It’s a common dilemma when decorating a bedroom space, what thing or object or accent is the right choice for that space above the bed? In my master, I’ve chosen option number one, but there are nine other ways to get creative with that zone above the headboard or bed frame.

1) Mirrors   A popular choice for their sculptural or textural frames that act as a focal point above a bed, mirrors also have the benefit of reflecting light around the room.

mirror above bed bhg


white mirror above bed bhg

  sunburst mirror above bed bhg


2)  Artwork  Large scale paintings are a perfect jumping off point for a bedroom’s palette and also provide a serene backdrop. 

abstract art behind bed bhg


abstract above bed bhg


3) Folding Screens Intricately carved or detailed folding screens can replace the headboard – use them to make a dramatic statement in a bedroom.

filigree screen bhg

folding screen headboard bhg


4) Fabric   Beautiful fabric frames a bed and adds both softness and pattern to a sleeping space. 

patterened fabric behind headboard bhg


fabric behind bed bhg


5) Framed Photography or Prints   Use a series of prints or black and white photographs to turn the bedroom into a mini art gallery. 

black and white prints above bed bhg

charcoal prints above bed 

6) Decorative Plates  Whether your style leans colorful and eclectic or traditional, plates are another way to add movement and pattern.

plate collection above bed bhg

plates above bed bhg


7) Wallpaper   Modern wallpapers were made popular once more a few years ago, continue the trend in your bedroom by choosing a soft botanical or graphic geometric. Paper one wall, the entire bedroom, or simply a small section above the bed. 

wallpaper behind bed bhg

geometric wallpaper behind bed bhg


8)  A Cornice or Canopy  This traditional treatment is a way to use fabric to envelope and separate the bed from the rest of the room.

bed cornice bhg

bed canopy bhg


9) Window Panels   For those whose bedrooms don’t have the luxury of a blank wall or prefer the natural light above, placing a bed under a window is another way to  frame it in soft fabric panels.

curtains behind bed bhg

window panels behind bed bhg


10)  Nothing   A statement bed or headboard can speak for itself and needs no embellishment above. Suspend a dramatic light fixture above the bed instead!

glamorous headboard bhg

carved black and white headboard bhg

Or choose nothing at all to give the eye a place to rest. 

curvy linen headboard bhg


What decor is hanging above your bed at home? 

Have you chosen to keep it blank, or are you still on the hunt for that perfect focal point?



Animal print has gone through different periods of popularity but always been present in home design. Lately we’re seeing animal prints reinterpreted in large scale abstract giraffe motifs and in colorful leopard and zebra prints. 

blue zebra print


We’ve all seen those exaggerated rooms filled with animal print that’s way overdone and the crime that occurs from overuse. Animal print is best used in small doses and smaller pieces of furniture or accents, or to make a dramatic impact with a rug or fun upholstered piece. It’s a bold move to upholster a sofa in an animal print, but it’s graphic nature makes a stunning statement.

zebra print


Go a little less wild with chairs and ottomans – they’re perfect candidates for playing with animal print in traditional motifs, but consider colorful ones too since many fabrics are now available in recognizable patterns printed in bright colors. 

giraffe print ottoman

zebra ottoman bhg


Animal print will always inject a graphic element and the recognizable patterns make for fabulous area rugs in leopard, zebra, and giraffe skin prints. 

zebra rugh


leopard print rug

 zebra rug in bathroom bhg


For those craving the exotic nature of animal print but in smaller doses, an accent pillow or lampshade will always do the trick!

zebra pillow


I rounded up a few favorites available in stores for adding a touch of animal print to the home in several motifs and colors.

modern animal print decor


From top left: Sommerset Wing Chair, Horchow; Green zebra rug, Z Gallerie; Giraffe 4 x 6’ rug, Bed, Bath & Beyond; Pink leopard 3 x 5’ rug, Bed, Bath & Beyond; Orange needlepoint, Bellacor; Leopard duvet, Urban Outfitters; Oval chair, Kmart; Giraffe print pillow cover, EastandNest on Etsy; 19; Gray zebra ottoman, Z Gallerie; Zebra Toss Pillow, Target; Animal print lamp, Lamps Plus, $80


Do you use any animal print in your home?


Built-in cabinets and bookcases are one of the most desirable architectural accents in a home. Sought out by buyers and valued by homeowners, built in shelves and cabinetry add practical storage and a place to showcase your personality. The trick is how to style them so that they look attractive yet also serve the purpose of storing your necessities and keepsakes. Here are some inspiring images I rounded up, with helpful tips on accessorizing built-ins in the home.

The five best built-in bookcase fillers will always be 1) books 2) decorative boxes or baskets 3) ceramic or sculptural objects 4) artwork and/or photographs and 5) favorite mementos. 

built in library shelving

When you combine several of these categories and stagger them between shelves, you’re sure to end up with a stylish display.

white built in cabinets

The key to a well balanced presentation is proper scale and careful editing, and the incorporation of color, pattern, and texture through clever repetition. Fill smaller cubbies with singular objects and larger spaces with stacks of books, patterned boxes, or baskets.

family room built ins


family room built ins bhg

Take a cue from this simple yet stylish sitting room and fill shelves with framed family photographs in black and white in a gallery style. Couple them with a few small sculptural objects and favorite artwork.

black and white pictures on shelves bhg

Hanging framed artwork on the front of your bookcases is another way to add interest and also showcase favorite prints or unique paintings in large or small scale.

art on bookcases bhg


built in bookcase in bedroom

Painting your built-ins something other than white is guaranteed to bring drama to your home. Deep charcoal adds a sophisticated touch to a home office, and blue glass front built-ins add both color and storage in a family room.

painted office built ins

blue painted built ins


Wood finishes are warm and inviting – highlight the unique beauty of the wood by purposefully leaving empty space around collectibles so that the grain is visible, and choose objects in lighter colors and sculptural shapes that stand out against the stain.

styled wood bookcases

 single object in wood built ins


Do you have built-in bookcases or open shelving in your home? What strategies do you use to fill them with style and personality?



