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It’s a Trend: Shower Plants

Heather Keeling
Heather Keeling

Here’s a trend that’s slowly and steadily been creeping up on the design scene – shower plants! One of my decorating rules of thumb is having some live greenery in every room, and some of these bathrooms take it to the next level with their jungle-like vibes. We might all not be lucky enough to have a large window ledge near our bathtub like above, but this look is very forgiving and easy to adapt to whatever bathroom configuration you do have in your home.

Design*Sponge

Have a bit of a black thumb? One of the best pros about shower plants is that you never have to remember to water them and the humid air that occurs post-shower is fantastic for their care. Some varieties have also been proven to remove toxins and bacteria from the air, which is a bit of a health benefit. If you have a lot of natural light coming in a vining philodendron would be a great choice with lots of vining drama.

Bauer Media via My Domaine

If the bathtub or shower itself isn’t an option, think vertically and consider hanging a plant from the ceiling where you can spare a square foot or two. Something that cascades as it grows – think ivy – would be ideal. If that’s not an option think about adding a few smaller plants on a shelf or even gasp the top of the toilet tank. Work with what you’ve got!

Design*Sponge2

If you’re a bath lover your caddy can act as a sort of pseudo coffee table, so add a few small pots or large air plants to it for personality. You can also add a few larger pots on the bathroom floor if you’ve been blessed with a big enough space, Boston ferns and snake plants work great.

Molly Winters via My Domaine

Perhaps one of the smartest – and easiest – ways to incorporate some greenery is by simply hanging a plant over the showered or curtain rod for the perfect careless bohemian aesthetic. It’s also a perfect option if you’re living in a rental because it involves zero permanent alterations that will need patched up when your lease runs out.

Add more of that natural earthy feel to your bathroom with a rug made from natural fibers in an interesting pattern or shape!

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

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Perfect Piano Rooms

West Elm
West Elm

Did you ever take piano lessons as a kid? I taught myself how to play with one hand on my grandparents’ piano before being put into lessons for a few years to properly learn. My grandmother asked if we wanted to take the instrument with us when we moved halfway across the country, but I was 18 and had lost interest. I regret that decision to this day! A piano is a substantial element, bringing plenty of heft and presence to any room its placed in. But it also oozes character and gravitas and offers up a unique decorating challenge – how to do so around it?

Domino

Decorating around a piano can be a daunting and demanding task, but when done right it can feel like the room was built around it. I really love the idea of bringing in other instruments from the home or creating a new collection to make a pseudo music room. The one above features the owner’s stringed instruments on the wall above that act as playable art!

Sincerely, Sara D

I’m really feeling this monochromatic vibe! The bare legs of the piano itself and the lucite of the bench’s make the setup feel super fresh and modern. By the way, they painted this piano which is definitely an option if you’re looking to freshen up an instrument that’s seen better days. Rescuing a previously loved piano would make owning one much more affordable!

Emily A Clark

Some of the pianos above are almost treated as mantels, their upper surfaces decorated with vases, candles, and picture frames. But a simple lamp is very striking. The super chic crowded gallery wall behind this one doesn’t leave room for clutter, and the brass of the lamp really stands out against all of that black, white, and navy blue.

My Domaine

This arrangement (no musical pun intended) is perhaps my favorite. That piano feels like it just about grew up out of the floorboards, it’s that much a part of everything. The only thing that I think might be able to make this setup a little more ideal and cozy is a great floor rug.

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

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5 Ways to Perk Up Your Home With Color

It’s always around this point — about halfway through winter — that the gray skies begin to take their toll. Enough already, we want some color! Since spring is still a flip of the calendar away, it’s time to take matters into our own hands. So pour yourself a mug of something hot to drink, and feast your eyes on these sunny, happy projects, and quick ideas. Then pick one (or more!) to try, and see your home bloom with glorious, rich color.


Amelia Tatnall Lawrence for Paper & Stitch

Idea #1 — Add fresh flowers, fruit, and books. This is so quick, easy, and affordable, you’ll want to keep it on repeat. The next time you’re at the grocery store, pick up a bouquet of fresh flowers (anything that catches your eye), and a bag of citrus fruit. When you get home, pile the fruit into a pretty bowl, put the flowers in a vase of water, and set both on your coffee table. Clear away the random papers and other junk, and place a pretty stack of books from your own bookshelves on the table beside the flowers and fruit. And voila, you have a colorful, beautifully styled coffee table sure to light up the whole room.


Amelia Tatnall Lawrence for Mollie Makes magazine

Idea #2 — Paint a half-wall. It’s true that this project requires significantly more effort than, say, buying a bouquet of flowers. But it’s a lot quicker and easier than painting a whole room! Painting just half a wall, in fact, takes much less time than you probably think (just a few hours), and the results are so darn cool, it’s well worth the effort.

