DS Tip Of The Week: Don’t Rush on Picking Paint

Happy May 1st! It’s Monday, and that means it’s time for another Tip of the Week.

Sometimes our tips elaborate on common sense design tips most of us already know. But other times, our tips help to dispel common design mistakes.

One of those is paint color. Many people want to pick their paint color first. Believe it or not, you should actually pick your paint color LAST!

This week’s tip comes from Decorating Solutions Interior Designer Dawn Adamec. Dawn works out of our Waukesha Corporate store.

Dawn explains, “It’s a good idea to have a general color scheme, but make life easier for yourself!! Figure out the furniture and/or area rugs and art first. Then you can select your paint colors from the colors you see in your fabrics, art work, and area rugs. It’s harder to match fabrics, a favorite piece of art or an area rug with existing paint colors.”

Here’s one of Dawn’s projects, brought to life by Steinhafels photographer Sarah Utech. Note how the pain color pulls everything together!


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: Don’t Be So Pushy!

It’s Monday AND the first day of Spring. Time for some #MondayMotivation!! Here’s your Steinhafels #DecoratingSolutions Tip of the Week to give you a burst of motivation!

This week we look at furniture arrangement. Samantha Price is an interior decorator based at our beautiful Oak Creek store. Samantha points out that many people have a tendency to think furniture needs to be pushed up against a wall. Instead, she says don’t be so “pushy!”

She explains, “In a lot of spaces, most commonly the long narrow room, furniture against a wall makes for a real awkward space, with no real definitions. An entertaining space should be more cozy and not spread out across a room. An area rug is a great way to help ground and define a specific space. After the main pieces are placed, sometimes the leftover space can be overwhelming and undefined? An accent chair and a table are always a great solution. It can create a visually pleasing area of interest, while offering extra seating when guests come over! Furniture pieces do not always need to create the look of everyday use. Sometimes the definition of a space within a space can be the eye catcher.”

Here’s a Before and After of one of Samantha’s recent projects:



We post a new, quick and easy decor tip each and every Monday.  Check in next week for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

Steinhafels & The Pabst Theater: Showtime!

It’s the big night. The stage is set, the theater crew is working on last minute preps… and the band is relaxing, watching TV, and enjoying some fresh coffee and a home-cooked meal!

The Pabst Theater Group prides itself on making all performers feel at home once they enter the doors of the Pabst Theater, The Riverside, or Turner Hall Ballroom. From an on-site caterer, to personal barista, and an enviable vinyl collection… the Pabst staff does all it can to make sure performers are comfortable before they take the big stage.

This emphasis on hospitality and the comforts of home make Steinhafels a perfect fit as a partner for this Milwaukee institution!

Over the last few months we’ve been working together to redesign the backstage of the Group’s historic Pabst Theater. As you can see it’s a neat space, but needed a little TLC and modern touches.


Steinhafels Decorating Solutions Interior Decorator Anne Sperry was basically given carte blanche to transform the space. The Pabst Theater staff admits it was a little daunting. “It’s always a little scary when you are changing something that is so personal and important to what we do. But it’s also very exciting since we know it will be a better, improved space.”

After the big Delivery Day, and a few finishing touches… check out the “NEW” digs! It still has that casual hangout vibe, but Anne added some color to make it pop, and also included some modern/rustic wood and metal pieces to hold all that vinyl!



Channel 12 and CBS 58 even came by to check it out and talk to Anne!


We love the new space, and so does the Pabst… but don’t take our word for it. Let’s see what the performers think!

03.10.17 Pabst Backstage-2

The first band to use the space was Wisconsin’s own Horseshoes and Hand Grenades. The band has been playing together for about 6 years, and they always love playing the Pabst theaters. Davey Lynch plays harmonica and accordion. He explains, “The hospitality is absolutely the best.  That’s not just a Milwaukee pride thing either, since I live in Milwaukee.  Of the entire lower 48, Pabst/Riverside/Turner has the best hospitality. That’s not just food and beverage, but the feeling you get with the hospitality and the staff too.”


Lynch and his 4 bandmates spend an average of five hours a day together on a small bus, so he says having a place to call home away from home while touring is very important. “Getting that living room environment is wildly important, especially to feel comfortable before performing too, so it’s nice to have that. Just that good down home feeling, that’s just great.”


