Today, I am obsessed with wallpaper!

So, today, I had a meeting with a new client.

I am so super excited about this specific client because this project is going to get me out of my element. Instead of the typical residential client, this one is commercial…but way more fun than your standard office project. This is a high end clothing retail store for women and men!!

I love to shop for clothes and, consider myself an expert in that area so, what could be better?!?!

While we were discussing the scope of the project, we touched on wallpaper a bit.

This got my wheels turning!

There are two fitting rooms, one for the men and one for the women. They are both the same and located in the same general area, which I felt could cause confusion for shoppers.

Why not make them gender specific with wallpaper?

So, after my meeting,  I hit Douglas and Sons, my favorite stop for paint and now, wallpaper. Who knew I would spend 2 hours in there and leave with stacks of books!!

I am on a wallpaper “roll”!!


radiant orchid paper

I don’t have a project for this specific pattern (yet), but my all time favorite brand, Thibaut, just came out with this new book.

I wasn’t so sure about Radiant Orchid when Pantone announced this was the color of the year but, in this paper, I looooove it! I am going to be begging a client to have the guts to use this soon….or convince myself I need to work it into my own home.

I love Thibaut!!!


So, then as luck would have it, I found another book that contained this fabric and corresponding paper that another client and I had seen in a photo on Pinterest.


I have a meeting with her tomorrow….this Thibaut book is also coming home with me!

Thank You, Emily A. Clark for the photos of your fabulous house, by the way.

So, what about my new client? The retail store?

Well, that one has been a bit of a challenge.

We need Bold!

Not something you would ever put in your house….

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The photos above are some prospects. We are thinking accents of Tiffany Blue??

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But Maybe something more bold??

The Stripe for the Men’s side and the Damask for the Women’s.

Keep in mind, these are much better in person. Digitally, they lose their luster!

I have a picture in my mind of what I want but unfortunately, it hasn’t come to me yet….so the wallpaper hunt goes on!

And I am enjoying every minute of it!!


Every Lake House needs a Butler’s Pantry, right?

Today, I thought I would would share one of my favorite rooms in our vintage lake cottage. This room originally was the Master Bath until 2005 when the previous owners added a new Master Suite in an addition they put on the south side of the house. This poor old Lake House has gone through so many remodels….one tour of our basement and it reminds you of a jigsaw puzzle!!

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Excuse the mess in the pictures…this is how this room looked the week we moved in. The space is located right off our kitchen and they really had the right idea to make it a pantry. There is also a closet right next to the door of this room that we also decided to make a pantry with shelves. It is small and they used it as a coat closet, which really did not flow with how our family was going to live in the space. Plus, I dont like clutter, so its a great pantry closet to hide all the ugly necessities that you have to keep in the pantry.

So, did we need another pantry?

What do we do with this weird, rather large room with a sink??

We did need a place to put our upright freezer….gotta have a place to store our Organic Beef we get from a farmer in Indiana!

So, my wheels started turning….

And I have always wanted a Butlers Pantry!

A place to store glassware, dishes, serving pieces and wine! Perfect! Plus, we have the bonus plumbing, so this calls for a Wet Bar!

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This is the view from the doorway to the kitchen now, after a lot of lumber, beadboard and white paint!!

What do you think of the antique auger my mom bought me at a local antique store….she is so funny! She picked it up, and said “This is a really big corkscrew! You need it for your bar!”. My mom is a great person to go antiquing with, and she taught me so much as a little girl….dragging me up and down the Blue Star Highway in and out of every antique store. Who knew I would grow up to love it and live so close to all the places visited as a kid?!?!

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My husband built custom shelving on one side of the room out of pine and we lined the other 3 wall with bead-board.

We have bead-board in the entry, basement, and guest room/bath, so we wanted to add more to make it all flow together nicely.

Gotta keep that Cottage Vibe!

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He even made me a custom wine rack for our everyday wine that we don’t store with the “good stuff” in our temperature controlled basement.

I love the way wine bottles look in racks! They are a great accessory!

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I now have a place for our freezer, my cookbooks and canisters of flour, sugar etc. The baskets hold potatoes and onions, and paper plates and napkins we use for entertaining.

We have a little alcove for a trash can, which really holds all of our returnable cans and bottles… in Michigan we have to bring them all back to the store to get our refund!

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He even made me a special cubby for my vintage Coleman Cooler.

I got it for next to nothing at my favorite Ann Arbor Thrift Store. I love this thing! It just screams Lake House and stores extra cans of soda and beer perfectly!

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The light fixture was in an odd spot, but we left the electrical in the same place so we would not have to patch the ceiling.

I like the pendant we chose from Ikea and the fact it is placed off center.

It adds more character to this old cottage for sure!

