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Refresh Your Space

Refresh Your Space

Is your home calling for an update, but renovations are an investment in time and finances that you aren’t ready to take on? If this sounds familiar, skip the overwhelming project. Instead, refresh your space and breathe new life into your home with a fraction of the commitment. Redefine your interiors for the long-term or just the season by ushering in bright new colors to lift your mood, soft shades to calm after a long day at work or stark contrasts to encourage creativity.

A home evolves as a reflection of discovery and milestones of those who live within. Keep your emotionally connected possessions on display, accenting them with temporary lighting fixtures such as table and floor lamps. Create cohesion by selecting lights that continue the theme of your refresh.

Your walls are a blank canvas waiting for you to express yourself within them. Move your art around from other rooms in your home, pull the trigger on that one fantastic piece or even create a gallery wall to change your statement. Trust in the power of an oversized piece as it can be the catalyst to drive your other decisions. In each of these images, you can see that the colors of the piece repeat throughout the room in the soft objects and accessories.

Build off your heirloom and forever furniture to combine equal parts old and new. Different soft items are an opportunity for a quick refresh to your substantial pieces. Elements such as bed linens, throws, and pillows can be custom created in a multitude of colors, textures, and fabrics by the skilled artisans in Montgomery’s workroom or selected from the showroom floor allowing your space to have a curated layered look.

Changing your accent furniture is a cost-effective way to combine two styles from the one that previously dominated your space. Update or replace your accent furniture; such as end tables, benches, and seating cubes to mix your previous tone with a distinctly different design. Select from natural products like live-edged wood and sea grass. Bring in a contemporary flair with glass, and bright metals. Add industrial with raw finished metal, reclaimed woods, and worn paint embellishments.

Refresh your room and fall in love with your home all over again.

Layered Living

Layered Living

Often the most appealing homes are the ones that are an extension of the owners personality. They are the houses full of collections that feel lived in comfortable and magazine shoot worthy without being forced or fake. The secret lies in styling with layers.

Layering can occur in a vignette or an entire room. It is the process of placing objects at different levels than others, including varied heights and planes. Layering draws the eye with depth bringing the foreground through to the background as well as down low and up high. Gain visual warmth, depth and interest through layers.

Start small with a vignette, maybe a reading nook, bar or a dresser to experiment with creating connections between your layered items. Colors, patterns, textures, functions, and style all allow collections to connect. Implement the rule of three’s to make your space more memorable. The human brain is attracted to the variation as well as odd numbers. Select three things, one each vertical, horizontal and thicker or of sculptural quality. A vertical piece might include art, a tall vase or lamp. Kidney pillows, stacks of books or another piece of art are excellent selections for a horizontal item. Bring it all together with a sculptured piece, vase of flowers or even a bowl of fruit. Build off of your most important piece with different heights for your other pieces. Don’t restrict layering to a standard surface, take it to the next from the floor to the lighting.

Take your layering to the next level through the use of colors and patterns. Creating depth keeps your eye moving around the room while making it feel cohesive and “lived in.” If you are drawn toward colors and patterns, start with a clean palette for ultimate versatility. Layering with color allows boundaries in style to be crossed with purpose. Mixing a mid-century piece into traditional home works when in the same color palette. Don’t leave that accent wall alone. Repeat the color throughout the room with pillows, throws, rugs, accessories or linens. When layering with patterns select colors that play well together while carefully editing your selections down to the essentials. Use small, medium, and large scales of patterns, but only one large per space. Vary directions and types of patterns, mixing a petite floral with a buffalo check for example.

Creating a calm surrounding with a tone-on-tone palette can be just as exciting as color with the help of some texture and style layering. Mix and match wood with leather, linens with metals and soft furs with stone. The different textures will continue to create the depth and interest you desire. Can’t stick to one style? Try layering your styles, for example, a vintage or rustic chair placed in a more contemporary home may feel out of place. Add in some additional pieces of the same style throughout the room. Small items like picture frames or a side table may be just enough to bring the mix of styles together.

