4 tips for designing a home that you will continue to love for years

4 tips for designing a home that you will continue to love for years

Setting up a living space is no easy feat, so it’s better to create a space that you’ll love for a long time as opposed to redecorating frequently. When decorating your home, keep these four tips in mind to create a space that stands the test of time:

1. Seek out quality furniture

Everyone wants to save money, but buying low-quality, cheap furniture will actually cost you more money in the long run. Higher-quality products last longer, which means you can enjoy their great style and functionality for years.

4 tips for designing a home that you will continue to love for years

2. Don’t overspend on trendy products

The trendy accessories that you love might be in style now, but what about a year from now? It’s okay to keep up with the trends and incorporate what’s “in” at the moment into your home’s design, but be careful of overspending on products that you will only use for a short period of time. Save your money for a beautiful piece of wall art or a stunning light fixture instead.

4 tips for designing a home that you will continue to love for years

3. Tell your story with design

Take a page out of interior designer Diego Rincon’s book and fill your home with meaningful items that share your story and personality. For example, you can display souvenirs or decorative items that you’ve acquired while traveling. Antique items that have been passed down in the family can also make great décor for your home.

4 tips for designing a home that you will continue to love for years

Photo credit: Amanda Nisbet Design

4. Find ways to make easy, temporary changes

No matter how much you love the look of your space, there may come a time when you feel ready for a change. Instead of redecorating an entire room, however, you can make simple changes that will save you time, money and stress. When you’re craving color, hang up bright wallpaper on one or more of your walls. When the seasons change, switch out your smaller accessories like accent pillows and curtains for items that are more suitable. Small changes can have a big impact on the overall look and feel of a room.

People should feel happy in their home environment. Create space that you can love for years with these four tips in mind.

By Wendy Weinert

Six heart-themed decor you can use all year round

Valentines Day

Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to get inspired by love and fill your home with heart-shaped décor. But you shouldn’t have to put these items away in boxes once the season is over! The perfect heart-themed décor in your home can be displayed all year long! Here are sixideas to get you started.

 

Acorn Manufacturing Smooth Iron Black Hand Forged Split Heart Hook

Bellacor Number: 146641

1. Split heart hook: Sure, a heart-shaped balloon is nice for a couple of days, but then it deflates and is usually just thrown away. This heart-shaped hook is a great way to stay organized, while adding a little love in your home all year round.

Cheung's Metal Heart Shaped Hanging - Welcome

Bellacor Number: 881133

2. Heart-shaped “Welcome” sign: Welcome all to your home who walk through your front door! This heart-shaped sign will help you create a welcoming environment no matter what season it is.

Kalalou Iron Wire Twenty-Four Heart Photo/Card Holder

Bellacor Number: 712550

3. Heart photo/card holder: Forget about the typical picture frames. This photo/card holder provides a more unique way for you to display memorable pictures or cards from loved ones. Just be sure to leave some of the squares open so guests can see the cute heart design!

Yosemite Home Decor The Healing Heart II 24 x 24 Acrylic Painting Reproduction

Bellacor Number: 674460

4. Healing heart painting: While most Valentine’s Day décor is made to be bright red or pink, this gorgeous piece of artwork is painted in metallic tones for a more natural look. Hang it up in the bedroom or even your living room. The neutral colors will fit in well with your existing décor and with any season.

Santangelo Lighting & Design Hand-Painted Bronze Heart Chandelier

Bellacor Number: 469867

5. Heart chandelier: It’s the little details that make one light fixture stand out from another. This bronze chandelier features an elegant heart design that will add a touch of romance to your space. Hang this chandelier up in the dining room for a more intimate atmosphere.

Cheung's Share My Life and Hearts, Wall Decor

Bellacor Number: 881165

6. Share my heart wall décor: Everyone gets chocolate and flowers for Valentine’s Day. Do something different this year and let the beautiful message featured on this hanging wall décor express your feelings instead.

 

Heart designs shouldn’t be limited to just Valentine’s Day. Add a little love in your home with heart-themed décor that looks great all year long.

By Wendy Weinert

Outdoor showers – are they right for you?

