Home Bars Tap Into Guy-Friendly Style

Gathering over a few drinks at a pub or bar to discuss thoughts and catch up on friends’ lives has long been an important part of community life. In Britain pubs have historically been integral as working-class social hangouts. However, Paul Jennings, author of The Neighborhood — A History of the English Pub, says that these spaces have actually been declining for more than a century. “motives include the ever widening array of alternative leisure pursuits, and the greater importance of the house as a place to spend some time in,” he told BBC History Magazine.

While I couldn’t agree more with Jennings about the importance of spending time with family, I’d venture to say that perhaps Jennings has forgotten how smart we ever-evolving humans can be. Pubs aren’t decreasing. We’re just bringing the concept home.

Current Concepts Home Automation

RMT Architects

The house bar has turned into one of the funniest bonus rooms in homes now. And while people alike are adapting and planning these spaces, it is common to find a masculine influence in their own designs. Rich wood, TVs, leather-backed seats, pool tables and cigar porches are popular features of this modern-day home bar.

Bespoke’s Art

Heather DeMoras

“It is the best man fantasy — have your bros, and some pretty girls too, sidle up and loosen up,” says Tina Skinner, a writer and writer who’s written over 100 lifestyle books, such as Entertainment Rooms: Home Theaters, Bars, and Game Rooms. “With the boom in square footage that drove the marketplace in the last 15 decades, there are a lot of homes with rooms to fill. Why not meet fantasies?”

Crisp Architects

This homeowner’s business takes him to London often. Every time he’s there, he stops off in his favorite bar. He loved the air so much that he re-created it in his New York country residence.

Crisp Architects

His wife had more control over the decoration in the main house, so he made this his personal endeavor. He reached out to architect Jimmy Crisp to help him realize his vision for developing a London-style bar in his basement.

There has been a very strong push to acquire an old feeling just right from the space. The contractor even dragged chains round the stained pine floor to add dents and marks.

Paint: Bittersweet Chocolate, Benjamin Moore

Crisp Architects

“He can have a celebration for 60 individuals and in the close of the night near to the door, and the house is still pristine,” Crisp says. “Everything is perfect except the bar.”

Crisp Architects

From the all-pine space using a custom bar top, the owner watches sports, plays pool, entertains a few buddies and has large parties.

“This is the man cave,” Crisp says. “The homeowner wouldn’t call it that, but that is exactly what it ends up being.”

Macaluso Designs

This is a legitimate man distance. The owner, a lifelong mentor in Las Vegas, had complete say in all that went to the space. Signed guitars, jerseys and other collectibles adorn the walls. There are multiple TVs for sports and even doors that lead out to a courtyard for cigar sessions.

Designer Michael Macaluso chose the deep wine-reddish wall colour to match the wood bar, which is alder with a medium stain, and the walnut flooring. He added an animal print and embossed leather too. “As a man designer, it was not difficult to come up with everything in this,” Macaluso states.

The designer claims when constructing a house bar, it is important to ascertain how much space you’ll actually need and use. “A pool table takes up a great deal of room,” he states. “So unless you’re planning to use it a lot, don’t get one. People need slot machines, baseball games, they then realize they have nowhere to sit.”

Macaluso estimates that a room in this way would cost approximately $100,000 for the makeup — furniture, custom cabinets, floors, comprehensive wood ceiling, custom cabinets, high TVs, sound system, wine rack.

Ike Kligerman Barkley

Bar stools: Mimi London

A retired professional baseball player transformed the two-bedroom casita on the land of his Arizona vacation home to this bar space for storing his sports collectibles.

The remaining portion of the house is done in a Venetian style, so he wanted something that was his speed. The African-chic aesthetic features bamboo walls and animal prints for a summery feel.

Knight Construction Design Inc..

The rest of this house is bright and white with pops of colour, so the owners of the space needed something darker and moodier. The husband revealed designer Kristen Peck a photograph of a bar and said, “I need the exact same feel.”

While the husband and wife agreed about the aesthetics, the husband’s preferences drove many of the selections, such as tin ceilings and knotty alder cabinetry. There is also a gas sink, a dishwasher, a microwave, and LED rope lighting, a TV and a pure quartzite flooring.

Bob Michels Construction, Inc..

Contractor Bob Michels turned a storage space above his house garage into a coveted pub with great views.

His wife had picked out the rugs and wall colours in the main house, but this space was his. The room has a pool table, in-floor heating and beautiful custom cabinets from Dura Supreme.

Princeton Design Collaborative

The designer of the New Jersey basement bar maximized a tight room, which makes room for essentials like a sink, a refrigerator and plenty of bottle storage. The ceiling is actually Fry Reglet acoustical wall panels (design B) that were fastened with stainless steel screws and trim washers.

Bar stools: Room & Board; wine rack: Wine Enthusiast

Build Cincinnati of Coldwell Banker

Lucy Call

After moving further away from downtown, where he couldn’t walk outside his door and into a bar, Ian Wade discovered that having a house bar space spurred social gatherings. He constructed this bar from old and plywood wood pallets.

Bob Michels Construction, Inc..

Peter Santrach and his wife collaborated on gutting their Minnesota basement and turning it in an amusement area. They wanted the darker look of Lyptus cabinets from Dura Supreme, and Santrach wished to integrate a Coke machine he’d had since college.

Santrach added a table for poker games along with a pool table, popcorn machine and oven. “It is definitely a man distance, but it is also a combination family room, too,” he states. “If it was my man space, it would be filled with a lot more beer mugs and maybe a trophy deer mind or ducks. Right now all I’ve got is a wooden duck.”

Santrach estimates that the bar area cost approximately $25,000 for parts, labor, counter, mirror, lighting, metal ceiling, installation, electrician, appliances and plumbing.

Michelle Fries, BeDe Design, LLC

This is a basement space in a lake cabin for a young family with four kids. The wife drove its own aesthetic. She wanted a more rustic vibe, with knotty barn wood provided and installed by local craftspeople. There is an electronic poker match on the bar top plus a fridge, popcorn maker, wine cellar and microwave.

Michelle Fries, BeDe Design, LLC

The baseboard is corrugated metal.

Michelle Fries, BeDe Design

A local metalworker designed the footrail.

Your turn: Display us your home bar!

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Great Native Plant: Baptisia

You would like a shrub in that dry corner, but no shrub will get the job done. You want something which looks different. You want superlow maintenance. I’ve got just the right perennial for you: Baptisia is a quick-growing, uniquely blooming wildflower native to regions from the U.S. Central Plains to the East Coast. It does the work of a shrub but requires less water.

