decorating tips

Decorating with photographs - tips from interior designer Southern Farmhouse Designs

Displaying photographs and artwork is one of the best ways to personalize your space.  But despite how easy HGTV makes it look, decorating your home is not always so straightforward.  Choosing paint colors, fabrics, furniture, artwork, and accessories that reflect your personal style is one thing, but putting them all together to make a cohesive look is another.  Today's post has some helpful hints for decorating your space from local interior decorater Ashley Moore of Southern Farmhouse Designs.  Her designs are so inviting, and I love how she combines old, new, budget-friendly, high-end, colors, and textures into her designs.  

Me:  Tell me a little about how Southern Farmhouse Designs got started.

Ashley:  I've loved design since I was a child, when I used to rearrange the furniture and redecorate my room often.  After we bought and remodeled our home in Tomball, this passion was ignited and with the support of my friends and family, I started Southern Farmhouse Designs.

Me:  What services to you offer your clients?

Ashley:  We are currently specializing in e-design packages to help our clients decorate and style their spaces.  By using a detailed questionnaire and face-time meetings, we put together two cohesive design boards for a single space and send a fun box of fabrics, samples, paint colors, shopping list, and links for purchasing everything.  E-design is great because it's cost effective and allows our clients to transform their home on their own timeline and budget.

Example e-design (photo credit: Southern Farmhouse Designs)

Example e-design (photo credit: Southern Farmhouse Designs)

Me:  What do people struggle with most in decorating their home?

Ashley:  The number one decorating mistake I see is not choosing the proper size and scale – this applies to artwork on the walls, rugs on the floor, furniture pieces, and even accessories.  A large space usually requires larger pieces.  Many people also struggle with choosing and hanging drapes and pulling different pieces together.

Me:  What are some tips for hanging artwork on the wall?

Ashley:  The first thing you should do when hanging pictures on the wall is consider the overall size and shape of your wall.  You can make a statement with one large piece that fills the wall.  Or you can hang a collection of pieces together to make a story.  I have a collection of nine black and white photographs in my family room – the whole wall is tied together by using the same frame and same color palette throughout the photos. 

Black and white gallery wall (photo credit:  Grace Laird Photography )

Black and white gallery wall (photo credit: Grace Laird Photography)

For people who don't like the hassle of lining up a group of pictures in perfect straight lines, an eclectic wall gallery is great for mixing and matching sizes, colors, textures, wood tones, and metals, and you can include other items besides photographs!

eclectic gallery wall (photo credit: Southern Farmhouse Designs)

eclectic gallery wall (photo credit: Southern Farmhouse Designs)

Me:  How about tips for styling a bookshelf with pictures?

Ashley:  On a bookshelf, I prefer to use fill the bookshelf space with a larger photo, or even a smaller photo in a chunkier frame.  By using larger pieces, you let the photographs take center stage rather than getting lost among other small trinkets.  Another thing I like to do is layer my pictures.

styling bookshelves with photographs (photo credit:  Chelsea Davis Photography )

styling bookshelves with photographs (photo credit: Chelsea Davis Photography)

Me: Do you have pets?

Ashley:  Yes, I have a lab named Rebel and an outdoor cat that eats snakes!

Me:  Great!  How can you incorporate dog stuff into decor?

Ashley:  Dogs are like kids, they have a lot of "stuff"!  A decorative basket or bucket is great for collecting dog toys, and dog beds have come a long way in the last 10 years!  It's easy to find a dog bed that coordinates with the colors in your home.  We recently made a built-in dog crate in our mudroom, which fits seamlessly into the desk.

built-in mudroom dog kennel (photo credit: Southern Farmhouse Designs)

built-in mudroom dog kennel (photo credit: Southern Farmhouse Designs)

Me:  Anything else you'd like to add about decorating your home?

Ashley:  No one actually lives in a Pinterest-house!  Don't worry that your kitchen doesn't look like it's out of a magazine – do what you can to make it pretty and comfortable, but remember, homes are made for living!

layered photographs (photo credit:  Grace Laird Photography )

layered photographs (photo credit: Grace Laird Photography)

Thank you Ashley!  I appreciate your insight, and now I have some work to do restyling my bookshelves...

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