|Posted on June 28, 2019 at 6:55 AM||comments ()|
Summer living is leisurely as the heat and humidity beckon a real slow down of nesting. Spring was, on
the other hand, a frenzied time of declutter, donations and downright disposal of things we’ve outgrown.
Summer does something a little unique in my spirit though. It grounds me differently. I’m indoors to
escape all that heat and humidity when not sunning, swimming and picnicking. Although I don’t really
need to spend one thin dime buying the trendiest or the most decadent decoratives to scatter throughout
my space, however, I thirst for change to visually cool my sanctuary. It’s your time to do that too.
My recipe is:
- add cool and warm white everywhere
- bring in live greenery
- rearrange furniture.
In doing so, be bold, outside of the box and be quick, for summer goes swiftly!
Focus on your decorative objects first. Remove every pillow, tray, candle stick, sculpture, book, magazine,
throw, urn, vase and vessel. The emptiness of unadorned furnishings gives you a clean slate. Replace these
accessories in various shades of white. You’ll find many table top adornments in washed shades of pale gray
to white finishes, shiny ceramic or chalky matte surfaces; textiles with feathers and faux fur, embellished with embroidery,
beads or shells. When used together they make a rich interesting statement.
Nestle some fresh live greenery like succulents, palms and ferns
among these new finds and the air will be cleaner too.
Your window treatments could use some lightening up also. Replace them with simple gauzy sheers in
soft shades of cream to white. They can make all the difference in the soft, coolness of how your home
breathes. You’ll sense an ethereal calming effect too.
Now that you have accessorized with shades of white, look at all the largest items and find a new home
for them. For example, if your white glazed 3 foot urn would have lived on an entry console, let it now
occupy space on your dining room buffet or on a dresser. With collections of vases and boxes, etc., bring
all like items together and pull the 3 best and biggest and let them adorn your coffee table...wrap your
hardcover books in gorgeous white marbleized papers and stagger their heights.
I know you get the idea!
For your art and mirrors that hang on the walls, take them down, clean them up till they sparkle and move
your collections around. Let them breath, let your instincts guide you. You’ll begin to see your treasures
new and old with new eyes and energies. Imagine you’ve been hired by some very busy executive to
design a new layout for her summer home. You’ve got to move some furniture around too. Create a new
path to the lanai or front door. Don’t be timid, even if it doesn’t feel right at first....just do it! Later the
weather will cool and you’ll want to re-do for a whole new set of reasons.
But for now create a soft coolness indoors because it’s summertime!
|Posted on January 23, 2019 at 9:35 AM||comments ()|
|Posted on April 1, 2018 at 12:10 AM||comments ()|
One fabulous sofa can be the catalyst for an inviting room! Make your next sofa purchase one that has all the bells and whistles you’ve been wanting; and maybe a few you haven’t considered! Kim Isreal knows where to find the treasure trove of stylish looks.
Select from so many designs from simple to grandeur, with straight, curved, plump, tufted, scalloped varieties in a range of sizes. Many can be customized in length and construction too. Choose a color you truly love! Go for what looks good on you….peek into your own wardrobe and jewelry boxes for ideas. Trims on pillows can be soft, silky, textured, bold, shimmering or iridescent touches. This time consider gorgeous contrasting welts to show off and define the shape of your sofa, maybe quilted chenille on the seat cushions, a striking contrast fabric on back.
Try cultural influences. These can be stunning with the right mix of color, texture and design: think American, African, Asian, Latin, European, and Indian to name a few; the choices are very inspiring and vast!
Have fun with mixing coordinating patterns in throw pillows. These pillows can be where the “power” fabrics shine. Also, buy extra down filled pillows for a seasonal switch, dressy parties, or for added comfort and luxury in a range of shapes like bolsters, rounds, triangles, boxed, kidney, etc. Your investment in a variety of extra pillows goes a long way as it gives your sofa a fresh new look when you’re ready for a change.
