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It’s hard to come back to work after the holiday weekend. If you’re like me, you ate your weight in delicious grilled foods and revelled in the sounds of patriotic songs and explosives in the name of American independence. And because we all love holidays so much, let’s go ahead and prep for the next occasion that allows us to dress up and go all out with decor and entertaining. You all must be ready because Halloween is already a hot topic on Pinterest.

HALLOWEEN

1. Halloween Party Favor: Mummy Candy Cans

2. Adult Halloween Makeup Tutorial: Mermaid

3. How to Make Glittered Pumpkins

4. Trash Bag Spider Webs

GRAY INTERIORS

A good gray room is timeless. Gray conveys a sense of formality and peace in a room and plays well with many accent colors. It also looks stylishly chic on its own, with dark and light shades mixed to create interest. Some of our most popular pins of all time showcase the versatility of gray rooms.

1. A House That Plays With Pattern

2. Budget Bedroom Decor: Our Favorites From HGTV Fans

3. Designers’ Best Budget-Friendly Living Room Updates

4. Hollywood Regency Style: How to Get the Look

SHIPLAP

Fixer Upper style is still a fan favorite. Shiplap is a decorating go-to for Chip and Jo, and this rustic barn look is still making waves on Pinterest.

1. As Seen on HGTV’s Fixer Upper

2. Fixer Upper Coffee Table

3. Rustic Bedroom Style

What’s filling up your Pinterest boards these days? Follow us at Pinterest.com/HGTV to repin your favorite looks.

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I’ll be honest: I’m far from a world-class chef, but I’ve recently hit a real streak of stumbling upon chef-worthy kitchen goodies for bargain-basement prices. First, I found a pristine set of celluloid-handled steak knives still in their original box at a barn sale, then while thrifting in Asheville, NC, I spied a beautiful end-grain cutting board (below) at the Brother Wolf thrift store for just $3. What a steal! (A similar board would cost upwards of $150.) Best of all, the money from my thrifty score goes to rescue and rehome dogs and cats in need. That’s a win-win in my book.

It had definitely seen its fair share of use, but I knew that with a little elbow grease, I could fix it right up.

How to Restore an Old Cutting Board or Butcher Block Instructions

What are the 3 steps, you ask?

1. Make a conditioning cream. Don’t worry, you need just two inexpensive ingredients.

2. Thoroughly sand the board to remove scratches and stains.

3. Work the conditioning cream into the wood.

That’s all, folks. It’s that easy to take an old cutting board or butcher block from used and abused to looking like new. So, show your old butcher block or cutting board some love.

Get step-by-step instructions >>

 

MORE ADVENTURES IN ANTIQUING:

Adventures in Antiquing: How to Make a Short Headboard Look Taller
Adventures in Antiquing: Take a Virtual Tour of a Spring Antiques Fest
Adventures in Antiquing: Trending at High Point Furniture Market
Adventures in Antiquing: How to Restore an Old Wooden Bowl
Adventures in Antiquing: Clinch River Spring Antiques Fair
Adventures in Antiquing: Charleston Antiques Show Part 1
Adventures in Antiquing: Charleston Antiques Show Part 2
Adventures in Antiquing: (Easy!) Beachy Candle Makeover
Adventures in Antiquing: Repurposed Wooden Tray
Adventures in Antiquing: Crushing On Carrara Marble
Adventures in Antiquing: Old Toolbox Turned Magazine Caddy
Adventures in Antiquing: Old Clock Repurposed as a Frame
Adventures in Antiquing: Classical Busts
Adventures in Antiquing: Vintage Avon Bottle
Adventures in Antiquing: Salvaged Molding As Holiday Decor

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July is a time to celebrate America’s birthday, but it’s also a time for summer fun: Think carnivals, amusement parks and backyard parties. So when Chelsea pitched this classic, all-American red for July’s Color of the Month, we were smitten.

After all, it’s all around us this time of year, from old-fashioned popcorn boxes at outdoor movie screenings…

Circus Party Popcorn Cups

…to bright red wagons toting picnics, beach gear, or even the littlest family members.

Red Wagon Picnic

Bright red may strike you as more of a fall color, but trust us — it works for summer, especially when paired with deep blue, crisp white and light gray. This classic, bright red door just screams summer, don’t you think?

