Interior Design Photos on our web site

Interior Design Photos on our web site
For More Interior Design Photos: ^ Click Above ^ - Hundreds of Before & After photos

Sunday, October 28, 2012

How to decorate the dining table for Thanksgiving, see these table settings!

Ready to embrace the fall season? See how these homeowners decorated for fall with centerpieces, using seasonal fruits and vegetables, and other fall foliage. These fall colors add a welcoming touch for the entire season, and can last through Thanksgiving day for your table decorating needs.

This dining table arrangement is nice and low so
guests can still see each other! So often people
put a huge arrangement on the table that they end up
moving while they dine, that's silly, it defeats the purpose!
For a casual low height Thanksgiving centerpiece, consider cut branches or colorful maple leaves.
You can lay them on their side, to keep them below eye level for Thanksgiving dinner.

Think asymmetrical or unconventional! This fall centerpiece could be
placed on a hearth, or in the corner of the room. It would be a nice touch
 in November. It could be a nice touch on the buffet on Thanksgiving day! 
For a nature inspired fall centerpiece or table scape, use eggplants, watermelon,
 and fresh cut hydrangeas. The hydrangeas turn a reddish purple during fall.
This table scape incorporated rustic wood with clear glass.

This homeowner collected items found in nature to create a
welcoming arrangement on her cocktail table. What a nice touch
to accent the scented candlelight!

Centerpieces are a fun way to prepare your kitchen or dining room
for Thanksgiving dinner.  Nature is all the inspiration you'll need!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

How to update kitchen on a budget, 6 tips and photos for alternatives to a complete remodeling job.

If you think there's no alternative to a kitchen remodel - think again! There are easier solutions for updating a kitchen, and much easier on the budget! A complete remodel can be time consuming, costly, (most people go way over budget) and a big inconvenience. Here are 6 tips for updating your kitchen on a budget.

1) If your upper kitchen cabinets doors are all wooden, this can look boring (or too dark in the case of wood cabinets). Talk to a carpenter about inserting glass behind a few of the doors. The kitchen below is much more interesting due to the addition of glass in the doors. You could do this on the corner cabinet only, or the one above the stove (if it is centered).

Updating the kitchen cabinets by adding
glass inserts in the doors creates
a huge impact on a low budget
2) Get creative with kitchen hardware. Instead of replacing all the knobs with new knobs, create variety. Some of the knobs could be changed to long handles, while others remain the same. Below is a photo of a Kernersville NC Kitchen. We recommended that the homeowner create variety by mixing in handles with knobs.

A hardware upgrade makes a big
impact on a low budget!
3) Add crown molding! A deep crown molding at the top of the cabinets can really update the look. See above photo. You can have your paint color matched by taking a door to the paint store, be sure to consider the sheen as well.

4) Replace one area with a contrast color. Example, the kitchen island and/or the hood above the stove could be painted a contrast color, such as a dover white, taupe, or a camel color. See photo with caramel stove hood at bottom.

Notice how the pendant light, bar stools, update to cabinet doors (grass cloth) 
and new hardware transform this kitchen. 

5) Moving kitchen cabinets or changing the placement can create a big impact on a small budget. See photo at bottom.

6) Replace the fluorescent lights!! This makes a huge impact. Pendant lights and recessed lights make a nice impact.

Notice the varying heights, the corner cabinet with glass doors, and the beautiful tile back splash instead of a microwave over the stove, after all, you'll spend a great deal of time there!

Greensboro, NC kitchen remodel
NOTE: It's smart to determine how long you will live in a home before tackling a major kitchen renovation, as well as consideration of what you can recoup during resale.

In this High Point, NC Kitchen, we moved the microwave
from above the stove to an unused desk area so we could
add a pretty tile back splash and a custom hood for the stove.
We added pendant lights, all this for major impact on a low budget.
See before & after photos of this room on the web site.
For more kitchen photos, with tips painting kitchen cabinets, purchasing granite, tile, just type any word in the search box top left, or see this link:

To update your kitchen, know that with a little imagination, there are alternatives to a complete kitchen remodel, which is great to know when you're on a budget.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Best valance styles for kitchens, baths, and bedrooms

These are the best looking valance styles. They are unique, clean and simple, and have a timeless style.

 These photos range from very easy to make (which you could sew & hang as a weekend project) to more complicated.

If budget is key, notice that some valances are stapled to a 1 x 4 board, so you don't have to purchase a rod.

Window Valance with tab top
This Greensboro, NC window looked much larger
once we hung this custom valance in the bedroom

This Window Valance is simple to make
Notice how much it adds to this kitchen
Window Valance with two pleats
Stapled onto a 1 x 4 board
This valance is even great for living rooms
The best looking valances often have contrast fabrics
This valance is great for kitchen windows
Window valance with contrast straps
This structured style valance is clean and simple

This mock roman valance is a popular style
voted #1 as the best window valance which is
great for kitchens, baths, & bedrooms

What are the advantages of a valance?
  1. The best looking window valances can add a "finished look" to your windows. If you don't believe they're necessary, check out the BEFORE & AFTER windows on our web site at  
  2. Valances create the illusion of height, so the ceilings feel taller and the room feels larger. 
  3. A window valance is a great way to add color and texture, not to mention better sound absorbtion!
  4. Valances require very little fabric, but they have maximum impact.
  5. A valance can make a window feel larger, which makes windows look more expensive. 

Monday, October 8, 2012

How to layout furniture in a long or large living room,

To layout the furniture in a long narrow room, know that their are several ways you can "trick the eye" so the room will feel wider. Do a sketch or to scale furniture layout - your back will thank you if you spend more time planning & less time moving furniture!

1) Create sections by adding fabric between two parts of the room, see photo below.
The drapes hung between two seating areas help create two sitting areas in this large room 
2) Arrange long pieces such as a console table, sofa, or a rug across the narrow width.   If you don't have a wide enough room, you can create a furniture grouping on one side of the room instead of in the center of the room.
  • Make sure your sofa isn't too long, as you'll need to allow at least 34" (preferably more) for the walkway. 
  • If the room is so narrow that this can't be done, you could always resort to chairs instead of sofas. 
  • If you only have a walk way on one side or the other, the room probably will feel imbalanced - don't give up! Just place a large painting on the opposite wall to balance the room.  
2) Avoid putting long pieces such as horizontal art against the long wall, this can accentuate the "bowling alley feeling" that you're trying to avoid.

3) Create "groupings" so you'll have intimate conversation areas like the photo below.

Two or three different groupings of furniture are often needed in a large room
The "curve" shape of the chair softens the room 
4) Add drapes on the outside of windows to make the room feel wider. This is an important addition that you'll want to budget for. Once custom window treatments are hung, people comment that they're amazed at how much wider the room feels. Custom window treatments are much wider & thicker than store bought drapes.

If a budget is key, (causing you to have to do without certain items), drapes are more important than wooden shutters. See the before photo below --- notice that shutters or window blinds do not make the window feel wider. If you need light filtering, today's linen sheers can be a nice layered touch.

AFTER above, BEFORE below
This Greensboro, NC room had a long narrow room
with a 'bowling alley' feeling. Drapes hung on the outside of the
window frame made the windows feel wider. 
Do you have a furniture arrangement that you're struggling with for a long narrow room? We'd love to hear your room layout delimas! Send us an email if you want a response.