Archive for September, 2012

How to create advanced Olioboards

Olioboard Design Tutorial

In preparation for the upcoming Layla Grayce Moodboard Design Challenge we have decided to share several blog posts to provide some great tips and tricks on using Olioboard to help you create gorgeous room designs. This is the final installment.

Our friend Stacy Naquin has already provided a nicely detailed overview on the basics of using Olioboard. You can find that post here. This post will focus on some of the advanced tools with video tutorials. We will show you how to use them to manipulate the images on your moodboard and create more detailed and polished looking room designs. So let’s begin!!

Tip 1: Use the background and texture libraries to create a base for your 3D design When creating room designs on Olioboard you can opt to create 2D collages (like the one below), made up of a collection of images or you can choose to create a 3D space (like the one above).

Olioboard Design Tutorial

If you are interested in creating a 3D moodboard design, the best place to start is in our background and texture libraries. Olioboard has a collection of empty room images that you can use as a base for your moodboard design. The room images include various styles such as contemporary, industrial, traditional, and outdoor spaces. Once you have chosen your background image, you can customize the image using our texture library. The texture library contains various textures like, brick, stone, barn boards and more. In this video tutorial you will learn about the libraries and how to build your 3D moodboard design with perspective in mind.

Tip 2: The Crop tool is your best friend You’ll find that this tool will be one of the tools you rely on the most. This video tutorial will show you how to use the crop tool to manipulate images, create clean moodboard designs and how to crop and rotate visuals so they appear to be half hidden by walls or railings.

Tip 3: Make the most of the advanced background removal tools Olioboard’s background removal tool can help you separate the background from an image you wish to incorporate into you design. It can also help you clean up the edges of the product to create a more polished look. This video tutorial will show you how to use the advanced background removal options to maximize the look of your room design.

Tip 4: Creating 3D moldboards on Olioboard In this 15 minute in-depth video tutorial, we take you through every step, from beginning to end on creating 3D room designs on Olioboard. This tutorial covers all the tools in detail and in repetition.

I hope you have enjoyed this blog post. We can’t wait to see all the entries in the upcoming Layla Grayce Design Contest. Good luck to you all and happy Olioboarding!

Style Standoff: Tulip Louise and A Piece of Toast

The Stylists: Anna Cottrell of Tulip Louise and sisters Sally Ann and Molly Bernadette of A Piece of Toast.

Gorjana Earrings

The Challenge: Style our Gorjana G Ring Gold Earrings in an ensemble that best expresses your signature style.

The Criteria: 1. Creativity 2. Wearability 3. Overall Impact

The Winning Look: You decide! Through October 5, vote in our poll and leave a comment on this post telling us which look you love the most… and you’ll be entered to win a pair of our Gorjana G Ring Gold earrings! We’re picking 2 winners, to be announced on October 8. One comment per person, please. Be sure to leave your email address so we can get in touch. Official contest rules.

Tulip Louise Gorjana Styling for Layla Grayce
Images: Keely Yount

Tulip Louise: For a minute, I’ve been obsessed with the unexpected pairing of a frothy tulle ballerina skirt plus a touch of {faux} leather thrown into the mix. It feels very updated-material-girl. Everything seems right in the world when I’m wearing a balance of feminine and edgy, so this look definitely made me happy!

A Piece of Toast Gorjana Styling for Layla Grayce

A Piece of Toast: As a teacher, I (Sally) dress to reflect my personal style while wearing things that are classroom appropriate. This look says a lot about my signature style – classic with a twist. Both my sister Molly (who snapped these shots) and I are obsessed with white shirts and this one I wear year round. Molly wears all kinds of heels to work but since I’m on my feet all day flats are my go-to, and these nude ballerinas go with everything and never go out of style. I like simple but not boring jewelry – and a dainty necklace, everyday rings and a men’s style watch perfectly complement these non-traditional hoops. Hoops are the most versatile earrings a girl can have! I’ve been keeping this pair stored safely in my handbag so I can throw them on when my look needs to go to that next level.

