Ask the majority of people looking to buy a home what they’re looking for and most will say a 3 bedroom, 2 bath, granite countertops, and stainless steel appliances.

As a designer, it’s certainly what I hear most often. However, are granite countertops the best choice?

I don’t think so. There’s another surface that offers more advantages and that is quartz.

This week’s article shares 5 reasons by Cynthia Bowman for Freshome.com why this is so. You may decide it’s a better choice in your home, too.

Granite has been the counter surface of choice in many high-end homes since its heyday in the 1990s. But the material is not the most low-maintenance or contemporary looking. For those who went against the grain and chose an alternative material like quartz, you are now a majority!

The National Kitchen & Bath Association announced its results from a survey of kitchen designers that granite is no longer the top choice for kitchen counters — quartz is. In the granite vs quartz battle, quartz takes first place and here’s why:

Contemporary kitchens are preferred over traditional styles

contemporary kitchen granite and quartz - freshome.com

The top choices for kitchen design are contemporary style and quartz over granite. Image: Ferguson

According to the 2017 Houzz Kitchen Study, the contemporary style is the No. 1 look homeowners want for their kitchen (22% and rising). Granite is not the best choice in a contemporary kitchen, because of its golden tones or distinctive and somewhat busy pattern.

Caesarstone Cambria Silestone quartz - freshome.com

A warm grey quartz countertop flows with the cool tones of this contemporary kitchen. Image: Nicholas Design Collaborative

As homeowners start choosing more modern and minimalist patterns and sleeker, cooler colors like greys and whites for their kitchens, quartz offers more options.

Quartz is more eco-friendly than granite

eco-friendly quartz - freshome.com

An eco-friendly contemporary kitchen using low to no VOC materials and finishes. Image: Premier Kitchens

When considering granite vs quartz, both are eco-friendly — and not. Granite is imported, which means the carbon footprint is larger, due to transport and shipping. Granite is a natural stone, but is porous and requires sealing with chemicals to minimize staining and etching. According to the EPA, granite may also off gas radioactive materials called radon. Levels are normally not harmful, but a radon home testing kit is inexpensive and can double check for you.

Quartz is made with at least 90% quartz material. The rest is polymers, color and resins, which bind the quartz and make it incredibly strong and stable. The resins, although not as dangerous as radon, may also release into the air. Quartz may also be imported, creating carbon footprint issues.

The U.S. manufacturer Cambria offers an eco-friendly quartz that solves both issues. Its quartz is made in the USA and is Greenguard Certified, which means it doesn’t create any indoor air quality issues from off gassing.

pros and cons of quartz and granite - freshome.com

Contemporary yet classic kitchen design featuring light work surfaces and rich wood floors. Image: Melissa Miranda Interior Design

Quartz manufacturers Caesarstone and Silestone also certify their quartz products with the Greenguard badge. In addition, Caesarstone offers eco-friendly quartz surfaces that use recycled materials such as post-consumer glass.

Quartz offers more options as far as color and pattern

colorful quartz countertops - freshome.com

Caesarstone’s Apple Martini quartz is festive, modern and vibrant. Image: NZ Builders

Because quartz is engineered, grain and color can be added to the surface. Want an apple green surface? Quartz has it. Looking for a snow white countertop with very little texture? There are plenty of options.

calcutta calacatta marble quartz - freshome.com

A quartz version of high-end Calacatta marble is more durable than the original. Image: Aidan Design

Do you love the look of marble but don’t want to stress about your counters being damaged? Go with Caesarstone’s Calacatta Nuvo, like the image above.

Quartz is easier to work with

integrated sink design - freshome.com

Quartz is so durable and impermeable it can also be used as a sink, like in this contemporary integrated design. Image: Found Associates

When comparing granite vs quartz, the latter is as strong as granite but is more flexible. This means it can be used in ways granite can’t, like as a seamless counter with an integrated sink as in the image above.

quartz vs granite - freshome.com

This kitchen may feature lots of bright white, but its durable and kid-friendly. Image: The Designory

The strength of quartz means you can have bigger ledges or overhangs without support. It’s also less likely to crack or chip than granite, which naturally has fine cracks and fissures in the stone.

