Category Archives: How-To

5 Ways to Use Pillows for a Seasonal Pop of Color

Decorating, How-To | | | 3 Replies

We love using pillows to bring new life into our homes each season. When it comes to adding festivity, color and seasonal punch, few accents are as easy and as powerful as a perfectly placed pillow. Read on to discover 5 simple, statement-making tips to accessorizing with pillows in your home.

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Mix up sizes and shapes. Choose pillows in an assortment of sizes and shapes to mix things up. Many decorative pillows come in a standard 18-by-18 inch square, so seek out other shapes and sizes for added visual dimension. Bolsters, round pillows, lumbar pillows and oblong pillows can bring variety to your decor with very little effort.

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Blend different textures and textiles. Since pillows are a relatively affordable, easy way to change your decor from season to season, they’re a great excuse to take a risk. Don’t just stick to something simple here — mix and match solids, prints, silks, linens, cottons and more.

Pull from your room’s color. Choose an accent color that’ll bring your entire room to life. Try pulling hues from a favorite piece of art in your room — you can still choose bold hues that don’t feel disconnected.

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Be playful, not random. Play on the unexpected, but don’t let your pillow choices feel random. Mixing patterns can give your room a more eclectic look, but if you decide to go that route, keep your pillows in the same size for continuity. If you’d rather mix up sizes, make sure there’s at least one color in common amongst all your pillows.

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Even or odd? There are all sorts of rules about an even number of pillows versus an odd number of pillows. We say, do what feels right for you! If you enjoy a more eclectic look, try an odd placement. We like nestling two pillows in one corner of the sofa, and one pillow in the other. If you’re a little more traditional, stick to even numbers — two pillows on either side of the couch.

 

Bath Reno 101: How to Start Planning

Decorating, How-To | | | 1 Reply

Remodeling a bathroom is no easy feat. It involves a lot of planning, plenty of patience and a clear vision. With so many wires, pipes and materials in one space, there’s a lot that can go wrong. Before you start jumping into your bathroom renovation, sit down and take the time to plan. Don’t know where to start? Take a look at our four tips for bathroom remodel planning, below.

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1. Determine your budget. This seems like a no-brainer, but your remodel budget should actually be more than one big number. This isn’t just about how much you can (or want) to spend overall, but where the money should go. What’s your priority for this bathroom? Would you rather get a new tub, or splurge on tile? Do you need professional help, or are you going to DIY it? Answering these types of questions can help you determine how your budget should be allocated.

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2. How much time do you have? If you’re already in your “forever” home and you have more than one bathroom, you can probably take your time with this remodel and make sure it turns out perfectly. But that’s not always the case — for those trying to move into a new house as soon as possible, or for those with a single bathroom, you might need to make some compromises on design to get your bathroom ready in time. If you’re on a time crunch, be prepared to cross some luxuries off your list.

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3. Consider style and practicality. Deciding on your dream bathroom style isn’t quite the same as picking out new pillows for your living room. You might have a dream of a pristine all-white marble bath in mind, but the reality of three school-aged boys might put a damper in your plans. Don’t be afraid to dream, but be practical, too. You want your new bathroom to last!

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4. Don’t forget safety. In a room with water, electricity and plenty of potentially slippery materials, it should come as no surprise that a bathroom can be a very dangerous place. Consider non-slip materials, think about proper ventilation and make sure everything will be wired and plumbed according to code.

Read the rest of our Bath Reno 101 Series:
Choosing a Console
How to Choose Lighting

 

 

Designer Suzanne Tucker’s Tips to Refresh and Renew Your Home for Spring

Decorating, How-To | | | 1 Reply

There’s something about spring that gives us the decorating itch. When the weather turns warm and the world starts to feel fresh and new, we want to refresh our homes, too. But how can you do that without spending a lot of money or time on a full home makeover? We talked to interior designer Suzanne Tucker to get her professional advice. Read on for her tips to help you refresh and renew your home for spring!

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Q: Why do you think so many people feel the need to refresh their homes for spring?

