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Welcome to my blog. I hope to share information and ideas that you will find informative, valuable and entertaining. If you would like information on something specific ( or you just have a question) be sure to e-mail me at (, you can also visit my website at Otherwise, sit back and enjoy!!!!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

If "grown up" bedding is on your wish list, you will definitely want to check out the vast array of custom bedding that I offer. Guaranteed to create the "ambiance " of your dreams. The picture here is showcasing a decadent pattern of gently spiraling scrolls, depicting traditional elegance in the Ornato collection. This set's brocade fabric is crafted in Italy using the finest 100% Egyptian combed cotton in a 600-thread count weave. Ornato's signature color, yarn-dyed Azure, features an understated blue tone accented with a dramatic mahogany design.
There are many options available, from clean contemporary lines to fabulously opulent. Call today to schedule an appointment and get the "grown up bedroom" you've always wanted. 360-687-5076

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Lighting Tips
Lighting is one of the most important yet understated elements of any space.
Yet one of the most overlooked. Good lighting can transform the simplest of spaces to one of great interest, in addition, poor or neglected lighting can reduce a magnificent space to simply mundane. There are four basic types of light that can and should be used in layers, to achieve the best lighting design. They are: ambient lighting, task lighting, accent lighting and decorative lighting.
Ambient lighting fills the undefined areas of a room with a soft level of general light, enough for someone to navigate the space.
Task lighting is a bright light that illuminats a particular area where a visual activity such as food prep or reading will take place.
Accent lighting is similar to task lighting, in that it consists of largely directed light used to focus attention to itself or some object.
Decorative lighting can fit any of the above categories to create the environment that you desire. The pictures above, reflect the use of LED (light emitting diode) lighting to illuminate the translucency of an onyx sink in a small powder bath and an onyx counter top in a butlers pantry. Both situations create a simple, yet stunning use of light, while creating significant ambiance. In using LED components, the energy savings is considerable ( lower watts, 20 year bulb replacement and no heat discharge). Making these choices great for your interior projects and the environment.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Psychology of Color
Ever find yourself in a room that you just weren't comfortable in?
Maybe you felt restless, uneasy, agitated or on the other hand too comfortable and relaxed in a space that required you to be more productive.
Are you aware that homes with predominately blue interiors have the reputation of taking 5 times longer to sell. Did you know the most flattering colors for a bathroom are those that pick up on skin tones. It's really no mystery, the art of Color selection can greatly influence an individuals mood and productivity.
BLUE-too much blue can be chilling and impersonal. Research shows that looking at blue decreases a persons body temperature, heart rate and blood pressure. It's no wonder that an overly blue interior can make a perspective buyer feel, well, blue.
Blue can be associated with calm, loyalty, serenity, authority, protection and promoting intellectual thought.
RED- On the other hand has been found to produce the opposite effect. It can increase body temperature, blood pressure and heart rate as well as increase appetite. It can decrease restfulness and create an environment of over stimulation. It is not recommended to paint bedrooms in shades of red. Although dining rooms painted red are quite acceptable.
In addition, red can give a real punch to a room when used as either an accent wall or used as an accessory color.
RED is associated with danger, passion, energy, warmth adventure and optimism.
YELLOW- finding the right shade can be a real challenge. Bright shades can stimulate aggression and feelings of emotional distress, therefore they might not be the best choices for bedrooms. Soft shades can induce a sense of calm and stability.
YELLOW is associated with sunshine, energy and creativity. It can also stimulate the intellect.
GREEN- Enhances a sense of friendliness, especially when combined with soft blue. Green promotes feelings of well being and harmony with nature. It enhances feelings of security, stability and balance. It is known to aid concentration, sometimes making it a good color choice for offices and study areas.
ORANGE- Induces a sense of friendliness and supports warm communication and outward focus. Orange is associated with stability, reassurance, warmth, sunset and Autumn leaves, it is also suggested to aid digestion. Shades of orange are great for family rooms and living room areas.
BROWN- Promotes a sense of stability and security. Brown is also known as the new neutral. With the numerous shades of brown varying from beige to rich chocolate, it will look great with almost any color. To spice things up and give visual punch to a room, add lively accents in almost any color to compliment the shade of brown.
PURPLE-Supports inward focus more than blue. It also supports the feeling of disconnection from reality. PURPLE is associated with magic, creativity, joy and fertility. It can also add a sense of luxuriousness.
Purple was once reserved solely for nobility. Some shades can be overpowering, so it is best to keep the color toned down or used as accessories.
PINK-Promotes a feeling of safety and that of being cared for. Strong pink short circuits fear and violent behavior. Pink is associated with femininity and spiritual matters, as it simulates the mist area between the sky and heaven. The right shade of pink tends to create a stress free sanctuary. Pink has been a long standing feminine choice for little girls rooms.
Gray- is associated with sophistication. It can be used for any room. Neutral colors such as gray can be used to bring a sense of order and peace to a colorful palette. Gray is considered smart, with ranges from dark charcoal to misty silver. Gray can look stunning with colorful accents.
Gray, however can be a daunting shade in the pacific northwest where the predominance of gray skies in addition to shades of gray on an interior can influence moods tending towards feelings of depression.
BLACK- can lend a feeling of sophistication and elegance to any room. Accessorizing with a touch of black adds an element of class to any space.
Color Mood Rules.
1. Determine the mood or ambiance that you want to create
2. Establish your favorite and least favorite colors
3. Sample the color choice and live with it for 24-48 hours. Try to catch the changes under different lighting conditions. The term "metamerism" means that a color can acquire different hues under different lighting conditions.
4. Hiring a professional to assist with color choices can be a very valuable and cost effective tool.
I would be happy to assist you with your personalized color consultation. 360-687-5076

