Decorating for Smart People

Right before my Furniture Arrangement Workshop last Thursday night, a lady who was attending came up and asked me where remedial students should sit.

decorologist class workshop

Furniture Arrangement Workshop at Merridian 


I believe that anybody – anybody who wants to, that is – can learn how to decorate their house in such a way that  it feels like a home.  Sure, there are lots of DIY sites that give you specific tutorials about how to faux paint lamps or make a jewelry box out of a pile of rocks.  



And there’s tons of advertising that makes you believe that if you buy this one certain thing, your room will finally look fabulous like you see in the magazines.  

decorologist nashville class 


I’m just not sure there’s been a huge focus on teaching specific skills like arranging furniture and art in a way that makes a room feel balanced and complete, no matter what kind of furniture you happen to own. 

arranging furniture


I decided I wanted to teach a class for people who wanted to learn how to do just that.  And not a “Decorating for Dummies” kind of class.  I wanted to create a class that gave the attendees specific ideas and real tools to take away and completely. change the way they look at their homes and their living spaces.

decorating class


Some of the things we focused on included how to arrange your living room furniture perfectly, even when you have odd angles, multiple openings, and even a dreaded corner fireplace.  And how to hang art like a pro. And how to choose fabrics for upholstered pieces that will work with what you already have in your home.  

how to choose upholstery

how to choose fabrics


The class was supposed to be two hours of instruction, but I ended up going over at least a half an hour!  Hopefully, no one minded too much.  I had a great group of ladies (and even a few guys) who listened attentively and asked great questions.

furniture arrangement class


The Furniture Arranging Workshop was hosted by Merridian Home Furnishings on Franklin Road in Nashville.  They provided food, drink, and gift bags for all the guests, as well as some fun door prizes and the grand prize of a beautiful wood coffee table.



That’s where YOU come in – in order to win the coffee table, attendees have to post a photo on The Decorologist Facebook Page of their favorite Merridian find and how they’d like to use it in their home.  “Like” your favorites and help one of the attendees win that coffee table!

merridian home furnishings

Me and the crew from Merridian Home Furnishings


Thanks again to the great folks at Merridian for hosting this event in their fabulous Nashville store!


  1. Patti Hutchinson

    Awesome! Did you video tape the class? I’m in PA and would LOVE to watch something like this! I have an awkward FR and can’t figure out what to do.

    • Kristie Barnett

      Yes Patti, we did videotape the class. I hope to offer it on the website in the near future!

      • alexis

        Me too!

  2. Rhonda

    What a gorgeous dress you were wearing! Would have loved to attend — you want to come to Florida??? 🙂

      • Rhonda

        Yes, we are! Just a short drive to Fort Myers Beach, Sanibel, and Captiva!!! 🙂

  3. Christine

    Great post! So thrilled that you class went swimmingly! I wish I could have attended. If you ever go ‘on tour’ and find yourself in Maryland, I’m there! (well, here)

    • Kristie Barnett

      I’ll let you know if I ever get up that way, Christine!

    • cecilia

      Me too! I’m a Marylander, that makes 2 of us….totally worth the trip, right?

  4. Teresa Wagner

    Would you consider turning this workshop into an on demand format? I would love to buy it!

  5. Kelly

    Wow, Kristie! Looks like you had a fantastic turnout. Congrats to you. I’m sure everyone who attended was thrilled. I see a tour in your future….;)

  6. Annie Vincent

    Looks like a great turn out! You looked great and what a beautiful showroom to hold the workshop in! Congrats!!

  7. Michelle at Faith, Trust, & Pixie Dust

    Wow Kristie, Could you be any more gorgeous?! I love these photos of you teaching your class & I would love to have been there. I’m sure the attendees loved it! I take such joy in your successes because I think you are one talented chick!

    Warmly, Michelle

    • Kristie Barnett

      Oh, Michelle – You are too sweet. And one to talk, Beautiful Girl! Thank you for the complements – I had a wonderful time after the initial nervous sick-to-my-stomachness of it all!

  8. Sarah - Art of Decor Blog

    Oh, I too wish I could’ve attended. Sigh!! Workshops like these are such a wonderful source for those who don’t want to hire a designer, or maybe can’t afford. This must have been such a learning experience and interesting too. Congratulations on such a great workshop.

    • Kristie Barnett

      Thank you, Sarah – would have loved to have met you there!


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