A Design Blog of Feng Shui Designer Sherry Burton Ways

Posts tagged ‘Interior Environment Coaching’

Creating Continuity of Design Through Collections

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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.

 

Should All My Furniture Match One Design Style?

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Today’s interior styles reflect an eclectic mix of influences. Not only can you switch up your style from room to room, but within a room as well. Whether you prefer a casual or a more formal approach to furnishing your home, the contrast of different styles enlivens the space. A well-designed space does not have matching pieces, and in order to create a visual interest in a room, it is better to complement rather than match. Matching is very restricted.

Spaces can become more personal through time as furniture pieces are collected from family members, friends, or antique shopping.

All these different styles collected can become representative of you and your style.  While on the other hand, buying a set can seem less personal and instead, less boring!

I  believe it’s more stimulating to use different styles as opposed to one style when it comes time to decorate.  When you use pieces that you have collected over the years and integrate new items as well, you are able to create a more personal living space.

Want more tips and inspiration for your home or office, sign up for the Kreative Koncepts newsletter  here.

How To Avoid The Most Costly Design Mistake in 2013

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The most costly mistake that homeowners make is starting an interior design project without a plan.  Taking on a new project without a plan is like trying to drive to a strange, faraway place without a map.  This will cause you delays, increase your frustration, and cost you a bundle.  Making a plan is a lot like having a navigation system to guide you along the way.

If you consider some important steps before beginning your home design venture, you can feel more confident that your project will go as planned.

Step One:  Choose a Mood

Many homeowners get stuck trying to figure out a style.  Instead, think about how you want to feel in the room.  Before choosing even one item, decide on the mood you want to achieve: casual and comfortable … formal and elegant … cheerful and whimsical…

After you’ve chosen your desired mood, make sure that everything you choose reflects it, and your final design is sure to turn out perfectly.

Step Two:  Find an Inspiration

Find one piece that really speaks to your heart.  It can be a painting, a piece of furniture, or an area rug.  Use this piece to keep your purchases on track.  Everything you buy for the room must coordinate with that one piece.  Sometimes a picture in a magazine can be your inspiration.  Make sure your overall plan is consistent with the colors, textures, and overall theme of the picture.

Step Three:  Plan your Budget (loosely)

Home projects rarely stay within the initial budget, but it is still important to set one.  You can feel more secure if you know approximately how much you are willing to spend for the entire project, and then plan for each separate item accordingly.

Step Four:  Make a List

List the items you are keeping for your room, and also ALL the pieces you need to purchase to complete the project.  You don’t need to buy everything at once, but you should have a list before you begin.  Relating back to this list during your project will keep you on track, and also keep you on budget!

You will find that making a plan and sticking to it will force you to stay on track and achieve your design goals.  This whole process is even easier if you can share it with friends or family.  Having support will get the job done more smoothly – and with a lot more fun.  Enjoy!

Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC is available to assist you in 2013 with your design needs.  Call us today at 1-888-280-8318 or email us at interiors@kreativeways.com for your free 30 minute phone or skype consultation regarding your project.  Make it your New Year’s resolution in action!

Six Strategies to Prepare for The End of The World Of Uninspired Home Design

Backyard Corner

Well it is the end of the world as we know it… well sort of.   According to the ancient Mayans, the end of the world is supposed to be December 20-21st.  However, I got news for you… the end of the world as we have known it from a consciousness level is no longer the agenda.

The year 2013  is about making a shift in the collective consciousness around the world.  In order to prepare, we will need more spiritual and energetic tools.  It is now going to be about listening to your intuition and being in touch with your spiritual self.   It is about moving to action instead of waiting for permission to move forward.

Inspired

This is a time for transformation, spirituality and understanding your place and your role in co-creating the universe.  This is the end of doing it all on your own.  It is about sharing and tapping as many resources as you can.  You will want to match your personal SHIFT with an environmental SHIFT.

To do this you must create an interior that fully supports the way you want to be, and the way you want to live in the world—one where you can really thrive and enjoy every aspect of your life, with spaces that function well, and allow you to tap into your true self and your authentic gifting.  So as you prepare mentally and spiritually for this exciting shift in the universe,  your home or office  interior must be in alignment for the abundance prepared for you in 2013.   To prepare your interior for the SHIFT here are six strategies:

  1. Discover your personal (and even professional) needs and goals.
  2. Create an action plan for setting up your interior environment so that these needs and goals will be supported and fully realized.
  3. Consider spaces that integrate personal hobbies, work, and creativity into your home.
  4. Incorporate design elements that can have an emotional and psychological effect on your well-being and productivity both within the home and outside of it.
  5. Know what your personal development colors are and how to integrate them in your interior.  There is nothing like having the right customized colors in your environment to help you thrive at your highest level.
  6. Find out what your Feng Shui Five Elemental make up is and the characteristics of your Chinese natal element chart is to be able remain balanced.

