Dear Nyla:

I have been in my home for 15 years, and I desperately want to update my master bedroom and common areas. I am ready to start making some changes. I just don’t know where to start. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


(1) Create a plan. Everything starts with a plan. Get things on paper. If you don’t know where to start, look at magazines and find something that inspires you. Once you have an inspiration or an “example” of what you want your room to look like, start listing the functions and storage needs you have in mind for the space.

(2) Identify your budget. You have to know how much you want to spend in order to achieve your desired look and functionality.

(3) Enlist a professional, if at all possible. Enlisting a design professional is like outsourcing the headache, leg work, and the worry. Once you have a plan and a budget, you can have magic elves do all the leg work. It is definitely a good way to go.


Dear Nyla:

I’ve been seeing a lot of bamboo bedding lately. It is available in a number of stores in a wide variety of prices. Can you tell me more about the benefits and why price varies so greatly?


I actually sleep on bamboo sheets, and I absolutely love them. Bamboo bedding is becoming increasingly popular for a number of reasons. It is silky soft and comfortable – it feels like silk. It is also naturally antibacterial and superior to cotton in moisture management in that it wicks away water three to four times better than cotton. Sheets made of 100 percent bamboo fiber have been proven to help keep your body temperature 2 to 3 degrees cooler when you’re hot and are ideal for people prone to night sweats.

These sheets are widely available these days. However, all “bamboo” sheets are not created equally. Look for sheets made of 100 percent bamboo fiber – a lot of sheets claim to be bamboo when bamboo is only a fraction of the overall content. The greater the bamboo content the greater the price. A nice set of 100 percent bamboo sheets will cost upwards of $350 per set, whereas sheets with lesser content will cost about half as much. You should definitely add a set to your wish list.


Maria Bailey Benson is owner of Nyla Simone Home, a full-service showroom offering a wide range of design services, furniture, artwork and accessories. Reach her at (480) 422-6178 or


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