Thursday, April 12, 2018

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Better Homes & Garden
To thrive in place or to go elsewhere seems to be the talk of the town for Baby Boomers. As the market continues to restore itself from the fall in 2007, it’s not selling that seems to be the problem, but finding a home that meets all your needs. On March 29, Mike Collins discussed the rise of Charlotte’s market.Collins and guests focused on the inventory available in the surrounding areas, and the price tag that comes attached.

What's next?

As you decide what you want to do with your home, although selling may seem appealing, trying to find the home that meets all your needs as you transition into each stage in life, can be difficult to find. What we find now, are most homeowners are wanting to remain in their homes because of the desire for the neighborhood and the low price point once retirement takes precedence.

How can we help?

It’s not only listening to what you want, but determining how to incorporate changes that promote independence, active living, and sophistication. Creating functional rooms that allows ease as you transition through each life stage.


Option 1: Is it feasible to make your current home work for you?

Style Blue Print

Option 2: What changes can be made to your existing home that offers both support and independence?

Workshop 360
Option 3: Are we remodeling an entire floor that offers the freedom of choice and space design?

The choice is yours!

We're here to tell you that you don’t have to uproot your life, you can make what you currently own accessible, allowing you to remain independent in your daily life.

Transitioning? Let us help you get started!

Colorfully yours,

Thursday, April 5, 2018

First impressions: Dehli, Jaipur & Agra (Part 1)

Day one began in Delhi.

Liv, Karin, and I made an appointment at the spa, not something you would imagine beginning an adventure with but something I would highly recommend! A good head and neck massage is the cure-all for jet lag.

The very first thing I noticed, is that men seem to do all of the work in India. They are everywhere and doing everything from massaging and hairstyling to waiting tables and housekeeping. It's interesting to see what we are accustom to in the states, although the act is the same, be carried out differently elsewhere.

After our morning of being pampered by men, we went to the Kahn market.

The Kahn Market, to my surprise, is one of the most expensive commercial real estate locations in Delhi due to it's proximity to the embassies. The market houses a wide variety of shops, some we recognized, and sold anything from jewelry to fabric to food.

Our last stop was a lovely shop called Good Earth which contained three levels of pure desire; a chic boutique, a home goods store, and a posh little restaurant.

Aren't these cushions beautiful? Many of the pieces you find in India are personally crafted by hand. These cushions in particular are hand painted on linen.

The restaurant at Good Earth was lovely. My eyes would not stop moving. I was distracted by the wallpaper selections, the color of the ceiling, and the saree's worn by those nearby. There's truly nothing like it. 

Stay tuned for more first impressions as Liv, Karin and I travel to Jaipur and Agra. There's so much more to share as we continued our journey and learned more about the textiles of India.

Until then,

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Making Dreams Come True

Who says dreams can't come true?
I believe you have to make them happen.

I've always wanted to go to India, and while I was visiting my cousin and his wife Liv in Oslo,  I happened to mention this to them.
Well, guess what - Liv said she was planning to attend the largest textile & home show in India that upcoming February!  
Did I want to go, Liv asked?  

Well, of course, I said yes!

What an experience!
And, what luck!
Not only do I now get to travel to India, but I also get to go with someone who has been there numerous times before and combine work into my trip.
Liv took care of all our travel arrangements, leaving me to handle one thing: meet Liv, and her best friend Karin, in Dehli. Done!

I was dreading the 14-hour plane ride, and I did not realize that during that long flight, you never see the sun. At one point, I looked out the window and saw what I thought was a beautiful sunrise. Nope! Tinted windows. To make things even more comical, I allowed myself to be tricked by these windows for hours, continuously.

I love seeing new places from the sky.

Time change is something, isn’t it?
When I arrived in Dehli, it was evening and an entire day ahead of North Carolina.
Thankfully, I hadn’t passed up buying homeopathic jet lag pills at Passport Health, because they were extremely helpful. And that 14-hour plane ride I was dreading so much, not so bad.

At the airport, I was met by my driver, as promised by Liv, and delivered safely to my hotel where I slept comfortably for hours. To be honest, I had expected India to be more chaotic. But to my surprise, everyone was very organized.

