Posts Tagged ‘Before’

Source: Casa Sugar

I recently had a client come to me who needs help designing the family room in her new condo.  Kim has just turned 28, started a new government job, and feels like it is finally time to buy some “big girl furniture” and to get rid of the ol’ Ikea and college hand-me-down junk.

Designed by Julien Macdonald for Graham & Brown

I decided to post about this project because Kim and I have a very similar aesthetic and I really connected with what she has envisioned- “mature”, “sophisticated”, and “elegant” were the three words she said when I asked her to describe what she had envisioned.  In other words, she likes a feminine yet refined look with a modern twist.

Design by Lauren Racowsky

Designed by Lauren Racowsky

(I want to point out that she did not want the TV to be the focal point in the room.)

Kim’s Famly Room floor plan

I just love taking traditional pieces but updating them with a modern and graphic fabric and bold paint!

Source: Ethan Allen

I achieved this look by combining clean modern pieces and dark woods with accents (like the floor lamp) that have a more organic shape.

Source: tables and accents-Ethan Allen, sofa-Holly Hunt, chair- Jaxon Home, rug- Fabrica, paint- Ben Moore

What’s your take on modern meets traditional?

If you need help designing your own space, contact me!


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Source: home-library-design-ideas.blogspot.com

My clients, Kate and Jim, have been building a house in the Friendship Heights part of DC for the last 9 months and are finally ready to move in!  With the “Library” being the first room seen at the front of the house, they wanted this to be the first focus of the project. 

The room is bright with white walls, dark floors, and lots of built-in shelving.  Kate gave me guidelines for this room: she needs a desk to work at, there will need to be a small TV in the room, she wants it to be “fresh”, “airy”, and “WARM”,  but absolutely no seafoam and mineral blues, and she wants a white sofa.


Color scheme

So my challenge was to select a color palette that is bright and fresh but to avoid greens and blues (which was the color scheme in her old house and she is totally tired of).  Okay, a warm but bright palette that would work with a white sofa, sounds difficult since I usually associate warmer tones with creams and not white.

Source: sofa-Kravet, chairs- Ethan Allen, ottoman- Ballard, casegoods and accents- Ethan Allen

I achieved the look Kate and Jim wanted by finding fabrics with a white base but accents of bright orange and yellow.  I also kept a fresh vibe in the room by combining white-painted wood furniture with natural elements like a raw wood lamp on the desk and the bamboo woven area rug.

Library Floor Plan

I will be sure to post pictures of the finished product when everything is installed so stay tuned in the next few months!


If you need help achieving this look or tackling any other design challenge, feel free to contact me!

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Source: kerriekelly.com

Not too long ago I had a client, Kelly, come to me who had recently moved from a large suburban home inVirginia into a smaller single family home in DC.   Size wise, this was a pretty big downgrade for Kelly as she lost her formal living room but wanted to keep a dining room to entertain in.

Source: domicileid.com

When I first met Kelly and saw her home, the “Dining Room” was filled with living room furniture (that would eventually all make it down to her cottage home).



Her goal was to transform the room back into a Dining Room where her family could eat dinner every night, but also a room to entertain guests on special occasions and holidays.  Basically, this space needed to be formal, comfortable, yet functional! 

By using fabrics with great graphic detail and rich color around the table, we were able to keep the room feeling fresh and comfortable.  I love how the simple hound’s tooth print on the side chairs lets the floral on the Martha Washington arm chairs pop! The only element that we kept the same in the room were the woven shades she had installed right before our meeting- they look great with the light striped fabric we selected for the custom window treatments.

Design by Lauren Racowsky

We also had to cover the awful radiator under the front window.  Most older DC homes still have radiators and this one completely detracted from the elegance of the design.  The radiator cover we had built was completely custom and looks original to the home!  It turned out perfect. 

The finishing touch was to hang a chandelier over the table which definitely turned this room into a Dining Room.  And with some fun accessories that pull from the colors in the chair fabrics, this room feels like home.

Design by Lauren Racowsky

Design by Lauren Racowsky

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