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Decorating a Den with Moroccan Style

den, million dollar decorator, BravoTV

Palm D'OR Suite


Martin Lawrence Bullard was back on Million Dollar Decorator doing what he does best: decorating incredible rooms. This time it was the Palm D’Or Suite at the Colony Palms Hotel in Palm Springs, CA. He wasn’t thrilled with his $50,000 budget, but he still worked his magic and came up with a bold, colorful, and inviting decor. Today’s affordable re-creation will focus on the den. Future posts will de-construct both the living room and the bedroom.

First he had the wainscotting painted a rich red, which is a cheap and easy way to instantly transform the look of the room. Using a yardstick, a roll of painter’s tape and a can of paint, you can do this in your home for under $30.

Cher bed, daybed, sofa, couch

Daybed for Sofa base

The centerpiece of the room is the gorgeous sofa, originally designed for Cher. It cost approx. $10,000, but you can create a similar look by using a daybed covered in pillows. I found a daybed with finials on all four corners, to simulate the decorative turned-wood legs on the original. This one is only $579 including the mattress! Cover the mattress in a slipcover, or if you are really inept and promise not to show anyone, use duck tape and fabric to wrap the mattress like a present. To complete the look, toss on a collection of pillows from Homegoods. I am budgeting $200 for the pillows, but if you have a curmudgeonly husband who complains about too many pillow, you’ll probably spend less. Just make sure you use enough to make it comfortable and inviting.

Moroccan Tables, table. end table

Moroccan End Tables

Next, instead of using a single coffee table, Bullard used a collection of Moroccan end tables. The variety in their heights and widths makes it a very interesting arrangement. Berber Trading has the lowest prices I’ve seen for Moroccan tables, with some as low as $74 each. During the episode he complained of the tables sometimes looking too brightly colored, but at this price, it is worth your time to add black paint to some glaze and give the tables a quick coating to tone the colors down.

table lamp, million dollar decorator, moroccan lamp

Lamp with Patterned Lamp Shade


At the far end of the sofa is an end table with a lamp. The selection to the right would look great, particularly since our daybed is black. The patterned lampshade gives the same exotic feel, but these lampshades are available in a myriad of patterns to go with whatever fabrics and colors you decide to use.

In the corner is a leather club chair. has many to choose from in the $300 – 500 range. The one I selected was only $300.

The final touch was the wall art, which was actually framed fabric. You can remove the cardboard backing of an oversized black picture frame, wrap it with fabric (trusty duck tape works like a charm again to keep it in place) and then re-assemble the frame. Select any fabric to go with your decor, and if you shop the remnant table you can create both large pieces of art for about $80.

Our total for everything needed to re-create the Exotic den in the Palm D’Or Suite at the Colony Palms Hotel is $2013. That is affordable on just about anyone’s budget.

Like what you’ve read? Please share it with your followers. Also please check out our other blogs “Save or Splurge” and “Ask the Design Diva.”

If you have a room you would like re-created affordably, please leave a comment below or email @

Barbara Green is The Design Diva and owner of Sensibly Chic Interior Design. Follow on Twitter @thedesigndiva.


Million Dollar Decorator Black and White Home Office

million dollar decorator, black and white office, Mary McDonald

Office by Mary McDonald

The latest episode of BravoTV‘s Million Dollar Decorator featured Mary McDonald creating a black and white home office out of a client’s empty room. The client did not specify a budget, and McDonald was pretty quiet about what she was spending, so I can only imagine what the entire project cost. The only figure we have for sure was the cost of  the painted floor, which was $8000. I suspect we will re-create the entire room for less than half that. The custom-painted floor is the foundation for the room design, and as long as you have some time,  three gallons of paint, and some painter’s tape it can be created for under $100. You can repeat the zigzag pattern, or design the unique pattern of your choice.

desk, office desk, white desk

Coaster Office Desk

The most important part of a home office is the desk. The one I found doesn’t have the black leather top, but it does have interesting legs, more drawer space, and is a bargain for only $359. To give the weight of the black leather top, use a black desk pad, which is only $30. The second most important part of the office is a comfortable chair. I found a great reproduction, pictured below, for only $207! At home, carefully paint the exposed wood gold.