You know the trend of working from home virtually has changed the mindset of the workplace. The virtual work situation has placed us in environments where we can be stimulated to be more productive.   We now have some control over the spaces in which we work.  We want beauty around us.   Take the opportunity to shape your home office or out of home office bathed in beauty.

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Why not place fresh bouquets of  flowers or installing chandeliers in your home office in order stimulate your productivity?

To help you make that SHIFT in your interior for the post-2012 world, consider our Interior Environment Coaching and Feng Shui Design services to transform your old interior design consciousness to one that is in step with 2012 .  Our services are more than equipped to help you end the world of uninspired design to a world of spaces that inspire you.  Call us today to schedule your 30 minute FREE phone consultation at 1-888-280-8318 or email us at interiors@kreativeways.com.

Upleveling Your Space with Recycled Glass Tiles!

Whether they’re in your kitchen or bathrooms, tiled walls, counters and floors glass tiles can make a space brighter, darker, larger or smaller. They add a splash of color to any dull room or space. Different sizes can accommodate different uses, while different materials and textures can convey different feelings. Choosing the perfect tile for a certain space can be hard, as mentioned, various sizes, textures, materials and colors can make decision making hard. However, the first place one should start the picking process is with sustainability.

Glass tiles have been around for centuries and can provide a classic timeless look. From beautiful and classic Byzantine mosaics, to modern day kitchen back splashes, glass tiles have come and gone in and out of popularity through the times. Now days, glass tiles provide a great alternative for consumers seeking a green and sustainable product. Whether you are seeking them for your residential or commercial projects, glass tiles are ideal for LEED certification.

Glass tiles are made and produced by many different manufacturers, however, when looking; one must research whether the glass tiles are made of recycled content and if so, what percentage of the tiles are made of recycled content. StoneSource has a series of different glass tile lines that come in different shapes, sizes, colors and are all made of post consumer recycled glass, comprised of 67% post-consumer and 28% post-industrial recycled content. Fire Clay on the other hand introduced “Crush, 100% Recycled Glass Tile – a handmade, American-crafted glass tile created from 100% locally sourced recycled glass.”

 

No matter which room you choose there is a role for glass tile.  Uplevel your interior with it today!

 

Essence Magazine December 2012: Getting to Joy

Thrilled to have contributed to an article in the December 2012 issue of Essence Magazine entitled Getting to Joy. Among the 10 things stated I provided the importance of de-cluttering your space as a means to increase joy in your life. You can find the article on page 137.

Article “Getting to Joy” on page 137 of Essence Magazine. See #8.

December 2012 issue of Essence magazine

Love and Marriage: Decorating Together The Feng Shui Way

Before decorating or redecorating a room in your home.  Call a meeting with your spouse or partner first.  Set the intention of what your home is to be for the both of you.  Determine first which rooms you would like to decorate or redecorate and whether or not the room is functioning at a level that you both are satisfied with.  Is it functioning efficiently and are both of you feeling productive in the space.

No matching match! Mix, don’t match. The home is an opportunity to grow as a couple or as an relationship evolves.   Mix and match décor items and furniture that suit both of your interests and activities.

Respect each other’s belongings, sacred inherited pieces and furnishings.  Find places in the home where each other’s cherished belongings will be respected and honored.

When shopping for new furniture, I always advise a couple to determine what their interior design style is first.  This can be done through researching magazines, blogs, websites and other media to identify which furniture and design styles will best suit both.  Tear out those photos you both like.  Identify using descriptors which furnishings and colors you both like.  Compromise is the name of the game.

Once you identify a design style that you both can live with, begin to list those items that you feel you need the most.  Determine needs verses wants at this stage.

Understand and work with a budget that you both agree to and stick with.  Determine whether or not you are living in a condo, house or apartment how long you will be living there and whether or not certain items are worth the investment if it is a temporary living situation.

Shop and choose items together.  Make it a date!  Make it fun and include dinner or lunch as part of it.  Choose a day where you will concentrate on one item verses another.

While typically women are drivers of décor decisions- always ALWAYS involve your partner in making the decisions.  While he may say oh go ahead and decorate, believe me he has an opinion too and it should be honored.  Keep asking questions about likes and dislikes between the two of you.

Here is a case study of a Feng Shui Design I did for a couple:

Feng shui is about creating positive energy, the right chi, within a space.  “It was my idea,” the wife, who didn’t want to be named, said. “I had done some research but wanted someone to help us with the layout and flow of the house.”

I began by guiding the couple through an intention ceremony. This process meant entering each room and stating the intention and purpose for the space. They burned sage and chanted — the wife said her husband, a Navy officer, was skeptical at first.

