Month: September 2019

Great Garden Combo: Planting for Fiery Shade and Beautiful Wildlife

There is something magical about seeing butterflies and hummingbirds in summer time. While butterflies flit gracefully from flower to flower, their vibrant wings lazily dancing on the warm breeze, hummingbirds appear to always be in a great hurry, bobbing up and down, in and out and chasing off any intruders — these feisty little critters.

In addition to supplying us with several hours of amusement, both these creatures are important pollinators for our gardens, and as such it’s worth taking time to encourage them to visit. When choosing a plant palette to fulfill their preferences, remember to plan for a succession of blooms over several months, and place these within a framework of bold foliage. This leafy backdrop will both boost the floral screen and hold the overall design together even when the flowers are not at their peak.

Le jardinet

At first glance that is merely a well-designed summertime mix, with fiery shades of burnt orange, burgundy and scarlet offset by cooling chartreuse. Yet that is a veritable buffet for both hummingbirds and butterflies, giving them a few months of nectar-rich blossoms.

Tall verbena opens the floral symphony in late June, immediately followed by Flasher daylily, which compels heaps of vibrant orange blossoms for nearly two months. The Lochinch butterfly bush combines in next, showing off endless blossom lavender, panicle-type blossoms while its silvery foliage becomes a striking backdrop for its renowned Lucifer crocosmia.

When these begin to fade, there is a large collection of Joe pye weed ready to take centre stage with their burgundy stems and horizontal rose-colored flower heads. These can continue to blossom together with the tall verbena until the end of the summer.

Yet without a strong framework of foliage, all these would be merely a collection of pretty blossoms. The gold locust tree along with Grace smoke bush add strong blasts of colour to fulfill our individual desire for construction and make certain our hummingbird garden is attractive to all garden visitors.

The finishing touch is a local chair. Not necessary, clearly, but the ideal place for enjoying the heady odor and seeing exquisite garden visitors on a warm summer afternoon.

Le jardinet

Ways to Get the Look

1. Choose Nectar-Rich Plants

Not all daylilies are equivalent. Many suffer with poor stalks, untidy foliage and also a short bloom time. Flasher daylily is different. The flowers are held high on sturdy stems and blossom for more than a month, while the foliage remains clean and requires minimal cleanup.

The burnt-orange colour stands up to strong sunlight without fading and looks superb against dark foliage such as the Grace smoke bush shown in the opening mix.

Botanical name: Hemerocallis ‘Flasher’
Common title: Flasher daylily
Gains: Attracts hummingbirds, butterflies and bees
Where it can rise: Hardy to -40 degrees Fahrenheit(USDA climate zones3a to 9b; locate your zone)
Water condition: Average to low
Light requirement: Full to partial sun
Mature size: 2 ft tall and 4 ft wide
Seasonal interest: Summer
When to plant: Spring or fall

Caution: Daylilies are toxic to cats; see different plants to eliminate pets.

Le jardinet

Tall verbena filters the view with no obscuring it, including a touch of mystery to the summer garden. Completely drought tolerant, it can be left to create its own plant combinations at will as it self-seeds with abandon. This is not a problem in my garden, where it’s easy to remove unwanted seedlings.

Botanical name: Verbena bonariensis
Common title: Purpletop vervain
Gains: Attracts hummingbirds, butterflies and bees
Where it can grow: Hardy to 0 degrees Fahrenheit (USDA climate zones 7 to 10)
Water requirement: Low
Light requirement: Full to partial sun
Mature size: 6 ft tall and 3 ft wide
Seasonal interest: Summer to fall
When to plant: Spring

Caution: Tall verbena is considered invasive in some regions of the U.S. Check with your regional cooperative extension office for information.

Le jardinet

A stand of scarlet Lucifer crocosmia is a memorable sight in any summer garden. Arching stems of brilliant red flowers appear to explode in the swordlike foliage in the summer, while hummingbirds vie for the ideal position like fighter pilots.

Botanical name: Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’
Common names: Lucifer montbretia, Lucifer crocosmia
Gains: Attracts hummingbirds
Where it can grow: Hardy to -20 degrees Fahrenheit (USDA climate zones5 to 9)
Water requirement: Low
Light requirement: Full to partial sun
Elderly size: 4 feet tall and wide
Seasonal interest: Summer
When to plant: Plant bulbs in spring; plants can also be planted in spring or autumn.

Le jardinet

Butterfly bushes have gotten a bad reputation since appearing on a lot of countries’ noxious weed lists. Do check to see which species are considered invasive in your area (if any), as you may unwittingly miss out on a few of the very beautiful hybrids — Lochinch butterfly bush. Although the one in my Seattle garden isn’t sterile, I have never had a seedling from it.

The silvery felted foliage would be outstanding even when the plant never bloomed, but the fragrant lavender blossoms, each with an orange eye, are what attracts hummingbirds, butterflies and bees by the dozen.

Cut down this plant to half size in spring to keep a tidy form.

