boston sunday globe


Mom and Dad want peace and quiet -- and these designsNo biggie.

Just sharing an article from The Boston Globe where I’m interviewed.

The SUNDAY Globe.

In which I am quoted 3 times.

On the front page article of the “Address” section.

With color photos, and other quotes from folks like the style director for Joss & Main and the editor-in-chief of HGTV Magazine.

Because I’m an EXPERT in designing for families.

Yup. Me and my interior design and organization business. WOOT!!


Read it here : “Mom and Dad want peace and quiet — and these designs”





give me liberty

Liberty London, that is! I’ve always coveted the Britain-based Liberty’s iconic floral prints, and now that they’ve gone and partnered with Anthropologie on a line of very anthro-esque, whimsical-retro, unapologetically sweet home furnishings, a part of me can die happy.

This chair is my absolute favorite. The barrel shape, the mid-century legs, the wood trim, the tufting, and that large-scale English floral — be still my heart 💞

Liberty For Anthropologie Strawberry Thief Bixby Chair

But my husband would flip out if I brought another chair home (I have a thing with chairs, like some people and stray cats), so I might have to just get the Bonnie Bloom duvet cover. And the sheets, too, because you gotta go big or go home when it comes to Liberty London.

Liberty for Anthropologie Bonnie Bloom Sheet Set

The entire collection, which includes more upholstery, other bedding patterns, tableware, notebooks, aprons, and this darling table and bentwood chairs, is available online here. If I don’t snap everything up first.


Shop the Liberty For Anthropologie Strawberry Thief Bixby Chair and more Anthropologie at Anthropologie today. Read customer reviews, discover product details and more.

Source: Liberty For Anthropologie Strawberry Thief Bixby Chair | Anthropologie

the ultimate decluttering secret

I need to get something off my chest. I’ve been taking advantage of people who ask me for organizing help. I have discovered the answer to society’s clutter epidemic but haven’t told anyone until now.

In helping families declutter and get organized over the past few years, I’ve observed a common thread that connects them. I have to conclude that it is the cause of all the clutter problems.

It’s Amazon.

Okay, so it’s not always exactly Amazon. It’s Overstock, eBay, Peapod, Everlane, or other website du jour, but it IS online shopping. More specifically, it is the “Amazonized” attitude towards shopping that values convenience, quickness, and getting a good deal.

I’m not talking about procurement, margins, and what happens at Amazon-the-business — that’s not my gig. My concern is that the ease of shopping online is causing an epidemic of cluttered, disorganized homes, leading to unhappy families.

Every time I visit a client for an organizing session, I see boxes in the entry waiting to be unpacked. People are paying me to get rid of stuff, but they just bought more stuff.


cluttered entryway

We no longer need to take time out of our busy schedules to physically go shopping. Nor do we need to exert ourselves lugging our purchases home on the subway or into and out of the car. We feel we’re being responsible by restocking before we run out of something. And we’re obviously getting the best prices on everything because of our promo codes and cash back and the streamlined supply chain an online retailer is able to achieve. We don’t even need to open our wallets.

In a single click, or just a tap on a mobile device, purchases are magically en route, in some cases, arriving within hours. We come home from work, juggling laptops and toddlers, texting our partners about what to order for dinner, to find humongous brown boxes smiling at us from our doorsteps, boxes that contain 60 rolls of Charmin, a brick of AAA batteries, a case of Goldfish crackers, and a collector’s edition officially-licensed replica Kylo Ren mask because it was the Deal of the Day.

amazon box

Don’t pretend this doesn’t happen to you. A similar humongous box arrives at least — AT LEAST — twice a week. Since we’re ordering one item, might as well get another if it all comes in one box. How often do we order a new something because we aren’t sure where our something is (hello, charging cables!)? If spending another $17 gets us free shipping, doing so becomes a moral imperative. Twice a week, non-essential impulse items come into our homes along with well-intentioned orders of Swiffer cloths. That’s 104 humongous, smiling boxes a year.

Let’s not forget about the oh-so-handy monthly subscription services that send us maker kits for our elementary schoolers’ enrichment, eco-friendly toys and treats for our beloved and deserving pets, diapers in the size our baby just outgrew, and organic healthy snacks from around the world for the whole family.

The packaging alone is more clutter than one person can handle. If we don’t have time to go to the store, we don’t have time to unbox and put all this crap away. Especially if it entails going through the crap you got last week to make room for the new crap.

Enter baskets, boxes, bins, and organizational problem solvers. We can’t find space to put all our stuff, so we throw money at the problem. Custom closets, Elfa systems, attractive woven baskets, clear stacking boxes with lids, super-slim hangers, label makers… and yes, professional organizers.