Outdoor showers are becoming more and more popular these days, and when the temperature is nice it’s not uncommon for people to bathe in their backyard rather than their bathroom. Outdoor showers are a great way to take your daily routine to the next level and turn it into an exciting and pleasant experience. Even with a busy schedule, an outdoor shower allows you a little time each day to enjoy the fresh air and beautiful blue sky.

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Photo Credit: Home Bunch

If you give the idea a chance, you might just realize that an outdoor shower is right for you.

Outdoor showers aren’t just a luxurious addition to one’s home. They are practical too! If you have a pool, live by a beach or spend a lot of time gardening, an outdoor shower allows you to clean up before entering your home. Just do a quick rinse to get the sand, dirt or chlorine off and you’ll prevent tracking in dirt or carrying unpleasant smells with you indoors.

Living room by the beach

Photo Credit: http://thitomaz.tumblr.com/

Once you’ve made the decision to install an outdoor shower, carefully consider its location for an optimal experience. Even if you’re the perfect candidate for an outdoor shower, the wrong location can quickly make you regret the decision. Keep the shower away from shaded areas and make sure it gets direct sunlight. Not only will the sun enhance your shower experience but it will also help prevent scum from forming by keeping the walls and floor drier.

Enclosed outdoor shower

Photo Credit: Remodelista

Privacy is obviously another factor you will want to consider. Depending on your setup and how you plan to use the shower, you might add an enclosure. If there are windows that allow people to look straight down onto the shower, a louvered roof will keep people from being able to see into the shower, without blocking out the sunlight.

Ready to change up your daily routine? Consider moving your shower outside and enjoy an exciting new experience!

By Wendy Weinert

Party-ready your Home with these 3 Lighting Tips

LivingRoom_Chandelier_Milano

You’ve rearranged your furniture, cleaned every inch of your home, created a playlist, and picked out your party outfit. All you need to do now is set the mood with a great lighting strategy. Lighting can have a huge impact on a room’s ambience, which means it can also have a pretty big effect on your party. Set just the right mood and make your party a night to remember by following these three lighting tips.

Elegant dining

1. Keep lighting low: While you might appreciate having your overhead light turned on during the day, the bright light can feel a little harsh during a party. Consider switching out your light bulbs for ones with lower watts. Or, install dimmer switches so you can create a darker setting at a moment’s notice. You also have the option to just leave your overhead lighting off, and use indirect lighting instead.

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2. Use multiple light sources: Creating the right amount of lighting can be tricky. While you want to keep the lighting low, it’s important that you also prevent certain areas of the room from becoming too dark.

Using multiple light sources throughout the room will allow you to keep all areas of your space lit just right. Lighting options you might consider include hanging up a string of lights, turning on lamps, lighting candles, installing a dimmed chandelier and displaying wall sconces.

Anora_Collection

3. Accentuate interesting elements: Mood lighting tends to hide the imperfections in your home such as a stain on your carpet or a scratched cabinet. You can also, however, use accent lighting to highlight décor or architectural elements you want to show off. Place lights strategically behind plants and furniture for a dramatic look. A well-placed wall sconce can be used to enhance a piece of artwork you want your guests to notice.

Every party needs a little mood lighting to make the evening feel more special. Try using these lighting tips in your own home and your home will be party-ready in no time!

By Wendy Weinert

Christmas Trees: Real vs. Artificial

Photo Credit: BHG

Photo Credit: BHG

With Thanksgiving shortly approaching, Christmas decorations are probably the last thing on your mind. Before you know it, however, the turkey will have been eaten, you’ll be out of your food coma and it will be time to put up your Christmas tree!  The question is then, should you get a real or artificial tree?

 Deciding between a real and artificial Christmas tree is a matter of personal preference. Take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of both to decide which is best for you and your home.

Photo Credit: Cabinsforeveryone

Photo Credit: Cabinsforeveryone

Real

Tradition plays a big role for those who prefer a real Christmas tree. If you spent your childhood picking out a new tree each year, it’s likely that you’ll want to continue the tradition. Others simply like the idea of having a real Christmas tree in their home and love that fresh-pine scent. A real pine tree just instantly makes a room smell like Christmas!

While an evergreen tree might be the “real deal,” there are also several disadvantages for choosing to go this route. Having to buy a new tree each year can get expensive and transporting the tree can be a hassle. Real trees are also messier because pine needles will fall to the ground so you’ll have to vacuum more frequently to keep the area clean.

