2012/02/15

Designing Living Spaces With Indoor & Outdoor Lighting

When furnishing a cozy home, an appropriate illumination must not be missed. A respective choice of extraordinary lights and special lighting designs is sufficient to give any room a certain ambiance. There are almost no limits to style, as a respective lighting concept can draw attention to individual furniture pieces as well as to entire living areas.
To bring sufficient brightness in a room, the choice of proper lights and illuminants is crucial. The living room can therefore not only be decorated with stylish ceiling fixtures or impressive chandeliers to create a special atmosphere. Even a dimmable floor light can create the right atmosphere for a romantic evening at home. A wall unit that is equipped with indirect light can additionally bring comfort in the room. Dimmed lighting and design lamps are also perfectly suitable in bedrooms. Besides various ceiling lamps, especially bedside lamps can create personal accents. Regarding the right choice of illumination for kitchen and bathroom, many residential- and homeowners decide for a bright and penetrating lighting.

Even if the hallway is the room in which people spent least time in, a proper illumination is especially important. Those who often welcome guests in their home will learn to appreciate the importance of a stylish hallway with appropriate lighting accents. For all design-newbies it is recommendable to visit several furniture stores which often present their offers on the Internet, too. 

Homeowners should also take attractive outdoor lightings into consideration, to illuminate the entrance area in a friendly light. Those include lights for illuminating path- and driveways for both security reasons and decorational aspects. Current lighting trends lead to the use of energy-saving LED lights and to the application of solar lighting techniques.

2012/01/30

Bathroom Planning 101

Here are some tips from designer Connie Edwards CKD, CBD and Waypoint Living Spaces to help you plan your next bathroom remodeling project:

1. Establish a budget. Bathrooms rate second only to kitchens as the most expensive home remodeling project. According to Remodeling magazine, the average cost of a mid-range bathroom is just over $16,500.00. A realistic budget is something that has to be determined early in the process. It’s also a good idea to have a cushion set aside to handle unexpected cost. Mechanical problems lurking behind the walls have a nasty way of increasing project costs.

2. Make a list of must-haves and nice-to-haves. Nearly every component in a bathroom comes in a variety of price points. I am always a fan of buying the best quality that fits the budget but knowing what is personally important will help you sort through the process. One important tip: as popular as super showers are, always have at least one bathtub in the house for re-sale purposes.

3. Find a designer that ‘clicks’ with you. The designer will be your guide throughout the process. Many will also provide installation. Going it alone can be daunting so choose wisely.

4.  Consider storage needs. Even a tiny powder room needs space to store and extra roll of toilet paper and cleaning supplies. The space over the toilet is sometimes the only available place, so make the most of it. Busy family or master bathrooms have additional needs. A new bathroom is a chance to improve the quality of life in your own home.

5. Layer lighting. Like any other room, a number of different lighting systems are needed. Sconces on either sides of the mirror, overall lighting and task lighting such as special waterproof shower lights are all important.

6. Most importantly, consider safety every step of the way. From grab bars to flooring with non-skid finishes plan for a safe as well as beautiful bathroom.

There are few projects as satisfying as a new or remodeled bathroom. Start planning now for a successful project and then relax and enjoy it. You deserve it!






2012/01/12

Lighting Ideas: Light Up Your Home

How to use lighting for decoration purposes? Frequently underestimated, lighting is vital for a convincing interior design. As illumination highly determines the atmosphere, choosing well from all the lighting offers is of importance. The following lighting ideas will provide some basics on modern home lighting and hopefully be inspirational enough for creating a unique style at your home!

Natural & Artificial Light
First of all, the illumination of living spaces starts with natural light. It will provide a warm and welcoming atmosphere and be amplified by just a few means. Well lit rooms do not only require huge windows and spacious dimensions. They will also benefit from some lighting tricks such as using mirrors to reflect the light. Covering one of the walls with mirrors will visually create a more spacious environment. Additionally, lighting effects will be more intense if brighter wall paint is used.

Many interior designers focus on ambient lighting when doing their work. Take advantage of the combination of reflections from different light sources by knowing that illumination has more than just one function. Again, mirrors will enhance the ambient lighting effects achieved. Avoiding glare is another basic principle of home lighting. A glare free environment is especially recommended for working spaces, computer screens and TV sets. By the means of indirect lighting and wall-washing glare does not any longer have to be your home lighting enemy.

Lighting Fixture Types

When natural and artificial lighting are covered, details on the types of lighting fixtures edge ever closer to the spotlight. There is a variety of lighting fixtures for almost any kind of application. In particular, floor and table lamps - being adjustable and flexible in terms of their position- are becoming favorite lighting products. Furthermore, they can create a cozy atmosphere or even provide the right light for task lighting.

Generally speaking, there is a high demand for ceiling light fixtures. Distributing light from above they are primarily used for general lighting. For ambient and accent lighting many more lighting fixtures are taken into account, from highly decorative chandeliers to simply elegant floor lights. With all that variety, using lighting for decorating purposes should not be hard at all.

2012/01/04

It’s Out in the Open: Dish Storage That is


Modern kitchen design is the topic of todays' RoomStyling.net blog. Connie Edwards from WaypointLivingSpaces.com has already spent more than 30 years in the kitchen and bath industry and will share her design ideas for dish storage with us: 

Open storage for dinnerware is so popular today. Pick up any shelter magazine and you will see what I mean. Now that surprises even me because you’d think that people wouldn’t want to store their dishes where they would collect dust daily. And frankly, not all everyday dishes are attractive. But so it goes. 


If open shelves aren’t quite right for you, consider cabinets with clear glass inserts and mullions to display your dishes. Choosing glass inserts with a small pattern will help obscure the contents if they aren’t all that perfect.

Of course you can always put dishes behind glass doors and that’s a great look and solves the dust part of the problem. But, we’re talking about putting dishes on open shelves or in plate racks. Here are some tips that will make this trend go more smoothly for you: 

Tip #1: Only use frequently used dinnerware. If they’re used regularly, it stands to reason that they will be washed all the time and will never become dusty.


A contemporary open shelving unit in Waypoint’s Cherry Spice is suspended from shorter wall cabinets by chrome tubing. The three inch thick shelf has a modern, substantial look.

Tip #2: Old or brand new, when dishes are out, they become part of the kitchen d├ęcor. Choose a color or pattern that works with your design theme or even adds a much-needed touch of color. 


Two Wall China Display cabinets are stacked, one on the other, to create easy to reach dish storage. The color and pattern of dishes on display are important to the look of any kitchen. They should be interesting and can add a real color accent to even a simple kitchen like the one shown here in maple with a linen white finish.

Tip #3: Place the shelf low enough so that dishes are easy to reach on a daily basis…maybe even for the kids. If the dishes are easy to reach, an open shelf is a practical place to store them. 


So while there are a few things to think about before planning open storage for your everyday dishes, it’s a great look. And despite all my cautionary words, you will laugh to know that in my last remodel…I put my everyday dinnerware on an open shelf. Right there for all the world to see. And guess what? I love it!