Let’s Have a Picnic. Backyard Decor Trends
With the rise of the temperature and our spirits, we have decided to take a look into the popular trend of backyard décor. The ladies of Divas N’ Design, a Chicago Interior Design Firm, are talking about the trends and colors for the outdoor season. The sun is shining, the grass is green, now let’s get outside and enjoy it!
If you are afraid of the bugs that often accompany the heat, a screened-in porch is the perfect option for you. We love how this porch has the surrounding windows to give a view into such a beautiful backyard. The cushions and the freestanding table are also a pretty touch.
This outdoor area is absolutely beautiful. We love the use of the overhang to give shade to the area. The neutral colors allow the colors of nature to stand out and make a statement. With plenty of seating room for all your friends and family, this chic and beautiful design makes for a great outdoor area.
The tiled wading pool in the picture above adds so many elements to this entire outdoor look. We love the use of the ivy and plays. The casual chairs and burgundy screen really play on the natural outdoor sunshine.
Having a day bed is extremely common. However, this daybed adds a major pop of color as well as adds some unique design aspects. The iron frame paired with the wooden crate bench makes this look contemporary. This would look so beautiful in a backyard surrounded by trees.
Adding wood inspired furniture to any outdoor area just seems right. It’s as if your furniture and nature are one. This look is so beautiful and simplistic. The natural greens and casual throw pillows make this area perfect for outdoor entertaining.
So lovely! We cannot believe how simply adding a gazebo over a pastel inspired design adds so much. This beautiful room looks inviting and comfortable. We definitely wouldn’t mind taking an afternoon nap in here.
Advice from Divas N’ Design, a Chicago Interior Design Firm.
It is the age-old dilemma of boys versus girls. We even have this major problem when it comes to decorating the home. If it were a bachelorette pad, there would be shades of pink, purple and sequins all around. If designed by the man, there would be beer signs and way too many La-Z-Boy chairs to count. The women of Divas N’ Design, a Chicago Interior Design Firm, are here to help you make your home stylish and something that the man in your life will love.
There is nothing a man dislikes more about interior design than having to sleep every night under a lime green comfortable with pink throw pillows. As cute or as trendy you think the girly bedroom may be, we advise you to refrain for the sake of the other person having to share the room. Stick to neutrals for the bedroom to ensure comfort for both parties.
The fantastic thing about this room is that a rustic and contemporary design is so in right now. While this not only looks chic and sophisticated, it also adds elements that would make any man feel right at home.
If you feel very strongly about adding a pop of color to bring some warmth to a room, make sure that the color you choose in gender neutral. That means no strong or bright colors that will make the room feel extremely feminine or outrageous. This orange above is soft and subtle enough to make anyone feel comfortable enjoying a nice meal at that table.
We are in love with how perfect this kitchen is for the entire family. The different colored wood finished paired with the stainless steel appliances makes this room incredibly chic. The natural light also does wonders. We have a feeling any man would be more than happy cooking in here.
Bathrooms are always such a difficult space to get correct for each party. Women tend to use an abundance of products, while men only use one or two things. Still, men like to have their space and don’t want to have your makeup overflowing the counter. This bathroom is so simple and contemporary. Yet, it allows for each person to have his or her own space.
We cannot believe how creative and amazing this interior design of this office is. Using a map of the world as wallpaper is sheer genius. The leather couch and antique chest make this room have the perfect “travelers” touch. Who wouldn’t want to hang out here?
One of the most important pieces of advice we can give you is to ensure your guy feels like he has somewhere that he can just hangout. This bar area would be perfect for a basement. He would have a place to watch sports and relax with the guys. Plus, it looks very put together and like a fun area for parties.
Chicago Interior Designers, Divas N’ Design, a full service interior design firm.
Chicago has evolved from its cold, brutal winter, into a warmer and rainier season. Although we know we are still at the beginning of spring, we just can’t help looking forward to what these April showers will bring. We are going to dive head first into the power of flowers and how they can brighten up you’re entire home.
