Style. Color. Fabric. Fashion. At Art Van, We've Got The Look! Our team of fashion and furniture 'Insiders' take you behind the scenes for the greatest trends, décor and design tips. Looking for what's new and what's next? It's here!
Urban Loft is like the James Dean of home design – leather, rough finishes and an attitude that celebrates the untamed side of life. This distinctive look was born decades ago in Europe when artists turned abandoned factories into expansive spaces that would showcase their artwork. You don’t have to live in a warehouse space to enjoy the style, though; its signature characteristics can be easily incorporated into your suburban home. Here’s how:
1. Stick with neutrals. Colors such as black, white or shades of brown in soft shades will offset the hard materials used in urban design. Paint your walls in the same color family as your furniture. If you have brown furniture, consider a dark taupe or chocolate paint. Black furniture looks great against grey walls.
2. Look for natural materials. Recycled or repurposed items give the room a reclaimed feel. Tables made of wood, metal or glass can be great additions. For upholstered furniture, stick to leather, canvas or other natural textures.
3. Use texture for wall coverings. Weathered brick walls are an urban style signature, but if your home doesn’t have this detail you can get a similar feel by using sheets of stainless steel, exposed beams or planks of reclaimed wood on the walls. Sealed concrete floors are also a great look. Cloak them with a neutral area rug, or choose hardwood flooring for a warmer look.
4. Create a single focal point. Use wall art sparingly. A large canvas with a bold abstract or geometric design will make an impact. You can also incorporate a statue or waterfall. Or if your view is outstanding let that be the center of attention.
5. Keep accessories to a minimum. Consider tone-on-tone art, such as a black and white print in a room with black furniture or sepia prints in a room with brown furnishings. Or create a splash of color with one bold accent. Use lighting with an industrial feel, such as pendant lights or floor lamps made of unusual materials. You can also use accessories, such as a faux fur throw, to soften the lines and materials of your seating.
6. Keep windows bare. Urban style focuses on the architectural details of your home. If you have gorgeous windows, let them be seen and leave the window coverings for your bedroom. If you’re concerned about privacy, use coverings that match the color of the walls.
Combining colors can be daunting, but mixing patterns? That can take an eye for design. Too many patterns in a room can overwhelm the senses and look like visual clutter. A room full of solids with one lone pattern, however, can be a little boring. Instead, find a design that blends balance with interest by mixing it up a little bit.
Here are five rules to follow:
Mixing pastels with jewel tones, or primary colors with muted, earthy neutrals doesn’t work. One pattern will dominate and the other will look like a design mistake. Instead, mix patterns by sticking to the same intensity. For example, our bold black and charcoal Grey Links Area Rug mixes well with the deep red and gray floral pattern of the Illusions Accent Chair. You can easily mix florals with dots or stripes or another pattern if it shares a common color palette.
You can also mix patterns that share a common color. Our Nolana Accent Chair, for example, has a deep apple green stripe. It pairs well with our Geo Chic Rug, which features a brick pattern in the same color. The result is a striking splash of green.
Another thing to do when mixing patterns is to stick to the same style. Contemporary patterns will mix well with contemporary patterns, and traditional patterns usually work best with traditional. There are exceptions to this rule, however. For example, a classic Oriental rug will often work in any style home. Here we mix the contemporary style and palette of our Sidney Road Accent Chair with the same style and palette of the Parquet Slate Area Rug. The effect is modern and sophisticated.
4. Consider scale
For patterns to complement each another, one should take the lead. Stripes and florals work well together, as do florals and plaids. The key is to watch the scale. If one pattern is large, the other should be of a smaller scale. Here we mix the large pattern on our Poppy Accent Chair with the narrow stripe on our Grant Rug.
5. Strive for balance
Finally, consider the layout of your furniture when you select patterns. Balance patterns around the room, and avoid having them all together on one side of a room. The bottom line is to have fun. Chances are, you can tell if it’s a hit or a miss. So listen to your inner design compass – it won’t steer you wrong.
Copper is one hot metal. From its rich tone to its reflective qualities, it commands attention while adding depth to a room. Copper also transcends design style. It’s a natural complement to traditional or rustic décor, and is a refreshing twist to nickel and chrome in contemporary homes.
While it’s never really out of fashion, this metal is very much on trend this season. In a recent issue, Elle Décor magazine invited readers to “try a new metallic this season with stunning copper, in both polished and beautiful bronzed tones. It’s a perfect way to add some winter warmth to a festive home … and shining accessories can give a simple decorating scheme a modern edge that will look good all year round.”
