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Design Insight

Luxe Up Your Living Room

When designers are revamping a space the living room is often the first place we’ll look. A central component in any home, the living room should reflect your tastes and aesthetic, but you don’t have to spend a fortune for it to look like a million bucks. Read our tips below and you’ll be on your way to a more luxurious living room in no time:

Simplify Your Styling
A cluttered, over-accessorized space can look messy and disorganized rather than chic and sophisticated. Pare down your collection and keep the pieces that have sentimental value or evoke strong memories. A simplified space will enable the remaining elements to really shine.

Photo: Pinterest

 

Hide Your Television
Nothing brings down the feeling of sophisticated luxury in a space quite like a huge black television placed front and center. If an armoire or modern console is not the right look for your space, you can visually minimize the presence of your screen by creating a gallery wall or salon-style art arrangement around it. Although it won’t entirely disappear, the frame of the television will blend in with the other artwork to distract the eye.

Photo: Elle Decor

 

 

 

Incorporate a Bold Textile
Give your room a custom look by using vintage or antique textiles to make throw pillows or cover small pieces such as seat cushions or upholstered stools with a great print. The unusual fabric will inject your room with a unique element, and will personalize your space.

 

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Photo: Commune Design

 

Add a Sculptural Item
Prevent your room from becoming a sea of straight lines and circular forms by introducing an element with an interesting shape or unique silhouette. A tree root coffee table or unusual side chair will feel like a piece of art in your living room, adding an unexpected and wholly artistic component to your design.

Photo: Pinterest

 

Hang a Large Piece of Art
Create a focal point and give your space some wow factor by hanging an oversized piece of art by itself on one of your living room walls. The look is chic and high-impact with very little hassle. Keep your eyes peeled at flea markets and thrift stores for large pieces at reasonable prices, or get creative and make your own.

Photo: Chameleon Design

 

Mix Your Textures
A layered, thoughtful mix of materials and textures will give your space a custom-designed, luxurious look. Mix metals, glass, wood, a variety of textiles, and leather items to create a dynamic, inviting space.

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Photo: Chameleon Design

 

Hotel-Inspired Design Ideas

No matter where we go on vacation, the hotel is admittedly the destination we look forward to most. But all of that four-star luxuriating might be the reason why we often feel less than enthusiastic about returning to the daily grind. So why not bring the hotel experience home? Here are a few ways to do it:

Start at the Door
The entry to a nice guest room is the place where you may find a small table or shelf to place keys and other items, and a small lighting fixture. Take a look at your entryway at home and consider if you’ve got those special touches that will make it count.

Photo: Pinterest

Make the Bed
No single item makes the hotel experience more than the bed. To achieve those incredible layers of pillowy goodness, skip the pillow-top mattress and buy a featherbed instead. A featherbed is much more economical and serves just as well for making you feel like you’re sleeping on a cloud. The same goes for super-high thread count sheets. The maximum you need is 300 to 400 thread count, though going higher is up to you.

Photo: Pinterest

Use Mirrors to Open Up the Space
There’s actually a reason for that mirror many designers like to hang right above the writing desk. Strategically placed mirrors can make a small space look more expansive.  Utilize this tip in your own home and see what a difference it can make.

Photo: Pinterest

Splurge On Details
It may be a fogless mirror in the bathroom or a set of super-luxe oversized bath towels. Think about those little luxuries that you enjoy most during your hotel stay and bring them into your home!

Photo: Pinterest

Keep It Fresh With Flowers
You’ll almost always find a bouquet of fresh flowers in the lobby of a nice hotel. If you don’t mind spending an extra $10 a week at the grocery store for a simple bouquet, you can bring that same freshness into your kitchen, bathroom or bedside table.

Photo: Pinterest

Rethinking the Coffee Table

One could argue the coffee table is the most important piece of furniture in your home: You can eat dinner on it, work from it, store your latest reads on it, the list goes on and on. So why not show some creativity with this furniture staple?  Large traditional coffee tables may not fit your space, or the look you want in a living room or family room. For this reason, designers often look at alternatives that can be used as a coffee table as well. These smaller tables allow you to place a drink or snack down on top, yet are more compact, and can be moved around when needed.

Moroccan Tray
Besides being eclectically glamorous, a Moroccan tray table is multifunctional. Take the top tray to the kitchen to fill up with teatime essentials and then carry it right back to its stand.  You won’t miss your stationary coffee table for a second.

