Image courtesy Traditional Home
If you've got a room with lots of empty walls, it can be difficult to figure out a way to add interest without a lot of repetition. I'm all for a series of artwork hung evenly spaced as a group. But there comes a time when the question becomes: how many little rectangles does one room need? One possible solution--decorative plates.
It's not always easy being a guy, especially when it comes to home decor. There's a fine line between your home looking cool and "dude, what are you? A girl?" This may explain why most men I know have the following on their coffee table: remote control(s), dirty dish(es), and maybe a magazine (not always the family friendly sort). It's just easier to avoid the ridicule. But this picture here gives one great idea of how to put something interesting on your table without forsaking your manliness. No, I'm not a fan of the basket (I'd rather see a low bowl in black), but overall, pretty cool. And if you're not into billiards, what about baseballs? Hey, maybe that's one to try in my apartment.
A perfect housewarming gift
Fisherman will tell you that to get a good haul you need to know where to go and cast a wide net. In that sense, it's not too different from interior design. Always on the lookout for affordable and stylish items, I like to check out a variety of places. Hey, you never know where you'll find an unexpected and cool treasure--though those people who have parents and grandparents with attics ridiculously full of great pieces irritate me to no end.
I'm always on the lookout for inexpensive, stylish home accessories--especially things that you won't necessarily see in everyone else's home. I'm looking at you, foo dogs. One site I like to check out from time to time is Zgallerie, which is based on the west coast. Sure, they're pretty popular and some of their items look familiar, but I bet you've seen them for a lot more money. Everything here is well under $100.
Now if you've learned nothing else about me while reading regularly, you've probably figured out that I love a bargain. By that I don't mean something cheap just for the sake of having something; but instead a great deal on something wanted/needed. But lately I've been thinking more about investing in fewer and higher quality items. My wardrobe doesn't know it yet, but half of it is about to leave my closet for this very reason. In that vein, I wanted to feature some truly stunning textiles from Aviva Stanoff.
I'm a big believer in investing in quality pieces for your home and very often one of those pieces is an area rug. The rug in my living area was one of the more expensive things I purchased but it completely set the tone for the room. Sometimes, though, you just want a little fun. This rug may be a little trendy color and pattern-wise, but it is still 100% wool and nicely made. I found it on the World Market site for $449 (on sale with no shipping charges) for a 5'x8'. The deal of the century? No. But a good balance between fun and smart.
Ikea has a reputation that varies wildly from chief producers of home furnishings crap to saviors from sitting/sleeping/eating on the floor. It all depends on who you ask. I do own a few pieces, upgrading to other items over the years as time and budget have allowed, the way most people do. One department from Ikea I will never outgrow, however, are their textiles. For simple drapery panels or duvet covers, they are a fantastic source.
Target is a frequent landing spot for designers looking to expand their line and customer base. Most of what looks fabulous online looks less so in person. Or maybe I am just not destined to wear Anna Sui. But housewares is a whole different ballgame and the Liberty of London line for Target looks playful and springy. Another design site featured these products this morning as a reminder that as of March 14th, they'll be available to order. Sadly, I'm not able to find anything online yet, but I'll be checking. Because there's a peacock print piggy bank with my name on it.
In the past few days I've found several articles online about decorating with blankets. And you thought they were just for practical purposes like napping on the sofa? Today's NY Times had a "shopping with" feature about different ways to use blankets in rooms to create interest. Blankets, much like pillows, are a fast, relatively inexpensive way to change out the look of a room.
This is Eddie Ross's window for Elle Decor as part of the Bloomindale's Window Challenge. He used a pink cashmere shawl as a throw blanket to brighten up the neutral sofa. Apartment Therapy also had this and this posting about creative uses for decorating with blankets.
I updated the Redesign Projects section of my Portfolio to include an accessory homecall I did today with a designer I work with at the day job. The client had some great pieces but the room felt a little bland. Some items she owned were not being shown off to their fullest potential and other areas lacked color and interest. This simple redesign shows how just a few additions can make a big difference.
Christine Schwalm is an Interior Designer and Visual Merchandiser based in Los Angeles. This space will keep you updated on what's going on with CSD along with some ideas to inspire you. Go here for more information about pricing and services and here to make an appointment.