1. Kitchen Transformation!

    Today we are thrilled to share a dramatic Before-And-After project we at Kate Marker Interiors recently completed.  The chef-caliber kitchen is a far cry from it’s 1990’s predecessor, which was the complete package of warm golden oak cabinets, burgundy walls, a diagonal island with built-in cooktop and limited functional counter and eating space despite the open layout and generous square footage.  Can you picture what it probably looked like?  Okay, here’s the real deal, our  BEFORE!


    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 11.40.26 AM

    {the lackluster layout & dated color scheme was not passing muster with the chef}


    -What Had to Go-

    The client, a passionate cook, sought big changes to optimize overall functionality and establish a generous every day eating and entertaining space.  The original kitchen was an ample size but had some major drawbacks.  A poorly planned stovetop on the small island was a hazard to anyone seated at the island and the placement of a stainless fridge was the unfortunate focal point of the kitchen.  A diagonal (why was diagonal such a hit 20+ years ago?) walk-in pantry was also awkward in that it broke up the minimal counter space.


    -Reconfiguring the Space-

    With two little children, the client wanted a “work zone” but also an eating space that was still very much a part of the kitchen.  This was accomplished in two ways.  First, continuing the wood floor from the kitchen into the adjacent open-concept family room that had been carpeted.  This visually connected the kitchen and family room and allowed the kitchen to encroach closer to the family room by placing a large island in what would otherwise be wasted space between the two rooms.  Secondly, the plan for this large island was then swapped in favor of two islands!  The first island is in the heart of the “work triangle” with quick access to the fridge, range, and sink and the second island, complete with a counter overhang for bar seating, is very much in the hub of the kitchen but out of the way of food prep.



    -The Reveal-



    {light and airy cabinets surround two islands}


    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.24.21 PM

    {lighting fixtures add a touch of sparkle}

    -The Distinctive Details-

    The walk-in pantry was removed  to allow for the eye-catching range and gorgeous backsplash tiles to become the new focal point centered along the far wall.


    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.23.42 PM

    {the honed granite counters on the prep island}


    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.25.18 PM

    {the backsplash tile is a raised ceramic}



    Honed quartzite counters on the perimeter are a soft complement to the artistic textured backsplash tiles in subdued greens and blues.


    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.25.01 PM

    {white distressed wood cabinets with honed quartzite counters}


    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.24.02 PM


    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 12.25.31 PM

    {white farmhouse sink}



    -Bench Seating-

    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 9.50.29 PM

    {counter bench}


    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 10.15.22 PM



    The two counter benches are one of our favorite alternatives to traditional bar stools.  They are customizeable and comfortable.  Contact us at Kate Marker Interiors if you are interested in swapping stools for a bench or two – so many options to choose from!  Here are some other examples of counter benches for the look we love!



    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 9.59.08 PM

    {Source: 2 Ivy Lane via Houzz}


    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 10.02.30 PM

    {Source: Caitlin Creer via Pinterest}


    Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 9.57.02 PM

    {Source: Tracery Interiors via Houzz}


    -Don’t Miss Out On This June Special-

    Pillow Promotion from our favorite Etsy shops

    PopOColor offers 10% for orders of $100 or more through 6/15 with the code “KateMarker”
    SparkModern offers 10% off orders through 6/30 with the code “KMIBLOG” (case sensitive)
    MotifPillows offers 10% off with code “KMI10”

    Get More Design Scoop!

    Follow us on Instagram @KateMarkerInteriors
    Follow us on Facebook at
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  2. Summer Pillow Swap

    With Memorial Day weekend coming up fast, we are ready to shift into summer mode and embrace it’s wonderful characteristics – green lawns, blue pools, white pants, pink watermelon, yellow corn on the cob, popsicles in every color of the rainbow. With this season of exploding color inspiration, we want to share some fresh throw pillow combinations to transition your home into warm and sunny carefree days.

    To try out your own combination, we suggest pairing a small-scale print + organic/botanical print + large scale print. One geometric pattern, either large or small, is a good contrast to the organic choice.

    Find a summer style that suits you below!

    Bold Florals{Bold Florals}


    The asymmetrical black and white pillow juxtaposed with the modern floral pattern add energy to any room with our Bold Florals combination.

    Pillows Front to Back:
    Citrine Velvet – MotifPillowsKelly Wearstler Channels in Ebony  – SparkModernManuel Canovas Misia in Multicolore – SparkModern



    Soothing Neutrals{Soothing Neutrals}


    Relaxed sophistication infuses a space with our Soothing Neutrals trio.

