Extending the Life of Your Sofa

Now that  you’ve made the splurge and bought the sofa you absolutely love, you’ll want to take care of it to make sure leads the long, beautiful life it’s intended to! To do that, follow these tips on how to keep your upholstery looking fresh and new.

First of all, research preventative care products to find out what you can use on your sofa. We offer a Gaurdsman Elite Five Year Protection Program, which will protect your upholstery if it is burned, has a food or beverage stain, tears, or other similar issues. For more info, click here. There are other options as well, such as using Scotchgard.

Vacuum cushions and upholstered surfaces about once a week to remove soil, dirt, and dust that easily settles into fabric and gradually wears it down.

Have pets? Sometimes vacuums aren’t able to get rid of their pesky hair. Instead, remove pet hair and dander with a lint brush or rubber dish glove.

Rotate and reverse cushions so the wear spreads evenly.

Be careful about where you position your furniture in a sunny room. Being exposed to strong light every day can effect the quality of your upholstery and dramatically fade the color over time, so keep it out of direct sunlight as much as possible or use drapes to soften the impact.

Have your upholstery professionally cleaned every so often to remove all sorts of dust, dirt, and mites and tighten fibers. This man looks more than happy to clean your sofa!

How do you care for your upholstery?

Photo Credits:

homeguides.sfgate.comfurnituretlc.comrestoringyourfloor.comprotouchfloorcareservices.comengland-furniture-care.comdesiretoinspire.netshannoncleaning.co.uk

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Ten Ways to Update a Rental

If you’re renting, chances are your landlord won’t allow you to make any permanent changes to your home, but don’t let that stop you from making your rental feel like yours!  Here is a list of ten ways to give your rental a customized touch.

One of the first things we notice in apartments that usually needs to be updated is the lighting.  Overhead lighting can actually be pretty simple to change, and makes a world of difference.

Changing the way your walls look will probably make the most dramatic difference.  If you’re not allowed to paint them, consider tacking up wallpaper with pins or applying fabric.  Yes, you read that right, you are able to apply fabric to walls using a lightweight fabric, liquid starch, and a paint roller.  Or, you can even mount fabric up against your wall like it’s a great big curtain, as shown above.

Since we’re on the subject of walls, hanging up artwork or decorating your walls with decals is another great way to make your rental seem more homey.  For ideas on adding artwork to your walls, click here for some great tips!

Using modular furniture in your apartment or rental house is another great way to play with the space.  Depending on the size and shape of the room, you can move the furniture around to suit your needs, and the same furniture can still work in another set-up if you move.

So many apartments have unfortunate carpeting.  While that’s not something you can easily replace, simply buying a cool rug to cover it can make a huge difference.  You can even layer a few rugs for a boho, mismatched look!

Swapping hardware is a fantastic way to give your rental a more updated, high-end look.  Changing doorknobs and cabinet hardware can make a big difference, whether you go with a sleek, midcentury style, traditional cast-iron look, or feminine, decorative hardware.

It seems that apartments just about always come with those standard issue vinyl Venetian blinds or vertical blinds, neither of which are particularly chic.  If you can, replace them with something a little more design-oriented, such as roman shades or wooden shutter blinds.  If you can’t take them down, we suggest making them less noticeable by putting up some simple drapes in front of them instead.

 

If your rental is a loft-like space with lack of actual rooms, divide the area with bookcases or screens.  The lower photo above also shows a fun way to put in your own overhead lighting as well!

For more kitchen counter space, buy a high table or small industrial island.  It’s a great way to create more work areas in the kitchen, especially for those who love to cook!

Another simple, easy way to update your rental is by changing out the fixtures.  Buy a new toilet seat if the one that came with your apartment is sub-par, invest in a great showerhead, or make any other fixture fixes that will make your home feel a little more luxe.  With some items, your landlord may even reimburse you or split the cost!

What things do you want to update in your rental?

Photo Credits:

designsponge.combloodandchampagne.comapartmenttherapy.comhouzz.comsittvancouver.ca, myweddingdecals.combloodandchampagne.comfurnitureconnexion.compinterest.comdesignsponge.comfurnitureconnexion.cominspirebohemia.comwillowdecor.blogspot.comlittlegreennotebook.blogspot.comapartmenttherapy.com12thanda.files.wordpress.com12thanda.files.wordpress.comapartmenttherapy.comremodelista.combhg.combhg.com

Adding Artwork to Your Walls

When decorating a home, it seems that rooms are often filled with furniture and accessories, but the walls can long remain empty.  Figuring out the right way to display artwork can seem like a difficult process, but it doesn’t have to be!  Here are some tips on how to add artwork to your walls in a way that is stylish, practical, and perfect for YOU.

Do you tend to be an organized, type A personality?  If so, you’ll probably want order and organization in your home, and that will include how things are hung on a wall.  Hanging a collection of artwork in a grid on the wall will look lovely and professional.  Whether you are framing and hanging professional artwork, vintage prints from the flea market, or even home photos, arranging it in a grouping with the edges lining up will give a polished look.

If you’re serious about your artwork, you’ll want to measure it out so that the center is at 57″ (the average person’s eye height).  This is how galleries and museums hang their artwork, and that way your pieces will all line up with the center at the same height.  Of course, if you are much taller or shorter, you can adjust so the center of the art is at your eye level.

Can’t commit to what you want to display?  Then shelves may be your best bet.  Installing shallow shelves on a wall makes it easy to change up your artwork displays.

Do you like a little chaos and have a large collection of artwork?  If you’re more on the free spirited side, try hanging your artwork in a large cluster on the wall. There should still be some loose organization if you choose this method, but it will give more of a funky, boho vibe.  Have your artwork start and end at around the same point, and have the space between artwork similar in size so there is some consistency in the look.