Granite vs quartz: Quartz is lower maintenance

should I choose quartz or granite - freshome.com

A thicker, slab quartz-top island with integrated bookcases. Image: Ben Trager Homes

Quartz is not porous — no sealing is required — so staining is virtually impossible. That makes clean up pretty easy— a quick wipe should get rid of any spills or stains. Quartz is less likely to scratch and, according to the Mohs Hardness Scale, quartz comes in at a 7, compared to a 6 for granite. They are close in hardness, but quartz surfaces are just a bit tougher.

granite vs quartz - freshome.com

A warm-toned ivory quartz ties in with the wood cabinetry. Image: Unique Spaces

Until next time…

Blessings from my home to yours,

Nancy
Dedicated to helping you create spaces that foster happiness and well-being

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When you hear either Modern or Contemporary design styles, do you think they are one in the same?

The two words would seem to be interchangeable at first thought.

However, while there are similarities, there are also big differences as well.

Basically, Modern design defines an era that has passed—think mid 20th century. Contemporary design deals with now and the future.

Take a look at this week’s article shared by Freshome.com and see examples on how they are defined in actual design examples.

You’ll easily see how different each is and you’ll know what to do if either of these styles speaks to you.

Modern design often features wood and earthier elements

Wood elements and nature-inspired decor play an important part in modern design. Image: Square Root Architecture

Contemporary design features state-of-the-art materials, glass and metals

modern vs. contemporary ideas - freshome.com

Glass, steel, porcelain and concrete are popular contemporary design materials. Image: Studio Ten

Modern vs. contemporary design colors

Contemporary design often sticks to a stricter palate of black, white and grey. If color is added, the color is often the pure, saturated tone like true red, indigo or orange. Modern design colors have an earthier hue and feature shades like rust, turquoise, brown and olive greens. Check out the difference in these two:

midcentury modern design ideas - freshome.com

Browns, golds, turquoise and earthier tones are popular modern colors. Image: Nest Modern

Black, white and bold, saturated colors are very contemporary. Image: Atmosphere Interior Design

Modern vs. contemporary similarities

Both design styles have three general elements in common, which make them good design styles to mix and match into your own signature look. The three shared elements are:

1. The esthetics are both minimalist

A modern design featuring a minimal amount of furnishings and accents. Image: Koffka/Phakos Design

Contemporary minimal design. Image: John Maniscalco Architecture

2. Clean, architectural lines are their signature

Both modern and contemporary design styles are unfussy and lean toward clean lines instead of ornamentation, like this Scandinavian-style modern living room. Image: Garrison Hullinger

Contemporary design interiors like this living room feature straighter, more austere lines, while modern tends to incorporate more curves. Image: Haus Design Studio

3. They both have an open-space feel

A contemporary open space flows from one area to another fluidly. Image: KF Home Building

modern vs. contemporary design - freshome.com

Wood is featured on all surfaces to maintain the flow of this open-space modern living area. Image: Best Builders

Now that you know a little more about modern vs. contemporary design, which style do you prefer?

 

Until next time…

Blessings from my home to yours,

Nancy
Dedicated to helping you create spaces that foster happiness and well-being

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Are the pictures shown in this article typical builders’ doors? No.
 
Are they inexpensive? Absolutely not.
 
Are they dramatic and do they reflect the home’s style and the owner’s personality? Definitely yes.
 
When designing your home, you may not give a lot of thought to your front door. After all, there are so many details that require your attention.
 
Yet the front door is the first thing people see before entering your home and their last impression when leaving—not to forget the pleasure you receive.
 
Why not make it special? Why not have your front door be a WOW factor?
 
The entry door can set the stage for your entire home.
 
Take a look at the doors chosen in these photos. Each one is unique and each complements the home’s architecture.
 
What gives drama to this door is its height which appears larger than it really is. The wood provides warmth, the sidelites and transom window allow light to illuminate the foyer.
 
This exquisite door is made of a bonded metal and the handles mimic the circular shape of its design. The dark color contrasts beautifully with the light paint color. Certainly not for every budget, this door costs approximately $21,000 including the hardware—but what a design statement it makes.
 
