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Belltown Design

Seattle, WA

(23)

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Get a free quote from this professional

Reviews (23)

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5/5

23 customer reviews

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16 July 2019

We consider ourselves lucky finding Belltown Design from a Google search as we sought to find a designer to update the 1914 Craftsman Four Square home I was raised in and purchased from my parents in 1999. Paula, the owner of Belltown Design, began her process by sharing her design vision through beautiful and detailed hand-illustrated drawings of two primary living spaces that provided us a “look and feel” and nailed what we had discussed with her at our initial meeting. From there, she and her team provided a work plan, target timeline and estimated budget. She brought expertise in design and color that pushed us outside of our box and helped us see design components we wouldn’t have naturally gravitated. We talked about our lifestyle, familial backgrounds, and the importance of representing our respective Japanese and Jewish cultures (what we like to call “Jewpanese”) into our home. Paula took this all to heart and when selecting design elements from wallpaper to lighting to artwork, made sure there was a significance we could both culturally and aesthetically appreciate. Belltown Design also took on the role of general contractor which was invaluable. Paula selected every single contractor as if they were working on her own home. The respect every sub-contractor had for our house, for the individuals living here, and for our timeframe, made the situation very livable. From the exterior siding to the hardwood floors, interior painting and wallpaper installation – the execution exceeded our expectations The living room is by far the most utilized room in the house. We wanted to update the look to one that was more contemporary and create a space that was both beautiful and functional. Paula came up with colors, designs, and lighting that we would never have chosen, and after a few compromises, we now have the living space of our dreams. Our big, beautiful sectional sofa with comfy throw pillows and blankets is where we find ourselves each night as we watch our favorite TV shows together. Paula accommodated our budget by shopping for high quality consignment treasures that we fell in love with and complement the sanctuary-like feel of the room. The dining room is our family gathering place. We wanted an intimate room we could use each night for family dinners, yet would also accommodate our large extended family and network of friends when we entertained. We found an online furniture company and Paula worked directly with them and us to select a table that doubled the seating when needed and created the more contemporary look we were aiming for in the redesign. Paula found a stunning Japanese-origami-inspired lighting fixture that reinforced the contemporary aesthetic and is the center piece of the room. Brightly colored artwork and beautiful floor lamps help “lighten up” the original dark fir wood panels and create a warm ambience. The kitchen had been updated in 2000 from its original 1914 build, but still had a few problem areas that impacted traffic flow and storage needs. Again Paula and her team designed a way to solve the traffic flow pain point by recommending a smaller counter-depth refrigerator and incorporating two refrigerator drawers to make up for lost space. Our pantry which was “dark and deep” was blamed for many lost canned goods over the years! Our new pantry is both functional and beautiful featuring layered “shelves within shelves” to promote organization and accessibility. New color on the walls, window coverings and vibrant teal blue counter stools completed the transformation with minimal investment. We couldn’t be happier with our updated kitchen We could go on and on about the beauty and function Belltown Design introduced into our home. We feel fortunate to have found Paula and Belltown Design and they will, with no question, be our “go-to” for other future projects. Paula and team are highly recommended for anyone seeking an experienced designer with a meticulous eye for color and aesthetic without compromising function or quality. Thank you Paula and Belltown Design! More...

Reviewed on Google Maps

15 July 2019

We consider ourselves lucky finding Belltown Design from a Google search as we sought to find a designer to update the 1914 Craftsman Four Square home I was raised in and purchased from my parents in 1999. Paula, the owner of Belltown Design, began her process by sharing her design vision through beautiful and detailed hand-illustrated drawings of two primary living spaces that provided us a “look and feel” and nailed what we had discussed with her at our initial meeting. From there, she and her team provided a work plan, target timeline and estimated budget. She brought expertise in design and color that pushed us outside of our box and helped us see design components we wouldn’t have naturally gravitated. We talked about our lifestyle, familial backgrounds, and the importance of representing our respective Japanese and Jewish cultures (what we like to call “Jewpanese”) into our home. Paula took this all to heart and when selecting design elements from wallpaper to lighting to artwork, made sure there was a significance we could both culturally and aesthetically appreciate.

