interior designer

How to Find your Design Style

You may like a lot of different styles and don't identify with one design style. Or maybe you feel that you don’t have a design style at all. But let me assure you that you definitely have a design style. If you have a personality, you have a style. You may not uncovered it yet but through some exploration you will be able to pinpoint “your unique style.”

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!

Experiment with Color: Fall 2015 Trends

Refresh your home's color palette with warm, earthy, or saturated tones to warm up your interior during the cooler months ahead. Today I will be sharing a combination of color pairings and how to incorporate these shades into your home. I am going to break this post into personal color preferences: Neutral, Playful, and Bold .. Scroll down to the color palette that you gravitate to.

For the Neutral Lover

If you love neutral colors, try incorporated shades of "Cognac" into your home. Warm whisky browns that have a reddish tint pair well with other neutral shades. The warm autumn shade can be incorporated with wood furniture finishes and/or fabrics like the warm whiskey brown chairs featured in this eclectic living space.

Cognac Chairs

(Image via House Beautiful)

Taupe and mink brown are a great choice to use as neutral to balance any color palette. I prefer taupe over gray because it is earthy and creates a warm inviting environment when used on walls. (Love taupe so much that it is my current Fall nail color right now)

If you are searching for a muted color, try using mauve in your home. Mauve is a toned down purple that compliments well with warm browns, deep plums, and crisp whites.

Blush pinks and soft rose shades are colors that can be worked into your home. They marry well with rich blues or beiges and creams. For paint colors, select a white with a tint of flesh tone pink for a touch of warmth to a crisp white.

For a deeper neutral color and an alternative to dark brown, try experimenting with the color "Marsala". Marsala is a rich brown-red hue and also the Pantone 2015 Color of the Year. Definitely one of my favorite shades. I love how the marsala sectional grounds the space in the photo below. Read more about this color in detail.

marsala sofa

(Image via Belgian Pearls)

For the Playful and Cheery

If you like bright cheery tones, use Pantone's "misted yellow" which is a muted yellow with a green tint. It is the fall version of a cheery yellow. If you are looking for a yellow without the green tint, I like using mustard as an accent color in accessories or fabrics. Mustard marries well with rich brown, vibrant teal, charcoal gray, and even black.

Misted Yellow Bathroom

(Image via Digdigs.com)

Another cheery pop of color to try is Pantone's Amethyst Orchid. A vibrant jewel tone that is strong enough to be a statement color or can be used sparingly with accessories or flowers. Amethyst Orchid can add a lot of energy to a space when paired with red or another vibrant hue but when combined with gray it adds a soft playful pop of color.

Cypress green is a color that I am seeing more lately. I've seen it on walls, furniture, and even kitchen cabinets. Cypress is a soft soothing green but when mixed with a neutral color palette it can add a crisp pop of color. As the leaves begin to fade, shades of green can evoke a feeling of nature when added into your home. Cypress green and forest green are two shades to experiment with this winter.

For the Bold and Daring

If you are feeling daring and want to explore using saturated hues, here are a few:

Aurora red: A cross between orange and red. Reminiscent in the fall leaves. This shade is perfect for Autumn shade. Whether you use this shade in small ways or big ways, this color is bound to make a statement due to the density in color.

Pumpkin: If you aren't ready for the commitment of red, try using shades of pumpkin or a paprika spice. Burnt oranges add warmth to charcoal grays and compliment taupe or chocolate browns. In the photo below, the pumpkin hue adds warmth and color to this cozy bedroom but isn't overpowering.

Bedroom

(Image via Ericcrossinteriors.com)

 

Not quite blue, not quite green: Teal is a beautiful gem tone that is vibrant and mixes well with warm shades like whiskey brown. I love how the mid-century modern chair pops against the rich teal walls.

peacock blue walls

(Image via mod-home.info)

Rich violet, Sangria-like shades are rich shades that can create intimate settings when used on walls. I love seeing deep violet or cabernet-like shades in dining rooms. I feel like it creates a warm dinner setting. Whether used in a big way on walls or in smalls doses, this shade is sure to warm up any space.

So which shade will you be experimenting with this fall? Will you be going for a cheery, bold, or neutral look? Comment below :)

 

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DIY Thumb Print Vase

Hello everyone! It's been a while since I have posted a DIY. I have been busy creating drawings and paintings, but I haven't actually made a "craft" in a while that I could share with you.

I wanted to create a bottle that had an all-year round design, texture, and that was sculptural. So I have created a vase that  I have wrapped in Air-Dry Clay that I purchased from Michaels with a coupon. Woot woot!