This exterior is absolutely stunning. We love how there are dozens of different colors all mixed together. This just makes the cream and wood colored house pop. We also like how the flowers are a little clustered and draping, instead of organized and trimmed.
This room is already bold and bright. However, we love how the flowers on the side table tie together the corals and pinks, as well as adding some green into the mix. It is the perfect addition to such a lovely sitting area.
Oh, how these tulips warm up the room. Although this room has tiny pops of turquoise and yellow, it is mainly white and wicker. Adding the flowers on the part of the room that receives the most sunlight gives it a fresh and airy feel. You almost feel as if you are lying out in the sun.
This room is already so amazing. The pastel colors and the artwork and mirror are so stunning and complementary of each other. The bold and big flower arrangement in the printed vase pulls all of the colors together. It definitely adds something magnificent to this Victorian style room.
This would be such a simple entry way or little nook design idea. If you had an empty corner in your house that needed some color, choosing bright artwork and matching it with simple, yet unique flowers looks incredible. We are in love.
What a quaint and understated room. It is the definition of “homey.” We love how the roses on the chest play with colors that are already present in the room. They aren’t the dominant colors, but accents, and they definitely make this room cozy.
With the beginning of spring we, the designers of Divas N’ Designs, a Chicago Interior Design Firm, thought it was time for some Spring Cleaning organizational ideas. Spring cleaning is not only a way to organize your home and get rid of unwanted clutter. It is also a way to de-stress your life and make way for the new, sunny season.
We have provided some of our favorite organizational ideas and rooms that make us feel clean by just looking at them.
One place we know to be the most unorganized room in the whole house is the laundry room. Constantly bringing clothes in and out and using it for extra storage can leave the room looking hectic and sloppy. This picture above demonstrates how a few DIY shelves and affordable polyester baskets can make a room look neat and tidy. We also love the blue pop of color.
We can’t believe that we have never thought of doing this ourselves. By adding horizontal drawers, we can maximize the space and create two shelves, instead of just one long cupboard under the sink. It is easy, looks great, and creates an organized, under the sink area.
We personally know that closets are the most cluttered and difficult places to keep clean. We LOVE how organized this is and how easy it can actually be. This can be a DIY project or you can get help from stores (like the Container Store) who now offer services to help create and install closet organizers. This picture also uses a pink curtain to cover the clothes when guests are over.
Not all bathrooms are equipped with an abundance of storage space that hides beauty products behind cabinets. This picture demonstrates a great use of space, as well as some additions that clean up the storage a little bit. By adding the extra shelving and some matching baskets, you can really clean up the area as well as make it looked orderly in a trendy way.
We all know how important office space can be in a household. It is the area where we can sit down and accomplish work and projects. However, excess papers and post-its can make an office drive you crazy. We love how this picture uses creative organizing techniques to decorate and de-stress this room. Everything is accessible and useful. This is a definite DIY project that will make you feel ready to tackle anything this spring.
Why hire an Interior Design professional?
Chicago Interior Designer, Karyn Musick at Divas N’ Design, talks about why you should hire an Interior Design professional.
Chicago Interior Designer, Karyn Musick explains that the perception of hiring an Interior Design professional, is only for the “elite” or “rich and famous”, no longer holds truth. Hiring a professional to help you make complex decisions regarding your design scheme in your home, can be worth every penny, this will not only effect your budget but will help you to spend it more efficiently.” A designer offers an extra set of eyes, but these eyes are trained to see and notice things that you may not. Just as you would select a physician for your health and medical needs, selecting a Designer for your interior design needs, is very similar when making your choice on who you may hire to take on your project. Your home, most likely, is one of the biggest investments that you will be making and how you put it all together is very important and in the long run, it could increase the value of your home. Even if you are renting a place and have minimal changes that you would like to make in order to make it feel like and call it “home”, a professional Designer can help you make those choices without crucial costly mistakes.