Botanical name: Buddleia ‘Lochinch’ (syn. Buddleja x ‘Lochinch’)
Common title: Lochinch butterfly bush
Gains: Attracts hummingbirds, butterflies and bees
Where it can grow: Hardy to -40 degrees Fahrenheit(USDA climate zones3a to 9b)
Water requirement: Average to low
Light requirement: Full to partial sun
Elderly size: 6 to 8 ft tall and wide
Seasonal interest: Spring to fall
When to plant: Spring

Caution: Although this hybrid isn’t recorded,the speciesBuddleia davidii is considered invasive in some regions of the U.S. Check with your regional cooperative extension office for information.

Le jardinet

2. Extend the Display With Great Foliage

Hold a layout together with fantastic foliage, so it is eye catching even when flowers are not at their peak. This gold locust tree shines a foliage spotlight on the whole scene.

Botanical name: Robinia pseudoacacia ‘Frisia’
Common title: Golden locust tree
Where it can rise: Hardy to -30 degrees Fahrenheit (USDA climate zones 4 to 9)
Water requirement: Low once recognized
Light requirement: Full sun for best color
Mature size: 30 to 50 feet tall and up to 20 feet wide
Seasonal interest: Spring to fall
When to plant: Plant it into well-drained dirt in spring or autumn.

Caution: Golden locust trees can create unwanted suckers in some parts of the U.S.

Le jardinet

Grace smoke mulch provides deeper tones using its rich burgundy leaves.

Botanical name: Cotinus ‘Grace’ (syn. Cotinus x ‘Grace’)
Common title: Grace smoke bush (syn. Grace smoke shrub)
Where it will grow: Hardy to -30 degrees Fahrenheit (USDA climate zones 4 to 9)
Water condition: Average to low
Light requirement: Total sun
Mature size: 10 to 15 feet tall and wide; 6 ft tall and wide with yearly pruning
Seasonal interest: Spring to fall
When to plant: Spring or autumn

Caution: Smoke bushes are thought to be invasive in some regions of the U.S. Check with your regional cooperative extension office for information.

See more ways to attract butterflies and bees

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How Do You Refinance Your Home and Your Car Payment at Precisely the Exact Same Closing?

Combining your mortgage and your car loan into a single payment can free up hundreds of dollars a month. Typically, mortgage interest rates are significantly somewhat lower than auto loan interest rates. But if coupled, if your mortgage is for 30 years, so is the auto loan. Mortgage lenders think about any loan which pays for any additional loan–other than a loan used to buy the home–a cash-out refinance.

Determine what loan amount that your loan will have to be to unite the car loan and the mortgage. Add some extra funds to cover closing costs–$3,000 or more. Compare this to the value of your house. Your lender may need the new loan be no more than 75 or 80% of your home’s worth.

Contact three to five lenders in your area and request quotes for a cash-out refinance. Explain you want to refinance your mortgage and auto loans into a single loan. Decide if you want to pull any extra equity out of your house in precisely the same moment. Considering that the loan is currently a cash-out refinance, you likely can access some extra equity in money.

Work with your chosen lender to fulfill all of the loan conditions and get complete loan approval. Most importantly, the lender will require you to provide income documentation and asset documentation, and also have an appraisal completed on the house to confirm its value. When you obtain full loan approval, the lender will set an appointment with the title company or real estate attorney to close your loan. If the home is your primary residence, you’ll have to wait three business days before the budget will be available. That is a faked right of recession period. Should you change your thoughts, you can cancel the loan in this period.

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9 Beautiful Craftsman Touches

Sandwiched between art nouveau and art deco chronologically, the American Arts and Crafts movement revolted against the mass production of home goods as well as the overcomplicated layout style of the Victorian era. This layout era preferred creativity, craftsmanship, simple forms and natural and local materials.

The Arts and Crafts movement thrived from 1901 to 1925, also included well-known designers such as Gustav Stickley, Greene and Greene, and Frank Lloyd Wright. These designers wished to bring nature closer to the normal person having a type of architecture that put function first and researched attractiveness through construction and materials.

Lots of the forms and principles of the Craftsman movement are still near our hearts now, and they live on in interior and exterior designs. Discover two ways to give your house a little Craftsman taste under.

Siemasko + Verbridge

1. Simplicity. Clean lines and simple silhouettes are key with this design strategy: The materials should always take centre stage. Straight lines show off strength, character and superior craftsmanship.

Get this appearance: Craftsman design works well in a real setting or within a transitional house with Craftsman components added here and there. Feel free to scatter bits of Craftsman style around your house — just focus on straight lines and straightforward bits, and stay away from greatly turned or ornate forms.

Conrado – Home Builders

2. Straightforward statement. The uncomplicated yet elegant lighting of this era mostly was composed of glass, bronze and iron in basic square or rectangular shapes.

Get this appearance: To honor the ease of this time, look for pieces with a clean shape. Many of today’s bracelets, pendants, sconces and lanterns (like the ones in this picture) can add a Craftsman element to any room.

