Maine Master Bedroom Retreat

I recently completed a Master Suite project for a wonderful couple with two small boys.  Their home is situated on the water’s edge with beautiful ocean views.  The room is large, but wasn’t pulled together, and didn’t reflect either of their personalities or style.  Armed with the objectives below & the inspiring views, I set out to transform this space!

Key objectives:

  • Create a welcoming and comfortable sitting area for the couple
  • Add more lighting throughout
  • Add artwork
  • Create better storage for books
  • Introduce color
  • Tie in the spaces using existing and new furniture
  • Overall feel should be that of a retreat from their hectic everyday lives
  • Incorporate their love of birds and butterflies into the design

Here are the “Before” and “After” photos.  It has undergone quite a transformation and the homeowners love their new space.  I had an incredible time working with them on this project.  I think we accomplished all we set out to do… and more!


photo 1

The room is spacious and has beautiful cherry floors.  It was lacking lighting and color.


Photo by Liz Donnelly
Photo by Liz Donnelly

New paint, matching glass table lamps, bold artwork, additional pillows, a few accessories and gorgeous pops of teal and green bring the space to life! The deep colors are warm and soothing and reminiscent of the ever-changing ocean colors.


photo 2

Everyday items needed a better place to live. We purchased a jewelry armoire for another corner of the room and found a new home for photos and books.


Photo by Liz Donnelly
Photo by Liz Donnelly

Again, lighting makes a huge difference! Never underestimate how important it is to your rooms.  A few accessories bring in the birds, while the clock adds function.


photo 4

This space was just waiting to be used.  It received a lot of attention to create the cozy space the homeowners wanted.


Photo by The Good Home
Photo by The Good Home

I painted this wall a different color to further accent the separation of space. A custom, cherry bookcase made by Tim Hill Fine Woodworking  perfectly fills the space between the windows and resolve the need for book storage.  New slip-covered chairs, ottoman, ceiling fixture,  table, reading light, pillows, throw and custom rug ground the space.  Adding existing framed photos makes it personal and familiar. It’s just inviting the homeowners to come, sit and relax!!  The ceiling light is even set on a dimmer for relaxing evenings taking in the ocean view.

Additional photos:

Custom Cherry bookcase - Tim Hill Fine Woodworking Photo by Liz Donnelly
Custom Cherry bookcase – Tim Hill Fine Woodworking
Photo by Liz Donnelly

MBR10 (2)


Photo by Liz Donnelly
Photo by Liz Donnelly

I hope you enjoyed seeing this Master Bedroom transformation as much as I enjoyed working on it! Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments.  Remember, whatever you space or project, always Design*Decorate*Delight in the process!


Garden Dreaming

I’m dreaming of being in the garden…

Yes, the current snow globe-like view outside my window is beautiful – but  I am over it! Perhaps it’s because we are having yet another snowstorm here in Maine! There have been so many this winter, I’ve lost count.  With that in mind,  I am wistfully wishing of warm, sunny days and being outside digging in the dirt.   Or at least a fantastic gardening room for planting bulbs!

My inspirations this snowy day

This would inspire anyone to garden! The color palette is soft and neutral and the apron sink is fantastic – it makes the whole space!

This room is almost too pretty for dirt! But the windows, detailing and natural light make it a great space to work in any time of year!

Love the simple, rustic style of this space and the board and batten walls.

Now for the gardening part.  Start with this…..

Before you know it you will be rewarded with this….

AAHHH, I’m feeling better!!  Just looking at these beautiful spaces and gorgeous flowers has brightened my snowy day.  Think Spring and how you can find new ways to Design*Decorate*Delight in your own home!



Guest Bath Reno

This past week, I spent an action-packed, fun-filled day with an awesome client!  She is so fun to work with and knows what she likes. That makes for smart  & quick decisions.  We set out shopping for everything from tile and toilets to vanities, hardware, fixtures, lighting and paint for her Guest Suite.  All in one day!!  The space hasn’t been updated for many years so we were starting from scratch.  We had a fantastic day and agreed we made a great team.  Decisions are made so let the work begin!

Here are some of the choices for the Guest Suite Bathroom:

Shower wall tile

Dal Tile

        Limestone Chenille White 24″x12″ tile

This honed limestone tile is absolutely gorgeous!!!  Pictures don’t do it justice.

  • The size of these tiles makes quite a statement.  They will run horizontally in a stacked pattern so the pieces stay whole in order to achieve the best impact.  I don’t want there to be too many cuts and likewise, grout lines.  The tile will stack from floor to ceiling.  When you enter the bathroom, this is what you first see. A seamless glass shower will frame it in. Wow – will it be fantastic!

