Living Rooms

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Do you prefer a formal living room? Stately Elegance is all about luxury and refinement, where style and substance are passed down from generation to generation. Colors include, deep reds, blues, rich golds and purples.

Or does your preference move towards a simpler style?  Urban Chic is sophisticated, fresh and contemporary and furniture is streamlined and simple. Black and white, mahogany brown and stainless steel are used in creative combinations.

 

 

Can I Mix Different Prints within the Same Room?

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With all the many different areas where you can use textiles in a room – drapes, rugs, throws, and pillows to name a few – it can be difficult to find perfect matches for everything. From the color to the print, there are times when you may want to try to mix things up, rather than attempting to have everything match. The best part about this, is that depending on what type of design you are aiming for, it can often be more than OK – it can become a way to really enhance and dress up your design.

Interior Design Styles that Work with Mixed Prints

Believe it or not, there are actually several different interior design styles that encourage you to mix your prints. The idea behind the mixing may be different in each one, but if you are reaching for one of these styles in your decorating efforts, you may find that mixing it up is just the thing to do.

Country Style

The idea behind Country style is that the home should be welcoming, comfortable, and inviting. This includes the use of a lot of different prints. Plaids, florals, checks, and stripes can all be used in Country style, as well as prints such as Toile that are specific to the design. Just be sure that your colors are in tune with one another to get the best results.

Eclectic Design

Eclectic design is a newer, more modern type of interior design that also focuses on a lot of mixing of color and pattern in a room. The idea is that the finished design should be bold, eye catching, and purposefully random. So if you want to mix polka dots and chevron prints in one room, go for it, provided that the colors have the same saturation or hue to ensure they blend.

Transitional Design

Transitional design is something that most people have in their homes. It’s a fluid mix between traditional and contemporary and often have components of both. That means that it’s perfectly fine to have some traditional prints in the room that also contains a few contemporary fabrics at the same time.

No matter what decorating scheme you prefer, mixing different prints in the same room can achieve a beautiful overall design by sticking to a few rules!

How To Design and Make a Custom Headboard Featuring Your Favorite Photography – Part 1

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Part 1: The concept and supply list

This project isn’t necessarily fast or easy, but the outcome is spectacular! A headboard is one of the most impactful focal points in a bedroom. It deserves extra thought and effort, but that doesn’t necessarily mean a lot of extra cost. You can definitely accomplish this project for less than the cost of a designer bed. Once you complete this headboard project all you’ll need for your bed is a basic frame on which to place the mattress and box spring. These are often available second hand in perfect condition.

The quantity, and thus cost, of the supplies necessary to complete this project will depend on the size of your bed. The overall concept entails painting the space above the bed where a headboard would normally be, than framing it with molding. Within the newly framed headboard space will hang an eclectic collection of picture frames featuring your favorite photography. 

Let’s start with your shopping list:

  • Paint – 2 colors that coordinate with your bedroom. Purchase amounts applicable to the size of your project. You need enough paint to paint two coats on the wall within the frame created by the molding. The other paint color will only be used for the molding and some of the picture frames so you won’t need very much.
  • Yard stick or long straight edge for penciling in the lines of the frame.
  • Molding.
  • Miter saw OR small handheld saw.
  • Numerous picture frames of various sizes, dimensions, and designs, in colors that coordinate with your bedroom.
  • Prints of your favorite photos. We’ll explain later how to determine the size.
  • Hammer and small wood nails.
  • Wood glue.
  • Picture hangers or damage-free adhesive tabs.

NEXT READ PART 2: Preparation and Framing the Headboard 

How to Paint an Old Wood Table So It Will Last

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Remodeling a kitchen is a big project, and it’s smart to spend your money on high quality flooring, cabinets and countertops. Anything built into the kitchen for long term use is a worthwhile investment. If you’re like most modern families there’s a good chance that you eat in the kitchen, so it is a good idea to include the kitchen table in the redecorating process as well. Rather than buy something new, though, consider painting an old table. It will be less expensive, have a lot of character, and you can paint it to match your kitchen perfectly.

