Reader Design: Emily's Curated Creation

There's something about Emily, the focus of today's reader design spotlight, that makes me think we should be friends. Sure, there's the practical "we both live in Seattle" part. But, we also chose bright turquoise couches as the focal point of our living rooms. I mean, that has to mean something, right?!


I saw Emily's home pop up on Instagram a few months ago and was immediately in awe. It is quite modern but still cozy, neutral while being bright and deep. 

My design style incorporates a bit of everything, I typically describe it as eclectic modern. I love modern elements, but I also incorporated traditional, art deco, bohemian, and plenty of vintage pieces to give it a curated feel. It takes a lot more time, but gives a space so much more personality. This “design philosophy” is the reason I named my business Cohesively Curated.

It's got a cool but classic London vibe. As Emily describes - 

The city of London above all else is very classic, but it also has so many modern gems and up and coming trends to discover.

It's a perfect fit for a similarly rainy, gray, but oh-so-cozy and interesting place like Seattle; I like to think Seattle & London are sister cities. Does anyone else buy that? 


With a focus on classic and modern looks, Emily has carefully selected every piece inside this home, filling it up to the brim with pottery, textiles, and art. She grounds herself in things that hearken back to her design philosophy and uses that as her foundation for making decisions. 

I think it is challenging with social media, Pinterest, blogs, etc. to not let yourself be swayed by other designers styles. Taking something as inspiration and figuring out how to integrate it with your own aesthetic can be a bit tricky. The trend I struggled with most is the boho trend and not going overboard, because that really isn’t my primary style. I included some vintage textiles and rugs that fall into that category but made sure to integrate them with my core aesthetic.

This home has to be one of my favorites yet, and I encourage you all to follow Emily along on Instagram @cohesivelycurated for more! We really just scratched the surface. 

Happy Fall, y'all! 

McKenna Sig.jpg

Reader Design: Jillian's Glam Getaway

Jillian and I have so much in common: a history in one of the best cities ever, Richmond, VA (school for her, growing up for me); a love for New York City; and a government day job in Washington, D.C. Despite those similarities and the fact that we live 15 minutes away from each other, we have never met (Jillian, we must change that!). 

But those overlaps are why I am so excited to show off the home Jillian and her boyfriend have created in Bethesda, Maryland.


This space is just their in-between place - a spot to relax after work and rest their heads until they find a place to buy in the area. But just because it's not part of the long-term plan doesn't mean it can't feel special. 

From Jillian:

I’ve always loved this quote from Bunny Williams: “If you love something, it will work. That is the only real rule.” Through fashion or interior design, I find items that speak to me and I allow them the space and the confidence to coincide together. If I love something, whether it’s art or furniture and it makes me happy to live beside it everyday, that’s more valuable to me than anything. To me your place has to host sentimental value…only collect the pieces that tug at your heartstrings.

Jillian's heartstrings feel the pull when they're around interesting historical details, understated glam elements, Parisian flair, and traditional silhouettes - all of which are seen clearly in this cute one bedroom apartment. 

In the living room, one of the best finds is the bar cabinet. 

I scored the bar cabinet in Richmond (my beloved college town) - I spotted it in the far back corner of the store, and I just had that feeling. I have wanted a bar cabinet for years, and this piece is not only incredibly sturdy but the bleached walnut details are so unique. It was a great investment, and I am so glad I decided to buy it.

In the bedroom, Jillian opted out of a traditional headboard by replacing it with a bright piece of seriously incredible abstract art. 

I’m so in love with the piece that hangs over our bed. It’s the first original piece we bought together as a couple. It’s vibrant and strong, and it makes me happy everyday to wake up to it.

This place has such a clear personality and is 100% Jillian, 100% of the time. It's authenticity and intrigue shine through in every single corner, and I am loving it.

Jillian, thanks for welcoming us in for a visit. For a place that is allegedly intermediate, it sure does feel like home. Follow Jillian along on Instagram @jqg_ for more. 

eDesign: Finding the Right Fit

This post is sponsored by all of our extended family members who've asked over the last year, "So, what exactly is eDesign again?". Whether you're a curious family member or a home owner/renter who is contemplating eDesign to complete your own space, we're sharing what we hope will be some very helpful information! It's going to get a little wordy here today, so if lots of text and finer details are your jam, you're in for a treat! If not, we've sprinkled in some pretty pictures to help you get through. Like this one:


So what exactly is eDesign?

eDesign is interior design done remotely. Rather than visiting clients' homes and doing all the work in-person, the design is put together without ever stepping through the front door. Using simple technology like FaceTime and email, clients and designers are able to work together to execute a detailed and personalized design plan for any space in the home! Clients often send measurements and photos of the space they'd like help with, and the designers are then able to create customized design ideas for the room complete with floor plans, design boards which help the client visualize the finished look, and in some cases a complete shopping list of items in the design plan that the client can purchase and put in place on their own.