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Your new window shades may qualify for a tax credit!
DID YOU KNOW? “Uncovered windows can literally be energy holes, depleting a home of up to half of its heating and cooling energy dollars,” said Marv Hopkins, Hunter Douglas President and CEO. “We specifically designed and developed the award-winning, strikingly beautiful Duette Architella shade – our most energy-efficient product and the fastest-growing innovation in the extremely popular cellular category – to address this problem. This takes the air-trapping cellular structure of our original Duette honeycomb shade and makes it even more energy-efficient by placing a cell within a cell.”.
Duette® Architella® Shades: Energy Savings Made Beautiful
Introduced in 2006, Duette Architella shades have insulating R-values as high as 7.86 and solar heat gain coefficients as low as 0.15. Their patented honeycomb-within-a-honeycomb design forms more air pockets than traditional honeycomb shades and reduces heat transfer at the window by up to 50 percent when the shades are properly installed – more than doubling the energy efficiency of the window and helping to lower heating and cooling costs.Calculations, based on a conservative energy-savings methodology that was validated by the Rocky Mountain Institute, show that Duette Architella shades can save up to $2.94 per square foot annually in energy costs and approximately 10 percent of an average household’s carbon footprint. Of course, estimates will vary by region.
Consumers may now have the opportunity to save on their energy bills and their taxes with Duette® Architella® honeycomb shades from Hunter Douglas, North America’s leading manufacturer and marketer of custom window coverings. Under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, federal tax credits for energy-efficient products are available for 30 percent of the cost of most Duette Architella shades, up to a maximum of $1,500 in total, when purchased and installed through December 31, 2010, provided the expense meets the tax guidelines. Highly insulating Duette Architella shades, which can more than double the energy efficiency of a window, are the first and only window shades to qualify for the tax credit without add-on insulation systems.
The LiteRise® TrimKit, which ensures shades are completely fitted to the window frame, may also qualify for the tax credit.
Consumers should consult their tax advisors or visit to determine if they qualify and will be required to furnish a Manufacturer's Certificate to apply for the credit.
Homeowners should check the Manufacturer’s Certification Statement available at for a list of qualifying Architella products and restrictions and also consult their tax advisor to determine whether they are eligible for this federal tax credit.

