Our quarterly newsletter features exclusive interviews with cool people in the design industry, new project photo releases, and updates about Lindsey Runyon Design. Sign up { HERE }    

02 Feb 2015  --   Newsletter #11

Winter newsletter: Lasting Colors, interview with Nik Palladino of Phinney Ridge Painting 2015 WINTER NEWSLETTER

16 Oct 2014  --   Newsletter #10

Fall newsletter: Big news, and new project photos 2014 FALL NEWSLETTER

13 Aug 2014  --   Newsletter #9

Summer newsletter: Safety Third! (summer newsletter from Lindsey Runyon Design) 2014 SUMMER NEWSLETTER

24 April 2014  --   Newsletter #8

Spring newsletter: My NYC trip and the interview that went better than expected! 2014 SPRING NEWSLETTER

01 January 2014  --   Newsletter #7

In this newsletter, we talk with a local tile installer about who is really doing the "dirty work", and which products are a pain in the butt!

15 November 2013  --   Newsletter #6

In this newsletter, we visit some of our favorite 'before and afters'. Click here to view!

30 July 2013  --   Newsletter #5

This newsletter interviews Lindsey herself about a recently completed commercial project. Click here to view!

5 April 2013  --   Newsletter #4

Click here to view.


13 December 2012  --   Newsletter #3

Click here to view.


1 August 2012  --   Newsletter #2

Click here to view.


24 May 2012  --   Newsletter #1

Click here to view.


11 May 2012  --   Lots of great things happening here at Lindsey Runyon Design!

NEW EMPLOYEES - I have hired 2 new full time interior design assistants, Amanda Khanjian and Heidi Somoza. They both have interior design degrees, are incredible designers, and have been such a welcome addition.

NEW SPACE - To make room for the expanding business, I have leased an office space in Lower Queen Anne! We are working on getting the permit for the space build-out right now, and hopefully we’ll be able to move in sometime in the next couple months.

NEW PROJECTS - Along with the design of our new space, we have several projects we’re working on at the moment: a condo in Capitol Hill; a house in Capitol Hill; a townhome in Magnolia; an organic med-spa in upper Queen Anne called Bella Fiore (check it out, get a facial!! The interior is not completely done yet though!!); a condo downtown; and a few other smaller projects.

Stay tuned for more!

PS -- Have you seen this yet? Seattle Pulp, KOMO News’ online lifestyle magazine, featured photos of our project, Live, Work, Love: an Eco-Upgrade, and an interview with me in this article on small space living.

Now up to this point, we’ve shared with you all the great reasons to hire an interior designer, but why hire us here at Lindsey Runyon Design? What makes us different from the rest of the designers out there?

It’s our dedication to our clients, and our working style.
  • We will do anything for our clients; they are our number 1 priority. We’ll have meetings on evenings and weekends, we’ll stay up into the middle of the night to finish something, we’ll meet their grandma, we’ll do whatever it takes to get the job done right and make our clients happy.
  • Our practice is very client-focused. It’s not about our agenda, it’s about the client’s needs and wants. We listen to what they want, and what they don’t want. We provide options and information to help guide clients to the choices that are best for them. People obviously hire us because they want a professional opinion, so we will give it to them, but we don’t insist on having it our way or the highway.
  • We’re perfectionists with high attention to detail from the beginning to end of a project. Making our clients happy is our number 1 priority, but creating complete, successful, beautiful, and functional design projects comes in as a close second.

23 June 2011  --   Top 6 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer – Reason #1
This reason is probably the one that is most familiar, and is usually what motivates people to even think about hiring a designer in the first place.

Reason #1: Achieve a better functioning result.

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “Form follows function.” But you may not have heard Frank Lloyd Wright’s version, and what I truly believe: “Form and function are one.” It can be a tricky process to know what will really function for you in your space, and how to integrate that functionality with your space’s physical attributes. Don’t spend the money and waste your time only to get a result that doesn’t work. An interior designer at your side will be able to help you create a space that is functional and beautiful—taking out all the guesswork. In my view, if an interior is not perfectly functional, I have not done my job.


31 May 2011  --   Top 6 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer – Reason #2
This reason is probably the one that is most familiar, and is usually what motivates people to even think about hiring a designer in the first place.