Photo: Pottery Barn

Ottoman
If you’re prone to kicking your feet up on the coffee table, why not make the ritual more comfortable by replacing your coffee table with an ottoman? A tray placed on top of the ottoman will provide a place to corral your essentials, while keeping your drinks steady.

Photo: Pinterest

Photo: Pinterest

Poufs
If you have kids who constantly need more play area, poufs may be your solution. Easy to move and undeniably chic, poufs give coffee tables a run for their money.

Photo: Pinterest

Side Tables
When the look of a behemoth coffee table is too heavy, consider grouping side tables together instead. The collection will make for a lighter coffee table solution. Another plus- they can easily be moved to open up the space when it’s time to entertain.

Photo: Pinterest

Garden Stools
Ceramic garden stools are colorful, versatile and will add a bit of whimsy when decorating a room. They’re great as side tables, but just the right size to hold a book and a cup of coffee, a single garden stool may be all the coffee table you need. Or if you need more space, group a few together.

Photo: Chameleon Design

Trunk
Not only does a trunk add structure and style to your living room, but it will also increase your storage options. If just one trunk isn’t enough to store all of your blankets and children’s toys, try placing two next to one another.

Photo: Pinterest

Photo: Restoration Hardware

Create a Beautiful Dining Space

Dining rooms can be a difficult to decorate due to limited furniture pieces and limited styling opportunities. However, if you combine certain elements to create high-impact designs, you can easily achieve a beautiful space that your guests will enjoy. Here are some easy elements to incorporate, then when combined will create a space that impresses every dinner guest:

Install Overhead & Accent Lighting
Cast a flattering glow on your dining companions and create a strong focal point in the room by placing a statement fixture directly above the dining table. If you can go a step further and layer your lighting sources by adding wall sconces and table lamps on a sideboard or console you’ll really be in business! And don’t forget the importance of putting lighting on dimmer switches to control the room’s brightness.

Photo: Pinterest


Hang Engaging Artwork

Since furniture in dining areas is usually placed in the center of the room, these areas offer the perfect place in the home to display oversized, interesting artwork. Go with a gallery wall or salon-style arrangement, or place one incredible piece on the main wall to anchor the room.

Photo: Chameleon Design

Create Seating Variety
Whether you opt to use a bench that coordinates with your side chairs on one side of your table or a different, larger-scale pair of chairs at the heads of a rectangular table, switching up your seating styles is a nice way to add interest to your dining room decor.

Photo: Pinterest

Mix Your Materials
Since furniture pieces in dining rooms tend to be limited, keep your room fresh and intriguing by incorporating a mix of materials and textures into your design. A table with a top that coordinates but contrasts with its base, along with chairs that introduce another texture, will add depth to your design.

Give Yourself a Serving Surface
Keep yourself from having to run back and forth to the kitchen by adding a surface where you can serve food and drinks. A console or buffet will do the trick and prevent disruption during dinner parties. As an added bonus, a piece such as this will add valuable storage space.

Photo: Chameleon Design 

Chameleon Design // Nominated for 4 SoCal Awards!!

If you are in our neighborhood, stop by and give us a high five – because that’s what we’re doing at our office right now!  We’re pleased to share our good news!  Chameleon Design has received the prestigious honor of making it to the finalist round of The SoCal Awards, presented by the Greater Sales & Marketing Council of Southern California.  As with every design we do, we strive for only the best in design, innovation and creativity.  Receiving industry recognition by our peers as well as leaders and influencers about our hard work is cause for us to celebrate!  A BIG THANK YOU to our wonderful clients who trust us with their work daily.  We’ve been nominated in the following categories:

Category: Best Sales or Information Center Pavilion Park
The First Great Park Neighborhood
Five Point Communities
Marketing Director: Jann Rowe
Strada Advertising/Chameleon Design

Great Park Neighborhood

Category: Best Interior Merchandising of a Detached Home priced under $500,000
AVO – Plan 2 ALT
Planet Home Living
Marketing Director: Melanie Ryan
Chameleon Design

AVO Plan 2

Category: Best Interior Merchandising of a Detached Home priced over $1 Million
Azurene at Brightwater – Plan 6
Woodbridge Pacific
Marketing Director: Karen Spargo
Chameleon Design

Azurene

Category: Best Interior Merchandising of an Attached Home priced under $600,000
Cortile – Plan 4
Brookfield Residential
Marketing Director: Mercedes Meserve
Chameleon Design

Cortile

Simple Ways to Upgrade Your Home Like a Designer

It takes a certain eye to be able to pull a room together and make it fabulous and functional, all at the same time. With that being said, not everyone can afford to hire an interior designer to come into their home and guide all of their design decisions. And some of us actually want to be the one who makes our own design decisions, using our own individual style and preferences.