    Pillows Front to Back:
    Kelly Wearstler Katana lumbar in Ivory/Ebony- SparkModernSchumacher Hot House Flowers in Mineral – SparkModernPeter Dunham Textiles Rajmata in Limestone – SparkModern



    Global Boho


    {Global Boho}


    Unique prints and surprising color combinations give Global Bohemian more than enough interest to last beyond the summer months. Tie-dye is the organic selection for this boho theme.

    Pillows Front to Back:
    Tribal Decorative Lumbar  – SandyKilimPillow, Banda Midnight – Eskayal, Pink Ikat – MotifPillows


    Navy + Botanicals{Navy + Botanicals}


    This crisp combination of Navy + Botanicals gives a nod to pool awnings and lush vegetation, with a relaxed indigo accent.

    Pillows Front to Back:
    Indigo Herringbone Bolster – John Robshaw Textiles, Peter Dunham Textiles Fig Leaf Faded on Hemp – SparkModern, Schumacher Mary McDonald Puka Diamond – PopOColor



    Thanks so much to Etsy shops PopOColor, SparkModern, and MotifPillows for offering 10% off* to our readers!

    PopOColor offers 10% for orders of $100 or more through 6/15 with the code “KateMarker”
    SparkModern offers 10% off orders through 6/30 with the code “KMIBLOG” (case sensitive)
    MotifPillows offers 10% off with code “KMI10”

    SandyKilimPillow is an Etsy shop based in Turkey and most pillows in their extensive collection are one-of-a-kind.

    John Robshaw Textiles are inspired by crafting techniques of various Asian countries and cultures and are sourced by workshops throughout India.


    Get More Design Scoop!

    Follow us on Instagram @KateMarkerInteriors
    Follow us on Facebook at
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  3. To Market We Go

    A few weeks ago, we traveled to High Point, North Carolina for the biannual High Point Market Design Show.   This show is a BIG deal. Imagine all the movers and shakers in the design industry gathered for six days in one rather unglamorous manufacturing town in the middle of North Carolina. For those six days, hundreds of vendors have styled and stocked showroom after showroom with lighting, furniture, rugs, home accents, and casegoods. Sound dreamy to you?   Needless to say, we loved every second. One of our favorite moments was meeting Thomas O’Brien, the designer who many recognize for his “warm modernism” home goods line at Target but also an enviable portfolio of lighting, furniture, and accessories. He has even designed store concepts for West Elm and Pottery Barn.


    thomas o'brien meet up

    {Meeting design legend Thomas O’Brien}

    We loved seeing some of our favorite vendors such as Visual Comfort and Oly Studio and to see products we can actually touch or sit in after admiring from pages of a catalog! The inspiration was overwhelming in the best possible way and it was so fun to see what is new on the scene as well as what has staying power for the time being.

    Here we will share our top five favorite trends from High Point 2015:


    1. Midcentury for this Century


    Midcentury furniture has always had a quiet and consistent following, valued for it’s clean and simple lines. Now it is back in a big way with some fresh updates! Wicker or metallic (brass!) accents or softer, plusher upholstery, curved lines, or printed textiles for a bohemian look were some of the ways these pieces are relevant for today’s tastes.

    midcentury chair

    midcentury console

    relaxed midcentury chair

    {Midcentury boho- A chair with a midcentury-style frame but plush upholstery for overall softer lines}



    {Sputnik lamps (a favorite of KMI!) will be stickin’ around a while. And brass is everywhere!}


    2. Ways with Wood


    In keeping with some mid-century inspiration, wood is having it’s day! We saw a great variety of wood types – walnut, cerused oak, etc .

    Oak chair

    nubby and wicker

    {This piece is made of dark walnut and wicker with a nubby cream fabric for a bohemian look}


    brass and wood chair

    {Pairings with other materials were common – this wood is painted with antique brass detailing}

    wicker drama

    {Here is a wicker accent chair with a dramatic but inviting profile}


    3.  Floor Décor


    Details were not to be overlooked anywhere – several floors caught our attention! From geometric painted floors to cowhides paired with washed-out vintage rugs to nomad and Southwestern-inspired prints, the floors clammered for attention.


    layering rugs

    {Layering of formal and informal}

    painted hex floor

    {Bold hex pattern wakes up any room!}

    rugs sophisticated palette

    {Love this combo of geometric and animal prints}


    4.  Nomad/Boho Palette


    Nomad and Southwest patterns are popping up but gone are the turquoise and reds…..the geometric, symmentrical patterns are being shown in sophisticated neutrals such as blacks, creams, grays and golds. This updated palette blends well and keeps interest high.


    Nomad rug 1

    Nomad rug 2


    5. Exposed Lighting


    Drum shades are taking a backseat to the open fixtures we spied, with exposed lightbulbs and geometric shapes taking the spotlight.


    Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 11.10.47 AM

    Exposed lighting 2

    Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 11.11.51 AM



    For Your Home


    Here are some products you can add to your own home to incorporate these looks!  For ordering, send  us an email at

    Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 2.11.08 PM


    Palermo Chandelier

    Strada Medium Oval Pendant

    Strada Medium Oval Pendant


    Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 2.01.43 PM

    Alistair Chair


    Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 2.06.26 PM

    Hermosa SideboardScreen Shot 2015-05-13 at 2.08.46 PM

    Henrik Rug

    To stay up-to-date about projects and products at Kate Marker Interiors, check us out at:

    @katemarkerinteriors on Instagram or
    our e-shop at

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  4. Our Work – In Print!

    Kate Marker Interiors has long been a fan of the gorgeous interiors showcased in Luxe Magazine, a glossy design publication with pages of Chicagoland’s most beautiful homes. Imagine our delight when we were approached to have a project featured in their April issue! It is officially off the presses and on magazine stands – grab your copy for a close-up of this welcoming North Shore home!

    – About the Project –

    Tasked with creating a family-friendly, open space while staying true to the Lake Forest home’s Georgian Colonial architecture, the KMI team juxtaposed classic lines with fresh patterns and soothing colors. The busy lifestyles of this family of five were addressed by installing generous cubbies in the mudroom, sourcing stain-resistant fabrics for furnishings, and ensuring traffic flow would allow for entertaining and maximum functionality.

    – Wow Factor –

    Kate’s favorite touch was the crisp black and white dining room Pierre Frey wallcovering from Holly Hunt, made with embroidered fabric ribbons, achieving an airy yet bold look.

    Dining Room

    – Design Challenge –

    The long, narrow living room gained definition and seating with the addition of a Lillian August daybed. The versatile piece lends a touch of informality suitable for a young family.

    Living Room

    – Tips for designing with children in mind –

    No need to sacrifice the pretty things!  Here are some ways to accommodate toddlers through teens in your home decor

    -Use durable, stain resistant fabrics (Scotchguard, indoor-outdoor textiles)
    -Plan for easy flow of foot traffic
    -Add pops of pattern and/or color to keep things fresh (think ikat, chevron, herringbone)
    -Pair children’s artwork with an elegant frame

    pop of pattern

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  5. New Year, New Look!

    Welcome to our new & improved site! We’ve been working on getting our most recent projects photographed for your viewing pleasure– take a look at the new projects page. We’ve also added projects that are in process, so you can check back & see what we’ve been working on this year!

    We are also excited to introduce our shop page coming spring! We have selected our favorite pieces that are staples in any home. Each item will be available for purchase directly on our site & shipped anywhere in the US!

    Check back for updates on the blog & new photos in the projects page. Thanks for stopping by!

    New Year, New Look! Our new wallcovering in the studio from David Hicks

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  6. Sneak Peek!

    Happy Friday! Today we are sharing three projects that are in the final stages.We love seeing a project come to life, let us know your thoughts!

    { mudroom re-model }

    You might have seen this mudroom concept in our last blog post. It’s about half way complete, so we are sharing a sneak peak today! The white paneling is so fresh against the army green cabinetry. Love these sconces from Cedar & Moss! They do not disappoint!




    { master suite re-model }

    This master suite re-model is so fresh with it’s navy, white, & grey color palette. We cannot wait to share the before and after in the next coming months!



    Built-In Linen

    Navy Master Bedroom

    { new construction }

    We have been working on this new construction home for the past year, so it’s so fun to see things come together. The modern brass pulls in the kitchen are a favorite! The study is painted in hale navy, a classic from Benjamin Moore. The dining room is painted in colonial verdigris, a color from Benjamin Moore’s new Colonial Williamsburg collection.


    Navy Study

    Verdigris Dining Room

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  7. Sneak Peak: Lake House

    Kate Marker Interiors is proud to share a sneak peak of our latest project, an all-seasons lakefront home in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. The beach house has a cozy feel from your first step in the door and was designed in just 6 weeks by the KMI team!

    Upon entering this vintage home, you’re greeted by the presence of a nautical feel. We were inspired by cozy beach cottages and Scandinavian white homes. The lucky family that calls this place home wanted a clean, fresh, all white home with pops of color that stay classic year-round. We chose to paint every room in Benjamin Moore’s, “White Dove“. The driftwood grey flooring is the perfect balance to the white washed, paneled walls.


    You step down from the foyer into a swanky lounge. The navy and white striped swivel chairs are perfect for viewing all angles of the lake. The brass bar cart is a great spot to pour yourself a drink after a long day in the sun. We positioned the porthole mirror just right, so you can always see the lake in it’s reflection.

