How to maximize your bedroom storage?

Being an Interior Design, I ashamed to talk about what happened to me last week, but its something I think would be beneficial to share.  While pulling out my winter wardrobe and comforter, I created an avalanche.  Boxes filled with collected knick-knacks, books, photo albums, pillows, blankets, keep-sakes, unimaginable amounts of forgotten here’s and there’s came pouring out of the closet and all over my bedroom. And there I stood, a self-proclaimed neat freak, amongst piles and piles of ‘stuff.’ And as I sifted through the wreckage I realized I couldn’t part with anything that lay about the floor and at the same time I couldn’t imagine boxing it all up again and hiding it back into the closet. I needed to find a solution but its nearly impossible coming up with storage space in NYC. So I put my mind into thinking up a few innovated ways to ‘unclutter’ your apartment and life.

The trick is to be honest when it comes to your keep-sakes. Many of us have trouble acknowledging our inner hoarder. We hold onto thing we hope our children’s children will use, or something that fit over 20 years ago. We keep articles we love to read, coffee mugs from our travels, and even dried flowers given to us ages ago from someone we don’t even speak to. These things need to be discarded in order to display your things in a neat and visually pleasing manner.

I love this open storage space because it forces us to let go of useless things and give importance to what matters. Mix your shelves with things you like to look at and things you like to use daily. These built-in shelves frame the bed with levels easy to reach for day to day use and then much higher shelves for pictures and collectables. I like how the space above the bed is left clear, it has a very Feng Shui look.

Don’t be afraid to go overboard. I love how the designer used the entire wall behind the bed as a bookshelf creating a very cozy cottage-like look. These built-in shelves seem to organize the chaotic look of all the books, very cool idea.

Instead of building the shelves into the room, you can also buy free-standing units for your apartment. Cubby’s are perfect for your kids or craft room. The unit is deep so lots of things can be stored with custom fit baskets at the bottom for all types of toys and knick-knacks.

If you like a clean simple look to your bedroom, install a storage unit you can hide with sliding track screens and modern hardware. The built-in television system is excellent and works well with the decorative linear paneling used throughout.

This bedroom/home office really uses all the space given. The bed actually folds into the wall with over-head shelves. To the right of the bed, a long desk stretches out wall to wall with the final wall covered with floor to ceiling build-in shelves.

More over-head shelves here with a adorable rustic wood ladder to help you reach. The bedroom has a tree-house look and is perfect for your child regardless of gender. I think its important to close some of your storage space with paneled doors to hind the clutter while keeping some space open.

Here is another example of over-head storage but clearly out of reach. I love this look for any room, although it is perfect for kids rooms with all those toys and games. I think this look could be pulled off in your living room with pictures, your bedroom with out-of-season clothing and in the bathroom with your towels and products.

This super modern piece is great for things you won’t use often but need relatively accessible. When living in a small space, its important to have every piece of furniture count with storage space under the bed is a great tip. This magnificent piece uses no exterior hardware, the shelves slide far under the bed so the bed actually looks as if it’s floating.

Keeping things under the bed doesn’t need to be so conventional. This East Village apartment owner wanted this apartment to push the limits and thats exactly what this lofted bed does; leaving the room with plenty of storage and space. The stairs provide individual drawer space with the main loft space acting as a walk in closet. I love with sleek look of the wood paneling, as we elaborated on last week, and the cozy nook it turns the bed into.

Another example of lower storage space made by setting your bed up on a pedestal. The drawers can be deep for that extra bit of storage you need for long-term items. I also like how the shelves have been painted to stand out instead of tucked away to be ignored.

Here is an excellent solution if your apartment doesn’t allow you to build in storage units about the perimeter of the room. This custom made space divider adds LOTS of extra storage to your home and transforms the walk-in closet into a nursery or guest room. I appreciate the space left above the divider, it allows natural light to pour in the bedroom and also makes the living space intimate.

Here is another example of a free-standing storage space that also divides the room and creates a privacy in this high-ceiling, industrial like space.

Here’s a cute way to conceal your clutter. These storage ottomans can be easily upholstered in the fabric you choose to fit any room around the house. If you don’t like the shape or look of these specific pieces, you can find a dozen looks to fit your style.

Although this may be an idea off the beaten path, I though it was so clever I had to include it. This is a Murphy Bed and it actually folds up into the wall for that extra EXTRA space you need.  Perfect for guest rooms, you can install this type of bed in any room. The bed stays concealed and private.

