To Market, To Market For Treasures Galore. Home Again, Home Again To Fill Our New Store!
What a week! Alyssa and I traveled to the Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market to search for vendors and products for our store, and as first-time market goers, boy, were we in for a shock! We had an amazing trip--it was exciting, overwhelming, and downright exhausting! It doesn't help that Alyssa and I suffer from knee injuries which make long periods of walking and standing difficult! For those of you who aren't familiar with Market, its basically made up of three different buildings, each with 20+ floors filled to the brim with different vendors carrying lines of home furnishings and accessories, florals, gifts, and more! That's a lot of ground to cover for newbies! We stopped and watched seminars, learned from the experts, and asked a lot of questions. Being new to the concept of Market, we wanted to take in as much as we possibly could during the week we were there--that might have been our mistake. Picture this: two women limping back to their hotel around 7pm each day after walking through floors and floors of merchandise for 8-10 hours. As soon as we got to our room, we flopped on our beds and took turns switching on and off with ice packs or heating pads on our poor knees, all while pouring over the products we saw each day. It was a sorry sight! It became our routine throughout the week but that didn't stop us from laughing every time we looked over at each other! We should have taken a picture. It was hilariously pitiful!
Now, about Market-- imagine the most stunning array of home decor items and displays completely surrounding you, everywhere you looked! It was incredible! We wish we could have taken everything home with us! We did take home over 1000+ pictures though!
Our final take away from Market was: - a large list of items we wanted to purchase for the store - inspiration for new ways to style or combine furniture and accessories - new relationships with many wonderful vendors - upcoming product and trend forecasts for the new seasons - and definitely a better game plan for our trip next year!
...Oh! and of course, a few more ice packs and maybe a heating pad for each of us next time!
We will see you next time, Atlanta! We can't wait to see what you have in store for us!
In the meantime, follow us on Facebook and Instagram to see sneak peeks of our Market finds!
"More and more, so it seems to me, light is the beautifier of the building." Frank Lloyd Wright - architect
As we've talked about in the past two posts, lighting is a crucial aspect of design and is found in three different categories: Ambient, Task, and finally Accent lighting.
Accent Lighting is almost like the jewelry of lighting. It highlights aspects of your home that you want to stand out. Whether it's artwork, your fireplace, or some shelving, accent lighting is used to help create or accentuate a focal point in your room. Accent lighting should be a more concentrated form of light, usually three times the general illumination level. Check out these common uses of accent lighting.
As you can see, lighting makes a huge difference in design and functionality as well. Having a good mix of the three types of lighting will give you the best outcome in your space. Just remember, the best lighting design is one that is barely noticeable!
"Light is the first element of design; without it there is no color, form, or texture." Thomas E. Farin - educator, lighting consultant, entrepreneur
Last week we talked about lighting and that in order to properly illuminate your home, you should have three different types of lighting- ambient, task, and accent. This week, we will be looking further into the second type of lighting: Task Lighting.
Task lighting focuses on function. When looking at your room, determine what types of activities will be performed in this space. Task lightning is used to illuminate those areas where finer tasks are being completed such as reading, writing, food prep, and more. By adding focused lighting to these areas, it should prevent glare and eyestrain, making everyday activities easier.
Task lighting is used in a wide variety of ways such as:
Under Cabinet Lighting
Next week we will finish up by exploring accent lighting and exactly where you should use it in your home.
"Because light alone among the designer's tools is constantly changing throughout the day, with one light source capable of expressing so many different moods, it is the home's fourth dimension." Alexsandar Rublek – lighting designer
Lighting, when done well, makes a statement in a home and can truly change it from average to extraordinary. When choosing the lighting for your home, there are quite a few things to consider: What is the purpose of the room? How much natural light does the room receive? Are there any focal points that should stand out? What type of lighting should be used? The last question is one that can make the biggest difference. There are three general types of lighting- ambient, task, and accent. Which is the best? The answer is a mixture of all three. In order to create a room with layers and personality, all three types of lighting are needed. Too often people assume one type will be enough and this can keep the space from reaching its full potential. When lighting is done correctly, it should almost seem as though it is a natural part of the room. Over the next couple of weeks we will delve into the different types of lighting. This week we will be featuring Ambient Lighting.
