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Entries in Pottery Barn (28)

Saturday
Aug292015

Tips for creating a calm space in a not-so-calm world

Wrenda Goodwyn • special to the Fort Myers News-Press• August 29, 2015

It's all about how you feel when you walk in the door.
 
Does your home make you happy? Is it a calm retreat from the chaos and over stimulation of the outside world? Do you constantly feel overwhelmed by projects that you just can't quite complete? Are you tired and drained and not sure why?

We all want a nurturing home that offers a refuge. Not one that leaves you frustrated and exhausted.

As a Southwest Florida interior decorator, I have my clients fill out a brief questionnaire before I meet with them.  The first question: "How do you want your home to feel when you walk in the door?"

Ballard Designs photo of Suzanne Kasler curated softly colored abstract artRelaxing and pretty. Suzanne Kasler curated softly colored abstract art that pairs with her signature fabrics and finishes for Ballard Designs. Photo: Ballard Designs.

Tell me how you want your home to feel and I will make everything else fall into place.

Each answer is the same. Everyone wants a "calm" home. Of course we do.

It's not about "stuff."  You may have everything that you could dream of in your home and it still doesn't feel right. Check out these tips that I use for my clients and see how it changes your space.

Declutter.
We talk about this a lot in design and decorating but if you don’t do anything else, do this one. It costs nothing. And it has the most impact. Do it today!

Delete some of the visual stimulation. Pare down your accessories. Eliminate or rearrange some furniture and establish a comfortable conversation area that is relaxing.

And your closet. Most of us wear 10% of what is in our closets. So why not just have the 10% in your closet? Instead of the piles of clothes that you never wear any more. It’s all visual clutter and it’s exhausting to look at and to think about.

But sometimes the thought of decluttering itself is overwhelming. Just the physical aspect of getting rid of things and deciding what to do with them is difficult and stops homeowners in their tracks. Because it requires sorting it into what gets donated, given away and tossed. The solution: leave that part for another day. Remove it all from your house. Stash it in the garage until you have time to make the decisions.  Meanwhile, you will love your decluttered home so much that you won’t mind saying goodbye to the clutter when the day comes.

Don't over decorate.
The eyes need a place to rest. Don't cover every surface and every wall.  Don't be afraid of space. It is what most of our homes are lacking and it's the very thing  that creates a calm home.

Splurge in the bedroom.
Comfortable pillows. Nice sheets and comforter. A window treatment that blocks out the light. Pretty, restful artwork and accessories that make you feel good. We all spend a lot of time in this room and it's not the place to cut corners.

Pottery Barn photo of beautiful bedroomCreate a space to end your day with comfortable linens and fresh colors. Photo: Pottery Barn.

Transform with soothing colors.
Rethink your color palette and drop it down a notch. Soothing colors and more muted fabrics equal a calmer home. Save the bold colors for your family room and outdoor spaces. Of course this does not mean that a well-place splash of color against the most toned down backdrop is not gorgeous!

Design a spa bathroom for relaxation.
This is a service that I have done for my clients since I have been decorating homes. And it’s really easy. You can do it today. Think about what you love at a luxurious hotel or spa. Lots of white. Clean and crisp. Fluffy towels. Thick rugs. Plants.  Candles. Soaps and aromatherapy.  And don’t forget a spa robe. White is the key here and it must be done in a spotlessly clean bathroom. This should be your calming retreat at the end of the day.


Pottery Barn photo of spa bathroomFor a spa look, try this Morgan shower curtain of soft cotton with a band of color, along with organic cotton towels. Photo: Pottery Barn. 
Lighting.
Forget the harsh, overhead lighting and install dimmers on all lighting.

Remove the bad vibes.
We all have them. Something that you carry around from home to home. You don’t like it but you don’t feel like you can get rid of it. Give yourself permission. Keep what makes you happy and anything with a negative or tiring association, send it out into the world where someone else will find it useful. It may be art, a photo or a piece of furniture that no longer serves you. Remember: it’s your home and you are not obligated to keep anything.

Create a space for solitude.
Give yourself permission to have a nook or part of a room where you can relax. Just you. Maybe it’s space for a yoga mat or a lounge chair where you can read. Create a corner in your home where there are no electronics or noises. A place where you can think and start to wind down from the day.