So inspiring. There's nothing like the joy one gets from stepping outside of their bubble to experience the world. Curiosity while traveling reinvigorates your senses and sparks your creativity pallet. Gaining experiences outside of what you're used to gives you unique insight into design and architecture that you don’t get to see every day.

I hope you will continue to follow me on my journey for the next few weeks as I share my experiences within Dehli, Jaipur, and Agra. It is during my travels, as seen through a designers eye, where I am taught to live, learn and design differently.

Colorfully yours,

Thursday, March 22, 2018

As Featured on Houzz

Designing a Laundry Room - Functional and Fun!

I don't know about you, but laundry day is my least favorite.  It's that endless chore continuing from week-to-week, (and for some) day-to-day.  However, through thoughtful design, washing, drying, folding and even ironing can become a much more enjoyable task. Patterns, colors and some unexpected touches make it easier to take on this mundane chore.

Morgan Province and the wonderful staff at Houzz wrote a fabulous article featuring a recent project of mine. You can find the article here on the Houzz website, or continue scrolling to find out more!

Laundry Room at a Glance
Who uses this space:
 A couple with three grown children
Location: Charlotte, North Carolina
Size: 104 square feet (9.7 square meters)

The laundry room works hard for these North Carolina homeowners. Besides washing clothes, the couple uses the space as a bill-paying area and a cleanup station when entertaining in the nearby kitchen. They didn’t want to do these activities in a boring space, so they hired designer Rosa Plaza Dest to give the room a new look. Although the footprint of the room stayed the same, Plaza Dest designed the space to maximize its use and keep it open and fun.

Laundry area. Before the redesign, the room had white walls, no window treatment and a bench below the window that accumulated random belongings. 

The Fisher & Paykel washer and dryer are still running after 20 years, so for now the couple want to keep them. Cabinets above them give the family ample storage for cleaning supplies and office extras. A sink sits to the right of the appliances.

Valance fabric: Thibaut

Touches of whimsy. Plaza Dest gave the room a feeling of playfulness with small but intricate details, such as the knobs on the cabinets above the washer and dryer. They feature images of little laundry items, such as socks. 

Hardware: Anthropology

Desk. At the end of the room is a desk and chair — a workspace for the entire family. When the kids were younger, they used it for homework because it was easy for Mom to keep an eye on them. Now it’s her turn to use the space. She can comfortably spread out her work and pay the bills. At other times, she can use the surface to fold clothes.

 Plaza Dest’s design approach is bold, collected and colorful. The laundry room “has great natural light, but it’s small,” she says. “So we had to accentuate the positive attributes through color and accessories.”

Color inspiration came from the adjacent kitchen, where blue is prominently featured. Orange was a great contrasting color, and it keeps the spaces balanced. The Moroccan Berber rug, which has orange and blue in it, also helped Plaza Dest choose the palette for the room.
It can be hard to make the abstract idea of “happy” a reality in design, but she believes that with color, pattern and scale you can achieve that feel.

Wallpaper: Thibaut

Wallpaper. One look at this room and you remember the wallpaper. Plaza Dest says she loves graphic patterns because they make a space feel fresh and instantly updated. Whenever she finds a wallpaper or fabric she loves, she hopes she’ll then find the perfect project in which to use it.

You might consider the bold wallpaper the star of this design, but Plaza Dest says everything works together. Each element and accessory supports the other to make the look feel complete.

More than just souvenirs. Reminders of past adventures appear throughout the room. The plate on the wall was created by Moroccan artisans from recycled plastic bags, while the ceramic table lamp is a former wine jug from Morocco.

Cabinets. Before the custom-built cabinets were installed, a window seat sat next to the small desk. Instead of relaxing on it, though, the family tended to throw everything from jackets to sports equipment on top of it. With the new cabinet, the family can store its items without creating a mess. 

“Uh-oh” moment.
 The wood cabinets were custom-made, but they were also pre-drilled for hardware before Plaza Dest chose the knobs. To cover the holes and fit the scale of the cabinet, she had to choose the hardware carefully. Fun and colorful hardware, like this beetle drawer pull, play right into the whimsy she set out to create.