Let your personality shine through in your home, layer in your heirlooms or travel finds. Work with your items, step back, take a picture and don’t be afraid to adjust and evolve.

Transitional Design

Transitional Design

What is your style? Is traditional style a bit too formal? Is contemporary style a bit too harsh? Do you feel like you like something in the middle, elements of both but can’t put your finger on it? Transitional style is an alliance between traditional and contemporary, taking the unique aspects of each and combining them to create a balanced blend of both.

For a fresh, tailored look, transitional design unites the simplicity of contemporary design with the refined elegance of traditional design. Design strategies in this style influence all elements from window fashions to flooring and emphasize clean lines, less color, and lots of texture to achieve a neutral space full of depth.

The base of a successful transitional design begins with the color palette. Subtle neutral colors create calm, relaxing spaces that are clean, uncomplicated and allow the other elements an opportunity to shine. Selecting white, tan, gray and beige may seem lackluster at first. However, when paired correctly, they become exciting, drawing you in and allowing your mind to relax and enjoy the space.

Setting foot into a transitional room means stepping onto thoughtfully selected flooring. Warm woods paired with soft carpets and textured rugs continues the goal of creating calm and depth. The evolution of design in rugs brings the homeowner more options in materials, patterns, colors and most importantly with this design style, textures. Various weaves, braids, and fabrics combine in infinite ways, producing intriguing patterns without the need for color and contrast.

Transitional furniture combines curves with straight lines, metals with woods and/or masculine and feminine features for a simplistic aesthetic that keeps the focus on the sophistication of the design. Pieces may be ample in scale, but not overbearing or intimidating. Mix and match minimalist pieces with more modern straight lines and carefully curated fabrics on relevant chairs, ottomans, and sofas for a subtle contrast.

Bring it all together with window fashions, lighting, accessories, and art.  Select simple solid drapes without embellishments or ornate gatherings. Go big with a statement light fixture and striking artwork, while less is more with accessories.

Whether starting new or refreshing your space, the transitional design brings your space current, blends elements from different styles and allows for a calm yet dynamic room.

6 Benefits of Wool Flooring

6 Benefits of Wool Flooring

With a long tradition as one of the most luxurious fibers for flooring, wool provides many benefits. Wool is stylish, sustainable, easy to clean, safe, strong and provides value to your home and life.

Stylish

The distinctive beauty of wool is of its natural affinity to accept dye. By locking the color in, wool is dyed in vibrant colors that last, cannot be rubbed off and look good longer. Wool can be woven, tied, or tufted into stylish textures and patterns adding dimension and depth to your room.

Sustainable

Wool, collected from sheep raised and bred in the countryside, takes a fraction of the energy to produce compared to other materials. In addition to decreased production costs, the lifespan of wool flooring is up to five times longer than other options.

Easy to Clean

Due to the lanolin (wool wax), the coating on each fiber wool rugs are stain resistant. This attribute also prevents dirt from becoming embedded into the carpet.

Safe

Because of the high protein and moisture content wool is naturally flame retardant, not allowing flames to spread quickly. The moisture levels also make the wool static-free and enable it to absorb indoor contaminants to help purify the air from harmful gasses.

Strength

Wool fibers are strong enough to bend up to 10,000 times before breaking. The fibers natural elasticity allow it to stretch up to 30% more than it’s original length and still bounce back.

Value

The longevity of wool flooring averages out the upfront cost while at the same time providing other energy, health, environmental and care savings.

Enjoy naturally superior qualities of wool in your home.

Effortless Entertaining

Effortless Entertaining

The travel plans are set, menus prepared, and decorations ready, but is your dining room? While the essentials of a great gathering require nothing more than excellent food and company, a comfortable space should be at the top of the list.

