March 30, 2015 | Comments Off on PILLOW TALK


When decorating a kitchen for a client, I created a small sitting area in her large eating area. We decided to add a chair with an ottoman. For a little oomph, we found a wonderful fabric in a great color to pull it all together and used it for a pillow on the chair.

Recently, I received a call from that client saying that this pillow needed to be re-stuffed. While the pillow was being repaired, she called again to say, “I miss my pillow! The energy of the room has changed. Without the pillow, everything feels different.”

This is a good example of how small objects can be missed and can change the feel of a room. Conversely, we also feel the shift when something new is added. This often happens when I install new furniture and accessories in a client’s home. Because we have become used to what we have around us, it’s a shock when new objects are introduced.

Clients often say, “I’m not sure how I like this new look.” My response is always, “Wait, live with it and see how you feel in a few minutes, hours or days.” It may take time to welcome something new into your home and “bond” with it.

• What are your favorite objects in your home?
• Which did you select because they caught your eye and you had to have them?
• What gives you a feeling of comfort every time you see it and you’d miss if it weren’t there?
• Is it a chair, a picture or a piece of jewelry?

Often I ask clients these questions, and they tell me that it’s something in a drawer or packed away, which I suggest we take out and make visible. First, we decide what room it should be in and then how to make it decorative.

If it’s a picture, you can frame it. An old chair can be reupholstered. A scarf or a tie can be incorporated into the design of a pillow. A piece of jewelry, such as a pin, can be attached to a pillow and taken off when worn and reattached afterwards.

No one else can pick these pieces for you. Those special objects create a feeling only you understand. This is your imprint, your monogram for the world to see.

The most fun in decorating is feeling that you have created something no on else has – that it means something to you that cannot be explained. It’s having a secret that no one else knows or understands.

Living in a home that gives you a sense of your taste and style empowers you to take this to all areas of your life. This includes your wardrobe, choice of stationery and flowers – even the car you drive. This personal identity you’ve chosen for your home continually reinforces your sense of self. Celebrate who you are in all that you choose!

Remember, “rooms have no feelings, YOU do!”

How to Inexpensively Decorate Your Dorm Room For Fashion And Function

July 24, 2014 | Comments Off on How to Inexpensively Decorate Your Dorm Room For Fashion And Function

It’s a milestone when you move away from home to go to college. Living on your own, usually for the first time, becomes an opportunity to learn about yourself. It all begins with “interior” design. A time to discover how you want to live in your new environment.

A good rule of thumb, when you are uncertain making decorating decisions is to buy what you like. That will result in good design, for you! Don’t be afraid to experiment and your interior design taste and style will evolve. This applies for both gals and guys.

Focus on the many ways to decorate your new personal space to feel like home and also promote learning. Buy for your needs and then address your wants.

The biggest concern when making decorating decisions is “the budget”. It is possible to create both fashion and function on a budget.

You can start by bringing something from home that you love or has meaning for you and build from there. Like bedding, a picture, rug, piece of art or a piece of memorabilia.

Or, if starting new, shop for bedding first to create a color scheme. Then coordinate all other purchases to it. Like a rug and accessories. Having several colors in the design, will give a wider range of accessories to choose from and make it easier and faster to shop. It also makes it easier to replace things as they wear out and get dirty.

Before purchasing, if you have a roommate, discuss matching or coordinating bed covers so the room will look neater, more coordinated and less cluttered.

For more storage, purchase bed risers to raise the bed to a comfortable height and adds space for less used items placed in plastic containers with wheels that slide under the bed. You can purchase risers with electrical plus for your devices. By using the air space, your room appears larger, and gives it a cool sunken room feel.

Use all the space you can! Hooks, hooks, and more Hooks! Use decorative wall hooks to hang things like keys, jewelry, or photos. Especially door hooks that hang over doors, can have multiple hooks for everyday items.

Shelving units can work double duty as both a storage solution and room divider. Install inexpensive shelving in the closet to maximize space.

