I faithfully read the Wall Street Journal.   Surprisingly (or NOT…)  I typically don’t read the financial section but a bold headline in a recent wealth management report caught my eye. It read… “The Best Financial Advice I Ever Got”..  Manisha Thakor, VP of Financial well-being at wealth-management firm Brighton Jones quoted her grandfather who said: “buy few, but buy the best you can afford.”

Music to my ears. She goes on to say “each time you see, touch or use these items, you think  “Ahhh, I have made a good choice and feel content.  It’s much deeper than simply quality over quantity.  It’s a way to repeatedly appreciate what you have versus that which you do not”. I was raised with this same mentality so these words resonate with me.  It’s also true to how I run my business and the products that I offer to my clients.  (although I might not be as eloquent with my own words of wisdom:  “buy once, cry once”)When you own something of quality it should last at least a generation. Amortized over time, it could be one of the the best investments you will ever make.
The Urban Farmer

Several weeks ago we spent the weekend  in Philadelphia.  
The hotel’s restaurant, The Urban Farmer,  has such a cool vibe that I had to check out its back story. 

“The Urban Farmer backdrop is warm and elegant, yet quaint and rustic visually telling the life-story of the hardworking, country farmer who marries the cosmopolitan art-collector. The result is a space that is at once a restored farmhouse combined with an eclectically sophisticated art gallery. Each location of Urban Farmer, though inspired by the same unexpected couple, each have their own twist that is uniquely original and authentic to the city it lives within.”

Pretty cool.

Successful design always starts with a story…whether it’s about who you are, where you’ve been … or where you want to go.

So what story does your home tell?

Our design process always begins with your vision..and if you don’t know what that exact vision is…we’re able to interpret and then curate your vision through our processes.  

And how cool is that?

For the second year running, we are proud to announce that Fiori Interior Design has been awarded the Design Excellence Award by the New Jersey Chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) for two of our projects.  

The first, which I will discuss briefly, fell under the category of “Specialty and Unique Spaces”.  

Our challenge for this Essex County, NJ project was what to do with that one last lonely bedroom now that the kids had all left the nest.  Actually not so much of a challenge as this client knew exactly what she wanted for her growing collection of new and vintage handbags and shoes!  

Details in this space included adding UV film to the windows to protect this client’s growing collection.  An Hermes window treatment hints of the treasures in this room.  
We chose to repeat the navy blue hue on the ceiling, aka the sixth wall. This richly dramatic contrasting hue completed the space and gave the room a feeling of intimacy and warmth.  
An upholstered faux cheetah bench subtly repeats the animal pattern in the roman shades while custom artwork recalls this client’s favorite pieces.

For more photos from this project (and others!) please visit our new website.   It perfectly captures the way I feel about design and the way my team and I approach our projects: with thoughtfulness and authenticity. And, as always, if my design work can be of service, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

A custom rug in a Tenafly New Jersey project.

Needless to say: vacuum regularly every 1-2 weeks.
What to do about a spill: If it’s dry wine use WD40 followed by 91% alcohol. (isopropal alcohol – available from CVS to remove any WD40 residue). If it’s still wet use soap and warm water followed by clear water. ALWAYS BLOT AND DO NOT SCRUB. Call us to clean if all else fails.
Another tip: Try club soda and blot – do not rub. Always use a clean rag. Never soak carpets with anything but water. Cleaning handmade carpets should be performed with the least amount of stress on the carpet fibers. No vacuum with strong suction should be used. No beater brush or other aggressive vacuum attachments should be used on handmade carpets.

FID offers a product called FiberShield protection: “An advanced stain repellent, fabric protectant and fabric flame retardant, FiberShield is is scientifically engineered for use on all types of area rugs, carpeting, upholstery, window treatments, wall fabrics, textiles and much more. FiberShield resists everyday soils, stains and wear, especially those in high traffic areas. FiberShield’s advanced technology helps to retain the color and texture of your fabrics without any change to the fabric, the look, the feel or color for years to come.

FiberShield enables future cleanings to be more effective as the textile is much more protected. Treated fibers and fabrics will demonstrate improved abrasion resistance (wear). Textiles will garner that deep-down protection on each and every fiber with NO COLOR CHANGE. Fiber-Shield will not wear off, therefore your fabric and textiles will be well protected against spills and stains. The patented state-of-the-art polymers in Fiber-Shield will actively fight oil-based stains to further the longevity and beauty of your investment.

