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What's Your Home Design Personality?

Lesson 32 of 34

Tobi's Inspirations & Fave Things

Tobi Fairley

What's Your Home Design Personality?

Tobi Fairley

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Lesson Info

32. Tobi's Inspirations & Fave Things


  Class Trailer
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1 Course Introduction Duration:15:22
4 Quiz Answers & Feedback Duration:26:18
6 Breaking Down Cool Urban Duration:24:56
9 Student & Web Questions Duration:21:05
10 How Do You Use Your Space? Duration:36:23
11 Functional Work Spaces Duration:21:38
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2 Mixing and Combining Styles Duration:37:30
5 Using What You Already Own Duration:20:46
6 How to Use Trends Duration:37:44
7 Current Home Decor Trends Duration:25:38
8 Trends on Their Way Out Duration:20:14

Lesson Info

Tobi's Inspirations & Fave Things

So let's look at a few products. And then, if any of you think of other things, these were really not just specific products. We're gonna get into that in the next segment about where to buy things. But these air kind of product categories that I use often and you've seen, maybe have recognized in my work. So one of my very, very favorite things and I said this to Devin yesterday was a room sized rug. And how do you achieve this look? Well, there's a There's a number of ways, but here's first. Why I like to use a room size rug. Many of us are living in a tiny little fraction of our home. Think about if you're guilty of floating your furniture just in the middle of the room or you think, well, my rug is eight by 10 so my sofa has to relate to that, so I can't. There's there's two or three feet or maybe four or five around the perimeter that just becomes wasted space or traffic flow, but it's really not functioning for you. So if you create a scenario where your rug is only six or 12 or ...

