Designer Q&A – Construction2Style & The Divine Living Space
We recently got to sit down with two of our favorite designer friends, Morgan Molitor of Construction2Style and Stephanie Goldfarb of The Divine Living Space. They answered their most frequently asked tile and design questions from homeowners and fellow designers. From their favorite tiles to whether you should make a statement or keep it timeless, we got the scoop!
Q: Do you have an exact plan for each design or do you let things fall into place?
Morgan: We have a process that we always follow that creates the plan. And we always have a design plan before we move into any construction and/or give any bids. Once we get to know our clients, their lifestyle, needs, wants, things that are important to them… this becomes the base for what creates our design plan. Once we know that, it’s simple for the elements to come together into place.
Stephanie: A plan.. ALWAYS a plan! If you don’t have a plan you will waste money on selections that don’t go together and don’t feel cohesive.
Q: What backsplash would you recommend for a HUGE wall above our range with no uppers?
Morgan: I love statement walls and am drawn to patterns and colors. Recently actually, I just did a statement wall for a project using the Skyline with Gold Stone Mosaic.
Stephanie: There are different ways to approach it. If you want a classic look I would go with longer subway (4″ x 12″ or 4″ x 16″). There are a lot of options and colors in the Imperial collection. I would pair this tile with some chunky open shelves for a beautiful, timeless look.
Check out our guide to subway tile here.
Q: Thoughts on painting interior doors black when you have grey walls and white trim?
Morgan: Love that look and that’s actually exactly what we have in our home! Black interior doors with black casing and white door trim, white baseboards and black window trim all complimented with gray walls. Black window trim was a non-negotiable for my husband Jamie. And gray walls for me. However, we both knew we didn’t want black base trim and we both were on the same page for interior black doors. We loved how the black window trim and interior doors tied the spaces together, but were able to brighten things up with the white base trim and light gray walls.
Stephanie: We did black stained oak doors in our last home and they were gorgeous. Go for it!
Q: What are your favorite bathroom tiles right now?
Morgan: Too many to say just one! That’s what I’m loving about the time we’re living in right now. Brands, manufacturers, designers and homeowners are all wanting and willing to mix styles, patterns, and textures and incorporate different styles and elements into their home. When it comes to a bathroom, I love a good black hexagon tile, big or small, and think that will forever be in style and that subway [tile] will forever be timeless.
Stephanie: The Laura Ashley Charcoal is one of my FAVORITE choices for a laundry room, The 10” black hex for a bathroom paired with a wood vanity, the Bulevar Ceramic for a kitchen backsplash, and a 2” Carrara honed marble tile for a master bathroom floor are my current “go to’s.”
Q: Best tile for a small bathroom floor?
Stephanie: I always recommend using a larger tile for a smaller bathroom. I know it’s counterintuitive, but larger tiles means less grout lines so it looks less busy. I adore the Versatile Light Gray Matte for a classic look.
Q: How do you decide which pieces to splurge vs. save on?
Morgan: It really depends on your story, your lifestyle. What space is most important to you? Where do you spend the most time within? What do you use the most? Once you’ve dialed in on how you use your home then I’d recommend splurging on those elements. If you love and cook a lot, I’d recommend splurging on your appliances. If you work from your island (like me), have a creative job, and need to continuously be inspired by your surroundings to get your creative juices flowing, a statement yet timeless backsplash is something you might want to invest in. Maybe retreating away to a little oasis and within your home every night is a must to unwind, then I’d recommend investing in your bathroom to create that spa-like feel.
Stephanie: I tell my clients to find unique pieces for rooms you spend the most time in and then splurge on some pieces that you LOVE for those rooms. Sometimes it’s a rug, other times a light fixture, or maybe it’s a killer backsplash that will really make a statement.
Q: Make a statement or keep it timeless?
Morgan: Both! I’m all about making a statement, however, I think you can make that timeless as well. Regardless of whether or not to make a statement or to keep it timeless in your home make sure you DO YOU. For us within our home… family, heritage, and pieces that tell a story are all important aspects to me. Both of which can make a statement and remain timeless. When it comes to colors, tiles and styles, I don’t think anything will forever remain timeless. It all evolves and comes back around in one shade, shape, form or another.
