Podcast, Ep. 208: designer Ariene Bethea

How to Decorate Ariene Bethea

Designer Ariene Bethea

Our guest today is interior designer Ariene Bethea from Charlotte, North Carolina. She has a décor shop called Dressing Rooms Interior Studio, where she offers full service interior design and a carefully curated mix of vintage finds collected by Ariene herself.

What You’ll Hear on This Episode:

  • How Ariene got her start in interior design
  • How Ariene was able to open her own brick and mortar shop
  • Breathing new life into vintage pieces
  • Factors that go into pricing upholstered pieces
  • Ariene’s perspective on the energy of color

Decorating Dilemmas


 I’m a Norwegian listener here! Thanks for an inspiring show.

My favorite color is green (earthy tones). I’m decorating a room with tall vaulted ceiling and good natural light. What is the best way to use my favorite color: paint walls and ceiling green and supply with furniture etc. in matching colors, or paint with matching color and choose greens on some statement furniture and small items?

Kindly regards,



Hi Gunhild!

Paint the walls first! To me, color evokes emotion. When people come into my home, I want them to feel cozy and welcomed with the color. Always go with the color first. When you walk into the room, you’ll immediately see your favorite color first. If you do an earthy green on the walls, you could have a cream or slip colored sofa with wood tones and black accents. Or, you could do something with a pattern in the green family but with a different tone depending on your own style and aesthetic. Your greens don’t have to match, tones give dimensions.

Good luck!

Hello wonderful ladies and host! Thank you so much for your entertaining and educational content. I look forward to your podcast every week!

My husband, 3 kids, and I just moved into an open concept home back in October. We’ve been loving it and I think I have the furniture arrangement down (although we need side tables!) but I’m stumped on what to do with the TV wall, as well as how to add color to the room. I would love to add tones of blue, green, and some pink. The rug is probably too small but it was from our last house when it was just the right size. I wanted to get your lovely Bethesda curtain panels but with the 7′ wide window and door I would need 8 panels and couldn’t quite go for the cost knowing my kids would get their hands on them so bleachable panels it is for now. I would love to paint the walls but I’m not sure how to do it without painting the whole house- the TV wall is open to the stairwell and loft upstairs. One of the downsides of the popular open floor plan concept I guess! As a side note, the ficus came from my aunt and while the top dropped its leaves I’m working on reviving it and it’s coming back. The window and door are south facing so there’s lots of natural light which is great. Any and all advice you can give would be so appreciated! Thank you so much!


Hi Jackie!

You could bite the bullet and paint the entire room all the way up the stairwell a color you love. Your second option is to paint the ceiling a fun color, blue or grey, which will carry all the way into the kitchen. Taking your curtains down to bleach them sounds like a huge pain. The blue panels you describe would hide imperfections and be more practical. A small console table behind the sofa might lure your kids away from the drapes, so you wouldn’t have to worry as much about grubby hands. If you’re brave enough, go all blue or do just the ceiling and drapes. Maybe at some point, add some light fixtures in the living room and kitchen to draw your eyes to the blue ceiling. Get some mood lighting like candles, floor lamps and table lamps with different lampshades.

Good luck, Jackie!

Show Notes:

Please send in your questions so we can answer them on our next episode! And of course, subscribe to the podcast in Apple Podcasts so you never miss an episode. You can always check back here to see new episodes, but if you subscribe, it’ll automatically download to your phone.

Happy Decorating!

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Abbey Nolte

Abbey is a homegrown Georgia peach who loves a fresh take on Southern design. When she’s not working behind the scenes of the How to Decorate blog and podcast, you can find her cheering on the Appalachian State Mountaineers and spending time with her wheaten terrier, Charlie.