home decor tips

How to Define your Design Style

Tell me if this sounds familiar: You just moved in or are looking for a new home, you started shopping around online, you made Pinterest & Houzz inspiration boards, you bookmarked all your favorite items, you watched reruns of HGTV shows, you took notes from a YouTube video on how to DIY everything, and you have been stock piling coupons for Bed Bath and Beyond like nobody's business. You did the research and you gathered inspiration but where do you start? I’m here to tell you how in this blog post!

DIY Centerpieces from Items Around the House

When it comes to summertime centerpieces, there's no need to bust your budget on overpriced items. In fact, you probably have all the makings for a stunning centerpiece lying around your house. If you are looking to put your DIY skills to the test, take a look at these stylish centerpieces that are perfect for summer. 

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(Photo via Modernize)

While crafting a summer-inspired centerpiece, never underestimate the power of fruit and flowers. A truly perfect pair, these items can be mixed and matched to complement your surrounding decor. As a nod to the season, choose bright colors like those provided by lemons and limes, and don't be afraid to have a little fun with the container that holds them. While you can certainly use your favorite decorative bowl, you can also use cake stands and cupcake holders. When choosing flowers, both fake and live blooms work well, but stick with in-season varieties for a natural look.

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(Photo via Modernize)

In regard to vases, you don't have to spend countless hours hunting for the perfect style. With tape and spray paint, you can create your own unique designs with vases you already have. Using painters tape, you can section off stripes like this picture depicts, or you can create whatever style you fancy. Once the tape is applied, use spray paint to transform the vase into a stunning decor piece. From metallic gold and silver hues to vibrant shades of yellow and green, your color combinations are endless.

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(Photo via Modernize)

Instantly adding a stylish flair to any space, feathers are just fun. While stark white varieties are stunning, you can choose any color and pattern you like. To add more interest, consider placing them in clear vases that are filled with colorful marbles, dyed rice, spray-painted beans or split peas.

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(Shabby Chic Porch by Savannah Photographers Atlantic Archives, Inc.)

To achieve this look, you can repurpose old wine bottles, mason jars or any other glass containers you can find. Keeping the bottles in their original state produces a clean, classic design, but you can also dye the bottles for a livelier look. Simply pour a small amount of craft glue into your jar followed by several drops of food dye. Using a Popsicle stick, stir the mixture until a uniform color is created. Then, tilt the jar in all directions until it is completely covered with the glue mix. Place it upside down on a plate to let any excess glue drain out. Placed upside down on a baking sheet, bake the jar in the oven for about 20 minutes. At the 10-minute mark, flip it over to cook for the remaining 10 minutes. When done, fill each bottle with a freshly picked tulip or daisy for a centerpiece that smells as good as it looks.

This post was written by Jane Blanchord. Jane is a blogger, home design geek, and graphic designer from Savannah, GA. She currently writes for Modernize.com. For more design ideas and inspiration, visit Modernize.com.

Want more design tips? Join "The Designed Life" monthly e-magazine, filled with tons of inspiration for the home and life. Also, receive a free Home Design Checklist to make your next shopping trip for your home easier.

Design Trend: Blue Hues in Home Decor

Boy oh boy, do I have the case of the blues (not the boo-hoo blues)!! Shades of blue were introduced at High Point Market this Spring. In the fashion industry, Pantone may have announced "Marsala" to be the fashion color of the year but blue is the color of the year in furniture, accessories, and home decor as well. Today I will be sharing my inspiration and home decor in bright blues that you can add to your home and reinvent your space.

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If you follow me on Instagram, I shared my inspiration of a vignette with vibrant blue plantation shutters and moroccan tile around it. Pigmented blue hues ranging from royal to indigo to watery azure are trending for this season on the runway and in home decor.

Introduce shades of blue to any decorating palette in doses or as the main focus. Blue plays well off of primary colors such as yellow or red for a bold impact. Pair blue with orange for a energetic color combo. On the contrary, couple blue hues with purple or green for soothing and cool palette. Blue could also serve as an accent color when paired with neutrals like the room featured below.

c70e1abd50d8a6669f68dfe9b77f4cff (Photo via 6th Street Design School)

Whether you choose to add vibrant blue tones in big way or subtle way, I have found a few options that will suit your decor needs. Here are some blue decor ideas that you can incorporate into your home.

