DS Tip Of The Week: Start Small–Wallpaper Your Niche!

You know you wait all weekend for this moment… it’s time for another Steinhafels #DecoratingSolutions Tip of the Week!

This week’s tip is for those of you who want to give wallpaper a try, but aren’t ready to commit to an entire room of modern geometrics or feminine floral patterns.

Beth Kealy is an interior decorator with our Decorating Solutions program, and works out of our Menomonee Falls store.  She has some advice for those of us not ready for wallpaper in a whole room.

Beth suggests, “How about just a Niche?  This picture is a powder room where a painted pattern on a cork wallpaper was applied to the niche area.  This really dresses up the room, and adding the two-tone wire flowers combines the colors of the mirror and wallpaper, creating a spectacular 3-D accent on the wall!”

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Looks great Beth.  Thanks for the tip!

Don’t be scared to try something new… even if you just take baby steps at first.  Check in next week for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

 

DS Tip Of The Week: Be Bold, Create Interest

Are you getting ready to tackle a new design project?  Are you the type who likes to play it “safe”?

Well, we’re here to tell you it’s OK to be bold, and take some chances.  Don’t be afraid of color or pattern!!

Get out the notepad and jot down these pointers.  That’s right… it’s time for another Decorating Solutions Tip of the Week!  This week’s tip comes from Interior Designer Samantha Price.  Samantha is a new member of the Decorating Solutions team, and we are excited to have her working out of our beautiful store off I-94 in Oak Creek.

Have fun and be bold, but don’t forget–a little bit goes a long way!  Samantha explains, “A bold chair, an accent wall, or even some wild accent pillows can make a dramatic statement in a room.  If color and pattern just aren’t your thing, don’t forget about texture.  Different textures in a neutral room is a great way to create interest!  Creating interest is what gives a room its character, and it’s an important element in creating a beautiful space.”

Here’s an example of a vignette featuring bold colors and patterns!

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Our designers are hard at work on many more quick and easy design tips for you.  Check in next Monday for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

Design for a Difference 2016: The Rainbow Project

Steinhafels has been taking part in Design For a Difference-Madison for a couple years now. Steinhafels is often thought of as a Milwaukee company, but we are proud to serve the Madison, Appleton, and Vernon Hills communities as well.

Design For a Difference is a national campaign focused on design makeovers for charities.  Thanks to organizers like FLOOR360 and BRAVA Magazine, Madison has been a staple city for the project for the past two years.  This year, the charity chosen was The Rainbow Project, which helps children and families in crisis.  Our designers oversaw a complete redesign of the center’s “Observation Room.”

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Steinhafels Decorating Solutions designers Mari Johnson and Patti Stindt were asked if they would like to donate their time, and take part in the project this year.  They hit the ground running!!  Designer Michelle Kahl, who is a newer addition to our design team, also helped out.  And of course, Steinhafels was so proud to donate a large portion of the facility’s new furniture.

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Sharyl Kato is a Child and Family Therapist, and Director of The Rainbow Project. Kato and her staff worked tirelessly to make sure this redesign was a success.

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We talked to Mari, Patti, and Sharyl about the overall experience.  Check out their reflections below!

MARI JOHNSON, Steinhafels Decorating Solutions Interior Designer

-What has been the best part about being involved in the DFAD redesign this year?

MARI:  The best thing about being part of the DFAD this year was working with a very talented group of designers.  We may be “competition,” but we came together and the result is unbelievable. Also, it took me completely by surprise that just by asking people in the community for help how many of them stepped up. In particular Tom Colby from the Elks, who connected me with The Carlson Company and the electrician, Jon Potter.  Target Corporation gave me a $100 gift card to buy a kid’s table and storage bins, and Cindy from Cindy’s Custom Interiors donated fabric and labor. In addition, when I went to purchase rope lighting at Menards, Becky Zahn, a Zone manager gave me her Menards card to make the purchase.  Just wow! Not to mention all the donations of toys which was the idea of our sales associate, Laurie Krueger.