This custom glass door with its wood vine overlay allows maximum light from the outdoors to pour into the space as well as connect with the landscaping.
 
The door on this Mediterranean styled home is designed to complement the exterior as seen in the next photo. Its curves match the curved windows and the wood matches the beams used above the rectangular windows.
 
Traditional architecture can have a dramatic entrance as shown in this photo. Rather than having the door alone, adding the sidelites and the transom window gives the entrance more importance. It’s carried through with the same color paint used on the iron railings and light fixtures.
 
This very dramatic pivot door was designed to compliment the unusual architecture of the home as seen in the following photo. An ordinary door wouldn’t have worked nearly as well. The red color serves as a punctuation point.
 
These examples show how powerful the design of a front door can be.
 
Not shown but worthy of consideration, are custom designed leaded and beveled glass doors. Check out custom art glass studios for examples.
 
No matter what front door you choose, make sure it compliments the architecture of your home and gives you pleasure.
 
Until next time…
 
Blessings fro my home to yours,
 
Nancy
Dedicated to helping you create spaces that foster happiness and well-being
 
Photos via HOUZZ
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Two pairs of feet in socks in front of a roaring fire
What you say?
 
What the heck is Hygge and how do I even say the word?
 
Think of pronouncing it as Hoo-Gah or Hue-Gah.
 
It’s a Danish word and translated as “cozy.” However, the philosophy is common throughout Scandinavia. 
 
I remember coming home from school on cold, winter afternoons to my Swedish grandparent’s farmhouse. Entering through the back porch, I was immediately assailed with the aroma of freshly-baked sugar cookies, brewing coffee, and feeling the immediate warmth of the old wood stove.
 
I realize now that I was experiencing a Hygge moment, although it wasn’t a word my Grandma used—it just was.
 
SO WHAT IS HYGGE?
 
It’s creating special moments that allow you to slow down and take the time to really savor friends and loved ones.
 
Mother with two young children by Christmas tree
 
It’s taking time out from worrying about money, acquiring more things, the state of world affairs, or anxiety about the future.
 
It’s about having simple experiences that make you feel joyful, grateful, and simply glad to be alive.
 
It’s a state of well-being, balance, and moderation in all things. Think of Hygge as an internal state and it’s the small things that make you feel it.
 
Candles in a sauna
 
 INGREDIENTS FOR A “HYGGE” HOME
 
.  Candles (unscented)
 
.  Firelight
 
.  Sheepskin or faux fur rugs placed on chairs or sofas
 
.  Delicious, tantalizing baked goods—cinnamon rolls, sugar cookies
 
.  Favorite beverages—coffee, tea, hot chocolate, hot-mulled wine
 
.  Soft, textured fabrics—affordable cashmere, velvet, fleece
 
.  Cozy throws to curl up in
 
.  Thick, fluffy socks or slippers
 
.  A hot bath, followed with a warm, plush and fluffy towels
 
.  Good books
 
.  Sharing time with friends and loved ones
 
.  Enjoying alone time with yourself
 
.  Turning off tech devices
 
 
 
Hyggeting, when you get to the root of it, is how you want to feel in your home—not just in winter, but all year long.
 

You’ve had many, many Hygge moments and not paid much attention to their importance at the time. Perhaps, if we all think of the concept mindfully; if we stay aware and keep it front of mind, we really can live happier at home.
 
Helen Russell, who authored “The Year of Living Danishly,” said it best: “Hygge is the complete absence of anything annoying or emotionally overwhelming” with “a focus on togetherness and prioritizing the people in your life.”
 
Doesn’t that sound wonderful?
 
Until next time…
 
Blessings from my home to yours,
 
Nancy
Dedicated to helping you live your rooms—not the other way around
 
Images courtesy BBC
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Every year a new list emerges telling us what’s trending in interior design and decorating.
 
In fact, I should say lists plural. Google “design trends 2017” and you’ll find many references.
 
The idea is to look at them and ask yourself 2 questions:
 
.  If I added this idea to my home, would it make it function better?
.  If I buy or incorporate this in my home, would it make my heart sing more because of it?
 
