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Blog - Home Renovation

Making the Most of Small Spaces

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23 March 2021 Home Renovation,

Small spaces – whether it’s a room or the entire house – are tricky to decorate. It’s easy to fill up a tiny space with too much furniture and all of a sudden, it feels cluttered. On the other hand, small spaces let you get creative with furniture, decor, and storage. Sometimes you want a small room to look bigger or you just want a functional space that doesn’t look cramped.

Regardless of your goals, the key to decorating a small space is careful consideration of materials and furniture pieces, the available space, and the purpose of the room itself. For instance, a kitchen needs to be more functional than a small corner next to your desk. So, here are a few tips on making the most of small spaces:

Layout and furniture

If you’re starting a room from scratch, decide on a layout and the bigger pieces first. Does the space need different zones like studying and relaxing? Can the room accommodate all the areas you need? Even a bedroom can have multiple zones – for sleeping, reading, getting dressed in the morning, etc. 

Once you’ve decided on the layout, choose the biggest furniture pieces first like the bed or dining table. Opt for lighter colors, lightweight materials, and a minimalist/sleek design. A loveseat with narrow legs suits a small space more than a heavy skirted couch. Fewer but high-quality pieces will also make the room look bigger than it is. 

Keep in mind that each piece of furniture also needs room around it for you to move. So one larger couch is a better idea than 2 small loveseats.

Maximize light

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Any space will look bigger when there’s plenty of light, preferably from natural sources. Use mirrors to reflect light coming in from the windows. Light shades of any color will give a more spacious look as well. Make sure the window treatments are as close to the ceiling as possible to give the impression of height. 

One common mistake is to make curtains too short or narrow. Curtains should just about touch the floor and also extend for at least 6 inches beyond the window on both sides. Too short or narrow and it starts to feel restrictive.

Double duty furniture

Use furniture that can do more than one thing. Storage is key in any room as you’ll have some things that need to be put away when you’re not using them. You also want to display the stuff you like. So consider an ottoman with hidden storage instead of a coffee table. A side table can also double up as a stool for extra seating or use nested tables to save space. 

Convertible sofas and pull-out beds are also ideal for smaller spaces. This way you can put them away when you’re not using them. A desk that folds up against the wall or a cart that you can wheel out of a closet when needed is also a good idea.

Use the wall space

Walls are useful for more than simply hanging photos or artwork. When floor space is at a premium, go vertical. You can fill an entire wall with floor-to-ceiling bookshelves to make the most of your space. Or simply attach several shelves at different heights for plants or books.  Use mounted shelves on the side of your bed instead of a nightstand. The options are endless once you start thinking of walls as a blank canvas.

You can also do the same with floor lamps. Instead of multiple lamps taking up precious room, hang scones from the wall or use a ceiling light instead. Closed cabinets are necessary for the kitchen or bathroom but open shelves can go pretty much everywhere. You can even screw in a few pegs and hang your bike or tools on the wall.

Use decor wisely

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Be thoughtful when it comes to decor in a small space. Unlike a large room, you don’t have unlimited space to cram everything you want inside. You need to think about what is necessary and add it with consideration. 

For example, let’s say you have 2 shelves above your work desk for decor. Don’t just put everything you need in random order. Group like items together (similar color, shape, or size) and leave space around each group to make it intentional.

If you can fit 10 things in the space, use only 7 or 8 items. This will make any space look and feel larger than it is. It’s also better to choose fewer but bigger pieces instead of multiple small items. Just like furniture, every decor item needs some space around it. 

As always, don’t hesitate to move things around if you don’t like them. The most important thing to create a space that looks good and works well for you and your family. 

Replacing Your Shower System

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Home Renovation,

Bathroom and kitchen remodel are the most popular home renovation projects and for good reasons. Updating these rooms is important for functionality especially if you have an older home with outdated plumbing/electrical fixtures. The remodel also offers a good return on investment when it comes time to sell your home. 

Unfortunately, bath renovation projects tend to get bigger than you originally expected. You might start out with wanting to replace a leaky faucet and before you know it, you’re retiling the floor or replacing the tub altogether. But what if your bathroom doesn’t need an extensive renovation and you just want a smaller update?

