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Posts Tagged ‘interior decorating’

Design Ideas – White Kitchen

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

So much happens in our kitchen, the good, the bad and all the fun and entertaining. The kitchen has become a center in our homes where people gather and mingle. The design trend is going towards white and neutral kitchens. White always looks clean, inviting, pretty and added bonus is that it never looks dated. Here are some tips to master the look of the white kitchen.

On the example below we have a white stone for your countertops and island has a current and neutral effect. It is both beautiful and calming. The variations in the stone give it a unique character. Those grey or tan lines in the stone help you find the perfect paint for your kitchen walls as well. No need to worry about wear and tear on a light countertop either, once the stone is sealed it will stand the test of time. While keeping it white on the counter tops, to ground the look you might consider a natural base for the island like a weathered wood table. This gives the mostly white kitchen and warm visual center point. For the pantry, open shelving breaks up the white lines and shows off pretty china or serving pieces. A creamy white sink will nicely tie in to the rest of the kitchen, keeping it light and neutral. In the image below we see a kitchen with grey tile as an accent, again complementing the darker vanes in the countertop and creating an interesting back splash.

Regardless of specific details, a white kitchen is never going to get old and will always have the feel of bright and clean. When finished off with white solar shades for a great view out it could make the most inviting spot in your home.

white-kitchen

Solutions for Small Spaces

Tuesday, April 15th, 2014

ShelvesSmall spaces can drive us crazy, they can feel cramped, feel small, and we don’t really know what to do with them. We are talking small bathrooms, utility rooms, closets or other small areas that are tight on space.

Here are some ideas and design tips on how maximize small areas:

  • Use Light Colors – Dark colors will make a room appear more compact, light colors and hues will help to open up a room.
  • Utilize Shelves – An excellent way to utilize small walls is shelves. Invest in attractive canisters to store away bathroom essentials.
  • Get the right Window Treatments – Find blinds or shades that work on small windows; stay away from vertical blinds, instead work with light-filtering cellular shades, light-filtering roman shades or blinds that have a small stack, so when the shade is raised, the eye is able to move beyond the wall and see outdoor space.
  • Add a mirror – An easy and great design trick to make a small space appear bigger is a full-body mirror. It helps to visually expand a space.
  • Choose small space furnishings – Decor and furnishings should be small, since items that are too big can quickly feel overwhelming. Neat pieces, compact frames, clean lines help in these areas.
  • Keep it clutter free - In small spaces any additional visual distraction of clutter and items will feel overwhelming. By keeping decorations and other items to a minimum you help keep the space organized to the eye.

Shades with Floral Design

Monday, April 7th, 2014

Here in Texas and many parts of the country everything is in bloom now. Trees, bushes and many garden flowers are popping up giving us beauty and many colors to gaze at. Want to have something in bloom all year around? How about window shades with flowers?

Many manufacturers are offering floral prints. They have come back in a big way! Good Housekeeping shades, Comfortex and Bali offer beautiful flower prints in just about any fabric product line including cellular shades, roller shades and roman shades. We just love how each shade becomes a decor item. See for yourself and decide if this could be something for your home:

The following Good Housekeeping Cellular shade isn’t overpowering but creates just that little something over a standard uni-colored shade.Floral-GH

Here is a floral print on a Comfortex Roller Shade that stands out quite a bit more. It’s clearly the focal point of the room.Floral-CTX

And here is a Bali Roller Shade with some soft floral swirls. This is very dreamy and a great added touch for a bedroom.Floral-BA

One more example of working with floral print, a Good Housekeeping roman shade with a contrasting floral design in black. The shade is the focus of this sitting area.Floral-GH2

Floral is back, it can be quite neutral or stand out and make a statement. It is playful in atmosphere and works in any room.