18 inches at the most from the wall all the way around. You have just given yourself permission to situate your furniture in that entire space or even have multiple seating areas that still relate to one another. So from a function standpoint, it's really, really smart from a product standpoint. How do you make this happen? Well, there's very expensive custom rugs that I often have made from companies dependent when the budget allows. Then there's some other moderately priced companies, like this rug was made by a company named Maslin that you may know just from creating wall to wall carpet, and they'll do custom rugs in there. Not inexpensive, but they're not as expensive as some custom rugs. And then the trick I use most often is go to a local carpet store and by wall the wall carpeting and have someone buying the edges to perfectly fit my room, even wrapping around a fireplace fit to the space, Um, and so you can find a great carpets now with patterns on them with florals, geometrics, medallions, all sorts of things. If that's still out of your price point. Another thing I've done is purchase rugs from either that or like a carpet, you know, just a cut pile and lay them side by side, but not so them together, or even buy rugs that are. There's a company called Dash and Albert that I love, that they're almost like just little cabana stripe drugs. And I saw them together sometimes also five or six rugs together and lay them in a room and even him. Them cut him down and really use store bought pieces kind of in the way. We were talking about drapery, modifying it to fit a space. So a lot of times as consumers we forget, just don't even think about the fact that we could buy something that already exists and modify it. Cut it off, make a rectangle into a square. So I hope that this will kind of start your creative juices flowing. A little bit of I don't have to take everything at face about you. It could be changed. It could be him that could be painted, I think, also rugs or something that a lot of retailers sell that you can, as exactly as Toby saying adaptive. I actually found some really cool rugs in eye care of all places on, but people are not. Soon for Overstock's stock is great. E Bay is great for rugs and craigslist, but it's interesting. It's always interesting if you you know, you. Sometimes you gotta like air and things. Anything but eight people gonna have it one. But you can actually go on Craigslist. If you're in the right city, I'd imagine what you are. Christ, this will be pretty. Yeah, we don't have a Nike in Arkansas. We have one in Dallas. We have a Dallas office and we have You can get a key there, but, um, also, I hope that we've encouraged you over these two or three days to not worry so much that other people might have it. But to say we have other people have this, But what can I do to it? And what can I combine with it that's going to make it look completely different than what anybody else is done with it. Which could be fun, too, because it might be fun. A fun reaction for your friends again. Oh, my gosh. I've seen that rugged 1,000,000 times. And this is so creative. I never would have thought to do this. So that's really kind of fun for a do it yourselfer to think, think creatively with an item to even if you've seen it out in the market place a lot. So any of you tried you said Theresa. And you've tried the idea of a of a bound carpet. I did, and I didn't. But I mean, I just came upon it by, you know, I was shopping for bedroom carpet in a carpet store in Lafayette, and I was saying I fell in love with this green carpet that I just loved. And I was like, Oh, I love this. I wish I could have in my living room. But we need to get an area rug in there because we have beautiful hardwood floors. Um, and she said, Well, we can just have it bound for you And it was not expensive. I mean, relatively speaking exactly so where I might make a custom rug from a company, or even by an Oriental rug in a large size for a living room. It could be thousands of dollars or even tens of thousands of dollars in. By comparison, a really large bound carpet might be $2000 not $20,000. So it could be a major cost savings for on enemy that taken certainly even be less expensive than that. It depends on the quality of the product that he's Yeah, and you can also do really fun things with them. So for one client, I wanted large stripes, just like with the drapery. So I just went to the carpet store and I picked out while the wall carpet in this color on wall to wall carpet in this color. And I said, Can you also this to get buying this together and Stripes and they go? I guess so. We've never done that before and I said, Okay, well, let's do that. And it turned into a strike drug, which was really, really fun, and we talked a lot in the color course that I taught about how to transition color in a space that, like even this space, if I wanted to combine the blue with the green with the yellow, and I had this rug made to bring in those colors, you could do the same thing with wall to wall carpet. You could say I'm going to buy a blue rug and I'm gonna bind it in a red border and they can go in and add a border to the edges. So you do. You put down the drug first and then buy the furniture. You do have all the furniture, design, everything what I call on paper before I buy anything. So I get little swatches and samples and get everything just the way I wanted in a design scheme. Mood board. And then I go out and start making purchases because invariably, when I go by the rug first and then oh, that will surely work. Then I can't ever find the other things that really match it perfectly. So I plan it all and then I go by. It's beautiful. Thank you. I love to use dramatic fabric patterns, of course, and they could make a great impact, and they don't have to be in the entire room. And then also, here's a situation sort of like the idea with the rug. Of course, this was a show house, so you think Runway not ready to wear This is really bold. Most people wouldn't have this in their own home unless they're really brave It was the runway version of of Design with the stripes on the ceiling. But you can certainly do things like this. Thinking of strike painting bold patterns on the wall stenciling things on the wall. So where fabrics can get really expensive, think of other ways to bring Bring the pattern in. Have any of you tried the stencils or any of the wall paints? Heavy had success with those. Yes, they have fun. Did you do it yourself? Kind of herself on. And then there's decals. We saw a room yesterday where I put the paisley de cow. So there's a fund company called blick dot com that you can order and custom color, different things that literally just stick on the wall. But certainly I love to use dramatic patterns I get my own mosaic to I just broke a mirror one day and decided to put it up. Did you put it? Was it on a table or on the wall on the wall? Yeah, I just broke a whole bunch of mirrors of a tree. And what did you do? What you have to fix it to the wall with, um, I used ground eventually but it was just an experiment. It actually turned out really nice, my best friend and I did but have fun. Well, that's really bright. Isn't that break? So that's that certainly shows