We had him try out one of the new leather couches. He was impressed, and had some fun with it! “I definitely notice the leather furniture, absolutely, very comfortable couches… Oh yeah, I did the lay down, the sit down, the half laydown.”

Photo Mar 10, 7 03 29 PM

It’s good to see Davey and his buddies making themselves at home! We are so excited to continue our partnership with the Pabst, and help bring a touch of home to the men and women who work so hard to give audiences a great time.

Photo Mar 10, 11 30 00 PM

You can check out more pictures from the big “Reveal Day” by clicking HERE.


DS Tip Of The Week: Lose the TV

Despite this late season deluge of snow…spring IS coming! That means time to turn off the TV’s, open the windows, and enjoy the sounds and smells of the outdoors.

This week’s Steinhafels #DecoratingSolutions Tip of the Week comes to us from one of our Oak Creek-based interior decorators, Jenii Kluver. She has a message for all of you hooked on Sports, Video Games, Netflix, Hulu, etc. Turn it off when you’re in the family room. In fact, lose the TV altogether. That’s right–no TV! Small family rooms were never meant to have TV’s.

Jenii explains, “Try eliminating the TV in your space and relocating it to a more closed off space such as a basement or bedroom. This will give you a lot more freedom to use your room to its fullest potential without having to designate one wall as a ‘TV wall.’ If you really cannot live without a TV in your living space, try mounting it above your fireplace to still give yourself freedom with furniture layout.”

Lose the TV

We post a quick and easy decor tip each Monday.  Check in next week for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

DS Tip Of The Week: Big Style–Decorating With Neutrals And Naturals

When it comes to interior design, many of us don’t want to push the envelope. We may think decorating with neutrals is the “safe” way to go, but the truth is, you can have BIG and BOLD style, all while decorating with neutrals and naturals! Our Steinhafels #DecoratingSolutions Tip of the Week asks you to think about neutrals in a new way.

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This week’s tip comes from Appleton Interior Decorator Julie Kanugh.  Julie says, “Don’t be afraid to go BIG. Neutral doesn’t need to be boring. You can make a neutral room interesting with patterns, textures, and materials. For example, leather is a natural and practical choice, and can have interesting textures. In addition, distressed or reclaimed wood adds texture and style, along with being family friendly (scratches on the coffee table won’t matter)!”

neutral big style julianne2neutral big style julianne1

Julie adds, don’t forget to protect your purchase with Guardsman! We post a quick and easy decor tip every Monday.  Check in next week for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.

You can check out Julie talking about Bold Neutrals on Fox 11’s “Living With Amy” by clicking HERE.

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DS Tip Of The Week: Furniture and Windows

It doesn’t feel like it, but winter is just around the corner.  Even though it’s cold outside, it’s still nice to have some natural light in the home, and use our windows to accent our decor.

This week’s window-themed Tip of the Week comes from Decorating Solutions Designer Linda Patti.  Linda has been with Steinhafels for more than 25 years, and has decorated more than 700 homes!

Linda’s tip focuses on the correct way to place furniture in front of a window.  She explains, “When placing furniture in front of a window avoid obstructing the window.  Keep the back of the furniture low, especially if it is a focal point.”


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 Celebrates One Year!

Wow, time DOES fly when you’re having fun–like blogging about interior design!

We’re excited to announce that our Steinhafels Decorating Solutions #TipOfTheWeek Blog posts have been running for exactly ONE YEAR.

That means more than 50 great interior design tips are available on our blog site–all at the click of a mouse!

To celebrate this blogging milestone, we’re going to look back at 5 of the Top Tips based on your page views.


This tip comes from Laura Hoffman, one of our designers in Appleton.

Laura has some advice for organizing all those pesky pillows you have strewn all over your room.  Laura’s Tip:  “I love to stack and build out pillows on a bed or a couch, either with the same color palette, or with different patterns.”

TOTW pillows


It’s the day some parents dream of, and others dread–the day a child leaves the nest!  Some parents will leave the child’s bedroom untouched–with teddy bears still on the bed and band posters on the walls.  However, less nostalgic parents will likely look at that vacant bedroom, and be ready to make a change.

This Tip of the Week comes from Menomonee Falls Designer Beth Kealy.  Beth says you don’t have to completely change your child’s old bedroom, but like your child, it’s time for that old room to “grow up.”

How do you do that?  Beth explains, “Empty nesters can reclaim use of a child’s old room with elegant updates that cut the cluttered look of the past.  Take a room from ‘Catch All’ to ‘Wow!'”






