I love this photo because it adds a dramatic romantic feeling with just the lighting. Look at the different shapes and textures. It's a beautiful setting. The days of everything matching are over and more and more people are going for an eclectic look. Adding this much drama to a space ensures a one of a kind look. What could you do to give your home a look of it's own?
Set a mood! Accent space! Create your own style! By using a few tried and true decorating techniques, and spending a little time doing some pre-planning, you can definitely express your own unique tastes and help shape the interior of your home.
Professional decorators’ techniques for using texture, shape and pattern are often well kept secrets. But the fact is that these techniques are not that difficult. You can use elements of texture, shape and pattern to create winning combinations for your home. The key to your success is careful planning.
Texture, for example can be used for contrast. Can you visualize the texture combinations of bricks and silks? Texture can be found in drapery and upholstery fabrics, wall coverings, area rugs, tapestry wall hangings, metal sculpture and iron work accents – just to name a few. It’s the artful combination of mixing unique textures together in a room that give that room its distinct personality!
Utilizing pattern in your room’s overall design scheme can be just a bit trickier. A large pattern will make walls in a smaller room seem even smaller. Fabric patterns can add a strong accent in any room. Rich floral patterns in lively colors will add pizzazz and surprise when used in upholstered furniture pieces.
Shape, too, will change a room. A round or oval area rug could add just the right touch to a living room seating arrangement. Window treatments can also be designed to add interesting shapes to your windows and ultimately your entire room.
Careful planning lets you use the elements of shape, pattern and texture to their maximum effect! And when teamed with color, you’ve created a distinctive look for your home. It’s fun. It’s easy. And I guarantee you’ll be thrilled with your new look!
When planning a new room redesign, window treatments can usually be ordered after other furnishings have been purchased. As a general rule of thumb, hard window treatments (blinds, shades, verticals, cellulars, etc) can generally be installed two to four weeks after the order is placed. Remember these are custom ordered specifically for your windows!
Fabric treatments vary in greatly in delivery time. The more elaborate the design, the longer it may take to create and manufacture. Some windows actually require the designer to make a template to insure proper installation of the finished product. It's not uncommon for a custom made window treatment design to take approximately 6 to 8 weeks from order to completion.
The next step in the process is scheduling the installation of your window treatments by a professionally trained window treatment installer. All reputable designers have installers on their staff who are truly craftspeople when it comes to insuring a beautiful, trouble free installation. Often, another week or two is needed to schedule this installation.
The kitchen has long been the center of the home. It's where we go to get warm, inside and out! Many people have memories of smelling mother's baking, drawing us to the kitchen. Perhaps for this reason, when we are entertaining, guests seem to migrate to the kitchen.
How about making your kitchen even more inviting by incorporating a loveseat, settee or chair and a half complete with ottoman? If your space is limited, perhaps just an occasional chair would be more appropriate.
Above all else, make your decorating scheme reflect your personality. Are you a gourmet cook? Then, by all means you should incorporate unique utensils and gadgets into your décor! Wooden spoons, spice graters, whisks, copper molds, etc are all great kitchen accessories. These items could be hung on the walls for dual purposes: decorating your kitchen, and also easy accessibility for cooking.
Window treatments for the kitchen are wide and varied. In fact, today more and more homeowners are opting for uniquely designed fabric top treatments, usually placed over a privacy treatment. Stagecoach valances, mock throw swags, and tabbed valances displayed on unique decorative rods really fit the bill!
So have fun with your kitchen! Be sure to let your cooking personality shine through
One of the fastest ways to cut your energy bills it to make a few simple improvements in your lighting plans. Using new technologies – all the rage right now in the lighting industry – can actually reduce your lighting energy use by 50% to 75%! That’s a huge savings! Can you just imagine what would happen if every home in America reduced their lighting energy by 50% - 75%?
Here are a few tips:
USE ENERGY EFFICIENT FLORESCENT LIGHTS!
Florescent lamps are much more efficient than incandescent bulbs and actually last 4 to 10 times longer. And although compact florescent bulbs cost a bit more than incandescent bulbs, they certainly pay for themselves by saving energy over their lifetime. So in areas of your home where you need to provide high- efficiency lighting, please make your next bulb purchase a compact florescent (CFL) lamp.
