Summer is a season for travel. I’m not much of a go-on-vacation-to-relax kind of girl, but I do love exploring new places and taking in different cultures. Decorating my room to remind me of the places I’ve been is a fun way to keep those memories alive. Every time I see the mini Dutch shoe I bought in the Netherlands, I remember how wonderful it was to go there with my family. And I love that I can simply look at my shelf to spur those memories, rather than yanking out scrapbooks or browsing Facebook albums. (Although, who am I kidding? I definitely still do that, too!)
If you’ve gone somewhere incredible in the past or you’re heading on a new adventure this summer, consider translating your travels into decor. Whether you plan on completely revamping your home or just incorporating a few trinkets acquired on your journeys, here are 7 tips for creating a room inspired by memorable trips:
Photo: Courtesy of Ore Studios
Start With Souvenirs
You may not have bought that magnificent hand-carved chair you saw in Morocco, but you did bring back a colorful vase. Good news: Small souvenirs are a great way to add global charm to your space without breaking the bank (or your back)! Simply placing your find on a bookshelf or coffee table will add some fun flair. But, if you’re feeling more ambitious, use the souvenir as inspiration to redesign an entire room. Pull some bold colors from the piece, like the orange on this vase, to use for accent pillows or a bright new wall color.
Photo: Courtesy of Thibaut
Throw in a Textile
Every country has a unique textile heritage, so while you’re traveling, keep an eye out for traditional fabrics! Whether you bring back a Moroccan wedding blanket, tribal rug, or French toile curtains, use them to transform a room. Like the beautiful French fabric in this space, a textile can be a lovely way to add a sense of your travels.
I’m over the moon for anything involving stars, constellations and the night sky. Last April, I created a DIY ‘phases of the moon’ wall art piece for No News is Good News, the newsletter that accompanies Panda Head blog. Ever since, I’ve kept my eye out for more moon moments and have found a few favorites to share.
Form meets celestial function in these moony clocks. Glitter Mint represented with dreamy moon phases as the numbers.
And Hello Bee made her whole clock face a moon. Both are so lovely.
Make your moon glow with a DIY project that was the result of my $5 Hardware Store Challenge on HGTV Handmade.
Builder Network took their love of the moon to the next level to create a sweet cradle for their baby. How sweet! Do you think they make that for grown-ups? Or better yet — DOGS.
If none of these are you, perhaps you are more in the mood to show your love for the moon with Oreos? Via DIY
BRIANA: Ice sculptures and swans are so ’90s. There’s a wacky new wedding trend taking hold: donkeys. Yes, you read that correctly. Donkeys. Apparently, some couples use them as transportation, to distribute goodies in their saddle bags, or just to provide ambiance and unique photo opportunities. What do you think? Do donkeys kick a wedding up a notch or would a burro upstage the bride?
Photo: Simone Van den berg/Hemera/Thinkstock
TREVOR: Is the ceremony taking place at the bottom of the Grand Canyon?
MEG ALLAN COLE: I’m glad you specified that I read this right because, it was unclear for a second. Who knew? Not this girl.
ARE YOU DOWN WITH WEDDING DONKEYS? VOTE NOW!
BRIANA: This week’s topic comes via Jessica: the resurgence of tie-dye. It’s very summery and historically, we’ve been sweet on shibori, but what do you think of this trend? Is tie-dye decor groovy or does it make you think of a pint of Wavy Gravy?
Credit: Rustic White Photography
KELLEY: I miss the old hippies who used to hang out around here, so I’m glad to see some hippie-dom coming back. I can do without the patchouli, tho.
DAVID HAYNES: Did someone say hippies? As a veteran of more than just a few Grateful Dead shows, I will recuse myself from this thread. But before I do, if you want to witness extreme tie-dye, you might take a look at this:
Headphones recommended. Things start to kick in at around the two-and-a-half minute mark.
TREVOR LANE: The traditional psychedelic neon-hued tie-dye reminds me of childhood vacation Bible school crafts. But this more modern take on the trend is great. I love monochrome and am obsessed with indigo. The more geometric shapes are incredibly beautiful, like the Crate and Barrel napkin in the second link. If I could do it… I would.
Crate and Barrel Shibori Blue Napkin
MEG ALLAN COLE: I support hand dyeing in all ways. I used to rock some pretty atrocious colored tie-dye in the 90′s, and those are moments we can leave in the past, but this new organic hand dye trend using muted mellow colors or bold jewel tones is just gorgeous. It gives off such a dreamy, tropical look and vibe that I am WAY into.
