brushed gold faucet and knobs in my newly remodeled kitchen a year and a half ago with a little trepidation. Now I know it will be here to stay for a good while because gold has exploded on the home decor scene.

    You know how we've been in a gray period for awhile now? Alot of you may just be getting on board. I've seen a shift toward white walls instead of grey, but the newest thing coming is warm color. Maybe not on walls yet, but definitely in fabrics. I see lush greens, caramels, amethyst being paired with the greys and whites to give drama and a "come and stay awhile" feel. I love the look of the all white interiors, but I don't think I could realistically live in them. I would constantly cringe when someone sat in my white chair, afraid of a stain.

    Remember all that fabulous trim we used to layer in our french country style interiors? It's been out for years, but I see it coming back in fabulous new ways. I've been seeing boullion trim on the bottom of sleek sofas. Large scale trim on the edge of plain drapery panels. The piecies below can be purchased through The Design Shoppe.

    Tassels are everywhere in fashion and I'm sure we will see them soon in our interiors. The gorgeous earrings can be found at

    And last but not least, we are seeing a lot of navy and camel. A beautiful combination that gives me "casual luxury".

    What are some trends you've noticed lately. Let us know in the comment section!

  • New Year New Space!

    Entropy refers to the idea that everything in the universe has a natural tendency to transform from order to disorder.  This thermodynamic principle is probably best represented in my home. So the new year came and I was totally into organizing, cleaning, and decluttering.  But now we are two weeks into the new year, approaching the time where new year’s resolutions go to die.  But wait! Does my New Year resolution of keeping a neat and tidy closet, coffee table, and crazy mess of a jewelry drawer (that never truly got the New Year overhaul) have to come to such a quick demise??

    No, not really, and neither does yours.  While researching for myself, I thought I’d share some organization tips I’ve come across, and share some beautiful organization options from our vendors.  All pieces are available through The Design Shoppe, send us an email if interested at



    Personally I do not like folding, I’m prone to toss things into drawers and slam them shut.  Out of sight out of mind, and no one has to know. But when it comes to things such as belts, scarves, and hats, I do not truly have a place for them.  In the summer, the winter items stay packed away in far away lands. Come winter they are falling off the shelf I deemed their temporary home. Enter stage left: baskets.


    Baskets are wonderful, big ones, small ones, and all inbetween are great additions to help your closet or even entry stay presentable. Now everything can have a home of its own.


    Here are my some of my favorites:

    I love the natural gradient pattern in these.


    These larger baskets would be great for an entry:

    Coffee Table:


    The coffee table, otherwise known as the gathering place for remotes, mail, magazines, and that self-help book I haven’t picked up since January 5th. Normally, these are situated in the middle of the living room, which may not be the best place to display my broken promises--just kidding.  This tip is probably something you’ve seen before, but is truly a gem.  Trays are a way to add organization and another layer of decoration to your coffee table. By gathering your items on a tray you are not only organizing, but as life gets messier, it just looks purposefully collected.  Next get rid of old mail, add a few other decorative items like a candle, small plant, or vase, and your table is stylized.  I would also like to note that trays are universally useful in many other areas of the home including: the kitchen, bathroom, bedside table, and any other place where things just tend to gather.


    Here are a couple of items that I thought looked great together for a coffee table:

    Jewelry Storage:

    A nicely organized jewelry area is the difference between me being a “plain jane” (which is usually the case), or a seemingly well put together lady.  There are many options in this area, so I will focus on my personal favorites: small boxes and bowls. Along with trays, small boxes and bowls make the most of my space.

    Some honorable mentions are thin velvet lined drawers, tiered trays, and wire sheeting that make it easier to find hangable earrings.  All great ways to help me find what I need in the shortest amount of time.

    These are some of MY favorite ways to keep my organized and on track for the New Year and beyond.  What are some of your favorite organization tips and tricks for allowing your space to gracefully decline?   Thank you for reading and let us know in the comment section below!

    Aurthor: Alex West

  • Winter Whites

    Firstly I'd like to say Happy New Year! It is finally starting to feel like wintertime in Tulsa, which has inspired me to gather a couple of cozy winter whites. We've picked up a couple of new lines and are excited to show off some of the new things we have to offer!