For accessories that make a difference, add a colorful area rug for warmth, pizzazz and cover a floor you may not like, while wall mirrors make rooms feel larger and more open.

For personality, put inspirational and funny sayings on walls. They can be changeable as you wish. And add some family pictures in room – to feel connected.

Bulletin boards are great for limited desk space and catches paper clutter. And great way to leave a note for your roommate.

Study areas need to be functional first: have good lighting, substantial desk space, comfortable chair, space to spread out when necessary.

If buying furniture make sure it serves multiple purposes. A table that also serves as a desk and a bed frame that also serves as storage space.

Furniture in neutral colors may make the space appear larger and can be reused next year when you may want a new color scheme, which can be done again inexpensively with accessories like rugs, drapes, cushions and throws. After all, your favorite colors may have changed.

When your space makes you happy, feels comfortable and supports your needs, you will maximize your learning experience.

Remember, dorm rooms have no feelings, YOU do!


July 9, 2014 | Comments Off on 21 EASY TWEAKS TO SUMMERIZE YOUR HOME


The time has come to “summer-ize” your home. There are so many ways to do this and you have your own ideas of what summer means. Expressing these summer needs means making easy and simple changes that will give comfort during the long, hot days of summer.

Here are some suggestions to choose from. Some of the following items may not make sense for you, while others may be just perfect.

• Change heavy draperies to lighter ones with white or pastel colors. Light-weight fabrics such as gauze or linen create cool airy looks.

• Place summer flowers throughout your home. Buy one bunch and separate the flowers into several different smaller vases. Even one flower in a vase makes a lovely statement.

• Slipcover a sofa or chair in a neutral or soft pastel color as a summer accent, then, add solid color or patterned pillows to coordinate with the change.

• Replace table linen with colors that can be mixed and matched together or use wicker and rattan placemats. Even paper napkins come in colors and patterns.

• Find sheets in cool pastels to sleep on during the summer heat.

• Add summer accents to your bookshelves with painted and natural rocks and seashells.

• Add a piece of furniture painted in a summer color. You may already have one you would like better if it were another color.

• Replace heavy fabrics, such as runners on tables, with lighter fabrics or remove them all together.

• Buy potted plants that look like grass and line them up on your mantel.

• Temporarily pack away some of your accessories like picture frames and knick-knacks to give a lighter, more open look and feel.

• Switch out a heavy rug with a lighter sisal rug. It’s easy to roll up your winter one and store it in the garage.

• Change your drape tablecloth with a lighter weight and color cloth. Or, drape a side table that has had no cloth.

• Change your lampshades from dark to light and make sure you are using a 3-way bulb to adjust the amount of light you need at different times.

• Change your furniture arrangement and if possible, face the seating arrangement towards the outdoors.

• Select your summer reading, and place some of the books on a cocktail table and the others by your bedside.

• Replace your winter afghans with lighter color or crocheted ones.

• Replace your waste baskets with wicker ones. Place pretty airy looking baskets throughout your house – some filled with fruit in the kitchen or with hand towels in the powder room.

• Replace the logs in your fireplace with candle holders and candles. Paint the inside of your fireplace white or a color for the summer months.

• Fill a large clear vase with lemons or other fresh fruit as an accent

• Change your room fragrance to something light, such as jasmine.

• Enjoy the outdoors, whether it’s on your patio or by the pool. Serve breakfast, lunch or dinner outside, and don’t forget the candlelight in the evening.

Summer is a time to relax and kick back. Life becomes more casual and loose; let your home reflect that. Create your summer home to bring cool smiles for you and all who enter.
If you want help doing this for yourself, I’d love to help you summerize your home.

Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

Sending design love, XO

IFDA, Allied ASID,
Beauty, Wellness and Lifestyle Interior Designer

The Color Catalyst
Design Dimensions – Home of Bajaro Method & Your Design IQ

DIY and Autumn Fun (With Color!)

October 31, 2013 | Comments Off on DIY and Autumn Fun (With Color!)