Before painting or purchasing, make a plan for effortless entertaining. Ask yourself, “How many people do you entertain at once? How do you plan to use your space? Will you need storage? Would you like an area to mix or serve cocktails?” With all of these thoughts in mind, the next step is to determine your ideal table. Your ideal table size is at least 36 inches deep to allow for place settings and serving pieces by 24 inches around the outside for each person you would like to seat. Select a shape that fits your needs. Rectangle tables are the most popular, as they fill rooms well and are good for both small and large groups. For an intimate setting of up to eight people, round and square tables offer a conversational atmosphere. Whether round and square, the larger the table, the harder it becomes to reach the items in the middle of the table as well as talk to others across from you. This is why round and square tables are best for smaller groups. To seat four people, select a 36-44 inch round or square; for 4-6 choose 44-54 inch and 6-8 select 60-70 inch. For groups larger than eight, consider a rectangular table instead.

Next, start laying out your options by measuring your space and implementing these basics to help you work from the outside of the room toward the middle. Measure the entire space first, then from your walls allow 42-48 inches to the edge of the table. This distance will enable your guests to sit and easily get up from their seats. The space remaining in the middle of your room is the maximum table size you can accommodate. Compare this size to your ideal table size and begin with the fun steps.

Once you have identified your perfect table size, you can focus on selecting the materials and style, as well as seating for your table. If you are ready to invest in your forever furniture and would like an heirloom piece, spoil yourself with Amish quality. Amish is not a style, but a standard in quality and craftsmanship. Handcrafted in the USA, Amish furniture is fully customizable in your choice of hardwoods, finishes, and styles. Wood is not your only option, as metal, glass, and marble are used to design rustic, contemporary, mid-century and industrial styles.

Table bases come in a variety of choices. Pedestal bases allow uninterrupted seating arrangements as there are no legs to interfere. Farm tables also have a central base, while most often you will find designs with legs. It is important to test the positioning of the legs with the type and amount of seating you are planning. To soften your room, add texture with upholstered seating and don’t be afraid to mix and match. Pairing a bench with chairs or materials like wood, metal, and fabric creates a curated feel with depth and dimension.

If your optimal table and room measurements allow for additional open space, consider addressing your storage or serving needs. This space could accommodate storage and food serving on a sideboard or cabinet. An armoire or hutch offers increased storage space in the same footprint. Craft cocktails and in-home bars are gaining in popularity; a bar cart fits well for small areas while bar cabinets and standing wine racks can fill larger spaces.

Finish your space with statement lighting and art, invite some guests over and find that your well-planned space offers effortless entertaining.

Decorating in Threes

Decorating in Threes

If there is such a thing as a “magic number” for assuring good visual design, it’s three. Artists and designers use visual elements in sets of three to help their compositions feel more harmonious. Left, center, right. Small, medium, large. It’s a series that’s familiar, balanced, and orderly. Three is important when it comes to structure, it has symbolic significance to many religions, and it has a natural connection to the way we process information.

As a design principle, combinations of three are considered more engaging and memorable. Our brains are programmed to find patterns and respond to proportions. Our eyes seek to keep moving. You can create this kind of visual interest in your own décor by applying the “Rule of Three.”

COMPOSITION

Arrangements composed of an odd number of objects are more appealing – a center point anchors the arrangement and the other pieces add symmetry.

Move larger furniture into groupings. Three pieces with similar visual weight will create cozy conversation zones.

Working with a standard shape in the room also creates cohesion. A round mirror, round table, and the curve of a sofa arm encourage you to think in threes.

SCALE

Varying size and scale engage a sense of depth.

Three levels of height draw the eye into following a triangular path.

Using patterns of three different scales (small, medium, large) or motifs (plaid, stripe, floral) in a room adds dimension and texture.

COLOR

A typical formula for a color palette consists of the primary color, a secondary color, and an accent color.

If you introduce a pop of color, repeat it in two more places to keep the observer’s gaze traveling around the room.

Layered lighting improves color and ambiance. Most plans incorporate three sources: natural illumination from windows, overhead fixtures, and task lighting.