Belltown Design also took on the role of general contractor which was invaluable. Paula selected every single contractor as if they were working on her own home. The respect every sub-contractor had for our house, for the individuals living here, and for our timeframe, made the situation very livable. From the exterior siding to the hardwood floors, interior painting and wallpaper installation – the execution exceeded our expectations

The living room is by far the most utilized room in the house. We wanted to update the look to one that was more contemporary and create a space that was both beautiful and functional. Paula came up with colors, designs, and lighting that we would never have chosen, and after a few compromises (due mostly to budget), we now have the living space of our dreams. Our big, beautiful sectional sofa with comfy throw pillows and blankets is where we find ourselves each night as we watch our favorite TV shows together. We no longer hesitate to invite friends to hang out or watch a Seahawk game as the room provides enough seating for everyone. Paula accommodated our budget by shopping for high quality consignment treasures that we fell in love with and complement the sanctuary-like feel of the room. From the start, we told Paula we didn’t want to live in a museum, and with two young boys, it was of utmost importance to keep the home comfortable and livable. Belltown Design accomplished that and so much more.

The dining room is our family gathering place. We wanted an intimate room we could use each night for family dinners, yet would also accommodate our large extended family and network of friends when we entertained. We found an online furniture company and Paula worked directly with them and us to select a table that doubled the seating when needed and created the more contemporary look we were aiming for in the redesign. Paula found a stunning Japanese-origami-inspired lighting fixture that reinforced the contemporary aesthetic and is the center piece of the room. Brightly colored artwork and beautiful floor lamps help “lighten up” the original dark fir wood panels and create a warm ambience.

The kitchen had been updated in 2000 from its original 1914 build, but still had a few problem areas that impacted traffic flow and storage needs. With two growing boys and a constant flow of neighborhood friends, we needed a solution. Again Paula and her team designed a way to solve the traffic flow pain point by recommending a smaller counter-depth refrigerator and incorporating two refrigerator drawers to make up for lost space. Our pantry which was “dark and deep” was blamed for many lost canned goods over the years that were eventually found way past their expiry dates! Our new pantry is both functional and beautiful featuring layered “shelves within shelves” to promote organization and accessibility. New color on the walls, window coverings and vibrant teal blue counter stools completed the transformation with minimal investment. We couldn’t be happier with our updated kitchen.

We could go on and on about the beauty and function Belltown Design introduced into our home. Our powder room now showcases a custom-made stained glass window sourced by a local artist and complements beautiful wallpaper and wainscoting. Custom built-in cabinetry installed in the main entry room easily hides away the clutter of backpacks, shoes and sports gear. Our stairwell showcases beautiful wallpaper in a gingko leaf design that is a reminder of the tree in our front yard from my late father’s childhood home. The exterior of our home was updated with new siding, custom lighting and landscaping that incorporates a Japanese maple tree, blueberry bushes and purple lavender – all selected with meaningful “connection” to the people and the history of this home.

We feel fortunate to have found Paula and Belltown Design and they will, with no question, be our “go-to” for other future projects. Paula and team are highly recommended for anyone seeking an experienced designer with a meticulous eye for color and aesthetic without compromising function or quality. Thank you Paula and Belltown Design!
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Reviewed on Houzz

7 February 2019

First of all, this is seriously not a fake review. I know how sometimes you read the review and you wonder how true it is. Anyhow, on to my review. We hired Paula to help us stage 2 model rooms for a brand new 13-story apartments building in downtown Seattle. I didn't make it easy for Paula, both units have some challenges in their layouts - one was a very small Urban 1 bedroom and the other one was a 1 bedroom with columns inside. But, she did a superb job with these units. I have attached some photos here to share and I wish I could show you more. On top of that, she was on time, under budget, and she acquires absolutely remarkable taste in her design. I can't for our next project to begin so I could see her work again. More...