Red Front Door From Lulu Designs

FIND 25 MORE WAYS TO USE THIS COLOR >>

What do you think of our latest color pick? Tell us how you use bright carnival red in the comments below. 

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Welcome to Design Happens’ Cocktail Week! Each day from now until July 4th we’ll be sharing our favorite summer cocktail recipes on our Facebook page and here on the blog. Join us for #HGTVHappyHour and share your favorites, too. 

Happy Fourth of July! I hope you’re ready to celebrate our wonderful country today with an outdoor barbecue, fireworks and a little booze. I’m normally a red wine person, but white wine is my go-to during the summer months. For that extra refreshing summertime flavor, I love to mix a little lime soda and orange juice with my wine. To keep your drink cold (and for a patriotic touch), add frozen blueberries in lieu of ice and incorporate strawberries for added color and flavor.

Patriotic Wine Spritzer

Patriotic Wine Spritzer

6 ounces white wine
2 ounces lime soda
splash of orange juice
handful of frozen blueberries
handful of strawberries
wooden skewer
patriotic scrapbook paper or washi tape (optional)

Combine white wine, lime soda and orange juice in a wine glass. Alternate strawberries and blueberries on a wooden skewer, and place in the glass with a handful of frozen blueberries. For a patriotic touch, use double-stick tape to attach a piece of patriotic scrapbook paper to the top end of the skewer. Cheers to America!

What cocktails are you sipping this summer? Let us know in the comments. And for more delicious (and gorgeous!) cocktail recipes, check out #HGTVHappyHour. 

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Welcome to Design Happens’ Cocktail Week! Each day from now until July 4th we’ll be sharing our favorite summer cocktail recipes on our Facebook page and here on the blog. Join us for #HGTVHappyHour and share your favorites, too.

Oh, summertime. I’m more of a glass-of-wine gal for the other three seasons, but hot weather makes me crave fruity, tropical cocktails. One of my favorites is the classic Painkiller, a coconut-pineapple rum drink popular in the Caribbean and the Florida Keys. It’s an easy-drinking cocktail perfect for a hot summer day — but careful, they tend to be strong. This take on the classic moves more in the dessert direction, with scoops of coconut ice cream floating in a rum-orange-pinapple mixture.

Tiki Pineapple Coconut Orange Float

Top the rum and juice mixture with 2 scoops of coconut milk ice cream, or more if you like. The maraschino cherry is optional, but don’t skip the dusting of freshly-grated nutmeg for true Painkiller flavor.

Are you a fan of boozy floats? Tell me your favorite tipsy ice cream concoction in the comments below.

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Oh, say, can you see decorating with red, white and blue in your home? The U.S. flag never goes out of style, and for good reason. Those colors create a classic combo, and there are so many ways you can work them into home decor. So with Independence Day upon us, let’s check out some rooms that do it up right, and just in time for the Fourth of July.

Custom Shelves Designed to Display Transferware Dishes

Design by Eric Gedney

This Seattle kitchen designed by Eric Gedney just feels classic and American in every detail. I love his use of a warm, ivory color on the wall, which creates depth with the crisp, white cabinetry. With a neutral background, the rustic, red wet bar and blue and white china prove that a little color can go a long way.

Eclectic, Blue and Red Dining Room

Design by Brian Patrick Flynn

Designer Brian Patrick Flynn has never met a saturated color he didn’t like, and he fully embraces an Americana color scheme in this East Tennessee breakfast nook. The key to this design is the plaid curtains, which break up the intensity of the solid blue walls and vinyl red chairs.

Red, White and Blue Bedroom With Painted Headboard

Design by Jennifer Mehditash

If a more muted approach suits you better, try working patterns in with your reds and blues. Designer Jennifer Mehditash selected a red kaleidoscope pattern for the headboard, blue polka-dotted sheets and a classic striped linen throw pillow to create a fun combo in this bedroom at the Ronald McDonald House of Long Island, NY.

Flea Market Chic Living Room

Design by Brian Patrick Flynn

If you’re worried that red, white and blue may feel too summer-specific, then try some unexpected shades of the colors. Here, Brian Patrick Flynn uses rusty red walls with paisley blue pillows and a taupe sofa for a fresh take on the color scheme.

