How To Make Design Decisions That Stand The Test Of Time

How To Make Design Decisions That Stand The Test Of Time

When you shop for design elements for your home or scan through the latest Pinterest pins, HGTV episode, or design publications, you start to see definite patterns of popular design trends. Interior design trends come and go just like the latest fashion trends. Some design trends might last longer than some of the fashion trends you purchased last summer, but they still, in fact, have a cycle of popularity.

Some design trends last a few seasons, and other design trends could last for a decade or so. When designing your entire home or shopping for a few simple home accessories, it’s hard not to be influenced by the current design trends since we see it when we are shopping at a retail store. There are ways to utilize current design trends in a way that doesn’t leave you feeling regretful in a few years about the choices that you’ve made. More significant, more permanent design elements can be pricey, and you want to be sure that the products you choose are something that you’re going to like in the future. Here are a few tips when making design decisions to avoid “design trend regret.”

broken floor tile
Add rich color.

ONE

Be patient. Take your time when shopping for your home. Don’t buy the first thing that you see. You might be shopping for a simple throw pillow, and yet everyone is showing orange throw pillows. You want a blue or green, but you don’t see many in those colors to choose from. You finally settle for the orange because it’s readily available. Take your time when making design decisions. A few custom-designed throw pillows can give you any look that you like but will take longer to customize than a quick trip to the store. As a result, you might be ready to get rid of those orange throw pillows after a few months, but the well-thought-out design selection choosing fabrics and styles that customized to your look could last you a very long time.

TWO

Incorporate trendy items in small ways. You might love a popular pattern or print, and you want to incorporate it in your home. You’re not sure that you want that super trendy pattern on a sofa since that will last you a lot longer. Try incorporating the pattern in a throw blanket or a few inexpensive pillows or accessories; this will allow you to integrate trendy patterns and colors in your homes without a large investment.

THREE

Use classic shapes and fabrics for large purchases. A classic white sofa can stand the test of time, allowing you to use trendier fabrics and patterns on top of that traditional white background.

FOUR

Choose all of your construction and renovation elements carefully. You might only be renovating that kitchen once, so choosing a super trendy countertop or backsplash tile might be something that you regret a few years from now; this is where the help of a designer can be very valuable. Knowing what design elements are trendy and what elements are classic can help choose tile countertops, cabinet design, and fixtures. If you love that super trendy light fixture, then go for it, but at least you’ll be entering into that decision knowing that you might find that it starts to feel dated after a few years.

FIVE

I am a firm believer in using items that you love in your home. If you choose items that you love, you might love them five years from now or even ten years from now. We all love seeing those design trends and the beautiful items that we can choose from to decorate our homes. Just don’t feel like you have to have a specific item or color because that is popular. Our homes should be an expression of ourselves. We are all unique individuals and can express our personalities through our homes, and the result is a unique blend of styles colors that fit you, your personality, and your lifestyle for many years to come.

Until Next Time,
Gia

From The Blog

Simple Ways To Decorate For Your Easter Celebration

Simple Ways To Decorate For Your Easter Celebration

Easter is a holiday in which many people choose to entertain in their homes. Whether it be a small, simple gathering or a large family dinner, this is certainly a holiday that you would like to add some simple, easy decor that coincides with the season. Easter coincides with the spring, in which we see changes in the weather and changes in the landscape. All of these changes influence the colors that we are drawn to when decorating our homes. Spring colors, including icy pastels, bright pinks, and yellows, are great colors to use in your spring decor. These colors might not melt well with your overall home decor. But there are some simple ways that you can add the fresh spring feeling to your home, even if it’s just for your Easter celebration

broken floor tile
Add rich color.

ONE

Keep your Easter decor confined to specific spaces. I love to decorate a very formal Easter table setting; this allows me to really play with the different textures and colors and still keep my overall decor in most of my rooms. Even if you’re serving a simple buffet brunch, you can still decorate your table with spring colors using simple dishes and a few sparkling decorations.

TWO

Add touches of spring flowers throughout your home. It is an easy way to bring in a hint of a springtime feel into the rest of your home without doing seasonal decorations throughout the space, allows you to transition the colors easily. For instance, if the spring colors that you’re using on your table don’t go well in your living room, you could certainly use simple arrangements of white tulips in other areas. It would still blend in well with your seasonal Decour and your existing room decorations.

THREE

Use a seasonal front door wreath. A great way to transition the season and keep decorating to a minimum. It also allows you to use different colors than you might use in your home. Be sure your wreath colors contrast your front door so that they become a focal point when you look at your home from the road or driveway.

