purpose. beauty. inspiration.

If you read our post on traditional interior design and thought, “Well, that’s pretty, but it’s exactly the opposite of my taste,” this one’s for you.

Contemporary interior design is sleek, clean, and largely free of embellishment, making it a favorite for anyone who strives for simplicity and minimalism. While many contemporary interiors tend toward neutral palettes, especially gray and taupe, color blocking (see photo with blue wall & sofa) can be a stunning addition to this style. Contemporary furniture features straight lines and sharp angles, steering clear of the curves and delicate scrolls of more traditional styles.

What this style lacks in ornamentation, it makes up for in inviting textures and mixed metallics. Minimalism is anything but boring! Take a look below for some inspiration:

ContemporarySources: 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10 // 11 // 12 // 13 // 14 // 15 // 16 // 17

Want to see some other styles? Visit this post for a more comprehensive Design Dictionary.



There’s a reason why some things never go out of style – they’re classic. Take Debussy’s Claire De Lune, or Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel, for example. The former was composed over a hundred years ago, and the latter was painted half a millennium ago, but both are still praised for their beauty in 2017.

The same is true of traditional style interior design. It takes a page straight out of the old world book of 18th and 19th century Europe. Elaborately carved wood furniture, roll-top sofa arms, tassles, gilded finishes, chinoiserie, lace, and tufted details come together to create graceful and stately interiors. Lovers of this style tend to be attracted to consistency, comfort, elegance, and – you guessed it – tradition.

Think this might be the style for you? Take a look below to get some style inspiration!
TraditionalSources: 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10 // 11 // 12 // 13 // 14 // 15

If these photos don’t speak to you, check out this post to learn about some other interior design styles!




So you have 37 Pinterest boards. You’ve saved enough interior design ideas to fill a 200 page book. But what does it look like to turn those daydreams into a reality during a real-life home improvement project?

In an Internet world ruled by Pinterest and Houzz, it’s easy to get caught up in the idea that you’ll save yourself money by taking on your design project on your own. The countless DIY blogs and TV shows make it look simple and straightforward. Sure, they have the occasional hiccup, but the solution was a piece of cake, right? However, unless you’ve taken the time to research every step of the process and become a space planning and color theory expert, you will likely end up with more than just a few little bumps and bruises a long the way.

That’s where we come in. We’ve dedicated our education and careers to the field of interior design, becoming experts on all of the nitty gritty details, so you don’t have to. You wouldn’t think twice about hiring a lawyer to support you in court. Why not hire a design expert to support you throughout your home improvement project?

Still need some convincing? Here are the four biggest reasons hire an interior designer:

save-moneyHaving a designer on your team can prevent mistakes on the job site – big and small – before they happen. For instance, our trained eye would see right away that the cool grey you’ve selected for your interior walls looks purplish-blue when it’s placed next to your warm wood floors. If you’d hired a painter without consulting a design and color professional first, you’d have ended up with a several-thousand-dollar mistake, and a periwinkle house on your hands. In that regard, a $200 consultation seems like a drop in a bucket.

In addition, we can help you manage your overall budget. Since we put a cohesive design plan together before purchasing and construction even begin, we are able to look at the project as a whole, and make sure that you aren’t going to spend an unnecessary amount of money on any one area. Taking the project piece by piece can add up quickly! Many of our clients come to us saying that they ran out of money halfway through their last attempted renovation.

And don’t forget about resale value! Since we are connected to the housing industry, we know what sells. We’re also trained to think outside the box, which can give your interior an added edge, or “wow” factor, that will draw in potential buyers.

save-timePerhaps even more valuable than the money, hiring an interior designer will save you time. Renovations and furnishing projects alike can take hours of research time. We went to school for this stuff, so we already know much of the information you’d have to spend time researching. Google searches like “how high above the dining table should my chandelier hang” or “what direction should my hardwood floors run” won’t have to cross your mind at all, and you’ll be freed up to take care of more important things – like enjoying life.

Moreover, since we’re an all-in-one service (kind of like a wedding planner), we are your middleman. We coordinate communications between the architect, contractor, and furniture salespeople, so you don’t have to. Translation: fewer technical emails in your inbox. Of course, we still come to you for the big stuff, but you won’t have to spend time worrying about the annoying details, like ordering the correct size of rug for your living room.

resourcesOne of the biggest perks of being an interior designer is our network. We have connections to countless other home improvement professionals, who can take care of the things we can’t. Need a contractor? We’ve got 5 of them in our “recent calls” list. How about a place to pick out bathroom tile? We use 3 on a regular basis, and have another 3 in the arsenal as back-up. Don’t be afraid to use us for our connections!

We also have access to designer-only resources, such as wholesale furniture vendors and fabric manufacturers. That means you’ll have a broader range of options available to you as you work on your home, allowing you to create a space that’s more “you” than the average Crate & Barrel showroom floor. You’ll also benefit from deeper discounts on items from our wholesale vendors. RWD splits our wholesale discounts with our clients – if we get 50% off, we’ll sell it to you at 25% off of the suggested retail price!

boost-confidenceThe most important move you can make when working on a new home improvement project is to set up a “big picture” long before you begin demolition and purchasing. Hiring a designer is a huge step in that direction. We’ll help you come up with a cohesive plan, making sure you love your new space even before you get started! Having an end goal will give you the confidence you need to move forward.