Small bathroom projects

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There are many alternatives to a full-blown bath renovation. For instance, you can replace the decor and small accent pieces if you’re satisfied with the existing functionality. In other words, you just want to update how the room looks. You can also replace fixtures such as the towel rod, faucet, towel hooks, and sink accessories in a coordinating finish. 

Design upgrades are often inexpensive and don’t take up much time. Functional upgrades are typically more expensive, time-consuming, and difficult to plan out. It’s especially true if you want to swap out the tub, replace the tub with a shower, or another more extensive remodeling. 

Replacing the shower system

Luckily, replacing your shower system doesn’t have to be a big project requiring experts. If you’re handy with tools, replacing the shower can be done in a day or even an afternoon. Unless you want to add more valves, handles, or multiple showerheads, you don’t have to re-tile or break anything to replace the shower system. 

There are several reasons you may want to replace the shower:

  • The existing shower is leaking or close to breaking down
  • You want to update the shower to match the rest of the bath fixtures (faucet, towel rack, etc.)
  • You want to add functionality like a hand shower, spa shower system, etc.
  • You’re interested in water-saving or eco-friendly features like low flow showerheads, digital controls, or similar tech upgrades

You don’t need an expert to replace the showerhead, just basic tools and some time. If you’re used to DIY projects around the house, you can complete this one in less than a day.

Selecting a shower system

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There are many types of shower systems available in the market today. You can buy all-in-one packages that include all the parts you need or assemble your own bespoke system. A new shower system can cost anywhere from $100 to $5000 and above. It depends on the manufacturer, functionality, and the finish you want. In most cases, it’s not worth the time and effort to build your own system from parts. Most all-in-one systems are easy to assemble and work well regardless of your budget. 

Budget

Naturally, price is a limiting factor whenever you shop for something. If you are replacing the shower as part of a blogger remodel, make sure to leave room in the budget for the purchase. No matter the constraints, you’ll be able to find a system that suits your needs. 

Features 

From water-saving showers to complete spa-like experiences, your shower can be as simple or complex as you need. A master bath may benefit from a rain shower head (where the water sprays down from the ceiling) while a guest bath doesn’t have such a complex system. Modern shower panels may even come with digital controls, speakers to play music, and other technology features.

Some showers feature multiple heads such as a fixed showerhead and a more flexible handheld one. Spa systems combine multiple nozzles or heads that are flush against the wall to provide a relaxing bath experience. 

Finish 

As with all home upgrades, the finish is important. You should select one that complements your design style and the rest of the bathroom. That beautiful oil-rubbed bronze showerhead in the showroom may look completely out of place in a modern, minimalist bathroom. 

Since bath fixtures are generally not very expensive, it’s a good idea to replace all of them at once with items from the same brand/manufacturer. Remember that polished finishes look elegant but need more cleaning to keep them free of fingerprints and smudges. Brushed or matte finishes are more forgiving and easier to clean. 

It’s always a good idea to shop for shower systems from a reputed manufacturer like Grohe. It ensures you get quality fixtures that won’t break down anytime soon. Grohe products are simple to install, making them ideal for smaller bath remodels. 

For example, the Grohe Euphoria system combines a minimalist footprint with maximum performance. It is sleek and almost blends into the wall, so you won’t even notice it’s there. With numerous features like rain spray, adjustable height bar, and flexible rotation, this shower system offers excellent value, regardless of your budget.

Spotlighting Kitchen Sinks For All Needs

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25 February 2021 Home Renovation,

A sink is the workhorse of any kitchen and quite often purchased for utility rather than looks. But why not combine both? Sure you can buy any old steel sink and call it a day but sinks come in a variety of styles and materials. Whether you prefer a cottage-style kitchen or something ultra-modern, there’s a sink out there for you. 

Sinks come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. From large single bowl steel ones to more compact bar sinks, there’s one for every purpose. Sinks can be classified based on specific criteria such as the number of bowls, the size, and the materials it’s made of. 

Types of mounting

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Drop-in sinks

The classic sink is a drop-in style mounting that you see everywhere. It drops into a pre-cut hole on your countertop. It has a rim that rests on the counter, making it easy to install as it needs no additional support. Drop-in sinks are inexpensive and you can replace them without having to disturb existing plumbing or change the countertop.

