Home Design Tips & Tricks

Our very best home design tips, tricks, and how-to guides. We tackle everything from layout struggles, to decor ideas to help you design your home with confidence.

floating furniture sofa

Floating Furniture 101: The Ultimate Layout Hack You Can Use in Every Room

floating furnitureSometimes, it feels impossible to land on a layout for your space. The furniture doesn’t seem to fit. There’s not enough wall space. What’s the focal point? But for all of these problems, there’s one secret weapon that (more often than not) always works: floating furniture.

What does it mean to “float” your furniture? We don’t mean a sofa that levitates off the ground but rather the act of pulling your furniture away from the walls and letting it “float” in the middle of the room. And while this may feel strange at first, but it can be the best thing that’s ever happened to your space.

Floating furniture is a great way to optimize your room, especially if it has an untraditional layout. It’s also a great trick if you’re lacking wall space. It can even help create more intentional pathways and traffic flow in your room, and establish “zones” in open spaces.

Ready to learn more about designing a space with floating furniture? Keep reading for our guide to on how and when to let your furniture float in every room.

floating furniture sofaIn the Living Room

Great for larger spaces, a floating sofa in your living room can help define a focal point and create better flow through the space. Some people do this because they lack wall space to create seating areas if furniture is up against the wall. Others prefer this method because it creates an intimate seating area geared toward conversation.

Whatever your motivation, a floating sofa creatively divides up your room and established walkways that help direct traffic flow. This is a perfect option if you have an open floor plan and want to create distinct living room and dining room areas. Just remember to anchor the seating area with a rug!

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floating entryway table ideaFor an Intentional Entryway

Have a large foyer space? Install a floating entryway table (grounded by a rug, of course)! This will help define an open entryway space and offers a quick and easy place to drop keys and mail when you arrive back at home. With this approach, a round table is best so there are no hard edges to bump into.

To keep it from becoming a cluttered catchall, give it a designed look. Consider adding a vase with branches, some coffee table books, or even a small group of decorative objects. Adding a mail organizer and a bowl for keys will keep this table purposeful and beautiful.

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floating office deskIn the Home Office

There’s no reason your home office desk has to be pushed up against the wall. Opt for a floating desk for a more “executive suite” style in your space. Yes, it gives your office a more formal air. But perhaps that will just inspire you to take on your projects with the confidence of a seasoned CEO?

This is also a great design option if you have other features in your office that don’t allow you to place a desk against the wall, such as a fireplace or built-ins.

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floating furniture studio apartmentIn a Multi-Purpose Space

If you have a studio or other multi-purpose space, consider floating a bookcase as a functional room divider. This helps partition your space into zones—creating more distinct bedroom and living room spaces. And as an added bonus? It adds storage to your space—which for most studio apartments is at a premium!

Just be sure that you opt for an open-back bookcase so that your shelving looks beautiful and is functional from both sides.

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floating furniture ideasFor a Few Extra Seats

Looking for some creative seating in your space? Try a floating bench. Place one in front of a fireplace or use it to break up a large living room into multiple zones.

We love this as bonus seating, especially in front of a fireplace, because it doesn’t block the view of whatever it’s sitting in front of so it won’t feel like it’s taking over the space. If benches aren’t your style, you could also try a pair of poufs or stools for the same effect!

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fall mantel decor ideas

Get Your Living Room Ready for Fall With These Mantel Decor Ideas

fireplace mantel ideasIf you don’t like the idea of doing a total decor overhaul for each season and holiday remember this: there are small ways to make seasonal changes that can make a big impact. One of our favorite areas to focus on for seasonal changes is your mantel decor.

A fireplace is a focal point in a living room — so what happens on your mantel impacts the vibe of your whole space. This small area is the perfect place to show off your personality and set the tone for the space all season long. Keep reading for some easy tips and fall mantel decor ideas that work for any style!

fall mantel decor ideas

1. Crown Your Mantel

As the focal point of your room, reserve the space above your mantel for something special. Think a piece you love and want to highlight. (AKA: if your home were the Louvre, this is where you’d hang the Mona Lisa.)

All that to say, choosing the right piece to crown your mantel is important. A statement mirror, painting or art print, or a TV are classic options for mantel decor. But you can also think outside the box and hang a sculpture, a grouping of smaller paintings, or even leave it bare for a dramatic effect. The only rule? Pick something you love as this will be the piece that sets the tone for the rest of the room.

2. Pick a Color Palette

To make this area feel more curated, stick to a cohesive color palette. With this traditional look, we opted for a bouquet of earthy, fall colors like reds, yellows, and oranges, with a white base to keep it from feeling too loud.

3. Embrace Symmetry

One of the keys to a traditional mantel decor scheme is symmetry. Here, we hung a mirror above the center of the mantel, and bookended it with taller decor. But that doesn’t mean you have to get too matchy-matchy. Instead of identical objects on either side, we played with symmetry in terms of height and size, which gives the look a more inviting feel.

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fall mantel decor ideas

4. Layer On the Decor

Add visual intrigue to your mantel by layering your decorative touches. This creates a more dynamic, curated look and will add depth to your mantel style. We used natural materials for this eclectic mantel, mixing and matching woven baskets, a wooden bowl, and a stoneware vase. The layers and texture of this look are especially nice for fall when you want to embrace those cozy vibes!

5. Prop Your Art

Rather than hanging a statement art piece above the mantel, consider leaving it unhung and leaning it against the wall instead. This gives your mantel a more casual feel, which is perfect for eclectic rooms or adding a note of whimsy (whereas hung art can feel more formal).

6. Group in Threes

When decorating a mantel (or any surface, really), stick to the “rule of thirds.” This design principle boils down to the idea that objects grouped in trios are more pleasing to the human eye. Use this trick to make your fall mantel look expertly curated no matter the season or style.

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fall mantel decor ideas

7. Incorporate Texture

The secret ingredient to any space is to incorporate texture. For a rustic look, we love natural options like live edge wood, plants, and carved designs. The mix of textures adds dynamism to this cozy, layered look, which is the perfect mantel idea for fall.

8. Vary Your Heights

To add to the dynamic look, mix tall and short objects on your mantel. This keeps your eye from focusing on any one item, making the mantel feel thoughtfully designed but not overly done.

9. Add Plants

Greenery brings any look to life and adds some beautiful natural texture (see tip #7). We love the idea of incorporating greenery that’s in season for the fall — like the eucalyptus in this rustic mantel idea. Then, as winter approaches, you can switch in a boxwood or pine garland and something with florals for spring. Simply changing the greenery and a few objects will make your mantel feel fresh each season.

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fall tablescape ideas

6 Fall Tablescape Ideas That are Sure to Impress Your Guests

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about hosting! While the holidays are about being together with the people you love—not impressing them with a Pinterest-worthy home—it is fun to gussy up your house and make it extra inviting for guests. One simple way to get your dining room holiday-ready is by designing a beautiful tablescape!

A tablescape is an artistic arrangement of objects on your table. Obviously this involves your dinnerware — but to create a truly stunning tablescape, you can also work in additional objects like greenery, candles, and linens. Depending on the objects you choose, you can embody different design styles that will compliment the overall style of your home while playing up those fall vibes. Keep scrolling for fall tablescape ideas for 6 different styles!

modern tablescape ideas

modern dining room

1. Modern and Minimal

For a look that’s more modern or transitional, keep your tablescape free of frills and too many decorative objects. Take a minimal approach to styling, with only a few simple and thoughtfully curated accents. We love white pumpkins for a modern touch of fall style. Complete the look by opting for for contemporary and simple serveware.

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modern rustic dining room

eclectic tablescape ideas

2. Mid-Century and Rustic

This dining room features a more eclectic take on a fall tablescape. For both mid-century and rustic looks (or the perfect combination of the two: modern rustic), gravitate toward a warm color palette and play with interesting or unexpected forms. Here, we love the organic shape of the wheat stalks, a handleless carafe, and even the surrounding artwork.

Next, play up the texture. We incorporated texture with woven placemats, featuring tassels that tie into the color scheme. What results is a look that is cohesive, visually nuanced, and interesting enough to get your guests talking about something other than politics.