Ambient lighting is the base layer of lighting in your home. This type of lighting is used to illuminate your space. It keeps the areas of your home balanced and uniform when it comes to the amount of light in the room. Ambient lighting should be the general source of lighting which allows you to complete basic, everyday tasks such as walking from point A to point B. Because this type of lighting engulfs your entire space, it can really set the atmosphere of a room. Often on a dimmer switch, this lighting can be brightened to give a clean, awakening feel or dimmed to create a more personal and intimate space.
Ambient lighting comes from many different light fixtures including:
Ceiling or Wall Mount Fixtures
Chandeliers and Pendants
Track or Recessed Lighting
Look out for next week's post where we will discuss the purpose of task lighting and show you examples of how to utilize it in your home.
Neutral color schemes are a popular choice by homeowners because of their versatility and understated, yet classic style. The trick with this scheme is to keep the design interesting as well as making sure the palette doesn't feel too sterile.
Neutral colors include white, beige, cream, tan, gray, taupe, and black and come in varying shades and tone. If you want a white wall, there are many factors to look at when choosing a paint color. White, as in all colors, has undertones of other colors such as pink, blue, gray, tan, yellow, or peach. Finding the perfect tone can be daunting, but not impossible--just pay attention to the undertones. If you struggle seeing the undertones in a paint chip, try holding several paint chips of the same base color next to each other, such as three different whites. This will help point out the different undertones in each sample. One of the most noticeable differences you will see between the different paint chips will be warm verses cool tones. Noticing these little details will help you choose a color that will work best with your palette.
Once you select a color to base your neutral palette around, use a variety of lighter and darker shades throughout your space. For instance, pair your light gray wall with a dark charcoal grey area rug and a medium grey on your sofa. What you are doing is adding depth to your space while keeping it neutral. Depth adds interest to a room and keeps it from looking too flat. Don't limit yourself to just one color; combining several neutral colors in your space allows you to keep your space classic and interesting without feeling monochromatic.
Now to keep your room from feeling too sterile or cold, pull in contrasting textures. Pair woven materials with metals, nubby linens with faux fur, reclaimed wood with mirrored glass. A combination of these materials provide depth and warmth to your room. Scatter them throughout your room with brushed velvet accent pillows, linen sofa and chair fabrics, wooden crates, grass cloth walls, stone or tile fireplaces, metal side tables and candlesticks, and mirrored or glass trays and lamps.
The last step to creating an interesting neutral room is to add your personality to your space. Do this by mixing in fun, funky, or eye catching pieces that speak to your personal style and experiences. Whether you do this through travel mementos or family heirlooms, every space needs a touch of personality. Have you recently renovated to a neutral palette and love the look? Post your pictures here and tell us what you love about it.
'One of the hardest styles to perfect is definitely the eclectic style. It's a look that seems the most laid back and effortless due to the mixing of different styles and elements, but it is so easy for this look to become cluttered and in disarray.
The eclectic style is a highly personal, curated look and highlights unique and personal touches as the main focus. With this style, you are able to combine pieces from different eras and styles to create a truly cultivated look.
Because of its personal look, the biggest enemy of this style is matching furniture sets. Having all of your furniture pieces match can take away the opportunity to bring personality into your space.
A lot of people find that scary because it is easy for your room to feel uncoordinated when you are bringing in so many different elements, but there are several ways to make sure your unique pieces still work together harmoniously.
