Pinpointing Your Home's Style Direction | The Question To Ask

Many people get confused about what style they like best.  They are conflicted because they like a variety of looks and can't seem to pinpoint the one that they want to commit to.  Because of that, it is common for homeowners to feel like their homes don't look finished or pulled together and it's frustrating.  The beauty of design is that it's ok if it incorporates a mix of styles.  Homes that aren't cookie-cutter or too "model-home ish" are comfortable and unique.  A home that's too perfect doesn't feel like a home.  And when your home has  it's own special mix of styles, you know there's no other home quite like it.  Homes should also be a reflection of people who live in them. It's not a design faux paux to have a home that reflects your personal taste, no matter what the design magazines say.  If you love it, that's all that matters.  You live in it!  Styles and tastes can bed edited, or refined, though, so don't think we're just saying that it's ok to put whatever wherever.  

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However, we think that the best place to start when trying to pinpoint your home's style direction is by asking yourself how you want your home to feel.  Feelings can be different from person to person but this simple question gives you a very clear starting point.  If you want your home to feel comfortable and cozy, you probably won't decorate with super modern furniture that has hard lines and is somewhat sterile feeling, even if you love that look in a magazine.

Aside from how you want your home to feel to you, there's also the question of how you want others to feel in your home.  Some people are super concerned about their guests being relaxed in their homes.  They might have house guests a lot and accessibility and comfort are the most important things to them.  While others might entertain a lot and while they want their home to look and feel finished, flow and ease of passage throughout the common areas is super important to them.

A lot of times, the way you desire your home to feel will affect color choices as well.  If you want it to feel cozy, you may go with warmer color choices.  Whereas, if you want it to feel breezy and open, you may select brighter whites and cool color choices.

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Oftentimes, the way people determine that they want their home to "feel" is an immediate reflection of their general style so once they determine their home's feeling, taking the style direction que while also incorporating their own personal likes is much easier and comes more naturally.

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We think the most important thing is that you love your home, though!  A home is a monetary investment and a time investment but it also plays a large part in whatever journey you are on.  Once you are happy with the way your home looks and feel relaxed in it, it can quickly become your retreat from the world...which is something we think everyone needs!  So don't neglect it or yourself!

Outdoor Spaces | Spruce-up for Summer

Summer is just around the corner which means that summer vacation will be in full-swing in just a few short weeks.  A lot of people really look forward to this time with family.  The kids don't have hours of homework to do in the evening and the days are much more relaxed so everyone is just generally in a better mood. This usually means more BBQ's, afternoon swims, dinners on the back porch, and time outside!  So, in order to get you ready for all this outdoor living, we're talking about how to update your outdoor space in the right ways that will make it all more enjoyable for everyone!

If you don't have a pool or if you just like layers of ambient noise, try incorporating a water feature of some sort into your outdoor area.  The sound of running water is so relaxing and makes the perfect background music for an afternoon hanging out by the pool or dinner under the stars.  It's also just pretty  and will be a great decorative addition to your outdoor space.

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Make your outdoor area feel more like an indoor area by installing outdoor drapery.  The thing about outdoor drapery is that it's not really meant to create privacy or completely block the light.  It's really meant more to soften an outdoor space and make it feel more comfortable.  For this reason, outdoor drapery are usually stationary and are mounted to the side of a column or corner of a wall to soften the edge.

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Hanging some sort of market lights or cafe lights is something super inexpensive that can make a giant impact!  String lights immediately make a space feel super cozy and elevate the overall feel.  String lights can be permanently wired to a switch or even just plugged in.  They're inexpensive, easy to install, and highly impactful!

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Incorporate greenery!  An outdoor space without potted plants or hanging plants will immediately feel sterile.  If you don't have a green thumb or are concerned about care, get something hearty that requires very little attention.  This will add a homey feeling to your outdoor living space without causing you too much additional work!

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Master Bedroom Styling | Fresh Ideas for Accessorizing Your Bedroom

It's true that everything has been done.  There's really no new ideas anymore.  Anything "new" is probably just an edit of something already existing.  This is ok, though. There's nothing wrong with a good ole fashioned refresh which is basically what we're discussing today in the master bedroom.

It happens to us a lot--we have a master bedroom that we're re-doing and the room is just too big.  There's a king size bed, two over-sized nightstands, some sort of foot-of-the-bed seating, a dresser or console and maybe even a separate reading/seating area....but there's still a ton of space.  What do you do with it?  The bedroom is tricky because there are really only certain things that make sense to go in there.  You're not planning to entertain in that room so you don't need seating for 5 but you do want to be able to lounge and read a book or even snuggle up with your kids and watch a movie.  Well, the same is pretty much true for accessorizing.  You need bedside lighting, light blockage on the windows, and something to soften.  The type of storage you need could vary from person to person but overall, most master bedrooms are styled the same.  However, there are things that could be improved upon...  

