December 2012

Jen Jones

organize this: home office!

The new year is quickly approaching and once January hits, the first thing many begin to think about is something near and dear to my heart; getting organized!  It’s a blank slate to the year, a fresh start and a way to analyze your spaces and use of time.

One of the first rooms I look at when the new year hits, is the home office.  It is where we manage schedules and bills and all things household management related.  Here are the key items I recommend for not only an organized office, but a happy, comfortable and functional one that you love to spend time in as well.

 

A place to work.  The foundation to a home office is the workspace.  It is important to select something that is large enough to write on and hold a computer screen or laptop.  Desks come in a variety of sizes, shapes and colors, but remember to think function first!

 

Task lighting.  Proper lighting when working is important to keep your eyes smiling.  Lamps that have the ability to swing or adjust are a great way to get the light focussed right where you need it!

 

A cozy place to sit.  A comfortable chair is essential when using your workspace for longer periods of time.  If you work from home or spend a few hours at a time working on bills and household tasks, consider chairs with cushion and padding and that are ergonomically designed for an office space.

 

Vertical space.  When space is limited, or when office supplies are in abundance, think about the space above the desk.  It is amazing how much storage can be packed onto a couple of shelves, a hutch or cabinets mounted to the wall.

 

In and out boxes.  Managing the paper piles that come with a home office, will ensure that the desk is not a discouraging place, but a spot that blends seamlessly with the rest of the home and that welcomes you when it is time to get to work.  Giving yourself a place to quickly drop mail and important papers, will keep things orderly until you have time to devote to them.

 

Filing system.  Rule number one is to go digital with papers when you can, but for all of those other important documents, setting up a good filing system will help you locate things in a jiff!  Filing options are endless, from desktop organizers to desks with built in cabinets, organized papers will keep you grinning year after year.

 

Desktop organizer.  Keeping the day to day goodies on your desktop is a natural and smart way to use the space efficiently {vs. tossing everything inside drawers}.  To keep stamps, pens, pencils, stationary and envelopes organized and accessible, desktop organizers are the key to organized desktop success!

 

Memo board.  We receive important correspondence in the mail and in the kid’s backpacks on a daily basis.  To be sure that all dates get recorded, that schedules are noted, permission slips are signed and important details are remembered, a memo board is a wonderful solution.  You can quickly pin or tack up documents that need immediate attention.

 

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Joni Lay

new year’s nursery: mod princess

Thinking about Christmas and the New Year and all the festivities around the corner makes me want lots of glitter and metallics around . . . thus, a nursery inspired by such a palette, with a modern touch to keep it from being too girly.  (Love the “dipped” dresser!  What a fun way to add a hard edge to such a feminine piece, and the tailored stripe on the chair is the perfect complement.) baby room ideasSources, from top left: (1) Cinderella’s Castle; (2) Hammered Pendant; (3) Love print; (4) C’est Tort; (5) For Like Ever; (6) Chateau de Chambord; (7) Neuschwanstein; (8) Florence & the Machine; (9) Vintage Crest; (10) Sparrow Crib; (11) Wild Things Crown; (12) Gilded Lamp; (13) Sparkle Pillows; (14) Dipped French Dresser; (15) Tailored Chair; (16) Honeycomb Rug; (17) City Baby Crib Sheet

Hope you enjoy!  ~Joni, Lay Baby Lay


Style Spotter Editor

Built-In Kitchen and Bath Shelving

Being a kitchen and bath editor, I see more kitchens and baths than I ever thought possible (I love my job!), and although each room is different, they start to feel and look the same. So, I’m always searching for something that makes the space stand out: a great use of color, an excellent tile backsplash, or, in this case, built-in open shelving. Open shelving never fails to provide an opportunity to personalize a space, while built-in shelving has a more high-end look (even when it’s not an expensive custom design). The result is a simple book shelf, bold accent wall–or somewhere in between–that looks great and lets you show off your character.

This setup takes advantage of a kitchen nook by adding countertop space and sleek storage. Essentials are kept behind closed doors below, while a cookbook library and stand-out serving pieces add color and texture to the modern design with traditional decor.

