Tami Michaels: Inside Out

Firefighter Stair Climb for Leukemia

Firefighter Stair Climb for Leukemia

On Sunday, March 7th, a friend of ours, Trever, is going to be one of the 1,500 firefighters climbing 69 flights of stairs in the Columbia Tower. We are trying to raise donations to sponsor him. This money will go to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) for research, patient, services, advocacy and education. 

If you would like to support Trever's efforts in the Scott Firefighter Stairclimb, the easiest way to donate is online at:


Just click on the "Donate to Trever" box.

Here's a video of the first group going up to the tower:

Protect Against Fading

Protect Against Fading

As an interior designer, protecting the beautiful furnishings, carpets, wood work, and art are a concern that I try to educate my clients on how to protect their investment against fading. 

Home owners with newer windows often believe that their new windows protect their home furnishings from fading.  Most new windows feature Low E Glass (low emmittance glass). The low emmittance protection is usually achieved with either a microscopically thin layer of either metal or a metallic oxide coating.  In most cases even with the more expensive windows we still see significant fading within the home.  The Low E glass and factory tinting are not enough to protect against fading.

I encourage my clients to use a window film that is constructed from a nano ceramic.  The nano ceramic film is clear, so it does not tint the view.  The nano ceramic defuses the light and acts more like a polarized set of sunglasses.  

The first photo shows the cellular and fabric shades that do offer some protection.  The pull down cellular shades perform well at defusing the light, yet the shades are not attractive and tint the view to an unattractive brown color.  Fabric shades which block the light must be pulled down and block the view.

The second photo is AFTER showing a nano ceramic window film application on a window.  The view appears more defined, and the view has less glare.  The view appears to be enhanced as if peering through a polarized set of sunglasses.  Nano ceramic window film reduces the UV light up to 99.9%, which helps eliminate fading on home furnishings.

"Mad Men" yourself

"Mad Men" yourself

It's all the rage right now. Everyone is talking about the show "Mad Men," and now it's time to bring Mad Men into your home.

Above, you can see the "Mad Men" version of me. You can also Mad Men Yourself! No one wants a complete time warp in their home. But a few pieces can create a timeless look. It really can be a full time project; the estate sales, craigslist, eBay, thrift stores. And then there's the process of restoration or reupholstering.

Sometimes all you need is to search for the perfect lampshade and harp. Pictured above is a lamp from Casa Victoria and a charming pair of lamps from an estate sale.   Amy Wells, the set decorator of  "Mad Men" has some great tips: "Old wooden furniture, particularly American walnut and Scandinavian teak, is so forgiving," says Wells, who also swears by an oil-based rub-on product called Restor-A-Finish.  


Don't be afraid of reupholstering the perfect sofa - it's really simple, actually.   "There are great things surrounded by horrible things, so you have to go through and look at things slowly without getting distracted by other stuff. You have to do the editing," says Welles. The upside is that prices tend to be lower, and with so much stock, prices may be easier to negotiate. "I try not to make a store owner defensive by saying this is too much," Wells says. "I always ask, 'What's your best price?' It sounds much more positive."  


This is a headboard that is similar to the Draper's. It would look fabulous if it were upholstered.

Some great deals can be found a second-hand stores in Los Angeles like Furniture House LA, and Casa Victoria. They are more than happy to arrange shipments to Seattle. And don't underestimate the great finds on Craigslist and eBay

Locally I recommend the Fremont Vintage Mall.  When it comes to my secret treasure trove for discovering pristine vintage furnishings, I love the Freemont Vintage Mall.  This location is a virtual cornucopia of remarkable gently used consignment furnishings from the 50's, 60's and beyond.  Wear comfy shoes and allow yourself a few hours, you never know what you will discover.  Everything from Eames chairs, sputnik lamps, men's magazines from the 50's, 60's and 70's, to movie memorabilia all rotate through this antique consignment center.

Stain Removal Tips From The Pros!

Stain Removal Tips From The Pros!

- For oil, pour baby powder on the spot, let it sit for a few minutes, gently rub the powder in with a cloth and then bush powder away.
- For pencil marks, pour rubbing alcohol on the spot with a cloth underneath and tap dry with another towel.
- For suede, an eraser takes most stains out. Just make sure it's a white eraser. 

- For red wine, pour white wine over it and press dry with a towel.
- For pet stains on carpet, my favorite product is http://www.spotshot.com/.

2010 hot colors: Aqua and Fuchia!

2010 hot colors: Aqua and Fuchia!
Grace Home

Aqua is the most important new color for 2010 and arguably for about the next five years.  This is a new color that you can add to a boring room and update it without redecorating the whole room.  I suggest painting the kitchen aqua; it is a remodel in a can.

New accessories are a great way to update any room in home.  The editor for Elle decor stated on my show there are fantastic accessories available at places such as Target.

