A Design Blog of Feng Shui Designer Sherry Burton Ways

Posts tagged ‘Sherry Burton Ways’

How to Decorate a Multi-Functional Space

I have often come across people who are confused about decorating a large room in their home.  They end up buying very large furniture that does nothing to make the room feel cozier or functional.  When you have a great room, it is a good idea to make it multi-functional and take advantage of the large spac.  Without adding walls, you can make the space serve different purposes for the entire family.

IMG_0435

Here are a few ideas to help you get started:

1.  Make a plan.

It is important to understand the function of the space around which you will be designing before you get started.  On a piece of paper, draw a rough floor plan.  Decide the areas you would like to create in your great room.  Correct placement of the furniture can help you divide the space without actually putting up walls.

2. Create conversation areas.

In your plan, chalk out areas where the family can sit together and spend time.  These can be areas to watch the television, to play video games or board games.  Use easy and comfortable furniture like sofas, ottomans, and recliners to create distinct conversational areas.  Use a day bed to visually divide the large area into two distinct functions.

3.  Create a cozy corner.

Once you have created conversational areas, also plan for a cozy corner for some quiet time.  In a corner, place a small area rug and an armchair or two.  Stack books in a book shelf behind the armchairs and install a floor lamp.  Drape a throw over the arm chair to make it appear warm and inviting.  Finally tie the cozy corner together with a small coffee table.

4.  Separating the functional areas.

Demarcating specific areas for specific functions is not difficult.  Make use of interesting area rugs to visually divide the room.  When you place furniture around an area rug, it behaves like an anchor and ties everything around it quite distinctly.  You can also make use of wooden screens to divide the room without compromising on the design aspect of the room.

5. Space to move around.

Always remember to leave adequate space to move around the furniture easily.  People navigating in the room should be able to walk with ease without bumping or having to move the furniture around.  The walkways should never be blocked with small decor like floor lamps or side tables.  As a rule of thumb, keep a three feet distance between the furniture to create easy flow.

6. Make use of circular patterns.

Finally, make use of circles.  Circles depict flow and are much easier to navigate around.  Instead of a square center table, consider using a circular one.  Choose patterns on the upholstery that have a circular pattern or curves that makes the multi-functional room easy on the eyes as well.

Here is a quick video on some other multifunctional decorating ideas.

An Introduction to Zen Decorating

ZenDecor2

Zen decorating is a Japanese style of interior decor that embodies the values of minimalistic and simplistic living.  Does the word Zen transport you to a dreamy land of peaceful Buddahs and stress free living?  Then you are on the right track.  Applying Zen principles can help you break the stress and relax in familiar surroundings like your home or office.

A few basic principles can help convert your home or part of it into a Zen inspired space that feels like a retreat.  Here are four aspects of Zen decorating to get you started:

1) Minimalism- Decorating your home with Zen sensibilities means that you have to clear your surroundings of clutter down to the bare minimum.  Do away with knick knacks sitting on the console table, ornate displays of decorative pieces and even intricate wall papers.  The interiors must be unobstructed and filled with abundant natural light.  Think simplicity and open spaces.  Swap your exotic Victorian style furniture and upholstery with intricate patterns for simple textures and clean, straight lines.  Hide any disturbances in the room like electrical wiring and electronics that can cause stress.  This does not mean that you stop watching TV but simply place the TV in a cabinet with doors that can be shut when not in use.

2) Color Palette- Zen decorating takes its inspiration largely from nature.  Use warm, neutral colors to paint your walls.  Avoid any pops of bright colors as these will clash with the Zen style of design and disturb the balance.  Choose a muted, earthy color scheme for your upholstery, carpets and furniture as well.  Some of the most commonly used colors are creamy whites, coffee browns and shades of green.  Avoid stark colors like white and black, your palette should be warm and subdued.