Missouri Botanical Garden

Botanical name: Baptisia australis
Common names: Blue wild indigo, wild blue indigo
Origin: Native in regions from the central Great Plains to the southeast and northeast U.S.
USDA zones: 3 to 9 (find your zone)
Water requirement: Medium to dry clay, sand
Light requirement: Full to partial sun
Mature size: 3 to 4 feet tall and wide
Advantages and tolerances: Easy perennial; drought tolerant; offers winter interest; attracts native bees
Seasonal interest: Good two-week blossom period in spring, followed by ornamental seed bombs that make a rattling sound
When to plant: Spring to fall

Benjamin Vogt / Monarch Gardens

Distinguishing attributes. Spikes of tropical blossoms in mid to late May attract beneficial native bees (that can be better pollinators than honeybees). In spring the emerging spikes seem like asparagus, and in fall the seedpods are both decorative and rattle gently for added sensory interest. Baptisia’s size makes it like a shrub, but it has the quick growth of a recurrent flower.

Benjamin Vogt / Monarch Gardens

The best way to use it. Use Baptisia for height and as a filler in the back or center of a dry edge, en masse, in groups of three or as single accents.

‘Carolina Moonlight’ (revealed) is a lemon-colored cultivar that performs exactly as well as the species plant. There’s also Baptisia australis var minor, which is a shorter variety that grows to about 2 feet tall and wide, and blossoms purple like the species.

Benjamin Vogt / Monarch Gardens

Planting notes. Wherever you put Baptisia, make sure that is the final spot in which you would like it. Baptisia takes a couple of years to blossom, and it has a deep taproot (which makes it quite drought tolerant), so it reacts poorly to being transferred.

‘Twilight Prairieblues’ (revealed) is just another cultivar with dusky purple petals and a yellow base. Its leaves are inclined to be a smokier blue compared to species plant that is parasitic.

More flowers to attract birds, bees and butterflies

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Steam Showers Bring a Beloved Spa Feature Home

Incorporating steam in your toilet renovation or new-build bathroom can improve the level of your everyday life. Throughout history people have used steam to heal, to perform religious ceremonies and, naturally, to simply unwind and socialize.

Today’s steam showers are clearly much easier to work with than those of yesteryear. There are not any fire pits, no tarps, no natural underground heat nicely — only a touch of a button and you are good to go.

Naturally, you have to design a room or shower with steam in mind. Since steam becomes much warmer and permeates over water does, it requires much more planning and a much more exact shower installation.

Get some tips for your own steam heat in your home — your miniature Turkish bath — from the modern-day projects under.

Stonewood, LLC

The modern-day steam shower came in the 1960s and grew in popularity for several years before its prevalence dropped off for a spell. Now the steam shower is the latest trend I see from shower building. Over the past 20 years, better vaporproofing technology has emerged, which makes the management of moisture much easier.

Hint: The reduced the permeability score a vaporproofing material gets, the greater it’s. High-use business steam showers in Canada require a minimal permeability rating of 0.5, as analyzed by the American Society for Testing and Materials. Utilize this standard since your base requirement when purchasing a vaporproofing material and be sure you specify it when working with your own professional.

If you are planning on a steam shower for 3 or more individuals, be sure to match the ideal steam generator into the area. You do not want to oversized these showers to the point at which they do not perform well. You may need to adjust the size of your shower to accommodate the volume of steam your apparatus can create.

You are going to get a touch more heat and steam on the top layer of a two-tiered seat.

Beckwith Interiors

ThermaSol has been refining its steam systems for 50 years and now has an wonderful steam generator capable of cleaning itself.

Hint: You do not need to construct a bathtub to have a steam system. Installing the steam option is just as easy with a bathtub installation — easier, actually.

Markay Johnson Construction

A steam shower or steam tub often resembles any other tub or shower with the exception which you can fill the room with a thick fog of steam.

Here is the growth of the steam shower. Disguised as a normal shower, this space can be transformed into a relaxing escape. Ask your designer to make sure you’ve got room for two in there. A sloped ceiling, the ideal amount of lighting and also the capability to cool off beneath the showerhead can upgrade an average steam room experience to a good one.

Hint: You are going to want to be able to warm the seat ahead of time, so plan on a way to warm it to have the shower spray reach on the rear of the seat wall and seat. A handheld fixture close to the seat works perfectly with this.

Drury Design

Aside from the two reduced steam heads at the lower side of this image, all you see is a gorgeous shower. The seat and the steam heads convert this space into a private steam tub together with all the flip of a switch.

Holger hoos layout

You do not need a huge space to devote a steam shower. In fact, many are designed to stand independently, and may be purchased as a unit to be installed in your home.

This steam shower is a favorite of mine. Produced by Holger Hoos, it is a hard-working steam shower that’s part of a tub conversion.

Hint: All steam showers have to be sealed well. We use a product called Kerdi Repair in conjunction with waterproof flashing substance. Be sure to speak to your professional about vaporproofing choices to construct a shower that will last for several years.

Peter Rose Architecture + Interiors Inc..

If you want to relax and detoxify in fashion, you can integrate some nice loungers in your design. If that were my shower, then I would be spending a great deal of time here. What a room!

Hint: When you are designing seats and loungers, the surfaces have to be graded to keep water from collecting on them. Use a smaller tile to facilate these gentle curves.

Light is an ideal companion for steam. Adding a light source to your steam shower which may change color is really a no-brainer in my novel. Everyone has a favourite hue — I like these purple colors, but my wife enjoys blues.

Steam showers and chromotheraphy may even be useful in treating migraines. If you suffer from these, a steam shower could just be something.

ATM Mirror and Glass

Steam Shower Door

Ventilation is vital to a healthy steam shower construct. Incorporating airflow with bathroom exhaust fans and transoms, like in this steam shower, can decrease the time necessary to dry a steam shower after use.

Hint: Install the bathroom exhaust fan close to the shower entrance or transom beyond the steam shower. Never put in your exhaust fan inside the steam shower itself.

Bill Fry Construction – Wm. H. Fry Const. Co..

Control pads can let you place the temperature and duration of your steam session. Adjust the light turn the music on. Bring in a jug of ice water and a glass. Cool off under a cold shower spray.

A steam shower is a luxury thing; it is expensive to put in, especially when done properly. This is not something you want to skimp on — an improperly developed steam shower may self-destruct in under three months.

Hint: Maintain the control pad away from the steam head and also within easy reach of your entrance or seat for easy adjustment.

More: How to convert your tub into a shower

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Exotic Flair to Get a Luxe-Looking Montreal Loft

When first-time homeowner Elena Atsaidis was looking for the perfect place to call her very own, this airy, open-plan condo wasn’t what she had in mind. “I was initially looking for a place in the suburbs,” Atsaidis says, “but when I saw the interior of this building, I had been sold.”

