Professional Chat: Porch Swings Sway Into Sweet Life

A few summer days it is hard to imagine a more magical place where to see the world go by than a porch swing. Inviting and cozy, porch swings seem to quietly beckon one to slow down and relax for a while. And as seen here, this can be a strong tradition in the southern portion of the United States. These ideas can you help you make the most of a swing.

Frederick + Frederick Architects

Be inspired by historical properties. “Our inspiration was that the Plum Orchard Mansion on Cumberland Island, Georgia,” says Jane Frederick of Frederick + Frederick Architects. “They have huge swinging porch beds that are the perfect place for napping on a hot, lazy summer day.”

MCM Layout

Make the most of the opinion. “This hanging bed is located in the tower of a villa in Jumby Bay in Antigua, West Indies,” says Robert Moreland of MCM Architects. “Jumby Bay is a level island, so the tower provides a fantastic vantage point to miss the island and the ocean. There is also more of a breeze up the higher you are, so the idea of placing a hanging bed here seemed perfect for enjoying the cool breeze while being gently rocked as you nap or read a novel”

Wright Design

Combine in with your environment. “This home is located in a cove on Lake Keowee, South Carolina,” says architect Brad Wright of Wright Design. “The porch pavilion was extended out from the home so as to capture a mountain perspective observable through the mouth of cove. The clients and I agreed that this was the ideal place for a bed swing. The cushions and finish were selected to blend seamlessly with the forest setting and other natural substances utilized on the porch. From the swing, the homeowners can enjoy views of the lake in addition to the remote mountains.”

Group 3

Take a peek from the South. What does each Southern porch want? “A swing, a glass of sweet tea and a dog,” declares Rick Clanton of Group 3, in South Carolina. “If that is not the answer to any question, it should be.”

RSVP Design Services

Make it as large as a bed. “Our clients wanted a porch swing out their master bedroom that has been the size of a double bed mattress,” says Rhonda Vandiver-White of RSVP Design Services. “We made it to their size specifications and had it locally constructed, and utilized outdoor fabric on the pillow and pillows. It looks out over a beautiful English garden, and the owners love relaxing after a hectic day.”

Grounded – Richard Risner RLA, ASLA

Create a Zen retreat. “The inspiration for this design really flows from the design,” says landscape architect Richard Risner of Grounded. “The residence has been designed by architect S. Scott Emsley, also that I desired the outside living spaces to blend seamlessly with the home’s interior and total architectural feel.”

The home is in Southern California, so “we’ve got the opportunity to enlarge our livable area beyond the walls of the home,” he adds. “And for this project I created spaces for my clients to entertain, play, relax, and self-reflect. The result was a modern-style landscape using a slight Japanese influence.”

Soorikian Architecture

Construct your very own little perch. “In the temperate climate of Atlanta you can use a screened porch nearly year-round,” says Karen Soorikian of Soorikian Architecture. “This porch was constructed from the home’s large kitchen/dining area and sits a level over the backyard”

Soorikian was inspired “from the beauty of the deep woodland-like property,” she says. “I expected to give the porch the feel of a perch surrounded by lush trees. It is ideal for lazily lounging in a porch swing, especially in the summertime.”

Coggan + Crawford Architecture + Design

Enhance what you are already obtained. “When we bought the house that the swing was there, and we simply repainted the porch ceiling and floor,” says Annie Coggan of Coggan + Crawford Architecture + Design. Both colors are conventional Southern porch colors. The blue for the ceiling is traditional and practical since blue repels wasps, so the lore goes. The gray floor is porch gray, which hides dirt and pollen in the spring”

Coggan’s favorite color is orange, “so pieces of it are constantly placed about the home we live in, and this chair was a gift from a friend,” she says. “This photo was shot in the first fall during harvest year in a rural Southern community, thus the bucket of gourds.”

HBF plus Design

Help it become sunset prepared. “What could be more satisfying and romantic than appearing out into the sun setting on a water perspective from an expansive porch?” Inquires Bruce Finkelstein of HBF plus Architects. “Maybe only doing it while sitting on a porch swing. It harkens back to more relaxing and gracious eras.”

More great ideas for your porch

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Is an Online Decorator Right for You?

Between house makeover TV shows and also the wealth of online resources available today, there are more options than ever for those people wanting to decorate and improve our homes independently. However, what happens when things just aren’t coming together? DIY projects go awry, paint colours look wrong, color schemes and furniture fashions don’t come together — we have all been there. Occasionally turning to an expert full-service professional or interior designer is the right course; however, if the price of an in-person decorator is out of reach, or in the event that you merely need to have more control over the design process, there’s a new choice to take into account.

