Category archive - Redesign and Decorating Ideas

Small Spaces, Tips to Make Them Work

Small Spaces, Tips to Make Them Work

Small spaces are a challenge. A client of mine had a living room space that was not working for them. There was too much furniture, the flow in the room did not work. I noticed that the architectural details of the room were lost. They need some help making the small room work for their life style.

Smaller rooms can work if you know what to do and pay attention to. Here are some suggestions that might help you if you are feeling a little cramped.

6 Suggestions to help improve small spaces

1.Go upward- by that I mean make the small space feel larger by bringing the eye up. Have you ever been in a house that has high ceilings, but you realize the room is very small? The height gives the illusion of a bigger space. Using the height of the room can make it appear larger eventhough the foot print is still small.

use upward space

2.Open up the floor– when purchasing items for the room like a couch or chairs; having the legs exposed gives the feeling of more space. Consider a shelf instead of a night stand in a bedroom, it will make the bedroom feel more spacious. Removing rugs in a small space to expose the hardwood is a great idea to do too.

3.Reflectionmirrors and glass help open up a space. A coffee table made of glass, or mirrors on the opposite wall of the windows makes the light reflect in a small space making it feel more spacious and open. In addition, use accessories that have the same effect– glass base lamps, mirrored accessories but don’t go overboard. Too much of a good thing is just that- too much.glass coffee table

4.Paint- Painting your ceiling the same hue as the walls can help make the space feel larger. It erases the visually defined space. When everything is the same color it is harder for the eye to tell the parameters of the room therefore appearing larger. Using color is such an important factor when decorating a small space. Not sure which is best? A professional color consultant will be able to help.

5.Let the light in – Let natural light pour through the windows in a small room, makes a room feel larger also. It’s good for the mind too.

getaway bedroom

6.Proportion – The items you use in a small space,(actually in any space), above all, need to be proportioned to the room size. I have seen too many houses that have either too much furniture in the space, or they have too large of furniture for the space. It’s like a large football player wearing a too small outfit- it does not work, or look good for that matter. Proportion is very important when picking out furnishings.

 

These are just a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing. I have other tricks up my sleeve and if you need some help planning you tiny area out, let me know!

Other good reads:

Piecing a Room Together That Works

https://freshome.com/depth-in-interior-design

Bring the Outdoors In


Furniture Placement In a Room

Furniture Placement In a Room

How and Where to Place Furniture

When you approach an empty room to decorate, the challenge can be trying to figure out how much furniture and where to place furniture. The first and most important thing before you go shopping is to take measurements so you know the size of a room.

Proportion and Size

I had a client recently that needed a new dining room table. The room was a long space that would serve as a living room/ dining room area. The first thing I recommended to them was to measure the space where they would like the table to go. They did not, bought a table that they “loved” the style but when placed in the space appeared to be the size of an elephant- a costly mistake. This not only applies to a dining room but any room. Make sure the furniture is in proportion to the size of the room not overwhelming the room.

 

Proportion of furniture is also very important for the space. If the room has tall ceilings, the size of the furniture is important. Taller chairs, and larger scaled pieces will balance the room. The type of furniture that you place in a room with 8 foot ceilings might look dwarfed in a room that has taller ceilings, consider proportion of the furniture within a room. Furniture that is too large will look out of proportion also if the room is smaller and with standard ceilings. Notice that although this room has a tall ceiling the placement of the bed does not work, making all the other furniture look like doll furniture in the bedroom.

scale of furniture to a room

If the furniture is sized properly for the space, the placement must also be balanced. Too many pieces of furniture placed on one side of a room can make it feel lop-sided.  Place a large couch for instance across from two chairs to balance the space. The layout of the room needs to be considered too. An open concept can be challenging because spaces need to be defined to make the space appear cozier.

DSC_0044wm

Balanced furniture is more pleasing to the eye. It allows you to look from one area to the next without having something that is jarring in your mind. It can be a challenge for some though to envision an empty space. That is why there is help with decorators that enjoy those challenges to make everything fall into place.

Take a look around your home; can you move a few things to get your rooms’ just right?

 If you’re still stuck send me a picture, I will take a look and see what we can work out.

Other Great Reads:

5 Decorating Elements to Make a Room Look Fantastic

Update Your Room for FREE!


