fbpx
Title Image

Blog

Highlights. Trends. Insights. We’ve got the scoop on everything you need to know about interior design right here in one tidy space!

Home Design Trends // Rattan

Rattan is the name for nearly 600 species of palms that are native to tropical regions of Africa and Asia. While wildly popular in the 70’s, wicker furniture first became all the rage in England and America during the 17th and 18th centuries, and it’s coming back with a vintage vengeance!

Woven Cane Side Table, Mecox

Decorative Pillow, Horchow

Wegner Circle Chair, Danish Design Store

Chameleon Design Featured Project // Bethlehem Tower, Santa Rosa

Chameleon Design recently installed a beautiful Senior’s Apartment building in Santa Rosa, CA. Our client purchased the building and did a complete remodel of all of the units and common areas. The style is California Ranch with a pale aqua and sage green color palette. Rustic pine accent pieces warm up the various rooms and the floors were done in a laminate with a washed wood look, which not only looks great, but allows the seniors with walkers and wheelchairs to move through the spaces with ease.

When we work on a rehab of an existing affordable seniors apartment building such as this, people often get worried that the new owner is going to raise the rent and they won’t be able to afford to live there anymore, but that is not the case at all. On the first day of our installation of furniture, art and accessories, we overheard a lady in saying to another, “oh my goodness, these new owners must really like us, this is beautiful.” It’s comments like that one that makes our job all that much sweeter! 

Lobby

Library

Social Hall

Rear Court

Home Design Trends // Chain Link

Chains are everywhere—from patterns on pillows to prints on plates, this is the must-have look of the moment. Check out some of our picks for on-trend, yet classic pieces for your home:

Paxton End Table, Arteriors Home

Betty June Mirror, Currey & Company

Chain Link Floor Lamp, Zinc Door

Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 10.50.36 PM

Chain Link Curtain, William Lyon Design Studio

Is the Formal Living Room a Thing of the Past?

The formal living room, once the centerpiece of the American home, has been dwindling in size for several years. Now it’s being eliminated in many new home plans. Most new houses still have large rooms with deep seating and media, but they’re called great rooms rather than living rooms. And unlike their more formal predecessors, they’re usually open to the kitchen, the better to accommodate casual family activities. As a private, set-off area, the living room is losing its form.

In today’s homes, the kitchen is king. We no longer hide it; we open other rooms up to it. People work so much away from home, that when they are home, they want to relax. They’re still entertaining, but it’s less formal than it once was. Now, when you have company, everybody wants to stand in the kitchen near the center island. Today’s open floor plans help to foster togetherness for time-strapped families. When families are together, they want to be together, not separated in different rooms.

All that said, the living room still has its devotees. Some buyers will enter a model and ask, ‘where is the living room?” Though they tend to be more mature, and often they’ve accumulated a lot of beautiful living room furniture and need a place to put it. But even people who insist on having a living room are satisfied with much less space than in the past. Today’s living rooms are about as small as they can get- just big enough to hold a sofa, a chair and a coffee table. They’re not the big showcase they used to be.

What do you think-  is the living room dead? And how have you reinvented it in your home?

Photo: Chameleon Design

Photo: Chameleon Design (Gold National Award Winner)

Chameleon Design Featured Project: Mirador, Plan 5 // San Juan Capistrano

Mirador Rancho San Juan Plan 5 has a contemporary, elegant look. The decor includes modern, dark furniture, clean upholstery styling, large abstract art canvases on the walls and polished accessories with Asian accents. Everything was done with a color palette of chocolate, orange and white, which paired well with the creamy limestone flooring that’s extended throughout the home. The kitchen is one of our favorite rooms, with an island so big you could park a car on it! This model also boasts a home gym and a casista with a living room, bedroom and private bath for guests.  Plan 5 has everything a homeowner could ask for.

Kitchen

Living Room

Dining Room

Capistrano Room

Office

Theatre

Master Bedroom

Nursery

Gym

Front Exterior

Chameleon Design Featured Project: Mirador, Plan 4 // San Juan Capistrano

Plan 4 at Mirador Rancho San Juan has a casual, comfortable style that we feel is very appealing to many California residents. A soft color palette of aqua, pale green and creamy white helped us achieve the soothing, coastal style we were going for. Floors were done in a natural light wood and the wood cabinets in the kitchen are a worn, ivory color which have a nice, beachy feel. To take the look further, we incorporated other beach elements into the accessories and small touches throughout the home.

Front Exterior

Living Room

Living Room

Kitchen

Kitchen

Great Room

Great Room

Dining Room

Dining Room

Capistrano Room

Capistrano Room

Master Bedroom

Master Bedroom

Master Bath

Master Bath

Loft

Loft

Rear Exterior

Rear Exterior

Combining Wallpaper and Artwork

As long as there has been wallpaper, serious art collectors have lined their wallpapered walls with art. With its repeat pattern, wallpaper is designed as a background, to lend a unifying structure to a room. Even if it’s a bold design, wallpaper complements, rather than competes with, art. Wallpaper is a fantastic way to dress up a bland wall, but its artistic design can pose a problem when you want to display artwork on that same wall. In fact, this dilemma can pose real design headaches for experienced professional designers, not to mention the at-home designer. Fortunately, there are a few rules of thumb to guide you through this home décor challenge.