MORE DEBATING ABOUT TIE DYE
There is something about the mellow, organic vibe dip-dying creates that is so lovely and oh-so-summer, to me. A deceivingly easy DIY, considering how intimidating it looks. I’ve tried my stained hands at this many times before (Re: wear gloves), and shared the in-progress process and the results on my blog, Nest. Liz touched upon this trend a few weeks ago in her Color of the Month post, so clearly we are all digging the dye right now.
This week I felt the need to share just how simple it can be to create the look over on HGTV Handmade.
Please DO try this at home. The result is really quite dreamy and I can see this being a great addition to any couch, bedroom, or even a pop of custom color in a new dorm room.
Inspired by this lush and lovely dip-dye duvet set at Anthropologie, I took the project into a home textile place with a set of dip-dye pillows in a palette of blues and purple for my HGTV Handmade video.
More on Dip-Dye
Top L to R: Pottery Barn, Pencil Shavings Studio, Lonny | Middle L to R: Yossawat, Design Home, H&M | Bottom L to R: Country Living, Target, H&M
We could use up all of our effort — and budgets — on flawless furniture, but the details are what really bring a room to life. With the summer holidays and parties quickly approaching, now is the perfect time to experiment with new design ideas and tips.
For this warm weather season, many designers are harnessing the impact power of accent pillows. Whether it is a coordinated look, or an eclectic mix of different styles, the beauty of this trend is that you can continuously change the mood and feel of a room by simply switching out a few inexpensive cushion covers.
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Try mixing a nautical inspired pillow with a contrasting graphic stripe for a crisp yet bold statement. Or create a more subtle tone with vintage embroidered pieces with a calm color palette. The possibilities are endless with this trend — and they will no doubt impress at all of your summer parties.
I am so ready for summer I can smell the suntan lotion, feel the sand between my toes, and hear the waves crashing now (or is that my sound machine that helps me sleep?). I’ve been seeing watermelon everywhere right now in fashion and home decor and it’s beckoning a long, chill summer season perfect for BBQ’s and pool days. This trend is in tandem with the pineapple moment that is happening right now, and the combo is oh-so-refreshing! Let’s see what else bloggers and YouTubers are creating with citrus across the ole’ inter-web. Madame Citron hand-dyed this tote bag to be watermelon fresh and it’s adorable.
Are these projects making you hungry? Then let’s make this delicious-looking dish seen on Food 52.
The Hey Hey Hey painted a pair of slip-ons to look like the fruit and they are uber-cute.
More Adorbs Watermelon Ideas
BRIANA: Move over, duck face — there’s a new craze sweeping Instagram called the “shelfie.” Apparently, tastemakers everywhere are taking pictures of artfully-arranged shelves and posting them to social media with the hashtag. What do you think of the trend? Is it a fun way to share your personal style or does showing off your possessions make you seem shelf-ish?
Design: Brian Patrick Flynn | Photo: Rustic White Photography
JESSICA: I’m a hoarder and lacking in shelf space (read: furniture), so looking at people’s neatly organized shelves is very relaxing.
KAYLA: I’m one of those people that rearranges my bookshelves once a month, so seeing people’s “shelfies” gives me ideas for placement. (I had no idea that was a thing, though.)
DAVID HAYNES: I’m with Kayla. I’m all for seeing what other people are doing along these lines and I will happily cherry-pick and plagiarize their ideas. However, I’m more the type in search of the Holy Grail of shelf arrangement, so once I have a shelving strategy and display theme I’m happy with, it’s likely to stay that way to the end of time.
MARIEL CLARK: Here’s a trend I can get behind. I love being inspired by real-life design and bookshelves are such a great reflection of individual personality and style. I probably won’t share my own “shelfie” right now since mine is a study in juice boxes, train sets and baby blocks. But I will eagerly flip through others’ perfectly arranged shelves and dream of one day having just the right bookends that will pull the entire shelf — no, the entire room — together.
FARIMA: I love a well-decorated shelf, and I truly think it takes talent to design one perfectly. Saying that, the closest thing I have to a bookshelf is an electric blue China cabinet that I’ve decorated minimally because I hate dusting!
MORE SHOUTING ABOUT SHELFIES
It seems like everyone I know covets one common thing — SLEEP. Dear, beautiful sleep, an illusive old friend that comes and goes and never quite stays long enough. A major influence on the frequency and length of our pal’s nightly visits can be largely contingent on our bed. I shamefully admit that my husband and I were slumbering on my childhood double-mattress until very recently. No wonder I was an insomniac who watched countless episodes of Golden Girls until the wee hours of the morning on countless sleepless nights.
