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How To Mix Patterns Like a Pro!

By: The Balance Design Team

Our upcoming spring/summer collection is chock full of color and pattern, which is a fun way to mix and match some real statement makers. But where do you start when you want multiple patterns in one space? The possibilities are practically endless, but here are a few of our favorite combos.

Stripe and fret fabrics courtesy of Schumacher. Rug courtesy of Loloi.

Play with scale. Pair a large, bold pattern (like this super funky Manuel Canovas leaf print) with a couple of smaller, tighter patterns. Ground it all with thick, white-based stripes and you’ve got a mix that’s just wild enough.

Fabrics courtesy of Norwalk, Celerie Kemble, and Schumacher. Rug courtesy of Crate and Barrel.

Limiting your color palette to a few earthy tones gives you more freedom to play with pattern and texture, and can be more approachable to those of us who prefer sepia to Day Glo. Want a smart tweed with a sparkly fabric? Heck yes you can do that!

Black and white fabrics courtesy of Schuamcher and Kravet. Lilac and bouquet fabrics courtesy of Schumacher.

There’s something about stripes and florals that complement each other perfectly. Bold, graphic, black and white lines against delicate, illustrative tendrils gives you edge with a touch of softness. It’s the visual equivalent of “I’m cute, but also don’t mess with me.”

How do you take mixing masculine and feminine patterns to the next level? Involve color! Try a hard zig zag in a lovely gem tone (Schumacher sure knows how), or a delicate hand embroidery in a tough black and blue. (Pair with a luxe berry velvet for extra va-va-voom!)

When it comes to mixing patterns, we say don’t hold back! While these are some good ideas to get you started, the rules truly were made to be broken. Be as adventurous or reserved in your pattern play as you wish — in the end, it’s all about whatever makes your space authentically yours.

It’s Element-ary! How to Incorporate The Four Elements in Your Home.

By: Danielle Clockel

The four elements of earth, fire, air, and water were used by the ancient Greeks as a way to simplify life’s complexities. Nowadays, we often refer to them in terms of our personalities. For example, maybe you identify with the free-spirited nature of the wind, or are passionate and fierce like fire. Whichever one speaks to you, here are some ways to really get in your element at home.

Earth.

Photo courtesy of Femina.

Filling your home with plants is the best way to immerse yourself in earthy goodness. But what if you don’t have a green thumb? We love pressed plant art as a way for everyone to celebrate their earth element roots in a clean, modern way.

Fire.

Photo courtesy of Frerik Hylten-Cavallius.

There’s something so comfortingly primal about fire. Grand fireplaces and outdoor fire pits are amazing to gather around, but not everyone has the space for them. That’s not an issue for petite ethanol-burning stoves. These little guys are perfect for feisty spirits in any size abode, especially since they don’t produce smoke.

Air.

Photo courtesy of Studio KO.

This is an easy one: just open up! Open any doors and windows you can and get some air flowing through your home. That feel of a gentle, calm breeze — what can be better? How about standing amongst flowing sheer window panels like some sort of goddess? Yes, that.

Water.

Photo courtesy of Pinterest.

Ceiling mounted rainwater shower heads. Floor inset soaking tubs. These are amazing ways to turn your morning (or evening) shower into a luxurious submersion, but what else? Match your floor and walls in a cool blue handmade tile to channel the experience of swimming through a beautiful lagoon every time you bathe.

Natural elements in the home, regardless of which specific one they reflect, make a space feel grounded, intentional, and authentic. And of course you can mix several elements in one room — whatever speaks to you!

Color Palette: Moroccan Door

By: Danielle Clockel

We’ve still got a ways to go before any sort of warm weather, but we’re already getting inspired by the lively colors of Morocco, Mexico, and Spain. Expect bold, saturated, sophisticated color combos this spring and summer!

Photo courtesy of Pinterest.

From top to bottom:
1. Sherwin Williams Jasper 6216
2. Benjamin Moore Rocky Mountain Sky 2066-40
3. Benjamin Moore Lemon 2021-20
4. Sherwin Williams Spicy Hue 6342
5. Sherwin Williams Jitterbug Jade 6987
6. Sherwin Williams Honorable Blue 6811

Transitions with Color and Subtle Connectivity

By: Loren H. Pratt

Photo courtesy of Hygge & West.

 

Recently the talented team at Balance Design helped me select and install this Hygge & West wallpaper in the top stair landing of my home. The inky blue color and quirky copper design reflects the mood of my home: cheerful and playful, yet sophisticated and relaxed. It invigorates the landing by adding movement, and the metallic details reflect light, making the area seem larger. This wallpaper inspired me to make the most of my transitional spaces.

In the past, I viewed these spaces (front entryway, hallway, and staircase) as simply a means to an end — get me to the next real space. However, they don’t have to simply be placeholders for connecting the main living areas; they can communicate something about you and reinforce the mood of your home as well.

