Ask an interior designer: Home design tips from a Leander-area designer

Interior designer Lindsay Cerilli suggests keeping old furniture until new furniture arrives. (Courtesy Cerulean Concepts)

Lindsay Cerilli is a Leander-based interior designer with 11 years of experience. Her interior design company, Cerulean Concepts, specializes in new construction design and working with builders on finishing details. Cerilli provides design services in the Leander, Cedar Park, Lago Vista, Georgetown and Liberty Hill areas.

Cerilli shares tips, offers design ideas and answers questions regarding the design process.

How can homeowners customize a new construction home to their personal style?

“Sometimes the hardest part in choosing finishes for your new construction home is figuring out your style. Before selecting finishes, it is helpful to save images of rooms as inspiration and to find the commonality among the inspiration photos such as color, material types or architectural elements. You can then replicate the elements into your new home using similar options that your builder may offer. If builder options are limited, I suggest going with the standard included offerings for lighting, mirrors, and cabinet hardware and to replace with your own after closing.”

What are a few weekend-long home projects?

“My favorite weekend project where the sweat equity you put in will make the most design impact is an accent feature wall. To best utilize time, I suggest breaking up the project into two weekends. On the first weekend, plan and purchase all the materials. Next weekend, create your feature wall. Ideas include wallpaper, shiplap, panel molding and accent paint with an all-over stencil detail.”

What should clients know or do before contacting a designer?

“It is best to contact a designer four to six months in advance of when you are wanting your project to be complete to allow for design time and for materials to arrive. Before contacting a designer, it is helpful that all decision-makers agree on a list of the areas you are looking for help with and the budget you are wanting to spend on your project.”

Do you have any advice on navigating long waits caused by the pandemic?

“My design philosophy has always been “plan before your purchase,” and this is true now more than ever. When it comes to furniture and accessories, take more time in the design planning stage to understand dimensions and order color samples to save time and hassle to prevent returning items. With widespread furniture delays and limited materials, it is best to keep your existing furniture until your new furniture arrives so that you are not without key pieces.”

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