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Complete Coverage of Things We Love From Concept to Completion

Destination Design-South Africa

POSTED ON: May 26, 2017, BY Dallas Design Group

Traveling opens many doors, and windows for that matter, into our wonderful world of interior design!  Have you ever taken a close look around you when you travel to a different part of the world? If you had, you will have noticed that the culture, the people and the surrounding environment can influence design in many different ways.  Whether it be in the fabrics, furniture, accessories, tile, etc. it all comes together to tell a story for that particular region or destination hot spot.  This past October, my fiancé and I went on a stunning South African Safari—by far one of my favorite trips to date! I could write an entire book on the fascinating culture, the Big 5 and the Safari itself; but for now, I’ll do my best to stay on track sharing the design with you!

Jamala Madikwe Royal Safari Lodge / Game Reserve

From the moment we stepped off the taxi plane, we were truly awestruck and it only grew more beautiful from there.  A mere fifteen minute ride from the airstrip and we found ourselves at Jamala Madikwe. Consumed with what can only be described as a wonderful ‘foreign sensation’ we were greeted by a dramatic entrance.   A series of illuminated decor flanked the walkway and created a restful symmetry to the Royal Safari Lodge.  The Lodge’s inspiring decor successfully combines Colonial style with an easy African elegance sure to please the most discriminating guests.

The main lodge is split into 3 areas (Dining Room, Lounge, and Study) and surrounded by an operable wall to the back veranda.  The neutral dining room is brought to life with a rich red accent color interspersed in the chairs, rugs, and accessories.  A diverse grouping of decorative pillows break-up the carefully assimilated neutral tones by creating depth, contrast, and interest. The multi-colored rug touches each of the pieces, unifying the furniture arrangement. 

The study embodies a masculine and sophisticated design. The heavy furniture pieces are complimented by just the right feminine touch of delicate crystal accessories and feathers. 

The variety of wood finishes is perfectly balanced with the stone on the stunning fireplace fascia.  The panoramic view from the outdoor seating area was absolutely fantastic! The lodge was built behind a watering hole—so while sipping a refreshment at high tea, you’re able to admire the native animals while they quench their thirst as well! The seating arrangements were always situated for the most optimal views. A beautiful scattering of patterned pillows brought the otherwise plain sofas to life by adding color and contrast. 

The Villas

Let's just say the description "Room with a View," was taken to a whole new level. Each of the five villas on the reserve have an infinity pool and an outdoor shower overlooking the Bush. The angles of each villa provide the perfect amount of privacy and entertainment. While enjoying a shower or a dip in your pool, you will see wild game interact and approach the watering hole only a few meters from where you sit! 

Inside The Villa

I don’t think I’ve ever been more thankful for, or appreciative of, concrete flooring in my life. Along with tiles and laminates, concrete floors are one of the best ways to keep your home cool! —and oh boy! Did that cool concrete feel wonderful after a long hot day on the reserve!  Each space had beautiful, jewel-tone, hand woven rugs that complimented the neutral color tones of the flooring and the furniture pieces. 

A 7-foot tall privacy partition wall separated an intimate dining space from the bedroom. The crisp white linens contrasted beautifully against the wood finish on the canopy bed.

Again, we see a beautiful red color appear as an accent in the tiebacks, lamp shades, and rugs.  The bathroom used a combination of warm finishes and natural stone to reflect the incoming natural light.  

We were amazed by all of the incredible animals around us.  We even had a group of elephants join us for breakfast!

Every detail of design in this lodge, contributes to the desired atmosphere it deemed to create.  It was undeniably accomplished! Job well done, Jamala Madikwe Royal Safari Lodge / Game Reserve.

 What part of the world will influence your design?






Designing Outside The Box

POSTED ON: September 21, 2015, BY Dallas Design Group

Hello there everybody! I’m Tawni! Growing up, I was the girl who rearranged my bedroom (and five other siblings rooms) almost weekly! My mother always asked my opinion whether it was on furniture selection, placement, color, or even her outfit for the day. She always thought I had a keen eye for good design. I carried that passion with me to further graduate with a bachelors degree in Interior Design. In Uni, I remember being scolded for thinking too far “outside of the box,” on a project. However, within weeks of working with Dallas Design Group, I was complimented that it was a strong suit of mine. And thanks to our awesome builders—I now see our innovative ideas can actually come to life! Thinking outside of the box I believe is a talent we should all exercise in the design field. So I decided to write my first blog on just that!

Three reasons we should all keep our creative minds young.

Reason #1: Thinking outside of the box opens up an endless amount of possibilities in a design.

Although we can ponder some pretty outrageous ideas—the more inspiration in the conceptual stage, the better!

Reason #2: You’re surrounded by everything you need!

By simply noticing the elements of design in objects and the environment around us—we can be inspired ANYWHERE and EVERYWHERE! Ex. The Line, Color, Shape, Positive and Negative Space, Texture, Scale, Dominance and Emphasis, Balance, Harmony, etc.

Reason #3: What if it works? We never know until we try. Having a supportive team to collaborate with (like Dallas Design GroupLaughing) is vital. It can be scary to deviate from the set way of doing things, but if you’re on auto-pilot all the time you can’t look at things from a different angle. And often, that’s when you find the solution!  

It’s easy to get stuck in our ways, repeatedly doing things the way they have always been done—I mean why not, it’s worked hasn’t it!? But, while thinking outside of the box may initially be used as a tool for inspiration, I do believe thinking inside of the box is just as important. Especially in terms of functionality and longevity! But, the two together are the perfect combination for a fabulous outcome! 


Below are some pictures I took while studying in Paris. These architects and designers obviously achieved unique and beautiful design! 

Louis Vuitton Foundation –Frank Gehry


Eiffel Tower –Gustave Eiffel & Steven Sauvestre 

Louvre Pyramid –I.M. Pei

Musee du quai Branly –Jean Nouvel

Centre Georges Pompidou –Piano & Rogers


We’ve got to keep those creative juices flowing! You have a unique contribution to society that only YOU can give! And remember, nothing ever starts with a harvest—it all starts with a seed that initiates the process. 

“What if the long list of explorers, leaders, inventors, scientists, and more who have each stepped outside the box to bring their own unique influence and ideas never did? What if all of history had never been touched by the bravery and radical choices of those who opened up their minds to the possibilities of new and different things? The concept is mind-boggling. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that your contribution, your uniqueness, is not important enough to pursue, either. For every historic icon, for every hero, for every name that rings of greatness, there are hundreds of thousands who made their own contribution that, while it significantly impacted our society, we will never know by name.”

–Brian McDaniel