Interior design tips and lighting ideas for today's home! Providing professional interior design advice, home decor ideas and inspiration.
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Good with words? Got mad wit skills?
Show us what you've got in our "Name That Blog" contest for a chance to win a $250 Lamps Plus online shopping spree.
We've refreshed our blog here at LampsPlus.com as a place for fresh and creative ideas in home decorating. Our goal is to provide our readers with inspiration, resources and affordable design solutions. Now we need a new name to match our new attitude!
We're taking submissions now through May 31st. Feel free to submit as many ideas as you wish, but only one idea per day during the submission period.
Submit your blog name suggestions via:
Be sure to leave a valid email address or Twitter handle with your entry so we can contact you.
In case of the same name being submitted, we'll take the first submission, so get your ideas in early!
We'll put the best user-submitted names up against our own faves for public voting on Facebook from June 2-8.
The name with the most votes on June 8th will become the official Lamps Plus blog name.
The creative genius whose user-submitted name receives the most votes will win the $250 prize and some serious bragging rights, even if it's not chosen as the official name. Ready, set, show off your creative prowess!
View complete contest rules (PDF file; requires the Adobe Acrobat Reader).
**This contest has officially ended. Thank you for entering.**
We are pleased to announce that Vicky from Alabama has named our blog!
Do dimmers really save on energy use?
Key to answering this question is understanding how dimmers really work.
Many consumers, and even a few electricians, think that dimmers work by converting unused electricity to heat at the dimmer switch.
It's true that many old rotary dimmers worked this way; they were rheostats that took the excess energy when dimmed and converted it to heat.
Today's dimmers use a "Triac Switch". When dimmed, these switches cut the flow of power to a light fixture up to 120 times a second.
While the circuit is switched on and off many times a second, the human eye and brain doesn't register this flickering. What we see is a constant light output.
And dimmers do save. Dimming your lights an average of 50 percent can cut your electric use a whopping 40 percent over time and make your bulbs last 20 times longer!
We blogged about the debut of our new line of Candice Olson lighting last week. Candice is a fixture on HGTV with her show Divine Design, and we found these videos from her show online at the HGTV website. You can see the way she uses lighting in her rooms and check out her unique sense of style.
POST UPDATE: We've got a lot more about Candice Olson and Divine Design. If you liked this, you might enjoy some of our more recent posts. You can find them here: http://www.lampsplus.com/Info-Center/b/blog/archive/tags/candice+olson/default.aspx
Do you need help discovering your interior design style or guidance on selecting the perfect color for your space? Well, now is your chance to win the perfect Lamps Plus Home Decor Trifecta! Simply enter the Meghan Carter Contest. The winner will receive a personal design consultation with Meghan Carter, author of The Meghan Method, a $250 online Lamps Plus shopping spree to implement Meghan’s advice into your home, and a signed copy of Meghan’s book.
Enter now through August 16, 2011. Only one entry per day please.
It is easy to enter! There are three ways-• Leave a comment on this blog post explaining why you deserve to have your room redone with help from Meghan (my favs!)
• Follow Lamps Plus and tweet... " @MeghanCarter I should win the @LampsPlus redo because:” ( Lamps Plus Twitter page)
• Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org explaining why you deserve to have your room redone with help from Meghan
View the complete contest rules (PDF file; requires the Adobe Acrobat Reader).
Connect with Meghan on Facebook to get more decorating tips and helpful home advice.
Images courtesy of Meghan Carter
** 8-17-11 This contest has officially closed.**
Post Addendum 9-2-11:We are pleased to announce that Lauren W. from Richmond Hill, Georgia, is the winner. She will be getting a Meghan Carter Design Consultation, Signed Book and a $250 Shopping Spree. Congratulations to Lauren and thank you all for entering!
Having an organized office is crucial for career success. It helps focus all the energy in the office and put you in command and control over your career. The way your furniture is positioned creates a stimulated and comfortable working environment that will encourage success.
Jerome Abecassis of Divano Designs and Brigitte Beltra, Feng Shui Expert, offer their 10 tips for office furniture layouts:
1. DO place your desk so you can see clearly when sitting behind it. If you sit with your back to the door, you are inviting others to take advantage of you. You are also turning your back to the incoming wealth and blessings for your career.
2. DO sit with your back against a solid wall or corner - not with a window behind your back. Having a window behind you makes you vulnerable.
3. DON’T sit in line with the door, as you will be in the path of negative energies.
4. DO place your computer in the North or West areas of your desk to enhance creativity. Place the computer in the Southeast corner if you use it to generate income.
