Spring is officially, finally here!

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Springtide Remodels

Maybe more like a monsoon? I think spring makes us all want to breathe (or blast) a little new life into our surroundings - clean out the cobwebs, take a fresh-eyed inventory, re-arrange, and perhaps even entirely rework a room or two. As an interior design firm, it isn't a coincidence that we always experience a spring-time rush of new clients, all of whom are seeking renewed inspiration in their environments. Sure, it might get a bit busy for us here at BLD but it's also our favorite time of the year! How can we resist the magic deluge of sparkling perspectives, which always make for a nice little pick-me-up for anything that was feeling stale and uninspired? 

With spring (and its change-driven energy) in the air, we thought we'd compile some notes to help you answer the question: do I just need to do a little revamping and restyling or is it finally time to jump into a full remodel? Of course the decision is a unique one for everyone and every home, but here are some thoughts for anyone torn between superficial, cosmetic updates and something a bit more extensive... 

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Are you and your space candidates for construction?

  • First thing first: it's generally advantageous if you've lived in your home for at least a couple of months before approaching a project involving construction. If you've just purchased a new place, there are so many things that will pass by unnoticed the first year until you wake up one morning and think that the house has maybe up and rearranged itself while you were sleeping (unless you’ve already enlisted professional help, of course!). Living with a space for a few months allows the time to take stock of the good, the bad, and the ugly. You might fall in love with the more traditional, closed floor plan that you thought you hated or you might decide against your better judgement that you absolutely must have more closet space. 

  • You're planning to stay in the house for the foreseeable future. Remodeling for resale and remodeling your dream house are two very different things, my friends. Only one is done with fresh fervor! 

  • You have defined goals and a clear(ish?) budget. Clarity on what you need functionally, what you want stylistically, and what your wallet can feasibly part with are...important to say the least. Think through what absolutely must be modified now (like you are definitely going to die if you have to look at that horrid granite countertop again, right?) and what can wait for another day and another dollar.

  • You've sat with your inspiration folder for a few months and are still in love with what you fell for originally. There are the trends we are attracted to in the moment and then there are all of the separate elements that become our forever home. Building that trust and confidence in the things you love before they become the things you have is so key to creating a finished space that feels cohesive and very much you at the same time. 

  • You are coming up on a period of time where you can be displaced for several weeks (or months - let's be real).

  • You are feelin' flexible, fluid, and collaborative. Construction means pivoting in the face of the unexpected, and the more zen-like you can approach the whole creative process the better.  

What do you think? Is it your space’s time to re-shine?!

Our mantra for 2019.

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More is, in fact, more.

Not that I've ever been one to shy away from minimalism, but I expect that 2019 might be the year we'll finally be able to answer that age-old question, "Just how much is too much?" It might be a bit of wishful thinking but I won't be surprised if everyone continues to riff on the maximalist trend that we started to see in 2018, pushing the envelope on what it means to leave restraint at the front door and let your inner bon vivant run wild. 

This means turning up the bold saturated hues while layering copious patterns and rich textures; drawing in sharp-lined pieces next to curved, organic shapes; and, curating spaces that reflect depth and personality. It means playfully mixing different eras and styles in a way that pays tribute to their individual histories and affects while also contrasting and reinterpreting them. And I do think playful is the key word here! For me, maximalist design should give you a taste of indulgence without making you feel like you're underdressed and overwhelmed. There's an artful balance to achieve (maybe somewhere between oh my god this complete dedication to minimalism is so stark that it's cutting my eyes and wait, is that where my weird great aunt lives?) and it can be difficult to hit all the right notes because, in the end, maximalism is all about forming a cohesive whole (like everything else in design, right?) while telling its story with seemingly disparate elements that are sometimes just chewing at the bit to compete with each other. 

So, how do we pin down the oh-so-tricky maximalist muse and make it meaningful for our homes? 


  • Choose a color palette or motif that will course through the space - unifying it so that when taken together, all of the contrasting bits and pieces are juxtaposed with suggestion and intention. A fool-proof way to achieve this is by drawing inspiration from a wallpaper print or piece of art.

  • Don't overdo it. There's a difference between evoking maximalism and falling into the underworld of clutterdom (it's a real place, trust me). Maximalism doesn't mean surrendering to an incomprehensible indulgence. If you're into clean, minimal tabletops, you can still go maximalist by incorporating a wider variety of finishes and textures. A grasscloth or mica wallpaper, for example, can do a lot of the heavy lifting as can the fabrics you select for your furnishings, drapery, and throws.

  • Embrace eclecticism and mix different eras and styles. For example, if you’re a midcentury modern loyalist, it doesn't mean you have to be monogamous. When curated consciously, multiple design styles play beautifully together, so try mixing contemporary pieces with plenty of vintage or layering some of your more modern decor choices with Hollywood regency influences.

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I'll leave you with this last thought. Think about starting a collection.  If I can sum up my 2019 design dreams in just a few words, I would say this: this is the year to start collecting the soulful pieces that speak to you and for you because that's what your home should do - don't you think?  

A Little Heart-Shaped Inspiration

February 14th doesn't have to be all cherubs and cupid's bows and meet cutes. For us at BLD, it's just another excuse to celebrate some of our favorite design duos. Pink and red color combos? Yes, please and always. Brass and black accents are never not sexy and curvy, organic shapes tend to make us a little starry-eyed. Of course we're always swooning when lacquer is laid on thick and we can't help it if textured wallpaper reminds us of a little old-fashioned romance. In the name of falling head over heels all day everyday, we've put together a little visual ode to our design valentines. So here's to celebrating our love story with all things design!

BLD Blog

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Hello, lovelies!

Welcome to the BLD blog - we're so excited to start this adventure with you! As a design firm dedicated to living ever lovelier, we are delighted to announce that we've created this space as one devoted to all things interior design: somewhere to untangle our design philosophies, share hard-won knowledge, collect inspiration, spill tried and true tricks, and explore the archives of design. After years of being asked for interior design advice, we decided to set up a landing page to collect the answers to the questions we get asked the most (and even the more niche ones!) and make known our unceasing design musings.

Part memoir and part manual, here we hope to take you behind the scenes us as we move through projects and continually refine our work. After all design is a messy business. The "after" always looks so perfectly pulled together but getting there is a whole different story, and that's the story we'd like to tell here. 

If we just provide you with a regular dose of design inspiration, we'll consider the whole quest a success... here's to a well-designed 2019, loves! 

xoxo,

Caitlin + the BLD crew