Category archive - Redesign and Decorating Ideas

5 Decorating Elements to Make a Room Look Fantastic

5 Decorating Elements to Make a Room Look Fantastic

Every designer uses key decorating elements to make a room look fantastic. It’s the little things that take a room from ehh to beautiful. But those details are not always easy to decipher as to what they are. If you consider these five elements when creating your spaces, you will see a considerable change.

First, find a focal point. Every room needs a focal point to build around. It can be as simple as a beautiful fireplace, a fantastic view, or even a piece of furniture or art. But the focal point is where the eye is drawn when you walk into the room. The items and placement of furnishings within the space then complement that focal point. One focal point in a room will make it feel classy. Think of a kitchen. If you are renovating, don’t have your finishes’ competing for attention. Let one finish do the talking, such as the floor tile, or the counter, or the backsplash but not all be the main focal.

Next consider something organic. Plants are fantastic in a room. They not only purify the air they also add beauty to a space. If you don’t consider yourself with a green thumb; then look into investing into some real good silk fake plants. They are carefree while adding beauty, and warmth to your room.

adding plants to a room make it feel warmer

Texture is important also in every room. Texture can be in a rug, a throw, baskets that you have your plants in. Having the different textures allows the eye to look around, having all smooth surfaces can feel cold and hard, adding texture, the room becomes softer and more interesting to look at. By adding layers you can create a textured look also. A blanket on the back of a chair with a complementary pillow makes a chair feel more inviting.

Along with texture though, your eye does need to rest someplace. Having open space, or a surface with little to nothing on it can do the trick. The minimalistic area gives you a place to rest your eye and be able to take in the entire space. Not every inch of a wall needs to have something hanging on it. Not every surface has to be filled with tchotchkes, or furniture. Open spaces in a room are refreshing.

having open space in a room helps the eye rest

Last color, it speaks louder than most people realize. When you are choosing color for the walls of a room consider the impact it has. I hear from a lot of my clients that it is the first component they want to tackle when decorating a room. In reality, it is the last element to tie a room completely together. It’s not to say that if you love green you cannot choose elements with green; but once you get all your green pieces together, then choose a color to complement those items to tie the room together.

Still a little baffled as to how to make your room look fantastic? Consider reaching out to myself or a local decorator. For a small investment it might be worth every penny to get the look you are hoping to achieve.

Other helpful reads:

Your House is The Boss When Choosing Colors

Five Decorating Elements That Can Make a House Look Cheap


Simple Systems for Fall Inspiration In Your Home

Simple Systems for Fall Inspiration In Your Home

Where do you get your Inspiration from? The air becomes crisper, the days shorter, fall is coming, and the best part- kids go back to school!

We get back into our routines, instead of the lazy days of summer. The question always arises how can we make life a simpler, are their better systems, better ways to make these routines easier. Of course the first step to making things easier comes through organization.

Organization in the home is always a tough one because so many live under one roof, with all our possessions and articles we bring in from the outside; it can get out of hand. My fall inspiration to organize starts usually when I am pulling out the warmer clothes. You can consider this flow chart from Buzzfed as to how to organize:

organizing chart

Or make it a lot simpler. To begin organizing an area, I create three piles. Let’s take the clothes closet dilemma which always surfaces when the change of seasons is here. First wash all clothes; when putting them away really ask yourself:

  1. Did I wear this at all this season?
  2. Is it in good condition?
  3. Does it still fit?

From there pull out anything that you know you will probably not use next year and anything that is not in good condition. Donate, sell or throw it out depending on the condition. This is the first pile.

Next those items that you say “hmmm, I really didn’t have an occasion to wear this but I will hang onto in case…those items cast to another pile.

The last pile is the clothes, shoes, accessories you know you will use again next year. Store those neatly- by style (all tee shirts together, short together, bathing suits – you get the idea) by doing so if you win a trip to a southern destination this winter you are ready to go in a flash, seriously though, it will make finding things easier for the next season.

That second pile…go back to it now take your time and be honest, if you really think you might use, store by its classification/style, if not let someone else enjoy.