“E-decorating” or even”virtual decorating” allows clients to get a decorator from any place on earth, receiving a design program either in a package through the mail or through email. Much less expensive than in-person interior design, e-decorating may consist of everything from mood boards and floor plans to certain resources for furniture and paint colours, and a growing number of decorators are getting on board with virtual services. Here, learn about four decorators on the forefront of the trend and discover if this strategy is right for you.

Burnham Design

1. “Immediate Space,” Betsy Burnham. A leader of the online decorating concept, Betsy Burnham of Burnham Design developed Instant Space, her online design support, to fill a demand she realized: supplying high quality design to budget-conscious and long tail customers.

Full-service interior design from the highly sought-after Burnham can become quite pricey. But when a client is prepared to do some of the legwork, an instantaneous Space box complete with furniture plans, resources, fabric swatches and paint samples, plus specific instructions on the best way best to implement the plan, arrives in as little as a month — and in a tiny fraction of the cost.

Need to know: You send in dimensions and photos of your space plus inspiration photos, complete an online questionnaire and cover the complete fee up front. Four to six months later, you receive a pretty sheet box in the email containing a design board, cloth and paint samples, a furniture plan drawn to scale, a shopping list together with resources available anyplace in your area or online and step-by-step directions for pulling the space together.

Cost: $975 to $1,950

Is it appropriate for you? Immediate Space is a good option for anyone pining to work with a fancy decorator but that want to execute the plan on their own time. If you love the Burnham Design appearance and love receiving a luxe box using samples and skilled design planks in the email (rather than emailed documents alone), this could be the right option for you. Also worth noting, you may choose to add trade-only furnishings and fabrics to your Immediate Space design plan for an additional 25 percent commission.

Watch the meeting with Betsy Burnham

Burnham Design

The Betsy Burnham appearance: famous for the expert way with color, Burnham offers stunning and unexpected color palettes that are really liveable. Expect interiors that are polished and upscale but consistently comfy.

Vanessa De Vargas

2. Turquoise, Vanessa De Vargas. After running her own successful design shop, developing a line of furniture and supplying complete interior design services through her organization, Turquoise, Vanessa De Vargas has garnered a dedicated clientele in the Los Angeles region. Wanting to offer a less expensive option, De Vargas a long time ago expanded her services to include e-decorating.

Need to know: You send in dimensions, photos and drawings of your space, along with inspiration images, your budget and an info sheet, and cover the fee up front. All information is filed electronically. About three weeks later you receive your personalized design program, including suggestions for wallpaper or paint, ideas for design items you own, furniture placement and resources for everything displayed, from furniture to accessories and artwork.

Cost: $500 to $1,050

Is it appropriate for you? Turquoise e-decorating offers the experience of a time-tested interior designer in a less expensive price point, and communicating entirely via email makes things easy and fast. This could be a fantastic fit for your job if you love Vanessa De Vargas’s contemporary glam look and need advice for utilizing some of your current furniture in a new manner.

Watch the meeting with Vanessa De Vargas

Vanessa De Vargas

The Turquoise appearance: Brand New, contemporary and a bit glam, De Vargas’ style blends new and old pieces for a look that feels personal and fun yet polished.

Vanessa De Vargas

Things to expect with design planks: whichever decorator you choose, you will likely receive some kind of design board — either as a hard copy in the email or as a PDF download. In the case shown here, from Vanessa De Vargas, it is possible to see that images of the actual furniture pieces chosen for the client are organized alongside paint color swatches and fabric patterns.

Design boards reveal suggested products and substances, and therefore are meant to help you visualize how the appearance will come together; it is different from the floor program, which (if included) will reveal where to put all that furniture. A written description might also be included to iron out the exact particulars that are not easily displayed on the design boards. Last, you also need to receive a source list with directions on where to purchase everything displayed in your strategy, either locally or online.

Tobi Fairley Interior Design

3. InBox Interiors, Tobi Fairley. Chosen as among Traditional Home magazine’s Top 20 Young Designers in the usa, Tobi Fairley is an accomplished designer offering full-service interior design in addition to an online decorating choice by InBox Interiors.

Need to know: You send in dimensions and electronic photos of your space, inspiration images and also a questionnaire, and cover the full fee up front. All communication happens using a Tobi Fairley team member through email. Six to eight months later, you receive a stunning box comprising a hard-back”look book” with floor plans, sketches and elevations of important details, a concept board, a shopping guide with pricing and detailed directions on implementing the design. You’ll also receive a packet with swatches of your preferred fabrics, paint and wallpapers.