In some cases, it’s as much about what you have on your open shelves as what’s behind them. The unembellished cabinetry in this kitchen is clean-lined and contemporary, but a slightly rustic wallpaper keeps the space from feeling too edgy. The subtle pattern lets the items adorning the shelves take center stage in the decor.

 

Then there’s the pièce de résistance of built-in open shelving: striking composition, eye-catching location, and perfectly picked decoration. This floor-to-ceiling display creates an elegant backdrop for an in-kitchen breakfast nook. The furniture-like surrounding gives the table it’s own atmosphere that feels separate from the kitchen, enhancing the dining experience. The mix of colors, textures, and shapes used to decorate the shelves complements the room–and homeowner’s personality.

Finally, I couldn’t leave this exceptional space behind. Most often we see towels, glass canisters, and soaps on display in the bath–and rightfully so. But this bath uses a more sophisticated approach. Although I wouldn’t call this splash-proof or kid-friendly, there’s just something calming about seeing a tub designed as a quiet retreat.

While it’s admittedly easier to plan open shelving into a new kitchen design or remodel, you can add it to the space you have, too. Can you carve book nook into a wall that’s lacking character? Replace a portion of a long run of cabinets with open shelving to break up the dull doors? Maybe just give built-ins a try by removing a couple cabinet doors to open up shelving that’s already part of your space. Whatever you choose, it’s a blank canvas for you to perk up your kitchen or bath. And if you’re looking for tips to get your open shelving looking stellar, check out this helpful post from Centsational Style and BHG blogger, Kate. She’ll help you find the perfect things to display–and how to display them.

-Kristina McGuirk, Assistant Editor, Kitchen and Bath Ideas

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Style Spotter Editor

2013 Pantone Color of the Year!

Pantone, the keepers of everything color, just announced their 2013 color of the year. And — drum roll, please — it’s emerald! This lush, luxe green is earthy yet sophisticated, with a tone that calls to mind lush velvet and sparkly gemstones. It can be dressed up (tufted couches and silky fabrics) or dressed down (camp blankets and botanical charts). What’s your favorite way to incorporate emerald?

To check out my shopping guide for all things emerald, click here.

- Alexa Fornoff, SHOP BHG editor

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Chelsey Andrews

DIY-ify: Show off those family photos!

1. Artificial Wreath, Christmas Lights Etc. 2. Ornament Set, Target 3. Christmas Photo, The Paper Mama 4. Wood Clothespins, Target 5. Glitter Ribbon Spool, Joann

 

How do you showcase your photos from the year? Well, I love how Better Homes and Gardens shared their photos on a wreath and I want to share how you can create your own version of this!

How to:

- Pick out your wreath. Live or artificial? I love the smell of live wreaths, but an artificial wreath will last longer.

- Print out your favorite family photos. The size will depend on the size of your wreath.

- Create 5 bows with some pretty and festive ribbon.

- Attach your bows and ball ornaments to the wreath. If you have a live wreath: tie the ribbon and ball ornaments on with wire. If you have an artificial wreath: you can still attach these with wire, or make it super simple and hot glue on the embellishments.

- Using your clothespins, clip on your photos.

- Hang and enjoy!

Now everyone can enjoy your photos! If you did take your OWN holiday photos this year, I have a Holiday Photo Challenge going on RIGHT now. You could win some neat prizes, and you don’t have to have a blog. You’ll just need someway to share your photo (flickr, tumblr, instagram…). If I’ve captured your interest, you can click here for a bit more info. I hope to see you!

- Chelsey, The Paper Mama


Nicole Balch

Get the Look: Hot Pink Christmas

Get the Look: Better Homes and Gardens Hot Pink Christmas

I love to decorate with non-traditional Christmas colors in my home. Specifically, pink. Mine tends to be on the lighter side, but when I found this living room decked out in hot pink for the holidays, I was smitten. I immediately set about figuring out how to get the look!

Get the Look: BHG Hot Pink Christmas

  1. White Feather Tree
  2. Fresh Boxwood Wreath
  3. Ribbon (for the lampshade and the wreath)
  4. Nikki Table Lamp
  5. Pink Ornaments
  6. Sutton Sofette
  7. Brinkley Red Pillow
  8. Magenta Mohair Throw
  9. Flokati Rug

 

– Nicole Balch, Making it Lovely