This sorting principle can be applied to any room in the house. Think bathroom with towels, toiletries, medicines. Things you need frequently put in am easy to reach storage area. “A place for everything and everything in its place” as my father always say. Move to your kitchen, do the same. In the pantry, group like products together, discard anything past expiration shelf date. This will allow you to easily take stock of what you have, and what you need. Making shopping that much easier, if not enjoyable; or am I going too far with that?

organized kitchen is inspirational

 

Feel inspired by the progress you have made. I find after I do a though cleaning; the house almost feels new again. It inspires me then to think, hmm maybe I should update this room with a new color, move a few things around to get a new look, or just add something I found sitting in storage I had forgotten that I even had. Get your inspiration, organize and see how it feels.

Other Good Reads

Can the Colors of Your House Affect Your Mood?

Things Your Home Does Not Need

Home Improvement Projects | Inexpensive Updates


Update Your Room for FREE!

Update Your Room for FREE!

Update your room for free! Simply look around your house and see if there are items you can move to give your room a new look.

It’s hard for some; once you get your house decorated items stay in the same spot for YEARS! That doesn’t mean that’s bad, but change can be good. What is the best way to begin an update? Start first by removing anything in the room that is broken, or does not serve a purpose. This could be an old TV, books or magazines that are no longer read, any decorations that have more dust than appeal.

Clear the space

By clearing the space or room, it is important to keep in mind what is the room used for? Do you just add a bunch of stuff into the room because you no longer use it? By clearing it out, it will give it an updated feeling alone without spending a dime. If anything, maybe you can make money by selling some of the items you no longer use.

clearing clutter alone can make a room look completely different

Size Matters

Yes it does, even in a room! If you have a room with too much furniture, it will feel cramped, and small. Just by removing some of the items, it will open up the room, giving it a refreshed new look, but when doing so, keep the integrity of the room. By this I mean, if it is a family room, keep the TV, and key pieces of furniture for viewing the TV, but not every piece you have currently. Measure the room and furniture, draw it out on a piece of paper and see what is reasonable to fit into the space, then if you feel you can, add one or two pieces if the room allows. Too much furniture can be too much, edit open the room up.

Move It, Move It

Think about moving some of your furniture around or into other rooms. Here is an example; this house had an open family room with a fabulous fireplace. Unfortunately the position of the furniture was not taking advantage of the features in the room. The owner was not happy with the room at all.

misplaced furniture

By using furnishings and accessories in other rooms, and moving the furniture, we were able to take advantage of all the features in the room. We created a better seating arrangement, flow, and updated the room without spending any money. The owner loved the space after! Who wouldn’t we gave it a new look, at no cost. Win, win!

rearranged furniture to utilize entire space

With a little thought, a lot of effort- throwing things away that are no longer useful, and rearranging furniture, art and accessories you can have a completely different looking room, for FREE in a weekend!

Other Good Reads

No Brainer De-Cluttering

Home Organization and Decorating Go Hand in Hand


Five Decorating Elements That Can Make a House Look Cheap

Five Decorating Elements That Can Make a House Look Cheap

What makes a house look cheap and one that looks classy? What items should you avoid when trying to create a look that will enhance a room, not detract from its beauty? When you are ready to sell, or even living in your house, you want your décor to complement the value of your house. You dont want things that with cheapen its appearance.  I will be the first one though, to say you do not need to spend a ton of money to decorate.

Furniture Sets

I get it, if you know nothing about decorating you go to the store and pick up the whole ensemble for a room at once. The couch, side tables, coffee table and chairs that typically do not enhance the room. First off, my guess is that you did not measure the room, so all the pieces probably do not fit in the room, or the pieces are not the right size for the room. Second the quality is probably not the best and it will not stand up to the test of time, eventually looking shotty. Mixing pieces is a good thing, giving you the ability to still decorate on a budget but with style. I always say get one good quality piece like a sofa, and then build from there.

 furniture  all the same can cheapen the look in a room

Theme Decorating

It’s ok for your child’s room but don’t do it anyplace else in your house. Too much of a good thing is just that – too much, and it will look cheap. Instead look through design magazines, and get inspiration on Pinterest and Instagram. Find a style that you like and incorporate some of the things you collect within that style. I find pigs kind of humorous and have a few in my kitchen, but by no means do I have the plates, placemats, valance with pigs on the windows, pigs on every surface of the counters. Two or three objects is all you need in a room, otherwise it begins to look cheap. Same goes for the “flowers” that are put in a room. Adding too many artificial plants and flowers makes a room look cheap. Consider live plants, or if you don’t have a green thumb maybe air plants.