It is now 13 decades after, also Atsaidis, an interior designer and project manager in Montreal, has transformed the industrial attic space to an expression of her hot and creative character, incorporating DIY jobs with artifacts from her travels and mementos from childhood.

in a Glance
Who lives here: Elena Atsaidis and poodle mix Finnigan
Location: Outremont neighborhood of Montreal
Size: 1,200 square feet, 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom
That’s interesting: The attic complex dates to the 1940s, when it turned into a warehouse for the electronics company Marconi.

Laura Garner

Atsaidis, shown here, appreciates different tastes and fashions however, knows that one particular decorating style does not work for everyone. “I love the notion of an amazing home, by way of example,” she says. “I toyed with the idea, but I could never do it. It just wasn’t appropriate for me. Especially having a dog.”

She says her style is transitional and that she makes a point of ridding her rooms and rotating her artwork every few months to keep things interesting.

Laura Garner

Using its 11-foot ceilings, big paneled windows and industrial cement beams, this space was Atsaidis’ dream. The entire living-dining area is flooded with light during the day, which makes the glass table in this place an ideal place for working from your home. The yellowish triptych is on loan from a buddy, Québécois artist Pascale Poulin.

Glass container, table, floor lamp: HomeSense

Laura Garner

“I change the photographs every few months or so, to update the space,” she says. These, in matching silver frames, are from a recent trip to Maine.

Flooring lamp, vases: HomeSense

Laura Garner

Contrasting materials, such as this velvet armchair near a concrete support, play the home’s architectural capabilities. An oversized mirror reflects light and interior views, which makes the space appear larger.

Mirror, armchair: HomeSense

Laura Garner

Atsaidis put her oversize sectional within an angle away from the wall to give the illusion of a larger space. After she dropped for the sofa (in the Sears socket), found it was discontinued, and finally tracked it down, it almost didn’t fit in her living area.

Bowl: HomeSense

Laura Garner

When confronted with the design challenge of working with 11-foot ceilings, Atsaidis knew a mild paint colour wasn’t the solution. “I wanted a rich, luxurious shade to generate the bedroom feel cozier, more intimate,” she says. “White would have left the space feel too big, too empty. I completely fell in love with this colour.”

She included vibrant accessories and rich textiles to match the deep chocolate-brown walls. Her entire bed was an ambitious DIY project: she created the headboard from two pieces of plywood (“I could not find one piece that was big enough,” she recalls) and covered it with fabric panels she sewed together. She left her bedspread and bed skirt by hand, “a project that was a lot more difficult than I’d imagined,” she says, laughing.

Paint: Brown Eyes, Behr; pillows, nightstands, vase: HomeSense

Laura Garner

The mirrored nightstand houses things from Atsaidis’ childhood, such as her first pair of shoes and a jewelry box made from her own uncle in Greece. The lamp was something that she grew up with, updated with a new colour.

Laura Garner

Wanting a piece of artwork that would tie the space together, Atsaidis got creative and made one herself: She made a frame from plywood and stretched the yarn to get the size she needed. “It was cheaper than purchasing a canvas this size, and I needed it to become thicker,” she says. “It is hard to find that in stores.” Using leftover paint, she improvised the abstract artwork.

Laura Garner

This chaise longue, found at a thrift shop and reupholstered, and practical vintage-style phone give the bedroom some glam. Atsaidis is frequently inspired by old Hollywood–fashion insides; Barbara Barry and Vincent Wolf are one of her layout muses.

Chaise: Village des Valeurs; pedestal: HomeSense; telephone: Crate & Barrel

Laura Garner

The kitchen was renovated prior to her moving in and is the only space that she’s not made over. “The kitchen is pretty simple, but it works,” she says. “I add character to it with images and accessories.”

Laura Garner

“Cookie cutter insides can drive me mad,” she says. “I much prefer it when things tie together without being indistinguishable.” These dining chairs were purchased as a pair, then reupholstered with mismatched fabric.

Laura Garner

Calling it her Zen den, Atsaidis fashioned a sanctuary off the dining area, where she comes to meditate and relax.

Laura Garner

The Zen den exhibits mementos collected from her life and travels. A framework from her childhood retains a cloth from India. The assortment of plates belonged to her parents, who obtained them decorations in an waltz contest from the 1940s.

Laura Garner

Atsaidis made the bathroom mirror from tin ceiling tiles salvaged from an old house in Quebec and painted. The mirror is screwed directly into the wall to support its own weight.

Laura Garner

The back balcony is a lovely place for a summer dinner or read.

Laura Garner

Finnigan the dog has a dedicated corner. “He’s a part of the household, so that he deserves his private space,” Atsaidis says.

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Lighthearted Brightness to Get a British Victorian

Nine outdated, self-contained rooms for rent once made up the floor plan of this 1918 Victorian in North London. However, Monique and Trevor Alexander watched beyond the mustard-colored rugs, crimson painted brick and a boarded-up staircase and altered the area by stripping off the drab elements to show its stunning original features. After a year of patient renovations, including a rear extension with skylights and a kitchen that is fresh, the outcome is a magical scoop of modern atop stunning conventional structure.

in a Glance
Who lives here: Monique and Trevor Alexander, with their 2 young daughters
Location: Muswell Hill, London
Size: 320 square meters (3,444 square feet); 4 bedrooms, 3 baths, home office

Holly Marder

The Alexanders extended the rear of the house to make this casual dining room beneath skylights. “The skylight makes such a difference once the times get so grey and dark throughout wintermonths,” says Monique. “It makes me feel as though I’m not in London.”

Glass patio doors open to the backyard, where the few expects to soon redesign the backyard with a new fish pond and barbecue area.

Holly Marder

This Knoll dining room table and chairs were the beginning point for the layout style and colour palette at the kitchen.

Holly Marder

Although the kitchen comes off as a well-thought-out implementation of sleek style, the design process was much more off the cuff. Having a newborn baby in tow, Monique selected the floor, fixtures, fittings and finishes in only one week. “Fortunately, I know what I like,” she states.

Holly Marder

The area, which combines stone tiling, walnut cupboards, granite worktops and white MDF composite cabinets, has become the household’s action hub. “We live from the kitchen,” says Monique. “Occasionally from the time Trevor comes home before the time we go to bed, we’ve just been at the kitchen! We do art in here with the kids; we eat, cook, socialize — everything.”

Holly Marder

Because the kitchen is such a massive part of their lives, the couple’s 25,000-pound ($37,897) budget because of it went toward state-of-the-art appliances and a high quality decorative. “I had a very clear image of what I desired: black, with marble to match the one-off Italian table we had,” Monique, shown here, states.

