Internationally Trained Interior Designer, enthusiastic traveler, and dog lover shares advice and inspiration to help you create your Beautiful Habitat; a home you love and the ideal place for you to flourish.
Customizing your upholstery is a great way to add personality to your home, whether you are ordering a new piece or reupholstering an existing item. Too often people play it safe and select an overall neutral for their upholstery. This is "smart" in that the piece will be timeless. However, you can still have a timeless piece, while taking your upholstery out-of-the-box. Here are some tips for just that.
Tip 1: Use two fabrics on the same piece
This photo is from House & Garden UK magazine and features dining chairs with 2 fabrics - a timeless look, but more interest than one overall fabric.
Below is a Before & After of an antique fainting couch from a Beautiful Habitat project in Louisville, Colorado.
We used both a solid black and a contemporary print from Kravet to customize the piece.
Tip 2: Use a Small Pattern
Small patterns can look like solids from a distance. This can be a "safer" alternative if you aren't ready to go bold. You'll still have interest and uniqueness in the piece, but it will not be too trendy.
This project is a home I worked on in Broomfield, Colorado. Here, the sofa fabric is actually a gray-on-charcoal dot pattern. It adds fun to this contemporary decor, but reads as a solid from a distance so it doesn't complete with the artwork and other fabrics.
Tip 3: Use a Big Pattern
A large and bold pattern can still be timeless. Here, elegant dining chairs have again been upholstered in two different fabrics. This time a large embroidered pattern has been centered on the chair backs of each chair. The result is truly stunning.
As Holiday Entertaining gets into full swing, I find myself inspired by some amazing table designs. Your table setting and decoration is a great way to set the tone for your holiday gatherings and to create parties to be remembered.
First a quick primer on *proper* table settings. To be followed, or completely ignored as YOU see fit for your own party...
Starting with your dinner plate, which looks more lovely and festive when layered over a place mat, charger, or both. A salad plate or bowl can be layered on top of the dinner plate, depending on your planned courses. Don't be afraid to mix styles, colors or vintage with new - get creative. Place cards are a great touch to a dinner party. Think out-of-the-box, use fruit or foliage, or a small gift.
Next - forks to the left of the plate, knife and spoon to the right. Place silverware in the order of it's use, working from the outside in.
Glassware is at the top right of the plate. Water glass first, followed by white wine, then red wine glasses.
One of the easiest and least expensive ways to spruce up standard Christmas decorating is with ribbon or tulle. Both can add texture, shimmer and color to your holiday scheme.
Use it on the tree.
Use it on the mantel.
Use it with the nativity.
Add it to any greenery, wreaths or garland.
And to take it up another notch - use the same ribbon or tulle throughout your home, then use it in your gift wrapping.
It makes a beautiful statement and takes your Christmas decor to a new level. The best part is you can reuse the ribbon for many years before it wears out! The amount of average household trash increase by 25% during the holidays. You'll be doing your part to reduce that, while making your holidays beautiful.