Color

Color is an easy way to create mood and connect spaces. Blue is the primary color unifying the rooms in my open-concept home.

Photo courtesy of Loren H. Pratt.

Various shades of blue help the oversize photograph flow into the almost indigo color of the upstairs wallpaper. I love how the copper frame of the Brittany Kidd photograph (another Balance Design purchase!) complements—both in movement and color—the model’s hair color in the image and the underwater sea creatures in the landing wallpaper. Color unifies all of these spaces and helps you move naturally from one to the next.

Subtle Connectivity

I love a subtle theme. We’re not talking about your grandparents’ “Santa Fe room.” (I hope I’m not the only one with grandparents who had a Western themed room.) One or more subtle themes can tie multiple areas together. An implicit theme of water flows (couldn’t help myself) through the transition spaces in my home.

An abstract painting in the downstairs hallway was created at the beach, where the artist, Candace Greer, incorporated sand into the paint. The different blue shades symbolize the ocean and sky, and the hallway rug below the painting is reminiscent of coral. In the racy laundromat scene, the circular washing machines remind me of submarine windows.

Painting by Candace Greer.

Photo courtesy of Loren H. Pratt.

As I mentioned, the wallpaper contains whimsical underwater creatures perfectly in keeping with the water theme.

Photo courtesy of Loren H. Pratt.

Perhaps few will notice the subtle connections between these transitional spaces, but they really bring a sense of passage and evolution to otherwise mundane areas in our home. Take a second look at your “in between” spaces. Let them connect to each other and communicate something interesting.

Loren Pratt is a lawyer and legal writing professor who loves interior design. Her legal writing background influences her affinity for juxtaposing order and symmetry with personality and flair in decorating. Loren loves working with the Balance Design team when she’s stumped with a design challenge or when she needs a second opinion. Follow Loren to see what inspires her as she decorates her new Atlanta home. 

Design Challenge: Bedroom Solutions

By: The Balance Design Team

Last week Shelby outlined her wish list for her master bedroom, including a headboard for her bed, new nightstands, lighting, and a vanity area. Each of us browsed her Pinterest board and created our take on a perfectly “Shelby” bedroom.

Stephanie’s Solution

Shelby has a fun-loving, adventurous personality that I wanted to bring out in her room design. The low upholstered modern platform bed lets the organic wallpaper create a bold statement wall. The vanity (which is actually a children’s desk) has ample storage for Shelby’s collection of funky and fun jewelry. Her accessory style inspired my choices for the vanity stool, pendants, and mirror, which all have touches of gold. And of course, I had to add a hand knotted rug that can be used in Shelby’s next home too!

Elisabeth’s Solution

I was inspired by Shelby’s love of texture and the perfect shade of blue in creating this Bali-tastic Bedroom Boutique. This water-meets-print wallpaper from Eskayel is sure to motivate Shelby’s creative world while the organic linear black and white rug grounds the room (literally). The classic floating shelf is simply smart, providing a platform for this modern woven marvel of a pendant. The canopy bed is a new absolute favorite of everyone at Balance Design. Finally, a beautiful challenge for Shelby: root plants in glass by taking a cutting and growing her own piece of art in water. I hope this design inspires art, nature, and light for morning and night (intentional rhyming included).

Danielle’s Solution

Keeping in mind Shelby’s request for a clean, sleek look, I focused on things she loves (with a little inspiration from her Pinterest board). The dresser currently in the room will be removed, making room for a printmaker’s drawer desk with a rounded rectangular mirror to act as a vanity/primping area. The drawers provide stylish space for jewelry, makeup, brushes, etc. An accent wall painted in her “spirit color” will pick up the blue accents in this vintage rug, which really pops against an underlying sisal. I took a small leap with the bed — Shelby requested ideas for a headboard, but I know from her Pinterest that she loves sleek, modern canopy beds. Replacing the mirrored nightstands with these crisp marble shelves keeps the room clutter-free (and provides the perfect perch for an aloe plant or two!).

Melody’s Solution

Shelby’s love of natural wood really inspired this space. Using walnut furniture accented with metal and glass creates a natural-feeling, put together look. This desk used as a makeup vanity will provide some much needed jewelry storage and a space to sit and get ready for the day with the large round mirror. The wall mural is an homage to her favorite color, teal. This effect is more subtle than full on paint, but gives enough color and impact to still make a statement. The glass shelves are 10′ deep so she will be able to use them as nightstands without the bulk. Even a piece like this lovely wood and glass terrarium would fit (bonus: these plants require minimal attention). Finally, the pendants for either side of the bed add the little bit of sparkle for Shelby that she brings to us each day. 

Stay tuned next week when Shelby announces the winner!