Friday, December 29, 2017

Don't Take The Christmas Tree Down Just Yet

Happy Holidays everyone!!! It is puzzling to me why I see people taking down their holiday decorations already. Christmas is until the Epiphany on January 6th. We have all worked so hard and spent so much money to do these beautiful decorations, leave them alone. Enjoy and entertain until the 6th. In my next blog installment, I will give you great ideas on what to do after the tree is down. until that time, enjoy the season.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Dining Room Ideas for the Holidays

It is not too late to do a mini makeover of your dining room before Thanksgiving. I love doing dining rooms in particular. I love the use of color in these spaces. I also love that they are a pop room in a home and should be just a little more bold than the rest of the house. Navy dining rooms have been trending for a while now and I still love that look. Wallpaper is back in again and it is the perfect room to use paper in. Lighting is key in a dining space and one should make sure there is enough light in this space. Sconces are fine, but really don't give off much light. In a smaller dining room a chandelier may be enough light. In larger rooms you may have to have additional sources of light. For more information on this topic just go to and then click on Modern Design. You can listen live at 2-3pm E.S.T. or on the podcast dated 11/15/17.

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Last minute painting ideas before the holidays

Nothing is more transformative than paint. It is one of the least expensive things you can do to a room that will give you the most impact. Take a look at your holiday photographs over the last couple of years. Does everything look exactly the same? Why don't you change it up a little this year before
the holidays and paint. Colors have changed a lot over the past few years and we are seeing much more blues, grays and dark charcoals. Trim paint is also getting much whiter. The jewel tones of burgundy, gold and green are looking dated. Why don't you consider a navy blue dining room. All shades of dark blue dining rooms are trending on popular social media site. Perhaps you want and accent wall in dark charcoal gray or a wall with the new trendy chalk board paint to reveal the holiday menu. We only have a few weeks left before it all begins. Give it a try, remember its only paint. For more Ideas on paint go to and then click Modern Design

Monday, October 9, 2017

How to mix antiques into a modern home

I very often see antiques being underappreciated or overlooked totally. The best looking homes are balanced with a combination of new and old things. Right now with the trend towards modern design people seem to be pulling away from items with a history. Antiques have and always will have a place in decorating your home. Old road signs and commercial things are perfect in a modern home. The eclectic mix makes your home individualized. On Wednesday 10/11/17 The Modern Design Radio Show on WHCR-DB in Flemington will have Susan Nercker as a guest. Susan is the co-owner of Ye Olde Antique & Curiosity Shop. Go to and tune into Modern Design live this Wednesday 10/11/2017 from 2-3pm. You can also listen to the show on our podcasts. You will be able to call into the show  @ 908-237-0410 and talk about your experiences using antiques in a modern world!!!

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Fashion Lighting

I have become intrigued by all the new shapes and looks in lighting. The shapes are now endless. We see a lot of new lanterns without glass. We see orbs and bigger pieces with mixed metal finishes. There is a lot of chrome, nicked, iron and yes even a new white gold finish. A new light fixture could not only change the look of your room, but can add additional lumens and make your space brighter and more functional. For more information on this and other topic listen to Modern Design on WHCR-DB live Wednesday's from 2-3pm  or listen anytime on our podcast. Got to

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Transition to Fall

I can't believe it is almost here folks, but it is Labor Day weekend!!! It is sad but exciting at the same time. Fall brings us wonderful things like pumpkins, gourds and cider. It is all how you look at it. I love decorating for fall and the best place to start is outside your home. Because I have 2 stores, I have to be a little ahead of the curve so I was in the garden centers this week looking for inspiration. This year I am using coxcomb. It is a plant I have spoken of before. It kind of looks like a velvet lasagna noodle. It comes in oranges and burgundy and is very fall. Ornamental gourds and unusual pumpkins are key this year. White pumpkins will trend. The combination of purple and orange is always a favorite.  Finally try fall pansies. Orange pansies are hardy and will last beyond Thanks Giving. For more information on this topic tune in to Modern Design on at 2pm today or on the podcast anytime.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Kid's Rooms

More and more parents are hiring me to design their children's bedrooms. I find that so funny. When I was growing up I did not have a say in what my room looked like. Times have changed and today kids have voices. There seem to be trends that often surprise me. Boys always seem to pick the color green and like themed bedrooms. Girls are more likely to pick a shade of blue that boys. Often the blue is a periwinkle or purplish blue tone. Girls are much more interested in storage and closet space for their clothes. For more information on this topic tune into Modern Design Wednesday live at 2-3 pm est.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

What's up with Furniture?