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On the opposite wall, where the old sink was, needed storage first so we purchased stock oak cabinets from Home Depot.

We installed them ourselves and added a small beverage fridge for beer, wine and soda.

Butlets pantry cabinets Fashion Gray

We painted the cabinets Behr Fashion Gray, added a little trim to make them look a bit more custom and threw in some under cabinet lighting.

They turned out great!

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Next I purchased a stock maple butcher block counter top from Ikea along with the stainless drainboard sink.

I stained the counter top and sealed it with a product called Waterlox, that I bought at a wood working supply store. I knew that with a wood counter top, I wanted to limit the chances for water or spills to sit on the finish, and the drainboard integrated with the sink would do that.

This is the perfect place to wash all of those wine glasses and let them dry before they get put away!

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Next came the hardware, which is like jewlery for your cabinets! Gotta have it!

Right now, I am obsessed with Mercury Glass. I saw these knobs at Anthropolgie for $10 each….too much for the Butlers Pantry! I ended up finding the same knobs at Hobby Lobby for $3 each and was sold! I cant tell you enough how much I love Hobby Lobby!!

By now you probably realize that I don’t like things to be matchy-matchy, so I chose drawer pulls from Martha Stewart’s line at Home Depot for the drawer and sink tilt-outs to hide my sponges etc.

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My favorite item in the room is this antique map from 1910 that my mom bought me as a gift the first time she came to visit me.

We found it in a local antique store and had to have it!

I had it framed at Hobby Lobby in a reclaimed barn wood frame.

A perfect conversation piece when you are pouring a guest a drink!

I hope y’all enjoyed my Butlers Pantry!

I promise there is more to show you in my 1960’s Lake House, so stay tuned!!

What we are working on next?

While I am trying to finish up a few small projects, I am moving on to my clients Great Room.

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This is a huge open living room that is central to the home. It can be seen from the Dining Room and Entryway, so we are finishing those small projects to begin this one that is a bit more complex.

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There are many problems in this room.

The first being the furniture desperately needs to be updated. There is also a need for a new entertainment configuration. The current cabinetry only can accommodate a tiny TV, which suits neither of my clients. They love sports and they love to entertain in this room….this is not working!

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We have chosen some inspiration pictures and plan to put slate or stacked stone on the chimney with a new mantle, maybe barn wood or reclaimed? We are currently waiting for a few contractor quotes to give us an idea of what type of profile we can have on the stone with compromising the built in cabinetry.

What do y’all think of painting the built in’s a dark tone like the middle inspiration picture? I am working on convincing them….

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We also need new flooring and are exploring carpet options to keep things warm and cozy on the feet.

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The rest of the common areas of the home will be painted Revere Pewter from Benjamin Moore, so we will be looking to coordinate accent colors with that tone.

So, this is what we have to work with….

I have to say, I love this house and these clients! This has to be the best job I have ever had.

I hope to update you soon with progress.

I know the results are going to be gorgeous!

Dining Room Project

Now that the Study is done at my clients home, we are moving on to the Dining Room and Entryway. This area is all open and adjacent to the study so, it was natural to concentrate on these spaces next.

dining room before

This is what the space looked like when we first began. The Dining Room table worked for my clients in their last home, which was smaller….their family was also smaller then too. Now they need a larger table to accommodate the entire family for holidays and gatherings, plus they love to entertain.

First we decided that we needed a bigger table. We shopped and shopped. Then, my client ended up finding a craftsman online who would custom make her a table from reclaimed barn wood and stain it to her specifications. Perfect!!! New chairs were a consideration but we wanted to get some other layers in the room before we decided.

Next task was rugs and we fell in love with the grey and blue tones in this wool rug. That  determined the color for the walls. There was a lot of red in the room, and while my clients like red, we decided to go a different direction.

evening dove

We picked the Benjamin Moore color Evening Dove to bring out the blue tones in the new rug.

Jacobs dining room in progress

The paint is up. The table and rug are new. The chairs, artwork and lighting we have decided all must go!


We have chosen new chairs from World Market that we think will be great with the new table and the lighter, cooler tones of the room. Maybe a Wingback chair at the ends of the table?


Then there is the issue of lighting. This chandelier and its matching friend in the foyer are very formal for this young casual family. We have discussed a heavier more linear fixture for the table, like the one above.

Hopefully in the next few weeks I will have an update for you and this project will be done so we can move on to the next room.

Executive Office Project

Before the Holidays I was commissioned to design some executive offices for a manufacturing plant outside Kalamazoo. I am not going to lie, commercial interior design is not always my favorite job. I have always felt more comfortable designing a living space rather than a working space. It is great to get out of your comfort zone occasionally though….you never know where you will find inspiration!