Bunk Beds Offer Shared Room Solution

Design by Jenna Buck Gross

You can’t go wrong with red, white and blue in a kid’s room. Designer Jenna Buck Gross uses the color scheme in a superhero-themed space. Like the other designs, pattern is key to keeping the design feeling fun and fresh.

Would you decorate a room in red, white and blue? Let us know in the comments below.

Like these photos? Head to the HGTV Photo Library for more home design inspiration.

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A long-time favorite designer of the HGTV editorial staff, Jennifer Jones of Niche Interiors creates spaces that are practically overflowing with modern details, like fun wallpaper, bright tile and brilliantly-mixed patterns. The best part? Her spaces bring in these details while still remaining comfortable and livable — a winning combination in my book!

Jennifer Jones of Niche Interiors

Jennifer Jones of Niche Interiors

Even though designing a nursery isn’t in my (immediate) future, I’m obsessed with this sophisticated little boy’s room — it’s fun and colorful, yet anything but juvenile. And that wallpaper? Amazing.

Nursery Design by Niche Interiors  - HGTV Design Blog

Nursery Design by Niche Interiors

We already love her designs, but we wanted to know more about Jennifer, from her favorite color to her design pet peeve. See her fun answers to our Design Happens questionnaire.

Design Happens Interview with Jennifer Jones of Niche Interiors

 Thanks, Jennifer! See more of her latest designs on her HGTV Professionals Network page.

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Welcome to Design Happens’ Cocktail Week! Each day from now until July 4th we’ll be sharing our favorite summer cocktail recipes on our Facebook page and here on the blog. Join us for #HGTVHappyHour and share your favorites, too.

It’s officially the lazy, hazy days of summer, that time of year when all I really want to do is enjoy a cocktail on my deck. Or by the pool. Or the beach. You get the idea. With this mindset, it was pretty easy to come up with my player for HGTV Cocktail Week. Glamorous people of the internet, I bring you the cocktail most likely to make you friends (or friendly!): The Magic Hour.

The Magic Hour Cocktail Recipe

I can’t explain how delicious this cocktail is. The gin is herb-y, the mint and cucumber are refreshing, the fruit and lemonade add sweetness, and the secret ingredient of Aperol adds a bitter note that keeps it all oh-so-delicious and very easy to drink. The name is inspired by the “Magic Hour,” that idyllic time of day when then light makes all of your photographs look like you’ve run them through your favorite Instagram filter. It also just so happens to be the perfect time to enjoy a cocktail. Cheers!

Get this easy 5-step recipe >>

What cocktails are you sipping this summer? Let us know in the comments. And for more delicious (and gorgeous!) cocktail recipes, check out #HGTVHappyHour.

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Where you live influences your home’s design style. If you live in the Southwest, you most likely live in a stone or adobe-style home. If you live in a small town in the Southeast, you may live in a cottage- or colonial-style home. We want to know — would you prefer to live in a Craftsman-style home with plenty of windows and multiple roof lines, or do you like the sleeker look of a midcentury modern-style home?

Vote in our poll below, then tell us which design you chose and why in the comments section below.

Craftsman Vs. Midcentury Modern

Check back next week to see the final tally.

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My daughter, Lulu, recently spotted a shirt that she loved – a dip-dyed watermelon number that set her six-year-old heart a flutter. And bless her heart, I gave her the dreaded “I could totally make that” answer. If you were raised by crafty people, you’ve probably heard that one before. But I held my end of the bargain by creating this simple and oh-so-adorable watermelon shirt that she will wear all summer long. Watch the video below to see how you can make your own just in time for the Fourth of July.

easy diy watermelon shirt

YouTube Preview Image

Dyeing fabric may seem daunting, but it’s so easy! I think this treatment would be really cute on a picnic blanket as well, don’t you? We are just all about some watermelon around here today!

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In case you missed it: A couple of weeks ago, the Design Happens team held a craft challenge here at HGTV Headquarters. We handed nine of your favorite D-Happ bloggers a basic, unfinished, square-shaped wood tray and let everyone’s clever and totally unique ideas take over. The only parameter? With the exception of a few general in-house supplies, each blogger had a $20 budget for materials.