Deep River Partners

3. Hand-crafted tiles. Hand-crafted components were an important part of Craftsman design, especially in tile work. Tile vignettes often included multiple solid-colored tiles of the exact same colour, tiles showing scenes from nature, or a mixture of solid and decorative tiles with a nature-inspired relief.

Get this appearance: Craftsman tiles formerly sold for just 90 cents each, but now these authentic tiles can go for over $150 each. Reproduction tiles tend to be the best bet for the budget conscious. Alternately, look for a local craftsman to replicate the look you are going for.

Morava Glass Studio

4. Stained glass. Natural light played a significant role in Arts and Crafts homes, and stained glass satisfied both function and form. The windows acted as small, lone specifics or as larger statements — like a banner on a large picture window.

Get this appearance: instead of installing a new stained glass window, think about introducing stained glass at a less permanent manner. Room dividers, wall art and even lighting can integrate stained glass in subtler and more affordable ways.

Dura Supreme Cabinetry

5. Hardware. Simple hardware, like cupboard turns, brings, rectangular beveled door plates and switch plates were introduced compared against the natural timber in the house. Copper, bronze, cast brass and wrought brass were often used in polished, patinated, oil-rubbed or forged finishes.

Get this appearance: You can actually find this hardware design at many home stores now. Geometric bronze and aluminum fittings can help give your house a subtle Craftsman appearance. However, specialty turns, hinges or tacks may have to be specially ordered.

FGY Architects

6. Fireplaces. Most Craftsman homes had a central terrace. Stone or tile surrounds (in nature-inspired hues) topped with large wooden mantels created a grand focal point. Traditionally, these fireplaces were created by built-ins to create an inglenook (or chimney corner).

Get this appearance: Adding a large wood mantel for your existing fireplace can provide your house a touch of Craftsman design. Aim for something simple and structural that shows off the wood’s natural beauty — like the mantel in this picture.

Christian Gladu Design

7. Breakfast nooks. Formal Victorian kitchens (which predated the Craftsman era) were designed just for preparing dishes — usually achieved by hired help. Kitchen activities were concealed from the dining area and living area. However, Craftsman homes embraced the kitchen as the home’s most important hub. Eat-in kitchens and breakfast nooks enabled families to gather in the area at any time of day.

Get this appearance: Banquettes appear great in Granite counters and use space sensibly. This particular breakfast stall and its banquette stick to the straight lines of Craftsman style. But do not worry; you can soften your seats with a cushion or two.

Gardner Architects LLC

8. Natural flooring. Craftsman homes generally stick to wood and stone flooring finishes. Persian, Indian and Turkish rugs often anchored spaces, providing texture and warmth.

Get this appearance: If money prevents a significant installation, limit new flooring to smaller spaces or a couple of select, important rooms in your home. You can also introduce pieces of Craftsman design with wood and stone furniture pieces along with a showstopping rug from the regional import store.

Sarah Greenman

9. Built-in furnishings. Constructed Craftsman furniture added into the superbly crafted and clean aesthetic that defined the period, and also helped make the homes really functional. Window benches, sideboards and ample storage of this period were beautiful and productive.

Get this appearance: Lots of today’s tract and custom homes are built with interesting niche areas that present the perfect opportunity for a cabinet or bench. If you are wanting to save a couple bucks, then consider purchasing in-stock shelving or a bench and also adding your own moldings for that built in appearance.

More: Browse thousands of photographs of Craftsman designs

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On a window sash’s frame, the stiles are the vertical pieces on the left and from the window pane. Like rails, they’ve grooves for placing the panes inside. Cross muntins extend from stile.

Chris Hill

Like rails, stiles are also used to tag parts in furniture. They mention parts.

Mathews Brothers Company

Cross muntins operate from stile to stile.

Interiors with Attitude, LLC

Stiles are generally considerably wider than muntins and may be thinner than rails.

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California Gardener's July Checklist

This time of year that I wake up considering watering — sometimes, though, about the Giants game the night before, or Mad Men if it’s Monday. True, most of California has had hardly any rain since last Christmas, but rather than obsessing about what a backyard most desperately desires in midsummer (irrigation, crabgrass remedies, security against tomato-stealing varmints), wouldn’t it be much better to focus on the beautiful items during what may be the most abundant and joyous time of year?

Many California native plants are on summer hiatus, by nature dormant for the long, dry summer, but let’s give a distinctive shout-out to heat-loving plants from all around the world that revel in the California summer: jacarandas, gardenias, summer fruit trees (for example, apricots) and many more delights.

Grow a jacaranda at least once. In case you have any doubts about the beauty of the jacaranda tree, then simply look for it in Google Images. You’ll see magnificent trees in magnificent bloom in virtually every warm portion of the world — Australia, India, South Africa, Los Angeles and Brazil (the tree’s native home), as an example.

