How to Remodel Your Bathroom: A Step by Step Guide to Working with Designers and Contractors


Bathroom renovations can be challenging, even for the most experienced remodelers. The bathroom is one of the smallest rooms in the house but requires a lot of forethought. With hundreds of decisions to make, and a lot of back and forth, you need a good designer and contractor to make the project go smoothly.

Whether you desire a spa like experience or a bold guest bathroom, at Armina Interiors our goal is to guide you in the right direction, help you manage the design process, and, of course, have a little fun. These are the steps we take with our clients to make sure they get the perfect look, every time.

Before starting your renovation, it is imperative that you pick  your interior designer before your contractor. Doing so in reverse can slow down the process. Prior to beginning construction, designers pick every product and fixture and consider every aspect of the layout (the plumbing, electricity and space) to make sure the process and results are flawless.

Step 1: Pick your priorities:

We sit down with you to discuss the priorities of the space.

These are the questions you should consider:

  1. What are your habits? Your bathroom should be both beautiful and functional. Consider you and your families habits. Do you and your partner leave for work at the same time and you need a double vanity? Do your children have enough space to get ready? Do you have products and accessories that need storage? Your bathroom investment should solve these problems.
  2. What type of environment do you need? Are you looking for a space to seek solace? Do you love to luxuriate with salts and oils and dream of a spa-like environment? Or are you someone who likes a quick shower and need a a no-nonsense, efficient style space?
  3. What dynamic items would you like to add? When renovating your bathroom, think about all of the extra bells and whistles that you would love to add. Additions add to the personalization and style of your space. If you love to listen to music or podcasts, add audio or video elements. Heated floors, lit mirrors and heated towel drawers are the epitome of luxury. Extra shower heads, extra jets and a steam attachment create a mini spa at home.  
  4. What’s your budget? Consider your budget to be at least 10% more than what you originally considered.

Step 2: Pick your contractor

The contractor and designer work together throughout the entire process. Together we make your dream come to life.

Make these considerations prior to hiring your contractor:

  1. Your contractor should come with a proven, established and skilled crew.
  2. Communication is the key. Your contractor should be a good listener, with an attention to detail. Some trades think the job is done if it’s functional, but thinking about your aesthetic and making the space work for you is just as important.
  3. Your contractor should be reliable- they should follow through on commitments.
  4. They should be creative problem solvers.
  5.  They should have the ability to anticipate challenges before they arise, this helps to minimize surprises and frustration.

Step 3: We develop a layout:

One of the most exciting parts of the design process is seeing a visual layout and making sure everyone (client, designer, cabinet designer and contractor) are on the same page. We showcase the drawing and elevations and it kicks off the construction phase. 

Step 3: We manage the process

We love the construction process!  This is when ideas come to life. It’s exciting but many times full of surprises and challenges. Our job is to soothe you, the client. We stop by the job site frequently to oversee the sub-contractors and ensure work is progressing on schedule and as planned. We meet with you weekly to address any of your concerns and to review the process.  

Contact Armina to create a space for your lifestyle.


5 Reasons to Choose Wallpaper over Paint

Architectural interior photography for Rochester Michigan Interior Designer | Living and Dining Rooms with Wallpaper and Accessories

Wallpaper streamlines your entire aesthetic and pulls together your look adding a unique blend of color, texture and depth. This isn’t to say we don’t love paint. With so many amazing hues to choose from, paint can be a great option to add interesting character to your home. But with so many varieties, wallpaper provides a layer of style that is incomparable.

Wallpaper adds texture:

Using a studded wallpaper for the dining room, Armina Interiors created a charming landscape creating a conversation piece and another layer of elegance.

From laser printed to silk, the amount of wallpaper textures are immense. Texture adds a layer of style that completely draws your decor together. It pops and adds interest to the room. The studded wallpaper in the above image adds drama and creates a cozy entertainment area for your dinner party guests. Paint applications rarely, if ever, mimic the same level of  texture. Wallpaper can have metallic accents that glisten in the light or 3D shapes and patterns that emerge from the wall.

There are a variety of styles and patterns:


From larger scale prints to smaller geometric patterns, in the realm of wallpaper, there are so many options. This is another interesting way wallpaper adds a distinct character to your home. There are so many unique shapes and styles that can adorn your walls. Printed patterns, which add so much dimension, are not the only options when choosing a style. Recently, the trend has shifted towards larger prints of work and multiple layers of cool shapes and graphics. The best part, if you can’t find the pattern or image you desire, we can always customize it. With new trends in digital printing, you can literally create any design to decorate your walls.