One of the easiest ways to keep this style cohesive is by the use of color. Keeping your colors mostly neutral allows the personality of your items to really stand out. Now, just because you're using neutral colors, it doesn't mean it has to be boring. While a soft neutral wall color such as white, cream, taupe, or a soft gray keeps your room feeling light and airy, you can also use a charcoal or a navy to give your room a dramatic or moody feeling. Also, following a color scheme will help avoid the cluttered look. Again, stick to mostly neutrals, but feel free to bring in an accent color.
The next big part of creating your eclectic style is making sure your furniture pieces all work together and fit your room. Like I said earlier, if you buy a matching set of furniture, you lose so much personality in your space. So instead, choose pieces that have similar lines and proportions. Don't be afraid to mix your styles here. Just make sure the proportions, scales, and shapes of your furniture work well in the room as well as with the other decor. This helps you create your look while also feeling purposeful.
Just like furniture, fabrics are a key element in creating the eclectic style. Having a multitude of textiles with different textures and patterns is an easy way to achieve this look, just make sure they draw from a shared palette. One fun way of using fabrics to bring cohesiveness to your room is to reupholster two different chairs in the same fabric. This allows you to find that creative feel with your furniture selections while minimizing the distractions of having too many unique individualized pieces.
Textures are a big part of keeping your space interesting while sticking with a more neutral color palette. Use a natural woven window shade or a fluffy shag rug to add dimension. Feel free to layer textures as well. Pair a woven rug with a hide rug, or throw a furry blanket on top of a jute chair. Because most textures affect a room in the same way as a neutral paint color, you can fill a room with varying textures without it feeling too overwhelming.
Tips and Tricks
If you follow these main rules, you should be on your way to creating a personalized, eclectic space. But here are a few more tips and tricks that will help you along the way.
- Art: when using artwork on your walls, try finding one thing to tie them together, whether it is all black and white pictures, a collection of items featuring the same type of subject, or matching frames. - Accessories: a unique blend of accessories is what really pulls together the eclectic style. A fun way to create a focal point out of accessories is to use several of the same type of item but in different styles together, such as a bunch of candlesticks on a mantle. Because they are the same type of item, they can each look different and not feel like clutter. - Don't forget to keep a focal point in your room. Your eye will wander the room because of the multitude of unique pieces in there, but having a focal point will ground the room. - Contrast plays a big part in eclectic design, whether it's through texture, color, or finish. Feel free to play up the contrasting features in your room to help set the atmosphere of the room. - Make sure your room feels personal to you- that is the whole purpose of the eclectic style!
Do you pick up fabric samples you like and then wonder if they go together? Does this print look right with this stripe? Can a geometric pattern work cohesively with a floral? Fabrics with their wide color choices and infinite possibilities of pattern options can get overwhelming and down-right confusing. There are three main things to consider when choosing your fabrics: color, scale, and style. Let me try to walk you through some of the aspects of fabric color selections. First and foremost, the fabrics that will be used together should have similar colors and be in the same tonal families. If your colors are bright and pure, all of the fabrics should have that pure color, although it’s not necessary for them to all have the same intensity. If you have a more muted, greyed out version of colors, the rest of the fabrics that were picked should have that same greyed out color range. It’s not necessary for all of your fabrics to have the exact same colors in them, but there should be a few colors that are found in all of the fabrics in order to keep them cohesive. So, if one fabric has blue, green and purple in the pattern and another has the same color blue and green but has a mahogany color with it, as long as they are in the same tonal family it should work. The next important factor in picking fabrics is the scale of the patterns. In order to make different patterns work with each other and not compete, mix up the scale of the patterns. If your main fabric has a large floral design, pair it with two more floral prints by finding ones in a small or medium print. This same tip goes with geometric or striped patterns as well. Also, this rule helps you combine multiple styles of patterns such as a floral with a stripe. Lastly, fabrics translate as different design styles such as traditional, contemporary, and farmhouse to name a few. You shouldn’t avoid a fabric just because on its own it doesn’t fit the style you are creating. Mixing fabrics from different styles is what will make your combinations more interesting and diverse. That being said, some fabrics definitely read too strongly of one style to be mixed with another. Below the two fabrics on the left are too traditional to pair with the two contemporary fabrics on the right.