Due to their ubiquity, they can seem dated or commonplace. Cleaning around the sink is also problematic as food particles tend to get stuck between the sink rim and the counter. But it doesn’t mean you cannot get stylish drop-in sinks like the RUBI Chardonnay. It’s a wonderfully large steel sink if you’re interested in a drop-in or top-mount sink.

Undermount sinks

Undermount sinks are kind of the opposite of drop-in sinks. They are installed under your counter and require additional support. They tend to be more expensive and need professional installation. You also need to plan for them in advance so that your countertop can be cut to the exact size. For this reason, they are more popular in newly constructed homes or when replacing the countertops in a kitchen remodel.

The RUBI Cabernet is a great under-mount sink. It is made of stainless steel, has square corners and is a spacious single-bowl sink.

 

Number of bowls

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While 3 bowl sinks are available, the most common sinks feature a single or double bowl. Single bowl sinks are perfect if you have many large pots and pans. Since it’s a single bowl, it tends to be quite deep and wide enough for most purposes. If you only have 1 cook in the kitchen, a single bowl kitchen is ideal.

A double bowl sink, on the other hand, is good if you have multiple people using the kitchen daily. If you use the sink for both dishwashing and dinner prep, the 2 bowls are more versatile. They do need a bit more space but are often worth it. Double bowl sinks can be 50/50 or even 70/30 depending on your needs. The Blanco Quatrus R15 U2 is a good choice if you’re looking for a 50/50 double bowl sink. It comes in a brushed finish and features drain grooves as well.

Types of materials

The most popular sink material is no doubt stainless steel. It’s easy to clean, durable, and matches almost any kitchen design. While they can be noisy and dent easily, you can choose specific finishes to reduce these effects.

Composite sinks are the next most common material used. They are either granite or quartz composite. More expensive than steel sinks but they easily last longer and are more durable. Other sink materials include fireclay, ceramic, and even copper. These materials are uncommon and require planning but can be a great addition to specific kitchen styles.

 

Secondary sinks

Some homes may need multiple sinks, depending on their size and purpose. For instance, you may want a smaller sink in the kitchen itself specifically for meal prep. It makes cleanup easier and prevents cross-contamination. A bar sink has a smaller footprint, so you can install it on an island or in a corner near the bar. You may also need a laundry sink, which is typically larger and placed in the laundry room for washing pets, tools, or art supplies. 

 

Using Warm Earth Tones in All Spaces

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18 February 2021 Home Renovation,

Earth tones like chocolate brown, terracotta, and mustard are all shades that are rooted in nature. They are soothing, relaxing, and instantly bring a warm vibe to any space. However, many people tend to think of them as boring or that they just don’t know how to use these shades with their existing decor. 

The beauty of warm earth tones is that you can use the colors with any design style. Whether you like a rustic farmhouse effect or prefer bright, modern interiors, warm earth tones can blend right in. if your objective is to create a cozy and inviting room, warm tones should be your tool of choice.

 

Where can you use earth tones?

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The answer is literally anywhere. Bathrooms, bedrooms, kitchens, and living rooms can use a dose of red or brown to bring nature indoors. You can complement the earth tones with natural materials or not. The choice is up to you. 

The trick with using warm earth colors is to decide whether it is a base color or you just want to use it for accent pieces. A deep reddish-brown color can pair wonderfully with white cabinets or countertops in a rustic or vintage style kitchen. If your living room has a cool and modern palette, use warmer accents with artwork or throw pillows to add instant coziness. If you have a dark-toned fireplace in any room, the existing colors are a good place to start your color palette. 

Select the right color palette

earth tones color palette

As with any interior design project, start with your base colors and work your way up from there. Select one ‘hero’ color such as warm terracotta or burnt sienna. Then pick a complementary shade or two for some variation. These secondary colors can be lighter or darker shades of the hero color. Dusky pink, muted lavender, and warm mustard are all great earth tones to play with.

Once you have 2 or 3 main colors, it’s time to pick some neutrals. Unless you want your entire room to only feature warm colors, it’s a good idea to pick some neutrals like beige, white, ivory, or even light grey. The neutral colors can go on the walls or you can use them for accent pieces like rugs and bedcovers.

