First Impressions Count! Entry Hallway Design

Whether big or small, the entry area or hallway is what visually greets your guests.  Below are some simple tips to help you make sure the design of your home’s entry is ‘saying what you want it to say’.

5 handy tips for decorating your hallway
The hallway is the first interior aspect of your home that guests will notice, so it’s worth spending just as much time on this area as you would your living room or kitchen. When people enter your home you want them to think WOW! With the right décor, you can certainly create that first impression. In this article I will suggest a number of ideas that you can use to create a welcoming and aesthetically pleasing hallway.

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Focus on lighting
The hallway is an area of the home that receives very little natural light. If this is the case with your hallway, it’s definitely worth incorporating an effective source of artificial light. If the first thing a guest notices about your home’s interior is a dark hallway, you’re doing your home an injustice. There are literally millions of unique lighting options out there to suit all kinds of décor styles. If you are trying to create a Grande look, a chandelier would be ideal. Chandeliers work especially well in hallways with high ceilings. If you want to create a contemporary style hallway, spotlights are becoming increasingly popular in new build properties and apartments.

Use a rug to break the area up
Incorporating a rug is not only a great way to add a fresh burst of colour, but it’s also an effective way to break your hallway up. To make your hallway look more spacious, a neutral coloured rug would be the best option. If you have a long yet narrow hallway, incorporating a carpet runner is an effective way to add interest and de-emphasize its narrowness. To create an immediate impact, add a statement rug to your hallway, a brightly coloured rug can add some much needed interest to an area of the house that is often neglected.

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Consider hallway floor tiles for practicality
As comfortable and cozy as carpet can be, the hallway is not the most practical place to have it. If you want flooring that is durable, easy to clean and looks good, floor tiles are the better option. Long length wood effect tiles are becoming increasingly popular and look great in contemporary style homes. For something a little more traditional, consider Victorian floor tiles. These days’ floor tiles are available in all sorts of patterns and sizes, so there really is no limit to what you can do with your hallway.

Incorporate stylish storage solutions
If you have a spare corner in your hallway, consider adding a freestanding coat stand. By having one of these you can use its central area to store umbrellas and walking sticks. Another idea is to buy a slimline hallway table. A slimline table is ideal if you have a narrow hallway. If possible, choose one that has a lower shelf, this will maximize its storage potential. In extra small hallways, angled furniture allows you to squeeze in much needed storage. The angled shelves are particularly useful and allow you to make the most of your wall space. As a general rule of thumb, any items of furniture that doubles up will be a good investment. An unconventional storage solution is a comfy bench seat with shoe storage underneath. This will encourage your guests to remove their footwear at the door.

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Choose a light colour scheme
As mentioned above, a lot of hallways are dark because of the lack of natural light that they receive. Entering a dark hallway doesn’t create the best first impression, so choose a colour scheme that oozes freshness and positivity. You really can’t go wrong with neutral colours such as magnolia, crème and lemon. Try and avoid using darker colours as they can make your hallway look smaller. There are a few exceptions though, if your house is a grand period home, a deep red colour will add tremendous impact. You could also incorporate wall art to break the space up and add another splash of colour.

Author by-line:
These handy tips were contributed by Direct Tile Warehouse, a discount tile warehouse that specialises in hallway floor tiles.

Mix Your Design Styles

Below is a guest post on the subject of mixing modern and vintage decor style. S Interior Design is a big fan of mixing design styles within a home. By mixing styles of decor you create a unique environment that is  a true reflection of your personal style preferences.  So mix away, use Grandma’s antiques with a modern Knoll chair without fear.

How to Mix Modern and Vintage Decor Style

 You love the look of modern decor in your home, but you just can’t toss out all those vintage pieces that you’ve collected over the years. Instead of choosing one of these over the other, why not choose them both? It’s absolutely possible to blend these two styles together to create a home that feels unique, special and welcoming. All it takes is a little bit of creativity, some time spent experimenting with decor placement and some great pieces that you love.