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glam dining room design

chic tablescape ideas

3. Elegant and Glam

If you like tablescape ideas that are chic and a little over the top, this one’s for you. When styling your tablescape, layer on gold, crystals, and statement pieces — like gold chargers, a stunning chandelier, and these crystal geode candlesticks.

And speaking of those candlesticks, they contrast perfectly with the delicate glassware. It’s the perfect pairing of glamorous and luxe materials with sleek forms to keep the look balanced.

But despite all the glitz and glam, this fall tablescape idea still takes a traditional approach to styling for a look that’s both sleek and feminine.

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rustic dining room design

rustic tablescape ideas

4. Rustic and Traditional

This look embodies the classic sense of “fall” in all its glory. With rugged woods, a farmhouse dining table, Windsor-style chairs, and plaid accents, you have a tablescape that’s truly rustic and cozy. Family-friendly to its core, the table decor is pared back yet creates a cozy sense of place.

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coastal dining room design

elegant tablescape idea

5. Classic and Contemporary

Elegant and sophisticated, this fall tablescape idea relies on simple styling for a fresh and clean feeling. It’s the perfect look if you like more classic or coastal styles, as it has a more formal air to it. While it features a fall color palette, it’s in a more subtle and contemporary style topped with simple, fall-inspired decor.

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boho dining room design

boho tablescape ideas

6. Rustic and Eclectic

This dining room mixes a few different styles in one space—a little bit bohemian, a little rustic, and a lot of eclectic. With that, you’ll notice unexpected pieces and styling moments, like wishbone chairs and basket wall art.

This look is grounded by saturated earth tones and a solid wood table with a live-edge look. And the tablescape idea is finished by layering on a lot of textures and natural materials — including plenty of plants and greenery.

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modern rustic

Modern Rustic Style: 6 Tips to Get the Look of This “It” Style

living roomWhat do you get when you mix mid-century modern furniture with rustic materials and accents? A perfectly modern rustic look! This just so happens to be a style we love due to its emphasis on comfort, slightly eclectic vibe, and always on-trend look.

New to modern rustic style? You’ve probably seen it before and just didn’t know what to call it. It involves comfortable but streamlined furniture, natural elements, earth tones, and reliance on rustic materials and decor. This style is all over Instagram and Pinterest, and brilliant designers like Amber Interiors and Studio McGee often design rooms that you could easily say are of this style.

Modern rustic is also the perfect style for couples trying to compromise between a comfortable and livable look and one that’s more modern and sleek—combining the soft edges of rustic with sleek notes found in modern styling.

 Ready to dig in? Keep reading for 6 tips on how to create a modern rustic look!

living room1. Establish a Comfortable Foundation

Comfort is key with this look. So, the largest pieces of furniture in any modern rustic room should be streamlined but never skimp on comfort. In living rooms, start with cozy oversized sofas. In bedrooms, opt for plush, upholstered beds. For a dining room, look for an oversized, rustic wood dining table around which big groups can gather.

But, while prioritizing comfort, make sure the furniture lines are clean and simple to keep the look modern.

bedroom2. Add Mid-Century Modern Accents

Once the comfortable foundation is laid, introduce a more mid-century or eclectic vibe. At first it may seem odd to mix these styles—but the contrast they create is what makes this look so dynamic and fun.

An easy place to do this is with your accent furniture. Think of an eclectic woven leather armchair or a coffee or bedside table with an antique flair. In dining rooms, pair your farmhouse dining table with more modern seating, like Wishbone or Eames shell chairs.

modern rustic dining room3. Create Conversational Layouts

A family-friendly style by nature, modern rustic interiors often have more symmetrical layouts that are geared toward large gatherings and facilitate conversations. (Hence the huge, rustic dining table we suggested above.) This is where the look leans more rustic and formal rather than modern and eclectic.

This is especially noticeable in a living room, where you might arrange a set of matching armchairs opposite the sofa or set them on either side of a couch, facing a fireplace. Although the furniture is a relaxed mix of different elements and pieces, arranging them in a more formal layout will play up a slightly more polished vibe.

modern rustic office4. Introduce Industrial Lighting

The next step? Finding the right lighting. This is where we see some style overlap with the modern farmhouse look. With modern rustic, light fixtures are often industrial with sleek, streamlined forms that are sculptural in nature.

Look for matte black or antique brass options to tie in the rustic. And don’t be afraid to establish multiple light sources in a single room; this helps bring personality to your style.

Just make sure you’re never matchy-matchy with light fixtures. This is a perfect opportunity to utilize one style—industrial—while getting eclectic with how you bring it to life throughout your space.

entry5. Layer on Natural Textures

When bringing the modern rustic style to life, we love the opportunity to play with textures and different materials. This keeps a room looking livable and approachable. Look for natural materials like seagrass, jute, ceramics, leather, and live-edge woods—then mix and match them together in one space, incorporating them in furniture, lighting, and decor accents! This helps the room feel dynamic and visually interesting.

living room6. Add an Antique Edge to Art and Accent Decor

If you want to play up the rustic side of this style, infuse your space with a few antique or antique-feeling pieces. While you want your furniture to feel more modern, art, decor, and rugs are the perfect place to incorporate this nod to old-world charm.

How, exactly? A rug with a traditional pattern and warm colors would be a perfect way to do this. (We gravitate toward using earth tones here, like terracotta, olive green, or a deep blue). For art, opt for landscape or still life paintings or even botanical prints.

Or consider your pillows: you can play with a mix of traditional patterns that tie in the colors of your rug. And try incorporating a vintage vibe in decorative objects and mirrors. This is definitely the most subjective part of this style—but what allows you to really make it your own!

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dining room

The Only Dining Table Guide You’ll Ever Need

dining room

Your dining table is one of the most crucial pieces of furniture (especially during the upcoming holiday season!) in your home. A person’s gotta eat, after all! Not only is it the place you and your family dine on the regular, but it’s also the focal point of your kitchen or dining room and the place where family and friends gather for everything from formal dinners to casual gatherings to the occasional crafts session and everything in between.

A great dining area means you have a place to enjoy bountiful meals, laughter, shared stories, and memories with family and friends. No wonder choosing a dining table can be hard! There are many factors to consider to make sure you have an attractive and practical setting that fits your space, offers adequate seating and fits in with your own personal style. If you’re ready to invest in a new table, this dining table guide will walk you through everything you need to know to make sure you furnish your dining room with functionality and style.

dining roomConsider Your Dining Table Shape

When choosing a dining table, one of the first things to consider is the shape – this helps to narrow your search a bit, too. You can choose from the whole array of selections based on your personal taste, but there are some general guidelines to follow when it comes to the shape of a dining table. It usually boils down to the size and shape of your dining room.

dining roomRectangle/Square

This is the most common shape for a dining table. This is largely because these shapes work best in rectangular rooms and most dining rooms are – you guessed it – rectangular! It’s a good shape to seat more than 4 people, so keep this in mind if you have a big family or love entertaining. But keep in mind, it’s not awesome for super large gatherings because there’s not as much room on the tabletop to fit place settings on both sides and food in the middle.

oval tableRound/Oval

Round tables are great because they can accommodate the most people. It’s easy to squeeze in an extra table setting or two where there aren’t any corners! They’re better for small rooms or rooms that aren’t square, as their rounded edges help create easy flow through the room. Circular tables are perfect for small gatherings and make an intimate and cozy setting for conversation. Oval tables help fill out longer, more narrow rooms.

dining roomFind the Right Dining Table Length

The size of your dining room table will depend on the size of your room and how many people you want to accommodate.

In order to make sure each diner has enough elbow room while chatting, follow these standard seats to size ratios:

  • A 48” long table seats 4 people
  • A 60” long table seats 6 people
  • A 72” long table seats 8 people

Of course, if you don’t mind a more intimate setting or have little ones at the table with you, you might be able to squeeze in an extra seat.

Expandable dining tables are also a great option! If you don’t need as much table space on the day-to-day, but want to have the flexibility for an occasional dinner party or holiday gathering, consider a table with leaves that can be dropped or inserted at the center of the table.

tall chairsGo For The Right Dining Table Height

Dining tables generally come in 3 height variations. Most standard dining tables fall between 28-30” to allow for comfortable legroom underneath. Counter height tables are closer to 36”. And pub-style tables are the tallest, falling in the range of 40-42”.