    We are head over heels for this fringe sofa. What a cool way to incorporate such a tradional detail with a more modern shape. I loved this white leather scalloped swivel. True to Tulsa style, I've also picked this gorgeous french side chair that features an almost champagne fabric, and an elegant tufted sofa.

    Now time for accessories! Here at The Design Shoppe, we. love. gold. So of course I had to add these lovely vases, and candle holders. The details of each are what truly make these pieces great.

    Last but not least, nothing makes a home more cozy than the textiles. To add dimension to an all white space it's ok to throw in some off-white. And you'd definitely want to add texture, texture, texture! Below I have some ultra luxurious neutral rugs, cozy throws, and a woven pillow that would be the perfect addition to a neutral palette.

    Let us know below what some of your favorite pieces are, and feel free to give us a call or email if you need help layering those neutrals!

  • Major Key: Trust and Communication

    As Michelle’s assistant, I am new to the professional side of interior design.  Before a few months ago my experience included my own DIY efforts, Pinterest, Blogs, and any social or print media I could get my hands on.  On the job I have learned that one of the most important aspects of interior design has to be the client-designer relationship built on a foundation of trust and effective communication.  

    While watching Michelle, I’ve seen that she has a great knack for communication: by being able to truly listen to what the client wants, and have patience to decipher between that and what they believe they want. Although some clients may not know the terms to express what they are looking for, it is the designers job to ask the right questions. Michelle will also ask the clients to bring pictures, and utilize social media accounts like Pinterest and Houzz.  Although sometimes, it’s like when you bring a photo to the hair salon, you have round face and that ear length bob just isn’t flattering.  This is where the trust comes in.

    2015 Chanel Couture show at Paris Fashion Week


    For example, a client may have seen beautiful, contemporary interior and believe that this is exactly what they want.



    But as they begin to show you more pictures, speaking about their daily needs, and giving feedback on specific modern pieces, conflict arises.  Which is perfect.  It now allows you to delve deeper into what they don’t like about the space, offering room for more suitable alternatives. In this case, the client wanted something more transitional, with more softness and functionality for their growing family. Like this space found here: 


    As the client begins to feel the designer truly has an understanding of where they are coming from they usually relax, and begin to trust the designer to do her job. Freedom of expression is another aspect of trust and communication, a conversation where neither party has to walk on eggshells about their likes or dislikes. With trust and effective communication, misunderstandings are few and far between, allowing for a much smoother design process.

    Thanks for taking the time to hear about my journey so far in design, let me know if you think I am right on, or have any other tips!

    By: Alex West

  • Fashion Trends and Interior Design

    This weeks blog is focused on fashion trends you can find in interior design.  It is kind of fun to be able to wear and experience your favorite trends on your body and in home.  But I won’t get ahead of myself, a lot of a trend can go too far.  Some of my favorite fashion trends going on at the moment are lucite footwear, tweed, and fringe.

    Translated into interiors we are seeing them in mostly furniture, materials, and accessories, respectively. Keep scrolling to see some of the cool finds.

    Shoes: YEEZY Season 2 Lucite Heel found at, VALIANT Pointed Boots by Unique found at, Gianvito Rossi found at Bed: Oscarine Lucite four poster bed fround at Side Tables: Both to the trade pieces found at Made Goods. 

    Tiles: Emser Tile. Throw: Made Goods, to the trade.  Fabrics: To the trade, can be found at The Design Shoppe

    Bag: Ray Fringe Shoulder found at Boots: Ray Fringe OTK found at Metal chandelier: Douglas found at Pillows: To the trade, found at

  • Urbane Farmhouse: Here to Stay?

    For the past few years the “Urban Farmhouse” aesthetic has been pretty popular, especially in the Southern region of the US.  A look characterized by unfinished or weathered woods, linen/burlap, and worn metals, giving a refined rustic appeal.  The question: is Urban Farmhouse a new classic or are people closing the sliding barn door?  Who is making the decision?  The people of course!

