Baby on Board

For a lot of newlywed homebuyers and families who are expecting new additions to their lot, having the perfect nursery is a must! Here are a few things to consider for those who are expecting:

Location

The location of the nursery is very important. Choose a room that’s close to your own to avoid making noise and easy access during odd hours of the night. Consider the natural temperature of the room, and the amount of light that can go in when developing the overall design and theme of the nursery.

 Overall Style

If your home has an overall style, make sure to incorporate it in the nursery. If you have a traditional, eclectic, or edgy décor style, make sure the nursery reflects your overall home style, so it doesn’t feel out of place.

 Mood Board

Search the Internet and collect pictures and even videos of nurseries and interior design styles that you like. Have variety for options. Discover what others have done that you like, and might work for your own nursery. Put a theme together through the pictures that you find.

 Simplicity

It is easy to over-decorate specially when you find many things you like. Remember to pick key items that can be points of interest in the room. Have child-friendly items, not necessarily childish. Choose a colour palette that will make it easy for you to redecorate if needed.

Calm

Choose colours and a setup that is calming and peaceful. There will be many hectic times that come with having a baby/babies. It is very important that the mom can feel calm and relaxed in the room despite perhaps being physically busy with her tasks.

Adaptability

Choose décor that is not permanent. Wall decals and stickers are a lot easier to change than full wallpaper. Think about how long the nursery might last your kid, until they develop their own taste and might want to change the décor around.

Safety

Make sure electrical wirings are safely hidden away from the baby especially as they grow more active and curious about their environment. Make sure any heaters are safe and childproof.

Key Furniture

Most people think it’s easier to pick a paint colour for the room then match the furniture after, but the opposite is actually true. Pick key furniture you like first, then match paint colours that complement the furniture.

Functionality

Decide the exact uses of the nursery and place your furniture accordingly. Have designated areas for specific tasks. Determining these will make the design process a lot easier.

Think Outside the Box

Just because certain furniture or design is not listed under the ‘children section’ doesn’t mean you can’t use it for your nursery. Part of the design challenge is using things you may not initially think of using and making it work for yourself. Check your local art store for some DIY ideas.

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Consult with Jackie Connolly at Parsons Interiors 905.271.4224 or email at info@parsonsinteriors.com to start developing your dream nursery. 

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Small Space, Big Style

Any space can be stylish regardless of size. Smaller space doesn’t mean less style and creativity. In fact, having less space to work with means using your imagination and creativity to its full extent. A functional space doesn’t have to compromise on style. Here are some tips to personalizing any small space:

1.    Colours – be consistent and use colours and tones that blend evenly. Stick with a simple colour scheme throughout the space. This will make the space feel bigger. Consider the colour of your floor, and incorporate that with the colour scheme.

2.    Practicality – Today’s condos for example, are not necessarily designed to house a formal dining table, 3-seater sofas, and big dressers. Consider functionality when choosing your furniture.

 3.    Grandeur – Add the illusion of a big space by adding floor to ceiling artworks, wall mirrors, or headboards to the room. This adds the illusion of more space, without actually taking up more space.

 4.    Mobility – Invest in furniture pieces that travel well. Rugs, lamps, artwork, armchairs that can be moved easily are must-haves for small spaces. Mobility allows you to revitalize a room by having the ability to move things around when wanted.

 5.    Soft Look – Create a pleasing look by matching the drapery with the colour of your wall. Have your drapery a shade darker or lighter than the walls, to add a flowing look that enlarges the feeling of the space.

 6.    Wood Theme – stick to one particular colour scheme that goes with your wooden furniture and floor. Dark wood floor and furniture usually feels masculine and sophisticated, while lighter wood floor and furniture usually feels more feminine, casual, and fun.

 7.    Mirrors – Mirrors create the illusion of more space. If placed near a window, it allows more natural light into the space. Long vertical standing mirrors are great for long narrow spaces.

 8.    Area Rugs – Create small spaces within the overall spaces by using area rugs. They help define each space and its particular use. You can use them to define living space, dining space, and office space.

 9.    Technology – Check out new technologies. Flat screen TVs and other sleek devices give you more room in the space. They also serve as works of art in some cases.

 10.    Storage –  Use functional storage kits to hide away little things and big things   specially in the office and in the family room. Storage boxes are great for de-cluttering small spaces. They can easily be personalized as well depending on individual style.