If you’re not married to the idea of a traditional dining table, counter and pub tables are worth considering! They’re convenient because they can double as a place to serve food or extra space for food prep and work especially well in small spaces with open kitchens.

dining roomPick Your Dining Table Material

Dining tables come in a wide range of materials. So when choosing a dining table, this factor mainly boils down to your own personal aesthetics and how much wear and tear your dining table will need to withstand. Here are some of the most popular material options for dining tables.

wood table

Wood

Wood is the most common choice for dining tables because it’s super durable and stands up to everyday butchering! It’s also easy to maintain or refinish with paint or stain as needed.

Natural wood offers a beautiful color and texture in a dining space and there are plenty of different types and shades of wood to choose from. Weathered or reclaimed wood looks great in a variety of styles and can also hide nicks or scratches – great for families! Solid wood is more expensive and can be damaged more easily, so it’s more of an investment.

Veneer

Veneer or laminate options can mimic the look of wood but are usually a much more affordable alternative. It is a non-porous material so it’s easy to clean and holds up to stains better than many other materials. However, if the veneer chips, stains, or get scratched, it can’t be refinished, unlike solid wood.

glass

Glass

Glass dining tables provide a sleek look for modern or contemporary spaces. They are great for small dining area because they don’t add any clunky visual weight to a room.

Glass is also super low maintenance and easy to clean. However, these tables might not be very family-friendly as they easily show finger smudges and their sharp edges can pose a threat to rambunctious little ones!

marble

Marble

Many people consider marble to be one of the best dining table materials. It’s luxurious and sophisticated and puts the natural beauty of the stone on full display. However, marble is a porous material meaning it can stain easily and quickly. While it’s great for elegant, traditional settings, it might not be the best choice if you have a family of young kiddos or like to entertain often.

Metal

A metal dining table can add a cool, industrial feel to any room. It’s also super durable and easy to clean up. Some metals can be prone to corrosion, however, so make sure to choose a cleaning product that won’t damage it.

dining chairsExplore Dining Table Styles

Finally, choosing the best dining table means finding the right style for your space. There are so many styles to consider, from modern to rustic, contemporary to traditional, and each style has plenty of variation within it! In addition to being functional, you want your dining table to reflect your personal style and complement the decor in the rest of your home.

Take our style quiz or check out our dining table style guide to learn all about the pros and cons of different dining tables!

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industrial lighting

The Industrial Lighting Trend Your Rooms Need for 2020

industrial lamp

Like to be on the cutting edge of design trends? Then you’ll want to keep reading. Because we see a major lighting trend on the horizon! You may have spotted them on Pinterest and Instagram: sleek, minimal, and sculptural industrial light fixtures. They’re everywhere, and we’re loving them. Usually made of matte black metal – or occasionally a brushed steel or brass – these pieces show off sculptural, minimal designs with no frills or ornamentation.

We’re predicting this trend will carry us through 2019 and well into 2020. So, you may want to jump on board! Because, while good lighting may seem like a small detail, it can make or break a room! Not sure how to chase down this style? We’re shedding some light (we had to) on this trend and giving you some bright ideas on how to make it your own!

industrial lightingMix and Match Styles

One of the reasons we love the industrial lighting trend is that you rarely see these pieces in purely industrial design. More often than not, these fixtures are the crowning jewels in minimal, modern, and even rustic spaces. They easily fit into multiple design styles, and can even help blend different styles together, like Rustic Minimalism.

We love how these pieces offer a note of edgy, minimal contrast that can be a lovely counterbalance to large, plush furniture or rooms with a more feminine design aesthetic. This lighting style is all about grounding a room and helps keeps it from becoming too much of one thing.

industrial lightingPlay With Proportion

The industrial lighting trend is all about the push and pulls between minimalism and boldness. While the fixtures themselves are minimal and sleek, you can amp up the scale to make a bold statement.

Take this oversized floor lamp, for example. It has a simple and streamlined design – but its large scale adds serious drama. Arching designs like this are also a great way to add a sense of overhead lighting if your room doesn’t have a built-in ceiling fixture.

industrial lightingGo Sculptural and Geometric

While industrial lamps and light fixtures are minimal in design, many are also incredibly sculptural. With that, they add a lot more than just light to the room – almost serving as works of art within your space. The floor lamp in this room features an interesting angular design that’s perfect for adding bold style and flooding a larger room with plenty of light!

industrial lightingScore with Sconces

You’ve probably noticed that many fixtures in the industrial lighting trend are wall-mounted sconces. These pieces are both beautiful and practical; they add sculptural style to a room but are also able to swivel, extend, and pivot, so you can shed light exactly where you need it. They’re perfect in a bedroom if you want to free up the surface area on your nightstand – all the more room for books, flowers, drinks, or midnight snacks! They’re also great above your sofa, in a dining room, or nestled in a reading nook.

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living room

Stylists Picks: 6 Best Gifts for New Homeowners

living roomBuying a home is a life milestone worth celebrating. But it can also be an extremely stressful time, with all the paperwork and packing and moving and decorating. And as the friend of a new homeowner, buying a housewarming gift can be pretty stress-inducing too! What to get that’s meaningful but doesn’t impose a design style on them? What’s too little or too much? Where to even begin?? To help you out, our stylist rounded up our favorite easy and thoughtful ideas for new homeowner gifts that aren’t a bottle of wine. Though, let’s be real, no one will complain about that one!

1. Candles

Candles are a fan favorite for housewarming gifts. They immediately cozy up a room and create a serene ambiance. We love soy candles for their clean-burning qualities – and bonus points if the scent is crafted with essential oils! This is a simple, lovely welcome gift for your new homeowner friends.

2. Coffee Table Books

Help you friend show off their style and sophistication with a lovely coffee table book. Simply pick one that goes along with their interests – whether it’s design, art, architecture, or even pop culture. You know your friends best, so find something that would inspire and delight them!

3. Door Mat

A doormat is probably not the first thing on the shopping list of a new homeowner, but it’s an item that helps set the tone and style for the rest of their home! This makes a welcome mat a lovely way to celebrate a new home and a great gift for new homeowners. We love welcome mats with a cute saying or sweet pattern. Though you could also go custom and opt for a personalized saying if your friend has a signature catchphrase!

4. Potted or Fake Plant

Who doesn’t want a feeling of life and vibrancy in their new home? This makes a bit of greenery a great way to celebrate a friend’s new digs. Whether its a real or fake plant (you know your friends best, after all), pick one that suits them and personalize it further with a cute pot or basket. If space is at a premium, opt for something small. Succulents are favorites of ours for their low-maintenance existence and loads of desert minimal style!

5. Coasters

A coaster set is a small gift, but one that will get a lot of use over the years. With so many style options, you can certainly find a set that suits your friend’s style. Our favorite part? They’re decorative, but unlike an art piece, you’re not making a major design decision for your new homeowners.

6. Modsy Design Package

Ready to get the friend-of-the-year award? Gift your friend a Modsy design package! Designing a new home can be stressful, but we help make it easy with designs that showcase exactly how new furniture will look and fit in their new home. And since you can shop hundreds of brands right through our website, we can save your friend the hassle of shopping for furniture and decor at a million different stores. Just imagine all the fun you’ll have browsing design ideas together! Trust us, this one will be a definite hit.

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Awkward nook ideas

5 Ways to Put the Awkward Nook Under the Stairs to Use

Awkward nook ideasMost homes have one. And most of us don’t know what to do about them. It’s those awkward spaces that feel too small to decorate or be useful, but feel like a waste of space if they’re not utilized. So, what can you do with a corner of the room that has weird features or an awkward nook other than ignore it?

Well, we’re big believers in embracing what you’ve got and getting creative. So today, our designers are helping us address one of the repeat offenders in the awkward spaces category: the awkward nook under the stairs. We’ll show you five clever ways to put this space to work and make it functional!

1. Entryway Storage

If your awkward space under the stairs is near your front door, try turning the nook into entryway storage. Designating this nook for shoes, coats, umbrellas, and bags will not only give function to this little corner – it will give all that entryway clutter a designated home. Now that’s a win-win!