Truth be told, the inspiration for this outfit came from one of my style icons: Olivia Palermo. She’s the queen of mixing high and low pieces and never looks like she is trying too hard. I spotted her in a similar maxi skirt and top so I attempted to pull off the look myself. Tip: Wear the blouse tucked in at work and tie it up in a loose knot for an instant change that’s fun for dinner and drinks.

The Vote is in and you all agree that, while it was a tough call, A Piece of Toast styled the Gorjana earrings best. Congrats to our lucky winners, Melissa S. and Mary B.!

Who Styled The Gorgeous Gorjana Gold Earrings Best?
  • Tulip Louise
  • A Piece of Toast

View Results

Olioboard Overview + Benefits

Designer/blogger Lynda Quintero-Davids is here to talk shop about a fabulous site called Olioboard! Read on for Lynda’s insight into using Olioboard and understanding its capabilities.

Have you ever heard of or used a site called Olioboard? No? You haven’t? Let me tell you about it! Olioboard is a great online tool to visually help communicate the style, look, color or trend of a space with a 2D sample board or a 3D roomboard. I’ve used this design board site for client projects, for room redesigns, for closet + home organization, for room + holiday planning as well as table styling. Olioboard also creates design challenges for members to enter your boards in and sometimes you can win cash or gift cards to your favorite home décor retail sites.

Shopping: For both homeowners and designers, Olioboard is a great means of pairing patterns and also editing items for planning the design, style or mood of a space. Similar to virtual shopping, you may like and pin several items to a board on Pinterest, but with Olioboard, you can narrow down those selections to create a look you’ll love. Pins can be uploaded to Olioboard, or you can save your own images from your favorite sites. Olioboard is also affiliated with several popular retailers like Layla Grayce and Zinc Door, which makes it easy to shop from your favorite stores and pull together a look. Even if you have too many favorite items, you can create sets on Olioboard – either public or private – and come back to these sets to create your boards.

Selecting: The boards created on Olioboard can be shared on Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter. As mentioned before, and the difference between using Pinterest and Olioboard is you can save Olioboards and sets privately, which is a huge plus for designers. Being able to share the boards also makes it easy for spouses to be in agreement when making a furniture purchase. Olioboard is also a wonderful tool to create options for a spouse or client to consider, making online shopping an even easier experience. Olioboard also has applications called “Pro-Tools” that make it even easier to coordinate Benjamin Moore paint colors with a space, plus add text and keep the project on track with the budget too.

Editing: I’ve tried a few other online design board sites out there, but Olioboard is the way to go! I’ve been using the site now for the past two years – for both client projects and even planning our move to a new house – and over that time, the site just keeps improving.

A. Fancy Dot Monogram Wall Decal, B. Cecile Iron Canopy Bed, C. Jamie Young Lighting Small Etched Glass, D. DwellStudio Home Draper Stripe Ash Sheet Set, E. Currey and Company Portico Pendant, F. Stanley Signatures Palais Modern Resting Bench, G. Ferret Desk Noir, H. Gabby Furniture David Bookcase, I. Arteriors Silver Leaf Iron Floor Lamp, J. Noir Ritter Side Table, K. Noir Hampton 3 Drawer Chest, L. Arteriors Quinn Glass Teardrop Table Lamp

About Lynda Quintero-Davids: Lynda experience extends to both retail space planning/visual merchandising and residential design, including outdoor living and garden design, event planning and execution and small kitchen renovation. With specialties that include conceptual design, room boards, product boards, interior planning and styling, Lynda uses Olioboard throughout her client projects

How to Use Olioboard for Client Presentations

Interior designer Jennifer Reynolds is here today to discuss the benefits of using Olioboard to help envision and quickly move forward with projects–for both homeowners and interior designers seeking approval from clients.

