Kitchen Back Splash–Do You Have One?

A kitchen back splash is a perfect example of how  design elements can be both FUNCTIONAL and LOOK GREAT.  Having a back splash will protect your walls from stove top splatter from food and oil and water.  Often people will simply add a 4-6 inch back splash in the same material as the counter top.  We encourage you to take it beyond that and extend up higher, preferably to just under the wall mounted cabinets and even higher at the cook top wall.  Similar principles apply in bathroom design.

I realize that S Interior Design is a big fan of the glass tile back splash as evidenced by the last 3 kitchen remodels we have completed for clients.  Here are a few pictures that show 3 options we have used.  This illustrates that even within only the category of glass tiles, the choices are many.  One of our favorite options is from Oceanside Glasstile as they strive to  eco-friendly in their manufacturing processes.

Sandstrom Kitchen

Hymson Kitchen

Below is  a guest post courtesy of  Erin Devine on the subject of kitchen back splashes.

Selecting the Perfect Kitchen Backsplash

Selecting the right colors and textures for your kitchen back splash can be a tricky task when you consider all of the options out there. There are as many kitchen and design choices as there are back splashes to choose from. Fortunately, knowing a few “do’s” and “don’t’s” can make the process much easier.

Keep in mind that busy patterns detract from the rest of the kitchen’s décor. If any busy pattern is to be used, it should contain colors from the kitchen to tie everything in and not create too much of a focal point. Further, the area of back splashes should not be large in comparison to the rest of the wall space.

Glass tile is one of the prettiest types of tile. Glass doesn’t attract mildew or mold, cleans easily, and offers numerous color choices. The reflective property of glass tile makes it one of the most favored of tiles because it offers an unparalleled shine and rich color.

Choose a backsplash to enrich the overall look of the kitchen rather than the space it occupies. For instance, choosing backsplashes one or two shades darker than the cupboards is wise. You can also choose a color similar to the floor in the case where the rest of the interior is of a light color. With that said, choosing colors that do not mesh create an eyesore. Glass tile backsplashes create somewhat of a focal point, however, they should not contrast so much from the rest of the interior that they’re all the eyes focus on.

Backsplashes belong under cabinets and neatly contained between other fixtures. Moreover, back splashes look best when placed underneath the cabinets. On the other hand, if pulled out onto a joining wall without a cabinet to frame them, the look is awkward. Keep back splashes underneath or butting cabinets or choose one in a color one to two shades within the shade of the wall so that it blends in. However, where cupboards frame the back splash, it is safe to go with a darker color.

Avoid drastic colored tiles where the rest of the décor is neutrally toned and colored. Whatever colors are present in back splashes should tie in well with the rest of the kitchen. In the instance of a multicolored kitchen, choose small tiles with each color to create a mosaic or opt for a simple design with a dramatic border.

The idea of back splashes is to accentuate the beauty within the kitchen—to pull everything together. The idea is to add to, rather than detract from, the overall appearance of the kitchen. When things don’t “look right,” people know it. Whether a person has an eye for interior design, colors or creativity, they quickly notice if things are off. Not to mention that home is a place for self-expression, rather than being overly concerned with how others perceive their choice of décor. For this reason, establishing individual preferences is key for any interior project. Back splashes are beautiful and functional and are meant to be enjoyed, so make sure that you choose a back splash that reflects your taste and accentuates the design of the rest of your kitchen.

 

Erin Devine is a guest writer for Floor & Décor Outlets, a flooring and tile retailer with a do-it-yourself attitude and an eye for style. She loves writing and maintaining her own interior design blog, DIY Home & Floor.

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Transformative Power of Art

 Trans-formative Value of Art

Below is a guest post about what I will call ‘the power of art’.

S Interior Design uses a generous definition for the word art.  We believe that art should make you smile   when you look at it. So, that said a nicely framed picture of a vineyard you visited could indeed be great art, as could a child’s drawing.  The key is in the presentation—don’t expect a poster thumb tacked to the wall to be pleasing to the eye.  Invest in the proper mat board and framing and you will be amazed at what can happen to your child’s painting from 5th grade.