A touch of copper can have a big impact. Take a look at these pieces available at Art Van Furniture:
The Symphony Round Cocktail Table features a hand-hammered copper top highlighted by a beveled glass inset. The texture is an interesting departure from the smooth surfaces of most living room tables and it adds an unexpected detail to your room. The steel base provides a nice contrast of metals, allowing the copper top to be the star of the combination. If you like this look, Symphony End and Sofa Tables are also available.
This Copper Pedestal from the HGTV Home Collection is not only striking; it’s a versatile piece of furniture. Use it to display your favorite accessory place it near an accent chair or settee to serve as an additional end table in a small space. The textured finish plays with the light and gives your room a bit of luxury.
The clean lines of the Coronado Round End Table’s warm cherry wood base provide the perfect frame for its jewel accent – an antiqued copper metal ring. With a beveled glass top and sleek design, this table will shine in any room. Use it as an end table in a family or living room, or place one in your master suite as a sophisticated bedside table.
The Wakefield Fireplace features a sculpted, espresso frame with copper accents that glimmer in the light of the fire. River rocks enhance the focal point and add another element to the mix. The best part is that it’s wall-mounted, allowing you to install an architectural feature into any room. Use one to add visual warmth to a contemporary living space, create an intimate setting in the bedroom or enhance gatherings in a kitchen.
Our Tiffany Style Table Lamp looks like an heirloom passed down from generation to generation. Its dome shade is made of hundreds of pieces of art glass, each wrapped in copper foil and then soldered together in a unique pattern. Beautiful when not in use, the base and shade come alive when lit, gracefully illuminating your space. While it will be new to you, this lamp is sure to become a family treasure.
One of the benefits of a rug is that it defines an area, but it also has a super power: it can make a room feel more intimate or create the illusion of more space.
“The same room with different sized rugs will look completely different,” says Cyrus Loloi, principal for Loloi Rugs, a rug manufacturer located in Dallas. “Choose the size of your rug according to the atmosphere you want to create.”
When in doubt, Cyrus suggests that you go for the bigger size; it will unify the furniture and make the room appear bigger. He also recommends choosing a rug that leaves at least 18 inches of bare floor showing around its edges to help maintain the room’s proportions.
In the Living Room
Selecting a rug size for your living room will depend on the size of your room as well as your furniture arrangement. The rug should be able to at least accommodate a coffee table, although in most cases, 8’ x 10’ is the best choice.
“An undersized rug can make the room appear smaller and disconnected,” Cyrus says.
If you’ve got a smaller living room or prefer to keep all of our furniture off the rug except for a coffee table, go with a 5’ x 8’ rug. It creates the feel of a cozy, intimate setting.
With an 8’ x 10’ rug, you’ll most likely have all or some of the front legs of the furniture on the rug with the back legs off. This size connects the various pieces and creates a good sense of proportion.
A 9’ x 12’ rug allows you to pull all of the furniture together in a cohesive look. It defines an area and gives the room a more spacious feel.
In the Dining Room
In a dining area, the most common mistake people make is selecting a rug that’s too small, says Cyrus. The legs of the chair should sit comfortably on the rug – even when they’re pulled out for sitting. A rule of thumb is to look for a rug that extends at least 24 inches around the table.
For smaller-sized dining tables 5’ x 8’ rugs can be a great choice. A rectangular rug will work under round tables, but a round rug is often a better match. And for traditional dining tables with six to eight chairs, 8’ x 10’ or 9’ x 12’ rugs are the best choice.
If you’ve got an unusual room layout or furniture arrangement, you’ll have to be a little more flexible. And while rules provide helpful guidelines, it’s OK if they’re broken. “Ultimately if you think it looks great, go for it,” says Cyrus.
The Chinese New Year started January 31, 2014, and this year is the Year of the Horse. In China the celebration is marked with customs that include cleaning house, preparing a feast that included fish, meat, roasted nuts and seeds, candies and fruits, and posting red scrolls on every gate.
We think it would be fun to celebrate the Year of the Horse by giving your home an equestrian touch. Equestrian style is rugged yet refined. Colors, fabrics and textures are rich, and the look is one of casual elegance. Take a look at these hot to trot pieces for your home:
With equestrian style, leather is an important fabric. Our Thread & Feather Riviera Chair is 100% genuine leather, with deep tufting and nail-head trim that showcase its texture. Roomy and inviting, this chair is soon to become the best seat in the house.