Color on Walls

This is a tough one for people to understand, because they go to the store, find a color swatch put it on the walls without testing it to see how it really looks.  First the overall colors in the room need to be considered, as well as throughout the house. Just because the builder painted the walls a generic white does not mean that is the best color to complement your room, it can cheapen the look of a space. Similarly using the wrong undertone in a space can make the room look cheap because it does not complement anything in the room. Not sure what color to use, get advice from a professional color consult, it’s worth the cost.

cheap looking room

Art Work

Sorry, but it can look cheap, like posters or mass production art.  Consider either making your own art, there are a ton of ideas and tutorial online for simple ideas or visit sites like Etsy and choose something original. Also the size of art is really important in a room too. Too small of art can cheapen the look of a room as can the framing of the art.

Lighting

The ‘builder lights’ that come with a house are usually very cheap, and can cheapen the look of any décor. Also outdated light fixtures do the same. When looking through design magazines and online notice the lighting and the styles. Then see if you can find similar in nice finishes at either big box stores or online. This can be tough, but the most important take away here is finding lighting that is in style now. The cut glass Tiffany lamps that were popular in the 80’s now look cheap if they are not real Tiffany lamps or in a Victorian styled house. Time to find something more in style with the times to step up the style of your rooms.

Review your rooms, do you have any of these elements that might be making your house look cheap? Remove, replace and update to give everything a fresh new look.

Other good reads:

Lighting a Room In Layers 

Arranging a Room

Lighting Can Help Sell Your House


5 Important Lessons Learned As A Professional Stager

5 Important Lessons Learned As A Professional Stager

I have seen a lot of houses through the years being a professional stager. I have learned a lot in those years too. Not only business wise, but also ways that can help people when they are decorating their houses. One thing to keep in mind is that…

Everyone Sells Eventually

As a professional stager I think I have seen it all, and then I go to a house and say, nope never saw this. So here are a few take-a-ways that can help any homeowner when decorating or updating their house.

Measure your room before you purchase furniture, and go SLOWLY when purchasing items. We tend to over consume here in the USA, thinking we need the entire set of something when shopping in a furniture store. When it is time to sell I hear “I can’t give this stuff away!” So consider the essential piece first, place it in the room, get the feeling for it in the room, then and only then add to the room.

when decorating start with a few key pieces and build the room from there

Hire someone, if you are not trained in finishes and color. I have entered into many half a million on up homes only to see none of the finishes correlate to one another. What a waste of money! You builder is trained in construction NOT finishes. The store clerk can tell you what looks good in the store, but has no idea about the rest of your house, your style, light in rooms etc. Hire a designer or decorator that can assist you with these expensive choices. They should be able to tell you why your pink travertine tile you love does not go with Uba Tuba granite. Why the highly veined marble does not go with the trending retro revival backsplash you have fallen in love with.

Look at your house as a whole, not just one room. Many times when I consult a homeowner on their house, there is no continuity from room to room. One room might be filled with over stuffed furniture around the TV and the next room has Victorian tiny detailed furniture. Do one or the other look, but don’t try to do everything under one roof.

When updating, or thinking of changes things, keep in mind the value it will lend to the property but also the aesthetics and how it will enhance the overall look of the house. When looking for items and staying on budget consider what will give you the bang for the buck over all.

kitchen with finishes that are a worthy investment

Keep in mind the focal point in a room. Is it the view, is it the fireplace, are there architectural details in the room that should be played up, or do you need to make a focal point. Making a focal point might be adding art, but make sure the art you add is the right size for the space. Too many times I see mini art on a big wall, not enhancing the room or giving a focal point at all.  Don’t ignor this if the focal point is played up, the room can take on a totally different feeling.

I know I said 5, but this one I need to put in. There is always a way to update the furnishings you have, to make them look fresh and current. I have done this so many times when getting a house ready for market, and every time the sellers are amazed. So don’t despair, a professional stager or decorator always have tricks up their sleeves!

Other Good Reads:

How to Make a Room Look Balanced

Designing By Numbers

Hand-Me -Down / Inherited Furniture- What To Do??


Home Improvements Worth the Investment

Home Improvements Worth the Investment

It’s every home owner’s question, if I improve this in my home will I get a return on the investment… What is the bang for the buck, and which home improvements are worth considering?

Being summer time, it is a great time to consider one of the best investments a home owner can make, upgrading their landscaping. What would that entail? Trees, foundation shrubs, flagstone walkway, bright flowers and a fresh mulch. By adding these to your yard the typical return is close to 100% or higher. It is an investment that will continually grow, get it, continually grow…

While we are on the subject of outdoors a patio or deck is worth the investment also. It not only extends your living space, but will allow you to enjoy all that work you did upgrading your landscape.

