Done right, interior design
turns your home into your sanctuary.

Why Hire an Interior Designer?

Since Fairhaven Furniture started offering interior design services over 20 years ago, we’ve completed hundreds of home and office projects in the Northeast. And we’ve noticed a few common reasons why people ask for our help:

No Time
Maybe you’d love to do it on your own, but life has many other demands. Hiring us ensures the project actually gets done — we handle the job from the start to finish, so you won’t have to.

Reassurance of a Professional
When investing in home furnishings, it makes good sense to consider different viewpoints and opinions you can trust. Our expertise in space planning, aesthetics and available furniture options are all integrated in a functional solution that expresses your personality and taste.

Too Many Choices
Most of the pieces we offer are custom-built. This allows our furnishings and accessories to fully reflect your style or the unique requirements of your home, but the selection process can get overwhelming. Let us help you navigate these choices to find the perfect solution.

New Home
With bare walls and empty rooms, there’s no better time to envision how you’d like to use a space. Whether an older home or new construction, we make a point of reflecting architecture and surroundings in our designs. In many cases, we begin design well before your move-in date, so your furniture is ready to go when you arrive. We also incorporate pieces that you’d like to re-use from your previous home.

Life Circumstances Change
A shift in your phase of life can be an opportunity re-evaluate how you use your home. New family members arrive, or family members move out. A new job or hobby may change how and when you spend time in a specific room. You may be ready to downsize or simplify your home — or maybe just freshen it up for a new season. Understanding the reasons for your change is an essential step in our process, and it affects every part of the final design.

How Do Interior Design Services Work?

Our interior design services are essentially free. We charge a small fee when the appointment is set, based on the scale of the project and our designers’ travel time. For example, for a customer living in Hamden looking for a redesign of their living room, the cost would be $250. The $250 is then applied to your purchase once a decision has been made.

Over the years, we’ve refined our interior design process to five natural steps. This is just a framework; we’re happy to adapt to your particular needs.

1. Set an Appointment
A home visit is an essential part of the process. Although we do many in-store consultations, it’s best for us to see the space, and to meet you in your element. We’ll find a time that’s convenient for your schedule.

2. Home Visit + Interview
Working in a team of two designers, we take measurements of the room, windows and doorways, and items that will be staying in the room. We photograph wall colors of the rooms being re-designed, as well as adjoining rooms, so there’s a blending of the spaces.

During the home visit, we’ll ask questions about your preferences in colors, materials, layout and style, as well as the mood you wish to create in the room, and how you’ll be using the space.

Visits typically take about 30 – 60 minutes per room, but we’ll take as much time as needed for this critical part of the process.

3. Draft Design
Within a week, we’ll have a draft design completed, including a scale floor plan with movable furniture models, suggested new pieces and material swatches. We’ll set an appointment for you to come by the store to see the draft design — where we’ll have access to all of our style books and swatches, in case changes need to be made.

4. Ordering + Tracking
We’ll source furniture through our preferred manufacturers, or we’ll have something custom-built for you by one of our partner woodworkers. We’ll carefully track your order while your furniture is being built and keep you updated about timing.

5. Delivery Day
Our delivery team will have your floor plans with them so they know exactly where to put each piece. Your satisfaction is our top priority — if any questions arise, your designer will be contacted.

Let’s Get Started!

Meet Our Designers

Colleen Gala

Owner + Designer

“For me it’s about problem solving — people approach us for help, from indecision or because they have a tough space. We can make a more personal connection with interior design customers, because we’re in their homes. We can go deeper into their needs by seeing the space where the furniture will go, and how it will fit in their life.”

Background

At Fairhaven Furniture since 2005; Industrial Design degree from Wentworth Institute of Technology

Design Inspirations

Space planning, Industrial and product design, Indian textiles

Lao Triffin

Owner + Designer

“It’s very satisfying when we can find a solution where it seemed that none existed, such as with a difficult room. It’s part of your life, it’s your every day. But we can help transform a space into something that goes beyond the every day. A well-designed home can both nourish and excite its occupants, and give them a genuine pride in their home.”

Background

At Fairhaven Furniture since 2003; studied electrical and computer engineering at the University of New Haven

Design Inspirations

Form and function, live edge furniture, woodworking

Joe Shelfo

Designer

“You can see the effect of good interior design on people’s faces. It’s more than just getting a new couch — there’s a sense of clarity and excitement in the redesigned space. We get to see how it improves our customers’ daily lives, bringing creativity into their home, positive energy, a sense of balance and well-being.”

Background

At Fairhaven Furniture since 2009; Interior Design degree from Paier College of Art & Design

Design Inspirations

Forests, woodworking shops, attention to detail

Emily Mitchell

Designer

“I believe that everyone deserves a space that feels like home. The objects we choose to surround ourselves with — furniture, textiles, artwork — these are the building blocks that turn a room into a personal haven.”

Background

At Fairhaven Furniture since 2023; Interior Design degree from Paier College of Art & Design

Design Inspirations

Color and pattern, architectural details

Daniel Finks

Designer

“I live for the excitement that a single, well-designed piece creates in a client’s space. Good interior design is personal — it tells the observer something about the unique life perspective of the person who lives there.”

Background

At Fairhaven Furniture since 2023; Furniture Design and Engineering degree from Kendall College of Art and Design

Design Inspirations

History, functionality, proportions, texture