Welcome to SHM Designs where life is our inspiration. Our company designs interiors and exteriors of homes, furniture and accessories. We are passionate about creating a home which is not only beautiful, but comfortable and functional as well. Our number one goal in every design is to create such a feeling that all you can do is SMILE!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Makeover Reveal

I am so excited to finally show you these chairs. They have been done for awhile but I didn't want to reveal them before my client got to see them and then Thanksgiving came and well you know how it is.. I was so wrapped up in taking a picture of them that I forgot to get a picture of the whole room. I really have to get better at this whole photography thing. Any way back to the chairs. I used Annie Sloan Pure White chalk paint and Annie Sloan clear wax.  I didn't distress the chairs because I wanted a more clean look ( but ithis paint makes distressing a piece of cake) If you are not familiar with this paint it is ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL!!!!!! It goes on so easy and adheres to anything. You don't have to sand or prime either. It is a must try. A little pricey but with the time you save and the fact that you don't have to prime (saving you the price of the primer) I totally think it is worth it.

Well ready for the reveal;

A before picture of the chairs:

In the process of painting. It was amazing how good they looked just after a fresh coat of paint.

After new paint and some really cute Greenhouse fabric, here is how they look now:

Aren't they unbelievable! I just love them. I didn't realize how old these chairs were until I took them apart. I thought I was just going to be applying new foam and staple gunning the fabric to a board, but when I discovered it had tied springs and webbing, off they went to my good friend Susan for her wonderful upholstery skills. I am so lucky to have her.  The pillows are done in another great Greenhouse fabric. You can purchase both of these fabrics and pillows though the SHM Designs Website.

These chairs were placed in the same room with the reupholstered couch I showed you a couple of weeks ago. Here is a reminder picture of what the couch looks like. Again it would have been nice had I taken a picture of the whole room. So Sorry!

Now time for some teasers:

This picture is the top section of an old desk that I picked up at a consignment store. The whole desk was painted a pea green and the doors were a metal mesh with a rust colored velvet behind it .Can you say outdated? Take a guess where its new home will be?

And one more piece that has left for Susan:

There are so many wonderful pieces out there ready to be redone. I am constantly learning new techniques to give them new life. If you are considering getting red of an old piece because you don't know what to do with it, please stop and give me a call. I will be happy to show you how you can change its look to something you will love.

Take Care,

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Say Hi to Piper!

You know what they say Good Things Come In Small Packages. Well my GREAT surprise package this year for my birthday was;


She is so unbelievably cute I just can't stand it.  Her breed is a toy Morkie and as of right now she only weighs 1 lb 4oz. She is already at full size, which is about the size of 2 soda cans put together but should get to a weight of about 5lbs. We need to fatten her up a bit. Are last dog was an incredible dog and I swore I wouldn't get another because no dog could be so good; but then I started  missing a dog around the house and my youngest REALLY missed having one. Are life is crazy and my family thinks we a nuts but you only live once so you might as well add as much CRAZY as possible.

Besides how hard can something this little be..........

Stay tuned to find out.

Take Care,

Monday, November 14, 2011

Grand Opening of THE BARN

I wanted to quickly send you a post of a great new shop opening in Fredrick called :

The Barn

The barn is run by Kelly and Yvette, who I met (not in person) through reading their blog Stylish Patina. I thoroughly enjoy their blog and am sure any venture they take on will be just as fantastic. You can visit their blog and get more info on The Barn at stylishpatina.com. Their Grand Opening is this weekend NOV 18,19,20 or DEC 2.3.4 from 10-5pm. The Barn will be filled with home decor pieces from several vendors so plan to make a day of it. Other great shopping stops near by are:

Old Lucketts Store & On a Whim: 11 miles away
Chartreuse & Company 3 miles  away
Silk & Burlap and downtown Fredrick: 8 miles away
Repurposed & Refind: 25 miles away  in Hagerstown, MD

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

How Does My TV Look ???

TVs have really come a long way. I am not talking about their technological ability or actual cost, I mean in regards to what we will do to make them look good. They have become a HUGE part of the Design Plan.

Before, the decorative solution for the TV was to hide them. We would buy a big armoire with doors so as not to be able to see anything. Unless in use, doors were to always be kept closed.

Now we put TVs everywhere and spend alot of money to make them look GOOD. They have become an important part of the rooms design plan. As a decorator, I have to become very creative in trying to balance both the husband's and wife's visions.  Men want them BIG; women want them PRETTY.