A new roof is one that will achieve 100% return similar to landscaping. If you have shingles missing, roof covered in moss, or stains on your ceilings and walls it’s time to consider this investment. It will also help you with your energy bill. A new roof is one thing every home inspector looks at, along with buyers when it’s time to sell, so if you need a new one, invest in it and at least enjoy a dry house while you live there. Adding insulation under your roof is not only saving you on heating and cooling cost it will reap you a 95% return.

Another big improvement is Hardwood Floors. They are classic, timeless everyone loves and desires them. So if you have them and are noticing they’re worn, not looking the best, give them some TLC have them refinished and reap the return when you sell. If you don’t have them and want to replace your flooring you currently own, you will gain about 90% return on the cost.open living room space to outdoors with hardwood floors

So for doing one or all five of these improvements, for the money you invest, you will get just about every dollar back in value; now that is a better return on investment then the stock market! Here the National Association of Realtors broke projects down, along with the satisfaction or “Joy Score” of getting the project completed:

home improvement projects that are worth the investment

Other good reads:

2017 Home Trends

10 Home Renovations That Are Worth The Investment


Color, The Backdrop Of  A Great Room

Color, The Backdrop Of A Great Room

Color is the backdrop of a great room

Color has such an impact in a room. If the color is not right, the room does not look right. Color does make a room harmonious and beautiful.

For some it can be difficult to choose, for others they just pick a color because they are frustrated and just make a choice because there are so many available. How do you narrow it down to make the color work?

Finding the right color

It can be hard to find the right color. But when you do find it the room looks fantastic. Think of images that you love on Pinterest, or pictures you drool over on Instagram. Those rooms resonate with you because the color is done correctly. It is balanced well, and makes you feel something, whether relaxed, excited, or falling in love with the way it is presented. The color is probably working well in that space.

soft blue color in a bedroom

To start, look at the fixed elements in a room. Those are the things that you cannot change. Think flooring, cabinets, tile, and counters. Each and every one of those has color in it. Those items will not change in your design, unless you are starting from scratch or redesigning a room. Fixed elements will dictate what colors will work well in the space. Mixing too many of these elements can make a room not feel cohesive. You need to pick one main element and coordinate the color with it throughout the room. Due to fixed elements being expensive and difficult to change, serious consideration in the choices need to be made.

For instance, you chose travertine flooring. Identify the color family first.  On the walls the color needs to complement those fixed features that are not changing. Your whites should be on the warmer scale also to complement the browns. The reason neutral colors work so well in spaces is that it allows the elements of the room stand out, not the color. Every neutral has an undertone and can coordinate with your finishes. It can be difficult to see these subtle colors but once identified, the room will come together and feel harmonious. The accent colors that you pick up and use can vary in saturation that will give the mood to the room that you are trying to achieve.

Choosing color can be challenging for some. That’s when I suggest having someone come in and assist you. They should be able to narrow the array of colors and assist you in finding the perfect shade for your space.

Other Good Reads:

Meaning of Colors

Choosing Colors for a New House

Color How They Work Together


Take Your House Out of Hibernation

Take Your House Out of Hibernation

Spring is a great time to consider ways to take your house out of hibernation. Here are four easy, inexpensive easy ways to give you a fresh new look.

Start at the Entrancepainting can greatly improve the look of your house

Your front door is not only the ‘mouth’ of your house, but also the first impression to visitors. Consider the condition of the door and possibly the color. A new color can completely change the look of your house giving it a fresh new look. Consider a new set of lights, or clean the glass on your lights. New door mat, maybe a pretty container of flowers.

Make it Brightbrighten up your decor

Maybe remove some of the warmer colors you used in your décor and add lighter shades, and brighter shades to give more life to your room. If you look at a color wheel and choose a color opposite the primary color you have in the room. If you have a blue room consider adding yellow to give you a new look and a little warmth. Just be careful of the saturation of the colors you are choosing to complement each other. Add lights and fresh flowers too.

Clean the Cobwebsclean everything so the light can brigten spaces

This may be obvious to some, but opening the shades, dusting them off, removing cobwebs, dust from all surfaces will make a room feel good and refreshed and in your mind it will also. That cleaning will make the rooms resonate fresher.