New bedding or even something as simple as a lamp.  In this economy there are not many people that can redecorate every few years, I feel like new accessories and a fresh coat of paint can easily refresh a home for just a little money. New accessories are a great way to update any room in home.  The editor for Elle decor stated on my show that there are fantastic accessories available at many places. The picture above is of a lamp from (Sub)Urban Home.
This is the set of Paris Hilton's BFF.  I do not believe that most people envision a pink Paris palace, yet it is far more popular than I think you would guess.  On my show I now get many emails asking how to incorporate bright fuchsia and magenta.

They're Back!

The IDCW, a lobbying organization sponsored by two special interest groups, the ASID and the IIDA, is back to once again try to pass legislation that would significantly regulate the design industry as to who can call themselves and work as interior designers. (see proposed bill http://apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/summary.aspx?bill=1608&year=2009). 

Last year and in years before these special interest groups failed to gain enough support to pass such a bill into law. The bill has returned and designers and associated trades are quite concerned. I have covered this debate in the past and I will state that at no time in my radio career have I witnessed such an outpouring of emotion. I want to be clear about my opinion; I believe that the public is NOT at any safety risk from interior designers and we don't need such a law. If such a law is passed hundreds of jobs would be lost, and countless small businesses would be adversely affected. Remember that we all ready have tons of building codes and professionals licensed in real safety areas (architects, electricians, etc), and there are no gaps in protections.


Further, Washington State officials concluded that there is NO need for such a law, and further that it will cost the state government $465,000 next year alone. I believe the actual cost will be much higher.  In states where designers fought such legislation, the IDCW lowered the requirements of the bill just enough to get it passed, and then they came back in following years to further restrict and regulate all interior designers. That is their tactic in this state as well.

This is about a cartel that seeks to control an industry and eliminate its competition based on untruthful scare tactics.

In some states where this has became law, designers are facing fines of $1,000 a day and cease and desist orders. The right to work litigation in every state that has passed such a law is cost prohibitive, and ultimately these litigation cost will be paid by Washington tax payers if this bill passes. It is clear that IDCW has returned. This show should be a hot topic.

I am asking people that share my concern and oppose this bill contact their legislature, http://apps.leg.wa.gov/districtfinder/.  The Labor and Commerce Committee are voting on this bill as soon as next week and we urgently need your support.  For more information go to http://www.protectdesignfreedom.com/.

My guest tomorrow, Saturday January 30h is Patti Morrow, Interior Designer, who formed a national grassroots organization opposed to this legislation. http://www.idpcinfo.org/

Join me today, broadcasting live from The Bellevue Home Show

This year, there's a lot to offer at the Bellevue Home Show. I think it will be the best ever.  See the latest in home cooking at the Albert Lee Appliance Cooking Stage.  Plus cooking stages and green solutions in the Sustainable Living Section.  And one of my favorites, the Wipliance Theater Experience.  There are many new and exciting products for your home and everyday living.
It's happening all weekend in the Meydenbaur Center, located at:
11100 NE 6th St.
Bellevue, WA 98004

I'll be on the first floor, right in the entrance and would love to see you there!

Brace yourself for LACE!

Brace yourself for LACE!

I know what you might be thinking, "Lace???  That's what my grandmother has on her table!"  Well, I am here to tell you it's back, baby!  It's in fashion as well as home accessories. But this isn't the Laura Ashley kind of lace, think more along the lines of lingerie for your sofa; and more modern.  Lace adds texture and a feminine touch when used in small doses like throw pillows and blankets. 


I know you think I'm crazy, but that's okay! I'm fully prepared for spring 2010 when I can say "I told you so."



If you happen to be shopping for a chandelier, this website has amazing deals under $300. THREE HUNDRED DOLLARS, people!

At that price, I just might have one in every room. Pictured above is a Murano chandelier in emerald for $297.00

The only downside is that you have to assemble it when it arrives. But the good thing is that it also ensures it arrives safely.


I ask you to take a minute and call your legislator today to oppose HB 1608 and SB 5514, the Interior Design Licensing bill.  This bill affects all of us in a negative way, and the House Labor & Commerce Committee is having a hearing on the bill this Friday, January 15th, so this call to action is urgent.  Please call 800-562-6000 today.

 When you call, urge the Committee members to oppose the bill because:

• There is no threat to public health and safety from interior design. In 2005, the Washington State Department of Licensing did a sunrise review of interior design legislation and found that no threat existed and that no licensing of interior designers was necessary.
• The state, the economy, homeowners and small businesses can't afford this legislation. This legislation is a direct threat to the survival of many small businesses, putting jobs at risk - something Washington cannot afford. Customers of interior design services will see costs go up as competition decreases and designers will have to pay unnecessary fees if they actually do qualify. Established firms will go out of business, not because they do poor work or have done something wrong - but simply because they do not meet a very specific set of criteria.
• There is no gap in protection. An umbrella of governmental oversight already protects the public and ensures that those involved in design projects follow the appropriate building codes and laws. Plan reviews, building inspectors, code enforcement officials and licensed professionals (architects, engineers, plumbers, contractors, electricians and others) all verify that any work specified by interior design professionals meets the code and safety requirements enacted to protect the public.
• If passed, this proposed law will cost Washington hundreds of thousands of dollars to administer and defend at a time when our state has a large budget deficit and numerous vital programs are being cut.  We cannot afford this.

