So I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts with great content about living your best life (Behind the Brilliance) which featured an interesting conversation with a behavioral finance expert who spoke on the relationship between money and happiness. According to research once a person reaches an income level beyond $75,000 their level of happiness plateaus. But what really sadden me was the statement that once you buy a new car or a home the level of happiness and satisfaction with the purchase quickly fades. In particular the expert shared his personal feelings about purchasing his own home on a lake which after a month was nothing more to him than a place to house or store his stuff. As a self certified homebody who loves my home and how if makes me feel, that statement left me cold and I had to wonder how many people feel the same about their own home. Could I be in the minority in that I’m very sensitive of my surroundings, so much so that living in a home that’s a reflection of my personal style that makes me happy to call my own is not optional? For me this is not a temporary feeling. I can’t say I’ve ever been away from my home for an extended period of time and not been happy that I’m home again. Continue reading
Typically when most think of a luxury home often times a large or spacious home of mansion proportions comes to mind. But when you consider the Merriam Webster definition of luxury, something adding to pleasure or comfort but not absolutely necessary, luxury is well within reach of anyone willing to make the effort to add simple pleasures and comfort to their own home. In essence whether you live in an apartment or detached home, luxury is an inside job. Assuming you already own the basic furniture necessities you can create a home environment that you will grow to love with the addition of accessories and minimum efforts designed to boost your home’s sense of pleasure and comfort. The key to an eventual life of luxury is selecting your first room and taking one room at a time. By doing so your home will become a reflection of your personality and leave an impression on those you invite into your space. So why not make it a positive one. Continue reading
When it comes to home décor going with a neutral color scheme is often a safe bet. But for some safe can also mean boring. The good news is this can be a temporary situation. Having a neutral foundation comes with perks such as the option of updating and layering the room with accessories that may be more fitting with the changing seasons. Just like your wardrobe changes with the season, so can your home décor. So with this post I’d like to demonstrate how this neutral living room can make the shift from spring and summer to a fall through winter design color scheme that’s primed and ready for upcoming festive holiday entertaining. The following photos also illustration how with a few additional accessories a cool and airy space can be transformed with the addition of rich warm colors and a mix of wood and metal finishes into a cozier and inviting place.
While some people have a love of high fashion I’ve always had a love of home fashions. Your home is as much a reflection of your style as your wardrobe. The fabrics are often the same whether you’re talking about cottons, silks or wool and the color schemes and combinations can also set the mood or make a statement. Just like with your personal fashion style, the right accessories and pops of color can either make or break the look you’re trying to achieve. I like to call these elements wow factors. The key to a luxe look versus a more eclectic one is to choose a color scheme of two or three colors which are consistently carried out throughout the home. You might even want to take a tip from one of your favorite outfits and transform your space with a complementary color pallet. See how the following example from fashion can also serve as an inspiration for the home décor picks.
The kitchen island has had a long run as the primary eating hangout in many kitchen design projects. It’s the equivalent of a kitchen bar. But what if you’re looking for a cozier space for meals in the kitchen? The solution just might be the kitchen breakfast nook. Below is a photo selection of 40 breakfast nooks that you may want to bookmark for future inspirational kitchen design ideas.
Blue and white is a color combination that I’ve always liked as shown in this living room I discovered on Horchow’s website. But of late I’ve developed an interest in blue and white porcelain that’s often seen in rooms with a Chinoiserie design aesthetic. Although it’s a cool color combination it can easily be warmed up with deep and rich maple and mahogany wood furnishings. It doesn’t really matter if it’s used sparingly as an accessory or in groupings it always takes the room to another level which I often refer to as a design wow factor.
It’s no secret that I’m a nature lover and have a passion for beautiful gardens and outdoor rooms. This is one of the reasons that spring and summer are my favorite times of the year. I’ve often encouraged readers to view many of the pictures that I’ve featured as inspiration for their own home design projects. However, it has just recently occurred to me that I have never fully explained exactly what that means or what it looks like in practice. The above picture is one that I thought was very beautiful and inspirational. It may or may not look like your outdoor space but perhaps it reminds you of a similar space that brings back fond memories of a tropical vacation. So with this style guide to outdoor living spaces I’m going to deconstruct this outdoor room and provide some tips on how you can create a similar space for your own home.
Everyone is probably familiar with the “Man Cave” the ultimate escape where men can be men. Well now there’s an escape for women to counterbalance the man cave. It’s called the “She Shed” which is nothing more than an outdoor shed that’s especially for the lady of the house that’s removed from the noise of everyday life. All that’s required is a backyard shed a few pieces of furniture, your personal decorative touches and necessities for one’s hobbies such as painting, gardening, reading or other guilty pleasures. What follows is a small sampling of a few that caught my eye.
I’ve always had a love of real estate whether you talking about the architecture of the home, it’s gardens or interior. So for today’s post I just wanted to share with you several notable homes that are on the market for sale for you to explore even if they are not in your price range because I’m a firm believer that inspiration can be found at many price points. The house above is the home of celebrity chef Paula Deen and is located in Wilmington Island, Georgia. Continue reading
Full disclosure I am not the best photographer by a long shot but spring is my very favorite time of the year and I’m always up for a good house and garden tour. Allergies aside, I love flower gardens and am inspired by the creativity of the landscape designs that I have enjoyed touring over the years. So May has been my official kick off of the house and garden tours that I plan to indulge in over the next several months. If we’re lucky I’m hopeful my photography skills will improve. Even though I was disappointed by the shots I captured in the blinding sun recently, I wanted to share a few from my tour of the British (seen above) and Denmark embassies in D.C. and a local public garden in suburban Maryland.