Use your Sense of Smell

Not only clean the windows, open them and let the fresh air flow throughout the house. Consider adding scented potted geraniums or a vase of eucalyptus in your house to give it a fresh smell. House plants are great air purifiers and add to the décor of any room. Don’t have a green thumb? Consider easy to care for plants that require little care.

Other Great Reads:

Hand-Me -Down / Inherited Furniture- What To Do??

10 Inexpensive Ways to Increase Your Curb Appeal

Designing Rooms that People and Pets Love


2017 Home Trends

2017 Home Trends

Trends. What’s going to be popular, or showing up as popular as decorating trends? After attending the NY Now –which features vendors, and Architectural Digest 2017 featuring everything for the home and highlighted artists, there were reoccurring trends that should be noticed.

For 2017 the soft gold tone continues to still popular and showing up in furniture, lighting, and finishes for the house. It is not the brass of the 80’s but a softer look which is warmer. This trend I think will continue because the gray tones are starting to subside, while the taupe colors are becoming more popular, and will continue to trend.

soft gold knobs, soft gold fixtures are trending

Back to nature, things made of wood, live edge furniture, wall gardens and plants all very popular. I have noticed these for a few years and due to their organic nature, they will probably continue trending for a few years. I see this because people are looking for healthy ways to live, more in-tune to their environment. Being connect with the environment they will include these elements in their homes.

feather fabric nature related

Speaking of the nature trends, animals are a big influence with decorative items. Hides, horns and lambskin are big in accessories for the home. This fabric from Coral and Tusk of embroidered feathers would be a beautiful addition to a room. If you want to update a room add a hide pillow or fur pillow into the mix. This trend is whimsical as well as luxurious to the eye.

Both the natural elements and animal influence relate to the bohemian trend that is popular in design. Although I relay it to the 1960’s hippy days of growing up, LOL, it has a fresh flair to it. A little more organic a little less quirky.

boheimian trend in decor for living

Casa Cook Hotel

Deep rich colors are also trending. Think of deep navy, rich emerald green in couches, walls, cabinetry as well as accent pieces like pillows and art are showing up repeatedly. The deep colors are a switch from the dark grays, a little less moody possibly a more optimistic feeling. Bolder colors will be seen in the coming years for home décor but of course mixed with neutrals or softer shades to balance the entire look.

If the last time you decorated your rooms was when you moved in five or more years ago, now is the time to consider something new and fresh to update your spaces!

Some other good reads

Fad verse Trend | What’s the Difference

According to “Pinterest” 2017 Trends


Home Organization and Decorating Go Hand in Hand

Home Organization and Decorating Go Hand in Hand

Home organization is a crucial element in decorating

If you have organization within your room, it will keep you design looking fresh long after you finished the last touches. Why? Because it will reduce the visual clutter and you can then focus on the design.

I know you think decorating = painting, new rug and new furniture. When considering a decorating plan, one of the first things that needs to be envisioned is how the space will be used and lived in.  One element of design is form and function and how they blend together. The right balance will give a calming feeling when using the room. It is important to do your basic work up front too before you begin. Do your measurements, create a vision board. The room not only has to be pleasing to the eye, but how the space will be used, allowing you simple solutions for storage. Consider the style of your home and look for storage solutions that complement that style along with the décor.

staged living room with shelves for storage and storage cabinets

Storage Solutions

When you have the proper storage solutions it will give your room a more polished look. If you love that polished look you need to have a place to put your things. You know ‘a place for everything and everything in its place.’ Having that will also probably help you with any extra clutter. If you don’t have room for it; guess what? It’s time to de-clutter and remove some of the things you don’t use any more.

If you do not have the space, consider built-in shelves going upward, this is always an easy solution for small spaces. Consider creating a space with shelves and drawers possibly in an awkward spot like a corner in a room to store some of your things. Having proper organization throughout your house will help with the resale of your house, but also help you now living in the spaces. I recommend baskets a lot to keep similar lose objects together. They make the shelves/rooms appear neater. Keeping things organized also helps reduce some of the stress that goes along with clutter and mess. It is a lot more calming to enter a room that is organized than one that is in complete chaos.

So when you are considering revamping a room and giving it fresh new look, also keep in mind organization solutions so that you can maintain the beauty of your new room for years to come.

Other good reads:

Piecing a Room Together

10 Ideas to Give your House Love

Chi The Energy in Your House