I have found some inspirational pictures of beautiful rooms with rather large but pretty TV designs.

I love this room. The deep browns against the crisp whites are such a great contrast and really make this room stand out. The TV is on the larger scale, but its size is visually minimized because they choose a black TV encased in a dark stained wood. This allows the large TV to blend very nicely with the decor of the room and actually helps to pull it all together.

Having a larger TV in this room works because your focal point is the fireplace. Not only is the fireplace centered on the wall unit, it is projected forward and sconces illuminate the center piece on the mantel.  You are instantly drawn to look there. The TV at this point becomes just a decorative part of this beautiful wall unit.

This is an example of a room that is small but takes advantage of every little space in a big way. Creating a unit the extends the whole width and length of the far wall not only provides one with alot of storage it actually (to me) makes the room feel bigger. Having items on shelves so close to the ceiling causes your eye to move the complete length of the wall giving you the impression that the ceiling is taller then it probably is. Also flanking the sides of the room with long couches accentuates the length of the room again making the room appear longer. Lastly, having the TV have its own "boxed "area gives the appearance that the TV is a framed piece of art work. This is definitely a room I would like to hang out in.

In this unit the designer has created individual spaces for arrangements to be placed to become one large piece of wall art. The TV has been creatively incorporated into this one large wall design.

Creating a unit under a picture window is a great way to distract ones eye when the TV is not in use. Guest will tend to not even notice the TV because what is at eye level is the view of the outdoors.

I have just had a new wall unit built for my TV next to my fireplace.

Lets hope mine will be as successful as the inspirational rooms were because of course my husband has ordered way to large of a TV. What is it with men and their big TVs anyway?

Take Care,

Thursday, November 3, 2011

New Arrival of Greenhouse Fabrics

I am so excited to announce that we have just added our textile section to the SHM Designs Website. Greenhouse Fabrics is an absolutely wonderful company to work with and they have incredible fabrics. I have been ordering alot of fabric for various projects recently and am always so excited to see a bolt waiting at my doorstep when I pull in the driveway. Most of the time they deliver within 1-2 business days which makes the impatient side of me very happy. I hate when you get a great creative idea in your head, find the perfect fabric to complete it and then have to wait 1-2 weeks or more to actually start it. Not a problem with this company. It's wonderful!

There are so many fabrics that Greenhouse carries, it was hard to decide which ones to put on the website. In the end I went with the fabrics that I have either used or will be using for my projects. SHM Designs can sell any of the fabrics on their site. So if you would like to browse, just go to greenhousefabrics.com. If you find one you like and want to know pricing or get a FREE Sample, just shoot me an email and let me know. I would be glad to help you.

Below are some of the Textiles for sale at shmdesigns.com:

I love both of these fabrics. The second one I posted about last week and is being used on 2 dining chair makeovers. I fell in love with this fabric before I looked up the price. Its funny I do this ALL the time; fall in love with something BEFORE I know the cost.  At $71/yd I knew I had to find a small project which did not require alot of fabric. The dining chairs were the perfect match.

 Here's are a couple other fabrics for sale:

These would be terrific on an ottoman ( again not alot of fabric for a fabric you love) or as a duvet cover.

I really like the brightness of these fabrics and how the colors just pop against the white. I used the first one on a set of pillows and the second on 2 cane chairs. Actually the pillows were made to sit on the chairs as lumbar pillows. I will show you pictures soon.

Decorating/Buying Tip: If you find a fabric you love but it seems way to pricey. Stop and think of other ways to use just a little of it. Pillows are a great way to add what you love for less money. Use the pricey fabric you love on one side of the pillow and a less expensive piece on the back, find a tray and line it with a piece of your favorite fabric or place a piece inside a matted frame and hang it on the wall as art. Don't give up on something you love, there are always ways to add a little bit of it for not alot of cost.

Take Care,

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Dining Chair Makeover

I am getting ready to start my first makeover to be sold on my website and I wanted to give everyone a peek. I found these chairs at Goodwill -by the way goodwill is a great place to find furniture which needs a makeover but is in good condition and CHEAP!!- and I am finally ready to bring them back to life. My plan for them is to paint them in a high gloss black and then reupholster them. I think I have found the PERFECT fabric.