Live Life, Outdoors

Live Life, Outdoors

Make your home feel more expansive this Spring, Summer, and Fall by opening your doors and increasing your living space.  Enticing outdoor rooms offer an opportunity to relax, entertain and dine while enjoying the changes in the weather and light. Create spaces with specific functions like cooking, dining, socializing, reading or enjoying a cocktail. Define your areas with fire, water, and planter elements placed to act as dividers. Gain vertical layering with plants and planters of varying height and placement on stands, wood blocks or other hardscapes. Spice things up by adding texture and color with outdoors accessories. Options in outdoor lighting, art and decor continue to grow and give you the opportunity to put your signature on your space.

In the last decade advances in fabric and materials have allowed the evolution of outdoor furniture from frumpy to fashionable. Now you can bring your indoor style out with designs made from wood, metal, plastic, wicker, and fabrics in a range of functions.  In such a vast array of colors and designs, it’s hard to believe these new materials are strong enough to withstand the elements. But that is what they do as they resist fading, repel water, and are easy to clean.  The designs are fun and functional ranging from classic coastal to modern minimalism. When selecting furnishings for your outdoor rooms start by evaluating the nearest indoor spaces and connecting the two by replicating a similar style, color or feel.

Functional outdoor spaces create the opportunity for more time enjoying nature. Define how you’d like to use your space. Do you wish to enjoy cooking and cocktails? Bar height table and stools offer the convenience of conversing with the chef. In your dining area, a table with chairs or benches can seat all of your guests. Put your feet up and read a book while soaking in the rays on a chaise lounge. Or promote conversation with sofas, chairs, and loveseats around a central piece like a fire pit or coffee table.

Already created your space? Freshen up your look with accents in the newest color palette or add some mood lighting with lanterns, hurricane candles or bistro lights. Engineered decking materials can get hot in the sun, so protect your feet with an outdoor rug and your head with an umbrella. Add even more color with outdoor pillows and art. The possibilities are endless.

Get outside and enjoy!

Treading Trends

Treading Trends

Current flooring trends have been dominated by the form and function of patterns. Patterns have found their way into carpet, tile, luxury vinyl tiles and planks and even hardwood. Just take a peek at Pinterest and get inspired by images of herringbones, chevron, and hex. While it may be intimidating at first to tackle a project as permanent as your floor, it’s easier than you think with the help of a professional.

Once you’ve chosen the ideal type of flooring for your space, you can turn your attention to what you hope to accomplish with your flooring. Select planks or linear patterns that can be laid diagonally drawing your eyes toward a corner of the room to enlarge the area.  Setting your lines perpendicular to cabinetry will give the illusion of a wider space.

Love lines? Select planks of varying widths instead of a single width to increase the element of interest. Thin line tiles come in uniform options or the ever-growing mosaic options. Widths start as small as one centimeter and may be a uniform width or have a variety of widths on a mesh sheet for easy installation. You can find thin line options in classic marble materials, glass, stone and porcelain. If you fall in love with more than one, create your mosaic.

Patterns in carpet are made possible with a mix of thread colors or with texture variation through a process called cut-loop-cut. With cut-loop-cut selected threads are cut rather than lopping at the top creating a different texture, and abstract or structured patterns arise. Popular Moroccan tile and abstract patterns are both soft and structured when used on carpet and rugs.

The classics never go out of style, but they do get revitalized. Hexagonal and penny tiles are a staple for older homes. Bring them into a more modern or transitional home in new sizes and materials. Mix and match them with tile or even wood planks to discover an artful floor.

You have chevrons in your closet, you have them on your bedding, they are even on your throw pillows, but are they underfoot? Use wood, tile or luxury vinyl planks to create chevron patterns on your floor. Expand on the design of chevrons with a herringbone pattern.

Lay down the floor of your dreams and step into livable luxury.

Texture in your Home

Texture in your Home

Establishing the ideal backdrop to love how you live can be daunting.  It can be frustrating when your desire for a welcoming, comfortable home falls short. The design of your home can truly affect the way you live, with warmth and texture you can live and encourage a life surrounded by love and people.

The path to creating a home you love is paved with texture. To add texture mix fabrics and materials that contrast but compliment each other. If you’ve selected a velvet sofa, for example, you may choose to select leather or wood accent chairs. When mixing, multiple styles select tone-on-tone texture options rather than multiple different colors as the style will add some texture on their own. For colorful rooms choose more subtle rather than heavy texture, jute or hide rug rather than a flokati or shag option.