The whole idea of trends is to present new ideas in design or discover new technology that really can make your life better.
 
In the following photos you’ll see some ideas that aren’t new at all—they’re just rediscovered and shown in a newer fresher way.
 
And that’s the beauty of it; you decide what’s “on trend.” If it works for you in form and function, you have the trendiest home on the block!
 
Take a look and see what you think and feel.
 
 SATIN BRASS
A softer, quieter feel than bright and shiny brass. Works well with all colors and most design styles.
 
Our lives seem to revolve around technology and our homes will continue to find new ways to incorporate their features into our design. From charging stations to voice-activated assistants as shown in this photo. On the table is Amazon’s Alexa which acts as a voice-activated interface for many smart home devices.
 
 
 
A DIFFERENT VANITY SOLUTION

If you don’t wish to choose the typical vanity, consider using a cabinet, console, or chest of drawers for a different purpose. Almost anything that can hold a sink and plumbing will work. A great way to have a one-of-a- kind piece.

 
KITCHEN STORAGE WALLS

Housing much of a kitchen’s necessities in one built-in area, frees up space elsewhere and keeps everything close at hand.

 
DESIGNATED LAUNDRY ROOM

If you have the space, splurging on a laundry room might be something that makes your life easier. Everything needed is in one room and can be beautiful and functional at the same time.

 

BRINGING THE OUTDOORS IN SHOWERS
Contemporary Bathroom by Milestone Homes
Everyone enjoys and benefits experiencing nature. If you have the budget, what a joy to feel like you’re showering outdoors when you’re inside. It could be a feast for the senses!
 
STORAGE NICHES
Room of the Day: A Pattern-Happy Powder Room With a Secret

A great idea, especially if you’re remodeling, is to add storage spaces between wall studs. They’re a great space saver.

 
BLACK STEEL AND GLASS DOORS
Transitional Entry by Stuart Pliner Design

If you have a dark entry, this could be the answer for letting in much needed light. Also being seen for shower doors in place of frameless glass. Black steel window frames are also becoming popular.

 
 
CONTRASTING KITCHEN ISLANDS
Traditional Kitchen by Smith & Smith Kitchens

White kitchens remain the popular choice for this space. To keep them from looking too sterile, painting the island a darker color helps bring contrast and balance.

 
WAINSCOTING IN BATHROOMS
Traditional Bathroom by Hatfield Builders & Remodelers

Painted wood panels is a wonderful way of adding interest to a bathroom. You can also use tile.

 
BEDSIDE PENDANT LIGHTS
Scandinavian Bedroom by Shanade McAllister-Fisher

Especially helpful in a small bedroom, pendant lights free up bedside tables. Plus, there are so many beautiful choices available in all price points, that they can make a dramatic design statement.

 
BEDROOM PAINT COLORS
Traditional Bedroom by Amy Werfel Interiors

Paint choices in bedrooms usually lean toward soft, soothing hues. Consider, however, choosing darker shades to create a more intimate and romantic atmosphere.

 
ALL WHITE KITCHENS
Farmhouse Kitchen by The Working Kitchen, Ltd.

To keep an all white kitchen from appearing stark, add wood elements to provide warmth.

 
HEXAGONAL TILE BACKSPLASHES
Contemporary Kitchen by Trevor Brown Architect

Subway tile is an ever popular choice for backsplashes. However, if you’re looking for something different and still classic, consider the hexagon shape.

 

Of course, along with the what’s trending lists, there has to be the what’s out lists. Pay no attention. The only thing that counts in your home is being surrounded by all that you love and that which nurtures your best life.
 