DIY Jewelry Organizer

I’ll admit, I was a bit stumped when I first starting thinking about this craft challenge. I knew I wanted to transform my tray into something other than a tray, but what? So many possibilities. My idea came to me when I stumbled upon a section of decorative aluminum sheets at the craft store. The patterns were not only cute and trendy but also the perfect shape and size for displaying French wire earrings. I decided to make my tray into a hanging jewelry organizer with additional hooks for necklaces. If you’ve been searching for a way to stylishly keep your jewelry in order, here are the steps I followed for this easy DIY project.

6 Steps for a DIY Hanging Jewelry Organizer

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Welcome to Design Happens’ Cocktail Week! Each day from now until July 4th we’ll be sharing our favorite summer cocktail recipes on our Facebook page and here on the blog. Join us for #HGTVHappyHour and share your favorites, too.

The taste and smell of fresh watermelon always take me back to summers spent in my grandfather’s garden here in East Tennessee. My cousins and I would crack open ready-to-eat watermelons and let the juices just run down our faces. I ate so much watermelon as a child that it’s probably my least favorite fruit these days, but this refreshing cocktail has brought it back to the top of the list. A fresh and colorful twist on the classic Moscow Mule, this summery version features the perfect mix of fresh watermelon juice, vodka, lime juice and both ginger beer and ginger syrup for fizz and spice.

If you’re looking for me I’ll be on a patio somewhere drinking THIS.

Watermelon Cocktail Recipe

Get this easy 5-step recipe >>

What cocktails are you sipping this summer? Let us know in the comments. And for more delicious (and gorgeous!) cocktail recipes, check out #HGTVHappyHour.

Thanks to Bespoke Post for sending over a specially branded kit including the Smirnoff Vodka, Liber & Co’s Fiery Ginger Syrup and copper mugs.

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Welcome to Design Happens’ Cocktail Week! Each day from now until July 4th we’ll be sharing our favorite summer cocktail recipes on our Facebook page and here on the blog. Join us for #HGTVHappyHour and share your favorites, too.

I don’t know what the weather’s been like in your neck of the woods (paging Al Roker…), but here at the HGTV offices it’s been downright tropical — muggy, steamy and hot, hot, hot! And what could go better with tropical temps than a tropical cocktail? Usually, a margarita is my summer go-to, but this unrelenting heat calls for something special — a drink that’s as colorful and fun as the waterbird for whom it’s named:

Pink Flamingo Cocktail Recipe and Ingredients

Pink Flamingo

1 ounce coconut rum
1 ounce vodka
3 ounces cranberry juice
3 ounces pineapple juice
splash orange juice
4 ounces clear soda

Combine ingredients in a tall shaker with crushed ice. Shake, strain, then pour into a stemmed glass. Garnish with a fresh pineapple wedge and a strawberry. Enjoy a taste of the tropics wherever you may be!

What cocktails are you sipping this summer? Let us know in the comments. And for more delicious (and gorgeous!) cocktail recipes, check out #HGTVHappyHour.

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guest rules

Photo by: Zach DeSart (styled by Christina Wressell)

Manners. They’re instilled in us from a very young age, but over time the rules about how to be on our best behavior can get sort of … forgotten. The power of being polite is never more evident than when you host visitors or are a guest yourself — so HGTV Magazine wants to help you out of sticky situations.

Take a look at the short poll below, then let us know how you would handle the following scenarios. Our editors will use the results in an upcoming story. Oh, and thank you!

Take the poll

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Welcome to Design Happens’ Cocktail Week! Each day from now until July 4th we’ll be sharing our favorite summer cocktail recipes on our Facebook page and here on the blog. Join us for #HGTVHappyHour and share your favorites, too.

Lately, I’ve been on a beer+rum cocktail kick, so when Liz introduced to me to grapefruit beer, I knew I had to try it. Turns out, it’s pretty delicious and I had a hunch it would pair well with the coconut rum sitting in my freezer. So I started experimenting and came up with a summery beer-tail using pineapple, orange and lime juices, coconut rum and, of course, grapefruit beer. It sounds super sweet, but the lime and beer give the mix a light, crisp flavor that’s refreshing instead of sugary. It’s absolutely perfect for those sweltering days on the lake here in East Tennessee.

The Tennessee Fizz

1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/2 cup orange juice
1 small lime
3 ounces coconut rum
1/4 cup grapefruit beer
lime wheel, for garnish

1. Add rum, pineapple and orange juice to an ice-filled cocktail shaker.

2. Cut a lime in half and lightly squeeze about 1/4 teaspoon of juice into a shaker. Shake well. (Don’t add too much or it will overpower the other ingredients.)