Reason #2: Results go from "just fine" to "fabulous."

Together, we can achieve a better look than if you design a space yourself because:

  • Through education and experience, I am a trained design professional. I’ve learned the theory and the hard-skills needed to design gorgeous spaces, and I have put that theory into practice. I care about details that non-designers wouldn’t notice while also being able to visualize the big picture. That level of thorough understanding is what makes a design project truly stunning.
  • I have honed my eye and sense of style through personal research. I keep up with design trends and trade publications to stay current and fresh in my work. I also attend industry events such as High Point furniture market. I went to High Point at the beginning of April and it gave me an even deeper understanding of the scope and depth of the furniture industry and all it has to offer.
  • I then fit this knowledge into the context of my client’s personal styles, desires, and preferences. I tease out this information through questions, careful listening, and observation. I blend my general knowledge with the new information I gain about each client to create a beautiful result.
So in short, a designer has the skills to take your space from "just fine" to "fabulous". From "ok" to "outstanding." From "meh" to "marvelous!"

Stay tuned for reason #1!


22 March 2011  --   Top 6 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer – Reason #3
What does everyone want more of? Time.

Reason #3 to hire an interior designer: SAVE TIME

Every day, I take work off people’s backs-- work that would otherwise take up a lot of time, especially for people who don’t have the patience or training to do it efficiently. For each item that is needed for a project, I will narrow down the number of options from 5,000 to five. The client will still have final say over everything. They just won’t have to deal with all the nitty-gritty.

With an interior designer, endless hours searching for a sofa are over. No more lengthy debates with significant other on drapery style. The choices are made simple and easy. It works out because I’m passionate about design. I’ll follow my passion so that you have more time left to follow yours.

We’re almost finished with the series. Coming up next week, the 2nd best reason to hire an interior designer.

13 March 2011  --   Top 6 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer – Reason #4
Sorry it’s been a while since I’ve posted! But let’s get right back to it! We know that hiring an interior designer can help people save money and make money… What are the other reasons to hire a designer?


I have visited the homes of so many people who have made big mistakes trying to tackle their interiors on their own. One lady had purchased 2 large sofas, brought them home, and then realized that they didn’t fit in her living room at all—one of the sofas was sitting half in the entryway, and half in the living room. She called me in to help advise her on the problem. The time, money, and energy that went into selecting, purchasing, and then subsequently returning the sofas completely went to waste.

Regrettable decisions are even worse when they are attached to the space itself. Another couple had attempted a laundry room remodel, and selected a tile that they thought looked good at the store. When it got laid down, their reaction was the opposite – they hated it. But it was already in-place, and too expensive for them to rip it out, purchase new tile, and start over at that time. They brought me in to try to salvage the look with the perfect paint color. But let me tell you that paint colors can only go so far in correcting such a problem. One of the skills I have developed as a designer is the ability to visualize something in-place, even if I’m only looking at a sample. If they had brought me in at the start of the project, I would have gotten to know them and their style, and I would have been able to better visualize what type of tile would work better in the laundry room. Instead they were forced to live with a tile they hated (however, with a perfectly coordinating paint color!).

If both of these clients had called a designer to begin with, they wouldn’t have ended up in these situations because 1)all decisions with a designer are extremely thought-out to work with clients’ style, space constraints, and the room itself, and 2)the client has to approve everything before it’s purchased. These two checkpoints of approval will eliminate the types of circumstances described above.

It’s clear the best approach is to start with a designer from the beginning. However, if you know somebody who has already gotten themselves into a regrettable situation all hope is not lost. I would love to take on the challenge and help them get out of it. I’ll try to also help them avoid making the same mistakes again.

Next week: What everyone wants, and how an interior designer can get you more of it.

10 December 2010  --   Top 6 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer – Reason #5
Last week I wrote about the value gained from accurate planning, material re-use, and purchasing through a designer. So now that clients are saving all this money, what are the other benefits to hiring someone like me?

