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Add Animal Accents For a Fun Conversation Piece

25 Nov

Animal accents bring a wild touch of the outdoors into your home.animalaccent3
… And an unexpected splash of interest.
Bring a little wildlife from outdoors into your home with animal accents! Animal home accents include rugs, upholstery or drapery fabric, wall coverings, animal and bird prints, and more. Just one animal print in a room can become the engaging focal point!
Very popular right now are leopard and zebra print rugs. Or go outside the box with a pattern that depicts antelope, cheetah, tiger or giraffe. Animal print rugs are especially effective in small spaces, such as stairways, powder rooms or foyers – and these small rooms are a good place to start if you’re feeling nervous about adding a large amount of animal accents to your home. You can even buy animal print rugs in colors that aren’t realistic at all, such as a magenta and black striped zebra rug!animalaccent1
Animal wall art can include:

  • The famous Audubon prints or similar etchings or block prints of birds and animals
  • Photographs of animals that you take yourself or purchase
  • Even a stencil border that shows birds in flight or animals running or grazing

animalaccent2For sculptural animal art, think a decorative bird cage that can be empty, filled with plants or even housing a live bird! Sculptural animal art can sit on floors, tables or mantels, and can be made from a variety of materials including metal, ceramic, stone or Lucite.
Especially popular in home design today are Japanese and Chinese painted screens that depict birds or animals. These can be hung on a wall or used functionally as a partial room divider.
Take a walk on the wild side by adding a touch of animal prints to your home! We can help.

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Adding an exotic element to your decor is a surprising touch.

30 Sep

It creates conversation and personalizes your home.ExoticElement2

What do you consider an exotic home element? That definition has changed over time as our worlds have gotten smaller, and our population is more diverse. We have more access to purchasing interior design elements from other cultures, in addition to bringing them home from our own travels.

Most people consider the following as exotic elements to add to their home décor:

  • Indian or East Asian fabrics

  • Moroccan or Indonesian end tables and lanterns

  • Latin American dining tables

  • Japanese ceramic stools

  • Polynesian sculptures

  • African masks and wall artExoticElement1

  • Asian stone sculptures

  • Exotic woods with dramatic grains and textures

  • Carpets and artifacts from the Southwest U.S.

  • Tiles from almost any country

  • Rugs from Turkey, Kashmir, Iran and so many other countries

  • Even tropical plants and flowers

bonsai-tree-3previewThe trick is to add enough exotic to make a room interesting, but not so much that the room is cluttered or looks out of place for your life style. A little goes a long way with exotic elements. Most of these items are hand-crafted so you won’t see the same piece in a friend or neighbor’s home! And you’re adding to the individuality of your home, especially if you brought the piece back from a special trip. 

Even in minimalist décor, one or two touches of the exotic can stand out; actually they’ll stand out even more than in a cluttered room. And even if the pieces are exotic and special, they can be in neutral colors that keep the zen feeling going strong.

Personalize your decor with an exotic element or two this year. It’s a conversation starter that will add personality and energy to your home.

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A Touch of Black

17 Jun

A touch of black is a design necessity.

Black2It’s a tried-and-true design adage that every room needs just a smidgen of black..
There’s something about adding just one element of black to a room that anchors the room and enhances the other colors. You and your guests may not even notice the touch of black, but it does make a difference.
Black is a powerful color, so a little goes a long way in adding drama, sophistication, seriousness or masculinity. And one of the best things about black is that it never goes out of style, even as other colors rise and fall in popularity, so your black accents will probably outlast all your other design elements!Black1
Black goes well with so many colors, especially cream or any off-white – or even pure, snowy white. It also looks beautiful with bold jewel tones and soft pastels. Today, some people are even decorating with black as the primary color in their design scheme, but be cautious about using too much black – it can be overpowering.
Ideas for a touch of black include:Black3

  • Frames for paintings, photographs or mirrors
  • Granite or marble countertops in the kitchen or bath
  • Lamps or lampshades
  • Upholstery fabric – in moderation
  • Flooring
  • Lacquer moldings around windows and doors
  • A valance, top treatment or drapery rod
  • Leather-covered walls or wall coverings
  • The inside surfaces of a built-in shelving system
  • Wrought iron for stair railings or bed frames

Anchor your home decor by adding a splash of black in every room this spring.