Here is a link to the Architella products page on the Hunter Douglas website. See how beautiful these shades are & be amazed at the energy
efficiency provided by these shades.
Be sure to click BACK on your browser to return to this blog page.
Check out the Energy Star government tax credits link to see what OTHER types of home improvements qualify for the tax credit.
I would love to bring out actual samples of these shades to see in your own home. Now is a perfect time to purchase these shades. .Great REBATES are available right now in addition to the tax credits that you may receive.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

This was actually a "design on a dime" project for a young girl that wanted a fun, yet a bit more sophisticated look for her bedroom. In addition, Dad wanted a room that would grow with her tastes. The current room had tall vaulted ceilings, irregular shaped walls and the existing murals broke up the room and made it look cluttered and busy. The main expense was sanding , priming and repairing the existing walls and replacing the woodwork. (repeat after me " thou shalt NEVER paint murals on woodwork).

The room was painted with Miller Paint, color Devine Kiwis and Beans. By painting the room one color, the room appears larger, without the visual breakup of the irregular ceiling. The bedding and accessories where purchased at a local box store and the beaded window treatments (which replicate the bedding) were found online. The end result-- a sophisticated and fun look that will last for years. If you need some assistance or some fresh idea's for someone in your family, be sure to call "Walls too Windows, Interior Design" 360-687-5076

Monday, October 12, 2009

It has always been my opinion, that truly great design is the end product of a great team. The most successful projects are always the collaboration of contractor-designer-client and gifted craftsmen and artisans. Here we see the creation of a one of a kind stair railing. the clients vision was to have the "earthy, organic look of trees and vines" to compliment the overall ambiance of the home. You can see from the pictures the painstaking process that is involved.
Here, Tom is heating and forging the ends of the vine grain round stock to form branch ends.
You can see the branch pieces on the table and Tom fitting one branch in place. You can also see the bender on the right that is used to create the organic look. Each piece is fit into place to resemble a vine. You can see the straight pieces on the table, waiting to be formed as needed. See the gray ends where we have sandblasted each piece after heating and forging to clean the scale and discoloration.
Once a single branch is formed to meet the desired look, it is tack welded in place. We do a few branches and then step back and look the arrangement over to ensure that it looks natural. Occasionally we cut off one branch and rework it to provide a more natural look. Look on the lower right, on the table. There is a 4" round circle with a center stud (handle) that is used to ensure that there are no spaces greater than 4" diameter. This is done to meet the building codes.
After al the pieces are in place and we like the design, Tom welds everything together and Linda takes the finished panel and grinds/sands/files off the rough spots and welding splatter. Then we sandblast the entire railing once again to remove the welding discoloration and any other areas that need to be cleaned.
It's a slow process, but we are enjoying.
As a designer, it is always a privledge to work with such gifted artists.
Patti Marvitz/Walls too Windows

Tom and Linda Hemphill
Hemphill Iron Works
12702 NE 50th Ave.
Vancouver, Washington 98686
r-client and exceptional craftsmen and artisans.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I liked this article on space useage for small bathrooms. I think it has some valuable information that I have used for my clients.

•Learn how to design a small bathroom without knocking down walls.•Discover bathroom products made for small spaces.
In order to stand comfortably in your bathroom, do you need one foot in the tub? Over the past 30 years, the average size of bathrooms in new homes has almost doubled. However, in many older houses the main bathroom has remained at its original 5- by 8-foot size.
Feel like time has passed your bathroom by? Don’t despair. The following eight tips from Kohler Design Center designer Diana Schrage will help you update your small bathroom, either by saving physical space or by using design techniques to increase the perception of space.

Enlarge photoTIP 1: Toilet upgrade. Old toilets are larger and less efficient than newer models. To give yourself more room to operate, consider replacing your old model with a compact toilet. It's the same size as a round-front model and still provides the comfort of an elongated seat. Plus, newer toilets use less water, making them friendlier to the environment.TIP 2: Stick with solid colors. In a small room, busy patterns overpower and appear to shrink the space. Light, natural tones lend an open, airy feel. If you want to get creative, play with textures rather than patterns. Keep prints light and to a minimum.