black armchair, office chair, chair, armchair

Black Armchair

A big switch was made for the two guest chairs, but before you complain about not holding true to true to the original design, please remember that if you make your guest chairs too comfortable they’ll never leave and you’ll never get any work done. We are instead  substituting simple black chairs with elegant nailhead trim. Do paint the exposed wood white before placing them in the room. Both chairs cost only $178, a fraction of what just one of the original guest chairs would cost.

bookends, gold bookends, fleur de lis

Fleur De Lis Bookends

On top of the desk is a pair of gold buffet lamps for $100, but replace the small red shades with larger black shades for an additional $60. The bookends are gold Fleur De Lis and a bargain at $15. The black vase for $50 is a different shape, but it has gold accents, which refers back to the desk chair,  lamps, and bookends. To finish off the desk area is an elegant black planter, also with gold accents, for $97. Instead of filling it with cut flowers, use a living plant, $5, to save money and serve as your own personal air purifier.

Drapes, draperies, curtains

Black and Tan Damask Drapes

The wall of french doors features gorgeous black and white striped drapes that I’m sure cost a King’s Ransom. I found draperies with a tan background (pulls in one of the floor colors) and a black damask pattern. It is not a stripe, but it does add drama and elegance to the room and cost only $184 for two pairs. The black rods and rings are available at Lowe’s for $80 for two sets.

Next we’ll address the wall of pictures. This is where you can really save big! Search garage sales, flea markets, or charity shops such as Goodwill, Salvation Army, or Habitat for Humanity ReStore for an assortment of frames. This room had 11 frames, but you should select the quantity based on your own room’s dimensions. Unify them by spray painting them all black and fill with your own photos which can be sized or converted to black and white by your local printer. Alternatively, you can frame pages from an art or photography book, a piece of fabric, or sheet of wallpaper.

pillows, decorator pillows, decorative pillows

Pillow for Pop of Color

Lastly, a pop of color is created from  brightly colored pillows, which can be found for under $40 for the pair at your local Marhsalls, TJMaxx, or  Homegoods store. Do not use a neckroll as pictured because it will fall through the back of the chair. Look for a large square pillow instead.

Now we get to my favorite part of the blog, adding up the items and comparing it to the original cost. The mathematicians out there probably have the total in their head, but for the rest of you, the grand total came to only $1505. That is less than one quarter of what was paid just for the painted floor. It does not include the cost of the wall of art, because you can spend as little as $50 or as much as $200, it just depends on your scavenger skills. It’s exciting to see how low we can go, and this one even surprised me!

If you have a high-end room you would like re-created for less, please submit it in the comments section, or email a picture to

Barbara Green is The Design Diva and owner of Sensibly Chic Interior Design. Follow her on twitter @thedesigndiva.

Money Can’t Buy You Style

living room, Kathryn Ireland, Million Dollar Decorator, Shannon Factor

Shannon Factor's Living Room by Kathryn Ireland

Fans of BravoTV‘s Real Housewives of New York will remember Countess LuAnn’s memorable song “Money Can’t Buy You Class,” but in this week’s Million Dollar Decorator her song could easily be re-recorded as “Money Can’t Buy You Style.” Shannon Factor, an heir to the Max Factor cosmetics empire, spent millions on furnishing for her home, but needed the assistance of Kathryn Ireland to make sense of it all, teaching Shannon that more is not always more.

area rug, navy and white rug

Navy and White Rug from Home Decorator's Collection

The room turned out beautifully, with a clean blue and white palette. Let’s see how you might be able to recreate the look, but on a much smaller budget. Keep in mind, we will not be shopping Europe, like Factor did, but instead shopping the internet, saving on airfare and pricey antiques. Let’s start out with a large area rug in navy and white to anchor the space. Ours is from Home Decorator’s Collection and retails for $869.

