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Back in Black: Black Interior Inspiration

Francesco Lagnese
Francesco Lagnese

I’m all about white walls. They set off art incredibly well, they make any space feel instantly larger, and they generally create a canvas for whatever you put within their bounds. But lately I’ve been paying much more attention to the dark side, that is to say, black walls and accents. I love the moodiness they bring with them and appreciate their altogether different type of sophistication.

This being October, and with colder weather slowly creeping up on us, my first inclination would be to paint a bedroom a medium black from floor to ceiling. A cozy, cave-like atmosphere surely awaits at the bottom of that paint bucket.

Suburban B's

You don’t need intricate woodwork or even wainscoting or a chair rail for this classic half and half look. In act, if you’re nervous about going too dark in a room or have one without much sunlight, this might be the answer. This dining room is my favorite example because of its unexpected twist – going dark on the top half rather than the bottom and painting the ceiling as well. You might expect it to feel heavy, but I find it to feel quite the opposite.

Blair Harris

Painting walls is generally easy, painting cabinets a little more involved but well worth the effort. Not only is black a great way to update older cabinets, it also makes them feel uber chic when paired with those brass pulls. One of the beauties of black is that it goes with just about everything so your backsplash will probably feel refreshed as well.

Marie-Lyne Quirion

This look is really interesting to me, it’s called shou sugi ban and it’s a Japanese technique that involves burning the surface of a certain type of wood to give them a rich black finish. Traditionally the technique is used on home exteriors because it protects them from the elements, but it’s slowly making its way indoors as well. I love it for the naturally black finish it can add to any space.

le Fashion

Okay, so maybe you’re not ready to add this much black to your home. I get it. But black furniture can add its own brand of appeal, making any room look more expensive through its presence. Whether you want to update a piece you already own or are on the hunt for something new keep black in mind as a worthy option. Of course, you can always add a rug as well…

Black rugs

For more inspiration from Kelly, follow along with her at Design Crush!

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Colorful Modern Rugs for Kids

It seems to be a universal truth that kids love color, and the more, the better! So whether you’re updating your child’s bedroom or play space, or starting a fresh space from scratch, read on for loads of inspiration to create a fresh, colorful, modern room your kiddo (and you) will love.


Petite Interior Co.

Look No. 1: Pastel Brights. In the space shown here, color is playful and bold, with a geometric print rug, wall mural, and mint green bed frame — not to mention the colorful baskets and toys! And yet overall, the room manages to feel fresh and serene. How is this accomplished? In a nutshell, with ample white space. Beginning with a clean palette of white walls and pale or neutral flooring grounds the space and gives all of the fun, colorful pieces some much-needed breathing room. Also, note that while there are a lot of colors present, they are all bright pastels, which work together because they are in the same “family”.


Petite Interior Co.

Look No. 2: Sophisticated Modern. In the next space, shown above, we also see pastels — but this time used as accent pieces, rather than main colors, and more muted in tone. A delicate black and white wallpaper, modern furniture, and gold metallic-trimmed rug pull together to create a space that an older child could happily live with well into the pre-teen years.


Apartment Therapy

Look No.3: Natural Modern. In this room, a tactile felt rug, natural wood furniture, and rainbow artwork work together to create a handcrafted-yet-modern look. If you’re craving a space that is simple and serene, but your child wants color, color, and more color, this could strike just the right balance. The rainbow art and rug are boldly colorful, to be sure, but the slightly muted hues still have a natural look that plays well with organic textiles and modern scandinavian wood furniture.


Apartment Therapy

Look No.4: Bold and Playful. In this Netherlands bedroom, a wild mix of safari-inspired wallpaper, lemon-yellow bed, and zebra-print rug are a fitting match for the playful young gentleman who lives here. Sometimes in decorating a boy’s room, it’s easy to get stuck on too-serious navy and gray, but this space proves that boys can have wildly colorful rooms, too! Once again, notice the ample white space: this time, not only the walls but the floors, too, are painted white. It’s essential to have some breathing room — but the great thing is, once that’s in place, you can really go nuts with color!

Ready to try this at home? I recommend starting with clean white or pale neutral walls, and then beginning to layer in colorful elements within the same color family: choose all pastels; or hits of neon brights; or warm, rich, muted tones. A fabulous rug to anchor the room is a must, so I rounded up 9 of my current top favorites that the kiddos will love, too:

Rug Shopping Guide:

Top row, left to right: Surya Lullaby Waves in sky blue, pink, and purple; Couristan Spectrum Illuminations; Kaleen Lily and Liam in denim

Middle row, left to right: Kate Spade New York Gramercy in off-white and black; Surya Skidaddle Floral Print in lime and sky blue; Couristan Spectrum Fluorescents in beige and red

Bottom row, left to right: Surya Leap Frog Moroccan in purple; Loloi Rugs Lola Shag in plum and white; Loloi Rugs Piper in blue sky

For more inspiration from Laura, follow along with her at LauraGaskill.com!