Tip: Pick a wall where the base color is already white (or at least a pale neutral), and splurge on the high-quality painter’s tape to make a really crisp line with ease.


Paper & Stitch

Idea #3 — DIY Stick-on tiles. If you have a really dated floor you’d love to cover with on-trend cement tiles, but need a more budget-friendly option, this DIY from Paper & Stitch could be just the thing for you. By customizing peel-and-stick vinyl tiles with a DIY painted on pattern, you can create a really unique floor covering without breaking the bank.

Note: This project is not recommended for renters, because the glue backing may leave a residue when you remove the tiles.


Amelia Tatnall Lawrence for Mollie Makes magazine

Idea #4 — Frame some large-scale artwork. Adding a great big framed poster to a wall, or atop a credenza, is a great way to add big-impact color without spending a fortune or doing anything permanent to your space. So if you’re a renter, and dream of being able to paint the walls or stick cool tiles on the floors, this can be a really lovely alternative. Choose art with your heart, without worrying about what anyone else will think. It’s your home, and it should make you happy…end of story!


Paper & Stitch

Idea #5 — Layer on colorful textiles. Rolling out a new rug or adding a warm throw to your sofa or favorite chair are foolproof ways to add color to your space. In the room shown here, a simple white throw was upgraded with handmade tassels for a colorful twist.

Whichever projects you choose to try, here’s to a cozy winter…and an early spring!

Rug shopping guide: (clockwise from top left) Safavieh Bellagio in red and pink; Feizy Rugs Arushi in orange; Kaleen Rosaic rug in lime green; Safavieh Soho rug in rust.

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

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How To Get the Right Size Rug

The right rug can make your living room cozy and warm, add color and pattern to the dining room, and give your feet something cushy to sink into when you hop out of bed in the morning. But getting the right size rug for your space is one of the most common decorating mistakes around. Luckily, with a few handy rug-sizing rules of thumb, you can learn how to choose the perfectly sized rug for your space with confidence, every time.

DominoLivingRoom1
Domino

Measure your furniture arrangement first. When it comes to the living room, the ideal rug is large enough that all of the living room furniture fits on top of it, as shown above. The simplest way to figure out how much rug you need is to measure the perimeter of your seating area first, and then order the next rug size up from that. For example, if your seating area measures about 7×9 feet, an 8×10 foot rug would be just right. If you can’t swing that, opt for a rug large enough to scootch under the front legs of the major pieces of furniture (sofa and armchairs).

HarloweJames
Harlowe James

Layer up. If you already have a rug you love, but it’s not quite big enough for your current space, feel free to “cheat” by layering it atop a neutral natural fiber rug, as shown here. This is also a great way to be able to splurge on a fancier rug, and yet still get your entire living space covered.

DominoBedroom
Domino

Measure from the foot of the nightstands. In the bedroom, your rug should start just below the nightstands, so take your measurement starting there, and past the edges of your bed by at least two feet on each side and at the foot. As in the living room, you really can’t go too big with your rug, so when in doubt, order the larger of two sizes you’re considering.

AlwaysRooneyBedroom
Always Rooney

Pair a smaller rug with fluffy bedside rugs. As in the living room, if your bedroom rug is too small, no worries. You have options! In this case, the thing to do is pull your small area rug to the foot of the bed. Either place the bottom feet of the bed on the rug, or not, depending on the rug size. Then, boost your small rug with a cozy, fluffy runner or sheepskin on each bedside…perfect for sinking your feet into on a chilly morning!

MyScandinavianHomeDining
My Scandinavian Home

Measure with your dining chairs scooted out. Your dining room rug should be large enough that chairs won’t get caught up on it when you (or a guest) scoots their chair out to get up. To get the right size, add about two feet to each side of your dining room table to allow room for scooting. Or simply pull out the chairs as much as you would if you were going to sit down, and measure on all sides.

WhittenArchitects
Whitten Architects

Go wider than you think in hallways. Leaving a six-inch border of exposed floor on all sides of a runner will make your hallway look warm and inviting. A too-narrow runner, on the other hand, will just look dinky! Measure the width and length of your hallway, subtract six inches from each side, and order the nearest available rug size for a perfect fit.

Right Size Rugs
Rug shopping guide: (Clockwise from top left) Safavieh Amsterdam in ivory and light blue; Safavieh Tunisia in ivory; Safavieh Amsterdam in light gray; Surya Jill Rosenwald Bjorn in dark brown, black, and khaki.

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

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