We all like our stuff. Naturally, after a number of years, we may have too much “stuff”, and there may be good reasons why some terrific things should go. Not all, though. When starting a new interior design project with a client we often encounter a mix of older items, some newer items, as well as an overall desire to modernize without throwing out all of the older treasures. Many of these older treasures not only have sentimental value, but were very costly when they were purchased. We may almost feel that these items from a different time “owe” us, even though they may no longer reflect our current taste. In fact, they likely are not at all our current style. Some things, especially furniture and window treatments that have been well cared for will simply never wear out. They have, however, “uglied” out. This is especially true of well made draperies that have been sent out to be cleaned. Many professional cleaning establishments, do not do a good job of cleaning draperies, and what could technically last almost forever hang like forlorn rags on the window.The way to prevent damaging custom draperies is either to send them only to cleaners that clean draperies as a specialty, or to simply vacuum them well regularly. They will continue to hang well, and there will be no rags on your beautiful windows.Over a long and happy lifetime, we are often bequeathed beautiful furniture pieces, artworks, or accessories. Many times these are truly treasured items and we enjoy living with them, in or out of style trends.The client often realizes that some of their possessions are dated or worn, but are hoping to bring these treasures, somehow, into a more appropriate form so that they can continue to enjoy them. Often, this is possible. Blended families also have many furnishings which are serviceable, but of wildly disparate styles. Some family members truly dislike their partner’s furnishings. Can a lover of antiques live happily with a modernist? Often, adding dramatic touches to a room design dilutes the prominence of the antique item and a pleasant room design is the result. Creative people often have a lot of possessions. They also are often producers of art objects and some artists are quite prolific. Even if they don’t make art, creative people find beautiful objects everywhere. Some of these things are vintage, many are one-of-a-kind, many are large, and many of them are striking to look at. some of these items are found in a tattered state, and often creative people enjoy hands on techniques to bring these pieces back to life as they once were or dramatically evolved into a new identity. If the creative person’s partner is a bit of a minimalist, it can be difficult to live happily in the same home. A creative and dramatic approach to displaying a reasonable number of treasures may be the solution. Once again, drama is our friend. Minimalist décor is often dramatic, as well, so the idea can work.The fireplace or a media centre is often a favourite place to display décor vignettes. Whether the fireplace is contemporary, transitional, or traditional and ornate, cozy vignettes can be created using colour as the connecting bridge between disparately styled items. The room below has a minimalist vibe but there are a lot of items in this room. They are stored in the leaded glass built-in unit. The mantel is clear, there is an interesting artwork over the fireplace and there is an interesting egg chair, which may be a treasured older piece. Classic moldings and architectural detail are another excellent way to link décor styles of different periods. The classic detailing of the moldings plays well with contemporary furnishings as well as traditional. The over the top moldings in the room below lend an air of formality and presence, while the gold lined transitional chandelier is quite eye-catching. The exaggerated height of the moldings draw the eye up so that the magnificent chandelier is featured. The muted gingham custom draperies lend a softened air, as does the gauze Roman shade. The rich deep neutral of the wall colour is so much more effective than a white wall colour would be, as it enhances not only the moldings, but the furniture and area carpet. This deep neutral is repeated in a slightly lighter shade on the door, but the molding detail is highlighted in white, which adds a little subtle drama. The velvet sofa lends a transitional vibe to the space. It can exist happily in either a traditional or more modern space. It is also comfortable. Many antique settees simply are not. Rusticity has crept into even relatively formal homes, and it looks good there. Distressed finishes on furniture or in the abstract weave of an area rug look wonderful in a balanced room design. Contemporary design also pairs well with reclaimed wood accents. Surprisingly, white is an excellent foil for the natural shades found in the rustic elements. The seating may or may not be old. It is of a style that has survived many trends changes. Similarly, the white bowl my be old or new. It also is a style that has survived changing trends. Wallpaper is able to transition several design periods. Wallpaper became very unpopular for a time, simply because a lot of it was simply ugly. Much of it was far too feminine with no real design direction. Such a shame as it turned some people off wallpaper permanently. They won’t even look at the new offerings. it’s quite understandable. If you grow up in a home with walls covered in a material that is simply hideous, you feel that the vehicle is to blame. Over the decades there have been a great many graphic designers who have produced wonderful patterns. Many wallpapers are reprinted decades later because they are able to meld into a new design aesthetic. Geometric patterns can also bridge the gap since many geometrics are timeless. In a similar way, lighting styles come and go. Design elements are reused and incorporated into new editions. Wood and metal components in lighting can help bridge the design gap when creating a room design with wood and metal elements.A vintage, weathered door that is the prized piece of one home owner can co-exist happily with another resident’s more contemporary pieces. The other person’s funky abstract artwork is able to find a special place in this happy home, as well. Keeping the pieces in scale with each other will maintain the balance of the room design. The room design remains light and bright while combining the contemporary and traditional elements. The colour palette is also kept in balance. By adding personality to the space and respecting the taste of each home dweller, the home becomes much warmer and a pleasant place to come home to. Each person’s quirkiness is a positive element in the home. There is a feeling of fun, as well as elegance.There are so many different ways to design the aesthetics of a comfortable home. Often, a key ingredient is a willingness to compromise so that all occupants of th ehome have a few things that they love. Call Mulberry Interiors now at (905) 849-6423 to book a consultation. We look forward to working with you to increase your enjoyment of your home.
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