Other than coat hooks, we love the idea of adding shelving for more functionality and utilizing baskets for an easy, beautiful catchall for extra clutter and kids stuff. You could even tuck your pet’s food and water dishes under the lowest slope of the stairs for maximum utilization of the space!

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awkward nook2. Kids Corner

When you think of a nook under the stairs, you might immediately think of Harry Potter. But we’re making a space that’s way cheerier than Harry’s cupboard under the stairs! You can easily turn your nook under the stairs into a cozy play corner for your little ones. Just add a cushy bean bag chair, a few baskets and bins to store their toys, and perhaps an easel for drawing or painting or a small table for crafts. With that, this little nook may become their favorite corner of the house! (Just make sure to block off the lower space to ensure no one bonks their head!)

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awkward nook office3. Office Nook

Want a home office but don’t have an extra room to designate for it? We’ve got your fix. Just tuck a desk and chair into this alcove, and voila! You officially have a home office. Add a favorite piece of art for inspiration and make sure you find a good desk lamp. If you have a little extra space, you can even add file storage like we did here for added functionality.

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4. Extra Storage

One of our most-requested room features is extra storage. If that’s you, why not turn this awkward nook into just that—a space for extra storage! If it’s a smaller space, try tucking a trio of baskets in the corner. You could also go for a storage bench, or even a full-fledged credenza if you have the room!

We added a petite dresser to ours to give this nook a little splash of style, as well as three drawers full of storage space. We also had room to sneak in an extra stool alongside it, which can easily be pulled into the living space when you have guests over need another seat on the fly!

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5. Reading Nook

Does any design idea sound as cozy and exciting as a reading nook? If this is the living room feature of your dreams, consider turning the awkward space under your stairs into just that!

The key ingredients to a reading nook? Well, it begins with a comfy chair. Add a footstool or pouf, a side table for coffee or tea, and top it off with a bookcase full of your favorite reads.

Does your pooch like to stay nearby when you curl up with a book? Tuck their bed in the corner and get ready for a cozy night in!

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guest room essentials

Stress-Free Hosting: 7 Things Every Great Guest Room Needs

guest room essentialsHosting season never seems to end! And with Fall gearing up, Thanksgiving and hungry guests are just around the corner. Whether you’re hosting an intimate get together or the whole family, being the host with the most extra bedrooms is no easy feat.

But fret not, the secret to stress-free hosting isn’t skipping town for the weekend, it’s a well-prepped guest room that’s sure to impress.

Since you probably already are familiar with the guest room basics like a bed frame, comfy mattress, and clean linens, here are 7 of our favorite ways to whip your guest room into shape, all before your in-laws arrive.

1. Set Up a Place to Unpack

After they lug their suitcase up the stairs, your guests will appreciate having a place to park their luggage and unpack.

Try placing a bench or a pair of poufs at the foot of the bed. This also doubles as a great place for them to take shoes off or get ready for the day.

fall guest room

2. Keep Guests Feeling Cozy

No matter the season, give your guests the hotel treatment by readying your guest room with a basket stocked with extra linens, pillows, and blankets.

Think cozy cashmere throws, cable-knit blankets, and fluffy pillows for winter, or linen sheets and cotton throws for the warmer seasons.

3. Dress to Impress

Sometimes it’s those finishing touches that truly round out the guest room ambiance.

A full-length mirror is just the accent piece that brings a luxe look and feel to the space. Place one against a wall for your guests to use while they get dressed for breakfast or dinner.

guest room ideas

4. Start a Conversation With Art

Tell your story to visitors through the art and objects you display in your home.

While this might not seem like an essential, showcasing unique art and accessories is a great way to make your guests’ stay more memorable.

Not sure what to pick? Think about choosing pieces that will spark a conversation – photographs from your trip to Iceland? Perfect. A woven plate that looks better on the wall than in the kitchen? Yes please!

5. Make Storage Easy

Set your guests up for success with a handy place to stash clothes, toiletries, and even surprise hostess gifts (wishful thinking?).

A stylish dresser and pair of nightstands is a great place to start! Also consider pulling in a woven hamper for your guests to easily toss used towels and linens. This simple addition majorly ups the hospitality factor.

6. Ensure Ample Lighting

Place a pair of reading lamps on the nightstands, but don’t forget to think about lighting for the rest of your guest room as well.

Sconces above a dresser or on the wall opposite the bed can be a light-touch way to add more sources of illumination, while a floor lamp by a window will cast a warm glow that can help cozy up the ambiance for your guests.

7. Make Room for Personal Space

Give your guests a place to relax and unwind with a cozy reading nook or desk area. This is a great, no-pressure way for them (and you) to enjoy some personal space during their visit.

Add a bookcase with old and new tomes for guests to peruse, and even include a tray stocked full of goodies like coffee, tea, and snacks.

It’s these finishing elements that can truly make a space feel homey for visitors.

 

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red headboard

5 Designer-Approved Ways to Design a Red Bedroom

red bedding

Red is a daring and vivacious color that can instantly transform your bedroom. However, the color has long been known to evoke aggression, passion and energy that, in overwhelming amounts, can make your room feel really intense and hard to relax in. If you’re thinking up red bedroom ideas, it’s important to use it in a way that doesn’t interfere with your ability to chill out and retreat in your personal sanctuary. Here are our best tips for red bedroom design – try one or multiple in your red bedroom!

red headboard1. Ground Your Room With a Red Bed Frame

A plush red bed frame is a perfect way to incorporate a vibrant red into your bedroom. It will make a bold statement without overwhelming the space. And if you want extra flair, you can kick it up a notch with a few more red accents around the room.

Stylist Tip: Cool off your red bed frame with blue accents. This classic color combo will steer your red bedroom away from aggressive and into more balance.

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red bedroom paint2. Add a Red Wall Color

For the extra daring designer, a red wall color might be just the dramatic look you’re after. But it’s important to choose the right hue! We opted for a shade of clay red, which still achieves the bold look you want but feels sophisticated at the same time. A more muted red hue like this also pairs better with other colors in the space, unlike a super flashy firetruck red.

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red bedding3. Add Pops of Red with Bedding and Pillows

Red bedding and pillows are an easy, low-cost way to incorporate red. The patterned duvet here adds a pop of red but doesn’t feel too bold or become the only thing your eye can see in the space. And the red pillows help bring the look together with added layers of coziness.

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red prints4. Sprinkle in Red Decor

You don’t need to go overboard on red to infuse your bedroom with the brilliance and energy of the color. Try adding a few pops of red with your lamps, art, and a bench. That way the room feels balanced but not overwhelming. You can always flex up or down later by adding more or swapping out.

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bed rug5. Try a Red Rug

Another easy way to incorporate a bold red touch is to add a red rug. More than a furniture piece or room decor, this really grounds your room in the color red. And a traditional pattern feels sophisticated and instantly warms up any space. And unlike red walls, you can easily move the rug to another room later if you decide the red bedroom look is no longer your cup of tea!

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6 Reasons Your Bedroom Needs a Rug

bedroom

Pretty much any room in your home can benefit from a rug, but they are especially nice in a bedroom. Your bedroom is the most intimate, cozy room in the house, after all! Bedroom rug ideas take many forms to be it as wall-to-wall coverings, layered on top of carpet, or large area rugs, and they can instantly add excitement to an otherwise simple space. That’s why the list of basic bedroom essentials pretty much always includes a bed, dresser, nightstand, and a rug!

In case you’re not totally sold on the idea yet, here are 6 reasons why your bedroom needs a rug.

bedroom with nightstand1. They Keep Your Feet Cozy

It’s no secret that carpeted floors are a lot softer than hardwood or tile – not to mention more comfortable to walk and stand on. Rugs feel warm and cozy on your feet and the softness gives your floors the flexibility to absorb the weight of your footsteps. This makes for a gentler surface to tip-top across with bare feet. Plus, we can all agree that it’s much more pleasant to step out of bed onto something plush instead of hardwood.

