Wednesday, November 30, 2011

November Design Inspiration

Remember to give thanks each day not just during the season of Thanksgiving.  Each day brings a new beginnig and new opportunities to cultivate our personal relationships; business endeavors and our creativity!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Turning 50 This Week

Never stop evolving both personally and professionally.

Fifty years ago today I entered this world.  I can never remember a day that all things of beauty did not permeate my being and continue to shape me.  This beauty that I speak of is the beauty in people and in all ordinary and extraordinary things I come in contact with each day.   The beauty of the love of my mom, dad and family has allowed me to develop into the wife, mom and artist I am today.

I would have to say that the person who has made the most profound impact on my life is my mom.  Although her physical beauty is quite stunning; her inner beauty is unparalleled by anyone I have ever met.  Her ability to love unconditionally, her grace, her capacity to run a household, a business and social volunteer efforts still amazes me today!  It is from this foundation that I have been able to flourish and overcome all obstacles each day.  My greatest creations, of course, are my children; they are like an oil painting that you continue to refine; with each stroke it gets more beautiful and the complete composition is more fully realized. (Thanks to my husband for helping with those creations; it's been a great ride so far!) As for my professional life; the visual and performing arts have been an integral part of my life from my earliest memories. As an adult I intend to continue to explore all of these realms as I embark on new Interior Design Projects, new visual & performing arts projects and new community arts & volunteer efforts...on to the next 50 years!!!!

1961 Felicia's first photo

2011 Felicia's arts volunteer efforts this year in her hometown. "Highlandtown", Baltimore, MD

2010 A commercial interior design project in Baltimore

Monday, September 12, 2011

September Design Inspiration

Frank Zappa - Do you remember his music? Do you remember that era???  Well he now has a permanent presence in my hometown community of Higlandtown in Baltimore which is evolving into a very eclectic artists' Mr. Zappa fits right in.  As Highlandtown commemorates "Frank Zappa Day", our annual arts festival will occur; celebrating the visual arts, the literary arts and the performing arts.  Magnolia Designs will have a tent again this year and will be joining in the celebration. We hope to see you there!

Please join the Magnolia Designs Tent during the Manifesto 2011 Event!
When: September 17, 2011
Where: Highlandtown - Corner of Eastern Ave. & Conkling Street
Time: 12:00-6:00
Featuring: Gary Helton who will sign his latest book "Highlandtown Revisited"
                    Maria Cavacos who will be working on her "Collages on Canvas"

For more information or to reserve a book contact Felicia @ 301-370-0115 or

Monday, August 22, 2011

August Design Inspiration

For me, one of the most attractive things about living in this part of the country is that we truly have FOUR SEASONS. As each new season unfolds, with it comes an opportunity to re-express our personal style in our attire and in our home.  We grow and evolve each year, so it is natural that we are constantly updating our "look" and our "environment".  

I would like to give you some suggestions to make your home more enjoyable as you embark on each new season~

    1) Take a half an hour one morning when you are rested with a clear mind and simply walk through your home. 

     2) Make a list of your top ten things to improve or change.

     3) Narrow them down to the five items that you know you can accomplish in two weeks. Follow through with it!

     4) Take a half hour one evening and walk through your home, and repeat #2 and #3.

Little things like, changing hardware, new lamp shades, replacing an area rug, adding accent pillows or re-upholstery of a piece of furniture, are quick and easy things that can really change the way you feel when you enter a room.

Another important thing to focus on is the lighting. Lighting is different in the morning and in the evening; which is why I have listed item #4 above.  Lighting is as important as the right paint color, that perfect fabric or the "star" piece of furniture.  If there is inadequate or incorrect lighting; even the most beautiful room will never reach its full potential.

Take a look at this example of how a simple change can make a huge difference. 

I hope this gives you some food for thought.  Good luck as we enter this Fall 2011 season; and if you need help with your  "to do" list; we are always here to assist!

You can also visit my website at

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

June Design Inspiration

My June Design Inspiration comes from the garden ~

During the Summer months we have such an abundance of beautiful flowers blooming in our gardens.  Take time to bring fresh flowers into as many rooms as you can; as often as you can.   I was able to bring beauty to four rooms in my home by simply pruning two hydrangea bushes.  Fresh flowers change how you feel as you walk through your home. Their natural beauty brings joy as you enter and as you are enjoying time in each room to which they are added!

What is in your garden? Feel free to send photos and share your floral compositions with Magnolia Design Studios.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

May Design Inspiration

May brought me once again to an Art and Furniture show in one of my favorite cities, New York. Along with some cutting-edge lighting and furniture design, I found this unique wallpaper out of Finland. Want to really transform your room? Just try this "Antique Barn finish" wallpaper or this fun furniture made of recycled materials.

