5 Ways To Bring Great Design Into A Small Space

Five Ways To Bring Great Design Into A Small Space

How do you bring great design into a space where you don’t have a lot of room to work with? Maybe you won’t have an opportunity to bring in furnishings and add elements to create a finished look.

I recently had this challenge with a small room that my clients wanted to turn into a closet space. The room was attached to the adjoining bedroom and bathroom that was also renovated; we wanted to bring some complementary design elements to the rest of the space.

 My clients wanted closed cabinetry for clothing storage in this room. I designed this built-in cabinetry with storage clothing items in closed cabinets and open storage for folded items and shoes.

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In this room, an existing window was very close to the room’s corner, which prevented us from going all the way to the wall with the cabinetry, and the window was needed to bring light into the room. My client mentioned needing a bench, so my cabinet maker and I incorporated a low bench into our cabinetry to create a beautiful design element out of an area that could have been problematic. 

The small bench also has storage with a lifting top. We made a custom cushion for the bench with coordinating custom pillows using complementary fabrics. Then I designed the beautiful motorized roman shade for the window. I designed a 2-inch edge that trimmed the entire shade in a complementary fabric, making this roman shade even more luxurious. Motorization is an excellent feature as it ties into the window treatments in the adjoining bathroom to work from the same remote control. This is a room where the roman shades will most likely be opened and closed daily; This was a great feature to add to this custom window treatment.

My cabinet maker added a beautiful custom-designed leg on our cabinetry pieces that make the cabinetry look like furniture. This detail looks beautiful with the curved patterns of our fabric. 

Add rich color.

These small details added so much luxury to this room without adding things like area rugs and furniture, Which we didn’t have room for in this area. Here are five ways to add great design into a small space.

ONE

Small details make a difference. Adding unique hardware or detailed features like the details on our custom cabinetry to the elements you have in the space makes a big difference and the overall look.

TWO

To the luxurious fabrics and materials. It allows you to use more luxurious items in a small space because you don’t need as much of them. For instance, a beautiful marble floor to a large room might be very pricey, but in a small powder room, it will create a beautiful luxurious look and create a beautiful oasis in your small space.

THREE

Scale things appropriately for the room. If you’re finishing a small sitting room, scale those furniture pieces wisely so they don’t take up your entire room. A few strategic pieces of furniture that are scaled appropriately will make the room still feel spacious.

FOUR

Add custom details. Mixing the fabrics in the closet space that I discussed above allowed me to use several different materials, adding interest and texture to the room. Since I had all of my fabric work customized, it allowed me to choose patterns in the exact scale and fabrics that I wanted. Again, a small space with a few custom pillows was a big design element in this room, so anything that you customize gets noticed in a small space.

FIVE

Be creative. The challenge of a small space will provide an opportunity for some great creative ideas. As a designer, I love challenging spaces, and they provide me with the ability to come up with some great design ideas.

Until Next Time,
Gia

From The Blog

Choosing Tile For Your Backsplash

Choosing Tile For Your Backsplash

Whether clients are looking to do a complete renovation of the kitchen or just changing out a few kitchen elements, the selection of backsplash material is always one of those areas where people struggle to visualize a selection and how it will look in the space. If a client is doing their own kitchen project, this is one of the areas that I see people make the most design errors when it comes to material selection. Often clients do come to a designer after the fact, after trying to implement their design ideas and then not being happy with the results.

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With so many different materials, colors, and design options, the backsplash presents us with an opportunity to complement the space’s design. Still, without a thorough knowledge of design principles, the backsplash can sometimes become the piece that conflicts with the rest of the area.

Add rich color.

When  I select a backsplash for a kitchen that I’m renovating and designing, this is how I approach the selection.

Don’t shop until you have determined what you are looking for. I often go into a space where a backsplash tile selection was chosen based on how much you like the tile material. That’s great, but just like choosing any other design element, the most important thing is to be able to picture the whole room as one and how it’s going to work together to create a cohesive design.

I base my selections on the number of things – the other design elements that I’m putting into the newly renovated design, the choice of countertop material that I am using in the new design, the size and scale of the pattern on the new countertop. The other thing that I look at is how much backsplash there is and how it’s sectioned and cut up in the particular kitchen design. For instance, a backsplash with many small sections might not be a great candidate for a widespread pattern because many details of that design would get lost in the smaller cut sections of the backsplash configuration.

The other thing that I look at when designing a backsplash is precisely where the backsplash material will be applied. Where will it start, and where will it end concerning the cabinetry and the other design elements to create a truly customized backsplash for your kitchen? There is no clear-cut answer that applies to every space and every tile. When designing a kitchen space, the goal for me is to create an overall balance in color, materials, and proportion creating a well-harmonized look.

 

Until Next Time,
Gia

From The Blog

Common Pitfalls When Furnishing An Entire Home Or Room

Common Pitfalls When Furnishing an Entire Home or Room

You might be excited about furnishing that new home or perhaps just furnishing your living room or Master bedroom.

