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Posts Tagged ‘decorating’

Living in Upstate NY there are many historic farm homes that were built with excellent architecture. Large wooden beams and coffered ceilings make farmhouse design alluring today. With a revival of Rustic design and rich heritage of older homes and estates in upstate New York,  this style is a marriage made in heaven! I’ve put together some steps to follow to create beautiful, functional upscale farmhouse designs. To start the Journey…

Stay Neutral

Use a neutral pallet of light and airy colors to create a calming and casual atmosphere. When you do add color make it  a soothing green or sea-mist blue that adds a touch without too much pop. Soft shades of brown, black, grey, tan, beige and white are used quite often to ground the whole design concept.

farmhouse-painted-coffered-ceiling

Blending History and Current design

Mix together old furnishings, new fabrics and colors to keep your look fresh, but inviting. Even if you don’t currently own true antiques you can fake it. Use Distressed furnishings and sanded off painted surfaces to give the look of worn out furniture that has a story to tell.  Pull vintage farm equipment into the décor and give each piece a new purpose. Think outside of the box when decorating your home using old plates, glass jars, used books, dressers as vanities, trunks as coffee tables and more.

farmhouse-bedroom

Using Fresh Flowers and Greenery

Pulling in greenery from your yard adds character and beautiful texture to warm up a room. Options includes indoor plants, twigs, branches, succulents, herbs, flowers, pine cones. Use them in pots, clear vases, and more. Whether real or fake, this is a staple farmhouse décor.

farmhouse-greenery-kitchen-pinecones

Adding Texture

Shiplap wood ceilings, stone accents, barn wood floors, milk glass, linen pillows, antiqued tables, textured mirrors and much more. There should always be abundance of texture in farm inspired homes.  Even if you don’t own a home with brick walls or wood floors you can add in texture through your furnishings. When it comes to farmhouse style, there are guidelines but no hard and fast rules. You may enjoy anything from metal barn lights and industrial chandeliers, to classic mason jar pendants. The common thread that all farmhouse style shares is the antique, casual and streamlined design.

farmhouse-shiplap-ceilings

Finding Time … Clocks

Amazingly unique wall clocks have wowed you, designers strategically place them everywhere in farmhouse design. Incorporating gorgeous antique (or antique looking) clocks to remind us of times past. Here aged leather chairs and the right accessories, invite you to sit and pass the time away..

farmhouse-clock

What is a perfect farmhouse home? In my opinion its architecture and construction that fits naturally into the topography while offering beautiful inspired interiors that transform outdated spaces into Old World themed treasures. Treatments such as coffered ceilings, crown molding and transom glass windows enhance the warm farmhouse inspired designs….

 

As Always stay tuned for more Adventures in Styleland..

 

XOXO

Michele

 

 

 

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In honour of mothers on their special day, I asked myself what decorating secrets did I learn from my Mom…

mom carol and I

She made our home beautiful, chic and inspiring while juggling both a full-time job and being a mother. I learned about fabrics and sewing from my mom. She was an extraordinary seamstress. When I was little, I loved going to the fabric store with her — it was a world of imagination and creativity. She taught me to appreciate quality, natural fibers like wools, silks and fine cotton. Now working with fabrics is one of my favorite parts of decorating.

Another important lesson she taught me,  never to buy what I don’t need: a bargain is only a bargain if it’s something important. I also learned all about color selection and furniture arranging from her. We lived in Brooklyn NY in a 6 room apartment, she always kept it fresh, ever changing.. and I firmly believe that had this wonderful woman been any less interested in our family home as I grew up, I might not be where I am today.

My mother taught me that it’s important to develop personal style,  buy the best quality you can afford and mix family pieces, antiques and comfortable upholstered furniture– eat in the dining room, use your china or better dishes on Sundays.. I learned to respect our home and everything within it, including my mother.

My mom used to rearrange the furniture a lot — it’s surprising how furnishings can look completely new when viewed from a different angle or in a different room. She also taught me that every window looks empty and cold unless softened by a window treatment, she changed hers often.

She was never afraid of bold patterns, I remember her sewing room or the SPARE ROOM, we had large orange and yellow wall paper, and smaller floral wall paper on the ceiling.. It was cutting edge at the time..

