Luxe Home Philadelphia Interior Designer and Buyer, Francesca Dininno, recently welcomed her South Philadelphia neighbors into her home as part of a fundraiser for the Passyunk Civil Association and Design Philadelphia. The event raised money for the association while allowing attendees to gain design ideas and meet some of their neighbors.
Francesca is a first time home buyer and was excited to use her five years of design experience to design her home. She and her boyfriend, Ryan, purchased the home in August 2013 and gave themselves a year to get a main portion of the decorating completed. They have not finished everything, but the space is a clear reflection of her style and how she designs.
After working at Luxe Home Philadelphia for three years, Francesca has refined her design sensibility, gravitating towards manufacturers and vendors that cater to her needs and preferences.  She likes to to use affordable pieces that showcase her style.

In decorating the house Francesca found that rugs were her inspiration and each one helped influence the design of the space.

Instrumental in the design of the living room was the Saturday Night Rug by Surya Rugs. “The room was based around the rug,” said Francesca. “There are tons of striations of color and it is a great jumping off point for the room.”

The rug also has a cool story behind it, making it a fun conversational piece. It is made out of 100% silk using recycled saris. Designing the room around the rug allowed Francesca to bring in color through the accessories. “The larger pieces are neutral in color and I was able to include colorful artwork, pillows, and accessories,” explained Francesca.

Another interesting piece in the room is the Santiago Collection Medallion Pillow, which is handmade in India. The pillow, by Sabira Collection, has hand-applied embroidery and appliqué. 



The highlight of the dining room is the Isadora Console Table by Bungalow 5 Francesca utilizes as a bar cart. The open design and interesting finish pulls your eye in. Prohibition Era photos above the cart provide an ironic twist to the display. This is also a perfect example of a way to use an item outside of the intended purpose.




Francesca wanted a place for Ryan to hang out, a place where the guys can come over to watch the game. It’s a fun, lounge-y area where the guys can kick back and enjoy the Phillies red walls, but the design is still stylish. It has a masculine feel, but thanks to the Phillips Collection Seat Belt Rocking Chair it keeps with the rest of the design of the house. The seat belts provide the masculine feel, while the curved design adds soft lines to the space.






Keeping with the trend of neutral larger pieces and bright accessories the master bedroom utilizes an interesting technique. The walls were painted the same color as the upholstered bed to create a floating look. “The wall color blends with the bed and all you see are the nail heads.” It creates a cool visual in the room.

Francesca fell in love with the Ornate Queen Bed by Dwell. Though the bed is no longer available, Bernhardt Furniture offers a similar bed in the Madison Crown Top Bed.

One design issue that is common in the South Philly row homes is lack of space. “Tight spaces is a design struggle in this area,” explains Francesca. “We did not need the storage space, so we were able to use cigar tables as bedside table.” The Pattern Makers Cigar Table by Regina-Andrew Designs also incorporates the curved edges of the bed.

Since the tables are smaller there was not room to include table lamps. The solution: hanging lanterns.

This is another room where the rug created the design. According to Francesca you can find one really great piece and create the room around the item. Neutral large pieces and walls allow for colorful accessories to be brought in to change the look. The neutrals allow for a versatile room where the color can change based on her changing designer mind.

The Hands Stool by Global Views is a unique, eye catching piece. The neutral color allows for it to be moved to almost any room in the house.





One area of the house that took on a different feel is the hallway. Francesca took the opposite approach of a really bright chartruese color and neutral accessories and artwork for the space. It also features an outdoor runner, which is very durable for a highly used area of the house.





Though the year deadline is up, and the space looks complete, design is a very fluid thing. Francesca is always adding to the look of her home and there will always be another project. Next up, the roof, which currently features a recycled plastic all-season rug.