Opt for rich texture and beautiful color even if you prefer simple, chic lines without the embellishments. You can still make a fabulous statement!
|Posted on March 12, 2018 at 11:20 PM||comments ()|
Focus on Design…..Creating Extraordinary Focal Points
An impressive element of great design is a focal point that needs no introduction! And your room can have more than one. It is an area(s) that takes center stage, a place that commands attention to itself before you notice other details. With color, texture, light and a sense of adventure, you can accent these focal points by pointing to a variety of elements:
• Architectural details: fireplaces, columns, crown moulding,
• Furniture: your “one fabulous sofa”, embroidered silk chairs, fancy face mahogany dining table, a custom painted French inspired chest
• Fine art: a splendid impressionist oil, oversized abstract paintings hung vertically stacked!
• Outdoor view: the city at night, a lovely courtyard garden and flowing fountain.
The “heart” of a room can also be staircases, other distinctive case goods and even media equipment. What helps to define these significant hubs is the convergence of seating around them for everyone’s enjoyment. Focal points are the spotlights where the eyes also rest to indulge in the beauty of a room! So be extravagant with your choices in color, texture, space, and light.
• Color: Select fresh exciting wall color and accessorize in splashes of that color around the room.
• Texture: Let it be about how light reacts to the surfaces: shiny, rough, fuzzy, iridescent, etc. Hint: add mirrors to reflect these surfaces.
• Space: Have breathing room amidst seating and between other focal points in one room
• Light: Illuminate what is significant in your room; do it in layers with ambient and task lighting. It is crucial for seeing the totality of a space, for creating moods and for emphasizing noteworthy focal points.
|Posted on March 10, 2018 at 7:55 AM||comments ()|
Create Rich Texture in a Room
One of the best ways to attain rich, beautiful texture is to create a room that is in a singular base color while mixing a wide variety of surfaces that are smooth and rough. This instantly reveals breathtaking interest. For example, imagine a bedroom that is in shades of beige. Now envision its walls covered in creamy metallic wall paper, soft billowy linen curtains, a satin duvet cover, velvet throw pillows, a tufted cotton chaise lounger, a fluffy shag rug, faux fur throw, silk lamp shades, a crystal chandelier, stacked stone fireplace, and mirrored night stands topped with a vase of white roses. Get the picture?! Although this imaginary room of ours is created via one simple color (shades of beige), the drama and excitement and luxury is in the layering of a variety of these surfaces defined as texture. The eyes move about this space exploring the texture, noticing where light reflects differently on each item in the room. The shiny smooth surfaces are going to create a greater reflection of light as foreground elements, while the rough and soft surfaces are matte, absorbing the light much differently. Altogether they beautifully support the landscape of a one color room. Our room becomes intriguingly gorgeous as the many textures altogether are rich and have their own sense of “color” and provide your mind and body a feast of the senses. Experiment with your own personal spaces, especially with colors that are easily accessible. It’s fine to use more than one shade of a color, remember to keep it soft for rooms that are intended to be restful, such as bedrooms and sitting rooms.
|Posted on February 3, 2018 at 6:40 AM||comments ()|
Many couples celebrate Valentine’s Day out on the town enjoying an exquisite night of cocktails, dinner and dancing. But there are many who would prefer enjoying the evening in the privacy of their own home, if only they could create the perfect ambiance, if only for one night! You can do it every easily with the following suggestions. Remember to plan ahead with a smart timeline and create a realistic budget you can stick with and simply surrender to the possibilities!
Romantic settings mean different things to different people. Here are a few amorous, yet practical ideas that you can use and adapt to your own personal aesthetic to create an exciting, romantic décor just for Valentine’s Day or anytime you want to create a sensual atmosphere.
There are several elements of romantic “staging” you will want to consider in your spaces. Remember, these basics are a guide to take the guesswork out of what to do and what will be the greatest impact in your space. Pay special attention to: Touch, Scent, Sounds, Sights, and Lights.