 

Use natural and sustainable materials

Warm earth shades lend themselves to using natural materials for decor. Think rattan chairs or a cotton rug. Other natural materials like stone, concrete, jute, and wood are also perfect for earthy colors. Consider incorporating existing features of your home when sourcing furniture. If you have exposed wood beams or a large fireplace, use decor that highlights these architectural elements.

Another fun way to bring nature into your home is using plants. Potted plants in a variety of sizes can punch up any room. You can even use hanging baskets in the bathroom which is the perfect moist environment for plants to thrive!

 

Metallic accents

Metallic colors like gold, bronze, copper, etc. work exceptionally well with earth tones. The thing with metallic accents is to use them as accents and not overwhelm any room. For example, if you are using them in the kitchen, the faucet is a perfect option. Metallic frames for artwork will look good against a brown or reddish-brown wall. 

You can also use metallic accents through fabric such as curtains, throws, or area rugs. A rug with golden vines or throw pillows in light silver can brighten up a heavy couch or dark hardwood floor.

 

Using warm tones in various rooms

Kitchen

Colorful kitchen trends

Warm earth tones are right at home in the kitchen, especially if you have a large window or doors that open to the outside. Burnt orange or sienna walls contrast nicely with green herb containers and light cabinets. Cool greys or shades with grey undertones (beige, tan, etc) will work as secondary colors.

Bathroom 

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You might not think it but the bathroom has many options to incorporate warm tones. Many people prefer light colors here which make small rooms look bigger. So if you have white or soft pastel shades on the wall, you can use warm tones for the shower curtain, towels, and for any artwork. Metallic faucets and mirror frames will also bring the room together.

Bedroom 

Who doesn’t want a warm and cozy bedroom that invites you to relax at the end of the day? Unless the bedroom is really small – and sometimes even then – you’ll find warm colors are deeply relaxing. These colors work exceptionally well if you have a fireplace. You can mix and match fabric colors as well here. From the pillows and sheets to the curtains, the options are endless.

Earth tones work well for any design style from modern minimalist to a traditional or farmhouse aesthetic. Remember to select a broad color palette, use metallic accents as well as natural materials and you’re all set to create the ultimate cozy living spaces.

Three Design Trends to Consider for Your Next Renovation

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26 January 2021 Home Renovation,

Major home decor trends don’t change that often which means you can keep your current look going for a few years at least. You can also tweak or refresh any space by changing smaller elements like a curtain or accessories. But what if your bathroom is due for a renovation? If you’re looking for design trends and ideas, you’ve come to the right place.

Bright and Modern

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The last year saw an increased awareness of hygiene, especially in places where we spend the most time like our homes. No remodel would be complete in 2021 without considering ease of cleaning and anti-microbial materials. A bright and modern bathroom or kitchen can help you keep a clean space instead of worrying about germs. 

Light walls are a must if you’re planning to go down this route but you don’t have to stick to white. Light shades like cream, ivory, beige, etc. work just as well. The idea is to create a spacious room with a focus on cabinets or bath accessories like the tub. Large patterned tiles on the wall feel luxurious with fewer grout lines. You can say goodbye to tiny mosaic tiles which can be hard to keep clean.

With light walls, you can use much darker cabinets and vanities. Consider deep blues, greens, or warmer earth tones for good contrast. Metallic accents like knobs and handles add a classy touch. 

Bohemian Dreamland

Mid Century modern furniture and design is all the rage at present. Create a bohemian dreamland by mixing clean lines with eccentric touches like a traditional carpet or patterned tile. Another great idea is to use plants and natural materials like bamboo in the bathroom. Bamboo floors and cabinets make the bathroom more inviting and add warmth. 

You can create a jungle paradise or an eclectic wonderland by using the right mix of whimsy and tradition. Hanging plant pots, warm earthy colors, and bright patterns will liven up the bathroom.

Luxury in marble

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Natural stone or stone-like materials will always be in style. But designers are often coming up with fresh new ways to use them. That’s why marble and quartz vanities are becoming popular. After all, these materials work well as kitchen countertops, so why not extend their use to the bathroom?

