Blog Archives

Million Dollar Decorator Wall Mural

Daisy Fuentes muralo, wall mural, Martin Lawrence Bullard, Million DOllar Decorator, BravoTV

Wall Mural for Daisy Fuentes

Each week The Design Diva re-creates one of the completed rooms from Million Dollar Decorator so you can have a similar room at a fraction of the cost. Unfortunately, Episode 6 did not complete anything. Since so many people loved Daisy Fuentes‘ wall mural on Episode 5, we are going to share some sources for wall murals and 10 Easy Steps for successful installation in your own home.

 

 

wall mural, brooklyn bridge, million dollar decorator, BravoTV

Brooklyn Bridge Mural

One source for an extensive selection of inexpensive wall murals is Mural Superstore, which was also featured on HGTVBravo’s Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, and ABC’s Extreme Home Makeover. If you’ve ever wished you could afford a New York City skyline view, or you dream of owning a beach house, you can create either illusion for under $75. If you are decorating a “Man Cave” and your man is a baseball fan, he can feel like he is hanging out at the World Champion San Fransisco Giants Stadium with the misty San Francisco bay on the horizon.

beatrice potter mural, child's mural, million dollar decorator, BravoTV

Customizable Wall Mural

Another great source for wall murals is Murals Your Way. What makes them different is their ability for customization. If you are decorating a child’s room, they can add his or her name to it. If you have a unique area you want to cover, they can customize the mural size. If, like Daisy Fuentes and Martyn Lawrence Bullard on Million Dollar Decorator, you have a great picture you love, they can transform it into a wall mural. Plus, you have your choice of getting your mural printed on traditional vinyl, artist-quality canvas, or made as a peel and stick, repositionable wallcovering. The options are endless!

Now that you know where to get your mural, here are 10 easy steps for successful installation of it:

  1. Determine what size you want your mural to be. Do you want it from corner to corner or just a section of the wall like Daisy Fuentes?
  2. Remove outlet covers, switch plates, picture hangers, and nails. Fill holes with spackle and allow to dry.
  3. Sand area to be covered. A smooth wall assures the best results.
  4. Prime the area with wallpaper primer. This will make it easier to slide the panels to their correct position.
  5. Layout panels in their proper order and number them to be sure they get hung in the correct position.
  6. Make a level guideline for where you want the right edge of the first panel to hang. This is the most critical part of installation, since the accuracy of the first panel will determine how well the entire mural will look.
  7. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for pasting and hanging, or using the peel and stick backing.
  8. Be sure to smooth out all air bubbles and wrinkles starting at the center and working your way outwards.
  9. After all panels are hung, use a straight edge and sharp blade to trim the tops and bottoms of panels. Be sure to change your blade frequently to assure a clean cut.
  10. If using paste, be sure to remove any excess paste from the surface of the mural with a clean, damp sponge.

Now your room has the style of a Hollywood star, at a fraction of the cost!

eiffel tower mural, wall mural, million dollar decorator, BravoTV

Eiffel Tower Mural

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 @ askthedesigndiva@gmail.com.

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

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Million Dollar Decorator does Daisy Fuentes

Daisy Fuentes living room, Martyn Lawrence Bullard, Million Dollar Decorators

Daisy Fuentes' Living Room

Episode 5 had Million Dollar Decorator to the Stars, Martyn Lawrence Bullard, designing a living room for celebrity Daisy Fuentes. He had a blank canvas to start with, and the end result was simple yet dramatic, elegant yet comfortable. He never mentioned the total cost, but I suspect it was over $50,000.

area rug, circle pattern area rug

Area Rug

The area rug alone was $25,000. Here is a really good substitute for only $447. Bullard had a custom wall mural made from a photo of Cuban architecture. The price was not quoted, but I am sure it was in the thousands of dollars. It was very large and made quite a statement. I found an in-stock wall mural for $300. Although it features architecture of Spain, it has the same sepia tones and similar size. Daisy Fuentes chose the mural because Cuba has significance to her. There are thousands of murals available, so select a subject that is meaningful to you.