Those styles are a little too different to blend together nicely.
Now, take a look at these three fabrics, they definitely read as farmhouse style,
but if you take one of these fabrics and pair it with this traditional style fabric,
they all work with the traditional fabric.
Since I am having so much fun mixing fabrics, here is an example of a contemporary fabric mixed with traditional patterns.
The middle fabric is definitely a contemporary style fabric which I have paired with traditional style fabrics. Any pairing of those surrounding fabrics would look great with the middle fabric.
Now I think by my example above, I have answered my next question. Can you mix florals, stripes, plaids and geometric patterns? Yes, as long as the scales are mixed and the colors are similar with the same tone. See some more examples below.
Finally, now is the time to inject some fun into your room by using some fun fabrics that show your personality! Here are a few samples of the type of fabrics out there to choose from.
There are so many choices of fabrics out there and there are endless possibilities for combining them to create your own individual style! Now that I have made these fabric combinations, I love them all. I can’t pick one that I like best! What is your favorite combination of these fabrics?
The past several blogs we have talked about color, and though I can go on and on about color, I will circle back to it another time. For this post, I would like to talk about new construction and remodeling.
Building a new home or tackling a remodeling project can be intimidating and scary thanks to the countless decisions that your builder or contractor will already be asking you. Having an interior designer on staff during this process insures that there is someone paying attention to the aesthetics and making sure that the overall use of the area is kept practical. To do this, we have to answer certain questions pertaining to your space.
I’ll start with the two biggest questions.
What is the room going to be used for? Will it have a dual purpose? When during the day will it be used and for what type of function? Knowing these questions will help with the lighting of the room, the surrounding sightlines (if you are sitting on your sofa, will you be looking at your toilet through the bathroom doorway) and help give the room a purpose.
What furniture is going to be used and how the furniture should be placed? This will help you determine the flow of the room and how people will be moving around in it. When deciding on furniture, the size of the pieces will matter when you are looking at the room’s flow and its use.
Now that those questions are being answered, here are a few more things to think about.
Where is the best places for light switches and when to use dimmers? Usually it is pretty obvious where you want to have your light switch but sometimes having two light switches in a room is easier than running across the room to turn on the light. Dimmer switches are great in some rooms where you would like to control the brightness levels or for mood lighting. The dining room is the best example for the use of dimmer switches. I also have 2 dimmer switches in our living room where one set of lights are above our TV so when dimmed it makes for better movie viewing and another switch to dim the lights above our sofas. This allows me to have the sofa lights on so I can work or do crafts while watching a movie with dimmed TV lights.
Where will the Christmas tree go? (That is coming from a person that likes to decorate for the holidays!) Now, I say Christmas tree, but it can be any holiday decoration or anything your family might add to a room for a brief period of time, that if you plan ahead, you can make it easier for you. For me, another thing would be a place to overwinter some of my potted plants I have outside in the warmer months. In my living room, I have an outlet that has its own switch which means the outlet doesn’t work unless I flip a switch for it. I wanted this outlet because it is the outlet I plug my Christmas tree into and having it on its own switch allows me to quickly turn on and off my Christmas tree with very little effort. Love it! The outlet can always be used outside of the Christmas season just by flipping the switch. I also have electrical outlets above my kitchen cabinets which allow me to put up decorative lights or illuminated décor without having any cords that hang down. Again, I have a designated switch just for those outlets so they are easy to turn on and off.
These are just a few details that easily get overlooked when designing a home or renovation because there are so many bigger issues to address. But these details are important because they can make living in your home more comfortable and tailored for your lifestyle. Interiors designers can help guide you on all the details and ease up the decision making process! Here’s to a happy home!
Are you afraid of using color in your home because you're worried about making it flow? Don't be! A different color in each room can be both striking and cohesive!