 

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Prints, Pattern, Colors All In One Room? Part One.

1 Apr

Mix It Up Like a Pro

“Conjunction junction, what’s your function?”  Remember that from when you were a kid?  You learned about “this and that”, “this or that”, and “not this, but that”.  In design, when we see patterns, we tend to think “this OR that”.  BUT…we are here to tell you it’s “this AND that”.  Mixing prints and patterns isn’t so scary once you understand the basics.

Part 1: Getting Started

Choose 3 or More-Starting With One Big BoldMix It Like a Pro pt1-1

Start with a focal point- it could be an area rug, wallpaper or a large print in upholstery that you love. This will be the base upon which you will build, incorporating color and patterns that coordinate with your focal point. To get depth and create interest, use multiple scales of at least three patterns. Don’t be afraid to bring multiples together, as long as you keep the values close.

Mix It Like a Pro pt1-2Find Inspiration via Theme

Maybe you like the Asian inspiration of chinois fabric, or a modern tropical focus with birds and flowers.  Any theme is a good way to get some ideas for various kinds of prints.

 

Picking ColorsMix It Like a Pro pt1-4

Do you have a favorite color?  Go with it!  Find a bunch of different prints in one color family and keep the same intensity of shades.  For example, if you go pastel, keep all of the shades pastel.

Blend similar to ease into pattern and print coordinating and to soften the look.  If you are unsure about mixing multiple colors, begin with just two.  Blue and green are great choices because they are next to each other on the color wheel.  And you can use a solid of each to tie it all together.  Just be sure to stick to the same intensity as you would for a single color scheme.

Or perhaps a white and a color is more your style.  White is great for filing in negative space when you have a color you are really loving and all the prints you are finding in it.

 

This is where you get excited and rush out to find all the things to make your home brand new.  But wait, there’s more.  Check out the next blog to get detailed hints on where to go from here.

 

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Adding an Asian Touch Will Energize Your Decor.

18 Feb

Adding an Asian Touch Will Energize Your Decor.
Asian design can be neutral and calm – or ornate and colorful.
AsianPhoto2Many people think of Asian home design elements as simply Chinese rugs and Japanese screens. But there’s so much more. The continent also includes the countries and cultures of Southeast Asia, including Thailand, Indonesia and Vietnam, and South Asia, primarily India.
These countries have both an ancient design aesthetic and a growing 21st century vibe. Today’s Asian design elements range from simple, monochromatic pieces to wildly patterned and colored designs.
bonsai-tree-3previewYou can start small with an ornamental bonsai tree, beautiful celadon dishware, painted lacquer ware or ceramic vases in many shapes and sizes. Or go bigger with a folding screen that acts as a divider between rooms, an accent piece sitting in the corner of a room, or a piece of wall art.

Japanese and Chinese ceramic stools are readily available, both in new versions and antiques, and add a beautiful Asian touch in your home or garden – to provide extra seating or a place to set a drink or snack.
Asian wall art offers so many possibilities, including ornately carved wood panels, landscape murals painted on silk, and wall hangings painted with calligraphy. And on the floor, there’s the possibility of oriental rugs, tatami mats and bamboo flooring.AsianPhoto1
Antique Asian furniture from almost all of the continent is fascinating, often with a blend of Asian design and European colonial influence. And in many countries, artisans are making new furniture out of recycled wood that originally adorned temples and houses.
Introduce a unique and beautiful element to your home décor this season by adding an Asian element – or two!

 

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