Thanksgiving Holiday Décor

The season for giving thanks is fast approaching and what better way to celebrate than by inspiring you with you beautiful table settings. I personally will do a casual spread and just focus on a centerpiece and let everyone server themselves like a buffet. But every house I have lived is very different, so I always tend to go more for a “family style” approach. For instance in our small house in San Diego we had a groupings of tables while the island in my kitchen was set up with all the food for everyone to grab from. Or like the time I had to carry in entire Thanksgiving dinner on board the USS Porter for my husband and his friends who were on duty that day. PS. I almost dropped the turkey while carrying down the ladder to get to the mess deck but, I caught it I was just totally red in the face though.

As a military wife it brings me great joy to welcome the service men and women into my home that can’t be with their loved ones for the holidays. It’s important for me to create an environment where they can come and get good food, relax and stay for fun and drinks. After all that is what the season is all about right? being with family, friends, and  thankful for the what we have right. But you might as well do it with style that is was I always say, so here are some dazzling table scape’s that are sure to stir your decorating juices.

Start with a great color palette first:

Gave the traditional yellow, orange and red Thanksgiving palette a contemporary twist by pairing it with icy blue placements. Using contrasting cool and warm colors like this is a sure bet for an eye-catching table setting like these images here

Try going dark red or in this case Merlot, fuchsia, orange and ocher would be a nice analogous color scheme

When it comes to a centerpiece and your mantel try to bring the outdoors in:

Think of using fresh fruit such as pars, pomegranates, oranges and squash for rustic organic look

Fill clear containers with nuts and corn for an easy candle update

Wrap a piece of wood veneer around the bottom of a vase and use a wooden ball as a decanter stopper or use birch wood strips as a table runner and layer over top of them

Use leaves and branches for added décor

Place setting 101:

Start with white dinner plates, wine glasses, flatware, and runners. Layer and add color with the salad plates, napkins, appetizer plates, and dessert plates.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!


the pink door designer

Image Sources and Readings

Lonny Magazine



Design trends for the home

Hey there, I know, I know it’s been a while. Last month was very hectic for me and it looks like it’s running into this month as well. I went for the first time to the largest furniture markets in the U.S. to High Point, North Carolina. It’s the market of all markets for trade professionals that happens twice a year.

This small town is home to many manufacturers of  “american made” furniture company’s. It is made up of multiple clusters of buildings stories tall  full of unique fine furniture, art, accessories, rug, and jewelry dealers for a designer’s to shop through every Spring and Fall.

This is a place where new budding furniture makers or  any one within the home decor market  can come to be in the forefront of designers who are constantly looking to buy/sell to their clients. I happen to come across a reusable wallpaper company that I just loved! ( I am hoping to use it on a project sometime soon) Anyway, the theme this year was High Fashion, but I notice a few trends myself and I just wanted to share them with you.

Color Trends:


Lemon Zest

Poppy Red




I was in LOVE with this wall color!



Accent and Detail Trends:


Weird Science

Angelic Infusions

I had such a great time and I would love to spend the whole week really checking out all the off the beaten path places to scope out all the resources! If there was one something I learned early on it was that a designer is only as good as their resources, so it’s important to always be looking around for the latest and greatest.


The Pink Door Designer

Image resources:

Pink Door Designs

Lonny Magazine

Fall Decorating Ideas

Fall is officially here people and this is my most favorite time of year!!! This is will be a short and sweet post of some ideas and inspiration photo’s found via web and magazines to get your decorating muscles in shape for the holidays.

I decorate from mid September thru the end of November.  I really like to use a lot of foliage, mum’s, hydrangea, jute, and pumpkins of all kinds!!!! Doing it this way serves as a base for fall decorating.

Then, when it come’s time to transition into Halloween and Thanksgiving simply change out a few accessories to sway to the mood of the holiday.

BOOM, you’re done!

From now until the end of the year I will post something about what I believe to be great ideas for holiday decor starting with September. This is a celebration of the beautiful fall color’s inspired by mother nature her self. It is her last ” Who-Rah” after all before she hibernates for the winter. Happy Decorating!