Guest Post

Although I’ve always been a big fan of interior design it has only been recently that I’ve truly begun to have a full appreciation for the trans-formative values of art. I must confess, I always thought ill of those overly proud of their new painting, sculpture, or art. I was an avid fan of contemporary styles, with a minimalist approach. I was of the opinion that the sleek look, along with sparse furnishing and sharp lines, gave a real clean, organized, powerful aura.

Recently however, I’ve come to appreciate an appropriately placed piece of art. It can add true depth to a room, granting reflection and meaning where previously there was blank space. Whether you feel the way I once did, or share my current views, here is why I now consider art to be a trans-formative agent in a room.

The greatest way in which a piece of wall art transforms living space is adding a depth of reflection. Artwork inspires reflection for various reasons. Mainly for these three:

The art was made by a human being, and you can’t help but reflect on the thoughts of the human behind the art.

This is one of the most powerful ways art makes one reflect. Art, whether through beauty, abstractness, or sheer uniqueness, makes one wonder. To consider that a human made this piece of wonder causes a further wonder that someone was not only able to, but had deeper motives. Humans, being naturally curious, can’t help but reflect and consider what might have been the motivation and thoughts behind the creation.

The wondrous qualities of the artwork itself.

This is often the initial way that artwork causes us to reflect and wonder. It draws the eye, pulls us in, and suddenly, before we know it, we’re standing and reflecting and staring. Thinking about the amazing, unbelievable qualities of beauty, strength, power, subtlety, or whatever aspect the painting best personifies.

The depths of your own imagination.

A surprisingly large portion of artwork plays off the imagination of the viewer. Almost all abstract art relies on the viewer to draw their own, deep conclusions based upon what can actually be surprisingly simple. This leads the perceiver to wonder and reflect at the depths of their own imagination, and reflect upon not only what lies in the depths of imagination but also what in the artwork causes such a visceral reaction of thought.

To help capture the attention needed for reflection, and further add to the trans-formative value of artwork, one should attempt to subtly orient furniture toward artwork. Many people will throw a painting on a wall and be happy. Or, if someone is over proud of their new painting, they’ll frame it, hang it up, throw a light feature on it, and attempt to force everyone to stare at it. This can, in ways, be worse than hanging art without accentuating it.

Artwork should be subtly brought to attention. To do this, try placing it somewhere where people usually face. For example, place it somewhere it can immediately be seen upon entering the home. Or, if in a bedroom, have it facing the bed. Somewhere where the eye will naturally happen across the artwork.

I still firmly believe in a minimalist approach to interior design. However, I believe with the right piece of art a room gains much-needed depth. Try including a medium-sized piece of art alone in a clean, uncluttered room. Enjoy the reflection, beauty, and depth added. Everyone must follow their own heart’s guidelines when making their own living space, but I hope you have appreciated my own thoughts on the trans-formative properties of art.

Author Bio: Edward Stuart is an interior design aficionado, and follows all things design and fashion. He is an online publisher for the framed art expert www.framedart.com and blogs on the topics of interior design, home decor, and fashion tips.


WALLS That Satisfy a Sweet Tooth

Here at S Interior Design we are always on the look out for unique and environmentally friendly options to use in our design projects.  When we were asked to take a look at this product, it got an A+ rating on both counts.  So, we are pleased to share with you, and promote the product for the manufacturer.

That’s right –these are eco friendly 3d-wallpanels made out of Sugarcane bagasse

Eco 3d-wallpanels give an extra dimension to your walls!

WallArt will bring your walls to life with their eco friendly 3d-wallpanels made out of the fibrous residue of sugarcane also called bagasse. This fibres of crushed sugarcane stalks, remaining after raw sugar is extracted from the juice of the sugarcane by shredding it, is now the raw material that forms the base of this easily installed eco friendly interior product. The raw material used for WallArt 3d-wallpanels is 100% recycled, compostable and therefore 100% biodegradable.

WallArt 3d wall panels are all made out of a renewable source which is biodegradable and therefore contribute to sustainability. Bagasse, as a residue of sugarcane, is one of the world’s most renewable sources because sugarcane can be harvested up to 3 times a year. The total harvest worldwide is more than 1.2 billion metric tons yearly and out of each 3 ton of sugarcane there remains 1 ton of bagasse. By using this recycled raw material we can say this 3d-wallpaper is a real eco decor product.