Reason #5: MAKE MONEY

Really? Sounds crazy, but it’s totally true! Here’s how:
  • Two words: RESALE VALUE. Homeowners normally try to renovate and increase their resale value when they’re ready to sell. Why wait until you move to make these investments? Re-design your home now, while you still have time to enjoy it! You don’t want to be one of those people whose home looked best... the day they moved out.
  • And secondly, this is so so important for those business owners: CUSTOMER IMPRESSIONS. For a business, having a great interior is key to attracting customers, keeping customers, and increasing the perceived value of their products or services. It helps a place of business reflect the image the owner wants to reflect, and show off what that business does or sells in the best possible light. All of this results in more money in business-owners’ pockets. $$$$$$$ What I like to tell people is: earn what you’re worth. When your interior looks good, people expect to pay more. And wouldn’t you rather them expect to pay more than be surprised at how much? (Think about that one) With a nice interior, they won’t be surprised at your rates, and they’ll love coming back each time.
Next week: Reason #4 – when we get off the topic of money, sort of.

1 December 2010  --  Top 6 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer – Reason #6
Okay, I changed it to the top SIX benefits to hiring an interior designer. So what are the benefits you ask? Here we go!

Reason #6: SAVE MONEY

You may be thinking, “How can anyone save any money? Isn’t hiring a designer something that’s only going to make people spend lots of money?” The answer is that actually, many people, especially businesses with those customer-facing spaces, are already spending money, or thinking about investing something into their interiors. What I can do is help them spend that money in the most effective ways:
  • BUDGETING. I work with all budget sizes, and I’m an expert at sticking to them. Most people don’t realize what all will be needed to make a space feel complete. They under-estimate, and then end up either going way over budget to finish the project, or not finishing the project at all (talk about a waste of money). I will also talk to my clients about what is realistic to expect within their budget so that there are no surprises.
  • FEWER MISTAKES. No expensive do-overs! Through experience, I have learned to be extra, extra careful about everything I draw, purchase, and install. It’s common for people to make terrible mistakes in purchasing & execution when they do it on their own. I help avoid these mistakes, so money won’t have to be spent in fixing them.
  • MY TRADE DISCOUNT. I get a special discount, just for being an interior designer, on most furniture & products, and unlike some designers, I pass most of that discount along to my clients.
  • ITEM RE-USE. Often times I am able to help clients utilize pieces they already own in their interior, but in a new and different way. I am able to draw the line between what can be re-used, and what is better to part with.
Any comments or questions? Go to the “Notes” tab of my Facebook page! Or just e-mail me :)

Coming up next week, the fifth-best reason to hire an interior designer!

-- Lindsey

22 November 2010  --  NEW BLOG SERIES! – Top 5 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer
I’m going to do a series describing the Top 5 Reasons to Hire an Interior Designer. The content is an adaptation of a presentation I did a couple weeks ago, but I think it contains some good information so I thought I’d share it with everyone.

There are a multitude of benefits to hiring an interior designer (or, me in particular :), that many people may not realize. In the next few weeks, I’ll talk a little about the residential side of my business, but I’d like to place a special emphasis on the small business owner, who may feel like he or she can’t afford, or doesn’t want to hire an interior designer for some reason. So to start off, is there a small business owner you can think of who has a customer-facing space (lobby, waiting area, massage therapy room, retail space, salon space, etc.) within their business? It could be you, or if it isn’t, is there someone you know? Keep this person in mind throughout the rest of this series. I am going see if I can bring to light enough awesome reasons to hire a designer, so that in your minds, the benefits will outweigh the cost.

Stay tuned for reason number 1, coming up next week!

-- Lindsey

10 October 2010  --  Help for New Homeowners
Here is a flyer I made directed to new homeowners of single-family houses, townhomes, and condos. Let me know if you’d like to have a stack printed for you! Real estate agents and mortgage lenders have found them especially useful to give to their clients who need interior design help in their new homes.

Home Flyer

19 May 2010  --  To Plan or Not to Plan? It Depends.
I have been thinking a lot about the PLANNING process lately. I know that planning is what I do on a daily basis, so I’m a little biased, but I decided I would share my thoughts. And these are just my opinions, I’m sure there are other amazing designers and people in general who think differently, but I’m just basing this off my own experiences. So here it goes...

When designing a space, you have 2 options.