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bedroom

2. They Reduce Noise

Another main benefit of a rug is that it will significantly dampen the noise in your space. It’s quieter inside your house without the sounds of footsteps clicking back and forth across the bedroom and it also makes your room less echoey. Hard surfaces don’t absorb sound in the same way that carpet does, so you’ll notice the volume in your bedroom will be softer. Plus, those noisy neighbors downstairs won’t sound as loud when you’re trying to snooze.

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3. They Add Personality

Maybe the most obvious reason why you need a rug in your bedroom is to show off your style! A rug adds color, pattern, and texture to a space to give it a more polished and personal look. It’s also a super-easy way to refresh your space without breaking the bank! A new rug can totally change the look and feel of your room in a flash.

 

bedroom

4. They Help Define the Space

You can use bedroom rugs to define or separate your space. This is especially useful in studio apartments where you might want the bedroom section to feel separate from your living area. And if your bedroom is on the larger side, a rug under the bed can help “zone” and define the space. If you already have carpet, this can also be a great way to add contrast and create further definition between particular areas.

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bedroom

5. They Protect Your Floors

If you have beautiful floors it might seem counterintuitive to cover them up with a rug. But, as you can see, there are lots of reasons why a bedroom needs a rug and you can rest assured knowing that it is actually helping to keep your floors safe and scuff-free! A bedroom rug is the easiest way to protect floors, especially in high-traffic areas, from scratches and scuffs.

 

bedroom

6. They Tie the Room Together

A rug is absolutely one of our bedroom must-haves because, without it, a room can look unfinished. If you’ve ever walked into a bedroom with bare floors, you know the feeling. It can appear stark and scattered, as though the furniture is floating in the room. A rug is a perfect one-step formula for making any bedroom (or any room, really) look pulled together and calm, perfect for getting a good night’s sleep.

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gulf wall paint

5 Bold Wall Color Ideas We Love for Any Room

If you have a hankering to change up the look of your space, bold wall colors might be just what you need. Paint sets the mood for a room and can instantly add personality and style to an otherwise lackluster space. Even if none of your furniture changes, a new coat of paint can totally transform the look and feel of the room. If you’re looking to try out something a bit bolder, here are our 5 picks for bold wall colors that help set a mood.

charcoal blue paintCharcoal Blue

We love this Charcoal Blue bold wall paint by Sherwin Williams. It’s bold and dark but has a grey tint that also gives it a neutral quality to make it super versatile. It’s perfect if you have a lot of white/neutrals in your space because the color adds contrast and makes light furniture pop instead of appearing drab. And, the richness of the deep blue is cool but doesn’t feel chilly.

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gulf stream paintGulf Stream

If you’re really ready to go bold and conquer, consider this Gulf Stream color by Sherwin Williams. This intense aqua blue is as bold as they come! It’s a lovely, vibrant hue that brings the tropical vibes of Miami right into your home. This bold paint color definitely makes a statement for a person who is unafraid of color. And it pairs really well with bright furniture and accents, like this gold sofa and neon artwork!

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black swan paintBlack Swan

An almost purple shade of grey, this Black Swan paint color by Sherwin Williams is just as intense as it sounds! This shade is not for the faint of heart – it’s a hue that is daring and unapologetically bold. You will definitely set a distinct mood with this color, although the kind of mood depends on how you accessorize. It’s a great hue for eclectic interiors or in rooms where you want the materials to shine, like this luxe armchair and the yellow porcelain vase.

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Radicchio wall paint Radicchio

If you want to really spice up your room, go for this Radicchio shade by Farrow & Ball. The super red hot color that makes a great compliment to natural tones. If you’re not ready to deck out the entire room in Radicchio, why not consider it for an accent wall or a room that isn’t your main living space. Red is a great color for spaces where you want to feel energized and lively, like an entry or bathing space!

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green black paintGreen Black

Almost a dark shade of olive, this Green Black hue from Farrow & Ball is the most neutral of the bunch. This is a great color for monochrome spaces that use other shades of grey. It helps foster a sense of calm and peace because it’s on the cooler side of the spectrum. It’s also neutral enough to perfectly complement a variety of styles, including modern, industrial and contemporary designs.

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first apartment

10 Design Tips to Make Your First Apartment Feel Like Home

Meet Alessandra Wood, the Director of Style at Modsy. With a PhD in Design History and an M.A. in the History of Decorative Arts and Design, she is a bona fide design expert. Today, we’re picking her brain on how to decorate your first apartment on a budget! Here are her best tips to help you get started.

So it’s finally happened. You just signed the lease for your first apartment. Congrats! But once you get the keys, the excitement may start to dwindle. What are you going to do with this space? How will you decorate it – and on a budget, no less?

Well, it’s time to flex your decorating muscles and make a space that reflects your style (and doesn’t feel like a college dorm room). Don’t worry – it’s simpler than you think! Use this post as a “first apartment checklist” and you’ll have a space you feel at home in and are proud of in no time.

first apartment1. Size Matters

Make sure your furniture is the appropriate scale for your space. Don’t try to cram a big sectional into a tiny space or fit a tiny futon in a large sitting area. Many furniture brands now have apartment lines, designing sofas at a smaller scale to fit the constraints of an apartment.

For smaller spaces, I also recommend looking for floor lamps that have big design impact but smaller bases – like the one pictured here – so they don’t take up too much floorspace in your room.

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2. Find Furniture that Pulls Double Duty

If you’re in a smaller space, look for dual-purpose furniture to stretch your dollars and maximize your space. Pull-out sofas are a great way to have guests over without worrying about inflating and deflating an air mattress.

And it’s not just sofas that can pull double duty. If you work from home or are working extra hours out of the office, dining areas are an easy solution that can double as a work-station, so you don’t need to worry about cramming a desk into your space.

studio apartment3. Add Sneaky Storage

When it comes to smaller spaces, storage is a must! Only have one closet? No problem. Look for beds that come with built-in storage or that have space underneath to place storage bins. Bring in bookshelves that match your style to keep books and knick knacks organized.

I love finding cool baskets or ottomans with hidden storage for hiding clutter, my dog’s toys, and things you don’t want to put on display.

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first apartment4. Show Some Personality

Bring your personality into the space through art and decor. For your first apartment, don’t worry about spending too much on new prints or expensive mirrors. Instead, consider putting photos of friends and family into new frames and hanging your diploma and other accolades front and center.

And add in any art or decor you’ve collected on trips and travels! Then, sprinkle in a few smaller pieces to round things out – whether it’s a throw pillow with personality, a special print, or a sculptural knick knack that caught your eye.

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5. Beware of Freebies

When you’re on a tight budget, it’s tempting to just take free items from family or Craigslist. But I’d encourage you to be picky with hand-me-downs so your space still feels like a reflection of you. If you can’t afford a new sofa, instead look for new pillows and throws that can freshen up the one you inherited and cover up any wear and tear.

The same goes with other key pieces like bookshelves or coffee tables. A new coat of paint can often make something feel like new – and you can cover any dents or scratches with fresh flowers or small decor pieces.

first apartment6. Layer On The Textiles

Make your space feel lived in with layers. Pile pillows and throws on the sofa for a comfortable feel. Layer rugs to bring in color or texture to the floor. Add a curated gallery wall to bring in pops of color. Mixing different textures and materials will make your space feel designed and well thought-out.

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7. Add Cozy Lighting

Is your space window-less or just feeling kind of drab? Use lighting to make it feel more homey. Combine task, overhead, and table lighting for different intensities. Lamps are also a great way to add some style and personality to your space. And, you can layer in candles for mood lighting, too!

first apartment8. Make Impermanent Changes

Often times landlords aren’t keen on tenants painting walls. But a bad wall color can really negatively impact a space! My favorite (and affordable) way to freshen up a room is to use removable wallpaper. This can add a pop of color and pattern to a room, and showcase your personal style in a bold way. I’d recommend just doing a single wallpapered wall as an accent to your room.

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first apartment9. Add Natural Elements

Bring life into your space through greenery! A boho style – which majors in greenery and natural textures – is perfect for all budget types and design styles. Place plants on shelves, bar carts, or even hang one from the ceiling to add texture everywhere you look.

Plants improve the oxygen quality in your home and add brightness and color to your space. Just make sure you look for plants that are suited for the types of light you get in your apartment. And if you’re afraid of killing your leafy friends, faux succulents and fiddle leaf fig trees are affordable way to get the look without the effort.

