Tag Archives: decorating with neutrals

(Re)Treat Yourself!

As the lazy days of summer come to an end, and things seem to get busier and busier, we all need a place to retreat to at the end of the day; a sanctuary where we can relax, de-stress and treat ourselves to some creature comforts. Here are a few simple ideas for creating your own at-home refuge.

If you have limited space a comfy chair, reading lamp and ottoman should do the trick. Add a soft, warm throw and a few pillows to up the cozy factor. For more privacy add a floating bookshelf or even a single curtain panel hung from the ceiling.

At-home retreat | Chicago ReDesignTassle pillow| Orange Pillow | Throw | Bookcase | Chair | Side table | Lamp | Ottoman

For a luxurious retreat mix opulent materials, interesting textures, plush fabrics, and plenty of shine. An interesting basket keeps reading materials close at hand while a laptop table provides a convenient spot to perch a glass of wine or warm mug of tea.

At-home retreat | Chicago ReDesignHandled basket | Side table | Chaise | Pillow | Throw | Lamp

If your idea of bliss is curling up with a good book while soaking up the sunshine, add a daybed underneath a window. Keep the feeling light and airy with sheers, plenty of white, and pops of bright, cheerful color.

At-home retreat | Chicago ReDesignDaybed | Pink Pillow | Petal Pillow | Side table | Curtains

Do you have a favorite spot in your home to retreat to at the end of the day? I’d love to hear all about it in the comments section below!

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How to Create Warmth and Richness When Decorating With Gray

After about a decade of the brown and beige design trend, gray has officially been ushered in as the go-to neutral these days. Grays are extremely versatile shades that can compliment just about any decorating style and color palette. Grays can add depth and sophistication to a room, but many people avoid using gray for fear it will make a room feel sterile and uninviting. Fear not my friends; below are some tips you can use when working with gray to create warm, rich spaces in your own home.

  • If you are worried about selecting the right gray to coordinate with your existing furnishings, try BM HC-172 Revere Pewter or BM HC-173 Edgecomb Gray. Both are very neutral “putty” shades of gray.
Decorating with Gray | Chicago ReDesignBM HC-172 Revere Pewter | Source
  • Create a balance of cool and warm tones by pairing cool grays with energizing pops of jewel tones and warm natural elements like wood, leather, and copper. Pair warm grays with shiny silver metals and cool colors for a touch of elegance and modernity.
Decorating with Gray | Chicago ReDesignSource
Decorating with Gray | Chicago ReDesignBM HC-87 Ashley Gray | Source
  • Pair a dark gray with a softer pastel shade, white furniture, and earthly elements like wood, wicker, and sisal to create a cheery and informal space.
Decorating with Gray | Chicago ReDesignBM AF-720 Sparrow | Source
  • A dark gray ceiling and dark gray walls create a dramatic and intimate effect.  To keep the dark ceiling from being oppressive, complete the look with lighter, creamy accents and flooring.
Decorating with Gray | Chicago ReDesignSource
  • When working with gray and white opt for a creamier off-white (such as BM OC-17 White Dove). Stark white can provide too much of a contrast and might come off as a bit jarring.
  • This is true for any paint color, but ALWAYS use large scale paint swatches (2′ x 2′) that can be moved around the room before settling on a gray color. Grays can affect the mood of a room, so determine how the color changes with the light and is affected by shadowing. Click here for a great tutorial on creating large size paint color samples.
  • Use a low-sheen paint on the wall – anything shinier can look metallic and unflattering.

How do you feel about gray? Are you on board with the trend or do you still prefer beiges and browns? I’d love to hear what you think!

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Decorating with a Neutral Palette

Although I love color, I’ve always been drawn to rooms with neutral or subdued palettes. There is something very calm and relaxing about a neutral space, akin I think to a winter landscape after the snow. Everything seems a little more still and quiet, which is the type of sanctuary I long for after busy days in the city. However, creating a neutral palette isn’t just about throwing a bunch of beige furniture in a white room. In order to give the room depth and warmth, and to create that sense of sanctuary, the room still needs to be visually engaging. And the key to this is texture and pattern. Mixing wood grains, varied textiles, detailed furniture, stone, shell, metallics (you get the point) keeps a neutral room from being anything but boring.

Remember this mantra – texture, texture, and more texture.  With a multitude of textures, from the shell chandelier to the rustic coffee table and distressed furnishings, this room is full of warmth and interest.

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, distressed furniture, shell, capiz{source}

Subtle colors and patterns, soft texture and interesting accents add depth to this monochromatic white-on-white palette. For a slightly creamy off-white try Benjamin Moore Cloud White 967.

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, monochromatic color scheme, white on white

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Exquisite details, metallic accents, and Lucite chairs give this room an expensive, high-end look.

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, luxe, modern, lucite

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Switch up accessories in a neutral room, like the throw, pillows, wall art, and table pieces for a new look (and new color scheme) without spending a lot of money

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, pop of color{source}

A mix of eye-catching patterns and cozy textures (am I the only one that wants to snuggle up to those cable knit pillows and throw?) keeps this gray and cream bedroom from feeling sterile and cold. Wall color is BM Spanish Olive CC-606.

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, gray and cream bedroom, BM Spanish Olive{source}

And finally, some neutral decorating inspiration of my own… a mood board with a gray, cream and gold color palette and featuring plenty of texture and pattern.

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, gray cream gold paletteBM Revere Pewter HC-172 | BM Cloud White 967 | Capiz Chandelier | Jute Rug | Pouf | Kivik Sofa | Zen Embroidered Throw Pillow | Bromley Wall Mirror | Portledge Wall Mirror | Gold Ceramic Lotus Stool

I would love to hear what your thoughts are on decorating with a neutral palette. Do you prefer lots of color? What rooms do you think a neutral palette works best in?

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