FAB FRIDAY

1. Silk Pillow // 2. Cobalt Table Lamp // 3. Porcelain Chinoiserie Vase // 4. Indigo Scarf // 5. Tufted Sofa // 6. Botanical Watercolor Art // 7. Hall Chest // 8. Ikat Rug

Did you find something you liked? Pin this image to your Pinterest board so you can shop later. Are you following me on Pinterest? Let's be friends :)

http://pinterest.com/byamadesigns/

For current photos of my work and progress photos, follow AMA Designs on Facebook or Instagram.

Want more design tips? Join "The Designed Life" monthly e-magazine, filled with tons of inspiration for the home and life. Also, receive a free Home Design Checklist to make your next shopping trip for your home easier.

Inspired by Fashion: Chinoiserie Decor

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is hosting its "China: Through the Looking Glass" Costume Institute Benefit Gala. During this event celebrities and fashionistas alike gather for the style world's biggest night of the year. Various famous designers will be featured in the exhibit such as Cristobal Balenciaga, Travis Banton, Bulgari, Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, Callot Soeurs, Cartier, Roberto Cavalli, Coco Chanel, Christian Dior, Tom Ford for Yves Saint Laurent, Valentino Garavani, Ralph Lauren, Christian Louboutin and many more. Chinoiserie print strongly debuts in this exhibit. Not only does this event mark a pivotal point in fashion but the interior design industry as well. If you are unfamiliar with the term "Chinoiserie," it is a print that reflects Chinese artistic influences.

In today's post, I will be sharing how to incorporate Chinoiserie decor into your home inspired by the popular fashion trend seen at the Met Gala.

China Through the Looking Glass

(Photo via gotamist.com)

The Chinese-esque pattern is impacting decor for the home with fabric, wallpaper, and accessories. Incorporate Chinoiserie decor by grouping porcelain blue and white ginger jars for a more decorative and temporary approach like the room below.

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Designer and Blogger, Erin Gates featured chinoiserie decor in her guest bedroom by framing fabric on either side of the bed. I adore this transitional incorporation of the pattern.

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(Photo via Erin Gates, Elements of Style)

Elements of Style

(Photo via Erin Gates, Elements of Style)

[houzz=http://www.houzz.com/photos/110000/Hollywood-Residence-transitional-living-room-los-angeles]

For a dramatic look, Los Angelos designer, Elizabeth Gordon added gold chinoiserie to the ceiling with a decorative ceiling mirror with a gorgeous guided frame. Whether you choose to introduce this Chinese-chic pattern in a bold way or a small way, Chinoiserie is a trend that is here to stay. Chinoiserie is a classic pattern that has evolved through design and making a modern comeback in fresh color palettes.

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If you are feeling super inspired by this fashion-forward trend, comment below! Will you be visiting The Metropolitan Museum for the exhibit? If you are into fashion, design, art -- I urge you to go! I went to The Met for the Alexander McQueen exhibit, it was beyond inspiring. It was such a memorable experience. For a preview of the "China: Through the Looking Glass" exhibit, visit this gallery from Vogue.

Want more design tips? Join "The Designed Life" monthly e-magazine, filled with tons of inspiration for the home and life. Also, receive a free Home Design Checklist to make your next shopping trip for your home easier.

Trend Alert: Flower Power

Spring is weeks away and I am beyond ready! After a long gray winter, I can't wait to see the flowers and plants come back to life! Not only am I hyped about warm weather approaching but I am anxious to see bold color and style! I recently received the new Bloomingdale's catalog for Spring. The bold floral and botanical prints immediately caught my attention. Here's is a picture of my inspiration: FullSizeRender

Floral prints are making a strong comeback in Spring 2015 both on the runway and in the home. When I say "Florals," I am sure some of you may be reading this and think, "Oh no Amanda, my Grandma's florals are never coming back." Rest assured, these are not your Grandma's florals. The trend today is packed with punches of color and playful large-scale prints.