Tips for Blending Decor Styles

1. Avoid Perfection

No longer do homes have to have the “perfect” decorations that are straight from the showroom. Don’t be scared to let your personality show by putting unique pieces of decor throughout it. This could be a chest that you picked up while traveling in Spain or a modern number wall clock you found online. When people walk into the room, they should want to explore all the different things that are there. Not only will this make the room more interesting, it will also give you a lot of conversation pieces.

Tip: While your decor doesn’t have to be perfect, you should avoid having a lot of clutter that makes your space look messy.

6 - SmallSource: http://www.thrivevintage.com

2. Decorate Your Chairs

Don’t leave your couches or chairs bare. These are the best spots to add modern or unique pillows or throw blankets. For example, if you have replica furniture from a modern designer, then put on some pillows with pillowcases made with Victorian prints or old throw blankets you picked up from an antique shop. Mixing and matching these two things together will balance out the harshness of the modern design with the warmth and richness of the vintage design.

Tip: Make your own pillow by going to a fabric shop and choosing rich fabrics that look like they are from different time periods.

Image: yellow-upholstered-side-chair-and-vintage-pillow Source: http://designpardeux.com

3. Transform Your Furniture

If you have vintage or old pieces of furniture that you don’t mind changing permanently, then re-upholster them with modern fabrics. If you do this then you will be left with unique pieces of furniture that nobody else has! The best part is that they will mix the design of the antique furniture with the boldness of the modern fabric.

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Source: http://www.modern-fabrics.com

Tip: Paint the chair if it doesn’t match the colors that are in the fabric to make sure that it’s a statement piece in the room.

4. Change the Curtains

If you have an uneven balance of modern and vintage, then change out something like the curtains. Right away it’ll make a big difference with the way your room looks, and will balance everything out quite well. And, if you get a colorful curtain, it will really brighten your room up and add a pop of color that makes it more interesting!

shower

Source: http://www.moldse.com/modern-shower-curtain-for-your-modern-bathroom-design/modern-printed-shower-curtain-for-rustic-bathroom-design/

5. Add Small Touches

Curved mirrors, new knobs on drawers and wallpaper are all small touches that can make a big impact in the overall appearance of your room. These are also the small touches that give the room more personality and showed that you put a lot of thought and effort into the details!

Ana-Ros-bedroom-traditional-modern-antique-mirror-white-bedding-zebra-fur Source: http://smallshopstudio.com/2013/11/25/trad-eclectic-barcelona-designer-home/

High Point Highlights- Spring 2013

Some great design tips and ideas from the High Point, N.C. Market which just passed.
Colors, neutrals, patterns, floral, geometric, organic……….all were represented.  There is no 1 right way to design, there is not the 1 trend to follow.  This illustrates what S Interior Design always tells her clients “the only thing to be aware of is what you like and want,  don’t worry about what is trendy or in.”

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Take a look at this video from one of my favorite celebrity designers Candice Olson speaking at Surya Rugs and Textiles.   When stating from ‘scratch’ in a room, beginning with the area rug selection is often a great way to begin the design.

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Here is a link to a blog by ‘Design Addict Mom‘ who shows us great images from her time at Market .

 

 

Oriental Rugs De-Mystified

Below is a guest post about Oriental Rugs. My grandmother, an antiques collector had fabulous Oriental Rugs through out her home. Of course as a young child I had no idea how amazing they really were. The guest post below explains a bit about the Oriental Rug and what to look for when purchasing one.

oriental rugs

Guidelines for Selecting the Best Oriental Rugs from Sales
Oriental rugs are considered to be one of the best rugs as they add beautiful hue to any room. These are generally hand woven rugs and come in rich colour, texture and intricate. The rugs are unique and expensive and no two rugs come in exact similar pattern. These handmade pieces of arts are generally made of wool and silk and a worth buy for your home. Many stores and online shops have huge collection of oriental rugs and offer rugs for sale. To select the best of the rugs, following tips can be useful.

