5 Tips for Your First Meeting with an Interior Designer

5 tips for your first meeting with an interior designer | Lesley Myrick Art + Design in Waco, Texas

Once you’ve taken the plunge and hired and interior designer (yay for you!) it can seem intimidating. What do you need to know to get ready for your first session together? Prepping in advance is important and makes the most of your limited time together. Here are 5 tips for your first meeting with an interior designer:

Tip #1: Complete any requested pre-meeting activities.

At Lesley Myrick Art + Design we send our clients a personalized Kickoff Kit that contains links to their invoice, our Design Dossier questionnaire, and other helpful resources to help us kickstart projects in the best way possible. The more preparation our clients can do before our first working session, the better prepared we are to deliver design awesomeness. If you’ve taken the time to think through your needs, wants, style, and budget, we don’t have to spend time going over those items when we meet – we can jump right into the good stuff (design!).

Tip #2: Gather inspiration images.

A picture really is worth a thousand words, and something described as “modern” may mean different things to different people. Photos of spaces, objects, or furnishings you’re drawn to will bring clarity to your interior designer that words just can’t. Designers are visual people and getting on the same page from the start will ensure a successful partnership. Have magazine tear sheets, links to Pinterest boards or Houzz ideabooks, and any other design reference you’ve collected ready.

Tip #3: Prepare your questions in advance.

Usually during your first working session with an interior designer (sometimes referred to as a consultation; we call ours a Design Jumpstart) the designer will answer a lot of questions before you even ask them. We make sure our clients know about our design packages, our design process, and what it looks like to work with us beyond that first meeting. But do be sure to make a list of all the questions you have, whether they’re about the design process, pricing, or specific design dilemmas in your home.

Tip #4: Remember, interior designers are not judging you.

Designers understand it’s a privilege to be hired and to be allowed in your home. We don’t take it lightly that you trust us in your space, and we aren’t judging you on how your home looks! Please don’t apologize for anything. If your home looked exactly the way you wanted it to already, you wouldn’t need us. But do point out problem areas that need to be addressed so we know what’s not working and can design a solution for you.

Tip #5: Trust your designer.

You’ve hired a designer for their style, expertise, and ideas. We have years of education and experience that allow us to design and visualize some amazing transformations for your home! Even if you can’t clearly see the design picture at the first meeting, trust that you’ve hired the right designer and she’ll create something incredible for you. You may feel a little uneasy at some of the design changes suggested, and that’s totally normal. When you’ve lived in a space for a while, it’s weird to imagine things changing, even if you don’t like the space how it is. A designer will take your needs, style, budget, and timeline into account to customize a design that will rock your socks off. And they’re happy to guide you gently through the process, as it can be a stressful one. Remodeling and decorating takes months and there are always bumps along the way. But your designer totally has your back. (Also, while it’s important to trust your designer, if you’re getting major red flags from them and it’s really not a fit, it’s totally okay not to move forward with them.)

These 5 tips for your first meeting with an interior designer should put you at ease. Designers love what we do and are happy to help make the process a smooth, efficient, and happy one. If you have other helpful tips or questions, chime in on Facebook – I’d love to hear what you’ve learned or what you wish you’d known. Cheers to starting your design project! 🍸

Want more awesome design tips and inspiration to break out of a “blah” home and let your rad self shine? Get my FREE guide, “Bring Personality to a Boring Space” right here. 🤘

Going Dark: Deep Wall Colors Can Be Surprisingly Successful

As the home columnist for Wacoan magazine, I’m psyched to share my insights and ideas about interior design and home decor each month. Here’s an excerpt from my current column, “Going Dark: Deep Wall Colors Can Be Surprisingly Successful”. Read the full article over at Wacoan.com, and check out the article archive here.

Going Dark: Deep Wall Colors Can Be Surprisingly Successful | Article in WACOAN magazine by interior designer Lesley MyrickJust because a wall is painted white does not guarantee that the room will have the bright expansive feeling that’s desired. (Bummer, right?) It’s counterintuitive, but in fact, a deep color can often be a better choice and actually make a space feel larger! While white walls bounce light and feel open and airy, dark colors recede. A deep wall color sits back and blurs the boundaries of a room, creating the illusion of a larger space, especially if the walls and ceiling are painted the same dark hue.