Breath life back into your home by adding playful floral prints. Introduce floral prints in small touches like adding a floral printed vase or artwork to revive your space. To add floral prints in a bigger way, try bringing in fabrics with floral prints into your space like pillows or bedding. Do you have an old chair that needs reupholstering? Make a statement with a bold modern floral. Here are some accessories that I found from Joss & Main and One King Lane that you can incorporate into your home for spring.

FAB FRIDAY

1. Yellow Arm Chair / 2. Yellow Flower Wall Art / 3. Floral Medallion Rug / 4. Flower Motif Pillow / 5. Coral Flower Pillow /  6.  Blue and White Vase  / 7. Flower Print Vase /  8. Multi-color Arm Chair / 9. Gray Floral Pouf / 10. Modern Floral Rug

Find something that you loved? Pin this image so you can revisit this post later :)

For more flower print inspiration, visit Apartment Therapy and read their trend alert post on flagrant florals.

3 Tips to Create a Fab Foyer

The entry of your home is the first thing your guest see when you invite them into your home. As the saying goes, "First impressions are formed within 7 seconds." Create a lasting impression in your foyer that expresses your personality in a nut-shell. Show off your individuality but don't show all the goods ... shhh, save that for the rooms. My dream foyer would be packed with bold style, sexiness, gold accessories, lucite, a statement chandelier, and Mongolian fur ottomans. At least, that's what I am dreaming of right now - it changes.

This blog post was inspired by the powerful statement foyer that I found in the House Beautiful magazine (picture below). Isn't it drop-dead stunning? My eye was immediately drawn to the wallpaper. I love the citrus and blue tones in the pattern. Not to mention the pedestal table that literally was screaming my name.

favorite

Although the wallpaper is bold and in-your-face... the stair runner is neutral and creates a sense of balances. The solid gray grounds the space, giving your eye a place to rest. Next, is the gold pedestal base table; a stylish twist on a classic. It fills the corner nicely. The staircase is almost hugging the table. The accessories are simple and the florals draw your eye up towards the rest of the staircase and towards geometric pendant.

Are you anxious to learn how to create your own fab foyer? Inspired by the photo, there are three tips to keep in mind while designing your foyer. Let's break it down, shall we?

 

1. STYLE - Enter your home with style! Design your foyer by starting with largest item. Carpeting in most spaces will dictate the design. Stair runners and area rugs are a great way to introduce color and pattern into your foyer. Or opt to be different and add decorative wallpaper in your entry while keeping it neutral on with the carpet. Add a funky console table with a statement mirror above it. Reinvent an old table lamp and make it bold with a new lamp-shade. Strategically place florals, trinkets, picture frames, and other decor that will catch your eye as you enter the home.

Entry Storage

2. PERSONALITY - You should feel welcomed every time you step foot inside your home. Add accessories and details that represent your personality and/or family. Whether it be pops of your favorite color, a traditional chair for putting shoes on, or that animal print rug you always wanted - get creative.

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3. FUNCTION - Aside from being stylish and pretty, it has to be functional for your lifestyle. Place a small decorative tray on your console table for a spot to leave keys. Tuck away stools underneath your console that could easily slide out if you need to put your shoes on. Hang a decorative mirror for those last minute looks before you leave the house. Add a cute but functional Hall-Tree or hang hooks behind the door for your every day coats that are easy to grab-and-go.

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I just realized that the acronym for these three rules is SPF! That should be easy to remember! :) Get your SPF on and rock on. For more inspiration to create a fab foyer of your own, please check out my "Fab Foyer" board on Pinterest.

https://www.pinterest.com/byamadesigns/fab-foyers/

Lots of Living for a Small Space

  Living in a tiny space poses an issue. How can you store all of your stuff, make it functional, comfortable, and stylish all at the same time?  Keep in mind these 5 tips when decorating your space.

1. DON'T OVERFILL YOUR SPACE

Just like the saying, "less is more" the same concept can be applied to your home. Leaving more open space makes the room feel larger. Try not to fill up your space and leave a little wiggle room.