The investment in a new, high-quality QUEEN-SIZE mattress was a game-changer, to say the very least, yet the combination of our new mattress and my DIY upholstered headboard still begged for something else. With the bed being the focal point in the room, I wanted something to frame it and make it stand out while creating a romantic, relaxing aesthetic. I found the perfect solution for this in a DIY Fringe Canopy that took all of 30 minutes to install, yet changed the entire dynamic of the room.
It got me curious to peer into other people’s bedrooms and see how they were creating a bed that begs you to slumber peacefully. And, so as not to be creepy, I bring you a totally-appropriate yet intimate look at different sleeping situations that might inspire you and your bedroom.
Any post concerning creating an up-grade to your bed would be remiss if it did not include Justina Blakeney’s incredibly romantic and dreamy handmade canopies. Customize with lanterns, ribbon, pom pom trim, or whatever your heart desires. Learn how to make one with Corinne Czar in this episode of Recreate.
In a stark contrast to those colorful, feminine spaces, Rue Magazine gives us a glimpse into Nate Berkus’s masculine and modern bedroom. Those clean lines and dark palette would put my mind in a calm and restful state immediately.
This week, HGTV HOME Design Director (and former HGTV.com Guest Editor) Nancy Fire is readying herself for SURTEX, the leading design and digital fabric printing trade show that connects designers, buyers and manufacturers from around the world. Nancy, who is also creative director and founder of Design Works International and First2Print — is playing a big part in this year’s event.
Nancy’s companies and SURTEX have come together to create Design A Seat, a campaign that showcases surface design, digital fabric printing and industry connectivity. As so many industries come together May 18th, 19th and 20th, each seat in the campaign will represent one or more of them. The seats are sourced, revamped, DIYed and upholstered with both digitally printed fabric or wovens, each with their corresponding industry in mind. Each seat tells a story. Take a peek at what’s coming.
3 More Looks
Watercolor prints have been rising in popularity for a few months now — HGTV Home’s Nancy Fire even named them as one of the top design trends to watch this spring. I personally love these hazy, colorful designs — but you know what I don’t love? That designer price tag. So, how excited was I to discover that you can make your own watercolor-esque pillow covers with basic rubbing alcohol and a handful of Sharpies? Pretty darned excited. Watch the video to learn how:
Fair warning: These pillows are kind of addicting to make, and I’m itching to use the technique on table linens and maybe even a t-shirt. The possibilities are endless!
With the determination of an aging pop star, string art continues to reinvent itself over and over again. Design is always in flux so it’s impressive when a technique evolves over time and continues to connect with what’s going on in the home decor world. Originally a “decor craft” in the 60′s, string art has evolved from kitchy to trippy to modern right before our very eyes, if you consider old Domino magazines and Pinterest right before our very eyes. Here are a few of my favorite interpretations, and I’d love for you to weigh in on which ones you dig in the comments section.
Our own Marianne Canada made a rad monogram moment with her version on Weekday Crafternoon.
I brought string art to a geometric animal place with my Geo Bear for HGTV Handmade.
BRIANA: I know I was pining for warmer climes through our long, bleak winter and it seems designers were, too. Pineapples have been popping up in the fashion world and now they’re appearing on pillows, in paintings and on blogs. So, what do you think of the pineapple as a popular motif? Are these fruits tropi-cool or do you only care about them when they’re in colada form?
Pillow: Bonnie and Neil via Anthropologie
MARIANNE: My girl Meg JUST did this amazing cut paper pineapple, and I’m loving it. And did you guys see The Alison Show’s Mother’s Day brunch? MORE PINEAPPLES.
BRIANA: What about monograms/initials for this week? I was cleaning out some of my email folders and remembered this newsletter from C. Wonder. It was actually an April Fool’s joke that redirected here (ha!), but they totally do have tons of monogrammed decor stuff…
C. Wonder April Fool’s newsletter
LIZ: Bring it on! I think people monogram things far too often. No one needs their initials embroidered on socks, toilet paper holders or underwear. And yet…
BRIANA: Haha, oh, it is so on! Opening this thread wide right now. Folks, are monograms and initials a capital (letter) idea or just excessive branding?
JESSICA: When I was still in school, my friend’s mom sent him monogrammed sheets, and to this day, we are still making fun of him for it. They’re cute and make sense for weddings, though.