To further enhance this space-expanding effect, I prefer a matte paint finish over an eggshell or satin one. A flat, velvety finish only helps the walls appear to recede and therefore creates the illusion of a larger space.

Not everyone around Waco is on board with dark, matte wall colors though, not even paint professionals…

READ MORE…

Your home should make you feel totally amazing. Is something missing? I’ve got your back. Book your complimentary Consultation Call now and let’s make design magic together. 👇

Book Your Complimentary Consultation Call

Lesley’s Picks: 10 Best Sofas

Guys, I’m a sucker for sofas. So you can imagine it was quite hard to narrow down this Lesley’s Picks list to just 10 best sofas! I mean, how am I even supposed to decide?

What I’m drawn to when choosing sofas for a client are the details – channel quilting, tufting, buttons, a cute little swoop arm, self-piping, or some seriously sexy legs. Your sofa is a huge investment piece, and worth every penny! This is not the place to go cheap. Your butt will thank you for splurging on a comfortable piece of furniture that’s made to last. A durable upholstery-quality fabric or leather are going to clean well, wear well, and last for a loooong time.


1. Barin Green Leather Sofa | 2. Calista Sofa | 3. Abbot Cigar Leather Sofa | 4. Blue Velvet Canal Sofa | 5. Charlotte Sofa | 6. Conrad Sofa | 7. Gatsby Sofa | 8. Vendome Sofa | 9. Delano Velvet Sofa | 10. Helm Sofa

You may notice that there aren’t a whole lot of neutral options up there, and this is for a couple of reasons. One, your sofa is the biggest investment in your living room – don’t be afraid to make a statement with it! You KNOW I’m a fan of colorful sofas. And two, many of these 10 best sofas are available in other leather and fabric finishes, or even COM. (Design tip: COM means Customer’s Own Materials, when you supply your own fabric for the manufacturer to use. I do COM furnishings all the time and it creates an even more kickass custom look – you’re almost guaranteed that no one will have the same piece as you!) A number of these sofas are available through my awesome trade-only resources, so if you’re interested in purchasing one please contact us for pricing and details.

“Lesley’s Picks: 10 Best” are roundups of my favorite home furnishings. Check out the complete “10 Best” archives here, and find more furniture, home decor, and lighting I love on Pinterest.

Your home should make you feel totally amazing. Is something missing? I’ve got your back. Book your complimentary Consultation Call now and let’s make design magic together. 👇

Book Your Complimentary Consultation Call

Confession Time: Neutrals Need Not be Boring

How to decorate with beige and neutrals that's NOT boring! Tips from interior stylist Lesley MyrickI’ll let you in on a secret – I don’t hate beige as much as you might think! Neutrals need not be boring and decorating with neutrals can actually be chic and successful. You just have to know how to do it right. If you’re more into color, beige and other neutral colors can also form the foundation of a room, allowing you to add awesome pops of color without a space feeling crazy. Here’s how:

Can’t view the embedded video above? Click here. Prefer to read? Transcript is below.

Hey everyone, Lesley Myrick here. I’m an interior stylist and I transform boring beige spaces into kickass colorful homes with an offbeat edge that are livable, delightful, and unexpected. I talk a lot about “boring beige”.

But, I’m going to let you in on a little secret – I don’t hate beige as much as you might think.

When it becomes a fail-safe, when it becomes a default because you don’t know what else to do, it’s not my favorite choice. But beige and neutrals really are needed to help ground a space. Too much color is crazy-making – and I’m someone who loves color! It really is all about the mix.

When you’re working with neutrals, form, and texture, and sheen – that’s what becomes important, not color. So layering neutrals can actually be incredibly chic and sophisticated and put-together. When you start to work with beautiful textures like leather, tweed, and fur, and beautiful luxurious finishes like that, beige becomes anything but boring.

