Sneak Peeks, Project Updates … and the Debacle of the Industry Right Now

Home Style Compatibility Quiz


Things have been busy here over the last year, with 4 projects hopefully wrapping in the next 4 months or so. That may seem soon, but they have been A LONG TIME in the making.

Things have had to change in the design industry now that long lead times and labor shortages seem like they are here to stay for the foreseeable future. A project used to take 4-6 months from start date to installation (if not a renovation), with furniture lead times usually around 6-10 weeks for custom pieces. Now, even small projects can easily last a year, with most of that time just waiting.

Even the best vendors & manufacturers  are quoting 30-45 weeks to make a sofa. With the labor shortages, freight takes forever while full trucks sit in parking lots awaiting drivers, and damage from poorly packed pieces coming from understaffed warehouses has escalated time resolving claims. Don’t even get me started with anything that comes from overseas!!! A vendor may have an ETA of 4 months from their plant in the Philippines, but that can easily turn into a year. I’m not ordering anything that isn’t at least “on the water” (a little bit of trade-speak for you!).


All that to say, designers used to LOVE installing all a client’s furniture in one day, with a big WOW factor and HGTV tears flowing (well, maybe not that 😉). It was so gratifying, and it made us feel that all the hard work & creative risk was worth it to see how happy and AT HOME our homeowners now felt. These days, it’s a long slog — a slog for us & a slog for the clients, with installations coming in piecemeal & underwhelming. I haven’t had a completed project since Project Modern Rustic … so I’m still waiting (and hoping) for that emotional high again soon!


Huge REVEAL! -- Project HGD Modern Rustic, a Historical NH Farmhouse with a Montana Twist


You know when big name designers like Heidi Caillier, Erin Gates, Dina Holland, and Rachel Cannon are posting sob stories, rants, and funny reels on Instagram about the debacle of the design/construction industry right now, it’s bad.


This one made me laugh-cry:

RCL Interiors Reel about Lead Times
RCL Interiors Reel about Lead Times

That’s why you’ll see so many more people celebrating and posting small wins & progress shots over fully styled out and beautifully photographed rooms.

And that’s what I’m doing today!


Project Lake Sunapee Sunsets


This project has been more than 2 years in the making, beginning with our involvement with the architectural review & creating a look-book to guide all selections.

The house was finally finished a couple of months ago, but, though we ordered furniture more than a year ago, some of it still isn’t in. (Lead times started out 20 weeks and grew….) The final pieces are supposed to ship this month, so fingers crossed we’ll be ready for the architect’s photoshoot in July!

You can read about this project in the earlier stages at the below links:

In the meantime, here are a some progress shots.



Laundry Room

The dog wash. I love the variegated penny tile! The cafe curtain is in an indoor/outdoor fabric that is easily cleanable and mildew-resistant.





I LOVE the way the brass inlay came out on the island!


Dining Area

We’re still missing the blue striped host chairs. The table is a custom extension trestle table in oak.


Wife’s Office

This is going to be my favorite room. The mural paper cam out perfectly! The custom ash desk is narrow & long to fit the space and houses a file cabinet on the left and a printer pull-out behind doors on the right.


Master Bedroom

The rug that inspired the house’s palette!


Peeks Upstairs

We’re missing all the beds still, so there isn’t much to show. But I love the color variation in this upstairs guest bath!

And the herringbone tile in the shower under the eaves!


I had to brag a bit about my drapery workroom and wanted to show this custom, working Roman shade that perfectly fits the slant in the ceiling!


Project Manchester Maison

I’ve never really shown any inspo or plans for the all of the following 3 projects, outside of the occasional Instagram post. So, there may be some more detailed posts in the future.

Project Manchester Maison is a stunning 1930 Tudor in our state’s largest city, with gorgeous formal gardens. The homeowners have a glorious art collection, and many beautiful furnishings. They bought this house about 5 years ago and are starting to put their own stamp on it, beginning with the master bedroom & an enormous original work of art they wanted to incorporate.

They are big fans of Thomas Jayne’s work, and especially loved the bedroom in this project of his. This project will hopefully wrap by July.