WallArt introduced their 3d-wallcovering in Europe in 2011. They’ve been the first entering the market with this eco friendly home decor and interior product. At this moment there are 12 different models of the WallArt 3d wall panels available, for more information about WallArt and their 3d decorating wall panels please go to their website http://www.mywallart.com and check it out. WallArt 3d decorative wall panels are not only environmentally friendly but the 3d effect give an extra dimension to your walls!

http://www.mywallart.com

S Interior Design “Pawprint Design Services (TM)”

Today S Interior Design had a great opportunity to be the special guest on the weekly blog radio show-FURvently Speaking

Great discussion about how we can have a fabulous looking, feeling and ‘smelling’ home even when we have one or more furry family members.

Take a listen and hopefully it will give you some things to think about when ‘designing with pets in mind’

FURvently Speaking

 

THANK YOU TO THE RADIO HOSTESS EILEEN PROCTOR!!

 

 

Easy Bathroom Decorating Ideas

Below you will find a guest post from Valerie Gravel representing Smart Tiles on the subject of bathroom renovation.  Smart tiles are a fabulous option for  a home owner who is a DIYer!

Before

After Smart Tile Installation

After the kitchen, the bathroom is the room you use the most every day. It’s where you get ready in the morning before you dash off to work and where you take a few minutes to relax in the evening while soaking in a hot bath or a shower. If you’re thinking of giving your bathroom a much-needed makeover, here are a few trendy tips you might want to take into consideration.

Merging one room into one:

People need more and more room to escape the fast paced society in which we live, that’s why the size of bathrooms has increased over the last few years. Merging two rooms into one like a bathroom and bedroom is a trend that has been exported from the hotel to the home and it is catching on quickly in the home renovation world.

Going digital:

Technology is all around us and we rely on it almost 24 hours a day. You can have a television in your refrigerator door now, so why not do the same for your bathroom. Imagine watching your favourite movie or television program in your bathroom while you soak your worries away in a bath. What could be more perfect than that?

Heated floor tiles:

Tiled bathroom floors are cold all year round. Heating them with a radiant floor heater is a good idea because not only will the heat prevent you from getting cold feet; it might actually help you save money in the long run. It’s true that installing a heated floor may raise the cost of your renovations, but once tiles have been heated, they retain their heat for a long time and they continue to warm the room even after the heater has been shut off. Therefore, a heated floor might help you save a couple of dollars from your heating bill.

Multiple mirrors:

Even if the trend dictates that bathrooms are becoming larger, not everybody has the space to double the size of their bathrooms. People who live in smaller houses or in apartments might want to put multiple mirrors in their bathroom to create an illusion of grandeur that will make the room look bigger than it actually is. Also, mirrors come in some many different shapes, sizes, and frames nowadays that they can look great in any type of bathroom decor.

Going green:

Renovating while still being kind to our environment is a trend that has been catching on not only in bathrooms, but in every room of the home as well. Imagine recreating a spa like atmosphere in your own bathroom. With the help of wood furniture and even by encasing your bath tub in a wooden frame, you could relax in spa without ever having to leave your home. It’s also quite eco-friendly to install low flow toilets and energy-efficient lighting while renovating your bathroom.

Painting with neutral colors:

Bathroom colors have always been neutral, and that trend never really went away. While I am not condemning the use of color in the bathroom, neutral colors should be your palette of choice if you plan to add a new coat of paint to your bathroom. It’s better to favour relaxing colors like beige, olives and pale tones. If you’d like to add contrast to your pale room, use dark furniture or colored accessories.

Choosing the right lighting:

A bathroom shouldn’t be too bright. Since the room is used for different reasons throughout the day, different types of lighting should be installed to keep things lit up or tone them down when you need to. Consider installing a dimmer switch to set the proper mood when you want to relax in the bath or the shower and install bright lights where a woman would normally put on makeup.