Next we will add the seating, which includes two tufted, Chesterfield-style arm chairs and two white sofas. I found luxurious leather Chesterfield chairs for $999 each, and two white sofas for for $1039 each. The great part about this sofa is that it comes with an assortment of colorful pillows, which is one thing Kathryn Ireland’s designs are known for, without adding an extra expense to the room design.

Upholstered Ottoman, round ottoman, velvet ottoman

Armen Round Ottoman

Completing the seating area is a round, tufted ottoman and two round end tables. I found a blue velvet ottoman by Armen for only $207. It doesn’t have as many tufts, but I prefer the simplicity of it better anyway. Paxton makes an affordable end table with similar curving legs for only $250 each.

The last piece of furniture is the antique china cabinet. I found an elegant reproduction by Broyhill which costs $1619.

The mantle features a rectangular mirror, two brass candlesticks, two vases, two decorative items (too small for me to figure out what they are !) and a clock. I found a good mirror substitute for $152 at LampsPlus (simply hang it horizontally instead of vertically),  a pair of brass candlesticks for $100 at Touch of Class, blue and white porcelain vases for $59 each and a mantle clock with brass accents for $107, both at The finishing touch for any room are the window treatments, and I found great-looking blue striped curtains at Target for only $116 for four,  along with two nickel-finish rods for $28. The inspiration room’s drapes are patterned, but combining the stripes with the patterned rug and solid furniture will look really sharp!

mantle clock, mahogany clock

Mahogany Mantle Clock

The grand total for all of these items is $7892. It’s not affordable for all budgets, but in a typical home you won’t have room for two large sofas AND two large armchairs, so to furnish an “average sized” living room, it would cost much less.  If you do have this large of a living room,  our cost is certainly an improvement over the millions of dollars spent by Shannon Factor.

Do you have a picture of a room you’d like to recreate on a budget? Leave a comment and we’ll try to help you out!

Barbara Green is The Design Diva and owner of Sensibly Chic Interior Design. Follow her on Twitter @thedesigndiva.

Million Dollar Decorating Bedroom Design

bedding, bamboo bedding

Bamboo Bedding


On BravoTV’s  Million Dollar Decorator, Mary McDonald decorated a guest house with a budget of $100,000. When the divorcing homeowner requested reducing the decorating budget to $50K McDonald refused, and said she wouldn’t have taken the job for ONLY $50,000. The completed project was beautiful, but as usual, High End Looks for Less will take it apart and see what dollar amount we come up with!


The bed should always be the centerpiece, and this one features an upholstered headboard, white bedding, and brown decorative pillows. We found a great headboard at for $250, silky white duvet, sheets, and pillow cases all made from eco-friendly bamboo  for $360, and a brown quilt for the end of the bed for the bargain price of $25. Rounding out the bed area are two benches for the foot of the bed from Home Decorators Collection at $99 each. On the wall is a round mirror  for $154, and a set of  two framed prints from art4cheap at only $40 for the pair.

Striped vase, decorative vase, striped pottery, decorative pottery

Striped Vase


Next we move to the seating area, consisting of a brown loveseat for $638, two wicker armchairs at $59 each, two bookshelves at $99 each, two bunching coffee tables at $87 each, two striped vases at $115 for both, assorted white vases for $17 each, 6 decorative pillows for $18 each, an assortment of wicker baskets for $15 each, a large, framed print at $185, and a zebra rug at $393.

Dining Table, square table, expandable table

Wood Table from IKEA


The last area to furnish is the dining/desk area which consists of a square wood dining table found at IKEA for only $149, a beautiful leather upholstered chair for $249, chunky wood candle holders from Pier 1 Imports at $40 for the pair, a fresh potted orchid for $40, and some tiny vases. Ours is a set of five for only $29.


So with all this bargain shopping online, did we come anywhere near Mary McDonald’s $100,000 budget? Of course not!The High End Looks for Less  grand total comes in at the paltry sum of $3593.  If you thought high style required a high budget,  Sensibly Chic Interior Design and High End Looks for Less are sure to change your mind!