Friday, March 27, 2015

Everyone needs a console

We know how much we use console tables in the shop, and how so many of our clients need one, or more than one.  If you look up "console" in Wikipedia (where else???), their first definition is that it is used as a device for playing video games.  Well.....that's not our first thought.

Our current favorite is about to be delivered to one of our customers, but luckily,  it can be reordered!  This one is about 60" wide, which we have found to be a good size, and about 15" deep.  It's also a little taller than some, which is a plus in a lot of situations.  The lattice front will provide a nice texture to the room it will be going to, but the light wood finish will keep it from looking to "weighty" in the otherwise small space.

We see consoles used in hallways, foyers, dining rooms, and most commonly under our TV's.  An open bottom console provides a place to store an extra little ottoman or bench, or a good spot to place baskets which help contain some of the smaller things that have no where else to go!

We have the availability to order custom sized consoles from Hickory Chair, so if you have looked endlessly for that perfect size with no luck, we can take care of it!

Of course I cruised the Houzz website for some other uses and styles of consoles:
















If you are still looking for that perfect console, make sure you stop by and see what we have or what we can order.  Remember we can do custom sizes and finishes.
 

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Bookcase styling tips

A recent catalog from one of our vendors, Studio A, offered some great suggestions for styling a bookcase.  We do this ourselves for our clients, and have learned many tricks and tips from various showrooms on our trips to market.  However, Studio A was kind enough to put some good basic ideas in print, usually only meant for retailers eyes.........but as a Valentines Day treat we are going to share!


First thing to note here is the use of a textured wallpaper for the background.  This particular grasscloth has an organic feel to it, making it a good background for this client's collection.  By covering most of the books with white paper, the more important books stood out, along with the various glass accessories.

After taking your background into consideration, look at what you have the most of, possibly books, and hopscotch them on alternating shelves from left to right.  Try placing the books in horizontal and vertical positions.  If your collection is another object, like vases for example, the same principle would apply.

 Often smaller pieces of art are lost hanging on a wall, so adding them as background to your bookcase is a great way to add some color, and start the layering process.  Work from the back of the shelf to the front, placing the largest items in back and layer forward with the smaller items so they are all visible.

If you are adding additional hidden storage (and decorative boxes are a popular item right now), make sure they are consistent in look or feel.  Use similar finishes or colors so it doesn't look cluttered.

Notice the collection of metal owls on the shelves in the first picture, we call that a "graphic grouping", since they are "like" items.  By combining the collection you will get more of a visual impact.  The same idea was done with the vases in the top shelf.



Winter is a great time to look over those neglected bookcases!  Go ahead, take everything off those shelves and start "restyling"! 


Sunday, January 11, 2015

We're still making our New Year's Resolutions........

Whew, 2014 was one busy year for Madison Lane Interiors.  It'll be hard to be any more hectic than our move into our new location which actually started on December 26, 2013.  Our New Year's Eve was spent unpacking and still moving into the shop. 

 Here's the wide open space we were looking at just before we started unloading our store.  Of course we had to add several more display pieces to help fill the space. 

 And here is a shot from the same area, taken last week.  Needless to say, we have filled the space and continually look for better ways to show off our furniture while still adding more. 

Luckily, I can't find any photos that might be titled "during" ;)

Now for some of our New Year's Resolutions:

~Our "Seasonal" items will consist of "Giftable" items, not so much decor that has to be stored by you or MLI.  Although, we  have had requests to carry some floral decor, and we do like orchids and carry quite a few stems already so we can keep the shop looking up-to-date.

~Our furniture inventory will increase.  Our plan is to have more options to buy or at least try out before you place an order.  There are several furniture pieces that can be made as a chair or a sofa, which helps us with space.  Also adding consoles/sideboards, we hear a lot of customers looking for various sizes and styles.

~We will keep as much wall art as we can....we have the walls for it!  Our starting prices are around $60, so there's definitely something for a wide range of homes and styles.

~Gift items we want to add include beautifully packaged soaps and notecards.  Look for more books in the store, too.  They range from kid's books to books for the graduate.  There is no end to lovely items at market, and we want our customers to know how easy it is to find a special gift at MLI.