When I was little, my mother always dressed — she was glammed up even when cleaning the house. From her, I learned to dress and decorate with the intent to be gorgeous, having no fear of color.

I will end here with a couple of ideas for what to do for your mom..

Source and pay for a house cleaning service for a few months. A house cleaning every two weeks, I’m sure all moms would appreciate the break. That being said, do not buy her a vacuum, cleaning supplies, or tools unless she specifically asks for them. I’m looking at you Dad.

Brunch was always a favorite of mine.. I loved to go to a special Italian place locally that served cured meats..fresh fruits..baked delights and my family would all laugh and enjoy the meal together…

table scape

Spend time, yes…time… take the day and pull out pictures, family vacations reminisce with her, make cookies sit and have a cup of coffee.. Love her and let her know that she is the most important women in your life.

Mom and Dad

 

Miss you Mother Theresa…All my love

 

XOXO

 

M

 

 

 

 

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Revere PewterChoosing a wall color can be fun, its all in the approach….and help from your painting professional! While doing a room for Vanguard Showhouse, I was asked to do a tour through the house and talk about the paint colors. As National Color consultant for Certa Pro Painters, I was happy to lead the tour.

One of the first questions was:

Q : What is the lovely grey color on the walls? And how do I know if it’s right for my home?

Paint colors

A: The question-of-the-day on the house tour was ‘What color are the walls?’  The answer was Benjamin Moore’s Revere Pewter.  Once I answered, nearly everyone who asked the question, replied “This can’t be Revere Pewter !  I have used that color or have sampled Revere Pewter and this is not what it looked like.”  Although each person’s experience with Revere Pewter was different, the consensus was that the color looked great in this home.

Certa Pro Banan Boat

Selecting the right paint color for your space is a process that takes time and a number of steps to achieve.

There are many factors that can affect paint color:

  • Natural light : the direction the light is coming from (northern exposure and eastern exposure each provide a very different quality of light),
  • Artificial light : will you have incandescent, fluorescent, or LED lighting?  Or a mixture of some or all of these?
  • Surroundings : what furnishings, artwork, draperies, rugs, and hard finishes are there in the space?  Each of these factors will have an influence on the wall color.
I always recommend hiring a Professional Painting Service. At CertaPro Painters they know the highest quality paint products to use with the right finishes that will enhance your walls. With this expertise, they will recommend these products to you to ensure that your painted surfaces look their best and stay looking beautiful for as long as possible.
Certapro painters

Paint colors should be selected in the space they will be utilized.  Look at the color swatches next to the fabrics and finishes intended for the space.

  • Start by finding a few (2-3) options for each space.
  • Ask your decorator or Painter if he/she can order larger color sheets for you, BM has 18 x18 and Sherwin Williams has 8 x 10
  • If the large color sheets are not available, ask the paint store to mix the smallest quantity for you (in the intended sheen) for each of the options you have selected.
  • Paint the colors on a board such as poster board, or some spare drywall pieces.  Painting on the wall may seem like a great shortcut, however as soon as you put 3 big splashes of color on the wall next to each other, each of the samples is affected by the other colors, and are therefore not rendering true.  Another reason to sample on a board is that you can carry the color from room to room, as well as from wall to wall.  The color will look different on a wall with a window than a wall opposite a window than on the ceiling.
  • Seeing the color in multiple locations, and at different times of day (with natural light during the day, and artificial light in the evening) will allow you to really study the color and decide which is right for you.

If you are still feeling unsure about the process and selecting the right colors for your space, please give Certa Pro a call they would be more than happy to provide a color consultation for just the one room you are ready to paint, or your entire home or commercial space. Set up your appointment for a free quote at the Home Expo Terri Gargano of CertaPro Albany will be at Booth 348 in the Times Union Center.

Stay Tuned for more Adventures in Styleland

 

XOXO

M

 

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Albany Centerr Gallery

Albany Center Gallery has provided a platform for 39 years for the work of contemporary visual artists to engage the public, Leslie Urbach opened the gallery’s doors in 1977.  The Albany Center Gallery (a non-profit art space) that is dedicated to exhibiting contemporary art of the Mohawk Hudson Region. They have at least 7 major exhibits each year. Located at 247 Lark Street in Albany, the Gallery holds regular classes and workshops.     