Cost: $1,350 to $2,500

Is it best for you? For those with traditional preference looking for a thorough strategy and hands on materials and design boards from a high-end design home, minus the significant sticker shock, Tobi Fairley’s InBox Interiors team could be a fantastic fit.

Watch the meeting with Tobi Fairley

The Tobi Fairley appearance: famous for her freshened-up conventional appearance, Fairley uses large-scale prints, classic furniture shapes and contemporary pops of color. Her design is simple yet luxurious.

4. Birdhouse Interior Design Consulting, Jessica McKay. Jessica McKay offers in-person remodeling and decorating consultations for those in and around Omaha, Nebraska, in addition to online consultations for customers who just require a little bit of help pulling everything together.

Need to know: Online consultations incorporate an area mood board with resources for furniture and accessories, tips on developing a color palette, ideas for repurposing items and a written explanation of how to execute the strategy.

Cost: $250 per room

Is it right for you? Birdhouse Interior Design Consulting could be a fantastic fit if superaffordable design help from somebody with a fantastic eye is what you are after.

The Birdhouse Interiors appearance: Expect trendy, classic touches and lots of ideas for creatively aligning items. It’s hip and contemporary with an eclectic flair.

Interested in hiring an Internet decorator? Here are a couple more e-decorating companies worth checking out:
Maggie Rose Interiors: Decorator Maggie Morgan offers e-decorating bundles in addition to in-person decorating in the Seattle region.
Kelly + Olive: Courtney Davis and Lauren Paradise offer color consultations and mood boards online, also online decorating decorating for those from the Chicago region.
Nesting: Specializing in baby and children’s spaces, designer Susan Hutchinson offers e-design bundles in addition to in-person design consultation in the Philadelphia region.

Tell us: What do you believe? Can you (or have you?) Tried e-decorating?

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Designer's Touch: 10 Basement Upgrades

Is the clutter in your basement driving you insane? Get your last piece of spring cleaning done and clean out this underused — and underappreciated — space. Rejuvenate your basement with these designer tips and include performance, style and square footage to your property.

Peregrine Design Build

1. All bases covered. Install open shelving together all of the walls of your basement for organized storage. Display household products, games and toys as decor.

Witt Construction

2. Stunning basement. If you’ve got a slightly bigger budget, completely design it to become another usable degree of your property. Insert a wellness TV, cabinetry, furniture and games for that supreme bar and recreation area.

Eisner Design LLC

3. Total basement fitness. Establish a dedicated physical fitness area in your basement to save time and money. Insert an adjacent play area to keep a watchful eye on the kiddies as you’re exercising.

Billinkoff Architecture PLLC

4. Basement exhibition. Convert your basement space into a gallery, together with all of your personal favorite artwork on your walls.

Leslie Goodwin Photography

5. Measures to success. Build a perfectly operational office under the basement stairs with built in cabinetry and handy open shelving to store bills and household paperwork. Save space and keep organized under a single stairs.

DIN Interiorismo

6. Divide and counter tops. Put a counter-level bookcase with exposed shelves and — voilà! Counter space, privacy and easy access to all your books, with a defined television room.

Sandvold Blanda Architecture + Interiors LLC

7. Bookworm addition. Read all your favorites in your own private oasis of knowledge with a built-in floor-to-ceiling library. What a great idea to showcase your piano in the basement, also — if you dare.

Lizette Marie Interior Design

8. Bold basement. Take a danger and paint your basement a dark shade. Bold color equals a dramatic and cozy basement.

Urban Cape

9. Vino vault. Wine lovers can make their dreams come true with their own wine cellar just down the stairs. Stock up on what your palette needs and have your favorite bottle right in your fingertips.

Dream House Studios

10. Billiards basement. Twist your cellar with wainscoting, crown moldings and carpeting, and top it off with an expert pool table. Your energetic game room expects — with or with a wet bar.

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Kitchen of the Week: Casual and Coastal at Ireland

This updated kitchen on the coast of Howth, Ireland, was developed to combine with all the family’s living areas and catch the texture of the surrounding ocean. Durable materials, a beachy palette and plenty of open space were musts for its clients, who hired Joanne Reilly of Mc Adam Kitchens to design a space with a casual dining area, a defined breakfast bar and a layout that opens into the rest of the home.

Mc Adam Kitchens

The sea-green kitchen cabinetry is constructed from hand-painted oak sanded to reveal the wood beneath. Since the kitchen has views of the ocean, courtyard and the rest of the home, Reilly chose soft colours that would use everything.

Particular details help bring the kitchen into life, from the rustic metal hardware into the drawers engraved with all the childrens’ names. “Regardless of what angle you look at, there is something to keep you interested,” says Reilly.