“My husband has been a good sport,” she said. “The ceremony got us all on the same page.”

The primary intent was to create a home that feels inviting to friends and serves as an oasis to the couple. I removed walls on the main floor to open the space and then quadrupled the number of windows, inviting in more sunlight.

The color scheme was based on personal feng shui readings performed by me. The husband, a Yin Wood type, needed more water, which was represented by blue to enhance his energy.

Home I designed for a couple using Feng Shui and Chinese astrology

Wood is stimulated by water. The wife possessed a large fire element and benefited from the water cooling her down.

“If left up to me, all the walls would have been red or orange,” the wife acknowledged. “These colors really bring a sense of calm and balance.”

Each of the chosen colors is painted on a wall in the home. They are repeated in tiny rectangular tiles, from Architectural Ceramics, arranged in a geometric pattern and mounted around the fireplace. The result is a reflective, shimmering work of art.

Usually feng shui requires window coverings.  But part of feng shui is about bringing elements of nature into the house, and the windows certainly do that.

Circles, which represent unity, infinity and completion in feng shui, appear in various forms throughout the home. The light fixture above the dining table is an assortment of rings grouped in a mirror bowl chandelier with brass detailing. Wooden accent tables and lamp shades replicate the circular pattern. All the furniture has rounded edges, alleviating any “poison arrows” that interfere with positive chi.

A transitional sofa in taupe chenille-like fabric with a micro-maze pattern is flanked by two sets of chairs. On one side are comfy accent chairs in micro-suede, complemented by dainty round satin teal pillows. On the other are two chairs with Indonesian-inspired carved mahogany frames.

The entire project, which included designing a nursery and master bedroom, took only six weeks to finish. I contribute part of the speedy completion to hiring a contractor who also studied feng shui and the fact that the couple who had a firm understanding and intention to design the space as they wanted.

“My biggest concern with feng shui was whether we could find the types of things, such as furniture, we liked in a style that fit,” the wife said. “I love the flow of the house and [my husband’s] very happy with the outcome. We want people to come into the house and feel relaxed. We want the focus to be on the person and not the furniture.”

 

 

Creating A Feel Good Space Before I Knew What It Was

A few years ago, I worked on a new home for a very special client.  This was one of my first projects as a designer.  Looking back now, it was my first project where it entailed me creating a feel good space which I did not know it at the time.  First, I decluttered her entire home and categorized her belongings as to whether they should stay or go.  I carefully worked with her to determine the significance of various items  in which the client moved in with.   I categorized her belongings and and placed aside those items that would remain verses which ones would go.

Then I worked with the client to determine what colors were considered peaceful to her.  The client stated that she liked earth tone colors.  Earth tone colors are wonderful colors to place in the home because these are the colors we see most often in our natural environment. The colors brown and a neutral color in the taupe family were chosen.  So I decorated the living and dining room of the townhome with a theme of a tropical inspired oasis.  Brown is considered a stabilizing and grounding color it as used as a color to accent her dining room which connected to her living room.  The neutral taupe color was used to complete the space.

In the living room, I worked with the client’s own furnishings and accented existing furniture  pieces with  naturally inspired bamboo pillows and a natural jute rug, an tropical inspired accent lamp, chosen based on the client’s love for travel to tropical locales, candles for her coffee table and decorated with the client’s own personal artwork and memorabilia.  For the window treatment, rather than to purchase off the shelf draperies or have custom window treatments done, I accented the client’s sliding glass door with sheer brown and beige colored fabric draped around it to frame it.  This was done because the client loved the outdoor space in her backyard and wanted that feeling to come into the interior.

Plants and nature is always a calming effect in both work and living spaces. Because of the client’s big sliding glass door which opened into a personal patio oasis of nature including plants and trees.  I took advantage of the natural environment in her backyard, by placing the clients plants around the living area to take advantage of the light coming in from the sliding glass door.  Lastly, to create a calming and peaceful space, I added a floor mounted water fountain.  The sounds of the water fountain and the feel of it created a calming yet peaceful space the client was after.

During the process the client stated:  ”I absolutely love the way the place is coming together. My investment club thinks my home is awesome. They describe it as warm, intimate, and peaceful. Working with you has been one of the best decisions I have ever made.” Homeowner, Washington, DC

After reflecting on this project, I just realized what I gift I had to create something special.  Something that made someone’s life much more peaceful.

Simple Feng Shui Inspired Environmental Tips for Children’s Health in the Home.

Feng Shui is a powerful tool to create a healthy, loving safe environment for children no matter what room they are in your home.  Emotional and physical support using Feng Shui can enhance all the stages in a child’s development.

So what is Feng Shui?  Feng Shui is pronounced ‘Fung Shvee’ and literally translated means ‘wind and water.’  It embodies the 7,000 year old ancient Chinese art of placement which balances and enhances the environment.