Living in Phoenix and close surrounding areas in Arizona, we always experience a slow transition into fall. As we ease into the new season and the warm days get cooler, the slow transition of colors and textures begin to appear.

Many of you know that color is my passion, and I use color to speak and express…to tell a story. Here is another opportunity to let the brilliance of the beautiful autumn colors do the talking. You can take the richest colors we have from nature to enjoy a new mood in your home. Many DIY tricks revolve around color.

One of the places to begin this change of statement is at the front door. And don’t neglect your back or garage door if that is where you enter your home every day. Your entry area is a perfect place of introduction of the new season and we can carry the theme inside, too.

We certainly can look to the usual wreath to hang on the doors as well as bring out pumpkins in all colors, shapes and sizes. Who said you can only make one pumpkin for Halloween. Start early and keep going until Thanksgiving. You can create your own pumpkin family.

A great way is to highlight with candles in lanterns or a hollowed out pumpkin made into a lantern, which of course shows up so much more at night. This will give charm and interest to your home as well as a warm glow…a great way to welcome guests.

You can also paint the pumpkins in different colors and also create patterns. Find some autumn colored leaves, either go up north and pick your own or go to the crafts stores for fabric versions, and scatter them near your entry door creating a fall illusion. It’s fun to walk on them to feel and hear the symbols of autumn under foot.

Inside your home, decorate placing those cute little pumpkins around. Include the sink areas in bathrooms and kitchen, bedroom night tables, family room book shelves and fireplace mantle. Seeing them will bring you a smile.

Mix silk leaves with real ones, placing them on tables, shelves under and around accessories and lamps for accent all around your home. Decorate your dinner table with these and other natural symbols of autumn. Treat yourself to a new set of fall colored placemats. For fun get them in different colors and color change them from place to place each night so you have variety at every meal. Your dishes and flatware will look new, too!

Since fall fashion has its own color palette, play it up. Most color schemes can handle a pumpkin colored pillow or vase placed carefully to accent a room. Or you may have your own favorite color for the season. These simple DIY decor tricks make inexpensive seasonal statements. Then you can put them away and save them until next year. I have an orange lamp I bring out October 1 until December 1 and keep in the closet the rest of the year.

Everyone can create a DIY experience and what better time to do this than NOW! Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!!!!!!!!
I’d love to hear how you have decorated for the season. I’ll send you a free coupon to take the Color & Design IQ at www.BajaroMethod.com. You can reach me at www.BarbaraKaplan.com

Adding Color & Light – Dining Room Becomes An Appetizing Place

July 8, 2013 | Comments Off on Adding Color & Light – Dining Room Becomes An Appetizing Place

Some people seldom use their dining room and others use them frequently. Either way it is a room to enjoy the experience of dining and sharing with others. Therefore, it can be the ideal room to be designed somewhat outrageously. The creativity will add to and stimulate the event for you and your guests.

Traditionally, most dining rooms are decorated with a table, chairs (maybe host and hostess chairs are different), buffet and display cabinet. Break with tradition and design it uniquely with some surprises.

Tables come in many choices. If it is important to add more people around your table, use an oval-top table with a pedestal base. Having no corners and no legs makes it more versatile.

A round table is used less often but is wonderful in a round or square room. In some dining rooms, it is possible to angle a rectangular dining table, corner to corner. This can provide more space to move around, plus it creates interest.

Here are some decorating ideas to consider.
If you have a collection of precious pieces behind glass in your display cabinet, paint the inside of the cabinet a strong color to make them pop. Or you can paint the wall a striking color. Add free-floating shelves painted the same color to display each piece. The wall becomes a focal point.

Using color on the walls in dining rooms can stimulate or calm appetites and conversation. To be really outrageous, paint each wall a different complimentary color and sit where your mood dictates.

Dining rooms usually are long and narrow, which can make buffet-style serving awkward. Instead of placing a buffet on the long straight wall, put serving shelves in corners; this way people won’t bump into chairs when serving themselves. If the buffet is in an adjoining room decorate the serving counter color scheme with the dining room table.