So how can we get the inspiration to take our interiors from boring to beautiful, without the expense of a professional designer? We’re sharing some simple tips to help you begin designing your rooms into a space that, until now, you thought only an interior designer could create.

Display Books
Books are the greatest accessories ever. They add warmth to any room. Stack and intermix them with fun objects for an instantly polished look.

Photo: Pinterest

Photo: Pinterest

Avoid the Matchy-Matchy
Different textures make any interior look more expensive. Combine sisal, leather, metal, linen and glass to make a simple space seem as if it’s been curated by a professional.

Photo: Chameleon Design

Throw Some Pillows
Accent pillows can look high-end but are super easy on your wallet. They’re a perfect low-risk chance to play around with color and pattern.

Photo: Chameleon Design

Include a Statement Plant
The fiddle leaf fig is beloved by design pros–and the magazines that lovingly photograph their work–for its large size, lollipop shape and cheery shade of green. Add one or a similar big green plant to inject color into an otherwise mostly neutral palette.

Photo: Pinterest

Layer Your Rugs
A great way to cover a large space without investing in a room sized rug, it’s also a easy way to incorporate mixed patterns and lend a relaxed bohemian style to a space that can easily be changed up later.

Photo: Pinterest

Photo: Pinterest

Paint Your Bookshelf’s Backing
A simple way to create depth as well as a fresh, vibrant look with minimum effort is to paint only the backing of built-ins or bookshelves.

Photo: Elle Decor

Add Mirrors
Whether used as a single statement piece or in a small grouping, mirrors lighten and open a lackluster space. Target is a great “luxe for less” source for fab mirrors these days.

Photo: Chameleon Design 

Feng Shui Tips To Bring Good Energy Into the Home

Feng shui is an ancient art and science developed over 3,000 years ago in China. It’s a complex body of knowledge that reveals how to balance the energies of any given space to assure health and good fortune for people inhabiting it. Feng shui has long observed that the front door represents our relationship with the world. When it’s captivating and positive, that is the kind of energy that shows up and channels throughout the rest of our home.  Here are a few simple suggestions to get the good vibes flowing your way:

Make the space outside the door as appealing as possible
Keep your front door area in tip top shape by replacing any burned out lights, wiping down the door and its hardware and by just keeping the space clean and approachable. And if you can do nothing else, sweep. It’s a simple ritual that maintains pleasing space and calls forth positive energy.

Infuse the front path or porch with color and fragrance
Healthy plants and bright flowers elevate beauty and suggest good health. Maintain both, and feng shui says that it’s a magnetic invitation to whatever you desire in your life.

Maintain a visible address
Refresh it, if necessary: a quick polish to the numbers or a few new screws to firmly hold them in place, a fresh coat of paint to update a faded curb address, or a well-posted name in an apartment building will ensure energy knows exactly where to find you.

Use your front door daily
Most of us enter our homes through a secondary door. However, feng shui holds that the really potent, boundless energy available prefers the front door, if invited. Make it a routine to open the door at least once a day. When we do, we invite bounty and abundance into our lives.

Keep the front door clutter-free
The wider a door opens, the more open we become to unlimited resources and opportunities. If there is unnecessary clutter, find a home for it. Designate a basket for shoes, place a tray nearby for keys and mail, and install hooks to hang anything else that might otherwise linger on the floor.

Let your creative juices flow here. Whether you add thriving plants or attractive light fixtures it all beckons the good life to find its way to your front door!

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feng-shui-tips-entryway

Common Decor Mistakes // The Living Room

There are certain mistakes that even the savviest home designers make. We’re calling out some of the most common issues we see when it comes to living room design, as well as some solutions to assure you won’t make these mistakes again. We’ve shared images of our work to demonstrate how you can effectively tackle these common décor mistakes.