For touch, start with the removal of existing throw pillows and area rugs. Replace your everyday throw pillows with a variety of oversized silky, satin softly colored and neutral pillows…nothing frilly. Scatter them on your sofa, across the bed and even the floor. Make sure they are made from quality materials and filled with soft down feathers. Swap out your area rug with a sumptuous Flokati or shag in a soft neutral beige, which looks not only looks great with most décor, but also feel wonderful underfoot. Drape a big soft fluffy throw made from sensual cashmere, faux fur or soft blends over your sofa and the foot of your beautifully made bed. This little luxury feels so good next to your skin.
Nothing smells more romantic and pretty than the soft scent of delicate roses. Buy several fresh dozen in one color and place all around the home in simple glass containers on the coffee table, foyer table, powder room, bedroom, kitchen and dining tables. Fresh flowers also create an instant energy boost to any room. Tuck a rose behind your ear to bring softness to your face too.
For visuals, replace everyday table top accessories with elegant silver, sparkling mirrored or crystal embellished decorative trays, bowls, chargers, candlesticks, etc. Think in groups of 3 for balance. For example, place a silver footed bowl of pink rose petals on a table with a mirrored silver tray of dark chocolates and a tall silver candlestick with a pink candle; three sizes, heights and items in similar finishes. Don’t forget to remove the clock from your nightstand, let time stand still. Prop a large oversized mirror against any wall where you’ll be spending most of your evening. Not only does it reflect the beauty of your room, but the beauty of you and your mate.
Don’t stop there, place candlesticks of all sizes around the room you’ll spend most of your time. The candles should be in the same color….pick something that coordinates with your roses or your outfit. Then turn off the table top lamps and dim the chandeliers. Everything, even you, will glow in the soft light created by candles and dimmers.
Finally, softly play your favorite music. Create a romantic mix that starts with upbeat songs and transitions into slower tempos or whatever matches the mood of your evening. Don’t forget to include beautiful stemware and plates to serve your variety of foods and beverages that should include something cool, spicy, bubbly and sweet.
Make February 14th all about romance, make it unforgettable!
For more ideas and places to shop contact Principal Designer, Kim Isreal of Art & Home Designs 770-906-7224, email: [email protected]
|Posted on July 29, 2017 at 12:25 AM||comments ()|
It’s nearly August and we are enjoying the last of our summer vacations, and preparing our children to return to the rituals of school and dorm life. During the onset of this season we long for cooler weather, and naturally, changes on the personal home front, especially the interiors.
Fresh paint is typically one of the most popular and useful solutions for the beginning of a newfound enjoyment on the inside of home. The last three years ushered indomitable shades of gray. Beautiful grays have been designers’ and homeowners’ go-to colors for it can be cool or warm with hints of blue, taupe, green and bronze. Now that gray’s neutrality is appearing in builder models and in nearly every furniture showroom across the country, we indeed, come to long for something more substantive color-wise. We are ready to transition into fall, the season that mimics the colors of spice and herbs like cinnamon, cumin, turmeric, sage and dried tarragon.
Accent wall painting is a way to get the color groove back, so to speak. Paint a facing wall or focal wall. Here are a few choice options when selecting your accent color, especially when integrated next to your lovely shades of gray.
Red increases the energy level in any room as it stimulates conversation. It is stunning in formal dining rooms with any wood tone and can be used appropriately above chair rails. It looks like velvet when painted in a matte finish.
Yellow (shades of gold are best) makes the sun literally shine in a room. Its energizing effect is fantastic in busy kitchens, however take care that its intensity is muted for yellow is known to agitate the senses with too much of a good thing.
Blue (grayish blue) and Green are the colors of relaxation and calm. They are excellent for a bedroom. Blue is known to slow down the heart rate and lower blood pressure.
Purple (lilac and lavender) are also known to make a room feel mellow and soft. Deeper shades of the color purple are amazingly dramatic and look stately when paired with silver or bronze finishes.
Orange, like red is energizing and looks amazing in an exercise room. Warm shades are so flattering to any skin color too.
Charcoal is a very deep rich shade of gray that looks chic and glamorous next its lighter gray color.
More Autumn to come…..next week’s feature is all about Texture. Read this before you buy upholstery basics.