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!

window treatment photo

When it comes to covering your windows, choosing a treatment can be confusing. From elegant draperies to contemporary shades to classic shutters, a world of options is available. How do you decide which style is right for your room?

 

“I always start with the question, ‘What is your reason for covering this window?’” says Sharon Zmick, executive director of the window fashions division at Art Van Flooring. “It could be for privacy in a bedroom or light control in a living room or family room. It could be that you need more insulation in a room. Or it might simply be that you’re looking to add a decorative element or bring color to the space. The reason will guide me in finding the treatment or product will give you exactly what you want. And within the solution are several design options.”

 

Zmick says there are two basic types of treatments: hard and soft. Hard treatments include things like blinds, shutter and shades. Soft treatments are coverings made of fabric, such as draperies, sheers or a cornice board. Either type can be used alone for a look that’s simple and sleek. Or you can combine hard and soft and create a rich, layered effect.

 

“Sometimes a room feels like it’s missing something,” says Zmick. “If you had just a blind up, for example, the minute you add a drapery it will often be just what the room needed.”

 

To choose a treatment that fits your style, Zmick suggests looking through home design magazines, collecting photos of what you like: “Once you lay the pictures side by side, you’ll often find they share a similar look,” she says. “Having this as a starting point helps narrow down the choices. Somebody with a trained eye can quickly recognize the look you’re going for.”

 

Zmick says it’s also a good idea to know your budget before you start shopping: “We offer all kinds of price points, with great choices in each one,” she says. “How much you want to spend often can be determined by how long you’re going to be in house. You might be a renter and not want to spend too much. Or maybe you’re in your dream home and want to make more of an investment.”

 

You’ll also want to understand your space. Take down the measurements of your window as well as the area around it. You can download this handy Window Measuring Template and fill in the blanks before you visit the showroom. With those simple dimensions in hand, Zmick says she can design and quote any window.

 

Finally, give thought to a palette. When it comes to choosing colors, Zmick suggests looking in your closet. “The colors you wear are the colors you are comfortable with and it’s a good place to start,” she says. “The room can also determine the color. If a customer enjoys a monochromatic look, the existing colors in the room will point us in the right direction.”

 

Then get ready to imagine the possibilities. “Window treatments are like furnishings in a room,” says Zmick. “Not only do they offer functional aspects such as privacy and energy efficiency, they can change the look of your room and give it more personality. It’s fun to play with colors, textures and styles and really make the look your own.”


Tailgate Tips

Author: Art Van

If you’ve ever attended a sporting event, you know the fun starts before the first ball is thrown, kicked or tossed. It happens in the parking lot with a tailgate party. If you’re thinking of hosting one, here are three things to consider:

 

1. Food. When it comes to tailgating, food is by far the most important ingredient. Think chicken wings, corn on the cob, pasta salad, hamburgers, hot dogs, popcorn and chips – anything that can be eaten with your hands or while milling around. Set up the food in a buffet format so guests can serve themselves. It also sets the relaxed tone of the event.

 

2. Seating. For many, tailgating is not simply an hour-long picnic before kickoff; it can be a party that lasts a few hours. For that length of time, people will need to sit down. Consider purchasing folding tailgate chairs, which come in a bag and are often available with your favorite team’s logo.

 

3. Games. Finally, plan some activities. While tailgate parties revolve around food and beverages, it’s a good idea to provide other entertainment. Basic backyard games, such as bean bag toss, ladder ball, horseshoes, ring toss and Frisbee are portable and fun to play.


Clutter can turn a beautiful room into a mess, but where do you stash the DVDs, magazines, games and extra blankets that seem to collect in every home? We’ve got just the solution! Here are seven storage solutions that will effortlessly hide away the unsightly, drawing attention to their style instead.

 

Arya Chest
Who wouldn’t be intrigued by the Arya Accent Chest? Its scrolled studded pattern and nailhead trim dress up the understated elegance of the natural linen exterior. A perfect addition to a family room corner, you’ll find plenty of space to store items behind its two doors.

 

suzanne chest
The subtle detail of two birds in a tree will make the Suzanne Accent Chest a heartwarming addition to your home. The piece also offers ample room inside its three drawers to tuck away movies, magazines, blankets – anything you wish. Imagine it in your foyer, family room or bedroom.

