Add Drama to Your Home Part 2

When designing the decor of a home, we often give much attention to the furnishings and the wall colors. But what about the ceiling? Homeowners, often ignored this space because they believe that it should quietly blend into a room’s surrounding. The color and design of your ceiling are vital to your home’s overall style? You can add drama to the ceilings through color, molding, and additional elements.

 

Lighting

You can start off by playing with different lighting schemes. Ceiling lights can emphasize the existing elements of a room. Fluorescent lighting can bring out the green and blue tones of a room. On the other hand,  an incandescent lighting scheme tends to bring out the warmer colors. If you install a dimmer switch, you can alter the mood of the room.

 

Paint Color

If you are working within a small budget, you should consider only painting the ceiling a different color. Avoid using neutral colors if you are looking to achieve a dramatic look. Ceilings with lighter shades instantly attract the eye. While dark, deep colors bring more attention to the furnishings by bringing the eye downward. For instance, an orange colored ceiling paired with neutral colored furniture can brighten a room. Yellow colored ceilings make a room lively. Black is a bold statement that requires elegant furniture and accessories. Explore faux finishes of leather or plastic if you want to go big.

 

Architectural Designs

Adding architectural design elements sounds harder than it is. However, you can add elements by using a variety of simple techniques. Nail pressed tin panel strips into an existing ceiling. Reflective tin instantly adds drama without overtopping. Also, to enhance the appearance of your ceiling you can have a professional install a coffered ceiling by attaching molded beam to the ceiling to form a grid pattern. 

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Add Drama to Your Home

You can emphasize a room’s color palette or create some drama with your home’s decor by just selecting the right accessories and furniture. Yes, both of these elements can make or break a room’s appearance. 

 

When selecting bold accessories for your room, it’s best to visit a variety of different stores and outlets. Thrift stores have a unique collection of items that you more than likely won’t find anywhere else. You can find vintage home decor pieces at a secondhand store, revamp it and incorporate it into your design scheme. What type of accessories should you explore when aiming for a dramatic look?

 

–       Gold accessories can instantly add a sense of glam. For instance, an all gold lamp can quickly add style to your living room.

–       Chrome figurines or silverware attracts the eye especially in a room where most of the furnishings are dark.

 

Trying picking a particular area in a room that you want to dramatize. For instance, if it’s the living room you might choose to highlight the fireplace. You can do so by hanging a large, extravagant painting over the area. For lighting, you can consider adding wall sconces. The fixtures will be a talking piece for your guests

 

What about when it comes to furniture? You can add drama to a room’s decor by selecting furniture with a color. A big black couch or an all white sofa creates a focal point.

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The Benefits of Laminate

Laminate can be an excellent choice for your home, providing durability and easy maintenance. Those that may feel like shying away from laminate because of its old reputation should consider taking a closer look at the laminate of today. Technology has given laminate, new life as it can imitate almost any kind of natural stone or wood.

 

One of the great things about laminate is how easy it is to clean. With wood and tile, you have to be sure to maintain the natural flooring so that it lasts. Wood can fade in the sun, and with tile, grout must be cleaned. Some wood floors also require upkeep with their seals. Laminate is easy to clean and won’t fade due to sunlight. It is also stain and scratch resistant making it perfect for homes that see heavy foot traffic. 

 

Laminate is versatile as it allows you to choose from many different looks, making it ideal for any room. You can choose laminate that imitates natural stone for your kitchen, or choose from a wide variety of wood variations that can even be offered in plank form for an authentic look and feel, all without switching materials. Consistent use of materials can be beneficial when you are trying to overhaul more than one room, but you want to have different looks.

 

Laminate is a great alternative for those who are seeking to elevate their room with the beautiful new floor but don’t necessarily want to break the budget. The laminate of today can be installed to look just as fantastic and elegant as the best wood flooring or tiling. Come on in to Levis 4 Floors and check out our wide selection of laminate flooring for your home.

