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How to Decorate

We want to teach you how to decorate! We'll help you unleash your inner decorator with interviews from interior designers, sharing the trials and triumphs from our own homes, and answering your burning decorating questions. Brought to you from the Ballard Designs team.
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Now displaying: Category: general
Oct 30, 2018

Today, Bradley Odom joins in to share his background in retail and interior design, the inspiration for his iconic store Dixon Rye, and how he is shaking up the home styling industry. He also discusses the mix of raw and refined, the importance of scale and ways we can make our space well curated and uniquely personal.

What You’ll Hear on This Episode:

  • Bradley’s background in retail and interior design and home stylist work.

  • How brick and mortar stores are still very much alive and important and require smart and educated decisions on what’s going where for particular seasons.

  • How we can understand scale, and what scales work for a particular space.

  • The mixing and editing of materials to keep the9 ebb and flow of old and new.

  • Bradley’s time at The Savannah College of Art and Design, and the challenges of obtaining a degree while working a busy full-time job.

  • His love for Atlanta’s artisan community, and why he chose Atlanta over any other possible locations.

  • The life cycle of products and the importance of good quality.

  • The most important things to invest in, and what items should be hand me down pieces.

  • Why Bradley may not believe in purchasing things just because they may be timeless.

  • Mixing neutrals, and how neutrals can take on a masculine or feminine role. And yes, there has been a beige sofa on the floor.

  • The history of Dixon Rye, and the challenges that the space faces due to the 1940’s industrial feel.

  • The amazing potential of small houses decorated and styles really well.

  • How to tackle storage in the bedroom without cluttering the room with furniture.

  • Why it’s not what or how many things we have, it’s the way they fit in the room.

  • A power statement can be everything, even just one rug.

  • Why not to gallery wall yourself out of every situation.

  • His use of brass, silver, and metal in different projects to create a look and feel.

  • How we bring more lighting into our space, picture lamps, and the importance of using lamps that work in scale.

  • Why it’s better to invest and buy “better, fewer things.”

  • The subjective nature of “luxury” and why the term doesn’t always mean high end.


Decorating Dilemmas

Hello ladies,

I have thoroughly enjoyed the podcast since discovering it a few weeks ago, and have since been 'binge listening', is that a thing?!? We are currently planning a complete remodel of a small footprint full bath off our hallway, and I envision something with a mix of styles. My question: Lucky for me, we live close by in Athens, but honestly, Atlanta seems a world away when it comes to navigating shops and good venues for sourcing tile, tubs, and good lighting. Can y'all recommend a few stores where I could see a good selection of higher quality tile in person? I already tried the big box options and I'm not finding what I'm looking for. I am really having fun with this process and look forward to exploring ATL and all it has to offer for stylish options to bring into my home. Thanks for any advice!

Christine

PS -- Scott's market is already on my radar, I've been a few times over the years. Also, I've purchased some nice brass door hardware at Masterpiece Lighting recently, and have them on my list.

Bradley gives some examples of local tile stores that are both boutique and big box stores. The tile itself matters, but the pattern and grout you choose also are large factors. A white subway tile with a jet black grout creates drama and an interesting mood rather than just plain white. You may also want to go to high-end stores for inspiration, then take your ideas for a combination of affordable and luxury tile.

Hi Ladies!

I love the podcast! It feels like a conversation with friends who love decorating and design even more than I do! Your warmth and humor comes across in each episode. When I heard the call for decorating dilemmas, I knew I could deliver you one!

My dilemma has to do with our master bedroom. We live in a 1923 house (american foursquare with some craftsman touches) which is lovely and has loads of character, but basically, no right angles left anymore. Our master bedroom faces the street, and if you leaned out the windows on the side wall, you could practically touch my neighbors MIL apartment above his garage. As you can see from the detail photo, one of the street facing windows is noticeably closer to the ceiling than the other. One is also right up against the side wall where my closet is. How can I cover these windows so it doesn't look weird? I'd like to not draw attention to the fact that the edges in this house are a little bit Seussian and we also need privacy. The current shades are leftover from the previous owner.

My second question is, how do I work with that fireplace? All the furniture in the photos is from my husband's bachelor days. All the pieces have basically been given a stay of execution and that is why they are still here. Having a fireplace in the master bedroom is pretty awesome. We do live in Texas, however, and have absolutely no need to use it. Your suggestions for what furniture to get and how to arrange it would be most appreciated! I don't want to ignore the fireplace but feature it in a way that makes sense for the space. My style vibe is new traditional.

Many, many thanks for your suggestions and pointers!