Function was significant, also. “I do a lot of cooking, baking and fun, so I invested a lot of time exploring range ovens. I just had to have a fantastic range. That was my one major splurge,” she states. Her handmade one is out of France, by Lacanche.

Holly Marder

The casual dining area serves as a playroom for the couple’s two young girls.

Holly Marder

A formal dining room is right off the kitchen. Aubergine-hued upholstered seats sit alongside a bespoke wooden table in The Real Wood Company. “We chose how mottled we wanted the timber to be,” says Monique.

Holly Marder

During the renovations the few tried to respect the home’s original details. “We wanted it to seem like an old Victorian house, so we retained the traditional-style features,” Monique says. They upgraded the space with modern furnishings, including an elegant, custom-designed Rocco Borghese tiered chandelier. Borghese is a Italian chandelier specialist in Crouch End who, notably, furnished the lighting for celeb chef Jamie Oliver’s London restaurant.

Much like many older homes, structural challenges did arise, despite a building report that told a different story when the Alexanders became the home’s fourth owners at 2008. “It was just when we pulled off the rotten dressing table that we saw that the house had extensive underpinning. The dry rot from the living room required a lot of time to get treated,” Monique says.

Holly Marder

An easy leather Natuzzi sectional wraps the distance beneath three framed butterfly art prints at the living room, which Monique says she uses chiefly for entertaining and playdates with other moms and kids. She strives to maintain the room, like the majority of the house, without any clutter. “It stresses me out having things lying around,” she states.

Holly Marder

Because the stairs was boarded up when the couple bought the house, they had no idea what they would find.

Holly Marder

“We knocked down the dressing table to show the most beautiful timbers,” she states.

Wall sconces: Rocco Borghese

Holly Marder

Checkerboard flooring tiling provides a picture element to the otherwise stark entryway.

Chandelier: Rocco Borghese

Holly Marder

Traditional furnishings and a warm colour palette create a soothing master suite, and it is still a work in progress, Monique states.

Holly Marder

The master bath features stone tiling and walnut cabinetry, much like the kitchen. The spa tub was just another major splurge. “I wash every night,” says Monique. “It is my way of regrouping, centering myself following a hectic day.”

Holly Marder

A second-floor guest bedroom has pistachio mattress linens and lotion furnishings.

Holly Marder

The guest bathroom soothes with a walnut vanity, slim-line basin and cream tiling.

Holly Marder

The couple’s oldest daughter loves a sorbet-hued room, with high ceilings, a first flame surround and a fun playhouse.

Holly Marder

Her Cinderella carriage mattress was a recent present from her daddy. Lilac walls and pale pink tones during make for a calm retreat for reading books and enjoying.

Holly Marder

The couple’s youngest daughter also enjoys first Victorian details, including an elaborate fireplace surround and high ceilings.

Holly Marder

The gentle lilac walls blend swimmingly with Pip Studio floral wallpaper.

Crib: Mamas and Papas

Holly Marder

An upholstered charcoal-colored feeding chair sits beneath expansive windows with Venetian blinds. The room features stunning views of Muswell Hill’s town church.

Holly Marder

Monique, found here with her two brothers, couldn’t be more happy about the renovation. “I feel really blessed to live in this beautiful house,” she states.

See more photos of this home

Holly Marder

The outside of the house was originally painted red. The couple had to carefully remove the paint to show the first brickwork, then enlist a specialist to refill the grout.

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Ample French Country Style Belies a Budget at Dallas

Kathryn Janes likes to hunt for fantastic antique paintings for her property, and she has a very rigorous system which keeps her decorating habit on funding. Every year she makes a pilgrimage to the Round Top Antiques Fair in Smithville, Texas. Prior to her trip, she lists. Subsequently she combs her home to what she calls purge things which she is able to sell. Janes consigns things, hosts garage sales and sells things on Craigslist to build her funding — ranging anywhere from a few hundred dollars to $1,000 — to the upcoming trip to Round Top. She states, “Once I have my money in place, its hard-stop budget, and that I really don’t move over.”

in a Glance
Who lives here: Matt and Kathryn Janes, daughters Emma (11) and Ainsley (8), dogs Harper and Thatcher, and Sprinkles the bass
Location: Lake Highlands area of Dallas
Size: 2,750 square feet; 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms

Sarah Greenman

The ice-blue and terra-cotta master suite is a tasteful collection of plush pillows, silk textiles and vintage accents. Janes replaced a ceiling fan with an antique chandelier within the bed.

Paint: Sea Salt, Sherwin-Williams

Sarah Greenman

“I desired the master bedroom to feel calm, light, soft, relaxing and pretty,” says Janes. Her husband, Matt, adore finishing their afternoon in this room and consider it their retreat. The master bed has been a present from Matt’s parents.

Bedding: Tuesday Morning and household hand-me-downs

Sarah Greenman

“My favorite place in the home is sitting on the sofa at the foot of my bed in front of the fireplace,” says Janes. “I love to place my feet up with a good book or see Downton Abbey over and over again.”

Sarah Greenman

A classic French dining table, once part of a larger piece, sits next to French doors leading to a sheltered courtyard and terrace area. “When we were house hunting, I fell in love with the home because it had a great deal of French doors,” says Janes.

Sarah Greenman

A sheltered courtyard, very similar to those Janes grew up with in Southern California, is the perfect location for outdoor grilling and dining. Climbing a hot water fountain and a potbellied clay fire pit help make a relaxed vibe.

Sarah Greenman

“A home is a reflection of who you are, where you’ve been and what you enjoy,” Janes says. Traveling along with her parents to Europe as a child and studying overseas in her school years cemented her love of the European cottage aesthetic. Plush furniture, French linens, comfy nooks and pastoral paintings fill the living room.

Paint: Napery, Sherwin-Williams; couch: Weirs Furniture; pillows: Wisteria

Sarah Greenman

No matter where somebody is sitting in the living space, there’s always a surface for a beverage or book. Instead of traditional side tables, Janes uses many different vintage boxes, stools and benches she found in the Round Top Antiques Fair. She says everybody should experience Round Top at least once.

Sarah Greenman

An antique secretary desk, which Janes found at Lots of Furniture in Dallas, sits in the corner of the living room close to a painted brick hearth. French doors bring in hot natural light and pleasant cross breezes in summer.

Sarah Greenman

To promote a French country feel, Janes reupholstered this antique bench with a classic French grain sack embroidered with her initials, by the Antique Linen Store on Etsy.

Sarah Greenman

Janes grew upon the California shore and decorates her home home with shells, coral and driftwood for a reminder of her hometown.

Landscapes and classic paintings hang from the living room on a pub wall. Many of the paintings are from City View Antiques in Dallas.

Sarah Greenman

Buttery walls painted in Napery by Sherwin-Williams throw a glow on the classic dining table and chairs. Blue silk curtains billow in the floor, and country-style shutters are affixed to the walls close to the kitchen’s entry.

Chairs: Round Top and Uncommon Market

Sarah Greenman

The Janeses upgraded their galley kitchen with granite countertops, a rock tile backsplash and ivory painted walls and cabinets. Among the latest steals is the rolling kitchen cart Janes scored for $5 at a yard sale.

The couple’s next project would be to convert the electrical range to gasoline.

Sarah Greenman

Matt trusts Janes to make most of the design decisions. She states, “My husband has only ever made one petition, which I’d honor — to come home by Round Top with fresh kitchen table chairs which would never break or get wobbly. And these will not, because they’re pure metal.”

Table: Lots of Furniture; chairs: Round Top

Sarah Greenman

This Welsh hutch belonged to Janes’ mother and used to be in Janes’ youth home. “After we moved to Dallas, we left our long family behind. I tempered my homesickness with family heirlooms,” she states. “I paid more to have them shipped than they were worth, but that I don’t care.”

Sarah Greenman

The most important room in the home is a living area connecting garage and the kitchen. “We must have an area for everybody to land their stuff somewhere,” says Janes. “The kids’ backpacks, school paperwork, my purse, husband’s wallet, keys and a homework station are here.”

Sarah Greenman

She describes the room as fundamental control. “I really like order and using coordinating systems to keep everyone on course,” she states. An industrial worktable, found on Craigslist, takes centre stage. Homework, art projects, bill paying and much more all occur here. There’s also a computer station tucked beneath the stairs with built-in storage into the right.

Sarah Greenman

Sarah Greenman

Daughter Ainsley’s bedroom is a sweet mixture of paisley textiles, bright furniture and country accents. A little desk painted in a bright orange lacquer doubles as a table. A classic hutch on the opposite wall homes books, boxes, art and other unique paintings.

Paint: Napery, Sherwin-Williams; Chair: Juliette Tufted Headboard, Goal; bedding: Goal

Sarah Greenman

Janes lately helped kid Emma transition her youth bedroom with fresh preteen-appropriate colors — a cheery mixture of pink, orange and green. She painted the bookcase, upgraded the bedding and added some glowing storage choices.

Bookcase: City View Antiques

Sarah Greenman

The desk in the corner of the room was passed down from two previous generations. Emma’s grandmother received it as a present for her 13th birthday, and her mother enjoyed the desk in her youth bedroom as well.

Paint: Sea Salt, Sherwin-Williams; desk seat: Ikea; pink storage blocks, dangling bull bust: Home Goods

Sarah Greenman

The two Ainsley and Emma concur that the upstairs living room is their favourite place in the home. This multiuse room has four distinct areas: a guest bed, an entertainment area, a home office space and a children’s library.

Bed: Restoration Hardware; couch: Ektorp, Ikea

Sarah Greenman

The hutch and children’s table are equally family heirlooms which Janes shipped from her childhood home. “That room is perfect now that the girls are older,” she states. “The girls really like to hang out here, play games and host their own friends for slumber parties.”

Sarah Greenman

After the family moved to Dallas from the Los Angeles area eight decades back, they were hoping to find a traditional-style home that was close to downtown. After seeing a parade of modern houses, they were delighted to land in Lake Highlands, which boasts big ranch-style houses.

“We painted the home exterior to update its ’70s multicolored brown brick,” Janes says. “Painting the brick in gray made it feel much more like our home.” The Janeses also added landscaping and paved the front walkway with flagstone.

Sarah Greenman

Emma takes a twist on the tree swing. “I really like our neighborhood, because it’s such a tight community,” says Janes. “Occasionally most of us meet and hang out in the front lawn, bring wine and sandwiches, and socialize with our local friends.”

See more photos of the house | Show us your creative household home

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Kitchen of the Week: Uncovering History in an Colonial

Vintage materials and a simple fashion help pay tribute to the kitchen all-American roots. Once an orchard worker’s home, this 200-year-old house in Melrose, Massachusetts, has gone through several renovations. Those renovations covered or altered many of the home’s historical features — such as the original brick oven and fireplace in the kitchen. Designer Eric Luciano chose to begin, tearing down the drywall surrounding the toaster to reshape this kitchen into a more viable space that also matches the home’s history.

Kitchen in a Glance
Who lives here: A couple in their 60s
Location: Melrose, Massachusetts
Size: 250 square feet
Cost: $45,000

Luciano Group

After ripping out a dilapidated porch above the kitchen, Luciano was able to raise the low ceiling by about 8 inches. Bright black walnut, warm yellow walls and contrasting white woodwork draw the eyes away from the low ceiling height.

Pendant: Restoration Hardware; wall paint: Butter Pecan, California Paints; dishwasher: Frigidaire

Luciano Group

Granite or marble counters felt too chilly for this blossom kitchen, so Luciano purchased large parts of American black walnut in pieces and cut them onsite for custom counters.

Countertops: Craft Art

See how to work with wood countertops

Luciano Group

The original brick chimney and oven was covered up by drywall during a previous renovation. Luciano had no idea just how much of a presence they would become until his group took down all the surrounding walls, but he adopted the prominent brick in his design. He abandoned the part above the original oven open for timber storage.

Luciano Group

Luciano altered the kitchen’s original galley layout to an L shape, expanding into an old laundry room. The new layout not only generates more working space, but also allows for greater entertaining — if guests are finished, the kitchen mess can be hidden on the marble worktop, imperceptible from kitchen’s entry and the adjacent dining room.

Cabinetry: Starmark; hardware: Restoration Hardware; fridge: Maytag

Luciano Group

All-white appliances blend in the cabinet layout. “Stainless steel would just be too slick for the home,” says Luciano. “As a designer you need to maintain the integrity of the home.” The scope was part of the previous kitchen, and the customers plan to eventually replace it using an abysmal version.

Two-by-4 Carrara marble tiles tie in with the baking counter around the corner of the L-shaped kitchen. Luciano chosen for a backsplash onto just 1 wall to avoid visual clutter.

Luciano Group

Rather than extending the black walnut countertops, Luciano chosen for marble on this particular breakfast and baking place. “It may stain, but it has a café feel and also is a great worktop for baking,” he states.

The customers love to bake, and this working space’s location makes it simple to keep messes from sight.

Sink: Domsjo, Ikea

Luciano Group

Initially the client needed a piece of furniture for this particular desk place, but Luciano suggested this custom made solution to make more counter area and stick with the kitchen clean and simple lines. A counter and drawer legs underneath allude into some piece of furniture without creating an awkward gap between the counter and desk.

The customers also use this region as a location for food when it is ready to bring into the dining table. “Cabinets could have been put here rather than a desk,” says Luciano. “But I needed to add a feature to this kitchen.”

Stool: Era Counter Stool

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How to Pick the Right Floor for Your Garden Room

Every area needs a ground, and outside garden rooms are no exception. Paths, decks, patios, overlooks, and garbage can storage hoses, lawns, ground cover plantings … they’re all floors. If it’s possible to walk it, store something on it or roll up on it, I call it a flooring.

The easiest, cheapest floor material is that the dirt that comes with a home. Unfortunately, the issue with an all-dirt garden flooring isalso, well, it is dirty, even entirely muddy when wet. It does have one redeeming trait: It is dirt cheap. Nonetheless, it’s highly possible you’ll have to select something other than dirt for the majority of your garden. The way to decide, given all of the choices? As with any design decision I make, I look for practicality, beauty and sustainability.

Creative Garden Spaces

As the saying goes, form follows function. First consider how the surface will be utilized and what’s the most appropriate material to support that use.

Loose stuff for much more casual spaces. I considerloose materials like crushed stone, gravel and shale (also bark mulch) when I want an informal garden pathway or lounging area. They usually cost less and require less labor than other materials, and you do not have to become a master builder to make them seem good. But because these materials could be movable after placement, you’ll have to do some care to keep them from drifting away.

Hard materials for more formal places. On the flip side, hard materials such as flagstone, brick, tile, concrete and timber give themselves to more “civilized” applications like patios, decks and entryways. These generally withstand a lot of visitors and can easily be cleaned using a broom, a washing machine down (rather not in water-scarce ponds) or an electric blower, if that is your instrument of choice.

Visual allure. But we seek more than usefulness. The first thing we notice in a garden is its visual appeal and sense of design — not how readily ketchup stains could be vanquished. Take cues in the materials and finishes of your residence in addition to influences in the natural surroundings.

Environmental Effect. Consider where the materials originated, if they come from recycled resources and if they are permeable. If you do not understand, ask.

Price. For almost all of us, cost is the elephant in the room. The best advice I can offer here is to not be penny wise and pound foolish. I have found time and again that a bit more cost (sometimes a lot) on the front end guarantees that you’ve selected the best flooring for the job, the one least likely to come back and bite you later.

environmental concept

7 Materials for Outdoor Floors — and How to Use Them

Stone. Stone is enduring and elemental, taking many forms. Where a thoughtful style is the most suitable, irregular slabs of flagstone edged with yummy ground covers seem right in your home. In formal dining terraces, geometric contours mortared to a slab are a sensible solution, assuring the stones remain in place and supply a level surface.

In regards to selecting the right stone for your project, consider not just the colour, but also its surface texture. Too eloquent and it could pose a slip hazard; too irregular and you’ll have a hard time leveling a desk (or walking in 6-inch stiletto heels — not a issue for me).

Stability and security are paramount concerns, so be sure to place the stepping stones on a well-compacted foundation with some of their mass underground to keep them from tilting and moving around. Check that pathway stones are large enough and ergonomically spaced so you can land them on without needing to finely dance from you to the next.

The colour of the rock must harmonize with the outside of your home, other garden hardscaping and organic elements. You’ll get a wide selection, from nearly black to gray to white, and browns including rusty oxide-infused colors.

Billy Goodnick Garden Design

Brick. Brick is just another durable flooring material that can express the air of a classic garden. If the visible foundation of your house is brick, utilize the same brick as a walkway boundary to permeate the house and the garden into a coherent composition. Or you can unleash your artsy, bohemian style by creating arbitrary patterns and infusing the layout with random sprinklings of different materials, like stone or ornamental tiles.

If you are the one responsible for rolling out the garbage cans in the side lawn to the curb each Thursday evening, you’ll be happy you passed on a pea gravel route and went with a continuous ribbon of mortared brick.

The colour palette for brick requires additional design choices; colors incorporate a selection of black through gray, brown, red and some yellowish tints. Although individual bricks are somewhat rectangular, you will find infinite layouts to experiment with, including traditional running bond, herringbone, basket weave, radial spokes, soft curves and whimsical layouts that look like somebody wrapped down too many beers.

THINK Architecture – John Shirley

In formal situations brick is put to a daybed of sand or mortared on a solid slab of concrete. This approach ensures that the brick will not subside or change, a important detail under chairs and tables. For paths the standard approach is to place the outer borders of brick in a solid concrete base, pave the inner coating with brick put on well-compacted mason’s sand then brush more sand into the joints to lock them into position.

For shady, moist places where moss can cause slip-and-fall mishaps, be cautious about picking materials, like brick, that could withstand a strong blast from a hose or deep scrubbing using a coarse broom.

Caution: Where the earth freezes, loosely put brick could heave, which makes the trail uneven and potentially dangerous. And steer clear of mature trees with surface origins.

Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape Architecture

Tile. Tile, like brick, supplies a broad palette of styles, ranging from crisp, contemporary styles to old-world Mediterranean. Because tile is lean and not able to bear much weight on its own, it is always mortared to a solid foundation. Be careful to avoid slick surfaces, since they may get dangerously slippery when wet.


Concrete. Square foot for square foot, concrete is also a smart long-term investment. It starts off in a semiliquid state, meaning it could assume any form. If plain old pavement gray is not your design, concrete could be stained and textured to look like rock, seeded with pebbles, pocked with rock salt or stained with intense pigments to make bold layouts. One problem with traditional concrete, though, is it is impermeable; it sheds water instead of allowing it to percolate into the soil where it could do some good.

Evergreen Consulting / 4EGC

Decking. A builder friend of mine calls wood decks “dry rot in slow motion.” He is pretty spot-on. Conventional wood decks, regardless of how much waterproofing you apply annually, will eventually succumb to nature’s forces (or termites).

But if you’ve got a sloping house, require a level surface for outside entertaining and want to avoid the cost and disruption of constructing retaining walls, decking is the way to go. Since you’re not likely to add on to the deck after it is constructed, now is the time to decide how it’ll be utilized and make space for all of the furnishings you desire.

jamesthomas Interiors

To avoid the effects of weathering and decay, consider building with fabricated plastic lumber made from recycled bottles, plastic bags and wood scraps. It comes from regular lumber sizes, connects with screws and doesn’t rot, which makes it perfect for rooftop getaways.

Frank & Grossman Landscape Contractors, Inc..