Equestrian style also includes seasoned wood pieces that look like they’ve been passed from generation to generation. This Coffee Table from the Post & Rail Collection fits the bill. Inspired by a time when wood furniture was crafted by cabinetmakers without screws or staples, it utilizes reclaimed and recycled woods for a one-of-a-kind piece you’ll love for years.
This Wood and Leather Chest looks like it was assembled from a stack of Old World leather suitcases. Use one in your foyer, family room or guest bedroom. With nail-head trim and strap detailing, it provides a stately accent piece for your room as well as an opportunity to add some storage.
Need a place to sit when you pull on your riding boots? Our Wood and Leather Bench is the perfect location. Featuring nail-head trim and strap details, it provides extra seating. Or use it as a unique cocktail table in a traditional or contemporary home. This special piece would blend with any décor and provide an interesting element of surprise.
Rich texture is an important element in equestrian style, and our Emerson Chair combines two. In gorgeous brown leather with contrasting burlap fabric sides that feature a script design, this piece is an uncommon take on a traditional leather chair. In a cozy den or set by a fireplace, this handsome chair will make your heart race.
Singer Katy Perry’s performances at the Grammy and American Music Awards have been dramatic and even a bit controversial. It should be no surprise that her Hollywood Hills home – the one she once shared with now ex-husband actor Russell Brand – was over the top, too.
The Mediterranean style four-bedroom home got the royal treatment with stained glass windows, coffered ceilings, a stone-wall foyer and oversized fireplaces. The grounds included a grotto-style pool, Japanese garden and babbling brook. Perry recently sold the house for $5.65 million, but if your dream is to live like a queen we’ve got the look (for a lot less). Take a look at these pieces you can pull together to create your own castle-inspired abode:
Start with the sofa. We offer two options that mimic the plush lines of Perry’s place. Our oversized Hudson Sofa (left) is upholstered in plush woven chenille. With thick rounded arms and accent pillows in a contrasting color and texture, it’s as comfortable as it looks. Or go more formal with our Glynallen Sofa (right). In a traditional style, it features decorative carved trim and chenille upholstered cushions. The look is made even more opulent by the combination of patterns, trim and details on its accent pillows.
Add more seating to the room with accent chairs. In Perry’s living room, the look is regal and refined with a combination of seating in two styles. The Heidi Chair (left) is a great choice, with its hand-carved wood arms and legs, textured fabric upholstery, and nail-head trim. Use a pair on one side of your sofa. Then add a unique chair, like our Glynallen Accent Chair (right), for another layer of style. While its lines complement the Heidi Chair, this piece will add interest with its spool-like carved legs and back, and blended upholstery choices in fabric and leather.
Instead of a traditional wood cocktail table, Perry’s room uses a plush ottoman in a butter color. We think the Cocktail Ottoman, designed by Cindy Crawford, would make a great addition. Its generous proportions provide plenty of room for a tray, and it’s large enough to be used as additional seating during large gatherings.
A collection of tables makes the room party-ready. Perry’s living room has a carved sofa table placed against a wall to display a favorite accent piece. Our Norcastle Sofa Table would also be perfect for this purpose. Its rich finish is enhanced by exquisite detailing and cast metal filigree, and its beveled glass top makes it practical for entertaining. Next, we incorporate an end table for more surface areas. Our Priazzo Round End Table is attractive and versatile, with curved lines and a glass top that helps lighten the feel of this rich room.
Finally, add a floor lamp to the room to bring in more light. The Thompson Floor Lamp has a rounded base and trimmed shade. Traditional in lines and detail, it fits perfectly with the Old World, opulent feel of this room.
Taupe and beige can be serene, beautiful and blissfully neutral, but a room with color – lots of it! – will lift your spirits when you come through the door. From blue to purple to coral and yellow, color impacts your mood and your outlook. Combining colors, however, can be scary; you wouldn’t want your home to look like the circus came to town. But you also shouldn’t be afraid to get creative. That’s because the folks at Pantone – the global color experts – have expertly mixed together their 2014 home color collection, with nine palettes from which to choose.