Have you ever considered having more than one table in a dining room? This way you can have small groups at one table or connect them for larger groups.

Since hours are spent sitting around the table, the dining room can become a perfect gallery in which to display your art collection. Remember to place the art low enough since it will mainly be seen and enjoyed sitting down.

To create a calming, luxurious feel in the dining room, fill it with plants (or at least one large one.)

Palms are a perfect choice to give a feel of luxurious dining. Use an up-light on the floor angled up under the leaves to create drama and shadows on the ceiling.

Lighting is always important:

• The bottom of the chandelier should be approximately 30 inches off the top of the table or 60 inches off the floor. Each situation various slightly. Use your eye to determine the best clearance.
• The light should be on a dimmer to adjust the intensity for atmosphere as well as temperature so diners are comfortable and not too warm.
• Lighting around the perimeter of a room directed at the artwork adds interest and drama and often provides enough light for dining if you have candles on the table.
• Colored glass pendant lights can be used instead of a single chandelier.
• If the ceiling is dropped over the table, coffered recess lights can be used and the ceiling painted an accent color.

Lastly, sit in each chair of your dining room and experience what each person will be seeing. Make sure it is a pleasant experience for relaxed, happy, comfortable dining.

Decorate to your heart’s desire, creating the experience you want.

Always remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

And don’t forget, the Color & Design I Q Quiz is waiting for you. See Menu above.

Cleaning Our Spaces Can Change Design To Reflect a Change in Us, Too!

April 20, 2013 | Comments Off on Cleaning Our Spaces Can Change Design To Reflect a Change in Us, Too!

Q: Is it true when you let go of things or clean out closets and cabinets that you attract new things into your life?

A: Oh yes! This can be an exciting time, a time for change and growth. Part of being an interior designer, the part that I love, is the approach I use in my practice. Many clients hire me to change their environment, and I have joyfully witnessed a change in them as well. This happens because the inside of us and the inside of our homes can be connected.
Your question speaks to a new beginning. My passion in life is about healing environments. We are either healing or hurting. A healing environment is all about choices, your choices for you.

When you are ready to clean out your closets and cabinets, you are symbolically clearing out yourself. Feng Shui and Bajaro Method are built on that concept – our environments reflect how we choose to live. If your homes, offices, drawers, desks are full, cluttered and disorganized you may feel the same way inside. We are actually taking care of ourselves when we take care of our personal spaces.

I believe that interior design is about your “interior.” We attract and create what we feel. If we feel as though we need to hold on to things, chances are, those feelings are expressed in our actions with our possessions.

We are creatures of habit and get comfortable in what is familiar. Most often we don’t notice the piles that accumulate around us until one day we decide to do something about it.

Here’s a helpful hint: take a virtual tour of your home and do it with a camera. When you look through a third eye, you see things you might otherwise miss. It is also possible that you notice some things that you like and have overlooked.

Once we begin the clearing out process, we are taking action and opening to new possibilities, new things and people. Most of all, we have to make the decision that we need change.

We all have that closet, drawer or pantry that we dread going into because it is a reminder of what we have to do. We know it represents the four letter word “mess.” It’s probably the last place we would like to be, but this is where you need to begin. Once the wheels of cleaning are in motion, we find we can’t stop until it is done. It gives us a wonderful feeling of accomplishment.

Don’t forget cleaning up the yard and garage because they are the first and last places we see upon leaving and returning home. Clearing these areas opens the energy around us to flow more freely and bring us renewal.

This all starts with you – and you must fearlessly create the environment in which you can thrive.

Always remembering that rooms have no feelings, YOU DO!

You Can Write Your Own Design Story

March 17, 2013 | Comments Off on You Can Write Your Own Design Story

How would you like to write your own interior design story? We’re all living a story — one that we created in our own head. The story is based on our experiences, histories, memories of our parents’ home, friends’ homes and on media influences.