Loose materials. Even though they may seem to be a non invasive cop-out, loose materials like gravel, crushed stone, compacted shale and decomposed granite can be an inexpensive yet elegant option, especially when edged with a richer material, like brick or stone. Benefits include permeability, low cost and ease of installation.

However, these materials are more likely to be displaced, especially if water passes over them. And gritty, sandy materials are the very last things you want to monitor onto your hardwood entryway. One of my favorite design remedies for updating crushed rock paths uses enriched thresholds and intersections of rock.


Plants. As well as inert materials, there is all of the living things. Once again, your choice ought to be directed by the intended use: Active recreation, by way of instance, involves the equally mowed surface of a tended yard.

Another consideration is the way “at home” a yard is in your climate. Where rainfall is dependable and plentiful, you should not be too concerned about using potable water for irrigation. And there are plenty of natural approaches to lawn care, so you can steer clear of the old-school arsenal of chemical sprays and remedies that could be harmful to beneficial insects, wildlife and groundwater. But in arid climates, more and more people are moving lawnless to help conserve water in addition to lower their reliance on fossil fuels for both mowing and edging.

CYAN Horticulture

Meadows, using their tussled, just-got-out-of-bed look, are perfect for creating a rustic sense — and can bring in a diversity of beneficial insects and other cool things for kids to discover. You are able to walk through them or mow intimate, sinuous paths to research. If you do not have to ramble through the space, any combination of ankle-high perennials and ground covers can offer color and a open expanse that will take the eye across the garden.

More: How to Decide on a Mulch — and Why Your Soil Wants It

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City View: Chicago's Contemporary Design Will Blow You Away

Chicago has a wealth of iconic buildings — there are Frank Lloyd Wright’s Robie House, Eero Saarinen’s Law School at The University of Chicago, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s 860-880 Lake Shore Drive and Bertrand Goldberg’s Marina City, to name a few. However, many modern Chicago designers are quick to point out that the Windy City often gets ignored as being too conventional for an urban region with more than 2.7 million people. That couldn’t be farther from the truth.

I reached out to eight design pros in Chicago to find out more about this city’s unique design style. “Chicago might be Midwestern in place, but its design has global influence, like all cities full of immigrants and influences from other areas. Like every big city, every neighborhood has its own flavor and feel, and also the people who live there imbue it with additional personality and style,” designer and contributor Rebekah Zaveloff states. “There seems to be some disagreement about whether Chicago has 100, 183 or 237 areas, so that you can imagine that Chicago has more than a couple styles: tasteful and tailored Gold Coast apartments, converted loft living in the West and South Loops, vintage modern mixing in Wicker Park/Bucktown, merely to mention a couple.”

Really, as a world class city whose inhabitants travel frequently across the globe, bringing back diverse ideas and fashions, Chicago is at the forefront of forward-thinking design. What’s more, breathtaking views of Lake Michigan and the striking urban skyline heavily influence its insides. And Chicago’s high-rises enjoy way more square footage than their similar New York counterparts; this has assisted the third most populous city in the nation explode with its distinctive brand of style that unifies traditional, modern and contemporary looks.

More City Views

jamesthomas Interiors

1 benefit Chicago has over a number of the other major cities at the U.S. is much more square footage normally. “We’re lucky in Chicago that the majority of the rooms at our clients’ houses are decently sized when compared to other cities like New York,” states Tom Riker of James Thomas Design. “We now have the luxury of specifying pieces that are on a grander scale than many residences in other cities.”

Ltd, Lisa Wolfe Design

The spacious houses have lacked invention, also. “The long, narrow lots that differentiate typical Chicago residences present certain proportion and layout difficulties,” says interior designer Lisa Wolfe. “Our ordinary three-flat condos and single-family houses are usually just 20 to 30 feet wide and can feel like one long hallway. We find ourselves producing many custom pieces to accommodate this, most often dining banquettes.”

The designs also encourage opening up the floor plans. “Kitchens and living areas tend to be open to one another, and families practically live in such busy, streamlined locations,” Wolfe explains. “Squeezing multiple functions into a tiny space while keeping that main walkway throughout the house requires some severe editing and smart design.”

Ltd, Lisa Wolfe Design

“Chicagoans do not equate square footage with luxury,” Wolfe continues. “They have learned to appreciate practical, bright and gorgeous design over a McMansion feeling of scale. We’ve been ditching the established notions of formal rooms such as blended, multifunctional zones. Living and dining rooms are often one shared space, delineated by cleverly placed furniture.”

Ltd, Lisa Wolfe Design

“Due to space limitations in Chicago, we find ways to creatively repurpose spaces for optimum impact,” Wolfe says. “For instance, at a one-bedroom condo, we knocked down a wall to make a functional and decorative bookcase. This opened the boxy room layout and created a welcoming hallway between the entry and living room.”

A good deal of the residential space in Chicago is many stories above street level. “A enormous misconception about Chicago design is that designing at a high-rise is tough,” says Emily Mackie of Inspired Interiors. “I actually think planning a remodel at a high-rise is extremely straightforward and ordered. There are more rules and reqirements, but they help direct your overall design for the distance.”

Mia Rao Design

Interior designer Mia Rao agrees. “The urban view is identifying. We often design high tech spaces with urban and high-rise views, which can be typical in other major cities. Nonetheless, in Chicago, there’s often focus paid to Lake Michigan,” she states. “Many high tech condos have some sort of lake view, and individuals play the water concerning color scheme and design.”

The lake perspectives inspired the condo design seen here. “We worked with grays and cool peacock-green tones, which can be both colours that are often present in the color of the lake depending on the weather and daylight,” Rao says. “Along with all the lakefront, many high tech houses focus on another distinctive natural element to Chicago: Lincoln Park. We like playing these topics and bringing the outside in with our interior designs.”

Powell/Kleinschmidt, Inc..

This is a brand new take that honors the past in Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s iconic International style apartment buildings at 860-880 Lake Shore Drive, which enjoy sweeping views of Lake Michigan. The designers employed iconic Miesian furniture. A well-placed Barcelona sofa keeps the opinion open whilst emphasizing low-slung horizontal lines.

Michael Abrams Limited

“While the Midwest in general is much more conservative than either coast, the design community in Chicago is as talented if not more than our seaboard counterparts.” says interior designer Michael Abrams. “While we are not a city known for the of-the-moment appearance, we are a city of designers with enormous talent that has continually produced a number of the best interiors throughout the nation.”

Abrams cites this penthouse duplex flat as a fantastic example of Chicago’s “clean, urban, transitional design,” as he puts it.

jamesthomas Interiors

Riker concurs. “We believe that there’s a misconception that design in Chicago is timid or conservative as compared to L.A. or New York. We discover that in our clinic, this isn’t all accurate,” he states. “Many of our clients travel internationally for both pleasure and work, and are therefore open to new ideas and concepts. Among our most popular requests is that our clients want their houses to be unique and not cookie cutter. They’re willing to experiment to push the envelope concerning design.”