Stephanie: I’m all about the statement in my home, but I always say that as long as you stay true to yourself, it will always be in style.
Q: Grey hex tile… white or black grout?
Morgan: Depends on how dark or light it is. If it’s darker gray I’d say white grout. I love a good contrast. If you were to ask Jamie, the contractor and installer, he always says to match it. Remember, imperfections easily show when the tile pops.
Stephanie: White for sure. I think that’s clean and classic.
Q: Are large format-tile bathroom walls and floors the new classic or just a trend?
Morgan: I don’t think they are a new classic; I think they’ve been around but you’re just seeing more and more homeowners jump on the bandwagon, and I think it will forever be on trend.
Here, we did a large oversized black tile to give it the illusion of a black slab for half the cost. Paired it with light and bright oversized floor tile to keep it clean, simple and timeless.
Stephanie: If they are neutral in color, I don’t think they will ever go out of style. The larger tiles that are specific colors may date themselves ten years down the road.
Learn more about how to use large-format tiles in your space here.
Q: How do you find your style?
Morgan: We found our design style when we stopped caring about what anyone else thought. Which is exactly how we’ve been remodeling our current house. I usually say my style is Eclectic Bohemian and Jamie says his design style is Craftsman. I like to make sure every single piece that comes into our home has a meaning, purpose or a story to tell, and Jamie likes to put his carpentry skills to the test. And best of all, it’s always evolving. Our style might be totally different come this time next year. And all of those elements are reflections you see within our home. If you looked at our last two homes, they’re nothing like what we’re living in now.
‘Create a space you love & your life will launch off of that.’ Everyday we get to wake up in a home, our home, that inspires, gives us energy, sends daily motivational & sentimental reminders, pushes and breathes life into us. – Morgan
Stephanie: Ha! Great question. I still don’t know what my “style” is, but I know what I love!
Q: What is a tile you are drawn to and would love to use but haven’t had the opportunity to yet?
Morgan: I have loved the Annie Selke collection, and all the pink tiles, since I laid my eyes on them. And I’ve only gotten one client to add a subtle touch of pink tile in their twin girl jack and jill bath. I would love to have the opportunity to design out a bathroom space with the Annie Selke 3 x 12 subway in a stacked vertical layout within a shower. 2021, goals!
Read more about pink design trends here.
Stephanie: You guys have a floral tile that I have been DYING to use! Flowers are my signature; they are part of my branding and I will never tire of them. Now I just need to find a client who loves florals as much as I do.
A big thank you to Morgan and Stephanie for sharing their expertise on all things design! Follow along with their latest designs on the Construction2Style Instagram and The Divine Living Space Instagram.
Shop The Look
- Outline 1 White Gold AC11 x 11 in. | Ceramic | 495913
- Outline 2 White Gold AC11 x 11 in. | Ceramic | 495914
- Skyline with Gold Stone Mosaic11 x 11 in. | Marble | 616042
- Black Hex10 in. | Porcelain | 680185
- Cube Gold AC18 x 35 in. | Ceramic | 496044
- Hex Matte Black Mosaic2 x 2 in. | Porcelain | 615823
- Versatile Light Grey Matte12 x 24 in. | Porcelain | 681179
- Laura Ashley Mr. Jones Charcoal Matte13 x 13 in. | Porcelain | 680666
- Bulevar White Subway4 x 12 in. | Ceramic | 494332
- Firenze Carrara Honed Hex Mosaic2 in. | Marble | 650217
- Umbria White Polished 12 x 24 in. | Porcelain | 680558
- Marmi Classico Nero Venato 24 x 48 in. | Porcelain | 680458
- Imperial Bianco Gloss Subway3 x 6 in. | Ceramic | 441955
- Annie Selke Artisanal Soft Pink Subway3 x 12 in. | Ceramic | 496074
- Fabola Green 6 x 12 in. | Ceramic | 494497