TURN OFF YOUR LIGHTS!
Such a simple solution, and yet sometimes so hard to accomplish! When you’re not using a room, lights off! And if it’s hard for you to remember, then consider installing timers, photo cells, or occupancy sensors to reduce the amount of time your lights are on!
USE TASK LIGHTING!
What an effective solution to energy savings. Take a critical look at your room, and rather than brightly lighting the entire room, consider designing an effective task lighting plan!
THREE WAY LAMPS/BULBS!
Here’s another great way to keep your lighting a low levels. The soft glow and ambience created in the evening by dimly lit lamps is definitely appealing to the eye.
With so many of today’s homeowners desiring to expand their living spaces, it’s only natural to incorporate the GREAT outdoors in your next decorating project. Whether it’s a porch, patio, sunroom or four season room, outdoor decorating can become a beautiful extension of your home.
And, as with other rooms in your home, it all begins with a plan. Do you entertain a lot? Is your new outdoor space primarily for your personal and family enjoyment? What activities might be taking place in this new area – outdoor/indoor games? Dining? Reading? Relaxing?
Once you’ve determined your needs and wants, it’s time to begin! And with Mother Nature as your backdrop, why not be a bit bolder in your color selections. Creating a bright and dramatic outdoor color scheme is sure to take your new space from dull to dazzling!
Furniture styles? There are a myriad to chose from – all sizes and shapes – as well as a countless all weather fabrics in gorgeous designs. Wicker and rattan continue to be the most popular and comfortable seating selections.
Area Rugs? Yes! For sure! Nothing helps set off a conversational area better than a well designed area rug. Today’s all weather styles will add a definite touch of design excitement to our new outdoor space!
Lighting? Of course! Especially, if you intend to use your space for reading and relaxing. Task lighting options are virtually limitless!
Window Treatments? Not something that you typically think about when designing an outdoor space, but creating a beautiful, functional and practical window treatment can actually help add even more ambiance to your new room’s style!
You know the old saying, “measure twice, cut once?” Taking that extra step to make sure your calculations are just right, can mean the difference between excitement and disappointment on the day of new furniture delivery.
Floor plans to scale are a great “first measure”. But the best way to make sure you’ve checked twice is achieved with the use of a little painter’s tape! Taking the dimensions of a piece of furniture and “taping” them out on the floor where you’re thinking about placing your new furniture is a great way to bring your floor plan to life! This is also a great way for you to actually “see” the space you will need to accommodate your new furniture pieces. Painter’s tape is designed to be inexpensive and easy to remove without harming carpet, tile or hardwood.
In addition, remember to check the size and clearance of doorways and turns – especially on staircases, hallways and landings to be sure you can access the room and final area of placement of your new furniture pieces.
So the next time you’re not quite sure how a new piece will look – or how much space you will need – take a moment and TAPE IT OUT!!
One of today’s hottest design trends is a return to nature. From fabrics to wall coverings to accessories, our living spaces can easily reflect an embrace of Mother Nature.
Why the growing interest in bringing a little bit of the outdoors inside? First, we long for peace and quiet at home. As our lives outside our homes become more harried and stressful, we are turning to our homes as retreats, and decorating them with furnishings and accessories we find soothing and comfortable.
Secondly, our increased awareness of the environment and the quest to preserve its beauty has led to a desire to bring bits of it home.
Here’s a look at several areas of interior design that can get you back to nature!
Fabrics: Bouquets of colorful botanicals with flower, leaf and vine prints are perennial favorites. Imagine relaxing in a lush garden where flowers flourish all around you – soft violets, delicate lilies of the valley, bold hydrangeas and stately red tulips. Fun, faux animal prints remain popular – even zebra stripes and leopard spots will lend an air of the exotic to any room.