Photo: Ruth Meharg/HGTVGardens
DO YOU LIKE THE MONOGRAM TREND? VOTE NOW!
Clockwise from top left: Depst | Megan Lee Designs | Gingiber | SketchInc.
It’s Friday and I’m feeling fox-y! But not in the Cleopatra kind of way.
I love the minimalistic look of facets. Their clean lines can instantly modernize a room and make it feel more organized. The geometric trend has been around for years, but designers keep finding fresh new ways to incorporate it into their work. You can get your facet fix with big furniture pieces or in small doses with lamps and appliances. One of the latest facet fads is foxes, and they’re so darn cute, you’ll forget all about that terrible “What Does the Fox Say” song.
What do you think of these faceted foxes? Are they fabulous or faux paus?
The road less traveled is not in all likelihood in reference to our Silk Road of the Orient, which happens to be not only well traveled, but cycled through often as far as trends are concerned. The good news here for those of you who already own any variety of Oriental rug, or would like to own one in the near future, is that a well-made version never really goes out of style and always looks glamorous in a space.
Image Credits: 1 | 2
With so many zip codes (or the regional counterpart) calling the Orient as home base, there are quite naturally a great many varieties of rug included under the umbrella term of Oriental. The ever so fabulous Persian rug and many Turkish styles of rug, of which there are more than I can count on my two little hands, are currently enjoying quite a design moment, especially if they happen to be of the vintage variety.
Image Credits: 3 | 4
I have found that some of these specimens come in some oddly sized pieces, and some may not do much in the way of covering any actual surface area, though virtually all of the designs are spectacular and complex, not to mention typically hand knotted and made from gorgeous natural materials. If you happen to have an aversion to faux fibers, this might be a route you would do well to consider, assuming you can find a size that suits your space. Many styles of Oriental rug actually seem to stick to some semblance of habit when it comes to size. Some tend toward larger sizes on the whole, while others seem to produce a very consistent array of the most beautiful oversized door mats you have ever seen. If you are looking for accent pieces, this might be perfect, but if you need a full sized rug to fill your family room you may need to consider this in your search.
Image Credits: 5 | 6
While this trend has moments of rise and fall in popularity among the masses and in particular the young, given the propensity for these pieces to keep their ‘cool’, it might be safe to say they are worth the investment. Since you can track down some mighty fine rugs at stellar prices on the second hand market, that investment may turn out to be one that deals more in time than dollars. With such a wide variety of styles, colors, patterns, and regional differences that set these rugs apart from one another, perhaps while one is on the rise and trending, it just might be time to focus your energies on another region’s goods and get your dollars’ worth while no one is looking.
From slouchy to sleek and safari, oh my! Whether cushy or chrome, and maybe even both, the sling chair runs the gamut, and this hot little number has indeed reentered the design world in a big, big way. If you like a good romp through a second hand store or flea market every now and again, chances are you will find yourself drawn to these deconstructionist leather supported pieces at some point in the very near future.
Image Credits: 1 | 2
So when did we last see these beauties? The safari style variety of sling chair, with all of its belts and buckles, was in great demand during the days of the great campaign wars and was made to move and pack with relative ease. To credit the design of the chair, it actually accomplished this with fabulous success. Truthfully it is not such a surprise that this item is on the design radar right now, given the relatively recent adoration of other campaign style pieces. In fact, it seems a rather natural evolution.
Image Credits: 3 | 4
For the Scandinavian style inclined and vintage lovers the world over, the Swedish furniture master, Arne Norell, designed his own version of the safari chair along with a great many other versions of the sling chair. Most, if not all of them, have similar features with leather or canvas supports that rely on a frame system, which make his pieces strong contenders for those who lean toward this vintage, textural, and luxe material driven style.
Image Credits: 5 | 6
The sleek chrome or cantilevered versions of the sling chair might play on the industrial and mass produced era of the midcentury or the glamorous aspects of the sixties and seventies depending on the design you happen to be coveting. Regardless, if you appreciate a bit of design history this chair will take you down the lane and back with all of its possibilities, varieties and interpretations. It is quite literally the chair that continues to morph, and I cannot wait to see how modern day designers continue to reinvent this design chameleon. If the past is any indication of how it will change and adapt with the times, then we are in for a wild ride filled with a great many different modifications during this chair’s time in the spotlight.
If you’re a design fan, you’ve likely heard of High Point Furniture Market. Every spring and fall, the city of High Point, North Carolina fills to the brim with designers, furniture buyers and exhibitors, all ready to see the hottest trends in home decor.