 

tamara chest
Add a punch of color to a room with the Tamara Accent Chest. Its rich turquoise hue will complement most color palettes, and the lattice design and unique pulls blend with any style décor. Store hats and gloves, board games, or DVDs and CDs inside its three designer-look drawers.

 

arlo cabinet
Storage gets a rustic touch with the unique Arlo Cabinet. The distressed doors are accented with a patchwork-style design that features a mixture of colors and patterns. A fixed shelf inside will easily hold games for family gatherings, making it a great addition to your living space.

 

carl accent chest
The curves of the Carl Accent Chest give this simple piece a sophisticated feel. Its glamorous look is accented by classic metal ring pulls. In a brushed silver finish, it offers three drawers that will store your items in style.

 

brandy chest
The eye-catching details of the Brandy Accent Chest will make it a much-admired piece in your room. The raised scroll design in soft cream contrasts with the hand-painted cadet grey background. Slightly distressed, its three drawers provide room for a variety of belongings.

 louisa chest
Finally, the Louisa Accent Chest has the look of a forgotten treasure, but its unique lines and finish are sure to be remembered. In sage and black, the piece has wonderful details such as ring pulls, nailhead accents and decorative medallions. It’s the perfect addition to a foyer or a family room.

 


Rug 1                          Rug 2

Breathe new life into a room by updating your rug. Rugs can make surroundings feel fresh by introducing a bold new design. They can add a splash of color to a neutral environment. And they can bring definition to a larger room. With so many styles and patterns to choose from, rugs can do it all.


bedroom main picture

If your home is your haven, your bedroom should be your sanctuary. Reflecting not only your personal sense of style, the master bedroom should also represent your dreams, your desires and your priorities. Designing this room should not be left to chance. Instead, purposefully incorporate all of the elements that will transform a bedroom into a personal retreat.

 

While the style is up to you, here are five things every bedroom needs:

 

Serena Rug
1. A rug. You don’t want to get out of bed to a cold floor. While carpet is welcoming, a rug adds another layer of comfort and provides a chance to express your style. Choose something plush to make your entry into the day as inviting as possible.

 

contempo lamp
2. Layered lighting. While overhead lighting is helpful for getting dressed, the bedroom needs other kinds of task lighting. A table lamp on each nightstand will offer a way to read in bed. A floor lamp near a sitting area illuminates a spot to unwind. And candles here and there add a romantic touch.

 

bell haven chair
3. A place to sit. While your bed is a comfortable place to read at night, your bedroom should include an accent chair that can be enjoyed during the day. Use it to put on your shoes. You can also sit here to read or catch up with a loved one. Include a side table and you’ll find yourself enjoying the privacy of this room even more.

 

mattress

 

4. A great mattress. A restful night’s sleep isn’t a luxury; it’s a vital element for good health. Art Van PureSleep is the only store in Michigan that scientifically fits you for the right mattress. Choices include specialty, such as foam, memory foam and gel memory foam beds; innerspring, which have the traditional coils, and hybrids, which are a combination of innerspring and foam.

 

cameron nightstand
5. A nightstand. Drift off into peaceful sleep by assembling all of the night’s necessities on your nightstand. Tissues, a glass of water, a good book or magazine, a lamp and maybe a sleep mask can be conveniently stored right where you need it. When you keep creature comforts nearby, you can stay tucked in beneath the covers.


glow in the dark mummy

 

Michael’s Arts and Crafts’ Mummy Pumpkin

Glue two large wiggle eyes to the pumpkin. Decoupage cheesecloth in random strips until the entire pumpkin is covered, working around the eyes. Allow to dry for at least 24 hours.

 

ribbon pumpkin

 

Kraft’s Ribbon Pumpkin

Preserve your pumpkin for Thanksgiving recipes by decorating it with ribbon instead of carving or painting. Choose fabrics and trims that you like, and attach them with dots from a glue gun.

 

spiderweb pumpkin

 

Better Homes & Gardens’ Spider Web Pumpkin

Forego orange and purchase a white pumpkin this year. Then attach silver sequins in a web design using glue. Add a silver spider, and you’ve got a glamorous Halloween decoration.


When Gone With the Wind was released 75 years ago, moviegoers got a glimpse into some of the most opulent home fashions of its time. A breathtaking backdrop with luxurious finishes and furnishings, Tara was a reflection of Scarlett O’Hara’s dreams and style.

 

If Scarlett were furnishing Tara today, she might go a little lighter on the details but we’re sure the glamour would be there. Here are five furnishings she, quite frankly, would give a damn about:

 

scarlett ohara sofa

Scarlett was big on drama, and so is the Whitney Sofa. With curved lines, it makes a statement in elegance and refinement. Nailhead trim outlines its shape, and the fringed skirt and assorted toss pillows offer traditional flair. This sofa is a masterpiece.

 

scarlett ohara chaise
Always the diva, Scarlett liked to demonstrate her emotions by fainting. Our Broadway Chaise provides the perfect landing. Its neutral body fabric is outlined in chocolate brown welting for a sharp contrast. And the rich toss pillows make it all the more striking!

 

scarlett ohara bed
Tara offered a luxurious master retreat fit for a queen. Today’s Scarlett can find the same feeling with the simple addition of the Cotswald Collection Sleigh Bed. The tufted linen upholstery on the headboard and footboard give the elegant shape a sumptuous feel. And the bun feet ground the piece in traditional style.

 

scarlett ohara chest
The gorgeous Gwenyth Accent Chest provides a stunning space for storage. Looking like an antique, the hand-painted fruit and floral design is accented by decorative pulls and a scalloped base. Imagine this piece in a foyer, dining room or living room. It would also be the perfect piece for a Scarlett-worthy dressing room.

 

scarlett ohara desk
Finally, every modern woman needs a writing desk. Imagine today’s Scarlett sitting at the Brookview Desk to update her Facebook status. Its center drawer drops down for keyboard storage and two pencil side drawers hold supplies when she prefers old-fashioned correspondence. Antique brass hardware complements the scrolled design of the legs for a look that’s timeless.

 


Give your home a fresh look by mixing antiques or reproductions with contemporary furnishings. The interplay will surprise and delight and offer a bold new way of living. Take a minimalist approach to put the focus on special pieces.


Give mealtime a pop of color by updating your current dining room table with bright new chairs. Hues like orange, plum, red and teal give a fresh look to your wooden or glass table. And a bold shade provides plenty of personality as well as a starting point for choosing your centerpiece, rug and art.

 Antonio Table

Take a look at our Antonio Dining Table. Its thick wooden top and base bring a sense of substance to a dining room, and it provides the perfect blank slate for an array of colorful chairs.

antonio table teal chairs

Add teal and you’ve got a striking arrangement. The Warner Parsons Dining Chair features nail-head trim and quilted design for a gorgeous transitional look. The wood legs coordinate well with the table, and the white accents create a modern feel. The Warner Parsons Dining Chairs are also available in plum, orange and red.

 

plum chairwarner orange parsons chairwarner parsons chair red

 

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antonio table red chairs

 

Try red and the room instantly looks rich and traditional. Our Baker Parsons Chairs in blended leather have a high-back design that is as comfortable as it is formal. Perfect for a leisurely family dinner or special evening with friends, the Baker Parsons Chairs are also available in teal, orange and plum.

 

teal parsons chair orange baker chair plum baker chair

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antonio table plum chairs

 

Or choose plum and you’ve got an elegant setting for six. Our beautiful Roland Parsons Chairs have a rolled top for a feminine feel and a wide-back design that invites relaxing conversation. Upholstered in an easy-to-clean polyurethane, you won’t worry about family dinners with children. Roland Parsons Chairs are also available in red, teal and orange.
 

red rolled parsons chairteal roland chairorange roland chair
 

 


caramel apple

 

Halloween is the season for making caramel apples, but making them can be messy. Here are four tricks for this favorite fall treat:

 

  1. Forget about unwrapping dozens of caramels; Kraft has special caramel balls available this time of year for this purpose, or look for caramel wraps that are even easier.
  2. Thoroughly wash and dry your apples before you dip them. Caramel will adhere better to a dry surface.
  3. Chill your apples for at least 30 minutes before you dip; it will help the caramel to stay put and not pool at the bottom.
  4. Refrigerate your dipped apples for an hour to set the caramel. Remove and let sit for 15 minutes before you enjoy.