  1. Sand the table. If you have access to an orbital sander it’s ideal for the job. Hand sanding is an option but plan on a lot of extra time. Sand the table until it’s very smooth. It’s not imperative that you remove every last speck of paint or varnish.
  2. Wipe the table clean and remove any dust. Next, apply primer. It’s important to purchase a primer that is intended to resist stains, so check the label when you buy the primer. Be sure that it is also high-tack. You want it to stick to the table like glue. Use roll on primer – spray primers aren’t strong enough for a heavy use items such as a kitchen table. Use two coats of primer, allowing at least one hour drying time in between. Then, use a spray on primer on any tiny areas that can’t be primed with the roller. When done, let the table dry for a full 24 hours.
  3. Hand sand the primed surface to restore to a smooth and even surface. (No orbital sanding this time. It’s too aggressive.)
  4. Next, use highly durable paint that dries to a hard finish. It has to withstand heavy use. You will likely be doing more than just eating at the table so ensure that it can withstand science projects and game night. Paint the table with two to three thin coats of paint, and allow sufficient drying time between each. (Three coats are necessary for very dark colors.) Allow the paint to cure for three to five days once painting is completed.
  5. Last, protect the table and the paint. It’s important to not skip this step! You have two options. You can use a brush/wipe on product that will dry to a sleek finish. Or, you can use a wax finish. It’s rubbed on with a rag, and then buffed out to create a low gloss matte finish.
  6. Try not to use the table for a few more days after you’ve put the protective coating on it. It will appear to be dry, but two to three more days will ensure that it has definitely cured and is ready for some serious use. 

How to decorate with T-shirts

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It seems like every time you turn around, a new t-shirt is in your closet or laundry. Perhaps you purchase them regularly, or maybe you’re the just the unassuming recipient of wearable promotional giveaways. No matter the source, t-shirts are part of the American way of life. They are worn frequently, and some are even treated with the greatest of care.  Yet, all t-shirts reach a point at which they need to be retired. But what if you absolutely love the shirt and don’t want to throw it away? It might have sentimental value, or monetary value as a collectable. If so, don’t stash it away in a dark drawer where you can’t enjoy it. Use it as part of your home décor! Here  is a list of some shirts that you might have lying around:

  • High school and/or College teams
  • Professional sports teams
  • Concerts and shows
  • Luxury labels or popular brands
  • Promotional swag handed out by vendors
  •  Themed or graphic tees
  • Vacation souvenirs

Hopefully our list motivated you to dig through the drawers, and we bet you found more shirts than you thought. Now, what to do with them:

  • Cut them at them to size, sew three seams, insert a throw pillow, and sew up the fourth seam
  • Purchase a glass-encased memorabilia frame and permanently mount the shirt and hang it on the wall
  • Gather as many of them as necessary and sew an amazing memory quilt
  • For something avant-garde, buy a torso-up clothes mannequin and put a different shirt on it every week or month (you can add accessories too!)
  • Use photographs related to the t-shirt to create a multi-media collage. For instance, if you have a souvenir shirt from your summer vacation, cut off the arms and collar, stretch it over foam board, and pin your vacation photos to the board.

There are numerous options for repurposing your t-shirts, and we’re pretty sure we only mentioned of few. If none of our ideas quite fit your vision, use them as inspiration to think outside of the box and come up with something innovative on your own. If you do, please return to our blog and tell us what you devised!

Components of a Tuscan Kitchen

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Tuscan style kitchens are beautiful and comfortable, evoking the hills, colors and style of Tuscany. No matter where you live, you can bring some of that beauty and style to your kitchen by using a few of these decorating ideas.

Tuscan Colors

The rich colors of Tuscany are the inspiration for the Tuscan kitchen theme. The colors of the hills, sky, plants, and buildings are what show up again and again throughout the Tuscan kitchen.

When choosing your palette, look for sun-kissed colors such as:

  • Apricot
  • Gold
  • Ochre
  • Olive green
  • Sky blue
  • Pumpkin

You can also choose materials that embody these colors as well, such as terracotta tiles for the floor or limestone for the backsplash. This helps ensure that the entire room stays cohesive. Remember to use the contrasting cool colors – blue and green – as accents to make them pop out against the warm background.