Shower Wall Accent Tile

Dal Tile

 Endeavor Meditation Random mosaic tile

  • A band of this mosaic will be run horizontally about 5′ from the floor along all sides of the shower.  It adds in a great mix of glass, brushed nickel and natural stone.  A bit of sparkle and interest!
  • At first glance,  it didn’t look like it would work.  Up against the limestone, it was fantastic!

Floor tile

Dal Tile                                                          Veranda P520 13″x13″ floor tile

We chose this soft ivory for a couple reasons:

  •   #1 The shower is the real show piece here!  It’s the first thing you see when you walk in – not the floor.  I wanted it to almost disappear.  It gives a soft and muted feeling.
  • #2 It has a great texture, so it won’t be slippery for all those guests that are sure to come visit!


swan cotton

Swan Cotton Quartz Countertop

  • I think I am in love!! This gorgeous quartz will pick up the colors in the wall tiles and paint.  It’s a great surface that is extremely durable and has very little maintenance. Set against the dark espresso of the vanity, it’s sure to be striking!

Paint Color

Benjamin Moore – Revere Pewter

  • This color is so versatile!  Depending on what you pair it with, it can appear more taupe or grey.  It has a lot of warmth and depth.  This Guest Suite has no natural lighting, so I didn’t want anything too dark.  With the brushed nickel finishes and off white trim, the bathroom with have a crisp, clean and current appearance. Not to mention, very inviting!

Working on projects with such a fantastic client always makes it more fun!  Each decision was exciting and I cannot wait for the finished product.  This project is definitely one where both the client and I will Design*Decorate*Delight in the process together!




It’s almost New Years Eve!

It’s hard to believe Christmas is in the rear view mirror and New Year’s Eve is just ahead!  Another reason for friends and family to come together and make new memories.  It’s  the best part of the holidays!

As you prepare for the festivities, here are a few simple decorating ideas to get your home ready!

mini silver chandeliers
Photos by Liz Donnelly

Add a little sparkle to your room!  These mini votive chandeliers are beautiful in the windows when lit up at night!

Twinkle lights make every thing magical!

I love this look!  Tons of ambient light from twinkling lights and candles make this so welcoming. Add lights throughout your room for the same effect

Window seat and mini votive chandeliers
Photos by Liz Donnelly

Create cozy seating areas for your guests to gather- like this window seat.  Don’t forget to set out small tables for your guests to set down drinks and appetizers.

27 New Year's Eve Party Decorating Dos (& NO Don'ts ;-) — DESIGNED w/ Carla Aston

Setting up a bar doesn’t have to be complicated.  This one is super simple has everything you need!

Wedding Photo:

Bar Photo:

Wishing you all a happiness in the coming year!! No matter where you are, who you are with or how you choose to celebrate, enjoy each moment! Happy New Year!



“We spend January 1 walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched.  Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives… not looking for flaws, but for potential.” – Ellen Goodman


Woodland Theme Christmas

Photo by Liz Donnelly

I am absolutely loving all the woodland decorations this year!  There are so many wonderful owls, birds, and woodland creatures that you can incorporate into your existing  decor.  I decorated this tree using a mixture of three key elements: Silver, wintery whites and owls. A grapevine wreath was taken apart and used as a garland.  Silver balls, sparkly jeweled snowflakes and  assorted ornaments reflect the light and add a little glitz to the woodland theme and furry white over-sized ball ornaments.   Glittered curly picks were added to the tree for bit more sparkle and texture. A vintage sled does double duty to hold presents and hid the artificial tree base.  I placed the base in a large seagrass basket and covered the top with white burlap.  Presents wrapped in fun papers – chevron and animal prints – add a little pop of color.

It’s in the details…

Photo by Liz Donnelly
Photo by Liz Donnelly

I love this woodland owl perched near the top of the tree. He seems to draws you in for a closer look! When decorating with a theme, you don’t want to overdo.  Just use a few pieces like this owl to really bring it all together.

Whatever your theme or decorating style, have fun with it.  And most importantly, enjoy old traditions, making new memories and  the time you spend with friends and family during this holiday season.

Happy Holidays to you and yours!!

Design*Decorate* Delight

Holiday Home Tour – Living Room Makeover

This year I had the honor of participating as a Designer in the Portland Holiday Home Tour. I was fortunate to have a lovely, historic home to work within.  My task: turn a Living Room into a beautiful holiday space meant to inspire all visitors! I decided on a Winter Woodland theme.  It was a great experience and a lot of fun!

As a designer, I was asked to come in and decorate only; meaning, I am limited to using the existing furniture, rug and current paint colors.  Otherwise, I was given free reign by the homeowners regarding the design.  I removed furniture from the room, rearranged the layout, and brought in other pieces. The other item worth mentioning is that this lovely family with three young daughters would be living in this space as decorated throughout the holiday season.  I wanted it to be beautiful, elegant for the adults, warm and inviting to all, and definitely family friendly!

