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Decorating with photographs can enhance the image of your home.

23 Sep

Photography is a tried and true design element.

Couple looking at artwork --- Image by © Steve Hix/Somos Images/Corbis

Couple looking at artwork — Image by © Steve Hix/Somos Images/Corbis

In the early days of photography, art aficionados didn’t consider photographs a “real” form of art. Today, we know that isn’t true. You can purchase a vast variety of photographic art — or create your own – and it’s just as beautiful and engaging as any other form of art you can display in your home.

Display photos can range from super-size portraits of your kids, dogs or a vacation spot to collections of miniature-sized photos of almost any item. With photos, you can:

  • Tell your family’s story

  • Focus on your kids or grandkids

  • Pay homage to your pets

  • Feature the places you’ve visited

  • Highlight specific things you like, such as elephants, dogs, Victorian houses or oak trees.

photos2Framing is half the fun. Often the frames are just as interesting – or even more interesting – than the photos themselves! You can go bold and ornate or opt for simple black rectangular frames to keep the emphasis on the photos themselves. If you’re displaying vintage photos, make sure to frame them with protective glass so they don’t get damaged by sunlight.

It’s typical to display photographs in a collection, as small as two photos to as large as you can fit across your wall or display shelves. Photos can be all the same size and orientation, or can vary in size and shape. photos3

Arrange collections in consistent horizontal vertical columns or horizontal rows, or go wild with a random arrangement. You can even angle photos up a stairwell. Equally pleasing are photos arranged on a shelf or mantel, often mixed with other pieces such as mirrors, vases and plants.

Picture your home with a beautiful photography display. It’s a dramatic decorating concept that personalizes your living space beautifully.

Using Tile In Decorating

22 Apr

Decorating with tile gives you an almost unlimited range of patterns, colors and materials.Tile2
The most difficult task may be to decide what kind of beautiful tile best suits your lifestyle and decor.
Tile is one of the oldest and most traditional of building materials, but it can also look totally modern, depending on the type of tile you select, the surfaces you use it for, and the way it’s installed. You can even add Southwestern, Asian or African accents with a carefully selected tile.
Tile is so versatile it can be used on almost any surface, including:
Walls                           Floors                                                      Countertops
Fireplaces                  Table tops                                                Even Ceilings!
And what a variety of tile materials is available, including mosaics, marble, porcelain, glass, natural stone, ceramic, slate and terra cotta. There’s even porcelain tile that looks like wood for better stain resistance and moisture proofing!Tile1
One of the challenges of selecting tile is that there are almost too many choices – and they’re all beautiful! That’s why it’s helpful to work with an expert to pick the most fitting tile for your application. For example, bathroom flooring and shower floors need to be slip resistant. And for your kitchen floor, counter top or backsplash, you’ll want to sTile3elect tile that’s stain-resistant and easy-to-clean.
Compared to many other hard surfaces, most tile is reasonably priced, long-lasting, durable and easy to clean without periodic polishing or sealing. Tile is also flexible because it comes in so many shapes and sizes, from tiny one-inch squares to giant 12-inch by 24-inch rectangles.
Tile surfaces can add beauty, style and durability to your home. They are so versatile – and come in so many choices – that you can create almost any look and mood.

 

 

 

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Women’s History Month-Famous Women in Design

13 Mar

Ladies in Design You Should Know About

“There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle, or the mirror that reflects it.”  This is a famous quote fromWomen1 Edith Wharton, mostly known for being a writer and the first woman to win a Pulitzer, but many do not know that she was also an interior designer.  She designed her home the Mount, which still stands today as an example of her design principles.  To celebrate March being Women’s History month, let’s take a look at some other female designers that paved the way.

Women2In 1905, Elsie de Wolfe became the first interior decorator to be given a design commission; it was the Colony Club on Madison Avenue and its interiors garnered her recognition overnight.  Rejecting the Victorian style she grew up with, Elsie chose a more vibrant scheme with more comfortable furniture in the home. Her designs utilized fresh colors and delicate furnishings opposing the Victorian preference of heavy drapes, plush upholstery, and dark wood. Her designs were practical in that she eliminated the clutter that occupied the Victorian home, enabling people to entertain more guests comfortably.