3. Pour over fresh ice in a glass tumbler until 3/4 full.

4. Top with about 1/4 cup of grapefruit beer or to taste. Stir twice quickly with a spoon.

5. Garnish with a lime wheel. Enjoy while fizzy.

Tip: You likely won’t find grapefruit beer at the grocery store, so save yourself some time and stop by your local beer market or package store first. It’s definitely worth the trip!

Do you have a favorite beer-infused cocktail? Tell us in the comments. And for more delicious cocktail recipes, check out #HGTVHappyHour.

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With Independence Day right around the corner, you may be sprucing up your home with star-spangled decor or whipping up tasty red, white and blue treats. (Need some help? Check out our best Fourth of July ideas.) But what if you want to add a touch of all-American style to your home year round? Looking back at HGTV Dream Home 2012, designer Linda Woodrum did just that with a guest bedroom decorated in timeless patterns, classic furnishings and a patriotic color palette. Inspired by this space, we’ve gathered some tips for adding a touch of Americana style to your home.

Copy the Look of This Americana-Inspired Guest Bedroom1. Pottery Barn / 2. Ethan Allen / 3. Cafepress / 4. Pottery Barn
5. Pier 1 Imports / 6. Wayfair / 7. Wayfair

7 Ideas for an Americana-Inspired Bedroom

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Welcome to Design Happens’ Cocktail Week! Each day from now until July 4th we’ll be sharing our favorite summer cocktail recipes on our Facebook page and here on the blog. Join us for #HGTVHappyHour and share your favorites, too.

When I think of summer I think of hand-churned ice cream, soft-serve swirl cones and Nutty Buddies from the Good Humor man. This absurdly easy-to-make cocktail is a grown-up version of those sweet, creamy desserts, but in drink form. It’s the perfect refreshing sip when the weather turns steamy. Through some alchemic magic, the combination of vanilla vodka and ginger ale transforms into a dead-ringer for a cream soda. Since we’re in the midst of bathing suit season, you can sub the calories in regular ginger ale for diet. But don’t skip the maraschino cherries or a tall soda glass in order to really savor the frothy goodness.

Cream Soda Cocktail Recipe

Cream Soda for Grown-Ups

2 ounces vanilla vodka
6 ounces ginger ale
2+ maraschino cherries
crushed ice

Combine vodka and ginger ale in a tall soda glass with crushed ice. Garnish with at least two maraschino cherries.

What cocktails are you sipping this summer? Let us know in the comments. And for more delicious (and gorgeous!) cocktail recipes, check out #HGTVHappyHour.

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Welcome to Design Happens’ Cocktail Week! Each day from now until July 4th we’ll be sharing our favorite summer cocktail recipes on our Facebook page and here on the blog. Join us for #HGTVHappyHour and share your favorites, too.

Suddenly in the summer, a good Cabernet (my usual go-to beverage) isn’t very appetizing unless it’s in sangria form. Tequila, on the other hand, when mixed with the right goodies, is an instant summer refresher that still feels light enough to drink poolside in the sweltering heat. Margaritas are great, but lately I’ve been swapping the lemon-lime mix for grapefruit soda. Enter: the Paloma.

For this cocktail, I made my own grapefruit soda using a seltzer bottle but you could easily skip the extra steps and use a store-bought brand. Squirt, IZZE and Fresca are all good choices.

Paloma Cocktail Recipe

The Paloma

For the grapefruit soda:

1 cup fresh grapefruit juice
3 tablespoons simple syrup* (more or less to your liking)
1 cup water

Stir ingredients together to combine. Pour into a seltzer bottle or soda stream until ready to serve.

*To make a simple syrup, combine equal parts sugar and water in a saucepan, then cook over medium heat until the sugar has dissolved completely. Once the sugar is dissolved, strain the mixture and refrigerate until ready to use.

For the Paloma:

3 parts grapefruit soda
1 part tequila
pink Himalayan sea salt
lime wedge, for garnish

Swirl the lime wedge around the rim of your glass and dip in the sea salt to coat. Fill the glass with ice. Add tequila and top with grapefruit soda. Stir and add a lime wedge for garnish. Enjoy!