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10. Make Smart Investments

If your budget allows, invest in a piece of furniture that can be a statement piece for your space. What do you want to be the topic of conversation when guests enter your home? Is it an inviting velvet sofa for wine and cheese nights? A well-styled bar cart or a luxuriously cozy-looking bed?

My design philosophy is all about investing in one high-quality piece that you can take with you to your next apartment and beyond. And, if you’re really unsure where you’ll be in a few years, pieces like this often have a high resale value so you don’t have to stress about moving it!

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hidden storage ideas

Stylist Picks: 10 Clever Solutions For Extra, Hidden Storage

hidden storage ideasFinding smart ways to fit in some extra storage is a common dilemma among many of our Modsy customers. But jamming another bookcase or storage cabinet into an already crowded room isn’t always the best design solve. And if you’re pressed for space, the last thing you want is to spend money on another piece of furniture that’s just going to take up more square footage.

So instead, we’ve rounded up 10 of our favorite furniture pieces that come with hidden storage. Read on to get the scoop on our stylists’ best hidden storage ideas.

hidden storage ideas1. A Wooden Storage Bed

No matter the size of your bedroom, underbed storage is always a plus. Because beds are large pieces of furniture, the storage underneath packs a mighty punch. This makes for one of our favorite hidden storage ideas because it can easily take the place of a dresser. As a bonus, it keeps everything neatly tucked away out of sight!

Modern wooden storage beds also have drawers that are a seamless part of the design, so you won’t even be able to tell it’s working double just by looking.

Stylist Pick: Blair Queen Storage Bed

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hidden storage ideas2. An Upholstered Storage Bed

Solid-wood storage beds can be expensive, so an equally stylish alternative is an upholstered one. Not only is it more budget friendly, today’s upholstered storage beds have a classic and clean-lined look that make them super versatile pieces. Many of them have deep drawers that pull out from the foot of the bed, and they often come with a padded headboard. And who doesn’t love that?

Stylist Pick: Terrence Queen Bed

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3. A Clean-Lined Storage Sofa

A sofa with storage might sound too good to be true. But these magical pieces of furniture really do exist, and they come in modern and stylish designs to boot! We’re big fans of hidden storage ideas for small spaces, and sofas with storage are perfect since you can stash everything from blankets to kids toys in the compartments underneath the seat cushions.

Stylist Pick: Hughes Sofa with Storage

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4. A Glam Storage Coffee Table

One of the most stylish pieces in the bunch, we love this coffee table for its unexpected and spacious storage compartment. (Psst! If you can’t spot it, it’s hiding under the wooden top.) You can easily stow away blankets, remote controls, and games inside, while its metallic finish brings polish and shine to rustic and traditional living spaces alike.

Stylist Pick: Drum Storage Coffee Table

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hidden storage ideas5. A Classic Storage Ottoman

Probably our favorite living room storage staple, a traditional upholstered storage ottoman is endlessly versatile. You can use it as a coffee table, a footrest or even an extra seat in a pinch. One with storage inside for pillows and throws makes it even more of an essential in any classic living room setting.

Stylist Pick: Barrett Storage Ottoman

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6. A Contemporary Storage Bench

You can’t go wrong with a simple storage bench that also doubles as comfy seating. It can work in virtually any room, from the bedroom to the living room. But we love it most in an entry, where you can stash away shoes, umbrellas, picnic blankets, and other on-the-go accessories.

Stylist Pick: Fulton Charcoal Storage Bench

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7. A Chic Mirror With Storage

An easy way to sneak a tiny bit more storage into your room is to hang a slim mirror with a built-in ledge that can function as a catchall and display. We love this idea for an entry or a small nook as it makes the most of empty walls. Set a bowl on the ledge for keys, add a candle, or display some photographs to make it a focal point.

Stylist Pick: Perch Round Mirror with Shelf

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hidden storage ideas8. A Cool Storage Stool

If a storage ottoman is too big for your space, consider a little storage stool that can also work as a footrest or extra seating. We have our eyes on some of the more modern takes, which come in cool modular shapes and some are even upholstered in durable leather. The best part is that most modern storage stools are versatile in style and can work in modern, eclectic, or even rustic spaces.

Stylist Pick: Squad Storage Ottoman

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9. A Streamlined Storage Shelf

Who doesn’t love the simple, sleek look of a hanging shelf ledge? Sweeten the deal with designs that incorporate drawers for even more storage. Install one above a home office desk to stash away mail, wires, and other electronic accessories, or line a few along the wall in your living room to create a custom wall shelving vignette.

Stylist Pick: Hide N Seek Acacia Wood Storage Shelf

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10. A Polished Storage Trunk

Sometimes a good ole trunk does the trick. Especially when you need a place for bigger fluffy items, such as winter duvet covers, chunky blankets, oversized pillows, and winter clothes. While there are many steamer trunk and other vintage style designs out there, right now we’re loving wooden chests that add a little texture and polish. Try this burl wood trunk at the foot of your bed or in your living room for a stylish storage piece.

Stylist Pick: Burl Wood Cedar Lined Trunk

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studio apartment design hacks

Best Multi-Purpose Design Hacks – When Two Rooms Are Actually One

multi-purpose space hacksIf you live in a small space or need to make one room serve multiple functions, sometimes you need to get clever with your design. That’s where a few multi-purpose design hacks come in! We’re all about utilizing some creative design solutions to create distinct areas within a room, making it feel like two spaces in one.

Carving out distinct areas can be tricky, but it’s important to help the flow of the room when you need one space to have multiple functions. Here are our best hacks for dividing a multi-purpose space.

multi-purpose studio1. Use an Open Bookcase as a Room Divider

We love to create distinct spaces in an open room by using a bookcase as a room divider. This is a perfect solution for a studio apartment, where breaking up living and sleeping spaces is a common conundrum.

Using an open bookcase as a divider creates visual distinction without making your space feel smaller or blocking much-needed natural light. Bookcases are more substantial and have more visual impact than curtains, but they also provides function. Because in a small space, storage is at a premium – so this gives you added shelving and a visually pleasing divider. A win-win solution!

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multi-purpose space hacks2. Separate Your Living and Dining Spaces with a Floating Sofa

An open concept design is wonderful for so many reasons. The flow from room to room, more natural light, great for entertaining… just to name a few! But when you live in an open concept house, you probably want some sense of definition between your spaces.

One way to do this is by using a floating sofa to diving your living and dining space. The back of your sofa acts like a wall to help visually “zone” the room and create separation. Just make sure when using a floating sofa that there’s enough room to walk behind it without bumping into walls or other furniture.

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open layout design3. Create Zones with Rugs

Another way to create zones within an open concept space is to utilize rugs. Rugs can help visually distinguish between a living room and dining room, an office and a living space, or even a bedroom and a living space in a studio. Each rug creates a zone that helps make each “room” feel distinct. Bonus: Rugs are also a great way to add color, texture, and pattern to your space!

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studio apartment design hacks4. Use One Piece of Furniture for Multiple Functions

In a small space like a studio, it’s important to find furniture that can serve multiple functions – in this case, using a dresser as a nightstand! For super small spaces, this is an easy way to create division between spaces.

In this room, the dresser breaks up the sleeping and living spaces, creating the sense of two rooms that are distinct. This also provides significantly more storage than a nightstand while cutting down on the pieces of furniture you need to fill your space.

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bedroom essentials

10 Essentials Your Bedroom Needs Right Now

bedroom essentialsThere’s no fixed formula when it comes to designing the perfect bedroom. But, there is such a thing as the perfect bedroom. At least the perfect bedroom for you. Regardless of your personal style or budget, it simply comes down to the bedroom essentials. From plenty of good lighting to a plush rug and soft bedding, we’ve rounded up the top 10 must-haves for a vibrant and thoughtful bedroom design. Read on to get inspired and get our tips for bringing each bedroom essential into your own space.

1. Layered Bedding

No magic formula here. You can always count on good, comfy bedding as a surefire way to brighten your bedroom and make it look thoughtfully pulled together. A bed with just two standard pillows can look a bit sparse and empty, so pile on lots of colorful and textured pillows, make sure you have soft sheets and a fluffy duvet, and top it all off with a throw blanket.

