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Local Interior Design Experts Offer Some Helpful Advice 

click to enlarge “Good design in quality materials from any era mixed together will create the most interesting design,” says Geraldine Duskin.

photo courtesy Geraldine Duskin

“Good design in quality materials from any era mixed together will create the most interesting design,” says Geraldine Duskin.

Geraldine Duskin

How can you combine old and new pieces and make them work? 

This is a delicate balance. Inherited older pieces that are interesting and-or have sentimental value can create a striking juxtaposition in a contemporary interior. Too much of a good thing will look old-fashioned and stuffy. On the other hand, the better quality and workmanship of many older pieces can eclipse new things and make them look shabby. Good design in quality materials from any era mixed together will create the most interesting design. 

If you want to completely redo a space, where do you start?

For structural changes, it's best to engage an architect. For a design redo I would suggest removing unnecessary elements such as crown molding and chair rails, refinish the floor, choose a beautiful wall color and then begin adding furniture and art.

How can you buy antiques on a budget? 

Many people and dealers are selling off possessions and inventory now, so this is a good time to buy. Try online auctions like Kamelot's. Their recent sale had many bought-in lots that were well priced on reoffer. Also, visit malls such as West End Antiques Mall and Project1, resale shops such as Revival and estate sales like Phoenix.

What's most important to remember when choosing your own design elements?

Have confidence in your individual taste and don't be timid or too trendy. The world of design is at your fingertips online, so take advantage of it. Engaging a decorator can help you organize and refine your choices.

What's your one piece of advice for a first time home decorator?

Don't rush, proceed organically, consider your budget and choose the best you can afford. 

Geraldine Duskin Design, 344-1557 by appointment. Also at Project1, 2012 Staples Mill Road.

Michael Maszaros

How can you combine old and new pieces and make it work? 

Mixing old and new doesn't have to be daunting or complicated. If the old pieces are case goods, then the background — walls and floors — should be more contemporary as a contrast, but if the old pieces are upholstery, I like to update the fabric and pair them with more contemporary case goods. Modern art adds a sophisticated air to any space, regardless of style and helps blend old and new by anchoring the eye in bold artistic expressions.

If you want to completely redo a space, where do you start? 

That varies. Some clients have a unique item like a handmade pillow or work of art that has meaning to them and we build the room around that. Sometimes, it's the overall feeling we begin with — the background — and work our way to the finer details. In both cases, the decisions are guided by the desired style and functionality of the space.  

How can you buy antiques on a budget? 

The most important piece of advice is to not be in a hurry. You might find the perfect piece, but it's out of your price range. Be patient, because eventually you'll find the right piece at the right price. Get to know the auctioneers and the estate sale companies because they let regulars know about unique and valuable pieces hidden in the inventory.

What's most important to remember when choosing your own design elements?

One trap I see clients fall into is thinking they have to love every single element in their space. This leads them to question each tiny detail, getting stuck on the small stuff, when really it's the big picture they're after. A room contains both focal points and backgrounds. Fall in love with the elements you use often and let the rest become decorative support.  

What's your one piece of advice for a first time home decorator?

Seek professional help! If it's your first time trying to put together a space, a designer can save you time, money and frustration. We navigate the millions of options to arrive at a curated selection providing both beauty and functionality. A first-time decorator should have an idea how much they want to invest in décor. Designers love having a budget to guide decisions and can often do more with your budget than you could on your own.

Michael Maszaros at Cabin Creek Interiors, 639-2510, 6733 Lake Harbour Drive, Midlothian, info@cabincreekva.com.  

Susan Jamieson

How can you combine old and new pieces and make it work? 

I love combining old and new pieces in a room, like an old farm dining table with modern chrome chairs. The secret is to follow the lines of the furniture. Curved legs on a table work well with a curved back chair. 

If you want to completely redo a space, where do you start?

I like to start with the overall look, then space planning for furniture and finally, fabrics and colors. 

How can you buy antiques on a budget? 

The best way to buy antiques on a budget is to buy at yard sales. You can find some great deals as well as fixer-upper items.

What's most important to remember when choosing your own design elements?

Don't get too carried away with one style.  A room is more interesting when it feels collected and not forced.

What's your one piece of advice for a first time home decorator?

Always paint a sample swatch on your walls before you pick a final paint color. Natural light and artificial light change paint colors once they're applied to the wall.

Susan M. Jamieson at Bridget Beari Designs, 321-4747, Bridget Beari Home Store 1528 W. Cary St., info@bridgetbeari.com.

 

 

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