The Practical Decorator

For interior designer Cindy Mardis doing her job right is as much about advising clients what not to do, as it is coming up with an overall plan that meets their needs and style.

B14 Designer
Published June 6, 2013 7:10 PM
2 min read

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B14 DesignerFor interior designer Cindy Mardis doing her job right is as much about advising clients what not to do, as it is coming up with an overall plan that meets their needs and style.

 

By Caitlin Brown

 

B14 DesignerFor interior designer Cindy Mardis doing her job right is as much about advising clients what not to do, as it is coming up with an overall plan that meets their needs and style.

 

“Most of my clients already know to be creative in their use of color; to try to build a focal point in a room; and to bring in interesting pieces and accessories to give a space life,” said the longtime Harrison resident. What is most challenging, she says, is getting them to understand that there are some ideas that may not be right.

 

“I try to convince clients not to go too trendy, especially with expensive things like furniture, countertops, tiles, or built-ins that may be difficult to replace. What looks good today may not be so exciting five years from now.” If you’re updating a room, Mardis suggests picking less costly additions. Start with pillows, table decorations, and fabrics.

 

Another mistake to avoid, she stresses, is matching periods and styles. “A little mixing makes for greater interest and allows your personality to show through. Which leads to my third ‘don’t’: don’t try to imitate someone else’s style. You may have seen a great room at a friend’s or in a magazine, but trying to replicate it in your own home more often than not fails. Your room should reflect your personality, your interests, and, of course, the unique design of your house.”

 

Above all, for a space to work and be well lived in, think about your lifestyle before you buy, recommends Mardis. “Don’t go for things that won’t work with it. If you have children — or grandchildren — avoid fabrics that don’t wear well and rugs that can’t take a lot of traffic. If you are a neatness freak, you may not want to use marble countertops because they stain easily and are virtually impossible to keep looking good without annual maintenance.”

 

 

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