Moreover, you’ll have a professional’s opinion to back you up. Sometimes all you need is to hear someone reminding you that you’re moving in the right direction. That’s what we’re here for! We’re more than just design experts – we’re also your cheerleaders. Renovations are hard, and we’ll do all we can to make the process less stressful for you. We’ll stand up for you when other professionals want to dismiss your opinion, and we know the right questions to ask to get the job done the way YOU want it done.

Overall, hiring a designer will reduce stress and doubt during your home improvement project. Whether you’re picking a few paint colors, purchasing all new furniture, or building a brand new home from the ground up, having an interior designer on your team will boost your confidence and general happiness throughout the process.

Happy renovating!


RWDP.S. If you’re interested in scheduling a consultation, click here.

The stories are true – everything really is bigger in Texas. Portion sizes, pickup trucks… even the state’s capitol building is huge (14 feet taller than our nation’s capitol building in D.C.!).

Last month, part of our team got the chance to visit Austin and see what all of the fuss was about, and we want to share some of our favorite spots with you! Our mouths are watering just thinking back to that delicious Texas BBQ…


Black’s BBQ

Skip the insanely long lines at Franklin‘s, and try this foodie heaven instead. The photo above pretty much speaks for itself. Creamy mac n’ cheese was the perfect complement to the melt-in-your-mouth tender brisket. If this restaurant opened a location in Sacramento, we’d be in trouble.

Walton’s Fancy & Staple

An adorable place that fits right in with the city’s motto: “Keep Austin Weird.” It’s a pastry/coffee shop and deli that also sells candles, succulents, and an assortment of odd little knickknacks. They also happen to have one of the most delicious breakfast sandwiches we’ve ever tasted.

Gourdough'sGourdough’s Donuts

This food truck’s no joke. The donuts are so big and so fresh, they serve them up with a knife an fork! We recommend the Naughty & Nice – a sugar and cinnamon-coated donut with a side of honey butter.

Kemuri Tatsu-Ya

For the adventurous eaters: a cross between Japanese Izakaya and Tex-Mex. We know… Mind. Blown. Our favorite dish, hands down, was the Texas Ramen; a beef broth with brisket, soft-boiled egg, bamboo, scallion, seaweed and sprouts. Sounds strange, tastes phenomenal. (P.S. Pair your meal with their yummy tiki drink – the Puff Puff Pass – for added novelty.)

1110154557-IMG_7415_16x9_992PLACES TO DRINK


A bar inside a literal parking garage (pictured above). We thought we were in the wrong place for about a minute, and then we found the sign that read “cocktails”. The moody, romantic interior was a dramatic contrast to the dingy parking lot outside, and the drinks were absolutely delicious. 10/10, would recommend.


A casual, inviting wine bar with plenty of patio seating. They have an extensive wine (and beer) list, and delicious trays of artisan cheese and crackers to snack on. It’s a bit outside of the main tourist zones, so the atmosphere is pleasantly relaxed – the perfect way to end a day in the Texas sun (it was 85 degrees while we were there… in FEBRUARY).

Rainey Street

A quaint, pedestrian-only street lined with historical houses-turned-bars. Our advice: skip the craziness of “Dirty Sixth,” and head here instead. This little street has something for everyone – from beer gardens to cocktail bars with live music, and everything in between.


Texas State Capitol Building

Large and impressively beautiful, not unlike our own capitol building in Sacramento. While there aren’t many exhibits to look at, it’s worth wandering the halls to admire the architecture, and climbing up the grand stair cases to get a better look at the stunning detail inside the rotunda.


Hope Outdoor Gallery

A strangely beautiful cluster of concrete walls covered in graffiti. It’s managed by a non-profit organization that encourages street artists to express themselves in a positive way. The result is inspiring and refreshing. Pick up a can of spray paint before heading over and add your contribution!

South Congress Shops

Stroll down one of Austin’s main streets and allow yourself to wander in and out of its quaint little shops. Our favorite, by far, was the antique shop called Uncommon Objects. It’s full of strange trinkets, many of them unique to Texas and its history.


Ann and Roy Butler Hike & Bike Trail

Though most Austin travel guides recommend Zilker Park, we found it a little underwhelming. Instead, take a walk along this gorgeous, riverside trail, and get the best views the city has to offer. If you come at the right time of year, come to the trail at dusk to see Austin’s impressive colony of 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats!



Unlike the vast majority of cities in America, Austin no longer allows its residents and visitors to use Uber and Lyft. Be sure to download Fasten if you’re planning a trip to Texas’s capitol. It works just as well as the apps we all know and love, but a small portion of the fees go to the City of Austin to keep them satisfied.

Happy travels!