Ottomans: So Much More Than a Resting Place

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Like what you see in the picture? Find your ideal room here:

Mirror
Ottoman
Accent Table
Striped Table Lamp
Silver/floral shade Table Lamp

After a long day, there’s nothing better than sitting back and putting up your feet – and ottomans are the perfect piece of furniture for doing just that. But often, ottomans are an afterthought, seen more as an accessory than a necessity. Designers know, however, that ottomans are a key décor element that can pull a room together and give it some extra character in addition to providing that extra level of relaxation.

So, what can an ottoman do for your room?

  • Add style. Are you classic? Contemporary? Transitional? An ottoman can help to drive the style direction and feel of your room. With the plethora of options available, the ottoman can act as your center piece the brings everything together. As an added bonus, an ottoman can be style and function and may be a place for storage, extra seating, a place to rest your weary feet, or literally just a place to put your favorite magazines and accent decor.
  • Add texture. Ottomans are available in an almost endless variety of fabrics that add visual texture to a room. Leather, for instance, offers a subtle sheen and an organic, smooth texture. Cowhide ottomans cast light differently and have their own uniquely tactile character. Other fabric options like damask, velvet or even rush grass also provide visual interest.
  • Enhance color. Whether you want to harmonize with the existing color scheme of your room or add a burst of color, you can find an ottoman that suits your tastes. Neutral shades are the most adaptable options; earth tones generally pair nicely with other earth tones. For something bolder, an ottoman covered in handwoven kilim squares, which are one-of-a-kind, will offer a rainbow of rich colors, including reds, blues, browns and golden hues.
  • Balance the look of the room. Large rooms can suffer from an excess of negative space, leaving the room feeling “off” or just a little too empty. Ottomans, alone or in pairs or groupings can add that extra element that fills the space to balance the overall appearance of the room.

Lighting up your living room

Living_Room_PinterestPhotograph credit: http://bit.ly/1646d07

If the kitchen is the heart of the home, the living room would have to be the soul. It’s often the main space for entertaining, so it’s important to have lighting that’s both useful and attractive.

Many people, however, don’t have ceiling lighting in their living rooms. If you decide you want this type of lighting, it’s highly recommended you hire an expert to install it. Not only do you need someone who is knowledgeable about installation processes and electricity, but you also want a professional who will not damage your walls or ceiling.

There are many advantages to adding ceiling lighting. It gives the room a special atmosphere. It doesn’t require much RooneyChandelierspace – ceiling light fixtures are natural choices for small rooms. Plus, there’s a style to fit any home decor – formal, modern, traditional, informal. You can get a fixture that matches other lighting in the room, or one that is part of a blended design.

If you decide you don’t want to add a ceiling fixture, you’ll need to light the room with floor and table lamps, or perhaps wall sconces. Torchieres , which are floor lamps that shine upward, make lovely additions to rooms. Not only are they bright and beautiful, but many come with dimmers, allowing a touch of ambiance.

MeenaTableLampTable lamps are another option that fits in well with any furniture style. From contemporary to rustic, novelty to Tiffany, table lamps only need a flat surface and you’ll instantly add just the right lighting to your living room. When you consider the wide selection of finishes and shades available, you’ll realize that you can customize your lighting choices with pieces perfect for you.

Consider selecting a couple of wall sconces to add light and beauty to your room. Today’s selections are stylish, and can be warm, glowing beacons that light up the night.

DIY Lamp Revamp

Well chosen accent pieces can make or break the flow of an otherwise well thought out room. Poorly chosen pieces, or errr… ugly pieces, are sore on the eyes and greatly distract from the room’s other aesthetic qualities. Assuming there are any. And if there are none, that’s ok too- we’re here to help with that.

Oftentimes we can find ourselves in a decorating rut. We recognize our homes are in need of extreme makeovers, but unlike high profile television networks, our bank accounts are not exactly endless. The good news is that a little creativity in the area of home decorating can go a long way, and if we’re lucky we won’t have to spend a thing. In the event that we’re unlucky, we’ll spend a few dollars (which we could probably find at the bottom of our couch anyway).

