Making a House Your Home: Redecorating Tips

If you’ve been in the same place for years, redecorating can do wonders for your psyche and your soul. It’s not just about the change; it’s about making the place more your own. What follows, then, are some simple tips and tricks for making a house into your home.

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Take it one at a time. Don’t feel like you have to remodel or redecorate the entire house to make it your own. If time or money is tight, concentrate on one room at a time.

Change the color scheme. Color has power. Select one color to be the focus in each room and then use highlights and accents in a similar hue to add contrast. Too much color can be distracting.

Eliminate clutter. You may be surprised how much a cleaner space can clear up your attitude. It literally lightens your mental load. While you’re at it, create pathways so you don’t have to worry when moving from room to room. Continue reading

Designing with Mirrors

Use mirrors to reflect your style and taste while opening up new vistas.

Everyone knows that mirrors are useful, but did you know they can also solve a wide range of decorating dilemmas? You can use mirrors to make a room look bigger, to bring a lovely outdoor scene inside, to reflect light in alluring patterns and to fill a void on a wall. A mirror won’t clash with furniture like a painting or photograph, and it can blend with any theme, from the simplest country home to the most upscale contemporary design.

Restaurant and nightclub owners have long used mirrors to create a mood. To attract customers, they place them strategically behind the bar to highlight the lights shining among the bottles. Mirrors often line exclusive dining establishments, where dim, provocative lighting reflects enough so patrons can still see their food and their companions while sharing the intimacy of both. You can duplicate this effect at home: place a mirror in your dining room and turn down the lights!

Apartment and condominium developers often rely on mirrors to provide the illusion of space and largess.  Walk into an empty condo with mirrors lining the walls, and you’ll feel as if you’ve just walked into a mansion. Full-length mirrors in tiny spaces make the walls look taller. Hang them sideways to create a wider feel to any room.

Another trick is to strategically place a mirror near your front door so you can quickly check your makeup and hair or straighten your tie before leaving the house. A mirror hung opposite a doorway can let you see the three-year-old trying to sneak up on you. And full-length mirrors on opposite sides of a closet or bathroom provide for a full 360-degree inspection.

Although a frame-less mirror can accent many interiors, a framed mirror offers another way to add a dramatic, elegant, or rustic touch to your decor. Look for a plain black or brushed chrome frame to set off the clean lines of a contemporary setting. If you lean toward the more traditional, use ornate dark wood frames to match the elegance of your furniture. Rustic frames made from reclaimed wood highlight the natural elements of your home. Placing a large mirror framed in natural wood tones over your mantle complements your fireplace, anchoring it as the room’s focal point.

For decorative purposes, the height of a mirror is not that important, but for practical purposes, you should hang a mirror so that your eyes reflect in the middle of the mirror. Make adjustments as needed so that everyone in your family can see themselves without having to bend down.

Use mirrors to open up a closed-in space.

If you don’t trust your instincts for design, here are a few standard rules for hanging a wall mirror:

  • The top of a mirror should be no less than six feet above the floor.
  • Keep at least 18 inches between the bottom of the mirror and the floor.
  • Don’t place any mirror in front of lights. The glare will make it difficult to see the reflection.
  • Leave three to four feet of empty space in front of a mirror so you have enough room to step back to get a fuller view.
  • A bathroom mirror should not be wider than the vanity. Center the mirror over the vanity, not to the wall dimensions.
  • When hanging a heavy mirror, use a drywall anchor if you can’t find a stud.

If you have questions about how best to place a wall mirror in your home, stop by one of our three locations and ask one of our consultants.

How to Spiff Up Your Kid’s Dorm Room

Indulge your college student with a rug and down pillows in colorful and cheery colors.

After spending a fortune on tuition, books, and clothes, you may not feel inclined to indulge your college student with lavish dorm furnishings. At the same time, the drab confines of a college dorm can have a detrimental effect on your child’s mood and study habits. Spiffing up a tiny space that’s often no bigger than your walk-in closet at home can be challenging and fun — and it doesn’t have to break your budget.

Start with the floor. A brightly colored area rug can define the space and set the tone for the entire room. Rug&Home carries a wide range of inexpensive shag rugs in a wide range of colors and styles that will be a joy to step onto each morning while redirecting the eye away from the other, less desirable aspects of the space — like its size.

The first thing you see when you enter a room is its floor; the twin beds and cramped desk space seem more pleasant when set against a

Rugs with teen-style and a reasonable price point make it easy to add color and design to a dorm room.

charmingly creative canvas. Go with a 5×8-foot rug to fill the small space in the center of the room or cover the entire floor with a room-size rug that lies under the beds and desks.

You may be stuck with an odd-sized space that won’t accommodate a standard 8×10 or 10×13-foot rug. If that’s the case, you can pick up several smaller area rugs you can set side-by-side in the room. Contemporary patterns (such as bright florals) can blend easily with each other while completely covering the entire space. Tack them to the floor with duct tape to keep them in place.

Once you’ve landed on a color scheme for the floor, use available wall space to add personality to the room. Aim a full-length wall mirror at a focal point in the room to give the impression of increased depth. If there’s a decent view from a window, for example, place the mirror on the opposite wall to bring additional sunshine into the space. While mirrors are an ideal way to make a room look larger, make sure you leave room for favorite posters, quotes, and soothing artwork.

To help your student study into the night, don’t forget to supply some extra lighting. Floor lamps and wall sconces take up less space in the cramped room and can usually be angled to improve the atmosphere and provide the best line-of-sight. We don’t recommend cluttering up valuable tabletop space with desk lamps. Additional lighting, placed strategically behind an open bookcase or wall unit, can dramatically increase the appearance of space in the room.

Finally, give special attention to bedding so that your student feels comfortable while living in a home away from home. We recommend accoutrements that serve double duty. Feather down comforters and luxurious pillows provide a cozy sleeping experience so your student is well rested each day. A soft, welcoming bed may be most appreciated as a haven from the stressful world of exams, homework, and social commitments.

Easy and Inexpensive (All Items Under $299) Ways to Get Your Home Holiday-Ready!

The holidays are just around the corner and, as your eye scans through your house, you start to enter into panic attack mode seeing the bare walls and floors, and colorless table tops.  There just doesn’t seem to be enough time or money in your decorating budget to get your house holiday-ready before the guests and *gasp* your MOI (mother-in-law) arrives!  We are here to tell you that, fortunately, that’s not true!  We have some easy and very inexpensive ways to fill-in all of those spots that seem like empty holes in your home.

Solution #1: Add Florals and Greenery to Tabletops to Brighten Up the Place

The easiest way to add a sense of cheeriness to any room is by bringing in plants to brighten up the space.  However, live versions require maintenance between watering and picking off dead leaves, but life-like florals and greenery are the perfect alternative!  We have a large selection of extremely reasonably priced arrangements (the ones below are under $150!) that will bring joy to your home through the holidays and all year round.

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