Look around at your environment (home and work) and ask yourself: How do I want to live? You are the author of your own environment, and you need to write the story that suits you. Martha Beck, author of “The Joy Diet: 10 Daily Practices for a Happier Life” says, “Every living person has the power of authorship when it comes to composing our lives.”

Has the story you’ve written about your surroundings reflected your taste and selections? Do you feel you’re living in an environment that speaks of you?

Here are some things to consider:
• Do you prefer comfort or style?
• What colors or shapes are you attracted to?
• Does contrast or monochromatic suit your needs?
• Do you like drama or a softer look?
• Does large scale or small fit your needs?
• Is there a particular theme you like?
• What is your favorite style of furniture?
• What scents appeal to you?
• What textures do you like to touch or see?
• Do you prefer silence, or do you like the sound of running water or music playing?
• Which of the above have you already incorporated into your present environment and which would you like to bring in?

Did you answer the previous questions from a place inside yourself or do your answers reflect someone else’s choices? Do your answers describe your current home?

Next, take some pictures of your home/office and see if it looks like what you wrote.

• Does the story match your surroundings?
• If so, are you satisfied to leave it as it is?
• If not, what are the differences? Why is it different?
• Are there things you can easily change or does it require an overhaul?

It’s particularly surprising when you compare the pictures to what you thought you had in your living space. The spaces may look different. Things that were important suddenly aren’t. You might even discover some things you didn’t even notice have become visible.

Now rewrite your story as you would like it to be. Be honest. Honesty will get you what you want. Mention the things that are important to you and the things about which you have changed your mind.

Often we feel that we cannot have what we want. When we let go of the “shoulds” and “fears” of decorating, we feel free to express ourselves through our design choices. It is then that we find ourselves living in a place (of authenticity) that really feels like home.

Redecorating isn’t the objective here—it is making sure that the pieces you have chosen to surround yourself represent who you are.

Remember, rooms have no feelings, you do!

If you need help discovering these answers for yourself, just click on the menu bar above on this website to discover your Design I Q!

29 Ways to “Love Your Home”

February 9, 2013 | Comments Off on 29 Ways to “Love Your Home”

In recognition of Valentine’s Day, Interior Designer Barbara Kaplan has proclaimed February “Love Your Home” Month
because after all loving your home is loving yourself!

1) HOW TO HANG PICTURES Change or re-arrange wall art placement. For
drama you can hang larger pieces in smaller spaces and smaller pieces in large places.
Sometimes the art doesn’t have to be centered. Be sure not to hang wall art too high.
Make sure art is not blocked when viewed while seated. Remember, rooms have no
feelings, YOU do!

2) EMBRACE COLOR Color is key. Don’t be afraid to express yourself with color
anywhere and everywhere. See how much you can handle living with and of course
make sure you “love” the color. Start slowly with an accent wall or pillow. Then you can
add an area rug or chair. Keep going and have fun. Remember, rooms have no
feelings, YOU do!

3) WHAT TO DO WITH PHOTOS Take a treasured photograph out of your
photo album and put it into a frame. Make sure the frame matches your room so it won’t
look out of place and detract from the picture. If you add a backing that matches the
room you can replace the picture often regardless of the picture size. Remember, rooms
have no feelings, YOU do!

4) WHAT KIND OF LIGHTING Is the lighting in your work areas sufficient? Task lighting can be installed under cabinetry in kitchens or offices. Always light the areas where you need to see…otherwise ambient lighting creates “shadows” for mood and interest and highlights accessories. Lighting can also spotlight focal points of a room. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

5) THE PILLOW TRICK You’ve probably heard about the pillow trick. But sometimes it only takes one fabulous pillow to make the difference. Especially if you can match it to a piece of furniture in the room that you paint the same color. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

6) THE REAL ENTRY TO YOUR HOME IS OUTSIDE The “outside” entry is
what people see first. Buy a new large mat that coordinates with your door, if possible.
Position the mat like a runner so people step on it several times, which helps clean their
shoes. Make sure your door bell is clean so people will feel good about ringing your bell.
Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