Isn't eDesign more work for the client?

It is. eDesign certainly isn't for every homeowner, but if a client is willing to put a bit of their own time into transforming their home, they can easily save hundreds, (and thousands), of dollars on in-person designer fees. But there are tools that make it very easy for designers to communicate ideas and final looks, so the ultimate goal is for the client to be able to follow a clear step-by-step plan that's easy to follow and execute on their own.

Just to hold your attention:

There, are you still with us?

Now that we've explained what eDesign is, let's discuss how to go about finding the right eDesigner for you. Just because eDesign is done remotely doesn't mean it's meant to be impersonal; it's your home, after all! Since eDesign is becoming increasingly widespread there are many eDesign businesses to choose from and it can be overwhelming to know where to start! Here are some questions that can not only help you decide what you'd like to get from eDesign, but what exactly you'll get from your eDesigner!

Getting started

Understanding what you'll get from an eDesign business before you pay is crucial. Many larger eDesign companies employ somewhere between 200-500+ designers. Be clear about how you'll be matched with a designer - do they match you by style? Location? Availability? Will you have the opportunity to have a virtual consultation with your matched designer before you pay?

Understanding the fee

First of all, when deciding on your budget for your home make sure you consider the design fee. This will be what you pay the eDesigner, not what you pay for new things for your home. So if your total budget is $$$ and the design fee is $, you'll have $$ left on new purchases. Across the board, most companies charge a flat fee for a specific package, while a few charge an hourly rate. Hourly rates encourage prompt decisions and a clear vision from the client - the more back and forth there is the more the fee grows. Make sure you understand when the clock is ticking. For example, do you pay when you email them with questions and they respond to you? With flat fees make sure you understand exactly what you'll receive from each package, (if they offer multiple packages). While the least expensive package may look appealing, (some of the basic packages that we've found start at $79, $150, $299, and $725, just to give you an idea), just make sure you understand exactly what you'll get. Most of the basic packages offer only 1-2 finished looks, (so if it's not exactly what you were looking for for your home, you're stuck), with no additional tools, (no floor plan, no shopping list or guide to finding the pieces in the plan), and no further assistance. Regardless of what plan you choose, do some digging as to what exactly you'll get and have a clear idea of what you hope to receive.

Here are some questions to ask:

-How long do I have my designer? Most eDesign packages give you your designer for an allotted amount of time, (some even as short as one week - 10 days). This leaves very little room for 'life' to happen and requires your prompt attention to decisions.

-Once the final look is handed over how much room for iteration is there? Will you be cut off from getting feedback from your designer after the final look is delivered? Will there be an hourly rate for any necessary feedback?

All this numbers talk is exhausting! Let's break:

Whew! Ready to move on?

Affiliation with retailers

This is a biggie. Most larger eDesign companies profit two ways - through design fees and through collaborations with big box stores. This means that they are required to use only pieces from affiliated retailers in their designs. The final look can get very pricey and lose the personal touch you may desire for your home. So just ask them where they'll shop for you! Where will the elements of your final look be coming from? If your style is relaxed and you like unique finds, will they be able to accommodate? If your budget is $$, will they be researching the very best deals that are out there, or are they limited to specific stores? Just ask.

We are delighted to tell you that StyleMutt Home is not affiliated with any box store and that we have experience using resources that help us find character pieces for less, as well as the very best deals in your area. This allows us to deliver without limitation a personalized look unique to you, within budget. We are most passionate about helping others create the home of their dreams regardless of limitations, (budget, size, renting rules, location and the like). StyleMutt Home began eDesign as a solution to a problem - we want to help you wherever you are and feel confident that even if we can't be there in person, we can work with you to deliver a home as unique as you.

We hope this post has been helpful to you! The above images are just a few of the eDesign projects we have had the pleasure of working on and photographing and we invite you to view our eDesign page if you'd like to see more!

If you're interested in eDesign for your own home please fill out this form! You don't have to know your style to get started - sometimes figuring that out can feel overwhelming! We are pleased to offer life-like examples of various style options custom to your home and floorplan. The sample of images below are 3D renderings we have created using past clients' spaces! Sometimes it just helps to see options. We get it and we got your back!

Thank you all for stopping by!