Monthly Archives: April 2018

How To Make Your Little City Space A Home

Real estate prices in urban areas are known for being incredibly high. For the same price that could afford you a five bedroom house in a rural area, you might be able to get a one bedroom apartment in a city like New York or San Francisco. Because of this unavoidable fact of real estate, many people that crave a life in an urban environment are forced to make do with living quarters that are…well… unglamorous to say the least. Thankfully, interior design experts have compiled a list of sweet tricks for the urban home designer. If you read closely, you can transform your little city closet into a lovely place to live!

1. Emphasize the pretty, hide the ugly. It is important, when trying to work on a small space and within a small budget, to work with what you have. In other words, emphasize the good things about the apartment and cover up the less-than-beautiful elements. For instance, if paint is peeling off of the molding or the walls in some places, then cover them up. You can paint over the rough spots, or hang things like posters, tapestries or other art to decorate over the peeling. If your apartment has other unfavorable features, like old linoleum tiling or stains on the floor or ceiling from water damage, try strategically placing furniture or carpets over the damaged areas. Additionally, remember to highlight the GOOD features of the space. If there are hooks to hang pots and pans from in the kitchen, then use them. If there are built-in shelves, or an antique fridge, bathtub, or stove, then let those elements shine through unobstructed in a room.

2. Use the light to your advantage. If you’ve gotten yourself a small place in an urban area, then your access to natural light has a chance of being limited. Often, tall apartment buildings block the light from windows of neighboring buildings. Also, rooms in small apartments are small (duh!) so they often have only one small window if any. That being said, use the natural light you DO have access to in order to make your apartment feel larger and lighter. Make sure you arrange furniture in rooms so that it blocks the least amount of possible natural light. Also, be aware of where the light hits on the walls and place bright and colorful objects there to maximize the reflection of the light.

3. Create stylish storage space. One of the biggest problems of a tiny, urban apartment? Not enough storage space! If you have loads of clothes to hang, and minimal closet space, then it’s time to get creative with the way you store your wardrobe. Keep the closet space for the bulkiest items, like heavy winter coats, and for the rest, get yourself some metal, heavy-duty clothing racks and hang your stuff out in the open! This idea is especially good for colorful and interesting items of clothing, like fun blazers, dresses and flannel shirts. This will solve the problem of closet space, and also add it’s own fashionable aesthetic to a room.

A Frugal Home Design Basic Buying Guide

American homes traditionally are not complete without living room coffee tables. That said, many choose the common living room tables without the advantage of simple buying guidelines with the end result being coffee tables that are miss-matched or ill-suited for the rooms where they are placed.

The 3 interior design principles to consider when buying any piece of furniture is form, function and space.

Form

Form simply means determining the design direction you wish to create in the room. Consistency in design will minimize clutter and focus your buying decisions.

Take the time determining your desired design style by browsing through home decorating magazines, viewing staged model homes, consulting with an interior designer or taking advantage of simple design style assessments that can be found online.

Function

Function is extremely important when choosing coffee tables. This requires identifying your families living habits in the specific rooms that need coffee tables. For example, are you a “sit back and relax” type family who loves to kick off shoes, grab cold drinks, a bowl of popcorn, feet up on the coffee table to watch a movie or ball game? If so, a glass table is out. A better choice is an easy clean, solid hard wood table top or trunk type coffee table.

If you are the type that enjoys spreading out on the couch with a good book, newspaper or Kindle then you will need a table that does not measure higher than the top of your couch seat cushions. There is nothing worse than staring at a table line while relaxing horizontally.

If there are small children in the house, then tables designed in marble or wood would be a better choice over glass. Round and cushioned are safer than the sharper edged counterparts. Smooth surfaces over tiled and paneled coffee table tops are best for growing families because constantly trying to keep those designer nooks and crannies clean is really an exercise in futility.