As an interior designer, I’m always looking for new and efficient ways to express my design concepts, ideas and overall plan to clients. While hand sketching and rendering will always be a part of my arsenal, they are not easily changed or modified to show an array of options. In our fast paced world we as designers need tools like Olioboard to quickly and efficiently create visual presentations for our clients.

Olioboard can be used for creating basic concept boards as well as 2D and 3D mood boards. I personally like to use it mostly as a 3D mood board creator, which does take practice and getting used to. The 3D capabilities of Olioboard are amazing and what sets it apart. I’d like to share a few tricks that I’ve learned along the way to make the most out of this amazing online tool.

Follow along below as I work through the design of a Nursery using products and furniture from one of my favorite online resources, Layla Grayce!!

My Top Olioboard Tips and Tricks:

BACKGROUND: I like to copy, flip and layer my backgrounds for a symmetrical look.

Layer Background

AREA RUGS: Use Power Point or Photoshop to manipulate your area rugs into 3D perspective.

area rug

WALLPAPER: Add your favorite wallpaper (or other wall finish) to your backgrounds by using a tiling tool in PowerPoint or Photoshop. I chose this great Birdcage wallpaper by York.


FURNISHINGS: If needed, take the necessary time to manipulate, recolor, or fill in pieces to make sure they look realistic. Check out the 2 black mirrors below; I used a photo editor to fill in the one on the right.

mirror fill in

ADJUSTMENTS: Use Olioboard to make adjustments to your overall design and selections. Decide on screen whether or not you should use green lamps or pink lamps before you purchase.

Lamp color

I used accessories and finishing touches that I found on Olioboard, Layla Grayce and Google images. Here is my final 3D mood board below. I can now successfully show this to my client for an immediate approval and go ahead.

OB-Layla Grayce Nursery

I often love to take the presentation one step further and add an Instagram filter for a final effect. Even if the actual room is not completely symmetrical and maybe there won’t really be two swivel rocking chairs in the room, a presentation like this can give your client a very realistic idea of what the room will look and feel like. It’s a true representation of the products and finishes presented in the concept and can give your client the confidence to say “YES, I love it! Let’s move forward.”


For designers, Olioboard can be an invaluable tool to quickly help your clients make decisions and move forward with projects. As homeowners, it can give you confidence in your choices before you purchase a single item for your space.

I hope you found this post useful. If you haven’t already, head over to Olioboard, sign up and give it a try. Every time I log in and begin a new board I learn something new! Until next time….Happy Olioboard creating!!

Decor Mentor’s Buying Guide: The Perfect Area Rug

After working on more than 350 client homes, I’ve found that area rugs that are too small is one of the top three mistakes! I’m Lisa Ferguson of Decor Mentor and Lisa Ferguson Interior Design, and I’m here to spill my designer secrets with Layla Grayce so you can get it exactly right!

BUDGET: I recommend budgeting 25% of your room’s decorating budget for your rug.

STYLE: Do you know if you are more Modern than Traditional? Take a look at Decor Mentor’s 6 favorites. We love that you can almost always take a rug in either style direction!

Decor Mentor's Favorite Layla Grayce Rugs

Clockwise from top left: Dash and Albert Indoor/Outdoor Wool Rug, Ikat Tufted Wool Rug, Suzanne Kasler Oria Flower Aqua Braided Wool and Silk Rug, DwellStudio Home Almonds Ink Wool Rug, Soho Blue Contemporary Blue Wool Rug, Amy Butler Hand-Tufted Lacework Blue Wool Rug


  • If you have pets and kids, choose colors that mask dirty hand marks and pet hair. 
  • The more pattern in a rug, the lower the maintenance. 
  • The more color in a rug, the easier it will be to make a room feel layered.
  • Take cues from your rug to build a color scheme for your entire room. As designers, we color match colors in the rug with paint chips to use as color references. We always carry the chips around in our client files to help match!
  • You can use rugs of different patterns within the same room as long as the colors coordinate.
  • SCALE: Always vary the scale differing patterns in your room. Typically, I like to make sure I have a mix of small, medium and large patterns, as well as a stripe and some solids in every room scheme.