Option 1:

Have a really strong plan. Don’t just assume that furniture pieces will fit, that the tile will work with the art piece, etc. Before you purchase or install any materials, make sure all the other materials are chosen as well, and that they all look good together. This may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised… (By the way, compare materials and colors together in the daylight. This will give you the truest sense of how they will work with each other.) Same goes for furniture! Make sure to have a good space plan that is TO SCALE before any furniture is purchased. It’s amazing how often I see people design in piecemeal fashion, and end up extremely disappointed, and have to spend more time and money fixing what went wrong. Hiring an interior designer can be vital to the planning process. A designer has developed the skills for planning, and knowing what looks good together, and can help you avoid catastrophes and bad purchases.

The misconception people have is that they don’t have time for planning. When in actuality, planning up front will save you so much time down the road when the project really starts going. A clear vision, a to-scale plan, and having materials all pre-selected will save you from countless hours and unneeded stress during the construction or installation process. And bonus, with a designer, you’ll be happier with how it turns out in the end!

Another note on this: PLEASE don’t choose your paint color before you’ve chosen everything else in the space. There are a zillion paint colors out there, so it’s much easier pick a paint color to go with the rug, for example, than it is to find a rug to work with an arbitrarily-selected paint color. I try to choose paint colors very last, and sometimes, I even wait until after everything (furniture, materials, etc.) is installed.


Option 2:

Because I am an interior designer, you may think that setting out on an uncharted interior journey is against my religion. But actually no! I am totally into going with the flow, following your heart, trusting your instincts and allowing the universe to bring what it may bring – just look at my accounting methods! So if you are not a planner or just don’t want to plan, that is great too! But the rule on this is: make sure you are absolutely in LOVE with every element that goes into a space. You have to love it, the ottoman, the tile, the wall paper, the rug, whatever it may be. If you are not going to plan out everything in advance, you don’t want an interior designer, and you’d like your interior to have a more layered, lived-in, personalized feel, you just have to make sure you are not feeling mediocre about any of the elements. You can’t just buy something because it’s a good deal, or because you think it would be okay. For this flowy, DIY option, you have to be in love with each piece of the chaotic puzzle. Your love will – in the words of The Dude – “tie the room together”. BUT -- For this option, you are also required to have the luxury of time. It takes time to find things you love. There’s no rushing the search. (Note: an interior designer can absolutely help you create a layered, lived-in personalized feel, where you love everything, and it will certainly take less time, and probably function better, than if you did it yourself.)

Too often I see people who have rushed into a project without proper planning, but yet they are not in love with the elements in the space. They purchased these ho-hum pieces & materials only because in a stressed out moment, when they were just trying to get keep the project moving forward, they made a choice. These people made a split decision and thought the chosen element(s) would “work” visually and functionally. But when there is no planning, there is also no room for error. So when these types of elements are not planned, and on top of that the owner doesn’t love them, they usually end up NOT working. But then the owner is stuck with them. If you’re going to be stuck with something, make it something about which you feel passionately positive.

That’s all. Let me know what you think.

-- Lindsey

11 February 2010  --  2010...! New Year Update from Lindsey Runyon Design
Just in case you missed it, here is a copy of the e-mail I sent out to everyone a couple weeks ago!

Dear All my Friends, Family, Clients, Colleagues, and Associates,

First, I would like to wish you all a happy new year! 2009 is gone and we’re all off to a great start on our new year’s resolutions (I hope). I don’t know about you, but I already feel like exciting, interesting, CRAZY things are going to happen in 2010. It’s been a while since I’ve sent out an update, so I thought I would check in with you all about how my interior design business, Lindsey Runyon Design, is doing.

I’ve been in business on my own now for over a year, and what a year it has been! I have learned incredible amounts of information, and gained such valuable experience in the field. I’ve worked on some fantastic projects, most of them in the residential sector, with the exception of one. Working mostly in residential has given me the opportunity to get to know the Seattle Design Center (an interior designer’s furniture shopping haven), along with its people and systems for customizing and ordering beautiful furniture. I have also been able to gain experience working within some tight budgets, which can be a fun challenge to still create a beautiful and functional end result.

The most rewarding things about interior design are to see a project completed, a client happy, and the space I designed in-use. I have been so lucky to have amazing clients. They are all unique, with very different working styles and design needs, but they are all funny and fabulous, and I have learned so much from each one (thank you clients!). The vendors I’ve worked with have also been so great. As a designer who had recently stepped out on my own, I had a lot to learn, and they’ve been extremely helpful and patient working with me.