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-Has this experience helped you use your design skills in a new way?

MARI:  This opportunity helped me use my design skills to make a different space than someone’s home, beautiful!  It’s very unfortunate that there is a need for a place like The Rainbow Project, but they do such a important job in our community. So if we can make it somewhat easier for the therapists to perform their jobs, how great is that.

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-Why is it important that businesses and employees give back to the communities they serve?

MARI:  It is important for everyone to give back to the community.  We all live here.

PATTI STINDT, Steinhafels Decorating Solutions Interior Designer

-What has been the best part about being involved in the DFAD redesign this year?

PATTI:  The best part Is to help provide a healthy and positive environment to encourage the feeling of safety, support, and healing for those that have been traumatized.

-Has this experience helped you use your design skills in a new way?

PATTI: It has been a great pleasure to partner with other designers that have different specialties to provide a cohesive space.

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-Why is it important that businesses and employees give back to the communities they serve?

PATTI:  We all should feel a sense of ownership to help those in our community that need it most.

Sharyl Kato, Director, The Rainbow Project

-How did you first feel when you found out Rainbow Project was chosen for this year’s Design for a Difference?

SHARYL:  I was shocked and elated and jumping up & down & hugging everyone & screaming!!  I was so elated because you have no idea how much our clinic needed repair.

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-Describe what The Rainbow Project does, and why it’s so vital to the Madison community.

SHARYL:  We offer a wide range of prevention, early intervention, treatment, & crisis services, specializing in trauma recovery for young children (infants through 10 years of age) and their families.  We work with families who have experienced child abuse, neglect, domestic violence, community violence, victims of crime such as break-ins, severe accidents, fires, natural disasters, grief/separation & loss, drug endangered children, child sex trafficking & victims of pornography as well as medical trauma.  We provide best-practice, evidence based approaches working with children, caregivers, families & other agencies, service providers including schools, early childhood programs, hospitals/physicians, homeless shelters, substance abuse programs, first offenders, substance abuse programs & other sources.  We have been providing effective,  innovative, state-of-the-art services for 36 years & were ahead of our time, doing work that research is finally validating as valid science.  We are proud of our service model involving play therapy, family therapy, parent education, in home work, children’s & parent groups, community networking  & collaboration as well as community education & consultation services.  We have served over 10,800 children and 10,500 adult caregivers.  We focus on younger children because they are at highest risk for developing post-traumatic stress disorder increasing their risks for criminal behavior, poor academic performance, substance abuse, mental illness, violent behavior, unemployment & homelessness.  Trauma can negatively impact brain development & neuroscience, yet research indicates that specialized positive consistent interactions such that Rainbow staff provide & promote in the community, can reverse that damage.  And we observe these successes every day.

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What has the process been like watching the building be transformed over the last few months?

SHARYL:  The process has been so very amazing.  The Design 4 A Difference volunteer team embraced Rainbow so totally.  The focus, attention, & appreciation for our work, our environment, what we do, the caring for our mission and the population we are devoted to serving–was so deeply moving and appreciated.  We involved the children and families we serve early on to provide input on what they already liked about our space & what they would like to see added or changed so that they were a part of the planning process too.  The process and anticipation was building with every day!  The well-planned, thoughtful meetings & the caring and concern to get our input was so consistent throughout.  Over time, the initial exhilaration & excitement has transformed and actually deepened as we “live and work” in our new space!  We see clients both children and adults be so in awe of the space.  Squeals of laughter & delight, so many ‘Wows’ and ‘Ohhhs’ and ‘Ahhhs’  as they tour the new space & discover the changes.  A child who normally does not express himself kept repeating & exclaiming with amazement….’this is shocking, this is shocking!’  And another child jumped into the huge pillows exclaiming he wanted to stay in the room forever.  The children & families are careful & respectful of the awesome toys & furniture.  They are aware that this was done for them & they are grateful.  As victims of trauma, our clients may view the world as mostly not safe & caring so when folks do something so incredible voluntarily, it alters their view of the world and of themselves as valued.  Nothing can substitute that in their healing process.