Wallpaper provides maximum impact especially in small spaces:


Adding wallpaper to a feature wall in a large space can change the style of the room, but adding a bold print to a small space greatly increases the impact. Redesigning a dining room or powder room with wall-to-wall wallpaper transforms the energy, light, and feeling of the space. Small rooms require a special balance of verve and reserve. Easily impress guests by transporting them into another world when they go to freshen up.


It’s art:

Wall & Deco Family Affair Contemporary Wallpaper

Wallpaper designs today aren’t the usual repetitive floral patterns your grandparents favored. With major designers and artists collaborating on new work all the time, today’s wallpaper is art. The wallpaper company Art & Deco work with some of the best artists in the industry to create works that add original, organic, flair to any space. Art, one of the most important components in design, can cover your entire wall.

Wallpaper can hide a multitude of sins:

Wallpaper adds another layer to your walls, forming a protection and depending on the location, can be more durable than paint. Another bonus is that is covers any flaws in the walls, completely hiding uneven, or dented areas. Wallpaper works wonderfully and is a great choice in the bathroom because it adds a layer of soundproofing, plus many can be made water resistant with a coat of varnish.

Contact Armina to create a space for your lifestyle.

Stylish Outdoor Spaces

The white washed floor boards, all white accessories, and grand tropical plants paired with the sky blue seating from Paulo Lenti will provide your patio an island vibe. We love how the designer of these chairs played with the woven texture for an updated sophistication beyond wicker.

With the proper elements you can transform your backyard, porch or patio into a stylish green oasis fit to be enjoyed all summer long. The most amazing outdoor spaces not only look stylish, they provide a place for entertaining, rest, relaxation and shelter from the summer heat.  These are some of my favorite inspirations for creating a lavish outdoor space.

A Romantic Escape at Home

Image from Shop Terrain

After a long day of work, this back patio makes for a great place to unwind from the day.  The table and chairs add texture and interest and the various versions of lighting create a romantic mood.  The bounty of beautiful plants, instantly sweeps you off to another place altogether.


A Cozy and Quiet Getaway

Images from Flikr, Pantaleon y las decoradas and Elle Decor

By bringing some of your home comforts outside, you can create a quiet place for respite without having to leave the the house.

I adore the Asian vibe of the first photo.  The low seating makes everything feel grounded and the sea foam green and coral tie in with nature.  Fun lighting changes the mood of the space and makes it look far more elevated.

Even if you have a small patio, you can add comfort to your outdoor space.  Adding a chaise lounge creates an intimate and relaxing place to catch up on your summer reading, while the curtains add a sense of privacy while blocking the heat of the sun.

The pergola in the last photo exhibits beautiful climbing vines and incredibly comfortable wicker seating. I love how they kept everything cohesive and let nature take the spotlight; the light blue cushions on the sofa and the soft grey tile don’t overpower the space.



An Entertaining Hot Spot

Image from Elle Decor & Mikki Design Home

When the weather warms, it’s time to move the party outdoors.

The backyard in the first photo looks incredibly sophisticated with a giant sofa to host everyone comfortably.  Several coffee tables provide ample space for guests to set down their drinks and the large fence adds a sense of privacy, great for the city or the country.

The beach patio has such a pop of rich sorbet colors that look incredibly lush against the white of the patio and the beautiful view of the ocean.  The low cushions and sofa scream relaxation.

Dine Alfresco

Images from Elle Decor and Vogue Mexico

There is something so wonderful about eating outdoors. There are so many creative ways to design an outdoor dining area that still feels relaxed.

The climbing vines on the pergola creates a Mediterranean vibe while providing ample shade. I love how the grain and the shape of the wicker chairs appear both relaxed and traditional.

The mix of textiles, geometric patterns and  textures add a modern twist to the table top.  Adding soft cushions provide your guests with a comfortable place to sit while they dine.

A Few Simple Additions Can Change the Entire Environment

Plants are an easy way to bring any kind of style to your environment. These giant planters allow the greenery to take center stage.

Outdoor lighting can change the mood. Solar lights work really well; just put them in the ground and forget about them!  Use lighting creatively to add style, create a walking path or place them under plants to add drama.

We won 3 Detroit Home Design Awards!