The color’s of FALL

Make a statement at the front door

Pumpkins, pumpkins and more pumpkins

Table scape

Dressing the mantel

Shopping Sources:

Hobby Lobby


Garden Ridge


Online:  ( for those of ya’ll who are not in my neck of the woods)

Trendy Tree


Grand In Road

Images Sources:

Analog Girl In A Digital World


Decor Made Simple

High Street Market

Kristy Masterandonas


Southern Living Magazine

The New Take on Plate Art

A lot of exciting things have happen in the last few weeks. I was recently interviewed by a local magazine here in San Antonio Texas. They asked to take photos of some my work. As an emerging interior design professional this is very BIG!!! For the first time I will be published. They wanted to feature my formal dining room that I organically pulled together over some months, but there where some minor details that still needed to addressed. I had this blank spot in the one corner that I need to fill. I found some plates from a local import store that had great detail on the edges. However, a designer can never leave well enough alone and I wanted to personalize my space with initials. The overall concept for my dining room is an etherial garden with touches of modern glamor and I wanted to go “old school” with the initials on the tree.

Here is what I started with.

Here is what I used

Got the classic Helvetica font stencil and went to work

Note: I used the oil base Sharpie metallic marker thinking I was going to get more of a graffiti  look for my heart, but it didn’t work out so well on the porcelain surface. Instead, I made a stencil out of leftover cardstock I had for the heart and used the spray paint. Then roughed up the edges with a wet sponge so the paint looked worn. I was not going for it to look clean and “perfect”.

Then, once I decided where I wanted them on the plates I taped them off and covered everywhere else I did not want paint

Lastly, I added the self adhesive plate hangers found at my local hobby store in the custom framing department. Then, I had my husband help me hang them late the night before the photo shoot with while drinking my favorite glass of red wine Hall 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley.

I know what your thinking what about the rest of the room?  The issue is not out yet and I am on pins and needles for the photo’s so I will just share what I took the day of the shoot.

Now this is no new trick. Plate’s on display have been used for interiors for quite some time mostly in traditional settings. I believe doing this in the spray paint and even going with my original thought of the “graffiti look” brings this concept into the modern-day. If you would like to try  this here are my suggestions. Keep the plate’s all one color, or if you have mixed collection paint them all one color to match your décor, and only do 3 an accent color for jolt. Also, play with painters tape for fun patterns. Just think of the larger overall scheme beforehand. Happy creating and I would love to see what you come up with so send your pictures!

I would like to “thank” my good friend Brandon a designer who referred me to the magazine for the article in the first place. You are truly an engaging spirit and I wish you all the best in you endeavors. Also, I would like to thank Rebecca, Veronica and Phillip at the magazine for such a great experience.


How to make modern silhouette art

In my design school days I often used silhouette art as inspiration for my projects. I was drawn to its graphic detailed quality that held it’s nostalgic charm. Silhouette art was introduced sometime between the 17th and 18th century in the Victorian Era. I have found through some research that it began in Europe and eventually became exceedingly popular in the 18th century in America, where artist were employed as a way to capture dignified portraits of American aristocrats, politicians, and common folk alike.

As a mother I thought I would love to have one of these for my self. However, as a designer I thought how can I make it work for my home? I needed to update this Victorian Granny into the Hip Modern Mother that I am. Plus, I also don’t have a lot of time as working mom and wanted something I could do in a day or so. By the way, once I got all my materials in order this project took me about an hour!

First I want to show you some examples of this traditional artistry. While it may be an oldie it is still very much a goodie!

Then: Antiques found on-line:

Now: The Viceroy Hotel Santa Monica

Designer: Kelly Wearstler

The Hip Modern Way of making Silhouette Art

First, with your point and shoot camera take a profile picture of your subject. It’s best to do this up against a blank wall.  If you wanted to take this into to Photoshop and could do a really cool digital version. I’m just more of a traditionalist and like to work with my hands. Plus, let’s face it I’m not all that great with Photoshop.

Once you have selected your frame measure it in order to get an idea of the size enlargement you will need.  I found this oval frame at a nearby hobby store and knew it would be perfect! I asked the copy center to make a 16 x 20 size photo enlargement on in black and white on regular bond paper. Ask for regular bond so they don’t over charge you.