Now, you can do an all-neutral space and do it very successfully by layering in texture and pattern, but my jam is more about mixing neutrals in to form a foundation for a more colorful, exciting, and creative look.

Neutrals can really ground a space and create that blank canvas that you can have a lot of fun with.

By using a lot of reclaimed wood, and black and white, and neutral walls in my designs I can do funkier things like a teal upholstered sofa or a yellow wing chair and other sort of quirky accents that come together as a whole to create an awesome space, and not one that feels totally crazy-making.

Now, this is just scratching the surface of talking about neutrals and color and balance and texture and all of those great things. So if you want to go deeper and learn more about how to sort of cultivate your style and figure out how to work these subtle design nuances, I have a great online course called Interior Style.

Want more awesome design tips and inspiration to break out of a “blah” home and let your rad self shine? Get my FREE guide, “Bring Personality to a Boring Space” right here. 🤘

Fall 2017 Home Decor Picks

FALL IS MY FAVORITE. (Can I get an AMEN TO THAT?) Rich colors, natural textures, organic patterns, mixed metallics, and a cooler color palette are all totally my jam. I love scoping out fresh new home decor picks for fall from my favorite design sources.

Feeling in a post-summer style rut? Layer in a few of these hip finds for an instant update in your home. Here’s what I’m loving this fall:

Grey Ceramic Lamp | Paloma Embroidered Pillow | Pleura Champagne Mirror | Wood Slab Stool | Indigo Block Print Rug | Monarch Magazine Rack | Tweed Side Table | Distressed Zebra Sculpture

Click through for more details on each piece – and if you’re interested in purchasing anything, please contact me for pricing and availability and I’ll hook you up.

Want to see more of my favorite pieces – stuff I would actually buy for myself and for my clients? Check out my past seasonal decor picks and browse the interior styling archives for oodles of design goodness. ✌️

Book a design consultation with interior stylist Lesley Myrick

Great (Room) Expectations

As the home columnist for Wacoan magazine, I’m psyched to share my insights and ideas about interior design and home decor each month. Here’s an excerpt from my current column, “Great Expectations: The Great Room is the New Heart of the Home”. Read the full article over at Wacoan.com, and check out the article archive here.

A fresh and colorful great room designed by award winning Lesley Myrick Art + Design in Waco Texas

Since the early 1990s the great room has become a common alternative, and I’ve got to say, I dig it for both practical and aesthetic purposes. A great room incorporates the functions of several more traditional rooms into one space. Think of it like combining the family room, living room and study into one. Often great rooms have raised ceilings and are located at the center of the home.

The New York Times has called the great room “the McMansion’s signature space.” I’m not sure how I feel about that slightly snarky observation — or how I feel in general about McMansions, which are large, mass-produced homes with little attention to architecture and design.

I’m a big fan of the great room, and it’s a trend I’d like to see continue.

There is often so much square footage in a home that goes unused, and I’m thrilled to see a functional, family-friendly space becoming the norm.

I believe a home should be livable, delightful and unexpected. Livable is first in that list for a reason. What’s the point of designing a home you love only to admire it from afar? Pretty and practical is the name of my game, and the great room checks both of those boxes.

READ MORE…
How to work with interior stylist Lesley Myrick

How to Bring Personality to a Boring Space

How to Bring Personality to a Boring Space | Interior Design Tips from Lesley Myrick

I had a client once refer to her home as a “beige box of sadness”. Ain’t nobody got time for that! Your home should be a haven and a source of delight. There’s too much great design out there to live in a home that lacks personality and style. Here’s how to bring personality to a boring space.

Can’t view the embedded video above? Click here. Prefer to read? Transcript is below.

Hey everyone, Lesley Myrick here. I’m an interior stylist and I transform boring beige spaces into pretty kickass colorful homes with an offbeat edge that are livable, delightful, and unexpected.

Let’s talk about something I am super passionate about – how to bring personality to a boring space.

