About four years ago, my husband Mark and I built a new beach house down south. We chose an architectural idea which followed a Southwestern look, incorporating archways, stucco, a tiled roof and an inner courtyard. Mark and I then wanted to continue that same style throughout the interior of the house, but we weren’t sure how to accomplish this. When we looked into southwestern style pieces at local stores, all of the furnishings and accessories looked gaudy and cheap. By the time we called on the custom design specialists from a local furniture shop, we were getting discouraged. We explained that we were hoping bring the vibrant and bright colors of the sky, desert plants and neutral earth tones into the beach house without looking like the interior of a Mexican restaurant. The design specialists understood our concerns and showed us a wide variety of possibilities for custom furnishings, upholstery, tapestries, carpets, draperies and identifiable accessories. We liked the sturdy lines of the couch, chairs, tables and cabinets, which mixed finishes and textiles to express a history and create an eclectic feel. He worked with us to design the complete look of each room of the beach house and ensure a continuity. Heavy dark woods, metal details, bright accents, and colorful fabrics achieved our vision for the home. Because the custom furniture shop makes everything and handles every detail within an on-site workroom, there was no doubt of the quality of the materials. Mark and I were surprised by how quickly everything came together. Although we paid more by going through a custom furniture shop, the end result is worth it.