Mc Adam Kitchens

The functional region of the kitchen is in the trunk, together with the sink, trash and dishwasher within an island facing the stove. There’s plenty of counter space on the bar prep area and on either side of the stove.

Mc Adam Kitchens

The kitchen is linked to a living space. A round breakfast bar makes it possible for the household to sit facing whatever direction they like. A small unit for glassware storage joins the pub with the major island. A row of small drawers on the kitchen island holds spices and other regularly used pantry products.

Mc Adam Kitchens

An ocean view is offered by A built-in seat. A table can be inserted to make a casual dining space. Soft limed oak floors and glass pendants finish the appearance that was coastal.

Mc Adam Kitchens

The kitchen is planned to the last detail — there is nothing . “There certainly aren’t rows of cabinets that are endless for gathering plenty of useless items, however there are plenty of pullout drawers to store essential things,” says Reilly. Silestone quartz countertops were chosen due to their durability and effortless maintenance, and the light color feels at home in this beach home.

More Kitchens of the Week:
A Fresh Combination of New and Old
Traditional Townhouse in D.C.
Exposed Brick Arches in Illinois

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Elevate Your Everyday Edibles Into Kitchen Artwork

Ever since kitchens became about entertaining and aesthetics as about cooking, there’s been one big, lingering question: How can I cook and keep things orderly? If you inquire, there’s no reason to hide away the culinary fundamentals. Spices, dry products and veggies and fruits, when displayed properly, can develop into a fashionable area of the decor. With a few simple tweaks, maintaining the heart of the house guest prepared and making it usable do not need to be mutually exclusive.

Du Bois Design Ltd

If you like the idea of having veggies and fruits where you could view them but think that a typical fruit bowl is passé, a beautiful tray similar to this is a perfect place for keeping edibles right at hand at a fashionable way.

Blount Architectual and Interior Design

Another super-snazzy alternate to the fruit jar, this modern rack keeps all of your edibles right where you’re able to view them prevents the inevitable mush on the base of the fruit. The splash of red is indeed fun!

Archipelago Hawaii Luxury Home Designs

It is a fact of life that some create is not really prepared to enter the refrigerator when it is purchased. If you are not a fan of having unripe berries and salmon lined up on the window sill, a unique vessel similar to this is essential.

Glass Canisters | Williams-Sonoma

Glass canisters top our listing of stylish ways to display your meals. Fill them with oats, grains, beans, pasta or, yes, freshly baked cookies.

Rebekah Zaveloff | KitchenLab

Sugar, flour, grains and other dry products are kitchen musts. Why hide them off when they enhance the decor?

Nordby Design Studio

Even when you’re not much of a cook, then clear canisters are a slick touch onto a counter. If flour, pasta and the like aren’t daily requirements for youpersonally, coffee beans and also loose-leaf teas are a beautiful alternative.

Archipelago Hawaii Luxury Home Designs

We do not always have a thoroughly prepared cheese tray just lying around. But, like flowers, appetizers are an appealing way to decorate your home for guests.


Stacked Optic-Glass Beverage Server – $109.90

Whether you are entertaining a crowd or just trying to get your eight glasses every day, a beautiful drink server is another dual-purpose kitchen item. The color and dimension add pizzazz to the counter, and everybody has their favourite drink all day long.

Powell/Kleinschmidt, Inc..

If you are tired of having spices cluttering your free cabinet space, let them see the light of day. This wall-mounted spice rack retains favorites close to the stove. It looks fantastic and makes it simpler to provide all of your favourite meals a healthy dash.

Cuisinox Magnetic Countertop Spice Rack – $250

Spices are beautiful to show, particularly when their canisters are as glossy as the decor. We love how modern this spice rack is and think its magnetic feature is so handy!

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Casual Wall Art Arrangements Show Deliberate Style

Are you among those men and women who’s afraid to pound nails into freshly painted walls for fear you will put a hole in the “wrong” place? Well, fear no longer. Hanging wall decoration randomly is easier than ever and will give a space a sense of individuality that ideal gridlike arrangements can’t.

The crucial thing is to maintain the arrangement loose however the spacing tight so the overall effect is one big focal point. Repeat key components — colors, fabrics, shapes — inside the arrangement to get a look that’s casual yet pulled together.

Create loosely arranged gallery walls in household spaces for a fun effect, in formal spaces to get a bit of informality, in modern rooms to get a dose of character, in spaces for inspiration and also in small vignettes for spontaneity.

So put the tape measure, stand back and sneak a peek at the bigger, more imperfect picture. It’ll have you filling those partitions with holes very quickly.

