The Interior Designer's Tips on Holiday Decorations

It’s this time of the year that interior designers and design lovers are busy showcasing their style and decorating skills. The home has many rooms and spaces to play with holiday decorations.

Let’s talk about holiday decorating ideas. Let’s start with the Christmas Tree which is always the focal point. .You may get a fake or real tree but pay attention to the type and color of the tree that you choose.

  • I suggest you invest in a high-quality artificial tree. High-quality trees are more durable. It can stand up to the test of time all whilst maintaining its beautiful look. Choose a fake tree that offers easy setup and storage in order to prevent wear and tear on the Christmas tree. 
  • Fluff and shape the branches of the Christmas tree would help make your Christmas tree look fuller and more natural. Separate each branch and bend individual branches to fill in gaps. 
  • Design around a theme before choosing your decorations sets the tone for your materials and gives you a clear idea of how to decorate your tree.
  • Start with the lights first and continue wrapping the lights evenly around the branches nearest to the trunk, and then weave it upwards from the middle of the crown.Next, you may want to have a festive look on welcoming your guests to your home. Thus putting holiday decorations to your door would be a fascinating view of the yuletide season. The combination of the garland, wreath, lights, and baubles would make up a great holiday decoration. Colorful ornament wreaths are eye-catching and fun.

    Then the Christmas Stockings which makes every morning of the Christmas season even more magical for the whole family. You may hang them in the fireplace or sideboard, stockings are great for holding stocking fillers – and, of course, they're the perfect finishing touch to holiday decorations. 

    The creation of a mini Christmas village would be a great addition to your holiday decorations. Creating a Christmas village as one of your holiday decorations is as easy as 1, 2, 3. First, you have to determine the size of your village. Then, choose a theme that you want for your Christmas village. There are many varieties of themes for Christmas villages e.g. Victorian Christmas Village, whimsical elf Christmas Village or Winter in the woods. It is great to have a village map so it will be easier to place the decorations.   

    Now, let’s jump to a festive table setting, Celebrating the yuletide season means many get together and parties, hence, you should set the table with the theme that goes with the occasion. 

    • A decorated Christmas dining table with champagne glasses and Christmas tree in the background
    • A good centerpiece can uplift the whole dining room, and bring the mood up along with it. 
    • Think about what kind of color palette you want to use and how it relates to your home.
    • Metallic accents add a modern twist to the ritual, and you might even consider throwing in a calming neutral shade to balance out the look.
    • Flowers and plants always give a soothing welcoming impact to any setting. A simple or well-crafted bouquet on the table is a time-tested centerpiece, You may also add a touch of greenery pieces like sprigs of fresh herbs like rosemary or thyme. 

    These are just a few tips on your holiday decorations. If you plan to decorate your home and looking for professional help, contact designstiles. For a limited time, hire us by the hour, for design projects small and large! With as little as a 1-hour minimum, we can make sure you get exactly what you need for the project at hand. 

    Click here to request your discovery call and see if this is the perfect fit for you!


girls pink bedroom by designstiles los angeles

Children's Bedroom Design: Timeless Ideas To Consider

Designing a children’s bedroom can be as fun for you to do as it is for the kids to enjoy afterwards. Children’s rooms are a whole new ball game for colors, shapes, storage ideas, and furnishings. Coming up with creative ways to include the practical elements of a bedroom is a fun challenge. 

You might even see how excited the children are when it’s finished, making the project rewarding. Whether you are looking for inspiration or considering a redesign, here are the things that you should know for designing a room that has everything a kid could want. The more innovatively you can combine fun and function, the better!

girl pink bedroom by designstiles los angeles

Make it a happy place

A child’s bedroom should make them feel content. Think unique color combinations, mixing fun patterns and incorporating some of their favorite animals or accessories in the room, which can easily be swapped out when they're no longer obsessed with aforementioned item.

Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by designstiles.

Ensure there is space for creativity

In this bedroom we redesigned, we incorporated a reading nook, a cozy little corner in this bedroom, as a place that little ones, or mom and dad could lounge in during story time. This encourages learning in a relaxed environment.

boys blue bedroom by designstiles los angeles

Let Imagination Run Wild

Kids bedrooms are for more than just bedtime! Their rooms should be fun and inspire creativity as well. Turn the space itself into an exciting place to be, rather than just a room containing a few essentials. I’d like to discuss more high end ideas vs. the traditional "little kid" stuff. 

You could build an indoor tree house that they can climb a ladder to get into. Paint their desk with chalkboard paint so they can show off their art skills! Make a building station that encourages critical thinking! Giving kids a creative space allows them to be imaginative and think outside the box. Parents lives will also be much easierif their children really enjoy being in their own rooms!

cosy girls bedroom by designstiles los angeles

Make it cozy

Kids need to feel safe and secure, so fill your child’s room with items they can use to self-soothe, like a large soft blanket with enough weight to feel like a hug. Bedding, pillows, and rugs should be soft to the touch, so feel all materials before bringing them into the room.