Albany Centerr Gallery 1Take Shape:  Opening in May 2015

Telling Oct-Nov13Telling featuring: Jane McCambley, Theresa McTague, Josette Pastore, Allan Sparrow

Leslie Urbach passed in 1997 at age 88.  His mission of fostering regional art helped launch the careers of numerous area painters, sculptors, photographers and printmakers. Albany Center Gallery will have various artists on display at the Times Union Home Expo. February 19-21st.

Our adventures continue with this DIY Art Project…

Wall Art for Less Than $10!!

Art done right..I love finding these little DIY projects that we all can appreciate! Surfing the internet on FB. I came across this article from Popsugar.com. I just had to pass it along! Enjoy!!!

How-Turn-Photos-Wall-Art

XOXO
M

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guido Guido was one of my favorite cousins growing up in Brooklyn. Now living in Upstate New York one of my favorite places to visit is Guido’s Ice Cream Parlor in Albany..  Recently I  thought… why can’t we eat ice cream for breakfast????  how is it that different from milk and cereal, except in format?   Guido's Italian Ice Should some foods — like ice cream  — be off limits for breakfast?   I think not!  L.O.L…Let me say that ice cream is one of my favorite foods in the whole world; I like all kinds, with all sorts of toppings, and I have been known to find reasons to partake in this yummy treat multiple times within a single day. I mean compare your yogurt and your ice cream label…or your granola and your cone ingredients (or sugar content)! It’s all a numbers game my friends….   Growing up in Brooklyn, Italian Ice runs in my veins! This past weekend we had family in for the weekend so we headed out Saturday to Guido’s for some Italian Ice and to pick up some ice cream for home. Last night we finished dinner and brought out the ice cream from Guido’s for desert…. it was so much better than the supermarket ice cream that we normally have on hand. As we dished some out, my niece decided she wanted hers in a cone… guido's ice cream       I can honestly say I have never seen someone eat an ice cream cone by starting with chomping into the cone just below the ice cream . When I saw this we realized there was no way to salvage the situation so we just let the little honey bunny eat the cone in whatever way she wished.

She finished the whole thing………………………. then she had a bath………………………………. then we did the laundry..

I’ll end here today with this thought when I grew up we didn’t have a dishwasher, I’ve found that some shortcuts in life are worth it. And eating ice cream off paper plates is one of them.

Stay Tuned…for more adventures in Styleland…

XOXO

M

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habitat Post-and-Beam-Waterfront-Home

What makes the Post and Beam homes so alluring? Is it the massive strength of the post and beam frame and the enduring stability of the homes, or is it the unmatched calm and comfort of the homes  style, in stark contrast to life itself? These beautiful post and beam designs are made to have engineering strengths that allow for long, unobstructed spans, open floor plans, and walls of glass. The result is a signature: a mix of casual elegance and livability that never goes out of style.

habitat Post-and-Beam-Waterfront-Home 1

There is a network of Post and Beam Designers (also known as Timber Frame Homes)  nationwide and internationally, do your research. Post and Beam homes are a legacy that can be passed down for generations, those who inhabit it can enjoy these benefits for decades… or even centuries.

Habitat comtemporary Post and Beam

Habitat post and beam interior by hearthstone

Post and beam homes are true works of art. And just like art, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, whether your contemporary, traditional, classic or rustic, the timeless beauty and ambiance of a Post and Beam home results in a warm and inviting space in which to live. .

Habitat post and beam interior kitchen

Stay tuned.. Spring is in the air.. what will we discover on our adventures in Styleland….?

XOXO

M

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our yardOn Merlin Drive today my yard looks pretty but very cold brrrr…..

As temperatures drop outside stay warm inside with some cozy fireplace inspiration. From traditional to modern, gas to wood-burning, a fireplace can add a serious cozy factor to your room. Just imagine snuggling up to a warm fire on these frigid nights.

Matchless Stove and Chimney

If you’ve already got a fireplace, there are many ways you can give it an update to change your look. Repainting the mantle or changing out the accessories and art above it can update your space with little effort. This neutral fireplace mantel is dressed with a bright, colorful painting!