How you use marble depends on your vision for the space. There are different colors and tile sizes when it comes to marble due to its growing popularity. Marble tiles look good and luxurious without dominating the entire room.

 

Design elements

Freestanding tubs and vessel sinks

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Some elements can be used in any design such as freestanding tubs or vessel sinks. Once considered a luxury, these elements are now within reach for the average homeowner. White freestanding tubs are especially popular as they can fit in smaller spaces and still look beautiful. A freestanding tub also does not mean it has to be in the center of the room. There are different shapes of freestanding tubs, from rectangle to oval. Play around with different positions to see what works for your space.

What are vessel sinks? These modern sinks are very different from your standard drop-in or under-mount sinks. You may have seen them in magazines or open houses. A vessel sink is basically a bowl that sits on top of the vanity or counter. You can use any material for a vessel sink, although glass, metal, and ceramic are the most popular.

These are decorative sinks, often found in powder rooms where the sink doesn’t see much use. These sinks add height so shorter people like children might have difficulties using them. Freestanding tubs and vessel sinks can work with both modern and more traditional design trends.

Plenty of storage

As with other areas of the home, bathrooms are moving away from the minimalist trend. As we spend more time at home in 2020, homeowners are realizing the value of practical storage solutions. Cabinets allow you to store things out of sight and make it easier to clean the room. 

The more stuff you leave on the counter, the more dust and germs collect on them. It’s also more difficult to clean around these items as you have to clear them all before wiping down the counter. Keep essentials on the vanity and put away other items in cleverly hidden cabinets or other storage solutions. 

Hidden storage that makes use of vertical space, behind the door or above the toilet can maximize storage without feeling cluttered. So you can hang an over the closet organizer that hides behind the bathroom door for small items like a blow dryer or curling iron. Floor to ceiling cabinets can make a bold design statement while concealing all your clutter!

How to Remodel Spaces on a Budget

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Home Renovation,

2020 was the year we all stayed home. It’s not surprising that home renovations are number 1 on most people’s to-do lists. However, you may not need or even afford a full-blown home remodel. But that doesn’t mean you cannot make smaller changes that have a big impact. Here’s what you can accomplish on a budget – as long as you’re prepared to spend some time and effort on the remodeling.

Living room

The living room is often the first space you see when you enter your home. So why not give it a facelift? One easy way is to simply rearrange all the furniture. Sound too simple? Yet it works. If your living room is built around a fireplace, you may not have much room to change things around. But if all your seating points to a TV screen, consider if you can change its position. 

Another low-cost way is to change the couch covers or reupholster an old loveseat. Paint the coffee table or a side table to a bold color. You can also swap pieces from another room. Add a few throws or pillows and you have an almost new space that costs next to nothing. If your budget has a bit more wiggle room, then consider painting the walls. Whether it’s just a focus wall or a geometric design, it can freshen up any room instantly. 

Kitchen 

When it comes to the kitchen, functionality is often more important. So take a look around the room and decide where you want to invest your money. Do you need to update the cabinets or replace a leaking faucet? Prioritize those first. 

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But if everything works well and you’re looking to update the decor, you still have a few options. Adding wallpaper or a backsplash can brighten up a dull kitchen. The brand Anatolia offers a wide range of tiles in a variety of colors. If your cabinet hardware is in good condition, you can try painting them a different color as well. White cabinets work well with smaller kitchens. 

If you’re looking for more counter space, consider a moveable island instead of splurging on new countertops. The advantage of using an island or cart on wheels is that you can position it wherever you want! 

Bathroom and bedroom

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A bathroom remodel doesn’t have to be a big project. A coat of paint and fresh hardware – think towel rods, faucets, and showerheads – will update any space. Add soap dishes and small containers in the same matching finish for an Instagram worthy upgrade! The Volkano brand offers a variety of bathroom accessories in different metallic or matte finishes based on your preference.

You have a few options to redecorate your bedrooms as well. For example, you can replace the sheets and get ones in a floral or summery print. You can also add some pillows or a colorful blanket. Whether you have carpets or hardwood floors, a new rug is always welcome. All things considered, you can easily update these two rooms with a few hundred dollars if that.   

Other rooms

There are other inexpensive upgrades that you can do throughout your home as well. 