Rugs Create Ambiance In Your Rooms

Rugs Create Ambiance In Your Rooms

Rug trends are showing up now in subtle and bold patterns, colorful or muted shades. The looks allow a design to be eclectic, midcentury modern, bohemian, as well as formal to create the ambiance you are aiming for in a room. Doing a search on the internet will provide you with a plethora of options!

Rugs add warmth to a room aesthetically, and are a great foundation to any room. The pattern and colors create a mood and contribute in the design within the room.

geometric rug in living room

Geometrics are very versatile and depending on the color and boldness of the geometric they can range from a very traditional design to a more contemporary feel.

Oriental style rugs have been popular for a very long time, they were considered classic. But now to update a space, look towards the newer patterns to update you space. Consider the patterns that can be bold and elegant at the same time. Graphic rugs in two tones can be quite elegant. The “bohemian” style rugs allow you to create a traditional or eclectic room. Depending on the colors, and the intensity of them allows you to play with the looks to give you the style that complements your furniture.

Farrow and Ball is pairing up with The Rug Company to create handloom rugs that complements their color pallet. The uniqueness of this is that you can create a understated rug that is tailored to your own home. The advantage of this is that you received a custom rug fit to your existing furnishing. It allows you not to have to do a total restyling of a room.

When choosing a rug consider the size. Ensure that the rug is not too big for the room, but large enough to anchor the furnishing within the space. Here is an example for a living room area rug:

configurations of furniture placement on rugs

These examples show you how to place furniture so that it is anchored in the room. Depending on the size of the room will also dictate the size of a rug. Square and round dimensions are sometimes available to be considered to fit the size of your room better.

rug size for every sized room

A new area rug can transform a space easily, and the colors can then be used through other elements throughout the space to give a room a refreshed look.

 

Other Good Reads:

Piecing a Room Together That Works

5 Simple Ways to Cozy Up Your Home – Inexpensively


Dress Up Your Living Room

Dress Up Your Living Room

With the holidays here, lots of friends and family coming to visit, this is a great time to refresh your living room. Re-styling a living room does not have to be expensive, and by adding a few new elements to existing can create a whole new feeling.

 

Elements to Consider

Sometimes by just changing your layout you can create a totally different feeling throughout the room. Pairing down some furniture also will give a more elegant feeling. Consider the main focal point in the room, is it a fireplace, maybe a drop-dead view; arrange the furniture to highlight that focal point. No focal point? Maybe create one by wallpapering one feature wall with a great pattern. By arranging the furniture around the focal point or in a friendly conversation arrangement the room can have totally different feeling.

Need a little more than just rearranging and editing furniture? Start with the flooring, as you would first when designing a room. Finding a new rug can change the feeling completely and warm up the space. Consider the dimensions of the room first to ensure you select the right size. Too small and the area will not look anchored, too big you will not be able to show off your wood floors. Trending rugs popular today are with bold or understated geometric pattern, subtle washed out colors, or bohemian style rugs that are playful and romantic at the same time. Similar to Persian style rugs but less traditional.

Next consider texture in your room. Add plump pillows to complement the colors in your rug. Consider various fabrics throughout the room like velvet, wool, tweed, sheepskin. The accessories you add will also contribute to the texture in the room. Style your coffee table and end tables with vases, plants, books or unique objects that complement the look you are achieving. These items are similar to when you get dressed up for a party, you put on your outfit but then add the shoes, tie, jewelry to create a total look; a room is similar. Layer the glamour on, but do it subtly to maintain the elegance you are going for.

styled living room with lots of accessories

Look to the walls. The color in a room can impact the ambiance of the room. A good rule of thumb is to consider a color from an element within the room. Look at your fireplace surround and the stone. What undertone does it have, that could be your starting point, maybe your new rug is a good inspiration point to find a color or the fabulous colors in a printed pillow. Take those clues and base your color from those elements. Maybe you want to go dark rich and bold, keep a balance of neutral throughout the room.

warm color on walls gives the room a cosy feeling

Adding simple drapes can also dress up a room. Consider simple panels that reach the floor on beautiful rods. Hang them closer to the ceiling to give the windows an illusion of being large. Decorative panels will not cover the window when closed but to give a feeling of opulence, consider doing two panels on each side to create the fullness if you are purchasing pre-made panels.

Art and lighting are also additional elements that can add a lavish feeling to your room. The height and size of the lamp can complement the décor to create a renewed feeling. Art can refresh the feeling of a room. Consider moving art around from other rooms to create a gallery wall that can become a focal point that is showy. Transforming and updating your living room does not need to be expensive. With a little cleverness using what you own, or only updating a few pieces, you can create an elegant space to entertain guest!