Hardware: Anthropologie

Sink. Because of its proximity to the kitchen, the laundry room often acts as overflow space when the homeowners entertain. This lacquered magnolia wreath contrasts well with the wallpaper and ties in with the other pieces of art in the room. Maintaining a feeling of fun in the space was important, even near something as mundane as a sink.

Thank you Morgan and Houzz for putting together this beautifully written article. I am as beyond thrilled with this feature as I was designing and implementing this laundry room project. With the use of funky patterns and bright colors, you can really bring a space to life and give it the personality that makes you want to enter it every day.

Call on your color expert to begin your next project!

Colorfully Yours,

Thursday, January 18, 2018

My word for 2018

Several years ago I attended a workshop by Rosie Molinary on setting goals, creating a vision board and finding your word for the year. I love this idea because each year as the new year approaches I begin to think about what my word for the next year will be. This word is based on the direction I want to take my life and my business in.  This word guides me in my daily actions and sets the intentions I would like to base my year on.

This year my word is Engage, my goal is to be present and engage in the moment of every intention and action I have and in every conversation, encounter and action I take.


Having a word and thinking about it each day is a wonderful way to keep you focused on what's important in our lives. It's quite different than a new years resolution because there are no disappointments attached to your word.

Now writing your word down and sharing it with the world will help you stay true to yourself and your intentions. This is where a vision board comes in handy. Putting your intention on a vision board and keeping your board in a place where you can see it is important. Since creating my first board I have to admit I've never made another one, I just keep adding to it every year. The goals I have and the things I enjoy doing are still the same as when I initially made the board,  I just  build on it every year.
I suppose this vision board is a good reflection of who I am, what is important to me, what I want out of life and where I want to go.

If you haven't selected your word this year, it's not too late give it a go and if you have some spare time, create a vision board.

I'd love to know your word of the year and why you chose it.
Happy New Year!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Rosa Dest Interiors

Would you say You POP or You BLEND?
Before you answer that question or wonder what I am even talking about, let me explain...

Our reaction to color affects so many parts of our lives and when it comes to the spaces we live and work in, color has a profound effect on us. I love to surround myself with colors that make me feel happy and bring a smile to my face.

Through an understanding of my client's color sense I gain an insight into their likes and dislikes. One of the best ways to do so is by understanding my POP vs. BLEND technique.

This technique comes from answering the simple question of whether you  prefer to see a POP of color or a BLEND of color in your space. In order to figure this out, it's best to have an understanding of color value and the relationship colors have to  each other.

When I talk about color value, I am referring  to the lightness or darkness of a color. Color value influences the colors we enjoy surrounding ourselves with and identifying the mood we are trying to set within a particular room. Once we know the color values we are drawn to, and whether we want our rooms to POP or BLEND,  the process of selecting  the color palette  becomes a little easier. Of course there are many other factors to consider but then again, that's why you would call me to help you figure it out!

When a color POPS it tends to be either  brighter or darker  in value than the other colors around it.
Without getting into too much color theory, it also depends on their position on the color wheel as to how they react to each other. There is a misconception that only brights or primary colors pop, but it really just depends on the color they are next to.
These colors are incorporated into a room using furniture, fabric, art and accessories, etc. evoking an energetic and vibrant feeling. This color scheme needs to be controlled carefully as to avoid a jarring feeling. Tobi Fairley does a beautiful job by introducing painted furniture and pops of color through art into the bedroom below.

                                                                    Tobi Fairley Home  

By keeping the patterns and colors controlled, one fabric is allowed to Pop and your space will come alive.

                                                                Rosa Dest Interiors
When I refer to a color palette as one that BLENDS, it tends to be a combination of muted colors such as pastels or neutrals. For example a monochromatic color schemes is one that uses shades of one color throughout the room evoking a feeling of  and calm and cozy. For example, Suzanne Kasler uses similar shades of blue in this beautiful dining room to elicit a feeling of calm.

