Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Spirit of Giving

Today it is just a few days before Hanukkah and a week before Christmas. So with the holidays so close, I wanted to talk about some ways that the interior design industry is giving back, and some ways you can help out!

One of the fabulous rooms at the Holiday House. Photo Courtesy of

Holiday House is an event in Manhattan that showcases designer's interpretations of the holidays throughout the year. You can buy tickets online or at the door, and the proceeds go to support Susan G Komen. The rooms are so wonderfully done. They are beautiful and inspiring. If you live in New York City, or a neighboring town, it is definitely worth popping in and getting inspired.

Another great way to give design, is by asking a local designer to give new life to old furniture pieces for a charity auction. Material Girls in Dallas did just this, and there re-vamped pieces are gorgeous!

There are plenty of other charitable events pertaining to Design, and a whole lot more that don't. But the idea is that it is the season to give, so do a little search to see what you can find in your area, you can have a fun time attending an event, and feel good knowing that you are helping to benefit a good cause. You can also volunteer for a lot of these events, as another way to give back.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Deck the Halls

'Tis the season to pull out those bins of holiday decorations, turn up the carols and get in the spirit!

But how do you make room for all of it in your space?

Here are a couple of tips on how to make your big Christmas tree, Menorah, and other decorations fit in:

Typically the placement of your tree is prominent and it becomes the focal point for the season. So place it in the front window, centered in the living room, etc. When you are placing it, you will inevitably have to move a chair or two, if your room has a fireplace, place your tree adjacent to that, and shift your couch to face the tree, and your love seat or chairs to face your fireplace. You want the scale of your tree to balance out with the scale of your room and your furnishings. Therefore, if you have a small space, think of keeping your room set up the same, choose a smaller tree, and place it in a corner to anchor that corner and attract your eye to it.

There are several ways to set up your tree, play around with it in your mind. Try to find a tree that lends itself to the scale of your furnishings and space. Don't fret about shifting a chair or two to re-balance your room.

A Menorah is much easier to place. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, some are more square, some more curved. This should be placed where your family gathers. It becomes the centerpiece of your kitchen or dining room. You can get strands of blue and white holiday lights to trim out your windows, and little illuminated menorahs to deck the halls with and add a festive vibe.

Decorate with the help of your family and loved ones. Make a new tradition about when to cut down or put up your tree. Do something special this year. Most of all have a joyous holiday season!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Get Organized

During the Holidays especially, it is a good idea to get organized. See what you have, and donate what you don't use anymore.

This is of course a good thing to do at any time of year, but it is a great thing to do before any big gift giving event. Do it with your kids in their space- it will make them feel good to give their toys to someone less fortunate, and they will be making room for incoming gifts at the same time.

Organize craft supplies, games, and other toys in bins and on shelves where your kids can reach them. They will use their stuff more and have more fun independently when they can reach what they are after. Use labels, and make sure things get back in their place. These tips will make for more efficiently playing.
Put your vases, and other fragile items on the high shelves, you can reach them when you need them, and it will prevent accidents.

Clean out and re-arrange your closet- you'll be able to get dressed more efficiently in the mornings, and be ready to go when it comes to holiday parties! If you don't already have a functional closet, pre-made and custom closet systems are a great holiday gift idea.

Here is a sneak peak at next week's topic...

Happy organizing! Remember, if you need any specific design help or inspiration, drop a note, I'd be happy to help!