Carnegie designer is making her mark in area
When the Wine Loft restaurant retained interior designer Bonita Farinelli in 2008, its South Side Works building had nothing but dirt floors.
Now it boasts what House Trends Magazine called “an elegant space” with lamps, carpeting and comfortable seating.
Farinelli, who worked with contractors from the beginning of the project, considers her work a success.
“If you can walk in five years later and say, ‘What would I have done differently?' and can't think of anything, then you've done good,” Farinelli said.
Farinelli is owner and designer at Distinctively Different Decor & More, located at 103 Chestnut St. in Carnegie. Working out of the two-story building, she plans design projects as small as one room and as big as an entire house — or restaurant.
While the Wine Loft might be considered one of Farinelli's more famous projects, she also is putting the finishing touches on the Mintt Indian Cuisine restaurant in Dormont.
Other projects include Golla Center for Plastic Surgery in Fox Chapel, where the interior design features 12 different colors, as well as numerous houses in Western Pennsylvania. Farinelli said she can work on as many as five design projects at once.
Dr. Dinakar Golla, owner of the Golla Center for Plastic Surgery, said he hired Farinelli to design the living room in his house after he heard of her work at the Wine Loft. When the time came to design his Fox Chapel office in 2010, he retained her services again.
“We wanted people and patients and clients to come into that space and feel excited, energized and not like they had entered another medical office space,” Golla said. “We wanted people to feel, in essence with the colors, a little more enlivened. I feel people really do feel that way when they come in, that they love the splashes of color.”
Farinelli said she works with clients at their pace and keeps their budget in mind at all times. Her work includes a mixture of commercial and residential projects.
“I would never want to do just commercial or just residential,” she said, “because it stifles the creative impact.”
Farinelli founded her business in 2002, running it out of her Kennedy Township home. She moved her business to the Carnegie building in December 2007, which she called “the worst possible economic time to do that.”
“I had to make a decision on whether I wanted to stay small or keep moving and growing,” she said.
The Chestnut Street building was damaged in flooding from Hurricane Ivan in 2004, Farinelli said, and she worked to improve the interior and exterior looks. The Carnegie Community Development Corporation provided a match grant in the amount of $10,000 for work.
The building didn't have a sidewalk when Farinelli moved in. It now has one, as well as a brick gate, landscaping and a distinctive green awning.
“Everybody says, ‘Oh, that green awning just sets that building off,'” Farinelli said.
The first floor of the building operates as a boutique where people can buy furnishings, lighting, pillows, artwork and much more.
While Farinelli did some work at the Indian Community Center, she hasn't done any major design projects in Carnegie yet.
But Farinelli does have designs in mind for Carnegie. She believes the borough has great potential for second-floor apartments, which would help “bring Carnegie to life.”
“I'm a firm believer that Carnegie is the best-kept secret, and we've got everything to offer,” she said. “Something is always going on.”
Doug Gulasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-8527 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- South Fayette High School backs out of federal lunch program
- Chartiers Valley hires architect, though no building plans set
- Hunt resigns from Carlynton School Board
- Bridgeville, Carnegie library directors take differing approaches to plotting programs
- Oyler: Learning something new from newspaper archives
- Around Town: Businesses open in Carnegie, Crafton, Bridgeville
- Babish-Schultz: Collier man to celebrate 90th birthday