BHG Style Spotters

The Hottest Trends for You and Your Home

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pencil shavings studio outdoor update-4

We’re in the midst of updating our backyard patio, especially now that our youngest is big enough to enjoy playing outside. We found a pair of chairs and a low outdoor coffee table on our local Craigslist for a steal and I’m amazed how a simple, relatively inexpensive update has brought us so much more enjoyment of our patio. And with a little creativity, you can create a beautiful outdoor living space for the whole family to enjoy as the weather turns warm. Here’s a roundup of 11 easy ideas to update your patio or porch.

cool pendant funky mismatched furniture

Use unexpected pieces to bring personality to your porch. An old trunk and mismatched side tables add a lot of style and function (think toy storage!). Plus they could easily be sourced from antique shops for not a lot of money and easily updated with a coat of paint.

ceiling fans southern porch

Just because you’re outdoors doesn’t mean you can’t have great lighting. In a covered porch or patio, set the mood with a pair of lamps flanking an outdoor sofa.

curtains on porch

Why not add outdoor curtains to your front porch? They’re a great way to block harsh sunlight and to provide privacy from too-close neighbors.

dining room french chairs lighting

String lights mounted overhead bring a soft warm glow to your evening dinner party. Wall-mounted sconces embedded in a greenery-laden wall bring an extra layer of polish to the dining space.

funky side tables

Have plenty of little side tables that can double as seating in a pinch. By choosing items that can do double duty, you get maximum bang for your buck.


Outdoor pillows are a great way to provide a comfy place for your guests to relax. Don’t be afraid to have a rainbow of hues. These brightly colored pillows bring an all-white deck to life but stay chic since they’re all the same pattern. Remember – repetition is always your friend when it comes to design.

low seating umbrella repetition

A long low outdoor sofa is shaded under a broad outdoor umbrella. Sofas are a great way to offer a lot of seating and lounge space – it’s the perfect place to catch an afternoon nap in the breeze.

mirror patio

Try an unexpected indoor element outside: a big round mirror is a beautiful addition to the brick wall and outdoor sofa.

mix and match patterns colorful floor

An indoor/outdoor rug will make any outdoor space feel more cohesive and intentional. Plus it will also keep your feet from burning on hot concrete.

orange and blue patio

Have a consistent color scheme for your outdoor living room. Just like any interior room, a tight color palette will bring a sense of continuity and intention. Balance it with a neutral to give your eye a rest (like the white ceramic garden stool and clapboard walls of the house).

outdoor upholstery

Don’t be afraid to try upholstered furniture in outdoor fabrics, particularly on a covered patio. Specially designed to wick away moisture and resist fading, there’s a wealth of comfortable lounge furniture in a surprising array of fabrics. (via)

unexpected textiles

Even the smallest of patios can be made extra cozy with the addition of fun textiles, an array of plants, and mood-setting lighting (check out those mismatched candelabras!). (via)

What are your favorite ways to beautify your outdoor space? Share in the comments!

coral paint colors

Not quite orange and not quite pink, coral is one of those nebulous colors that comes in and out of style. In the 80s and 90s, it was probably best described as peach – my fourth grade teacher was famously obsessed with peach and had everything including her house and her car painted in her signature shade. One of the big trends I happily saw at High Point was this fabulously fun color popping up on everything from upholstery to rugs to lamps. So I started to pin some color palette inspiration, starting with the perfect pairing of coral and emerald green inspired by none other than the Beverly Hills Hotel. Arguably the most iconic hotel on the West Coast, its fame is partly due to its coral color scheme that coats everything from the exterior facade to the bedrooms.

Polo Lounge Patio_Alcoves


I love the modern interpretation of their palm frond wallpaper in the bar scene below.

beverly hills hotel bar


You can’t help but be happy when surrounded with this tropical color scheme.

paper and stitch coral frond


And how beautiful is it on this building I passed by in Grand Cayman?


In real life, you don’t have to go quite so over the top if you’re a little nervous about committing to color. Coral is soft and feminine all while adding a sophisticated calm to a space. Test it out in small batches by adding a few throw pillows or some abstract art.

tobi fairley

In both of these bedrooms (Tobi Fairley above and BHG below) it’s softened a bit and it acts as a background to the more saturated emerald green and overall visual grounding of white. Don’t feel like you have to stick with the exact same shade in a room; experiment with varying tones to bring depth and dimension. And choose a contrasting neutral, whether it be white or black to give your eye a break.

bhg bedroom

Why not try a punchy coral front door flanked by a couple of palms?



