Ode to Orange

In honor of the 2012 Pantone Color of the Year: Tangerine Tango, I thought it would be fun to share a few images that caught my eye on Houzz.com, showing off various uses and tones of orange.

Depending on the saturation of orange, it can really give a room a bold or subtle touch of color. Used in the correct way, I don’t think I could tire of the color. I have a number of clients who are on board with this color as well. 

via Houzz

via Houzz

via Houzz

via Houzz

via Houzz

via Houzz

I was very fortunate in 2011 to have some clients who adored bold color. If you pass by The Venue On Guadalupe, peek into their window, you’ll see their walls painted this magnificent color:  


Here is another photo of a client’s niches we painted orange. How cool do these look: 

Do you love the color orange as well? Would you use this versatile color in your space? 

Picture Perfect Walls

Raise your hands if behind your pictures hanging on the wall, there are at least two to three nail holes lurking. I would be amiss not to admit that I am guilty of this picture hanging faux pas. 

So, I did a little research to minimizes these holes to one. The best instructions I found are here, here and here. More specifically, I find that grouping like and non like pictures are a fun way to sprue up that blank wall space. 

If the idea of grouping images is appealing, blow is an instructional break down of how to do it:

1. Trace pictures onto brown kraft paper and cut out. Label each of the papers with a description of the picture or a corresponding number.

2. Using blue painter’s tape (which won’t pull up wall paint), tape the papers to the wall. Experiment with arrangements until you have one you like.

3. Install picture-hanging hardware directly through the paper. Pull paper away and hang pictures.

Below are a few images showing how to do differnt groupings from Pinterest. Not only do I like the groupings, I love the rooms too. 





Do you have a grouping of pictures in your home? I’d love if you shared them with me on my Facebook page! 

Consider Me A Doctor Who Makes House Calls

Throughout my five-year career as an interior designer, I’ve always heard fellow interior designers talk about their childhood love of design. Constantly rearranging their room or working on craft projects were topics high on their list of design memories. I was quite the opposite; my childhood room was never reorganized and I never had a crafty touch. I grew up with lofty dreams of becoming the next great geneticist, which is fitting because I graduated with my first degree in Neuropsychology. But looking back, there were fleeting moments of what was to come in developing my love and passion for the field of interior design. Whether the room was big or small, I was constantly examining the space I was in, and from high school into college, I was always describing myself as ‘environmentally sensitive,’ reacting uncomfortably to spaces that were not well planned or were just plan ugly, in my mind.

As cliché as it sounds, I believe that the career of interior design found me rather than I found it. It was after college that I trying to find my way in a world where having only a bachelor’s degree meant nothing. Trying to secure a job with my undergraduate science degree was hopeless. Working for a temp agency, I took on a job as a receptionist at an architectural firm; from there I was referred to a contract furniture group to be their receptionist. I distinctly remember that day in the summer of 2004, after organizing a few rings of fabric samples heading back to my desk; I stopped at a table where a commercial floor plan lay. It was at that moment that a cartoon light bulb went off over my head. Studying the floor plan was, for me, the equivalent of studying a famous piece of artwork. I was both amazed and grounded by the fact that this 2D piece of paper with lines of positive and negative space held all the information to create a 3D structure. To make a long story short, I asked the project manager who sat next to me about her background in interior design. By the fall of 2004, I was enrolled at Texas State University-San Marcos. Three years later, I graduated Magna Cum Laude with a bachelor’s in interior design. After four years of working under an acclaimed interior designer in Austin and passing the qualification exam, I opened the doors to Allison Jaffe Interior Design. I will be celebrating my second year as a two-time award-winning interior design business owner this December.

After years of reflection, I know exactly why I love being an interior designer and the field of interior design. Interior design has always been described as an art-science. The use of color and light theory, space planning and other science-related fields play to both sides of my brain. It is, in my opinion, the grand culmination of art and science.

I often joke with other designers in the field that many times we take on the role of psychologist when working with clients or husband and wife teams. This is why I thrive on client-designer collaboration. The collaboration and involvement with the client for every design project is essential in order to execute the perfect design for each individual’s needs. When a client is interviewing me for a project, I always explain to them that this is their project and that they are the end-user. Using my expertise, I am here as a guide to helping them to make the best decision possible for their home. The strong emphasis on client-designer collaboration is what makes each project so successful. I also do not subscribe to a niche style of design. Being able to flex my design muscle in all styles of design keeps each job so interesting.

I look around at my fellow 30-year-old friends complain about being stuck behind a desk in a cube farm, and remind myself every day how lucky I am to have discovered my passion relatively early in life, and that I was able to build a career out of it. I may not be that geneticist that I dreamed of being as a little girl, but I say I’ve come close to being a pretty good scientist of the home. 