Enlarge photo
TIP 3: Use corner storage. Install shelving or build your storage units into the corner. Small bathrooms need to make use of all available space. Corners provide those extra inches, and create unique design solutions.TIP 4: Work at the right height. Consider hanging your cabinet from the wall at a more comfortable height (around 34 or 36 inches) to avoid unnecessary bending. If possible, use niche shelving and a mirrored medicine cabinet to remove bulky furniture.
TIP 5: Choose a smaller faucet. Change your faucet to a space-saving, single-control model.TIP 6: Downsize the vanity. Save real and perceived space by installing a petite vanity, smaller pedestal or wall-mounted sink. Console tables, even if they're not particularly small, help expand the perception of space thanks to their slender legs. You'll want to add shelving to make up for lost storage with a pedestal sink.

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TIP 7: Lower your bath profile. To give the illusion of more space, consider replacing your old tub with a lower-walled model. Look for a 5-foot tub with a flat bottom. They're perfect for showering, but still deep enough for a pleasant bath. If you don't have the dimensions for a full bath, consider a corner shower enclosure.
TIP 8: Streamline the shower. Choose a sliding shower door or shower screen. Sliding doors don't require door clearance, and the clear glass acts like a window, opening the space even more.By using some imagination and a few simple tips, you can turn your cramped bathroom into a cozy retreat—without moving any walls.

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Monday, September 21, 2009

Remodeling Cost Versus Value Report

The following information is compiled and published by the National Re- modelers Council. The results (even in a sluggish economy) continue to show that our homes are still the most valuable investment tool that most of us have. So what will show you the most "Bang for your Buck" when it comes to remodeling/updating?

Major Kitchen Remodel

National Average

Cost: $56,611 Resale Value: $43,030 Cost Recouped: 76.0%

Pacific Northwest

Cost: $62,997 Resale Value: $55,025 Cost Recouped: 87.3%

Minor Kitchen Remodel

National Average

Cost: $21,246 Resale Value: $16,881 Cost Recouped: 79.5%

Pacific Northwest

Cost: $22,974 Resale Value: $21,944 Cost Recouped: 95.5%

Mid Range Bathroom Remodel

National Average

Cost: $15,899 Resale Value: $11,857 Cost Recouped: 74.6%

Pacific Northwest

Cost: $18,452 Resale Value: $15,992 Cost Recouped: 86.7%

Savvy homeowners are using this time and information to give them an edge. They are updating their homes and enjoying the new amenities while building value and market appeal into their homes.

Friday, September 18, 2009

October is "National Child Safety Month" . If you have small children or pets, dangling cords on window coverings can contribute to serious injuries from accidental entanglement or strangulation. Walls too Windows and Hunter Douglas are pleased to offer the LiteRise cordless lifting system FREE on every purchase of:

1. Vignette Tiered Modern Roman Shades
2. Duette Honeycomb Shades
3. Applause Honeycomb Shades

Available September 25th through November 16th 2009

The Fall season is upon us and what better way to ready our homes for the change in weather and temperature is to take stock of how much energy we are losing from an uncovered or improperly covered window. If you are wondering how to improve your energy efficiency, I invite you to give me a call to look at all the innovative energy efficient products available from Hunter Douglas. The timing couldn't be better! Sept 25th through November 16th 2009 is the Fall Rebate program. Receive $25 to $600 back on select products. This is one of the best rebate offers that I have seen, I hope you can take advantage of the savings.

To schedule your home visit to view these products and the many other Hunter Douglas Window Covering options designed with safety and beauty in mind---Please call 360-687-5076

Thursday, September 17, 2009

This is a shot of a Western Show Home that I did. I just love the detail of the light illuminating the fused glass transom. For more pictures of the entire home be sure to visit my website at