Fiber Shield repels oil, water, virtually all food stains,  alcoholic beverages and dirt Fiber Shield is safe with it’s non-toxic, NON-FLAMMABLE, and hypoallergenic properties making it safe for use virtually anywhere in your home. Unlike fabric protection products of the past, FiberShield contains no chemical agents (ex. Teflon or Silicone) that will stiffen the textile or cause yellowing of the fabric. FiberShield is recommended by industry professionals today for new home furnishings, new carpeting, as well as recently cleaned items. This ensures full protection is achieved at the onset.”

Solid linen window treatment with a John Robshaw 6″ band

We advise vacuuming every few months with a brush attachment. Dry clean as needed. (which really shouldn’t be that often).

Fiori Interior Design offers a white glove service in which we will arrange to have someone come to your home, take down the treatments, and then reinstall the treatments once they are dry-cleaned.
For 100% linen fabrics, spot clean only with a water free dry cleaning solvent. Do not saturate or use water. When cleaning a spill, blot immediately to remove spilled material. We recommended using a professional dry cleaning service.


Window Hardware:  Maintain the fine finish by simply dusting with a soft clean cloth.
And keep those kids with stick fingers away from the drapes. (ha)

Wood pieces like dining tables, chairs and end tables need to maintain their fine finish by simply dusting with a soft clean cloth, always rubbing with the grain.

If you use your dining table frequently, every six months, polish with a high quality furniture polish. Apply the polish in a thin, even coat with a dry cloth, rubbing with the wood grain. Buff with a fresh dry cloth while polish is still moist for a rich lustrous finish.
For dining tables, the best treatment while not in use is prevention – ask us who we recommend for custom table pads!

Always protect wood surfaces with felt protectors on lamp bases. Avoid putting plastic, hot dishes directly on the wood. These items will harm the finish. Use coasters for alcohol and water glasses. Address spills and smudges immediately.


Maintain hardware with regular dusting. Clean with mild soap and water and dry thoroughly to avoid water market.

NEVER place anything hot or wet onto a wooden surface as it can cause discoloration, Keep wooden furniture away from air vents, humidifiers and fireplaces, as well as direct sunlight. All can have drying and/or bleaching effects.

Multi-Function Rooms: Making the most of every inch of your home

We all have rooms in our homes that simply aren’t used as frequently as we would like. Perhaps these rooms have a more traditional function, and are not used as often as they were in the past. As an example, when was the last time you used your formal dining room to entertain guests?

For most families, a formal dining room and formal living room are large spaces that aren’t being used to their full potential. While they can certainly be useful for special occasions and large gatherings, they often aren’t designed to be functional for our day-to-day lives.

Designing these rooms to be multi-functional is key to bringing them into the present. With a few simple adjustments, you can transform these seldom used rooms into spaces your family loves and uses on a daily basis.

I talked about multi-functional rooms and showed some real-life examples on an episode of House Smarts, a home improvement and lifestyle TV series hosted by Lou Manfredini. You can watch my segment in the video below.
At Fiori Interior Design, we prioritize functionality to ensure the spaces you live in feel authentic and nurturing, so you and your family can live well. If you would like to know how you can make your home work better for your family and lifestyle, I would love to help – simply schedule a consultation here.

My mother taught me the art of embroidery when I was seven years old. I often think about how those invaluable lessons she taught me then are easily “woven” into how I approach my work today.

  1. Have a plan.  Know that all of your components are lined up in front of you before you even start.
  2. Have patience.  Nothing worth anything is ever rushed.  When things are rushed, they get sloppy and mistakes are made.
  3. What you see on the back end is just as important as what’s on the front.  Loose ends on the back end will eventually unravel and show up on the front.
  4. Appreciate that while you are repeating the same stitch, not one is ever truly the same.  That’s part of the beauty of the perfectly imperfect piece.  
  5. Take pride in your work.  Don’t be afraid to put it out there to share it with the world.

Incorporating unique, hand made pieces into each space I design breathes soul into a home. It elevates any space and gives it it’s own personal narrative. 

What story does your home tell?

I love when clients already have artwork that is the inspiration for a space because they’re typically personal pieces that tells a part of their story.   The challenge is when we seek out artwork for our clients. It needs to be approached in a thoughtful, creative, and authentic manner that lends itself to sharing their narrative.  


This is why, in our process, the art always is the “last piece of the puzzle”.   It’s after we’ve learn about what our clients love…and hate. Discovering to where they have traveled and how they spend their weekends and which books they’re reading and what shows they’re seeing.  It’s how we can choose pieces that truly reflect them. And oftentimes, we create original art for them.


The importance of art in a room not only adds beauty to a space but intrinsically meaning to the homeowners. It connects us.