Lighting 

For instance, consider the lighting in each space. You need a good mix of task lights, ambient lighting, and decorative lamps everywhere. It is especially true in the kitchen and living areas. Evaluate all the rooms and consider where you might want to add some lights, whether it’s under the kitchen cabinets or over the island. Invest in LED lighting that will last longer and be more cost-efficient in the long run. 

Replace the front door

Replacing the front door is an expensive proposition. But what if your door is in good shape and you’re tired of the color or finish? It’s easy to repaint or even refinish if need be. Upgrading the front door is also useful if you plan to sell your home soon. It’s one of the best remodeling projects you can invest in.

Window coverings

When was the last time you changed the curtains? Window coverings can become old and outdated pretty quickly. But swapping the curtains for a new color or even material can freshen up any room, not just the living space. Consider layering the curtains as well – a thin and sheer layer can work well with vibrant and bold ones in heavier materials for the winter.

DIY where you can

The more things you can do on your own, the more you can save. But consider your skill level and expertise before going this route. Generally, plumbing and electrical work is best left to the experts. But painting and replacing cabinet pulls or doorknobs are easy projects for even the novice DIYer. Investing in a few basic but high-quality tools will also make your DIY projects easier to finish. The more you work on DIY projects, the better you get at them. Which means you can tackle bigger projects down the line. Now that’s a win-win for any homeowner!

 

Trends to look out for in 2021

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30 December 2020 Home Renovation,

To say 2020 has been strange would be the understatement of the year. We’ve all seen our share of ups and downs in a pandemic that has left no life untouched. With most families spending all their time in the house, our relationship with home design has changed. Many of us are re-inventing our living spaces to become more things at once – the living room/home office, the dining table/online school, and many more such combinations. 

As we prepare to step into a hopefully better new year, here are the design trends to look out for in 2021.

Minimalist Garden

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Minimalism as a trend may be past its peak but it doesn’t mean clutter is back in. Between working from home, online schooling, and virtual socializing, organized spaces with minimal clutter is the way to go. The key is to be conscious of the ‘less is more’ philosophy but avoid the stark and sparse rooms of true minimalist decor. 

Another trend that will make waves in 2021 is the use of green – whether in terms of color or greenery. From soothing wall colors or soft green kitchen cabinets, there are many ways to introduce a touch of green. And no more fake plants. Bring plants indoors to soften harsh lines and bring a natural vibe to any design choice.

Warm Earth Tones

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Thanks to the pandemic, using warm tones is set to make a big splash. From rustic reds to muted yellows, expect to see warm and earthy tones pop up everywhere. This fits right in with other design trends of using natural and sustainable materials as well. While there is a time and place for calming blues and cool greys, 2021 will not be it. We want our homes to be cozy, comforting, and a place to rest. What better way to achieve that than with rich, earthy color palettes?

Contrast items/walls

The strictly monochromatic color schemes of the 2010s are definitely out. All-white kitchens or bedrooms will start to look dated by 2021 and will definitely not make a comeback anytime soon. But if you have rooms that largely stick to one color, then liven things up by adding a pop of color in a few chosen spots. A brightly colored vase with flowers or a strategically placed piece of art will make any room trendy.

Vintage

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One of the biggest trends to hit 2021 is going to be everything old. Vintage pieces that have meaning and memories attached will be all the rage. Think antique furniture, wall fixtures, repurposed pieces, or anything salvaged. It shouldn’t be surprising as older trends have started to make a comeback throughout this year. In the midst of a global healthcare crisis, it looks like we need some nostalgia to get us through the tough times. 

Easy to clean materials

It shouldn’t come as anything of a shock to see that many of the design trends in 2021 will be affected/inspired by this year’s pandemic. From cozy comfort pieces to using more sustainable materials, all of it comes back to our experiences this year. The emphasis on cleaning our hands and homes will translate to easier to care materials being used around the home. You want fabrics that will resist stains or make it easy for you to clean them. Non-porous materials like glass and metals will dominate as they are easier to wipe down.