It’s time to look at neutrals in a whole new way.  Beige doesn’t have to equal boring.  Instead, look at it as a tool of versatility!

This is another design tip from Appleton Interior Decorator Laura Hoffman.

Laura suggests, “Design the base of your room in neutral color hues, then add your pops of color with pillows, throws, art, candles, etc.  That way when you get tired of a certain color, or want to add your seasonal color scheme you can give your room a whole new look in a few minutes!  Simply replace those candles, pillows, and other accessories with similar items of a different color.  Your room will look totally different and very put together, with little work involved.”

TOTW Neutral Base


Designer Rhonda Vivoda is based in our Corporate store in Waukesha.  Rhonda likes to bring her designs to life with rich textures.

Here are Rhonda’s Top Three Ways to add Texture to a design project:

*Use an area rug over carpeting.  It anchors the room, along with adding color and texture.


*Throw Pillows.  These are an inexpensive way to change the look and feel of a room.  They add pops of color and different textures.


*Gorgeous Greenery.  Real or artificial always adds softness to a room and can add a different texture.



One of the most important accessories in a room is a lamp.  The way light can alter the look of a room, or bring out the colors of paint or furniture truly is remarkable…all with the flip of a switch!

This one comes from Interior Designer Colleen Rome.  Colleen works at our Greenfield store, and helps customers across Milwaukee create the homes of their dreams.

As Colleen suggests, you can create patterns and colors simply with Tiffany lighting.  She goes on to explain, “Tiffany lighting can add nice warm ambiance to the room, and you can use them with other types of lighting to create a certain feeling for a nice dinner or special occasion.  Best of all–they never go out of style!  They can be used in all different settings from transitional to traditional.”



As you see in the pictures, the colors of the lamp truly bring a sophisticated and artistic look to the room–while still remaining casual.

Thank you for making our first year of #DSTipOfTheWeek a success!  We look forward to bringing you many more Unique Tips and Trade Secrets in 2017.


DS Tip Of The Week: Comfort and Style Don’t Have to Be Mutually Exclusive!

Are you looking to redesign your room, but don’t know where to start?  You’ve come to the right place.  It’s time for another Steinhafels #DecoratingSolutions Tip of the Week!

This week we look at how to combine high style and cozy comfort.  Those may sound like two very different design strategies, but they don’t have to be!

This week’s design tip comes from Anne Hildreth, an interior designer the Steinhafels in Vernon Hills.

In a recent article in the Daily Herald, Anne explains, “Reclining furniture is very popular today but current recliners don’t look like the overstuffed, bucket seated ‘Bubba’ furniture of the past.”  She adds, “Today’s recliners are often high-end pieces with tailored arms and backs that also happen to be designed to recline and are very comfortable.  Many are custom-made so the homeowner can choose exactly the arm, seat depth, back height and footrest they want, as well as the fabric or leather they prefer.”


Another thing Anne is seeing is that people are showing more personality, and choosing eclectic looks.  She says, “People are mixing fabric and leathers on chairs and sofas within the same room to keep in interesting. That sleek, matching, all leather look from the 1990’s is gone.”


In addition, Hildreth says cocktail tables are largely being replaced by cocktail ottomans… which don’t necessarily need to match the sofas and loveseats they accompany!

So go ahead and break some rules!!  You can check out more of Anne’s article HERE.

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

Purple Survivor Couch: One Woman’s Story

Steinhafels is constantly looking for new and unique ways to partner with the community for various projects and events.  While we donate money to a variety of causes, we also like when our wonderful furniture can serve a higher purpose.  After all, furniture helps to bring families together, and a good piece of furniture can last for generations!

That was the case with the American Cancer Society of Southeast Wisconsin.  They approached us and asked if we could help with their Relay For Life events this summer.  Steinhafels and ACS brainstormed, and we came up with the “Purple Survivor Couch” idea.  The purple couch traveled to several relays, and served as a symbol of survival and hope.


Check out our PURPLE COUCH SURVIVOR STORIES if you haven’t seen it!

In addition to being a comfy place to pop a squat during relays, the purple couch was also part of a Giveaway to help raise money for Relay.  Many survivors and other relayers entered the contest.


The lucky winner was announced at the big Kenosha Relay for Life event.  Cancer survivor Nancy Brey is now the proud owner of the purple couch!