Whether you’re furnishing an entire home, one room, or a series of rooms, furnishing a space can be quite complicated. It involves a thorough and detailed plan consisting of what the space will look like in the end. Homeowners sometimes attempt furnishing on their own, not understanding the complicated yet important details of proportion, balance, and scale when furnishing a space.

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Quickly realizing that is not the simple task they had envisioned. No matter how large or small your budget is for furnishings, you want your purchases to stand the test of time both in style and durability. You also want the space’s design to be cohesive, reflect your personality, and work well with the rest of your home.

Add rich color.

Here are some common pitfalls that homeowners often fall into when attempting to do this without the help of a pro.

ONE

Purchasing furniture pieces before having an overall plan. It is easy to get excited about starting the process of furnishing a space, but the place to start is with thorough planning before any shopping or purchasing begins. It is only after thoroughly planning out the area that purchases should begin. Knowing how all furnishing will not only look good but function well in the space is essential. Properly planning out walkways, traffic flow, and planning out space for tasks is crucial in developing any space plan. Planning out the entire area first allows you to make changes and visualize the room with your new furnishings. It also gives you a perimeter of size, shape, and scale to guide you when making those furniture purchases.

TWO

Selecting fabric, colors, and finishes individually. The mixing of fabrics, colors, textures, and other material finishes can be complicated. A professional knows how to do this efficiently, knowing where the room is ultimately going and how different finishes and patterns will work together. When homeowners attempt this, they can be easily swayed by salespeople whose primary goal is to sell a product. It’s also very easy to choose the most beautiful sofa or fabric without really knowing how it will work with all of the other elements in the room or home. Buyers remorse will start to set in once you begin to choose the other elements in the space and realize that you have unknowingly designed yourself into a corner. A well-designed plan will help you select finishes, colors, and fabrics strategically, giving you the confidence that you will have a cohesive look when your project is complete.

THREE

Feeling like you need to pull together a professionally designed look without a pro. Today many aspects of the design process are over-simplified. Homeowners are led to believe that it’s fast and easy to get professional level results independently, with just a few trips to the store, certainly not the case. Regardless of the size of your project budget, you want to be sure you get the best possible results by hiring a pro.

FOUR

Buying items yourself.  The reason professionally designed rooms look so beautiful is because many items that go into the space are custom or customized to the designer’s specifications. For instance, when designing custom pillows, upholstered pieces, or window treatments, we can choose the exact trim or decorative details and decide on those details’ precise placement.

Many designers have trade accounts with manufacturers that often quality pieces and a higher degree of customization on products, which results in that customized look. Even when purchasing a stock piece that you can find for yourself at retail, it’s always best to have your designer do the purchasing. Eliminating ordering errors since your designer is familiar with the process and ordering direct doesn’t guarantee better pricing. Timing of deliveries and storage of furnishings until you are ready for them can also be an issue. When working with a designer, items can be consolidated and delivered when ready for the whole installation. That is not possible when ordering numerous pieces from different vendors at different times, each with its delivery schedule.

Those are just a few of the most common pitfalls that one can fall into when attempting a large furnishing project without a designer’s guidance and expertise.

 

Until next time,
Gia

 

From The Blog

Creating A Peaceful Retreat

Creating A Peaceful Retreat

One of the things that I have noticed in the last few months, as predicted, most people’s homes have turned into a multi-functioning area almost overnight. Homeowners everywhere are hurrying to keep up with the new lifestyle of working from home, schooling from home, setting up a home gym for working out at home, and the overall lifestyle changes that this has brought us. One of the things that I am hearing and seeing is that those moments of having a bit of quiet time for private thought or a place to retreat from a hectic day are now nonexistent in homes that are very active with families and children.

The abrupt lifestyle changes also explain why so many people are finally deciding to renovate their master bedroom or master bathroom. The need for creating a peaceful retreat right in your own home has become more critical than ever. While most people seem to be enjoying working from home, they are finding that they are putting in long hours and cannot get away from their work.

Of course, there are many ways that you can create a retreat right in your own home:

broken floor tile
Add rich color.

ONE

Prepare for next summer’s outdoor renovation projects now. With the renovation at an all-time high, prepare beforehand to have a quality contracting team for the project. Lead times for ordering building supplies are longer than usual. Planning is everything, especially right now.

TWO

Make small changes using furnishings and decor to create a peaceful area for reading or relaxing. Make small changes in your furniture arrangement. It could create a feeling of privacy without adding additional space, such as a relaxing chair near a window with a view an area for books or your favorite projects or artwork could be created easily by moving a few things around in your home.

THREE

Take a look at any unused space in your home and involve a professional to help you visualize and create a private area in which to retreat. In a loft, a small room, or a place above the garage might work perfectly and you might not visualize what can be done, but involving a designer brings you a fresh set of ideas for the space.