~We do intend on keeping up on all the continuing education we can, be it webinars, seminars, or updates from our reps.  There is no time to fall behind on learning about the latest in window treatments, their control mechanisms just get better every year!  

~Staying current with our fabrics has always been on our list, and it still is.  I was informed this week by a fabric rep that the USA is finally starting to mill some fabrics again!  That's definitely good news for all of us.  If you've been on the other end of this, you know "discontinued" is a four-letter-word in our business. 

We will be off to market next weekend, so be watching our Facebook page for more immediate updates.  

If you have a suggestion for something you are looking for, give us a call or come in.  We always take a list with us to market, and we might even send you a photo for a second opinion!      

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Drapery hardware: short rods or full length?

Choosing the appropriate drapery hardware can be a challenge.  "Off the rack" hardware is seldom the best solution---unless you are able to make some type of modification.  One question we are asked quite often is "should I use one long rod or two shorter rods on my window?"

Looking back at a few years ago, we still think this was a good choice:

Before

After
  Considering the pale color on the walls but dark dining room table, we felt that the rods should pick up the darker stain color.  However, having one long "line" across the top would distract from the treatment itself.  In this case we used 2 low profile finials, not wanting anything extravagant, but not too plain, either.

In recent weeks, we've been working on a sunroom with one large window and another wall with a window/sliding door grouping.  The need for some type of fabric was obvious, although privacy was not needed from the drapery (the windows have blinds inside the glass), we knew full length panels would help soften the heavily trimmed windows, but still allowing most of it to be visible.  


Before (wall with slider and 2 windows)  


You can see that this room is all window, except for an inside wall and the entry.  A full length rod over this expanse and onto the next wall (to the right) might start looking like a race track!  It was decided we would treat each window to their own "dress panels".  The appropriate fullness, without being too full and covering the view, was a huge factor in deciding the width/length.  Did you notice there is no extra wall space by the windows to place any extra "stackback" from the drapery?  There were several obstacles to work around.....

Before, right wall of windows


After, left corner

After, opposite corner


After, right side of window wall


We hope to finish off this room next month, as soon as all the furniture arrives (notice the lonely table), and we'll get some overall photos of the room!  If you are looking at the fine details, you'll notice that we didn't use finials on these rods, just endcaps.  Drawing attention to the four different rods was not our intent, but rather to show-off the fabric.  In addition to the expanse, we had to make sure we could have custom brackets fabricated due to the size of the window trim.  The projection is larger than normal, so the "off the rack" hardware would have never worked.  Thanks to our custom hardware vendor, Helser Brothers, for helping us get the perfect solution for this beautiful home.

Keep watching our blog for more "after" photos.  We'll be ready to talk furniture, then!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

The joy of pillows

One of our more popular photos on Facebook was the one above.  Who doesn't love a big leather sectional (if you have the space for it).  Our client already owned the sofa, but something just never seemed finished.  She opted for some color changes in her living room, and purchased the Hickory Chair ottoman.  Now, how to add the dark blue with some aqua and not look disjointed.......sounds like a job for some oversized throw pillows.



Aqua velvet for a softer texture

Smaller scale plaid with a navy and a small stripe of the aqua

Large scale plaid with brown, navy and aqua


Now that our fabrics are chosen, deciding on the appropriate sizes was another important factor.  The large sectional needed larger than normal pillows to take up more space, and add a sense of coziness.  It was decided that 22" would be a good size for this particular sofa, and since there was enough room to spread them out, we had them all done in the same size.  If your sofa is smaller, you might need to do a couple of sizes so when the pillows are pushed together, you can still see the ones behind the front pillow (stair-step sizes).




  The client had a large rectangular pillow purchased that would look great right in the middle!  Now, go back and look at the photo--can you imagine that sofa without the throw pillows? 

Changing the look of a room is as easy as throwing a few new pillows in the mix.  Whether they are custom made or from our ready-made pillows, enjoy the quick and easy decorative changes you can make with pillows!