For interior design inquiries contact Jackie Connolly at  Parsons Interiors 905.271.4224 or email info@parsonsinteriors.com

  

Asian Zest for Your Home

Intricate designs, bright colors, and an exotic touch are all hallmarks of Asian décor. Whether it’s the serenity, calmness, and minimalism of the Japanese, or the bright, lucky figures of the Chinese, there are many ways to add an Asian flair to any space. You may not want to fully convert your home into an Asian inspired space, but there are certainly inexpensive and easy ways to add Asian elements in.

 Lighting

  • Rice-paper lamps with low wattage bulbs. These lamps do not put out a lot of light, but add a warm, soft glow to any room. Hanging lanterns, and lamps made with oriental paper umbrellas are also popular choices.

Nature

The three most common natural elements used in Asian decor are water, stones, and plants.

  • Water
    • Adds an air of serenity
    • Make sure you can hear the water in motion before buying a water feature
    • The water feature not only has to be visually appealing, but must also flow in a way that is rhythmic and harmonious.
  • Plants
    • 2 popular plants: Bamboo & Bonsai
    • Bamboo plants can be bought in most grocery stores. They’re usually in clear glass containers with water, and smooth pebbles, or crystals. They require minimal care – simply replace the water once a week.
    • Bonsai plants require a lot more time and effort to maintain. I would recommend this to people who have a knack on working with plants. It requires a great deal of skill and care, to grow this plant to its full potential.
  • Stones
    • Using stones is an inexpensive way to add an Asian element in your space. Smooth black or natural stones add a feeling of being close to nature. They can be used to fill bottoms of vases, and other clear decorative containers.

Room Dividers

  • Room dividers come in different types and styles. There are simple rice paper room dividers, painted room dividers with Asian scenery, black lacquer room dividers, and room dividers with stunning Chinese silk embroidery.
  • There are unique ways to use a room divider. You can hang it on your wall to serve as art, put it against a wall and add a plant or a chair at the end, or use it as a beautiful headboard for your bed.

Fabric

  • Fabric is one of the most incredible offerings that come to us from Asia. Intricate embroidery, silks, brocades, and applique are all beautiful components of Asian fabric that can be used to decorate your home.
  • Saris make great window coverings, pillowcases, and even wall art. You can also use sari fabrics as table runners, placemats, or decorative napkins to add an Asian flair into your dining space.
  • Chinese silks with beautiful calligraphy or stenciled images make for fantastic beddings, pillow covers, etc.

 

Statement Pieces

  • Porcelain and Ceramic vases make excellent decorative pieces in any space. They’re available in small, to very big sizes. They are perfect for adding Asian accents in your room.
  • Asian deity figurines are great Asian elements to have. Thai Buddhist Deities, and Indian Deities all make wonderful conversation starters, and statement pieces.
  • Balinese furniture is also popular, exotic pieces that will add the Asian flavor in your home. They will certainly be a hot topic among your friends

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If you’re feeling inspired and plan on adding an Asian flair to your space, contact Jackie Connolly of Parsons Interiors at 905.271.4224 or email at info@parsonsinteriors.com  Tune in later, to find out how to add European Romance into your space.

A Brilliant Space

Lighting is one of the basic principles of interior design, but is often neglected by people when doing their own home projects. There are different lighting purposes, but proper lighting can enhance the overall look of your space and your furniture. Bad lighting on the other hand, can easily drain the life and energy out of a room. To understand how lighting works, we should analyze the three layers of home lighting: ambient, task, and accent.

Ambient Lighting

Ambient Lighting is the most basic type of lighting. It is the natural light during the day and the lights that come built in with your home. It is the ceiling fixtures, chandeliers, light kits on ceiling fans, track lights, torchieres, and wall sconces. Most people understand this kind of lighting, but unfortunately stop there.

Task Lighting

Task lighting is exactly what it sounds like. It is lighting used for specific purposes: reading, studying, cooking, or applying makeup. Table lamps, desk lamps, swing arm lamps, under counter lights, pendant lights, directed track or recessed lights, vanity lights, and adjustable floor lamps are some examples of task lighting. I suggest making a list of the different tasks you may perform in each space before buying anything. This also avoids conflict in design and over lighting.

Staircases are often forgotten when thinking about lighting. Simple LED lights discretely places every few steps or so within the walls is perfect for guiding your steps specially during the odd hours of the night when it’s the darkest. If you have an architecturally pleasing staircase, this will add emphasis and ambience to it.