FOUR

Use groups of flowers that are all the same. Very casual-looking fresh arrangements. This type of arrangement is also simple to put together with a few grocery store flowers. When in doubt, use white flowers or soft colors and display them in a clear glass vase. The simplicity of the arrangement makes it easy to mix into any existing decor in your home.

FIVE

Choose seasonal decor carefully. If you were going to use Easter eggs, bunnies, and any other seasonal item in your decor, choose carefully. Anything made with glass or ceramic will look a little more tasteful in your home. Since I have little ones in my home for Easter, I use a few mercury glass bunnies on my kitchen counter and a few other strategically place items that the children look forward to finding every year. Then, of course, they each have an Easter basket filled with toys and candy that they can play with if they are not too worn out from our annual Easter egg hunt.

SIX

If you have young children, and you want to involve them in the decor, go all out by making decorations. Table setting with handmade Easter eggs and handmade paper decorations can be a thoughtful addition to your table decor. An excellent activity for the kids that will also add to your home’s festive feel.

Until Next Time,
Happy Easter!
Gia

From The Blog

5 Ways To Say “I Love You” With A Project At Home

5 Ways To Say "I Love You" With A Project At Home

This year, you might be thinking about exchanging the annual Valentine’s evening out for a quiet evening at home with some take-out from your favorite restaurant.

Since there is such a large focus on our home environments right now, why not think out of the box this year and plan a little Home project that you can work on together with a spouse or family members.

broken floor tile

You could surprise a loved one with a quick home project or work together on a project that will show your home a little love, choose a project that will give you quick results and that both of you will enjoy once completed.

Add rich color.

ONE

Decorate for the holiday. If you plan a quiet evening at home, or a night at home with the kids, make it memorable with some simple decor. Think about your favorite restaurant and what makes the ambiance so unique. Fresh flowers, candlelight, music, and layered lighting can re-create a special evening or for a little romantic vibe for the whole month of February. Add some heart-shaped accent pillows, some touches of red and pink to your home decor, or involve the kids making some homemade decorations to spread a little love throughout the house. Make a music mix with some favorite love songs. Enjoy the Valentine’s Day holiday for a few days or throughout the month!

TWO

Collaborate on an organizing project. Show a little love to each other and your home by tackling an area in your home that frustrates you. Empty that pantry or hall closet and re-organize. Purge unused items and group like items with storage bins and baskets. Create a system that works for you and your family.

THREE

Organize old family photos. Organizing photos is easier now that most of our photos are conveniently stored in digital format. However, many of us have physical photos somewhere in our home, especially photos from previous generations of family members. Spend an afternoon sorting, scanning, or scrapbooking these precious photos. You will feel great after completing this task and might have some fun revisiting some old family memories.

FOUR

Start planning that master bedroom renovation that you have been talking about. Spend an afternoon making a list and looking through inspiration photos. Put all your dreams into one list. Dreaming and planning together can help narrow down the options when you finally get serious about the project, and planning gets you one step closer to your goals.

FIVE

Plan a small gathering and share the love with a few family members or friends. A little Valentine’s day brunch could be a fun way to share some love. Plan a Valentines themed table setting and enjoy the holiday!

Until Next Time,
Gia

From The Blog

How To Update Your Christmas Tree

How To Update Your Christmas Tree

Many of us have used our cherished Christmas ornaments collection for many years, each ornament holding Christmas past nostalgia. Most of us don’t want to part with our cherished collection or family ornaments, but there are ways that you can update your Christmas decor without starting from scratch. While I enjoy most of my time highlighting client’s projects, I want to give you a quick peek at my living room Christmas decor to show you an example of how I recently updated my living room mantle and tree decorations.

Although my Christmas decor changes up every year, I do a minimum of a few full-sized trees, which I love to decorate differently. But my living room tree has remained primarily gold for several years. This year I wanted to bring in a mix of numerous shades of red to this usually glimmering gold, snow flocked tree. I added a beautiful red and burgundy satin brocade wired ribbon to the tree to add some color and depth. It tied in great with my red velvet bejeweled accent pillows. Then I added red ornaments in 3 shades of red and burgundy. Some were glass, some were a satin-finished glass, and some were a glittered burgundy. The numerous shades of red worked well to add interest to the tree and blended all of the various red shades that I have throughout this area of the house.

broken floor tile

The fireplace mantle draped with a sweeping cascade of garland, glittering gold ribbon, frosted snowflakes, and a mix of the same red ornaments played nicely with the original all gold garland with a variety of sprays. As with most of the woodwork in this room, this fireplace was originally a dark stained wood when I purchased the home. It was beautiful in its own right, but I wanted a lighter look, so the woodwork was painted white, and the old brick red clay fireplace tile we replaced with a blue and white patterned tile. The Christmas tree garland and wreaths in this room are also dripping with glass frosted icicles. I have had these icicles for decades, and they are still some of my favorite ornaments to use. Some years they are on one of my trees; other years, they have found themselves hanging from my stairway garland.