But in the go-big-or-go-home category, check out this gorgeous coral watercolor wallpaper by Black Crow Studios. This potentially could have been majorly overwhelming to a room, but it’s tempered with the white wainscoting, ceiling treatment, and contrasting chartreuse bed.


I can’t wait to experiment with this color more! Will you be decorating with coral?

bhg roman shades pencil shavings studio 3

My current favorite pin right now is this stunning built-in desk scene above. Those coral zebra stripe roman shades are a total show stopper, are they not? There’s just something about a tailored pretty Roman shade, which naturally led me down the rabbit hole of window treatments. They’re not the best solution for every single window situation, but they can bring a ton of personality and function in the right spot.

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If you’re working with a tight space or want a more streamlined polish to your room, a Roman shade is a great way to cover your windows with maximum style. They provide privacy and light control to almost any room. Tailored to fit your individual window, they’re great for a space where traditional curtains simply won’t work, such as in this built-in bookcase (above), or in a place where you want to highlight the architecture of a room (as in the scenario with our zebra-patterned friends at the top).

bhg roman shades pencil shavings studio

I love them because they are a great way to experiment with color and pattern – it’s like the perfect little finishing detail that can absolutely make a room memorable. If you’re color or pattern-phobic, you can commit to a relatively small amount of visual real estate without feeling like you’re going overboard.

A matching headboard and Roman shade in this bedroom (below) bring in repetition to an eclectic aesthetic.

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But you can also experiment with different trimmings to get a completely custom look too. This would be easy to recreate with a solid store-bought shade and some grosgrain ribbon to compliment your room’s color scheme. The monochromatic color palette of this room below is echoed in the Roman shade and matching cushion.

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bhg roman shades

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Roman shades are great for bathrooms as they can soften the space while still remaining streamlined.

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If you’ve got multiple windows to cover, a Roman shade can be a great solution without adding a lot of visual bulk.

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Most of these spaces could’ve gone without window treatments, but the Roman shades really do bring in a softness that would have been missing otherwise.

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But don’t feel stuck with only fabric options – natural bamboo shades add warmth and texture to a room, especially if you want a more beachy vibe, and they allow the light to filter through the windows beautifully too.

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Love Roman shades? A few more posts from around the blogosphere: DIY Roman Shades via Jenny Komenda, Everything You want to know about Roman Shades via House of Jade Interiors, and another DIY roman shade tutorial. Happy hunting!


By now you’ve probably seen the announcement that Pantone’s 2016 Color of the Year is actually two colors: Serenity (an icy calm blue) and Rose Quartz (an equally pale blush pink). As a color lover, I’m definitely a fan of both but I’m especially excited about Serenity as it’s one of my favorite colors in fashion and interiors.

Serenity has a lavender cast to it which some people might be nervous about. But there’s nothing babyish about this blue. Think bright summer hydrangeas, shutters in the south of France! It’s surprisingly versatile as it can be paired with plenty other colors to create different moods and is as much at home in the kitchen as it is in a nursery. It’s calming with other neutrals like white or beige. But it can also skew punchy and bold with orange or hot pink. (My personal favorite is with a cherry tomato red)

My current Serenity obsession is the Anthropologie Kettleby sofa in linen. I’ve had a long love affair with it ever since I first laid eyes on it in a local store. I’m itching to design an entire room around it – but if you’re nervous about committing to colorful furniture, you could always test it out in other forms (sconce // pillow (VELVET!!!) // desk // lamp).


It’s not just upholstery I’m obsessed with in this color. A quick perusal of my favorites on Pinterest revealed that I apparently have a thing for Serenity blue doors (like the one below from here).


An all-Serenity blue kitchen (below) feels chic and sophisticated with brass fixtures and natural wood floors laid in a herringbone pattern.


It’s also a natural pick for a bathroom like the one below completely saturated in color from ceiling to floor (via Lonny). Oh so chic with a Scandinavian vibe.


Or perhaps go little more playful with stripes of tile mix-and-matched with a floral wallpaper.


But my absolute favorite bathroom right now is Emily Henderson’s bathroom renovation. That scalloped tile is divine and feels upscale yet still whimsical. I don’t know that I’d ever want to leave that shower. It’s periwinkle perfection.


