Wednesday, February 29, 2012

In Living Color!

If you are not a fan of bold color in your home..... you may be after you peruse these beautiful images below! It makes me rethink my neutral color scheme, do these photos do that for you? Leave me a comment of your favorite image and why, it would be interesting to exchange thoughts! Thanks for participating and for being a loyal follower of my blog. I am tinkled pink!

Monday, February 27, 2012

How to Arrange Furniture!

I want to share some helpful tips to arrange rooms in your home. Recently, I have been asked about furniture placement in a living room and ideas for a beautiful dining room. There are some basic questions that you can ask yourself before decorating...seriously contemplating these questions will help you to get the room you truly want. I think these images below really capture the suggestions but remember they are only suggestions, you can really do whatever feels best to you! So you have any specific rules of thumb that you live by when arranging furniture? Leave them in a comment below for us to read! Thanks!

  • Look at the entrances to the room. Do you have doors? Do they open in or out? If they open in, you will need to allow room for those to open fully.
  • Do you use the room as a pathway to another room? Is the room a destination room? In other words, is the room one that people go TO or go THROUGH? If they go through, you need an easily navigable pathway from one room to another.
  • How do you want to feel in the room? Do you want it to be cozy and intimate? Do you want an open and spacious feel? Furniture in a cozy room tends to be places in closer groups. A open feel needs more space between pieces.
  • Are you going to use the room for entertaining? If so, you need flexibility in your furniture choices. Extra seating may be placed out of the way and be moved into use when company comes.
Here are some dining room and living room measurements to consider.

  • Between the sofa and side chairs, designers normally allow 48 to 100 inches. But you should adjust the space according to your family's needs. If you feel more comfortable with the chairs closer or if you are better able to hear conversations, then move them closer.

  • If you are using a coffee table in front of the sofa, the normal placement is 14 to 18 inches from the sofa. But again, if you have short arms or long legs, adjust the table until you are comfortable.

  • For television watching, the normal guideline is to place the television at 3 times the size of the screen. But with some of these new big screen TVs, 3 times the size of the screen is in the next room!

  • Three feet of space is recommended for traffic lanes. But if you have large family members or lots of kids, I would recommend allow an extra foot for safety for your furniture and for your family members.

  • In the dining room, a average adult needs a depth of 20 inches for a dining room chair, plus 16 inches to scoot back the chair back from the table. Again, adjust the measurements to fit your family.

  • At the dining table, you should allow 24 inches per person or more. If your family tends to gesture as they eat, as mine does, allow another 6 inches.

  • In order to serve your guests, allow 46 inches between the wall and the dining table.

  • Friday, February 17, 2012

    A Reader's Kitchen Design Dilemma!

    "I need ideas for our kitchen. We have an oak floor. We will refinish that and save some money there. 
    But I was thinking of putting in a rolling island. We have a cart now and I like the extra work space and storage. I was also thinking about putting in more cabinets than we have so they go to the ceiling to avoid all that wasted space. I don't know where to begin with a color scheme. I would like to change the appliances with stainless steel but will have to see what we can afford. I know we need to update. The sink is stained white porcelain and the faucet leaks. I would love some tips. I don't know what you call my style. I don't like too over the top contemporary but NOT country or traditional either. I love the beachy with a clean look not beach hut just as if I live by the sea."

    I received this email a couple of days ago from a reader in Missouri! It is always exciting to learn that people from all over the US read my small NJ blog yay! I did some research and I think I found some photos that are not just designer kitchens but are real homeowner's kitchens. Hopefully, these can give her some great foundation ideas for color and design. These photos highlight the option to possibly paint the existing cabinets if the budget is tight and some photos that incorporate new cabinets! Creamy blues, grays and green are wonderful beachy tones to bring in either with the cabinets or just the rolling island if she desires. What would you do for her kitchen, I would love hear your ideas! Please leave me a comment!!

    Thursday, February 9, 2012

    Baby Girl's Nursery E Design!

    A beautiful young family from Basking Ridge, NJ are anticipating the arrival of their first little baby girl! We have been discussing her baby's nursery and they have chosen this beautiful bedding from Restoration Hardware and the canvas baskets. These selections have been the basis for my e-design. Taupe and soft pink really complement each other and are very soothing together. Perfect for a nursery! If you want to know where to find these selections, contact me via email. 

    Tuesday, February 7, 2012

    Bathroom Beauties!

    Bathrooms are on my mind for several reasons....wanting to redo our own bathroom and I am currently working with a client renovating their hallway bath. There are endless options to choose from but the baths I have featured below meet the practical needs of a bathroom used every day. I think the challenge for some homeowners is getting the storage that most desire without losing the details that bring interest into the room. The common thread below is muted neutrals and white and storage vanities. I will be doing a follow up post with color to contrast. Do you have a preference?

    Monday, February 6, 2012

    House Crashing on Long Island NY!

    House crashing may seem intrusive to some but our good friends Stacey and James were nothing but gracious in sharing their home with me! We haven't been out to their Long Island home for a visit in quite some time and when I walked in, I was like "I have to take some pics before we mess it all up!" Stacey has such a creative eye and her home has nothing but touches of her bohemian, hippy and ethnic essence!

    What I admire about her is that she is not afraid of color by any means and loves lots of texture and layers. They have extensively traveled around the world in Central and South America, Africa and Europe, so their home is adorned with many trinkets, textiles and carvings that just fit somehow harmoniously together! Enjoy and please leave me a comment below!