In England, Syrie Maugham became a legendary interior decorator by designing the first all-white room.  Also women3designing in the Victorian Era, she challenged the norm by filling rooms with light and furnishing them in multiple shades of white. In addition to mirrored screens, her trademark pieces included: console tables with plaster palm-frond, shell, or dolphin bases, upholstered and fringed sleigh beds, fur carpets, dining chairs covered in white leather, and lamps of graduated glass balls, and wreaths.

women4Dorothy Draper was the first documented commercial interior decorator, establishing her design firm in 1923.  Dorothy Draper believed that the energy of vivid colors would make people feel happier, so she led design away from the dark interiors of the time by introducing bright color palettes. She chose dramatic and contrasting color schemes and combined different fabrics and patterns together. All of the colors and patterns contributed to her dramatic design now referred to as “the Draper Touch.”

So if you are ever in need of some inspiration for your home, look back to these women who were so forward-thinking for their time.  Where will you put your white room?  Where will you use the “the Draper Touch”?

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Decluttering before you decorate will make your holidays trimmings pop!

11 Dec

Decluttering before you decorate will make your holidays trimmings pop!

Begin your holiday decorating with a clean start for maximum beauty and minimum chaos.
It’s so much fun to decorate the house for the holidays, but sometimes there’s just too much clutter once all the decorations are put out – so much “stuff” that people can hardly see the beauty of your holiday treasures.

Put away your “everyday” home accessoriesChristmasDeclutter1

Your first step before starting your holiday decorating should be to put away the other home décor items that usually adorn your house – sitting on table tops, mantles and furniture. This includes vases, candles, throw pillows and house plants. You can even store them in the boxes that your holiday decorations usually occupy! A clean start will help you decide where to display your holiday decorations for the most beautiful look and ensure that the decorations are the focal point of your rooms during this festive season.

Get rid of holiday decorations you’ll never use

ChristmasDeclutter2When you’re getting out your holiday decorations, take the time to purge, purge, purge. Take a close look at the decorations you aren’t going to use this year and honestly evaluate whether you’ll ever use them again. If it’s damaged, get rid of it. If you don’t love it, get rid of it. Think about passing your undamaged discards on to your children or other family members who are just starting their own households. Or donate them to a hospital, nursing home, homeless shelter or other charitable organization that could really use them to add some holiday cheer. After all, this is the season for giving.

Keeping your house clutter-free can be a challenge during the holidays. Try it and your house will look more festive and bright!

Fireplace warmth and style

14 Nov

Get ready to enjoy the cool winter months in front of a warm fire with family and friends.

The weather is cooling, and we’re all spending more times indoors. What a good time to refresh the fireplace, mantle and everything surrounding it.

A fireplace provides more than just fireplace2physical heat; it adds emotional warmth and ambiance. Your hearth-side experience can become the focal point of your entire house, whether your home is traditional or modern, formal or casual!

There are so many ways to make your fireplace area beautiful – and functional too, from the style and material of the fireplace and chimney to the design of the mantel and hearth, and even the décor and furniture near your fireplace.
Select stone, tile, brick, paint – the choices for materials are almost unlimited.

Purchase an antique wood or stone carved mantel and surround for a unique look.fireplace3

Don’t have a mantle at all! A fireplace can look beautiful with the brick, wood or stone extending to the ceiling.
Hang a mirror or beautiful piece of art over the mantel – or even your flat screen TV! You can even have your TV installed behind a remote-controlled piece of artwork.fireplace1

Add a unique fireplace screen for function and beauty.

Place big comfortable chairs near the fireplace or low ottomans for relaxing and warming up.

In the summer months, adorn the inside or edges of your fireplace with live or artificial plants or a beautiful “garden” of candles.

One of the biggest ways to change the look of a room is to redo your fireplace. Focus on your fireplace this fall and soon you’ll be basking in the glow of a beautiful hearth-side experience.

Fall Is the Perfect Time to Focus on Your Fireplace.
November 2014

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