                                                            Suzanne Kasler Interiors

Another example is to use pattern. You can achieve a  beautiful blend by selecting a combination of patterns that are similar in value and as a result a serene and comfortable design.

                                                                       Rosa Dest Interiors
There is no right or wrong answer to this exercise... the key is to figure out which you prefer and commit!

Now to the question:

Do you Pop or do you Blend??

Five ways to help you determine whether you Pop or Blend:

1. What colors are your eyes naturally drawn to?
     •Is it the softer colors or neutrals?
     •Is it the brighter more vibrant colors?
2. Do you like to add pattern or texture into the mix?
     •Do you like to see texture in the same colors?
     •Do you like to have a contrast between the pattern and the colors?
3. What mood do you want your room to convey?
     •A peaceful serene feeling?
     •A bright and cheerful feeling?
4. Do you want to feel like saying OOOHHH  or WOW!!  as you walk in?
5. Consider your personal style and  how you like to dress, it oftentimes reflects your home.
     •Your closet says it all, how we dress is usually an indication of the colors we like to surround ourselves with.

My job is to create  both a WOW and an OOOHHH in your spaces. By determining whether you prefer a pop of color or a blend of color gives me an insight into your color sense. What it really comes down to, is making the colors you like  - WORK for YOU! 

                           Feeling Color challenged?
                                         Let's talk about your project !

Colorfully yours,


Thursday, July 13, 2017

Thinking about Downsizing?

My top tips for simplifying and streamlining the process to make a CHANGE right from the start!

Change is never an easy thing to embrace, it always seems to come with a little bit of fear.
In honor of Father's Day, I would like to send a big shout out to my dad Mario who was fearless in his decision 50 years ago to immigrate to the United States with my mom and five children. On June 17th our family will be celebrating a decision that changed our life for ever.

We all don't need to immigrate to make life changing decisions but deciding to embrace a remodel or deciding to downsize are overwhelming decisions that require courage and patience. This is totally understandable and why calling a professional will help simplify and streamline the process.

Recently I started working with a lady who is soon to be 81 and she is making the big transition from her forever home to a smaller place. This transition comes with a lot of emotions and anxiety and my job is not only to help her create a comfortable and beautiful home that will meet her needs, but most importantly to help her make the transition on time and on budget.

Have a Plan
Deciding what downsizing looks like is key to making it happen. Consider the following questions: Where am I going to go? When is this going to happen? How is this going to happen? What does the new place need? Which of my pieces will fit into the new place? What is my budget?
These are all questions to consider when creating your plan and it is the beginning of making the change happen for you.
A good professional will be able to help you resolve the concerns you have.

1. Your potential budget
Having a good idea of what your potential budget  is critical to knowing exactly what you can do. It also gives the professionals involved a clear understanding of your expectations and gives us direction as to how to best guide you.

2. Begin by purging
This is a dreaded task, but actually a very important one in bringing clarity and helping you downsize without the baggage we all collect over our lifetimes.

A. I recommend making three piles-
    1. The Love, got to have pile.
    2. The Maybe my kids will want this pile. (they won't)
    3. The Oh My Gosh, I can't believe I still have this and it's got  to go pile.

B. Revisit #2 and #3 and break those piles down into do I love or need these, if you don't, immediately proceed C.

C. Call Habitat, Good Will, the Veterans and get rid of it!

3. Make a List
Make a list of everything you are going to need in your new home.
Make another list of your furniture pieces that you would like to take with you and please make a list of the ones you think you would like to take, but not sure if they will fit before you give meaningful and valuable pieces away.

Here again, hiring a professional who can guide you with scale, size and creative ways to use your furniture is extremely valuable.

4. Inspirational images
This is a new beginning so make it special...dream. Begin collecting inspirational images and save them to Pinterest boards or Houzz idea books , so you can share them easily.

5. Architect,Designer,General Contractor
Depending on your project and your needs you will most likely want to begin with the right team to begin making changes.
At Rosa Dest Interiors, we love to be the very first professionals you call, whether you are ready for a designer or not. We can guide you with trades, make recommendations and point you in the right direction.

 I'd like to encourage those considering a change to embrace it, get the right help and enjoy the ride.