Keeping the home organized is a situation we all face and with kids running around, the challenge is magnified! Last year I offered up ten smart ideas for family organization. To build on that topic, here are even more strategic solutions for keeping your busy home ship shape.

Create a Drop Zone.  Having a spot where all things land has its advantage: when you need them again (hopefully) there they are. Isolate the everyday backpacks, shoes, and coats in a single zone to ease the transition out the door each day.

family drop zone bhg


Make a Family Binder.  With school in session, a single binder filled with contacts and schedules is a life saver but just as convenient for summer activities when kids camps, activities, and the information on the family vacation is all centralized in one place. 

binder for activities bhg


Office Supply Central. If you lack the space for a corner office, no worries. Set aside a cabinet and shelf where supplies are stored for easy access.

office supply cabinet


Mail Zone.  We live in a digital age where much of our correspondence and bill paying occurs online, yet there is still the need to have a place for outgoing mail, especially for those cards for friends and family to commemorate birthdays, holidays, or special occasions. Keeping the zone front and center helps prevent your sentiment from being a belated one. 

cards and stamps


Receipt & Warranty Readiness.  Often it’s necessary to hold on to receipts for reimbursement, returns, or future tax purposes, and when something needs fixed, the warranty is a document you’ll need to pull out for reference. Storing them in a single spot means when you’re most in need, the document will be there.

  file storage bhg


You’ve Got Game.  Store the games you play in a centralized spot (perhaps a coffee table with drawers or a nearby cabinet) to inspire another competitive round of family fun.

coffee table game storage


A Place for Everything.  The best technique for avoiding the clutter creep is to have a place for everything from sports equipment and seasonal attire.

baskets on shelf bhg


What strategies do you use to keep your family home organized?


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Remember last year when I was advocating for breaking up dining sets?  I still stand by that opinion because the principle makes for good design. Dining spaces are more interesting when the chairs and table are not a matching set! How do you bring a dining room with a matching set into this century?  Here are a few ideas!

Replace a traditional chandelier with a contemporary orb version and remove the matching chairs from the space to use elsewhere in the home. Bring in upholstered chairs in two tone fabrics like this geometric yellow paired with navy velvet and nailhead trim.

yellow and navy chairs


Mix modern zig zag velvet chairs with chinoiserie print for an unexpected twist on tradition. 

zig zag and chinoiserie chairs


Partner a comfy wingback chair covered in linen with a barnwood table and benches for a welcome juxtaposition of textures (soft meets rough).

rustic table wingback chairs


Or instead of investing in upholstered chairs, pair your rustic table with brightly painted mismatched versions for a welcoming dining space.


Update a traditional matching set by replacing the seating with curvy tufted chairs upholstered in a pale fabric to contrast with the dark rich wood – a zebra motif rug also adds a modern edge. 

white tufted chairs on zebra rug


Modern Louis Ghost chairs are an unexpected addition of lucite to a traditional space, but just the right dose to keep it fresh and fun.

lucite chairs in traditional dining room


Industrial chairs and wire pendants bring cool metals tones to this farmhouse dining room dominated by wood surfaces, and their presence gives it contemporary appeal.

industrial farmhouse mix


If your style leans traditional or European, continue the theme with upholstered French linen chairs but mix the wood tones to keep it interesting.

French style chairs


Another easy way to modernize your dining room is it to slide a few chairs over and make room for an bench upholstered in a complementary geometric or botanical fabric.

upholsted bench in dining room


If you’re not prepared to replace the matching chairs with new ones, there is an easy alternative. Paint your existing chairs in a fresh color or in classic black or white and reupholster the seats in a pretty patterned fabric.

black chairs pedestal table

painted reuphostered chairs

It’s a no fail approach to giving your dining space a fresh modern look in a weekend!


When I remodeled my kitchen, I chose a classic white brick pattern ceramic tile, however whenever I spy an incredible patterned kitchen backsplash I pause to admire it for its striking effect. Opting for a bold pattern in a kitchen takes commitment and courage, but the risk is rewarding given the stunning result.

geometric backsplash bhg

Mesh mosaic or brick pattern tiles in neutrals or pale hues are common choices in many remodels, but there is a bolder and braver alternative – an intricate ceramic tile installed high up on the wall so the pattern becomes a focal point that demands attention. 

patterned backsplash behind window bhg


We’re fortunate in modern times to have countless tile options available and in various colorways, and there is always an opportunity for creativity such as combining neutral and colorful 3 x 6” tiles in a herringbone pattern.

colorful herringbone backsplash bhg


If you love the idea of pattern but want less of it, minimize the impact of the repeat by keeping it contained only to the section of wall between lower and upper cabinetry.

patterned backsplash bhg


Perhaps you’ve fallen in love with a patterned ceramic tile or exotic motif  – why not pull a color from it and repeat it on the cabinetry?

yellow patterened backsplash bhg


For those less inclined to use patterned tiles for an entire kitchen backsplash surround, incorporate a smaller section behind the range to satisfy your craving and to also add a dash of color in one contained spot. 

blue lattice backsplash bhg


A white backsplash is a timeless choice and complements any cabinetry color, but there is always the alternative of a unique or unexpected shape. Consider a white Moroccan inspired motif which satisfies a desire for clean, light and bright, but still includes an pattern with character and movement.

moroccan inspired backsplash bhg


What style of backsplash do you have in your kitchen?  Have you opted for something simple or do you also crave something with pattern or detail?




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