Good things come in small packages, right? Well think of your little living room as a diamond – with thoughtful and purposeful decorating it will transform into a stylish hub of coziness fit for dazzling guests. Double Duty Décor || Just about any surface can be used as a cocktail table, however by opting for an ottoman or bench you’ll also be getting additional seating. Bonus if they have hidden storage! Power of Transparency || Decorating with glass or acrylic furniture or pieces that feature tall legs will create an airy vibe in the room making it feel more open and less cluttered. Bring the Drama || Floor-to-ceiling décor such as a tall bookcase, gallery wall, or one oversized piece of artwork will create the illusion of taller ceilings while making a dramatic style statement. Cozy Corner || Bring on the SECTIONAL! While this sounds counterintuitive, it can actually work well in small spaces since it hugs the contours of the space. Just be sure it is the right proportion for your space. Get it in the same color as your wall and it will blend seamlessly! Optical Illusions || Perception is everything; give the impression of an infinite amount of space by decorating with mirrors. Round mirrors provide the most continuity with their “tunnel” effect while the shape is a great way to break up square spaces. The Traveling Table || Nesting tables are undoubtedly one of the most useful and versatile pieces of furniture. Coming in twos or threes these little guys are easy to move from room to room and their airy construction enable them to be tucked away!
Distinctive Accents || Make your home uniquely yours with accent tables, clocks, mirrors & more In almost every story, the main character needs a sidekick – someone to interact with and play off of. The same is true of rooms in your home. Your living room furniture needs a supporting mirror, clock, accent table or objects to give it life. Most of all, these supporting accents should include details that speak to you. As many an interior designer has stated, these pieces make up the "jewelry" of a room, much like the finishing touches to your fashion wardrobe. These are easy to switch out when seasons change or for special holidays, or if you just want something new. In addition, accents don't have to hide in the background. An oversized vintage-style clock or decorative mirror, for example, can be a main focus for an entire wall. Ultimately, an eclectic diversity of accents will make your rooms more interesting, invite conversations, and create fascinating twists to your story. Accents…can be a main focus for an entire wall. Collections || Souvenirs from your travels will make any home more distinctive, and remind you of memorable destinations you've visited over the years. Quirky masks or hats on the wall, trinket boxes, sculptures, busts, glass vases, and books on a coffee table mingle with ease among other objects in your room. Displaying artwork is a great way to showcase your unique personality, whether you choose family photos, colorful abstract paintings, vintage travel posters grouped and expertly framed, or anything else that reveals your passions.   Colors & Patterns || Toss pillows are the easiest way to add instant pizzazz to your furniture. Try other shapes in addition to square – round, rectangular or organic shapes add depth to your upholstered furniture, as well as comfort. Play with different scales, too. Mix large leaf prints with, say, a mini cross-hatched pattern. Lamps are another way to add color and pattern, especially if you choose a shade that isn't solid white, or one with a colorful sculpted base.   Contrasts || If your main furniture is wood, add metallic accent tables for shine. In addition to their multifunctional uses, your room will have greater depth if you mix matte and shiny surfaces, which you can also achieve with paint or wallpaper. Even better, if your furniture is mostly square or rectangular, mix in other shapes like round, octagonal, triangular or organic shapes for added interest. If your walls are white, artwork in black frames look chic, especially when configured in multiples.
Small space living can be challenging, but that doesn’t mean you should forgo personal style for functionality - there are ways to marry the two in perfect interior design harmony! The Furnishings || Don’t shy away from statement furnishings just because of your limited space - if you love it, make it work! Your bedroom is your sanctuary so if your way of packing a style punch is with a grand bed then do it, but be smart about it. Opt for a bed that has under-bed storage built in and/or invest in a short chest that can be place at the end of the bed for additional storage and a surface for décor. If space allows for a bedside table choose one that is glass or Lucite as this will give the room an airy feel. The Color || “Paint it white to enlarge the space…” we hear it all the time and while yes, there is truth in this go-to small space design standard, it doesn’t need to be your standard. Rules are made to be broken, right? If you are a lover of color then splash that bold hue on an accent wall or even the ceiling! You’ll discover that a pop of color will actually create depth in the room. Not a fan of accent walls? Hushed hues like blush, dove gray, and sage can be painted on all the walls creating a quiet impact that won’t go unnoticed. The Décor || Visual tricks like styling with mirrors and glass will definitely create the illusion of a larger room while adding a dash of glam, but there are a few other tricks! Try adorning one of your walls with one piece of large-scale art. This will create a feeling of grandeur without the chaos of a gallery wall. Have a spare corner? Combine the look of luxury with functionality by adding a stylish storage ottoman.