Wrenda Goodwyn is a Southwest Florida interior decorator. Home Inspirations appears the first Saturday of each month. Visit her website at spectacularspaces.com. Call her at 949-1808 or e-mail wrenda@spectacularspaces.com. For more decorating tips and photos, visit spectacularspaces.com/blog




Want to come home to a spectacular space? Call me!

Do you want your home to look like a model? Read my tips.

Sort through the confusion of when to splurge on your home and when to save.

Saturday
Jul042015

How to make porches part of your living space

Wrenda Goodwyn • special to the Fort Myers News-Press• July 4, 2015

We're in those lazy, hot, humid days of summer but if you are at home on this Fourth of July weekend, chances are that you will end up on a porch someplace either relaxing, celebrating with friends over a meal or watching fireworks.

Photo of white house with flag and hydrangeasMaybe it's because I was born and raised in the south. But I love porches. The "porch" was where the family headed after dinner.  I can hear my mother saying, "Help me finish the dishes and let's go out on the porch." It was where all important discussions and  decisions took place. Even though the "porch" was only a small cement stoop with a couple of aluminum chairs. It was still the place where we retreated at the end of the day.

As a Southwest Florida interior decorator,  I have had many "porches" since those days. Small apartment balconies barely large enough for two chairs,  front porches with comfortable wicker furniture, large lanais' with summer kitchens surrounding a pool and filled with friends.  But to me, they are all "porches."  A place to unwind, relax and think.

So, if in these hot, hot,  hot, days of July, you find your porch in need of a little makeover, I have some tips to give your space, no matter what the size, a little refreshing.  For years, I have been helping my clients makeover their porches as an extension of their living space. No matter what the size or budget.

My favorite
Add a porch swing. What could be better than dozing in a porch swing at the end of the day? Find them at flea markets if you are looking for vintage, hardware stores or check out the Ballard Designs Sunday Porch SwingPhoto of porch swing from Ballard DesignsDozing in a porch swing on a lazy afternoon. From Ballard Designs, this Sunday Porch Swing is hand crafted of 100% FSC eucalyptus to be naturally moisture and insect resistant, and finished in a warm whitewash. Photo: Ballard Designs. shown on this page. A porch swing just cries out, "Stop what you are doing and come and relax for a while." And if you find a vintage swing  that just will not hold up to much weight, hang it any way and fill it with plants.

Anchor your seating area with an outdoor rug
Even on a tiny balcony this works and adds color to the space. It also makes it an extension of your home.

Lighting
If there is space, add an outdoor lamp.

Add a bar cart
Yes, it's great for a party but you can also use it for storage...liquid refreshments,  cups, stirrers, coasters, books, magazines, speakers, and anything else necessary for a relaxing afternoon.
Photo of all-weather cart for porch from Pottery Barn Pottery Barn's all-weather wicker bar console. Photo: Pottery Barn.
Hang Twinkle Lights
Arrange some strands of patio twinkle lights to transform your porch or patio into something special when evening comes. They make everything (and everyone) look pretty. And are very inexpensive.

Paint something blue
Paint the ceiling blue. Why? It's pretty and adds another dimension to your porch. Giving your own outdoor space a hint of blue is the perfect way to play into history, and it just might keep wasps and evil spirits away, too. According to the legend! Years ago, in the deep South, many people painted their porch ceilings a specific shade of Haint Blue, a soft blue-green, to ward off evilPhoto of ceiling porch painted in a haint blue shadePaint the porch ceiling a shade of blue. It's pretty and legend says that it keeps wasps away! Photo: Wrenda Goodwyn spirits called "haints." It's especially common in the historic homes around Savannah, Georgia, and Charleston, South Carolina. And I can say that my own blue porch ceiling has kept the wasps away!

Invest in plants
Give it your personal touch with lots of greenery. If there is space, add some pots, a small tree and a vase or two of fresh flowers. Use perennials so you will not have to replace them each year.

Go vertical
Hang a piece of artwork, plants  or a mirror on one wall.

Tiny space? No problem!

Bistro table and chairs may be all that you need. No room for furniture? Fill your tiny balcony with plants and in the winter months in Southwest Florida,  let the outdoors inside. And if you are on a budget, or even if your aren't, you can get creative with furniture by turning crates on the side and using them for benches of plant holders.



