When designing a space, often the very first question that homeowners are faced with is: what is your style? It can be a difficult question to answer. Before you can think about all the little details, it’s a great idea to take a moment to figure out what your style is. Some people will say either traditional or contemporary. But what if your style lies somewhere in between?
Transitional design is a design style that is not that well-known outside of the interior design world but it’s probably the category that most homeowners fall into. Transitional interior design happens naturally when you take the best elements of two design styles and combine them together in an elegant way. That might sound easy to do – and sometimes it can be – but there are definitely some guidelines you should adhere to when creating a transitional space.
Here are seven key points to think about when decorating a transitional style space:
1 – Think carefully about your colors. A neutral palette is the most popular choice for transitional design but don’t be afraid of color. Try using soft and soothing colors like lilac or powder blue mixed with lots of neutrals like white, cream or taupe. Furniture in dark colors like espresso or gray acts a counterbalance and helps to anchor the space.
2 – Transitional furniture needs to be chosen with care. Choose furniture with simple lines and elegant curves. Try to choose pieces that are not overly masculine or feminine. Some details such as tufting or piping can be incorporated to add interest. Wood finishes tend to be dark in chocolate or espresso and lately we are seeing the rise of gray. Some simple furniture styles such as Asian, Mission or Shaker lend themselves nicely to this look.
3 - It’s also important to think about texture when choosing upholstery and fabrics. Try to include a few different types of texture such as linen, silk, velvet, chenille or cotton twill. This will create dimension and add interest to your room. Fabrics tend to be solid or tone-on-tone but some graphic patterns will work beautifully.
4 – If you are designing your space from scratch, try to incorporate flooring that will work with the transitional look. Espresso stain or walnut hardwood flooring is a great choice but off-white or pale grey carpet that is low-pile (like a berber) can work in some spaces, particularly bedrooms. Rugs tend to be neutral with a tone-on-tone pattern or a texture like sisal.
5 – The classic lighting choice for transitional design is the white linen drum shade. This works just as well as a pendant light as it does on a table lamp. Other choices include sparkly modern versions of the traditional chandelier or lamps with chrome or silver metal details.
6 – Window coverings should be kept fairly simple. A nice shirred drape on a simple rod with plain finials would look great. Other suitable options include Roman shades and textured woven blinds. Stay away from ruffles or any other excessive style.
7 – Accessories should be kept to a minimum. Style your bookshelves with a few white sculptural vases or small stacks of books. To add interest, try to incorporate a few pieces that sparkle like a cut glass bowl or a trio of silver candleholders. Other great accents for this look include potted orchids, a mirrored tray or artwork in black or silver frames.
Creating a transitional style room in your home doesn’t have to be difficult when you stick to these guidelines. The key is to carefully consider each and every purchase before you bring it home. Be sure to remain true to your design vision. If you only bring home truly beautiful pieces then you will already be half way to having a gorgeous transitional space of your very own.
The days of the McMansion are over as people everywhere downsize. Today’s homes are becoming increasingly smaller. The economic recession changed what the average homeowner is looking for and priorities have shifted. Smaller homes are more energy efficient and cost less to maintain. Plus the baby-boomer generation are also empty-nesters. Bigger used to be better but that is no longer the case.
In addition to living in smaller spaces, the trend these days is to stay in and entertain at home more and more. So how does the average homeowner accomplish this in their new smaller space? Entertaining in a small home can be tricky but there are a number of ways to accommodate a gaggle of guests. Furniture that multitasks is gaining popularity. With limited storage space, it is doubly important that your furniture work for you year round.
Coffee tables with pull out seating are a particularly smart way to do this for your living room or family room. Coffee tables with seating don’t take up any extra floor space. Plus they keep the extra seating close at hand so it’s easy to pull out when you are entertaining.
Always keep in mind that form should follow function. Make sure the table fits comfortably in your space. It should also meet your needs as both a coffee tables and extra seating. And of course, your design style and budget are all important things to take into account as well.
Fortunately these days the selection of coffee tables is almost endless. Coffee tables with seating are available in a wide range of colors and styles. Consider a sleek metal and glass coffee table or with the dark and sophisticated look of espresso stained wood. It’s easy to find one today that works for your lifestyle and looks great.
You’ve probably heard that Pinterest is the newest darling of the social media world. It’s a visual-based system which makes it completely different from Facebook or Twitter. Pinterest is exactly what it sounds like: a virtual pinboard. It allows you to take images that you find anywhere online and collect them all in one spot. It’s a simple concept but it’s actually quite brilliant and can be used for many different purposes.
So how can you use Pinterest? Pinterest is a great place to collect your favorite images of bedrooms, cute puppies, future vacation destinations or whatever else you like. It’s the perfect spot to collect ideas for your upcoming wedding or to post inspirational quotations. The choices are endless – which also means it can be confusing or overwhelming when you begin.
While there are lots of different ways to use Pinterest, this article is going to focus on how to use Pinterest specifically for interior design. It’s the perfect place for everyone to begin making a concept board or moodboard whether you are a professional or a DIY-enthusiast.
1 – The first step (after signing up) is to create a pin board just for your project. Perhaps you are working on your living room. Begin by creating a board that you’ve named something easy to remember like “Living Room” or “My Project”.
2 – Now that you have your board set up, it’s time go out and start browsing for images. There are many ways to do this. Looking through interior design blogs o ronline magazines is a great way to start finding visual images. A Google image search can also work well or you can upload photos you’ve taken with your iPhone. Of course, you can always browse through Pinterest itself. Re-pinning other people’s pins is very quick and easy. Clicking on the Pinterest logo at the top will bring up the latest pins from you and the people you follow. Try the search box to look for specific items. Click on one of the categories like Home Décor to get some general images. If you really don’t know where to begin, try clicking on Everything (to find the latest pins from all users) or Popular (to get a look at what has the pinning world is currently going crazy for).
3 – Pin your images! Use the Pin It bookmarklet to pin almost anything on the web. Pins are part fantasy so don’t be afraid to pin anything and everything you like. Go ahead and pin some items from fancy stores that are out of your budget, rooms by famous interior designers or a house that belongs to a celebrity. You should also pin individual items for your space – lighting, flooring, color schemes – as well as whole room photos with the style you are looking for. Just make sure that you make a note of the reasons why you chose your pin (Pinterest will prompt you to do this).
4 – Invite others to pin. You can invite other users to help you pin to your board. This is a great way to collaborate on design ideas. Maybe you’ve hired an interior designer. Or perhaps you are hoping for the input of your husband, mother or best friend. Allowing others to pin can be very helpful for illustrating your ideas back and forth. Another option is to create two different pin boards and compare them. This part is especially helpful at speeding up with design process.
5 – You can also go a step further and create a final pin board for your space. On this board you would only pin the items (sofa, lighting, rugs, paint colors etc.) that you have actually chosen. It’s a great way to ensure that you get a cohesive look for your project.
6 – Create your shopping or to-do list and away you go!