Posts tagged design

Most often with remote clients, it can take several months or longer to see a project from start to completion. While Fairly Modern does offer full-service, on-site projects – it's not always necessary or the most cost effective way to achieve the same results. For this project, the client wanted the whole sha-bang. A new, functional layout, cabinets, countertops, finishes, lighting, doors and windows. They were willing to do the demo themselves and hire a contractor that would follow the plan I put in place. This is a very affordable solution to anyone looking for a similar overhaul.

While the client was 100% remote, we started with a handful of photos and a skype call to discuss the wish list as well as what needed to stay. From there, the client provided me with measurements and we worked on the functional aspects of the kitchen.

When starting a remodel, it's important to note that moving plumbing, gas or electrical lines can add a lot of cost to your project. I always try to avoid moving mechanicals unless it will make a dramatic impact to the flow of the space. 

In this case, I kept the stove and sink in place. The client was removing the wall oven and replacing the countertop stove with a combo unit which allowed for me to gain enough space to suggest moving the refridgerator. This was a HUGE win because it then allowed us to blow out the wall and make it open to the living room! 



After / In Progress

After / In Progress

Since they were losing some precious pantry space, I suggested taking a "rarely used" hall closet and converting it to a walk-in pantry. While the desk needed to stay, we did make it smaller to allow for more pantry space and brought in a TON of natural light by changing the small door into a glass slider.





One pain point that the client shared was that the island made it difficult to have too many people in the kitchen. We went through a variety of options with the island and discussed functionality and worked around the built-in drawer microwave.

After determining the desired configuration, I then moved the island further away from the kitchen cabinets to allow for a wider work area.



For the finishes, it was important to keep the space light and bright. I suggested keeping the foundational elements such as the cabinets and tile traditional as they plan on living in this home forever. I love a trendy kitchen as much as the next person, but it's important to understand the life span of how long someone intends to enjoy the space before another overhaul down the road. We worked through several iterations before landing on this combination.

I could not be happier with the end result for this very sweet and hard working couple! They stuck closely to the plan and allowed for it to come to life. Talk about a before and after!


All I can say is...WOW. What a difference a year makes. If you were a steady follower of the blog (thank you!), you may have noticed the dramatic halt and transitions over the year. I'm going to go out on a vulnerable limb here and say that we had some major personal hurdles and leaps of faith that quickly changed a few things. It's a little early to be talking about the new year, but hey – things don't always go according to plan, do they?

Through a vague turn of events, we made the decision to move to Los Angeles last October. For those of you that know us – we don't sit still for long. Shortly after our move, Brandon had an amazing opportunity to work at Apple which required us to move to San Francisco temporarily. During that time, we made some incredible friends, traveled, sold our house in Michigan – the house where Fairly Modern was born – to my lovely sister and brother in law, and I started to re-evaluate what I wanted for myself and my career. 

In June, I made the very difficult decision to quit my steady, full-time job with no plan other than I knew I wanted more. I left knowing I had given it my all and that it was about to be the biggest personal leap I’ve taken in my life. I’ve always played it safe. Had a plan. Crossed my fingers and hoped for the best.

This time was very different.

After a week of hanging poolside, I knew sitting around eating bon bons was not the future I envisioned for myself. I like to work. Actually, I love to work, but amidst scrolling handfuls of qualified job listings....nothing felt right. So, with a few years of working on interior side projects and encouragement of clients, friends, and family (you know who you are) – Fairly Modern went from a blog and limited clientele to a full-time business in the blink of an eye. Its grown, I’ve grown....

And I am insanely humbled to announce that Fairly Modern now has a home of its own!

Starting today, Fairly Modern will be operating from 401 Cypress / Los Angeles, CA as a full-service Interior Design + Brand Identity Studio. I will be launching “The Market by Fairly Modern” after the new year which will include our line of hand-made candles (yes, we make them all ourselves!) and other Home + Lifestyle products both in-store and online. 

The studio is located in my neighborhood of Arroyo Secco (Cypress Park / Highland Park for those unfamiliar). I'm not only looking forward to my short walk to work, but planting some roots in this wonderful community of "urban pioneers". 

Thank you, thank you, thank you to all of my wonderful clients, family, friends, business partners, past co-workers, and those of you who continue to send me work, a text, buy a candle, be a good friend, be a good stranger, offer advice – the list goes on and on. This sincerely would not be possible without you.

Be sure to follow along for studio updates on facebook and instagram @fairlymodernhome and our retail shop @shopfairlymodern and/or


A while back, I wrote a guest blog post for Tiny Blue Sky offering tips on how to work with a designer to get the most from your brand and was interviewed on the TBS Podcast. Below you will find excerpts and links to the full features.


"Without a doubt, Pinterest is a tool built to provoke ideas, facilitate collaboration and curate just about anything. At Fairly Modern, we use Pinterest not only to pull inspiration, but to collaborate with our clients gaining a better understanding of their vision and design direction. The drawback of using a site like this is also the reason we are drawn to it: endless possibilities. So, before you get caught in the Pinterest trap, we’ve put together a checklist of what you should have prepared before you create another Pinterest board or meet with a designer."

Read the full blog post here.



What is your process when designing a retail space and how do you incorporate branding into the process?

Well, every project is different. And, rightfully so in this case. First, I spend time understanding the product or the business. What makes them unique? What stories do they tell? Once I have a good understanding of that – I like to pull inspiration from there and incorporate it from a customer experience standpoint rather than focusing on the space itself. For example, think about an ordering process. That really has nothing to do with the design of the physical space, but it is important and can be built upon. Are the orders by number or do customers stand in a line? If they take a number, what would it be made of? What is something interesting I could do with it? Things just come to life when you start with the customer first.

Listen to the full podcast here