First impressions

Designed by InterDesign Studio

You do not get a second chance to make a first impression. So when your visitor enters your room / home let that moment count. What impression do you want to make? How do you want your space to be regarded? You have 10 seconds. So rein in the clutter in your entry and let your true design aesthetic shine through.

Designed by GHStyleWorks

Be sociable and inviting. A good idea is to provide somewhere to rest – a sofa, a stool, a chair – whatever your space can accommodate. You space should say hello and have a sense of entry. Plants and flowers are naturally elegant and welcoming.

Rein in the clutter. Have somewhere to place your mail, umbrellas, shoes, bags and keys. Make it interesting. Consider baskets, boxes, trays, hooks, closets.

Architectural wall art

Provide eye candy. Something interesting, pleasant and impacting for your guests to look at. A painting, a photo gallery, sculpture or some other art is appropriate here. Let it be something that is very much ‘you’. If your guests may have cause to linger or wait here, give them something admire and appreciate. A mirror is an idea for small foyers. Mirrors can visually enlarge your space and its great to have a last look before you leave your home.

Good lighting. Lighting sets the mood. I suggest you install dimmers so you can switch from  bright light to low light as the mood / occasion dictates. Instead of run-of-the-mill lighting – what about a chandelier! Grand , huh?

Colour. No single factor can influence your entry decor as colour. Your entry colour(s) should complement the decor in your home. Let it set the tone for the room that your guests are most likely to enter after they exit your foyer or that they have line of sight of from your entry. It can accent, complement or introduce.

Make it all count. Just like any other room, you have decorating opportunities for floor to ceiling. Your entry door, walls, floors, ceilings and all the possible furnishings and accessories that you can add to all these surfaces … Make those first 10 seconds count. Even though you may not have the luxury of a large entry, you can have a grand impression.

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Pantone’s 2013 Colour of the Year

PANTONE has announced their pick for the 2013 Colour of the Year. They see Emerald (Pantone 17-5641) as being a colour of prosperity and growth and it channels the perception of brilliance, sophistication and luxury.

Yellow-greens have been trendy for quite a while. So this crisp blue-green is quite refreshing.

This Colour of the Year can be quite confusing. Paint manufacturers and fashion gurus release their pick for colour of the year. Everyone, including PANTONE has a pick for each season and a top 10 list. Others also release trending mood colour choices. To put things in perspective, PANTONE is the big daddy of them all. They do extensive research on the trends and their declaration can actually influence colours in fashion and decor.

So look out for emerald in vases, rugs, paint, handbags and gowns.

This colour translates well both in the home decor and fashion arena. In fact, Vera Wang, Burberry and Micheal Kors have been brightening up the runway with versions of this hue in some of their latest collections.

Zac Posen 2013 Spring Collection

In February 2013, JCPenney has announced that they are releasing an entire line of bedding, pillows, towels and decor accessories in Emerald.

Emerald green drapery looks stunning with grey and white

Green is almost a neutral and it complements almost everything else. This emerald actually complements Pantone’s last years pick, Tangerine Tango. This will make transitioning or updating your decor even easier.

As a sidebar:

Sherwin Williams announced that SW 6464 Aloe is its 2013 colour of the year.

SW 6464 Aloe Sherwin Williams COTY

Looks familiar? Doesn’t it look like Emerald with a like grey and white?

Tell me  … What do you think of the Pantone’s pick? How do you feel about the colour Emerald?

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Fabric: beyond drapery

I have always loved fabric. I love the way it feels, the way it looks and the way it can be transformed perpetually into infinite creations for the same window and for different windows. And in home décor, fabric can be used in so many ways beyond drapery to dramatically transform a space.

Upholstered Walls are more popular where walls are made of wood or wood based products. In Trinidad and Tobago, with or mainly concrete walls, this practice is very rare. So when done it is unexpected and rather dramatic. Consider covering a wall in silk for a super luxury or in burlap for a more natural and elemental look and feel. Walls can be soft, textured and touchable. Our humidity can pose a problem so I do not advise upholstering the walls of bathrooms or any room with moisture. Natural silk will disintegrate over time if exposed to direct sunlight, so prefer faux silks. Other decorator fabrics, denim, upholstery fabrics, leather or faux leather are just some of the fabrics that can be suitable for this treatment. A classic treatment is to upholster the wall behind your bed – just like a large scale upholstered headboard.


from My Notting Hill


Portieres. I remember my mom using fabric in the living room entry to the passageway that led to our bedrooms. At that time we called it the ‘passage curtain’. Fabric can be used anywhere a door might be used or between 2 rooms. They do not necessarily need to totally cover the openings. They can merely soften up the hard lines. Portieres, the proper name for these ‘curtains’ must look finished on both sides. They can be as simple, as stylish or as elegant as you need it to be. Mom’s portieres were always well coordinated with her living room drapery on the living room side and simple on the passage side.

Tenting. Yes, this is exactly what you think it is.  Imagine being inside a fabulous circus “bigtop” and looking up at all of that great tenting – well, you can do that on your high ceilings too!  This technique is used quite successfully in event decorating and can be beautiful in a bedroom, and works well in an outside space as well.  You can also “tent” the walls, covering up a lot of wall issues and sins.

Bed Drapings. Beyond the regular pillows shams and bed linen, bed canopies, testers and half testers can frame your bed luxuriously. Bed drapings can be used quite successfully in very modern and contemporary settings. Simple, tailored treatments can update this treatment that is normally seen as traditional and frou-frou. Use beautiful hardware and fabric and frame your headboard and ‘envelope’ your bed without the feeling of being overwhelmed. I am also in love with simple bed scarves. You can inject colour and texture very creatively and inexpensively.

Slipcovers. A room can be quickly and easily ‘made over’ with slipcovers for your upholstered furniture, and even for furniture that is not upholstered. It is so easy to change the look and feel of your room – and it doesn’t have to be permanent.  You can use slipcovers on your traditional pieces such as your sofa and chairs, but don’t forget your “hard” pieces.  Side chairs or benches, or even tables can be slip covered, giving your pieces a completely new and updated look, completely making over your rooms.

So when you are looking around your home, wondering where you can add that gorgeous new piece of fabric you just found, do something different and look beyond drapery.

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