Our New Offices After the Final Clean!

I hope everyone had a great week!  Mine was so crazy!  We are still trying to get organized in the new space…  I have decided this is why I have lived in the same house for 25 years – the dread of the move.  The hardest part is that I am so used to getting up at 4 and working on design things or billing or blogs before my staff arrives at 8.  And since the move, all the computers at my home office haven’t been working. Maybe God is helping me establish boundaries between work and play; the problem is I feel like my work is play – I love it all!!

Here is the outside of the house, near completion.  At this stage, it still needed some architectural elements and landscaping to really transform the look.

We stained these two cedar posts in the front, as well as the shutters, in a soft gray. The door – formerly that gorgeous (haha) orange color! – was finally changed to a distressed gray blue.  All these things made a big difference. I just adore the landscaping too!

All the little accessories make it so lovely!  The light fixture from Lighting Inc. was a bit of a splurge, but really pretty close up.  The mailbox, on the other hand, is temporary, only $14 from Home Depot.  I bought one that I just love, but it came in damaged so I sent it back, and you have to have a mailbox to pass inspection!  The numbers on the door, just $4 each from Home Depot, add a clean line to balance the old world look.  The stone bench from Statue Makers in Houston is beautiful. Statue Makers has great things for wonderful prices; this bench was $225!  They also have beautiful olive jars and fountains. Don’t worry, I’ll get a welcome mat soon. Any suggestions?

This is the landscaping at the corner of my lot.  When I pulled up to a client’s home not too long ago, I fell in love with the work of Steve Henry from Gregory/Henry Landscape Design.  She had wonderful things to say about him, and I wasn’t disappointed!!!  He listened to my needs – I wanted a European feel with a charming front and a lot of parking. I absolutely love what he designed within my budget!

Steve came up with a wonderful compromise for the parking area. This is “grasscrete”, a lattice paver placed over soil, allowing grass to grow through. Once grown in, it will have a beautiful pattern of green grass and gray pavers.  He got the color and softness he wanted, and I got more parking!  Brilliant!!!

From the last photos I posted, you can see that the floors are now refinished in a light undertone with a gray wash on top.  Ari with AR Floor Designs Of Houston Inc. (281-932-9461)  did a wonderful job patching and repairing these original floors from the 1950s. Notice the antique mirror we installed in the art nook. Frame Tek does an absolutely fab job on these mirrors, making them look truly vintage without overdoing them. We’re going to add glass shelves, and we’ll be selling a wonderful mineral collection on acrylic bases here. The mural is finished, and I am loving the little bit of France with its fields of lavender!!!

Here’s the view from my conference room to the back of the house.  It feels so big and open!  I am so appreciative of Goodchild Builders everytime I walk in!!

This room will house the art gallery and home accessories! Sitting on my beautiful floors, there are two pieces of art by the cute girl I did a post on who just got married.  These paintings sold before we could photograph them!

Since I originally planned to mildly renovate and then decided to gut and start from scratch, I definitely had to watch every penny.  This light fixture from MAI Consigned was $250 but solid black.  We added a textured gray finish to soften the look!!

Here is the kitchen with the stencil backsplash and cabinetry all done. Yay!

I love both the quartzite counters from Olympus Marble & Granite, a splurge, and the contemporary sink and faucet I purchased online for $300.

We bought all the appliances from Home Depot online, free shipping.  My little stove measures just 20 inches – too cute!

To divide the stencil from the plastered walls, we painted a faux metal strip with nail heads to transition between the two finishes.

This is an office for two that will house the approved sample. We distressed these white shutters from my house, giving them a new life.

The shelves were just inexpensive pine that we distressed.  The splurge was having the shelves built into the sheetrock so they float!!

We built the offices around these cabinet doors with chicken wire and fabric.  In my home office, we had these all around the room so, to save money, we used the same doors and just refinished the exterior in a different way!!  This one is in a textured finish and  has a $149 Ikea cabinet underneath it.  It looks amazing, especially for the price!!

Karen loves her new space!!

And this is Isai’s space in the office he shares with Karen.  He is so cute, not complaining at all about the brighter plaster color and the little bit of glimmer on the cabinets!

I share an office with my design assistant Leslie Carrigan.  We love our wood ceiling and the chicken wire cabinets!!

Another look at our bathroom with my favorite cabinet ever that I shared last time.  The tile is from Home Depot, only $1.80 per square foot!  Cutting the tile to include the border and insets cost a bit more but was worth the splurge – Goodchild Builders did an incredible job here making my vision become a reality!!!

The powder bath is wonderful with this lovely sink basin from Designer’s Direct for $250.  The tree mural is one of my favs!!!

If you remember, this was the back of the house during construction!