Tuscan Materials

Using natural materials whenever possible will help pull your Tuscan kitchen together. In addition to terracotta and limestone, consider incorporating the following into your kitchen design:

  • Natural wood for the cabinets, ceiling beams, soffit, table or floors
  • Wrought iron
  • Marble, granite, or soapstone for the countertops
  • Glass either as cabinet inserts or accents
  • Clay pottery for display
  • Linen, burlap, and cotton for curtains, dish towels and other fabrics in the room
  • Copper as a farmhouse sink, cabinet pulls, or faucet finish

Tuscan Accents

While the colors and materials that you use will primarily envoke the Tuscan theme, if you want to take it a step further, use accents scattered throughout the kitchen such as:

  • Wine, grape, vineyard, or olive themed tiles, backsplash, or decorations
  • Terracotta pots
  • Fresh mediterranean herbs growing on the window sills
  • Wall art that displays scenes from the hills and homes of Tuscany

Warm Up Your Kitchen

The end result of your Tuscan kitchen will be a warm and inviting space that makes visitors feel cozy and right at home. Decorate your kitchen in the Tuscan style and create a welcoming environment there.

Selecting the Perfect Coffee Table

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Coffee tables get a lot of use, making them an important part of any living or family room design. They also take up a prominent position within the room itself, which makes their shape and size as important as their use. When you select a new coffee table for your home, take the time to consider these different factors to find the best fit for the room.

Size

Coffee tables can come in a many different sizes. It’s important that you measure your sofa carefully from end to end when it’s time to start shopping for the coffee table. Ideally, the table should take up about 3/4 of the length of the couch. Any larger than this and it becomes harder to navigate around it to sit down. Any smaller and it makes it more difficult for people sitting on either end of the couch to reach it.

When considering the width or depth of the coffee table, pay attention to the overall size of the room. Large, square coffee tables work well in big, open floor plan spaces that have a lot of room to walk around in, but that same coffee table would simply get in the way in a small room.

Take a sheet of cardboard and lay it on the floor as if it were the coffee table and try walking to all the areas of the room around it. When it begins to get in the way, scale back a bit; this is the largest size coffee table you should purchase for your space.

Style

The shape and style of your coffee table should be consistent with the overall interior design you have in the room. If the rest of your furnishings have very clean lines, an ornate table would look out of place, for example. Therefore, try to follow the look of the other furnishings; curves go with curves and straight lines with straight lines. This way even if the coffee table isn’t a perfect match for the rest of the room, it still blends well.

Put some thought into your coffee table purchase. The right piece will make the rest of your room flow better and add an extra spark to your space. 

Decorating With Summer’s Best Colors

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Summer is the perfect time of year to refresh the colors in your home. You may be looking for new accent pieces in your sitting room, a new paint finish in the kitchen or an easy DIY facelift to your powder room. Consider these clean, gorgeous colors ideal for your home’s summer refresh.

 

Crisp white to brighten any room

A clean, bright white can be so much more than boring. Consider repainting your kitchen white and adding a neutral backsplash to add pop to this room. If you already have white cabinetry, you may want to consider a light, muted grey instead. Add a metal or shiny white backsplash. A neutral kitchen can be adorned with fresh flowers, colorful window treatments or slate grey bar stools.

 

Sunny yellow for the perfect accent

Bright yellow is the most welcoming color in the home. It may seem overwhelming for a larger room, so instead try using the color as an accent focal point. Consider yellow throw pillows for the sitting room, a yellow accent wall in the kids’ bathroom and yellow side tables for the bedroom. A bright yellow is the perfect accent to white, any shades of grey and blue and navy shades.

 

Muted orchid to refresh a small bathroom

Radiant Orchid is the Pantone Color of the Year, and it’s beautiful hue is perfect to refresh areas in your home. Try wide, vertical stripes in a little girl’s bedroom, or paint a powder room and add bright white accents. It can also add the perfect small pop a room needs, try painted vases, frames and lamps.