Another dramatic element to the room is the mirror wall art over the mantle. Bullard paid $15,000 for it, but in The Design Diva’s other blog “Save or Splurge” we show you how to recreate it for under $200.

sofa, velcet sofa, mocah velvet sofa, million dollar decorator

Mocha Velvet Sofa

Now we move on to the furniture. A contemporary sofa with straight lines was used, and our option is similarly styled but at an affordable price of $510.  Across from the sofa are two large, round brown velvet armchairs. We have found smaller chairs that still have a round shape, but these will probably fit better in an average sized room for a mere $399 each.

Our substitute for the coffee table is the same shape, and has visual interest from the linear slate insets. While it is a

slate coffee table, coffee table, million dollar decorator

Wood and Slate Coffee Table

different color, the low price of $232 and the fact that the colors will tie together the other furniture pieces makes it a winner. The round end table in the photo looks like a burled wood drum table. We found a round wood table that, while not burled, still has some detail to the top and only cost $159.

The room has minimal accessories. On the back wall is a dark piece of art. We went with an art canvas that is still neutral in color and reinforces the circle pattern from the rug. On the floor below the art is a tall vase, and we found a perfect substitute for only $80.

The time to add everything up is here! The total cost to recreate this room was $2925. It was easy to do, since every item on the list was found on  Amazon.com. Once again, High End Looks for Less proves that great design can be created on a budget. Now you can live like a celebrity, but at a fraction of the cost.

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 @ askthedesigndiva@gmail.com.

Barbara Green is The Design Diva and owner of Sensibly Chic Interior Design. Follow 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 Amazon.com. 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.

Celebrity Living Room for Less

zebra print rug, black and white rug, safari rug, area rug

Mossa Zebra Area Rug

Million Dollar Decorator on BravoTV featured Martyn Lawrence Bullard’s speedy decorating of Sharon Osborne’s new Hollywood apartment. In record time he did an awesome job, but at a startlingly high cost.

If you want the look but don’t have the budget, High End Looks for Less has affordable options to create the look in your own home.

Sharon Osborne’s living room is a simple  study in black and white design. The beauty comes from the play of interesting shapes, patterns, and  silhouettes.

The most eye-catching detail is the zebra-print rug.  The Mossa Zebra Rug pictured at left will give the same foundational drama to your room, but only costs $529.

The most important part of a functional living room is the sofa. It needs to be both comfortable and durable.

black sectional, black sofa, black leather sofa, black leather couch

Diamond "Valentino" Sofa

Celebrities have been known to spend as much as $25,000 on a sofa, but I found a wonderful substitute by Diamond,the black leather “Valentino” with chrome legs for only $1859. It has an angular shape like the Osborne’s, but looks even more cushy and comfortable.

Next to the sofa is a traditional footlocker serving as an end table. I like the trunk below for its modern look and textural interest. It does double duty as an end table and extra storage for a mere $132!

black trunk, black coffee table, black storage coffee table, black leather trunk

Black Faux-leather Trunk

Opposite the sofa is a contemporary buffet with some sculptural lamps on top. Look for a deep espresso or black finish, with coordinating lamps.

Modern buffet, espresso buffet, Zocalo buffet

Zocalo "Madison" Buffet

This buffet is made of solid wood, but is still a bargain at $770.

Modern lamp, table lamp

Modern Lamp

The Osborne’s lamp is an “X” shape, but our subsitute is “U” shaped. While different, we retained the geometric nature and the sculptural visual effect  it provides for an affordable $261.

The final pieces needed to furnish the living room are the antique chairs. They were a source of controversy after the episode, as Bullard quoted the chairs  as “antique Eames chairs“, when in fact they were Barcelona chairs by Mies Van Der Rohe. Here is brand new reproduction that will fill in nicely for only $1138.

barcelona chair, modern chair, brown leather chair

Barcelona Chair

Accessories were kept sparse and simple. Artwork on the wall consists of photographs, all presented identically with white mats and black frames. This is an easy project for a do-it-yourselfer with black and white photos or pictures cut out of books.

If you have a room you want made over affordably, send a picture to highendlooksforless@gmail.com and perhaps we will feature it!