Finally the weather is turning a bit more pleasant. Spring has sprung in much of the country (or will soon……). S Interior Design is based in Arizona and it is definitely time to enjoy the outdoors before the triple digit temperature arrives. Below is a guest post about a home renovation in Australia that fully recognizes the opportunity to meld the outdoors with the interior spaces. Quite beautiful!
Clayfield renovation (Bayview) – Bringing the outdoors in
Brisbane is blessed with a gorgeous sub-tropical climate that lends itself to an outdoor lifestyle, and the suburb of Clayfield is a perfect example of this desire to spend time connected to nature. So it’s not surprising that the owners of this pre-1946 Californian Bungalow requested that Dion Seminara Architecture create for them a home that would fully take advantage of the predominantly fine weather.
The renovation involved an addition to the rear of the existing home which consisted of a dining space and a stunning new kitchen. A deck and courtyard were built at the rear of the home with sliding doors from the kitchen/dining room opening the home up onto this area. The result of this is immediately noticeable as the transition from inside to outside is seamless, resulting in a feeling of freedom and a connection when entertain in the courtyard area.
On those days that are less than ideal due to rain or the occasional cold change, the interior of the home can be closed off creating an intimate space that is warm and comforting.
At the front of the property a new double car port blends into the existing home, with a remote-controlled gate sealing off this area from the street. A new gate and gatehouse added to what already was an appealing streetscape and the re-landscaped front yard now takes on the appearance of a pleasant little courtyard itself.
Inside the little used main bedroom and hallway were originally the main beneficiaries of the prevailing north-east breezes that cross the property. Given that not much time was spent in these spaces they were renovated to create a gorgeous, naturally ventilated new living area that features an abundance of natural light. Creating a truly inviting space that thanks to the air-flow and natural illumination, further enhances the feeling of connection with the great Australian outdoors.
For more information on this property visit:
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.
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: 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.
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!
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!
Below is a guest post entitled ‘How to Create a Traditional Style Living Room’.
S Interior Design often has residential design clients who have what could be described as traditional style furnishings that they want to keep, yet update with more contemporary surrounding design elements. One of our favorite things to do is to re-upholster a traditional style accent chair in modern fabrics. It becomes a unique piece that can be the focal point of a seating arrangement.
This is an example we completed recently.
A home that mixes design styles is one that is reflective of the owner’s unique personality. Mix away and don’t be afraid!
How to create a traditional style living room
Not so long ago, traditional style was regarded as the grandmother’s home style, with impossibly uncomfortable furniture, pristine carpets and vintage wallpaper. I am very pleased to say that this is longer the case. Traditional home styles have been toned down considerably and are now more cleanly lined than ever. The traditional style covers a wide range of time periods and cultures, and can include just about anything, whether ornate and opulent or simple and spare. One of the reasons this style is regarded as traditional is due to the familiarity of silhouette and the use of architectural details.
Quite often, living rooms with a traditional style tend to be older and possess an abundance of suave architectural details such as elaborate chunky moldings, columns, arches, wood floor patterns, and inbuilt cabinetry. The reason these shapes are familiar is because they have a real sense of historical influence. The majority of the textiles and furnishings are labeled “traditional” because the patterns and shapes have been used for long periods of time.
Traditional style is no longer stale or fussy; instead it is now more casual and welcoming. The traditional style is literally the little black dress of the design world, looks great, always appropriate, feels fantastic, and goes with just about everything.
Below are a few ideas to help you create a traditional style living room:
Luxurious fabrics can be used in traditional style but not limited to cashmere, velvet, mohair, and silk. Other more humble fabrics such as cotton and linen can also be found. In reality, not many homeowners can get away with a sofa that is upholstered in high maintenance fabrics such as silk, but this doesn’t mean they can’t be utilized in low traffic areas such as pillows or curtains. Start off with a pivotal fabric and then blend other patters from the same color palate. A layering of texture and pattern will add interest to the space. Damask, paisley, floral, and even geometrics are common patterns. Rugs are highly people because traditional homes usually have very hard floors, either tile or wood.
Artwork introduces texture, mood, personality, and color. It is often beneficial to choose room arrangements and a color palate based on a great art piece. If you do not have the budget to buy a large piece of art, there are other more cost-effective ways to create impact. Try grouping similar images in matched frames to create a graphic punch.
Try to develop a consistent theme throughout your living room that is based on color. Neutral color tones are often utilized on large upholstery pieces and walls. Homeowners and designers often mute color pallets to show off other elements such as rugs and impressive pieces of art. An all white color palette is extremely popular because it can lend both minimalism and opulence depending on how it’s applied. Balance should be one of the key considerations when choosing colors; you should only use bright colors if they are offset by neutral tones.
Furnishings found in traditional styles commonly have a familiar shape that is recognizable and iconic to the majority of people. A perfect example of this is the wing back chair; although it is quite often reinterpreted and updated, it is mostly at home in traditional décor styles. Pieces of upholstery are often comfortable and neutral, a lot less fussy than in previous years. Traditional leather sofas are available in a variety of colors and styles; these can be mixed with contemporary pieces, reproductions, and antiques to create a relaxed feeling of elegance. Painted pieces and rich wood tones are also common in traditional styling.
Piecing it all together
The key to a great living space is the way in which pieces are put together. Be sure to create a focal point, this will give the human eye a resting place. Not only does it ground the room, but everything can be positioned in relation to it. Focal points can be artwork, a fireplace, or even an item of furniture such as a sofa or bed. Make use of symmetry to keep a sense of balance within the space. For example, you could have two chairs on either side of your fireplace. They do not have to be identical, but they should have similar proportions.
