Author Archives: Vicki Bolick
1) Replace. Yes, one small change can make a huge difference. It’s like changing the jewelry on a dress. If it’s in a kitchen, replace the faucet or change out the cabinetry hardware. Living rooms or bedrooms replace your lampshades with ones that have texture, or vibrant prints.
2) Add Drapery. This may be one of the last additions in a home, but adding curtains brings in texture, pattern and adds a finished look to a space. Just remember to hang high on low ceilings for added drama & height.
3) Rearrange Your Furniture. I do this several times a year, it’s as easy as swapping out pieces from different rooms. Even a new layout will refresh a space and give it new life.
4) Add wallcovering/paint. Updating with lighter colors makes a room feel fresh. One of my favorite ways to add visual punch is to paint or wallpaper an accent wall. If you don’t want to commit to an entire room-paint the back of a bookcase or niche.
5) Add Wall Art. Group together favorite family photographs on a wall or unique accessories. Kelly Werstler did a massive plate arrangement on a wall at the Viceroy Hotel in Santa Monica. It was stunning and would be easy to replicate on a much smaller scale (with less expensive plates). Not an artist? You can make your own wall art. So many novices create their own masterpieces, pick up a brush, paint and get in touch with your creative side.
What tricks have you used to refresh a room in your home?
For most of us the hallway is the first point of entry in your home, and it’s also a great way to add visual impact and functionality. Gone are the days of sweeping staircases and expansive spaces with intricate flooring. If there was one thing that I heard frequently from past clients it’s “I’d really love to do something to this hallway.” Most of the time, I had to agree. It can be one of the most overlooked spaces, and usually people struggle with either making it into a “mud-room,” or at the very least a space that functions well.
Of course there are quite a few ways to turn your hallway into a place that’s not just another challenging space, and here are some of my favorites:
(Via Design Wine Dine)
1) Paint/Paper It - Hallways offer a great opportunity to do something really spectacular and dramatic. One of my “no fail/go-to” treatments is bold wallpaper.
(Via Tod Hunter Earle)
2) Add Mirrors - Not only do mirrors reflect light, but they also visually open up a space. Generally, hallways have an absence of windows, and mirrors give the illusion of airiness.
(Via The Room Edit)
3) Make it Functional - If you need your hallway to function as a mud-room, add some stylish hooks to the wall, and a bench with some colorful baskets underneath. Or even a hall-tree in a corner gives you a place to hang an extra jacket or two.
(Via Usual House)
4) Add a Rug - If you want to emphasize the length of a hallway or make it appear longer, add a runner. I love using bold patterns, and indoor/outdoor rugs which can withstand heavy traffic.
Although, I had a formal design education, finding the perfect pattern combinations can be challenging even for those of us who have spent years practicing design. Finding out what works and what doesn’t can be a lengthy process. However, it can be made less stressful if you follow some simple steps which will help you create the most stunning fabric combinations.
Pick Your Color - A color scheme can be driven by a favorite fabric, wallcovering or even a painting. If you don’t have any of these as “pattern springboards,” simply build inspiration files on Pinterest or collect tear sheets from magazines. You’ll soon see a common thread to help guide you. It’s a technique I often use with clients.
(Via Lacefield Designs)
Choosing the Scale - There are three different sizes of scale: small, medium & large. When mixing prints vary the scale size. Each pattern you choose should be gradually smaller. Don’t pick patterns that overwhelm each other, rather those that work well together. For example if you are going with a bold wallpaper then choose smaller scale patterns in the pillows and drapery. Also, pattern should always be balanced with solid color for harmony in a roomscape.
(Via Wild Chairy)
Add Contrast - The look and feel of a fabric will have a role when playing with pattern and can enhance the effect of a pattern. Texture isn’t as important when developing a pattern scheme but it can be when decorating with a more neutral palette. Texture can add another layer to a space, and visual interest. For example mixing heavier grade linens with a velvet adds a little “pop” to an interior.
(Via Home and Garden Blog)
Use moldings- it not only brings in architectural relief, but can also add pattern and interest. We recently completed a master bath renovation, and while our new bath room is beautiful, it also needed a little bit of visual interest. So at the last minute we added a ceiling treatment and it truly added the additional “wow-factor” that was needed.
(Via Project Nursery)
Wallpaper-While wallpapering the ceiling is not for the faint of heart, it’s so worth the effort. With the frequent introduction of new patterns, sheens and textures into the market, the hardest part will be making a selection. If you don’t want to commit to covering the entire ceiling, add strips of gold metallic contact paper to the 5th wall, creating a stripe pattern.
(Via Jojo's Joys)
Paint-Ceilings don’t have to be standard white, if you want to add a little drama to the ceiling choose a paint that is different from the wall color. There are products that exist in the market which allow you to add a little gold dust or silver to the paint for added sheen. When my daughter’s bedroom ceiling was painted with stars we had silver sparkles added to the paint. Metallic colors are the perfect way to add a little glitz and glamor to a room.