When a piece of furniture or object is lovingly used over time, it can develop a rich, distressed patina that tells its whole life story. Think of a wooden table from an old workshop with metal drawer pulls that are darkened from years of use, or a marble countertop from a decades-old hotel kitchen, discolored and buttery smooth from wear. These characteristic imperfections are often indications of a time when furniture and household items were handcrafted, when country life prevailed, and homey, rustic objects were used, handed down, and reused. Today, this type of "farmhouse style" – which, incidentally, blends easily with boho, shabby chic and industrial styles – has become one of our most enduring decorating trends. And, short of incorporating actual antiques into your home, it's easy to find new furniture and objects intentionally made to look like weathered antiques. The secret to distressed pieces is simplicity. They look and feel lived-in, comfortable, unpretentious – the opposite of slick and shiny. Furniture || The idea behind distressed furniture – and why it has such charm – is that each piece has subtle variations in surface appearance, so no two are exactly alike. Before the Industrial Revolution, variations were naturally occurring, but once items became mass produced, each one started out exactly alike with uniform surfaces and details. For today's distressed furniture, surface imperfections are desirable, with variations in color and finish intentional. In addition to wood, other materials, including metal, glass, stone, and plastic, can be made to look distressed.   Area Rugs || Previously, the only way you could really get a "distressed" rug was from years of walking on it. Now you can find new rugs that have worn patches of faded color that truly look vintage, but are deliberately created in factories using special manufacturing and finishing techniques. Most rugs were and are built to withstand plenty of wear and tear, and can become more beautiful as they age. Finishing Touches || Mirrors, clocks, plaster busts (more popular than ever!), woven baskets, architectural salvage, metal gates and grates, stained glass window panels, books and other items, can all be found in true vintage distressed form. Or, you can buy attractive reproductions made to look as though you've curated them from years of global travel. Ideally, your home will look more unique if you mix true vintage items with newer items. It's even more interesting if you mix styles and time periods for an eclectic look that tells your personal design story.
Clearly Cool || Acrylic furniture is like the unicorn of the home design world; often seen in blogs and magazines, but rarely spotted in real life. This ultra-modern look is a great alternative to traditional wood and upholstered pieces especially if you are a small-space dweller or even decorating a small room. These clear pieces blend with their surroundings, visually decluttering your space making it look less full. Similar to mirrors, acrylic furniture also creates the illusion of a larger and brighter space due to their ability to let light pass through. Trend Lightly || Too much of a good thing is never a good thing so trend lightly. If you’re decorating a room, don’t fill it with acrylic accents or it will look like everything is floating like you’re in space. If you’re decorating an apartment, be sure to style your pieces in different areas. If you opt for a waterfall cocktail table in the living room then try ghost chairs at your dining table, this will create a balanced, cohesive look. Clean with Care || With acrylic you get the look of glass without the fear of it shattering, but don't clean it the way you would glass! Best practice is to wipe it down with a soft cloth and warm soapy water (no chemical cleaners). Be sure the cloth is non-abrasive, absorbent, and lint-free. Disposable cloths are the best way to go to ensure that there is no debris embedded in the material that could potentially scratch your furniture.
You’ve signed your way into adulthood by closing the deal on your first apartment. A fresh start and a blank canvas to make your own and call it home – how exciting is that?! Now it’s time to prioritize. Set a budget and make a list of the things you need, then decide on the décor you like best. Are you a modern maven or a vintage queen? Deciding which décor suits your personality will help you achieve a cohesive look when shopping for furniture. Choosing which furniture pieces to invest in at first will depend on the size of your apartment, but here are some ideas to consider… Mattress || Sounds mundane, but a great mattress will give you the ultimate beauty rest you need. It’s also a great investment because a quality mattress can last you 8-10 years, which will allow you to take it with you when you move into your first home. Make it a fun experience by choosing a stylish frame for it! If space is tight consider a frame that has built-in storage. Seating || The size of your space will dictate whether you’ll be a sofa, loveseat, or sectional. Sectionals are cumbersome so even though you may have the space to accommodate it, you also have to make sure you can get it into the apartment. A sofa or loveseat paired with a funky chair will create a cozy and stylish space. Complete the look with an upholstered ottoman so you can put your feet up! For tight spaces, put a tray on the upholstered ottoman to make it double as a coffee table. Dining || Any nook will do if you purchase the right table. Choosing a table with clean lines and a modern edge will allow you to get creative with the seating. Mix and match styles or use all upholstered chairs so they can be used in the living area too! Minimalist meets luxury is a great balance in design for your first apartment.         Now that you have the basics it’s time to decorate and personalize! Try to incorporate mirrors into your overall design. They create the illusion of a larger room while reflecting light from all angles. Storage can be a challenge, so strive to find sneaky solutions (like your bed frame or ottoman) in order to maximize your space. Lastly, bring a little of the outdoors inside with plants. Succulents and air plants are low-maintenance plants that are tiny enough to fit into a terrarium while still breathing life into your apartment!