Wine Bottle DIY

For this Tutorial you will Need:

- A Wine Bottle or Canister of your Choice

- Air Dry Clay (I used White so I could spray paint it if I wanted to)

- A rolling Pin

- Exact-o Knife

- Thumbs ;)

Step-by-Step Tutorial

Step 1: Select bottle

Step 2: Clean Bottles and take off labels with Hot soapy water

Step 3: Roll out Air-dry clay into a big rectangle (easier to work with). Roll out thin

Step 4: Wrap clay covering as much of the bottle as possible

Step 5: Cut off Excess clay with Exact-o Knife

Step 6: Use Excess clay to cover top of bottle

Step 7: Blend in creases with your fingers the best you can by using a rubbing or patting motion. I also rolled it on the table to even out the clay.

Step 8: Take your thumb and apply pressure to the clay to make rows of thumb prints starting at the bottom until you reach the top.

Step 9: Let clay air-dry for 24-48 hours (varies upon thickness)

Step 10: Spray paint bottle in the color of your choice and/or add branches/flowers for decoration

Here is the finished result!

 

IMG_2238

 

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.

 

Watercolor Inspired Home Decor

I have started a new hobby of water color painting. You might have noticed a few of my first paintings ever shared on Instagram, I was super proud to show it off. I love when the colors bleed into each other, even the imperfections look beautiful Have you ever heard of that saying, "what you think about, becomes about?"... I'm not sure if it's a coincidence or that I am subconsciously searching for watercolor ideas since it's my new hobby but I have been noticing watercolor everywhere!

Water color murals are being used in the home in unexpected ways. Instead of using water color murals in a traditional display of art; watercolor is being added on walls, fabrics, pillows, bedding, and accessories. Today I am sharing my passion for my new hobby of watercolor and my inspiration for the home.

How stunning is this watercolor drapery fabric? I even love the pattern for a playful pop of color on the throw pillow as well.

watercolor fabric

(Image via Bluebellegray.com)

 

If you are looking for a statement wall, Color Puddle has wallpaper murals available. It is applied like traditional wallpaper with wallpaper glue (more permanent option). Here is one of my favorite examples installed.

watercolor mural

(Image via Color Puddle)

A temporary alternative to traditional wallpaper is a self-adhesive wallpaper. Think of self-adhesive wallpaper as a giant sticker for your wall. It's temporary and damage free.

Watercolor Washes

(Image via Anewall.com)

If you want to join in on the trend but aren't looking to touch your walls, add a pop of water color with bedding. Anthropology had some great water color bedding options. Here are few from their website:

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Feeling crafty?

Learn How to Make your Own DIY Pillow via Tidbits.com

watercolor pillow

Let's Chat! I would love you hear from you:

Are you inspired by water color patterns like I am?

Have you started a new artistic hobby?

Are you tempted to add watercolor in your home in unexpected ways or with traditional art?

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.

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10 Tips How to Bring Nature Indoors

In this weeks blog post, I am sharing 10 tips how to bring nature indoors. Create a warm and inviting space by infusing elements of nature into your home. We feel more connected and happy when we spend more time relaxing outdoors. With organic shapes and natural textures trending in the design industry, it is easier to bring the outdoors in whether your design style is modern or traditional.

10 Tips How to Bring Nature Indoors

1. Select A Wood - Wood comes in a wide variety of stains, finishes, and species. It could be polished or left unstained to reveal its unique imperfections and character. Wood is also one of the few materials that can be used for several different applications, from floor to ceiling. I love this contemporary and rustic staircase because of the mixture of reclaimed wood on the walls.

contempary rustic

(Photo via Home Adore)

2. Choose a Stone - Another finish I am fond of using is stone because of its durability and versatility. Choose the stone that works best for your lifestyle, personality, and application type. Each species of stone has its characteristics: good and bad. If you are using stone as a kitchen or flooring it is important to understand the quality and what application it is best used for.

bathroom - zillow

(Photo via Zillow)

3. Create Zen-like Center Pieces - Surround pebbles around tea light candles on a long narrow tray to create a zen centerpiece on your coffee table or dining table.

4. Furniture - With nature trending in the design industry, I have seen some extraordinary furniture with natural materials. Whether it be a coffee table crafted from an exotic piece of wood or a slab of agate stone for an end table, there is plenty of variety available that could be used in any design setting or style. You don't have to have a rustic style home to add a touch of nature to your space. Check out this beautifully crafted console table from Phillips Collection.

console

(Photo via Phillips Collection)

5. Accessories and Lighting - Add a table lamp featuring a stunning slab of semi-precious stone or agate stone coasters in your dining room.

table lamp - ruemag

6. Natural Lighting - Natural lighting is a desirable design element in any space or home. Natural light also makes us feel inspired and energized. The power of natural light has an affect on how you feel like no other. Leave your windows open to the elements to feel more connected to the outside.

indoor outdoor living

(Photo via Architectural Digest)

7. Artwork inspired by Nature - If you don't have a room with a view, create one with art. Add a large abstract scenic painting over a sofa to create a statement or reminiscent of the the outdoors. If you're not into scenic prints, group photography of close up of nature. I love black and white close-ups of flowers.