Photo courtesy of Jonathan Garza for Collective Perspectives

Rain Lily Farms ATX (Taken with instagram)

Winning Project 2011 ASID Austin Design Excellence Awards

Well, I’m proud to say I did it again, took home 1st place Rising Stars: Singluar Space for my Lindenwood Living room project at the ASID (American Society for Interior Designers) Austin 26th Annual Design Excellence Awards. It was such an honor to be recognized with the best of them! 

Concept Statment: 

 The owner’s collection of Japanese wood block prints depicting scenes from nature is the inspiration for this living room. The blue and rust pigments of the artwork are repeated in the field of the Herez Persian rug. Sofa and walls are a camel color, providing a calming touch to the room and framework for the Blue Heron tapestry pillow and two velvet peacock blue pillows. A black wrought iron coffee table grounds the furniture. While, the table scape, with French demijohn as an ode to sea glass and a German bread trough filled with a collection of large sea shells adds another natural element. 

Before Photos: 


I also took home an award last year for this project! Thank you so much everyone for your continued support. I love what I do and I can only hope it shows through my designs!!! ALLISON JAFFE INTERIOR DESIGN

It’s my house dad and you’re just living in it!: The Perfect Playroom

Over the summer, I had to opportunity to dive into my inner Barbie and decorate an entire living room space for a little girl. The requirements of this playroom were the following: tons of storage and the use of her favorite color PINK. Well, of course, what little girls playroom would be complete without the use of the infamous ballerina pink. 

To define her space from her father’s own living space, I selected my favorite paint treatment, stripes. I also chose to paint the backs of the bookshelves in same pink color for a touch in flair.

Two type of storage, see below, from IKEA also helped to define her play area. One of my favorite purchases for the space were the IKEA curtain wire and clips, perfect for displaying daily art master pieces. 

For those days when paint falls on more than just the paper, we purchased an inexpensive bamboo 5’x8’ rug, that can easily be replaced when the rug becomes more than just a drip pad.  

We are in the midst of resurfacing the fireplace with light green glass. Pics to come. 



A. Sofa B. Activity Table C. Green and Pink Chairs D. Large Cube Storage Unit E. Storage Trunk F. Storage Stool G. Rug H. Wire and Hooks I. Painted Stripes: Sherwin Williams 6568 Lighthearted Pink and Benjamin Moore Decorators White

I had so much fun putting this room together. If you decorate a little girl or boy’s playroom, what would you fill the room with?

Find me and my other interior design projects on my website: allisonjaffe.com

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City Wide Garage Sale Finds

Hi All, it has been waaay to long. I got swept up in a remodeling storm. Lots of great projects under way, like a kitchen and master bath remodel in Great Hills and a kitchen remodel in Westlake. The same home that I did the fireplace remodel, check it out here:Weston Lane

One of my favorite past times is going to the City Wide Garage Sale every 3-6 months with my best shopping buddy, mom. 

I mostly go to window shop and dream about having a huge storage unit to collect decorative odds and ends for my clients looking to layer their home with interesting collectables. Of course, some of my favorite items are funirture, chairs to be more specific. Though, I did see a large mirror that I was tempted to purchase for $45-$50, in which I would of spray painted the gold frame with a bold color like fuschia or lime green. Instead, I settled for photos. 

Here are a few of my snap shot finds:

Although these chairs are wood veneered over plywood, I just love their shape. All they need is a little reupholstred fabric love and they would look great in a sitting room or at the end of a dining table. 

Sorry for the burry photo, but you can find glass demijohn vases all over the place now. They tend to range in price from $45-$100 depending on the size. I happen to love the colors they come in like blue and green. See here how I’ve decorated this living room coffee table with a turquoise blue demijohn. 

My mom and I just loved these grouping of 4 red diner bar stools. I could see myself walking into an old fashion diner and sipping on a malt shake while twisting on this stool. Could you? To repurpose them, I would set them in a kitchen along an island. 

Produced around the turn of the century, the last century, is a cast iron sewing stool made by the Singer Company. Though the company manufactured mostly table top sewing machines, a stool such as the one below was also manufactured. The Singer brand name is casted into each metal leg and the entire base has a hard shiny black finish with a walnut seat. History at its best!

Last I could not help fall for the pair of side tables, for a mere $200-$300, ha. Regardless of your style preference, these white lacquered laminated side tables would add the perfect modern punch to your living room sitting next to your sofa. The shape alone is sleek and refined. 