    SIZE: No matter the room, measure your minimum and maximum sizes before you go shopping. We put the info right into our iPhone so it’s easily accessible.

    Dining Rooms:

    • The chair legs shouldn’t fall off the rug when people are seated at the table or pulling the chairs away from the table to seat themselves. Most dining room tables need an 8′ wide area rug.
    • To determine which size rug you need, measure the length and width of the table and add at least 4′ to each measurement. 

    Bedrooms & Living Rooms:

    • 8-16″ of hardwood around perimeter of an area rug is optimal in the living room. In the bedroom, 24″ of rug on sides and end of bed is ideal.
    • Avoid area rug edges and corners in major traffic flow areas for safety. Go bigger or smaller if you can.
    • At minimum, front legs of furniture should be on the area rug. If possible it is preferable to have all legs on the rug to create a pulled together and professional look.

    Optimal Rug Configurations

    Synthetic Fibers:

    • Acrylic: Very resistant to sunlight, mildew and stains.
    • Polypropylene/Olefin: This inexpensive synthetic fiber is the most water and stain-resistant fiber.
    • Nylon: Durable and easy to clean.

    Natural Fibers:

    • Wool: Softness, durability and cleanability make wool a superior fiber.
    • Cotton: Not as durable as wool. Can often be hand washed but will show wear before wool.
    • Silk: Silk adds luster, especially to wool. I like to see it in blended carpets as it’s not as durable as wool.
    • Jute: The softest of all natural fibers. When exposed to direct sunlight, jute may fade or darken in color. With prolonged exposure to moisture, the fiber disintegrates. 
    • Sisal: Leading the pack for durability in natural fibers. Both static-free and colorfast.

    RUG CARE: A rug pad will absorb sound and create cushion. Not only will it prevent the rug from moving, it will also reduce wear and tear on the rug and the floor underneath.

    Going for Baroque

    Anne Sage of The City Sage is here to talk trends! Read on for her expert take on the Baroque craze that’s certain to be big this fall.

    Baroque Inspiration Board
    Images: 1, 2, 3

    When I first heard wind of this fall’s trend for Baroque details, I was skeptical. My taste veers more toward the simple than the sumptuous; the unadorned than the opulent. But when I saw the runways’ elaborate offerings, I couldn’t resist the idea of working just a few Baroque touches into my home and wardrobe. After all, who says I have to worship at the feet of Louis XIV? Can’t I just tip my hat his way instead?

    Baroque Inspiration Board
    1. Tara Shaw Maison Italian Four Light Candelabra, Image, 2. MOR Cosmetics Italian Blood Orange Emporium Soap, 3. Kirra Tate Marquise Purple and Teal Earrings, 4. Bliss Studio Monarch Ivory Pillow, 5. Set of 5 Eclectic Place Setting 6. Large Baroque Cyan Acanthus Mirror

    Catch a few of the Sun King’s rays with elements like scrollwork and metallic finishes; damasks and filigrees; jewel tones and medallion shapes. Pick one piece for subtle impact–perhaps a tone-on-tone pillow to swap out with your usual couch cushion–or haul in an entire palace’s worth of gilt goodies and play princess for a day!

    Olioboard Basics: How to Create a Moodboard

    In our quest to master Olioboard, we asked designer and Olioboard expert Stacy Naquin to show us the basics! Take it away, Stacy!

    Creating a beautiful home is an investment – wouldn’t it be great to see what your space would look like before purchasing items new? Luckily, you can! Olioboard has been a valuable tool for my interior design projects because it gives me a vast amount of resources to pull from and it allows clients to see how everything looks together before purchasing.

    I’ll show you how to create beautiful image boards of your own using Layla Grayce products, and even include you on a few tips and secrets along the way

    1. Go to If you are a new user, click “Join Now” and create a new account.

    2. Click on “Create a Moodboard“.” To find a blank room, click on the “Background” button. Scroll until you find a room you like then drag it into the blank white space to the left.

