BHG Style Spotters

The Hottest Trends for You and Your Home

Style

It’s easy to get excited about gorgeous outdoor patios and porches, but what do you do if all you have is a concrete slab out in the backyard?

That’s what we’re looking at currently in our house here in Oklahoma City, and it’s not exactly pretty. I’ve done a little fluffing and accessorizing to help things out, but it still doesn’t help us out with the lack of shelter. And in our crazy Oklahoma extremes (I’m looking at you, 100-degree weather) we need a way to stay in the shade.

I’ve been pinning ideas like crazy, and it’s probably most feasible for our home to do a pretty pergola of some kind. But there’s several things to consider when choosing one, so let’s take a little tour of some pretty amazing patios with pergolas and get some ideas to beautify your space.

VISUAL APPEAL + FUNCTION

bhg white farmhouse pergola

Pergolas are fairly simple – posts on each corner and a criss-cross lattice design on the top. But the aesthetic can extend so much further, and it’s important to consider the overall architecture of your home. Many pergolas are designed with columns or simple posts. The overhead tail of the pergola can also take on a multitude of different designs.

I love the contrast of this pretty pergola’s gently swooping white frame and natural wood overhead beams. It could easily be modern or traditional – a perfect in-between.

bhg contrasting elements pergola

The gentle roll of this pergola’s roofline adds so much charm along with the cheerful quote painted on the interior archway.bhg arched pergola

For a more modern spin, why not angle the roofline and build in a sectional to maximize your seating space?

bhg modern pergola

I’m particularly in love with this Victorian’s pergola. It honors the original and striking architecture of the home beautifully with turned posts and quatrefoil trim around the top. Look how the light filters through it too. Sigh.

bhg victorian pergola

Minimalists will appreciate the pergola below in all white with a simple grid construction for the top. bhg simple pergola

I’m also partial to this contemporary freestanding cedar pergola that offers shade and privacy. I’d love to see this in all white for a beach house.

modular garden modern pergola

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PRIVACY CONCERNS

Speaking of privacy, if you want to create a little hideaway in your yard (especially if you have neighbors close by), consider enclosing one end of the pergola. This is also a great way to create a focal point with a mirror, interesting piece of artwork or a light fixture.

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Caribbean style doesn’t get any better than this: an all-white pergola is surrounded by Bahamian-style shutters that not only provide shade but also privacy.

english room caribbean pergola

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Celerie Kemble’s Playa Grande Beach Club in the Dominican Republic is on my must-visit list. A series of 13 dreamy little bungalows, there are loads of beautiful little nooks and crannies to escape to. This pergola with rocky floor and grass growing all around features a hanging daybed and is one of my most favorite pergolas that I’ve pinned thus far. Maybe it’s because I’m obsessed with my porch swing at the lake, but I’d love to recreate this at our home in Oklahoma City.

sketch 42 playa grande pergola

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DECOR & LIGHTING

Now that you’ve got your structure’s style nailed down, it’s time to accessorize. Don’t overlook the all-too-important elements of seating, lighting, and accessories. Lanterns, stringing lights, and built-in sconces all make for dreamy and mood-setting options.

bhg grapevine pergola lighting

Why not try a series of vintage chandeliers? If you’re of the DIY persuasion, grab a can or two of spray paint and track down some inexpensive finds at a local antique shop or Craigslist.

bhg grand pergola columns

You can also get creative with your seating. Low-lying walls can provide flexible seating as a built-in banquette and are perfect for loads of fluffy outdoor pillows.

bhg built in rock seating pergola

And if you live in a place without a ton of gusty breezes, I love a set of dramatic outdoor drapes to provide shade, texture, and visual interest.

bhg accessorize pergola drapes


There’s just something about a beautiful porch that conjures up visions of golden sunlight filtering through the trees, the background hum of cicadas, iced tea, and an all-over warmth of summertime. I’m already looking forward to spending plenty of time on our front porch at the lake this summer, and I’m particularly dreaming about installing a big hanging daybed for us to wile away the hours on. I’m particularly inspired by the idea of sleeping porches, a traditional Southern design element that was born in the early twentieth century thanks to lack of air conditioning, as well as some fear of germs/disease (the prevailing idea was that it was healthier to sleep outside in all the fresh air and thus avoid tuberculosis, etc). If you’re a design history buff, you’ll enjoy this article on the history of sleeping porches as well as this more in-depth article on how American culture revolved around the front porch until it started to migrate to the backyard (particularly fascinating).

Larger than a traditional porch swing, most are usually the dimensions of a twin size mattress, although I’ve seen them in both full size or crib mattress size, depending on the layout of the porch. Most have large rope details and are enclosed on 3 of the 4 sides, although some also feature armless versions for a more modern interpretation.