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Thinking Beyond the Kitchen: Eggplant

Bo Concept
Bo Concept

I think it’s time. Time to take that rich purple known as eggplant or aubergine out of the kitchen and bring it into the other rooms of our homes. Purple is known as the most royal of colors, and the deeper the hue the more elegant it can feel – in other words, this isn’t the same purple your junior high self likely would have chosen.

If you’re all in on eggplant and looking to add tons of impact and charisma, you might want to consider biting the bullet and painting the walls. As I continuously say, there is no better bang for your buck than a few gallons of paint. (Bonus: If you end up hating it, it’s not an expensive fix either!) I think this color would look incredible on the wall of a dining room or bathroom.

via Beauti Tone

Okay, okay. So maybe you’re not into painting an entire room eggplant, but what about making a statement with your front door? Choose a tone that’s so deep and dark that passersby are left wondering if they’re looking at dark purple or black. It looks great with just about any color of brick and any other neutrals as well!

Romero Armchair

The right eggplant can act like a neutral, believe it or not. Check out these stunning chairs with mid-century lines that manage to strike a balance with the wood tones and natural textiles in the room. They’re showstoppers without being scene-stealers.

via Frenchy Fancy

Last, but certainly not least, are accessories. Whether it be a great throw, a piece of art featuring the color, or floor rug, there are a hundred different ways to inject a dose of eggplant into your current decor. One of my favorites is a plant called Oxalis that has stems capped with shamrock-like leaves and is very easy to grow.

What’s your favorite way to incorporate a new, bold color in your space?

Rugs-Direct-Collage

For more inspiration from Kelly, follow along with her at Design Crush!

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Refresh Your Home for Spring

After a long, gray winter, it feels good to finally look forward to the lengthening days, fresh flowers, and cheerier spirits of spring. As soon as the first hint of spring peeks its head up in the garden, I like to begin making little changes around my home to reflect the new season. This can be as simple as scooping up a big bunch of fresh cut flowers at the market to plunk into tiny bud vases or pretty water glasses…or as ambitious as painting and wallpapering!

kunstbloemen-eettafel
VT Wonen

Spring color inspiration: In spring, we can draw inspiration from the new shoots, pale blue sky, and blossoming trees for a palette of mint, aqua, sky blue, sunny yellow, and petal pink. If you’re a bit of a color-phobe, dip your toes into this spring palette by placing a few fresh, cheerful accents against a backdrop of white walls and pale floors. For a spring party, try hanging blooms in all shades of pink from a ladder (or from the rafters), and layer the table with linens and glassware in watery blues and greens.

Trend Center VT Wonen
VT Wonen

Spring project ideas:

  • Put wallpaper scraps or pretty gift wrap to use by framing pieces with lattice from the home improvement store. Alternatively, pop your favorite sample into a picture frame and hang it on the wall.
  • Give a basic bulletin board a fresh look by painting the cork minty green. For contrast, give the frame a coat or two of metallic or glossy white paint.

  • Keep an eye out for pretty packaging, and use it to plant spring bulbs. Imported tea and cookie tins are some of my favorites!

  • Change up the art around your house, swapping out artwork that feels too wintry for something bold, fresh, and fun, like a graphic poster.

DecorateWithFlowers
Decorate with Flowers

Enhance your workspace: Get motivated and inspired by giving your workspace a spring refresh, too. A small vase of cut flowers on your desk, a few bits of inspiration taped to the wall at eye level, and a cup full of freshly sharpened pencils will get your Monday morning started on the right note. If you’re looking to make more of a change, consider recovering a boring office chair with a fun, floral fabric; or roll out a vibrant area rug under your desk. And don’t forget to take plenty of breaks to get outside and smell the spring blooms!

Rug shopping guide (clockwise from top left): Jaipur Rugs Coastal Lagoon Palm Breezy in yellow and white; Nourison Waverly Sun and Shade in Seaglass; Dalyn Torino Ombre in teal; Surya Aberdine in teal, charcoal, light gray and lime.

For more inspiration from Laura, follow along with her at LauraGaskill.com!

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