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Describe the feeling you had when you first saw the project all finished?

SHARYL:  Shock, Excitement, Overwhelmed, but mostly Grateful. It is the intensity and magnitude of those feelings that were most meaningful.

Steinhafels was so honored to be a part of this project.  Can you tell us a little bit about the room our designers remodeled, and what you love about it most?  

SHARYL:  The room Steinhafels remodeled is one of the most important because after the waiting area,  it is the first room they come in for their initial consultation.  We are aware of how stressful it is to come to ask for help.  To make something private very public.  It takes courage to seek help when they are in such pain and stress from trauma.  So we want to be sure we are as sensitive as possible to that apprehension.  The lighting, the playhouse, the warmth and welcoming feeling is so perfect!  The interior designers truly understood.  We appreciate every item, object & thought that went behind everything.  It was so very touching and healing for all of us.  The gifts that will continue giving include the beautiful & irresistible toys that were given to the children here.

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Finally, how is this project going to help you serve families even better?

SHARYL:  For one thing, the magnitude of this magical transformation that was given to the Rainbow Project makes us more determined than ever to continue our work to make you all proud of your investment in time, energy, resources, labor, & heart.  The impact on staff is multi-fold.  When surrounded by creative stimulating environments, it makes us all more energetic, motivated, creative & definitely more positive, efficient, organized!!  The attention to self-care products in the break room & OUR ROOMS!!!!  The results way surpassed our expectations.  We do not feel alone in the tough work we do.  We are not used to the attention & appreciation as we do our work every day!  It was challenging to get used to that.  We feel we can conquer the world!!!  Thank you does not seem adequate enough.  We have all observed progress with our clients.  A child I work with has made more gains this month than in over a year.  The environment is peaceful, welcoming, inviting, nurturing.  It is their place, it is our place.

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DS Tip Of The Week: Bold Bathrooms

Creating the home of your dreams can be overwhelming.  We often put most of our focus on common areas like the living room, dining room, and kitchen… but don’t overlook the bathroom.  That’s right–the bathroom!  Don’t be afraid to have some fun and give your bathroom a bold new look.

This week’s Decorating Solutions Tip of the Week focuses on that little room we all use, but don’t always think about at design time.  It comes from interior designer Beth Kealy, who works with the fine customers at our Menomonee Falls store.

When it comes to bathrooms, Beth suggests, “Ditch the wallpaper and create a bold look with a wide stripe paint application.  Update a cozy bathroom into a fun new look that is not concerned with humidity.”

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We know humidity can be a concern during these wet, hot Wisconsin summers!  Our designers are hard at work on many more quick and easy design tips for you.  Check in next Monday for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

DS Tip of The Week: Back to Black

Are you design-illiterate?  Do you feel like any time you try to improve the look of your room, you make it look worse?  You’re not alone!  Most of us don’t have a true eye for decor.  But there are some simple things you can do to make it a little easier on yourself.

One of the aspects of design where people falter most is color.  It sounds simple, but color truly can make or break a room.  Here’s a recent article on The Power of Color featuring one of our buyers.

Many of us want to incorporate as much color as possible in a room.  We often think of bold, bright colors like blue and red.  However, as designer Andrea Odishoo explains, don’t be afraid of the color black.  Andrea is part of our Decorating Solutions program, and is based in our Vernon Hills store.

Black is a mysterious color, often associated with fear and the unknown.  It also conjures up feelings of power, elegance, and authority.  If used correctly, and in conjunction with the proper colors, it can be very effective–but you don’t want to overdo it!

As Andrea explains, “Every room needs a touch of black to ground the color scheme and give it depth.  Black intermingles with almost any color–gives a space a sense of elegance, and commands attention in a room.”

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So don’t be afraid to get back to basics… and go back to black!  Our award-winning designers are constantly coming up with quick and easy design tips for you.  Check in next Monday for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.