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2. BIG PIECES THAT MAKE A BIG IMPACT

It may seem counterintuitive, but surprising larger items can help a space feel bigger. For example, hanging an oversized painting above a sofa can visually enlarge a space.

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3. EMBRACE TRANSPARENCY

Lucite or glass furniture gives the illusion of more space. Try using a lucite desk for a barely-there look that is both functional and stylish.

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4. HIDE WORK PROJECTS

Carve out a place to work and a special place to tuck away reminders of projects so the rest of the day is free to relax and enjoy living. Instead of creating piles around the house (I'm guilty of this), leave a storage box handy to safely store your work items.

file box

5. VERSATILE FURNITURE

What is better than a piece of furniture that has more than one purpose? Multi-functional pieces work in your favorite when it comes to small interiors. Storage ottomans, nesting tables that can be separated and used around the room, and even a coffee table that can be converted into a dining table.

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High-end Interiors without the High Price

I lust for luxurious fabrics, sparkling accessories, and jaw-dropping designs that are showcased in Hotels or high-end interiors. I admire streamlined and serene design or high-contrast color interiors. So how do you achieve a luxe look without the high-end budget? I will tell you how!

How to Get the Look:

Faux Custom Curtains - I am a big believer in window treatments. Custom designed curtains are like the scarf that ties your entire outfit together. By adding a decorative trim or tape to store-bought curtains, it will take your curtains from standard to extraordinary! It will also create a more high-end and custom designed look.

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(Photo from Style at Home)

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(Photo from chinoiseriechic.blogspot.com)

High Contrast Doors - If your wall color permits, painting your doors a semi-gloss black will take your bedroom or hallway up a notch. There is something oh so sexy about high-contrast interiors. Black and white hues scream "chic". I have also seen really dark walls, depending on where the application is, it can really look drop-dead gorgeous, if you dare!

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(Photo from Apartment Therapy)

Flowers - Something about fresh flowers can make a home feel so welcoming. Maybe because we often use fresh flowers for special occasions? I am all about the flowers, but not about the maintenance. Girl, nobody's got time for that! Polyvore, Michael's Craft Store, and Nearly Natural, have some great faux alternatives. You can even thrift vases and spray them white or gold. My personal favorite right now is mercury glass vases - so glam.

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Fluffy Pillows - You might be thinking, "What is this girl talking about?" The softer, the plumper, the better. Add pillow inserts that are larger than the actual pillow size for a more volumized look. I love the down inserts. If you have allergies, there are some great hyperallergenic alternatives that are available in the market.

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(Photo from emilyaclark.blogspot.com)

Hotel Style Bedding - Crisp, clean, white linens just ooze luxurary. I love the Restoration Hardware bedding or the Matouk Bedding from Bloomingdales.

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Chunky Crown Moulding - Thick crown moulding adds architectural detail to your space and also draws your eyes upward to give the illusion of a higher ceiling. I must admit, the beautiful and thick molding can add up in price. I did find on pinterest an amazing trick if you need a more budget-friendly option. Check out how to cheat when it comes to creating thick moulding (the tutorial is for base moulding but the same concept can be applied to the crown).

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(Photo from sheknows.com)

Details, Details, Details - Accessories are the jewelry of your room. I'm all about the details. I love touches of gold or polished silver. If your room has more warm tones, choose gold or bronze accents. If your room has cooler tones, pick silver, nickel, or even lucite accessories. Add stylish coffee table books and a tray to your cocktail table, or even a few bone-framed picture frames. Add the details where necessary, but don't over do it! Too many accessories will make your room feel cluttered. Check out this coffee table vignette from The Glitter Guide.

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(Photo from the Glitter Guide)

black and white vignette

 

(Photo from Style at Home)Screen Shot 2014-11-20 at 10.32.21 AM

 

(Photo from Lauren Conrad)

Random Thought: Did you know that H&M came out with a home decor line? Say what?!! I am the last person to find out? I'm not sure when this happened but I am happy. The items are super cute and affordable! I'm loving the vases with the polka-dot relief detail. I saw clear vases too but I thought this ombre color glass was different! What do you think?

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