Closed or semi-open floor plans

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With everyone from working parents to kindergarten kids staying at home and doing all their activities in one space, the reign of the open floor plan is set to end. Families are realizing the value of having a door to close between working spouses or the kids on their daily zoom call with teachers. Whether you want some privacy for a client meeting or you’d rather not listen to the kids studying online, it’s always handy to have a wall, windows, or doors to separate different rooms. Don’t worry if you have an open living space, just add a divider or two to keep things separate. 

Multifunctional spaces

While closed layouts are set to make a comeback, it’s not going to be overnight. Along with that transformation, people are wanting to create multi-functional spaces around the house. You don’t need a dedicated room for socializing, working, eating, and cooking along with everything else we need to do indoors. Combining different activities in one space will be the name of the game in 2021.

Sustainable furniture and furnishings

The grip of fast furniture is rapidly fading as well. Families will choose to invest in solid and sustainable furniture that will last a lifetime and create memories. No more cheaply made furniture that will not even last one move! People are more conscious than ever about their environmental impact and are actively choosing long-term sustainability over short-term monetary savings.

Small Upgrades to the home for the Holidays

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17 November 2020 Home Renovation,

As the days get colder and the nights longer, it’s the perfect time to upgrade your home for the festive season. As friends and family get together over the holidays, your home will see more traffic. So why not take the opportunity to refresh your home with festive decor?

Simple festive updates

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Upgrade the guest bathroom

Whether you are hosting a dinner party or overnight visitors, your guest bathroom is going to be busy. Many people update their kitchen or bedroom but hardly any thought goes into the guest bathroom. So take this chance to introduce some festive cheer here. You don’t have to start an extensive remodeling project here unless the room is in desperate need of one. 

What you can do is give it a deep cleaning, swap out the guest towels to something a bit more festive, and add some new decor. Scented candles, a bowl with mints and tissues, etc. will go a long way to provide a welcoming ambiance for your guests.

Bring in the festive decor!

Fabrics and linens are an easy win when you want to update any room without spending too much time, money, or effort. Switch out the couch covers for more festive ones in green or reddish hues. If you don’t have slipcovers for the couch, you can also get festive looking hand towels for the kitchen and bathroom. Silver, gold, green, and red are all excellent colors for some mugs, dishes, or mats that will fit right in for the season!

Festive lights

What could be more festive than sparkly lights? Spring for some LED light strings you can wrap around your mailbox, front doorposts, or even on the fence. No one said your lights should only hang from the roof!

Declutter and organize

This is a simple tip for the holiday season that’s often forgotten. Declutter and organize your rooms for the holiday season. Free up space on the shelves or tables and instantly make your home feel welcoming and festive.

Bust out the scented candles and fresh flowers

The holiday season can be frantic for many people, so it’s a good idea to find some time to relax and enjoy the season. Welcome guests and help them relax by lighting some scented candles. You don’t need seasonal scents although many brands sell delightful aromas just for the festive season. An assortment of fresh-cut flowers in bowls or vases in the kitchen and living room and also do wonders for holiday stress. 

Holiday reno projects

The above tips are things you can do without spending a lot of time or money on it. But what if you’re ready for some serious renovating for the holidays? Here are a few ideas that might work:

Set up a bar cabinet

What better idea than to set up a dedicated bar corner for your dinner guests? It can be something as simple as a corner shelf in the dining room or an elaborate cabinet filled with your favorite alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Stock it with glasses, fresh drink ingredients, and some snacks for your guests to help themselves while you’re busy rustling up dinner.

Decorate the kitchen island

During the holidays the kitchen island becomes the center of attention. Whether you are baking cookies or getting dinner ready, the kitchen island is going to be the centerpiece. So why not deck it up for the holidays? A few lights, festive stickers, or even a new countertop can help it look ready for the new year. 

Spruce up your chairs

With parties and dinner throughout the festive season, you might want to have extra seating around the home. But what if you have a collection of mismatched chairs that are not part of a set? It’s easy to make them all look coordinated if you dress them up in comfortable cushions in a matching pattern or use new slipcovers. You can also get some extra counter stools that can work as seating in a pinch.

Get new backsplash

Backsplash in the kitchen is often useful but it can also be an interesting design choice. Replace or put up new backsplash in bright colors to complement your white kitchen or dress up the boring wall paint. You can opt for expensive tiles or spring for some peel and stick backsplash which are often available in brilliant colors.