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How to Decorate with Pillows

With winter upon us in a few months, I have started to pull out the down comforters from the closet, the larger sham pillows for the couch and the heavy throw blankets to put around the apartment, and it reminded me. Pillows are a very important and integral part of your home. They add color, brightness, style, pattern, and layers. So as I set out my pillows along the couch, I thought of some helpful tips with picking out your pillows. Here are some tricks to keep in mind.

Nothing adds luxury to a room better then velvet. Its a mature touch that’s irresistible to curl up to on your couch. The well-paired collection of the pillows are perfect with one solid larger pillow, and two linear designs, one representing the more playful, chaotic side of you. Pillows can express a lot about who you are, so don’t settle, this homeowner certainly did not with these custom pillows by Pulp Design.

Choosing the right colors can be tricky. To make your choices a little easier, find a fabric pattern you love, pick two colors and expand on that. One major tip: BIG geometric, small geometric, organic…its a combination of throw pillows that never fails.

Here are the Celerie Kemble’s Hot House floral pillows that really set the tone for the room above. I loved the design and used colors from the pattern. Orange, because its my favorite and then I magnified this color with its complimentary, blue!

This homeowner was so inspired by the colors we chose she painted some artwork to hang above the couch. The personal touch really brings the room together. Another thing, do not be afraid to mismatch colors and patterns. It adds a sophisticated whimsy to this living room.

Shabby Chic will always have a place in my heart which is why I LOVE these feminine playful ruffle flower pillows. The pop color and texture compliment this warm bedroom.

Hint: you can never have too much floral prints, it gives a very English-cottage feel to your living room. The idea is to miss-match your floral prints so they clash in a very inviting way. If you feel the pillows you have don’t pull off the look add another pattern, and so forth and so on until your look is sophisticated and complete!

Same sofa, different look. This design is a perfect example of how to combine some of your favorite patterns regardless if they match or not. It fills your room with lots of color and looks great in rooms with a lot of natural light. One of the best aspects of this room is all the pillows are home-made. Here is a quick and easy tutorial on making your own pillows! How To Make Your Own Pillows.

Love this 5th Avenue inspired entry room, its black accents really pull off the look. The design here really focuses more on the materials and fabric used. The vintage leather pillow matches well with the black fur because the third pillow ties in all the colors. The rich color palette is very sexy as well.

Another great concept is to tie in your pillows with other accessories in the room, like these super cute table lamps.  The trick? Use neutral colors throughout the room so that your patterns pop. And who couldn’t fall in love with these Chiang Mai Fabric’s…full of bright, lively colors!

Don’t be weary, you can never over-do it when it comes to pillows. The more pillows you have the more cozy and inviting the room. And its a great way to layer color and create a solid design just like this girly bohemian look fit for a child of any age.

I fell in love with this Parasol’s Fabric as soon as I laid eyes on it. Made by Thomas Paul and Duralee, this ‘parasol’ fabric would be perfect for smaller throw pillows you see in this room or on a much larger scale like a wall covering. This small elegant and playful sitting area just goes to show you how you can inspire an entire room based on one idea.

Talk about ULTRA modern, these linear rectangle pillows mimic the art piece behind it, the rug, and the altogether rectangle shape of the room.  Its a great balance of color and line that creates this sturdy look.

Many designers choose pillows to fit a 2-2-1 pattern, but not in this traditional master bedroom. I like the blue patterned pillows against the headboard with a longer white sham. The bed really becomes the focal point in the room regardless of all these other design aspects.

If your style tends to stay monochromatic, use pillows to add bursts of color to your room. This super modern living room is complete with bold patterned bright yellow pillows.

I LOVE how the pillows match the wallpaper with this very classic Cowtan & Tout pattern. The finished look is very charming and cozy, which is what every bedroom should be.

Couldn’t help but to add some leopard print into the blog. Not only will it always be one of my favorite fabric patterns, but it matches any style: contemporary, eclectic, modern. And it fits perfectly in your bedroom, the living room or bathroom.

How to Create a Room Through Wood Paneling?

The innovation in interior design these days seems to be limitless! Trends that cultured a bad rap have now found there way into show rooms with a classic yet modern edge. Wood paneling, is one of these trends. Just as the words leave my mouth I can picture the daunting, gloomy ambiance of those 1970’s dungeons. The dark wood paneling draping every inch of the room, the red velvet drapes and linoleum floors. I didn’t think after such a disaster, wood would ever be able to make a comeback, but I. was wrong.