My next stop was back to the hobby store where I need to select the two colors of artist paper for the silhouette. This is where you can get creative and choose whatever color combination you would like to use. I selected one that would work well on the wall I knew I was going to place it on. Remember you don’t have to stick to the standard black and white. Think color, or even a patterned background would work! That is what make’s this more up to date I think. * Please note the paper used for this was colored on both sides!

Now, take some double-sided tape and place your photo copy on tope of the artist paper you choose for the silhouette. You should have two layers of paper at this point. The photo on top and the artist paper for the silhouette on the bottom.

Begin cutting along the outline of your subject and be sure to get as detailed as you want.

Remove the copy

Place it, attach it with more tape or you may glue it.

And Done!

5 interior design styles inspired by the Cinema

A lot of clients ask me: what are the most common design styles? Or, they wonder how they can come up with their own personal style.

Start by asking your self this question: If you could design a room; what movie or TV show would you use to stylistically inspire your space?

For as long as I can remember I have always looked at the background settings of movie and television shows for ideas and inspiration. Especially movies filmed in a specific time period. I often take notice of the styling, color combinations, and materials. I always look to see what they have displayed on tables and other surfaces to give more insight into the character’s personality.

Listed below are some of the common answers I got when asking my own clients in order to find their personal design style.

Modern | Mid-Century 50’s thru 70’s

Madmen, 2007

 (I so want the Saarinen tulip table in far left corner!)


Twilight, 2008

(My husband’s pick the house not so much the movie)

Design Elements:

    • Form follows function
    • Rectilinear lines long and low to the ground
    • Organic and asymmetrical shapes
    • Little or no ornamentation
    • Color and texture plays a very important role
    • Details of craftsmanship
    • High-gloss lacquer finishes, exotic wood veneers, and stainless steel accents

Coastal Transitional

Something’s Gotta Give, 2003

It’s Complicated, 2009

(One of my picks)

Design Elements:

  • Relaxed sophistication with an eclectic blend of Old World European furnishings with dark finishes
  • Comfortable fabrics
  • Weather or painted finishes
  • Light added mix of blues, greens, and whites or vibrant tropical with reds, oranges, and yellows
  • Natural fibers such as cotton, jute and sisal
  • Seashell encrusted mirrors and tables and coral-form accessories and prints

Traditional / Period

Marie Antoinette, 2006

Breakfast At Tiffany’s, 1961

Design Elements:

  • Symmetrical and formal
  • Traditional wood finishes are typically dark, cherry and mahogany
  • Fabrics that work well on traditional furnishings include chintz, jacquard, damask and brocade.
  • Leather in rich brown tones
  • Crown moldings
  • Raised panel doors in kitchens
  • Columns with ornaments
  • Hardwood flooring
  • Rich materials such as tumbled marble

Futuristic and Sleek

Tron: Legacy, 2010


Ugly Betty, 2006-2010

Design Elements:

  • Ambient neon lighting
  • Whites, black, blues, grays, with pops of bright colors
  • Smooth-lined furniture
  • Steel and glass-like surfaces
  • Atypical shapes and forms


The Royal Tenenbaums, 2001

(On of my best gal pal’s picks)

500 Days of Summer, 2009

(I totally loved the chalk board wall thing)

Design Elements:

  • Neutral background color palettes
  • Antiques used in moderation
  • Collections and sets of similar pieces
  • One of a kind item’s
  • Global pieces from around the world
  • Contrast in color or finish
  • Traditional and modern elements together
  • Rough fabrics mixed with elegant textiles
  • Worn surfaces combined with refined surfaces
What movie or television show would you choose? Let me know I love to hear it!

Links and Sources:

Modern | Mid Century

Coastal Transitional

Traditional | Period

Futuristic and Sleek



Designer’s Tip and Tricks for Rent Dweller’s

For the last 13.5 years and counting to my beloved husband who is in the U.S. Navy I have lived in a house or two or three, or maybe four heck, I have lost count! Through the years I have come up with different ways in my making my temporary houses feel more like home in doing some of the following things that always seem to work no matter where we go.