I invite you to be a Feng Shui detective and analyze using your intuition and senses things about your home to ensure it is healthy and vibrant for continued growth and production for your child.

First, think about or observe whether or not your child is having trouble breathing or has asthma or other concerns.  If he or she does, ask:

What is the air quality like in your child’s room or the entire home as a whole?  Have you checked your home’s ventilation system?  Do your air ducts need to be cleaned out or replaced?  I was working with a client who informed me that her daughter was having a lot of allergies.  This concerned me.  As we began a total redesign of her home, we learned that the air ducts were never cleaned in her home and was in serious need for replacement.  In addition, one of the air ventilation system was located just outside her bedroom door!

Ways to combat indoor air pollution to protect your family:

–          Do not smoke or allow smokers in your home

–          Get your chimney cleaned regularly and your appliances serviced

–          Open windows at different sides of the home to create cross ventilation

–          Seal cracks in floor edges, pipes and walls especially basements

–          Buy an air-filter.

–          Use safe non toxic cleaning materials

We all live with electrical appliances.  However, do we really understand what the effects are of these appliances in our home and to our children?  The entire earth is permeated by magnetic lines of energy that criss-cross over its surface.  These lines are similar to our nervous system along which travels natural radiation or the electro-magnetic field otherwise known as EMFs.  Millions of adults and children may face an increased risk of cancer and other diseases because they are exposed to electro-magnetic radiation from power lines and household electrical appliances.  Even electrical disturbances from electronic equipment in your child’s bedroom can increase the risk of disease as well as sleep deprivation.  These include things like computers, televisions, radios, alarm clocks, CD players, bedside lights, etc.  You want to keep these items at a minimum or at least in a closed armoire or cabinet so these do not affect the health of your child.

There are several ways you can reduce the positive ions in your home that may be harmful to your child:

-Keep electrical equipment away from your child’s bed

-Get an ioniser

-Keep a comfortable indoor humidity by ventilating to the outside.

– Use less electrical equipment

-Burn cleansing and purifying aromatherapy oils.

Next  assess the clutter level of your home and your child’s room.  It is generally a rule that children watch and emmulate adult behavior.  So let’s examine whether or not you are living a clutter free lifestyle.  You see, in the world of Feng Shui, clutter does not allow for the free circulation of good energy in the home.  When energy circulates, responses and moves about a space it will clog up or become depleted when too much clutter is in place.  This does not create a good situation for anyone including your child in the home.

Some things to do to create a clutter free environment for your child:

–         take time to clear any clutter in spaces outside the child’s room

–         create a clear system of organization to clear out your child’s clutter.  Toy    boxes, shelving and other systems are great to implement and are not very expensive- check out resources and products at stores like Target or IKEA.

–         Teach your child a clear and simple organization system in a way that will  help them to stick to it.

–         Allow for patience and time to use whatever system you come up with so that your child get’s acclimated to it.  Reward your child in some healthy way when the system is used successfully.

The main feng shui goal in transforming living spaces into healthy ones for children is to create a healthy, loving and safe environment for all who enter.

Setting Your H.O.M.E. Intention for 2012

One of the most powerful things you can do in the New Year is one of the most important- setting your intention!  We set intentions for our lives by way of affirmations and this time of year, New Year’s Resolutions!  How about setting a resolution for your space?  Set the intention of what you want to create a feel good space for all to enjoy.

One of my facebook friends just posted this lovely photo of an interior and words in which the interior will reflect for an occupant.  I think the words that describes what this occupant would like this space to be is powerful as well as infectious.

Using this photo above as a starting point, take a minute to think about your interior for 2012 and what you would like for it to reflect and be about for you.

List all the things you would like for your interior to say, do and feel for you and your family.  Then start setting about and implementing it.. one week at a time.  Start to declutter and rid yourself of things that no longer bring you joy.  Start thinking about the colors and furnishings in your home.  Is it time to repaint and bring in a different wall color?  Does your favorite chair need reupholstering?  What about finally getting those beautiful window treatments you always wanted?  NOW is the time to begin anew- a clean slate.

Think about what your H.O.M.E. means to you and begin a strategy to create it to reflect your New Year Resolutions in 2012.  Here is a wonderful way to break down this powerful word:

HEALTH.- what do you want your home to say about your goals for good health this year?  Write it down.

ORGANIZATION.-what ways can you better organized in your home in 2012?  Write it down.

MEMORIES.- what lasting memories do you want to create in your home this year?  Write it down.

ENVIRONMENT.-what are some aesthetic changes you would like to make in your interior?  Write it down.

Remember Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC is here to help you create a truly livable, feel good space that will last beyond 2012!  Give us a call today- 1-888-280-8318 or e-mail at interiors@kreativeways.com.

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