Until next time…
 
Blessings from my home to yours,
 
Nancy
Dedicated to helping you live your rooms—not the other way around
 
Photos via HOUZZ
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Soothing, restorative, organized, tranquil, calming, natural.
These are all words used to describe Japanese interior design. They are also words that reflect how we want to feel in our home—regardless of design style.
Take a look at the 5 elements shown in the following photos. While they represent traditional Japanese design, we can incorporate them into our own home.
And because of how these elements make us feel, our home truly can help nurture our best life.
COLORS OF NATURE
Japanese Style 4
Nature has never made a mistake with the colors it surrounds itself with. They always work; they never clash. In this photos, you can’t help but feel soothed with the autumnal hues of red, brown, and yellow.
LIVE GREENERY
Via
A sure way to bring nature indoors. Not only beautiful, but living plants and trees purify the air and helps us feel calmer. They also have restorative value.
MINIMALIST TABLE SETTING
Minimalist serveware and table setting:
Not only restful to the eye, but food will look and taste better, too, with simple and clean-lined settings.
LACK OF CLUTTER
Japanese-inspired entryway design:
We all know the negative effects of clutter, but for most of us it seems to require a mindfulness to avoid it. The results, though, promise a serene mind second to none.
NATURAL WOOD
Japanese hinoki-wood soaking tub in a soothing all white bathroom:
Natural wood elements reflect nature and for human beings we’re happier when it surrounds us. It makes us feel more at one with our world
Until next time…
Blessings fro my home to yours,
Nancy
Dedicated to helping you live your rooms—not the other way around
Photos originated on HuffingtonPost
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There are any number of reasons why you may choose to rent rather than purchase a home.
You may be downsizing and simply don’t wish to have the burdens that come with home ownership. When the sink leaks, for instance, you’d rather call the manager or owner and the problem is fixed—no muss, no fuss.
Or, you may be building a home and need a place to live in the meantime.
Or maybe you or your parents are moving into an assisted living complex.
Again, there are many valid reasons why renting an apartment or home is the best option. However, there can be challenges. One of them are restrictions as to what you can do with wall decor.
Your apartment is your home and however long you reside there, you want it to reflect your taste and who you are in the world. You don’t want it to look and feel temporary.
So how do you satisfy your design dreams and also the rental owner’s rules?
Freshome offers 13 ideas that can help you with this design dilemma so everyone wins. Take a look.

Removable wallpaper

When most people think of wallpaper, the first word that may come to mind is “permanence”. Not a great move if you’re renting. Removable wallpaper, however, swoops in to save the day for renters, and maybe homeowners with commitment issues. Gone is the terror of peeling off tiny bits of thin, dried paper. This modern decor tool goes easy-on, easy-off in countless modern prints and patterns. Your landlord will be none the wiser.

tapestry modern wall decorating ideas

Image: Nanette Wong

Hang a tapestry

Tapestries aren’t just for bohemian interiors anymore. While there are plenty to be found with intricate medallion designs, there are also countless choices to fit any decor style. Geometric patterns or abstract prints compliment contemporary style, while printed outdoor images, quotes, and minimalist designs bode well with more modern settings.

wall curtain wall decorating ideas

Image: hooray blog

String a curtain

If a tapestry just doesn’t fit your style, a curtain might do the trick. A simple, solid drapery softens the room without adding too much fuss. The mounts won’t do much damage and, in a pinch, tensions rods would do the trick. We personally love this look behind a bed.

gallery wall decorating ideas

Create a (shelved) gallery wall

Want the trendy gallery wall look, without the mess of drilling a dozen holes in the wall? Consider using floating shelves instead. Sure, you’re still putting a few holes in the wall to install the shelves, but you’re also able to change up your selection at any time without new holes. Look for floating shelves with a small outer lip to stop slippage. Otherwise, use some wall putty to hold the frames in place.

Frame a statement piece

A large piece of art doesn’t have to weigh you, or your walls, down. Hanging a poster or large photo has to do entirely with what it’s framed in. Find a lightweight poster frame, or alternative method — like these wooden bars, which leave the poster intact and give any artwork a clean, crisp look.

big mirror wall decorating ideas

Image: bloglovin’

Add a mirror

You’ll need a mirror anyway, right? Go big with a framed floor mirror, which can be found relatively inexpensively. Not only will it take up a considerable amount of your wall space with zero holes, but it will also help reflect and create light throughout your apartment. Again, wall putty is your friend here.

DIY copper shelves wall decorating ideas

Image: homeedit

Go green

A little green can go a long way. Dress up your walls with some of your favorite houseplants, whether by hanging a pot from a ceiling hook or placing a plant stand in front of your bare walls. The open shelving from your gallery wall also gets a lively upgrade with a plant, as shown above.