1.   Paint: If you’re allowed to paint this is the easiest  most cost-effective way to get big impact for your money. If the palette is neutral enough this could be considered a tenant improvement and you may ask about how to get a credit toward your next rent. I would avoid using really saturated colors because they take a lot of work to cover up that you will have to take care of in the end.

2.     Upholstered Walls: This is nothing new. They have been doing this since the Greek and Roman ages with tapestries then it became popular in the Baroque – French Neo Classic period where the walls, windows and bedding where all done in the same fabric. However, I got this idea from my Aunt Rosie circa 1987 when she rented her little house in Deer Park Texas. Thanks Tia!

Designer note: I would use upholstery tacks rather than liquid starch. That just seems like way too much work and a lot of mess. If you’re feeling frisky you could even do a design with the tacks. They leave tiny holes and are easy to fill when you go. Also, on a budget tip. I have used patterned flat sheets for a hallway in my last house. I shopped at a discount department store and I was able to cover the entire hall for $75.

3.     Large Scale Re-stick-able Murals:  Now, I have not used this technique myself YET! I am planning to do this for my guest bathroom, but this is a really good way to get big impact without any damage to the walls. Also, this particular vendor allows you to upload your own image. (high-resolution is best) I have seen a lot of really good photography lately that would be great for this application. Check out the vendor at for more information

Designer Note: Back in the late 90’s when I was newly married and had little money to decorate the house with. When I worked at Abercrombie and Fitch we were allowed to take home the large-scale black and white photo displays. I hung these up in my home when paint was not an option. It really made the space fell like a NY loft even though I was renting a town home in Norfolk, VA with 3 other roommates!!!! That’s a story for another time way to much drama MTV really missed out. Okay, back to the topic at hand…

4.     Carpet Tiles: Should you inherit unattractive floors this could an ideal solution.  Best if used on stone, tile, linoleum and low pile carpets. These are great because they come in a variety of patterns, and sizes to create custom rugs, or wall-to-wall carpeting. Plus it’s ideal for households with kids and pets because they make for easy replacement if they get stained.

5.     Size Matters: If your like me and have to move every 2-3 years you never know where you’re going land, or what size home you will be able to get into. That’s why it’s best to keep your furnishing to a clean, small, mid range scale. Meaning stick with a queen size bed, “for-go” the large over stuffed rolled arm sofa they take up a lot of real estate. Dining tables: the best shapes are round and a small-scale rectangle. When working with a round table you can squeeze in more people for dinner parties and when it’s not in use you could stash it away in corner or use it as a side table.  However, for the small-scaled rectangle table you can use it as dual workspace in a small apartment.

6.     Light Fixtures: Changing out dated fixtures to a fabulous vintage chandelier or a cool mod orbit style pendent can really make a difference. Yes, it may call for an electrician or mechanically inclined friend to make the “switch” lol…get it? Switch? I know I get a little corny sometimes I can’t help myself. My point is, it can really make a space feel special and the best thing is that you can take it with you when you go. Just be sure to safely store the other light in a cool dry place.

7.     Drapes: I can tell you right now that I have a least 4 pairs of store-bought drapes in the hall closet. Why, because every house it different and the ceiling heights vary. My suggestion… Buy the longest lengths you can.  The most common length in the store is 108”.  I believe Ikea has some that are longer. The average ceiling heights are 8’, 10’ and 12’. As a designer it’s best to hang your drapes at the highest point of the ceiling to make the window look taller. To adjust the drapes you can take them to your local dry cleaner and ask them to do a light baste stitch hem, or you can do this yourself with a sewing machine.  A baste stitch is a long length stitch that can me easily removed with a seam ripper. Just be careful not to snag the fabric.

Also, trick number two is if you stick with a solid or neutral fabrics you can easily make you store-bought drapes into custom lengths by adding a contrasting band of fabric to the bottom. Not to mention that this trick makes your store-bought drapes now look custom.  Drapes are like the eyebrows to your face.  That’s how important they are so “don’t not do it”, because they frame and soften the room.

Images Sources:

Happy home making!