I feel very strongly that styles are changing more than ever. Furniture keeps evolving and changing to keep up with the times. The trend towards a more casual lifestyle continues. You see it in how casual dining rooms are now. Also the contemporary trend does not seem to be going away. We see mostly contemporary furnishings in all stores. We even see more traditional stores like Ethan Allen and Huffman Koos going must more modern. There are just things now that are very 2017. Upholstered head boards are everywhere you look. Total upholstered beds are also very popular. Ottomans as coffee tables are a must now. People are buying trays to put on top as a way to put down beverages. Beverage carts on wheels are all the rage. Dining room sets are out. You now see a wood table with upholstered chairs and a painted side board with no china cabinet. Less furniture in general is common. Furniture is more casual and more streamlined. For more information tune in to modern Design on

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Decorating a Commercial Space

In the Design world 25% of my work in commercial spaces. Doctor's offices, store fronts and restaurants are my specialty. If you have one of these types of businesses and want a redo here are some general rules. First it is always important to use surfaces that are fire rated and safe for your project. Safety comes first. Secondly, use surfaces that are designed for commercial traffic like heavy duty 20 ounce wall coverings and toilets that are designed for commercial use. Today there are so many choices in commercial finishes that home owners have become attracted to these surfaces for themselves. Neutral tones of gray, grayges and whites are the most popular right now and the industrial look is very hot. Black boards , cage lights and weathered wood are also very popular. For more information on this topic tune in to Modern Design Wednesdays at 2-3 pm or on the podcasts anytime. Go to and then click on Modern Design.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Dorm Room Chic

Well folks it is August!!! That means it the back to school month. Oh how I hate that thought. I have to let me great interns Jesse and Connor go back to school. Dorm rooms can be challenging. Often you are not allowed to paint or put nails in the walls. Here are some things you can do as told to me by my summer interns on WHCR-DB in Flemington. Bedding is key. It gives you color clues for the rest of the room. If you pick a blue stick with it for all your accessories. Storage is also key. Keep things neat and organized. lighting is very important!!! Pictures and art work can be hung using command strips!!!! They are great and will give you color and visual interest in your new space. For the full story tune into Modern Design every Wednesday from 2-3pm live @ You can also listen to the podcasts any time you are looking for great design ideas

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

What Makes a Contemporary Home Contemporary

More and more I am hearing from clients that they want to make their homes more contemporary looking. Even if they are in a traditional home, clients are moving towards a more contemporary look. The word transitional is used often to achieve a more modern look in a traditional setting. Painting rooms gray or grayge with very white trim and ceilings is a great start. Removing accessories and looking for cleaner lines when buying furniture is also a very good move. Bigger accessories and modern art help complete a modern look. For more information on this topic tune into Modern Design on WHCR-DB. Go to then click on Modern Design. We are live every Wednesday from 2-3 PM est.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

A Healthy Home

Today there are so many things working against us in our homes. Toxins, chemicals and pollution are everywhere. We need to make our homes a healthy and safe haven. Green cleaning supplies are just one way to make your home safe. Removal of wall to wall carpet and getting a humidifier for your bedroom is also a healthy choice. For more information of this topic tune into WHCR-DB every Wednesday live from 2-3 pm. Go to then click on Modern Design.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Let's Decorate Outside

Now that the weather is warm we seem to focus more of our intentions outdoors. People are spending more and more time outside and we are seeing many out door rooms. Our door furniture and enclosures are more popular than ever. People are setting up their decks and patios like living rooms and dining rooms. the materials have gotten better and they are much more comfortable. Outdoor rugs are not only practical, but they are now beautiful. Outdoor dishes and glasses are so good looking you may want to start using them inside. Wonderful colors like teal and citrus green are great outside. Pots and planters are more interesting than ever. For more information on this topic listen to Modern Design on WHCR-DB live on Wednesday from 2-3 pm. You also can also listen to the podcasts then look for Modern Design.
. Go to

Monday, May 22, 2017

You Light up my Life

Lighting is probably the single most important element to any space. A room can be gorgeous, but if you cant see it, you have wasted your time. Lighting has changed significantly in the past few years and there are so many options now. It is daunting. Florescent bulbs used to be terrible. Now they are good. There are just so many types of bulbs now. Bruce Brodack of Flemington Fan and Light will help us break it all down on this week's Modern Design. Go to and click on Modern Design. Tune in Live this Wednesday at 2:00 pm or listen on the podcast.

Friday, May 12, 2017


In a world that constantly asks me to simplify and reduce clutter, the topic today is collections for the home. I have collected cabbage ware for many years now and have built quite a collections for my kitchen. I keep select pieces on my sideboard and love to serve with them when I have company. When occasions come up people will bring me pieces to add to my collection. When I am out shopping or on vacation, I seek out these items when shopping. It is like a treasure hunt. Clean lines are in, but collecting something you like can very much coincide with that look. You just need to group your collection together and keep it to one area. Use your collection as a focal point in a simple space. You will be glad you did.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Antiques in a Modern World