Know the vocabulary
The dealers of oriental rugs generally use their own lingo and jargons for describing their stock. It is easy to communicate with them if you learn some of the vocabulary before. Also negotiation about the price becomes much easier when the seller and buyer speak the same language.
There are certain key words those are used much in this business:
• Field: It describes the background colour of the rug
• Border: This is the particular colour and pattern that surrounds the outer rim of the rug.
• Medallion: This term is used to describe the circular or diamond pattern present on the field of rug.
While selecting a rug for your home, concentrate more on the field colour, as this is important to match the hue of your room.

Select the rug of proper size
Oriental rugs are generally larger in sizes and used for covering the major portions of the floor. There should be two- three feet area left free around the rug. Though there is no hardbound rule for this and you can use your own aesthetic sense for decorating the room, but it is still better to buy a rug of proper size, otherwise it might destroy the beauty of your room. Some small sized oriental rugs are also available that enhance the look of certain corners or accent a piece of furniture.

Feel the material before buying
A good quality oriental rug should have fabric that feels smooth and soft, not brittle and hard. Make sure to avoid the rugs which are soft and too shiny, as there might be a chance that these rugs are treated by chemical materials and have less durability.
Older rugs are more expensive
The rugs which are more than hundred years old are considered antique and those which age between seventy-five to hundred years are semi-antique pieces. Generally the prices of rugs go up with their age. Make sure that there is no damage or faint colour before buying an antique rug, as it might reduce its value. If you are buying antique or semi-antique oriental rugs, ensure their proper care. Buying oriental rug can be a good investment and resale value will gradually go up if properly maintained. The newer ones are easy to replace in comparison and need lesser effort for maintenance.
Get information about the knot-count
Knot count is a term for oriental rugs that is equivalent to the thread count for quality sheets. Knot count means the number of hand-tied knots present in each square inch of the rug. The rug becomes more expensive with increased knot counts.
If you follow simple guidelines to buy oriental rugs, you can select the best one  from the rugs for sale. To redefine the interior decor of your home, oriental rugscan be a good option and investment.
Summary: Many oriental dealers offer rugs for sale. Buying a good oriental rug is not easy, since you need to know certain rules for good selection.
Author’s Bio : Diyana is the owner of a renowned antique shop of London. She has many antique pieces in her store, like furniture, jewelery boxes, lamps and rugs. She buys beautiful pieces of oriental rugs from the dealers of Turkey and puts the rugs for sale. Diyana also writes regularly in different blogs and websites about different antique goods.

Paint Color 2013

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Are you considering doing some painting around your house or office in the coming year?  Here are ideas to consider based on  2013 Color ‘discussions’ by some of the leading paint companies.
In a sentence–“Look for a lot of variety and contrast to be popular in 2013.”

Sherwin Williams, Dunn Edwards, Benjamin Moore, Behr and Pantone all have published their predictions for what the popular paint colors and combinations of colors will be in the coming year. 

color links

 

dunn edwards color

benj moore colors

 

 

 

 

Benjamin Moore: IntersectionFlow, Cycle, Animate, Connect 

Sherwin Williams: Opposites AttractMidnight mystery, Honed Vitality, Vintage Moxie, High Voltage

Dunn Edwards: A New Renaissance Influences Palette and TexturesSimply Re-invented, Simply Re-newal, Simply Re-imagined and Simply Re-vival.

Behr:  Watch this short video!

pantone 2013 blues

 

 

Pantone   According to the PANTONE VIEW home + interiors 2013 book, there are nine color palettes predicted to dominate interior design and furniture trends in 2013. A mix of muted palettes serve as the new classics while rainbow-inspired colors provoke bolder style statements.     Note:  From the Casa Sugar Blog

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Before you begin your  painting, it is always a good idea to try your color choices on several walls in the room.  Different walls have different levels of light reflection and the colors will look a bit different in different spaces due to the levels and types of light they will have.  We recommend at least a 3′-0″ x 3′-0″ square on the wall.  If the wall already has paint color on it, we also recommend priming before putting the new paint color up.

Of course S Interior Design is always available to help in the Phoenix metro area!

Candice Olson & Area Rugs

How exciting–2 of my favorite things in the world of design COMBINED!