Colors: From gorgeous garden shades to the rich fruit tones of deep raspberries, soft banana yellows, plums and strawberries. Even nature’s neutrals are also playing their important role – wheat brown, amber waves of grain, the creamy-whites of magnolia blossoms and terra cotta corals all highlighted by an amazing azure blue sky. All these colors are uplifted by nature’s green – the color that will dominate our interior decorating in this decade – from deep, leafy green to teal, to greens with a yellow tint.
Furnishings: Today’s worn weathered wood styles, featuring more of a matte finish with lighter wood tones, are even appearing on contemporary furnishings. Sofas and chairs are being covered in natural cotton – and sport trims of raffia and hemp. Wicker and rattan furniture mixed with warm wood tones lend themselves to more of a casual style of decorating.
Wall Coverings: Like fabrics, florals and botanicals are blooming in their popularity. Don’t worry about too much pattern; these blooming designs look great when mixed with stripes, checks or even plaids.
Window Treatments: Floral print drapery fabrics designed in a traditional swag and jabot treatment will definitely give any room a perennial touch. And by coordinating your “blooming” window treatments with furniture, bedding – even your linens, you’ll find yourself surrounded by Mother Nature’s beauty.
Our love of Earth and the resurgence to preserve it, influences us to bring nature’s colors into our homes and our everyday lives. And what better way to start soothing the soul than in your own home. Relax! Enjoy! You deserve it!
Gone are the days when you only had the choice of a desk and chair for your home office. Today’s home office furnishings options are all but endless. So, first things first! As with any decorating project, you first need to determine what you want to accomplish in your new home office, and then match those needs with the right furnishings!
While many people purchase a conventional desk, more and more are requiring extra space. If you fall into this category, you might consider a workstation. With an L-shaped configuration, you should find that it provides approximately twice the work space of a traditional desk. Plus, the storage options are virtually endless – cubbyholes, drawers and cabinets are all designed to store office essentials.
Another popular workstation option is the office armoire: two tall doors open to reveal a drop down work surface and plenty of storage space. Available in a multitude of design styles and furniture finishes, these popular pieces can easily fit into any design style.
Chairs, too, have vastly improved in terms of aesthetics as well as comfort. This is one place you can really put a personal stamp on your home office. Who says you can’t work from a traditional wing chair? Or even a country style Adirondack chair? Once you’ve determined you style preference, you next need to give careful consideration to the ergonomics. If you spend a majority of your time working at a computer, you may want to opt for a chair with separate adjustments for lumbar and lower back support, arm width and height, seat back angle and seat height.
Another extremely important consideration in creating the home office of your dreams is storage. Books, files, mail, magazines, and a plethora of other paperwork are essential to any full-fledged office – and as we all know – every piece of paper deserves its own home. Take stock of how many linear feet of open and closed storage you need right now, then multiply that figure by 25% to 50% to allow for future growth. Once you’ve come to a comfortable conclusion, consider various storage options – everything from conventional steel files to traditional wood cabinetry.
And finally, don’t forget those furnishings that will put the “home” in “home office”. Decorative lighting, an ottoman for put-your-feet-up comfort, even a home entertainment unit can add up to an office ready for any job. And of course, those finishing touches – custom window treatments, area rugs, artwork and collectibles will all help to say, “This is my space!”
Given the right decorative approach, you’ll find it hard to leave work when 5 o’clock rolls around!
Designed to meet the needs of today’s homeowners who want to expand their living spaces “outdoors” Sunbrella fabrics are among today’s most important fabric choices. So, if you’re wanting to take advantage of the “great outdoors” in your own backyard, utilizing Sunbrella fabrics in your new décor might just fit the bill!
Originally designed and used in awnings, and then boating, Sunbrella fabrics have been in existence since 1961. And as today’s homeowner’s began creating additional living spaces “outdoors” Sunbrella fabrics began taking on a whole new look. Featuring many fabulous designs, colors, and patterns, you’re sure to find a fabric that will fit your new décor beautifully.
And, even before “green” became a prominent force in home decorating products, the manufacturers of Sunbrella fabrics were committed to exceeding industry standards for environmental stewardship. Here are a few ways that Sunbrella fabrics protect air, earth and water, while producing beautiful, high performing textiles.