I was very pleased to stumble upon a new antique shop in Flemington the other day . When I entered I realized that it was a new location for a store that had been in Flemington for many years. The store is called Lady Like Antiques. I had purchased some blue and White dishes and bowls from Maxine years earlier and was very happy with the experience. The new store is 3 times the size and I was surprised. Most of my work now is quite modern and casual. It is not that I don't like antiques. It is more that people are not embracing fine things as much.  In fact, clients are often asking me where to donate their finer things because their children don't want them. Maxine Stadele, the owner, has a wonderful collection of dishes, artwork, silver and many beautiful things. She will be my guest this Wednesday at 2pm on Modern Design on Hunterdon chamber radio. Please tune in and listen to how we suggest you combine antiques with modern d├ęcor to make your home sparkle. Go to www.hunterdonchamberradio. Click on Modern Design and join us. You can call in live at 2-3 pm live @908-237-0410.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Lighting is Everything

Lighting a room is a art. You don't want to make it too bright but there is nothing worse than a dark space. Dimmers on every switch is the key. Pendants and chandeliers are more popular than ever. Flush mount and semi flush mount light fixtures have come a  long way and there are many new style. The trend for lighting right now is to have clear glass and let the bulb show through. The Edison bulb which shows the filament is very popular and the industrial look is hotter than ever.
If you have not looked at lighting in a while, take a look. There are a ton of new ideas out there and great new things to Change your home.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Let's Paint

As I have always said there is nothing more transformative in a room than paint. Paint is the best way to change a space whether it is inside or outside. Even small thing s like painting the ceilings a brighter flat white or changing the trim to semi gloss can really make your home look better and often even make it look new. The trend today is to use greys, grages, or off whites on the walls in a matte finish paint. Paint the ceilings super white flat paint and paint the trim super white semi gloss. For more information on this topic tune into Modern Design tomorrow live from 1-3 pm E.S.T.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Getting your house ready for spring market

Now that we are in March it is a good time to start making plans for Spring. If you are going to list your house, these are the weeks you need to get your work done. I have had my real estate license now for 30 years and have some quick tips of things to do before you put your house on the market.
1. Paint, nothing says new better than a fresh coat of paint
2. De clutter take most accessories out!!!
3. Get your windows washed
4. Cut back shrubs and greenery
5. Seal coat the driveway. It will look new
6. Do the big clean
7. No personal items
8. Get a home warranty
9. show records of home maintenance
10. keep home smelling good

For more tips and great ideas tune in to Modern Design Wednesdays from 1- 3 pm on Hunterdon Chamber Radio. Go to then click on modern design.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Where to shop in new jersey for great finds

I have been an interior designer for over 20 years now and work almost exclusively in New Jersey. I have found both the best and worst spots to buy things. On today's Modern Design Iwill share with you some of the best places to buy things in our garden state. Tune in today live from 1pm - 3 pm. Go to

Monday, February 20, 2017

Getting ready for Spring in your home

Have you noticed with the warm weather this winter that we are all looking for an early spring. I feel this is also true for our homes. I just created a garden room in my Maplewood store. I think plants and spring colors help with the depression that winter often brings. Now is a great time to add a pop of coral for spring on the walls or in a pillow. Go buy some herbs and start then now in your kitchen windows. Now is a time to turn to spring!!!

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Fabrics give you a pop

If you have been watching HGTV or looking at Design NJ or Traditional Home magazines you will notice rooms have become a lot more neutral. The gray palate is still with us but this year it has shifted to more of a brown gray. Trim is super white and walls are pale grays or whites with a tinge of color. It seems that we are only getting pops of color right now. Often that color comes from fabrics.  Soft surfaces like pillows, window treatments and table runners, napkins give us our style. This is why I have devoted 3 shows to fabric. Fabric is more important that ever. Weather it be an upholstered head board or fabric dining chairs. It is the fabric that brings the style to our spaces. For more on this topic tune in to Modern Design on Hunterdon Chamber Radio live on Wednesday from 10- 11 am or anytime on the podcasts.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Fabric can be transformative

When I go into a fabric store to look for a new project I am often overwhelmed at all the possibilities. I really love fabric, it inspires me. Other than paint, there is no other surface that will change your home more than new fabric. It can be a window treatment or upholstered furniture or even just a pillow. Great fabric can make a room sing!!!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Wood can be hot!!!

In preparing for my radio show each. I take myself shopping and observe what seems to be trending. Yesterday when I said I better start exercising, I switched to sneakers and walked the mall. I noticed that there were several new stores and they all had one element in common. That element was the use of wood. I have noticed the look of wood is really popular right now.  Whether its rough wood, reclaimed wood, white birch or cork wood it hot! I seem to see wood wherever I go. Natural elements are great because they are trending, but will never really do out of style.  I am even seeing the wood look in fabrics and upholstery. For the complete story tune in on Wednesday to Modern Design on www.hunterdonchamberradio/design.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

When to take down the Christmas tree

I am often asked as a designer how long after Christmas is it socially acceptable to keep the Christmas tree and the decorations up.  After all January is dull and bleak if you live in the northeast.  The glow of lights often helps with depression in the darker winter months. Here is my answer. If it makes you happy take decorations down slowly but by the 3rd week in January you need to be done. Please savor these last moments of the season.