her does, but she embraces her unique designs All. Most of us would not just start making him as a on the wall, But I love that you do that. That's fabulous. We have the polite ist audience in the world, but when that picture came up, I wouldn't repeat that design anywhere else way. Just I can't even read it out. But no, a successful that one for No, you don't like. I'm just saying now the online audience have not gone for this. That's money. And that's why I said it doesn't offend me. But this the reason that I prefaced this with the fact that this was a show house. So when designers do designer show houses, it's our idea of like a runway version as opposed to a ready to wear. It's not true. Eight people are laughing. It is You know what I mean when you see something on the runway, a lot of times in the fashion that's very of on guard. They have these crazy hairstyles and weird makeup and crazy shoes and all of this theatrical kind of approach to design. That's what designers do when we do a show house. We do something that really gets a reaction from people, but at least it may give you some ideas to go. Wow. Okay, I don't like that or don't like that color combination. But isn't it interesting that, say, she saw thought to paint stripes on the ceiling? Or isn't it interesting that she could come the way she could lay her in pattern and color? And that's really what a designer show houses about. We have fun. We forget all the rules and really start showing things in a dramatic way so I can understand why it would have a It's it's polarizing. Sometimes that's that's the image is probably the most reaction of everything being showing straight. I for me, that's fun. That's not insulting in any way, even if they don't like it. I just think it's fun that we've gotten a reaction, and that is what CO two does. Yeah, you need to polarise in order to get thinking exactly right on Ben, don't forget about lining. Wow, lighting, whether it's very traditional, like the pendants over here or something out if you can see this. But it's a coral like a sea coral type of fixture in this room, and I used tons of unique lighting, and it really becomes the jewelry of a space. And don't forget that you don't have to take things like they come in the store. I have many times purchase lighting at a major retail store or online store and had it painted in a different color at a different kinds of of details to it. So there's so much that you can do to customize and really make something your own. Also timeless high quality upholstery in case goods case goods for designers mean tables, cabinets, chests. Upholstery, for sure, really is an important thing to invest in if you're going to be sitting on all the time. And I think you said this Theresa, that that upholstery and drapery and that being the of the most expensive things and that's often true. But you know it's it's a total waste of your money to buy an inexpensive piece of upholstery and be uncomfortable all the time, so investing in some good pieces of upholstery, this is a home. But the home I showed you all yesterday that everybody loved the the white did sundering with the orange and the blue that you both were like, Oh, we love that This is the dining room of this home And what's interesting about this is the table is and a vintage piece from Hickory Chair Company. And the chairs are new chairs from Hickory Chair Company. So ones from the 19 forties and one is from about four years ago. And I used them together and said, If you really invest in good quality pieces, they're gonna last for years and years and years now we can't run out and buy it all at one time. So we've also talked about If you know your style and you know what story you want to tell, then you can just add as your budget allows and they should work together. You don't have to buy all of that. You don't have to think well, I can't buy the dining table now because I can't afford chairs now and they're not going to go together. There's always a way toe. Add two things. In fact, the most interesting rooms, as we've talked about, are the ones that are more collected. So don't be afraid just to buy a piece like a table and add chairs later, or vice versa. Here's the slide on flowers. So you mentioned flowers not just about flowers, because they think it's so clear how you use them so beautifully. But also just plant going green plants, trees. I love bringing the outdoors in what I don't love so much, and they've gotten a lot better. But for a while there was a trend tohave artificial, not high quality plants and trees indoors, and they really are not good now. They improved greatly, and there's a company that makes artificial flowers that's called India I Natural decorations incorporated. I think it's what it stands for. You can't even tell the difference. I've had clients and people who work for me by them, and their spouses have watered the artificial flowers because they were so look so riel. So there are some good ones out there, but certainly bringing plants and flowers indoors. And a lot of people say, Well, I'd love to have plans, but I just don't have a green thumb or I travel too often, and I'm just not going to be there to take care of. And so there are solutions that are really hot quality, but they're not inexpensive. So you know, a really nice artificial arrangement could be several $100 now. It can last for a lot of years, but there's always that. There's no matter how you try to get around it. You try to save money. The things that really look the best on our last, the longest, are often investments in any category. So it's a you know, But I loved it just also when I'm at the grocery store, pick up whatever flowers they have. And here's a trick that I use. So as opposed to buying one bunch of flowers at the grocery store. Just like I said with the drapery panels, I'll buy four Bunches of the $7 flowers and put them together, and it's about the drama and the presentation. So where one bunch might look skimpy? I could bring several in together and they have a wow factor. So thinking about that and the way you're arranging but I certainly used flowers often in my interiors as you've seen. So just a few other things. What characteristics of your personal style have shaped your design style? Well for May. Certainly we've talked about fashion. Here's some of the things that you've probably already noticed about me. A feminine, really classic detail ing like you see here patterns, animal print. All of these things are actually on on riel pin boards of mine, and you can see these on my Pinterest page, as's faras clothing goes and things that shape of my design style. I have a PIN board called, um, my. I think it's called my style board, and it's about my clothing and fashion, also very influenced by shoes. I love shoes. I have a whole collection of fabulous shoes. I love to wear high heels, and I love things that have color in them. So these are all things that either currently, um, because I pin them on Pinterest and saved up and purchased them, or that I would love to purchase. So certainly shoes are feminine shoes and high heel shoes, leopard print shoes or something that influenced me. Um and then oops, accessories and bags. I'm very influenced by Here's a can't