The Boulevard Show House: Ask the Experts with Newberry Architecture

This has been a whirlwind month for the Laura U team and, by now, I’m hoping you have heard all about the Boulevard Show House (aka my house)! It’s an exciting project and I am so thrilled to share the process and redesign of my personal home with you. This is a huge task – and we have a ways to go – but I am incredibly happy with the progress thus far. We couldn’t have made such strides in the renovation planning of our 1925 Tudor Revival home without our talented team of Partners. From the very beginning, we called on the expertise of our Build Partner: Newberry Architecture. They have been with me every step of the way, from our initial tour of North Boulevard, to purchasing our home, and planning out and executing the renovations. They know their stuff!

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Crystals, Stones and Gold? Yes, please!

Whether it’s our team showing off their favorite interior design finds each month on our Team Obsessions round-up or recaps of our fabulous design discoveries from the various markets we attend each year, we love to share the newest products and ideas in interior design with you!

While I wasn’t able to visit the showroom during my whirlwind trip to the spring High Point Market, the fabulous team at John-Richard knows we MUST stay up on the newest and best. They just sent us their most recent introductions, and they. are. awesome!

Read on to see some of my favorite pieces from the spring introduction.

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Top 5 Showrooms for Sourcing Kitchen & Bath “hard” surfaces

One of my favorite parts of remodeling or revamping a space for a client (or myself!) is choosing the materials we will use for surfaces like countertops, flooring, backsplashes and more. When you find the right one, you just know, and it truly makes the biggest difference in the overall look and feel of a room. It can easily elevate a lackluster kitchen into a sleek, modern space for entertaining, and some of our most stunning bathroom renovations include a complete tile overhaul.

So, here is just a little sneak peek into the resources we – and many other design firms in HTX – tap when we’re tackling a project that requires detailed tile and stone designs. There are a handful of expert partners here in Houston that we rely on to help us make our clients’ interiors stellar. Keep reading to learn more about our favorite Houston spots for sourcing the mind-blowing materials we use to give our designs a WOW factor.

Marble Bathroom Tile

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Before and After: Timeless Transformation

My husband Michael always jokes that I am never one to back down from a good challenge. If someone tells me something is impossible or simply can’t be done, I can’t help but want to prove them wrong! I think this love for pushing the limits has also translated to our team at Laura U Interior Design. One of our favorite challenges as of late was a home that had fab structural potential, but needed some brightening up to create a cohesive look that was equal parts livable and luxurious.

Our design philosophy at Laura U centers around creating looks that draw inspiration from the past while also considering current trends. This transformation is the perfect example of a space that previously consisted of lots of opulent, dark wood and furniture that created an extremely formal feel throughout. While we think this look can absolutely work for some homes, we knew this home had the potential to really be transformed into an updated, yet timeless design in each room.

I’m particularly proud of this project and am so excited to show off the finished product! Read on to see the process of this timeless transformation unfold.

Dining room designs

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Favorite Designs with Shades of Green

Spring is officially here – lush flowers blossoming everywhere you look, people sporting festive shamrocks to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and everyone spending more time outdoors in the beautiful, warm weather. What better way to inject a little spring into your home than with some eye-catching pops of green?

This year’s Pantone Color of the Year is a stimulating and refreshing tone, and is also symbolic of new beginnings. Because of its versatile nature, it’s easy to introduce green into modern or conventional homes. There’s just something about a beautiful mint tone that can relax you, an unexpected shade of jade to lift your spirits, or an indulgent display of teal to put an eclectic spin on a traditional space.

Want to start small? Reach for an emerald vase or introduce a sage-colored throw pillow. Feeling a little more adventurous? Go on and tackle that olive-green accent wall you’ve been dreaming of!

No matter your mood, here are some tips for how to freshen up several different spaces in your home this spring using various lustrous shades of green.

Cosole Table designs

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Making the most of built-in nooks

Just because a space is small doesn’t mean it should be deprived of personality. In fact, injecting loads of personality into a small space can be really fun and add instant charm. Whether it’s a built-in space under the window or a cozy reading nook, there are plenty of ways to optimize the space by combining style and function including using pillows, cushions, lighting, stylish accents and storage to create one fab cohesive design.

I personally love capitalizing on these tiny spaces by transforming them into a private hideaway for the kiddos, a tranquil oasis fit for relaxation or a quiet area to dive into a good book.

Continue reading to find out how I make the most out of these built-in spaces.

Window nook lighting

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5 Design Rules Worth Breaking

As an interior designer, you learn about “design rules” early on and they almost become second nature. Through the years the way you see the rules begins to change as your design style evolves. This is why I always say there is no real “rule book” when it comes to interior design, but rather standard industry best practices to get you started. Then you create your own rules- after all the point is to trust your own instinct and design eye! Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with following the rules, but I have found myself really enjoying projects allowing me to release my inner rule-breaker and push the envelope by creating a unique design with a classically current twists.

Everyone knows the number one design rule I love to break is the need to keep up with the latest trends, but there are a few more I have broken over the years. Continue reading to see five more design “rules” I believe are worth breaking.

pink sofa

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Laura U interior design is 10 years young!

Yes, you read that right! This week marks our ten-year anniversary and I couldn’t be happier! I know I have said it before, but I can’t reiterate enough how fortunate I am to work with such a talented team; there is just no way that Laura U Interior Design would be celebrating ten successful years without them. Over the last ten years, we have had the privilege of working on amazing projects spanning the entire country (and beyond), we have collaborated with fabulous clients to create beautiful homes, and – with our wonderful vendors – we have pushed the envelope with our designs. Above all, we have grown as a team and as designers.

In the spirit of celebrating a decade of designs, I took a trip through the archives to re-discover some of my favorite designs throughout the years.

Over-sized living room designs

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Style outside the box: 4 ways to add drama to the ceiling

When it’s time to revamp a space, or style a home, it’s customary to focus on the four walls that make up a room while forgetting about the “fifth wall”- the ceiling! In fact, ceilings can have a major impact on a home’s interior, much like the walls and floors.

I’m not saying that keeping the ceilings white is the wrong approach, especially because you can always add a stunning light fixture to spruce it up. However, elevating the style of any room and pushing the envelope with a little creativity can be accomplished by simply looking up!

With paint, patterns, mouldings or natural wood beams, the ceiling can become a striking statement and conversation piece at your next gathering.

Continue reading to see some of my all-time favorite ways to spruce up ceilings.

Ceiling Mural Design

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Las Vegas Market Favorite Finds!

It’s already been a couple of weeks since the Las Vegas Market, yet I still can’t stop thinking about all the amazing designs! This action-packed weekend left me totally inspired after discovering an endless variety of fabulous new product introductions by some of my favorite partners and vendors.

This year, I had the privilege of visiting the market as a Tastemaker, where I was tasked with giving an inside look into the market, as well as tagging my favorite designs and products during the showroom tours. As soon as I began, I quickly realized narrowing down my favorites was not going to be easy because every designer, and manufacturer, brought their A-game.

However, my decision-making abilities prevailed and I was able to choose the pieces I couldn’t live without. Read on to discover all of my fab finds!

NOIR -cocktail table

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