Sunday, October 19, 2014

We're still taking about wallpaper

I know, you've probably just finished peeling off your old blue and mauve wallpaper last year and made a promise to yourself you'll never paper again.  But........if you could see the newest wallpapers, you might change your mind.


 We recently added wallpaper to the store and chose two totally different styles.  Above is a black background with "faux" handwriting.  The dark color absorbs light making our Beatriz Ball selection really sparkle, reflecting the light.



Another wallpaper from York Wallcoverings has a completely different feel.  The very large repeat and subtle background color was a good choice for this extremely tall wall.  It actually makes the framed artwork show off even more.  A tip for hanging art on wallpaper:  the matting makes a big difference!


The remaining photographs are from the Thibaut Wallcovering collections:


Although grasscloth is not new, the colors are fresh and there are so many more to choose from.  Just adding texture to a room will give it personality and more warmth.  If you feel like you home is lacking in architectural detail, a textured wallpaper will definitely add some interest without overpowering a room.

Another great thing about Thibaut:  they have coordinating or matching fabric!  And just like the paper, the fabrics have the best colors.  If you like high contrast, it's hard to beat navy and white.



An entry wall is another place to use wallpaper.  The small side table and mirror would be lost on such a plain wall, but they're just the right touch with this slightly more formal wallpaper.


How about the wall behind the fireplace (or the fireplace itself)?  This more free form pattern pairs nicely with the coordinating geometric fabric in the drapery.


One of my favorites---using wallpaper on the wall behind the bed.  You don't have to encase the whole room in a pattern.  Using floral wallpaper behind the headboard when there really is no room to hang a picture or mirror is an easy way to keep this room from being boring.

Have you thought of a place in your home for wallpaper?

Monday, September 29, 2014

Decorating for Fall? Try something like this.........

 Waking up to cooler mornings, going to football games, and noticing all the cute new boots in the shoe department.  That's how I know Fall is here.  Of course we still have a few warm days left, but there is something special about the changing seasons.


 Look around your home, does it still have a summer feel to the decor?  Adding in just a few of the right decorative pieces will make it feel more cozy and inviting.  Try replacing one your regular decorative dishes with a wooden bowl.  The natural wood will quickly add a warm vibe to the table.  Of course a few orange flowers, berries and stems make a great casual centerpiece.  Our richly embroidered table runners would  look rich across the foot of your bed over those extra blankets you'll be putting out.



Don't forget the pillows.  Just a few throw pillows with deeper colors and/or more texture will make the sofa look so much more inviting in the evening, and a throw or two added in the mix is even better. 

 
Cooper and gold add still another layer of richness to your Fall decor.  We have several sizes of platters in the shape of leaves that would look great on your coffee table and to as a serving piece at your next get-together.  Extra baskets sitting around to hold fruit, magazines, or those extra throws you cuddle up with when you watch TV will also add to the look.



Let us know how you decorate for Fall! 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Need another reason for a custom sized sofa?

Not every home is a standard size.  Some have smaller rooms and lower ceilings, often referred to as a cottage.  Others have soaring ceilings, oversized windows and a two story fireplace!  If you live in one of the extremes, chances are you have had difficulty finding furniture to fit your home.

Jules Sofa from Hickory Chair


We are just getting started on this living room decor, but from the photo you might think this lovely sofa is a regular size of 83" (a typical length).  However, it's a full 109", made to our exact request by Hickory Chair.  If you could see the oversized kitchen counter in the background, you'd really notice that anything of "standard" size in this living room would be off.  Having an unbalanced room might not be obvious on first look, but it's that nagging thought of "what's wrong with this room, I can't get it to look right" that keeps you scratching your head.

There's much more to talk about when looking for a sofa----color, fabric texture, nailheads or not, contrast cording or not, comfort and cushions----along with the actual dimensions.  Even the so-called standard sized sofas can be wrong for your standard sized room.  Many people assume that and sofa will work, only to see it in their home and realize it is not in proportion to their coffee table or side tables.


Don't spend your time and money working around bad proportions. We can explain all the options to you and find the perfect fit for your home. You might not need a custom sized sofa, but finding the right "standard" sized furniture is an important part of decorating your home.

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