Mother’s Day Style: Joanna Gaines

Joanna Gaines is one of the most stylish TV moms around. Not only did she make farmhouse style the hottest look of the past few years; she put the focus of home design on telling the family’s story. Her own home reflects those same values, with an eclectic mix of personal items, old and new, that creates an inviting space for family and friends.

If you love Joanna Gaines’ style, here are three of her signature items:

 

Shiplap

Admit it. None of us knew what shiplap was before Fixer Upper. Now we all want the beautiful reclaimed wood in our homes. From walls to furniture, every room can use a little shiplap.

 

Vintage Maps

There’s something nostalgic and beautiful about framing and hanging vintage maps. Whether it’s from your city, your travels or your dreams, framed vintage maps add a sense of adventure to your room.

 

Pendant Lights

Most of Joanna’s designs include large kitchen islands, and the way to create a sense of coziness is to anchor them with statement pendant lights. Not only do pendants provide task lighting; they underscore the design of the home.

 

What do you think of Joanna Gaines’ style?

How to Create a Comfortable Outdoor Living Space

Want to add square footage to your home without obtaining a building permit? You’ll feel like you’ve created an addition when you design a comfortable outdoor living space on your deck, patio or porch. New materials – such as woven wicker, updated fabrics and cast aluminum – have lead to pieces that mimic your indoor style with the added benefit of allowing you to enjoy the nature just outside your door.

From sofas to sectionals, chaise lounges and cocktail tables, it’s easy to create an outside area that feels like a natural extension of your home – perfect for entertaining or just relaxing after a long day. Take a look at what we recommend:


1. Go for the cushions

Furnishing with cushions is the foundation of building a room that feels like an indoor space. From chairs to sofas and sectionals, cushioned furniture is designed to be fade-, stain- and mildew-resistant, and you can leave these pieces outside. Group seating pieces together just like you would in your indoor living space.

2. Play with the color palette

Use the tones you have inside to create a natural flow onto your deck or patio. Or go for a bold color that gives the feel of a tropical oasis. Keep in mind that earth tones might blend in a little too well with the outdoors, shrinking the look of your furnishings, and dark colors will hold the heat of the sunlight. Consider using bold, brightly colored accessories for a feeling of fun and whimsy.

3. Think about the “floor” 

Consider using an outdoor rug. Made from a polypropylene material, it is made to stand up to the elements. And just like a rug serves in your indoor rooms, it will give the area a pulled-together feel.

4. Take advantage of greenery

Bring your landscaping onto your patio or deck by using hanging baskets, pots and planters. Choose flowers and plants that mimic those in your lawn; the cohesive materials will make your yard feel like an extension of the space.

5. Give the illusion of walls

Create the feeling of a room by installing a pergola, lattice wall or awning. In addition to providing shade and privacy, you can use it to support climbing vines. An umbrella over a dining set will also give the feeling of enclosure.

6. Consider the lighting

Strings of white or colored lights aren’t just for the holidays; they can create a starry effect when used outdoors during a summer night. Also consider landscape and deck lighting or torches that will softly light up the area and enhance the atmosphere. Lighting that points upward accents the architecture of the structure, while a light pointed downward creates a cozy glow.

7. Include the ambiance of a fire

Consider using a firepit. A popular outdoor accessory, you can find freestanding firepits or firepits that are incorporated in table groupings. An evening fire will instantly transform the space into an inviting gathering area as well as warm up the cool nights of Michigan summer.

8. Accessorize

Decorative items bring an indoor room to life and the serve the same purpose outside, as well. Play with decorative throw pillows, bowls and candles.

 

9. Crank up the music

Outdoor speakers bring the party outside. Relax in style with your favorite tunes. You can install outdoor speakers or use a portable speakers.

 

10. Add water

Complement the design and feel of your outdoor space with the calming trickle of a fountain. Its sound is soothing and will add another sense to your outdoor space. You could also choose a birdbath that will attract feathered friends.

Six Design Rules to Break

Rules can be helpful – especially when you’re doing something new. But rules are also made to be broken – especially when it comes to a creative process like decorating your home. If you’re afraid of making a design faux pas, here are six rules you can toss out of your (treatment-free) window:

Design Rules Old and New

You shouldn’t mix old with new

Your room isn’t meant to be a time capsule. In fact, decorating in a single style or period can make a room feel boring and uninspired. Instead, pick your favorite pieces from across decades. If you love them, chances are they’ll work well together. One way to create a cohesive look is to use the room’s architecture for inspiration. If you live in a traditional Colonial, for example, combine contemporary pieces with an Oriental rug. You want your room to look as though it’s been assembled over time, not in a single shopping spree.