Reviewed on Houzz

26 December 2018

Belltown design did a great job and our "new" condo looks great. Paula is extremely knowledgeable and guided us through every step of the process. The project included new flooring, paint and furnishings. Paula knew all the best places to shop. She and her associates were incredibly generous with their time, frequently going shopping with us to help make the best selections. Her style and color recommendations were perfect. And I can't review Belltown's performance without mentioning how patient she was while we sometimes waffled over the array of choices that were presented to us. I can't recommend Belltown Design strongly enough. More...

Reviewed on Google Maps

27 November 2018

Belltown design did a great job and our "new" condo looks great. Paula is extremely knowledgeable and guided us through every step of the process. The project included new flooring, paint and furnishings. Paula knew all the best places to shop. She and her associates were incredibly generous with their time, frequently going shopping with us to help make the best selections. Her style and color recommendations were perfect. And I can't review Belltown's performance without mentioning how patient she was while we sometimes waffled over the array of choices that were presented to us. I can't recommend Belltown Design strongly enough. More...

Reviewed on Houzz

26 November 2018

Over the course of this past year I have had the pleasure and privilege of working with Belltown Design. I have a business creating custom soft goods such as slipcovers, throw pillows, cushions, etc and she brought me in on a home renovation project in West Seattle. Paula's design talents are spot on and her ability to communicate her vision was wonderful. From a fabricator's point of view, I knew exactly what she wanted. There was no confusion or mystery. Her ideas are fresh and fun and I would not hesitate to work with her again! More...

Reviewed on Google Maps

9 July 2018

Paula's artistic design approach paired well with my own unique Craftsman/lodge/Adirondack style. I was in need of new window treatments, wall paint color, a woodwork refresh, upholstery, feedback on lighting and decor, and a new spatial plan for the living room, dining room and foyer of my 1916 Craftsman home.

Paula took the time to listen to me, and sift through my priorities, introducing all of the appropriate options. She developed a plan of action to reach my design goals, and we designated the appropriate budget within my means.

With expertise in paint color, Paula introduced me to the Farrow and Ball wall paint color collection, helping me to select Perbeck Stone No. 275 for the foyer, living and dining room walls. The color is timeless and I love it, something that I can live with for a long, long time.

Paula and I discussed a variety of appropriate window treatment options from shutters to draperies, helping me to discern what I actually wanted. She narrowed down the multitude of options of drapery fabrics, style and hardware, pinpointing materials to suit my whimsical, personal aesthetic. The project came together with finesse, as Paula procured yardage, hired the sew room, handled complex hardware orders, and scheduled the professional installation. It all turned out so well and I am super pleased with the results!

For dining room chairs re upholstery, Paula helped me to select the perfect Pendleton 100% wool blanket. We purchased two twin sizes so the pattern would be to scale to compose each chair with its own unique wildlife/nature design. The chairs are fabulous, and I will enjoy them immensely. We also explored options for living room furnishings
placement and decor, and re upholstered an antique Adirondack chair that we found together with the perfect gray wool flannel blanket.

I am completely satisfied with Belltown Design from planning stages to results, and I am grateful to Paula for helping me realize my design vision. I would certainly call her again for my next project!
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Reviewed on Houzz

29 April 2018

Paula was fantastic! I thought I'd never find pendant lights I could stand and she found ones that I loved on the first try! She did a wonderful job explaining her recommendations as they fit with the style of our house, color theory, etc. Her partner, Chris, was also very helpful and knowledgable concerning layout, and his drawings were exactly what we requested. Both were able to meet with us on the weekend while our daughter napped so that we didn't have to miss work or family time. What a great team! More...

