Traditional Floral Prints are Making a Comeback

by Lisa Stewart 16 Jun 2018

Floral motifs are always classic and timeless.

The left photo of Nancy Pyne by Jonathan Becker was featured in Town and Country Magazine in 1987. The right photo by Melanie Acevedo shows Nancy Pyne at her current home.  

The fetching floral chintz pattern on the left was famously used by distinguished designer Albert Hadley for his client, legendary socialite tastemaker Nancy Pyne in the 1960’s. In 2010 with the help of Hadley and Pyne, Schumacher reintroduced the beautiful floral print on the right. Available as a fabric and a wallcovering, this popular pattern named Pyne Hollyhock is gracing furniture, windows and walls once again. 

Thinking of adding this time-honored elegant look to your home? It’s available in quintessential color collections that will revive any décor, especially when paired with one of the latest contemporary geometric prints in the same colorway.  

Photos left to right: Caitlin Wilson Design, Michelle Adams, Erin Gates Design

Lisa Stewart is an interior designer serving the Triangle area of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, NC.

Interior Design Inspiration from The Past at Tryon Palace

by Lisa Stewart 18 May 2018

Historic New Bern North Carolina has colonial design roots.

Tryon Palace, located in New Bern, North Carolina, is a replica of the mansion built in the late 1760s. Royal Governor William Tryon brought architect John Hawks from London to design and build the Georgian-style structure to serve as the first Colonial capitol of North Carolina and home to the Tryon family.

Following the revolution, the site held the general assembly for the State of North Carolina and housed the state governors until 1794.

Shortly after the state capital was relocated to Raleigh in 1792 the original building burned to the ground. After an extensive 30-year campaign to rebuild with the original architect's plans this modern recreation was erected on the site in the 1950s.  

Today, the Palace with recreated gardens is a State Historic Site that lives on as a testament to history, community and rebirth. 

There are many other beautiful historic homes and sites in New Bern within walking distance of several nice Bed and Breakfasts. Plan your stay soon. 

Lisa Stewart is an interior designer serving the Triangle area of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, NC.

Barry Dixon and Lisa Stewart Chat Interior Design

by Lisa Stewart 21 Apr 2018

Blending global decorating styles

“A room should start a conversation before people actually start exchanging words.” 
~Barry Dixon

Photos: Erik Kvalsvik, Peter Vitale
See the careful attention to detail in this bookcase styled by Barry with the homeowner's collection.

Barry Dixon is known for a distinct aesthetic that blends Western styles with global influences from a childhood spent abroad in India, Pakistan, Korea, New Caledonia and South Africa. With projects spanning the world, Dixon imagines interiors that infuse artifacts and antiques with present-day motifs – all preserving the history and personality of the homeowners and their treasures.

What fun to connect with Barry at the Tomlinson Showroom. Notice how our design philosophies align. Whether designing your home or your life, we inspire you to embrace the world of the possibilities! 

Lisa Stewart is an interior designer serving the Triangle area of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, NC.

Lavish Bath Remodels to Love

by Lisa Stewart 17 Feb 2018

Luxury interior design bath tile for less in Raleigh.

This stunning marble bath remodel features Marvel Calacatta Extra Bath Porcelain Tile from the Mosaic Showroom in Raleigh. It’s reasonably priced and installs beautifully. Shown here, the largest tiles are 18 x 36 when installed with grout. The luxurious look of imported Italian marble is astounding and can be yours for less than you might think! 

Below, these 4 x 8 Mirage Privilege porcelain tile wall slabs create an upscale statement but cost less than real stone options. If you like a grand palatial look, this one’s for you. It can also be found at the Mosaic Showroom.

Lisa Stewart is an interior designer serving the Triangle area of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, NC.

Interior Designers in the Triangle Love Local Artists

by Lisa Stewart 16 Feb 2018

Decorate with Artists from Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill.

Local Artist, Dan Campbell of Morrisville, proudly stands by his wonderful tryptic masterpiece. Dan and I collaborated to recreate on canvas the family’s treasured beach memories. This neutral art piece has delightful hints of the metallic gold and silver found in their beloved sandy beaches.  The feel of ocean and beach is perfectly completed by the nearby rug with its touches of ocean blue-greens. 

This contemporary chic home absolutely sprung to life with the homeowners’ personality the moment Dan installed his creation. What a thrill to be there! Thanks, Dan!

Read More Here: Decorate with Artists from Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill.

Lisa Stewart is an interior designer serving the Triangle area of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, NC.

Pantone Color of the Year 2018

by Lisa Stewart 20 Jan 2018

Decorating with purple accents add intrigue and sophistication. 

PANTONE Color of the Year is 18-3838 Ultra Violet. The color of the vast night sky is symbolic of limitless possibilities. It communicates originality, ingenuity, and creative thinking. Inventive and imaginative, this thought-provoking shade of purple lights the way to what is yet to come.

Purple has always been my favorite color. This model home in China has touches of purple with warm creams and silver. Designed in 2016, it was ahead of the trend! 

Lisa Stewart is an interior designer serving the Triangle area of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, NC.


5 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer Before You Build or Remodel

by Lisa Stewart 16 Dec 2017

Working with an experienced interior designer teamed with your contractor can help control costs while upgrading creativity so you end up with a distinctive home that flows beautifully throughout. 


Why hire an interior designer? 

1. Couples don’t always agree. Designers can reconcile conflicting styles and make unlike things work together in surprising ways. 

2. Designers keep up with the latest trends and techniques in building construction. We come up with beautiful creative ideas and solutions that you would never think about. Builders appreciate what we bring to the table.

3. Interior designers know when to splurge and how to save without sacrificing style. Allowances can be blown easily, so designers can oversee selections of cabinetry, lighting and other items to help keep you on track. 

4. Designers know the best sources. Most designers have access to unusual items not available to the public. 

5. Designers use common sense. There are so many gorgeous things out there. You can become emotional when trying make multiple important decisions at one time. “I love this. And I love that!” Feeling overwhelmed, the temptation is to admit defeat and let the builder or sales staff choose. Really? Designers are in the best position to help you make decisions that are practical and that beautifully contribute to your overall design vision. 

Time to call Lisa! Read more here.

Lisa Stewart is an interior designer serving the Triangle area of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, NC. 

Tips for Hiring a Contractor

by Lisa Stewart 18 Nov 2017

An interior designer’s advice for remodeling or building.

Are you considering working with a contractor for remodeling or building a new home? Here are some things to consider.

Get at least three estimates that include everything from repairs, warranties to clean-up. The unforeseen things can get you, and you don't want to be gotten!

Don't be too quick to jump at the lowest bid. A Consumer Reports survey showed that people who used the lowest bidder got poorer quality work. On the flipside going with the highest bidder doesn't guarantee great work either.

Call at least three references. Ask about quality, clean-up, how changes were handled, if calls were returned, and if the job was completed on time and on budget. If not, find out why.

Make sure the contractor is licensed. In North Carolina, a contractor's license is only required for jobs costing $30,000 or more. But while a license doesn't guarantee success in a job, it does indicate a certain level of professionalism and competence. You can check their licensing status at the NC Licensing Board of General Contractors.

Get proof of insurance and verify it so that you're not liable for problems. Ask them to provide you with a Certificate of Insurance dated for the project dates and issued by the Insurance Provider before they start work on your home.  

Get a written contract that specifically lists what will be done, a payment schedule and a time table, including a completion date.

Ready to start a project? Read more here.

Lisa Stewart is an interior designer serving the Triangle area of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, NC.