Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Holiday Decorating Beyond A Christmas Tree

Maybe this year you have re-scaled your living space and don't want to move furniture to fit in a holiday tree.  There are many ideas to put a twist on the traditional Christmas tree. Try a few of these inspired holiday decorations.

Place vintage ornaments on a cake stand nested with leaves for a stunningly simple centerpiece.
Are you serving holiday dinner buffet style? Wrap each dish in a sheet of parchment paper and tie with a length of ribbon before stacking it. Guests will be rewarded with a pretty presentation.
Lush greenery draped around the house, especially around doorways, creates an inviting atmosphere and a woodsy aroma.
Use a string of pinecones to make an easy swag. Tie a big bow in the middle so you can center it perfectly over a doorway, then tack it up with nails.
Decorate a small, artificial white tree with objects that share a color scheme---such as candy canes, peppermints and red bows---and place them on a side table or a coffee table.
A grouping of old-fashioned ornaments hung from the ceiling makes a whimsical chandelier effect.
Tie big silver bells to the front doorknob with festive ribbon. Visitors will jingle all the way into your home.
For an elegant look, trim the mantle with a row of white votives and dramatic white amaryllises.
Use leftover ribbon to tie around the stems of your champagne flutes or wine glasses for an extra bit of festivity. A bonus choosing a different color for every glass will help guests keep track of their drinks.
A five-second centerpiece. Mix clementines or oranges and peppermint balls in a single glass compote or a grouping of three.
Add a little sparkling style to your dining room table by filling a snifter to the brim with an array of shiny silver bells.
Wreath filled with wishes. Hang an unadorned twig wreath in a spot where guests can't miss it. Set out red Magic Markers and small plain cards on a table next to it. Post a little sign asking visitors to scribble a greeting or a wish for the upcoming New Year along with their names and have them slip the notes into the wreath.
Decorative photo collage. Up on the mantle, collect your family's holiday picture cards from previous years and clothespin them to a long, slim stick suspended between two vases. Put them in chronological order and you can date the pins.
A staircase looks lovely with a garland of greenery. Easier than looping it around and around, lay evergreen on top of the banister and fasten in place with floral wire and wrap with extra-wide ribbon.
And keep in mind that these ideas can also be fashioned for any holiday, birthday, anniversary or special celebration.
 

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Budget Accessories Can Transform A Room

If you want to per up the color palette or character of your home but don't have the budget to redecorate every room, here are some ideas on how a few small touches can get big results.
 - Be inspired by the seasons.  Use object that reflect the weather outside.
 - Stools are perfect accessories. The are a great spot for extra guest seating or to place a tray with food and drinks.
 - Begin with a rug. An area rug becomes a focal point and can define an area in a room.
 - Pillows.  The easiest way to add color and textures to a room is by placing some interesting pillows on your sofa and chairs.
 - Display your favorite accessories.
 - Artful display. Organize accessories into groupings to have visual impact.
 - Table accessories.  Set your table as if you were dressing it---accessorize.
 -

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Preparing For The Construction Crew

You are remodeling your home, and you are going to be living in the home during the construction.  It is not only the physical changes but it emotionally feels like your nest is being torn apart.
    
There are a few things you can do to make life easier during the transition to your dream home space:
     1.  If you are remodeling the kitchen, you need to create a space where you can prepare foods you need like, coffee, light breakfast, lunch and dinner---even if it is reheating to-go food or frozen dinner. A coffee maker and microwave are essential.
     2.  If you are remodeling your bathroom, you need to know from the plumber how long your toilet and shower will be unusable, and maybe plan your day to shower at your gym after your workout, or everyone who lives in the home uses the same bathroom.
     3.  When redoing your floors you need to get all items off the floor, so you can store these items on temporary shelving or rolling clothes racks in rooms that are not effected by the flooring---even bathrooms or laundry rooms or the garage.
     4.  When remodeling a basement you can plan to bring the items usually stored there into a temporary storage locker.  And it may be a great time to toss items that you no longer need.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Expert Tips For Hanging Artwork

Now that you purchased the perfect piece of artwork or mirror, you'll want to place it to the best advantage visually and safely.  Deciding where to hang artwork is a two-person job---one to hold the artwork and another to ponder it.
Here are some tips from art hanging experts.
1. The center of the picture should be at eye level, approximately 60" from the floor.
2. Leave a least a 3" to 6" gap between the top of a sofa and the bottom of the picture frame, and 4" to 8" from a tabletop.
 3. A grouping of pictures should be treated as a single composition. Hint: make paper templates of each piece and tape the templates to the wall using painter's tape. Rearrange until you get it right for your eye.
4. Center the picture or grouping across the wall or over a piece of furniture.

