A Design Blog of Feng Shui Designer Sherry Burton Ways

Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

Four Quick & Easy Ways to Zen Your Space

Unlike what most people think, introducing a Zen sensibility to your space is quite easy.  Zen interiors mean living a simple lifestyle and design aesthetic that lends a calming effect to your home.  It does not require extensive remodeling of your home, just a few changes can create a huge impact.  Imagine bringing the serenity of your yoga class home!

dreamstime_s_16117859

Here are four quick and easy ways to Zen your space:

1) Live a clutter free life–  The first and probably most important rule of Zen decorating is getting rid of clutter.  The Japanese art of home decoration believes that clutter creates chaos and will not let your mind be at ease.  Clear everything that disturbs your line of sight.  Open spaces enhance the free flow of Chi-energy and it will instantly have a positive effect.  You will quickly realize the importance of a clutter free home.

2) Spare the bright colors– Zen decorating emphasizes the use of earth tones.  Your Zen home should be like a retreat where you can relax and feel at ease.  Bright colors disturb the balance.  Look for invigorating and fresh earthy tones like greens, browns and blues.  These are subtle yet soft making your home feel close to the outdoors.  Painting is the easier and most inexpensive solution to bringing in the Zen energy.

ZenElements

3) Use the Five Feng Shui Elements for your decor-  Zen decorating does not mean having a sparsely decorated, boring home.  In fact decorating with details is an interesting aspect of Zen principles.  Borrowing from the ancient Chinese art of placement, Feng Shui, the use  the the five elements earth, water, fire, mental and wood in your decor.  Bring in the wood element of a house plant which will add wealth as well as vibrancy and cheerfulness into your space.  Consider a mix of metal and wood for furnishings, accessories and  wall treatment inspiration.  Decorate your bare walls with serene paintings and photographs.  Limit your decor to one painting per room.  Use objects found in nature like rocks, shells and tree branches to creatively decorate your space.  You can also fill a glass bowl with shells for display on a mantel or shelf.

4) Organization and storage– Organization is another important aspect of Zen design.  An organized home will help you keep calm and feel at peace.  Take time to organize your closets, the kid’s room, drawers, refrigerator and the pantry.  These are some of the places where clutter tends to build up quicker than you think.  Make use of storage binds and boxes, label them neatly and create a place in the home for them.  When everything is neatly stacked and labeled, it will free your mind from small issues like finding birthday candles at the nick of time and will give you the opportunity to be at ease.

Here is another Zen Decorating Tip:

If you would like to create a Zen Decor and do not know where to start, contact me at Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC and I would be happy to provide you a free phone consultation to get started.

Creating Continuity of Design Through Collections

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Collections Create Continuity Of Design Creating harmony and flow throughout the home can be one of the greater design challenges. Without it, the home can appear to be a patchwork of elements that don’t coordinate, complement or appear as if they belong in the same room or home! Increasingly, interior designers are using collections to create continuity from room to room. What’s a collection you say? A collection consists of design elements that complement each other and when used throughout the home, can tie the whole space together. Below are several tips on designing collections that create continuity.

1. Select elements that coordinate via one common element. Popular common elements include shape, color, finish, use, etc. A collection of art on a wall, with black frames in varying sizes, grouped together is an excellent example of a collection. The common element is the black frames, despite the fact that the sizes vary.

2. Coordinate your design elements from room to room. Not only do you want the design elements to work well together in one room, but you’ll also want to them to coordinate from room to room. While some design elements offer an overall sense of unity, other elements have plenty of “wow” appeal just on their own. Be sure your elements work well when going from from one room to the next.

3. Be specific with architectural designs and finishes. The finishes you select could be anything ranging from distinctive metallic, fashionable wood elements, beautiful paint textures and the perfect color scheme. The absolute best way to create harmony from room to room is by selecting the correct color scheme.

Selecting the perfect color scheme for a home is an art in and of itself. Many factors come in to play that can either make or break the design, harmony and style of a space. This design strategy alone, selecting colors, provides plenty of options for beautifying your home. Today’s homeowners are looking for residential synergy, attempting to coordinate a wide range of products for their homes that blend a single theme.  Fortunately, collections are most helpful when creating the sort of harmony that homeowners desire. For more information and help with adding continuity to your home, or selecting the perfect color scheme, contact Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC at http://www.kreativeways.com.

