Favorite accessories reflect places you have been and your connection to them.  In this grouping, a replica of the Brophy Chapel from one of the fundraising luncheons is a back drop for a stone “Christ the Redeemer” sculpture from Brazil.  Mix it up and regroup as you bring new objects home.  It freshens up your look and makes your home more interesting and a reflection of your interests.

A Place For Everything

Feeling unsettled about EVERYTHING? Numerous studies and books indicate people are looking for personal order and peace. Organization books are popular as well as others with joy and happiness as a priority. Your home can provide these living spaces.

As we accumulate our storage options change. Love to entertain? Keep your dishes, linens, etc. in conveniently located spaces so it isn’t such a chore to get them out for the party. No room to entertain? Seating needs to reflect the number of people and how they can interact most comfortably. Use high tops with bar stools for wine. A small table for tea. For lunch for 6-8 people, consider a fire pit with cushioned chairs. Create space for interacting with others and enjoy the simple pleasures of chatting with a friend, a reading or a game area.

If you never use it, relocate it, provide better access or eliminate it.

Now that home prices have recovered it may be time to adjust the amount of space you have based on the lifestyle that is most enjoyable. Your quality time may be hiking, eating in a restaurant with a fireplace or a luxurious bed at home. Just so it works for your best life!

Need an update but not a total remodel?

Here’s a checklist of details that will improve your home.

  1.  Replace old toilets with more efficient low water use and soft close lids.  The plumber can do this.  Use the same color as the sinks in the space.  Kohler and Toto are both good options.  Washlets are popular and require added electrical to the toilet area.
  2. Dark or small spaces – neutral or light walls are very in and make the space lighter and bigger.  Warm up the color if the ceilings are 10’ or more.
  1. Update recessed cans to take advantage of smaller cans with more efficient bulbs for general illumination in your home.  Fluorescents can be used in utility areas but find bulbs that simulate natural light.
  2. Level the floor to eliminate sunken spaces. They are a safety hazard.
  3. If the popcorn isn’t gone off the ceiling, it should be!
  4. Cabinetry hardware is easy to update if the knob or handle fits the same hole(s).
  5. Old cabinets can be painted and a vessel sink added to low cabinets to bring the height up to 36” that is now standard.
  6. Paint the garage floor with epoxy.  It will be light and clean!
  7. Tile countertops should be replaced with cleaner solid tops (no grout) and get your showers updated. Both can require coordination with several contractors so you may need a general contractor to oversee the project.

The Advantages of Canvas Art

Celebrate your uniqueness!  Your personal accumulation of what is visible in your home tells your story – so is it boring or interesting?  It takes more time to personalize than pick up a piece of art or an accessory but it is also more interesting.  Do you have photos from trips?  These can be printed on canvas.  Or you can select other’s photos to have printed of your favorite locations.  Children can give a photo wall an updated look in larger canvas formats.  Choose 3, 5 or 7 larger format photos and use them alone or mingle with more traditionally framed family photos.  Choose the “best of” photo rather than every child, every year.  Old photos can also be formatted in this updated style. Tell your family history by selecting a few to mix in with newer photos.  See some ideas on my Pinterest board: Family Photos


Color Advice

So is everyone painting their interiors white? Your home is about your comfort so if you are in a small or dark space then white is great. But we have expansive homes and high ceilings in the spacious Southwest and warmer whites into darker neutrals give these areas a more inviting ambiance. White was the color of the year in 2017 but now we’re into other vibrant colors for 2018. The Sherwin-Williams’ color for the year is Oceanside and the Pantone selection is Ultra Violet.

When your favorite color is popular, stock up on sheets and towels. They are available when the color is in and may not be otherwise.

Most of my clients like a warm, comfortable space so white white is too institutional. Paint is the least expensive way to freshen up and lighten up.

If you have a favorite painting, use the most dominant color in the painting to expand the art and space.

Charcoal can be a dramatic change in either a small powder room (Do the ceiling as well.) or as an accent.

Check visual options at the and on my Pinterest boards:
Paint and Wall Finishes
White Interiors

Happy Valentine’s Day

White walls everywhere make a perfect backdrop for Valentines Day! The items shown add up to a party! The pillow fabric and napkins are from a variety stone, the tablecloth from Home Goods and heart dishes have been collected over the years. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Happy Valentines Day!

Invite a special someone or a gathering of friends for the most simple dessert – s’mores! Just break the chocolate in pieces, add marshmallows, microwave for 1 minute and scoop out with graham crackers. Having fun is more important than hard labor!

Where Have All the Florals Gone?

Florals have been seen and promised but where are they? It is surprising the time it takes for the trends to be available to the general public! Florals were showing up in designer dresses a few years ago but are still hard to find in the stores. Of course, designer fabric lines have always been a source of florals and now stores like Anthropologie have floral sofas for sale! Designers can recover your existing sofa and or chairs as well. Mario Buatta be still! Vivienne Westwood and Alexander McQueen have dark floral carpets and cushions. Bold red roses against black and Ted Baker’s unique florals are leading into a blooming and colorful spring! Not ready for an all-out commitment? Start with pillows!

Boring Ceilings

Are your ceilings boring?  If so, do something about it!  Beams can be added, drywall detailing, tin ceilings for a vintage look or paint!   The left photo is a stencil on an 8’ ceiling to add interest.  A stencil like this gives interest without lowering the ceiling The photo on the right shows how beams will make the ceiling lower as they extend down. 

Tongue and groove wooden ceiling from light to dark is another textural option for variety.  If the ceiling is too high, bring molding down on the wall and end the ceiling color at the molding.