Matchless Stove and Chimney 2

This modern fireplace adds warmth you can enjoy from every angle.

Matchless Stove and Chimney 3

You won’t have to worry about tripping on this fireplace that fits seamlessly in the wall.

Grab a good book, settle in and Stay Warm… Stay tuned for more wintery days and Adventures in Styleland..

XOXO

M

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Times Union Home Expo Banner

 

Home Expo 2015

Building a new home? Remodeling a room in your home? Well this year we have so much in store for you. Meet Jason Cameron February 8th, from the DIY Network. Watch our website for additional information on shows and events. My name is Michele Conti I am a local Designer/Blogger in the Albany Area! I will be here for the next few weeks, sharing information about the home expo, giving you DIY ideas and little blurbs about some of the Vendors and shows that the exhibitors will schedule during the expo. Check out our link on Times Union Home Expo. Below is a quick and easy DIY project for you… With a little help from Behr Paints available at Lowes located in the Times Union Center booth 284-285 this crafty idea was a breeze!!

Couch Seating DIY

Check out the Times Union Home Expo 2015 Web site and read my blog everyday now thru February 6th for great info and DIY projects!!

Chat with you soon!!!! Stay Tuned for more project information!

 

M

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It’s Furniture Friday!!!! I wanted to share this great find with you. I was in Buffalo NY visiting family.  One of my favorite haunts there is the Salvation Army at 252 S Cascade Dr, Springville, NY 14141. I always stop there. They seem to have a treasure for someone I’m currently working with.  Well on this Adventure in Styleland I found these:

Fabulous Find

Fabulous Find

My Goal was to transform them into the Louis the XV Salon chairs that I found on Ballard Design. Two of these beauties for only $10 how could you beat that! And so the project begins, here is a quick picture tutorial it took about a week to do both chairs.

 

Louis the IV Chair

Louis the IV Chair

 

Although these chairs retail for $700, the thrift store chairs look amazingly similar, almost exact same frame…

Removing the cording

Removing the cording

 

 

You can see the thousand staples used to attach the cording, this is only the beginning oy vey!! When asking Gabe to help with pulling the staples, he took pity on me, and I thought OK Green Light!!!  When my husband agrees to a project in our home (and by that I mean agrees to open his heart and sometimes his wallet to help me ), I act quickly.

Experience has taught me that green lights all too quickly turn yellow. Then, before you know it, there’s a big, fat red light staring at you through the windshield of your dreams.
When that happens, you are left with two choices… delays or apologies.  Trust me, it’s best to act while the light is green. Get Help when it’s offered!!!

IMG_0017

 

The fabric had just as many staples as the cording,  I will admit that by this time my fingers were a tad sore. The fabric came off quickly with Gabe’s strong hands… and before you know it we were down to the frame working together..

IMG_0025

Finally!!!! all the staples out and it was time for spray paint!!

 

The spay paint that I used was Satin Black from Rust-Oleum.

Black Spray paint for Ballard Chair Makeover

I spayed the frames with two coats and let them dry for a day before I began to start covering them, this also gave my hands a break, because at this point I was on my own, and was determined to finish these by the end of the week!

I decided to use drop clothes to cover these chairs,   I’ve always wanted to use drop cloths as a slipcover (from Martha Stewart’s magazine years ago). This was my opportunity, here is the what I used:

10 oz. drop cloth

10 oz. drop cloth

I washed and press the drop cloth first.  I used the old fabric we removed from the chair to create a pattern for the seat and back.

 

 

IMG_0113Stapling the fabric was a little tricky, I needed to pull it tight and staple it as I went, this didn’t always go smoothly, I had to remove some staples a couple of times because the fabric would pucker, but after you get a rhythm going, it goes along quickly. I did sew the fabric cording, and decided to use a black gimp on the arm pads.

IMG_1754

Here is the finished product (pictures are not professional). This was an easy project total cost was about $60! What do you think??

 

IMG_1753

 

IMG_1751

 

IMG_1743

Here is a picture of the living room where the chairs reside now,  complete with our Chocolate Lab Chino to compliment the brown in the room! Another project done!!

 

Stayed tuned for move Adventures in Styleland!!

 

XOXO

 

M

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