Angie Hranowsky, a hip Charleston interior designer known for her relaxed, artsy-cool aesthetic, answers your queries.

By Sarah Latta
July 12, 2012
Photo: Julia Lynn Photography

I want a mantel that looks beachy and relaxed, but also chic. What's the rule?
AH: Don't crowd the shelf by filling it with lots of little things, and don't stack it full of picture frames either—sorry, kids! Try for a minimal, asymmetrical arrangement by placing a tall item, such as a palm leaf, on one end, and then shorter and wider pieces, like vintage pottery, on the other. Hanging a mirror is a common way to reflect light at the beach, but take it one step further by leaning smaller paintings—like pretty seascapes—against it for a layered look.

I'm wallpapering a powder room. How do I choose a pattern that won't be outdated in two years?
AH: Stick to simple palettes, or try a textured wallpaper, such as grasscloth, which will probably be in style for a while. Wallpaper companies Cole & Son and Osborne & Little have classic, pretty patterns. Donghia and Kenneth James have beautiful collections of grasscloth in every color imaginable. This might seem obvious, but if you want a print, just don't pick anything that feels too trendy.