Today, we’re featuring the Fluidity palette. Pantone describes it like this: “Gliding gracefully through watery channels, Fluidity is the palette that understands the inevitable human need for life-sustaining cool water tones rendered largely in dazzling blues and blue-greens. These cooling hues are underscored by shimmering sea grass shades and undersea-creature colors such as Absinthe Green, Violet Tulle, a blazing Samoan Sun, a Dewberry purple and two tones of eye-arresting orange-corals.”
We think these tropical colors would turn your living room into an oasis. Take a look at how we combined the palette to create a room with vavoom:
Start with a neutral sofa that can handle some punchy pillows. The Thread & Feather Beckett Collection, with shelter-style tufting, is the perfect backdrop for the turquoise and coral pillows. Or select Thread & Feather’s Riviera Sofa, which has more traditional lines. In a linen-like fabric, its light color sets off its deep purple velvet and black-and-white houndstooth toss pillows.
Next, add accent seating in a bold color. The Thread & Feather Norfolk Armless Settee – in teal genuine leather – has simple lines and would be a nice complement to either sofa. If you’re not in love with teal, Thread & Feather offers several fabrics, so that you can customize for the look you want.
Colorful accent chairs are also a nice addition. The Thread & Feather Afton Chair features a bold pattern in grey and coral. Its straight lines are trimmed in a dark wood for a sleek, contemporary feel. Or add a splash of purple with Thread & Feather’s Henderson Chair. In rich velvet fabric with a dark wood trim, it’s both sophisticated and stylish.
Finally, add more color from this palette underfoot. Our Tarkan Collection Rug is made from 75% wool antique and vintage Turkish rugs with a patchwork technique. In emerald green, the rug plays with the other colors in the room, giving you the happy feeling of being seaside.
If you want to get a peek into the interior design trends of the future, pick up your favorite fashion magazine. The looks designers show during the acclaimed New York Fashion Week often make their way from the runway to your home.
We saw several trends emerge for Spring 2014. Designers were showing black and white, geometric and graphic prints, subtle details and flowing lines. Sometimes subtle and sometimes not, you can find these influences in home décor. Take a look at some of the fashion-forward furniture available at Art Van Furniture, and the runway looks they resemble.
Ralph Lauren channeled the ‘60s for his Spring collection, sending shifts, patent leather and black-and-white prints down the runway. The look was unexpected from the man who defines classic American style. Our Jazz Accent Chair matches the feel. With its sleek silhouette, the geometric pattern in black gives the chair a tailored but not too serious feel.
Czar by Cesar Galindo created a collection that was described as sporty elegance, with crisp bright colors and bold, flowing prints. Our Thread & Feather Abbey Accent Chair offers a similar look. In deep blue genuine leather, its uniquely shaped back has deep tufting detail, which shows off the blue and teal accent pillow.
Supima is America’s luxury cotton brand. Since 2008, the company has held its annual Supima Design Competition to give exposure to emerging talent. While he didn’t win, we love the looks created by Will Riddle of Kent State University. In deep purple and black, the color combination is rich and dramatic. The same can be said for our Thread & Feather Henderson chair. Its deep purple velvet fabric is wrapped in a wood trim that frames it in sophistication.
The Zimmerman collection was filled with a light palette of seasonal pastels, creamy whites, ivories and metallic. Prints included floral, stripes and checks, such as this garment in a subtle houndstooth. The Style Collection Mila accent chair is an excellent example of a subtle piece of furniture that adds a crisp detail to a room. With its curved lines and small-scaled houndstooth pattern in grey and tan, it is an example of simplicity and effortless style.
The theme of the Richard Chai collection was “soft geometry.” With stripes and shapes in tropical colors, the look was bold and eye catching. Our Thread & Feather Afton Chair also makes its presence known. Its upholstery features a bold pattern of gray and coral, and its geometric-inspired straight lines are set off by its dark wood trim.
Beer may be the big advertiser on Super Bowl Sunday, but wine is becoming the drink of choice for many of today’s adults. According to Fox News, beer sales are down 20 percent over the last 20 years while wine sales are up.
From merlot to malbec, pinot grigio and pinot noir, a glass of wine elevates any event to an experience in taste and sophistication. In fact, one of the most common hostess gifts is a bottle of vino. So where do you store yours?