Rethink Design Studio

Thwart the difficult mission of locating the perfect-size bit to meet with a narrow stairwell by grouping together an eclectic collection of framed mirrors and art. The placement around this doorway is balanced but not perfectly symmetrical, lending a casual sense.


For a family-friendly room, exhibit happy artwork in frames of the same material but of different dimensions. Repeating the same framework on one wall unifies the artwork. Contrary to popular belief, filling a wall artwork to the ceiling may actually make it seem taller.

Watch the rest of the home


Use a sliver of wall space to make a spontaneous vignette which includes wall-hugging furniture plus a medley of wall decoration. Defy tradition and hang modern canvases among vintage photographs and gilded mirrors. Relate the arrangement to the furniture by extending it down the wall in addition to up.

Jeanette Lunde

Use a cluster of colorful artwork to pick upon the colour scheme of a room. Here, pinks, browns and aquas lift the otherwise all-white decoration. Hang large pieces in the center of the arrangement together with smaller frames closely surrounding them for one large focal point.

Watch the rest of this room

Lauren Gries

Loosely arranged wall artwork can be complex. Mix and match frame dimensions but keep the colour scheme restricted and subdued. Limit the palette to three or two colors. In this living room, the golden, cream and brown artwork collection is appropriate while the imperfect arrangement is informal. It’s a comparison that works.


In a home office, group an range of inspirational prints and photos above the desk to maintain creative juices flowing. Hang larger frames first, then fill in the gaps with smaller ones. Change out artwork as crucial to maintain a fresh view.

sarah & bendrix

For a cleaner look, line up the bottom edge of a loose arrangement with the back of a sofa and maintain the spaces between frames to a minimum. Within this neutral living room, black frames comparison against a white wall and also pick up on the black details of the throw cushions.


Get playful in a casual living space by creating a loosely arranged focal point in a defunct wall. Skip the popular grid arrangement and hang eyeglasses randomly. This gives you the freedom to add more artwork on a whim.

Glenn Gissler Design

A clear option above a mantel is a mirror. However, for a more laid-back texture, hang a large piece of artwork off-center and lean a smaller framework against the wall. This uncontrived installation brings a sense of informality to an otherwise formal space.

A Gallery Wall for Every Character

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Refresh Your Mudroom

Time to clean out the winter equipment that’s been cluttering up your entryway and make space for new spring finds. Join us this week as we explore eight approaches to freshen up that hardest working of chambers, the mudroom. Whether it is a complete room or a sliver of wall from the doorway, this space must greet you warmly, offer storage for your belongings and set the tone for the remainder of your home. Let’s dig in.

Jennifer Grey Interiors Design & Color Specialist

1. List your requirements. Next time you are home, take note of what you’re carrying, as this can point you toward the furniture and accessories that can best serve you. For example, silky scarves might beg for a drawer or basket, while luggage would succeed on shelves or hooks. You might need:
HooksBoot trayShelvingChest of drawers
RugMirrorBasketsClockTray for mailRecycling bin

Warmington & North

2. Think creatively about furniture. When you’ve got the room, you might be able to repurpose something you own instead of buying a new piece. Who says you want a tough wood seat from the mudroom? A loveseat or a armchair are a magical addition (throw onto a slipcover if you’re worried about stains), along with an old dresser can discover new life as an ample storage unit.

Jeanette Lunde

3. Brighten up with colour and art. A small can of paint can do miracles. Paint the walls, stencil a pattern on the flooring, or repaint your furniture for a whole new appearance. A bracing light mint green looks especially fresh when paired with white, and it yells spring.

Artwork is one other way to make a fast change, and there is no need to devote a whole lot of money to acquire a fantastic appearance. Here are a few ideas for inexpensive wall art.

• Cut a vintage book of botanical illustrations.
• Frame pages by a gorgeous calendar.
• Press leaves and blossoms from your own backyard and frame them.
• Cover a corkboard in burlap and utilize it like a inspiration board.
• Fill embroidery hoops from the craft shop with swatches of vibrant cloth.

Tim Cuppett Architects

4. Take advantage of a small area. Simply because you do not have a mudroom doesn’t mean you can’t have an attractive and orderly region to corral your possessions when you stumble in the doorway. A simple built-in or floating shelf and a few hooks are all you actually need.

If you want to earn this zone feel like its own miniroom, try painting or wallpapering a accent wall to frame the region. Want it to blend in instead? Paint the shelving and wall to coordinate with the colour of the surrounding area to get a smooth transition.