Flea markets, garage and estate sales are some of the best places to find special decor pieces for your home and there is always a great story attached. And if there isn’t, well, I give you creative license to make one up. What are some of your finds? 

Find me and my other interior design projects on my website: allisonjaffe.com

Library nerds, raise your hands.

There is something magical about visiting the library and getting to take home books for free. Every time I step through the doors, a sort of illusionary osmosis of information occurs and I feel smarter the second I leave. But if and when you cannot take a trip to the library, why not have the library come to you. 

In design, books are so versatile. They can add color to a room, they can be stacked to set an object upon to create different levels of interest in a bookcase and they can be placed on your coffee table to elicit conversation. 

Towering walls of books lure young visitors to the Children’s Book Museum in The Hague 

I just loved scrolling through all of the photos that Google provided me when I searched wall of books

One day when I design my own home, I plan to have a library with towering walls filled with books books and more books. Would you do the same? 

Find me and my other interior design projects on my website: allisonjaffe.com

Miles of Tiles

As a designer working on new construction and remodel projects, I am always surrounded by tile. Miles and miles of tile. It is my job to not only to assist clients in selecting a tile that will be appropriate in their home but also relevant or on trend for the next ten to fifteen plus years. Thus being said, I am always on the search for the newest and most interesting never before seen tile. 

While still in design school, I toured a home on the AIA Austin homes tour and I distinctly remembered stepping into a study in which the floor had been laid with 12” x 12” leather tiles. Leather is a very durable product and I assumed this was an ok installation because this was not a high traffic area. I thought this was a beautiful design touch on the part of the designer/architect. 

I recently attended the reopening and newly remodeled tile showroom, American Tile. There, I was introduced to the company Stonepeak Ceramics and their tile was nothing short of pretty damn cool! 

Now, thanks to Stonepeak Ceramics, I can have “leather” tile anywhere I like with the added bonus of durability and easy maintenance: 

Touch Series

Also on the market, is a new technique of printing on ceramic or porcelain tile. Instead of rolling on a pattern onto the tile, the tile is now stamped via ink jet giving a the tile a more realistic appearance. Sometimes, I am even fooled by ceramic that looks exactly like travertine. What is really impressive is the Slate Series by Stonepeak Ceramic. Slate, which is a commonly used as flooring and roofing shingles is on avgerage more expensive than other natural flooring products. But with new advances in technology these visible difference between natural stone products and man made are becoming pretty blurry (in a good way)!

Can you tell which is the real slate???

Raja Series

Slate Series:

Ha, fooled ya!! 

Neither! Both are ceramic material AND 71% recycled material. I wish I had known of this ceramic “slate” earlier and I would of suggested installing it on the patio of the custom home I just completed designing. View the home here: Stephen F. Austin

I have one more tile trick up my sleeve and I’ll let you carry on. Can you guess what the flooring below is made of?? 

via Interceramic

NOPE, its not wood. It’s ceramic tiles made to look exactly like wood! The benefits to installing this look alike wood product is endless. Durable, inexpensive, easy to clean and will not warp with the ever changing climate in Austin. 

What’s not to like about all of these new ceramic products. Who’s ready for a new floor to dance across? 

Find me and my other interior design projects on my website: allisonjaffe.com

Let your walls do some talking-Part 1

I’m not sure why so many people are afraid of paint on their walls. It took my own mother twenty years to leave her white walls behind for color and when she did what a difference it made. 

Painting your walls is one of the most cost-effective ways to update a room. Not only that, but it allows you to add impact, brighten the space and create a backdrop for your wall art.

The biggest myth about paint: “Won’t a dark colored wall make the space feel smaller??” Absolutely NOT I say! As long as you stick to a few guidelines, dark colored walls can make room and the objects in the room shine with personality. 

Follow these rules when selecting a dark paint:

  • Choose the right room: large rooms with high ceiling and natural light, powder baths where not much time is spent, hallways for a dramatic or glam feel. 
  • Contrast is key: Off set the dark walls with white trim and molding, add objects in the room like fabric, art, drapery and rugs that are light colored. 
  • Make the room sparkle: Mirrors, crystal or glass lamps and acrylic furniture items bring brightness to the space while amplifying the colors you’ve chosen.

Here are a few choice examples of how much of a dramatic sophisticated impact dark painted walls can have on a space: 

via ApartmentTherapy

Given the opportunity I would have so much fun designing a room around dark walls. Who’s up for a paint job!?!?

Find me and my other interior design projects on my website: allisonjaffe.com

Allison Jaffe

Award-winning ATX Interior Designer|Social Shaker|Community Pathfinder|Girl on a Mission

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