ZenDecor

3) Nature Inspired Accents- Use minimal accessories to personalize your home.  When choosing accents, look for ones that represent the Zen elements of Feng Shui like earth, water,  fire, wood and metal.   Potted plants like bonsai and bamboo tend to create a tranquil atmosphere in the room and do not need a lot of care.  You can also place an indoor waterfall that creates a soothing trickling sound.  Fabrics made of natural fibers like wool, linen, and jute will ensure that your interiors are comfortable, warm and inviting.  Keep your walls free of intricate paintings and pictures.  If you want to hang a Zen inspired painting, limit it to only one per room.  Remember the rule of thumb- keep only what you really love, and harmonize with nature.

4) Lighting- Light is an important aspect to the Zen style of decorating.  Don’t block any natural sources of light like windows and sunroofs.  Avoid using drapes, instead you can opt for translucent screens that fill the room with abundant natural light.  For the evenings after the sun goes down, opt for wall sconces or pendant fixtures.  Instead of using only overhead fixtures that cast dark shadows, enhance the lighting by adding simple but modern wall sconces.  Dimmers can be used to set the mood.  Soft light and the scent from aromatic candles made of soy or beeswax will help you relax after a hard day of work.

In the next few weeks I will be focusing on Zen Decorating through a several videos.

Here is the first on how to accessorize a Zen inspired console:

 

The Clock is Ticking: Remember to Organize Your Home for the Holidays

With the holidays just around the corner, it is now time to look at organizing your home before you can sit back and soak in the holiday fun. Most people squirm at the thought of spending hours organizing and cleaning but the trick is to create a plan before you set off and tackle one part of your home organization before moving to the next. Organizing now will help ease the stress during the holidays.

OrganizedSpace2

Here is a quick guide to help you organize the most important areas of your home:

1. Organize the pantry – Holidays are all about the joy of baking, cooking and eating. Organizing your pantry will ensure that it is well stocked and sorted. Start by removing everything from the pantry and giving the shelves a good deep clean. Weed through the food stuff and remove anything that is expired or spoilt. Next, divide the pantry into sections like organic foods, baking goods, sauces and spices, etc. and rearrange the groceries. Place your bulk purchases like soda cartons or anything too heavy on the bottom most shelf. Label the jars and canisters clearly. Finally make a list of things you need to re-stock the pantry.

2. Organize the guest room – For most part of the year guest rooms are often treated like extra storage. Organizing the guest room to ensure a comfortable stay for your guests will make them feel welcome. The first step is to clear out the clutter from closets and drawers in the guest bedroom. Make space for them to keep their belongings. Change the linens and place extra blankets in the closet. Take time to clean the guest bathroom and put out some freshly laundered towels and toiletries. On the day of their arrival, make the room feel special with flowers and some small snacks. Don’t forget to leave a jug of water and glasses.

OrganizingSpace1

3. Organize the living room – Your living room will cater to the heaviest traffic during the holidays and is a reflection of your style and personality. Choose a theme for the holidays and decorate accordingly. Put away all the usual, year –round decorative pieces in the living room to make space for the holiday themed ones. Dust and clean the shelves, mantel place and side tables. Clean out your fireplace if you have one and get it professionally serviced if required. Is there enough space for everyone to be seated comfortably? Make arrangements for extra seating to avoid any last minute hassles. Finally vacuum the carpet and change the pillow cases.

4. Rev up the exteriors – The exteriors of your home should be just as beautiful as the interiors. The house should look warm and inviting to the guests coming to visit you. Rake and clean the entry way and if possible give it a good power wash. Re-paint the front door and the fence. Hang decorative planter baskets with perennials on the porch. Make sure that the house is well lit from the outside and replace any fused bulbs or broken fixtures. Decorate the exteriors with ornaments and wreaths close to the holidays.

DeclutterYourLife-Cover

Need to declutter before the holidays?  For just $4.50 you can check out some strategies in my new e-book: Declutter Your Life, Space & Prosper

KWS Included in Design Bureau’s Inspiring Interiors!

I am proud on behalf of Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC  to have been included in Design Bureau Magazine’s Inspiring Interiors: A Collection of the Best Interior Design Around the World- Where You Live, Where You Work Where You Play, a Special Edition that was just published!

