Home Design Find - Interior Design, Architecture, Modern Furniture - Part 3
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Design Dilemma: The New Way to Do Floral

eclectic home office how to tips advice

Floral pillows, floral wallpaper, floral couches, brings to mind visions of grandma’s house. But it doesn’t have to be that way. There’s a way to do floral that can feel funky and modern, hip and au courant. We’ve found a few interiors that embody all that. Let’s take a look.

Going Bold

One of the best ways to bring floral patterns out of the grandmotherly mold is to make them big and bold. That’s something grandma wouldn’t have done. In the living room below, an accent wall of big bold flowers adds a funky punch that is complemented by smaller patterns on both the wallpapered kitchen wall and the geometric patterned rug.

eclectic living room how to tips advice

In the bedroom below, a huge floral wall treatment instantly gives a bedroom a luscious punch. What makes the wall feel particularly modern here is that they sit on a wall painted black. Grandma wouldn’t have done that, either.

eclectic bedroom how to tips advice

And here, a headboard upholstered in a dramatic and large floral makes a bedroom feel fresh and feminine.

victorian bedroom how to tips advice

Mixing Patterns

The new take on floral involves mixing florals with other sorts of patterns. In the rooms above, we see floral mixed with animal prints, geometric prints, and smaller scale patterns. Grandma’s tendency would have been to do up a room entirely in florals.

In the bedroom below, an upholstered floral headboard looks fresh and fashionable when contrasted with pillows with a geometric pattern

traditional how to tips advice

And below, another mix of florals and geometrics.

contemporary living room how to tips advice

 

Floral with lots of white.

Large doses of white always seem fresh and modern.

contemporary family room how to tips advice

And here:

traditional bedroom how to tips advice

And here:

shabby chic style bedroom how to tips advice

 

A More Graphic Floral Pattern
Floral patterns are not all equal. The more modern spin on floral involves patterns with a more graphic take and bolder colors. The print on the chairs below, for example, have an almost  pop art Andy Warhol quality:

contemporary kitchen how to tips advice

And so too does this actual painting incorporating flowers and a cow’s head.

farmhouse entry how to tips advice

And below, vivid purple flowers in a guest bathroom feels very hip.

transitional powder room how to tips advice

So what’s the takeaway? Simply put, florals have moved way beyond the faded floral prints of grandma’s house. No need to shy away!

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Design Dilemma: Celebrating the Feminine

shabby chic style living room how to tips advice

For the last few years, there’s been a distinctly masculine feel in interior design. The industrial look, embracing reclaimed wood and raw materials, including materials such as iron and leather, was the epitome of this design direction. But lately, we’ve had our eye on the opposite look — interiors that are unapologetically soft, cozy, feminine. After a long period of industrial and mid Century modern, it feels like it’s about time.

All White.

Nothing says feminine as much as an all-white interior. The one below manages to feel feminine but not in a girly kind of way. It’s chic, sophisticated and even minimal.

traditional home office how to tips advice

Soft Textures.

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Texture is important in any design, but for a feminine look, it’s got to be the right textures. You’re not looking for anything rough. Instead, flokati rugs, silky upholstery and velvets fit the bill.

transitional bedroom how to tips advice

Pastels.

shabby chic style bedroom how to tips advice

It may seem trite, but pink continues to be a feminine color. Use it in small doses in a white room, and you’ve got a classic feminine look that doesn’t feel like kitsch.

Happy Colors.

shabby chic style living room how to tips advice

Sometimes, pastels aren’t the only way to go to create a happy and feminine vibe. In the living room above, colorful floral pillows, a bright kilim and a colorful bouquet of flowers stand in contrast to a white slip-covered chair. Mom would have been proud.

Likewise for the interior below:

contemporary home office how to tips advice

Florals.

eclectic bedroom how to tips advice

Florals are feminine, but it’s hard to keep them from feeling grandmotherly. The room above feels fresh and youthful because the floral pattern on the headboard is more graphic and set in contrast with the geometric print on the pillows.

Chandeliers.

shabby chic style home office how to tips advice

It’s no mistake that several photos in this post have included chandeliers. The gold chandelier in the room above feels very girly and is a nice counterpoint to soft gray walls.

What else feels feminine?

  • Curved shapes, including curved tables, headboards and lamps.
  • Patterned wallpaper, especially in pink.
  • Slipcovers and ruffles in white, a la shabby chic.
  • Attention to comfort items, such as plump pillows, silky throws, thick shaggy rugs — the whole point is to mute or tone down any hard straight lines and surfaces.

 

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Design Dilemma: Decorating with Roommates

home design how to tips advice

It’s a fact of life today: More of us live with roommates. While it used to be that having roommates was just a brief experience  in college, today, living with roommates is a lifestyle that often continues straight through middle age and beyond. The reason? Sky high rents make it impossible to pay rent on just one paycheck alone. For those who are not living with a partner or spouse, the only way to foot the bill is with the help of one or more roommates.

But living with roommates can become a significant design challenge. How do you create a coherent design if you’ve got two or more different design visions happening? What happens when one roommate likes shabby chic, the other appreciates minimalism and the third is into a Victorian parlor look? How do you make a space functional for two or three people and their significant others?

Ironing out all those wrinkles can get a little sticky, but there are a few ways to make your home with roommates a functional, beautiful and stylish place to live.

Create zones.

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Before you focus on style, you need to focus on functionality. When you have several independent souls living together in one space, you will need to set up areas where different people can do different things without getting in each other’s way. In the open concept living room above and the kitchen below, areas have been devised that lend themselves to different activities. A couch and chairs provide a conversation area which stands apart from a table that can serve as a place to serve meals or catch up on paperwork. A separate Eames chair serves as a perfect reading nook, as does a window seat. No one gets left out. In the kitchen below, it’s possible not only to cook a good meal, but a space has been set aside as an office.

traditional kitchen how to tips advice

And in the kitchen below, the simple addition of a couch adds a whole new dimension. Now the kitchen becomes a place not only for food preparation, but a place to relax or have a conversation. If the living room couch is in use, there’s always a backup.

contemporary kitchen how to tips advice

Consider room dividers.

contemporary living room how to tips advice

A room divider is an easy way to create space and allow for some separation for privacy and multiple activities. It can be as simple as a screen, or more complicated, such as a sliding door or wall or a bookshelf. Above, we have folding doors, below, a room is divided with the help of an open bookshelf.

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In the bedroom below, a screen allows for the addition of a living area.

contemporary bedroom how to tips advice
contemporary bedroom how to tips advice

Below, the clever use of vintage windows creates a separate dining room apart from the living room.

industrial dining room how to tips advice

Here, a decorative partition creates a double-duty space.

contemporary bedroom how to tips advice

Even just a fabric screen can work.

traditional living room how to tips advice

Make the most of your bedroom.

contemporary bedroom how to tips advice

When you’ve got roommates, sometimes, the only retreat you can count on is your own bedroom. That means you’ll need to pay extra attention to creating a bedroom that is also multi-functional. The perfect bedroom has not only a place to sleep, but also a couch or seating area and a work area as well.

Like this, for example:

transitional bedroom how to tips advice

Or this:

transitional bedroom how to tips advice

Or this:

scandinavian bedroom how to tips advice

Talk it out.

transitional living room how to tips advice

Just because you have roommates doesn’t mean you have to settle for less when considering a design aesthetic. Sit down with your roommates and have a discussion about what you each envision for your space, and where you might make compromises on that vision. You might even consider hiring a design professional to help your styles and furniture meld. In the Washington D.C. apartment above and below, roommates made no sacrifice in style.

transitional dining room how to tips advice
transitional bedroom how to tips advice