Candice Olson is one of the ‘celebrity designers’ I truly admire.  She has partnered with Surya rugs and designed a line of rugs for them exclusively.  Attached is a short video of Candice talking about her inspiration for her beautiful new rug designs.

Here is a link to her rug designs

And a  picture of one of my favorites

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Designing With Layers

Are you seeking that beautiful, finished looking room?  A room that looks like it is brand new, yet has been with you forever?  When you get the brand new furniture delivered and placed, why doesn’t it have the same ‘wow’ feeling you felt when you saw it displayed in the furniture store?  Lack of layers is probably the answer.

A lack of layers can lead to an impersonal, unwelcoming space.  Just like any art form, the design of an interior space involves layering.   A common conversation S Interior Design has with their clients is reflected in the attached video.

Well, one of the secrets to obtaining that look and feel is —

DESIGNING WITH LAYERS   By layers we mean incorporating different materials, textures, patterns, colors, and shapes in your rooms

Some examples :

Sofa -1 tone pillows and main fabric OR with a contrasting fabric on the pillows–Just by adding a layer of color and pattern, the whole personality of the sofa has changed!  If a throw in a complementary color with a nubby texture was added, it would become even more visually appealing.   Of course the layer of the sofa table behind the sofa layered with candle stick holders and other accessories helps too!

The floor in any room is a great opportunity to add visual and tactile layers.  A wood floor is beautiful.  Adding a great area rug on top of the wood floor in the proper size and location can add color and texture and change the entire personality of the space.

Here is a link to a good article about how to visually layer with multiple patterns

Via Erinn Valencich

Here is a super vibrant visually busy example of pattern mixing.  It works because of the common design element of color.

Is it Possible to Furnish Your Home Entirely Online?

Wherever in the vast world you reside, the fact is purchasing items on-line is a part of our lives.  Would you feel comfortable furnishing your home or office using only on-line resources?  Do you still feel the need to see and touch furnishings in person?  Many of S Interior Design’s clients are comfortable doing research on-line, but still want to give their seating what we call ‘the tush test’ before purchasing (we highly recommend it!!).  It is also nice to actually see and feel fabrics or leathers that will be used on upholstered pieces of furniture.  That said, many household furnishing items can be purchased on-line with little risk or fear; such as accent pillows, accessories and lighting. We have had good success purchasing area rugs on-line for great prices for many of our clients in the past few years.   S Interior Design offers virtual design services where a full design plan is developed for a client who lives outside the geography we work with in-person.  Included in the service is the identification of   on-line resources to execute the plan.

Below is a guest post that speaks to this subject.

Online shopping is just one of the reasons given for the demise of high streets up and down the UK. For many, purchasing groceries, gifts and clothing online is now the norm, instead of visiting stores. However, it seems that many still prefer to shop in store when purchasing new furniture for the home.

There are a number of disadvantages to furnishing the home through online shopping. For many people, the main one is that they are unable to look and touch the items that they are considering purchasing. For those looking for furniture such as traditional solid pine and oak, they find it easier to purchase online. Not only are colors and styles easily identifiable, the fact that no single piece of wood furniture is identical (because of its grain) means that it is easy to purchase without physically viewing. For those who are looking to replace existing items with the same, or similar, ordering online can also be pain-free.

For those who are reluctant to purchase upholstered pieces or soft furnishings online, a number of companies have fabric samples available. By requesting samples, it allows customers to make informed purchase decisions.

One of the additional expenses of buying furniture is the delivery costs. Local stores can often deliver (and sometimes assemble) furniture for free, whereas many online stores will have a set delivery charge. Couriers often deliver items and they may not be able to deliver furniture into the room where it is required or offer any assembly services.

Some online furniture suppliers are also able to offer complete room solutions to their customers. This means that in the online room design, all of the furniture is for sale. So when selecting a media unit and coffee table, the sofas are available, as well as the soft furnishings such as cushions and curtains. The opportunity to purchase a complete room ensures that when everything arrives in the home, it will coordinate fully.Some shoppers will choose to spend time browsing in furniture stores and then shop online to find the best price deal for that furniture, as one of the main advantages to shopping online is the financial savings and deals. For stores who operate online, they are often able to keep their prices down, as they do not need to employ staff on shop floors. Shopping online is also great for those who work shifts or have commitments that make it difficult to go out shopping for new furniture.