Stick on a decal

Wall decal stickers are widely available online and offer something for everyone. Whether it’s adding a shape like stripes, stars or polka dots, channeling nature with trees and leaves, or writing out your favorite quote, there are an endless number of styles and designs. Think about size and placement. Decals come in sticker or wall-cling materials, both which are a breeze to remove when the time comes.

neon sign wall decorating ideas

Image: Z GALLERIE

Flash some Neon

An eye-catching statement piece doesn’t have to be enormous — it just has to be eye-catching. Neon signs are just that. Grab a vintage one of your favorite brand, or find a new one with a fun saying or image that will have everyone talking.

Be crafty with washi

Heard of washi tape yet? It’s the Japanese version of masking tape. Made from rice paper, it doesn’t leave the residue of the stuff we have stateside. Even more appealing, it comes in a massive variety of colors and patterns. Hanging your pictures, prints and other paper goods with a piece of washi tape for an easy gallery wall, or create your own geometric mural with it.

Get organized

Use your spare wall space to get organized. From cork boards to calendars, get your style on while staying on schedule.

 

large wall map wall decorating ideas

Image: Lake Jane

Map it out

Maps aren’t going out of style anytime soon, and we say the bigger the better. A vintage style adds class to your space, while more classic styles can accommodate any decor style. Hang it like you would large art, and you’ll be seeing the world from the comfort of your couch. Bonus points if you flag the places you’ve traveled.

Hang it up

Calling all trendsetters. Displaying your favorite clothing and accessories with this trending wall decor. Hats are big this year (in fashion as well as wall decorating ideas), but sweaters, scarves, even jeans could hand decoratively on small nails for a look that’s ultra-chic.

What are you favorite no-fuss wall decorating ideas? Reach out to us in the comments or on social media — we’d love to hear from you!

Until next time…
Blessings from my home to yours,
Nancy
Dedicated to helping you live your rooms—not the other way around
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It’s often thought that the higher the thread count, the better a bed sheet is—better feeling and more elegant.

Actually, that high thread count doesn’t mean you’ve bought a better quality sheet.

In fact, as a designer, I’d rather my clients save the money and apply it elsewhere in their design budget.

In truth, a 350 thread count is perfectly O.K. vs. a 1,000 count one. Both in how well they hold up to many washes, their comfortable feel, and certainly the difference in cost.

Take a look at this short HUFF POST HOME video that designer ERIC COHLER did. He explains why a medium thread count is an excellent choice and gives you other info when buying your sheets.

Until next time…

Blessings from my home to yours,

Nancy
Dedicated to helping you live your rooms—not the other way around

This video was produced by Alex Kushneir and Stephanie Petchers on Huffington Post

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What is it that’s so appealing about stripes?
Perhaps they remind us of our National flag, or the geometry of the shape, or maybe warm summer days and the 4th of July.
For me, I always associate stripes with a confectionery shop I visited as a child. I could see it from a block away because of its gaily painted pink and white stripes. I knew the culinary delights that awaited me inside and those stripes acted as a homing pigeon.
Used in interior design, stripes are contemporary,timeless, clean, and always fresh-looking.
Applied horizontally on a wall, they visually make a room look longer. Used vertically, the room instantly looks taller.
Stripes can be bold or subtle. They can be a wallpaper, painted on, or used in rugs and fabrics.
They can powerfully add that WOW factor to a room.
Take a look at these photos from FRESHOME.COM for some great examples.
STRIPING A PARTIAL WALL
 

The latest fashion runway collections from designers in Europe and the U.S. were awash with stripes — from large, bold stripes to dainty pinstripes to everything in between. Home design collections are never far behind the runway trends, so if you have a love for stripes and contemporary style, now is the time to add some stripes to your home decor.

Decorating with stripes isn’t as difficult as you may think and you don’t have to make a big commitment to stripes to still have an impact on a room. Here are some of our favorite ways to take the latest off-the-runway stripes and incorporate them to your contemporary decor.