Mark English Architects, AIA

5. Consider flooring choices. The mudroom is a high traffic zone, often handling mud, dirt and snow, so think carefully about what you place on the ground. If you’re starting from scratch, consider a weatherproof material such as stone or tile. Otherwise, cover existing flooring with a challenging natural-fiber rug or perhaps one meant for outside.

LDa Architecture & Interiors

6. Make order for the whole household. If you share the space, it is critical to carve out an area for each individual. A basket, shelf and pair of hooks for each man, woman and child will maintain possessions off the ground and somewhat contained. Be absolutely certain everyone is responsible for draining those baskets until they float, or you’re back to square one.

Rethink Design Studio

7. Insert a command centre. Because it is often the last place we look before leaving the home, the mudroom is a great location for a command centre. Like a miniature office, the command centre acts as an organizational hub for the whole family. Here are a Couple of things you might want to include in yours:
ChalkboardWall calendarChairSmall deskFloating shelfFile basket

Just a Girl

8. Locate additional space. Not enough room indoors? Make your garagedoor or rear deck work by setting up an exterior mudroom close to the doorway. If you live in an apartment building, you might even be able to put a small locked cupboard close to your door.

Read more mudroom photos

Entryway, Mudroom and Laundry Room Wish List

The Handsome Mudroom

Makeshift Mudroom

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Set the Landscape: Cottage Garden Style

Mention the term “cottage garden” and most of us imagine a vibrant, fragrant garden full of billowing perennials, all surrounded by a picket fence. Ornaments, trellises, arbors and seats are nestled among the plants, and also a very simple route leads to a charming entryway.

That is the typical cottage garden nowadays, but what many admirers do not see is that the cottage garden began its life as a purely functional space for growing herbs and vegetables for regular usage. If the single space you have is facing your front door, then that’s where you will grow the food you need. As for the fence, it’s a practical way to keep fleas out (both human and animal).

Throughout the centuries, the cottage garden has become less functional and more cosmetic. It has also been adapted to match different climates and architectural designs, from traditional to contemporary. Just like any garden design, however, there are a number of guidelines which will help ensure that your cottage garden appears pleasing and hauled together, not simply enjoy a hodgepodge of plants which have been placed haphazardly.

Maria Hickey & Associates Landscapes

Start with the layout. Traditionally, the main route would lead directly to the front door, with plants billowing over on each side. That is still suitable, but you could also cause a winding route that leads you on a trip through the backyard.

Inside Out- Exterior & Interior Design

Keep it informal. A specific informality defines cottage garden plants, of course, but in addition, it applies to a hardscape. Gravel, pebbles or bark create great options for avenues, as an example. Rather than bricks set exactly in mortar, look for discolored older bricks with a few cracked edges, and place them so that the distance is not just even between each paver. Stepping stones also offer a cottagey look. Local substances are the ideal option if you’re able to locate them.

Design suggestion:While imperfections in a walkway look charming, have the effect by changing the width between different pavers and keep the walking surface even. No one would like to travel within an irregular rock, particularly at night.

Minglewood Designs

Reduce the yard. At a true cottage garden, a yard is seldom the focus. If you do want a little bit of green, then consider using bud as your route substance. A low-mow fescue will keep your maintenance levels down while adding to the informal feel.

Maria Hickey & Associates Landscapes

Plant for colour. A cottage garden is, most importantly, vibrant. You can use an exuberant mix of colors, choose something bold or stick to softer shades. A color wheel may be a great guide for choosing colors, if you want them to complement or contrast each other.

Design suggestion: If you are new to design with colour, select a motif color or colors, such as pinks, blues or purples, much as you would for colors inside a house. The different shapes of the plants you select will give you variety; the repetition of colour will have a calming and harmonious effect. Since you get bolder, add a pop of contrasting color — yellow nasturtiums blended in with blue pansies and delphiniums, bright red lupine nestled among white Shasta daisies and pink echinacea or some glowing orange black-eyed Susan scattered about in a sea of lavender.

WA Design Architects

Plant the unexpected. Bright purple allium, standing tall, adds colour. Artemisia and santolina are both good filler plants; their tender foliage and inconspicuous flowers function as a backdrop for more colorful plantings.


Enclose your own space. A white picket fence is the epitome of a cottage garden look. Here, the fence itself is simple, however, the bright white color helps it hold its own against the yellows and greens which front it. Additionally, a birdbath is always a welcome touch.

Archer & Buchanan Architecture, Ltd..

Stone and unpainted timber are equally authentic options for fencing, and also this fence artfully combines both. You may even use hedges to make a border. Maintain the substances simple; for instance, a rock wall ought to be brief and look dry place, not like a huge construction bit.


