The little things make a big difference

... long on style, short on effort and easy on your wallet

Karen Cummings & Pamela Blythe

CURTAINS: Stainless steel grommets and a contrast stripe give a decidedly modern edge to pure silk.

SMALL LAMP, BIG IMPACT: A simple silhouette, rendered in natural materials, hand-hammered metal or bone, tipped with a textured white cotton shade.

CURTAINS: Stainless steel grommets and a contrast stripe give a decidedly modern edge to pure silk.

PILLOW: A songbird in silhouette perches on a leafy branch, printed on pure silk.

STORAGE: Heavyweight storage for items big and small. Made of durable chipboard that is mat-laminated with acid-neutral black paper lining to ensure contents won’t yellow, stick or transfer.

VASES: A shapely landscape in snow-white ceramic.

Last week I found myself in front of the computer floating from Web site to Web site trying to find “a little something” that I could purchase to change up the appearance of my home without maxing out my credit card.

»  Well of course, I FOUND EVERYTHING, including new patio furniture, but my goal was not to spend more than a couple hundred dollars.

What matters is the WAY A HOME FEELS to those who live there not those that visit, so keep that in mind when you are purchasing anything for your home.

Usually, your FIRST CHOICE is the RIGHT CHOICE, and if you overthink it, it’s not for you. When you buy what you like, it will all come together, because somewhere in the back of your mind, you already have a plan and a color scheme visualized.  »

With a few new accessories, and a lot of organization, you can create a home that you are happy in now, not tomorrow or next month, but now, for little cost.

It is perfectly fine to use curtains for display rather than function.  They can create a textural contrast against plain painted walls and trim. Keep styles simple, for example a room with straight lines should be complimented with similarly unfussy curtains and rods. When curtains are drawn they create a block of color or pattern so choose a design that looks good when seen as a large expanse. Neutrals are best since you are less likely to tire of them quickly.

Pillows introduce a shot of color or pattern into a room, creating additional layer of texture depending on size and scale and it’s cheap enough that it enables you to change the look of a room entirely by replacing a set of pillows. Pillows are a portable item and offer a fool-proof opportunity to play with color, shape and texture.

Vases are one of my favorite accessories. It is not always necessary to fill vases. When choosing to fill them with flowers buy a little – like one – or a lot, like two dozen, and make sure your scale is right.

Mix oversize with smaller or keep vases the same size, but use the same flower for an updated look. NO flower “arrangements.”

Lamps are inexpensive and easy to use to present mood, morning, noon and night. There is something incredibly soothing about changing the atmosphere of a room with a lamp. You can also display them in multiples for a great look as shown on the opposite page.

Pick up your piles! Well they are most likely your husband’s or your kids’ piles, but they must be put away. Storage is a must.

It’s OK ... to paint your room after you furnish it. You are better equipped to make a decision after purchasing an accessory that you love the color of.


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