8. Table top Waterfalls/fountains - There is something Oh-so-relaxing about the sound of trickling water. Add a table-top waterfall in a bedroom for a soothing nights sleep.

9. Indoor Plants & Blooms - Perk up rooms with indoor plants. For low maintenance, consider creating your own mini succulent garden. Add flowers for color or even display your fruits in a bowl in a kitchen for a pop of color (and also a convenient snack).

plants bhg

(Photo via Better Home and Gardens)

10. Branch Out - If your not into the upkeep of plants, try adding branches to a vase for super low maintenance and natural look. Visit your nearest craft store for a wide selection of faux branches with flowers.

Welcome the outdoors in with one of these ten tips. I hope you have enjoyed this post. Which tip will you use to bring the feeling of nature into your home? I would love to hear what design tip was your favorite, make sure to leave a comment and share below.

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.

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. 

Screen Shot 2015-06-12 at 10.49.16 AM

(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.

Screen Shot 2015-06-12 at 10.49.30 AM

(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.

Screen Shot 2015-06-12 at 10.49.41 AM

(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.

Screen Shot 2015-06-12 at 10.50.17 AM

(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.

Outdoor Entertaining Made Easy

As the weather heats up, entertaining moves to the backyard. Entertaining outdoors doesn't have to be complex or over-the-top. Keep it simple with an easy food menu and table settings.

Here are 12 Tips to Make Outdoor Entertaining Easy:

1. Skip the Good China: Use melamine plates, silverware, and glasses because they are heavier than paper goods and won't blow away in the wind. Bed Bath and Beyond, Pottery Barn, Williams Sonoma, Frontage, and Horchow have some beautiful options to choose from.

melamine dinnerware

(Image via Frontgate)

2. Serving Bowls & Trays: Decorative melamine serving trays are great to put all the cooked burgers and hotdogs on for guests to grab. I also like to prep a tray with extra dinnerware and napkins just in case. Serving bowls can be used for all salads, snacks, and even fruit for dessert.

3. Skip the Table Cloth: Instead of using a table cloth, use vinyl placemats instead to complete the look of your table setting. Vinyl placemats are easy to clean/wipe down too!

4. Provide Shade: Protect your guests from the sun with an umbrella or canopy. Not only do umbrellas shelter your guest with shade from the hot sun but it defines your dining area.

outdoor umbrella

(Photo via Trendir)

5. Create Stations: I like to create "stations" for guests with tables designated for serving food and drinks with all the necessary supplies and tools. It's a "Do it Yourself" service for the guest but it takes pressure off you in the kitchen when your trying to do a million things and plate food for guests. This technique works great for BBQ's and large gatherings.

6. Keep Food Covered and Drinks Cold:  If keeping drinks outside, keep them cold in a cooler or chilled in an ice bucket. Cover food using a mesh colander to protect food from outdoor pests.

7. Beverage Dispensers: At your drink station, set up pitchers or beverage dispensers for guests to refill their drinks. I loved infused waters. It is so refreshing on a hot summer day. I grow mint in the backyard, so I like to add fresh mint to my water - Delish! Here is an entire list of infused waters that you can try.

8. Divided plates: I like serving platters that are divided into sections. It's perfect for serving veggies or fruit.

9. Outdoor Centerpiece: Create an outdoor centerpiece for your table. It doesn't have to be anything fancy. It could be as simple as a few mason jars gathered together with flowers inside and a burlap bow around the top of the jar. For more outdoor centerpieces, check back next Tuesday on the blog for more ideas.

outdoor centerpiece

(Photo via Style Me Pretty)

10. Outdoor Lighting: When the sun goes down, illuminate your seating areas with paper lanterns or candles for ambiance. I like to add a strand of lights underneath an umbrella or hang on the fence.

11. Bug Repellant: Protect your guests from getting bug bites with citronella candles and other bug repellent. I love this DIY citronella candle idea that I found on Pinterest.

12. Prep the Night Before: I always prepare the night before. All the foods that can be made and sliced ahead of time and get out of the way. For example, making pasta salads, potato salads, veggie platters with dip, and infused drinks like Sangria. Being prepared a day ahead makes your entertaining much easier. This way you get to spend less time in the kitchen and more time with friends and family.

I hope you have enjoyed these tips and styling ideas. If you loved this post, share it with your friends! :) Happy summer!

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.