What cocktails are you sipping this summer? Let us know in the comments. And for more delicious (and gorgeous!) cocktail recipes, check out #HGTVHappyHour.

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Did you love the cool, colorful kids’ room design inspiration from J&J Design Group? Well, I’ve got some more really fun kids’ rooms for you today, this time from the San Francisco Decorator Showcase. The common thread among all of these room designs is that they use lively colors and patterns to create a space that kids will love without resorting to overly youthful design themes that won’t age well as the room’s occupant grows. See how they did it …

Boy's Room Comes to Life With Ombre Lacquer Wall Finish

Design by Susan Lind Chastain and Willem Racke

Sky blue, turquoise and orange is a masculine color combo that’s both young enough to appeal to a pre-teen boy and mature enough for a high-school guy. The room has a sort of urban skater vibe thanks to the ombre lacquer walls and ceiling by Willem Racke and designer Susan Lind Chastain’s selection of Jean Paul Gaultier’s Fangio fabric on the daybed’s pillows.

Lipstick Wallpaper Print, Brass Accents Add Girly Glam to Bathroom

Design by Nest Design Co.

Pale pinks are popular choices for girl’s spaces, but the hot pinks and fuchsia selected by Nest Design Co. make for a slightly more grown-up bathroom that works well into the teenage years and possibly beyond. The pouty lip wallpaper pattern adds a kiss of sassiness to the space, while brass and marble supply additional touches of a mature space.

Room Designed for Twins' Music Practice and Play

Design by Allison Caccoma

On its own, midnight blue might seem too traditional and dull of a choice for a kids’ space. In this playroom designed by Allison Caccoma, it serves as a not-so-neutral background to the more fun green, orange and light blue accent palette. Kids will also love the textures in this space — the walls are covered with suede; the sofa is made from velvet; and the table has textured, lacquered finish!

Teen Girl's Room Offers Youthful Sophistication

Design by Amy Weaver

Like the girl’s bathroom, her bedroom, designed by Amy Weaver, offers mature takes on common kids’ colors: pink and blue. The French Louis chairs are a traditional, grown-up selection, but the hot pink and turquoise fabrics make the chairs more youthful.

Boy's Bathroom Invokes Swimming Pool Theme With Blue Vanity and Mosaic Tile

Design by Gregg De Meza

The boy’s bathroom, designed by Gregg De Meza also offers a slick, urban vibe thanks to the bold, yellow “no diving” sign painted by an actual street artist. The artwork adds a fun, youthful touch to a bathroom that can easily suit an adult or kid.

If you like the kids’ rooms at the San Francisco Decorator Showcase 2015, check out the rest of the house:

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Let’s face it: We all probably spend a bit more time in our laundry rooms than we’d like to. When I was designing this space in my home, I decided to make it as pretty and light-filled as possible in an effort to make the hours spent scrubbing, folding and ironing just a little more fun. From the appliances to the storage solutions to the products you stock it with, a little planning on the front end goes a long way towards making this overlooked space super functional, and look beautiful, too! Here’s how I created a laundry room that’s organized, serene and as hardworking as I need it to be.

Blogger Camille Styles in Modern White and Green Laundry Room - HGTV Design Blog

Photo by Chad Wadsworth

Design the space like you would any other room of the house. Most of us spend loads of time in the laundry room, but rarely do we add the decorative touches that we would to other rooms in the house. Why not make it a zen-like retreat where we actually feel more serene when we walk through the doors? I’ve always loved this trellis print wallpaper, so I used the paper on one dramatic wall in the laundry room. It adds a welcome pop of color and still makes me smile when I walk in.

Appliances in White and Citron Contemporary Laundry Room

Photo by Chad Wadsworth

Maximize a small space with creative storage solutions. When designing this room, I had cabinets installed that stretched all the way to the ceiling. I keep the items that I rarely use, like oversized vases and party supplies, on the top shelves (with a step ladder handy.) Items I use frequently, like large serving pieces, craft supplies and everyday vases, are within arm’s reach. The sleek cabinets keep these essentials out of sight but still accessible.

MORE TIPS FOR A STYLISH LAUNDRY SPACE

See What We’re Pinning

  • Learn how to give an old cutting board new life with this

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  • We're obsessed with July's #ColorOfTheMonth pick: Carnival

  • Discover our favorite Americana designs >>