Camille and I logged several miles a day walking around the many gorgeous showrooms in High Point last week, and I’ve gathered up the top 10 trends we spotted at this spring’s showing.
Bejeweled and Bedazzled
Think of this as the upscale version of that bedazzling gun sold on late-night TV. The agate trend continues this spring both in real-life slices, like this stone-covered sconce from Emporium Home inspired by the classic Sputnik chandelier, and agate-inspired fabrics, like this custom print spotted at Design Legacy. This trend also starring: quartz and crystal.
From Shibori-inspired rugs to floral fabrics to geometric patterns, indigo and navy blue were everywhere at this spring’s market.
Along with all that blue, a complementary color was also on display: lots and lots of orange, like this lush bedding display from de Medici by Eastern Accents.
Shades of Purple
Though we didn’t spot as much of Pantone’s radiant orchid as we expected, the displays we did see featuring this hue were stunning. Our favorite? This painterly vignette at Design Legacy.
See More Trending Design Ideas
BRIANA: The nautical look has been sailing along for a while, but it seems like it’s really made a splash lately. Liz and Camille’s photos from High Point are full of aquatic creatures (
sea see below) and Target’s new Coastal Collection sports stripes, boating motifs and plenty of navy blue. What do you think about this wave of nautical home decor? Is coastal style beachy keen or is it a sinking ship?
Design Legacy by Kelly O’Neal display at High Point Market
ALYSSA: This is blindingly awful for so many reasons, the first starting with the patchwork denim couch! A few items could stand alone in a beach house, but everything together is just too much. We ran a story about tropical style in the suburbs from the May issue of HGTV Magazine, so I could sound like a hypocrite for saying I like some of the looks in that home, but I think it’s all about not turning a design style into a design theme. AND YES, I know the difference between tropical and nautical. Also, I love a good navy and white stripe (like in Kayla’s mood board) and a big floral print — that’s the kind of preppy southern vibe I’m into.
BRIAN PATRICK FLYNN: Coastal style has timeless appeal because of its relaxed, casual and vacation-like vibe. It will always be in style and relevant as long as it’s played down, relying more on textures and finishes and shapes rather than literal nods like shells, fish and tons of anchors. One weathered anchor will do the trick, then just fill the space with tons of beach textures and muted coastal tones like blue-grey and seaglass green.
DO YOU LIKE NAUTICAL HOME DECOR? VOTE NOW!
The tides have officially turned, and while a custom experience is still the end goal, the actual manner of getting there is oh so very different. You see, it was not a great many moons ago that tricked out Billy and Besta shelves, made to look like custom built-ins, were all the rage. A “choose your own adventure in configuration and layout with a bit of your favorite trim and some fancy nail gun action,” and truly it was difficult to tell they were not in fact built right in. This current trend toward modular shelving, however, while still entirely customizable in most cases, celebrates that experience in a much different manner.
Image Credits: 1 | 2
From the iconic String Shelves to some very clever IKEA Hacks, these mod shelving wunderkind let it all hang out, quite literally. In fact for many of these units the parts are in fact a great deal more important than the whole, and are to be celebrated right alongside the clever functionality of the systems in general. From industrial strength brackets to wing nut fasteners that adjust to hold the shelves in precisely the location you desire, the machinery and inter-workings are on display just as much as the items that will ultimately live on those shelves later.
Image Credits: 3 | 4
So what gives? Are we becoming more in tune with our orderly instincts and honing our color coding skill-set? I would love to think this all stems from a society that simply cannot wait to deck the walls in perfect organizational bliss, but somehow I think we are simply channeling our gypsy inspired selves, wanting a more carefree lifestyle with a few less permanent fixtures holding us down. I suppose the answer could be much simpler for a great majority of us and maybe we only seek a budget friendly option to house our wares.
Image Credits: 5 | 6
Regardless, while the more DIY friendly seeming versions of these customizable systems might be a bit easier on the wallet, this is not so for the vintage cado shelving units, some of the modern floor to ceiling beauties, or the designer systems from our Danish and Swedish friends from colder climes. So while the style itself may seem less than permanent in all of its adjustable glory, the investment cost for many of these pieces may be anything but. In fact, a few of these systems might actually set you back for something akin to the price of an entire living room set of furniture and perhaps even a bit more. So the question begs to be asked, how do you feel about this style? Does it feel modern and functional to you or solve for your quirky storage and display needs like nothing else has? Or maybe it feels fleeting and not as favorable as a good solid built-in unit? Inquiring minds want to know…