7) TREAT YOURSELF TO FLOWERS Buy flowers when you go to the
supermarket. It only takes one stem in a small vase that you love and place it
somewhere just for you…by the kitchen sink when you do the dishes or by your
bathroom sink when you brush your teeth. If you buy a bouquet, you can separate the
flowers and place them anywhere. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

Paint/de-clutter/clean up/ and even hang pictures in your garage. Definitely keep it
clean. After all, it may be the last thing you see when you leave and the first thing that
greets you when you arrive home. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

9) HAVE A PRETTY PANTRY Imagine a pretty pantry. Build custom height
shelves for your food. Customize for your smaller and larger size items. You’ll have
more space, visibility and organization. Paint the walls and shelves complementary
colors you enjoy. Give the pantry door and handle its own style. Store your food items in
visually pleasing containers. Create a sense of organized pleasure. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

10) LOVE YOUR HALLWAYS That could mean different things. Either take down the hodge-podge collection of family photos and frame them all the same for a unified look or create a gallery for art with proper lighting or thirdly make your hallways a calm space with nothing on the walls to create a transition from room to room. Your choice…which feels right to you? Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU

11) CLUTTER, AGAIN It’s time to de-clutter. Take a walk through your house and
take away anything that is broken, that you don’t like, too dirty to get really clean, or has
a bad memory. This will give you the chance to appreciate more what you have or
replace it with something better. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

12 – CREATE YOUR OWN SANCTUARY If you don’t have one yet, create a
special and private place just for you where you can do anything you want, like read or
meditate and where you will feel comfortable and relaxed…a place where you feel
nurtured and secure. A place no one else can touch or use. Even if it’s a chair or pillow
on the floor with a lamp or candle…it is yours. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU

13) GIVE YOUR CHILD A TIDY ROOM If you struggle to keep a child’s room
tidy, involve the child in creating space for their needs. By providing a place for
everything they will learn to put things away. Decorative storage pieces can be
purchased inexpensively and don’t forget to utilize space under the bed for storage bins.
Install ready-made units to organize the closet that will grow with the child’s needs.
Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

14) “BE YOUR OWN INTERIOR DESIGNER” Take all the furniture out of a room you want to change. Removing and replacing each piece one at a time. Observe what happens as you create empty spaces. Some pieces can be totally eliminated. Be sure to try each piece in a different place than before. Try angling the furniture or changing the flow. Most importantly, take time to get used to the change. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

15) SEE WHAT YOU HAVE WITH DIFFERENT EYES Change the seat at which you eat all your meals today. Look around and see your room from a different perspective. Is there anything you see that you would like to change or that you didn’t see before? Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

16) ENJOY THE PIECES YOU ALREADY HAVE Go to the cabinet that has
your fine pieces of china, flatware, crystal, serving pieces, vases and bowls, etc.. Take
out the ones you love the most. Keep them out for several days to use and enjoy.
Hopefully you’ll never want to hide them again. Remember, rooms have no feelings,
YOU do!

like the cabinetry in your home, but wish it could be spruced up or updated, change the
hardware. New handles will make a huge difference. You can change the handle shape,
style and even the finish. Go from conservative to formal or funky. It will be like getting
new cabinets. Be sure you put different handles in each room. The kitchen shouldn’t
look like the bathroom or the hallway. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

18) STARTING YOUR DESIGN PROJECT Starting to decorate doesn’t have
to be overwhelming. If you first start with a piece you love or adore, it is easier and more
fun and will give you greater pleasure because it reflects you. Even if you have to spend
extra on it, build around it. Beginning your project with pieces you love, and sticking to
the theme, will insure the happy outcome you will want to live with forever. Remember,
rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

