Five Fundamentals of Christmas Tree Design

There’s a first time for everything. And the first time you decorate a Christmas tree on your own is definitely a learning experience. The thing that surprises most people is the number of ornaments you need to make the tree look full and balanced. (Hint: whatever you think you’ll need, triple it.) But there are a lot of other lessons to learn about tree trimming. Today, I’ll be sharing my tips for creating a festive tree that looks balanced, considered, personal, and (most importantly of all) beautiful. This year, I opted for a giant, white tree from Wayfair. And don’t judge me for…

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Small Shop Highlight: Amber Interiors Shoppe

Photography by Jess Diab and Amber Interiors Dear Design Diary, If you’re a designer or a design enthusiast with an Instagram account, a computer, a phone, eyeballs, and any combination of the aforementioned, it’s literally impossible to avoid the beautiful, beachy work of Amber Lewis, founder of the Amber Interiors blog, principle of her own design firm, and businesswoman extraordinaire. When I found out she had a shop, I knew immediately it would be one of those painful stores where you go in and just want everything. And so when I sent Hommemaker Editor Jess Diab on assignment to check…

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Creating a Festive Holiday Tablescape

Winter is the perfect season to invite friends over for conversation and coziness (to combat the chilly weather and moody skies). As you may know by now, I’m a big fan of holiday decorating, hosting, and fun times with friends, so go figure this is my favorite time of year. Today, we’re talking about how to create a festive tablescape to spice up your holiday home, for both everyday use and for dinner parties. One of the most frequent questions I get from clients about dining tables is how to style them for daily use. It’s not like you’re going…

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Design Inspiration: A Tour of Villa Kérylos

Dear Travel Diary, My trip to Europe in August was one of the most gorgeous journeys I’ve taken in all my life, where every place we went was more incredible than the last. Of all the places we visited, Villa Kérylos was the most fruitful for interior design inspiration. The home, built in 1902 by French gajillionaire Theodore Reinach. Not sure how he got all that cash, but maybe it had something to do with how many jobs he had. He was an Archaeologist-mathematician-lawyer-papyrologist-philologist-epigrapher-historian-numismatist-musicologist-professor-politician. GOT THAT? His masterpiece home, designed by architect Emmanuel Pontremoli, is located in Beaulieu-sur-Mer, which is about fifteen minutes away from Nice,…

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Epic Everyday: A Simple and Sensational Friendsgiving

Dear Thankful People Who Love to Chow Down, I’ve always thought it would be fun to do a Friendsgiving dinner. But my pesky family keeps getting in the way. We do Thanksgiving together every year, making the concept of a friends-only version off the table. But this year, I said “screw it!” I WILL HAVE MY FRIENDSGIVING. So I did what any dinner-party-loving crazy person would do. I had fake Thanksgiving a month before actual Thanksgiving. Luckily, I had a little motivation, as this coincides with my collaboration with American Express to take normal everyday activities (like, say, dinner) and make…

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Thanksgiving Dining Table Tips from Me and Other Super Famous Design People

Photography by Tessa Neustadt Courtesy Homepolish Dear Thanksgiving Hosts, A you FREAKING OUT about how to style your Thanksgiving table? Would you like advice from experts like Jonathan Adler, Emily Henderson, and ME? If so, you’re in luck! MyDomaine has put together a comprehensive guide to creating the perfect setting for Thanksgiving, with input from me and other design experts. Continue reading to get the inside scoop on how to decorate for everyone’s favorite harvest hootenanny. CONTINUE READING >>> Love, Orlando  

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Fun at Orcondo: One Bedroom Three Ways

Photographs by Amy Bartlam Courtesy Homepolish x Etsy Dear Decor Diary, When I’m not holding pillows like a psychopath, I love rearranging furniture and swapping out accessories to transform Orcondo. Accessories can totally refresh a space. And even if something is perfectly styled, after a while I find it starts to look a little stale and/or disheveled. Maybe Boyfriend put a book somewhere it wasn’t supposed to go. Or maybe Guest rearranged your shelves without asking. Regardless of what caused your styling to go awry, it’s always a good idea to refresh it every once in a while. So when…

12 Very Important House Rules That Must Never Ever Be Broken

Photography by Daniel Collopy, Tessa Neustadt, and Zeke Ruelas Dear Housekeeping Diary, It’s not a secret that I’m obsessed with life at home. I spend my days designing interiors, prepping “lifestyle” photoshoots (whatever that means), fantasizing about throwing dinner parties, and then actually throwing one every once in a while. As you can imagine, someone as obsessed with the (often failed) pursuit of home perfection as I am has concocted a lot of rules for proper living over the years. Many of these were passed down from my parents, but I’ve concocted some pretty insane ones all on my own….

Shop Small: Compartés for National Chocolate Day!

Dear Cathy the Cartoon and Other Chocolate Enthusiasts, It seems like every day is designated as some sort of holiday honoring a food, group of people, cause, or fictional character. For example, did you know that February 22 is National Margarita Day? Or that June 2 is National Doughnut Day? Or that August 20 is World Mosquito Day? I can’t believe that doughnuts and margaritas only get the U.S., but mosquitos are honored worldwide. So rude. I’m personally not a huge fan of mosquitos, but I am a fan of chocolate. So when American Express invited me to choose my favorite local chocolatier…

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The Spine-Tingling Ghost Necessary for Every Halloween Home

Dear People Who Are Huge Nerds About Halloween Like I Am, Last year, my mother made me a little handmade ghost and sent it to me in the mail. I have no idea what inspired her to make this, but I was immediately obsessed with it and stole the idea this year and made my own. I’ve tried to elevate my Halloween decor this year but there’s always room for a bit of frivolity so I love how this stupid ghost makes me feel every time I see him. It’s like, “Hi, I want my house to look nice but also…