Don’t hide bottles in a kitchen cabinet. Instead, showcase your collection in a wine bar or sideboard. Take a look at these four toast-worthy options available at Art Van Furniture:
Our Sheridan Server, in a fitting rich merlot finish, is a great addition to a dining room or gathering space. Store four bottles in its open wine bays, and keep your collection of wine glasses inside the two cabinets. The open shelving gives you a chance to display your decorative glasses or accent pieces, and a drawer conveniently holds a corkscrew, wine charm assortment and cocktail napkins.
The unique Keegan Server and Wine Rack will also hold your wine in style. With a beveled mirrored back and warm cherry brown finish, it adds sparkle and grace to your room. Five bottles of wine are held in its wine bays. Storage capabilities also include a total of five felt lined drawers, two cabinets and one display cabinet with an elegant glass door. The top features a starburst veneer pattern for a surprising detail.
The serious wine consumer will love the Tocara Wine Bar Curio. Two full-length glass doors showcase a collection of wine, champagne and martini glasses on glass shelves. A felt-lined drawer easily holds your corkscrew, aerator and foil cutter. Set up a bar on the curio’s pullout work surface, and organize, store and display your wine collection in three pullout racks.
Finally, add a splash of color to your room with our Asian-Inspired Zhang Wine Cabinet. Part of our Urban AV Collection, the piece is constructed using traditional Chinese joinery. One of a kind, it’s hand-painted in aqua and hand-distressed. It holds glassware inside its deep doors and dozens of bottles inside its wine bays.
The buyers at Art Van Furniture comb the world to find the best brands for your home. We look for quality, character and style, and assemble a showroom full of excellent options. Today we’re putting the spotlight on one of these brands – L.J. Gascho Furniture.
A customer favorite, L.J. Gascho products are individually handcrafted. An assortment of in-stock pieces are available for immediate delivery, or you can place a custom order. Simply come into one of our showrooms, find your favorite piece, and select your wood, color and hardware. Your specially made furnishing will be delivered in just weeks.
To discover this great supplier, we didn’t have to travel far from our Warren, Mich. headquarters. In 1989, a former Art Van executive was dining at a Mid-Michigan restaurant when he noticed the beauty of table. Talking to the owner, he discovered it had been handcrafted by Lyle J. Gascho, a local woodworker and fourth-generation chicken farmer.
Lyle had learned woodworking techniques from Amish and Mennonite craftsmen. With a passion for quality and detail, he started making furniture as a hobby. When the Art Van executive and buyer asked if he’d sell his pieces at Art Van Furniture stores, Lyle’s hobby quickly became a thriving business.
Today L.J. Gascho has grown into a company with 115 employees, but the mission has stayed the same: “to produce high quality furniture that will become heirlooms to be passed on from generation to generation.”
“We take pride in our work, and operate with honesty and integrity,” says Brandon Yowler, director of marketing for L.J. Gascho. “We’re not just making pieces of furniture, we’re making products that are part of people’s lives.”
Everything is hand-made using solid red oak and maple woods. Table slides are made with solid maple to add durability, and some are gear driven to make it easy for one person to operate. Pedestal feet include self-adjustable levelers. Round table rims and chair backs are made from solid woods and are steam bent.
The finishing process is also unique. Stains are hand rubbed to bring out the natural characteristics of the wood. The finish is done with Beshta-var, a catalyzed varnish that is resistant to substances including water, alcohol, warm dishes, and even nail polish remover. It is also resistant to marring and scratching.
The company is so remarkable that ABC World News featured Gascho’s Anniversary dining room table in its first-ever ‘Made in America’ special. The piece had been designed for Art Van Furniture stores to celebrate 25 years of working together.
Brandon says L.J. Gascho is committed to making products that are relevant for today’s consumers. “The past five years of the Gascho story revolve around Old World craftsmanship with updated styles,” he says.
Recently, the company launched new collections – Heritage, Hanover, Elizabeth, Saber and 20th Century – with pieces that include dining sets, entertainment centers, beds, dressers, chests, nightstands, end tables, cocktail tables, china cabinets, sofa tables and vanities. The new collections feature the company’s solid-wood heirloom quality with looks that bridge traditional with more modern styling.
With L.J. Gascho, you not only get a beautiful piece of furniture, you get a chance to make a family memory that can last forever.
“One of our customers had been diagnosed with cancer,” says Brandon. “He realized that life was short so he took his Gascho table, flipped it over and wrote a letter to his family. He shared seven things he had found to be true in life, and then he invited them to add their own wisdom and keep passing it on. Stories like that keep us going, and we’re proud to offer heirloom-quality furniture.”