19) WORD OF THE YEAR IS “OCCUPY” How are you occupying your most personal space, your home? Is it a reflection of you? Have you expressed your style, taste, collections and hobbies. If you have, great; if not, now is the time to do it! Begin with a list of what you like and don’t like in your home and decide how you would like to live and be seen. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

20) KNOW YOURSELF BEFORE DECORATING Before you begin a decorating project write a brief journal or answer a few questions about yourself and how you want to live. Interview yourself or have a dialogue with someone who really knows you. This is great to do with someone you live with. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

21) CREATE A ROMANTIC EVENING AT HOME Plan a dinner in a room in
your home in which you generally don’t eat. It could be your family room, bedroom or
garden. Use a small table with a pretty table cloth and comfortable chairs. Buy two
special dinner plates and definitely have candles everywhere. Remember, rooms have
no feelings, YOU do!

22) SING AND DANCE IN YOUR HOME Purchase your favorite dance music
and move the furniture aside to create a dance floor. Dance by yourself, with a partner
or invite friends. Your home can be a source of fun and joy. Any other ideas to bring fun
in? Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

23) SPLURGE ON ONE THING AND WORK AROUND IT Everything doesn’t have to be expensive. Just buy one thing that is very special to you and decorate from there. Make it the focus of the room and add pieces that blend or contrast but not
detract. Let your special choice be your inspiration. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

24) “REFRESH” NOT REPLACE To replace what we have in our home can be expensive so just “refresh”. Refresh means use it differently. Refresh is to move something in the same room or to another room, eliminate something, use it differently,
rearrange your accessories or wall art. Let your imagination flow and do the unexpected. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

25) BE SURE YOU LOVE THE COLORS IN YOURHOME If you have not originally chosen all the colors in your home, now is the time to change that. Paint a room, change your pillows, slipcover a sofa, paint a piece of furniture, eliminate old drapery. It could be as simple as new placemats. Be sure the colors you see everyday are the colors you like. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

26) KNOW YOUR STYLE Decide if you want glamour, serenity, comfort, etc. and make sure you eliminate pieces that don’t reflect your taste. Every room doesn’t have to be the same. Especially if different people live in the rooms giving a different purpose and energy. Each room in your home can have its own personality. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

27) BE AWARE OF ENVIRONMENTAL POLLUTION In the home there are many sounds and many aromas. Be aware of them and make sure you are not negatively affected by them. Conversely, you can have positive reactions to music, water
running in a fountain, food cooking and flowers. Tune into your stimuli. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

28) DIMMERS AND TIMERS LIGHT UP MY LIFE I love dimmers to create mood in a room. It creates shadows, interest and mood. Timers take care of you. You can time when you want lights on and off and never have to think about it. You will
never be in the dark or return to a dark home. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

29) NO HAVE TO’S IN SIGHT Put work and exercise equipment out of your bedroom and away from the room you eat, entertain or recreate. Creating a tranquil and peaceful environment is important and brings health and healing. It is preferable to have a separate exercise room and office. Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!


January 6, 2013 | Comments Off on THE TIMES THEY ARE A CHANGIN’

This Bob Dylan song title came to mind, probably because it’s been 2013 for a little while and changes have already occurred. In my book, The Bajaro Method: Rooms Have No Feelings, YOU Do!, change is always a good thing. I enlighten, encourage and empower people to move out of their stuck places and challenge them to embrace new decorating ideas, design thoughts and lifestyle opportunities. I also find the newness of change exciting! To quote one of my favorites, Wayne Dyer, “You are only a thought away from changing your life.” Now that’s exciting!

As an interior designer who starts every project with people first, then their rooms, I direct my thoughts and attention to personal change first, then to the inside of a home, which of course has to express our heart and soul. I always say, ” I can tell you everything you need to decorate your home, but only you can put your heart in your home.” Your home is your most personal space and expresses you in the most honest form. I am always asking myself, “How do I want to live? Am I living that way now? If so, great! If not, what can I change that will serve me better?” I know my environment needs to inspire many different feelings. I know that about myself. Yet, many people aren’t aware of how they react to their environment, even though we are constantly reacting. Each one of us has to answer that question for ourselves. Then that awareness brings about action.