Reviewed on Houzz

20 December 2016

I started out with a do-it-yourself design strategy for redecorating my apartment. After several costly mistakes and feeling overwhelmed at all the decisions that needed to be made, I reached out to Paula. It was a fantastic decision and she helped me expand my horizons to include decorations and colors that I never would have considered on my own. She spent a great deal of time up front to learn my preferences – that time investment allowed for an extremely efficient process on the back end. Her recommendations were always spot-on. Some of the shopping we conducted together; for other items, she pulled together a curated list for my approval. We ended up with a fantastic mix of decorations that are truly an expression of me. My home turned out better than I ever thought possible. Importantly, she was extremely responsive, flexible to my schedule, and made me feel like an important client. If you’re thinking of working with a designer to obtain your goals, Paula is an excellent choice. More...

Reviewed on Houzz

3 August 2016

Paula's Houzz Profile and Belltown Design Blog (www.belltowndesign.com) stood out to me, so I contacted her to meet in person to discuss aesthetics and to compare notes as creative entrepreneurs. I am a professional photographer with emphasis in Interior Design, and as Paula's colleague, I'm attracted to her work for its strong foundation in color and lighting, and careful attention to spatial layout and detail. Paula has been generous with sharing information as a seasoned interior designer, and our continuing professional exchange has helped me to move forward in my own business as an industry photographer. More...

Reviewed on Houzz

30 December 2015

We chose Paula to help us change our living room from a tired ho-hum space to something better. When we started all we knew is that we wanted everything in the living room to go but we didn’t know what we wanted to replace it with. Paula met with us and talked with us and was able to figure out what style we wanted which I view as a miracle since we clearly didn’t know what we wanted in the beginning! This is what she did for us: She managed the entire project; she designed the fireplace remodel (which is now beautiful); chose the color for the walls and the tint for our hard wood floors; she transformed our entryway and hall closet; she helped me pick out furniture.
In the end, Paula transformed our living room into a truly lovely place –so much better than we had ever hoped.
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Reviewed on Houzz

3 December 2015

As an interior designer at Ethan Allen, I worked with Paula of Belltown Design to provide textile and furniture recommendations for her Seattle clients. She is passionate and fun to work with. I presented my selections and she was decisive and her positive attitude made the design work succeed. I highly recommend Paula for design projects and am looking forward to collaborating with her again. More...

Reviewed on Houzz

6 November 2015

I have known Belltown Design's owner Paula McHugh for some time now, and one thing I always notice about her work - she is compelled by color. It's apparent how our local climate influences her color choices, she seems drawn to bringing in more light, more color and less gray to her projects.
Also, Paula is always out in the design community learning new things and connecting with people. This means she has her finger on new design trends and learns about improvements in product performance, not just how things "look".
Paula is also an artist, and her painterly eye informs her interior design approach.
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Reviewed on Houzz

1 September 2015

It has been a real joy to work with Paula at Belltown Design. She is knowledgeable and knows the ins and outs of the interior design and building industry. I look forward to working with Paula on future projects.

Eli Farrell

Norberry Tile & Plumbing Studio
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Reviewed on Houzz

26 May 2015

Paula McHugh brings a diverse background to her design work, making her a fantastic resource for many different types of projects. She is very well known among the Seattle design community for her insightful blog series and the beautiful results that she delivers to her clients everyday. If anyone is considering working with Paula, I would recommend researching the Belltown Design website and look at the updates posted on the Belltown Design Facebook Page. It speaks highly to Paula's ability and knowledge. More...

Reviewed on Google Maps

7 April 2015

Let us begin by saying that we have never taken on a project of this magnitude before! My husband fell in love with this 1895 Victorian that was in a serious state of disrepair 3 years ago when he found it on the market in our small midwest town. At the time, I felt I didn't need another "project" in my life. But once we bought it and started to bring different professionals on board, I got more and more excited. After we got through the foundation work, the cleaning brick by brick of the exterior, electrical, plumbing, heating and air-conditioning projects, we could then start focusing on the "fun" stuff! Here is where Paula McHugh entered the scene and really made the house the fresh, beautiful and lovely home it now is for us. We emailed almost 100 photos of the "before" state of the house to Paula who then worked the palette from the main stained glass window on the north side of the house above the grand staircase to the 2nd floor. When people come in the house, some of their first comments center around the colors on the walls. They are in a state of disbelief at the transformation that has taken place. Every single room is simply beautiful! From the raspberry dining room to the green laundry room and everything in-between, it's absolutely stunning. In many of the rooms, the original wood was intact whereas in others it had been painted over. All the colors were chosen long distance which is quite amazing! We can't recommend Paula more highly for her grasp of color and having the complete picture in mind as this project took shape. We are very grateful that Paula was on board with us on this journey! More...