2. A Stylish Headboard

If there’s a piece of furniture that signifies a grown-up bedroom, it’s a stylish headboard. Just like nice bedding, a solid bed frame with a fun headboard adds instant personality and polish. Plus, it provides added support for leaning back with a good book in bed.

Read This Next: Is an Upholstered Bed Right for You?

3. A Comfy Rug

A bedroom without a rug can feel cold and uninviting. Make sure to choose a rug that adds color, texture, or pattern to your bedroom from the ground up. This will help tie the room together and muffle sounds and the pitter-patter of footsteps. The best part? You’ll always step out of bed on to something soft and cozy.

4. Good Curtains

While we love a bedroom that gets lots of natural light, we appreciate the privacy that curtains provide for our most intimate space in the home. Find curtains that have subtle texture and can filter in sunlight when you need an afternoon nap. For a more vibrant approach, pick curtains that pull in colors from your rug, pillows, and other furnishings.

bedroom essentials5. Ample Lighting

All rooms benefit from having ample, layered lighting, but in a bedroom it’s especially important. Ensure there’s more than one light source in your space. Think an overhead lamp, a floor lamp in a corner, table lamps on your bedside tables, and even an extra task light on the dresser. This bedroom essential will create a layered lighting effect that will elevate as well as cozy up your space.

6. A Bench For the Foot of the Bed

Tuck in an extra place to sit beyond your bed to increase the function of your bedroom. A bench at the end of your bed offers a stylish place to plop bags, take off/put on shoes, and –if you’re a germaphobe – also helps keep street clothes away from your sleeping space. The end-of-bed bench can also serve as a luggage rack if you’re often on the go. If you’re tight on storage, opt for a bench with cubbies or one with a seat top that flips open with a big compartment for holding extra pillows and blankets.

rustic bedroom essentials7. Storage Dresser and Nightstands

And speaking of storage, it might seem like a no-brainer, but plenty of enclosed storage is a bedroom must. Not only does this help minimize clutter, dressers and nightstands make for additional surfaces for corralling everyday items, such as keys, wallets, sunglasses, books and knick knacks.

Read This Next: 8 Things You Can Replace Your Nightstand With

8. A Statement Mirror

Let’s face it: a mirror, be it a full-length version or a large one that hangs above a dresser, is a practical and stylish addition to any bedroom. It establishes your bedroom as a place to get ready. It also adds a touch of glamour and makes your room feel more open and airy by bouncing light around the space.

9. Personal Decor

Make the space feel truly you by showcasing bold accents and items that carry meaning for you. This is a fun way to add more personality to your room and warm up with a sense of familiar comfort. Think favorite books and perfume bottles, pretty ceramics you love and vases with fresh flowers, beautiful trays and jewelry holders. These are all perfect objects you can display on your dresser to play up a cozy, lived-in vibe.

10. Playful and Graphic Art

Just like how all the little objects are an intimate expression of your personal style, so is some eye-catching art. Hanging a favorite painting or colorful abstract print in the bedroom is a great way to add depth and inject color into your personal haven. Hang a few pieces to instantly bring your bedroom walls to life.

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hot weather design tips

7 Hot Weather Design Tips to Help You Stay Cool in Style

hot weather design tipsIt’s hot out! Summer can usher in lots of fun, but the heat can also bring a rise in tempers. To help you keep your cool, we’re serving up some hot weather design tips so you can create the perfect escape from the sizzle of summer. Check out these 7 summer design tips for designing a space that helps you cool down and beat the heat.

1. Materials Matter

For beat-the-heat design, pick materials that make your home look and feel extra cool. Linens, stone, and metals are great choices because they look smooth and serene and don’t soak up heat. Avoid leather, which is no fun to sit on (or stand up after!) on a hot day.

hot weather design tips2. Cool Tones

When it comes to cooling down a space, half the battle is mental. Let your home help you by choosing cool tones for your walls, furniture, and accents that will promote chill, zen energy like these soft whites and pale blues. Stepping into a cool-colored room helps you chill out even when life turns up the heat.

3. Plants for Days

Not only do plants keep your air fresh, they also bring the outdoor vibes indoors. That way, even when you’re taking refuge in the AC on a sweltering hot day, you can still soak up a little of the great outdoors. (Bonus: Indoor plants help reduce stress, increase oxygen levels and boost your mood!)

4. Breezy Bedding

Summer heat doesn’t have to interfere with your sleep. Steer away from heavy fabrics like flannel sheets and opt for breezy bedding to help keep you cool at night. Double down with a cool colored duvet and make your bedroom a peaceful oasis.

5. Calming Curtains

Natural light is a great mood booster but letting too much sunshine into your home can quickly raise the temps! Keep the sun from heating things up with the right set of curtains. You can choose options that will help diffuse the direct sunlight but still allow enough rays to keep your space feeling cheery and bright.

hot weather design tips6. Libations at the Ready

Nothing helps cool you down on a hot day like an ice cold beverage. Stock a bar car with your favorite drink so they are ready when you need a quick cool-down. Plus, you’ll always be prepared when guests drop by.

7. Diffuse Good Vibes

A diffuser with a few drops of your favorite essential oil is a must-have when it comes to creating a zen space. While it can’t help you turn down the summer heat, it can promote good vibes to keep you feeling your best.

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small space hacks

8 Small Space Hacks to Make Any Room Feel Instantly Larger

When you live in a small space – whether it’s an apartment, a dorm room, or just a petite house – you’ve got design challenges aplenty. But not all small spaces are created equal. While many are blessed with natural light or tall ceilings, more often than not, when it comes to their architecture, small spaces don’t do themselves any favors. Be it puny windows or a wonky shaped room, there are certain features that can make your small room feel even tinier than it is.

All that to say, designing a small space is no laughing matter. And while it can feel it can feel like an impossible challenge, with a few simple hacks even the smallest rooms can be completely transformed. To prove it, we’ve put together some small space hacks that will make a small room feel instantly larger, no contractor required.

small space hacks1. Utilize Vertical Space

One of the keys to designing a small space is to not dwell on how small it is. Instead, embrace what your room has to offer and work with it. One of the best ways to do this is to make use of your vertical space.

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With square footage at a premium, vertical space is a great way to add some practical functionality to your room. Wall-mounted shelving maximizes storage without taking up a ton of floor space and can multitask as a place to house books, clothing, storage, and decorative objects – adding both function and personality to your space.

Stylist Tip: One of our favorite small space hacks for your bedroom is to try replacing your nightstand with a bookcase. This will triple your available storage without taking up any more floor space. Not to mention, replacing your nightstand means one less piece of furniture to buy!

2. Stay Organized with Hidden Storage

Clutter instantly makes any space feel claustrophobic – but the effects are especially noticeable in small rooms! Keep clutter at bay with creative storage solutions.

In small spaces, we love furniture that does double duty, like this bench with interior storage. These three-drawer nightstands also offer that extra little bit of storage that a small space needs! And we love woven baskets for good-looking storage solutions that allow us to tuck things out of sight but within reach.

3. Draw the Eye Up

One of the greatest culprits of making your small space look (and feel) smaller? Low ceilings. Luckily, there’s an easy trick for combating this optical illusion. Hang your curtains high! A good 6 inches above the top of your window frame is an easy rule of thumb.

Why does this help? Because when you hang your curtains too low, your room will look smaller and more cramped, but hanging your curtains high will create the illusion that your space is taller and will make your ceilings look instantly higher. Just make sure you get curtains that are long enough, so they still hit the floor when you hang them extra high!

small space hacks4. Save Floor Space

You don’t want to over-stuff a small space with furniture. But on a practical level, you want to make sure you have what you need to accommodate both day-to-day living and entertaining. The last thing you want is a bunch of extra seating that you never use crowding your small space.

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Instead, look for clever ways that you can tuck extra seating into your space that won’t take up valuable floor space. Try tucking a few stools under a console, or placing a storage bench behind your floating sofa. Seating that you can pull out when you need it, and tuck away when you don’t, is a great way to make use of dead space.

