In Good Taste: MA Allen Interiors

MA Allen Interiors office

Good morning, chic readers! You know how much we love sharing favorite designers with you every week. The only thing better than sharing a favorite designer is sharing a favorite designer who lives right here in North Carolina!

MA Allen Interiors kitchen

MA Allen and her partners say that they “take a single thought, or a tiny swatch of fabric, or a family heirloom…and allow that small seed to become an explosion of ideas that eventually transforms your entire space.”

MA Allen Interiors kitchen

We love the thought of that, of starting with the tiniest kernel of an idea and using that to create something extraordinary. 

As you can see, that’s exactly what these designers do. 

MA Allen Interiors kitchen

From an eat-in kitchen worth coming home to, 

MA Allen Interiors kitchen

To a sweet pop of color that brings a crisp, white kitchen to life, 

MA Allen Interiors dining

A fun, modern dining room that practically begs for family holidays to be held (and makes great use of a space!), 

To a master bedroom where every detail is just right, MA Allen hits the high notes of style in every project. 

There is absolutely nothing we love more than an adorable nursery. A nursery like this one that can grow as he does is all the better. A simple switch from crib to bed and this darling nursery becomes a sweet room for a busy little boy. 

MA Allen Interiors playroom

In any child’s space, but especially a playroom, stylish storage is such a necessity. Books become a beautiful focal point, and her favorites are always right on hand between tea parties. 

MA Allen Interiors mudroom

Mudrooms are perhaps one of the most essential spaces in homes today–and MA Allen makes sure that even these tiny nooks not only flow seamlessly into the rest of the house but are also pinnacles of style. From North Carolina’s triangle to the Atlantic coast, New York to DC, these designers adapt every space to their clients’ needs. And we couldn’t love the results any more! 

Woman’s World thinks you and your mom will love reading my Peachtree Bluff Series together–and we wholeheartedly agree! Pick up copies of Slightly South of Simple and The Secret to Southern Charm for both of you. You’ll definitely be the favorite child this year! 

Gifts for Mom










Decorating Secrets from Thom Filicia and More!



Decorating Secrets from Thom Filicia

dering hall




Creating a Beautiful Master Bedroom

one kings lane



playroom from Serena & Lily


Creating a Fun-Filled Playroom

serena and lily





Red Currant Vanilla Spritzer Recipe

rose & ivy journal




Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

– jacquelyn clark/ lark & linen


books - slightly south of simple


If you’re looking for a perfect Vacation Read, we’d love for you to check out Slightly South of Simple!  

kristy woodson harvey




In Good Taste: Summer Thornton Interior Design

Summer Thornton

Last week, we had the best time touring one of the most incredible dental offices (that did not look like a dental office at all) designed by Summer Thornton. 

This week, we’re going outside the office and checking out Summer’s good taste inside the home. 

One of our favorite things about Summer’s designs is her use of color. 

Each room feels fresh, light, bright and never overdone. We love yellow! And we really love a chaise. So the combination of the two couldn’t be better.

This is an example of how a statement light fixture can totally transform a room. 

The color of this bar cart is phenomenal. All of the touches in this room are totally luxurious.

This is black and white done right. Summer transformed this nook into a destination.

A gold fume hood? Yes please!

Who thinks of a stairwell as a fun cheery spot you don’t want to leave? We sure don’t! But this stairwell is that and more.

Now, this is a closet! Is there a better combination than hot pink and leopard?

It seems like stunning closets might be a Summer Thornton specialty! 

A luxurious bathroom is such a treat!

What a sweet little girl’s room!

Talk about a nursery that grows as he does! Well, they might have to get him a little bigger car eventually… But, otherwise, it’s perfection! Don’t you love the good taste of Summer Thornton? We knew you would! Thank you so much for making Design Chic a part of your day. 


Also find Summer at:



Slightly South of Simple Around the Web:

We loved seeing Slightly South of Simple on vacation with our friend Fabiana from Ciao! Newport Beach! 


Also, if you want to know a little more about my new novel, SLIGHTLY SOUTH OF SIMPLE (Simon & Schuster, April 25, 2017) take a peek at the video below! (It’s only like 90 seconds. No major commitments here!)

Empty Playrooms and Full Preschools!

Studio McGee | Lucy Call Photography


On Friday I wrote a note to the FedEx man. And left it on the kitchen counter instead of the front door. Then I drove to school to pay tuition. And forgot my checkbook. It’s like my brain’s subtle way of saying: You need to get back on a schedule!

For fourteen weeks of summer, I’ve been pretty on top of it. Those last few days, my brain just conceded the fight. We’ve loved every moment of playing all day. But all good things must come to an end. And, eventually, it’s just time to get back in the swing of things.  

playroom Collins Interiors
Collins Interiors | Nathan Schroder Photography


But it’s a lot easier said than done to go home to an empty playroom. Of course, it’s easier to clean up without anyone protesting that you’re throwing away the stack of folded Kleenexes that were a part of a very avant garde art project that you failed to understand… But it feels very, very wrong, all the same! Those first couple of days, trudging up to my spin bike that resides in Will’s playroom will feel so quiet. And I’m sure I’ll be sad.

Collins Interiors | Nathan Schroder Photography



But then, when I realize I can watch The Today Show while I’m peddling instead of Dinosaur Train, when I discover that I actually know what’s happening in the world again, I’m sure I’ll adjust.  After all, it will only be a few hours until the teepee will be full again. Really full. Because four-year-old play dates are so much fun! And four-year-olds still ask in front of their friends if they can have their friends over so there’s no way to say no!

Collins Interiors | Nathan Schroder Photography


And, who knows, once the toys are all returned to their rightful places and the “boat” (a million pieces of cardboard with paint, marker, stickers and random household paraphernalia glued to every inch) is returned to the closet, I might even get some fun ideas for a little design tweaking!

Collins Interiors playroom
Collins Interiors | Nathan Schroder Photography

Even if I don’t, there are sure to be dozens of brand new pieces of artwork to grace the walls. And a whole new year of memories to be made. A few weeks from now, we’ll be longing for summer again. But, for today, we’re savoring the idea of a fresh start–and we hope you are too!



CLICK Each Image to Learn More:

We are so thrilled by the number of beautiful homes we are going to have as a part of the Slightly South of Simple book tour for next April and May. If you might be interested in having the Slightly South of Simple tour come to your house (or town!), or would like more information, don’t hesitate to email me at [email protected]

Serena and Lily-Westport


Serena and Lily

A store is just a store–until it’s an experience. Serena and Lily’s fabulous Westport, CT showhouse is exactly that. Three floors of amazing Serena and Lily pieces complement the original features of this charming and beautiful home to create a show-stopping, totally one of a kind shopping experience. We can’t get enough of Serena and Lily in a regular store. We can’t even imagine how incredible an entire house of nothing but their peerless style could be! Take a look for yourself!