I am embarrassed to admit it, but I really ought to tell clients who hire me for organization to STOP SHOPPING ONLINE.

I should just say :

Make a list of what you need. Go to Target and look at how much space 60 rolls of toilet paper takes up. Compare that to the size of the space you have to store toilet paper, and you’ll buy 12 rolls. Bring the kids and see if you have 90 seconds to look at Star Wars collectibles before someone has to pee, and you won’t buy Star Wars anything. Walk around with Goldfish in your cart but swap them for fresh grapes because you realize your cart is full of salty carbs. After a few months of this, you also won’t buy a brick of AAA batteries because you won’t have bought more battery-operated Deals of the Day that you never needed in the first place. You’ll also cancel the automatic subscription once you see that you already have 4 sealed bottles of plant-based, cruelty-free cleaning products.

True story.


There is mindfulness to be discovered in planning a shopping trip. Taking inventory of the consumables in your home will help you plan meals and save money by not ordering take-out. The life-changing magic of making a list of the things you need and buying them will mean you can stop reading books about what sparks joy.

And please, bring your kids to the store with you. I agree that shopping with kids is one of life’s most trying experiences. Bring a friend if you’re scared — I’d go with you.

Like all life skills, if our kids don’t see us do it, they won’t learn how.


My husband and I have a slightly klepto tendency to collect bits and pieces from the places we’ve visited: sea glass from the Jersey shore, coral from a beach in Mexico, stones from a river in Vermont, sticks from the forest floor in Northern California. I never unpacked our bits and pieces when we moved into our house 5 years ago, because knew I needed the perfect piece to display them. So our poor little box of bits sat on a shelf in our laundry room.

Last fall, I found printing type drawers from a dealer at SOWA Vintage Market in Boston. They were in great condition — no cracks, stains, or mold — so I picked up two, thinking I’d keep one and hold onto the other for future client. And buying two gave me a little negotiating edge to get a better price.

vintage printing type drawers

Thanks to Apartment Therapy’s January Cure, I put this project on my list of things to get done this month. First, I wiped it clean with a damp cloth, and used a Q-tip to get into the corners of all those compartments. Some of the residual black ink came up, but I didn’t go crazy trying to get it pristine. Then I rubbed the wood with a few layers of danish oil to deepen the color and give it a slight sheen. I installed a cleat-style bracket on the back to hang it on the wall, which also helps keep it level.

display collections of small objects in a vintage printing type drawer

This vignette in a corner of my living room brings a warmth and character to the space that had been missing. Displaying your personal collections can help make a house feel like a home. Don’t worry if they “go” with your décor — they go with you, and that’s what makes it work. Just find the right way to display them.

Here are a few pieces I’ve had my eye on:

cb2 alcove wall shelf
alcove wall shelf, cb2, 149.00
pottery barn cubby organizer
cubby organizer, pottery barn, 149.00
room 86 hexy wall shelves
hexy wall shelves, room 68, 300.00 each (2 shown)
ferm living the little dorm shelf from finnish design shop
the little dorm shelf by ferm living, finnish design shop, 138.00
toy car display picture ledges by lacey carroll interiors, via apartment therapy
picture ledges by lacey carroll interiors, via apartment therapy

inspiration: bedroom walls

I’m working with a client who shares a common problem with many families in urban areas — a small master bedroom without much natural light. Here are 5 bedroom decorating tips to avoid feeling like you sleep in a cave.

1. Keep it simple: cream walls paired with white bedding & window treatments.

via Amoroso Design

2. Soft, gold-toned walls that mimic sunlight. Like the room above, the dark furniture keeps the room grounded and sophisticated.

via Haut Haus

3. Defy common sense and go dark, but keep the rest of the room light. The quirky, vintage furnishings and graphic coverlet have enough character to stand up to the strong color.

via Apartment Therapy

4. Patterned wallpaper, but not so busy it isn’t restful. My rule of thumb: Imagine waking up with a hangover. If the mere suggestion gives you a headache, tone it down.

from Belle Maison via Design Your Walls

5. And finally, my favorite design route: take the walls to the bright side. Only for the brazen who are not afraid of color.

via House Beautiful
via House & Home Media

Here’s what I chose for my own bedroom walls. In addition to being small, my bedroom does not get much natural light. This orange is warm, cozy and inviting. When I use an intense color like this in a small space, I go with a satin or eggshell finish, so that the walls reflect the light, rather than absorb it.

Benjamin Moore Buttered Yam AF-230

What color is your bedroom?