Man Cave, meet the Haute Haven. Transform your walk-in closet into a style savvy sanctuary where you can sip libations and discuss the latest trends with your fellow fashionistas… The Layout || Maximize the space you have by utilizing your wall space from top to bottom. Line your walls with a mix of angled shelving for shoes, rods for hanging garments, and cubbies for your folded wardrobe. You can even utilize the wall space surrounding your doorway by adding shelving above the door; this is a great spot to store your handbags! The Furniture || Keep your lingerie and jewelry organized by adding a small armoire into the mix. This little organizational gem will fit snug beside your doorway leaving the middle of the room open for seating. Make a statement with a pair of brightly colored accent chairs, a luxe velvet settee, or even just a fun printed bench depending on what your space allows. You’ll appreciate having a place to sit while you sip your morning coffee and decide what to wear. Don’t forget a little side table! The Accents || No walk-in closet is complete without a mirror. Whether you choose a free-standing looking glass or carve out wall space to design your own three-way mirror, this is a must-have for any closet! Cozy up the space by adding a plush area rug and finish it off with a chic chandelier.
The gallery wall is a timeless interior design technique that can work in any home regardless of size; however, if not thoughtfully planned it can quickly turn from sophisticated to sloppy. Have you been thinking of creating a wall of wonder in your home? Keep the mantra “slow and steady wins the race” in mind while following these tips… Size || The size of the wall you choose to fill matters because it will not only dictate how many pieces to hang, but also the size of each piece. Even on smaller walls, it is best practice to include at least one large piece to serve as the anchor. Be sure to hang it off-center so it doesn’t become the main focus and overpower the smaller ones. Whether you have enough pieces to fill the entire wall right away or just a few to start, begin by laying everything out on the floor. This foolproof method will be the blueprint for your layout. It will give you the ability to move pieces around with ease, take proper measurements to space each piece out, and get a bird’s eye view of the finished design. Curation || Just like life, your gallery wall should always be evolving. Pieces you love now may not be what you love in 2 years and that’s okay! The beauty of a gallery wall is that it’s NOT a permanent fixture in your home. Live in the moment, but be thoughtful with your ions. It’s okay to have a few bookmark pieces to start out, but really take the time to find quality pieces along with pieces that have meaning to you. Those personal touches will make your wall unique to you and keep it from looking like an art gallery. Content || Think outside the frame. A gallery wall doesn’t have to be comprised of art exclusively! Create intrigue by adding unexpected elements like 3D wall hangings, a vintage poster of your favorite movie or magazine cover, or a mirror. Working a picture ledge into the design is a great way to include small, personal photos without them looking out of place. The ledge gives you the ability to layer each picture ultimately making it look like one larger piece. Make it come alive with plants or illuminate it with a whimsical neon sign! There’s an opportunity to get really creative with your wall, but keep it balanced. The overall look should still be cohesive even with the fun, unexpected elements. Obstacles || Don’t fight with permanent fixtures – embrace them! Gallery walls are a fantastic way to conceal eyesores whether it be an electrical panel, ventilation grate, or even your television. Designing your wall around these obstacles will help them blend seamlessly and draw the eye to the surrounding wall décor.