really see it. We can go out to these pictures sports if we have time in a moment. But Lucite bangle Bracelet says, I was talking about earlier so they may show a sluice site. In the house is a chair, but on my body and in my fashion statement as a bangle bracelet. I'm also inspired by lots of other things, like we've talked about Pinterest, instagram, all sorts of things, my girl Oprah, that I love to listen to. Those air my real headphones that my husband bought me for my birthday last year that I use all the times. But But I love tech. I love my Kindle app. I read all the time. I read a self help. I read novels, I read design books and I read it all. My I've had I spend a ton of time on Pinterest these air, certainly some of my favorite things that come into my life. Yes, but head finds it just I've got a question that has been waiting. Headphones really work to it. Bethany and two people have asked about how you work with metals and Bethany because I think medals comes up a little and you have said that you like bras and golden on, Bethany says. In Toby's new Home, What hardware finish was she install? If it's brass, will it be old, shiny yellow? Finished met like How you working with those times? And he's brass in my house. It probably will be not antique breast. It will be either shot. It will be more either Matt brass or shiny brass, depending on the room, for the most part. But I don't have a problem mixing metals, either. So, um, I usually would mix up to two medals in a room, potentially and remember in the color course, I gave my favorite queues for how to use metals, because I think about him as a color that was not love. That bronze 2 may in a metal comes off as brown, chocolate, brown or gold would be like a yellow color or silver chrome mirror would come off as a gray color to Meus faras layering into the color palette of the room. And that's how I transitioned spaces in transition. More than one medal into a spaces I have. That point of reference is I love to say that shows up in the same color way in something else. So if I wanted to introduce chrome and brass in a space, maybe the chrome worked because there was a lot of gray happening in the space and really read more as a color as opposed to a metal. But for the most part, the fixtures in my new home will be brassiere, right? Great question. I'm also very inspired by my favorite places. There's the front of my new house. I have. I'm just about to start remodeling it, even some things on the outside. So when we were looking at the style of homes yesterday exteriors, there's that more colonial style exterior we've joked about this year. This year. I think they even caught me on camera yesterday when we were recording my promo calling my razor backs because we do this weird little sports hall calls. I love the Razorbacks and certainly other places that I love to travel. There's a picture of little Rock, so favorite places this is in New York City, those air those great Kelly Wearstler chairs. So I'm inspired by my travels all the time, and they really come into my interiors in a lot of ways, whether it be that I purchase something when I'm there, all right, live and experience a space that I want to recreate that mood or that feeling. Or I see something that's a color that I want to translate, whether it's a pair of pink shoes at Bergdorf's and they I don't buy the shoes. But I paint the walls that color when I get home, some really and inspired by that and on a similar and rest and relax ations and not just travel, but what I do in my down time. Lots of reading, definitely traveling. I do tons of yoga, so there's a whole piece of wellness in my life. I do yoga at home. Um, we were talking about this over lunch. I spend time watching Downtown Abbey inspires me in many ways. It inspires me to educate myself more, inspires me toe look at creative ways to bring that sort of style into my home. So that's also one of my favorite things. So I think we have 10 minutes I can go out to these Pinter sports, but what might even be more fun is to take some of the questions. If you have enough, we have so many questions in there, I'm studio audience. Also there these questions that are you know, those classic when your own home. I wonder if and, you know, basically very keen on your slot on how to deal with all of this. So we got a few here. How that concrete bench tops in a kitchen. How do you feel about concrete countertops? I've never used them personally. I've heard good and bad things about him. I think they certainly look cool. I would think they would mainly fit into that cool urban style for the most part. Maybe a traveled style. Andi, I think they're one of those materials, like I mentioned yesterday with marble, that there have been a lot of technological advances in them and things that you can put on the top of them. I would be curious enough. That DuPont product I mentioned for marble could also go on the top of concrete countertops because one of the problems with concrete is that it is porous and it can staying. It can absorb, absorb things. And then I've had heard some people having a little trouble with it, just the installation of it. My sister had concrete, but it waas somehow polish coming. What it was polished with it did survive. What actually happens is it chips as well? You don't expect to happen. I don't remember any staining, but I do remember I've actually done a few concrete benching ups in houses I've done, and it's the chipping. And then it can also crack if you've got a really long expanse. But you gotta manage expansion, and it could depend on with the installation Teoh, where you are your climate. It cannot set a correctly, and but they definitely I've seen lots of them and even used about people that are known friends that are designers in cities and urban areas. New York City and they can certainly look wonderful. Beautiful, and Toronto is quite traditional, total right? Do we call them trapped in this country way mainly. Call it Toronto when it's on the floor. But it would be something similar. Yeah, where it's like a chip of a stone or something that's in an aggregate or ah, resin, right, um, material. And there's lots of countertops that look like that these days that bring recycled materials, recycled glass and other things to the countertop because they're in an epoxy that holds them together. Now, Jamie, in Texas, pointed out, there was a lot of industrial lighting showing in the kitchens that we saw. Do you think that's a fading trend? Not necessarily. I think that, you know, really is so kind of like yesterday We said, Why kitchen Can't Quite Kitchens are not. There may be trending out a little bit, but at the same time, that's almost silly to say, because they're so classic. So with certain design styles, particularly with the cool urban design style industrial is so such a part of so many of those residents is, and it's even part of the architecture, the windows and other things that people are gonna think continue to take cues from those name may be introducing them into classic homes that it's really a departure from the style. Maybe that won't be as popular, um, as we move back towards some of the really traditional designed that I think we're going to see over the next few