Accent Lighting

Accent Lighting is often understood as mood lighting, which it is. It is also much more than that, however. Accent Lighting is used to highlight architectural features and showcase unique details of your furniture and art. It is used to emphasize the good, and take away attention from the bad. Accent lighting serves quite an important purpose but it the most ignored kind of lighting. Picture lights, candlelights, directed tracks or recessed lights, niche lighting, chandeliers with dimmers, wall sconces, lighting inside glass or wire door cabinets, and light bridges on media furniture are examples of Accent Lighting. Having dimmers on your Ambient Lights can easily turn them into Accent Lights when needed. The direction of lights can also affect this kind of lighting. Before buying accent lights, ask yourself how you want the room to feel, and what elements and features you want to emphasize or hide away.

Accent Lighting is perfect for a formal Dining area. Too much light can make everyone look washed out, and too little light would be too dark. Accent lighting can highlight the food to make it look more appealing.

Spotlights can be very effective accent lights as well. Think about placing them in corners of the room that’s usually poorly lit. This can turn a room from dramatic to cozy in an instant.

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On a concluding note, despite having amazing furniture and architectural features in a space, it would seem less than ordinary if used with the wrong lighting. Think about the different functions and the mood you want in every space in your home before making any lighting purchases. Keep in mind, there are also eco-friendly lighting options out there. Find the right lights that fit your lifestyle. Too much lighting might make you look like a light store. Be careful!

Consult with Jackie Connolly at 905.271.4224 or email at info@parsonsinteriors.com to analyze your space and determine what lighting is perfect for your home.

Unveiling Your Windows

A Window Treatment is an element of interior design that relates to designing and decorating the area on, around, or even over the window. Aside from adding aesthetic appeal to the window, it also provides privacy, protection, light filtration, and heat/cold insulation. There can be many combinations of ways to add your own style to a window treatment.

Types, Styles, and Benefits

There are many different styles of window treatment available for different shapes and sizes of windows:

Hard Treatments = made of rigid materials such as vinyl, wood, metal. Also blinds, shutters, and some types of shades are considered a hard treatment.

Soft Treatments = Drapes, curtains, and other types of shades

Valences, pelmets, cornices, and decorative molding are dressings that are placed around the window.

Frosted, etched, and stained glass window films and compounds are a few examples of treatments that can be applied directly to the glass. There’s a wide range of style from modern, contemporary, retro, art deco, traditional, and various ethnic and cultural choices. These styles can be tailored with/through piping, loose fabric puddles, box-pleated and folded, swaged, ballooned and gathered, shirred, tie-back, tie-up, and Roman customizations.

Before doing anything, you must first consider the placement of the window and its purpose. For example, you want light, easy-to-clean window treatment when you have kids using that space a lot. It is common to want privacy in the first level of the homes especially to the side facing a close road or the neighbours. In contrast, you don’t want to cover up large windows with views especially in the upper floor levels. You will also want to be able to keep sunlight away in places like the bedroom where too much light might prevent you from getting any sleep or in an office where you want to avoid screen glare on your computer monitors. Another factor you must take into consideration is the décor around the window. The window treatment must obviously complement the overall theme of the space. Lastly, you must determine how much money you are willing to spend for this project.

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Consult with Jackie Connolly at Parsons Interiors 905.271.4224 or email at info@parsonsinteriors.com to analyze your space and determine what window treatment is perfect for your home.

Simple Sophistication

What is minimalism? Some may say it’s a boring way of living, but in reality, minimalism is a craft. When done right, it can even be captivating and enviable. When it comes to interior spaces, there are many ways to incorporate minimalism without having to get rid of things you may want to keep. To minimalize your own space, here are a few elements to consider:

1.    A clean space

Clutter is a big source of stress in any home.  Part of having a minimalist space is decluttering the things you don’t need around all the time, and creating an organized, streamlined space. Having a minimalist space doesn’t mean throwing out your things. It is an art of being able to properly hide things you don’t need lying around that creates clutter. Stylish storage units are easily accessible, and a great way to organize and hide little things in your home. Choosing what items you actually need and don’t need may be the hardest part of the process, but keep in mind the peace of mind you will later achieve.

