Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Making Mass-Market Work For You by Guest Designer Jessica McKay

We'd love to welcome Jessica McKay as a Guest Designer this week.  Jessica is an interior decorator located in Omaha, NE. and is the owner of Birdhouse Interior Design Consulting which specializes in affordable and accessible design. Birdhouse's services include interior decorating consultations, remodeling consultations, online Client Files and custom furniture redesign.

I like to look at decorating like I look at getting dressed in the morning {or let’s be honest, sometimes the afternoon} - use what you have and make it unique to you. That means you have to blend high, low, and every price point in between to get your desired look. Most people can’t dress in head-to-toe Prada and can’t furnish their home with nothing but designer pieces. In my opinion, even if I had the money to do that, I wouldn’t want to because when you never have to think about cost and can look at a showroom or the runway and snatch up exact looks, then you will never develop your own personal style.

So let’s break this down. I shop wherever I want and can afford {I’m not too proud to pop into Wal-Mart on the rare occasion}. I can’t afford many {if any at all} designer duds so that part of my wardrobe is very, very limited and probably only purchased at a discounted rate. My budget affords me to buy department store prices, which can limit the originality that will go into my closet. But, I love peeking in anywhere from the Gap to my favorite store of all time, Target. I know that I can find something there that will allow me to build on with more unique pieces. Those unique pieces often come from thrift stores, hand-me-downs from the women in my family, random little boutiques that I pop in while traveling, etc. Then, I blend everything together and it comes out original to me.

This is how one can approach interior decorating. You don’t have to look like a showroom, and quite frankly it’s boring if you do. You can find an awesome lamp at Target and place it atop an inherited side table like I did here.  The marble side table was my grandfather’s.

Mix in some books, personal accessories-- that red jar was my husband’s grandfather’s and where he kept his tobacco-- and you have a unique, little vignette.

Or take a look at what Elizabeth from the blog Peacock Feathers did in her bedroom. She mixed a thrifted little bench with a K-mart lamp that she spray painted to make it even more unique, and other personal accessories.

Start thinking about what is important to you. Think about what you love and would be thrilled to incorporate into your décor. When you add personal touches and original pieces, any stylish mass-market piece will fit seamlessly into your space and people will think you paid much more for everything then you really did.


Catherine Bosley said...

Great ideas Jessica - love it! Great post - glad to see her on here for all us with limited budgets!!

My First Kitchen said...

That's such a great idea to think of like your wardrobe. I just need to look past the fact that I have a three month old and don't wear anything these days except spit-up-covered sweats. :) It's a great mental shift though. Thanks for the advice!