It's simple, let's break it into an easy ratio- 6:3:1. Start with your main color. In our picture above, its a deep teal. This color will cover around 60% of our room. In our example room we have deep teal on our walls, our sofa, and in our accessories. Next, you want to bring in an accent color in 30% of your room, so we have a yellow chair, ottoman, throw, and accessories. Lastly, throw in a third color to keep the room from seeming two-toned. Use this color in 10% of the room. In this room we have red in our pillows, lampshade, and accessories.
It's best to keep your colors to a minimum which is why we recommend using three. You want to make an impact without overwhelming the room. That being said, neutrals such as black, tan, gray, cream, and white should not be factored into your three choices when used in small doses. Also, don't be afraid to use art or accents that have a variety of colors because they are going to only make up 1% or less of the total color of the room.
Now, the part most people find tricky is blending multiple rooms in their house together. Again, it's much easier than you think! Take at least one of the colors in your first room and bring it into the adjoining room. You can use that color as the 60%, 30%, 10%, or even the 1% or less. Just including one of your previous colors will allow your eyes to make the connection and give your home a more cohesive look.
Here are a few more examples of rooms designed using the 6:3:1 ratio.
So don't be afraid of bringing bold colors into you home. Color transforms your space and dictates the overall feel of your rooms.
Fill your life with color! What's your favorite three color combination?
Last week we introduced you to the colors chosen to represent 2018. This week, we pulled together a few color palettes that show the versatility of each of the chosen colors as well as a few inspirational photos.
Pantone: Ultra Violet 18-3838
Pantone's Ultra Violet pairs well with muted jewel tones as well as a variety of warm neutrals. Let Ultra Violet take the spotlight with these color palettes.
Want to incorporate Pantone's color of the year in your home? Use Ultra Violet as an accent wall, a pop of color through accessorizing, or mixed with other bright colors for a statement rug.
Sherwin Williams: Oceanside SW6496
Oceanside mixes well with not only the surrounding colors on the color wheel, but also with its opposite. A pop of orange brings Sherwin William's blue-green color to life and provides a strong contrast.
The deep tones of Oceanside provide a subtle and soothing accent to your room. Use it to add depth to the busiest parts of your home for a more relaxing atmosphere.
Benjamin Moore: Caliente AF290
The deep red of Caliente pairs well with most colors. Keep the palette warm with rust oranges and golden yellows or give it some contrast with deeps blues and cool greys.
Do you feel like your room lacks excitement? Benjamin Moore's Caliente is the perfect color to liven up a room. From your front door to your kitchen cabinets, Caliente is an exciting splash of color.
Behr: In The Moment T18-15
The soft tones of Behr's In the Moment pairs best with dusty neutrals and rich, saturated colors. In the Moment evokes a tranquil quality that make you feel comfortable and welcome in part to its tie to nature.
Because of it's nature based color, Behr's color of the year works perfectly on the exterior of your home as well as the interior where it creates a serene, and inviting environment.
Glidden: Deep Onyx 00NN 07/000
Deep Onyx is a neutral that pairs well with any color on the color wheel from bright tones to more muddied colors. Here we chose palettes that are more subdued but with interesting pops of color.
Feel like adding some drama to your space? Deep Onyx would be a great start! Don't be afraid to use this color in many unique ways. This matte black brings the perfect contrast when used as trim color or intensifies the overall look when used on the walls or even the ceiling in your dining room.
PPG: Black Flame PPG1043-7
We love the deep rich color of Black Flame. Here we paired Black Flame with strong grayed-out tones which brings out the luxurious richness to the color. We also pulled together muted soft tones that look fresh and modern.
Black Flame, PPG's Color of the Year, looks amazing on exterior elements such as siding, doors, shutters, and window boxes. The deep vibrant color on your walls gives off a moody vibe, or can be the perfect accent color when used on your fireplace, tile, or chairs.
Hope these palettes have inspired you to push your creative boundaries and give the 2018 Colors of the Year a try in your own home! Where can you see yourself applying one of the color schemes?