Q&A with Ace Hardware’s design expert Katie Reynolds + info on local MKE events


I noticed in your portfolio that you often paint accent walls. This is something I also do with clients and in my own home. However some designers feel you should paint a room in it’s entirety.  What are your thoughts? 

Accent walls are a great way to bring in an accent color without overpowering a space.  It is also a nice way to tie in a color palette between rooms.

How do you get a client to overcome any apprehensions on using bold colors in their homes?  

I like to show my clients a design concept as a whole at the beginning of the project so they can see the big picture.  This helps sell them on the use of bold colors or patterns.  Having a strong design vision is important in feeling confident about bold choices.  Even if you are not a professional you can use a picture that you love and follow that as a guide.  


I loved the baby rooms you designed. Is there any color combination you’re itching to do for a kid’s space?  

I love coral and aqua together with a touch of charcoal. It sounds risky but when used in the right way it would be amazing.

Most people think of gray and beige as neutrals. What are some unexpected neutral colors that people can use?  

Dark charcoal grays, black, and whites are great neutrals that give a strong impact and look great paired with just about any color!


Lastly, with the economy, many people are getting degrees but aren’t working in their fields right away. What would you say a designer needs to do to get in the industry? 

I would say to do what you have to do to intern or even work for free for a designer just to get that experience. Find other ways to get involved, such as working for a retail store, showroom, art gallery, or as a product rep.  Go to local design events and stay involved.  You never know when that next opportunity will present itself!

Katie Reynolds, a licensed and registered interior designer with a bachelor’s degree in interior design is the owner and principal designer for Lilli Design LLC – an interior design firm based in Dallas, TX.


Katie will be on hand Sept 21st to provide local customers with her color consultations at Milwaukee’s Elliot Ace Hardware in West Allis, WI. On the same day participating Ace Hardware stores in the Milwaukee area will be hosting a Color Consultation event from 9am-5pm with local Milwaukee interior designers where Ace customers can receive a one-on-one, 15 minute color consultation with an interior designer. At each consultation, designers will be on hand to answer homeowners’ color and interior design questions, provide them with color recommendations, share design tips and trends & help with home design projects. There is no cost to participate, however space is limited and customers must book their consultation in advance at here. Customers should also bring room photos to assist the designers at their consultation. Also each participating Ace Hardware store will also be hosting a BOGO event on the same day (9/21), where for every gallon of Clark+Kensington you buy, you get one free!

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