Right now, I’m involved with several residential projects: a condo in downtown Seattle, a home office in Queen Anne, a house in Redmond, a townhome in Redmond, a kitchen in Everett, a bedroom in Amsterdam, and on-and-off on my own residence (something about the shoe-maker’s kids…?). I’m also exploring new territory, working on a winery tasting room in Woodinville (www.robertramsaycellars.com) which has been an exciting project. Overall, I am keeping pretty busy, but of course, I do always appreciate referrals.

Apart from taking on projects and growing my business, another major milestone of 2009 was getting my LEED Accreditation (for more information about LEED go to www.usgbc.org). I consider this accreditation to be a symbol of my commitment to sustainability, environmentally sound, eco-friendly, socially conscious, and “green” design. While these terms have become buzz words in our culture that our minds just gloss over, the meaning behind the words is truly profound. The beauty and health of our earth depends on the choices that individual designers make, and the choices we make as a society. After many hours of studying (during the sunniest months of the year, I might add :)), I’m proud to say I passed and I am now a LEED Accredited Professional.

Moving into 2010, I’m hoping to continue with residential remodels and decoration, which I love, and expanding a bit more into the commercial side. I have aspirations to bring some style to a small family restaurant, and to design a dramatic & swanky boutique retail space. I would also like to gain more experience working on projects that are located within urban centers, historical areas, and other walkable communities—to align with my passion for smart urban growth, density, and mixed-use neighborhoods.

For some of you, it’s been a while, and I’d love to hear from you--feel free to contact me any time! You can also check in with my website (www.lindseyrunyondesign.com) periodically to see updates and new project photos. Lindsey Runyon Design is also on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Seattle-WA/Lindsey-Runyon-Design/50085356237 , where you can get the very latest news, comment on photos, and say hi.

Well thanks for reading, and hope to hear from you soon!

-- Lindsey

17 June 2009  --  Lindsey C. Runyon, LEED AP
Hello Everybody! It’s been a while! I just got back from a wonderful vacation to Tennessee and Kentucky and had a great time! I wanted to write to update y’all (forgive me, just got back from the south) about my latest endeavor. Before I left, as some of you know, I had been furiously studying to pass the LEED for Commercial Interiors exam. (If you aren’t familiar with LEED, or you would like to learn more, click Here. ) After many late nights and lots of iced tea…….I PASSED!!! Through the studying process, I learned many new tips on how to make our built environments more sustainable and healthier places to live and work. I also learned how to guide a project through the LEED certification process.

The location, products used, and the construction of interior spaces have a huge impact on our environment and natural resources. I want this accreditation to show that I recognize the importance of eco-friendly interior design practices, and to demonstrate my continued commitment to protecting this earth.

Thanks for all your support! Be green!

-- Lindsey, (LEED AP :))

17 April 2009  --  Clutter : Interior Design :: Fat : Fashion
Hi! Sorry it’s been a while; I’ve been busy... very busy... administrating, sorting, cleaning, and organizing today’s topic: CLUTTER.

Clutter is an issue I have been dealing with a lot lately. I got mad at clutter while cleaning out a basement that was infested with spiders, Christmas decorations long-forgotten, and big poufy afro wigs from 3 Halloweens ago. My “stuff” quotient came into strong focus when I had to go through each individual item I owned in order to prepare my own studio apartment for photography. And in a recent move, it took some clever planning when I had to find a way to combine the things of two lives into a severely limited space.

We all have had to deal with clutter at some point in our lives. What do we need? What should we keep? …Why is “stuff” such a big issue for us? Is it just me, or does clutter seem like a uniquely American problem? Here are some possible reasons why:
  • We have large houses that are able to silently accumulate incredible amounts of junk.
  • The goods we buy tend to be inexpensive, poor quality, and easily available. Then they break, and get stored and forgotten.
  • Our busy schedules don’t leave us enough time to stay organized.
  • Random companies somehow get a hold of our mailing addresses and send us junk mail… as if we don’t have enough to deal with!
We should know we have too many belongings when our huge houses can no longer accommodate them. But instead of getting rid of the excess, many people rent a storage unit! Check out this article from Slate magazine about mini storage: Self-Storage Nation. It talks about the irony of the fact that in recent years, American house sizes got larger, family sizes got smaller, and yet the storage industry is booming. Also, retail chains like Storables and the Container Store make loads of money selling us plastic bins that end up getting filled with nothing but our labeled and colorgorized good intentions. Whatever the cause of clutter may be, it strikes me that storing more stuff is not the solution.

