Robin Garceau - The Interior Designer: Before & After - Step 5 & Beyond…

Wednesday, July 20, 2016


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This article is a continuation of Before & After!  Where Do You Begin?

Now that your room is clean & organized, you are ready for the fun stuff…


Decide on the general feel of the room you want to create. This is where the desktop folder of your ideas you gathered come in.  Do you want a neutral palette with pops of color?  Do you want a sleek modern feel with a lot of chrome, earth tones & faux fur accents? Or, do you want a soft, serene, coastal feel to your room without any contrast? There are so many options, but trust yourself & know the look that you want to achieve.  If you cannot or do not want to continue the process on your own,  hire a professional! It is better to bring that person in right from the beginning and include that in your overall budget.  

The next steps are:







Once you have established the concept, list the items you need to complete the room i.e: area rug, window treatments, wallcovering, lighting, bedding, etc.

Which ones have the most limited choices? There are thousands of paint colors, so do not start with that!  I am talking about items such as area rugs, ready made bedding, in stock sofas or chairs & pillows, etc. These are generally confined to certain colors or designs, limited stock or even finding something by luck.  This is key to your budget and overall design!  You may decide to do ready made bedding but invest in custom window treatments.  You may find one pillow that you absolutely love & it sets the tone for the whole room.  If you do not begin with the most limited items, it will back you into a never finishing corner.  Chances are, you will either not be able to find coordinates or it will be way over budget and you will not be able to complete the project.



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After deciding on your limited items, you inevitably will come across other options or ideas.  Do not fall into the undecided trap!  You already made your decision - do not second guess yourself!  Commit to your design choice and continue to work from those selections, checking off the necessary items on your list...put your fabrics, photos & wall colors together on a table or stand them up on a chair. Paint some patches of the paint color on your walls (it’s easier to visualize if the patches are up against a molding or the edge of a wall).  STEP BACK to look at the design & palette you put together.  Leave it out overnight and look at again the next day. If all feels right, order it!   Plan the time to purchase everything on your list - COMMIT, hold your breath & jump!



Now is the time to schedule contractors and painters.  Check on delivery dates for furniture, bedding, window treatments & area rugs.  Have a place to store things until the painting is finished and the major pieces are in.  Once everything you have ordered is settles in your room, step back to revel in the beauty...but you’re not done yet! As tired as you may be, finish with accessories, lighting and art.  This could be a process of trial & error.  Do not be intimidated by size.  Fill a wall with a single piece of art.  Put a tall lamp on a corner table. A lot of little accessories adds up to a lot of chaos. Be brave, go large & be selective!

The room with the closed door will now become the room where you want to be...your space you show off to your friends...the happy place in your home.  


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Robin Garceau is among RI’s most prominent interior designers.  Her signature style of sophisticated & fresh design brings an elevated level of subtle luxury to client’s homes and offices. 

A native Rhode Islander with more than 20 years in the design field, Robin specializes in comprehensive upscale projects. She also received her real estate license in 2011 and has worked with builders, real estate developers, business owners & homeowners to develop a broad and extensive knowledge of living & office spaces. Robin holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Rhode Island College’s Fine Arts Program and is a longstanding member of the Interior Design Society & RI Association of Realtors.

Robin can be reached at 401-743-4889 and on her


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