For more information I recommend you go to the website of Washington Professionals Protecting Design Freedom, www.wppdf.com.


Note:  The opinions expressed in this blog are my own and do not neccessarily reflect the opinions of komonews.com or Fisher Communications.

Popcorn Ceilings

Popcorn Ceilings

Know your enemy-

Popcorn ceilings became popular in the 50's all the way through the 80's.  It has a bright white "cottage cheese" texture, often contains asbestos, and has noise reduction benefits. It is cheaper than painting as it can be quickly and easily sprayed on in new construction and is also useful in masking ceiling defects in older homes, such as stains, uneven ceilings or poor workmanship. 

Plan your attack-

Using a spray bottle with water, moisten (don't soak) about four small areas in different parts of your ceiling. Scrape about a 1 sq. inch patch from each area into individual plastic bags with a small putty knife. Send these samples to a lab that can determine if there is any asbestos in the samples.
After determining there is no asbestos present.....
Ready, Aim, Fire!

There is nothing pleasant about this experience. In fact, it might be the worst thing you ever do in your life.
- Use that spray bottle and water to moisten an area of 2 to 3 square feet. Alternatively, you could us a long nap ceiling paint roller dipped in water. The objective is to wet the popcorn enough to soften it and make it "easy" to scrape off without soaking the ceiling above.

- Once a section has softened, use an 8 or 10 inch taping knife to scrape the popcorn off the ceiling.

- Move across the ceiling, section by section, moistening and scraping until all the popcorn is gone.

Another option-

If this seems too scary, it is always possible to just install another layer of drywall on top of the popcorn. You will lose about an inch of ceiling room, but it might save you from pain and torture.
Good luck!

John Carlson Pleads his Case to Santa

John Carlson Pleads his Case to Santa

John Carlson was spotted Saturday with Santa, pleading his case that he has been a 'good boy'.  "I want a toy Harley 'this big'", said the conservative pundit. "Look, we both like the color red."   The skeptical Santa gave Mr. Carlson a candy cane to prevent a scene.

Santa promised to give Ken Schram a crushed candy cane at best.  Santa thought a lump of coal would be too good for Mr. Schram, and would cause him to go into a rant on climate change.



Toys for Tots is run by the US Marine Corps Reserves and is sponsored by Fisher Communications.  A Toys for Tots event was held at Olympic Hot Tub in Fife on Saturday, December 5th.  Toys for Tots and Fisher have raised thousands of dollars in new toys and cash donations in 2009.  Go to any Olympic Hot Tub location to drop of your donations.  Thank you!

Holiday Entertaining

Holiday Entertaining

The holidays are already here and I get very excited about table settings for the holidays. It's the details that go a long way.

Below are items that I've found in various stores ranging from $2.49 to $39.00 that could make such a difference on your table - whether it be for a party of 40 or just a dinner for two. Out of all of them, I've had the best luck at Target and Pier 1 in finding things that I never knew I needed until I see them.

West Elm - $38.00

Pier 1- $2.95

Pier 1-$3.95


Pier 1-$3.95


Target- $39.00


IKEA- $2.99


Target- $39.00

Thanksgiving Centerpieces

Thanksgiving Centerpieces

With all the rushing around, not to mention money, flowers are usually the last thing that we think of for the Thanksgiving table.  I love making centerpieces, yet I keep it very simple.

I am a big fan of thrift shops. In fact I love them. Purchase something unusual such as a pitcher instead of a vase.  I happen to like tea pots as they make great low profile centerpieces. My special tip is to rubber-band your flowers together in bouquets. I like two groups of flowers in one vase.

Snip snip!  Simply cut off the blooms and float the flowers. (Anyone can do that)

For apartments and condos (bistro tables), small teacup arrangements are charming.

Oprah's favorite combination for centerpieces is fruit and flowers.  A bowl of fruit and a few rose stems. Voila!

The Cornucopia of plenty; we have so much to be thankful for.  I found several of the cornucopia baskets at thrift shops and you can simply place squash, mini pumpkins, small gourds on a platter for a gorgeous centerpiece.

Everyone's favorite!  My husband Guy is the cook in our house and he really does garnishes his turkey well every year.  Whole Foods has a variety of crabapples, curly kale and mini pomegranates that are beautiful.

Share your ideas for Thanksgiving Centerpieces

Have a joyful Thanksgiving!