Wrenda Goodwyn is a Southwest Florida interior decorator. Home Inspirations appears the first Saturday of each month. Visit her website at spectacularspaces.com. Call her at 949-1808 or e-mail wrenda@spectacularspaces.com. For more decorating tips and photos, visit spectacularspaces.com/blog. And to see a selection of her favorite color palettes, go to www.pinterest.com/ wrendagoodwyn

Want to come home to a spectacular space? Call me!

Do you want your home to look like a model? Read my tips.

Read these tips and sort through the confusion of when to splurge on your home and when to save.

 

Saturday
Feb072015

Home Inspirations: Model behavior

Wrenda Goodwyn • special to the Fort Myers News-Press• February 7, 2015

It's happened to all of us. We walk into a model home and want to say "I'll take it."

Everything is so perfect and coordinated. The lighting, paint color, furniture, artwork, window treatments. It sparkles and says, "come in and stay a while."

As a Fort Myers interior decorator, I can't tell you how many times I receive a phone call that goes something like this: "I want my home to look like a model."

If only.

Here is a dirty little secret: It's not possible. It's like looking at  a photo in a fashion magazine and saying, "I want to look like that model."

It won't happen. That model doesn't even look like that model.

And it's much the same with a model home. It's designed to be a model home. Not a home that anyone lives in. Therefore, you will never be able to achieve the exact look for your space.

But here is the good news: You can manage, with some help, to achieve the feeling that the model home gives you. Whether you are looking at home magazines in which the rooms are staged for photos or at a model home designed to "sell" the home, there are some tricks that will help you capture the feeling. But on a realistic, practical level.

Photo of Pottery Barn's organic Ikat medallion print with bright colors and a washed effectFabric headboard, styled nightstand, sconces and this beautiful, organic Ikat medallion print with bright colors and a washed effect create a model feeling in a bedroom. Photo: PotteryBarn.comIt's like I tell all of my decorating clients, show me the feeling that you want and I will help you get there. But remember, because a model home is not designed for anyone to live in it, we need to proceed cautiously!   

Here are my favorite tips for designing your space to capture the feel of a model home for real life living:

•    Clean until everything sparkles. This is the trait of a model home: not a speck of dust anywhere! And polish the furniture and wipe down all appliances.
•    Declutter and organize. I know, you don't want to but you must. Clear the countertops and organize closets/drawers. You cannot have a model home feel with a lot of clutter. It just won't happen.
•    A fresh coat of paint changes everything.  Select a neutral color palette and give your walls a fresh coat. Add color with fabric, accessories and texture. One of my current favorites: grey walls with white, blue, green accents.
•    Notice how well lit and crisp model homes always look. One reason: lighting. Check out your ambient lighting, task and accent lighting. A carefully designed plan should include all three. And for those dark, tough to light areas: sconces and floor lamps.


New lighting, fresh paint and a hand-painted framed mirror transform a bathroom. Photo: PotteryBarn.com•    Establish a focal point in the living areas. This can be a piece of art, a beautiful view of the outdoors, an antique or eclectic piece, a fireplace.
•    Drag the furniture away from the walls. You never see this in a model home! Establish a comfortable, easy flow conversation area and make sure your furniture is in scale with the room. Note: the furniture from your previous house may not work with scale of your new/current home.
•    Eliminate pieces that no longer work for you. If you have been hauling around furniture from home to home, it may be time to start over. If you want the feeling of a model home.
•    Include a large area rug to tie things together. It makes the room look more spacious.
•    Style your dining room table: set it for your next meal (like a model) or create a tablescape in the center that becomes permanent and you can enjoy it every day. Rather than a dining room table that just sets there unused. And unpretty!
•    Style your coffee table. I like to divide my tables into sections: books, flowers and a pretty tray with something that you love.
•    Refresh the bathroom: Hang a chandelier. Frame the mirror or replace with two single hanging mirrors. Add new sconces over the mirror.
•    Less is more. Always. Go for somewhat of a minimalist look but not to an extreme. It's one of the reasons that we love models homes: they are not filled with our everyday "stuff."
•    This is an easy one and it has to do with artwork. Go for large pieces over the sofa and think in terms of three's. Cut a large image into three sections or try it with a piece of fabric cur three times and stretched over canvas.
•    Add some drama to the bedroom. Paint an accent or add a wall covering to the wall behind the bed. Invest in a fabric headboard. Add sconces for lighting. Purchase new bed linens in a fresh, bold color. Declutter the nightstand.


