Designer Helen Wright shares a client’s recent family room makeover

When Helen Wright walks into a room, her eyes immediately begin seeing its potential. She can envision modified furniture, new window treatments, fresh art—all while making sure the room stays functional and livable for its owners.

When she met area resident Barbara Brandner, who visited Wright’s Mason store—Interiors Plus—last August, Brander was seeking expert help to redesign her family room. Brandner and her husband considered moving to a more functional home for their kids and grandkids to visit, but eventually decided to stay put—investing their resources into make their current home more practical and inviting for family gatherings. One room that was top of their list? The great room, a space Wright says is her favorite to redesign.

“I love the great room because that’s where people actually live,” Wright explains. “To me, that’s where they are most of the time so I like to make it their comfort zone—a place where they can live and feel happy.”

Having worked in the field for more than 40 years, Wright’s experience speaks for itself. The interior designer owns Interiors Plus, where clients can come in to gather new pieces and inspiration for their home, and most walk out with an appointment scheduled for a personal home visit with Wright.

When Brandner invited Wright to her home for an initial consultation last August, she knew she wanted to create a more inviting space in the great room. The goal was to turn her traditional space into a more ‘transitional’ area, according to Wright, highlighting a softer and more modern look. Wright utilized grays and off whites to give the room a neutral look because Brandner enjoys decorating for each holiday.

“QUOTE FROM BRANDNER about how she likes to decorate for all holidays and why the neutral tones were important to her.”

Before she began the redesign project, Wright spent time studying Brandner’s aesthetic throughout the rest of the house and asking questions to learn her priorities and what item(s), if any, would be important to keep in the new room.

“There were things Barb wanted to keep – certain pieces of furniture, her TV – so we worked around those items,” Wright says. “She had a unique u-shaped chair that we knew we wanted to keep so we used some of her existing pieces and incorporated them into the design.”

Knowing family would be a big part of Brandner’s great room redesign, Wright purposely created a conversational space that would allow for family gatherings without compromising the room’s coziness when it’s just Brandner and her husband at home. In addition to a sofa and chairs, Wright utilized two ottomans for extra seating and a cocktail ottoman perfect for serving food and beverages when company comes.

Some original design elements, like the window treatments, were important to Brandner to keep, but Wright was able to update their fabric to feel more modern. Another priority was making sure the room looked visually appealing when you first enter.

“When you walk into that room from the other parts of the house, you see the backs of the sofa and chairs, so we wanted to make sure there was something visual to catch your eye rather than a standard back,” Wright explains.

She selected pieces with nice wooden feet, and the chairs featured wood on their backs, creating the look of a window pane.

“Small touches like this add a lot of visual interest,” Wright says.

Now when she walks into her great room, Brandner says she feels ready to entertain or cozy up on the couch for the evening.


Wright loves seeing happy clients and says the end result is what motivates her to follow her passion.

“I think the satisfaction of clients being so happy and comfortable in their space when we’re done with it…that’s what drives me,” Wright says. “Knowing they use it much more now than prior to you redoing it, it’s very gratifying to me.”


Ready for An Update?

Visit Helen Wright and her team of design experts at Interiors Plus.

6203 Snider Road, Mason