Since the new year is time for reflection and anticipation it also becomes evidence of how the past year has brought changes. This is a perfect time to look around and determine how the pieces you have brought into your personal spaces over the past year make you feel. Do they make you happy, put a smile on your face and bring peace and comfort to you? Are you living with things that you no longer like or need? Ask yourself some personal questions that only you can answer and answer them honestly.

Ask yourself why you chose to decorate your living and work spaces the way you have and if something held you back from doing what you really may have wanted to do at that time. Consider the choices that may have been made with different needs and goals in mind and now that change has occurred, you may be seeing (or overlooking) them differently.

Considerations may have been:

  • budget
  • what will others think
  • what is appropriate?
  • what is the image you want to project?

As the main consideration… where you spend most of your time, the most important questions that should be asked are:

  • how does your environment make you feel?
  • does it function for you?
  • is your space comfortable?
  • does it give you tranquility?
  • does is give you the energy you are looking for?

Finally, the truth about money and budget is, whenever possible, spend less because what you love today may no longer be what you want to live with tomorrow. Change is constantly happening!

Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU do!

I welcome you to submit questions to me to help you with YOUR changes and I will personally answer them.

Take the Color and Design Profile to find out yours!

Holidays Are All About Color. Colors Speak!

November 19, 2012 | Comments Off on Holidays Are All About Color. Colors Speak!

As I was putting my Halloween decorations away this year, I thought what a pleasure it gives me to have these symbols of the holidays. The pieces I’ve chosen have become sweet memories. For instance, I have a large white porcelain pumpkin that matches my black-and-white home. I adorn it with fresh orange pumpkins, but my personal black-and-white statement is there.

I also have an orange glass lamp with a black shade that I only bring out during October. I use it to temporarily replace a lamp in my kitchen and then I move it on Halloween night to the table outside my front door to light the way to my surprises for the trick-or-treaters. I pack it away each Nov. 1 until the next year.

For Thanksgiving, I have other accessories. I love using my white, brown and black turkey serving pieces, which I set on an autumn-colored tablecloth. I then add a mix of napkins in autumn colors. It’s also lovely to randomly add autumn leaves on the table. You can use votive or colored candles to make it complete. It’s inexpensive to rent a tablecloth and napkins so you have different colors every year. Finally, I place my festive wooden turkey plaque at the front door to welcome my guests.

When I open my cupboard, I am always excited to see the potpourri of colors I store for the holidays. It’s like old friends coming to visit. There are times I introduce new friends into my collection, as my family of decorations and ornaments grow.

The holidays are all about color! Much of my collection has no particular holiday symbolism. Because color speaks, I simply use the right color for the holiday. If there is a particular symbolism to the holiday, I blend color with those pieces that carries the theme further. When using color only, you can start the holiday early and end late.

The other day I was at an accessory store with a friend. She saw hand towels with a Christmas design on them for her powder room. She asked what I thought of them. I was concerned that people would not want to use them and that, if someone did, the towels would be ruined. I suggested that perhaps colored towels would be just as effective. I recommended red or green, accented with gold or white, and they would be washable and replaceable. Next I suggested that Christmas ornaments be placed around the area for theme and fun. As we talked, she remembered several Christmas decorations she could use in the powder room.

It’s possible to celebrate each holiday with your personal decorations that make a statement about you. Think about the pieces you might have tucked away and how you could use them to decorate for the holidays.

My holiday decorations have become a ritual. “Holiday rituals – activities that invite us to step out of ordinary time – play a strong and important role in emotional health,” says Andrew Weil. He goes on to say, “They deepen relationships, allow the expression of important values, and offer a sense of security and continuity.”

Adding holiday colors and design statements to your rooms will give a feeling of celebration to put you and your visitors in a festive mood.

Remember, rooms have no feelings, YOU DO!

Don’t forget to take the Color and Design Profile!