By now, you know about the many benefits of indoor plants – they help purify the air, reduce stress and background noise, and improve your mood, in addition to being naturally beautiful. You can also add life to your space with other naturally occurring items like coral, seashells, petrified wood, geodes, plus textured fibers like macramé, abaca, jute, grasscloth and sisal. Adding these natural elements brings earthy textures to your décor, and increases the tranquility of your space. You can use these elements in subtle or big ways, and they work especially well in casual, boho-inspired interiors. Fish tanks and fountains optional.   Natural Found Collections || You can easily add natural beauty to your home by gathering your seashell or beach rock collection, putting it in a woven basket, and placing it next to a group of plants. A branch of coral is another classic touch, often displayed atop glass coffee tables or on book shelves. Other shore items like starfish, sea urchins and sea glass are inexpensive, readily available collectibles that can be gathered in groups or scattered randomly to charming rustic effect.   Furniture & Rugs || There are plenty of ways to use natural elements to make a bigger impact. In addition to natural wicker, rattan or rope accent furniture, you can complete a seating group with an eye-catching geode-topped accent table or tree stump table that's anything but cookie cutter. Each one will feature unique variations in color, pattern and shape. Ground your space, inside or out, with an environmentally-friendly natural fiber area rug that's both resilient and easy to coordinate with most design schemes. Accent Pieces || Geodes in their organic form can be striking, and appear in many gorgeous colors, including purple, blue, pink and green. Arrange them inside an open clam shell for an artful presentation. The aforementioned coral makes a great decorative accent, maybe on a tray with other objects or under a glass cloche. A natural woven sunburst mirror adds coastal charm when placed above your dresser, or use it to embellish a bare wall in an entranceway. Finally, if natural elements aren't your favorite décor go-tos, framed botanical prints work especially well in a formal grouping on your wall.
You've seen it in almost every interior design magazine or decorating book… the use of symmetry to achieve that precise, balanced look in a room. A pair of wall sconces flanking a mirror above a fireplace mantel. A pair of identical nightstands bookending a bed. A pair of urn planters standing sentinel at a front door. You've also seen symmetrical elements where the two objects are not identical. For example, one planter is a different height or color than the other. Then, you've admired free-form spaces where elements are casually, randomly placed, with little or no pairs of anything. Whether you gravitate to highly ordered spaces or let it all hang out, the key to finding your comfort zone is to incorporate a balance of both. Symmetry || The main benefit of symmetry, and the reason it's so widely used, is because it creates a sense of calm in the viewer. It promotes order and harmonious balance, where everything is in its right place. It can also denote an aura of power. Think of ancient kings and queens (two heads are better than one?). Symmetry can also be formal and predictable, so in terms of interiors, too much of it can look uptight, and if you're the restless type, you may get bored with that pair of lamps or end tables. The key is to mix it up or change the position of things periodically if it suits you. Free-Form || The benefits of free-form style or asymmetry are that it creates tension or excitement, expresses individuality and informality, and a free-spirited, unstudied approach. It can also be sophisticated, out-of-the-box creative and cutting edge. The danger is that too much asymmetry can look chaotic and cluttered. For the most part, you don't want a room that says, "Yikes, get me out of here!" Or, "What happened?" There simply are times when pairs are better. A single bookend isn't very useful, for example.   The Mix || A good strategy is to determine the primary use for each room in your home, the feeling you want to convey, and how much space you have to bring your design vision to life. If you have a more formal living room, you probably want a pair of chairs flanking a fireplace (a single chair might look lonely). Or, if you're a couple sharing a bathroom, his and her sinks are likely desirable. If you're an artist or creative professional, you may only need one chair in your room, and plenty of open space to move furniture and other items around at will. Your needs may be less predictable and subject to change, depending on which projects you're involved with at any given time.
Just as an invitation sets the vibe for an event, your entryway sets the vibe for your home. Make it a fun and functional space whether it’s a small nook carved out of a larger room or an entire room on its own… Form || Decide what you want/need from the space. Surely you can blend fun with functionality, but if space is limited then you may want to focus on functionality and sprinkle in decorative accents to personalize it. Entryways have a tendency to turn into a catchall. Having the right furniture or fixtures in place will prevent it from looking cluttered. Function || Are you that person that kicks off their shoes and tosses their coat on the nearest surface? Invest in a credenza and some decorative hooks so you can hide those shoes and hang those coats in style! Not enough room for a credenza? Utilize your wall space from the ground up by making a small storage ladder. While your shoes will be visible, this looks more purposeful than just leaving them on the floor. Plus you can add a decorative accent like a small vase of flowers! For a warmer look opt for a bench - you can tuck your shoes below while still maintaining an inviting look. Fun || Personalize it! Hang a mirror so you can check yourself before walking out the door. Add a fresh pop of color with plants or pillows. Play around with the lighting by swapping out your fixtures or adding a floor lamp. Given the generally small scale of entryways, you can easily switch up the décor every season so you always feel like you’re walking into a freshly designed space!