And now it’s becoming a nice outdoor retreat! We since this photo have added white limestone gravel to the back for extra parking, but Steve Henry made the area look amazing by incorporating a back patio.  The arbor from Home Depot was $1500 – love it! These whiskey barrels from Lowes for $30 each will look great once they have the plants in them.  I also love my four olive trees, a splurge, which Steve balanced in cost by using gravel and precut concrete air conditioning pads that run just $30 each.  With twinkle lights, this area will be the perfect outdoor space for our events!!!

When I first purchased the first house, I had planned on building a warehouse in the back for our furniture refinishing.  But when we layed out the lot, there wouldn’t have been enough room for parking, so, instead, I purchased this other house two doors down to use for furniture refinishing, scaffolding storage, and book storage!  What a beauty???

Although I was out of money to fix up this one, I did paint… and what a difference paint makes!  The roof was green – yikes! To pull attention away from it, I painted the home SW Dovetail Gray and painted the aluminum window in a bronze and the door in a French blue. It’s still in transition but looking so much nicer.

Thanks so much to my blog friends and my clients during this process.  I am not quite there yet, but I’m so appreciative of everyone’s patience and support.  I’m still treading water, but I hope I can come up for air soon and give you some great home tours on the blog and great finishes in your home – the highlight of my week!  A big thanks to Joni Webb of Cote de Texas for listing Segreto: Secrets to Finishing Beautiful Interiors as one of her all-around top design books!  Thanks, Joni! ‘Til next Monday!!  xo  Leslie

What Segreto Did This Week - Part IV
What Segreto Did This Week - Part II


  1. Fabulous! Congrats and thanks for sharing!!

  2. What a great transformation. Congratulations! It is so nice.

  3. Veronica Solomon -CasaVilora Interiors says:

    Congratulations! Very lovely. Like you, I am in the process of renovating office/studio space for my design business. I've never had to be this frugal in my life! Wishin you continued success. I love your book!!!

  4. CONGRATULATIONS Leslie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It looks gorgeous!!!!!
    A dream to work here!!

  5. The office looks fantastic! What a wonderful place to go to work everyday!

  6. leslie, thanks so much for sharing your sources! i am loving so many of your choices and will be looking into that arbor for our neglected patio!

    i cannot believe how much you have accomplished in a short time. and your warehouse looks fabulous too!

    congrats on that nod from cote de texas.


  7. Your office is beyond words…stunning…I love all the things you have done. from the transformation of the actual house to the incredible finishes inside….I truly love the powder room mural…something I have been wanting for mine…I love the arched doors in the front of the house along with that great bench on the porch….I thank you for sharing your resources….I only wish I lived closer…would love to see your exquisite offices…..one day…

  8. Leslie I am amazed at all you have accomplished. Love the landscaping, the powder room is adorable. It all looks first class; and yet you did it on a budget!
    You are so inspiring!

    Art by Karena

  9. Looks fantastic!!!!!!!! I know you will be so much happier having your home as a refuge instead of doing business there….. Congratulations!!!!!!!!!! Maryanne xo Can't wait to see in person!

  10. amy @ Maison Decor says:

    Holy cow Leslie!! It is amazing!!!!! Wow!! I love it all! You must be thrilled with the results, as always you have vision and great taste~a winning combo!

  11. Dearest Leslie,

    Everything you do is so incredible! Thanks for sharing as I love seeing the transition and the process 🙂

  12. That transformation knocked my socks off!! Dang I wish you were in Atlanta……what vision.

  13. Aquired Objects says:

    I've been so busy myself I missed this post and so glad I'm going through this morning reading what everyone has been doing. The transformation you've done to your new offices is amazing and the color really helps on your furniture building. You must be so pleased with how everything came out. Congratulations on all your hard work and visions.

    I hope you're now enjoying your long weekend!

  14. Windows at your parking court? Take away the plantings, add large stone as if the windows were real French doors, add scaled shutters, lantern above.

    Goes with the perfection you've created.

    Garden & Be Well, XO Tara

  15. To discourage mildew growth in the bathroom, increase the amount of air circulation and light to decrease moisture. Use fans during the shower then after open windows.

  16. Beautiful transformation!! Hard to believe it is the same house. I'm curious about the french doors (by the ground lattice work) with the curved top. Are those old or new? If new, do you mind sharing the manufacturer? Thanks so much!!

  17. . You are so inspirational and love your decorating & projects…

  18. Well I see here proper arrangement specially the lights..Its hard to believe that it was the same house after you clean it..Indeed it was a great work.. Automotive Wire

  19. Angela dela Cruz says:

    What a nice looking space! Aw, I hope I can replicate that for my office! It looks neat, clean and inspiring! – Angela

  20. A pleasant working environment is key to getting the most out of employees,.. Keep on posting and thank you for sharing…

    Industrial Space,