Sunday, March 22, 2015

What If...Everything's The Same Color or Nothing Matches?!?

And so it goes... the age old dilemma of "I bought all of the same color of everything because, well, I knew it would match!!" I hear it time and time again. And the good news is, it's not too late! You can add color and keep all the stuff you have acquired and come up with a room makeover without too much fuss or additional cost. That is what was needed for my next client. Just a light refresh! All of what she had going on was not to be lost, just added to and livened up. So that's just what we will do! 

Enter, the matching problem. Gray on gray and gray. I love gray and it is very much an awesome neutral to begin our refresh. 

BEFORE: (sorry for the dark pics! It was a sunny day and I was armed with only my phone)

Below is what I am recommending we add to her master bedroom to just give it a breath of fresh air and color punch. We need to introduce a couple accent colors that she can add to when looking for accessories. Here is what I am recommending to start. Now that we have these colors, it will make accessorizing with decor very simple! 
A closer look at our selections...
My client loves eclectic style with a glam flair. She tells me she has a bit of "Liberace" in her style picks! Lol! I had to... Here he is! 
The challenge is they (eclectic and glam) are usually somewhat opposite each other. You find more eclectic fabrics in more whimsical tones and usually not in the bold colors. So imagine my excitement when I found the orange shams!! These euro shams I am recommending come from Dwell Studio and are part of an entire bedding collection called "Camille". But recall she already has the gray solid ruffle duvet and standard shams so in this case we just accent with the orange shams. Her is what the bedding set looks like in its entirety. In my opinion... a tad much. I actually prefer to mix pieces of the pattern in rather than a full overload of it. Too much of a good thing maybe. 
Recall that her current bedding is just this plain solid duvet cover in gray as seen in this closeup of the duvet cover below. 
So this makes it perfect for just adding these shams for color and the match on gray tones is almost perfect!
I'm also recommended the sheet set they showed from Dwell Studio as going with this bedding as I think its a great fit, pulls in the shams more and a perfect subtle pattern. 
Then we layer in some other pillows. A plum color seems to be a great color to bring in as the deep purple hue and the burnt orange are striking together. Plus you can never go wrong pairing gray and purple. When I decided on the plum shade I found this pillow on Spark Modern (one of my fav pillow shops on Etsy) with Kelly Wearstler fabric on it. I died! Kelly is one of my fav designers. And there is no one more glam then her! It was perfect for my little "Liberace" client! 
If you do not recall who Kelly Wearstler is, I referred to her writing the post on stepping out of the trends in kitchen design to embrace something bold and different. She is the queen of following the beat of her own drum! A hero of sorts in my book:) 
Now listen closely on this one. This will go on my headstone. Animal print goes with EVERYTHING! I mean that. And it does. It's like a neutral. When I'm looking for that extra pillow, fabric or accessory to add to a room, I always go to a pattern like leopard print. It just, well, works! So for my client I am recommending we DIY something like this! All you need, a couple Target or Home Goods benches and some leopard fabric and a staple gun! You don't need to cover the legs like this one! It makes the DIY much more doable. Done and done! Fabulous!!
They also have a gray sectional in the room. I selected an eclectic pattern pillow from Dwell Studio with a hint of the gold color in it. The gold is also in the large Camille orange shams and I think this color could be played up in accessories, bath towels etc. This goldish yellow color goes with everything! This is the Peacock pillow from Dwell Studio and is on sale for only $44!! Great deal! 
Since this pillow had some chocolate brown in it I decided on these next accent pillows as I love the way they look with the Peacock pillow and I love brown and gray together. Always always be comfortable mixing neutrals. It is one of the easiest ways to pull off a very dimensional look without having to feel like you need to add tons of color. This is also a Spark Modern pillow on Etsy and is a David Hicks fabric. Love his modern fabrics too!! Best part...all of these pillows are very affordable and very well made! 