Before picture with a sample of the fabric:

The black geometrically lines of this fabic are a velvet so the color really pops against the white cotton fabric. Imagine the wood of these chairs painted in black with this fabric----SPECTACULAR. They would look great flanking a buffet in a dining room or a foyer table or even stunning in a office. The fabric is called Black Jack and is from Greenhouse Fabrics. I am a retailer for Greenhouse Fabrics and will be selling their fabrics on my website.

I will not have all of their fabrics online but can sell any of the them on thier website. You can view all of their fabrics at greenhousefabrics.com.

I am also a retailer for Duralee Fabrics and will have a variety of them on shm-designs.com but can sell any found on thier website: duralee.com. Duralee also carries a furniture line which SHM Designs will sell.

I would love to hear your thought on the chairs. I should have after pictures of the cane chair makeover this week as well as some update pictures on the Harrisburg house. Talk to you soon.

Take Care,

Friday, October 21, 2011

New Arrivals on SHM Designs Website

If you haven't been on shm-designs.com lately you are in for alot of surprises. In the last week we have changed the look of the home page, added mirrors, lamps, accessories, clocks, tables and dressers to the shop page and started downloading pictures on my portfolio . I am really excited and hope you love what you see.

Here's a little peek at what you will find:






Coming Soon:

Children's: My Minky Baby Blankets are back!!!! The perfect baby shower gift.

Textiles: Wonderful pillows and fabrics

Jewelry: Even though I am mainly a home decor company everyone has been asking me to sell jewelry again. So I have brought back some of everyones favorites and then found some new artist that I absolutely love.

Sneak Peek:

Let me know what you think. Have a great weekend!!!

Take Care,


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Wing Chair Makeover!

Have I told you lately how much I just love Craigslist.

You can find the most wonderful pieces at great deals and with a little TLC, turn them into something incredible.

Take a look at my newest makeover:



Aren't they just MAGNIFICENT!!! They look incredible in this dining room. I will show you more pictures once the room is done. Thanks a bunch to my upholsterer, Susan. She did a great job.

Take Care,


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Choosing the Right Carpenter

One thing that I have definitely learned over the last couple of years is that choosing the right carpenter is key to the success of any project. I had no idea that there were so many different types of carpenters; all trained specifically for a particular aspect of woodworking. I thought in this post it might be helpful to define these various types so that choosing the right person for your job might not be so difficult.

Here we go:

A Rough Carpenter is one who does framing, roofing, and other structural or other large-scale work that need not be finely joined or polished in appearance. 

A Framer builds the skeletal structure or framework of buildings. Techniques include balloon framing, stick framing, or timber framing (which may be post-and-beam or mortise-and-tenon framing).

A Roofer specializes in roof construction, concentrating on rafters, beams, and trusses. Naturally, a roofer must be good with heights and have good balance as well as carpentry skills.

A Finish Carpenter is one who does cabinetry, furniture making, fine woodworking, model building, instrument making, parquetry, joinery, or other carpentry where exact joints and minimal margins of error are important.

SHM Designs has been lucky enough to find a incredible finish carpenter for all of our jobs; Mark Strouble. I have talked about him in previous posts but he continues to just amaze me. I  have alot of pictures to show you, but here are a few custom builds he just finished for a client of mine.

This bar is just beautiful!

Look at the wood detail in the glass panels of this built-in.

I love these lockers in the mud room. The detail on the bottom drawers is great.

Incredible curved stairway.

Hope this helps a little when choosing your next carpenter. Can't wait to share more pictures.

Take Care,

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Outdated Couch Gets an Updated Look!

Well it is finally done and I have to say it looks INCREDIBLE!!!!

A few weeks ago I posted on a couch that I found on Craigslist for a client. Superficially, it was in horrible condition.  I told my client that since the frame was still very solid, with a little imagination and some work, it could be stunning. A definite show stopper!

I am so excited to reveal the before and after pictures for you today. The upholsterer did an incredible job and just really transformed this piece that was well on its way to the dump.

Here are a few reminder pictures of how it looked before:

Believe it or not this picture makes this couch look good.
It was all ripped up, stained and smelled REALLY BAD!

The wood was scratched and the wrong color stain so I sanded down all the wood for a new color.

After a little imagination, alot of patience and work, her is how she looks: ( Sorry, the coloring in these pictures is really bad.)

I took this one on my phone to try to get a brighter picture.

Pretty incredible even with bad pictures. I am going to their house next week and will get some good shots of it then. It is just amazing what a little TLC ( OK alot of TLC) can do to a piece.

I would love to hear what you think.

Take Care,