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Artificial

The biggest disadvantage of having an artificial tree is that it won’t smell like pine needles. However, the benefits of artificial trees solve many of the problems that come with having a real one. Overall, artificial trees are cheaper. While you might have to spend a bigger amount for the tree, you can reuse it every year afterward. They don’t make a mess or require you to do any major hauling. All you have to do is put the tree together!

Another advantage of artificial trees is that there are options. You can get a fake tree that looks real, but you can also choose something that is more unique. There are now many different colors and designs of Christmas trees to choose from, which gives you the opportunity to put some unique touches on your traditional holiday décor.

 

All-in-all, deciding on the right Christmas tree is all part of the Christmas Spirit!  And that is all you truly need!

Vickerman Sky Blue Fir Christmas Tree, Bellacor #:928370

Vickerman Sky Blue Fir Christmas Tree, Bellacor #:928370

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Bar Stools Around the House

Bar stools have already made their way into the kitchen — where will they end up next? Well, that’s for you to decide! As people get more creative with their décor, many furniture pieces, including bar stools, are becoming much more versatile.  No longer do bar stools have to be accompanied with a bar counter-top. In fact, they don’t even need to be used for sitting!

Wherever you need seating, or want to have extra seating, you can use a bar stool. It doesn’t even need to be paired with a table or countertop. Try bringing out bar stools on your patio, in the game room or even in your garage. People don’t think to put any seating in work areas like the garage, but they definitely come in handy when people get tired and their backs hurt.

Bradly outdoor bar stool, Bellacor #: 854442

If you have a vanity in your bedroom or bathroom, sit on a bar stool every morning while getting ready. You’re probably thinking, “I want a chair with more support or that is more comfortable.” Bar stools, however, are not always the circular wooden stools you normally see in actual bars. The style of bar stools has evolved and now there are a variety of designs and shapes for you to choose from. There are even stools with chair-backs and arm rests.

Not only can bar stools be placed in any room of the house, but they can also be used for more than just sitting. Use a bar stool as a bedside table or an accent table in the living room. You can use the “table” to place personal items like a book, glass of water or even an alarm clock. Bar stools are smaller than the typical accent table, so they are perfect if you’re working with limited space.

Photo Credit: Hillsdale Furniture

Another idea is to use bar stools to display decorative items. Instead of hanging a plant, set it on a stool so that the leaves drape over the legs. Or, feature your favorite family photo. You can even stack a pile of older, worn-out books on top of an antique stool for an old-fashioned look.

How will you use your bar stools? Get creative and have fun trying new ideas!

 

Halloween is approaching—time to decorate!

The fall season has begun and soon you will be buying candy for trick-or-treaters and possibly even dressing up in costumes of your own. With Halloween just around the corner, the time for decorating is now. So whether you are throwing a party or just want to incorporate the spirit of Halloween into your home décor, there are plenty of options to turn your everyday home into a fun-filled Halloween display.FloralPumpkinSwag

Decorating for Halloween doesn’t mean you need to completely redo your interior design. Work with what you have and add different décor pieces around the house. When the Halloween season is over, you can then put the decorations away in storage. Skulls, ghosts and haunted houses are perfect for adding a little spook inside your home. Pumpkin décor works well for both fall and Halloween. If you’re running out of room to place the decorations, utilize your wall space and stick on glow-in-the-dark wall art. Wall stickers can make the kids’ rooms seem more fun and they won’t damage your walls.

MonstersGlowInTheDark

Halloween décor is nothing without the right atmosphere. Try using different tricks to decrease the amount of light in Brainlampyour home and give off an eerie look. If you have dimmers, you can easily set the right mood, any time of the day. Decorate with fake cobwebs and critters and attach them to your lampshades. That way, they will block and cover some of the light. To create a truly chilling display, use the Lumisource Mini Brain Blue/Red Electra Lamp. The Mini Brain Lamp is a 2-in-1 item because it works both as a Halloween decoration and gives off a colorful, yet spooky glow.
Have some fun this Halloween season and create a display your whole family will enjoy.

