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Thom Filicia

Home design chat with Thom Filicia

Thom Filicia is the design expert on "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy" and the host of the Style Network's new show, "Dress My Nest." He stopped by to give our readers fabulous home style advice.

Thom_Filicia: Hi all, this is Thom Filicia will be on shortly to answer your home style questions!

gusto__Guest_: I just moved into a condo with an open floorplan on the first floor (kitchen/dining/living rooms). All walls are now white. How do we handle painting the area(s). There is a column along one wall giving some division between living/dining areas. Do we do all the same color, complimentary colors throughout, or one darker accent wall and all other walls lighter color? Thanks for your help. The white walls are starting to get to me!
Thom_Filicia: I would choose a color that works for all areas to unify the space. In addition, I would consider two accent colors that have a stronger value for two of the anchor walls-- one in the dining area, one in the living area to give integrity to the loft space.
style_girl__Guest_: Hi, I have a room that is rectangle in shape and 3 of 4 walls have windows. What do i do for curtains?
Thom_Filicia: Consider a stainless steel wire curtain hanging system that is unobtrusive and will seamlessly hold your two walls of curtains together. I would recommend a simple, unlined linen panel in a light color or natural to white so that it doesn't overwhelm the space.
miked__Guest_: I was wondering what the new hot colors are for this year? Is that chocolate brown and light blue still in style?
Thom_Filicia: Chocolate brown and light blue have become classics. However, brighter, punchier colors such as great lime green, beautiful peach and salmon also work. Mix them with pops of white to keep it fresh.
courtney__Guest_: How is boston
Thom_Filicia: Had dinner at B&G Oyster House last night - best lobster roll I ever had! Love Boston!
Jilly05__Guest_: Hi Thom! I will be moving into my new home within the next few weeks. Any tips on creating the perfect Tuscan-style kitchen?
Thom_Filicia: I would consider painting the lower cabinets in a classic Tuscan red with a bit of an aged finish. Then, leave the top cabinets in a natural wood finish or paint in a coordinated, Tuscan maize or something to that effect. Don't forget the Italian pottery and a great antique light fixture with an Italian heritage.
Abita__Guest_: Thom, I have a very ugly , but very comfortable, couch in an extra room. I had a store-bought slipcover on it for awhile, but it got faded and didn't fit right. I spent hours making my own with pins, it was orange and looked decent, and different, but it got wrecked during a party - it basically just fell apart. Custom covers are too expensive for me. Any recommendations on how to make it look good?
Thom_Filicia: Making your own is always risky. Go online and find a pre-made sofa slipcover site and they'll give you options that from can be very affordable, in sizes and designs that will fit your needs.
lml__Guest_: We're building a house and the main floor will be stained concrete, a beautiful rich brown. The walls will be a mossy green and the ceiling a creamy white. My husband is adamant that we have to have a solid, cream-colored rug but we have two young boys and that's so not happening. Any thoughts on what would work?
Thom_Filicia: With children, I would recommend a heathered or striaed texture for the rug so as to not show the grape juice and Oreo stains! However, I would choose a color a relationship to the green on the walls such as a beautiful, rich honey color rug or for something a bit more calm, maybe a taupe-y beige.
style_inept__Guest_: Thom, what are your thoughts on wallpaper? I'm trying to dress up an awkward stairwell in my condo. My mother suggested using wallpaper since it's a small space. Naturally, I made a face because I associate wallpaper with my grandmother, in other words, as something really old-fashioned and dated. Thoughts?
Thom_Filicia: Wallpaper has come a long way. There are so many cool wall coverings and papers, from textures to patterns that are fantastic. However, I would recommend wallpapering only the wall side of a staircase and painting the rest of the room so that it has a fresh look.
Char__Guest_: Hi Tom, Is that really you?
Thom_Filicia: No - it's my twin sister....just kidding! It's me..
Char__Guest_: Tom, can I please have a job as your personal assistant?
Thom_Filicia: Go to, and send me your resume to Thom Filicia Inc. The address and info is on the site. XO Thom
echo7alpha: First, thank you for your visibility and your service to the gay community. Second, what are the best wall colors to make a room seem as though there is more daylight?
Thom_Filicia: I love robin's egg blue. It's clean, it's classic and it feels fresh and lively. Let the sun shine in!
Thom_Filicia: Also choose a really great ceiling white in a gloss finish to create depth and height.
WhatToBuy__Guest_: I am looking at buying a new house. I found a great one, but the ceilings are at the minimum height. What are the best strategies to make the ceilings appear higher?
Thom_Filicia: See above! And while you're painting the ceiling, skim-coat the ceiling too!
cma__Guest_: 26 year old son's first home, new construction, 3 level condo... suggestions for window treatments for 6 foot sliding glass doors?
Thom_Filicia: Never use a vertical blind! For sliding or French doors, always use a curtain so the door can operate without fully opening.
Merv__Guest_: I have a condo with 16' high ceilings and white walls, a fairly typical renovated warehouse style. When is it appropriate to have framed photographs and paintings displayed one over another - I have seen this done, but I am not sure I like it. On the other hand, I have much artwork to display.
Thom_Filicia: I think a mixture of artwork from paintings to drawings to photography, makes for a beautiful composition if handeled in a thoughtful way. Just be careful about the placement and it will look fabulous!
joni__Guest_: LOVE U.....i am doing my kitchen over...i want the handles to be forks, spoons , would i do that?
Thom_Filicia: They make forks, knives and spoons hardware for kitchen cabinets. Look for them on the internet - it's out there!
Stacer__Guest_: Hi Thom- Thanks for doing this! I am about to move into a new apartment- the first time living alone- and am trading in all my hand me downs and buying new furniture. What is the first piece of furniture you recommend buying and what are inexpensive places you recommend?
Thom_Filicia: First thing you should buy is a good bed and then a sofa. Crate and Barrel is a great place to start and they have great financing.
Char__Guest_: My kitchen is stuck in the 70s and I cannot afford to update it. What are somethings that I can do to make it more appealing to the eye?
Thom_Filicia: Go with it! Make it into your 70's dream kitchen! Don't fight it and make it look intentional and fabulous. Retro can be very cool.
style_inept__Guest_: Thom, what do you think of stainless-steel appliances from a design perspective? I'm going to be in the market for new kitchen equipment.
Thom_Filicia: I love the professional look and they add great value your home. If you have children, investigate finger-print free stainless steel. You'll love me for it!
garry__Guest_: Hi Thom..Loved you on Queer Eye! I have a friend who has a curved window and wants to put a window treatment of some sort, what would you recommend?
Thom_Filicia: Go to Levelour or similar blind company for pre-made atrium window shades. If the windows are standards, they'll make the shades in stock sizes.
Thom_Filicia: Thank you everyone for joining me! I'm sorry I don't have time to answer all questions. But I'll be at the Decorating from the Floor Up event tomorrow at The JFK Library and you can meet me there. The event is to benefit the Susan G. Komen for a Cure. Go to for tickets (they're only $25) or come to the VIP party afterwards for $100. The event starts at 2:00 PM - and it's amazing!
Thom_Filicia: My many thanks to Boston!
Thom_Filicia: Thom