Some “befores:”


And some renderings & progress pics:

All renderings by Annilee Waterman unless otherwise stated.



The design is based upon creating a backdrop for the large painting of the swimmers (below) & finding a way to balance its vibrant color and still have the serene sophistication that the homeowners were hoping for.



The below writing nook will have some beautiful porcelain flower art up the wall to the right.


I told you the views were glorious! The formal gardens are in the yard below this window.


Project Norwich New Old House


This project is located in the rolling hills & fields outside the Norman Rockwellian & impossibly beautiful town of Norwich, Vermont (the hometown of King Arthur Flour!). The house was built in the early 2000s as a Georgian reproduction and to the absolute highest quality. However, it was a little formal for my clients’ more youthful, funky taste.


There was also A LOT of stained cherry cabinetry!!!

Beautiful, but too much for the homeowners’ colorful aesthetic.


I was brought in to work on the bring some color to the kitchen (reworking the cabinetry in the island & the stove hood), create a new lighting plan, and furnish the open living room, game room, and entryway. This project will hopefully finish in the fall.


“Before” pics are from the original real estate listing and show the previous owner’s furnishings.


The dining room will be used as a game room, with the homeowners’ treasured vintage juke box, a console with a turn-table and speakers, and a super cool ping-pong table!



Some renderings & a mood board for the entry below.

Open Living Room/Kitchen


Painting the island, reworking the hood, and judiciously painting *some* of the built-in cabinetry.



The client chose an alternate furniture layout for the living room, but the basic color & pattern scheme is similar.


Game Room

The game room will have this FABULOUS green faux bois wallpaper & a plaid rug!!





The enormous metal map is a part of the homeowner’s art collection.

Project Nashua Aesthetic Era


This project is a brick 1880s Aesthetic style townhome down by the Massachusetts border in Nashua. This place has original gold tinted, Japanese embossed leather wallpaper in the dining room!


There are too many amazing details in this home. My jaw was on the floor the first time I visited!


I was called in to help decorate the front two parlors, creating related but separate spaces. We re-imagined them a Ladies’ salon that’s brighter & airier (for music and afternoon tea) and a Men’s Lounge that’s clubbier, darker (a space for the evenings).

The clients’ wanted a chinoiserie influence. They had also recently bought the green & red hand-knotted rug, so our color scheme grew from there.


A couple before pics, my own renderings (which don’t nearly compare to Annilee’s, but sometimes needs must!), and a couple progress pics below.




Ladies’ Salon

Men’s Lounge

In my rendering below, I couldn’t show a curved rod for the curved wall, but you get the idea.


You get a sneak peek at the Lewis & Wood wallpaper the wife selected on the right side of the below image. This is going ALL the way up the amazing staircase.



Drapery install day below. Those chandeliers are original, with electric AND gas fittings!

This fabric is GLORIOUS with the barely-there green paint.


A little peek at the Men’s Lounge progress. Nothing wrong with lunch-bag brown on the walls! The fretwork cabinet & “wave” ginger jars are chinoiserie, without being *too* chinoiserie. 😉


The curved rods… over which I lost MUCH sleep. They worked out, though!


SO! That’s what I’ve been doing for the last 6 months. I’m so grateful to my clients for such a variety of projects — but each one has in common a lovely family that want to make their house their Home. Hopefully, in another 6 months, I’ll have some better “after” pics to show you!


I’m bouncing around some post ideas, but let me know if there’s something you want to learn about! And stay tuned for that upcoming workshop!

‘Til next time!


7 thoughts on “Sneak Peeks, Project Updates … and the Debacle of the Industry Right Now”

  1. I so look forward to your posts. As always I love your colors and decorative sense. Everything is beautiful. Good work!

    1. Thank you, Gayle! It feels good to be blogging again. I appreciate your thoughts so much!

  2. Oh, my, goodness, Amy! I’ve missed your blog posts, but now I understand how busy you’ve been.
    Love all your work–good luck getting everything delivered and installed!

  3. Such amazing transformations! Love the fabrics, wallpapers, use of color! Don’t know how you were able mutitask (multidecorate) these different visions of “home”.

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