Reviewed on Houzz

4 March 2015

Paula is a talented and thoughtful designer. She designed a beautiful color scheme for our new home, both interior colors and exterior colors. She really took a lot of time gathering information about us and the results were amazing. She made a family of 5 all happy with the colors they are surrounded by. She managed to take all of our unique requests and interests into account. She also helped us with lighting fixtures and cabinet hardware. We can truly say that our favorite things in our home are things that Paula helped us choose. More...

Reviewed on Houzz

13 January 2015

Paula is passionate about her ideas and using the right colors and materials to enhance the design. She is an artist and has a wonderful flair for colors and how to integrate them into a successful design. She tirelessly combs through internet sources such as Houzz and Pinterest to find pictures to help illustrate her ideas. Paula is energetic, enthusiastic, and prompt .. you won't wait long to get input. More...

Reviewed on Houzz

19 December 2014

We recently completed a painting project for an east side commercial property where Paula was the design professional who hired Shearer.

Paula is an artist and talented colorist; and her strengths were evident in the final result for this high traffic building. The building is a one of kind day care in Bellevue with unique client needs and Paula captures this with Warm & Ambiance.
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Reviewed on Houzz

12 December 2014

We have worked with Paula (Belltown Design) on three separate projects for our 1922 cottage home. Paula researched are home and neighborhood to understand the 'zeitgeist' of our project. She also spends time getting to know you and making you part of the design process. You can be involved as much or as little in the design as desired. My wife and I are busy professionals with two teenagers, She was really helpful for us in choosing colors, fabrics and sourcing the final products. We are very pleased with the outcomes of all three projects and will not hesitate to use Belltown's services in the future. More...

Reviewed on Houzz

4 November 2014

My condo has a large amount of wall space, and it called for the right wall paint color scheme. With my simple, Asian influenced interior decor, I wanted it to be calming, yet have vitality. Paula worked with me to select just the right wall color scheme that was made up of only three colors, ( yes there are at least fifty shades of gray!) placed strategically as accent walls. This set a foundation for my interior decor moving forward, and provided me with an easy guideline for future purchases. Thank you Paula for setting the stage for a personal space that I love. More...

Reviewed on Houzz

27 October 2014

"Go to Girl for Color"
When asked to select the color palette for a brick mansion in the Midwest
built in 1895 I was thrilled, but a bit nervous. Having a background in
interior design I had experience with color, but it was not my specialty.
Having collaborated with Paula McHue before I knew I could draw on
her expertise as a colorist. Working with Paula was a rewarding experience, as her suggestions and inventive choices brought serenity
to an enormous drawing room, an energy and excitement to a yellow kitchen, and drama to a dining room with the use of a custom mixed
raspberry. She provided continuity throughout the interior with her clever
use of accent and trim colors. Paula was instrumental in giving this neglected house back its grandeur.
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Reviewed on Houzz

30 September 2014

Paula at Belltown Design has been a jewel of a consultant on two different projects. She has been able to take my ideas, expand and perfect them with her knowledge and versatility. She has an artist's eye for color and lighting, and the technician's skill for fabrication. I have her looking at two projects for me and for each of them she has been prompt, mindful of my time and my budget, and has made suggestions that made both projects seem immensely more interesting than I had originally considered. She is truly a visionary in her ability to bring people and their projects together in a harmonious meld and satisfying result. I recommend her highly. More...

Reviewed on Houzz