I would like to give you a few tips on how to help you select and make the best choice on selecting the right Interior Designer for your project. I always consider my clients and myself “in a relationship”, as, just like any other relationship that we have, we need to trust and have good communication, in order to successfully achieve all our goals together and make it work. Communication between the Designer and Client can often be misunderstood, design is not a “guessing game”, it’s a collaboration between the clients overall vision and what the Designer is creating for a beautiful end result. This said, the Client needs to be open and vocal throughout the entire process. Hiring a Designer is not about the Designer making your decisions for you, it’s about the Designer helping you make the best decisions, based on the things that you like most. Remember, this is about you, “the Client” and not about the Designer. Your home should be a true reflection of you!
- First Impression goes a long way
I personally feel that when you call or contact a prospect, the “first impression” truly matters. How long does it take for someone to get back to you and answer your questions? If it takes several days, than assume that is how they will be managing your project. Need I say more?
Once you finally connect, ask away! Thoroughly interview the prospect over the phone. Discuss your project scope and what you are trying to achieve, ask about fees and what their services entail. A good phone interview is very important and the prospect should be asking you many questions, as well. If you feel that the phone interview went well and would like to meet the prospect face to face, an initial consultation should be set up at that time.
This is the meeting where you can see if the Designer will be a proper fit for your project. Upon the arrival, have some preparations ready. Reference magazine clippings, Pintrest boards or design schemes that you have seen on Houzz. This will be very helpful for the Designer to get an idea to what your décor taste is, likes or even dislikes of specific elements that you find.
- Be very upfront regarding your budget and ask the designer if it is realistic or not.
- Discuss the time frame to when the project will begin and complete.
- Discuss consulting fees. Do they charge by the hour, room or project and how do the fees get billed or accounted for. Is travel time included or billed separately.
- Discuss how other trades will be involved with your project, ie: Painters, tile and flooring contractors, etc.
- If you feel you need additional assurance, request a couple of past client references.
Go with your intuition, if it does or doesn’t feel right, you’ll know!
I often get a lot of feedback from potential clients that watch the design shows on TV. As much as I enjoy watching those shows myself, they can be very misleading with the respect to how things cost. Yes, a room can be made over very inexpensively, if you DIY and refurbish existing elements yourself or go to estate or garage sales and pick up some amazing finds. The reality is, if you start from scratch and you need to purchase new furnishings, window treatments and accessories, we most likely cannot do it for under $500.00.
I hope some of these tips are helpful for you in making a good decision to hire a great Interior Design professional for your project. Most of us are truly passionate about the work that we do and the joyous gratification is a successful project with a happy and satisfied client at the end!
Feeling that Spring Fever
Chicago Interior Designers, Divas N’ Design, have a spring in their step about this trend. You may not know it (or feel it, yet) but spring is officially right around the corner. No, seriously. The week of March 14-20 is National Spring Fever Week. Some places, the weather may still be taking its toll, but we know just the way to start feelin’ that fever.
A couple of weeks ago we talked about bold accents. Now, it’s all about the COLORS: neon, primary, electric, and loud. Forget pastels and neutrals. Put a spring in your step with bright and obnoxious colors that will change the entire atmosphere of your home.
Here are some of our favorite 2013 Spring Color Trends:
We love this extremely bold and daring look. There is so much color and different aspects to this room, it almost doesn’t even look out or the ordinary. The walls accent the turquoise couch and center-upholstered table perfectly.
This fun bedroom definitely speaks to our inner girl. We are obsessed with the fuchsia comforter, eggplant bench, and turquoise vintage light fixture. The final touch? The hanging mixed colored panting, a simple DIY project that ties together all of the colors impeccably.
This room could have been left completely white and would have still looked beautiful. But, we are happy it wasn’t. The loud orange wall assorted with simple, yet matching accents, really adds something to this room. Adding any daring color to white, no matter what it is, will really make a statement.
We would have never thought that even just changing the color of a tub in a bathroom would make such a huge impact. This look is a must! The bold red tub paired with the matching floral canvas is beautiful.
This bedroom headboard and wallpaper matching set is the definition of electric, and somehow, it works. We love how they made white the accent in this beautifully decorated green bedroom, and took advantage of the gorgeous Pantone color of the year, Emerald.