5. Go for Clear Furniture

When all else fails, a good old optical illusion is a great way to make your small space seem larger. One of our favorite small space hacks, clear furniture in glass or acrylic is a great way to open up a small space.

These pieces serve their functional purpose, but they have the added benefit of not taking up visual space or adding weight to the room. It’s a small space win-win!

small space hacks6. Choose Leggy Furniture

Bulky furniture that sits on or close to the floor adds a sense of visual clutter and makes your room feel heavier. On the other hand, furniture perched on elegant, tapered legs makes small spaces feel more open.

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Even if they take up the same amount of floor space, furniture on long, spindly legs creates more of a light and airy feeling. And the extra floor space under a couch or bed that’s perched on legs offers a place for easy storage.

Design Historian’s Note: As styles go, Mid-Century Modern furniture is a great choice for small spaces. The furniture from this movement was heavily influenced by the life in smaller, urban spaces, hence the functional and small space-friendly designs.

7. Layer Your Lighting

In a smaller space, you may be tempted to minimize your lighting so you don’t add more to an already small room. But multiple lighting sources are actually your friend in a small space. Don’t be afraid of an overhead light, wall sconces, and a few table lamps. These varied light sources create depth and make a room feel larger. It’s also a great way to soften the lighting if your space doesn’t get a lot of natural light.

8. Add Mirrors

Just like clear furniture, mirrors create an optical illusion that makes small spaces feel more open. They trick the eye into thinking there’s more space and they bounce light around, which helps create an open, bright feel.

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bedroom office design

7 Design Hacks for When Your Bedroom is also Your Home Office

bedroom office designWouldn’t it be nice if your morning commute consisted of simply waking up and walking a few steps across the room? With the work-from-home trend on the rise, that dream is becoming a reality for many people! And whether you’re working full-time from home, need a place to study, or just want a dedicated space that isn’t your sofa to answer emails, a home office is a great solution to limit distractions and get your brain into work-mode.

Unfortunately, not everyone has an extra room they can dedicate to a home office. But, with a little creativity, you can create an office space in your bedroom! Surprising as that may sound, your bedroom can be that peaceful spot you need, away from the distractions of the main living area. Ready to get to work? Here are 7 ways to create a bedroom that also doubles as a comfortable and stylish office.

bedroom office designMaster Bedroom Office Design

If you have a spacious master bedroom, consider incorporating a full desk set-up for your workday. You can make use of an open wall or, even better, a wall with windows because who doesn’t love working with a view?

But don’t let your workspace cramp your bedroom style. Make sure you have enough space to walk around and pick furniture that won’t be an eyesore. Look for a chair that tucks under the desk to create more space when you’re not working. And a desk with plenty of storage to tuck away supplies will help you strike the perfect work-life balance, visually.

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bedroom office designSmall Bedroom With a Desk Space

If you’ve got only a small bedroom to work with, try swapping out your nightstand for a desk. This gives you all the functionality of both a desk and nightstand in one and it also means you have one less furniture piece to purchase! If you go for this set-up, be sure to place your reading lamp on the inside edge of the desk to keep it accessible for both working and reading in bed.

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bedroom office designHome Office With a Sofa Bed

Guest rooms are great, but they can feel like a waste of space the other 350 days of the year when you don’t have visitors. If this sounds familiar, make your guest room work year-round as your home office!

You can either go the route of a full-sized bed with a desk set-up, or – if you plan to use this office on the regular – try designing a space with a sofa bed to create a fully-functional office that can quickly convert to a guest room when needed.

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bedroom office designOffice With a Daybed

If you have a room that’s super tight on space, consider an office with a daybed. Without a full-size bed, you can incorporate a larger desk, a bookshelf, and a comfortable chair without feeling too cramped. The daybed has a smaller footprint and offers a place to relax during working hours and the flexibility of a sleeping space for the occasional couch-surfing guest.

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bedroom office designBookcase With a Desk

If you think you absolutely don’t have room for a workspace, think again! This design sneaks an office space into even the smallest bedrooms or living rooms, and it can even fit into an entryway or pass-through space. What is this magical solution? A wall-mounted bookcase!

Many bookcase models come with an option that features a desk in place of lower shelves. This makes for a handy workspace that won’t take up extra floor space. This is also a great way to combine functional storage with a workspace. Now all you need it to find a comfortable chair (or steal one from your dining room table) and voila! Your very own home office.

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bedroom office designWorkstation in a Kid’s Room

Kids rooms can quickly get cluttered up with all kinds of stuff – but there’s no arguing that your budding scholar needs a proper workspace, too! If your kiddo doesn’t need a huge desk, you can try tucking a simple and sleek option into the corner. Even take a cue from small spaces and make it double as a nightstand. This way, they have a designated place to tackle homework or get creative with some arts and crafts.

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bedroom office designDesk Under a Loft Bed

Got a teenager who wants their space to feel grown-up and trendy? This cool, loft bedroom office design might do the trick. The empty space below the top bunk is the perfect spot for a cozy desk set-up that will also save floor space. This is also a great way to extend the life of the bunk bed you just bought a few years ago!

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guest room essentials

Guest Room Essentials to Help You Prep For Summer Visitors In Style

guest room essentialsSummer is here and finally in full swing. We’ll be the first to admit that we’ve already made all our summer travel plans and blocked off all the weekends we’ll be hosting guests from out of town. Because we all know it’s the time of year when everyone is trying to squeeze in mini weekend trips here and there to see and hang out with friends in other cities, and vice versa.

And while we love a super charming Airbnb for our friends when they visit, we also love playing host and having friends stay over in our home. For one, it saves them from spending money on lodging; but we also love that it’s more intimate and gives us more time to kick back and catch up.

But we’ve also learned that to ensure your guests have a relaxing visit, you’ll need to prepare a guest room that’s comfortable and inviting. From making sure you have plenty of storage for clothes and a place to unpack, to adding greenery and small personal touches like books and a bedside carafe, having the right guest room essentials will make all the difference for your visiting friends.

Read on to get our hosting prep tips for setting up a guest room that will instantly make all your visitors feel right at home.

guest room essentialsFocus On Function First

A functional guest room is a comfortable one. That means start by making sure there’s a good flow and setup, where the bed is positioned away from the door and there’s enough room to walk around. Matching bedside tables with drawers will help frame your bed and establish a more composed look.

Add a bench at the foot of the bed to give your guests a place to unpack their luggage but also to pile on extra pillows when they go to bed at night. If you have room beyond the bed, a dresser can be just the piece that pulls together your space with a more thoughtful, designed look. All in all, focus on making sure you have the essential furniture pieces first, as they will be the key to a bedroom that is cozy and welcoming versus just another spare room where hosting guests feels like an afterthought.

guest room essentialsCarve Out A Dressing Area

There’s something so simple yet lovely about a guest room that features a designated space for getting dressed, whether it’s a walk-in closet (a dream!) or just a corner that’s set up with a dresser and full-length mirror. This is an easy way to elevate the look and feel in a guest room and bring in a hugely welcoming vibe.

A bonus touch? Ready a laundry basket in the corner so that they can easily toss in dirty towels and bed sheets without the awkward hand-off when they leave your home!

guest room essentialsMake Room For Lounging

Our idea of a relaxing guest room is one that actually inspires lounging and kicking back. A cozy chair by the window or even just a reading armchair in a corner of the room will do the trick.

To play up a laid-back atmosphere, round out the space with a small side table that’s ready with books or a vase of fresh flowers, and make room for some vibrant greenery. You want to build out a mini seating area that feels like an oasis within the guest room, so take the time to select pieces that have comfy cushioning and soft, inviting textures, like woven accents and polished stone and wooden finishes.

guest room essentialsCozy Up Your Bed

At the end of the day, it all comes down to a well-made and comfy bed for your guests. So pile on the best pillows and shams and layer in homey touches like cool art above the bed and a pretty bedside lamp. These thoughtful details are what separate a stylish guest room from a cookie-cutter hotel space completely void of character.

Our favorite hostess touches? A water carafe and glass set for the bedside and a pamper basket that’s ready with towels, bathrobes, slippers, and toiletries like nice soaps and toothpaste. It’s just the personal touch that’s sure to instantly put your guests at ease.

 

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