There is so much cool design stuff out there, so I’m always surprised when people land on boring. How do we get to these boring beige homes where nothing has a whole lot of personality? Well, design purchases are a big investment and mistakes can be costly. We often stay “safe” and make safe choices to avoid making one of those mistakes that could cost us thousands of dollars. Once you’ve purchased a brown sofa it feels safe to buy a beige chair, and paint your walls beige, and suddenly, you have a room that might look pretty but doesn’t feel anything like you and doesn’t feel that great to be in.

We get locked into this safe style and then don’t know how to break out of it.

I think there’s also a big fear of being judged by others. If you’re willing to step out, to express your personality, to have fun with your home, you open yourself up to criticism and judgement from other people. Not everyone is going to love what you do but I’m a real believer that you do you. Your home, your space, your money, you get to decorate it and you get to invest in your home how you see fit. There’s a big fear about doing what we should do, and I hate that word “should”! It is the worst thing to guide you when you’re making design decisions.

Screw the “shoulds”. Do what you want, do what you love, do what feels good.

Now, if your space is a bit of a snooze-fest, I do have a tip to help you get started and make it feel more “you”. And that is that textiles are your friend. Introduce patterned curtains, accent pillows, throw blankets, area rugs – those soft, fuzzy, cuddly, textural, colorful things. They might seem kind of insignificant on their own, but all together as a whole, when you layer them in over a neutral base they can completely transform a room.

So, if you’ve got the brown sofa, and beige chair, and beige walls, and you’re just feeling like you’re stuck in this beige box of sadness, that’s a great way to start. Throw a couple great pillows in, a new area rug, and you can really start to transform your room.

Even a boring beige backdrop comes to life with color, pattern, and texture.

Now, this is just scratching the surface. I know a lot of people out there have these beige homes and feel stuck and want to be able to transform them. I would love to help you with that! Head on over to lesleymyrick.com and reach out on my Contact page, or if you’re more of a DIY-type gal, you can check out my fantastic online course called Interior Style which will help you find your style and break out of that boring beige space.

Want more awesome design tips and inspiration to break out of a “blah” home and let your rad self shine? Get my FREE guide, “Bring Personality to a Boring Space” right here. 🤘

A Colorful Kids Craft Room in Waco, Texas: Before

I can’t tell you how much I love getting inquiries like this from new clients: “I have a playroom that I would LOVE to transform into a super bright (pinks, golds, oranges), super functional craft/art/office area.”

HELLS TO THE YES. Bright color, bold pattern, and a super-functional organized space? I’m your gal. This colorful kids craft room in Waco is going to be da bomb. 💣 But we’ve got a long way to go. Want to see what the room looks like now?


Yawwwwwn. While it’s definitely a pretty room with a great neutral wall color, classic espresso floors, and gorgeous French doors, it’s not at all where this hip mama and her three rad kids want to hang. Plus – hello, clutter. Nothing has a home or a proper place to be stored. And as a former Professional Organizer/total neat freak, I totally get how mom is dissatisfied with this room as-is.

Okay now, get ready. This space is about to get a totally kickass, colorful makeover. Here’s where we’re going with the design:


Each kiddo is getting a chic white lacquered Parsons desk and unique lamp; Mom’s getting a glam desk with acrylic and brass accents; there’s going to be THE BEST ACCENT WALL EVER (I’m so obsessed with that floral wallpaper!); and that badass hammered brass credenza is going to be the most freakin’ chic storage you’ve ever seen in a kids craft room. Check out our design selections (and some alternate ones too) on the Colorful Waco Kids Craft Room Pinterest board.

We’re still in the early stages of this design project so it’ll be a while before the transformation is complete, but I’ll be sharing sneak-peeks on Facebook and Instagram throughout the process, so be sure to follow along.

Book a design consultation with interior stylist Lesley Myrick

Decorating Basics: Area Rug 101

I freaking love area rugs. The bolder and bigger, the better. (Subtlety has never really been my thing.) Area rugs are totally awesome – but tricky to get right. Do you buy patterned rugs, or solid? How big should an area rug be? Here are some decorating basics on choosing an area rug – and what to do if your area rug is too small.

Can’t view the embedded video above? Click here. Prefer to read? Transcript is below.