If you have a large piece of art, you may not even have to hang it!  This colorful abstract painting looks great simply propped against the wall.

Don’t have any art, but still want something interesting on your walls?  Try this idea and hang a group of empty frames instead!  Since the frames are so ornately designed but match the color of the wall, they add a whimsical touch and texture for a unique look.

If you want your walls to feel decorative but don’t want or have artwork, consider wallpapering them instead.  There’s a huge array of wallpaper styles and prints you can buy, from graphic patterns to elegant chinoiserie to photographic digital prints.

Adding decals to your walls can be another fun, easy way to dress them up!  As a bonus, they’re usually made from vinyl and easily removable, so you can switch them out without hassle when you’re ready for a change.

Think outside the box and do something completely different!  Here, unable to decide on a color to paint her walls, a woman ended up covering her walls with paint chips for a vibrant, one-of-a-kind look and her very own artistic collage!  If you don’t have artwork you love, visit Furniture Connexion to check out some fun prints for your home!

How do you display your artwork?

Photo Credits:

jonathanadler.comniagaranovice.blogspot.comlookbook.elledecor.comlovelyclusters.tumblr.comwww.planete-deco.frhabituallychic.blogspot.comwww.stylinrooms.dethedecorista.tumblr.cometsy.comhilizapple.blogspot.com

Summertime Entertaining Guide

Summer is officially here and that means it’s time to start entertaining!  Whether you are planning to entertain outdoors, indoors, or a combination of both, here is a great little guide to get you and your home party-ready.

If you have a sideboard, this is a great piece to set up a buffet or bar on, and perfect for hiding away items you want protected.  I love our reclaimed sideboard to add an ethnic element to any room!

Having a bunch of people over, but don’t have a ton of places to sit?  Don’t worry that you suddenly need to buy another sofa or chairs!  Floor pillows are a great, inexpensive way to provide additional seating and create a relaxed, boho vibe for your party.

Get creative with floral accents!  Although a regular vases of flowers is always pretty, why not try something different?  The floor vase on top of the table with enormous flowers makes a bold and beautiful statement! Likewise, baby’s breath morphs from boring to breathtaking when turned into a hanging floral ball.

A large table is perfect for parties, whether you need a place for your guests to sit or an area to serve your food.  Adding chalkboard paper to display your culinary creations and drinks adds a fun twist AND protects your table!

To me, lanterns and summer go hand in hand.  Whether you have bright colorful lanterns or a cluster of white ones, they’re a great way to add decoration and light to your fiesta.

Just because you don’t own outdoor furniture doesn’t mean your furniture can’t become that – simply take it outside!  Adding some furniture that would normally be inside to the outdoors creates a festive, lighthearted mood.  While I wouldn’t advise moving your expensive white linen sectional sofa to the back lawn, a lightweight chair (such as the cute one picture above) or settee moved outside could be a great way to add outdoor seating.  Just make sure there’s no rain in the forecast – this is Portland, after all!

Photo Credits:

postcardsandpretties.blogspot.com, ruemag.com, furnitureconnexion.com, apartmenttherapy.com25.media.tumblr.com, ceciliafox.comrock-ur-party.tablespoon.com, furnitureconnexion.com, pinterest.com, traditionalhome.com, oncewed.com, furnitureconnexion.com

Working Color Into Your Casa

As soon as I walk outside, I am greeted with splashes of color – bright orange poppies, vibrant green shrubbery, deep red roses, perfect pink peonies – the list goes on and on.  Seeing so much color in the outdoors makes me long for the same pops of color inside, and luckily, there are many easy ways to do this that don’t involve a bucket of paint.  See below for some tips on incorporating color into your home.

I love having one (or two) bright upholstered items.  However, having bright upholstery means that the rest of the room should be fairly neutral and complement (but not compete with) the colorful pieces you add in, so keep that in mind when you’re redecorating.

Adding some funky, colorful pillows are the easiest way to bring in some color and switch up the look of a room.  Imagine how different the sofa above would look with simple black or white pillows, or even with pretty floral pillows like the one pictured from Wanderloot.com.

Don’t forget your floors!  Adding a rug, whether geometric, floral, Oriental, or traditional, is a great way to mix in color.

Add accessories!  The rooms above look so bright, but it’s only small items that give the room color – pillows, pottery, plants, art, wall decor, boxes, flowers, and lamps.  Mix in bold accessories to add a punch of color to an otherwise neutral room.  I love the idea of this cobalt blue tribal blanket from Wanderloot.com in an otherwise all white room!

One of my favorite ways to add color is with art.  There is nothing more stunning than a bright, all white room with vibrant, colorful artwork on the walls.

Another awesome (and easy) way to add color is to switch the drapery!  This is an especially great idea if you still have heavy, dark curtains hanging from the winter.  Switching them out with something light and bright will completely transform the room in a wonderful way!  Now, how do you plan to add more color into your home?

Photo Credits:

lonnymag.com, gabbagabbagorg.com, lonnymag.com, furnitureconnexion.com, lonnymag.com, wanderloot.com, desiretoinspire.net, elledecor.com, pinterest.com, wanderloot.com, cocokelly.blogspot.com, elledecor.com, shelterinteriordesign.blogspot.com

A Reclaimed Coffee Table 10 Different Ways

I’m a big fan of our vintage reclaimed coffee table for its simple, straightforward design that blends seamlessly with so many different styles of decorating.  Here are some examples of coffee tables with a look similar to this one and the different ways people worked it into their interior design.

How would this coffee table look in YOUR living room???

Photo Credits:

Furnitureconnexion.com, apartmenttherapy.com, harrisondesignassociates.com, lonnymag.com, decorpad.com, lillyunique.comtobifarley.com, elledecor.com, pinterest.com, bhg.com,  decorpad.com