Monday, November 4, 2013

Making a House a Home

One of the things I struggle with in decorating is keeping our style from looking too sterile. I tend to lean towards looks like this, this and this. I love the clean lines and contemporary vibe, but as I've gotten older I have really wanted to have our home feel cozy and inviting. The contemporary look doesn't always lend itself naturally to the warm and fuzzies, so I've been trying to make tweaks that will create a welcoming atmosphere in our sweet abode. 

One of those things is to make things personal - kid art! Now let me start by saying I am not one of those mothers who keeps every piece of paper her kids draw on. I do not generally see the inner Picaso of my children and simply don't understand what their little minds were envisioning whilst drawing such scribbles. With that said, they can make some meaningful art with a little parental direction. :) 

The kids' bathroom is very colorful, so when I saw this on pinterest I thought it would go well in there. Here's our take on it:

Another thing I did was swap out some colorful pops in our decor with more neutral colors. Initially I made turquoise the accent color for our kitchen, dining room, and music room. I realized quickly that turquoise clashes with the two holidays I decorate most for - Christmas and Thanksgiving. Now some would argue that I really need some color in my house! Gray, black, white and brown are very bland and some color would go a long way. I agree! I have just decided that my color will come with the changing seasons. This also satisfies my need for things to change frequently - I can bring out "new" decor as each season or holiday comes around. 

 With that in mind, we went from this in our dining room:

 To this (ignore that my silhouette changed, that's been done for a while now):

I have been loving all things chevron recently, so that made the cut for the fabric filled frames. The silhouettes got some new scrapbook paper mattes, with a gray/brown damask type pattern. Here's a close up since it's hard to make out above:

Another thing I have always been leery of is mixing wood with contemporary black materials. We have a shiny black piano, so I thought I was limited to sticking with that kind of furniture. After browsing magazines and decor sites, I've decided that is a myth! I saw so many examples of mixtures containing all sorts of woods, matte and shiny black pieces, etc. I decided to try it and I think it automatically made it look more inviting and less formal/stuffy. We went from this:

To this:

I still like the look of the first way we had it, but it definitely isn't as warm as the new setup. And don't worry, the turquoise items won't go to waste! They will come back out in the spring. It's still a work in progress, but I really think adding in the wood and other textures (like the fur throw) helped warm it up a bit. What are your thoughts? I would love to hear from someone who is an outsider and doesn't live here! 

We also moved the desk into the dining room, which I think helped the music room seem more like a visiting room. More seating and no electronics helps the cozy factor in the music room.

Stay tuned this week for updates in the kitchen!

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