5. DON’T have any mirrors in your office as they can reflect negative energies for clients and other people in the room.
6. DO keep the cords of your office equipment well hidden. They eliminate clutter and allow the free flow of energies.
7. DO place your reference books on the left side of your desk, such as a dictionary, manuals, and any other items you often reach for.
8. DO keep the back left corner of your desk clean, dust free, and uncluttered. If there is space in the back of your monitor for photos or posters, position family pictures in photo frames or renderings of future projects. Those pictures should face you.
9. DO place awards, diplomas, and certificates, centered on the wall behind your desk.
10. DO have an ergonomical office chair for your posture and back. Your office chair represents your career area. Keep it clean and dusted, with a floor mat that looks fresh and new.
Thanks Jerome and Brigitte! I'd like to offer one more tip to help your office function at its best. It's not an office furniture layout tip, but it's equally important - invest in a quality desk lamp! Good lighting reduces eye strain and fatigue, and can help create a more productive work environment.
Image credit: Jasmine Star Photography, Modern Interior.
The new TV show from Candice Olson promises something different from the famed designer. According to the show website, Candice's new show will reveal more of the behind-the-scenes design process. "This is Candice unplugged, as she deconstructs the design process and teaches us her rules in a fun, irreverent way." It airs Saturdays on HGTV. More details here. In addition to her show, fresh designs from Candice Olson lighting are also on the way.
Photo thanks to HGTV.
Decor mood boards have been popular for a while, but thanks to the creative folks at Olioboard, there's now an easy easy to make mood boards with your favorite home decor products on the web! Browse products by brand (including more than 14,000 Lamps Plus products) and drag-and-drop them to create 2-D or 3-D design boards that help you visualise how furniture, lighting, and accessories will look in your home.
One great feature of Olioboard that I love is the ability to upload your own images. You could take a photo of your room, upload it, and virtually arrange everything in the space before lifting a finger. I imagine this will save much heavy furniture lifting, and unnecessary holes pounded in the walls!
Today we're taking part in an "Oliohop" about fashion and decor, and I've created the mood board above after being inspired by this fantastic fashion photo. I love the simple color palette of nude and white, along with mixed metallic finishes and simple, angular shapes.
Using Olioboard, I browsed their product selction to find pieces that had a similar look and feel to the inspiration outfit. Very quickly, I had pulled together a room design that I know would be successful if implemented in real life.
There are 9 other blogs taking part in today's Oliohop: Apartment 34; Material Girls; Selma Hammer; Life in a Venti Cup; Euro Style Lighting; Embrace Your Inner Snob; Design Magnifique; Focal Point; and Pocket Full of Colors. Visit Lamps Plus on Olioboard to find out how to get the look above, and made sure to "hop" on over to each of the blogs above to be inspired by their fashion + decor mood boards!
For some, the holidays mean a ton of travel. For others, it’s prime time for entertaining out-of-towners. Unfortunately we can’t offer tips for navigating congested highways and overstuffed airports but we can help you create an incredibly gracious guest room. We’ve collected eight rooms that showcase the must-have elements of a good guest bedroom.
First, there should be good lighting on both sides of the bed, so invest in new bedroom lamps if need be. Avoid spindly or fussy designs that tip too easily, and if they’re on a dimmer, even better. Bedside tables should be sturdy and uncluttered. (Nobody needs to stare at snapshots of your long dead gerbil.) While a display of beautiful objects is lovely to look at, it’s more thoughtful to leave enough clear space for guests’ reading materials, cell phones, and such. Fresh flowers are almost always welcome (assuming an absence of allergies), so use one or two small decorative vases to dress up the area.
If you have the luxury of having dedicated guest accommodations, decorate with a subtle scheme. Fun colors and playful details are certainly fine, but refrain from jarring combo, overly feminine or fussy designs, and in-your-face art that might make friends or family uncomfortable. Interior designers Michael Bechara (right) and Maria Lladro (left) used neutral palettes in these rooms but they’re not at all boring. Maps, abstract artwork, and landscapes are safe bets. Hang them up rather than leaning them on the nightstand or dresser where they’re a hindrance. If the floors are bare, add a throw rug by the bedside, especially in winter. Not everyone remembers to pack slippers!
A bench, ottoman, or luggage stand placed at the foot of the bed is useful and keeps things clean. A suitcase that’s just been thrown around a tarmac doesn’t belong atop pristine sheets. Like the previous pair of rooms, designer Nicole Hollis went neutral. The minimalist aesthetic has a spa-like feel. Incorporating wall mounted light fixtures keeps things clean and clear, and a candle adds ambience.