Include gates, arbors and trellises. This really is a traditional mix, complete with a climbing rose, but you can also scatter structures which support climbing plants throughout the space. You may even add extra gates, if to enclose a smaller place or as decoration.

Insert the finishing touches. Cottage gardens call for individual details, and also this birdbath is a stunning example of taking a very simple detail and making it your very own. Constructed of a very simple bathing jar, it provides colour and creativity to the backyard when providing a spa for birds. In turn, the birds offer plenty of amusement for those homeowners.

Paradise Restored Landscaping & Exterior Design

Water features are common in a cottage garden. If you plan to add one, keep it simple. Ponds should be relatively small and natural in appearance. Fountains should also be low-key affairs, for example simple urns.

What’s a cottage garden with no birdhouse or two? They may be only decorative, of course, but it doesn’t take much to make one into a cozy home for a nest. Different birds have different nesting requirements, so opt for a birdhouse style which will attract birds indigenous to your region and keep them safe from predators. Check with a local pet store or birding group to find out more about what will work best for you.

Designs by Shellene

You have to be able to enjoy your backyard. A seat placed somewhere inside the space will allow you to look out over your backyard creation. You’ll likely discover that butterflies and birds will enjoy the garden as well.

If you are going to sit for a while, you will want a comfortable spot to do this. Fortunately, thrift store finds and older favorites will match right into a cottage space, so you don’t have to spend a great deal of cash. However, if your space is exposed to sunlight and rain, then you might choose to search for furniture and fabrics which seem weathered but are really designed to resist the components.

Between Naps on the Porch

Obviously, you’re going to need a place to work, whether it’s starting seedlings or arranging fresh-picked flowers. This seat is practical, and the green colour blends in with the plantings about it.

Arcadia Gardens, LLC

Produce a cottage garden that’s right for you. It is sensible to work with the distance and the climate you have. If you reside in the Pacific Northwest, amazing; you have a similar climate to England and you can probably recreate a Cotswold backyard. In other climates, you ought to be creative. At the upper Midwest, plants such as hostas function well as anchors in a cottage garden space.

Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape Architecture

Just inland from the central coast of California, a Mediterranean climate and lack of summer rain implies plants must be more drought tolerant. While this backyard proves, that doesn’t mean you need to give up about the cottage look, simply select grasses and perennials that could handle the climatic problems.

Peter A. Sellar – Architectural Photographer

While cottage gardens are unusually adaptable, somehow a fluffy yard of roses doesn’t necessarily operate with a more modern architectural design. Grasses, especially those with a mix of colors in their own flower heads, create a great, slightly more contemporary substitute.

You might not be prepared for a complete loss of yard and permanent paving, and that’s fine. Instead, make a cottage feel in a large garden bed, and allow the plants billow around on the pavement to soften the distance.

Troy Rhone Garden Design

This advantage of a sloping driveway offers the ideal spot for a contained cottage look which also brightens the edge of the driveway. In cases like this, the picket fence is keeping the cottage garden out of the yard, rather than in it.

Call it cottage. The containers have an urban appearance, but they’re full of spilling plants which evoke images of a cottage-inspired front yard.


If you are really restricted for space, then a cottage container may work very well. Place it on a patio or in an entryway to get the appearance, even in the event that you don’t have the property.

Design suggestion: You can also use containers inside your current cottage garden. They’re a terrific way to bring a decorative component, and easy to swap out if the plants start to look shabby.

Tom Meaney Architect, AIA

Of course, sometimes your house will seem like a cottage even with the minimum amount of landscaping. This house would state cottage even in the center of a town. Nevertheless, you may see the basic cabin components, from irregularly placed paving materials to climbing plants and a wooden seat.

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Kitchen of the Week: Exposed Brick Arches in Illinois

Most homeowners need a kitchen using more light and an open connection to main living spaces. Since the kitchen has become the main hub of action in modern homes, many households gravitate toward centrally located spaces which are easy to access from the rest of the house. The issue is, creating this installment is not always easy.

This Wilmette, Illinois, kitchen was originally completely closed off from the rest of the house. The homeowners wanted to connect it to the adjacent living space, but a thick wall obstructed off the distance. Great Rooms Designers & Builders pared down the warmth from the wall, exposing beautiful brick, and reworked the wall to an open and one of a kind design.

Great Rooms Builders & Designers

This wall between the kitchen and the family room was an exterior wall in the home’s unique layout. The family room was added later on (before this kitchen remodel), and the brick was furred out and drywalled.

Great Rooms’ Heath Siebert and his team realized that this once-brick wall could include a distinctive textural component, so that they restored it and additional arches and pillars.