Have fun with wallpaper! So many options are full of personality. In the coral bedroom shown above, we used wallpaper on the ceiling to draw the eyes up, and truthfully, mother wanted to avoid her daughter peeling the paper if it were on the walls. By installing it on the ceiling, it created an element of surprise.

So let your creativity go wild when it comes to designing your child's bedroom, they do after all deserve the most beautiful room in the house.

If you’d like to talk about decorating a child’s bedroom or you want to add a touch of luxury elsewhere in your home then contact designstiles now for a free consultation!



My family's in the restaurant business. If you guess Mexican food, you've been paying attention.

My uncle had the genius idea of opening in a developing city where there was essentially zero competition. Business boomed and customers practically demanded a second location. In came my dad, followed by my other uncle and two more locations. Now Tio's (means uncle in Spanish) is on to their fifth location and expanding no.4. And since we're keeping things in the family, I've been brought on to create a design concept and make materials/decor selections.

I want it to have color moments in thought out places. I don't want people to walk in an have it be arriba arriba all up in your face as most Mexican restaurants are known for. No cliche wall murals here.

Here's a look into what my brain is thinking.


I want a neutral base with half painted walls in that rich green color to add depth and dimension. An easy way to bring in a bold hue without going overboard. Brighter colors and texture will be brought in through decorative items, art and selective zarape upholstery.

My first commercial space. Exciting times.

Hardwood Floors

Hey, long time no post.

Things have been really busy, leaving me with close to no motivation to think of anything to blog about.

I mean, I get ideas, but I get even lazier to put them together into a post with pretty pictures, creative layout, cute font and few words. This stuff is time consuming.

 I am happy to announce, though, that we're having our hardwood floors refinished at the end of this month. Hallefreakinglujah. Hasta never dinky carpet.

This is great news for me and we actually have to move out of our house for about a week in order to expedite the process. We're just going to be renting a house in our area. I'm kind of looking forward to "moving"; I've always enjoyed being a house guest.

Now I just have to decide on a color. I thought I wanted something dark but have since changed my mind 23 times. I counted.

I think I now want something lighter.

Or dark.


To the inspiration board.


Now this is dark. Black would be bold, but maybe not so practical in a house with two dogs. I'd be cleaning every hour.


Gray would be so sleek. I don't think I can pull it off though. Not certain I have the right house for it.


White would be fresh. Just have to make sure it looks more contemporary and less shabby chic, or shabby shitty as one friend likes to call it.


I'm leaning towards lighter, but nothing too neutral or anything with any hint of red or orange.


Love this color. I see gray undertones, but it could be those chairs. And the herringbone pattern takes it up three notches.

Screen shot 2013-04-17 at 10.57.39 AM

I came across this image and thought it was the perfect blend. They're custom aged french oak. Yeah, good luck with that.

I like the color but I also don't want it looking too french country.

Better get to deciding. I have less than two weeks.

Happy Wednesday!

PS - new guest post on Spearmint Baby today. Check out what kind of clothes I'd gift your baby, if you had one.

Rest In Peace

"We would've been together for 31 years," the defeated sound in my uncle's voice said as he looked down at his wife, high school sweetheart. Despite what the severity of her condition did to her psychically, he still looked at her like she was the most beautiful woman on Earth. True love taken away because of cancer, a year long battle that was lost, but not without a long, hard fight. An encounter we thought she had overcome four years ago came back with a vengeance in round two.

We were there, at the hospital, to say our goodbyes. It was difficult to look at her and not expect her radiant smile, followed by her distinguishing laugh to greet you back. This isn't Alma, I thought, as I fought back tears, numbed by emotions. You're looking at someone who has only presented you with positive memories and think this isn't reality staring you in the face. For a split second you even convince yourself that she's going to get up at any moment, crack a joke, and say, let's go get a drink. Because that was the nature of her spirit. Young-hearted, fun, humorous, happy. Her and my uncle were TH and I's couple role models. They were the couple we wanted to be like when we grew up. Responsible parents who somehow still managed to have fun and remain in love. But her life was coming to an end and we were there, watching, not knowing if it would take a night, hours or minutes. You take a deep breath, in disbelief and hope to experience a true miracle.

December 10th, 2012, 31 years to the date of my uncle asking her to go steady was the day her body had decided it had enough. Life working in a mysterious way, puzzling us with symbolic questions we'll never had answers to.

My mind has been going in circles, analyzing and trying to understand it all, and it never will. And as forlorn as the situation is because I feel so much for my uncle and their three children, ages 10, 12 and 21, there's this sense of comfort I feel in knowing someone as genuine as she was. I compare and contrast the person I said goodbye to at the hospital to the person who was at my wedding, at family gatherings and events with that smile, that laugh and it calms me, knowing that's the kind of example and attitude I can proceed with in my life to keep the memory of her going.

I usually keep things very lighthearted around the blog, but felt it was appropriate to share a bit of what the week has been like around here and wanted to pay my respects to someone who more than deserved it, on the day of her funeral.

Physically, she is gone, but her spirit will forever be embedded in our family.

Smile often and enjoy life.