But the aesthetic overall doesn’t have to scream “I live in the Deep South.” There are all different kinds of aesthetic variations, such as this Moorish home below. The porch bed is so dramatic with all the ropes attaching at one point to dark hardware on either side. I love how low the bed sits overall — and it doesn’t hurt that the view is amazing too.

aphrochic porch bed swing

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Another great platform bed via BHG. Uniformly sized Euro pillows line the back and a mishmash of patterned pillows bring in color and personality.

bhg porch swing

A chic outdoor living room with monochromatic black and white accents is the perfect contrast to the leafy emerald palm fronds.The wooden base of the bed adds warmth and character.

dusk jacket attic porch swing

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But if your taste runs more traditional, you’ll love this aqua-hued setting. In this particular look, the bed could have felt really visually heavy, but since they kept everything white, including the flooring, the bed floats lightly overhead and allows the pillows to pop. This is great for a small space – allow the heavier elements to recede visually and keep the focus elsewhere.

house of turquoise porch swing bed

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Look how tiny and cute this little swing is!

Celerie Kemble porch swing - www.pencilshavingsstudio.com

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Another dreamy number with some fun bolster pillows.

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And if you’ve got the square footage for it, everything is better in pairs. These are so dramatic on that gorgeous portico.

saltaire pair of porch swings

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saltaire porch swing

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Finally, I couldn’t help but include this ridiculously awesome hanging nest. I have NO idea how you’d actually climb into it over the water, but it makes for a stunning photograph! It’d be perfect in a big tree or somewhere that you have enough space and scale to let it shine. Definitely a conversation starter – I would’ve died of happiness to have this as a kid and wile away the summer hours reading a book.

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I think I’m going to take some of these inspiration shots to a carpenter in our community and have something custom built to fit the size of our porch. And also there’s that little issue of convincing the husband to go along with it – but seriously, who wouldn’t be convinced after seeing these images? Here’s to a summer of outdoor living!


Are you tired of wearing heavy-duty winter coats that look like you’re about to go shovel away snow from your front driveway? I am. Luckily, there are other outerwear options available. One of which is faux fur–arguably the most popular trend for this season. Whether it be a clutch, coat, or vest, faux fur makes a great addition to any winter ensemble. If you’re not sure how you want to wear faux fur, then take a peek at these looks. Who knows? Maybe you’ll gather a bit of inspiration!

 

1. Clutch

How stunning is this faux fur clutch? I am in LOVE with its brilliant eggplant hue.

photo courtesy of The Glitter Guide

 

 

2. Earmuffs

Keep your ears out of the cold with faux fur earmuffs. Find a bohemian-inspired pair like this one or a more classic version here.

photo courtesy of Free People

 

 

3. Pull Over

Isn’t this faux fur pull over sensational? Plus it makes a great in between seasons staple.

photo courtesy of Atlantic-Pacific

 

 

4. Infinity Scarf

Nothing says “fall” like a good scarf. Take your look up a notch and opt for one that’s faux fur!

photo courtesy of Vanilla Extract

 

 

5. Statement Coat

Jewel tones were flooding the runways this fall. Incorporate NYFW’s latest craze with a brilliant dose of emerald.

photo courtesy of Style Carrot

 

 

6. Russian Hat

Possibly one of my favorite pieces–the faux fur hat. If you’re looking to make a statement, this Russian hat brings a dazzling dose of drama.

photo courtesy of Fashionsy

 

 

7. Vest

This faux fur demonstrates how color doesn’t have to take over. The subtle pink hue of the vest sweetly complements the neutral outfit.

photo courtesy of Sirma Markova

 

 

8. Cheetah Print Jacket

If animal print is your thing, then this cheetah print jacket is the perfect faux fur for you! Keep cheetah print from becoming overwhelming by pairing it with traditional cuts and simple hues.

photo courtesy of Sortra

 

 

9. Colorful Coat

Snap. Crackle. Pop! This vibrant coat does just that. If you’ve got this whole faux fur thing in the bag, then go a step further and mix it with pattern and color!

photo courtesy of Style Carrot

 

If faux fur seems a little daunting at first glance, then try to incorporate small amounts into your daily ensemble–perhaps ear muffs or a clutch? I guarantee after a few days you’ll feel like a regular.

 

Happy Friday!

xxmadison


It’s time to take a few tips from your grandmother because the art (and appreciation!) of calligraphy is back and here to stay! The pages of wedding invitations, signs, wrapping paper, chalkboards and cakes are overflowing with delicate handwritten notes. Whether you’re a newcomer to typography or a regular attendee, it’s time incorporate stunning script into your home’s decor.

 

Take a peek at Oh So Beautiful Paper‘s elegant DIY Balloon Engagement Cocktail Party Invitation. The gold metallic lettering shines brightest over a muted hue.

 

 

Go big or go home! Style Me Pretty‘s DIY “Cheers” Sign takes cursive (and sparkle!) to a whole new level.

 

 

Who says that script needs to be two-dimensional? Put on your 3D glasses because Oh Happy Day‘s Calligraphy Cake Topper opens up a dimension of an entirely different magnitude.

 

 

Put your favorite song lyrics to paper with Paper & Stitch‘s Large Scale Hand Lettered Artwork Tutorial. It’s simple, it’s easy, and did I mention that it can be done in less than an hour?

