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.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Custom Furniture by Vince Chiavetta

What do you do when you need a cabinet, table or chair in a special size, style or finish? You can have it custom made by Vince Chiavetta of Vito's Upholstery.

His work includes custom built-in library walls, kitchens, bathroom vanities, custom office suites and display units for retail stores and restaurants.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Reclining Chairs, Not Like Your Father's

Did you ever think that you would want to include a reclining chair as part of your home decorating scheme? Recalling old-school type recliners, I did not think I would ever recommend that my clients include recliners in their interiors.

Most of us know that guys have always enjoyed looking forward to relaxing in a reclining chair after a long day, or to spending a day relaxing in their recliner while watching TV or reading. But those old, bulky recliners never seemed to fit the image of an elegantly appointed room.  Current furniture manufacturers have come a long way in the type of reclining chairs on the market. Now recliners come in many styles, limitless fabric choices, various sleek designs, size options and a selection of operating mechanisms.

Today's recliners are great-looking and feel so good. Go to a local furniture store and try some of the new recliners. The only problem you may have is to find the room for two recliners:  one of your partner and one for you!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Design For Lifestyle Trends

Rightsizing Design: Interior design trend to move from a larger residence to a smaller home, condominium or apartment. Design services including:
 - Review of present furnishings
 - Evaluation of current lifestyle and budget
 - Design furnishings plan for new space
 - Recommendations for estate sales, remodelers and movers

Home Styling: Redesigning a room using what you already own.  It's redecorating by arranging and editing your current furniture and accessories in a new way.

Home Staging: Preparing a home for sale. The three D's of home staging are:
 - Decluttering.  A home with a lot of clutter looks like it is too small.
                          A prospective buyer will think their items will not fit in.
 - Depersonalizing. Remove items that relate to the current owner. 
                                This allows the home buyer to envision their items in the space.
 - Deep cleaning.  A clean home is appealing and looks like a well cared-for home.
                             A prospective buyer will picture just moving in.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Top 10 Decorating Mistakes

Everyone makes mistakes, and it is never more evident when it comes to home decorating. Trends come and go, and each brings with it a new set of decorating mistakes.

I have asked a few interior design professional for their opinion of the worst decorating mistakes they see.  Here's a list of the top 10.

1. Too Many Pillows. A little comfort is good but when it is impossible to sit on a sofa because there are too many pillows in the way or if you have to spend a lot of time removing and storing pillow in order to get into bed---you know you have too much of a good thing.

2. Headless Beds. The only thing to say about this is that nothing, repeat nothing, is worse than a bed without a headboard.

3. Furniture That's Out Of Proportion. That gorgeous sofa, love seat and chair looked so good in the large furniture store, but very crowded in your home or apartment. Make sure to take the measurements of your room sizes with you when you are furniture shopping.

4. Too Many Pictures. A grouping of pictures makes an interesting collection, but too many look like clutter.

5. Toilet Surrounding Rug. U-shaped rugs to surround your toilet are out. A much better choice is a small area rug in front of the toilet.

6. Floating Area Rugs. An area rug set in the middle of a room makes the furniture look off-balance, and the rug looks like it lost the furniture that should be sitting on top of it.

7. Keeping Dated Décor You Dislike. If you have a choice between purchasing a new piece of furniture or removing a furnishing that is obviously dated, worn and one you dislike---such as old shag carpeting---remove the out-of-date element.

8. Exposed Cables. Our electronic age has brought with it the problem of many cables and wires in our décor. Cables left out in the open can really destroy the style of a room.  Whenever possible try to hide them with covers or under the baseboards.

9. Overdone Theme And Pattern. Too much is too much. A theme and pattern taken to the extreme makes a room feel like a stage set and not inviting to relax in.

10. Clutter. Always get rid of clutter. It makes a room feel as though you are entering a closet.

The best thing to do in order to avoid interior decorating mistakes is to look at the rooms in home decorating magazines and see how the furnishings are put together. If you need help and have the extra budget, you will find it beneficial to hire a professional interior designer to assist you in creating your beautiful rooms. Most interior designers will work with you on an hourly basis and come in to review your current décor and make suggestion for future purchases. This can give you the most bang for your budget.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Six Elements of Design

I wanted to start out this presentation to anyone who lives in an interior---single-family home, apartment, condo, hotel or tiny home---and wants to feel at home in their space.

There are six elements that comprise a successfully decorated interior that will make you feel great to live in and look at.  These six elements are:

FUNCTION:  what goes on in that room or space? do you need special items to be included in the design?

STYLE:  do you like modern or traditional? a combination/eclectic or ethic design?

COLOR:  color is the first thing that someone sees in a room and what do you like to surround yourself with?

TEXTURE:  do you like slick and shiny? or matte and knubby textures? are there special conditions like children playing or older adults?

LIGHTING:  very important considerations for dramatic mood, task lighting for work or reading, bathroom lighting for shaving and makeup application

ACCESSORIES/EQUIPMENT:  artwork and sculpture? hobby collection display? computers? televisions?

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Carpet Selection Made Easier

Carpeting is one of those home furnishing items that has more permanence. When you move from your home you leave the carpeting. When you put your home on the market, carpeting might be one of your main concerns for showing to prospective home buyers. And it's one of the more expensive furnishing purchases you make for your home.

In today's market there are many fibers developed to appeal visually, be resilient, stay cleaner longer and be low maintenance. Looking for a certain color is just the beginning. The majority of carpet produced in the United States contains one of six pile fibers: nylon, polypropylene (olefin), acrylic, polyester, wool or cotton. Synthetic fibers make up more than 99 percent of the fiber used in the U.S. market. I have compiled an overview of carpet fibers and their properties to help you make your choice.

WOOL: excellent resiliency, soil and stain resistance, poor resistance to sunlight, poor resistance to mildew, flammability level burns slowly, good abrasion resistance, builds up static in low humidity, hand is warm and soft.

NYLON: excellent resiliency, excellent abrasion resistance, good soil and stain resistance, good resistance to sunlight, builds up static in low humidity, flammability level burns slowly, hand varies from warm and soft to cold and coarse.

POLYPROPYLENE/OLEFIN: excellent resiliency, excellent abrasion resistance, good soil and stain resistance only if treated promptly, poor resistance to sunlight, hand is waxy and soft, excellent resistance to mildew, melts at low temperatuares.

ACRYLIC MODACRYLIC: fair resiliency, fair abrasion resistance, good soil and stain resistance, excellent resistance to sunlight, builds up static in low humidity, hand is warm and soft, excellent resistance to mildew, Acrylic burns readily, Modacrylics are difficult to ignite.

POLYESTER:  good resiliency, good abrasion resistance, good soil and stain resistance only if stains are promptly treated, good resistance to sunlight, builds up static in low humidity, hand varies and finer deniers are soft and silky, excellent resistance to mildew, burns slowly/melts.

COTTON:  poor resiliency and tricky carpet cleaning requirements, extremely beautiful colorations.