curtains

Habitat Q&A Recap

Last month I hosted a "Design Dilemma" Q&A session at the Habitat Restore and was happy to help people with those burning design questions on their minds. I helped with several furniture floorplan questions, which I LOVE doing because it creates a world of difference in a home and how you use the space. I also fielded a few DIY questions related to updating furniture & kitchen cabinets. Below are a few other questions with pictures to demonstrate a solution. 

Q- What type of curtains can I put in a two-story bay window? 

A- I love the look of straight curtain panels hung on either side of the window and on the inside of each corner. Floor to ceiling this look pulls the room together and adds softness while not competing with the view or being overly complicated. I pulled up an image I had saved to my Pinterest board and she loved it!

For the link click here and check out some of my other window treatment ideas on my pinterest board here: http://www.pinterest.com/innovatemyplace/window-treatments/

Q: The brick fireplace in my home is too orange and doesn't match my style. Can I paint it?

A: Yes, try a whitewash! While painting is a good option for some homes I have been recommending a whitewash look instead. This takes out the orange/red undertones in the brick and neutralizes them while still showing variations in each brick. This works particularly well with the gray trend that's been going on the past few years. This DIY project is as simple as watering down latex paint and "washing' it on and letting it soak in. Blot off drippy areas, and you can customize how much you want covered.

(pinterest link)

Q: My dining room has a built-in cabinet in one corner, and the room is feeling off balance. Can I paint the inside the same as the wall color?

A: This was a great question because balance is so important in a room. My first suggestion would be to add another tall object in the opposite corner, another built-in with more storage that matched the other would be best. If that won't fit then try adding a corner shelf of even a tall plant. The second part of this answer is to try "painting out" the entire built-in. This is a great trick to use in small spaces to make everything seamless and blend in while adding subtle details and of course storage. 

  

(pinterest link)

What questions & design dilemmas are on your mind? 

Cheers, 

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Curtains Part 2: To The Floor

I think many homeowners are becoming savvy about curtains and know that hanging panels high and wide makes their windows look bigger and lets in more light.  I've shown several options how to do this and how to layer with blinds in this previous post here.

But what if you can't find curtains the right length in a color or pattern you like? Or what if you already bought a pair you like but now realize they're too short? This post will address a few creative ways to lengthen the curtains you already have or find affordable fabric alternatives.

These first few ideas show adding fabric somewhere on the panel and if you are handy at all you could do this yourself. The best way is with a sewing machine but sometimes you can use no sew tape instead.

Extending Fabric On the Bottom

Using a matching color from the pattern for a color block that goes to the floor below.
Posted by Shelterness

This adorable panel for a little girl's room mixes polka dots and stripes with pom pom trim between.
Posted by Nanny Goat

Here they added white fabric to the bottom of these shower curtains. Then continued the same fabric pattern for the very bottom. The DIY instructions are in the link below.
Posted by Migonis Home

This one plays with proportion and adds a large color block in the middle of each panel with narrow contrast trim between fabrics. This really adds interest to these tall windows.

Extending Fabric On Top

Depending on the room and what you want to emphasize is where you can add detail. Here the bottom is covered so they brought a Waverly fabric in matching charcoal gray towards the top. DIY is in the link below.

Good Design Takes Planning

As with pretty much everything else in life the best results are achieved when there is a "big picture" goal and a plan to follow. Sometimes decorating can feel like a daunting task when you don't have all the pieces yet, or don't know what to do with the pieces you already have. You may know what kind of look you want but find it hard to achieve the desired result because of various limitations. These limitations can be anything from trying to find furniture you love in the right size, waiting for the budget to allow for such purchases, or waiting to inherit a piece promised from a friend or family. The list goes on and on and it can be so frustrating!

This room needs help! Picture from Houzz dilemmas

This room also needs help! Houzz dilemma


But don't give up! It will all come together in good time. Designing a home takes a lot of time and patience, and allowing for things to evolve over time. I just finished reading "The Business of Design" by Keith Granet and I pulled a quote from him that really resonated with me: "A house is a product, a home is a process."  Isn't that so true?


Traditional Living Room
by Toronto Interior Designer Jane Lockhart Interior Design


Contemporary Living Room
by Orlando Photographer Studio KW Photography

Sometimes all you need to get started is a good plan! The design plans I provide as part of my consultation help to define the "big picture" for the space AND help to prioritize each step of the process so you know when to buy things and in what order. It's your own personal check list! Having a design plan saves frustration, keeps you organized, and helps your budget stays on track.

Curtains Part 1: Hello Ceiling

So spring is officially here - but where is the nice weather? We're still waiting! Anyway, I had a conversation the other day about curtains that someone had just hung in their freshly painted brand new house. They were concerned that the panels they bought were too short, but thought maybe they could still get away with them. My response was that yes they were not only too short, but they should have been hung higher! By hanging curtains high and wide it maximizes the amount of natural light that comes in and makes the room seem much bigger, as shown in the illustrations below.

(source)

        Do                                                                         Don't
(source)

Here are some photos that illustrate the same idea.

A Decorating History: The White House

This week following the Presidents Day holiday we've looked at chandeliers and artwork that is decorating the White House.  In this post we'll take a look back through some decorating trends that had their moment in the White House. To think of the White House as a living "decorating history book" is kind of fun!

Some of the public rooms are more limited in what can change (such as the blue room, red room, green room), so we focused more on the residence part that showed strong evolution through the years. As the rooms evolved the unused furniture and decor was stored away for possible reuse again for another redesign. It's fascinating to take a look though how the rooms changed over the years, especially in the function. Some converted from living room to bedroom. This post just skims the surface, so you can click here, here, and here for more information.