Current trends in home fashions have swayed toward more texture. No longer are you confined to one fabric or wood in multiple colors but in every aspect of your home you have endless options to bring in texture. And therefore, create a home you love to live in.

Turn the page to view more tips to add texture to your home

WINDOW FASHIONS:

Nothing is more warm & natural than the light shining in your windows. Select from unique fibers & woods to filter with a distinctly natural look. Or fall for the textures and colors of fabrics, synthetics, and hybrid materials.

For texture, look to woven woods and roman shades. The way the materials blend and the fabric foldes add intrigue to your room.

FURNITURE:

There have never been as many options in home furnishings as there is today. As shown in the previous page dining rooms no longer need only be sleek, but now include the options for rich textures in your wood and upholstered furniture.

In style and on trend are textured headboards. From tailored to woven seagrass these pieces make you want to stay in bed.

ACCENT & ART:

Already have the sofa of your dreams, but still need that extra something? Turn to your accents and art. Slight changes or additions offer the final touch or a quick update.

The lamp on the left has an intriguing pattern and linen shade while maintaining a neutral color balance. Throws and pillows are perfect for a wide variety of materials and construction.

FLOORING & SURFACES:

Capture the look and feel of reclaimed hardwood with natural and engineered floors. Filled and unfilled knots, brushed grain, rough cut and other techniques in production create a rich surface that pays tribute to a historic look while utilizing the innovations of today’s products. Hues from white wash to deep chocolate accentuate or subdue the rich texture.

Exciting colors and patterns await in tile and stone. Natural materials like ceramics, granite and marble coupled with colors, cuts, and grout shade allow for limitless options.

If you fall in love with a product traditionally used for flooring, think above the floor and onto your walls, showers, and backsplashes for that wow factor.

RUGS & CARPET:

Kick off your shoes and enjoy the cozy feel of thick deep-pile rugs and carpet.  Various techniques in production create patterns and textures of interest while utilizing no or subtle color variations.

If a complete carpet install isn’t in your plans, explore the abundant options in rugs. The natural textures and slight variations in color of natural hand woven rugs or hides create an immediate opportunity to soften the lines of a hardwood floor or carpet.

Don’t be afraid to layer.

Illuminate

Illuminate

With the flip of a switch, you have the power to alter the atmosphere and functionality of your home. The path to creating a properly lit home starts with a lighting plan.

Start your lighting planning by evaluating your space. Ask yourself the following questions to help you identify and set goals. What activities take place in that room? What tasks do you do? Do you have a desired focal point? Where are the electric outlets?

After you’ve evaluated and identified the areas of your home where you need lighting, it’s time to decide on the type for each section. The three types are ambient, task and accent. A good lighting plan utilizes layering of all three types of light.

The fun starts when you start selecting your fixtures. Lamps, chandeliers, pendants, track, architectural, recessed and sconces abound. With fixtures in every variety you can think of, the possibilities are endless.

We’ve included some tips to help you get started.

AMBIENT LIGHT: Overall illumination of a room

The general overall light in your room, typically natural window light, overhead ceiling fixtures, chandeliers and wall lighting.

TIP: Select window fashions that allow you the ability to have more control over the amount of natural ambient light.

 

TASK LIGHTING: target a workstation function

Designed to provide the proper light to complete tasks. Kitchen meal prep, office work, reading or crafting.

TIP: Task lighting shouldn’t be directly overhead, but strategically placed to light the workspace.

TIP: Table and floor lamps work as task lighting for reading when placed near sofas and chairs. They should be 60” from the floor.

ACCENT LIGHTING: To draw the eye and highlight the area.

Emphasize objects or space in your home such as art, an architectural element or a reading nook through focusing light directly on or in them.

TIP: Think not only about the light drawing the eye but the components of the fixture itself. A juxtapose of color on neutral or metallic on matte can create all the pop you need.

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