The Perks of Pillows: Why Throw Pillows Are A-mazing!

If you clicked on this blog based on the title, you’re probably in one of two crowds: the people who are already in love with throw pillows, and the people who haven’t yet fallen in love with throw pillows. Whether you’ve experimented with them, or are considering buying your gateway throw pillows, we guarantee once you start using them you’ll never want to stop.

Throw pillows are the perfect multi-functional spruce-up to… well… everything. From bedrooms to living rooms, and from patios (yes, outdoors) to foyers, pillows are an easy, quick, and inexpensive way to “redecorate” a space or a piece of furniture. With a little love from the pillow department, you can revamp the look & feel of a couch, chair, room, or whole home.

Photo Credit: Geoffrey Sokol

Photo Credit: Geoffrey Sokol

When selecting your new throw pillows, it’s best to start with an understanding of the feel you’re aiming for. Perhaps start with a window shopping trip to your favorite purveyors of pillows to understand what’s out there, but before purchasing, establish something of a “plan of action”. Know the color scheme you’d like to achieve, the overall feel (modern? classic? eclectic?) you’re after, if you want a simple (1–2 pillows, or a throng of them) and know how much space you have at your disposal. Be sure to also take into consideration the environment the pillows will be in—seek out weather & sunlight appropriate fabrics for pillows that will make their home outdoors or in rooms with a lot of natural light.

Once you’ve established some guidelines, head out to find the perfect pieces! Selectively mix colors, patterns, fabrics, sizes, shapes & styles to achieve your desired look. If you’re going for functionality as well as visual appeal, we highly recommend giving each pillow a good squeeze to ensure it’ll be a good scary movie partner.

How do you use pillows to decorate in your home or office? Share with us in the comments!

Bring the Outside In: How to Spruce Up Your Home with Outdoor Inspiration

One of the great things about using the outdoors as inspiration for your indoors decor is that it can help a space feel… natural. Utilizing themes, textures & colors from an outdoor environment can create a comfortable & timeless look that invites & welcomes people into your home. We find these little tips to be helpful when creating a natural outdoor-inspired space indoors!

1. Start by choosing an outdoor “theme”.

Choose an outdoor environment that you want to emulate. This may be as broad as something like a Caribbean beach, the forest, a sunset, or mountain river. It might also be as specific as a type of flower, a fall day in your favorite park or that beautiful mountain lake you took a picture of on your last backpacking trip. Starting with the theme can help you establish a color palette, some textures, and a general feel (open & bright? warm & cozy?).

Photo from ElleDecor.com, credit Simon Upton.

Photo from ElleDecor.com, credit Simon Upton.

2. Simplify the palette.

Once you’ve chosen your theme, think about a handful of colors that can help you achieve that. For example, if you’re going with a Caribbean beach, you might choose a warming sandy color, a palm-tree-trunk brown, a bright emerald & a light blue. Decide off the bat which colors will be the main colors & which will be supplemental or accent colors.

3. Decide on some natural textures.

Natural environments are filled with textures from subtly tactile riverbed rocks to intensely layered cedar trees. Nearly every natural environment will have some sort of wood texture you can adopt for furnishings! (Unless of course you chose the Arctic…) Look to the ground, trees & plants & animals for cues on textures!

4. Bring the outside in. (Literally.)

Use items from nature as accents! If you can’t actually GO to your chosen environment & pick up a few items, many boutique shops & outdoor markets may carry items that fit your theme. Even bringing in a bouquet of flowers can add a natural feel (and smell!) to your home. And if you don’t have the time to go hunting for the perfect environmental accent—head to the internet!! With the burgeoning world of eCommerce, it’s likely you’ll be able to find what you’re looking for on the internet.

Whether you’re doing a bigger redecorating “spruce up”, or just adding some new life to your home, or even just decorating for the season, taking cues from the outdoors can help create a relaxing & warm environment!

 

Hassle-Free Holiday Decorating

You’ve got family coming into town, meals to plan – including the big one – and way too much to do! How are you going to decorate for the holidays too? To help lighten your workload and shorten your to-do list just a little bit, we have some helpful, hassle-free holiday decorating tips:

chandelier_gal

Use a natural touch. Bring on the gourds, be-needled branches, holly, and pinecones! Decorate your mantle, shelves, and tabletop with the items au natural, or spray-paint, glitter, or be-jewel them for color or sparkle.

Keep it simple. You’re spending all of that time cooking, baking, and hostess-ing away, don’t let your holiday décor take over. Give your overhead lighting some simple accents by hanging ornaments or ribbon, or deck the ledges with sleek pillar candles in seasonal shades. For a colorful, dramatic look, fill hurricane vases and glass jars with bright ball ornaments.

Add a feathery flourish. Feathers are the stylish accent for just about anything these days, so don’t forget about them in your holiday decorating! They bring instantaneous texture and contrast wherever they are applied.

Embellish with metals. Metallic finishes are trending in design right now – don’t miss a chance to bring on the shimmer with your fall and winter décor! Catch eyes and start conversations with shining gold, glittering silver, polished bronze, or gleaming copper.

carolyn-roehm-fall-tablescapeUse seasonal hues. In your dishes and tabletop decorating, look for colors inspired by the season: olive green, cozy burgundy, glowing orange, butternut gold, etc. Contrast them against something surprising, like the blue and white tablecloth shown in the photo above.

Color with candy! The sweet stuff can make a spectacular statement when you use it for decorating instead of eating. Fill up vases and clear bowls with layers of colored candy, or string wrapped sweets together by stapling them end-to-end for vibrant garland swag.

Happy holiday decorating! We wish you the best from GR Home this holiday season.

Home Design Tips for Fall Decorating

The sunny summer weather is suddenly gone and fall chills have set in! While we’ll miss the warmer temperatures, here at GR Home, we’re looking forward to fall decorating. We noticed some beautiful home design tips and trends that have been circulating for fall 2013, and we wanted to share:

  • Photo credit: Elle Decor.

    Photo credit: Elle Decor.

    Brighten a space with sparkling embellishments. Glittering chandeliers, sparkling fabrics, metallic accents – they’re all in for fall decorating, according to Elle Décor, and we agree! With the gray skies and gloomy fall weather, brighten up your space with something sparkly. Houzz.com also took note of this trend for gold finishes throughout the home.

  • Pop some color into a neutral space. Graciela and our team here at GR Home love bright, brilliant color to perk up a room, and it seems to be a trend for many people – start with a neutral palette of grays, beiges, or creams and add some brilliantly colorful accents for flavor and personality.
  • Bring in the black. We’ve loved using black in decorating for a long time – Graciela has said before (check out this interview from March) that she loves black. The home design world is catching on, recommending black accents and even black walls. The color makes a dramatic statement, especially if it’s adorning a whole wall.
  • Add texture with feathers. Houzz.com is loving feathers for use on decorative accessories, as well as the featured pattern on home accents like tabletop décor and lamps. Feathers add eclectic textures and a unique design statement wherever you have them!
  • Put some studs on it. Update tired furniture and accents with studs and rivets! The decorative accents add a metallic shine along with texture and a personalized statement. We love this trend as a way to add sophisticated detail to a space or piece of furniture.

As you decorate for fall, and prepare for the holiday season (it’ll be here before you know it!), we hope these tips and trend insights help to point you in the right direction. If you need more inspiration, you’re welcome to come by our Laurelhurst store to browse or get advice from one of our creative design consultants!