Add rich color.

Here are a few tips to change your tree’s look without replacing all of the decorations and starting from scratch.

ONE

Add ornaments in a complimentary color. Be sure you add enough ornaments to balance out the look—a great way to tie your existing decorations into the room’s decor.

TWO

Weave in a different ribbon. Try something new. Several yards of new ribbon can do a lot to change up the look of your tree.

THREE

Mix old and new. Mixing old and new is a great way to build a tree design with character. A layered look on your tree will be a much more exciting yet traditional look. A tree with all ornaments that are the same will give you a more modern look if that is the desired outcome.

FOUR

Use unique items that may not be meant for a tree. Using unique items happens to be a strong skill of mine. Over the years, my trees have sported numerous decorative objects. My rule is, there are no rules; use your imagination. In my home, if an item is beautiful, I love it, and it can sit on a branch; it has probably at some point been on one of my Christmas trees. I have always enjoyed hearing the delight of family and friends when they spot an unusual item on a Christmas tree

FIVE

Remove a few items and re-vamp them.  Add decorative ribbon or paint existing ornaments to give them an updated look. Have fun and use your imagination.

With just a few quick changes, you add a fresh look to your existing ornament collection

Until Next Time,
Gia

From The Blog

Selecting Your Christmas Tree

Selecting Your Christmas Tree

This is the season for Holiday decorating! Especially this year, everyone seems anxious to usher in the beauty and comforts of the Holiday season. Choosing your Christmas tree is a great place to start since it is usually the most exciting Christmas decorating project of the season.

If you decide to use a live tree this year, it is essential to do a little preparation before you head out to search for your perfect tree.

 ONE

Measure your ceiling height and take measurements to be sure you know how tall a tree you will need. Leave room for your tree topper, and tilting the tree to an upright position when installing, also allows for your tree stand and tree trunk. Even the most beautifully shaped tree could look like a mess after having to cut half of the tree branches off to stand it in place. Check your measurements, and be sure to purchase a tree that is shorter than your ceiling height!

– Check your doorways, hallways, and stairways, be sure you have a clear path to your final destination. Be sure the length of your tree will make all the turns that it needs to make to enter your room.

– Of course, you also want to be sure you have a vehicle that can transport your tree back to your home, with plenty of cords or rope for securing your tree to your car. Always aim the tree’s trunk toward the front of the vehicle, so the wind doesn’t break the branches during transport.

TWO

When I decide to use a live tree, I purchase my tree from a local tree farm here in Massachusetts, where choosing the perfect tree involves a long hike, down a path, into the woods, through the snow, down past a stream, and up a hill in the freezing cold. Once you reach the peak of this hill, you can see a valley of beautifully tended live trees, all sparkling in the sunshine and all hoping to be my Christmas tree, makes the journey worthwhile. Once you are deep in the woods, it can become challenging to judge these beautiful trees’ height. Luckily my favorite tree farmer comes equipped with a tree measuring stick, a saw, and a pickup truck to haul my perfect tree back to civilization. If you are fortunate enough to visit a tree farm, ask your tree farmer about the different varieties of trees and what to expect regarding the longevity, fragrance, and durability of the needles and branches that vary with each tree.

Your local Christmas tree lot can also be a great place to purchase a live tree, this involves less hiking, less time, and you could also be helping to support a local cause with your purchase. When choosing a freshly cut tree, be sure the needles are not brittle. You don’t want to purchase a dried-out tree that will lose its needles quickly.

THREE

Once you get your Christmas tree back to your home, be sure that your tree trunk has a fresh cut before installing. A new cut allows the tree to continue absorbing water. After installing, fill your tree stand with water immediately, and continue daily watering. Remember, the taller the tree, the larger and stronger the tree stand needed to hold it up safely.

