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Back-to-School Basics

This time of year stirs something inside all of us-the need to learn, to educate ourselves. Whether we are learning something new or rediscovering something old, our cerebral cortex begs for stimulation. While I'm sure many of you know the basic design do's and don'ts, it is always helpful to have a refresher course. While many trends change with the seasons, certain fundamental design "How-To's" do not change.

  • Think of your fireplace as art. They are not just for warmth and ambiance, but also for daily delight. Be sure to treat any fireplace as another design element and alter it to make a statement in your space.

img btsb-dyer_sinistaj Photo Credit: Jennifer Dyer and Amanda Sinistaj

  • Always start with a clear idea of your color palette. Designing your space before choosing the room's palette will cause the space to appear fragmented and thrown together. By not laying this ground work first, finding the right accessories, furniture, fabrics, and other design elements will be a challenge.

img btsb-torre_dyer Photo Credit: Ernest de la Torre and Jennifer Dyer

  • Don't be afraid to use a piece of nature in your design. A beautiful organic stone or a bouquet of fresh flowers bring a natural and organic element into your design and make you feel more at home.

img btsb-tilton_fenwick Photo Credit: Tilton Fenwick

  • Always protect your investments. Account for the damaging affects of lighting, whether man-made or natural, always find the proper window treatments to protect fabric, furniture and art. There is nothing worse than half a sofa, bleached by the sun, while the other side remains vibrant. The double hung drapes in the photo below offer filtered light in the early hours of the day and then heavy protection from the afternoon's southern sun.

img btsb-darci_heather Photo Credit: Darci Hether

  • Each room should have 1 or 2 focal points. Choose your focal point wisely. It must be dominant enough to draw attention and interesting enough to encourage the viewer to look further. A focal point needs to make a lasting impression but also must be an integral part of the room's decoration linked through scale, style, color or theme.

img btsb-jeff_andrews Photo Credit: Jeff Andrews

So, as the days get shorter and the nights get longer, enjoy the natural cycles of life and embrace the home you have created.


Doodle Home - Doodle Home is a virtual studio for interior designers to run their businesses more efficiently. We are a team of interior designers and technology and business experts, passionate about simplifying the business of interior design.


September 19, 2011

    Comments (1)

  • great suggestions - especially as i have been trying to figure out what to do with my fireplace since it's coming upon the season of starting to use it.... great ideas.

    Annonymous, October 3, 2011

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