This article was written by David at Thomas Lloyd Leather Furniture, David is an interior design and home improvement enthusiast that has written articles for numerous magazines and blogs.
Below is a guest post on the topic of what to do with your bathroom walls. Of course consideration needs to be made to the moisture rich environment, who the primary users are, and what your preferred design style is. Paint in the proper finish, wall covering, wainscoting, panels, and tile are all options to consider. We just remodeled a small powder room at our house and placed two different tiles that go up the wall to a height of 42″. It adds a sense of drama in a very small space and functionally as there are no worries if someone gets messy with water.
Choosing The Right Finish For Your Bathroom Walls
If you are considering remodeling your bathroom, you will need to think about the finish you will use on your walls. Choosing the right finish for your bathroom is very important because a bathroom has its own special considerations, and the wrong decision can cost a lot of money to redo. Here I have outlined some finishes you could apply to your bathroom walls. I have also noted some pros and cons to help you decide which is the best choice for you.
Paint is the basic finish for any wall, and has its own pros and cons in your bathroom. On the plus side, paint is available in a massive range of colours, and if you cannot find one to suit you then you need to look harder. Paints are available that are waterproof and cleanable, so maintenance is relatively easy, and application is a simple thing that you may be able to do yourself. Against it though is that it can appear a boring finish that will start to look tatty within a relatively short time.
You can buy wallpaper that will suit hanging in a bathroom, and you can add a touch of personality to a room with your choice. The less expensive papers are not as long-lasting as the more expensive examples, but will last a year or two before wear and tear takes its toll (after all this is paper we are talking about …coated or not). Paper hanging in a bathroom is best done by a professional as the steam it will encounter demands good application.
Adding wood to a bathroom wall is less in vogue now, but it can still look extremely stylish if a good job is done. Quality sealing is essential though as otherwise you could have rotten or fungi riddled wood on your walls in no time. This is quite an expensive finish to use as you have to buy and fit the wood, and then it needs sealing and maintenance. Overall I would not use wood simply because once bored with it you need to have it removed before starting again.
Tiles are the perfect choice for a bathroom as they are impervious to water and easily cleaned, they are also available in a larger and larger selection of colours and patterns, as well as finishes. For a more expensive look you can add highlight tiles, or even a feature wall. It is true that some tiles can be expensive to buy, but the mass market ensures a great choice of reasonably priced tiles is always available. You will need the tiles fitted professionally to make sure you have no trouble in the future, and that you have the best overall effect from their application. From classic white to slate, tiles look beautiful in any bathroom.
It is easy to see my preference for the bathroom, and it has been my preference for many years now. If I was on a tight budget I would probably choose paint because it is also easy to clean and not bothered too much by water (as long as it is bathroom paint and has anti-fungicide added). However, I find paint too boring, whereas I think tiles add to any bathroom.
Leslie Kramer, the author of this article, works as a customer support executive at Cerdomus Tile Studio, specialists in high-quality floor tiles. Leslie loves bird watching and visits various national parks on weekends.
On this Valentine’s day, think about ways to love your home.
Do you love your furniture? Wall colors? Views out the windows? The kitchen or master bathroom?
Think about the design elements in your home that make you smile every time you see them. Then spend some time thinking about whether you want to make changes to the design of your home so you will love it all from top to bottom.
If you’re amongst the New Year’s resolution makers who have vowed to greet 2014 with a clean and organized house, tackling your closets should be a top priority. No matter how tidy the rest of your house appears, if your closets are filled to the brim with useless junk, making it impossible for you to access the things you do need, you’ll feel the same type of frustration you experienced when your entire house was cluttered. Plus, it’s a slippery slope; clutter tends to breed, so if you allow it to remain in your closets, it won’t be long until it starts spilling out into other parts of your house.
To get started, set up three designated areas; one for the things you’re getting rid of, another for the things that will go back into the closet, and a third for things that need to be relocated. This will allow you to clearly see if your stuff will fit neatly into the space that is available. If you’ve got more stuff than space, you might want to consider renting a storage unit. A storage unit (like this one in Canberra) will allow you to keep seasonal items you love while avoiding unnecessary clutter in your closets.
The next step is to get the organizational supplies necessary to provide a home for everything that is going back into the closet. If you don’t already have a shoe rack, purchasing one can free up a ton of floor space. If you don’t already have multiple levels of hanger bars, consider buying the type that loop over your existing bar and hang from a chain. This will allow you to hang twice as much clothing in the same amount of space. Jackets and tops on the top bar, pants and skirts on the bottom bar.
For items that won’t be hung up, consider stacking storage receptacles that provide easy access with sliding drawers. When choosing storage containers, keep in mind that it will also be much easier to find what you’re looking for if you purchase containers that are either transparent or have labels.
If you are keeping smaller items in storage containers, such as socks, underwear, belts, etc… there are a wide variety of drawer and space dividers on the market, which will take your closet organization to a whole new level. Remember that in addition to shelves and floor space, you can also make use of the inside of your closet door or empty walls (depending upon your closet design) by adding hanging shoe, hat, or accessory storage.
There is no reason to spend another year suffering from “stuffication.” You’ll breathe easier knowing that clutter isn’t lurking behind every closed door, and you’ll provide yourself with both a metaphorical and a physical clean slate. Closet organization is a great place to begin your commitment to a simplified home. By eliminating what you no longer use or enjoy, you will ensure that all of the things you do love have a proper home and are easy to access when you need them.
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.