2.    A Colour Story

Having too many colours in a space creates a feeling of clutter. Contrasting furniture, wood, and wall colours usually create an unorganized atmosphere. A monochromatic colour scheme will work well for the minimalist approach. Stick to one colour story. You can add variety by including different textures and lines in the space. Again, having a minimalist space doesn’t mean a boring space. There are ways to add fun and spunk even in a minimalist sense.

3.    A Balanced Space

Creating balance is key to achieving a minimalist space. It could be a hard idea to grasp, but the proper placement of furniture, art, lamps, and even pillows all help create a feeling of balance. Asymmetrical balance is a great way to achieve a minimalist space. It creates the illusion that you’re not trying hard to create balance, but it works.

4.    A Focal Point

A good focal point is a powerful element for any minimalist space. Choose your favourite art or furniture, and make it a focal point in your space. Strategically place everything else in the room, so that it radiates outward from the focal point. Be aware of the horizontal and vertical lines of the space. I recommend talking to an interior designer to determine these elements in your space.

 5.    Grouping of similar elements

Rather than spreading out your home décor, I suggest grouping similar home décor pieces together. This creates a bold statement, without taking away the minimalist feel. For example, instead of having picture frames in every wall of the room, consider placing them all together in one designated area. This adds drama and a bold statement in your space that looks smart but not calculated.

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Consult with Jackie Connolly of Parson Interiors at 905.271.4224 or email at info@parsonsinteriors.com to analyze your personal space and determine if a minimalist style is for you.

A New “Old World” Style for 2013

Stately & Bold

The big colours for 2013 are in! Today’s hot trends gravitate towards an “Old World”, 1920’s feel. Champagne, Cobalt-blue, and violets are the it-colours this year. Bold, preppy pinks and greens are also in, leaning more towards edgier, youthful spaces.

The modern home usually maintains a seamless neutral tone, with a splash of vibrant colour within the spaces, serving as accents and adding a wow-factor to the otherwise neutral feel. Khaki, taupe, camel, and sandstone are common neutral colours in interior design, and depending on personal style, splashes of vibrant colours serve as points of interest within a space.

Art Deco

Continuing the “Old World” feel, Art Deco makes a comeback in todays design trends. With many 1920’s inspired films being released such as Gangster Squad, and the upcoming film adaptation of The Great Gatsby, “Old World” never felt more new. Rich golds and silvers, with exotic woods, and bold, geometric textiles are all in this year.

Animals

Horses and Wolves are roaming free in today’s homes – figuratively, of course through stencils and prints. Something about being wild, free, majestic perhaps? Who doesn’t want to feel that way?

Chevrons

Chevrons are stylishly making their way from the asphalt city highways and into today’s homes. Chevrons with their zigzag patterns are trendy and hip, and add a point of interest in any space.

Wall Decals & 3D Wall Tiles

Wallpapers are a thing of the past. Modern homes place higher value on time and budget efficiency, which leads to the usage of wall decals and 3D Wall Tiles. Wall Decals are easy to install and just as easy to remove. Graphic stickers and mirrored wall stickers are some of the popular types of decals. 3D Wall Tiles are also in this year. They easily change the feel and mood of a room, while they interact with light, which subtly changes the appearance of the wall throughout the day. They add signature style to a space that’s easily changeable.

Wood Floors

Carpets are more or less permanently leaving the homes of 2013. Hard Wood Floors are forever replacing carpets. They are the more practical, and hypoallergenic options for today’s homebuyers and owners. Bamboos, exotic hardwood, and cork flooring are becoming more and more common in today’s homes.

“Decorating is not about imitating a style; it’s about expressing your own personal style.”

Jackie Connolly is an established Interior Designer, located in the heart of beautiful Port Credit. With clients ranging from the city of Mississauga, Oakville, and the Greater Toronto Area, Jackie Connolly is the go-to person when it comes to your home décor needs.

What truly makes a house a home is personal style.  Parsons Interiors, and Jackie Connolly create beautiful and engaging spaces by placing utmost value on client needs and helping clients understand and develop their own personal style.

Jackie Connolly is a true designer in every sense of the word, having a successful background not only as an interior and exterior designer, but also as an aesthetician in her early career.  With experience in home staging and personalized home decoration, Jackie Connolly is able to take any space and turn it into an inviting, beautiful, and functional representation of each client’s style.

Visit  www.parsonsinteriors.com to get a better look at Parsons Interiors.

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