When purchasing online, customers should never be afraid to ring the company and ask for further information about delivery, warranties or any other queries that they may have. How many people are confident enough to purchase their home entirely online is questionable, although the ease that online furniture shopping offers is making it a popular choice for many.

Everything for the home is available online, even paints and wallpapers, but for those who do not feel brave enough to furnish their home entirely online, they should consider purchasing soft furnishings such as Dunelm-Mill .

From this, purchasing a new room is just a few clicks away.

 

The Most Important Surface In The Home and Office

We asked to co-write a blog post for UK Flooring Direct.    Given the company’s wonderful product and service offerings, we were more than happy to do so.

If asked the question, What is the most important surface in your home or office?  What would you answer?  THE FLOORING OF COURSE.   What you decide to put on the floors literally lays the groundwork for all of the forth coming design decisions.  With this design element, FUNCTIONALITY is the most crucial factor to consider.  The amount of traffic and type of traffic the floor will need to endure, the exposure to moisture, the care and maintenance for the floors are factors that must be considered.  There is an ever expanding array of options in terms of how the floor LOOKS AND FEELS; including eco-friendly options such as Cork, Bamboo and even Teak.

Bamboo Flooring

If you are in the United Kingdom,UK Flooring Direct should most definitely be on the list of vendors to work with.  They carry an extensive product line for virtually any flooring needs you may have.

Kitchen Flooring

“However comfortable and durable your kitchen floor you shouldn’t have to compromise on the appearance and even with all of these great qualities it shouldn’t have to cost the earth.”

Wood, tile, cork, laminate, vinyl and linoleum are all good options to consider for the kitchen floor.  Within each of these flooring types, many color and even format options exist.  For example, cork is available as tiles or planks.

Cork Flooring

Bathroom Flooring

While everyone wants an attractive option it is also very important, because it is such a wet environment, to make practicality a priority. This will ensure that you get a product which can cope with the demands placed on it without being damaged.”

Do you have to use tile?  NO!!  Other good design options include laminate, vinyl and even cork (sealed of course) are great options to explore.

One design note  on tile —now increasingly popular in commercial and home environments are tiles that look like wood planks.

Laminate Flooring

Commercial Flooring

Here again many options are available.  The branding for the business will guide the aesthetic decisions, while durability factors are the primary concern.  Wood, carpet (tiles or wall to wall glue down), tile, vinyl, laminates and even cork should be considered.

A word on CARPETING

Many people prefer to place wall to wall carpeting in the bedroom spaces so they have soft feeling underfoot throughout the room.  Carpet is also a good choice to help with acoustics in a room, especially those with high ceilings.  Here again, options for the material, look and feel are plentiful.

Suzanne Lasky, Allied ASID, is the owner and founder of S Interior Design, the exclusive provider of Pawprint Design Services™. Suzanne works with her clients to develop a winning combination of design elements that result in warm, comfortable and functional spaces that reflect each client’s personal style. Suzanne and her team specialize in residential, contract and hospitality interior design, from simple color selections, to office build outs, to restaurant, spa and hotel designs. Suzanne shares her years of expertise through the power of social media. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and at this blog. To speak to Suzanne about your interior design needs, please call 480-220-4659 or visit her website at www.sinteriordesign.com.

A Guide to the Latest Interior Design Trends for Flooring in Your Home

When we were approached to host this guest blog, about one of our favorite topics, flooring, we jumped at the idea. Choosing the proper flooring from a functional and aesthetic point of view (always consider both!) is one of the most important items when re-modeling or simply re-decorating. Selecting the perfect hard or soft flooring helps to bring a room together and to unify the overall design. Sometimes for us, it all starts with the flooring and we design-out from there.