Your eye is immediately drawn to this partial wall making it an instant focal point.
STRIPED CEILING
 Black and white striped ceiling - decorating with stripes
A bold design statement for sure. Yet it ties in with the rest of the design. The only other place stripes are used are on the pillows.
FLOORING
Purple room with striped floor and pillows - decorating with stripes

Another place striping can be used is on the floor. Here is where the design statement is being made with just another small tie-in on the pillows.
RUGS
Blue and white large area rug - decorating with stripes
Your eye immediately goes to the rug. All of the other pieces in the room quietly complement it. That’s the trick really—you only need one bold design statement.
CURTAINS
Covered porch with striped curtains - decorating with stripes

Again, the focal points are the curtains and the bold stripe in the pillows. If your ceilings aren’t tall, hang the curtains as close to the ceiling as possible.
FURNITURE
Mixed pattern room with striped chair - decorating with stripes
There are several patterns used in this photo and they are all in perfect proportion to one another. Striping is only used on the chair fabric.
There you have it—just a few ideas for bringing stripes into your interior decor.
What do you think? Could stripes add some zest and verve  in your home?
Until next time…
Blessings from my home to yours,
Nancy
Dedicated to helping you live your rooms—not the other way around
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MINDFUL INTERIOR DESIGN:
We call them barn doors because originally that’s how they were used—to open and close an entrance to a barn.
In recent years, they have been used as a door that enhances rustic decor.
Today, we see many different styles that are far removed from the barn and are perfect for today’s modern interior design.
They provide function as well. You may have a space where a swinging door impedes the flow of the room. Or, a space where a pocket door would be difficult or impossible to install.
This week’s article is from Freshome.com and shows many different examples of how a barn door may be used. You may decide it would be the ideal way to freshen up a room in your home.

1. Rustic Barn Doors

Take rustic wood and create barn doors with a nod to their origins. The look is most effective in minimalist, contemporary spaces where the color white and concrete materials dominate. Rustic barn doors add texture and warm up the space, as in the art studio above.

2. Chalkboard Barn Doors

Add function and a bit of whimsy to your barn door by painting the surface with chalkboard paint. The multitasking door will hide what’s behind it beautifully while serving as a communications center.

3. Colorful Barn Doors

To give barn doors a modern look, consider painting them in a bright, bold color. Go with high-sheen paints or lacquers that add gloss and richness to the color you choose. Try orange, lime green, turquoise or bright red.

4. Contemporary Barn Doors

Bring your barn doors into the 21st century by selecting materials with a luxe, contemporary edge. The mirrored black surface of this barn door is the opposite of what comes to mind when most people think about barn doors.

barn door ideas - Freshome

Image: Dennis Mayer

5. Barn Doors as Art

A door does not have to be purely utilitarian. Why not mount barn doors that have an artistic quality to them? They will hide or divide what you need them to, in a beautiful, wall-art sort of way.

barn door ideas - Freshome

Image: Nat Rea

6. Recycled Barn Doors

Get creative with the materials for your barn doors. The chic one above may look like it cost a pretty penny, but it’s actually a salvaged old door. New hardware and a fresh coat of stain brought it back to life.

7. Repurposed Mirror Barn Doors

This homeowner went with the multifunctional aspect of a barn door by using a large mirror as the door itself. Mirrors have several advantages: They can reflect light and good views, serve as part of the dressing process and hide whatever is behind them.

8. Modern Classic Barn Doors

For those who love the cross wood and paneling effect of classic barn doors, mount a pair and simply update them by painting them a modern yet classic color such as gray, white or black. The effect is understated but elegant.

9. Alcove or Cabinet Barn Doors

Give a pre-fab home a custom look by adding barn doors to hide an alcove, media wall or built-in shelving. Select barn door materials that update the wall; some good examples are acrylic, glass, mirror or exotic wood.

10. Frosted Glass Barn Doors

If the section that you’re considering mounting a barn door to has a special feature — such as a bright, sunny area on the other side — or you simply want to divide the area without blocking it off with something large and heavy-looking, frosted glass may be the perfect solution for your barn doors. The frost effect conceals what’s on the other side just enough while letting light in, and the overall effect is open and airy.

Until next time…
Blessings from my home to yours,
Nancy
Dedicated to helping you live your rooms—not the other way around
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