 

Light sky blue adornments

A faint sky blue is the perfect calming color to decorate several rooms in your home. Paint exposed shelves in your kitchen or replace neutral colored lamps with light sky blue lamps and white lamp shades. Drape a sky blue throw over mustard yellow chairs to add warmth and coziness in the midst of summer. Or paint the dining room this light shade of blue and add a gallery wall of floral and green prints.

Mix and Match Patterns

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A room with a lack of layers of colors, textures and patterns can give off a feeling of bareness and even coldness. Prints and patterns can provide points that interest visitors. However, mixing and matching different patterns can be particularly tricky.

 

Choosing the Colors

 

A good color palette can coordinate very different designs so that the eyes are drawn to the hues instead of the patterns. Not all the patterns need to have the same colors. Different shades can evoke a sense of varying intensities without being too busy. Neutral colors such as cream, ecru and beige can also look elegant and dramatic despite being simple. Multi-colored fabrics of contrasting colors can also be used.

 

Varying the Size and Scale

 

The size of the patterns is also an important consideration. By varying the scale, a balance look can be achieved. When mixing the patterns, do not put different prints of the same size side by side. With similar sizes, the mind will have a hard time choosing where to focus. Large prints, for example, might work well with knitted fabrics with small patterns.

 

Aside from the size of the prints in relation to the other prints, taking into account the scale in relation to the furniture or item is also crucial. Large prints might be better appreciated on wallpapers or curtains, and small prints might suit throw pillows more.

 

Using Contrasting Shapes

 

Different shapes can provide contrast in the mix of prints. Patterns of similar movement and direction can overwhelm a space. Geometric shapes in a vertical pattern, for example, can work well with random natural patterns and with lines moving in a zigzag or a fluid manner.

 

Looking at the Texture

 

Texture may not be as noticeable as color, size or shape but it is also worth considering. Some textures can cause the patterns to be more visible.

 

Experimenting

 

If you are a bit hesitant to introduce bold patterns in your home, you can start with just small steps. The easiest way is to add some throw pillows that feature different patterns. Even with this simple step, a lot of drama can already be brought into the room. To help you design the whole room, going to the supply store and browsing magazines or the Internet to compare patterns can help.

Designing For Baby

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Are you expecting a new member of the family soon? Decorating the nursery is one of the most exciting parts of preparing for this new bundle! The dreams that expectant parents instill in a child’s nursery seem to add to the enjoyment and anticipation and can be expressed creatively through this design project.  Some of these tips may be helpful!

 

Functionality — Although aesthetics are important, a nursery is devoted to the functional needs of an infant.  The furniture is the place to start with functionality in mind. A safe and comfortable crib is a gift to both the parent and child. Middle-of-the-night changings, feedings  and everyday messes are easier on everyone if the surfaces and materials used for the room are easy to clean.  

 

Layout — The crib, which is usually the centerpiece of the room, should be strategically located near the door where parents can reach it without stumbling or bumping into other furniture, even in the dark. It should also be placed away from the windows where there might be drafts or where the sunlight might hit directly. Check with safety regulations to ensure the crib you select is in keeping with current safety standards.

 

Convenience — Near the crib, having a changing table or nursing station is ideal. Wet accidents are frequent, and having the changing table close to the crib will allow the parents to quickly clean up the mess and change the diapers.

 

Storage — Diapers are a never-ending part of a new parent’s life.  These along with other necessities should be present in the room and within easy reach. Articles and accessories for infants accumulate over time so it is important to plan for additional items.  

 

Comfort — To help make feeding and holding the baby as pleasant as possible, you can place a rocking chair or a recliner by the window. A night table or a side table can also be a nice addition to the room. As the baby grows, tables and other furniture should be secured to the wall or to the floor using nylon straps or L brackets.

 

Safety — Safety is another crucial concern when designing the room for such a young child. Electrical outlets should be covered and cables should be securely tucked away. Choking hazards and harmful products should be stored out of the baby’s reach.

 

Designing a nursery can be challenging, but when carefully considering not only the needs of the new baby but also the joy that the room will bring, it can also be an exciting part of getting ready for baby.