Thursday, September 1, 2016

BH Family Room Post 1 | How I Start a Design Project

BH Family Room Post 1 | How I Start a Design Project via Bliss at Home #BHfamroomWelcome to our first BH Family Room post!! I am so excited to get the ball rolling on this project and take you through the process! This is an extensive project, so it is pretty much going to dominate my personal designing time the rest of the year. I thought today it would be great to explain how I start a design project and share exactly what we are doing with this space.

I know, you’re thinking WHY because we are moving and what not. Well, 1) resale value and 2) we had a mishap in our basement. We had water get in our basement while we were out-of-town. It completely ruined the carpet and we had to rip out a good portion of the dry wall. So, for months our basement has sat bare bones. We miss having this space to use and knowing we are moving, we feel that investing a little money and sweat equity might just help this house sell when the time comes. We have since waterproofed the basement and now are ready to finish her out again. The joys of home ownership, right? It’s not fun putting money into the things you can’t see and enjoy in your home, but peace of mind is priceless!


The first thing I do with any project is assess the NEEDS and the WANTS. For our basement, there are a lot of things in that NEEDS category.

BH Family Room Post 1 | How I Start a Design Project via Bliss at Home

Also, before I start to think design, I see how the clients (or this case, my family!) want to use this space. For us, it is a place to spread out, watch a movie, play a game and have extra space to entertain. I also live in a house full of men and boys, so I want it to have a more masculine vibe than the pretty, pretty living room upstairs.

In the beginning, I also take all my measurements of the room size, walls, windows, doors, total square feet and square footage for different aspects of the project. Measure, measure, measure!bhfamroom-budget

After I assess the needs and wants, its time to shake the money tree. LOL, really though. I focus on making sure the needs of the space are met and then I see what I can do with the wants…the extras. That means I create a detailed budget. I estimate the prices for every part of the space. These are rough estimates and sometimes it requires a trip out to price materials. I track everything and make adjustments when needed.

Then, its time to get realistic, how much time is this going to take? I always create a timeline. Is it all DIY or am I hiring a contractor or tradesmen for certain parts? I think about lead times and shipping on furniture and lighting. I look at our schedule and see how many hours in the coming months we can personally dedicate to our project. It’s a lot of bits and pieces to coordinate and I usually try to nail down the furnishings right away because those can have the longest wait time.

Things are going to happen faster or slower in different areas, but its important to keep things moving. Luckily, at the start of this project all foundational issues are taken care of and we know what lurks behind the walls because we ripped almost everything out. That is not always the case!


Once I have a good idea of budget and timeline and I’ve thoroughly assessed the needs and wants of a space, it’s time to have some fun! Right away, I search for something that inspires. In this case, it was a book of all things. My Stepmom gifted an old Rudyard Kipling Boys Stories book to my oldest years ago and seeing that book started the domino effect of inspiration for me.

BH Family Room Post 1 | How I Start a Design Project via Bliss at Home

I wanted this to be a more masculine feeling space in our home. The gold, black, and emerald green really spoke to me. Green happens to be my husbands favorite color too. I started to then look at menswear fabrics for suiting and it helped shape my choices.

I like to moodboard my spaces to give an idea of the overall vibe.

BH Family Room Post 1 | How I Start a Design Project via Bliss at Home #BHfamroom

Usually, I’ll pull some inspiration from a room design I filed away and this space from Stephen Sills fit the vibe.

Stephen Sills Living Room

Sometimes the inspiration is the easiest part or the hardest part. It came easy this time around. I usually try to find one thing that completely grabs me and start centering the design around that. In this case it was a book, but it could be a fabric, artwork, rug, etc.


Once I have the inspiration, I get down to the nitty-gritty.

Right now, I am sourcing and ordering the pieces that will take longer to arrive. I am also drawing up the final room layout to scale. I had drafts I was using in the beginning to help me with furniture selections. This helps me to see the end result and make sure that scale is correct. I usually will tape this off on the floor and I always double check the height of pieces too. I usually sketch the furniture and decor at this point to make sure I like the mix of pattern, color, and texture.

We also have several flooring and tile projects we are doing for this space. Soon, I will be selecting those surfaces and sharing every project here on the blog. They are going to be so good! More on that soon.

This space is going to be my take on livable luxury for a house full of dudes, basically! Ha, ha! I’m going to take a basic basement and turn it into a hub for hanging out, watching movies, and entertaining. It’s going to be a mix of Traditional, Modern, Mid-Century, and a little Glam for good measure. All with durable and family friendly fabrics and surfaces. It can be done, promise!

I’m thrilled to be collaborating with Taylor Burke Home on the furniture and a few other details I’ll disclose later.  I am in love with their new Tailored collection. Have you seen it? You can achieve some beautiful custom details and the pricepoint is great. You can see the space I styled with their London Tufted Ottoman here for their Style It Challenge if you need a refresher on how beautiful their furniture is:

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Taylor Burke Home Style It Challenge

I know that was a lot for our first BH Family Room post! Sometimes taking on a full remodel can be a bit daunting, but maybe there are some tips in there that you guys will find helpful. Our next BH Family Room post we are going to share the before tour of this space! Let’s see…how can I put this nicely…let’s just say the before tour will make for a very dramatic after reveal! We are going to work some magic and by the time we are done I have a feeling this will be one of the places my family hangs out in the most!

Happy Weekend early to you! Today, D and I are celebrating our 14 year anniversary!! We both decided not to work today so I’ll be back Monday sharing a fun fall event I guest-hosted!



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Article Source: BH Family Room Post 1 | How I Start a Design Project

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