FOUR

Thinking about an artificial Christmas tree? As much as I love the fragrance and the all-day pilgrimage of selecting and installing a live tree. Artificial trees offer many benefits, such as no constant dropping of needles, no daily watering, and much sturdier branches that can hold up decorations that most live trees cannot support. For someone who puts up their decorations early, an artificial tree allows much more longevity. You can also find artificial trees in every shape and size, and variety you could get in a live tree. A quality artificial tree will look very authentic and will last many years if properly stored. There are many trees to choose from, including flocked, pre-lit, and many tree companies offer different varieties of trees, from Frasier firs to White spruce. Remember, decorations and lights go a long way, even with an inexpensive artificial tree.

Until next time,

Gia

 

From The Blog

A Peek At My Thanksgiving Table

A Peek At My Thanksgiving Table

This year I’ve decided to hold my annual Thanksgiving dinner a week earlier than usual. My adult children have to go to several homes to attend numerous Thanksgiving dinners—eating Thanksgiving dinner sometimes four times a day. For many years they were more than willing to do this. I decided that this would make it easier for everyone, including the newest 2-month-old addition to the family. Also, giving us more time to visit together as a family during our Thanksgiving celebration. Since my Christmas decorating officially starts on Halloween (this provides plenty of time to decorate my own house and my client’s homes and time to photograph my holiday decor). Most years, my own home is in full-scale holiday decorating mode completing just before Thanksgiving. This year my early Thanksgiving idea lost me a week. However, somehow the house is ready, and I am excited to share a peek at the decorations with you.

broken floor tile

As always, my tablescape is a mix of old and new Items. Some of my cherished pieces of blue and white china from my many years of collecting, mixed with new items like my jewel-toned velvet pumpkins and the beautiful new chinoiserie pumpkins that I stumbled upon earlier this year. I added silver and mirrored chargers purchased for previous events that I have held, antique crystal candle holders, and a few silver pumpkins wrapped with iridescent pearls. This year, I am using cobalt blue and silver for all of my holiday decorations in my dining room, so my Thanksgiving table is following suit. The numerous combinations of colors that I have used for this room are always one of my favorites, so I have used it again this year—an easy transition to my Christmas Decor.

Add rich color.

This year, I’m using cobalt blue satin napkins folded with the silver metallic linen blend napkin. Silver napkin rings trimmed with rhinestones will hold these napkins on top of my place settings. As I’ve mentioned before, don’t be afraid to mix and match when you set the table. When I use my blue and white collection, you might notice that there are about four different patterns of blue and white in one of my table settings. I prefer this layered look of compatible patterns mixed rather than the look of just one pattern on the table, which gives it a lot more interest. It also allows me to add pieces to my collection without worrying about having a certain amount of plates. I know I can always mix a new piece in with the others.

If you prefer a more clean-lined look, you could certainly use one pattern or solid colored plates. When using solid plates, I like to add some contrast to the table with color or pattern in another way. Maybe a more colorful centerpiece, or even a simple floral strong in structure, like an orchid, gives you a much more modern look. When I’m setting the table for a sit-down dinner, I try to keep any centerpiece or center decoration low enough to where you can see over it, especially crucial during Thanksgiving when you are probably going to be sitting at the table for a while. Depending on your table’s shape, you will need to decide how much space you need to create a centerpiece accordingly.

I always use place cards at my holiday table. When my kids were little, it was always a fun project to create place cards for everyone. I still enjoy creating different place cards for everyone joining us for dinner and coming up with different ways to display the place cards. When it comes to glassware, I treat this the same way I treat my china or plates. For this table, I’ll be mixing and matching. This year I combined two patterns of cobalt blue glassware with silver goblets. I also mixed in a few silver-rimmed antique glasses since we were using silver on the table. I try to mix glasses of complementary proportions; this is the key to mixing glassware.

Instead of fresh flowers, which I usually use, I used a few potted flowering plants on my tables for this tablescape. The small lacey blossoms on these flowering plants were pretty and delicate, and I knew they would look great with all of the chinoiserie patterns. I placed these flowers in white ceramic pots. The details on these pots complement the Chippendale details in my high gloss white dining room chairs. I have enjoyed these potted flowering plants in my home all fall and decided to work them into my Thanksgiving tablescape. A few ice and glitter-covered greenery stems add some additional sparkle to the table and complement the room’s Christmas tree, which is ready and waiting to greet guests in this dining room. I’ll add a few more small details to finish out this tablescape, but I thought I would give you a quick peek. Happy Decorating!

Until Next Time,
Gia

From The Blog

Free Design Tips

Submit your email for free design tips and announcements!
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Areas Servicing

Massachusetts  •  New Hampshire  •  Connecticut  •  Rhode Island

© Designs by Gia   |   508-847-6221   |   Contact Us 
Designed and Developed by inConcert Web Solutions   |   Site Map   |   Privacy Notice