 

 

Whether it be custom wrapping paper for the holidays or a personalized bouquet that carries a message on its sleeve, Julep‘s DIY Personalized Flower Wrap adds an extra dose of thoughtfulness to any gesture.

 

It doesn’t matter what your handwriting looks like, beautiful script comes in all shapes and sizes. You just have to give it a shot!

 

Happy Friday!

xxmadison


Hi everyone!  It’s Lauren Liess of Pure Style Home.  I’m a DC-based decorator who loves to keep things simple, relaxed, and natural. I recently decorated the 2015 BHG Innovation Home, and today I’m popping in to share a few of my favorite tips for giving your home a ‘natural’ edge with a few sneak peeks from my new book, Habitat: The Field Guide to Decorating.

1. Incorporate natural, textural materials into your decorating. Natural materials, such as natural woven rug and roman shades, wood, and natural fabrics like linen, hemp and cotton make a room feel more ‘touchable’ and relaxed. They bring a natural warmth to a space.

2. Gather, Collect & Display.  Take walks whenever you can and pick up what’s around you and bring it inside to display. My kids love to hunt for natural objects, be it at the beach or a walk around the neighborhood. A simple acorn becomes a treasured object when displayed on the wall in vintage printers’ trays.

3.  Plants Add Life to a Space.  There’s something about a shot of living green in a home that makes it feel fresh and lively. Enliven a tranquil color palette with bright green fern or easy-to-care-for succulents.

4.  Cut Greens Make a Simple Statement.  Even when there aren’t any flowers in bloom or you’ve killed off your houseplants (like I tend to do every now and then!) cut greens from outdoors can bring a bit of nature and life into the house.   I like to display them in little vases throughout the house and especially love varieties that will take root and live for months.

5. Focus on the Views.  If you have a particularly beautiful view just outside, make a focal point out of the window or windows so that the focus of the room is on the great outdoors itself.  Window seats are a seriously cozy way to do this, along with having seating face the windows, or leaving them completely bare or very simply adorned for an unobstructed view.

*Photos by Helen Norman

 

I hope you enjoyed these simple tips from bringing a natural vibe into your home!  We’re giving away 5 copies of Habitat so to enter the contest,  tell us one way you like to incorporate nature into your own home in the comment below. You can enter again by following @BHG on Twitter and tweeting with #BHGHabitatSweepstakes. Official rules here.

 

 


Domaine Home modern chairs vintage tables www.pencilshavingsstudio.com

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Today’s roundup is all about the perfect pairing of vintage dining room tables with contrasting modern chairs. I love an eclectic space, and the dining room is the perfect place to have some fun with an aesthetic mashup of vintage and modern, like in the space above. There’s no wrong way to make this look happen and it’s also a great way to interject personality and history into your home without having to spend a ton of money as this look can absolutely be achieved on a budget.

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Maybe you inherited your grandmother’s dining set or were stuck with a hand-me-down set after college. It’s simple to give an old table a fresh spin by switching out the chairs for something new. . Contrast is everything when it comes to this look, so don’t be afraid to push the envelope a little bit. This look is anything but matchy-matchy and sometimes the natural and traditional raw look of wood can enhance the contrast between old and new all the more.

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Studio McGee paired the classic Eames molded plastic chairs with a spindle-legged wooden table in a beautiful dark finish. It contrasts sharply with the white plastic and lighter wood dowel legs. The Eames chairs are available in a variety of colors (as well as price points if you don’t want to grab an original) and they also have different leg options too.

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I love the mismatched colors in this shot above from BHG. This entire room feels inviting and feminine with pops of English garden colors and a drapey capiz shell chandelier. You could find a similar table in any antique shop, a yard sale in your neighborhood, or by hunting around on Craigslist.

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The uber-traditional table (above) in Gen Sohr’s dining room table definitely feels like a piece that might be relegated to a fancy dining room, only to be used on formal occasions. But it suddenly feels family friendly and well loved when paired with simple white Emeco and funky modern art.

visual-vamp

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Of course, there’s my favorite modern chair of all, the Louis Ghost chair, which works with practically any table you put it with, beat-up wood included! A little bit of lucite can go a long way, and in this case, it allows the beautiful accents of the table to really shine through, in both the image above and below.

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My brandmother had a round table that reminds me of the one below. I wish now that I had that table because it proves that a classic and simple design can be so flexible in any interior.

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It’s gorgeous in the dark wood with the white chairs, but you could switch it up by painting the table, as evidenced below.

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These mismatched chairs above are loaded with personality and this look would be super easy to recreate with a quick perusal of your local Craigslist. Sometimes public schools also sell off old fixtures and furniture at auction (rolling library carts are my current google obsession), and you could snap up a bunch of chairs and other fun finds for not a lot of money.

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Such a great way to bring style and personality to your space. There’s just something about having a history and a story about the items you surround yourself with! Ok, a few sources if you’re hunting for some great modern chairs. My current favorites are West Elm, Industry West (Tolix knock-offs in a ton of colors, as well as several fun modern options), Craigslist, CB2, and good ol’ Ikea (check out the Tobias style for a lucite chair lookalike at a fraction of the cost).


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