From the neighborhood restaurant to the neighbor’s drop dead gorgeous kitchen.  From rising stars to super star designers.  From high-wattage homes to an awesome little office in a tiny corner of Canada.  From New York City to Saint Petersburg.  This coffee table edition of Design Bureau  provides a dialogue with more than 75 design professionals including me, about our most amazing interiors, the details behind the scenes, the decor that turns us on and our sources of inspiration!

In this exciting Special Edition, one of my eco-friendly children’s play area designs is featured as well as my take on the hottest design trends.  Check it out:

InspiringInteriorsCover

 

KidsRoomFeatureFeature1

To be showcased in an international design publication is certainly a BIG thrill to me and my firm.

 

Five Ways to Avoid A Home That Screams “Off the Rack”

 Bowie1
Interior Design by Sherry Ways of Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC

What makes a home look decorator quality? Is it the right shades? Is it the perfect fabric on your sofa? What about the right flooring? It doesn’t matter. What? Actually, there’s one principle that’s fundamental to ALL decorator quality homes. It’s detail!

Oftentimes, people overlook the details in their home and don’t realize how important they really are. I can even go so far as to say – the attention you give to carefully planned detail is what separates your home from the everyday look of store bought! Detail is what creates a home with a decorator quality, look and feel. It doesn’t matter what style of furnishings you have – traditional, cottage, beach, casual. . . or even if you don’t have decorator quality furnishings!

Bowie2

Interior Design by Sherry Ways of Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC

Many people purchase ready-made products such as curtain panels, valances, bedding, table skirts and pillows. But what they don’t realize is by doing so, they’re dulling down their home.

I’ve listed a few things to consider about ready made products –

1. Quality – Store bought fabric items are made FAST – the workmanship and quality is on the low end of the scale. That being said, they’re made to appeal to a mass market, a larger audience, everyone and anyone! The products don’t usually last long and they wear out in no time flat, especially after you’ve laundered them for the very first time. It’s almost as if the stiffener is the thing holding them together! Here’s what’s common – stitching is missing, the hems are crooked, the seams are too small, they’ve skimped on fabric, they hang off-kilter, the corners are sloppy, the thread doesn’t match, they aren’t lined, or if there is lining it’s too short and not hemmed properly.

2. Color – The use of exquisite trims, bandings, borders and beading is virtually non-existent with ready-made. The style is basic. The colors are boring. It’s the same stuff your neighbors have. And it doesn’t provide any of the extra added ‘zip’ that would look great in your home.

3. Repetition – If you find an item you like that has some detail to it, oftentimes it’s the only one like it. When you bring it home to your house, it’s the only item in the room with that detail. This creates a lack of repetition and unity in the room. You’ll want to tie things together and create a well-thought out room. Using only one item with that one detail could be too random.

4. Decorator Details – Pay attention to items like lampshades, trim on window treatments, knobs on the kitchen cabinets, light switches, pillows, live plants, pots, accessories, etc. Think these items through and the detail opportunities they provide. It’s what professional interior designers do to make your home look ‘decorator quality’.

5. Play Hooky – On the other side of the coin, don’t be afraid to remove details to keep things simple, chic and less cluttered. Too much detail in a room can be overwhelming or too matchy-matchy and doesn’t provide a place for your eyes to rest. A carefully planned absence of detail in a room can look absolutely fabulous!
You can learn how to develop an eye for detail. It takes time, but building your ‘attention to detail’ muscle is a skill you can acquire with ease. Who knows, maybe your home could be featured in an upcoming decorator magazine!

To learn more this weekend I will be one of three panelists in the Port of Harlem’s Build/Renovate Your Own Castle taking place on Saturday April 6 th, at the Alexandria Black History Museum.   The event is FREE!  Come learn the secrets of pulling together a beautiful space.  For more information check out  http://www.portofharlem.net/pohpromotions/buildrenovatefive.html

Sherry Ways one of 25 Designers Featured in New Nursery Decor book!