Wrenda Goodwyn is a Southwest Florida interior decorator. Home Inspirations appears the first Saturday of each month. Visit her website at spectacularspaces.com. Call her at 949-1808 or e-mail wrenda@spectacularspaces.com. For more decorating tips and photos, visit spectacularspaces.com/blog

 

Want to come home to a spectacular space? Call me!

Read these tips and sort through the confusion of when to splurge for your home and when to save.

Is it time to hire a professional? Check out my suggestions in the Fort Myers News-Press for working with a professional.

 

Saturday
Oct042014

Home Inspirations: Simple touches transition home from summer to fall

Wrenda Goodwyn • special to the Fort Myers News-Press• October 4, 2014

Pottery Barn photo of outdoor, fall pillows.Transition outdoor spaces to fall with pillows from Pottery Barn.As I write this column, fall is not in the air. Yet.

While most of the country is hanging on to those last warm days of summer, in southwest Florida we are anxiously awaiting a cool morning breeze, an evening that makes us look through our closet for a jacket and any sign that fall is on its way.

It will appear soon. Amy minute. Perhaps even this weekend, when a cold front is predicted.

And while our northern neighbors are covering the pool and bringing in the patio furniture, we are looking forward to heading outdoors after a long summer of air conditioning! And it only takes a few news reports of snow storms to realize again, how lucky we are to live in a tropical paradise.

But until then, we dream of fall.  

And there is something about the change in seasons that makes us want to make a change. In fashion and in our homes. We want to mark the change in seasons, no matter how subtle.

Photo of West Elm reclaimed pine library storageAdd a new accent piece from fall flea markets or this West Elm reclaimed pine librarian storage inspired by library card catalogs. Photo: West Elm. So as the days become shorter and we are all counting down fall's arrival,  we look at our homes and make small changes to mark the coming season. As a Fort Myers interior decorator, some of my favorites include:

•    Start with a good decluttering. Then go to your closet, bring the long sleeves and jackets and boots to the front. In the pantry, clean out all of the old spices and make room for the new as we get ready for the coming holidays.
•    Make a slight change of colors in your decorating with yellows, browns and orange tones.  Pillows, throws,  accessories. Mother nature's colors...you can't go wrong.

Pottery Barn photo of flora and fauna trays in neutral tonesFlora and fauna trays in neutral tones are a great accessory for counters, dressers and they are perfect for holding all of those remotes! Photo: West Elm.
•    Visit fall art shows and invest in a new piece of art or accent piece.
•    Search fall flea markets and find a new treasure for an accent piece.
•    With shorter days, now is a good time to take a look at your lighting and perhaps add a new lamp or two.
•    Change your scents to fall. Some of my favorites are the highly scented candles from Candleberry Candles and include: Copper Leaves ad Mulled Cider. www.candleberry.com.
•    The change in seasons is a perfect time to invest in new linens, towels, throws, blankets.

West Elm photo of plush cotton bath matGive bath a new look with this color block, stripe bath mat of plush yarn-dyed cotton. Photo: West Elm. 
•    Freshen up a room or outdoor space by adding a new rug. Some of my favorites are from Dash & Albert.  www.dashandalbert.com.
•     Change your fireplace mantel or tablescape with creamy neutrals accented with seasonal tones, gourds, pumpkins, leaves, baskets, accents. Tip: I pick these up from Home Goods for my clients.

Photo of West Elm metallic bowl filled with applesUse something as simple as this quilted bowl with a metallic sheen and filled with apples. Photo: West Elm.
•    As you spend more time outdoors, add some new pillows and throw (for chilly nights) to your chairs.  
•    Start at the front door with mums, a new welcome mat, wreath and pumpkins (Tip: spray paint the pumpkins to reflect your color scheme). Fun!
•    On the first cool morning: open all of the windows and let the fresh air into your home.

Welcome fall!  It's been a long, hot summer!


Wrenda Goodwyn is a Southwest Florida interior decorator. Home Inspirations appears the first Saturday of each month. Visit her website at spectacularspaces.com. Call her at 949-1808 or e-mail wrenda@spectacularspaces.com. For more decorating tips and photos, visit spectacularspaces.com/blog

 

Want to know when to splurge and when to save?

Call me. I will help you create Spectacular Spaces in your home!

Time to hire a professional? Read my tips for working with an interior decorator in the Fort Myers News-Press.