Whether you define your style as traditional, contemporary, minimalist or "something else," it's that "something else" part that really makes your home yours. There are many ways you can augment or change a room's perspective, and two ways are by incorporating glam or rustic elements into your space. Often inspired by antiques, glam or rustic furniture pieces, when combined with the right accessories, give a room more eclectic character. It's really how you mix all the elements of a room that defines your personal style. Glam || Whether it's a mirrored nightstand, shiny metal table or whimsical accessory, these are the pieces that always look on the bright side. Metallic finishes, gilded accents, ornamental fabric trims and glossy paint surfaces can add a touch of chic opulence, especially if you contrast them with traditional pieces and rustic surfaces. And, when you include sensual curves, animal prints and intricate textures, you'll elevate the glam factor to superstar status. Rustic || On the other side of glam are rustic furniture pieces that exude an industrial, down-to-earth vibe with matte distressed finishes, knotty wood grains and straight-lined geometrics. They have an authentic lived-in look, and they're often in darker colors. Think of natural brick or stone walls, exposed ceiling beams, nailhead trim, and corrugated metal. One of the easiest ways to achieve rustic style is with a leather sofa, chair or sectional, which will just get better with age! Extras || To make your space truly eclectic, add personal items like photos, artwork, antiques collections and one-of-a-kind pieces that you've gathered from your travels. The way you mix, arrange and display these elements will reveal your true style personality – your blueprint for living your best curated life.
The children have moved out; now what? You’re not quite ready to let go of the house you raised your children in, but now you have extra rooms that need a refresh. It’s a bittersweet feeling, but there are many things you can do to fill the space. It’s time to reflect on all the things you said you’d do “once the kids are gone” and make it happen! Here are a few ideas to get you started on this new adventure… The Man Cave || Equipped with a projection screen to view the big game, plush leather recliners that have built-in cup holders, pub tables complete with barstools, a mini fridge so you don’t have to go far to replenish, and a shuffleboard table to keep the fun going through half-time! The Home Office || Design an inspiring space that reflects your personality and style and that will keep you motivated! For him: A rich mahogany desk with an oversized leather chair and a file chest topped with decanters of the finest libations of choice. For her: A whitewash desk with a tufted chair and a bookcase reimagined with a few photographs, candles, and of course books! For the Yogi || Transform this room into an oasis of relaxation with a minimalist approach. Soft lighting created by decorative sconces and hurricanes filled with pillar candles will make you feel as though you are at the spa. Create a focal point with a large landscape painting that best suits your personality and will help bring you to that meditative state. Complete the look with a superbly soft shag rug and oversized pillows to create a hygge [Scandinavian word for a mood of coziness & comfortable conviviality with feelings of wellness & contentment] vibe that soothes your soul. For the Fashionista || Create the ultimate closet complete with shelving that displays your shoes, a three-way mirror to make sure you’re looking great at every angle, a jewelry chest for all those costume jewels and a hidden safe for the real ones, and lastly a plush chaise lounge (because with a closet this amazing you’ll want to sit for a minute and revel in it).
One of the charms of apartment living (especially in an urban setting) is more often than not the place you find will be in an older building; rich with the architectural details of the past, but lacking the modern storage of today… like closets. Whether you have 300 or 500 square feet to work with there are creative and decorative solutions to your storage conundrums… Bedroom || A closet-less bedroom may seem like the biggest disadvantage of your new space, but there are stylish solutions! Splurge on a bed with built-in storage or if you already love your bed utilize the space underneath to store linens and other items that you don’t need immediate access to. Rather than an armoire, invest in a mirrored chiffarobe instead. It is typically smaller in scale and combines a hanging wardrobe with drawers for better organization. If you need additional space for your hanging wardrobe, get a novelty rolling rack and showcase the outfits you’ve chosen to wear for the week – one less decision to make in the morning! Living Area || In a room notorious for having the most furniture it’s important to find pieces that can perform double duty in order to conserve space and keep your place looking uncluttered. When shopping for cocktail tables opt for one that has hidden storage. Don’t have enough room for a media console? Use a decorative credenza instead! Consider a silhouette that has tall legs so you can fit decorative baskets or boxes underneath for additional storage. Bathroom || The smallest of spaces takes the greatest creativity. Go vertical! Add shelving above your toilet and beside your vanity if cabinet space is lacking. Utilize apothecary jars to store all of your toiletries decoratively and hide those eyesores like cleaning products or towels in small baskets beside your toilet! Kitchen + Dining || If you’re living in 500sq feet or less, this is probably one open space that leads into the living area too. A great way to partition the two spaces is with a small-scale island that has storage and will double as your dining table – just add stools! Is drawer space limited? Use adhesive hooks on the inside of your cabinet doors to hang utensils that cannot fit.