Replace the faucet

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This one can be a little more time-consuming but it’s both a functional and aesthetic upgrade. If you are laboring with a leaky faucet or a sink that’s just not wide enough for your dishes, now’s the time to upgrade. Switch to a deeper sink or one with 2 bowls so you can prep and clean at once. 

Before you dive headlong into decorating, remember that you don’t have to splurge on expensive items or fill your house with knick-knacks. A few small changes here and there is often sufficient to give that festive touch.

Incorporating Color Into the Kitchen

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Home Renovation,

White kitchens are all the craze in interior design. Whether you’re buying a new home or updating an old one, white is in. But too much white can make any room look lifeless, cold, or uninviting. And that’s the last thing you want in your kitchen. It’s the heart of your home and where almost everyone spends time throughout the day. 

Even if you’re in love with the all-white kitchen, you can still brighten it up with a few splashes of color. In fact, a white kitchen is the best canvas to show off some deep jewel tones or flaunt pastel shades. So here are a few ways to add some color back to your kitchen:

 

1. Wall paint

A white kitchen usually has all-white cabinets and shelves. Since the cabinets are visually the biggest parts of the kitchen, the room will appear to be white. But you can always add color to the walls with paint. You can opt for rich and dark tones or light pastel shades depending on a few factors. If the kitchen gets plenty of sunlight, then darker tones can set off the white cabinets quite nicely. If the room does not have much natural light, then lighter shades will make it look larger and airy. 

2. Wall decals

If you live in a rental or don’t have the budget for paint, wall decals are an easy and inexpensive option. You don’t have to cover the entire wall either. You can get patterns or large designs to cover the biggest wall.

3. Backsplash

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If your wall space is not too large or you have some space near the stove, a colorful backsplash is always a good idea. It is functional protecting your walls from moisture and oil splatters but is also available in multiple colors and designs as well. 

Opt for tiles in geometric patterns like rectangles, hexagons, or circles in a bright bold color. Or create your own design by mixing different shades. You can even coordinate the backsplash with colors in your dining room or breakfast nook to make it feel more cohesive.

4. Colorful faucets

Walls are not the only thing in the kitchen that could use some color. You can also get colorful faucets and even the sink to match! Forget about the same old stainless steel or satin nickel finish. Go for luxury finishes like copper, gold, rose gold, or antique brass if your kitchen is more traditional or country cottage style. A more modern kitchen can benefit from other finishes like oil rubbed bronze or matte black. 

5. Small appliances

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For a decade or more stainless steel appliances have ruled the roost in kitchens, even white ones. However, it has been changing recently. Now you can find a range of small appliances in stunning retro shades of yellow, bright blue, or siren red across many brands. Even if your larger appliances are steel, you can upgrade the smaller ones (microwave, toaster, coffee maker, etc.) to these brighter colors. 

6. Wallpaper

Although wallpaper is often seen as old fashioned, you don’t have to stick to the same old patterns. Select bold geometric shapes or a forest-themed wallpaper to go with your white cabinets. There are many wallpapers rated for use in wet areas, so you can easily use it in the kitchen behind the sink.

7. Seating

If you have seating in the kitchen, that’s another avenue to add color. Counter height stools and bar stools often come in a wide variety of colors to suit any kitchen style. From shiny metallic gold to wrought iron or even modern glass/plastic, there’s sure to be something to suit your kitchen.

8. Cabinet doors

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Some white kitchens have several shades of white – from the cabinet fronts to the countertops, and even the walls. If your cabinet doors are in need of a refresh anyway, then it’s a good idea to go for darker shades this time. That way your countertops and walls get a chance to shine.

9. Window treatments

If you’re lucky enough to have windows in the kitchen, why not showcase them with unique window treatments? You can use curtains, venetian or roman blinds, or shutters in bright blue or yellow to add color. 

10. LED lights or pendant lights

When thinking of adding color, don’t forget the lighting. You can get pendant lights in many colors and shapes to suit. Whether you hang one large oversized light above the island or have several smaller ones throughout the kitchen it’s an opportunity not to be wasted.

If your budget allows it, you can also opt for modern LED under-cabinet lights that can change colors. Then you can change colors depending on your mood and stick to just one!

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