Hey everyone, Lesley Myrick here. I’m an interior stylist and I transform boring beige spaces into pretty kickass colorful homes with an offbeat edge that are livable, delightful, and a little unexpected.

So you probably already know…area rugs, totally awesome. They’re definitely something I recommend in most spaces. Now, if you have wall-to-wall carpet with a bit of a pattern in it, you might not need an extra area rug. But, in almost any other application, layering in a rug brings in color, texture, pattern, and really becomes art for the floor. Area rugs ground a space and they can help create separate zones in a much larger room as well. So, I want to share with you a few of my quick tips for decorating with area rugs.

The first is that you want the rug large enough to leave about 18 to 24 inches of flooring around the perimeter of the room.

Now, one faux pas I see are people using these teeny-weeny postage stamp-size rugs right in front of a sofa that don’t even go under the legs of the sofa. A rug should really take up a lot more of the room than that.

Tip number 2 is that when you’re shopping for an area rug, when in doubt, go big over choosing a smaller one.

This goes back to the first tip about something that’s large enough to leave about 18 to 24 inches of flooring around the perimeter of your room. You want the area rug to feel big and important. You don’t want it to feel like a teeny little afterthought you threw in front of your sofa and hoped for the best.

Tip number 3 is that ideally you want all the legs of all your furniture on the rug,

but at the very least, the front legs of all your furniture should be on the rug so that everything feels like one cohesive grouping. If your rug isn’t big enough to be able to put at least the front legs of your sofa and chairs on it, then your rug isn’t big enough. And that actually brings me to tip number 4, which is,

you can always layer a smaller rug over top of a larger one.

Now, that might sound a little crazy, but I love the layered rug look. And an easy way to do this is if you have a smaller, patterned rug – whether it’s something funky like a cowhide or maybe just like a 5×7 beautiful patterned rug – you can layer either one of those smaller rugs over a larger sisal or seagrass rug. It still lets your rug be center stage but it gives the illusion in the room of a much larger rug taking up much larger floor space.

So, that’s my rug 101. If you don’t have great area rugs yet, definitely, definitely go out and invest in them. They are totally worth the money. They can take a space that feels kind of lackluster and really pull it all together and help it feel complete, and beautiful, and just feel like an awesome space that you want to be spending time in.

Want more awesome design tips and inspiration to break out of a “blah” home and let your rad self shine? Get my FREE guide, “Bring Personality to a Boring Space” right here. 🤘

Lesley’s Picks: 10 Best Desks

If you’ve gone through any store recently, you’ll immediately notice that it’s back to school time. (MY FAVORITE EVER.) Back to school means moving into dorms, furnishing first apartments, and sales on everything and anything office related. No matter if you’re a student, a young professional, or are established in your career, there’s never a wrong time to update your office to make it feel like a place that you want to be instead of a place you dread entering.

Getting a desk that screams style is a great way to give you that productivity boost you’ve been needing. Whether you’re wanting to add a touch of color or a bit of modern flair, there is a desk out there to complete your space. Here are 10 of the best desks out there to help kick-off creativity in your home or office:lesley's picks: 10 best desks

There were so many rad options out there to choose from, it was really difficult narrowing it down to just 10 picks- Check out some other desks I adore here.

1. Wayfair Caviness Writing Desk | 2. Deny Designs Joy Laforme Lotus Deco Writing Desk | 3. West Elm Modern Desk | 4. West Elm Bone Inlaid Desk | 5. Anthropologie Lacquered Regency Desk | 6. Jonathan Adler Walnut Channing Desk | 7.Black Rooster Decor Essie Desk | 8.Modshop Bordeaux Desk with Brass X Legs  | 9. Modshop Trousdale Desk with Brass Finish | 10. Made Goods Audrey Desk

“Lesley’s Picks: 10 Best” are roundups of my favorite home products in a range of prices. Check out the complete “10 Best” archives here, and find more furniture, home decor, and lighting I love on Pinterest.

Want more awesome design tips and inspiration to break out of a “blah” home and let your rad self shine? Get my FREE guide, “Bring Personality to a Boring Space” right here. 🤘

How to work with interior stylist Lesley Myrick