Spring Is Here – Let’s De-Clutter

Thursday, March 27th, 2014

walkin Even though today feels more like a fall day here in Texas, fog outside and misty rain, spring has sprung and trees are starting to bloom. This is the perfect time to get spring cleaning done and de-clutter our homes. Here are a few suggestions that will help get your homes ready:

  1. Our blinds and shades of course! They are dusted over and somewhat dull looking. Get out that vacuum cleaner, duster or even hairdryer (on a cool setting!!!) and get in the corners of every slat or in-between vanes. This will bring out the sheen in your wood blinds again and brighten your shades just a little bit.
  2. My windows definitely needed a deep cleaning! Dirty and no sparkle they needed a good washing from the inside and outside. It has given me a clear view outside again.
  3. Closets are a good place to de-clutter. I like to look what I haven’t worn in a long time or at all last summer. All of that will go into the donation pile. I like to group shirts by color refold and restack clothing and create some space for the new pieces that will be purchased this spring. My kids have grown out of many of their items. All of that will go to donations as well. Worn out, too small shoes… out they go.
  4. How about rearranging some decor? I have taken some pieces and moved them around to freshen up the look. It’s the time to get lighter pieces out, couple of brighter vases and put those dark oil paintings into the attic.
  5. This is also the perfect time to get the carpets steam cleaned. If you do-it-yourself or have someone come out, I always like to give it a deep clean at this time of year.
  6. For me this is also a good time to de-clutter small spaces like cabinets in the bathroom, medicine cabinet as well as the pantry. Throw out what is past the expiration date and organize by size and groups.

Getting these few things done might take most of a weekend, but it will make all the difference to start spring. Off to the yard…

Bali Roller Shades Revamped!

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Roller-Shade

Spring is here, just in time for Bali to come out with new and fresh fabrics. Bali’s roller shades have been revamped with a versatile collection of stylish new materials and colors.

Roller shades are practical and easy to operate. A continues beaded chain helps you to lower and raise the shade to desired height, helping to control light and providing privacy depending on the thickness of the fabric. The beaded chain can be replaced by a cordless lift to eliminate all cords. This is a great way to go when having young children or pets in your household. Child safety first! Still in the collection available are “Classics” like their vinyl coated blackout shades the popular “Manhattan” light filtering or room-darkening material as well as the pearlized “Gemstone” fabric. However some of these popular materials’ outdated colors have been replaced by newer fresher tones. Entirely new fabrics include the “Harbor” and “Cascade” collection. Also now available are friendly new swirls and prints giving more options when accenting your windows. Our website is user-friendly and lets you preview all these fabrics and colors by simply hovering with the mouse over the magnifying glass in front of each link.

All roller shades can be paired with a cassette valance or square corner valance for a finished look. Call us to get pricing on decorative scalloped hems and trims. These new fabrics and stylish colors will make it easy to give your room a fresh new look this season.

If You Love Reimagining Bali Window Coverings for Different Looks, You Might Want to Make a Career Out of It

Friday, May 31st, 2013

If you’ve been considering a career change or want to try something out that caters to your own skillsets or passions, try answering these questions: Are you constantly looking through Bali window coverings, Comfortex cellular shades and other products on this and other outlets and dreaming of ways to make them fit your home’s décor? Do you go over other people’s homes and instantly see ways they can improve on their style through a slight alteration or accessory purchase? Are you organized, yet creative and self-motivated and willing to handle strict deadlines?

 

If so, you might want to consider going into interior decorating. Interior decorators work in a bevy of different environments. Some go into business for themselves working on residential jobs, while others are hired for commercial projects. An interior decorator might work in a specific industry, such as restaurants or office lobbies. A select few are even hired full-time to work exclusively for a particular company. Given this, there are many avenues to becoming an interior decorator, but here are some things to keep in mind:

 

  • Should you or shouldn’t you go to school? Interior design school can give you the tools and education necessary to produce good work. However, at the same time, it could be expensive and you might have to take time off from work or caring for your family, so you’ll need to take this into account as well.
  • Practice on friends and family: The most important part to getting new business is having a portfolio that features before and after photos showcasing your work. In the beginning, it could be tough to get people to allow you to perform work on their homes or places of business. By working for free or a small sum for family members and friends, you could build the portfolio necessary to get bigger clients down the road as well as earn experience, so you can improve on your craft.
  • Know that it’s more than design: Knowing good design practices and theory is, of course, an important part of being a successful interior decorator. However, it’s not everything. A successful interior decorator will be an excellent communicator to clients and understand project management in order to juggle a number of clients at once as well as meet strict deadlines.