Space

Finally, space might be the most important consideration. If storage is an issue, take advantage of the brilliantly designed coffee tables provide not only design and function but areas of storage from overnight guest bedding, to family night game storage. Nesting tables are a wonderful way to add additional seating with the ingeniously designed benches tucked under the main table unnoticed until needed.

Two smaller, tables placed side by side could work better that 1 large bulky coffee table. Glass, or coffee tables designed with metal frames and feet take up less space both physically and visually; when space is at a premium.

Frugal Home Design Tips

In today’s economy, no article would be complete without a few frugal home design tips. There are ways to find deeply discounted furniture that you may not know about. Though these sources may need a bit of handyman touch ups you can find some great deals without compromising quality. These money-saving sources are:

    • Craig’s List – If you are living close to a military base, this is the perfect resource to find furniture for sale from families on the move who need to down-size.

    • Model Homes – Sometimes you can buy the furniture right out of the house, especially in new construction model homes that have sold most of their new home inventory. Rather than pick up and move that staging furniture, they will be happy to sell it at drastic discounts.

    • Furniture Store Scratch and Dent rooms – If the store doesn’t have a room with these slightly damaged rejects ask about their delivery warehouse. Awesome deals are found there, the only catch is you have to ask.

    • Storage Unit “Yard Sales” – Though storage unit shows have increased the publics interest in the practice of buying the contents of abandoned storage units, there are still storage managers that will hold yard sale type events selling furniture sets. Some of these sales are advertised in the local paper, others are not. You may have to visit or call individual storage providers in your area to find out when their next sale event will be.

  • Repurposing – With some imagination you can repurpose an old discarded piece of furniture to serve as a coffee table.

For some great photo examples visit the link at the bottom of this article.

So there you have it, before shopping for coffee tables, determine your design style, establish the living habits of those in the home and identify space availability. Using these basic buying guidelines you will find the perfect living room table for your home interior needs.

Home Study Interior Design

Due to the availability of resources on the Internet and the proliferation of lifestyle-themed shows on TV, more and more people find that studying interior design can be both practical and rewarding. Many people have innate talents in interior design, and all they need to do is engage in a course to hone these talents.

In the past, one had to move to a large city just to be able to enroll in a prestigious interior design school. This made it impractical for people who, even if they had the talent, did not have the means to move to the school’s area.

However, the Internet age has undoubtedly opened many doors not just for colleges and trade schools that offered on-line courses and extended their reach to the masses, but also for individuals interested in home study interior design courses.

With a home study interior design course, even people who could not afford to leave their jobs may study. In addition, those who need to stay home or are unable to commute now have the opportunity to finish an easy home study interior design course.

Which Home Study Interior Design Course Should You Choose?

You will be surprised at the wide variety of offerings a home study interior design course can have. Although it can be a bit overwhelming at first, a simple evaluation of the topics you are really interested in and of important factors involved in the home study interior design concept will help you arrive at the right decision.

The first thing you have to do is to make a simple list of home study interior design criteria. Examples of these are: How long will it take me to finish the course? What is the price of the course? What kind of degree or certificate will I be able to get when I finish it? How will I be able to use it?

Apart from these important considerations, you should also look into the school’s reputation, the faculty’s credentials, and the quality of education that it offers. Keep in mind that while there are high-quality schools offering home study interior design courses, there are also a few run-of-the-mill schools whose only interest is taking advantage of unsuspecting individuals.

If a school has a poor reputation or does not offer the particular course you are looking for, it’s not worth spending time and money on it. You also need to check whether the school has an efficient and reliable support system which you can depend on just in case you run into some problems while you are pursuing your home study interior design course.

A number of schools offer job placement after graduation, and this is something you may want to take into account as well. Studying is one thing, but engaging in something lucrative after taking the course is another. Hundreds of new graduates undoubtedly have a difficult time entering the workforce because of lack of experience.

Look into the specialties offered under the school’s home study interior design curriculum. There are quite a few differences between office, corporate, and home interior design, and it would be wise for you to decide on a particular area before you start on a program.