Before you commit to hanging artwork on a wallpapered wall, you should be sure that you will like the visual impact. With ordinary drywall, it is not difficult to patch over a hole and repaint a small area as long as you have kept a sample of the paint on hand. With wallpaper, however, it is nearly impossible to cover up or hide a hole once it has been made. Aside from placing the hole to hang your frame in a busy area of the wallpaper so that it is less noticeable should you have a change of heart.

Photo: Pinterest

Think about the size of the artwork; on busy wallpaper, anything framed smaller than 11×17 is at risk of getting “lost”. Be selective. When working on a wallpapered surface, one work of art that makes a statement is frequently a better choice than several smaller works.

Photo: Pinterest

Go with a neutral colored frame, especially if your tastes are less eclectic. And use a wider mat, or artwork with negative space around the edges, to separate the art from the wall.

Screen Shot 2014-01-05 at 9.17.31 PM

Photo: Pinterest

Photo: Pinterest

Putting artwork on top of wallpaper can be a commitment. Be sure that you know what not to do before taking on this project. Your walls, and sanity, will thank you for it!

Home Design Trends // Copper Accents

When people think of copper in their homes, kitchenware and plumbing pipes are what usually come to mind. But that perception is about to change. While copper plumbing and wiring continue to perform in the home, the aesthetic beauty and durability of copper are making it the material and color of choice for home décor and accents inside and out.

Copper Pendant Lamp, Tom Dixon

Copper Chair, Blu Dot Furniture

Copper Cutlery, Sambonet

Copper Plates

Chameleon Design Featured Project: Mirador, Plan 3 // San Juan Capistrano

Mirador at Rancho San Juan offers a range of estate-scaled family residences.  Plan 3 is one of four models we recently completed for in this quaint community in San Juan Capistrano. This is a Spanish style plan, very popular in southern California, but with an eclectic twist. For a more modern take on this traditional look, we used color palette of teal, brown and green. The brightly colored fabrics work nicely with the mix of dark and light furniture, the warm look that the hand scraped wood flooring lends and the light-colored walls.

Entry

Living Room

Kitchen

Dining Room

Capistrano Room

Capistrano Room

Master Bedroom

Master Bath

Bedroom

Nursery

Front Exterior

Step Out of Your Decorating Comfort Zone

If you’ve been making the same safe decorating choices for as long as you can remember, it can be quite a challenge to break out of the rut. But change is hard; there’s no way around that — which is why we recommend starting small, with more of a gentle nudge than a big push out of your comfort zone. Take the classic style you naturally gravitate toward and give it a fresh twist. Any one of these ideas here would be a great starting point:

Add a fun pendant light that doesn’t break the bank
Some of the reluctance we experience in making changes around the home is financial — what if we spend a lot of money on a new piece and then regret it? If fear of making a wrong choice has been herding you into picking the same old things over and over, find something inexpensive and fun that you could live with, even if it doesn’t work out.

Photo: Chameleon Design

Update your artwork
When was the last time you picked up anything new for your walls? If you’ve been living with the same prints and other art for years (or decades), make a date to take yourself to an art show, gallery or student sale and pick out a few fresh pieces that speak to you. New art on the walls can do wonders!

Photo: Pinterest

Be daring in a small dose
Want to push the style envelope a bit? Experiment with a small piece, like a stool, a side table or an ottoman, and you won’t have to worry that it will overwhelm the room. Try a bench with interesting legs, a stool in a bright, glossy finish or an ottoman covered in an animal print or a modern geometric.

Photo: Pinterest

Change your table shape
After we live with the same large pieces of furniture for many years, they almost become invisible to us. Try swapping out your dining or kitchen table for one with a different shape — round instead of rectangular or vice versa. In the living room, try using a pair of small square tables instead of one large rectangular one, or a large upholstered ottoman instead of a fussy glass-top table.

Photo: Pinterest

Sneak in something acrylic
If your home is really traditional (and you like it that way), but you’re looking to bring in something new without throwing off the balance, try clear acrylic or Lucite. This sturdy plastic has a distinctly modern vibe yet fits in with any style, because it calls to mind other more formal clear materials, like crystal and glass. It looks amazing for anything from counter stools to tables and has the added benefit of increasing the sense of space.

Photo: Pinterest

Hit on a vibrant hue that makes you happy.
Pay attention to your emotional response to color everywhere you go. Did the lush turquoise of the water on your Caribbean vacation make your heart sing? Run with it! Focus on updating one room that has been living in mostly neutral colors up till now and add several healthy doses of your happy hue.

3-The-Ridge-Plan-8-Master-Bedroom

Photo: Chameleon Design

Try a typographic print.
Want to bring a fresher, more current vibe to your house? Tag along with the typographic trend and pick up a wordy print or canvas (try searching on Etsy) in a statement-making size. Some artists will customize prints for you, working in favorite quotes or meaningful names and dates. Or you could always pick up some alphabet stencils and paints, and make your own.

Photo: Pinterest

Try your hand at a tablescape.
Nearly all designers love to play with objects on tables, and so can you. Start with a rectangular tray that will fit on your table or ottoman. Add a small stack of books, stack a decorative box or other small object on top of the books, place a pretty bowl alongside and finish the arrangement with a vase of flowers.

Photo: Pinterest