Of course, the tree has its haters, including a number of those who have developed it and swept up underneath it — the constantly falling leaves, branches, blossoms, seedpods and every conceivable kind of tree litter. Everything depends on your tolerance of chaos and disease.

My proposal: if you reside in a gentle coastal portion of California, attempt jacaranda at least once — as a yard tree, as a street tree, even in the background, even as a patio tree if you have a big broom. It develops quickly and blossoms when young — in other words, if you have made a mistake, then you are going to understand it quickly.

Botanical name: Jacaranda mimosifolia
USDA zones: 10 to 11
Water requirement: moderate to medium; gets along with minimal water once established
moderate requirement: Entire sun
Mature size: 25 to 40 feet tall and 25 to 35 feet wide
Growing tips: Make sure you have room for a big tree. Plant it where falling blossoms, leaves and seedpods will not create a messy issue. In marginal climates don’t make jacaranda a centerpiece of the landscape — freeze can ruin it back to the floor. Water it to the first couple of years, then decrease irrigation. Prune it in winter to control the form and size.

If you have space for a single fruit tree. Whom I grew up, apricots appeared almost like annoying weeds — an orchard staple, simple to develop, so productive that individuals with trees in their own gardens didn’t know exactly what to do with of the fruit. Little did I know exactly how dicey it is to develop an apricot tree if you’re not in exactly the correct climate — and exactly what a highlight of summer their ripe fruit (perfectly timed for Fourth of July) can be.

The lesson: In case you want to develop a fruit tree, then make certain it’s right for your climate. And choose one that is going to provide you something unique. For example, would you wish to develop a peach tree (which requires careful pruning and spraying) when you can buy these fantastic peaches at farmer’s markets? Think twice, also, about cherry trees — you are going to have to fight birds off for ripe fruit.

More easygoing choices include old-fashioned plums such as Santa Rosa and figs (successful but amazingly expensive at niches). If you reside in warm coastal climates, especially in Southern Calfiornia, choose from a whole other group of tropical fruit trees, such as cherry, guavas and sapote. Check with local nurseries on proper varieties, and make sure you study up.

Common name: Apricot
Botanical name: Prunus armeniaca, many varieties
USDA zones: 5 to 9; the trees are rather hardy but bear fruit well only in climates without spring frosts. Mainly that means California’s coastal valleys.
Water requirement: Moderate; the soil has to be moist while the fruit is developing
Light requirement: Full sun
Mature size: 15 to 20 feet tall and broad
Growing tips: Plant bare-root trees in winter, grow plants in containers almost any season. Prune in summer after harvest. As with the majority of fruit trees, bone up on pruning, fertilizing and pest control.

The New York Botanical Garden

Meet the gardenia challenge. Should you buy one pristine white, lusciously fragrant bloom, all the travails of growing a gardenia will seem worthwhile.

Remember a couple of things from the start. Opt for a robust nursery plant, together with bushy growth and green leaves — a few buds or blossoms are a bonus. Gardenias come from warm, humid Southeast Asia; they function much better in the southern countries but do fine in California should you compensate for our drier air and more alkaline soils.

They desire a spot that’s sheltered from the hottest sun but can also be plenty warm. Try out a single plant near a partially shaded entry, where you can smell the perfume. Growing one in a container will provide you an opportunity to try various locations.

Botanical name: Gardenia jasminoides. Popular types include ‘August Beauty’ and ‘Mystery’.
USDA zones: 8 to 11
Water requirement: Moderate or more, as long as the soil drainage is perfect
Light requirement: Entire sun in cooler climates; semi sunlight in warm climates
Mature size: 3 to 6 feet tall and 3- to 4 feet broad; compact types are somewhat smaller
Growing tips: The soil has to be just right: rapid draining but with sufficient organic matter to hold lots of moisture — combine equal parts of ground bark or peat moss with native soil at planting time. Or plant in a container using a commercial soil mix. Never let the soil dry out, but don’t overwater! Feed monthly during growing season with acid fertilizer. Watch for aphids and scale insects. Those are the main warnings, but there are others.

Inhale the sweet smells of summer. Along with gardenias, there are other strategies to perfume a summer backyard. More or less all of them are less demanding.

Among your choices are annual flowers like nicotiana and heliotrope. Burmese honeysuckle is a wild tender blossom. Banana shrub (Magnolia or Michelia doltsopa) is an evergreen shrub with an intriguing fragrance like a banana. Then there is night jessamine (Cestrum nocturnum), a nondescript shrub with unnoticeable little flowers that scent the nighttime summer air — also potently for many people.

Most versatile and easiest to grow of all of the scent makers is the old reliable star jasmine, revealed here, one of California’s most widely used evergreen plants for centuries. Grow it as a blossom, as a ground cover, in a pot — where you want all-year good looks and summer perfume.

Common name: Star jasmine
Botanical name: Trachelospermum jasminoides
USDA zones: 8 to 11
water requirement: Moderate — it seems better and has a lusher, darker colour with regular watering
Light requirement: Full sun or semi shade (especially in warm climates)
Mature size: 2 feet tall and 10 feet wide as a ground cover; 20 feet tall or more when trained as a blossom
Growing tips: Pruning can control the size; also much pruning cuts on blooming

Lend a paw from the backyard. Fuzzy blossoms on long stems create kangaroo paw (Anigozanthos) striking in just about any scenario — in a group or alone. It is especially convenient in summer. Purchase a blooming plant, put it in a pot and it’ll bloom for weeks — or, more accurately, the drying flowers hang on and look great. The hybrids currently available come in a range of bright colours: yellow (try it in a purple pot), red, orange, green and more. The plants are continuing and will return year after year in most California gardens.

Botanical name: Anigozanthos hybrids
USDA zones: 10 to 11
Water requirement: Moderate
Light requirement: Full sun
Mature size: Leaf clumps 1 to 3 feet tall and wide; blossom stems 2 feet long and more
Growing tips: For a container plant, use a lightweight soil mix, with lots of sand. Cut off drying blossoms to encourage more, or leave them on in the event that you like their appearance.

Try a native tree as a rugged problem-solver. Catalina ironwood is an evergreen tree to your toughest places. Plant one or more in the narrowest strips along a driveway or make a grove on a dry hillside. The foliage is ferny and the sole real delicate thing about the tree. White flowers in spring and summer come in clusters up to a foot or more over. The most handsome feature is the reddish brown trunks using peely, shaggy bark — a look of antiquity.

Botanical name: Lyonothamnus floribundus asplenifolius
USDA zones: 9 to 11, essentially a California-only tree
Water requirement: moderate to medium; gets along with minimal water once established
moderate requirement: Full sun
Mature size: 20 to 35 feet tall and 15 feet broad
Growing tips: make sure that the drainage is perfect. Cut off dry blossoms in the event that you can reach them. Prune in winter to form plants.

What Else to Do in July in Your California Garden

Continue planting summer blossoms. Along with zinnias (shown here), other heat-loving annual blossoms set out today can bloom into early or even late fall: ageratum, bedding begonias, celosia, dahlia, marigold, petunia, portulaca, salvia and vinca rosea among others.

Plant for late harvest. In much of California, you can still plant summer vegetables and expect crops in late summer and early fall: beans, beets, corn, cucumbers, tomatoes. It is ideal to choose types with short growing seasons.

Do your own tomatoes. In midseason mainly you will have to control uncontrolled growth by tying, staking and trellising. Try to strike a balance between watering too far (which hurts fruit quality) and too little (the crops wilt). Watch for insects, like whiteflies; control with organics that will not ruin your crop. Look out for hornworms, gross and oversized they virtually can munch a tomato plant to the floor before your eyes. Unless you are too squeamish, pick off hornworms (typically there aren’t many) and eliminate them.

guide to growing tomatoes
Prevent and control fleas. Avoid plants that are vulnerable to hot-weather pests in your town. Petunias and geraniums are an example: In certain places they nearly always endure attacks by budworms, which hollow out blossom buds and leave telltale black droppings underneath.

You will find organic controls, but it’s often wiser to attempt different pest-free plants; find out exactly what a nursery implies for your local conditions.

Save water. Before turning on the sprinklers, make sure the soil is actually dry. Evaluation for moisture by probing with a hand trowel into the top few inches of soil at least.

Mulch as far as you can. To save water and cut down on weeds among flowers, vegetables, shrubs and trees, spread a 2- or 3-inch coating of ground bark, compost or other organic matter; gravel and stones are also effective mulches. How to pick a mulch

Maintenance for your yard. Make sure that the grass is getting sufficient water. Examine blades for signs of wilting and drying out. Test the soil by copying it with a screwdriver. During summer set your lawn mower to cut higher: two to three inches to bluegrass and other cool-season types; about an inch to Bermuda grass.

Search for bargain tropicals. Nurseries can offer sales on fast-growing tropical plants which might not be winter hardy in your climate, for example bougainvillea, hibiscus and palms.

Prune and trim lightly. Encourage a milder and more bloom from annuals and perennials by cutting off faded flowers — notably on marigolds, dahlias and zinnias. Pinch back marguerites and chrysanthemums for bushier growth and more flowers.

More: How To Grow Your Own Sweet Summer Compounds

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10 Ways to Receive Your Lighting Right

Let’s put it to the table right away: I don’t like torchiere-style lamps. I may even be permanently traumatized by the 1980s salmon-colored pair I struck in a client’s living room a couple years ago. Some folks like them, which is great; I frankly love that there are a lot of styles of lighting for all folks to choose from on the planet. After all, a lamp is a functional attachment, unlike a glimmering hunk of amethyst that stays there looking amazing while the husband asks why we want such a thing. But I digress.

Lamp style is unquestionably important, but so is lamp amount. The way that you light a space will completely change the distance, and using multiple lighting sources lets you control ambiance, mood and the way you use the space. Putting those light sources on a dimmer makes it unbelievably simple to change up the brightness as frequently as you want. I am fairly sure dimmers are a gift from the decorating gods.

Here’s the way to receive your own layers of lighting right.

Jenn Hannotte / Hannotte Interiors

1. Utilize a mix of table and floor lighting. Depending on the size of a area, I nearly always suggest both floor and dining lighting. I really like the mix of lighting in this room. Each piece is interesting in its own right and adds to the general design. Lamps are an opportunity to add something extra to a room — whether it’s shine, color, artwork or abstraction.

Shaw Coates

2. Get the scale right. Overhead lighting adds a fantastic touch when it is done right. Contemplate its size and purpose if going for an overhead fixture in a living area. This openwork geometric fixture looks stunning against the paper-white ceiling and walls. It adds a distinct focal point with no sole lighting source. The floor lamp beside the couch functions as a warm match and retains the lighting levels soft. It is more a catch-up-on-secrets distance to me.

W Design Interiors

3. Use canned lights sparingly. I actually don’t actually considercanned lights overhead fittings. I see them as ambient lighting which ought to be used sparingly and purposefully. When using canned lights, folks have a propensity to go a little nuts. From a design perspective, canned lighting should never be your sole source of lighting. I’ve been in a lot of homes that look like a landing strip or gambling arcade because they’ve had the whole ceiling done in canned lighting. It becomes a missed design prospect.

Have a look at this stunning room. Why can not more chambers be like that? The designer did it exactly right by using only a dab of canned lights to accent a beam while employing matching tripod-style floor lamps to illuminate the space in a very stylish way.

Rachel Reider Interiors

4. Don’t be afraid to mix and match colours. There aren’t any hard and fast rules when it comes to lighting and lamps. There are suggestions, but in the end, it all comes down to what works best for your lifestyle and your own private tastes.

Rooms feel more layered and interesting with a few mismatched products. The tall floor lamp in another color than the vivid blue bedside lamps actually works. Not only is that the floor lamp attached to the general color scheme through the colours in the cushions, but it also has a distinct function in lighting the seating area, making it the perfect spot for settling down to read a magazine without any other lights on. The bedside lamps lighting either side of the bed.

With all the lights on, the space is likely brighter but not overwhelmingly vivid, and lighted in a controlled way. I love mismatching that works this well.

For Folks design

5. Know the right way to choose a table lamp. I don’t hold to many established design principles, but I really do believe you need to not have the ability to observe the neck of the light bulb, or even the lightbulb socket, from a standing or seated position. If you do, the lamp is probably too tall. The glare of a bare bulb is not pleasant for anybody.

I believe tall table lamps provide a room a little bit of elegance. The gorgeous cream-colored table lamp shown here is bigger than you may expect for a delicate side table, but it works so well due to its classic shape and neutral color and the overall eclectic chic of the space. If you find a large lamp base which you absolutely love, I say buy it! Receive a color which will allow for the bulb to be coated, and you are all set.

Philpotts Interiors

6. Permit your lamps make a statement. The table lamp within this area is a lot smaller compared to the one in the last photo, but it has only as much presence as a bigger lamp, due to its unexpected black color and glistening copper base. It is a sexy little piece which makes a big announcement.

Jennifer Brouwer (Jennifer Brouwer Design Inc)

7. Mix bases, match colors. This chamber is a great example of mismatching lamps: The sharp white drum colors connect the floor and table lamps, even though both are quite different.

The almost Roman styling of the floor lamp and the crystal-ball base of the table lamp both operate beautifully against the dove-gray walls, and the two serve different functions. A floor lamp generally lighting a bigger place than a table lamp, but light a whole room.

Together they make for a warmer lighting scheme that’s bright enough but not overbearing.

Tucker & Marks

8. Try mixing lighting fashions, too. In this magnificent home, the mismatched table lamp, floor lamp and overhead lighting function together effortlessly. Many men and women are convinced they need to stick to a formulaic approach to style to achieve the type of luxury this room occupies. Certainly, that is not correct. When you look at the space as a whole, everything clicks. Everything is in its proper place, but nothing is matchy-matchy.

Taking a look at the lighting separately, you may be amazed that a Spanish castle-style overhead has been paired with an extremely traditional floor lamp. When picking any element for your area, examine the room as a whole. It is way too easy to get stuck on whether or not a toss pillow goes with a bookcase accent. Never is a whole-room aproach more important than with lighting options.

Take into account the ways in which you want to light your area, not if the lamps fit, then purchase accordingly.


9. Consider what type of lighting you want. I am a dedicated fan of arcing floor lamps. They are dramatic and lovely, they offer surprisingly warm and diffused light, plus they add a direct touch of contemporary. They are best positioned in a corner, so that no one exiting or entering the seating structure lumps her or his head. The way this arcing lamp is paired with a smaller floor lamp is interesting. I can envision the bigger one is used for studying or more romantic lighting, and the arc lamp can light the whole sectional.

As I sit here typing, I have three of my living room lamps on: my pharmacy-style reading lamp above my left shoulder, my classic industrial lamp using a contemporary burlap shade to my best and my midcentury chrome reading lamp in the corner. It makes the space brightest when I am working. Normally I’ve only the classic light on when I am watching television and the drugstore lamp on for studying.

Jobe Corral Architects

10. Learn all about lamps.

Contemplate scale. A giant floor lamp over a small occasional seat wouldn’t work well. However, a bigger midcentury ceramic lamp base using a contemporary drum shade would be awesome alongside a significant love chair or a sectional. The same goes for tiny table lamps. If your seating is big, look for moderate to large lamp bases.

Realize that lampshade cloths are crucial. I often replace the colors lamps come with in favor of ones which look more custom. If you like a more diffused-looking light, go for linen or burlap; should you want brighter light, stay with sharp white. For more ambience, any fabric-covered shade is going to do, but bear in mind the cleaning demands of fabrics such as pleated silk and cotton. They are not easy to dust.

Pay awareness of colour fashions. For those who get a contemporary or darkened home, I’d go for drum colors. Romantic or traditional homes would be best fitted with tulip or fluted-style lampshades. An eclectic house can employ many different styles as long as they match the design narrative of the room. If the area is relaxing and fun, as an example, a large fluted shade may look too formal and out of place.

Set the lamp correctly. Details matter! If your sole electrical socket is across the area from where the seat is, don’t string the lamp cord throughout the carpet and in plain view. Not only is it dangerous to have long strands of cord lying around, but it appears unfinished, as well as unsightly. Either invest in having another socket put where the seating will be or swag a lamp in the ceiling out to the space to provide better illumination.

More: Get the Lowdown on High-Efficiency LED Lighting

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Do You Dare Bring Home Some Liberace Razzle-Dazzle?

I just finished watching Creating Behind the Candelabra, and it has me more excited than an undercover rhinestone salesman prepared to land a Liberace lover’s account. Soderberg, Douglas, Damon, Debbie Reynolds and each one of the over-the-top, overdecorated, overbedazzled, overmirrored fabulousness that was Liberace’s costumes, sets, cars, mirrored pianos and homes in the late 1970s and early 1980s all in one movie? Yes, please!

Liberace did all of his own decorating, and he loved surplus. He likened himself to King Ludwig II, another king of bling. He overshopped, and once one house filled up, he’d purchase a different location. As someone with a loft full of things for “my lake house” (I don’t have a lake house, and at this rate, I will) I totally relate. Behind the Candelabra premieres on HBO Sunday, May 26, 2013, and I Can’t wait. Here is a peek at the movie sets and some approaches to add only a dash of Liberace’s exuberant style to your home.

Home Box Office (HBO)

Liberace got lots of repairs of his own image through mirrored walls, doors, pubs, cars, pianos … even some of his costumes resemble mirrors. A candelabra on the piano was Liberace’s trademark (as well as crystal-encrusted and mirrored pianos). In addition, he utilized candelabras and chandeliers extensively throughout each room in the house.

Home Box Office (HBO)

The moviemakers utilized Zsa Zsa Gabor’s house in Los Angeles to stand in for Liberace’s Las Vegas home. Liberace decorated in a style he dubbed “palatial kitsch.”

Home Box Office (HBO)

Liberace could not get enough of his own image and had a wonderful sense of humor about it. He had portraits of himself everywhere — fulfilling a cardinal, his face floating over his Grecian tub, etched into mirrors … everywhere. Within this picture, I’m sorry that Michael Douglas is obstructing the one of himself as Liberace playing with the piano, however you can also see his shape to the left of Matt Damon. Portraits e-ver-y-where.

The film’s set designers painstakingly re-created many of the pictures from the originals they obtained via the Liberace Foundation, but together with Douglas as Liberace.

Home Box Office (HBO)

Liberace not only had lots of bling, but he had a lot of swag. Windows were adorned with as many layers as you can, in luxe fabrics trimmed out in fringe, tassels and other finishes.

Home Box Office (HBO)

Home Box Office (HBO)

Liberace commissioned his variant of the Sistine Chapel for his bedroom. He also loved to collect items; one of the set designers notes she bought most items for the sets in pairs, such as you see in his sack (he even had a pair of elaborately mirrored pianos, which appear in the movie).

He had a mural on his Grecian toilet’s ceiling.

Home Box Office (HBO)

Liberace’s had one of the world’s most extensive collections of their most elaborate costumes, some of which weighed over 100 pounds. His $300,000 white fur and crystal coat had a 16-foot-long train. (Do not fret, animal lovers; for the movie version they employed faux fur.)

Laura U, Inc..

Hints of Liberace Around ?

Mirrored walls have come back into style but with some fresh designer twists, such as the diamond pattern found here, in addition to antiquing. The Venetian design and marble inside this toilet make mirrored furniture and walls glam and sexy again.