Purchasing Furniture in Sets
We tend to gravitate toward rooms that give off a collected air, spaces that feel as if they have lived a life. When the sofa and chairs are perfectly matched or the side tables, coffee table, and armoire are all the same, the space loses that unique, personal feeling.

Solution: Switch up your furniture selection to create a unique mix.

Photo: Chameleon Design

Lighting is an Afterthought
Home decorators commonly focus their attention on statement pieces like a sofa, and then add in lighting at the last minute to fill in any gaps.

Solution: Think about the lighting scheme from the beginning of the design. Whether opting for a statement chandelier, a pair of sculptural table lamps or decorative sconces, paying attention to the lighting you incorporate into your décor will create a more cohesive overall look.

Photo: Chameleon Design

Pushing Furniture Against the Wall
While it’s not a pitfall often seen in large spaces, pushing all of your furniture flush against a wall may be doing you a disservice.

Solution: A furniture plan featuring floating pieces is more conducive to conversation both when hosting guests and when just enjoying family time at home. Place a console behind a floating sofa to give it additional heft or position a side table between floating lounge chairs to provide a sense of permanence.

Photo: Chameleon Design

Not Mixing Materials

Solution: A variety of fabrics, finishes, and textures is key when designing a layered, dimensional space. If your side tables, console, and coffee table are all wood, consider subbing in a glass or metal piece to create more variety. Similarly, if your sofa is linen, we recommend switching up the fabrics on your draperies, lounge chairs, and throw pillows to create more visual appeal and keep the eye moving.

Photo: Chameleon Design

 Area Rug That’s Too Small
An area rug that is too small will make your furniture look crowded rather than planned and you’ll lose valuable useable square footage by cramming everything close together.

Solution: Take time to measure your space to see what the ideal size would be, and invest in a rug that is suitable for your room.

Photo: Chameleon Design

Essentials for an Eclectic Home

Eclectic design encompasses a variety of periods and styles and is brought together through the use of color, texture, shape and finish. A space that is eclectic allows for traditional furniture to mix with modern, or vice versa. Though it may not look it, a true eclectic style is a very purposeful and well thought-out way of decorating, and it’s not easy. Some styles don’t mix well, so it’s best to use no more than two styles unless you’re a professional.

To achieve this look, choose a color scheme and stick with a neutral as your grounding force. Then add to it with colored and textured solids and patterns. A combination of finishes and textures sets an eclectic look apart from the rest. If you like a wide variety of styles in your home and don’t like things that are too matchy matchy, a more eclectic style may be just the thing you’re searching for.

Photo: Chameleon Design

Photo: Pinterest

Photo: Chameleon Design

Photo: Pinterest

How To Create an Open Plan Kitchen

The kitchen is often called the hub of the home and for a while we’ve seen spaces designed to open to adjacent family rooms, creating a more intimate, homey feeling. Now formal dining rooms are following suit: in many homes, they’ve effectively become obsolete, being absorbed by the kitchen, creating larger, more functional spaces.

Homeowners have broken free of formality and embraced floorplans that combine rooms for optimal use. There’s no sense in wasting square footage on a room that’s only used sporadically. Considering an open-plan kitchen? The key to design success in these spaces is to separately define the

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dining and kitchen prep-areas, while ensuring the combined space is harmonious. Read on for why these rooms get it right.

Photo: Pinterest

Photo: Chameleon Design

Photo: Chameleon Design

Diverse Materials:
A mix of materials and surfaces keeps the eye moving in these large spaces and prevents visual boredom. If your countertops are granite, opt for a wood table with chrome light fixtures. If you have butcher-block counters, a marble-top table set underneath iron light fixtures is a good way to introduce a variety of texture into the space.

Lighting Variety:
Using an assortment of lighting fixtures and styles will define the kitchen and dining areas as different zones, though they may only be separated by mere feet. Switch up the styles of your sconces, pendants, and chandelier to keep the design cohesive, but dimensional.

A Decorated Space:
Combining kitchen and dining spaces doesn’t mean you have to lose all of the décor components. This makes dining rooms special. By introducing art, vintage and antique seating, beautiful draperies, and decorative accessories, you can still give the design of your open-plan kitchen the high-end look of a formal dining room.

A Variety of Seating Styles:
By distinguishing the look of your kitchen barstools from your dining chairs, you can evoke the feeling of a separate dining room and make the space dynamic and interesting while you’re at it.