 

Reuse Old Flowers

764493609_948699a6c2_oSpring is in the air! Birds, Bees, Bright colors and of course flowers! Fun fact: 65% more people have fresh flowers in their homes and offices between the months of April, May and June then all other months. It is great buying and receiving fresh flowers, but all good things must come to an end. Unfortunately flowers have a short life span. However I have a solution! Save those wilted flowers and give then a new life!

1. Make wall art

  • Press wilted flowers and frame the pieces on nice paper in a creative arrangement

2. Freshen up your drawers

  • Place flower petals in small cotton or linen bags and toss them into your dresser drawer

3. Homemade potpourri

  • Why but potpourri when you can make it for free? Get creative play around with different scents and colors

4. Dried flower candles

  • Creativity is flowing what better to do then a DIY?! Place pressed flower petals on the outside surface of a candle and cover it in clear wax to keep petals in place.

5. Paint dried flowers

  • Save the old flowers, once they are completely dried spay them with light primer. Let sit for 2 hours or until completely dry, then using acrylic spray paint spray away! Once your painted flowers are dry display them in a bold and interesting vase.

Don’t go overboard with saving all your flowers, eventually it can get overwhelming. On a rainy day when your looking to brighten up your home why not reuse old flowers?

Got Decorative Plates? Why Not Display Them?

????????????????????????????????????????Plates are an inexpensive, colorful way to add decoration to a room.  Take your most attractive ones out of the cabinets, and use these ideas to display them in your home.

  • Use plate hangers to arrange an arch of plates above a bed, the mantel, or a doorway.
  • Purchase small easels or specialty plate easels, so you can display decorative plates on any shelf or table.
  • Display plates, bowls, and glasses neatly in a glass-fronted cabinet.  To add extra drama, paint the interior of the cupboard in a contrasting color.  Items will pop and look especially beautiful.
  • Plate easels can also be employed in the glass cabinets so you see the decorative front part of the plates, instead of just the sides.
  • Line your plates up artistically on a counter.
  • Hang solid-colored plates on a patterned wall.  The solid colors will really pop.  But if the plate has an intricate design, make sure you hang it on a solid background.

????????????????????????????????????????

  • Arrange plates and bowls on open, stacked shelves.  Distribute color and size around the arrangement evenly.
  • Coordinating dishes can be displayed on a specialty plate rack, and hung as artwork.
  • To add a touch of formality, arrange plates on the wall in a symmetrical pattern.
  • Make use of your unmatched dishware.  Place single plates under plants as decorative saucers.  Use an odd teacup or bowl for a flower arrangement.  Use a pretty plate in the bathroom as a soap dish.
  • The right lighting will add drama to any plate display.  Make sure that room lighting is not pointed directly towards a hanging plate, or it may cause a glare.  Turn on the lights in the display cabinet.  If your cabinet doesn’t have lighting, you can install low-voltage lights, or even attach an inexpensive stick-up type.
  • Consider decorative plates for your outdoor space or patio.  Decorative plates can add color and punch to any outdoor space.

???????????????????????????????????????

It’s a shame to keep beautiful tableware out of sight.  Find unique ways to display your items so you and your guests can enjoy them every day.

For more tips to inspire your space, sign up for our newsletter, Kreative Koncepts and download our FREE Six Tips to Creating a Feel Good Space exclusive interview with me here.

Decorate Your Kitchen With Vintage Advertising

Recently while hanging out with friends in the Philadelphia area, I noticed in their kitchen framed vintage advertising campaigns from the early 1900’s.  I thought about how such a cool idea this is to reuse something old that you can possibly find in an antique store.

My friend mentioned that a friend of the family used to work for an advertising agency and gave them the old ads.  She simply framed them and used them as  a kitchen decor piece.  Cool idea!

Vintage advertisements make decorative conversation pieces in any area of the home.  However, I find them most interesting to decorate in the kitchen.  I have found a few myself that I have decorated in my kitchen showing old minstrel like charachures of African Americans at the turn of the previous century.  While I do not find them offensive, I found them interesting conversation pieces for visitors who come for a dinner party I am hosting.  The accents they provide and the colors are unmistakable.

