Month: April 2012

Brown and Gray Together

April 29, 2012



Have you noticed all of the brown and gray color combinations being used together lately?



Martha Stewart

Not only have I seen more gray painted walls with chocolate brown furnishings, I have also noticed that lately a number of designers have been using gray with stained woodwork.

Look how beautiful this pale blue gray works with the wood ceiling:


Martha Stewart

One of my favorite designers, Sarah Macklem, at The Yellow Cape Cod, pointed out very wisely how brown and gray work so beautifully in nature:


And we know Mother Nature is always perfect with her color combinations!


Martha Stewart


Martha Stewart

I have found if you are working with dark browns such as espresso or walnut in your wood tones, stains or furnishings, almost any silvery gray with blue or green undertones will work. A couple of my favorite grays with blue undertones are BM Sterling 1591,Pebble Beach 1597, Silver Lake 1598 and Winter Solstice 1605.


Steven Gambrel

A few beautiful grays with green undertones are BM Revere Pewter HC-172, Edgecomb Gray HC- 173 and Manchester Tan HC-81.


Steven Gambrel

A  lot of people have chocolate brown sofas and chairs and it is always nice to find color alternatives to use. Gray is fresh and clean and can really update your room. It is also great to have a new color option to use with stained trim.


Steven Gambrel

Have you used a gray on your walls to work with your stained woodwork or brown furnishings? Do you agree it is a great color combination?

If you need help choosing colors for your home, contact me today.

Similar Topics You Might Enjoy:

Another Color Option For Pinky-Beige

Finding the Undertones in Gray Stone

Updating Your Chocolate Brown Furnishings

Fabulous & Creative Nail Salon

April 27, 2012


I stopped at a local nail salon last week and when I walked in the original, creative decor just blew me away:


I spoke to the owner of the salon, David, who had decorated the space. He knew that he needed large artwork for this big wall. He told me most all of his artwork he made himself and he found some additional decor at places such as yard sales and salvage yards. Can you guess what this artwork on the wall was made of?:


If you guessed arm chair rests, you are correct!


I was amazed! David said that he had a friend with a leftover box of these armrests and asked if he could have, even though at the time, he did not know exactly what he was going to do with them.


He started playing around with them one day until he noticed shapes taking form. To hang them on the wall, he inserted a small 2-3” wooden dowel in the back of the piece and made hole in the wall to stick the other end of the dowel. The pieces are pretty light and he said they have held up just fine.


I think they are just so creative! Did you notice what the eyes are made from?


David has been very successful with his business since he opened two years ago. He understands that his customers lead a busy, stressful life and it is a special treat to come in to be pampered. He strives to make the customers time special and relaxing. He also believes in treating his employees well so they too have a great attitude and want to make the customer happy also.

Love this guy here in the corner!:


David believes like a lot of us, that it doesn’t have to cost a lot of money to be creative. Here is a picture of the talented David:


Look how ingenious these mirrors are that he made:


The picture just does not show how cool they look. He hung a rectangular smoke mirror on the wall, then in the center of that mirror he hung a round regular clear mirror on top. I am so inspired that I am trying to find somewhere to hang this in my home because I am going to make one for me! I love them! So cool and different.



I was so impressed with his work that I asked if I could share with my decorating friends!  He is so talented and resourceful, don’t you think? What do you think of the mirrors? Have you ever seen anything like that? I hope you enjoyed!

Have a great weekend everyone!

David and his incredible talent can be found at his salon ‘ENails’ in Slatersville, RI.

If you need help decorating your space, contact me today!

Similar Topics You Might Enjoy:

Pillows are the Jewelry in a Room

The Best Accessories- Mirrors!

Easy Flower Arranging

Sofa In Front Of The Window?

April 24, 2012


When it comes to rearranging the furniture at a client’s home, I always seem to have a hard time convincing clients to put the sofa in front of the window:


They are worried that the sofa will cover up too much of the window and block the view. But if you think about it, the average sofa is only 32″ inches tall and measuring up from the floor that is not going to cover much of your view or window.



I actually think it brings your eye over to the view and makes the outdoors the focal point of the room:



Here is a great example I found this weekend in my own home: When we first moved into our NH home a couple years ago, I placed the chairs facing the window to sit and look outside:

Makes sense right? But this weekend my new sofa came in (yay!) and against my family’s wishes, I put that sofa right in front of the window!:


It is amazing how much the room opened up and feels so much more welcoming. And I love sitting so close to the window and looking out (yes, the red rug is going).


