Friday, January 30, 2015

What An Honor: Saudah Saleem Named Amongst 15 Best Designers in Baltimore!

There are some amazing designers in Baltimore and I am beyond thrilled to be included amongst BuildDirect's recent list of 15 Best Designers in Baltimore. What an honor!

BuildDirect is a company that is dedicated to helping its clientele turn their houses into homes through offering high quality renovation products at an affordable price. Their user friendly site answers renovation questions and provides daily tips, insights, and inspiration on the journey through home improvement. In addition to the Designers series, where they name the top designers in each U.S. city, the BuildDirect site also offers other fun series such as "Color Palette of the Week" and "Diary of A Reno." See the feature n Baltimore's top designers here.

Monday, January 26, 2015


2014 was certainly a busy year for not only our family, but also for my design business.   In July we added a new member to the crew with the birth of our daughter, Zaria.  Then in the fall I jumped right back into work, tackling several E-Design and full service design projects.  Sometimes things seem to be moving so fast that there's hardly time to document it all.  One of my goals for the New Year is to document and share more of my projects here on the blog.

So, here we go.  One of the design projects I wrapped up toward the end of 2014, is the Miller's Court project.  Miller’s Court is a turn of the century factory building that now houses both urban loft style apartments and smart office space for educational nonprofit organizations, like my clients.

I was so excited to be working on this project.  The office space has exposed wood beams, high ceilings, and a soaring floor to ceiling exposed brick wall.  I love exposed brick  walls because they provide a historic / industrial yet modern loft feeling. 

This office will serve as the headquarters for a non-profit group that is committed to nurturing the wellness of children and adults in under served communities via yoga, mindfulness, conflict resolution and self-care instruction to both students and teachers. 

Here's a quick snapshot of what the office spaces in the building initially look like.

Now here's a look at the design plan I came up with for the office's waiting room area. 

Combined with those great brick walls, the design is a good mix of urban style, sophistication and a little fun and personality via those bold colored chairs. 


Pretty cool right? 

The velvet sofa is an elegant juxtaposition against the moody teal wall color and exposed brick, while the galvanized metal accents in the planters and floor lamp echo the space's industrial feel.  The bright color from the chairs and acrylic accents add a bit of fun and whimsy, helping to insure that the room's furnishings don't feel too heavy.

This project was so exciting and fun to work on! It perfectly represents my clients and their inspiring organization. Stay tuned for a look at how the office turned out and why my clients love their new work space. 

Thursday, January 15, 2015


Whether your ideal getaway space looks like an island retreat or a chic boutique hotel,  having a "getaway" space at home that evokes feelings of relaxation and calm at the end of a long day is important.  The hustle and bustle of everyday life seems so much easier to face when you have a space for relaxation at home.

I recently created this design board for a couple who wanted to use their master bedroom to create a calming getaway space in their home.  This restful retreat master bedroom design is what I came up with and was just what my clients had in mine! 

As you can see, I chose a warm neutral gray color palette.  Although the color palette is neutral, I incorporated lots of interesting texture and subtle pattern via the area rugs, unique wall art, throw and the luxurious gray grass cloth wallpaper. I maintained the same palette in the design for the clients' office nook which is adjacent to their bedroom to create a smooth transition from one space to the next. My clients were thrilled with the design.

Are you curious about how you can create your own bedroom sanctuary at home? With a just few simple updates, your own bedroom can be the restful retreat your busy life has been craving.  

Here are my top 7 tips for Creating A Restful Retreat:


Minimize bedroom clutter to create a sense of calm. Try not to bring paper work, bills, or things that remind you of stress into the bedroom.  If you must bring work into the space, try disguising/storing it in attractive storage containers. There are lots of attractive storage options on the market that can be used to store loose papers and odds and ends while blending seamlessly with your room's decor.

Add Texture

Especially this time of year, as the temperature begins to drop,  invest in a fuzzy fur throw to curl up underneath or a warm and fluffy rug to rest your feet on as you step out of the bed. Velvet, suede, silk, fur and even some cottons have a soft and cozy texture perfect to use in your new bedroom retreat. These fabrics can be incorporated in the room as pillows,window treatments, rugs, poufs, or throws.

Choose Colors that Make You Feel Relaxed 

Relaxing hues can be moody, monochromatic or even neutral.  Avoid busy patterns or bold contrasting color combinations. The key is simplicity.  As long as you keep the color palette simple, creating a restful space will be a breeze. I love the way this dark rich hue seems t just envelope the space like a cocoon.

Incorporate Smell 

Candles are not only for creating a romantic feel in the bedroom. You can also use them to evoke a relaxing, spa-like feel too.  How amazing does this cluster of candles look in this elegant bedroom?! Choose a fragrance candle whose scent reminds you of a spa, a favorite vacation you've taken or destination you've visited and really enjoyed.

Update your Lighting

Stay away from ceiling light fixtures that give off harsh or fluorescent lighting.  Use lamps or fixtures that create a soothing or calming glow.  Add a dimmer switch to a current light fixture or replace current bulbs with a lower wattage bulb. The chandelier with candles instead of bulbs in this bedroom becomes a focal point in the space.

Invest in Your Bedding 

Update your bedding by choosing sheets made of cozy fabrics and soft material like high quality cottons. Top your new bedding with a luxurious throw and you'll have incorporated two elements of a dream bedroom space - luxury and comfort!

Choose a Look that Works for You

The bedroom should be a reflection of who you are and what you enjoy. Choose a style/look that makes you feel good.  To help narrow down your style, start with gathering inspiration photos of room styles, home decor accents and furnishings you like. Once you've collected your inspiration photos, start sorting through them looking for recurring "themes."  Do all the rooms seem to painted white?  Do most of the rooms have art on the wall?  Identifying recurring themes in the designs will help you pinpoint whic elements you'd like to incorporate in your retreat space.

You work hard and deserve a peaceful place to relax and rejuvenate.  Make 2015 the year that you treat yourself by creating a space that makes you feel good.  Contact me here if you're ready to get started on creating your bedroom retreat!

Friday, January 2, 2015


A new year always calls for reflection and goal setting.  2014 has taught me so many lessons on life. I'm grateful to God for allowing me to see another year and for all that He has given me thus far. I've been blessed with good health, a loving family, a close supportive circle of friends, and a talent that I truly love. In the days leading up to the new year, I took some time to reflect on 2014 and jot down my expectations, goals and vision for 2015.  Here's what I came up with (not in any particular order):


Be courageous!
Focus on the Good.
Get Some Rest!
Appreciate the Little Things.
Know that Anything is Possible with God's Help and Permission.
Eat Healthier.
Relax More.
Stay True to Your Heart, Stay True to What's Right.
Have More Patience.
Read More.
Try Something New!
Get Fit.
Be Inspired.
Continue to Inspire.
Value and Guard Your Time.

I've learned that there are many reasons to be happy in life and blessings to be grateful for.  We just have to choose one.  Wishing you all light, love, peace, prosperity and joy in the new year! Let's go!!