Work Space

Tutto Interiors

Who: Based in Northville, award-winning interior designer Cheryl Nestro, left, is recognized locally and internationally for her work. She studied interior design in Detroit at the College for Creative Studies, but attributes her greatest education to her 15 years of experience. While she has a keen eye for detail and proportion, she also has a passion for beautiful things. Nestro merges traditional, transitional, and modern without declaring allegiance to any particular style, making her a leader in the industry. She is the recipient of 30 Detroit Home Design Awards.

Info: 248-348-8886,

Made For a Woman

This Howell residence office was planned with feminine touches in mind, as it’s the workspace for the wife. “The home is on a very grand scale, so in planning for this room, I had to be sure it would be substantial, yet have a feminine touch,” says designer Cheryl Nestro. As she did here, when Nestro begins to design an office, she often asks, Will the space be multipurpose, for both sitting and office work? “Most spaces aren’t completely thought through,” she says. (Not shown here is the room’s sitting area.)

“A shag rug adds a comfortable touch. ”— Cheryl Nestro

Awesome Agate: Omari sculpture, $240,“A perfect accessory to sit on top of, or beside, stacked books.”

Pretty Practical: Vanguard Burrel ottoman (not shown in room photo), price upon request,

The Write Stuff: Sherrill Occasional Masterpiece Collection writing desk, $4,050, to the trade. “It has a mirrored finish —  perfect for the space, as I did not want the classic wood-finished desk,” Nestro says.

Texture & Pattern: Clockwise from upper left — Ottoman’s Donghia Torero reversible fabric, price upon request; Ghiordes Knot Couristan rug in Killington Cocoa, price upon request; F. Schumacher & Co. window treatment fabric, price upon request; and Fairfield chair fabric — Avant Garde, Rivoli, $74/yd.

Study Up on Décor

Crack the books in a cool homework space or dorm room that’s sure to make the grade and inspire good marks.

Styled by Tanya Zager Chisholm

Stuva loft bed, $459, Ikea, Canton,

Stay Focused notebook, $12,95, Paper Source, Birmingham,

Clint mini task lamp, $99, West Elm, Birmingham,

Carved Horizon planters, $35/ea., West Elm, Birmingham,

Heck Yeah! note book, $9.95, Paper Source, Birmingham,

Busy files set of six, $14.95/set, Paper Source, Birmingham,

Kate Spade oblong throw pillow, $50, Bed Bath & Beyond,

Quick-Dry  bath towel six-piece set, $84/set, area JCPenney stores,

Comfort Research Big Joe bean bag dorm chair, $56, Brookstone, Troy,

Skalberg Sporren swivel chair, $39.95,  Ikea, Canton,

Kate Spade New York Random Dot square throw pillow, $50, Bed Bath & Beyond,

Kate Spade New York Vase throw pillow, $90, Bed Bath & Beyond,

Kate Spade New York This is the Life throw pillow, $50, Bed Bath & Beyond,

Kate Spade New York Ampersand square pillow, $50, Bed Bath & Beyond,

Will Power

One more thing to pack for the dorm room: a little lamb

It all started when Cathie Rourke’s mother-in-law, Madeline, was injured in a serious car accident. Her son (Rourke’s husband, Paul) gave her a nondescript stuffed animal while she was in the hospital to help her through her daily challenges; Rourke explains that her mother-in-law found the little animal to be quite comforting.

After her mother-in-law was back home and fully recovered, Rourke — a Bloomfield Township resident and busy mother of three, shown above — was inspired to create a stuffed animal called Will that can be passed from person to person as needed.

“Will is a little lamb,” says Rourke, a marketing manager in the financial industry. “It seemed like the right animal — not showy or attention-getting.” Rourke and a small team of creatives developed a sturdy “Traveler’s Box” for Will and a Life with Will journal for sharing greetings and documenting journeys. In addition, a heartfelt book, Will Found a Way, by Rourke, describes Will’s path and his powers for bringing strength to others just by being there. (The book is illustrated by Pete Moreau of Clarkston, and the book and box designs are by Ilya Hardey of Beverly Hills.) “Will helps people get through life’s difficulties,” says Rourke, who even managed to persuade Dr. Ben Carson, professor emeritus of neurosurgery, Johns Hopkins Medicine, to write the introduction.

“I think Will could be great for kids at college. Going to  to college can be a challenge. Will was designed to go wherever he’s needed, to bring comfort to others. He can even be secretly tucked into college gear, along with notes from family and friends that can be placed in the Life with Will journal, to help the student feel connected from afar.” Hundreds of Wills are traveling through Michigan and he’s been delivered to folks across the country. “People have even taken him on journeys to Prague, in the Czech Republic,” Rourke says, “and Paris, France.” — Megan Swoyer