Buying Good Housekeeping Blinds and Other Ways to Secure Your Home

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

Now that summer is here, millions of children all around the country are waking up with a bigger smile on their faces as school is done for a whole three months. While it’s certainly great to see your children more often, their constant presence does involve some challenges – one in particular is their safety around the home.  The home isn’t exactly a construction site filled with hazards, but children are creative and curious, so it’s important to safeguard your home against possible hazards. Here are several to keep in mind:

  • Keep pots and pan handles towards the oven when cooking: If your child wants to help you cook, that’s fantastic. But even the most prudent child can get a little overzealous, so it’s important to keep handles out of their reach. Many kitchen accidents involve overturned pots of boiled water or heated oil, so by keeping handles towards the back of the oven, your child can help you with safer tasks.
  • Make sure to shade your home with the right blinds: If you have small children, it’s imperative to take a look at the type of blinds you’re using to shade your home. One of the things to consider is replacement if your blinds are ten years or older. If you’re looking for a quality set of window shades that are designed to meet aesthetic demands as well as safety concerns, Good Housekeeping shades are the way to go. Make sure to opt for a cordless design to prevent any choking risks.
  • Secure bookshelves and heavy fixtures with anchors: Climbing things is a natural part of childhood. Children are curious and want to see what the world is like from higher ground. Unfortunately, they are not the most graceful of individuals, and fixtures aren’t meant to hold hundred pound children. Braces and anchors can secure these fixtures, so they don’t tip over, causing possible injury.

 

Part Your Window Shades, Think of Cleopatra

Friday, April 26th, 2013

History of window blinds: Old Egypt to modern day

You’re about to indulge in a subject that’s not talked about every day – the history of window covers … a surprisingly wondrous subject worth exploring.

After reading this, you’re going to appreciate the window furnishings in your home every time you part them, roll them up, or tie them in a not.

You’ll think of Cleopatra, laying in her bed, surrounded by leopards and pharaohs … renaissance characters like Elizabeth I, Shakespeare and Machiavelli, writing at their desk and studying court documents in a room decorated with long, elaborate window curtains … and unfortunate events like The Great Depression and the housewives who used rags instead of fanciful drapes to blind the outside light.

 

 

Ancient Egypt: Origins

Ancient Egypt was arguably the first civilization to conceive interior decorating, as we know it today.  From the beds they slept in to the cushions they sat on while playing board games like Senet, they appreciated comfort and custom design.  It was also fairly easy for affluent Egyptians to acquire the look they wanted due to Egypt’s production of certain textiles.

The spinning of linen and flax is native to Egypt and was in large supply back in the day.  After taking an interest in fashioning the home, wealthy Egyptians began accessorizing.  Things like bed drapes, sheets, and window curtains became essential pieces in all homes.

The Renaissance: Same Style, Different Design

Fast forward thousands of years and affluent people living during The Renaissance were decorating their homes with curtains similar to the Egyptians.  Some of them were still made out of linen and flax, but textiles that were easier to obtain like cotton were dominant.  People who were especially rich were able to cover their windows with drapes made from silk.

Although the hanging style didn’t differ from the style used in Ancient Egypt, the design did.  Like the dresses women wore, curtains attained a puffy characteristic.  Much like the women flaunted their wealth with their dresses, the curtains flaunted their light-blinding sill with their balls of fabric clumped together at the top.

The Great Depression: Simplifying

The Great Depression obviously wasn’t the first occurrence that forced people to simplify their homes, but it still serves as a relevant depiction.

In the 1900’s and earlier, interior furnishings became cheaper and more available to people in all financial situations.  Curtains weren’t considered a luxury item anymore – they were considered a natural element in all homes.  But, when The Great Depression struck, window curtains ceased to be considered a natural element.  Things like food, clothing and bedding were prioritized.

Those who were lucky could spare a sheet to block out the early morning sun.  Others, however, weren’t so fortunate.  They needed every piece of clothing and bedding to stay warm during the winter.  Because of this, a new window drape – a worn rag – came to be.

The Modern Day: Options Galore!

Today, there are countless window cover options.  Whether you’re own a budget or swimming in money, you’re sure to find the curtain right for you.

But wait … curtains?

Yes, of course they still exist, but window blinds are the new popular form.  They’re easy to install, easy to control, and easy to clean.  Some of them even provide insulation benefits like cellular window shades.  During the winter, they work with your heater to keep warm air in and, during the summer, they work with your air conditioning unit to keep warm air out.  In addition to looking good, they’re also very practical.

Today, we have so many stylish and affordable options to choose from.  The first characteristic can be attributed to civilizations like Ancient Egypt while the second can be attributed to the modern industrial world.

Whether you’re a fan of Good Housekeeping shades, Bali blinds, or custom drapes, remember this: there’s a history in everything worth appreciating, even window covers.

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