For Atlanta-based designer Connie Raines a beautiful area rug helps tie together some of her warmest spaces.
Thanks or joining us, Connie! Tell us a little bit about your training in interior design and how you came to choose both the profession and location.
I knew in high school that I loved making my childhood home look better. I grew up in a large family (12 kids-always a mess) in a beautiful old Queen Anne style home in a suburb of Chicago. I feel like growing up in that house had something to do with my appreciation and interest in interior design. I received my degree in Interior Design from Georgia State University. Most of my training was on the job of course, working in some great commercial design firms in Atlanta. Really learning how to conduct a business professionally. I had some great mentors at these firms, who always expected the highest standards from the designers in their firms.
Is Atlanta a challenging market for interior decorating? What are some of the major influences for the area?
Atlanta is a great city to practice interior design. I will say that it is pretty competitive as far as the number of designers who practice in the city. I think if you are talented and you are determined you will find the right clients to be able to do the work. Major influences are both traditional design and definitely now more transitional and contemporary design is becoming more mainstream everywhere. Less fuss.
What’s you design philosophy? How do you try and implement it in your work?
I don’t have only one philosophy of design. But I will say that any space no matter how small or big the budget can be well designed and usually improved upon.
Are your clients typically looking for big jobs, or a room-by-room type thing?
It really depends on each client. Sometimes it is a room or two, most of the time it is an overall design concept thru out the home.
When it comes to floor coverings, tell us how you incorporate area rugs into your designs.
I love area rugs over carpeting. Many of my clients have pets and hard surface flooring with area rugs are a great way to provide ease of maintenance and still have the softness that is needed on the floor. I use area rugs in all rooms of a home. I would typically always recommend a hard surface (wood, tile, concrete) floor with area rugs for softness.
Area rugs add some warmth to space. What are some other ways they can be used?
Area rugs can be used for wall softness and helping with acoustics in large open areas, and for keeping dirt and dust from tracking everywhere at entry doors and porches. Beautiful small antique woven rugs can make great ottoman upholstery or chair seat covers as well.
Do you have any types of rugs you use more often than others in Atlanta? Any other tips or tricks for using area rugs?
I have been recommending the polypropylene sisal products that really look good but can be used in moist areas like screen porches or rooms where animals and kids will be living. It has to be a reputable manufacturer to get the acceptable quality.
Thanks and Happy New Year.