Consider creating a vintage decor for your kitchen.  This is an interesting environmentally-friendly accessory you can find any vintage or antique shop.

My Material Culture Adventure in Philly

Indigenous wall sculptures and artwork create very imaginative interiors.

My Memorial Day weekend was spent in the City of Brotherly Love- Philadelphia.  There I visited one of my FAVORITE places to view ethnic furnishings and get inspired to create one of a kind interiors with Moroccan, African, Indian, Turkish furnishings.  This adventure led me to a place called Material Culture.  This is not just any store but in my mind an adventure in color, antiques, and amazing rugs from all over the world.  These snap shots are just an inkling of the kinds of furnishings and accessories made available at this store!  Feast your eyes on the array of home furnishings delight.

Rugs, rugs, rugs, galore!

Nothing like beautiful accent pillows to complete a space!

Ethnically diverse antiques and artifacts make great conversation pieces for any room.

Love these vintage cabinets! Adds great character to any space!

Beautiful furniture can be refinished in any way. Note the pairings and eclectic feel.

Love the background color. Mixture of ethnic and cultural arts, rustic cabinet and furnishings.

These African Shona sculptures add a great accessory to contemporary or traditional interiors.

Love the different variety of color and texture these flower pots bring.

Great outdoor furniture and accessories to brighten any patio!

Press Release: Unity Health Care @ DC General Opening February 17th

Unity Health Care’s New Children’s Reading Center at Former DC Hospital Will Open February 17th

Washington, DC – Unity Health Care will unveil a new children’s reading center at its clinic in the former DC Hospital, 1900 Massachusetts Ave SE, building 29, from 1 to 4 p.m.  Friday, February 17. The brief program will include remarks from Vincent A. Keane, President/CEO of Unity Health Care, key staff and city officials.

Unity is the largest primary health care agency in the Washington, DC,  area, providing health care services to more than 82,000 patients annually at 29 health centers and a mobile outreach unit. Unity at DC General has grown to a site that served over 34,500 clients in 2011.  Services offered range from primary care, for children and adults, dentistry, case management and specialty services such as neurology, ophthalmology, general surgery, infectious diseases, podiatry to name a few.

Promoting Literacy to DC’s Homeless Population

Unity’s goal is to increase literacy among children during the critical literacy skills acquisition years of six months to five years. Through a partnership with Reach Out and Read of Metro DC, Unity has developed the Key Corner Project. The Key Corner Project promotes early literacy by bringing new books and advice about the importance of reading aloud into the pediatric exam room, unlocking the door to reading success

Sherry Ways of Kreative Ways and Solutions has been heading the design project for the reading room, which will include new furnishings, books, murals and accent walls. Two members of the Kreative Ways team, Bretnage Blair and Shea Capri Bartley, have been working on the project for six months.  Shea Capri, a student at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond and an intern at Kreative Ways have painted two murals for the project. This is the second Unity Reading Room redesign that Ways has led. She coordinated the redesign of a reading room at Unity’s East of the River health Center in 2008.

Also participating in the project are Cindy Athey of Percision Tech, who has donated painting services; Benjamin Moore Paints, which donated paint; and Kate Smith of Sensational Color, who also donated paint.

Invited guests include Mayor Vincent Gray, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, DC Ward 6 Councilmember Tommy Wells, and members of the City Council, Dr. Mohammad Akhter, Director of the District of Columbia’s Department of Health, Federal and District officials, community leaders and stakeholders.

About Unity Health Care

Unity Health Care, Inc. (Unity) was founded in 1985 as Health Care for the Homeless Project (HCHP) providing primary health care services to homeless individuals and families that resided in local emergency shelters or on the streets of the District of Columbia.  With a patient population that is plagued by low literacy, the promotion of literacy has become an important part of standard primary care, enabling children to grow up with books and a love of reading.

About Sherry Ways

Sherry Ways started her design firm, Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC, in  2004. Ways earned a BS and a Master’s Degree with additional training in Interior Design from the Maryland Institute College of Art and the American Feng Shui Institute.  She holds a Certificate in Certified Color Therapy through the International Certified Aromatherapy Institute and has recently become a Certified Interior Environment Coach through the DeGangi Group.

 

# # #

Tag Cloud