FOUR

Re-think the current floor plan in your home. Sometimes even swapping rooms enable them to function differently. For instance, an unused dining room could be moved and swapped out with another room giving you more living space or more of an area to create a private reading nook or hobby area. Don’t be afraid to look at your current square footage and make changes to reflect your recent lifestyle changes.

FIVE

Of course, you certainly could create that luxurious master bedroom and bathroom suite that you’ve always dreamed of. At the end of the day, being able to retreat to a beautifully designed and customized space to create a restful environment will welcome improvement in your home. Think about everything you would love to include in the space and meet with a designer to find out how to best incorporate these ideas into a professionally designed Master suite project.

 

Until Next Time,
Gia

From The Blog

Styling Your Home For Mid-Winter

Styling Your Home For Mid-Winter

After the holiday decorations come down, your home can feel like it needs a little midwinter styling. As much as I know we’re all anxious to clean up after the holidays, I think most of us do miss the holiday decorations, and without them, the house feels a little bare and cold this time of year.

Here are some quick ways to style your home easily with accessories to give you a home in midwinter refresh.

broken floor tile
Add rich color.

ONE

Try some small changes in your furniture arrangement. I often have to move a few furniture pieces to make room for my Christmas trees and other Christmas Decor. So, if you’ve moved a piece of furniture, as the house starts to get put back together, try moving things around a bit to refresh your look. A few small changes in a room, for instance, an accent chair at a different angle, can change a room’s look and how it functions. Experiment a little as you’re putting your rooms back together.

TWO

Accessorize your coffee table for midwinter. Style your coffee table with some items you might already have in your home or add a few small touches. Add candles to add a little illumination. A tray on the coffee table a great way to display and group small items. A few coffee table books stacked on your coffee table could be a great start if you start from scratch. Add some flowers in a vase, and you have a perfectly styled coffee table for midwinter.

THREE

Add some cozy throw blankets. Adding a blanket or two is a great way to add some color and texture to a room that feels like it needs some layering. I add throws and cozy warm blankets to my living room and bedroom decor in mid-winter. They are also great for some extra warmth this time of year.

FOUR

This time of year, I like to make some flower arrangements, and I use various types of items as vases and vessels for these arrangements. Try using an old vintage vase or ceramic piece and creating some small fresh or silk arrangements for your home. I like to use some of the older vases and vessels that I’ve inherited from family members. You can use any jars or vases collection to display the flower arrangement or just a few blossoms to warm up your space in midwinter. Smaller arrangements can be placed in various areas of your home easily.

FIVE

Add a few pops of color. If the house feels a little cold and bare without those holiday decorations, small pops of color can do wonders. Bring in a few throw pillows or accessories in a bright contrasting color to freshen up your space. A welcomed change as a fresh new color can quickly and easily make a bare space look finished.

SIX

Print out a few of your family photos to display in mid-winter. Take some of those holiday photos out of your phone and do a grouping in small frames. A small gallery wall or a corner of a table with a few pictures can personalize your room and help you enjoy those family memories in the mid-winter months.

Until Next Time,
Gia

From The Blog

Your Design Goals For The New Year

Your Design Goals For The New Year

A new year means a fresh start! This year we welcome the new year with open arms as we look ahead and plan for the upcoming year.

After a year where just about everything revolved around your home, you might be thinking of some of the challenges your home presents and looking for guidance on making your home look great and function for your family and lifestyle.

An Interior Designer can make all the difference in the outcome of any of your upcoming projects. 

broken floor tile
Add rich color.

ONE

Be open to getting a professional designer involved from the beginning. With so much access to “information,” it is easy for homeowners to assume that they can google their way through a project. I can assure you that this is not a great way to design a project and cause significant design and budget problems. Sadly most of these projects do not have the desired outcome, and often a professional designer is later called to correct issues causing further cost to the homeowner. Savvy homeowners call in the pros from the beginning recognizing the value of experience and ready to invest in professional services to get professional results.

Now, with the daily changes with suppliers, resources, and vendors and the increased demand for experienced contractors, the value of what a skilled professional designer brings to your project is more significant than ever.

TWO

Make a list of all long term design and renovation projects you would like to tackle in your home. Review this list with your designer; discuss your priorities. Listen to your designer’s advice about what makes the most sense regarding what to tackle first. Understanding the process and what is involved will help you phase your project in a way that avoids costly backtracking. Choose a designer with history and the experience to deal with phasing a long term renovation on a professional level, setting your project up for success right from the beginning.

THREE

List specific challenges with your home’s function and tell your designer how you want your home to feel. Some of the solutions that you might be thinking of might not necessarily solve your challenges. Listing your specific challenges, needs, and goals will help you ensure that your challenges are all addressed. Most pros will ask the needed questions to solve your design problems, but be sure to discuss them at your first meeting with a pro. Homeowners may have ideas on how to solve these issues; listen to what the pros bring to the table as they are looking at your home in a different light and with years of experience that they can add to your project. A great designer will listen to your ideas, create something that you love, and help you meet your overall goals.

Until Next Time,
Gia

From The Blog

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