(Photo via Harolds Finishing Touches)
Displaying collections is an easy way to show things at one time. Regardless of the accessory they look better in groupings, treasured photos can be pulled together with similar colored frames, or treasured family mementos grouped in an interesting arrangement on a tabletop. Have fun and play with size, color, texture, height, and shape. It’s all about the “visual story,” that makes groupings interesting.
(Photo via Harolds Finishing Touches)
Think outside the box. Walls are also the perfect place for displaying collections. I love wall groupings of artwork, and it doesn’t always have to be the same subject matter. It’s about mixing shape and colors, mixing oils with etchings or watercolors. Building an artwork wall can add more impact to a wall than just a huge painting, it’s one of my favorite “looks.” In fact, some of the most eye-catching walls have happened when the artwork was mixed with mirrors or architectural fragments. It’s the pattern in which it’s hung on the wall that truly dictates the visual impact.
(Photo via Elle Décor)
Some tips when displaying collections:
1) Have a focal point, display in varying heights with the highest object in the middle.
2) Give “small space company and large objects space.”
3) When in doubt mix similar finishes or colors.
4) Play with size, shapes & textures.
5) Think outside the box. Walls are a great place to tell a “visual story.”
I can remember walking into the kitchen of a fellow designer several years ago, and not really noticing much else except for her tiled-to-the-ceiling- backsplash. It was dramatic and eye-catching. Since then it’s become one of my pet peeves, and of course not extending tile to the ceiling (when possible) gives the illusion that the wall is only half-finished. There are so many companies producing patterned tiles and with all the options available it can be a great investment, and take your kitchen from plain to perfection.
(Photo via Centsational Girl)
(Photo via Fiorella Design)
1) It's flexible-allowing fabricators to bend and shape it much more easily than any other solid surface.
2) It has microbial properties that keep it germ free.
3) It's scratch resistant, this means that it's virtually maintenance free unlike granite.
With Quartz surfaces now being offered in a variety of colors and some with the sparkling and veining of granite, it's has begun to take the design industry by storm...and has become the surface of choice for designers, architects and homeowners across the country. Oh, and did I mention that the array of color and veining variations are positively showstoppers?
(Photo via Dwell)
(Photo via HGTV Urban Oasis 2014)
LED’s can be used for all types of kitchen illumination, including overhead recessed and under-cabinet, it’s the perfect way to put light where you need it most. I think installing LED’s in the kitchen is the optimal way to create a layered lighting plan. They are programmable and easily manipulated to give you bright task lighting or softer tones for evening entertaining.
(Photo via John Cullen Lighting)
In an era where we live “greener” and crave energy efficiency- LED lighting makes the most sense. It’s more durable than traditional lightbulbs and can last for years. Dimmable LED lighting is an opportunity to bath the kitchen in warm light whether to highlight tile, the interior of glass front cabinetry, or illuminate focal points in the kitchen. LED continues to pave the way…
(Photo via Caesarstone, Dennis Gibbens Architects, project featured – 2141 Blizzard)
(Photo via Mowlem & Co)
Updated shades of blue lend themselves to an element of sophistication and timelessness. Because it's the color of the sky, it evokes a feeling of height and depth and makes the kitchen feel more open and spacious. While some of the more traditional "historic" blues are becoming a thing of "design past,” deeper blues are paving the way for a variety of color combinations. Paired with new introductions in solid surfaces such as agates and copper adding color to your cabinetry is the perfect opportunity to bring in visual impact. If you want to add a flourish of color to your kitchen, but don't want to commit to one shade, mix it up a bit. Any way you slice it, hues of blue are here to stay.
(Photo via British Standard by Plain English)
Since kitchen islands are getting larger and becoming such a central part of kitchen design, substantial lighting is needed to keep everything in scale. So an idea was born, and now chandeliers in the kitchen are frequently used by designers. Most kitchens don't have a lot of natural lights, so a chandelier is a great choice. Even when the fixtures aren't illuminated, the crystals will be. Walking into a kitchen and seeing it awash in reflective crystals creates a striking silhouette. It's always a challenge to bring in additional lighting to a kitchen without over-lighting the space. Since chandeliers aren't a central source of illumination in most cases, it's like the cherry on the proverbial design sundae. Bringing contrast and sophistication to even the most rustic interiors.
For those of you who don't want to commit to larger scale lighting hang several smaller pendant chandeliers over the kitchen island, it will break up the focal point without sacrificing the visual impact. So if you want to bring in an unexpected and striking element to you kitchen, chandeliers may be the perfect solution.
Photo via Robin Denker
Photo via Kim Scodro Interiors
Photo via NW Home Works-Tim Hutcheson