I do not often find things that make me stop in my tracks, but this wallpaper did. I can't wait to find the room for this treatment.

Does your room need a transformation? Contact Magnolia Design Studios today and see what we can do for you!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

April Design Inspiration

This month has been full of new, rich, fine art and sculptural art discoveries.  I visited the "ARTEXPO" and "SOFA" shows in NY.  The ARTEXPPO included primarily fine art from artists in the US, Canada and throughout Europe. One artist of special note from ARTEXPO was Michael Cheval. I suppose my love of the performing arts coupled with the high style of these compositions are the attraction for me. The SOFA show which focuses on Sculptural art had a myriad of exquisite artists including glass, pottery, jewelry and furniture from artists in North and South America, Canada and Europe.  The furniture of Jim Rose of Ann Nathan Gallery in Chicago was of special note; completely made of steel and incorporating colored recycled steel to create patterns whose origins come from the "Gee's Bend" quilting tradition.  The combination of sculpture and the influence of textile, blended with the concept of "green" into highly functional, beautiful and unique furniture!  The perfect solution for a designer who is always seeking a "character" piece to finish her room!

What inspires you?  Are you looking for a "perfect piece" to finish your room?  Write me, let's see what we can create for you!

Chinese Coins Quilt Cupboard
34H x 57W x 18 3/4 D
Jim Rose of Ann Nathan Gallery in Chicago
Available through Magnolia Design Studios

"Magica Lesson"
40" x 30" glicee on canvas. Edition of 100.
Michael Cheval
Available through Magnolia Design Studios

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

March Design Inspiration

Dear Friends:

Starting this month, Magnolia Design Studios is instituting a new design series: "Monthly Design Inspiration". This will be accessible from not only my blog, but also my Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn

The concepts for the March Design Inspiration come from my most recent visit to the DC Design Center and from this weekend's Maryland Home & Garden Show in Timonium.  Magnolia Design Studios shared a booth with Canton Kitchens at this past weekend's show. We spent time talking with lots of new people and soaking in all the new trends for Spring. To summarize the weekend in one word: COLOR! The gardens displayed big bold color at the show. The same was true of the textiles at the DC Design Center. 

Needless to say, all of this gets my creative juices flowing and so I thought I would show you an idea of a room inspired from one of the most beautiful fabrics I have ever seen. This Stark floral fabric is a loop and cut, soft pile. I would use this as accent pillows and/or a chair in a contemporary room. Pair this will the black and white zebra area rug and place this modern red sofa with chrome base in the mix. Paint the walls a lime green like that found in the leaves of the textile or a crisp white. Drop a modern chrome chandelier in the center and there you have it! An amazingly fun and sophisticated room!

What inspires you? 

By the way - the sofa is currently in stock at Magnolia Designs.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Stella's Bridal Fashions on the Avenue

Earlier this month I had the pleasure of coordinating the "Dana Mathers Event" at Fashions on the Avenue Stella's Bridal.  Dana Mathers is an Australian Couture designer who made nine stops on her US tour and Highlandtown was one.  Included in this photo below is Dana and Ray Mathers, Doris Dower, Phil Kenney, and me. Dower and Kenney are the owners of Fashions on the Avenue.

The talents of local merchants made the event a HUGE success. Thanks to AAA Photography, Posh Hair Studio, USMC DJ, ZVideo Productions and Flowers by Angelica.

The other photo shown below is me with Dana Mathers and my twin daughters.  My two girls had their modeling debut with this couture fashion show!  They are wearing two of Dana Mathers newest designs!  The apple does not fall far from the tree either. I was just out of High School when I started my career in clothing design/manufacturing and modeling.

The next event is a "Casa Blanca" Bridal trunk show on February 26th. Details can be found on my Facebook page. Be sure to 'like' the page so you can be notified of any updates to the event and more!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Complete your design in 2011

As we begin 2011 many of you will take a look at your surroundings and make a "to do" list of the things you would like to accomplish in your home this year.  There are many ways you can "bring the room together" without redoing it completely.

That is where a design professional like me comes in.  After you have made your list, Magnolia Designs can walk with you room by room and help you prioritize the most important items within your budget.  You will be surprised how much you can accomplish and how "complete" a room can look when choosing the correct furnishings, lighting, drapery, art and accessories. Sometimes it just takes one or two "perfect choices" to achieve this!  

For some ideas of original art to complete your room, please visit our website. We have a diverse selection of art from local artists that you could use as one of the ways to spice up a room or two.

"Gavin Magnolia" by Cathy Leaycraft