years. But again, I think that's one of those style cues one of those trends that may be here to stay because, as I mentioned with shoes and other things in fashion, almost anything goes anymore and they don't really go out. And I think that one's air really almost classic, went in and of itself in a lot of weight, if you will. Same about pendants sometimes just ask, expended like James pendant lining from a function standpoint, it's so important to be able tohave, pendant lighting or layering whiting into a space. And yesterday we were looking at Devin's room that was so dark and and Mom and I talked about that being a little the sluice way we've talked about it. After we left, we were just thinking about how we forget because we're so adept at using lighting and layering lighting in that a lot of people forget to bring different types of lighting into a space, and we'll talk. We can talk about this a lot more in the function course, but having pendant lighting and under counter lighting, an overhead lighting and layering all of those things into the kitchen so that you can have a lot of different functions going on in there. So I can't imagine that they would go away. Now this the slide you've got off is a good one for the question from large, high and also the thoughts about other ways of lighting. Because if you don't like from the ceiling, then you're left with the ceiling, which in your car color workshop you're calling the fifth ball last, I says. Any tips on when to do something different with the ceiling? What's the overall effect of patent or color on the ceiling and you've got that? It's pistachio, isn't it? Ceiling. It looks really green. A lot of people think it's green. It's actually a medal. So it's a a silver leaf, kind of between silver and gold, a metallic wall covering. And it was actually existing in this space in the show house room. Another designer had done it the year before. Remember, this is the house that I said that they keep decorating over and over. And a really well known designer from New York named Eric Kohler had taken Phillip Jeffries wall covering that was metallic and cut it into squares and applied it in squares on the ceiling. And it was so great and the people who owned the property said, I don't want you to touch the ceiling, but it was fine because it works really well with what I was doing in the space already, and it was really, really beautiful. I think one of the rules of thumb would be if you are going to do something really daring, like whether people liked it or not. The stripes on the ceiling and the other design a show house work paired with solid grass cough walls so the ceiling had a pattern. But the walls were a solid. In this instance, we have a whole lot going on on the walls, so even though the ceiling is interesting is it's metallic. It's not a pattern, so you don't want the two to be competing. You would want probably one or the other to have a pattern. What I find is interesting on, I would love to know, and they could tell me when you come back later, I've left the online audience to set to tell me why they love this space, because a lot of people loved it and why they didn't love the other show how space this one's in New York City. The other was in the Hamptons. But if you look at the color palette, it's almost exactly the same that this has a lot of black and white. But the other was Coralie coral peach with Jade green, and this is like a coral peach with Jamie Green. But one was well received, and one was like, Whoa, what is that? It's, you know, it's a little too much over the top. And but a lot of people would look at this space and say the same thing. That's way too much for me, really diagnose People love that. I mean, every. This is the second goals we've seen that slide, and I don't think I've ever heard anyone say anything. But I've seen some comments online where people thought this was too much. The magazine that I did this show house with posted on their website, and it's funny, it's a designer or anybody who puts them out themselves out in a public way. We have toe have you no not get offended? Not where our feelings on our sleeves about getting commentary. It's totally fine with because everyone has a different opinion. So but some I usually don't read them and don't even know they're out there. But sometimes I go and look at them and I'll see people say Oh, way too much way too busy for May. I would never put that kind of a wall covering on the wall and other people say, Oh my gosh, it's so glamorous and gorgeous and beautiful So it's in the eye of the beholder, for sure, and I know that my design aesthetics are very, very strong. One in many ways. So it's not one to be a fit for a lot of people. Welcome, Crimson Hopes already responded quite quickly, she says. They see this is crazy patterns that repeat it kind of draws your eye. And but the other one they just felt was blocked. So put it really bluntly block in that funny so blah with crazy stripes on the ceiling and jade green like hot green pagoda all over while covering the walls were solid s. Oh, that's interesting is that I expected the opposite, as expected, them. I expected people to say this is more classic and the other was really crazy with stripes and the floral and everything. I wonder cause we looked at the other one and dipped in the color works young too. And they wasn't a reaction really at all. But I wonder if that was because we were talking about color and by the time we got to that we had done a lot of whereas in this workshop, you really often a whole lot of options and you almost often offer the option to not love it because you don't have to be that time gave permission for people to say you have my design work. Just kidding. I'm not insulted. But you have you been power people to actually go? You know, this is with the they are, but they are In fact, in this case, this one is my type. And that one is it's not stuck too much going on. Now they know which is exactly what I wanted people to get out of this course. I'm not trying to I'm not trying to bring you over to my design style. I'm trying to help you dig so deep that you can really become very aware of what your own design style is and how yours is different from anybody else. is or how maybe you could even embrace yours more than you have been. Maybe you were afraid to, because you felt like it wasn't right. And I want to give permission for people to really create something that's unique. So sounds like we're it's working right not to take on this is this New York space has a very small amount of green that just pops. I don't find it overwhelming, but they found that the other space just had way too much green. It was just too heavy. And, you know, it's interesting it that color is so polarizing in and of itself. And some people really love strong colors and or really love a particular color where other people really dislike it. So, as I said yesterday, most Americans love blue. It's the most loved color in America. A lot of people also love green, but I've encountered many people. I mean greens in nature. Both of them are in nature, you know. But I've also encountered quite a few people in my career that say we do not like green at all. So interesting but very personal.