Kind regards,

Mary

One of the most new traditional things you can do is get rid of your ceiling fans! An outside mount with custom-made Roman shade can help draw attention to where it needs to go. Let the wood beams and fireplace be the hero because they are natural and beautiful. You can have some fun with your windows, and pick solid linen drapery on one side, and prints on the other. We love the deep brick, red of your fireplace, and the bungalow vibe it gives to the room. We also like the idea of a possible round standing sculpture on the wall.

 

Show Notes

Dixon Rye

@dixon_rye

Dixon Rye Facebook

SCAD

Paul Schneider

 

May 16, 2017

We recently traveled to High Point, North Carolina for their Spring Market and had the chance to sit down with some of our favorite tastemakers. This week, we're sharing our interview with the Editor in Chief of Domino Magazine, Jessica Romm Perez. She's worked at some of our favorite magazines -- Martha Stewart, Food & Wine, and Elle Decor just to name a few -- so we loved chatting with her about what trends she's seeing at market, her recent home renovation, and how her team dreams up such a gorgeous issue! Of course we couldn't end the episode without her answering your decorating questions!

WHAT YOU'LL HEAR ON THIS EPISODE:

  • We're in High Point Market in North Carolina interviewing interior designers and editors
  • We talk about why we love market and what it is
  • Karen's triumph is the new bed she put in her guest bedroom
  • Her trial is that her guest bedroom closet won't close because of the bed!
  • We talk about how everything in Karen's house is from Ballard but why it doesn't actually look like our catalog or store
  • Taryn's trial and triumph is a new console table she got from the Ballard outlet
  • My triumph is that I took a macaron making class with my mom and now I'm a macaron expert!
  • My trial is that I missed my rose bush blooming while I was in London, and it won't bloom again until next year. So disappointing! Also the saying about roses that I couldn't remember is, "First it sleeps, then it creeps, then it leaps."
  • We talk about her favorite part of market, how her editorial team decides which trends to feature in the magazine, and what is exciting her right now at market
  • She shares her best tips for decorating with kids, including organizing kid's toys in her small New York apartment
  • How systems are a crucial part of her decorating and organizing strategy
  • How she stepped into the role of editor in chief at such a beloved brand and magazine
  • We talk about our favorite recent features in the latest issue of Domino, like the crudite platter Karen recently tried
  • Jessica talks about their focus at Domino which is focusing on real, attainable living by real people. It's not just about a fantasy, everything they share is attainable.
  • Jessica shares her rules for mixing metals in your home -- just go for it!
  • She shares her most recent home purchase and talks about her home renovation
  • What colors she's gravitating toward and why color impacts the mood of your home
Apr 25, 2017

Interior designer Beth Webb's spaces are comfortable, tailored, and utterly timeless, so you can our imagine our delight when she joined us for this week's episode of the podcast. We talk about her recent challenge of blending her own style with her new husbands, we talk entertaining, southern hospitality, and the importance of great lighting, among other things.

WHAT YOU'LL HEAR ON THIS EPISODE

  • My garden related triumph and allergy related trial
  • Taryn has a cleaning conundrum she needs help solving
  • Taryn talks about her recent accessory addition
  • Karen's stranger danger experience in her neighborhood
  • Why it's so great to be an interior designer in Atlanta
  • We talk the business of design, including comraderie, client relationships, and social media
  • How she's combined her own style aesthetic with her new husband's more contemporary style
  • What are her decorating pet peeves
  • The importance of having layers of light in your space
  • Why scale is so important, why it's hard to teach, and how to approach scale in your own home
Mar 28, 2017

**Disclaimer: We had some technical difficulty with one of our mics. It refused to cooperate! We hope you'll enjoy the show anyway.**

Being the design-aholics we are, we couldn’t turn down an opportunity to interview the Editor-in-Chief of Atlanta Magazine’s HOME, Betsy Riley. We have Betsy to thank for reviving the title in 2015. Each issue brings some of the most gorgeous and inspiring spaces in Atlanta, so we were thrilled to pick her brain about what makes a house magazine-worthy and how she decorates in her own home.

WHAT YOU’LL HEAR IN THIS EPISODE:

  • Karen’s bathroom-related entertaining disaster 
  • Karen tested our Brian Patrick Flynn’s drapery training trick
  • Taryn talks about her entertaining pet peeve — everyone gravitating to the kitchen
  • Taryn’s shade swap with a big lighting lesson — take your lamp base to the store!
  • Why some beautiful homes just aren’t right for a magazine
  • How she picks which homes to feature and what types of spaces don’t make it to the magazine
  • What her biggest decorating challenge is
  • Why you have to be able to let things go
  • Betsy’s tips for making your spaces look good in photographs
  • We talk about Betsy’s black and white issue

 

Feb 28, 2017

We can't help but be struck by how powerful yet restrained interior designer Melanie Turner's spaces are, and we were even more struck by how down-to-earth and cool she is. In only seven short years after opening her interior design business, she's earned such accolades as Veranda's Southeastern Designer of the Year, Trad Home's Top 10 Designers, Architectural Digest's 2010 Kitchen of the Year, and many more. We were beyond thrilled when she sat down to talk with us about her recents trip to Morocco, the power of vision boards, why she never puts bookshelves in a home, and so much more.

