Archive for December, 2011

Design is in the Details

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating

The difference between okay design and amazing design is in the details. This adage is true whether your decorating style is traditional or contemporary. The little details and finishing touches are what make the designs more than just furniture, paint and flooring in a room. Design details are the ways we can personalize our decorating and make the house feel like our home.

Decorative trim on upholstery, curtains and pillows is an easy way to add pretty details to your décor. Tassels, ribbon, fringe, and pompons are all traditional trim elements that can be interpreted to work with most decorating styles. A ready-made pillow or curtain can become a custom curtain with a bit of trim or ribbon to the edge.

Nailhead trim is another traditional design element that can work with other styles. Nailhead trim can be found on sofas, chairs and headboards as well as ottomans and other seating. Nailhead trim can be added to an existing piece of furniture as an easy DIY project.

Adding a ribbon trim or textile paint can customize a plain area rug. Cotton or wool rugs can be stenciled and painted with fabric paint. Even sisal and jute can be painted. Adding a colorful decorative edging to an area rug is another way to personalize.

Other ways to personalize your décor with details include decorating readymade lamp shades. The same trim that is used for textiles can be used on lampshades.

These little details will add interest and make the room reflect your own personal style and taste.

Keeping Things Clean Around the House

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Care and Maintenance, Hints, Tips and Advice, Tips and Advice

For the majority of us, cleaning is not on the top of our lists on things we like to do around the house. Yes, there are those amongst us who really love to clean, but for most of us it is called a chore for a reason. After doing our own non-scientific research we’ve come to the conclusion that doing a little bit of cleaning every day is the best way to stay on top of things around the house.

Now there is a difference between cleaning and de-cluttering. You can have a clutter-free home that is still dirty and vice-versa. Even if you aren’t the neatest person, you can still have clean floors and dust free tables with a little bit of daily time and effort. Keeping ahead of things is the best offense when it comes to cleaning and clutter.

Other options for cleaning products include organics and homemade cleaning products. As with traditional cleaning products, you’ll want to use the right product for the right job. Make sure you aren’t using something too abrasive on surfaces that can easily scratch like stainless steel sinks or ranges. Blogs are a great place to find recipes for homemade cleaning products that use simple food safe ingredients like vinegar and baking soda. Even homemade products can be too harsh for delicate jobs so do your research. Make sure you have the right cleaner for the job. Tile and linoleum floors require different cleaners than wood or cork floors. Carpeted floors should be spot treated to avoid stains.

Decorating with Family Photos

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating, Hints, Tips and Advice

For anyone living with blank walls and is too nervous or intimidated to buy artwork for them, this is the article for you. Decorating our walls and mantels doesn’t have to be a big investment in art. We all have the perfect alternative to expensive art in our own homes: family photos. Family photographs are perfect for decorating walls and mantels.

If you have an annual professional family portrait or great casual portraits from holidays and birthdays these should be framed and hung in your home. With today’s digital technology, many of our pictures end up living on the camera’s memory card or on the computer. Culling through these images is a wonderful way to find art for your walls. Today’s digital technology also makes it easier to get prints and enlargements, change color to black and white or sepia, and restore older photographs with photo editing programs. Delicate photographs from generations past can be scanned and enlarged to be framed in a family photo gallery wall or framed for the mantel.

Hallways and entries are a great place to hang family photographs. You’ll see them every time you and your family enter the home. These pass through spaces can become picture galleries. Add a runner or area rug to make the space feel more like a room and you’ll find yourself and others wanting to linger there longer.

Other options for using family photographs as art include printing the pictures onto canvas. Great for filling up a large wall with a favorite family photograph.

Designing for the Modern Dog

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating, Family, Hints, Tips and Advice

As a society we spend billions on our beloved pets. For many of us, our pets are more than just cats and dogs, they are members of our families. Like our children, they come with a lot of stuff. Toys, beds, snacks, and clothes can take over. And yes, we’re still talking about pets. Luckily we can find storage and beds for our sweet furry friends that also match our sense of style and décor.

Decorating for the modern dog or cat is much easier today than it was a few years or decades ago. The dog bed that used to come in one style and a handful of colors is now available in a myriad of styles, colors and patterns. Choose a pet bed that fits in with your modern décor so it will blend in with the rest of the living room or bedroom. A pet bed is a must in a home with wood or tile floors as it provides a comfy place for mid-day naps that isn’t your favorite sofa or chair.

Storage is also key when decorating for a modern dog or cat. Toys and treats can take up a lot of drawer space or floor space. Find cute containers, boxes and baskets to store these must haves. Look for clean lines and modern patterns or stripes on these storage containers.

Living with a pet can be tough on your wood floors. Runners on stairs can protect wood stairs from claws and dirt. Area rugs and carpet can trap pet hair so make sure you have a good pet hair vacuum.

Now you are ready to live in style and harmony with your beloved furry companion.

Find Design Inspiration Online

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating, Uncategorized

Since you are reading this blog, you already know there are great resources for design and flooring information online. Finding information on the latest trends and products for the home can easily be done on your lap top, in the comfort of your own home. Besides online magazines, blogs are a great resources for inspiration to get you started on your next decorating project. And it seems like every home owner has a “next” on the decorating to-do list.

