Today we’re excited to introduce and feature Linda Benson of Linda Benson Interiors in our continuing “Decorating on a Dime” series. “I grew up in an artsy family. I always loved to work with fabrics and metals so I went into set design. I had to make pieces from scratch when I couldn’t find anything that perfectly fit the scene. That is where I honed my hands-on approach to Interior Design. After working on sets, I designed my own house and that inspired me to do it for others.”
Linda shares some fabulous examples of her work with a recent exhibit she helped put together: These pieces were used for the “Pippa Middleton’s Private Office” exhibit in the Glynallyn Mansion for the Mansion in May event held in Morristown, New Jersey. The space was designed and decorated to reflect Pippa Middleton’s lifestyle. I looked to her as an inspiration because of her professionalism, active participation in charity work, and social character. However, I created it with all young professional women in mind as well. My goal was to create something that would feel professional yet cozy for any ambitious young lady. I believe that magic happens when you re-purpose separate items to complement each other for a space, and in this case, it created a charming atmosphere.
1. I bought the blue lamp (on top of the coral octagonal table) at a thrift store for $10. It was originally beige and chipped without the wooden base. I changed the fitting and brought it to a finisher to put a glaze on it.
2. I bought the desk lamp at a thrift store for $35 – ceramic pieces are a little more expensive. It was rusty so we sanded it and painted it. I often collect bases and fittings so when the time comes, I have all the materials to work with.
3. The Wing chairs with the blue and white graphic print I found at an antique store for only $25 each. They were covered in old ripped fabric. I chose brand new trim and brought them to be re-upholstered. The legs were all scratched so I made them darker. I also removed the padding on the back to reveal the sweetheart detail. I often add or take away padding to change the shape of chairs.
4. The Venetian Painting I found at a thrift store. It was simply just canvass paper at the time. The artist happened to live locally so I asked him before I mended the rips and then framed it. I got the frame for $20 at an antique sale.
5. The Umbrella stand I got at a rummage sale for $4. It was actually a garbage can. I panted it and added a band of grass cloth. By adding ribbon, texture and an inside contrast color, it transformed into a cute little umbrella stand.
To learn more about Linda’s work, check out her website, lindabensoninteriors.com