You definitely have guts if you design a room like this trendy one! But, it totally pays off. We absolutely love the different shades of blues, infused with different pastels and greens as well as some crazy prints.
So, jump into spring and into this crazy new color trend. It is a chance to express yourself through interior design and your home.
Ireland Inspired St. Patrick’s Day Home Decorations
Chicago Interior Design by Divas N’ Design, a full service interior design firm. As we are all well aware, one of the most festive and beloved spring holidays is upon us, St. Patrick’s Day! We are going to offer some creative ideas for getting your home into the Irish Spirit without breaking budget or completely re-decorating a room. Enjoy and remember that everyone is Irish on St. Patrick’s Day!
The first and most popular way to create an Irish environment is to add some green flowers and greenery around the house. Flowers always have a way of brightening up a room. However, make the arrangement mainly green and add variety with different shades of green. This will focus on the St. Patrick’s Day theme, as well as get your home ready for spring!
Sometimes, it’s the modest pieces that can make the biggest differences. In the picture above, a simple white candle is wrapped with St. Patrick’s themed green material and held in place by cheap pearl end pills. We absolutely love this look and how simplistic it is! Everyone loves candles and this design technique allows us to take what we already have and spruce it up!
The green glass display above is a trendy way to make an Irish inspired centerpiece! Gather a collection of green glasses or vases and add them to any table to have that pop of the holiday color. You can even add ribbon or wiring to make each glass unique!
We adore this understated St. Patrick’s Day place setting! The rough twine makes a perfect rustic napkin for the holiday festivities! Embellish with a shamrock leaf and you’re good to go!
It is also very easy to use items that are around your house everyday to help bring out the festive green color. In the picture above, the normal contents of the vase were replaced with faux green apples. This would also work with green stones, decorative balls, or fabrics. It catches the Irish eye, but also is discrete and fashionable.
Adding green accent pillows to any piece of furniture not only makes it festive; it also adds a touch of color to any room. We love the nude coloring of the couch above mixed with the green accent pillows. These pillows also compliment any plants or greenery that may be around the room!
We use to refer to men as “Studs,” but now a new meaning is in style.
Chicago Interior Design Firm, Divas N’ Design, a full service interior design firm. Even though this trend has been growing for the past two years, it has proven to be one of the largest furniture and fashion trends of 2013. Studs started out as small, barely noticeable embellishments. Now, studs are bigger and more noticeable then ever. A Stud, also known as Nail Head Trim, is traditionally known for being a large headed piece of metal that pierces and projects from a surface for decoration. Studs are now traditionally being used in decorative décor pieces of art and accents on furniture.
It is an extremely popular to trend to have pieces of furniture decorated with studs. A newer trend is to actually have them form a design on the piece. We love this western dresser with the gold studded star on it. It is a token piece that would add to any room.
Upholstered chairs or couches that are studded have become the new trendy family room. It looks good with any design and carries a contemporary feel. The studding on the couch mixed with the zebra rug makes the room feel fashionable and comfortable.
People are even going as far as studding different walls and ceiling in their houses. In the picture above, simple studding added to the crown molding catches the eye in this pastel colored room. We adore how the Studding even helps bring out the unique pattern on the wall paper and the design on the rug.
We love how understated this look is and how everything matches. The bar stools are low and under the table, but the studding matches the mirror and the lamp, so everything is tied together perfectly!
This last look is probably the most popular studded look of 2013. We have seen upholstered or leather beds with added studs EVERYWHERE. The studding goes with any color fabric or leather and compliments almost any bedding you could chose.
Using Mirrors in Interior Design
Chicago Interior Designers, Divas N’ Design, a full service interior design firm. In this blog post we are reflecting on one of our favorite pieces to use in home décor, the mirror. The mirror is a very simple décor piece that does wonders to your design when used properly. A mirror has the ability to add character to a space, bring light to a dim room, and visually increase size of an area. Here are a few great ways you can utilize mirrors in your home décor and witness the immediate, happy transformation.
