Life + Spaces magazine takes you inside the home of Interior Designer Carols Brademas, owner of Interiors, Etc. in Mishawaka, IN, and shares her thoughts on the subject of interior design.
Q. What is your design philosophy?
My personal design philosophy is somewhat contradictory to today’s trend to more simple design – for me, “more is more”! I love lots of pattern, lots of color, and lots of accessories – layering them all to create a cohesive but always interesting tableaux. My favorite rooms are ones where every time you look, you discover something new.
Q. When did your passion for decorating begin?
I started building and furnishing dollhouses when I was very young – maybe 9 or 10 – and loved covering the furniture with little scraps of fabric, making tiny accessories out of toothpaste caps and pipe cleaners! I’ve also loved decorating magazines since I was in my early teens – so I guess the passion was always there!
Q. When working with a client, how difficult is it to not impose your style but rather design with the homeowner in mind?
It is not difficult at all. A designer’s job is to interpret his/her client’s tastes and desires, and to develop the room based upon those wants, needs, and preferences. A good designer should be able to bring his/her knowledge of the basic principles of design – balance, proportion, scale, etc. - to any style.
Q. Antiques seem to be popular in this part of the country. How can a homeowner incorporate favorite antique pieces into a variety of decorating styles?
Antiques add personality and a one-of-a-kind look to any room, in any style. A featured piece – a large armoire for storage or a great architectural piece over a mantel – adds impact and becomes the focal point. Smaller like items can be grouped together as a collection to avoid a cluttered look and make a statement of their own.
Q. The tagline for Interiors, Etc. is “detailed inspired interiors”. What are those details that a homeowner should be attentive to when decorating their own home?
Details are the finishing touches that make your room custom and unique – a beautiful fringe on a down-filled silk throw or dressmaker pleats on the skirt of a chair. Trim a lampshade with grosgrain ribbon or braided gimp, paint your ceiling misty sky blue, tie a tasseled cord around that gorgeous candlestick, or dress the top of your armoire with baskets, a huge fern and an antique garden statue. These are the kind of details our designers love and hopefully inspire our clients to add to their rooms.
Q. Where are the decorating trends heading here in the Midwest?
With many of the baby-boomers beginning to downsize, I think we’ll see more trend to smaller scale, cleaner lines, and larger but more important accessories. Color wise, blues are making a long-awaited comeback – not the traditional Wedgewood shade of the 1980’s but robin’s egg or misty sky blues are definitely on the horizon!