Wallpapering the wall or ceiling is not a new concept in the master but a new twist on wallpapering called wraparound wallpaper adds an entirely new dimension.   Wrap around wallpapering wraps the ceiling over the bed, the wall that the bed is against and the opposite wall.  This application creates a little cave or nook like effect for the bed making the whole space feel much more cozy.

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Don't get stuck on conventional lighting for a master either.  If you like the look of a reading light mounted to the wall beside the bed but also have table lamps or pendants over the nightstands, combine the two!

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Don't be scared of a heavy drape in your master bedroom.  The bedroom is supposed to be a little more luxurious feeling so you can go with something a little more dressy and full if you'd like.  Take the drapes to the ceiling and make sure they have the ability to cover the window for privacy.  Make sure they're blackout lined too for light blockage.

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Consider adding a built-in to your master bedroom.  While built-ins are usually thought of more for Offices and Family Rooms, a built-in can a cool storage piece to your room and make a great focal point on the bed wall.  If it's designed right, the built-in could also incorporate the nightstands so that everything is one unit.

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The master bedroom is an important room!  It needs to be comfortable and functional...and not just for you, for your whole family.  But don't get so caught up in convention that it doesn't have a feel that works with your style.  Make it unique!

Design Discussion | Negative Space

Negative space can be a powerful design tool.  When used correctly, it brings a sense of calm to a space and actually puts the objects that are in the space into focus by drawing the eye toward it.  The act of well-done negative space is accomplished when someone understands the importance of editing.  In design, not every space always needs to be filled in order for the room to feel finished but understanding when there's something missing and when enough is enough is a delicate balance.

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Negative space works well when done right because it eliminates all of the distractions.  Oftentimes, it is a much more simplified version of layering and requires the viewer to step back and look at the space as a whole...even though, ironically, it brings items into focus.

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Negative space oftentimes thrives where asymmetry is present because whomever has accomplished the use of negative space has looked at the space as a big picture.  It sees the room as one pictures instead of becoming hyper focus on filling things up.  Wall space and ceiling space is seen as the backdrop for everything in the room so the way pieces of furniture in the middle of the room stand off the back wall affect what else is hung on the wall and where.

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Negative can often be used to emphasize architectural details like windows and stairs but be careful because sometimes it can also highlight things you might not want in focus.  Just be sure your furniture doesn't detract from architectural details you might want to highlight...it's ok not to crowd a room with furniture if it keeps the cool architectural details in focus.

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If you're still unsure about the benefits of negative space, just think about a bold black and white patterned tile or wallpaper or even fabric.  The black portion is the negative space and without it, there is no pattern!  Negative space is important!  Be sure that you're stepping back to look at the big picture each time to re-design your space.

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Color Talk | 2018 Blue Hues

We know!  You're sick of grey...and beige...and grey beige.  You want color.  But you don't want to be overwhelmed by color so you're trying to figure out the best way to incorporate it without overdoing it.  Blue is a great color for a;,pst amy space.  Depending on the shade, ti can be dark and moody for a bedroom or light and airy for a common area like a great room or dining room.  Accoring to Houzz, there are certain go-to blue hues that are guaranteed to make the statement you want!
 

We still love muted blues with grey in them so Skylight by Farrow and Ball is a great option.  It can really work in common areas or bedrooms because the mix of blue and grey make it versatile.

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If you want to go with a little brighter that can be more bedroomy...although we've seen it used throughout entire homes, Retiring Blue by Sherwin Williams is a clear blue-green (mostly blue) that leaves your home feeling light and bright and almost beachy!

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This next blue is very mature and would be perfect for a master bathroom or even a guest room.  It has almost no green in it but isn't too powdery or baby-blueish like a lot of pale true blues.  It's just nice and calm--First Snowfall by Benjamin Moore,

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Going much more green and feeling super springy is Watermark by Behr.  Again, we see it as a bedroom/bathroom color but it's calm enough to  work in other spaces too.

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The perfect dining room color is Winter Ice by Benjamin Moore and we can't forget about one of our favorite go-tos---Silver Strand by Sherwin Williams.

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All-in-all, we consider blue to be a neutral and love mixing it in.  Blue is classic and can really work in almost any part of the home as long as it's paired with the right mix of other items.  It really is one of our favorite colors!