The cluster effect: How to make it work in your home

From textiles to home décor, the cluster trend – layering and grouping décor elements – is here to stay. Now it’s easier than ever to implement this favorite strategy of interior designers into your home, no matter what your style preferences. Here are three ways to add the cluster effect to your favorite rooms.

LIGHTING CLUSTERS

Cluster designs can be found in various lighting pieces, but perhaps the most popular iCorbett Big Bangs in chandeliers. Add a cluster chandelier to your favorite room for an instant transformation from boring to beautiful. For example, the Corbett Big Bang Silver Leaf Sixteen Light Pendant features a beautiful brushed iron and glass detailing in an elegant cluster design. As light illuminates the cluster, it only further enhances the eye-catching focal point that provides a room-widening effect.

TABLETOP VIGNETTES

Why do homes in magazines always look so polished? It’s because accessories are arranged into vignettes that mimic still-life art. There are a few general guidelines for creating stunning vignettes. Start by grouping similar items together in odd numbers, for example three vases of varying heights. Mixing textures like shiny metals with organic materials like bamboo provides visual interest, but make sure the grouping coordinates with the room’s overall design. Finally, build vignettes around a light source, such as in front of a window or next to a lamp.CoffeeTable

WALL GROUPINGS

Updating your home with wall décor is a great way to give it personality, but how and where you place those pieces either enhances or detracts from its style. Try clustering small- and medium-size items together for a cohesive look. Choose pieces with at least one element in common to tie the group together. For example, select different photography and use the same frame for each, or different plates that each feature turquoise accents. If you have a larger piece, use it as the center and strategically place smaller items in at attractive cluster surrounding it.

PhotoCollage

Chandeliers, Area Rugs, & Color: Transform Your Entryway With These Simple Tips

As one enters your home, it’s the first thing that they see; your home’s entryway. If your house or apartment could say “hello” this is where it would happen. Unfortunately, the entryway is often overlooked as an important part of the home. Shoes and coats are scattered here and there, lighting is mediocre at best, and the day’s (or month’s) mail sits unorganized on your entryway table, maybe on top of a couple unused phone books. It’s not a very welcoming greeting and it leaves guests with a bland first impression of your home. Thankfully, all is not lost. There are big and small things you can do to improve your home’s entryway. Here are just a few:

First of all consider the lighting. You want to show off your home. It’s your space, where you spend a lot of your time, and the way that it is set up is a direct reflection of your creativity. What better way to showcase your foyer or entrance than with a grand chandelier. Grand does not mean gaudy, which can often be associated with obscenely large lighting fixtures. Perhaps because of its popularity, the word chandelier often conjures images of large expensive, bulky crystal lighting fixtures. That’s not the case anymore. Chandeliers come in all kinds of styles and sizes from whimsical to contemporary, small to large. You can even make your own chandelier if you can’t find one out there that suits your fancy.  A chandelier is functional and aesthetically pleasing to the eye. It sets the mood and the stage for your home. It can also be the focal point of your entryway; a much better alternative to the unopened mail and phonebooks.

Now let’s consider the color of your entryway. Again, if your home were a person, the entryway’s color would be analogous to the tone of your home’s greeting. Is it dull and lifeless? Is it bright and cheerful? Is it bold and strong? Remember, a guest’s first impression of your home is the entrance. Use this opportunity to splash some personality into your décor.

Now take a look at your walls. What’s on them? Showcase some artwork or an eclectic set of pictures. You would be surprised at how much life you can breathe into a large or small space just by filling the walls with items to look at.

The entryway staple…. Do you know what it is? A decorative mirror! It’s convenient and it’s so ubiquitous that I’m sure someone; somewhere wrote in stone that every entryway needs a decorative mirror of sorts. Or if you’re eclectic, lots of decorative mirrors! If you have room for an entryway table, consider adding one of those as well. It’s a convenient place to stash your keys or anything you plan to take with you as you head out of the house.

Let’s not forget about the floor. Whether you hate your floor or love it, you’ll like it even more with a unique rug to pull all of the decorative elements of your space together. An area rug can really finish off a nice room, making it go from nice to gorgeous! It also prevents people from tracking dirt all over your floors.

By doing simple things like: adding a stunning chandelier, clearing clutter, and hanging a few things on your wall you can easily improve your home’s entryway. If you know where and when to shop, it shouldn’t cost much, but it does call for some creativity.