    3. To start browsing products, click on the “Items” button, then the “Brands” button. Scroll down until you see “Layla Grayce” then click “View All“. From here you can search for specific items such as lamps, chairs, rugs, etc. Type what you’re searching for in the blank box and hit enter.   *Tip: Enter a singular item – Lamp instead of Lamps.

    4. Drag your favorite items into your room scene. Olioboard will automatically save these products in the “My Items” tab. You can upload your own products under this tab by clicking “Upload Items“.

    5. One of my favorite tools is the “Remove Background” option. If the background of an item is not already removed, click on the item and check the box to remove background. If the item doesn’t look quite right, you can go to “Advanced Options” to tweak it a bit.

    Olioboard before and after background removal

    6. You can save time by creating folders or “Sets“. You’ll access this feature from the home page of Olioboard. Some of the sets I’ve created to make finding products easier include groups of items I use often such as pillows, accessories, and sofas. You can also access sets created by other users.

    7. You can also layer items on top of one another for a different look. I often change color of lamp shades, art frames, or flowers and their containers. For the board below, I cropped a lamp base and added the shade to my preferred lamp base. You can also reduce or enlarge the size of an object by click on it and dragging it upward or downward.

    8. If you prefer to have more of a moodboard look, the “Frame” option may come in handy. Click on the item you want framed, click the “Frame” button, select your frame, then click “Apply Changes.”  *Tip: You may want to uncheck the “Background” box to add the background back to your item.
    Olioboard mood board

    9. Olioboard and their sponsors frequently host contests with fabulous prizes!  Your friends can vote on your projects and see your latest designs, so don’t forget to check back often. You can also upgrade to their Pro tool for the ability to add text to boards, create Benjamin Moore color schemes, and even calculate the budget of your project!

    Here is an example of a complete board. Designed by Stacy Naquin Interiors. Are you interested in the items on my board? Click here to see where to buy them, or to add to your set!

    Trends We Love: Black and White

    Pine Cone Hill Edelweiss Crewel Black Pillow Sham and Duvet Cover

    Clockwise from top left: Jonathan Adler Black Nixon Throw Blanket, Arabesque Black Mirror, Jonathan Adler Black Zebra Rug, DwellStudio Home Lion Ink Pillow, Khwai Black Applique Pillow Pair, Kashwere Striped Black and Creme Car Coat

    Go to extremes with this season’s hottest contrast: black and white. Whether seen together on bold geometric prints or a mod chevron, this timeless duo is replacing a summer of splashing color with classic refinement for the chic sophisticate. Shop the trend >>

    Inslee By Design: September Issue

    Inslee By Design for Layla Grayce

    Hello! Happy September!

    This month, I’m daydreaming about interior design. After years spent working from home out of my tiny apartment I finally have taken the plunge and found a studio space for my illustration business! I hauled all my paints and supplies out of my cramped apartment and up into a bright, airy studio and now spend my days enjoying a sweeping view of the Manhattan skyline as I watercolor away.

    A dream come true, right? Well, the only problem is that now that I’ve freed up all this space at home I want to fill it with beautiful new things to come home to each evening!

    In place of my old work desk, I’d love to put in the Worlds Away Ava Buffet. The mirrored panelling would make my apartment feel bigger right away. I’d invest in two Arteriors Bishop Nickel Table Lamps and the Aidan Gray Ethan Chair Pair. I love how these chairs are very formal and classic in design but rustic in color and fabric.

    And while I love creating my own art, I might cave in and buy something dramatic and modern like this piece from the Aidan Gray art collection. I’d finish the space with a neutral rug like the Jill Rosenwald Fallon Gray Hand Woven Wool Rug and an arrangement of fresh flowers!

    And voila! My apartment would be the perfect sophisticated and welcoming respite from my busy day at the studio. Wouldn’t you love to come home to this scene too?

    I hope you enjoy this sketch and check back for my October picks!