A: I think it’s a natural renewal process we go through – out with the old and in with the new – the lure of “spring cleaning.” As the weather gets warmer and the quality of light changes, fresh colors emerge in nature and it makes sense to bring elements into your home that speak to these changes.

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Q: What do you like to do to your home in the springtime?

A: Other than the thorough spring cleaning, I clear off table tops and bring in lots of fresh flowers in lighter vases and containers and I embrace all the outdoor-indoor living elements: furniture, cushions, lanterns, outdoor textiles…

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Q: What are a few of your favorite, budget-friendly ways to bring new life into homes for spring?

A: Changing out bedding, pillow covers and throws is a quick and easy trick to instantly refresh a room, along with a simple hit of color with fresh flowers.

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Q: What types of colors are you drawn to this season?

A: I’m always drawn to luscious colors and, with the changing light and longer days, I look to nature – fresh greens, coral peonies, lilacs, parrot tulips, chartreuse moss… all speak of spring and summer.

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Q: What are a few ways homeowners can implement these new colors into their homes without buying a bunch of new furniture?

A: A fresh coat of paint makes for an easy update, as does a coordinating pillow or throw. I pay close attention to the quality and color of the light sources in a house; optimizing your light can make a world of difference to the way color works in a room!

You might also like: The Power of the Perfect Accessory

Bring the Indoors Out! 5 Tips for Designing Your Outdoor Living Space

Decorating, How-To | | | 4 Replies

When the weather turns warm and we start to expand our living spaces outdoors again, it’s time to tie both indoors and out together. This spring and summer, we want to help you bring the indoors out! Embracing your outdoor spaces with the same mentality as your indoor decor will help you create a comfortable and cozy outdoor living space that you and your family won’t want to leave.

Take a look at our five top tips for putting together the perfect outdoor space this season.

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1. Layout.  Take the same amount of consideration when laying out your outdoor spaces as you did with your indoors. Don’t just schlep your new outdoor sofa into a corner of the patio — think about traffic patterns, view, conversation and symmetry.

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2. Color. When the weather’s warm, traffic tends to flow in and out of the house with ease. Shouldn’t your color palette do the same? Tie your outdoor decor to your indoor with pillows, textiles and your furniture material palette for a seamless design.

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3. Accessories. Today, outdoor accessories aren’t limited to beach balls and pool noodles. Outdoor lanterns, dishes, vases and side tables are built to withstand a summer outside. Look for accents in the same style and palette as your home’s interior to create a cohesive look.

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4. Textiles. We’re not just talking about pillows! Use your outdoor cushions, rugs, towels, umbrellas and poufs to blend your indoor decor with your outdoor decor.

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5. Ambiance. Above all else, a successful outdoor space is all about the ambiance. Your home has a unique feel — bring that same feel to your outdoor space, too. Do you love a little romance? Hang string lights on your covered porch. Do you appreciate comfort above all else? Fill your outdoor space with comfy pillows and plush cushions.

You might also like: The Glow of Summer: How to Decorate with Lanterns

Sofa Shopping Guide Part 3: 5 Things to Think About Before Choosing a Sofa Fabric

Decorating, How-To | | | 2 Replies

Fabric is often the last thing we think about when choosing a sofa, but it’s one of the most vital parts of this important piece of furniture. Choosing the right fabric for you, your home, your family and your lifestyle will impact your sofa’s visual appeal and longevity.

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We spoke with our upholstery expert, Eric, the General Manager of our exclusive Sutter Street furniture workshop in North Carolina, to get his professional tips on choosing a sofa fabric. Take a look at his top tips, below!

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What will you use this sofa for? Think about where you plan on putting your new sofa before choosing its fabric. Is it going in your bedroom? Pick something plush and luxurious, since you’ll really be the only one using it. Is it going in a living room for a family of six? You might want to choose something sturdy that cleans easily, like one of our Performance Fabrics.

Think about your home’s palette. Color is just as important as the type of fabric you choose. Are you in your “forever” home? Think carefully about what will go with your home’s current, and potential future color palettes. 