Cabinetry: Monarch; backsplash: white crackle tile, Chadwicks; countertop: Brazilian soapstone; floors: refinished red oak hardwood; sink: Rohl Shaws Apron; faucet: Franke Triflow

Great Rooms Builders & Designers

To connect the kitchen with the living room, Siebert and his team removed the drywall, framing and old brick from the previous wall. They washed the brick and used it with some fitting new bricks to create the new wall and pillars.

The soapstone countertop was pulled out through the largest arch to get a casual eat-in bar.

Great Rooms Builders & Designers

Classic white subway tile in a crackle finish was installed in a herringbone pattern for a backsplash. Pieces of soapstone frame it.

Pot filler: Danze Opulence; lighting: homeowner’s; hood: Savona, Zephyr; range: Wolf 36-inch

Great Rooms Builders & Designers

Storage was a priority, so Siebert and his team integrated shelving into each nook and cranny. Integrated wine shelving, a display case for china, tall cabinetry for pantry items and spacious cabinetry around the island are a couple of of the solutions.

Great Rooms Builders & Designers

A window at the far end of the kitchen and an open door to the rest of the house retains the room casual, connected and full of natural light. “Before we began the job, the brick wall was only a door from the living room into the kitchen,” says Siebert. “The homeowner never understood that this might be opened and that we can use an outside element with interior components seamlessly.”

Refrigerator: Sub-Zero; dishwasher: Bosch

More Kitchens of the Week:
A Fresh Combination of New and Old
Vintage Elegance, Pocket Size
Warm Luxury in San Francisco

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Luxurious Contemporary Apartment in Poland

Exotic artwork; Chinese, Japanese and Spanish influences; and luxury materials such as backlit onyx make this Central Warsaw flat a stunner. The customers, a couple in finance, traveling often and wanted their residence, which overlooks Łazienki Park, to reflect their love of the Orient and Spain. Working together with them “gave me the most joy,” says interior designer Pawel Sókol. “I heard from and was inspired by their own enthusiasm for layout — down to the most minute details.”

in a Glance
Warsaw, Poland
Size: 2,583 square feet
Designer’s question:
Sókol’s customers insisted on integrating onyx, marble, metal and wood –and design changes from the East and West — under a single roof.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

A reddish, flowerlike chandelier adds drama to a space where the ceilings are not very high. Paired together with the neutral, warm and earthy tones of the space, the headboard enhances the decoration and can be admired by the adjacent living room space.

Chandelier: Flower of Life, Willow Lamps

EXIT Interior Design Studio

A luxe custom drapery track is hidden underneath a header and glows from panel lighting; silk drapes breaking at the floor give a puddled appearance and some motion to the draperies.

In the front end of this space is an Alhambra carved-wood divider, one of the select pieces brought home to Poland from the customers’ journeys to Spain.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

Silver velvet sofas and an armchair contrast against the warm wood tones of the side tables, coffee table and floors. The metallic impact of this draperies and upholstery up the glam factor of this living room tastefully; the metallic motif extends to the circular centerpiece, silver frog figure and die-cast brass lampshade trio (the third lamp is not visible in this picture).

Lamps: Pasha, Luminara by Ceccotti

EXIT Interior Design Studio

The study has a serene view of the foliage from nearby Łazienki Park, which is home to many classical-style gardens and palaces.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

The customers’ love of Eastern layout is evident in this chinoiserie-inspired vignette: a pair of guardian lions, a Chinese porcelain plate and an altar table adjacent to a wood divider produced by a Polish carpenter employing a Japanese blossom print.

How to Insert Touches of Chinoiserie

EXIT Interior Design Studio

The Eastern influence extends itself into the restroom. A white lantern hovers over a vessel sink; red and white glass panels are placed between black iron frames with a Chinese geometric pattern.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

Sókol points out that the absence of cabinets, shelves and cabinets in the bedroom. “The bedroom is used for rest and sleep. Clothes, accessories, additional possessions have their place in the wardrobe in another room.”

EXIT Interior Design Studio

Sókol’s clients especially requested to integrate onyx to the interior layout. This picture shows backlit onyx panels at the ceiling, which include a visual richness that is preferred by luxury hospitality and commercial spaces. A small nook next to a center pillar with modular closets is used for coffee and afternoon tea.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

This shiny kitchen sink area looks like it could also belong within a luxury suite.

EXIT Interior Design Studio

This stunning receiving area by the flat elevator would be fitting at a contemporary hotel. It reflects the customers’ need for the same sleek look they enjoy while traveling abroad.

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