As a piece of art:
First, we must comment on how much we love this color scheme (purple is a trending color of 2013) and the patterned wall paper. But even with gorgeous throw pillows, pink floral and the striking hint of black, the starburst mirror is still the first thing that catches your eye when you look at this image. The mirror adds softness to the dark, harsh colors throughout the room and adds so much character.
This piece or mirrored art is placed on a large wall in a room with muted tones, causing it to be the first thing that catches your eye when you enter the space. Not only does this piece add interest to the room, with individual mirrors fused together much like a puzzle, it also reflects the light of the window and brightens the feel of the space.
In the bathroom:
It is expected to have a vanity mirror above the sink in your bathroom, but here is a great way to take that a step further. Putting a full length mirror in your bathroom is great for a few reasons. First, it is going to make this small space look much larger by reflecting any light you may get through a window or from your fixtures. Having a full length mirror in your bathroom also gives you a functioning dressing room, allowing you to see your outfit from head to toe. It isn’t bad motivation for opting out of that donut for breakfast, either.
As a statement piece:
Mirrors can be utilized in so many ways besides its conventional purpose, like as furniture for example. In this image the designer went with a printed wallpaper and muted accents. You would think that the zebra print walls be the focus of the room, but we can’t help but obsess over the mirrored coffee table and matching side table. These unique pieces add so much character to the room and are without a doubt fabulous statement pieces. Don’t be afraid to try something new and different!
To illuminate a dark room:
Nothing brightens up a room like mirrors, mirrors and more mirrors. Placing them on a wall adjacent to windows allows the light to bounce off the mirrors and reflect it into the room. Just like that your space will look much larger and the natural light will make the room feel airy and warm. Try installing a full wall mirror in your living room or dining room, like this image, and watch your room transform.
A full ceiling mirror is another spin on ways to illuminate a room and make it look bigger. Try this in your dining room and living room for a sophisticated and romantic feel. The mirrored ceiling in this image compliments the floor to ceiling windows with a panoramic view, reflecting the beautiful colors of the sunset. Feeling crazy? The master bedroom is another great place for a mirrored ceiling.
Using Floral Accents in your Home Decor
Chicago Interior Design Firm, Divas N’ Design, a full service interior design firm talks floral accents. January has come and gone, but we are still on our trend watch for 2013, searching for the hottest ways to re-vamp your home this year. With spring just around the corner, it is time to think beyond the snow and starting dreaming of warm weather. Nothing screams spring and beautiful weather more than bright colors and floral patterns. Look no further, here are a few great ways you can incorporate floral patterns into your everyday décor (without making your home look like Martha Stewart got hold of your credit card).
The kitchen is, in our opinion, one of the most under estimated rooms in the house in its capability for design. The kitchen is where you express yourself through food, so why not make it your happy place by decorating in a way that makes you want to spend even more time in it? This kitchen exemplifies an excellent way to incorporate floral without going overboard. The cabinets, counter tops and walls are all a beautiful white color that makes the room look bright and so large. The white is then offset by a palette of bright, fun colors including the lime green floral lamp shade and seat cushions. A hint of a fun pattern, like floral, brings life to a fairly plain room. We love this!
There is so much to love about this room from the textured walls to the natural light and the fabulous bright green floral arrangement. But what we love most about this design is the subtle yet beautiful use of a unique floral pattern. Sometimes redecorating your home can be overwhelming and discouraging; there are so many colors, patterns and styles to choose from. This design did a great job at balancing that with the muted yet statement walls, white couch and most importantly, the floral patterned chair. The colors on the floral pattern stand out amongst the color scheme of the room and the matching throw pillow on the couch is merely the icing on the cake.
Unlike the last two floral components, this option is for those who aren’t afraid to be BOLD. Instead of choosing a chair or say a floral printed rug for a room, make the wall your statement. Choose wallpaper that has a large floral pattern or if you know an artist, have the flowers painted on to the wall. If you choose to go down this road, make sure you choose furniture and accent pieces that won’t compete with your statement wall. Like in this picture, choose a color from your wall and buy furniture in a solid form of that color. If you choose a pattern on your furniture as well, your room may look very busy and confusing to the eye when guests enter.