Let’s talk paint!

How do you tackle paint colors for a room? Do you tape a few swatches on the wall or do you actually paint patches of colors next to each other, let them dry, and then decide? I was browsing through the April issue of Elle Decor and saw this advertisement for Farrow & Ball (above) and thought, now that's interesting… quite brilliant actually. They have taken each of their new Spring 2011 wall colors and painted them onto objects to illustrate various color schemes for each featured color. They went as far as dying fabrics to reiterate the idea, adding a new dimension to the vignette – which I love of course. What a refreshing way to visualize just how each color interacts with one another. 

And then I had a flashback… an idea from the March issue of Livingetc (below) where they also used a Farrow & Ball wall color (Brassica No. 271) for a bedroom. What I found intriguing was that they actually left the top as is, combining two very different aesthetics together – an unfinished look of abstract brushstrokes with a perfectly tailored bed – what do you think?

{ images: top / Elle Decor April 2011; 1 – 3 / Farrow & Ball; 4 / Livingetc March 2011, photography by Katya De Grunwald }

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3 Unique Beds

As much as I love great design, it means nothing without a touch of whimsy and personality. In other words, I'm a believer that your home should be yours, rather than a cookie-cutter replica of a glossy loft you've seen in the mags. Naturally, the following bedrooms scream of personality and the look is sheer perfection. Care to take a peek?:

[Image via: Poppytalk]

With a rustic, personalized headboard, classic color palette and simple patterns, this bedroom is the perfect mix of masculine and feminine. And who wouldn't want to sleep under a romantic profession of love?

[Image via: Anthropologie]

Perhaps the least expensive headboard ever, this chalkboard wall is perfect for the non-committal. Craving a French four-poster bed? Feel like switching to a Danish platform? Fill in the blanks and color outside the lines of this chalkboard wall for an impromptu headboard that's as fun as it is personal.

[Image via: Suzie Beezie]

Low on space and high on bodies? These makeshift loft bunk beds look cozy and perfect for the little ones in your life. Why not try an adult version next time you redecorate? After all, why should the kids get to have all the fun?

Happy decorating!

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Two Looks, Two Rooms, One Shop

You've heard the golden rule of decor, yes? That you can't purchase everything from the same place for fear your rooms will look like they're carbon copies of your local showroom? Throw that rule out the window. In fact, throw every golden rule out the window, because it's not about rules. Decorating is about what you love, and it's a personal, beautiful thing. Never let anyone tell you otherwise.

And just to drive that point home, I've created two rooms using key pieces from just one shop. Of course, it's a pretty eclectic shop, so my job was easy. But it's entirely do-able with any store, with a few helpful hints:

[image credits here, all from anthropologie]

1. Mix styles.
Sure, we've got a pretty French, typographic chair above, but it absolutely sings when paired with a modern, muted paint swatch curtain and a few industrial magnifying glasses.

[image credits here, all from anthropologie]

2. Mix periods.
The sweet vase above could easily be an antique, while the octopus curtains are clearly a modern interpretation of a vintage sketch. Keep things fresh by bringing in surprising finds from different eras. Bonus? Your home will never look dated.

3. Mix finishes.
Brass and wood, silver and gold, metal and pewter. Mix and match your favorite textures, finishes and sheens for a layered look that's clearly unique, personal, and you.

Are you sensing a trend here? Mix, match and have fun. Go forth and make your homes beautiful, friends!

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Time and Space

Sometimes I play little design games to entertain myself, and today's game of 'Time and Space' is no different. Although I like to pretend that time doesn't exist, it very much does. So naturally, in my head, every room needs a continual reminder of that existence, through a (preferably well-designed) clock. Yet so many of my favorite interiors are missing clocks… until now.

In 'Time and Space', I'll match my favorite clocks with their perfect spacious counterparts. Ready to play along?:

[Clock: Contemporary Heaven, Room: Per Gunnarsson]

In a stark modern space, an artful and graphic clock is the perfect accent for bright white walls.

[Clock: GNR8, Room: LonnyMag]

The juxtaposition of bold reds and pretty pinks is enough to make any glamour girl swoon. And the simplicity of this sweet clock will balance busy stacks of books perfectly!

[Clock: A+R, Room: EmmasDesignBlogg]

Any kid needs a reliable alarm clock that's as bright as it is fun. Bonus? He won't lose it in his dirty laundry.

[Clock: HORNE, Room: Nice*Room]

For a space that's equal parts industrial and midcentury-modern, an old schoolhouse clock fits the bill. And that empty wall above the desk is just screaming for some timely love!

All in good time, I suppose.

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Design Is In The Details

Every now and then, I stumble upon an image of a room that makes my knees weak. Sure, in most cases, the source of weakness comes from a classic chair, brilliantly antiqued kilim rug or a quirky collection of busts, yet sometimes what really gets me is the details of a room. A surprising staircase railing, an impromptu storage solution. Details are so often overlooked, yet so important when it comes to pulling a room together and infusing it with personality. Behold, a few of my favorite kitchens that showcase not only great design, but extraordinary detailing. Enjoy! In the above image, truck springs are re-purposed as stools, creating an industrial aesthetic in an otherwise seemingly mundane kitchen. Via House Beautiful Country/Industrial Kitchen eclectic kitchen Similarly, an unexpected decal and paint finish keeps a completely industrial kitchen full of personality, whimsy and delight while alternately warming up the space with plenty of quirk. Via Country Living hhbradys ideabook kitchen eclectic kitchen Last, but certainly not least? A modern kitchen gets a healthy dose of old world glamour with statement lighting and an over-the-top ceiling medallion. Amazing what a bit of texture can do to a room, yes? Via Houzz Proof that design is indeed in the details, so  keep your eyes on the prize, friends!

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