So what if you have the other issue going on? You have a room where you feel like everything is disconnected and nothing really goes together!! This often happens in guest bedrooms as it is the room that get some of the misfits or leftovers of the house. In my clients guest bedroom they painted the walls a beautiful blush color and she has orchid color solid bedding she already purchased and wanted to keep in the mix. She also has a vintage Hollywood Regency style silver dresser in there and a floral upholstered chair. How do we make it all work?! We can and we will!!

Here is the BEFORE: 

 Below is closeup of the chair fabric seen above on the chair in corner.
We need something to pull it all together and make a bridge between the silver dresser, blush walls, green and purple tones. So...we shall add black and white!! Seems like a long shot but let's see what it does! 

Black and white pulls together a focus for the room. Now it looks to be a black and white room with accents of blush and plum rather than a blush and plum room with no plan. The green accents are present because they help to anchor the floral chair in the mix. The chair has shades of purple but also has several shades of green throughout so accenting with some green accessories in one of those shades of green is perfect as it doesn't overwhelm but yet it helps to tie in the chair. Here is a a closer look at the items I recommend. 

These lovely Anthropologie sheet set. Small simple pattern but still interesting since we have a solid duvet. 

For Shams I love these plain banded standard or euro shams from Crane & Canopy

A black and white rug would be nice in the room too! This one is not a perfect pattern as it has some design element without being too busy! 
As far as accent pillows go for the bed, the sky is the limit. There are a ton of great inexpensive black and white throw pillows all over Pinterest, Etsy and lots of the stores these days. Any combo of these would be great. In the design I used this pillow below with a nice plain stripe pillow just to keep the patterns in check. Stripes can mix well with any other pattern and not overwhelm. 
So if you are matchy matchy or all over the place, pick some anchor colors to tie it all together! It's a balancing act! Design updates do not have to be about reinventing the wheel. They don't have to cost a lot! My client did the right thing by purchasing nice quality bedding pieces in solid colors. This allows you to change out your look fairly easily with pillows and accents and throw blankets that can change over time! 


Thursday, January 22, 2015

Put your color where your couch is.

For most of us, the couch is the crown jewel of the living room. It is usually the largest piece of furniture in the room and the starting point for the rest of our furniture choices. Furniture stores are notorious for selling living room sets. Nine times out of ten the couch is presented as the strong silent type in beige, gray, cream or some neutral in between and the accent chairs get to have all the fun with color and pattern. 

I'm in search of a new couch for our living room and I have been inspired by this colorful cast of couch role models.  Here are 5 ways I've found to add bold colored couches to your living room. 

#1. Neutral white walls. One of the easiest ways to add a bold colored couch to a room is to start with white walls. Here, the harmonious hues of green and violet take center stage against the black and white walls. 

The blue couch and green ottoman draw your eye down in this high ceiling, neutral room. 

This jewel-tone couch is matched in color power by the navy chair and bold design rug. 

Yellow done three ways.  Here, a bright yellow couch against architecturally interesting white walls. 

#2. The other neutrals - Gray and Black. This mustard yellow couch is paired with complementary color fuchsia and pops against this charcoal neutral wall. 

These rooms use the bold neutral black as a backdrop for bold hues. This gold couch is set off against a black neutral wall. 

#3. Harmonious Hues. Another way to work with bold hues is to work within the same harmonious color scheme. In these next four rooms, the couch and contrasting wall colors are pulled from the same side of the color wheel and create a nice harmonious color balance. 

#4. Monochromatic moods. These rooms use the same color walls and couch or variations of the same color to create a cohesive color impact.

#5. Power play. These rooms use two saturated colors for balance. These bold colored couches don't overwhelm the rooms because they are balanced with equally saturated wall colors.    

There are so many ways to make your couch a main character in the living room. So put your color where your couch is and go bold!