Changing without spending a lot

If you’re not considering to have your whole bathroom made over, you could just change a few existing elements to refresh your existing decor. Custom sinks and counter tops are all the rage and self adhesive tiles  used as a frame for your mirror or as a backsplash will add diversity to your bathroom without the need of contractors invading your home for weeks to come.

 

 

Featured On Hand Made Design/Faberuna’s Site

We try not to use our blog to be self-promoting, but sometimes you just gotta break the rules .

This week S Interior Design was honored by being featured on Hand Made Design/Faberuna’s web site.  Please take a look !

The site is unique and definitely worth checking out.  Have fun!

 

Interior Design A-Z: ‘T’ is for Tile

The journey through the design alphabet continues with the letter ‘T’.  My Facebook and Twitter friends suggested; Tables, Travertine and Tile.   The subject is so large, this post will just ‘touch on it.

Let’s talk TILE.

Choices of tile materials and types are vast.  Different rooms and functionality requirements, not to mention personal aesthetic and maintenance preferences should guide the decision-making process as to what type of tile is chosen.  For a great overview of tile materials and types , read 3 Types of Tile Types and Tile Your World.

Tile can be used as a strictly decorative design element.  Mosaic tile artwork and accessories can be used to add texture and color to kitchens, bathrooms, and display areas.  Glass mosaic tiles are beautiful and often add just the right WOW factor to a kitchen or bathroom back splash. The glass tiles are very easy to take care of in both kitchens and bathroom settings.

A few  great sites to explore are  Susan Jablon Mosaics and  Oceanside Glasstile an environmentally friendly glass tile company.

S Interior Design Kitchen Remodel

Kitchen Backsplash Using Oceanside Glass Tiles

Environmentally Friendly Kitchen Remodel – S Interior Design

S Interior Design Kitchen Remodel Using Susan Jablon Mosaic Tile

Kitchen With Susan Jablon Mosaic Tile Back Splash

Kitchen Remodel Using Susan Jablon Glass Mosaic Tile-S Interior Design

Some common floor tiles are travertine,  porcelain, and in certain regions Saltillo tile.

There is tile that now looks like wood planks for those who want the look of wood without the maintenance factors.

Tile is a great material to use as a fireplace surround and on a hearth.

S Interior Design Fireplace Surround Design

3-dimensional Tile Makes This Fireplace a Focal Point

Great Room Design by S Interior Design

Interior Design A-Z: ‘K’ is for Kilim

Personally I have a love/hate relationship with Kilim.  Love it for rugs (don’t forget your rug pad, they will slip!),  Love it for footstool covers,  Love it for wall hangings.  Not so sure about for pillow covers.  Why?  Because while they look good, and are textural, often colorful  and interesting to look at, they are NOT face-friendly.

So please proceed to use Kilim pillow covers for the seating that you only sit on, or look at, but don’t use it for the sectional sofa you lie all over at night to watch your favorite TV shows.  For detailed information about Kilim please click on the Wikipedia definition.   I promise you will learn more than you thought possible about Kilims; I know I did.

Transform a Plain Wall : Drab to Fab!

Spring has awoken the creative juices in me and I wanted to share some ideas for transforming a plain wall into a focal point in room.  With all of these great options there are simply no excuses for boring walls!

We are all familiar with paint, but have you tried using it in a new way lately?  Stencils are back and better than ever.  Over scale stencil work on a wall can end up looking like expensive wall paper if done correctly.  If you don’t have the ambition to do an entire wall, you can use a stencil at the chair rail height (36” -42”) or at the crown molding height where the wall meets the ceiling.    Check out this web site to find virtually any stencil imaginable
http://www.stencil-library.com/docs/catalog.htm.

Not handy with a paint brush?  No problem.  Wall decals are not just for kids rooms anymore.  The ‘artwork’ subjects range from faux trees, to abstract modern art and everything in between.  Wall decals are cost effective, easy to use and removable if you get tired of them.
http://www.wallsneedlove.com/

Wallpaper is back!  Not the stuff from Grandma’s house but amazing options to fit any décor style are available.  There are even textural wall coverings that make you feel like you are connecting to the great outdoors. Many papers are now printed on ‘easy hang easy strip’ substrates.

You can even get a scenic mural