This post focuses on how you can vamp up your home lighting style with a little paint, a little time, and a lot of fun.  First things first, rummage through your home and find an ugly lamp. You’ll want to find a piece that- overall has good structure (even if it’s boring or plain) and is in working condition.

You’ll need a few materials for this project, but don’t worry- most of these things you’ll already have.

Materials:

  • Rubbing Alcohol
  • Cleaning Rag
  • Painter’s Tape
  • Craft Spray Paint
  • New lamp shade (found in the home furnishings section of most stores) if you’re less than happy with the current shade.

Choose an optimal spray paint based on the current finish of your lamp. Spray paint cans list the ideal finishes on the front or side of the can.

Now, painting 101, clean the surface of your lamp by wiping it down with a cleaning rag and some rubbing alcohol. Be sure to remove any hardware (screws, switches, etc.) so that it does not get painted. Also, to protect the cord from paint, use the painter’s tape as you would when painting the trim on your walls at home.

We’re ready to paint! Or at least we should be- so long as we’re either outside or in a well ventilated space with newspaper lining the floor. Now the fun part.

Holding the can 8-10 inches away from the lamp, evenly distributing color throughout the lamp’s surface. You will have to do this using multiple coats. It’s important to refrain from saturating one area; otherwise you’ll have drips that remain on the finished product. Wipe drips immediately away using a damp rag. A few coats of paint is generally enough to get the job done. Less coats result in an uneven distribution of color (which can be a cool look if that’s what you’re going for).

Let the lamp dry overnight, otherwise you’ll end up smudging the color.

Does the finish appear dull? No worries! You can find faux-finish spray paint at most hardware or craft stores for just a few dollars.

DIY projects offer you the chance to be creative so mix and match your colors. Pick bold colors of paint and pair it with a neutral lamp shade. Or choose a subdued paint to pair with a bold lamp shade. For ideas on styles visit our online inventory of lamps.

Do you have ideas on how to get out of a home decorating rut? Send them to marketing@bellacor.com for a chance to be featured as a guest blogger.

Lamps 101

Lamps are commonly referred to as the “portables” in the lighting industry meaning they can be “carried or moved with ease”. Also, they can be plugged into electrical outlets and do not require an electrician for installation. This makes them a very easy way to decorate and light your home.

There are 4 primary categories of lamps: table lamps, floor lamps, desk lamps and outdoor lamps.

There are hundreds of different table lamps offered on Bellacor’s website in many different styles, colors, sizes, shapes and materials. Table lamps can be used to read by, work on tasks, or to create ambiance in your room. They are usually placed on an end table but there exceptions to that when it comes to accent lamps and buffet lamps which are “special” table lamps. Accent lamps are usually smaller than your standard table lamps, usually not higher than 24 inches, and are used to decorate or light a specific place in your home wherein you wouldn’t necessarily be using the light to work or read by. An excellent example of an accent lamp are the tiffany glass accent lamps that Quoizel have been creating for many years.

Buffet lamps, on the other hand, are usually slender and taller in height, generally 32”- 40” high, and are used on console tables to highlight decorative objects or buffet spreads.

Floor lamps are usually taller than 48 inches and are designed to stand on the floor. They are oftentimes used for reading and task work but don’t necessarily have to be as in the case of a torchiere wherein the light is directed upward.

Desk lamps are primarily used on desktops but can be placed anywhere you might have a work area. Desk Lamps usually have a downward task light to expose light on to your work area and oftentimes have a swing arm in order to direct the light as you choose.

Lastly, we have outdoor lamps, this category has been rapidly growing as outdoor spaces become more important to our homes. Outdoor lamps are available in table, accent and floor lamps and are generally made of weatherproof resin and fabrics in order to withstand the elements. Kichler has a wide variety of quality outdoor lamps.

The great thing about all lamps is that they are a relatively easy way to change up a room or create a new environment without hiring a handyman. You can easily switch lamps in any setting for a brand new look, or purchase an accent lamp for the kitchen counter, or put a new pair of table lamps on either side of your bed. As we say in the industry, they are “portable”!