I came up with the analogy a long time ago, that Clutter is to Interior Design as Fat is to Fashion. The logic is that excess clutter camouflages what we are really meant to see in an interior, just as excess fat obscures the true, beautiful form of our bodies in clothing. Going by this standard, I think I am obese. The fact is, we could all do ourselves a favor and “lose some weight,” in the form of simplification. If we simplify our lives, our time, and our possessions, we will be able to see the true beauty and the true potential of our interior environments.

What do you think?

I’d love to know your ideas about the causes of clutter in America, personal anecdotes about organization, wisdom about our consumerist culture, or any other thoughts you may have. Post on the Lindsey Runyon Design Facebook page to share.

Now I’m off to go organize the bedroom!

-- Lindsey

01 March 2009  --  Urban Sprawl
Hello All! I can’t believe it’s already March. Spring is coming and I’m soooo ready. Well this time, I’d like to write about a topic that many of you know is near and dear to my heart: URBAN SPRAWL. I have always had a special love for cities and dense urban communities for the experiences they create—centered around the human, not the car. But it wasn’t until college when I learned specifically about urban sprawl and the drawbacks it has for our environment and our society. If you’re not sure exactly what sprawl is, check out this great Wikipedia article.

I know that most of us who are in the USA tend to live in suburban communities, and I don’t want to start making everyone feel guilty, but I just wanted to bring up a few points that we could all keep in mind if we are thinking about moving, investing in property, or even if we’re faced with a choice at the polls sometime. The Wikipedia article has great points too, but these were a few that I came up with:

  • Urban Sprawl makes people drive more. Lack of density makes public transportation inefficient as the primary means of transportation. Driving leads to pollution. Driving & sprawl also lead to a feeling of disconnect & insensitivity to the less fortunate among us, when we don’t have to ever come physically in contact with homeless, etc.
  • It takes over natural lands, ruins habitats for many species, cuts down trees, puts strain on the earth.
  • It takes over agricultural lands, increasing the distance (and fuel needed to transport food) “from farm to fork.”
  • It robs cities of a “sense of place” and community when everyone lives far apart in cookie-cutter developments. Communities are enhanced when people share spaces like parks & plazas.
  • The infrastructure required (roadways, goods, services, etc.) to reach suburban locations consumes huge amounts of resources and fuel.
  • When people move out of city centers, those centers become deserted and crime-ridden at night, without 24 hour activity. Also, historic places get abandoned and forgotten.
  • Although it is possible to make single-family homes very sustainable, dense & urban areas (where people live with small amounts of private space) generally have the lowest carbon footprint per-person. Plain and simple: we consume more resources when we spread out and take up more space per person.
If you do have the choice, consider the personal and environmental benefits of living in a smaller space, in a dense, walkable, urban community. You will have so much more fun, and the earth will thank you! But like I said, if you do live in a surburban, non-walkable location, there are many things you can do to make your home & lifestyle more environmentally friendly, or even completely sustainable. Or if you’re really ambitious, there are ways to make a home or building not just “less bad” but actually improve the environment around it (read either Cradle to Cradle or The Nature of Design if you’re interested in this amazing concept). I am studying for the LEED exam right now, so “Creating Sustainable Single Family Homes” will be an entry for another day :).

Thanks everyone, and enjoy urbanity!

-- Lindsey

4 February 2009
Hello Everyone!

I have decided to start a Lindsey Runyon Design blog, and this is my first entry! It will be a new adventure for me... In here, I am going to post all the latest news about Lindsey Runyon Design, the projects I’m working on, photos, etc.. I’d also like this to be a place to share my thoughts and opinions on a variety of topics. Some initial ideas include: design trends, sustainability news and information, views on urban planning, reports-back from events I have attended, and just my general philosophizing about art, design, society, and the environment. If anyone has a blog idea for me, please let me know, I’d love your suggestions!!

Well thanks for reading, and check back again soon for my next entry!

-- Lindsey