Home innovation should solve real-life problems and make life better, focusing on the people, not simply the systems, inside. To demonstrate, we decided to build, furnish, and tech out our ideal house: the BHG Innovation Home. Check out these useful and accessible products and ideas.View Slideshow
Yarn isn't just for your grandma's knitting projects anymore. These worn pieces of furniture get major facelifts and personality with the help of a little paint and a lot of yarn.
This ugly duckling cane-back chair had tons of potential, but lacked color and interest. The chair needed some TLC to let its inner beauty shine through.
A fresh coat of orange spray paint and flower embellishments stitched on with yarn gave the chair a new look. Free-form flowers are easy to make with cotton fabric. To make the flowers, cut several sizes of pink blooms and a smaller center shape. Using a darning needle, thread yard from the back of the fabric to the front, making a French knot. Repeat two more times for a total of three knots. Working from the back of the caning to the front, attach leaf shapes to the chair with yarn, making long stems. Sew a sweet cushion using dinner napkins or a tea towel.
An old wooden crate that was tired and worn played no functional role except collecting random junk and looking like a mess. It was in desperate need of some design and a purpose.
A whimsical dandelion stitching gives the crate new life. Different types of yarn that vary in texture and look yield fun results. Here, the dandelion sports a fuzzy flower and smooth stem. Small-scale motifs such as these are a great way to use leftover yarn or ribbon. Try thin ribbon for the flowers or French knots to enhance the texture.
The serving trays were spray painted with vibrant hues, then embroidered with fun imagery. Let some of the wood tones peek through in the design to help ground the artwork. Here, a reverse stencil with self-adhesive contact paper was used to mark off the dots, platter rim, and tree branch. Drill holes into the plates for the stitching.
This old cedar wardrobe was in need of a facelift. With some yarn, paint, and stencils, this wardrobe got a sentimental update with tons of personality.
First, the wardrobe was painted gray-green and then those three magic words were stenciled on, wrapping the letters to the side for a three-dimensional effect. After the paint dried, oversized allium flower shaped holes were drilled into the door and filled in with yarn and wool roving.
Peel off a 1-inch-thick section of roving from the bundle and gently twist the wool (a). Tie the twisted wool into a pretzel shape -- the looser the better (b). Feed the ends of the wool through the center of the knot to create a loose flower (c,d). Sew loose stitches at the back of the flower to secure the ends, then attach the holes drilled into the furniture.
The final look showcases pretty blooms that never fade away. Use wool roving to create other felted products, such as balls and beads.
Using basic embroidery stitches and yarn in garden hues, this headboard became a beautiful blooming sleeping pad. The first step was painting the dark wood white. Then a permanent marking pen helped transfer the design onto the furnishing so holes could be drilled through the headboard for the stitching.
With your needle in hand, you can accomplish all sorts of projects on fabric and wood using six simple stitches.