The three biggest current trends in the flooring industry are reviewed in this post and there is a suggestion that we are entering a new and hopefully more positive atmosphere with regard to consumer attitudes and desires.

Sustainable flooring is now a particularly important issue to a lot of people, and as a result, manufacturers are focusing on eco-friendly ranges and consumers are now certainly taking the environment in to consideration with their purchase, and thereby making a statement at the same time as acquiring a beautiful floor covering.

There maybe a few signs that the end of the recession may be in sight, in any case, consumers are looking to make plans to improve their surroundings and maintain or even raise the value and desirability of their homes. This is prompting a welcome increase again in new homes being built and a rise in home renovations, both requiring new flooring and pushing demand higher.

It seems to be a more widely held belief that products such as solid wood floors and high quality carpets will add to the value of your home and these choices are now seen as an investment rather than just a purchase.

With brighter news for the economy and the environment there is no surprise that the flooring style of the moment is all about bright colors.

Although interior design trends have mainly focused on neutral shades in recent years the mood and purpose for home improvements has changed and fewer people are now decorating with the intention to sell and are now more likely to want to put their own personal touches to a home.

Selecting flooring in your home is significant because the color, texture and pattern of the floor will set the mood for the rest of the room’s design. Many designers call their designing model the “floor-up” model for this very reason. When selecting a color, texture and pattern for your floor, consider the overall design you wish to pursue in a room, and select flooring that will compliment the walls, trim work and furniture.

If you are a person who changes furnishings often, you are best advised to select a neutral floor, which will easily work into any decor. This will protect you from purchasing a new floor to fit in with your design change. Ideally, a floor like hardwood could be purchased to accent the room’s trim. These floors typically look good with any furnishings. Select a hardwood that is a shade lighter, or a shade darker than the wooden trim in the room to give the room depth, and create distinction between trim and the floor. Generally, dark woods with a high sheen are considered appropriate for formal rooms, like a dining room, while lighter woods with a more natural finish are preferred in rooms with a rustic decor, or a less formal purpose, like the living room.

In an area where there is heavy traffic, or where there is a risk of water damage, avoid both wood and carpet. Instead select a tile, laminate, or vinyl flooring that will both hold up well to use and clean easily. In a bathroom, take the time to look at the permanent fixtures. If they are bright white, the floor is an opportunity to include a splash of color. If the existing fixtures contain color, a more neutral flooring is appropriate and will prevent clashing.

In an area like the kitchen, there are a lot of other design elements to consider when selecting a floor. Most importantly, the counter tops and cabinet fronts should be considered. Also, if the kitchen has canister sets, family heirloom kitchen elements or other existing decor, the colors already present in the room should be considered. Select flooring that can be worked into the room in other ways. If you are laying large tile, find one that is similar too or complements a small tile that can be used as a backsplash. If you are laying laminate, take a sample of your countertops and look for a laminate flooring that closely coordinates in terms of texture and color.

No matter what furniture and decor is in the room, remember that the floor takes up one-sixth of the visual space, more than any other uninterrupted space, with the exception of the ceiling. Select a flooring that ties all the furniture, decor and natural elements of a room together. Try to find flooring that contains the same color palate as the walls, the room trim, or the furniture. Avoid colors that are too bold, especially in small spaces where they will become overwhelming. Consider the room’s natural or artificial light source, and consider how that will affect the appearance of the flooring after it is installed. Finally, take home samples of the flooring and see how it looks in the room before purchasing enough to do the whole space.

 

About Suzanne Lasky, Allied ASID
Suzanne Lasky, Allied ASID, is the owner and founder of S Interior Design, the exclusive provider of Pawprint Design Services™. Suzanne works with her clients to develop a winning combination of design elements that result in warm, comfortable and functional spaces that reflect each client’s personal style. Suzanne and her team specialize in residential, contract and hospitality interior design, from simple color selections, to office build outs, to restaurant, spa and hotel designs. Suzanne shares her years of expertise through the power of social media. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and at this blog. To speak to Suzanne about your interior design needs, please call 480-220-4659 or visit her website at www.sinteriordesign.com.