All of a sudden paneling seems to have cleaned itself up, lightened its stain and spent more concern on quality rather then quantity. With some helping tricks, easy wood paneling has found its way back into our homes, and our hearts.

One key to wood is LIGHT. Not just the light color of the stain but also the amount of natural light in the room. Dark and gloomy comes from too much wood and too little light. So rid your room of heavy drapery and let the light spill in.

Before, modern wood paneling was something of a myth, like Bigfoot or the Loch Ness. But then came this sleek looking stylish contemporary edge, proof that wood doesnt detract from a modern space.  The key? Square panels and a natural finish, very sophisticated.

Tip #3: Introduce bold pops of color. Keeping the rest of the room monotone makes bold colors easy to integrate into your style. Notice how this arrangement includes three dark furnishings: two chairs and an ottoman. But taking a step back, the room is fun and light with colorful drapes, pillows and rug.

Have fun with the paneling but mixing up the direction of the wood grain. Too much linear gesture can be boring, especially when you are applying the paneling too a larger surface.

Love this horizontal paneling.

Use weathered or reclaimed wood to add texture and timelessness to your home. If you find yourself hiding from bright colors and falling for a very clean modern linear look, they you will love how this composition accents your home.

Push the limits! If you’re finding yourself falling in love with wood, then go the extra mile and apply it to a room that really stands out. Extend it from the wall to the ceiling. Spread it across the room. This technique really works in rooms with soaring ceiling heights. Plus, I love how wood paneling feels so right around the fireplace.

Spruce up your white room with painted paneling. The white semi-gloss paint creates a sleek look that is shiny and clean. This idea works well in rooms with existing old wood panels.

I find that soft toned painted paneling adds so much charm to your home. If you have trouble commiting to an entire room, find a spot overlooking a focual point in your room. This room for example, placed the beach sea green panels over the bed and really gives warmth to a very important part of any home.

Which brings us to another important trick; limit the amount of wood so its enjoyable and not over-done. Accent wood paneling adds so much interest into a particular part of the room, like this wet bar.

Use light flooring with dark wood to create an equilibrium. In many cases, the dark wood will act as an accent wall. The designer here was very strategic when using this style by keeping the stark contrast of wood colors in a narrow part of the house. This concept will not work everywhere.

Panel the refrigerator! Its amazing how versatile wood paneling has become. And hiding your kitchen appliances with rich dark paneling is spectacular in this modern cabin-like kitchen.

One place wood paneling has always felt right was in a spa-like setting, which is why it fits so easily in this open bathroom. The light looks so natural as it reflects off the natural wood.

Love the contrast of colors in this ying/yang bathroom. The natural wood colors with the sea green and blue tiles gives the impression you are emerged under water or out in the wilderness.

Love the architectural detail this detailed wood paneling adds to the room. It creates a very intimate backdrop for your headboard and bed.

Wainscot lining the walls of this nook add to its fresh charm, while an over-sized fixture clearly announces this is a modern space.

How to stylaize your Television?

There are several design dilemma’s an interior designer must work around and the chunky unattractive Television is certainly one of them. Even with such great strides on technology, it is still hard to find a home for your entertainment center and keep it clean and sleek looking. For years designers and cabinet-makers both have been coming up with solutions to hide the TV, some have worked and some have not. It is this placement predicament that has inspired this week’s blog.

Finding a custom furniture designer is easy to do, the trick is to find one that makes high-quality pieces at affordable costs and listens to your wants and needs with good intent. That’s why it always helps to work with an interior designer who has formed this particular relationships over years of experience. This one of a kind piece is an example of just that. He is a craftsman that listens to the home-owner and can create something functional that accents the rest of the room. I love how the sliding doors uncover shelf shape perfect for accessories to the room.

Instead of a free-standing space, this designer hides the flat screen by installing tracks at the top and sliding a two-piece artistic landscape.  The piece gives the impression of a second window even.

Another example of hiding the TV behind artwork is in this room.  It  has a very family friendly feel with the DIY leaf-motif hanging in front of the flat-screen.  The break in the stone fireplace keeps the television tucked far enough back where one would not even notice once the sliding panels are closed.

With so many advancements in technology, television sets are becoming sleeker, thinner and quite a conversation piece. This looks like another colorful artistic canvas for your TV but this actually is a bold moving image that adds whimsy to your living room. Makes your think twice about that expensive and time-consuming fish tank.