WHAT YOU'LL HEAR ON THE SHOW:

  • How Melanie uses vision boards to turn her dreams into reality
  • We talk about the photo shoot Ballard Designs did at Melanie's house
  • The powerful history of her historic home and the spiritual connection she has to it
  • Why she feels like a steward of her house instead of an owner
  • She talks about how practical the home is for modern life, even though it was built in 1923
  • We talk a bit about Atlanta architect Phillip Shutze and historic preservation
  • How owning a historic home has helped her with her client work
  • All the fabulous locales where she currently has projects
  • She tells us all about her trip to Morocco, including what she brought home and visiting Yves Saint Laurent's house
  • How you remember much more if you can't take photographs
  • Why instead of gifts, they take a family trip every year during the holidays
  • Why editing is the most powerful thing you can do to refresh your home
  • Her approach to picture frames -- framing them in one big mass on a stairwell instead of spread throughout
  • Melanie talks about how she manifested her project onto the cover of Veranda magazine with a vision board
  • How rewarding it is to give purpose to her client's homes
  • How at her client installations, the husband is usually the one who cries the most!
  • Why you shouldn't dismiss how important your home is
  • Why she loves decorating for bachelors
  • Why it's so hard to decorate her own home
  • How many times she's moved since she's been married (she's married to a builder and developer)
  • How you can give a new build home that old character that gives a house soul
Jan 17, 2017

This week on the podcast, we're talking with stylist, entertaining expert, author, and workshop master of ceremonies, Annette Joseph. Annette does it all and makes it look so easy. We sat down to talk about the villa in Italy she's renovating, her workshops, how she got into styling, and so much more!

What You'll Hear on the Show:

  • How Karen did a mini bathroom makeover in her guest suite
  • How Annette started styling
  • What it was like pitching a show to Bravo and shooting a pilot
  • Annette has been vacationing in Italy since she was a kid
  • Annette talks about her upcoming book about Italy
  • Why it's hard to be an ex-patriot in Italy
  • Why it's always better to go shopping in Italy with an actual Italian (or someone who knows everyone)
  • The scoop on buying real estate in Italy ... and renovating from a different continent
  • Italy's all about 'juice'
  • The faux pas Annette committed recently while walking around her property
  • How they ended up buying the property they chose
  • All about the workshops she hosts -- perfecting branding, photography, styling, and more
  • What you could expect if you were to attend one of Annette's workshops
  • The book she's working on about the cocktail culture in Italy
Dec 20, 2016

This week on the podcast, we sat down with Erika Ward of Erika Ward Interiors. After majoring in finance and working in the corporate world several years, Erika decided to follow her passion and start her interior design business. She gives us the whole scoop on her business, decorating pet peeves, and answers your decorating questions!

WHAT YOU'LL HEAR ON THE SHOW:

  • Erika talks about why she went into finance and eventually transitioned into designing full time
  • How Erika balances classic design with a modern aesthetic
  • Why you need to incorporate color into your room
  • Why it’s so important for her and her clients to understand each other
  • Why her biggest challenge in design work is educating her clients
  • What’s so important about the ‘shell’ of a room
  • What decorating mistake she made in her own house
  • What surprised Erika when she came to one of our catalog shoots

 

Erika also helps us answer to questions this week. The first question is about how to properly dress an 11 foot window. Our second question is about mixing furniture shapes and heights cohesively.

Nov 8, 2016

This week, we're talking to stylist extraordinaire, Ginny Branch. Ginny is a prop stylist who has worked with some of the most beloved brands all over the country, including Southern Living, Country Living, Martha Stewart Weddings, Design*Sponge, Cooking Light, Coastal Living, and Ballard Designs! She shares with us how she got into styling, her favorite accessories, her most recent travels, and even her hoarding tendencies.

WHAT YOU'LL HEAR ON THE SHOW:

  • Ginny talks about becoming a stylist
  • Why it's so important to love the people she works with
  • Which people or brands she's dying to work with
  • An insider's view to how catalogs are shot
  • The magic of shooting a catalog in Italy
  • The craziest thing she's ever brought home with her on a plane
  • She tells us about her little house in Atlanta

As always, we answer your questions. This week, we talk about the best sisal rug to use if you are concerned about spills, and we answer Rosemary's questions about hanging a mirror over a bed.

We want to teach your how to decorate! We'll help you unleash your inner decorator with interviews from designers, sharing trials and triumphs of our own homes, and answering your burning decorating questions. Brought to you from the Ballard Designs.

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