Class Description

Brought to you by House Beautiful Magazine, award-winning interior designer Tobi Fairley returns to CreativeLive for an exciting workshop all about identifying and exploring your unique style.

Have you ever tried to verbalize your design style but end up using blanket statements like "my style is eclectic" because you didn't know how to describe what you’re drawn to visually? Knowing what your interior design style is — and being able to verbalize it — is as important as knowing what does and doesn't go together in home decor.

Tobi will teach you the top design styles — including today’s latest trends and what styles are rapidly on their way out. You'll learn how to define your personal style, how to shop smart when buying a new piece of furniture or art, as well as how to blend two different styles to create a cohesive look. By the end of this workshop, you'll have all the skills you need to create a stylish personal space that is a true and modern reflection of your taste.


Amy Cantrell

I was happy to get this class on sale at a time when I needed it. We were painting and replacing some furniture so it helped me get some clarity on what is most important to me. As a photographer I can appreciate most styles and colors so the class helped me hone in on what my design personality is (eclectic mostly) which helped me focus on things to inspire me.

LIndsey Connell

What a generous offering. I got so much out of this course. Sure, some of the style references are a little out-moded, but it's incredibly thorough. Tobi is so knowledgeable about all of the styles and is gifted at helping students ensure style and functionality. Dive in! You'll learn so much about your own style and how to make your home flow in a way that you love.

a Creativelive Student

Clear, informative and inspiring!