Nursery Decor copy

We are proud to announce that Sherry Ways – Interior Designer & Interior Decorator Washington, DC is one of 25 design professionals across the US  chosen to show a variety of looks for fun, age-appropriate rooms that can be easily updated as your baby grows in this new book, Nursery Decor by Ashley Rooney.  Featured in the book is an eco-friendly play room we designed for one of our clients.  With more than 200 color images, inspiration boards, and sketches, this colorful book is ideal for expecting parents and growing families looking for some fun decor inspiration. Long before the parents bring home the new baby, they are planning their nursery. What kind of crib or diaper stand? What color palette? What decor? There is a good deal of information available, but it can be confusing on its own. This well-illustrated book makes it easy. Look for it on Amazon or Barnes & Noble!

 

 

Book Signings, Color Workshop and Complimentary Design Consultations: Annual CCBC Women’s Expo & Conference

SATURDAY, MARCH 16TH – SUNDAY, MARCH 17 th

ANNUAL  CCBC WOMEN’S EXPO AND CONFERENCE

Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC is supporting the 12th Annual Women’s Expo MD. Women’s Expo MD is running a ticket/raffle campaign to increase attendance at this year’s event. The goal of the Women’s Expo MD event is to raise funds to provide resources and ongoing financial support for local women’s organizations.   Please consider supporting this outstanding event with the purchase of tickets.   Your $10 ticket will serve as admission to the two-day Expo event and you will be automatically entered into a raffle which features some great prizes!

The location for this two day event is:

Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC) GYM 800 South Rolling Road Catonsville, MD 21228

Author and Designer Sherry Burton Ways will sign and discuss her book Feel Good Spaces and provide a special presentation on the Energy of Color in our homes and offices on Saturday, March 16th.  For National Women’s History Month, Feel Good Spaces will be on sale for $18.95 at the conference instead of $21.95!

Sherry will be on hand for a complimentary interior design consultation on both days.  Bring in your photos of your projects, floor plans, etc. and she can provide you some quick tips on how to redesign your space.

Her schedule at the CCBC Women’s Expo will be as follows:

Saturday, March 16th

12:00 noon Wellness Center – Back of Gym 1/Book Lover’s Cafe: There will be a live Radio Interview with Author and Principal Designer Sherry B. Ways:   Creating Feel Good Spaces for the Body, Mind and Spirit

booklovers

2:00 – 2:45 pm  Building K – Faculty Dining Room Presentation: The Energy of Color

Do you ever wonder why you’re more attracted to certain colors than others?  One reason is that colors vibrate at different electromagnetic frequencies which depending on your situation can feel energetically harmonious or dissonant.  The colors you choose in your home or office should say things about you:  who you are; what you wish to express; what you need, what creates the environment that you desire.  This is why, when you are moving into a new home or thinking of redecorating any space you already have, it is the perfect time to evaluate how to create a feel good space that brings out the best in you.  A space that makes you feel peaceful as well as energetic; spacious as well as secure.

One of the easiest and least expensive ways to spruce up your home is to give it a fresh, new coat of paint.  When you do, it is important to select the right colors.  Although what color you paint your home is a personal choice, you might consider a personalized color palette derived from the principles of Color Therapy.

In this mini presentation, Sherry Burton Ways, Principal of Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC will discuss the colors associated with your home’s life areas.  As she introduces each color, she will explain the effects on the body and mind,  the Chakras and will explain how the energy of that color can support specific healing goals.  You will leave this workshop with a personalized color palette for your home that will uplift you and all the members of your family.

Sunday, March 17th

Author and Principal Designer Sherry B. Ways will have a booth available to sign her book Feel Good Spaces with giveaways and other products for sale.

By clicking on the link below, you will be directed to the ticket/raffle page from where you can purchase tickets. These sales will automatically be credited towards Kreative Ways & Solutions, LLC.

Click Here to Purchase Your Ticket

Thank you for your support!

Tag Cloud