Measuring and making your mark.
1. While holding the picture in place where you want it on the wall, put a strip of painter's tape on the wall, making the bottom edge of the tape even with the top of the frame. Mark each end of the frame on the tape. Then remove the picture from the wall.
2. If the picture will use only one wall hanger, you want to place that hanger at center-of-frame. Measure the width of the frame and divide by two.. Then measure this distance in from the marks on the painter's tape.  Now turn the picture over and measure from the top of the frame to the point the picture will hang. If the picture has hanging wire, hook the metal end of a tape measure under the center of the wire. Pull up until the wire is taut and measure up to the top of the frame. If the picture has D-rings or sawtooth hangers, hook the tape over the top of the frame and measure down to the ring or hanger. Then transfer that number onto a hanging location on the wall by measuring down from the bottom edge of the painter's tape at the center point. Use a level to make sure your new mark is plumb with the mark on the painter's tape.

Choosing Hardware
1. For most jobs, use a simple hanging kit (includes a J-hook and nail). The wire on the back of the picture will hang from it. Hanging kits are generally sold according to the weight of the artwork. To find that weight, weigh yourself on a bathroom scale while holding the picture and then subtract your weight from it.
2. Consider using adhesive picture hanging strips for normal-size pictures. They leave no holes in the wall and are easy to remove without damage to walls.
3. If the picture weighs 25 pounds or more and a stud is not present, use a wall anchor on drywall or plaster walls. Anchors that spread out behind the wall, such as toggle or molly bolts, provide the most holding power and help keep plaster from cracking.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

10 Tips For A Luxury Bathroom

Do you want your bathroom to make you feel pampered, the way you feel in luxury bathrooms you enjoy at hotels when traveling? You deserve to feel that wonderful way everyday in your own bathroom. Here are 10 tips to help you to create a luxury bathroom of your own.

1.  Install a heated floor under your tile.
2.  Replace your standard towel bars with an electrical towel warmer.
3.  Proper sizing.  Before you purchase a bathtub or install your shower---try it out dry.
4.  Put a steam unit in your shower.
5.  Toilet with bidet unit attachment.
6.  Make sure you have enough electrical outlets for your daily equipment use.
7.  Install both fixed shower head and a hand-held to double for easier cleaning.
8.  Good lighting is essential for shaving and putting on makeup.
9.  Your vanity should be able to hold all the accessories you need.
10. Before you remodel your bathroom, decide on materials, finishes and color.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Right Sizes Decorating Is Right For Today

An important trend in interior decorating is referred to as "downsizing" however I like to refer to it as "right sizing".  Designers today report that people of all age groups are moving into more right sized arrangements that reflect their current lifestyle and space needs.

The various reasons for home right sizing are:
 - You live in a home that no longer fits your needs.
 - Your home is now an empty nest.
 - You are retired or getting ready to retire.
 - You want to tap into the home equity you have built.
 - You are interested in minimizing stress with less responsibility.
 - You desire a smaller workload.
 - You are interested in an increased cash flow.
 - You want greater lifestyle flexibility.

Right sizing and relocation is a transition and can incur emotional and physical aspects along with the d├ęcor changes. To help you with this transition, a designer and/or organize can assist by providing a comprehensive and personalized approach. The process can begin with space planning and organization to coordination of the move through to post move support and decorating. A great plus a designer provides is experience which results in timeliness and getting the most bang for your budget.

Right sizing is uniquely ;personal and does require planning. Hear is a good outline for organizing:
1. Start by assessing your original home versus the layout of your new space.
2. Go through room by room to sort items into the following categories: what to keep, sell, donate or discard.
3. Coordinate moving from your original home to your new location.
4. Pack and label your boxes for ease of moving your belongings into your new location.
5. Prepare for move-in day by having enough assistance to locate belongings into the right rooms.

One of the keys to a successful right sizing with less stress is to start planning early. You will be prepared for any last minute glitches.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

White Or Stainless Appliances With White Kitchen Cabinets?

The number one color for kitchen cabinets is white, according to the Kitchen and Bath Design Association.  Stainless steel has been the most popular finish for appliances, but is white a better option?

I recently visited this question with my own kitchen redecorating project.  I went about the decision-making process the same way I recommend to my clients.  I made a list of pros and cons for each option.

White appliances:  blend in color-wise with the white cabinets seemingly making the kitchen appear larger, white appliances cost less than stainless steel finish, easier to keep clean, timeless classic color.

Stainless steel appliances:  harder to keep clean as they show every fingerprint and smudge, more costly than white appliances, visually stand-out against the white cabinetry, give a more commercial equipment look.

However, I think the bottom line is that white appliances are less expensive and can look cheaper than stainless steel appliances.  Stainless appliances give more of a luxury-look to your kitchen.