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Consider neutrals for longevity.  “In my opinion, I think you get more longevity out of a sofa if you’re picking a good neutral fabric,” Eric says. “A sofa is really like a canvas for a room. You can put a throw on it, you can put decorative pillows on it — you can go a hundred different directions stylistically if you want.”

Be honest about your lifestyle. “Where are you in your lifestyle?” Eric asks. “If you’re young, with small kids, or if you’re going to have children soon, that might change what you want to put on your sofa.”

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Understand fabric maintenance. “Fine things require maintenance,” Eric says.  “You have to maintain the furniture if you want to get the proper longevity out of it. You’ll need to fluff it, flip the cushions and vacuum down in those crevices and creases.”

Read more about our Performance Fabric Collection here to find out which Pottery Barn fabric is right for you.

You might also like:
Sofa Shopping Guide Part 1: Know What You Want
Sofa Shopping Guide Part 2: Measure Your Space

The Glow of Summer: How to Decorate with Lanterns

Decorating, How-To | | | 3 Replies

It’s no secret that we love lanterns in the summer. Our latest collection speaks for itself! Glowing lanterns create the perfect ambiance indoors and outdoors, adding summer’s warmth to each room in the home.

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Take a look at some of our favorite ways to use lanterns both indoors and out to see how you can add a dose of summer style to your house.

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Add light to your living room. Replace a couple of your table lamps with large, metal lanterns filled with flameless candles. They’ll add the same ambient light to your living room with an entirely different look.

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Style your bedroom. We love how these two ceramic lanterns add color and warmth to a bedroom dresser vignette. The tray of coral completes the scene perfectly!

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Accent the outdoors. Lanterns are great outdoor accents. Use flameless candles to add light to your patio or pathway on warm summer nights.

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Hang them from the rafters. Try something traditional and hang lanterns from rope or ribbon. Hanging them at alternating heights will create a slightly more modern touch.

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Dress up a coffee table. A simple coffee table vignette with a lantern or two is all you need in an outdoor living room.

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Light up at dinnertime. Small, candlelit lanterns on tabletops make indoor or outdoor dining look romantic and feel special.

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… Or don’t light them at all! We love filling lanterns with favorite decorative objects. Use shells and coral in the summer, and ornaments and faux snow in the winter!

Tell us: How do you like to use lanterns in your home?

You might also like: The Power of the Perfect Accessory

Sofa Shopping Guide Part 2: Measure Your Space

Decorating, How-To | | | 2 Replies

It’s finally happening — your dream sofa has arrived at your home. It’s gorgeous! Now, it’s time to get it off the truck and into your living room. But, as anyone who has moved larger furniture knows, this is easier said than done. There’s so much that can go wrong — a misstep on the stairwell, a too-small front door or a mis-measured room can all have disastrous results.

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We spoke with Eric, the General Manager of our exclusive furniture workshop in North Carolina, Sutter Street, to get the scoop on how to make sure you find a sofa that fits your home’s size (and style).

Make a template. Instead of just guessing where your sofa will go and hoping it’ll fit, measure and make a template to get an accurate idea of how your sofa will fit in your home. “I’ll make a template out of butcher paper and lay it out where I want the sofa to be,” says Eric. “I just did this for an outdoor area where I want furniture to go. It helps to make sure it fits, that there’s room to get around it and that it doesn’t swallow the space.”

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Measure your doorway. There’s no worse feeling than having your dream sofa arrive and realize that it can’t (and won’t) fit through your living room door. Measure your doorway width and compare it to the sofa width.

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Give yourself some wiggle room.  If your doorway and your sofa are exactly the same width, you might not want to chance it. Struggling, pushing and shoving your sofa into your living room could cause some damage to the upholstery.

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Measure your home. “Walk the path that the sofa will have to take to get into your house,” says Eric. “Understand that path, and think about how the sofa will have to get into your room.”

You might also like: Sofa Shopping Guide Part 1: Know What You Want

Stay tuned for part 3 of our sofa shopping series next week!