 

Design Rules Sofa

A living room needs a sofa

It used to be that designing a living room started with the sofa. This rule no longer need apply. Consider creating a cozy conversation space with four oversized easy chairs. A pair of loveseats or settees can make a space feel more formal. Or choose a chaise and an easy chair combination, for a place to relax and unwind. While you can never go wrong using a sofa in a living room, it’s not the only option.

Design Rules Windows

Windows need window treatments

If you have a beautiful view and gorgeous windows, there’s no rule that says you have to cover them up with window treatments. Let the outdoors in by leaving windows treatment-free. This is a great choice when privacy and insulation aren’t a concern.

Design Rules Nightstand

Nightstands should match

His and hers doesn’t have to mean identical. Why not create a more interesting setting by letting each person choose the nightstand option that suits them best? If you like to read in bed while enjoying a cup of tea, choose a sleek glass-top end table. If your partner prefers to store magazines and the remote, a more classic design with drawers would be best. Then bridge the difference by choosing a similar finish.

Every room needs a pop of color

An accent wall or bright throw pillows certainly make a room feel alive, but monochromatic rooms can be just as interesting. Design a room in subtle shades of gray or ivory or tan. Neutrals look very rich when they’re layered in different textures.

Choose one wood finish and stick with it

While it’s never a bad choice to bring home a matching dining room set, you make a room much more interesting when you mix pieces. While many people are afraid to use more than one wood finish in a room, it’s actually a great way to create a layered look. Dark furniture looks great when placed on light oak floors, for example. Or choose furnishings with mixed finishes. Limit the finishes to two or three, and use them throughout the space for a harmonious look.

 

Small Spaces, Big Living

From quaint cottages to trendy lofts, small spaces are a movement that isn’t slowing down. It’s all about downsizing and editing, says our Creative Director Broc Clark. “Tiny homes are a national phenomenon as are the lifestyle changes associated with low-impact living,” he says. “For many urban dwellers—and an increasing number of suburban dwellers, too—small space living is the only option, but that doesn’t mean it has to be any less intentional.”

If you have a small space, here are three must-haves to make sure you live large:

Sectional with a Reversible Chaise

Sectionals are a great solution for small space seating, accommodating up to four people and providing a lot of comfort when you’re curling up alone or with a loved one. A sectional helps organize an open floor plan by designating zones for living and dining.

 

Round Table

A round table is a must have because it’s all about versatility. Use it for dining or working. It’s perfect for a card game and can later double as an entry table in a foyer. There are no hard corners, which is perfect for high traffic areas.

Serving Cart

Finally, a portable bar is the perfect solution for a party. Easy to move, you can set out beverages and let guests help themselves. Later, this piece doubles as an end or bedside table. And a square version could be a great solution for a printer cart or computer tower in a home office.

Style 101: Coastal Style

Life’s better at the beach. So why not bring some of those good vibrations home? Coastal style gives you the feeling of being on vacation all year long. Its casual attitude and breezy energy makes it an easy-to-live-with option that is classic and fun.

If you like Coastal Style, here are five things you should bring to your sea-worthy residence:

 

Blue!

Coastal style sings the blues. Choose your favorite shade of blue or introduce a palette that combines more than one. From sky to turquoise to midnight, blue helps you feel calm and relaxed, and you can create depth by layering shades of blue and using patterns. For accent colors, look to other sea inspirations, such as sand, coral and green. The result will be refreshing.

Lots of Light

Dare to bare your windows, or keep them minimally covered when possible. Coastal rooms are known for letting in the light. In rooms that require treatments, such as bedrooms, consider draperies that can be pulled back during the daytime. Or choose white Plantation shutters that are classic Coastal Style.

 

Sea-Inspired Accessories

Bring the feeling of the sea into your room with items you might discover on the beach. A basket of shells, beach glass or driftwood adds a touch of nature. An antique telescope or sextant gives your room a maritime feel. Or choose a nautical-inspired print or decorative chest. But be careful not to overdo it – you don’t want to like a seafood restaurant! Less is more when it comes to creating the right balance.

A Casual Feel

Coastal Style promotes barefoot living, so make sure your home is casual and comfortable. Warm up wood or tile floors with a nice rug. Choose furnishings that encourage people to lounge and linger. Add an ottoman that beckons you to enjoy an afternoon spent with a book.

White And Bright

Coastal rooms get definition from crisp white woodwork that amplifies the blue hue. Use white in furnishings, as well. Or choose light wood varieties like oak, maple, and pine in natural finishes. You’ll want to avoid heavy, dark woods, opting for painted varieties instead. Or lighten the look of dark wood by toning it down with white accents.