Interior Design

Our Favorite Advice from Dallas Designers in 2016

From their biggest pet peeves to being fabulously frugal, our city’s top talents had some solid advice for living a stylish life.

On When to Save or Splurge

If something is well designed and you love—even if it’s at Target—by all means buy it! 
Alana Villanueva

Splurge on gorgeous handmade tiles. The pattern, color, and texture they add to a kitchen or bath sets the backdrop like nothing else.
Erin Sander

Reclaimed wood or industrial objects can be made into great conversation pieces and can be done inexpensively. Lost Antiques, White Elephant, and LuLa B’s are all great resources.
 Jen Mauldin

As long as you have a few really fabulous pieces, you can go frugal on the surrounding items. Those special pieces will enrich everything around them.
 Sherry Hayslip 

Fabulous pillows finish off any space. And because they require so little fabric, go for the most luxurious options to complement your color scheme. 
Debra Stewart

Splurge on a unique chandelier or ceiling fixture—something over scale and dramatic that will be the focal point of the room. 
Emily Johnston Larkin

Designers’ Biggest Pet Peevespet-peeve

Nothing good happened in the 1980’s design-wise, so the trend to return to them is not good.
 Jan Showers

You can have a great–looking piece, but if the scale is wrong, it’s like an ill–fitting dress.
 Samantha Fisher

I don’t like to be uncomfortable in a room. I really don’t like when scales are off: massive armoires, oversized light fixtures, and rugs too small for their rooms.
 Cynthia Collins

How to Grow Potted Plants

The bigger the pot, the less often it will need watering. Buy the largest you can afford and place it before you fill it with soil. –Mariana Greene

Must Have Entertaining Elements

Flowers from Grange Hall always bring a sense of luxury and life to any setting. 
Brant McFarlain

I light a ton of candles and put them everywhere. They are so romantic.
 Tracy Rasor

If something is well designed and you love—even if it’s at Target—by all means buy it! 
–Alana Villanueva

Rules to Design By

Don’t hang art too high, and always use down or down substance for pillows.
Elizabeth White

I place a table and a lamp beside every chair/sofa. Design needs to be practical. Who wants to sit in a chair with no light for reading and no place to set a drink?
 Jan Showers

Always have at least one quirky item that you love in each room of your home, preferably a one-of-a-kind piece with some age to it—something with soul. 
–Mary Cates


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