Please take a look at the before and after photos and let me know what you think.

Living Room “Before” Photo

Holiday Home Tour - Before photo

Piano “Before” Photo

Piano before photo

Fireplace and Built-in Bookshelves “Before” Photo

fireplace before photo

Here is the “After” photo

Holiday Home Tour - living room
Photo by Liz Donnelly

I removed the leather loveseat and ottoman and moved the rug closer to the fireplace.  Bringing in a pair of matching chairs and flanking them on each side of the fireplace created more balance.  A square hounds-tooth ottoman is more suitably scaled for this space and helped to brighten the room.  It also serves as a place to sit in a pinch or to set a tray for holiday cocktail parties! Opening up the window seat area and placing a table in front makes it feel more a part of the room.  Red silk drapes frame the window beautifully and help to soften up the space. Placing the tree in the corner draws you in for a better look.  And who wouldn’t want to go get a closer look at the snowy owl perched near the top.

Birch pillar holders with initials and felt deer head and piano
Photo by Liz Donnelly

The piano was turned and placed on a different wall.   A birch tree limb was the source for the pillar candle holders (A wonderful friend generously donated the limb from a tree on her property.) These battery operated candles even work on a remote! A bit of silver with the votives adds sparkle to the natural birch. I hung the initials of the three girls to help personalize the space.  And last, the felt deer head.  I absolutely love it! It adds a little more to the Winter Woodland theme, and is just plain fun.

fireplace mantle decor, magnolia and birch vases
Photos by Liz Donnelly

This fireplace was gorgeous to begin with.  I decided on a simple silver and winter white design to enhance the existing characteristics.  A beautiful antiqued silver mirror is the focal point.  The silver birch vases, magnolia stems and birch branches add a touch of beauty and elegance set among the natural pine branches and beaded lights on the mantle.

Built-in bookcases
Photos by Liz Donnelly

The built-in bookcases were made over using the homeowners’ photographs and books. Gorgeous red amaryllis arrangements added the necessary pop of color, height and drama.  Holiday accents were added throughout to tie in the silver, red and turquoise color palette.   Mini lights were wrapped around birch branches and placed under cloches to add a little sparkle and light to otherwise unlit spaces.

I hope you enjoyed seeing the transformation! Please feel free to comment.

With all your projects, big or small, remember to

Design*Decorate* Delight


Master Suite Retreat

Currently, I’m working on ideas for a Master suite for a great couple with two young boys. As you can imagine, their days are full of non-stop activity, noisy laughter,  and constant commotion – as they should be!  They want a place where they can close the doors to the rest of the house and feel a sense of calm, rest and relaxation – their own personal retreat.   I want to incorporate the beautiful views of the ocean outside their windows, and bring that sense of nature inside.

Here are some of the ideas that will transform their space into the retreat they deserve:


frameless shower - door and dog-leg
Portland Glass

A frameless glass shower will add clean lines and a modern look to the spa-like space they want

These are just two of the beautiful,  watery-blue glass tile options for the shower area

This photo shows a great way to add wall storage.  The existing bathroom has two separate vanities, but the idea is the same.  Create a simple, but efficient way to remove the everyday items from the counter tops.



The homeowner had clipped a photo of these lamps. I think it would be a great addition to the reading nook or another corner of the room.  They add a natural, organic element to the space, and necessary extra lighting.

These lamps would make great bedside tables!  The homeowner loves birds. These lamps are beautiful and but not too serious!

Florabunda - Sea Glass fabric

This fabric is gorgeous!  It would be beautiful as pillows on the bed, an ottoman in the reading nook, or pillows for the chairs.  The nature inspired palette works beautifully and allows for so many colors to be brought into the space.Alexa slipcovered chair

A pair of these slip-covered chairs in a natural linen would make the reading nook so inviting!  They are extremely comfortable and beg you to sit and read a book, or just drift off and relax. Throw in an ottoman, and you won’t want to leave.

This rug works great too.  Just a bit of color, pattern and texture to tie in with our fabrics but not overwhelm any of the other elements in the room.

There are still many more details to be decided. However, this is a good start in pulling together the couple’s existing furniture with new lighting, rugs, seating, and pillows. Together with the bathroom makeover – this couple will get just what they need –   a comfortable, functional, and inviting master suite retreat.

Thanks for reading!

As always, remember to Design*Decorate*Delight!!

The Portland Holiday Home Tour

The Portland Holiday Home Tour

I am so thrilled to be participating as a designer in this event! A portion of every ticket sold goes to Gary’s House – a home away from home for families of people receiving medical care in Portland area hospitals. Please come out to support this cause and prepare to be inspired for the holidays!

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