We are so thrilled to announce Armina Interiors has won the Detroit Home Design Awards 2017 in the following categories:

1st place: Use of Color

“Like a page out of the Jungle Book, this Rochester Hills room is all about the wild things. Finished in 2016, this space was designed for a young boy passionate for animal life and nature.  The designer created  the youthful space with a vibrant green and blue color palette and  sophisticated spin of luxe textures – from the zebra rug to the cornice board and the custom pillows to the zigzag pouf – with. A custom mural by Lori Fillmore (that at first glance seems real), papier-mâché animal heads along with a gallery wall of custom-framed bugs gave the room an artful edge fit for a budding biologist.”

“Armina Interiors created an energetic and charming space!”

Judge Kyra Hartnett


1st Place: Children’s Room


“When creating this space, the designer was challenged with giving the room its jungle-inspired look without creating too much of a theme. The answer was to give the youthful space a sophisticated spin by mixing luxe textures — from the zebra rug and the cornice board to the custom pillows and zigzag pouf — with a vibrant green and blue color palette. A custom mural, papier-mâché animal heads, and a gallery wall of custom-framed bugs give the room an artful edge. To ensure there’s space for schoolwork and relaxing, a window seat, loft bed, desk and casual modular sofa complete the room.”


2nd Place: Sustainable Design

“A restored kitchen never looked so fresh. In this space, the designer chose to keep the homeowner’s traditional maple cabinetry as it was in great condition. But the homeowner desired a dramatic new look, so the designer had the cabinetry painted white and added horizontal cabinets with milky glass fronts and high-shine hardware. Choosing chrome hardware gave the kitchen a more contemporary feel. Above the island, hammered silver pendants were added to give the room a warm glow and brilliant quartz countertops kept the space feeling airy and modern. A textured backsplash was a warm contrast to the smooth reflective surface of the quartz. A new wine rack and flowing shelves were added for both interest and convenience.  Of importance to the homeowner was creating an inviting and family friendly feeling throughout, so the designer chose to add textures like a stone-washed linen window shade and bar stools with linen covers to keep things casual and comfortable. The addition of wicker chairs, a beaded chandelier and a reclaimed wood top table only furthered that cozy feeling. A glimmering mirror tray and an oak windowpane cabinet filled with curiosities and dinnerware is not only functional for entertaining but gives the room a warm and personal touch.”










Add life to your kitchen with simple accessories

The kitchen is usually the main gathering space of the home, no longer just a place to cook, it should be designed as a pivotal room in the house that is relaxing, attractive, and functional.   I believe great design is what sets it apart, and with accessories and artistic elements you can add spice and liven up the environment.   

Making the most of your kitchen:

Before designing or renovating a kitchen,  my goal is to understand my client’s vision, how they live, what they love and what they desire to achieve in their space.  

Some of the questions I ask:

Do you cook, eat out, or order in?

Where do you eat? At Kitchen island, dining table or coffee table?

Do you entertain a lot? Are your gatherings formal or casual?

Your lifestyle addresses how your kitchen should be laid out.  Each of these questions can completely change the layout and function.  A well designed kitchen addresses functionality while allowing you to customize the layout that suits your unique needs.  

Consider the flow:

The open layout is such a big trend in home design.  In most cases the kitchen should reflect the character of the main living space.  When guests can see your kitchen island from the living room you’ll need a seamless transition and a decluttered space, meaning, your design choices and essential accessories are of equal importance.  

Style and Function:

I love designing kitchens that offer a solution for clutter-free countertops but some kitchen accessories are essential and can be functional and attractive.  This is by far the easiest way to add color and texture.  Well designed, everyday accessories allow your kitchen to look gorgeous and the process of cooking to feel luxurious.

Add personality with art and lighting:

When working on a kitchen design I put a huge emphasis on lights, for both function and form.  I don’t even need to mention that lights under the cabinets are a must!  Lights over the island can be the focal point of the entire kitchen, use dimmers to create the ambiance.  Good lighting sets the mood for any occasion.

When investing in art, don’t forget about your kitchen, it can transform the energy, add dimension and inspiration.  Go beyond the standard kitchen art (like a bowl of fruit)  in lieu of something with a bit more luxury to make your morning coffee routine feel a little brighter.  Art will pull together your overall design aesthetic and, just like a backsplash, it can serve as a pop of color and add life to your environment.  

Bar carts and trays increase storage and beauty:

Trays and carts always look glamorous and  provide the perfect extra storage space for items that don’t quite work on the counter.  They can easily hold extra dishes and glassware, and offer up a great solution for purely decorative objects such as flower bouquets and candles.  When hosting dinner parties, a wheeled cart can bring important items straight to your guests allowing you to stay present at the gathering.  Even if you don’t entertain, they work for every style and are so multifunctional,  it’s a great place to hold your full bar, coffee station or kitchen tools.