    Money talks, and the clearance section is telling a story.  Major retailer Restoration Hardware is a prime example: they are clearing some of their reclaimed pieces in favor of more modern pieces.

    Found at Restoration Hardware

    What is staying is weathered woods, but in sleeker looks.  A popular addition to the the shelves is a faux Shagreen--stingray hide.


    This is ultra-modern and sleek, a turnaround from the reclaimed woods and worn metals.  Ultimately, it is up to you.  What do you think, is “Urban Farmhouse” here to stay?  I believe so, just in a modernized version.


    Here at the Design Shoppe we offer the both of best worlds, so if you’re still infatuated with a refined rustic appeal, modern to the core, or somewhere in between, we offer vendors and in-shoppe pieces that reflect each.

    Have a great day, and feel free to stop in and explore what we have to offer!

  • The Coolness that is Neolith

    Neolith is a material that offers flexibility in style and application.  It stepped into my world when a client was looking for a material to cover their fireplace wall.  They are to build a cool stand alone fireplace wall that separates the living room from the dining room.

    This is what we're going for:


    The first thought? Quartz.  It has a sleek finish that would match the modern look our client has in mind.  But it was found that it would not stand up to heat.  It would melt.  Second thought? Natural stone slabs, BUT THEN we came across Neolith.  This client in particular is considering using the material for both their fireplace, and kitchen counters.

    Why the fireplace?

    Well, not only is Neolith resistant to heat, but it comes in huge slabs suitable for our 10x12’ fireplace wall, offering a more seamless look.

    Why the kitchen?

    Not only is Neolith resistant to high and low temperatures, it is also resistant to scratching, wear, stains, and strong cleaning agents.  

    Now, now, function IS important.  But so is form.  And isn’t she lovely!  Neolith comes in a variety of patterns, colors, and finishes. What is most awesome is it can be made to look like wood, marble, granite, and iron---giving us design freedom.  Who wouldn’t want to cut, dice, and chop directly onto hygienic “wood” countertops?  

    Wish us luck with our progect! And let us know any ideas you may have for the material. 

  • California Casual Pt. II

    Part II of our California Casual reveal is focused on the dining and living area.  The client wanted to replace the carpet in the living area with hardwoods, which were currently in the entry, hall and dining areas.  Between not being able to match the current engineered hardwoods, and some other issues with those, they ended up replacing all with new engineered hardwoods. Any time you can have the same flooring running throughout an open concept floor plan, it makes it look larger.

    In the living area, the traditional fireplace mantle was removed as well as the chair rail and trim boxes.  We painted the fireplace the trim color.  Beadboard was added where the chair rail and trim were.  The result was a much cleaner, more up to date look. I think it's fabulous.  An unbelievable difference!

    We put in woven wood shades for a little texture and added color with blues and bright orange.  What I love is that if you took away the orange, you could easily and inexpensively add in any other color.

    The dining room had alot of small trim boxes.  We decided to take all of that down in favor of clean, smooth walls. Part of the wall between the kitchen and dining was removed to make a bar/pass through area.  A new chandelier, fabulous art, jute rug for texture and new seating complete the transformation!  The client brought a picture of a banquette that she liked.  Our master upholsterer duplicated it.

    What do you think? Let us know!

  • Little Boxes

    Little Boxes

    Little boxes on the hillside,

    Little boxes made of ticky tacky,

    Little boxes on the hillside,

    Little boxes all the same.

    There's a green one and a pink one

    And a blue one and a yellow one,

    And they're all made out of ticky tacky

    And they all look just the same.

    You may have heard the one theme song from that once popular show about a woman in the suburbs who chose an alternative career path.   “Little Boxes,” was written and composed by Malvina Reynolds in 1962 to reflect the repetitive nature of suburban life. We often see repetitive exteriors, and equally uninspiring interiors.  I have asked Michelle, what makes a home memorable, what can you do to make it stand out, and how to keep your home as unique as you are individual?  Keep reading to hear some of her advice.

    So, there you have it.  To remain unique and memorable through interior design, just mix it up a little.  Create some drama, but starring you.  Home is your place to tell your story, make it memorable.