Here is a clever trick. The room obviously did not have the space to just tuck the television behind a sliding door or cabinet so the designer installed the TV on a articulating arm to utilize the space better. This is perfect for those tiny NYC apartments where every inch counts.

Masking the TV behind art work is one thing, making the entire unit disappear is another. I love how the natural wood panels line together to make a sleek looking fireplace.

How do design with Tile in a Unique Way?

This wont be your typical tile blog entry. The fact is, designers and home-owners alike have peeked an interest in unique ways to use tile around the house, and not just on the walls. I, too, was amused at all the possibilities where tile could be used. Walking about through the floors of the D&D building, I found tile everywhere; on floors and ceilings, with window treatments and accessories. The fact is, tile itself is art, so what better way to magnify the style in your home then to plaster tile everywhere, literally. This luxorious home did not leave any detail behind. From the gold-motif ceiling pattern, the zebra skin rug to the pleasant audacity of the shimmering chandelier, this room has it all. But looking closer you will find beauty in the hand-crafted Serena Screens that boarder the room.

A closer look at these Serena Screens prove they are like “jewelry for your home.”  The capiz-like tile adds sparkle to your home and are functional as well, diving any room to add more privacy when needed.

Decorative tile has been used outdoors in many central American/South American country’s, but is making its way up North. This outdoor patio proves playful color tile can be fun AND sophisticated. It also takes the pressure off of accessorizing the patio with outdoor-safe decorations.

These marble decorative tile risers reminds me of an aged Renascence Mansion. The elegance it brings to the steps is clear and powerful. Not only beautiful to look at, the tile kick plate helps hind all those hard to wash scuff marks left on your stairway.

Another use of tile kick plates on your stairs, although this one add some shimmer to your foyer. It also makes to wonder what the rest of the house looks like upstairs.

Love this pop-art treatment in the powder room. Its all about making a statement and this English Rose mosaic does just that. The idea is to keep the rest of the room simple and eliminate clutter to keep these roses in focus.

Cant decide what to tile, how about tile everything! The floor to ceiling yellow tile really creates an open space in this Mexican Kitchen. The room lights up dramatically when the natural sunlight beams through the windows and hit the semi-polished tile walls.

This is the same home, the yellow tile pours out onto the walking path and adds continuity to the home.

Love this tile pattern and the miminalism of this living room. The tiles are pure white with a finished surface that may be painted any color, although paint is not required.  Made from high grade industrial gypsum, these tiles add passion to the room. You can find these tiles and more like it online  .Here is the link: Bloom.

Found this dresser to a fantastic addition to your home. The unconventional wood tiles are clean and sleek looking and would love lovely in any bedroom, either masculine or feminine. The tile wood detail is hugely unique.

Fell in love with these “Precious Pebble Tiles.” The look is playful and polished but also creates such an organic feature to your home. You can find these “Precious Pebble” tiles in a variety of different colors at Cercan Tile.  Here is the link: Tile.

I know, I know…a tiled bathroom is far from unique but this flower pattern tile is advanced This collection is from one of my favories, Ms. Ann Sacks titled ‘Blossom’ as part of her Beau Monde Glass collection. The pattern speaks modern chaos at its finest.

This is a home I finished in NYC on Irving Place.  The bachelor wanted something bright and suave which is why I choose Ann Sacks for the tile.  Perfect for smaller Kitchens, the backsplash adds color and enthusiasm. Ann Sacks really makes some beautiful one-of-a-kind collections.

Another tiled bathroom but I couldn’t resist. These Sicis Glimmer Mosaic glass tiles are spectacular. The rich iridescent color is created by treating beautiful translucent colored glass with premium metal oxides. The resulting glimmer tile reflects light falling on it and through it with changing, contrasting effects.

I can’t think of a better way to relax then slipping into a warm bath with meditating monks gazing down a completely covered wall. With so much detail in the tile your bathroom can be essentially empty with effortless style and pzazz.

Another fun and functional way to add tile in your home is tabletops or countertops. The tile is easy to clean and creates a one of a kind piece in your home.

Purchased too much tile to cover the walls, use that extra pieces to insulate the kitchen sink.

Love!

These tiles are, in fact, made from leather. Installing this unique piece really amplifies the lines of your master bedroom and adds power a very important feature of your home.