Happy hunting! {Erin}

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

King Of ALL The Wild Things, Nursery Designed For "The Baby"

Oh how I love to design a nursery!!! I was begging for another one after my secret nursery reveal in May for a very special baby girl! And now a sorority sister from my IU days asked me to help her come up with a nursery for her baby boy, Thad. Both nurseries for "the baby" of the family and so even more special projects being that I too am "the baby". And as "the baby" I think we deserve our little corner of the house all to our own, right?!  So when I think youngest I think let's creatively bend the rules and let the wild personality of these favorite children shine though!!:) Did I say favorite?!? For little Thad I had to pull from personal experience of having a baby boy as my own youngest child. They are the "king of all the wild things" and will always remain the baby which makes the saying "I'll eat you up, I love you so" oh so very true!

What I love about this design is that it is practical and transitional. It has a theme but with some changes could transition into an older boys room. It also reuses and re purposes a couple pieces that she already has so our costs are lower and who doesn't like that!? Let me show you a couple vignettes in the room on concept boards and then I will break it down as always~

I will start with the bedding as it is hard to tell what it may look like from the swatches in the collage above. Emily already had a honey finish natural slat crib she could use. I like slat cribs because they showcase bedding better than any other type of crib and some of the cribs out there have such mass and detail that they need no pattern and color competing for attention. I love crib linens. However, that said, I hate almost everything that is pre made out there. Although the Pottery Barns, Land of Nod and RH of the world have done a better job with pattern and color since I have had kids, I still always want to change something in their sets! Or they try to appeal to all and are so plain and in my opinion not worth the crazy prices! So Etsy it is. There are so many talented people on Etsy pairing fabrics from all over and they are very cool! You can pick and choose what you want made and in what fabrics. The main fabrics were chosen from an Etsy store Sleeping Lake Designs. I would have her do the arrow one for the skirt and the fox and tree fabric for the sheet!

Sheet fabric: Designed by Becky Long (I couldn't get an image without the watermark but obviously the fabric doesn't have that:) 
Skirt fabric: Designed by Kerry Lynn Yeary for Kenner Road (same here with the designed watermark which will not appear on actual fabric)
This next fabric could be used for a changing pad if Emily decides she needs that. Thad is several months old already so I am not sure she will but we can also look into having a blanket or accent pillow made from it too. I think it really compliments the other fabrics and brings in blue which was a color she mentioned liking! Not the best image... This fabric is from a store called Nesting Threads on Etsy

While we are talking about the wonderful finds of Etsy. I can speak a little about the artwork on my nursery design! The much much loved "Wild Things" artwork was found on Handy Gerl. What I love about much of the artwork on Etsy is that things like this are just downloads and for $6 a piece you have 2, 11x14 prints that you can jazz up with frames and if you want to get fancy, a great pop of color mat to even make them look nicer! I would use maybe a rustic looking frame like the ones you can find at Hobby Lobby.

The other artwork, the series of three designs on wood are simple and have a great message for little boys and I like that these can grow beyond a nursery and other decor changes down the line. These are from Devenie Designs and for the entire set are $135.00

I also selected this small size deer head to pair with the three wood art designs. These are very reasonably priced at $49.95 from Z Gallerie and they are not giant (although it looks it in the picture) He is only 17"x15" and so can easily be part of the collage with pictures and not a huge focus. I like the idea of having taxidermy in a color like white in a kids rooms as it softens the look but yet still gets the theme across:) I chose the deer but any of these would be cute (note the huge one in the second picture is a size large deer and more expensive)