I Did It

I joined facebook. Well, I mean, I personally have been on facebook since the time it was only for college kids. And I was in college for a looong time. I should've probably missed the facebook college boat because I was supposed to be out of college but that's a whole other story. So designstiles. I started a like page for designstiles. TH has been trying to get me to start one since starting my blog almost three years ago. And I've been all, I hate facebook. It's so lame. I only log on 232 times a day to prove how much I hate it. It's like the Jersey Shore of websites. But it's part of the job, the job of making a social media presence for my business. I get all shy girl when it comes to promoting anything I do and when I do, I get all critical of myself and nearly hide under the covers for the rest of the day.

But finally the light bulb went on, and I'm all like, Irene just do it. Like Nike. So I did. And as lame as it sounds, I felt pretty proud. Like I'm moving forward. Making strides and feeling confident about the business and brand I'm trying to establish. I need to just own it.

My goal is to make design feel more attainable. I work with people who are on a budget. Sometimes that budget is tiiight. And I don't mean that in the slang sense. People don't have a shit-ton of money to spend and I like saving people money because I can find nice stuff at affordable prices. I get joy out of that. Everyone wants to come home to a space they love but many times they just don't know how to go about it. I am their guide. I'm here to make that design process feel less intimidating because often times I work with what people already own. I come in and fill in the blanks. Sometimes all it takes is moving some furniture around to feel like you have a brand new space. I love that. I've been doing it since I was a kid back when I'd never even heard of interior decorating. Live beautifully, it's not that difficult to achieve.

Okay, off the tangent. Facebook. If you like me come and prove it here. I like totally like likes.

Happy Friday!

image via techcrunch

Small Shop | Big Year

I've made several Erika refs on the blog before and today I'm excited to share the launch of her new site, coinciding with the ten year anniversary of working for herself. Ten years of being her own boss lady. What an accomplishment. I met her over a year ago now and I've witnessed the growth of her blog and her business. An inspiration and role model to say the least. A hardworking woman who manages to remain humble while still supporting her peers, and being a mother and wife.  She's always been so sweet to me and I truly wish her nothing but continued success.

That said, you're all invited to the virtual party. Meet us on Twitter #10on1010. It's open bar.

Congratulations, Erika!

image credits: cake | celebrate | confetti | work hard | cocktail 

Lovett Summer

And just like that it was over. Summer. Technically Autumn doesn't start until September 22nd, but living in the US we all know that Labor Day marks the unofficial end. My heart aches a little. But looking back at the fun times TH and I had, I'd say it was a good one.

At the end of May we wrote the Lovett Summer List 2012, a loose itinerary of all the things we wanted to cross off and spend more time enjoying while the weather was hot and the days were longer.

While there were some things we wished we would've done more of (like going to the beach), there were some really great unexpected surprises (New York and Toronto) that made this whole conscious effort a lot more enjoyable without adding any extra pressure.

Here's a few pictures because I've never been good at taking a lot.

There were a lot of dinners in the backyard. A beach day. As in one beach day. We live in California and we've never been like, ooh, the beach. But a few more might've been nice. A wedding. I love weddings! And this one taught me to contain my excitement over an open bar and I actually paced myself. At one point in the night I even stopped drinking. I'd say I'm maturing.

Pups. I usually hate walking the dogs at night come the cold months because putting on a coat takes a lot of effort. Summertime I'm all for it. Let's go the long route. A Where's Waldo pub crawl was out of the ordinary for us. Never pass up a dress up in costume occasion. A trip to the museum, although we didn't actually go inside, the trip was made. And I lifted a huge rock. With one hand.

Newww Yoooork.

Cooking. TH did a lot of it. I'd say most. I'm so spoiled now.

And that's us, some carefree chaotic kids acting like this was our last summer to be free. The PG version.

Not pictured were the hikes, the cocktails, the suntan, the bbqs, the pool time, the cocktails, the more cocktails, the private dance parties, summer concerts and the naps.

Our focus was fun, food and friends. But before we say farewell, we have one last hurrah this weekend to celebrate TH's birthday in Laguna Beach and a night out with these wild ones. Tamra, Sabra and Erika.

Summer was good to us. Now it's time to write up our Autumn list and enjoy those pumpkin spice lattes.

Have an amazing weekend!


It's the weekend! Time to relax a little. Or a lot. I hope you all get a chance to sleep in. Perhaps take a nap. And savor the last days of summer.

After two days of fun, Sunday will be spent hanging out at home relaxing and probably continuing our Sunday tradition of cooking together. But I may try to convince TH to order takeout.

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Sixty Years

In case you noticed my absence the past two days, I'm trying this new thing where I only post on days I have time and or feel inspired to share something new and or exciting. It's not always easy coming up with something inspiring to share five days a week, so I'm going for quality over quantity.

With that said, I'm excited to share that tomorrow my family will be celebrating my grandparents' 60th wedding anniversary. Sixty years. Six. Zero. I mean, the fact that they're both alive and haven't killed each other says a lot. I've been married six (and a half) years and I feel deserving of two medals and another honeymoon, by myself. You didn't read that, TH.

We should be so lucky to make it to sixty together. I think we've got a pretty good start.


Feliz anniversario, abueltios.

Happy Friday and weekend to you all.