Blogs can be great resources for new DIY projects that can save you money while being big on creativity. Bloggers who are also homeowners are wonderful sources of before and after shots as well as the in-between photos that show what it really takes to finish the project. Magazines are a great inspiration but they rarely show the individual steps of a decorating project or discuss project time or costs. Bloggers who are willing to share the nitty-gritty of a decorating project are a huge resource for homeowners contemplating the start of a similar project.

If you see a product you love in a magazine you are lucky if the editor lists the products and resources. It is much better finding something you love on a blog, contacting the blogger and finding not only the product and resource but great tips as well.

From picking a tile floor to making a Roman shade or even stenciling your own wallpaper, bloggers are a wonderful resource.

Working with an Open Concept Living Space

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating, Kitchen and Bath, Uncategorized

Many people have open concept living spaces that flow into one another, like this kitchen and dining room. Working with an open kitchen and dining area to create a design that highlights both the kitchen and the dining areas can be a little tricky. Successfully decorating these areas will leave you with spaces that flow together yet maintain their own identities.

Making a dining room that is open to the kitchen feel like its own room means highlighting the dining space to make it feel special. Here that is done by a gorgeous inlay in the floor that has bands of darker wood outlining the dining area. The space is further anchored by an area rug under the table. If you do not want to go through the expense of having a stained border added to your wood floors, simply adding an area rug or room size rug in the dining area can help the space feel separate.

A pretty chandelier above the table is a lovely way to make the dining area feel more formal. A similar chandelier or pendant in the kitchen, above the sink or island, would tie the spaces together.

Working in the same color palette for both rooms, playing off the cabinet color with a similar toned wood dining table and chairs also unifies the design of the two joined spaces.

Open kitchens allow the chef to interact with family and guests. Use design to celebrate this great feature of open entertaining.

Cottage Style in the Living Room

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating, Uncategorized

Cottage style is a wonderful decorating style that is very easy to live with. Typical cottage furniture includes deep seating covered in slipcovers that is all about comfort and easy style. Painted furniture, a great DIY project, is another hallmark of cottage style. Distressed finishes on vintage pieces add character.

White is the dominate color in cottage décor like this living room. Molding and architectural features are painted in glossy white paint. Like the similar shabby chic style, white forms the base for pastels and soft patterns. Creamy yellows, minty green, soft aquas, dusty rose are all shabby chic colors that also work in cottage interiors. Deeper greens, reds and navys, along with creams and other neutrals, are additional colors that are also common in cottage interiors. The creamy yellow walls in this living room could be swapped for khaki, brown or navy and the room would still work with the furniture.

Flooring in cottage style décor tends to be hardwood with an accent rug. If the wood floors are not in good condition, the cottage style solution is to have them refinished.

While architectural details like a fireplace or built in bookcase can be a focal point on a wall, sometimes the wall needs a little more help to be the room’s focal point. In this living room, leaving the wall above the fireplace and bookshelves blank does these gorgeous details a disservice. Adding a large mirror or shelves, creating a gallery wall of family photos, or hanging a large scale painting would be the finishing touch for this focal wall.

Sectional Sofas for Small Spaces

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating

Sectionals continue to be one of the most popular styles of sofas on the market. With either a chaise section or an L-shaped sofa, sectionals provide a lot of seating and space for lounging. The sectional’s versatility is what makes it such a popular choice for living rooms, family rooms and home theaters.

Sectional sofas do demand a large footprint in a room. Of course, like any sofa, sectional sofas can be found in a number of lengths and depths as well as seating configurations. It is for this reason that these sofas are great in small rooms.

If space is limited and you want to maximize your seating, consider a sectional sofa with a chaise. Buy a matching ottoman that can be used for a coffee table or additional seating and you’ve got enough room for a party.

Some tips when buying a sectional sofa for a small space. Keep the upholstery simple. Keep the back low and the lines clean to make the sofa feel less bulky in the space. Add color with colorful accent pillows. Balance the large size of the sofa with art on the wall above it; go for bigger pieces or a gallery wall.

In this room the wood floor is kept bare, but adding an area rug would help center the seating area. A rectangular rug placed in the L formed by the sofa would be a good fit.

As with any furniture purchase, make sure to measure your space beforehand to make sure the sectional will fit.

Pastels for the Living Room

Written by creatingyourspace on . Posted in Design and Decorating

Think pink is just for little girls’ rooms? Think again. Soft pink and other pastels can feel sophisticated and chic for living rooms and other grown up rooms. Delicate pinks with lots of soft grey undertones feel feminine without feeling girly, like in this living room.

Pale pastels, including pinks, are soothing shades that can calm the spirit. Sherbet colors can work as wall colors for rooms designed for adults. Their flattering hues can be paired with white and grays along with other similar hues in complementary colors.

Soft pastels paired with white create a fresh look for a living room or bedroom. White molding and woodwork add bright accents along with white slip covered furniture. Carrying the wall color onto accents like pillows and decorative boxes pulls the room together. Pastels could be carried onto accessories and lighting. A collection of pink glass or ceramics would be lovely in this living room. Adding a soft pink or other pastel to a lampshade would be a nice way to introduce more color. While white drapes are crisp, a patterned curtain in pink and white could also work in this space.

When choosing flooring colors to work with pastel walls in a living room or dining room there are a couple of options. You could go with a carpet color in a similar shade for a monochrome look. Dark wood floors would really stand out while white painted or light wood floors would blend with the pastels on the wall.