Nancy lives in Twin Lakes and is a retired nurse.  As you will learn, her cancer journey is a very unique one.


Nancy is 65 years old.  She’s a wife to husband Steve for 45 years, a loving mother to 3 sons, and doting grandma to 13 grandkids!  She’s a retired nurse, and says she has lived a very blessed life… but things could have been very different for Nancy.  You see, she is also a 54-year cancer survivor!!!



The oldest of 6 children, Nancy grew up on a dairy farm in Paris Township in Kenosha County.  She was a typical kid…until she turned 11, and everything changed.

”This was towards the end of my school year.  Everything I ate came back up, and I knew something was wrong,” Nancy recalls.


A tumor had formed in Nancy’s small intestine.  She was diagnosed with sarcoma of the small intestine, now commonly known as colon cancer.  Nancy admits, ”It was scary.  I didn’t find out I had the cancer until I was older.  You didn’t say the ‘C word’ to people back in that day.”

Nancy’s parents chose surgery only, and no cobalt therapy.  Although Nancy doesn’t remember much about that time, she is thankful to her parents and the medical staff that took care of her.

In fact, Nancy was so thankful, she decided to pursue a career in the medical field.  She started as a medical assistant, and eventually became a Registered Nurse.  Nancy’s primary role was managing the Hospice House in Kenosha.  ”To see all those people go what they go through, and being able to be there… the greatest reward is being able to help the families and patients go through this journey they are going through.  That has been the most rewarding of all my career,” she says.


Nancy has also taken part in the Kenosha Relay For Life for many years.  She wants to support fellow cancer survivors, and honor those who have lost their battle, like her cousin’s son who died of leukemia.  She is honored to see the thousands of people who come out for Relay events.  “This is out here, we have to cure this.  That’s why it’s so important.”



She is excited to be the new owner of the Steinhafels Purple Couch!  She says it’ll be helpful when the family comes over.  Nancy and her husband recently hosted a big sleepover for the grandkids, and the purple couch came in handy!  ”Steve said this is very cozy, and the grandkids think it’s cool.  We had a ball–had a good time.”


The local chapter of the American Cancer Society is proud to share stories like Nancy’s…and there are so many more amazing stories to tell!

“If you’ve ever heard the words, ‘You have cancer,’ you are a cancer survivor. The American Cancer Society Relay For Life movement celebrates every cancer survivor in every community,” said Kelly Candotti, Corporate Relations for the American Cancer Society. “We’re grateful to Steinhafels for joining with the American Cancer Society to celebrate 1,325 survivors at 40 Relay For Life events this year in southeast Wisconsin.”


Nancy knows we still have a long way to go in the fight against cancer, but she hopes as her grandchildren get older we get closer and closer to finding a cure, thanks to events like American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.

Nancy gets a little emotional as we finish our conversation, and says simply, ”I’m just blessed I’m here.  That’s all I can say.”

Relay For Life events in Southeastern Wisconsin raised $1,715,299 this year.

See more inspiring Relay For Life pictures HERE!


DS Tip Of The Week: Sofa Tables–Oh the Possibilities!

As you get set to redecorate the living room, you are likely focused on the sofa, and other large statement items.  We’re here to remind you–don’t overlook the sofa tables!!


This week’s tip comes from one of our Vernon Hills Decorating Solutions experts.  Brian Mueller is known for his ability to help his clients see the possibilities that they may not be able to envision themselves.

As Brian explains, “A sofa table has endless possibilities.  If your sofa or sectional are just floating in a room, and you’re tired of looking at all the fabric or leather, break it up with a table behind it.  Not only can a table break up the sea of fabric or leather, it also acts as another surface for lamps lamps, or a space to display accessories!  For instance, if your room doesn’t allow for an end table for extra lighting, and you have room for a table behind your sofa or sectional, use that instead.  It doesn’t even necessarily have to be floating to use one either, and you can move it forward off the wall to make for a more intimate seating area as well.”


Brian adds, “Sofa tables come in all shapes and sizes.  Some even allow for ottomans or stools underneath, which adds extra seating as well when you need it.  Don’t be afraid to even put a chest or cabinet behind it, as long as it doesn’t go higher than the back of the sofa cushion. You can also use open bookshelves to divide a room visually behind a sofa.”


We post a quick and easy decor tip every Monday.  Check in next week for another #DSTipOfTheWeek.