If you watch the trailer, you’ll spy a full mirrored wall in Liberace’s dining room. The appearance is obsolete, however there are ways to enjoy reflective surfaces while dining.

For example, antiquing gives this centered grid of mirrors today’s popular patina-style look in a streamlined way. It is a great mixture of old and new.

Robeson Design

Statement draperies stand up to the scale of big rooms and high ceilings. These are lavish yet tasteful — streamlined long curtains hanging between custom valances. If you look at the high windows above these, you can find an notion of just how much window treatments changed this room (without going full Liberace).

Sean Gaston Interior Design

Statues and busts. Component of Liberace’s “palatial chic” included many statues and busts; many many many statues and busts.

The statue in this photo is actually from Liberace’s estate. Its classical form is complemented by the new crude, minimalist Palm Springs structure surrounding it there is a pleasing balance between conventional and modern here.

Heavenly Homes

Ceiling murals. Today many designers add artificial architectural components via ceiling murals. To me, this bathroom is an elegant, toned-down variant of Liberace’s.

Michael Merrill Design Studio, Inc

Candelabras make you think of many dangling crystals in the case of Liberace, but streamlined contemporary versions can be found, and they still add the same quantity of romantic candlelight to a dining table.

Elizabeth Dinkel

An apple-green chandelier shape is an unexpected touch in this outdoor area.

Habachy Designs

Luxe cabinets. Liberace’s elaborate costumes deserved an equally fabulous home, like this modern closet. It seems to be channeling Liberace, by the mirrored doors to the chandelier, the blue rug to the white throw, and it is all a fantastic thing. If you have the means and Liberace design, don’t wait when it comes to the location where you store your outfits.

Tracy Murdock Allied ASID

A grand piano needs not only a lot of room, but a place that can highlight its acoustics and the player’s skill. This beautiful foyer suits its own grandeur. I believe Liberace might have oohed and ahhed within this curved staircase and intricate railings.

Home Box Office (HBO)

If you watch the movie, please come back and tell us what you think!

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Color Your World With Otomi Embroidery

The Otomi are a group of individuals native to central Mexico. Their traditional embroidery incorporates vibrant, simple images of the natural world — flowers, rabbits, deer and trees — contrary to a natural white cotton background. And it is stunning.

I love Otomi cloth for its color and shape, but also because though it’s ancient, it has a crisp, modern look. You can set Otomi cloth with modern lines, colours and sensibilities, and it makes great sense. You can also layer it in pattern- and – color-filled rooms. It’s a designer’s dream.

Jacaranda Home

Otomi Embroidered Fabric – $425

A bright orange Otomi bedspread.

Tara Bussema – Design and Neat Organization

Bright rosa Mexicana Otomi throw pillows and a suzani coverlet. Oh, what heavenly modern ethnic loveliness.

My brilliant blue Otomi cushions contrary to my yellow velvet sofa.

Grace Bonney’s now-famous home made Otomi headboard. This is a few hundred bucks’ worth of cloth, and worth every penny.

Sarah Greenman

Pink Otomi drapes at a Mexican-inspired kitchen. They’re so fun and playful. How can anyone be gloomy with drapes like this?

Amity Worrel & Co..

It’s so amazing, it is art. I also have noticed smaller panels framed behind glass. A triptych in white frames are a modern beauty.

Jacaranda Home

Otomi Throw Pillows

This vibrant selection of Otomi throw pillows is magnificent against this beige background. The traditionally multicolored pieces form the framework for the single-color lumbar pillows. I absolutely love this.

Michael Cadden • Kiel Thomson Company

A neutral beige Otomi cloth adds a subtle hint of layout to the beige room.


Stray Dog Designs Otomi Floor Lamp – $863

Traditional Otomi embroidery is multicolored, like this remarkable lampshade.


Otomi Wallpaper, Almost White/Red – $125

Otomi-inspired wallpaper. This could work in a crazily vibrant Mexican room or in a spare, mostly white modern box.

Jacaranda Home

Otomi Upholstered Chair – $595

Otomi cloth on modern chairs.

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Remodeling attempts the homeowner. While building debris and dust fills the air and melts the ground, a ZipWall will safeguard your living area. Adjustable poles create a door, you add the heavy-duty plastic sheeting, and the tall, vertical zipper creates an opening letting you pass through.

Before Photo

Ventana Construction LLC

Contractors and homeowners utilize ZipWalls as security that is fast and simple to install during a remodel.

Before Photo

Ventana Construction LLC

A ZipWall is a substitute for fragile and thin taped-up sheets of plastic, and it’s reusable.

Before Photo

Lauten Construction

Simply unzip to maneuver between chambers after the dust settles.

Before Photo

Lauten Construction

Raw demolished spaces could be worked on without the debris and dust settling into the other living areas of the home.

Before Photo

Lauten Construction

Since the zipper and poles are reusable, any size gap could be created with sheets of plastic.

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