Finally, think about bringing color into your space in an unexpected way by painting your ceiling like this master bedroom from BHG below. Find inspiration in the traditional Southern front porch with a painted blue ceiling – it’s reputed to be a “harbinger of good luck” according to Sherwin Williams’ history of porch ceilings.


Here’s to a happy new year full of color and cheer – will you be trying out Serenity blue?

buffalo check wallpaper

Once fall rolls around and turns into winter, I find myself gravitating aesthetically towards buffalo check anything (check out that wallpaper above!). More than ever, you can find buffalo check on practically everything from fashion (like these adorable J.Crew vests) to tree skirts and stockings. Simply put, buffalo check brings in some holiday cheer and a healthy punch of graphic pattern along with a classic American design sensibility.


Buffalo check is cousins with the more spring-y gingham. (Often gingham appears in a smaller scale while buffalo check is big and bold.) Most often buffalo check will be found in red/black and navy/white, although it can come in many colorways in a more contemporary riff. If you’re a history buff, I really enjoyed reading this little spotlight on buffalo check at Tidbits & Twine. Apparently buffalo check dates back to the 17th century and was made popular by Queen Charlotte and was even used in decor at Colonial Williamsburg! Woolrich, who designed the blankets in my lake house guest bedroom above, has a buffalo check shirt in its archives from the mid 1800s.

Buffalo check can feel modern and fresh despite its traditional roots. I love it paired with the white shiplap walls and simple farmhouse table.



But it’s also fun when created in an unexpected colorway (pink!).



Play around with scale if you love patterns. You can easily mix and match buffalo check in the same colorway for a new result. I love the emerald green with this – it feels old school and campy for a boy’s bedroom.



Another fun play on patterns with the bold stripe red chair.



Red buffalo check curtains bring some Christmas cheer to this pretty country kitchen along with the twin wreaths in the windows.



Ticking stripe is also a favorite with buffalo check in a more casual country setting.



But if your aesthetic leans more polished and contemporary, look for textiles that have been slightly reinterpreted, like this watercolor-inspired buffalo check fabric. The legs on the ottomans are more streamlined to continue the sleeker and sophisticated look of the room.



Finally, for the ultimate in casual luxury, this marble buffalo check floor on the diagonal provides a major graphic accent to an otherwise simple space. Wouldn’t this be amazing in a lake house? It’s like a checkerboard floor totally reimagined. I can’t get enough of this one!



Hip hip hooray for buffalo check!

Time for a Christmas confession: I have never decorated with evergreen garlands. Because in my mind, that was so old school and traditional and I wanted something different and original! But there’s a reason it’s a Christmas classic and now that I’m coming around to the whole look, I’ve pulled together some fun ways to use this natural beauty in an all-new way.

The graphic designer in me loves anything bold and statement-making, and this beautiful DIY star wreath on a Finnish blog is simply stunning.


I especially love the pop of color and contrast against the white brick. (source)


The breakfast nook via BHG above is simple and chic. It provides the perfect backdrop for a simple evergreen garland dotted with tiny decorative mittens. It echoes the gentle archway of the woodwork around the window and accents the architecture and overall feels subtly festive without going overboard.


Another vote for simple and chic! Drape your evergreen garland generously but simply on a long mantel and embellish with natural textiles and subtle sheen.

Ready for a twist on a classic? This succulent garland is such a fantastic new spin on a traditional classic. I love the different display of colors and textures in this garland. Perfect for a beach house or a desert getaway.


But if you’re of the black thumb variety, how about an all-paper garland? Stunning, colorful, graphic and bold — and it never requires watering! (source)


In a more rustic vein, a found branch brings the outdoors in when mounted on the wall. So pretty with all the red and natural tones.


Looking for something a little more glam? Weave striped ribbons through your garland and accent it with loads of glitter and sparkle. (source)


Minimalists will appreciate the way boughs of greenery accent door frames and windows without going overboard. This is also a great solution for renters or those who don’t want to mess with a Christmas tree.


When used with a stack of white cake plates, doesn’t this little embellishment of greenery below bring Christmas trees to mind? Simple, chic, and sweet. (source)


Monochromatic and simple, this greenery houses the family’s Christmas cards as well as some subtle shiny little ornaments.



But my most favorite unexpected use of all is by Jordan Ferney at Oh Happy Day. She DIY’d this fun typographic JOY garland that’s perfectly at home over the fireplace. This particular one is faux greenery, but you could probably also render it in a live garland.

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