One look at the current design of this office (or lack there of) and I could not refuse!! They had just been updating with the same finishes for the last twenty years or so?? Yikes!!

The offices were actually constructed from some extra space that was not being utilized. My clients were at the drywall phase when I was called to pick flooring, paint, furniture and accessories.

tile at install

First, I chose a durable commercial black slate floor to compliment the other teal green tile in the rest of the building. I was not about to let them carry on the dated tile that they had been paying twice as much for! Once they learned they could get something more attractive at half the cost they were shocked. This is why a good Interior Designer is necessary!! The photo above is during installation before grout. Looking Good!!!

revere pewter

Next, I chose a warm grey for the walls called Revere Pewter by Benjamin Moore. It is a pretty basic, common paint color that looks good in all types of lighting. Since we have those standard fluorescent baffles above, I had to make sure I picked a color that would not go pink.  I know the photo below does not do it justice….and looks pink! It is really not in person. There is only so much you can do with a Blackberry Camera!

progress after flooring and paint

The room looked pretty good after some fresh paint! Now, off to order office furniture!!

The client had an account already with West Michigan Office Interiors, so that made my job very easy. I took the floor plans and went to work with their staff to find something in our budget.

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Luckily, they were having a clearance sale on a few floor models and some slightly used furniture. We found Hayworth used side chairs for a third of the regular retail price with the perfect fabric. The desk was also a great deal because it was a floor model that they needed to move quickly.


The only flaw with the desk was the fabric on the cork board. It was not the right colorway and it was beginning to bunch a bit so, their upholsterer got me some new fabric and had it fixed for a few dollars more. We came in thousands under budget because we chose this furniture. Commercial Design is so different than residential when it comes to purchasing furniture. New office furniture can be very pricey. A great way to keep the budget down is to find slightly used high end furniture. It keeps your cost low but you don’t sacrifice quality.

In this application, my client needed enough furniture to seat 4 people in each office because most of the small group meetings take place in the executive offices. We made it work in this small space by choosing a U Shaped desk where side chairs can be pulled up for a common work space. I also added a small work table to place in between two side chairs and an enclosed white board to hang on the wall.


The ergonomics of the desk chairs were also considered because the executives spend hours on end at their desk conducting meetings. This should always be purchased new and specific for the owner because everyone is a little different. The best thing to do is have the clients come, and sit to decide for themselves.


The furniture was delivered over the Christmas holiday and now what this space needs is artwork and some accessories! Stay Tuned!!!

A final view of the Masculine Study project

It has been busy, busy here at Abigail Hayden Interior Design! We made it through the holidays and are ready to keep the momentum going through the New Year! I finally had time to take some photos of the Study Project and update you all on the next few projects I have in the works in my following posts.

The Study Project turned out great…and it always helps to have such great clients! I think we all had a great time working together which is now leading me to other project in their home.


Does anyone remember what it looked like before? Great space with great potential….but really? Just a big empty room and my clients were not sure what to do with it.

We filled it with new furniture, piece by piece….

Jacobs Study in progress after paint

We painted the walls a color called Squirrel Tail by Benjamin Moore and immediately the space warmed up!

Then there was the problem with the window treatments….first we were going to just throw them away…but it was such a shame to do that! They were beautiful silk dupioni custom drapes that the previous homeowners had left. The gold tones were not really in our plan.

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Then I found this pillow! An inspiration! Could we keep the drapes? Could we make it work? We had them cleaned while the room was to be painted…we put them back up after the paint was done and they looked great!!! We saved a ton on the budget by doing this and my clients were happy! I also had the idea to mix in more gold metallics in the lamps I purchased to balance out the gold in the draperies! Perfect!

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 I also had the idea to mix in more gold metallic with the lamps I used on the sideboard and on the desk to balance out the gold in the draperies! Perfect!

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We also decided to keep the chandelier. In the beginning we discussed maybe an antler chandelier because my client was worried the current light fixture was not appropriate for a masculine study. In the end, we decided to keep the light fixture and add a few antler accessories here and there. The chandelier does have a rustic quality that really ended up working towards our goal.

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And I can not forget the lanterns! The funny thing is, one of my clients loves them while the other took some convincing but I think they have grown on him. They add a rustic charm to the space, that’s for sure!!! We just scattered  a few here and there. When the candles are lit it really warms the room.

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We did end up going with the campaign desk, which has sides that can extend out for extra work space if needed. It really has become very functional for my client when he works from home. The dice boxes on the desk top are a fun little accessory because he sells board games for a living. We are still planning on getting him a new desk chair….we just haven’t found the perfect fit for him yet.

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So here is the finished project…..What do you think of it? Could you work from home in this space?

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