 

Other Good Reads:

Designing By Numbers

5 Decorating Elements to Make a Room Look Fantastic


2018 Color Trends To Watch

2018 Color Trends To Watch

Every year some colors in design stand out over others, that make an impression. They seem to feel fresh, new, and spark interest. Paint companies predict color trends; globally, color expert panels predict what they believe will be the new color trends. From their predictions colors begin to emerge in décor and you begin to see them as mainstream go to colors.

2018 paint colors have been announced from major paint manufactures.  In the Moment- Behr, a softer blue that is calming. Caliente- Benjamin Moore, a vibrant red that is exciting.  Oceanside- Sherwin Williams a blue green that is mysterious like the ocean itself.

2018 color trends

It tends to take a while for the current “years” predicted colors to become more mainstream. Generally because it takes consumers a while to embrace them. These colors will be seen in decor, but consumers tend to call the shots if a color will be accepted.

Currently there are two color trends in décor that have sparked my interest. I am seeing them used in more applications for home décor. Although these two colors had been chosen a few years back as “color of the year,” and they have had their place of “color of the year”  more now, than before. Surfacing on popular sites like Pinterest and Instagram.

At High Point; a design/decor show this past month, Dusty Pink tones (think Rose Quartz, Pantone’s 2016 color pick)  popped up over and over again. This soft color was featured in bedding, furniture, and metals. Soft rose color metal can be found in cooking items, and accessories for the home. The soft sheen is something new and attractive to be considered in the mix of a room.

Here is West Elm’s bedding. The soft tone of the bedding conveys a relaxed but elegant feeling in a room. The color complements gray, navy and beige nicely. It could be considered as a neutral; subtle, and innocuous.

dusty rose bedding

Metal, in hardware and lighting is a great way to update a rooms look.  Copper emerged big a few years ago and now the soft rose metals are popular and trending. If you are not ready to commit to the rose color or feel it is too feminine, this is a nice way to introduce it in your room.dusty pink bronze and leather credenza by BDDWAdd black, brown or gray along with the dusty rose to give it less of a femine feeling.

dusty rose rug

Emerald green is another color popping up in beautiful ways (Pantone’s color pick back in 2013). Velvet sofa’s are an emerging trend along with chairs. Again if this is too trendy of a color, consider accessories instead.

It’s a beautiful contrast against white, making a clear statement. Take a look at these designs to see how they have incorporated this rich color.

green sofas

 

House Beautiful gree accessories

The image above is from 2013, but the color is still holding interest. Possibly due to Pantone’s pick in ’13. These accessories are an easy way to add this trend into your decor to give it a fresh new look. Consider this year’s trending colors, or the past now emerging colors, to refresh and renew any room in your home. Let me know what you think!

Other Good Reads:

Green- Inspirational Rooms

Seeing Red????


Decorating for The Fall Season

Decorating for The Fall Season

Halloween; merchadise sales are second to Christmas. Who doesn’t love to decorate for the holidays?!

How can you get a longer run out of decorating for holidays? Decorate for the season, and add a couple of pieces in for the holiday that will create a festive felling.

Fall it’s a great time to bring the outdoors into your decor with gourds, pumpkins, leaves and other elements that create the festive feeling. These elements are sustainable through Thanksgiving, so you can gain longivity from these simple arrangements.

I pulled together some images that are also on my Pinterest board to give you some inspiration. It amazes me the talent that people have to create simple but unique arrangements. You do not have to be a master in flower arranging, but have a good eye and ablity to create similar fall arrangements using the elements here. Use these ideas on entrance tables, coffee tables, counter tops, table tops; your imagination is your limit! Enjoy decorating!

Orange pumpkins, flowers and berries

fall decor orange floweres and berries

The color of the flowers and adding small gourds are beautiful. Doing multiple vases along a table would be stunning!

sunflowers and berriesgourds and berries on a tray

Simple gourd and berry motif for an autumn table

orange roses and birch bark vases

Love the color of the roses with these natural vases

White Gourds

white gourds on wood tray

white pumpkin fall center pieceThe use of grasses and dry flowers in the gourd make for such a beautiful fall arrangement.

white gourds and succulants

This one I can even see working into the winter months.

Grasses and feathers

feathers in a white vase

 

Need more inspiration visit my Pinterst board

 

Other great reads:

Fall Tabletop Decorations


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