Living by Design

A Design and Lifestyle Blog

Styling during Social Distancing

April 2020

Sitting at home practicing social distancing….who would have ever thought this would be our new “normal”?! Thank goodness it’s temporary! So now that you’re stuck in your home maybe you have found yourself noticing some things that you would like to change….or perhaps just refresh? I have put together a few “easy” updates we can do while we stay socially distant to help update our homes and hopefully uplift our spirits!

PAINT. Such an easy way to update, refresh or even dramatically change a space. Call ahead to your local hardware store and ask them to mix you a few gallons of paint. Have them put together everything you will need. Our local store put together a box with rollers, painter’s tape, brushes and mixed the paint. I paid over the phone and they brought the box out to my husband! Easy-peasy AND supporting a local business in the process! Not sure of the paint color you want? Call ahead and ask the paint department to pull some swatches for you in the color family you are interested in. Companies such as Benjamin Moore, Pratt & Lambert and Farrow & Ball will mail swatches directly to you. Colors I am LOVING right now: Dark Navy Blues!! Hale Navy from Benjamin Moore is always a favorite. Hague Blue from Farrow & Ball is pricey- but BM will color match it! Benjamin Moore’s Hunter Green is so gorgeous and provides just the right amount of moody drama to a space (we just did a wall in our dining room). White Dove is a personal favorite for spaces where you really want the furniture to take center stage. Tired of your white walls? Try painting your ceiling a dark color like Wrought Iron, Midnight or Hale Navy. If you follow me on IG you know I LOVE this trend and will be implementing it in our Master Bedroom. My next post will detail all the ways I am torturing my husband with projects 😉

Rearrange some furniture. A fun way to change up a space and it’s FREE! Swap the location of your sofa with your arm chairs. Move around some floor lamps. Change out the photos in your picture frames with new ones. If you have children consider having them create some quarantine art and frame it- or create some of your own! Adding some new accessories to spaces is also a great way to change things up. Several local businesses are offering virtual shopping with either curbside pick up or local delivery ( I will link them at the end of this post).

It’s Spring! In this time of self -quarantine getting outdoors has never been more important. Now that Spring has arrived, many of us find ourselves with more free time than we know what to do with. This is a great time to focus on improving the curb appeal of our homes. A great place to start is with our garden beds. Put those kids to work clearing out the remnants of winter and prepare for spring planting. Call your local nursery and arrange for a fresh mulch delivery. Most nursery’s are offering curbside pick up for flats of flowers, potting soil and all gardening essentials. This is a great way to get everyone outdoors, focus on the good and support our local businesses.

I hope this post finds everyone well and that it’s given you a few easy ideas to keep you motivated and focusing on something that will make you happy. Be well.

Consider supporting these local businesses.

http://www.monmouthbuildingcenter.com http://www.nestforeveryone.com http://www.shopcurrant.com http://www.ryserslandscapesupply.com http://www.coastaldecoranddesign.com http://www.citybarncountrypenthouse.com

5 TIMELESS INTERIOR DESIGN ELEMENTS

March 2020

White Kitchens Ahhh…the highly sought after WHITE KITCHEN! What is not to love?! It’s light and bright- and most of all, a white kitchen suits any style. Not feeling the “all white” vibe? Not a problem! Break it up with a base cabinet in a darker hue. Perhaps black or even better…the super trendy ultra dark navy that you have been seeing EVERYWHERE. I personally love an all white kitchen anchored by an island in a bold dark color or a rich walnut stain. Changing the look of your all white kitchen is as simple as swapping out your hardware. Think of it as jewelry for your cabinetry.

Neutral Walls You can never go wrong with a neutral palette. Your walls should provide the backdrop to your space. You are looking for a color that will compliment, not compete with your design. A good greige, warm white or simple grey are all great choices when choosing a timeless wall color, and will pair nicely with any design style.

Antique Elements I have a deep love of antiques. Not in the sense that my home is filled with them- quite the opposite actually. More in the sense that I love antique elements in spaces- especially in a more modern space. A pair of antique French doors leading to your master closet. A 150 year old beam from a barn hanging above your kitchen sink ( a personal favorite in my home). Your Great Grandmother’s china. A beautiful wingback chair….it makes my heart happy.

Black A truly timeless and versatile shade. While studying design in college a professor lectured on the importance of black in a space. “Every well designed space includes at least one black element.” This of course was his opinion, but I couldn’t agree more. I find that black anchors a space. It adds a bit of drama and definition. Something as simple as a black gallery frame on a beautiful piece of art makes all the difference.

Hardwood Floors I think this goes without saying, but we do need to give hardwood floors the respect they deserve….and hopefully never repeat the dark times when we covered them in SHAG CARPET. Dark times indeed. Hardwood floors will always be a highly sought after element in a home. As a Realtor I know that when I show a home- or list one without wood floors it is going to be a major issue. We are always asking “Are there wood floors under here?”. Wood floors are so important to people that we have tile that looks like wood! You can never go wrong with this timeless element of design.

I hope you enjoyed my debut blog post. My intention is to keep them short, sweet and hopefully a bit inspirational. If there are any topics you wish for me to explore please send me a message 🙂


“Styles come and go. Good design is a language, not a style.” — Massimo Vignelli, Italian designer


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