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How to Maintain the Ceramic Tile in Your Home

Ceramic tile is one of the most durable materials available today.  Available in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes, it’s an excellent choice because of its resistance to scratching and stains.  If properly cared for, your ceramic tile will last for years to come.  Below are some maintenance tips ranging from easy to clean messed to tough stains.

 

For daily upkeep, wipe the surface of your tiles clean with a damp mop or cloth.  Doing this just once per day will keep your floor’s surface from looking dusty and dull.  For further convenience, a vacuum is an easy way to keep the area clean as well.  Be sure only to use one that has a “bare floor” setting to prevent scratching the finish. 

 

If warm water isn’t sufficient alone, use a cleaner that is safe for grout and tile.  This could be a solution with a neutral pH level, which is a widely available cleaner that is effective at attacking everyday stains.  Use a mop for even distribution across the tiles you are cleaning. 

 

For more stubborn messes you would see in commonly used areas like the kitchen or bathroom, apply a neutral pH cleaner to the surface and let it sit for several minutes.  The additional time will allow the cleaner to absorb any dirt, soap scum, or water stains better and make it easier for you to wipe them away without intensive scrubbing.

 

If these methods fail to improve the floor by any of the above methods, an alkaline based cleaner will be your last line of defense.  Before you begin, check the manufacturer’s recommendations for using cleaners.  First, remove all surface dirt and debris by sweeping or vacuuming the area you want to clean. Once you have a smoother surface to work with, apply the cleaner and scrub the problem area with a pad that is not too abrasive.  A nylon pad is recommended to avoid damaging the tile.  Once you finish, rinse off the problem area with warm water.  While an alkaline based cleaner should work well for most messes, if there are there are calcium or rust stains present you should use a cleaner that is slightly more acidic as a lower pH level can break down these types of stains more effectively.

If you have any questions about the best way to keep your tile floor looking wonderful, feel free to ask the staff at Levis 4 Floors! 

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Using the Virtual Room Designer

Whether it’s your home office or the kitchen, it’s important to make every space in your home as beautiful as possible. If you’re ready to start decorating that forgotten space, it’s best to start off with some inspiration. Start off by finding a photo of an existing room that you’re interested in recreating. The Virtual Room Designer is an online tool that can be used to help you recreate a particular design style.

 

Use the Virtual Room Designer tool to upload a photo of your room and a picture of the room that you’re using for inspiration. Once both images are uploaded, it can take up to three business days to use the Virtual Design Center. You’ll receive a notification email once your photo is ready for use in the design center.

 

The Virtual Design Center is a great tool to use because it allows you to make the pictures you upload interactive. You’ll be able to outfit a room in different paint colors and floor finishes. If you’ve always wanted to see how a room would look with gray walls and hardwood floors, this tool will enable you to do so. You can switch out cabinetry and other features through the design center. Also, you can make your room identical to the inspiration photo.

 

Whether you need to make minor updates or major renovations through the Virtual Room Designer, you’ll be able to see just how those updates can improve the look of the room. Yes, our software is a great tool to use when taking on any home improvement project.

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Insightful Interior Design – Part Three

Welcome back! In Part Two of our Insightful Interior Design series we discussed the importance of choosing quality pieces over trendy ones, keeping your layout in proportion by striking a balance between large and small pieces and finishing up the ground work with the proper layering of accessories.  In Part Three we will discuss how lighting, natural and artificial, will put the finishing touch on your design.

 

Proper Lighting Brings the Final Design Together

It’s easy to get caught up in all of the obvious decorating tasks that need to be completed and forget about the best way to showcase all of your items: lighting.  Do not underestimate the power of proper lighting in your design and be sure to include natural as well as artificial sources to make sure you can enjoy your final product from day to night. 

Ensure that window treatments allow you to manipulate the amount of light being filtered into the room to match the mood you are looking for.  If possible, install a mirror on the wall opposite of your windows to help reflect even more natural light into the space to make it bright.  Using glass accessories and accents for cabinets and side tables allows natural light to pass through as well. 

When it comes to artificial illumination, think about what works best with the size of the room.  If you don’t have much floor space to work with, overcrowding it with floor lamps isn’t going to help things.  Try wall sconces or table lamps if you need an extra boost of light.  The overhead lighting needs to be thoughtful as well.  A higher ceiling will allow for a drop-down fixture since it won’t overwhelm the space.  Lower ceilings should be equipped with recessed lighting to prevent it from looking like the walls are closing in.  Finally, programming a dimmer switch with all of your lighting choices is a must for making sure your lighting is always appropriate for any of your needs.

Thank you for joining us for the final installment of our Insightful Interior Design series! Come see us today to get started with your interior design project!

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Insightful Interior Design – Part Two

Welcome to Part Two of our Insightful Interior Design series.  In Part One we discussed the importance of preparation.  Having as much information as possible prior to purchasing materials puts you in the best position to stay on schedule, remain within budget and preserve the integrity of your design.  In our second post, we are going to offer some easy ways to best show off your space.

 

Choose Quality Over Trendy

When it comes to the larger pieces being used in the room, choose quality items that are well-made and versatile.  Trends change constantly and it may be tempting to go out and purchase the next big thing, but having to replace these items when they become outdated will end up costing more in the long run.  If there is a trend you enjoy, express that through the accessories you use in the space.

 

Keep Your Pieces in Proportion

Proportion and scale are an important part of making sure your design flows.  Space large and small pieces together for a more even look.  Separating them will only make the design look lopsided.  A room should also have easily accessible walking space so be mindful of overcrowding it with too much furniture.  If need be, remove a few pieces to keep the space functional.  Consider the shapes of the furnishings.  If the predominant shape is circular, sprinkle some more circular items throughout the room.  Do this just enough to tie them together, but don’t go overboard.  You want to show intention without looking like you tried to hard. 

 

Proper Layering is Key

Proper layering of a room is essential for bringing the look together.  The correct amount of color, shape and texture will bring effortless warmth to your space.  Start simple, with accent pillows or a luxurious throw blanket.  If you have a larger room, go for a larger pattern while a smaller one works best for a smaller space.  With every detail, think of what can bring out the personality of the design.  Can the drapes be made from a thicker, more decadent material?  Will a bold wall color accent the furniture?  Is there a special piece that can be showcased in the room?  Make what you have work for you.  Layer slowly and with purpose.  Step back and assess the room often to be sure you’ve achieved the right balance.

 

Check back in with us for Part Three of our Insightful Interior Design series!

 

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Fall Craft—Thankful Tree

As Thanksgiving approaches, here’s a fun family craft and activity to foster a thankful heart in yourself and your family members. A grateful heart is especially important to have if cooking and hosting are not your forte.

Some individuals love the holidays and everything involved with them; the time with extended family, planning, shopping, cooking, entertaining. Others find the season stressful, dreading the anxieties and tensions that can run high during the last two months of the year. If the later rings true for you, this activity can help you center your heart on all you truly have to be grateful for each day, bolstering your spirits for the season to come.

Fill a medium to large sized heavy-bottomed vase or pot with dry branches and make leaf “ornaments” to hang on the branches. Before your Thanksgiving meal (or however it fits in your schedule) you’ll each pick out a leaf from a basket placed next to the tree, write one thing you’re thankful for on the leaf, and hang it on the tree. During your meal, you’ll have a beautiful visual reminder in your home of all you have to be thankful for.

Here are a few ideas for making the leaves:

  • Since you’ll be writing on the leaves, you can simply cut leaf shapes out of paper bag material and craft paper in colors you like for a rustic, shabby chic look. Make patterns of leaf shapes you like by tracing leaves from your yard onto a piece of thin cardboard. Use these as your template.
  • Download and print leaf illustrations as pictured below for a fun artsy look. Cut each leaf out and write on the blank backside of the image.
  • If you love being crafty and creative, let your imagination run wild and get as intricate as you’d like! You can find fabrics or papers that coordinate with your décor and make your tree a real work of art!

To hang the leaves, simply punch a hole at the top of each leaf, and make loops out of string or use ornament hooks for easier hanging.

Remember to find a container to hold the leaves, and a separate container for different colored pens and markers so there will be plenty of choices and enough writing materials to go around when you all sit down to write together. Place both next to the tree for a complete gratitude station!

Let us know in the comments if you do this craft and how it helps you be more grateful this season. We always love to hear from you.

 

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Insightful Interior Design – Part One

If you are currently working on a new design for your home’s interior, chances are you are trying to find out some insider tips to help you get started on your project.  Many individuals decide not to work with a professional, so we are here to help you with some suggestions about how to make your home look like you had the help of an interior designer without having to seek one out!

 

Plan 

As excited as you may be to get started on your home renovations, keep in mind that having a plan is the best weapon in your arsenal.  Knowing what you want will prevent frustration and delays that may arise from “winging it”.  By not taking the time to think about the results, your space will end up looking thrown together and any intention you may have wanted to showcase through your design will be lost. 

 

Visualize

To get started with your planning, choose a way to brainstorm your ideas so you can experiment with different looks prior to purchasing materials.  You can do this through using a large pin board, with magazine cutouts, idea lists or printouts from our room designing program.  Take measurements of the space or spaces you are working with.  Our Virtual Room Designer program allows you to upload a picture of your space and visualize the room with new décor. 

 

Decide

Decide what is staying and what is going.  Updating a room doesn’t necessitate getting rid of everything in it just to make it look new.  Keep a list of the pieces you want to stay in your layout and what pieces you want to replace, remove or add.  When you have a proper inventory of all the room’s items, it may shed light on how many things you may have allowed to pile up in the space.  Doing this prep work ahead of time will help keep your design looking clean and functional. It will also assist in determining what color scheme will work best with the pieces you choose to keep and purchase.

 

Focus

Finally, keep in mind the function of each room you are renovating.  There are a lot of creative ideas out there and it’s good to try things that may be out of your comfort zone, but do not forget to keep the purpose of the space foremost in your mind when making design decisions.  Remember to let your individuality shine through while making sure your new arrangement still provides its proper use.

 

Be sure to check back for Part Two of our Insightful Interior Design series.

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Organizational Tips

With the holidays rapidly approaching, now is the time to get more organized. Before you know it your home will be filled with extra decoration, people, food, and presents. It will be helpful to get organized now to free up some space.

Choose the proper containers

When organizing the pantry, it is good to choose clear, rectangular containers that will hold dry foods and spices. Clear containers allow you to find what you are looking for in a cinch. The square shape is a space saver, as opposed to cylindrical containers. The square shape makes it easier to fit more containers on a single shelf. Round ones are hard to stack and waste space.

Donate Items to the Salvation Army

The Salvation Army is not for profit. Anything you donate will actually go to people in need. Not to mention that your donation is tax deductible. It is a good idea to have an area in the home, preferably in a hall closet or garage, where you keep a bin of items to be donated. This will cut down on the clutter in your home, and help people in need. Donate clothes that are no longer being worn, old furniture, or anything that works but is no longer being used. A good rule of thumb is: If you have not used an item over the course of a year, donate it.

Take Control of Papers

It is so easy to end up with piles of bills, junk mail, and other paper items. The first thing to do in order to help with filing important papers is to buy an accordion type file folder that can be easily closed. Make tabs for the following:

Bills, Manuals, Home, School, Pets, Medical, Miscellaneous

When opening mail head straight to the recycling bin and dump junk mail.  File away important papers as soon as you can. This will help you find important documents and keep the paper clutter at bay.

Designate a Place for Shoes:

Shoes can pile up next to the door or just lie about. They are clunky and a tripping hazard. Figure out a place to store shoes. This can be a cabinet that old shoes and can store items on top. Another possibility is to get a shoe organizer for behind the door in a mud room. These are great items to keep in each family member’s closet as well. It is nice to have a place for each person to store shoes as well as being a centrally located place to hold regularly worn shoes.

Follow these easy tips to clear some space in your home. You will be glad you did once the holidays arrive! These tips can be used year round for a clutter free home.

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