Mia Rao Design

This is one of Rao’s bedroom interpretations of Chicago’s slick urban style.

Rebekah Zaveloff | KitchenLab

Many designers also notice Chicagoans’ willingness to incorporate and define their city’s emerging trends. “While lots of the houses in Chicago lean toward the traditional, I see an increasing number of clients eager to take risks with mixing modern furnishings in conventional houses,” Zaveloff states. “People are more receptive to having fun with mixing eras and styles rather than being rigid. I also have more clients willing to utilize vintage pieces and, more importantly, willing to watch for the time necessary to find the perfect piece.”

Rebekah Zaveloff | KitchenLab

“A little bit of bling, tempered with a bit of industrial edginess on a conventional base, is also something Chicagoans appear to be more receptive to those days,” Zaveloff states. “Many of my clients aren’t searching for secure and transitional; they’re searching for something that expresses who they are or who they want to be.”

Inspired Interiors

A new trend in kitchen design in Chicago is refrigerator-freezer columns, based on Mackie. In this kitchen a separate fridge and freezer anchor the cabinet wall. “Separating the ordinary, enormous refrigerator into two parts makes symmetry and balance much more achievable from the interior space program,” she states. “There is not any longer a massive whopping refrigerator visually disrupting your lovely new kitchen design.”

jamesthomas Interiors

“We’re definitely seeing brass — notably antique brass — coming back strong,” Riker says. “We’re using it for everything from light fixtures to door and cabinet hardware. It’s very classic and timeless. Polished brass is somewhat harsh and feels a little ’80s, but we love the appearance and feel of aged, antique brass.”

Rebekah Zaveloff | KitchenLab

Zaveloff is discovering the exact same popularity in the material. “A willingness to mixing metal finishes and other substances in kitchens is on the upswing. I don’t become wide eyes and nervous twitches anymore when I propose antique brass lighting fixtures over an island when the hardware is nickel, appliances are stainless steel and the bar stools are chrome,” she states.

Watch more about how to mix metal finishes at the kitchen

Jennifer Harris Interiors

“When designing a Chicago house, I discover that many people prefer to mix up things, using modern bits along with crude bits,” says interior designer Jennifer Harris. “Antiques get a fair play also, whether they have sentimental value or are merely a bit that a client simply fell in love with.”

Harris often freshens up antiques with a coating of semigloss paint or by reupholstering them at a wild, funky or cultural fabric.

Jennifer Harris Interiors

And Chicagoans are going bold too. Harris has discovered a fearless, anything-goes attitude toward interior color palettes. “I’ve seen bright colors, neutral colours and even pastels utilized as color schemes in Chicago houses. It’s all in how it’s put together that makes a gratifying statement,” she states.

Ltd, Lisa Wolfe Design

Meanwhile, the Wolfe is hearing a lot of requests for cocktail bars. “More and more clients want a pub in their public living spaces — for both function and form. They’re a fun architectural attribute to perform up, and they often set the tone of a room, be it funky or tasteful,” she states. “In a Chicago three-flat, our client wanted to flip their plain, utilitarian living room into a daybed sofa for entertaining in addition to everyday living. We turned two underused closets with cheap, ugly doors to the focal points of this room: a glamorous pub and also a decorative bookcase that rolls away to expose the electrical panel.”

Inspired Interiors

Trends aren’t confined to just living spaces, either. Mackie points to the growing demand for boat baths in bathrooms. “Who needs ugly tile tiling around a whirlpool bathtub when you can have a gorgeous compact vessel bathtub with air tub and chromatherapy features? This tendency saves space while appearing supersexy,” she states.

Learn about coloured bathroom lighting

Ltd, Lisa Wolfe Design

Finally, rooftops and outside spaces are a trend that won’t ever die in Chicago. “We get more than our fair share of winter, so come springtime outside spaces are Chicago’s most coveted property, and if you’ve got a opinion of our world class skyline, even better,” Wolfe says. “Chicago rooftop culture is city living at its very best. From our roofs we all watch our baseball, cook our dishes in outside kitchens and watch the sunset over cocktails.”

Next: More City Views

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Color Palette Extravaganza Help for Your Paint Picks

Whether you are starting with a blank slate or trying to refresh an current layout, colour can make all the difference in your home’s design. But where to begin? Figuring out exactly what you enjoy — and what seems right — in each room involves a whole lot greater than simply staring at your blank walls.

We have compiled some of the best colour palette ideabook links, organized by room, for you moving. Get motivated by the room shots and find out the paint names of your favorite colors.

Fiorella Design

Bedroom. Your bedroom colour should reflect exactly what you want your escape to feel like. Produce a soothing haven from cool tones, add energy with hot colors or keep it crisp, classic and clean with neutrals.

Bedroom colour guides
Warm bedroom colour palettesCool bedroom colour palettesNeutral bedroom colour palettes

Drew Maran Construction

Bathroom. Since they are often smaller and out of sight of main living spaces, bathrooms and powder rooms can be great places for experimentation with colour. Go beyond plain white and attempt one of these bold colour palettes.

Bathroom color guides
Bold bathroom colour palettes
Bold powder room colour palettes

Dijeau Poage Construction

Kitchen. The hub of the house deserves special color treatment. Change the look and feel of your own kitchen with a couple quick color changes on your walls, cabinetry or accessories.

Kitchen colour guidesGreat kitchen colour palettesKitchen cupboard color palettesColor touches for impartial kitchens

Ana Williamson Architect

Exterior. Exterior colour is a tricky thing. This part of your house makes an immediate impact (and requires the most time to paint), so you don’t want to mess it up. Take a hint from ers who’ve fought with their outside colors and from our color experts’ professional guidance.

Exterior colour guides
• 7 outside house color palettes
• Tips for choosing your exterior house color

Niki Papadopoulos

Living area. Allow your living room feel and look as lively as the men and women who use it. Take a look at these hot and cool living room palettes, and decide on the one which works best with your general home decoration.

Living room colour guides
Warm living space colour palettesCool living room colour palettes

Flea Market Sunday

Children’ rooms. It’s always enjoyable to go a little crazy with colour in kids’ rooms, but nobody would like to have to redecorate whenever a kid is tired of the latest scheme. Be playful but choose something classic, too.

Children’ room colour guides
Unexpected colour schemes for boys’ roomsSubdued purple and pink palettesRoom ideas for adolescents More: Browse the library of colour guides

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