The bedside tables here are perfect because guests can see how everything you stocked them with. A bar cart is a fun idea too. Notice the cozy throw blankets on the bottom shelf. Carafe and drinking glass sets are a considerate touch so your houseguests needn’t wander through the house at night. And while most folks use their phones to tell time, a clock might help them achieve a holiday unplugged.
This bedroom designed by Palmer Weiss is perfection. The elegant bedroom lamps are a matched pair, the bedding is crisp and fluffy, and there’s even a loveseat in the bay window. Note the heavy draperies—don’t make your guests get up with the sun.
Be a considerate host - provide your weary houseguests with a few guest room essentials to ensure a pleasant visit for all involved! For more guest bedroom accessory ideas, click on over to StyleCarrot.
Shopping guide: 1. Purple Lines Clear Glass Vase Table Lamp 2. Large Diana Matte White Ceramic Vase 3. Lola Collection Mirror Accent Chest 4. Light Precipitation IV 40" Square Wall Art 5. Maple Brown Indoor Outdoor Rug 6. Brushed Brass Holtkoetter Pharmacy Desk Lamp 7. Dimmable Espresso Bronze Swing Arm Wall Lamp 8. Zuo Heywood Triple Natural Wood Bench 9. Chesapeake Bay 8 Oz. Thyme Verbena Candle 10. Connaught Polished Nickel Bar Cart 11. Beveled Glass and Metal Serving Tray 12. Pick-Me-Up Chartreuse Alarm Clock 13. Trace Lagoon Armless Loveseat 14. Chesterfield Teal Ocean Decorative Throw Blanket
Image credits: Rachel Reider / Rue Magazine, Chris Barrett Design, Michael Bechara, Maria Llado, Nicole Hollis, Better Homes and Gardens, Elle Decor, and Palmer Weiss.
I think that window treatments are a lot like jewelry.
Some are subtle and serene.
Some are simple and classic.
And some are colorful and full-of-life.
I'm an over-the-top jewelry wearer. I never met a pair of blingy, sparkly earrings I didn't like. I'm drawn to the unique, the one-of-a kind, the unusual and the interesting......
.....just like my window treatments.
So whether you like your jewelry classic or dramatic.....or fun or quirky, here are four fun ideas to create unique window treatments for your home.
1. Visit your linen closet
There are a host of possibilities behind the doors of your linen closet.
Create a fresh look with tablecloths or dishtowels or sheets or even a decorative throw.
Or why not repurpose netting designed for the bed over a window?
Add personality and dramatic interest with linens at about half the price of traditional curtains.
2. Who needs fabric?
Let a little light in when you forgo traditional curtains for a dramatic valance made from decorative scrollwork.
Or metal ironwork?
Or a piece of barn wood or a garden gate?
It's easy. Architectural elements add the perfect streamlined look for any window.
3. Frame it
Let the sunshine and enjoy the view by adding visual interest around the windows with a collection of prints.
Why not frame fun family recipes?
Or print out your children's artwork and frame it around the kitchen window.
Looking for a little whimsy? Introduce a little fun with colorful framed wall art.
4. Create a faux window
Have a large blank wall to fill?
Why not create the illusion of a window? Hang curtains and hardware and paint your view.
You could add a simple geometric pattern or a landscape or even painted window frames. Then add a stylish decorative mirror to reflect light and truly showcase your creativity.
Whether simple and classic or colorful and full of bling.....your window jewelry reflects you.
So have a little fun and try something unique with your window treatments for a creative addition to any room.
Let your windows truly reflect your personality and your style.....
......and let the sun shine in!
photo credit: Photo 1: Martha Stewart Photo 2: bhg Photo 3: Midwest Living Photo 4: bhg Photo 5: bhg Photo 6: Martha Stewart
Our new friend Lynda got our attention recently by posting pictures on our Facebook page. Lynda owns Focal Point, a growing interior design firm in Florida.
The pictures are from a recent project where Lynda completely refurbished the common areas of a small townhouse. As you can see above, our Moonlight wall mirror takes center stage in the living room. Thanks for uploading the pics, Lynda!
Read more about this project including lots of before and after pictures at Lynda's blog: Focal Point: Client Project.
We love seeing our products "in the wild." Upload your pictures to Facebook.com/LampsPlus or email them to email@example.com and we'll do our best to feature them!
Here's another look at our Moonlight mirror: