Decorating

Why Lighting Matters

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

Whenever I see a well designed space, my eyes are immediately drawn to the lighting choices. No room is complete without good lighting, and a great fixture is always an element I include whenever I’m working on a makeover too. Sometimes I score a chandelier from a discount store or a home improvement store, but I’ve also splurged on good lighting when I find “the one” – my kitchen island pendants and bathroom sconces are the perfect example.

Great lighting is like the jewelry that makes a fabulous outfit. Your lamps, chandeliers, and sconces are an opportunity to set the style of a space, to add a layer of texture (think industrial or woven shades), or to play the role of the unexpected element. Think of crystal chandeliers in a contemporary space, a minimalist modern fixture in a more traditional room, or an industrial cage pendant in a cottage dining room.

shades of light drum pendant

 

Sconces and chandeliers will live in the space for years and add value to a home. Today, I wanted to give a quick shout out to one of my sponsors Shades of Light. I’ve purchased several pieces from them over the past year and they deserve some thanks for their support of the blog. Shades of Light recently has been featured in the spring color issue of Better Homes & Gardens and they have a variety of fixtures available from the new Young House Love collection under $100 to splurge worthy pieces that will make a statement in any space.  Here are six of my favorites:

lighting choices

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6

 

How big should your chandelier be?  Here are the formulas:

Width of overhead chandeliers (living rooms, family rooms, bedrooms, home offices): A singular chandelier in a living space needs to be proportionate to the room size. Add the width and length of the room together in feet and convert that figure to inches to come up with the correct width of the chandelier. For example, in a room that measures 10 feet by 13 feet, add 10 + 13 together to get 23 inches in diameter.

Width of dining room chandeliers: The rule of thumb is to choose a chandelier with a diameter equal to one half the width of the table, for example, a 48 inch wide dining table should have a chandelier with a 24 inch diameter. However, many designers choose oversized pendants up to two thirds the width to make a strong style statement in a dining space (I love that look!) and modern rectangular fixtures are very dramatic over a dining room table as well.  Height: When hanging a fixture over a dining table, the bottom of the chandelier should be 30 to 34 inches above the table, low enough to create a focal point in the space, but high enough not to interfere with conversation.

Have you added any new fixtures to your home lately?

What style did you choose?

 

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Favorite Sources for Affordable Pillows

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

This week is pretty crazy, we’ve got several projects in the works and we’re celebrating a birthday, so I’ve been away from the computer a lot but I got a great question the other day and I had to smack my head because I can’t believe I haven’t answered it yet.

“Dear Kate. How can I get to the information from February where you were describing how to combine patterns of throw pillows? And where can you find a variety of reasonably priced pillows?” ~ Loretta in Kentucky

Loretta that post you mention on pillow styling is here and I have a lot of places I like to shop for pillows. I’m a frequent pillow changer by season so if I don’t make them myself, I hunt for ready made ones that are affordable and by that I mean under $50.  I’ve kept a master list of retailers in a document on my computer and was reminded to post it here when Loretta prompted me.

Here are my favorite sources for affordable pillows (under $50):

1) Etsy.  I like to support small businesses so I shop around on Etsy for pillow covers made with designer fabrics, some of my favorites include Festive Home Decor, NenaVon, Pop O Color, Pillow Mood, Kassapanola, and WillaSkyeHome.

etsy designer pillows

chevron ikat / flamestitch / yellow ikat

2.  Pier One Imports

pier 1

 

3.  Wisteriawisteria pillows

 

4.  Ballard Designs

ballard designs

 

5. Bellacor

bellacor pillows

 

 

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