Lets talk rugs!! In design usually you can't have your cake and eat it too. What I mean by that is kind of what I described above with the bedding. I found the bedding fabrics and loved the detail in them and so decided that since the simple slat crib was available to me then the bedding would work beautifully on this type of crib. If it were a super traditional more elaborate massive crib, the bedding patterns may need to be downplayed. With a rug it's the same way. If you find a great rug with lots of color or pattern, you may not want your walls to be a dramatic color. Too many cooks in the kitchen, if you know what I mean. Design elements need to compliment one another for everything to live in the same space in harmony. This West Elm rug has been on my mind since the minute I saw it. It looks like something of a uber expensive exclusive designer rug. But West Elm has made this handmade rug available at what I consider to be a very decent price for this large a rug! The 5x8 is $599 and the 8x10 is $999. This is for sure the splurge of the room but I think it makes it! 
And for those of you has pink in it and therefore it can't be for a boy... not not true... that's clearly salmon:) And there is barely any of it so no contest! Pink is one of my oldest sons favorite colors and he still wonders why people at school tell him that is weird! For you football men, you can say it's for breast cancer awareness! Since I just said we shall not compete with this color and pattern too much on the walls then it is a perfect opportunity to talk wall color. Now obviously what I can't do on E designs is be there to pick color for walls. So I usually try to give them a shade and she may need to test a few colors in the family to decide on what is perfect for the light in the room. What I suggest is a soft but bright, warm grayish white. More white then gray but not so beaming that it seems cool and blueish. This is a great shade called BM Swiss Coffee. It is a great off white without going yellow. Although it looks more gray in this swatch it actually appears more off white in most rooms. 
Emily mentioned having some barn wood to use on a wall and I like the idea of doing something on her wall that has the two windows side by side. I can say that I feel like the solid wall of barn wood look will be phasing out soon and the look is gonna get cleaner and more streamlined looking with trim detail going forward. What do I base that from, actually nothing really. I just feel like every trend needs to change up a little even if you stay within the theme of what has made it so popular. With the rustic theme I think the importance of mixing wood finishes, re purposing and creating a warm and cozy feel will stick but the more literal things like a wall wallpapered in solid barn wood will be the thing that may ease off over time. So, I found this alternative that I think would be a cool accent on one of the walls and a DIY of sorts. She can take it or leave it but it's at least an idea that seems fairly straightforward. You run board horizontally with space between from ceiling to floor. The board can be wallpapered with textured paper. She wrapped hers in a metallic paper in this design below but for this purpose I would do something like grass cloth with a more rustic woodsy feel. Love this idea. Creates warmth and texture in a soft subtle way! This wall design in a gorgeous ranch style home was found on Home Bunch if you want to check it out more

The wall I would suggest this for is the one with her double windows. See below her actual room. This would keep cost low, add a subtle touch without overwhelming and if they decided they liked it they could add the same treatment to the wall across the room. 

For window I would either do very simple roman shades. Maybe a simple banded shade in light gray with something like white or navy banding. Another option, if there is enough room on both sides of each window, are very simple panels that were relatively flat and not too fussy. These Pottery barn panels are a great option and they are on sale from $59-79 depending on the height she needs. They are also room darkening! 
As for furniture, Emily has this tall dresser that she can re purpose. My inspiration came from the dresser in the picture of the design board. She can keep the drawer fronts original in the dark wood and then switch out the hardware and paint the shell of the dresser a solid dark navy! 
This is her dresser as it stands: Its kind of dark but you get the idea!

This is the way she could re purpose the dresser to look and it would look very cool in the dark rich color combo against the white walls suggested for the room! 
As far as lighting goes. I pinned several options for Emily (see her Pinterest board here) but ultimately decide on this West Elm pendant which was a perfect size and price. I liked the natural color to compliment the crib color as well. 
Lastly the tepee thing is so cute and would create a perfect reading corner for a kids room as they grow older. I love the idea of laying pillows inside, stringing lights and using something like one of the inexpensive IKEA sheepskin rugs as shown in the design board. You can find tepees anywhere and there are lots on Etsy ranging in price from $100-200 but I thought I would draw attention to these two that are something of a miracle as they are actually sale items, not badly priced at.....get ready for it....Restoration Hardware Baby!   
Sale price $139.99

Sale price $200.00

One more look before I go! 

I hope baby Thad enjoys his nursery! To all wild things and favorite youngest children of the world! 
Let the wild rumpus begin!!


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