So if you are thinking of rearranging your furniture in the living room, try putting the sofa back against the window to see if you like the look in your room. I am so glad I tried it. I really love walking in the room now because it feels so open and welcoming with a gorgeous mountain background.

Do you agree that the sofa looks lovely facing into the room? It is such a welcoming space now. I love it!

If you need help decorating your home, contact me today.

Online Living Room Design Plan

April 21, 2012

Jonathan Adler

Recently an online client wrote and asked if I could help her with a design plan for her living room working with a color palette she fell in love with. She found this combination at :

Italian Colors

I also love these colors! So pretty. I found a couple pillows at and here and there online that I sent her. I wanted to see which see loved best to get a better sense of her style:





And the winner for favorite pillow:

She had a white sofa (easy to work with!) and this is the design plan I presented her:

blue lr

She was very happy with everything and is going to purchase the items over time.  I just wanted to share with you!

Have a great weekend my friends!

If you need help decorating your home, contact me today.

Bookcase Love

April 17, 2012


So very gorgeous!

Don’t you love looking at inspiring photos of beautifully styled shelves?

DIY bookshelves

You know how I love vignette’s!here, here & here. Chris over at Just a Girl” is an amazing DIY’er and blog extraordinaire designed the bookcase above. Isn’t it beautiful? She shares the DIY instructions on her website on how to build the actual shelves here.

I love Sarah’s work! You can read about the amazing whole room transformation she did here. So do you notice the pattern? Many of the books are laying on their side and used as pedestals for decorative objects:


Some bookshelves are designed so well using color. Look at the picture below how the white, teal and yellow are dispersed throughout the scene:

I do love the look. Although there are not many books on the bookshelf! Is that practical for our own homes? I have a lot of books. I would like to keep them on the bookshelf, but then I wonder if all of the books crammed on there will not look as pretty!



Not as pretty, but very practical. And I do see a couple small accessories on that bookcase above!

There is no magic in decorating bookshelves. As I posted here, there are no set of rules as to what is a right or wrong way to decorate a flat table surface. Many times it only requires patience and plenty of trial and error to get it right.


Another common item that I love in all these photos are all of the white objects.

wall of bookcases cg

centsational girl

So lovely! love.

Reading through various blogs the other day, I found strong comments either voting “yes” for hanging artwork on the actual shelf or a strong “no” stating that you do not like the look at all:


I think it would look better without the horns. I know it is supposed to be creative. What do you think? Do you like the look of artwork hanging outside the shelf? To be honest, I do not really like the look when the artwork is large. But I sure do like love this:

centsational girl


Linking to Serenity Now Friday Link Party here!

If you need help decorating your home, contact me today.

Similar topics you might enjoy:

Decorating a Round Coffee Table

Seasonal Tabletops

Mirror Art

Decorating a Round Coffee Table

April 9, 2012


A reader recently wrote and asked if I would please share some ideas and inspiration on how to decorate a round coffee table.

There are no set of rules as to what is a right or wrong way to decorate. Many times it only requires patience and plenty of trial and error to get it right. As with any other decorating rule to make a space inviting and beautiful, always take the rest of the room into consideration as well as the size of your table. For example, if you are working with a small coffee table:



You would not want to overwhelm the top with too large or too tall of an accessory that would throw off the balance. And the opposite holds true for decorating a large round coffee table- keep your accessories on the larger size. But the most important key in decorating your table is that you like the look.


Everyone has different tastes and styles (thank goodness!). Someone might love one decorated tabletop when another person will think it is not so great. Who cares?

Here is my coffee table right now:


But it can easily be changed. Start with a clean, empty tabletop. Then I begin with my tall item first(be sure it does not block view of tv):


And I always like to use a couple books to add height and dimension to the arrangement:


Then I start to add accessories with different heights and interest:


And then I always add an accessory that I love and that means something to me, (mine is a favorite bird I picked up from a vacation in Cabo, Mexico) :


That’s it! I love the finished look and that is what is most important!


Remember that it takes patience and plenty of trial and error to get it right sometimes. Just step back and take a look to see what else you might need to add or need to take away.

Here are a few more inspiring photos to get you started:


I love to see trays being used to decorate tabletops:




Pottery Barn

I hope I have helped give you some new ideas and inspiration for decorating your round coffee tables. I have noticed a lot of my clients are requesting the round coffee tables lately instead of rectangular. Which do you have in your home?

If you need help decorating your home, contact me today

Linking up to Serenity Now Weekend Link Party!

Similar Topics you might enjoy:

Coffee Table Love

I Love Vignettes

Beautiful & Functional Tables