Decorating to warm up your home

HGTV has some good ideas to “warm up” your home during these cold winter days.  I like them because they are easy to implement without much fuss.


Create vibrant living rooms

This living room is an example of mixing furniture and accessories from a variety of stores.  Sources include: Overstock, Pier 1, Bloomingdale’s, Crate  & Barrel, HomeGoods, Pottery Barn and Dania.  Can you match the products with the store?


Proportion, textures and colors tie it all together.  The lesson here is that it doesn’t matter where you buy it, but how you use it!

What can we learn from hotel decorating?

Designers of hotel rooms have a limited space and time to make an impact.  They have mastered the art of eliciting a “wow” when guests enter a space. 
This room in Chicago’s Trump Tower features tone on tone colors, elegant lighting and luxurious linens.  Everything feels serene and welcoming.
Trump Tower Hotel Room Chicago

Trump Tower Hotel Room Chicago

Note the space saving light fixtures.  They are both useful and beautiful and take up little space. 

You can have a similar feeling in your bedroom.  Remember to keep the color palette muted and have lots of textures to add interest.

Are you a wind chime decorator?

I have a theory that people either really like or really dislike these decorating selections.  Which camp are you in? 

  • Wind chimes
  • Scented candles and potpourri
  • Decorations on top of kitchen cabinets
  • Leather storage cubes
  • Family photos
  • Walls painted white
  • Decorative pillows
  • Sectionals

What would you add to the list?

Loving an old house

“Old houses have baggage.” — Candace Olson.

I laughed when I heard that.  It resonates with me because I have loved, and worked on, a 100-year-old house, for the past 20 years.

What were we thinking?

What were we thinking?

It certainly didn’t have curb appeal – look at those bushes!

A year after we moved in, I realized that the house looked just like the sketch I drew as a kid over and over again.   And, it closely resembles the doll house my dad and brother built for me.

Years later, I know why we bought it.  We needed to leave our mark on something.

A few years later.

A few years later.

Home as a haven from the world

When so much of the news is doom and gloom, I clean the house; move a piece of furniture; rearrange my ceramics collection; and, buy fresh flowers.

Redesigning my nest gives me the illusion that I have control over what is going on in the world.  It’s comforting to have a home that is welcoming.

What is your idea for holding the world at  bay?


Finding the “perfect” house

I stayed up late reading “Life Would Be Perfect If I Lived In That House” by Meghan Daum.  It’s a funny and poignant look at her home search.  The underlying message is that we can’t have perfect but we can have pretty darn good!

Have you ever obsessed over a house or region of the country?

Hip furniture for a stylish outdoor space

The Montauk Nest Chair from West Elm is appealing.

This isn’t your grandpa’s chair with the criss-cross poly strips, which sagged under his weight. (At least that’s how it was in our house).

The chair is a bit pricey, but oh, what style.  I’d use two in an enclosed front porch

Montauk Nest Chair

Patchwork with a twist

I like this Patchwork Pouf at

I’ll bet some of you talented people could create your own version.  I’m a firm believer in supporting artists, so I’ll be whipping out the credit card!

Find it at:

Squirrel Decorating

Last fall, branches were trimmed from the giant Oak Tree next door.

The squirrels have returned.  They are frantically trying to create a new home in the crook of the tree, while the wind wails.

Have you ever noticed someone making themselves crazy, trying to make a room perfect?  What results is a room that doesn’t reflect the homeowners’ personalities; OR, the room is abandoned, out of frustration.

The warmest, most inviting rooms evolve over time – not carted out of a store.

Let’s not spin into a decorating frenzy, like the squirrels.