    As you step up into the family room, you are greeted by large, tufted, kelly green poufs! These poufs are perfect for additional seating while adding a burst of color. The sleek, grey sectional is a nice accent to the teak mid-century modern side chair. The fireplace was re-faced in white painted brick and finished it off with a teak mantel that picks up on the other wood accents in the room. The bright bursts of color give it a young, fresh vibe. The navy, kelly-green, yellow, and white pillows really made the space feel warm and inviting . The family room is complete with a white game table nestled around Eames chairs.

    Lounge 2

    Family Room 2

    The lake house was designed for entertaining! The large sunroom on the back of the home is fitted with a 9 foot long, driftwood table that fits up to ten people! It’s perfect for large gatherings with friends and family. The room is accented with bright yellow bistro chairs for the adults and pint-sized ghost chairs for the kids!


    This five bedroom home might be small but it was designed to use every nook and cranny. The spare bedrooms are suited for multiple guests! We used trundle beds and furniture on wheels to make the space as functional. The tiny guest rooms are all accented with white exposed brick and vaulted ceilings!

    Bedroom 1

    We hoped you enjoyed our sneak peak of the lake house! We still need to tie a few loose ends on site, in the meantime please enjoy these candid shots (professional photos to follow)!

    1 3

    Thanks for stopping by two two zero and have a great weekend in the sun!

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  8. Spring Brings Changes to KMI!

    Here at KMI, we are transitioning the showroom from winter to spring! We are excited to share a couple changes with you. We have a new shipment of timeless accessories coming in soon! We also have tons of fresh, new fabrics for spring!

    There is something about moving a few things around after the cold winter that makes you feel alive again! Sometimes adding a new lamp or rearranging your furniture makes such a difference! How about adding a new piece from KMI? Today, we are showing you one of our favorite pieces: this vintage, soft grey cabinet! We found this piece in a local antique shop and had it refinished! This cabinet is the perfect size (39″W x 15″D x 64″ H), it’s small enough to fit in a tight space but still makes a big statement! We have been asking $850 for this one of a kind cabinet but today we are introducing it’s new price: $650! Take this piece home today and add some life to your space!

    photo 1

    { one of a kind! }

    photo 2

    { the little details }

    photo 3

    { unique corners }

    Another fun change we’ve made for spring is adding a new rug to the front of our showroom! The pattern and colors are fabulous! The ikat pattern is infused with silk and wool. The rug has a muted background of grey, taupe, and charcoal. What makes it really pop is the punch of lavender! Lavender is a great color for spring! This rug makes such a statement! When the lavender silk catches the light, it shimmers. The rug measures out at 10’6″  x 8’2″. If you’re interested, feel free to shoot us an email or give us a call!


    { the showroom }


    { details }


    { lavender silk }

    Happy Spring, everyone! Have a great weekend!

    All images belong to Kate Marker Interiors.

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  9. Project Update!

    We’re just about finished with another project here at KMI, so when’s a better time than now to share some great pictures of the space? We have classic elements such as the wainscoting mixed with industrial touches like the door on a sliding track. The shaker style wainscoting adds a hint of modern. We love blending different styles together to make a space feel unique and updated.

    One of our favorite additions to the space is the new stair runner! It’s a wool runner is accompanied by a leather border held down by nail heads.  The nail heads really add a great finishing touch. Who said that they’re just for furniture?

    For the powder room door, we replaced the old one with a  new shaker style door on a sliding track. It really gives the hallway some more character.

    In addition to the stairs and entry hall, are finishing up the living room in this house as well! We put down a gorgeous grey oushak rug that really pulls the whole room together. It has such a vintage feel but the color is updated and modern. In front of the fireplace are two chairs that we had re-upholstered with a striking grey and white ikat textile. Opposite the fireplace are well done, custom built-ins that we accessorized with precious little finds!


    photo 1

    { Powder Room Wall }

    photo 1 (2)

    { Powder Room Wall  with Classic Wainscoting }

    photo 2

    { Stairway }

    photo 1 (3)

    { Stairway }

    photo 4 (2)

    { Nail Head Detailing }

    photo 3

    { Living Room }

    photo 2

    { Living Room }

    photo 4

    { The Built-in Wall }

    photo 4

    {  Custom Built-Ins }

    photo 5

    { Ikat Chairs }

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  10. transition from summer to winter

    Here at KMI, we are excited for snowy days, cozy sweaters and sitting by the fire with a hot cup of cocoa. As we transition from summer to winter, we had these wonderful outdoor arrangements created by the team at Twisted Stem of Crystal Lake! Don’t they look wonderful? John Regan, designer, manager and part-owner of Twisted Stem, came up with these simple, holiday arrangements using yellow twig dogwood, evergreens and white pine cones. You can find Twisted Stem here!

    { KMI }

    { yellow twig dogwood flanking the door }

    { yellow}

    { twigs }

    { come stop in and see us! }

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