buildforcebuildforce

By Roelf Nel

French Country Kitchen Design

The French Country Kitchen design is one of many classic kitchen design themes that you could consider. It can provide your kitchen with a traditional look that has its roots in the hillsides of rural France. It is a style that can fit into both rural farmhouses and in the grandest chateau.

French country kitchen design conjures up images of the Provence and the French countryside with its pastoral settings, lavender fields and rustic French farmhouses. The French country kitchen represents country living that is uniquely French. In designing your French country kitchen you will discover that the French country look is always very rustic, old and warm.

There are many elements that go into the French country kitchen including the use of large pieces of furniture made mainly of light coloured woods and can be decorated with ornate carving.

Colour

Colour is an important place to start the design process. You can draw inspiration from some of the principle French impressionists like Monet and Renoir, Van Gogh. Colours that are used in the French country kitchen style can include sunny yellow or soft gold, bright red and rust, grass green, cobalt blue and soft ocean tones.

You can decorate in the style of the French country kitchen design by using vivid colours – poppy red, sunflower yellow, bright blue, meadow green, and sunset purple. Your walls and cabinets and large furniture can be painted in off white, ivory, light beige, and taupe. Cabinets can be painted a glossy white to brighten light-filled spaces in the kitchen or they can be left as natural wood. These colours can provide a light, airy feel so you do not want to use strong colours here. In fabrics such as curtains and seat cushions you might also add paisley, stripes and floral prints to your French Country Kitchen theme.

Natural Materials

Natural materials are an important element in walls, cabinetry, and furniture that is used in the design of French country kitchens. The materials used in creating a rustic French country kitchen look include natural stone floors, granite counter tops and tumbled marble back splashes. These natural materials can be used on walls and beamed ceilings, and can be rough stained or painted plaster, or wood painted in natural colours. Floors can be made of stone or brick and covered with wool or cotton rugs,  and wooden shutters as window coverings. Furniture and cabinets can have a rustic or even a distressed look. Countertops can be done in ceramic tile with tile back splashes.

Accent Pieces

In French country kitchen design you will find that tile, rustic urns, hand-painted European ceramics and pottery accents are used extensively. Ceramic tiles and terra cotta pottery pieces are used wherever possible. Add copper pots and a French country kitchen can encompass many old world-decorating colours.

Visit our French Country Board for more inspiring ideas .

By Roelf Nel

Elements to consider for your Pool Landscape Design

It is always a great idea to compliment the interior of your home with your exterior and have a gorgeous backyard. Many homeowners choose to have their backyards filled with great landscape designs of flowers and other sorts of vegetation. The trend is for homeowners to create multi-purpose swimming pools to enhance a luxurious lifestyle.

Pool shapes:

It all begins with the shape of the pool you want. The shape and size of your yard will determine the best pool design. The general rule of thumb are the geometrical figures and streamlined lap pools that give the wet edge look. The latter are designed so that the water from the pool would slip over the surrounding basin. This gives the dramatic illusion of a more opulent and larger pool.

Pool colours:

The colour of the pool is always credited by giving the dramatic effect. This is because the colour gives the more defined outline on the general design and it dictates the surrounding landscape design. Shades of blue, more specifically sapphire hues, are popular for swimming pools which are often matched by crystal outline. Blue stands out from green shades of the vegetation and the rustic hues of bricks, marble and other rocks common among pools.

Water features:

Plain swimming pools are obsolete, thus fountains are great to create effects for the pool.  You can use a grand wall of flowing water or small trickles of a well-constructed fountain.

Plants:

Floras are never out of trend, the variety of effects come from the manipulation of the hundreds of species of plants and flowers. Each general design, say tropical landscape, calls for various usage and species of plants. This element for pool landscape design must be used with optimised results. Of course, you do not want your pool to look as if you have created a botanical garden when all you wanted is to accessorise your landscape design with touches of greens.

Lighting:

Whether you intend to use the pool in the evening or not, you still would want to consider the use of lighting effects to illuminate the features of the pool and the surrounding areas. A single spotlight has been out of trend for quite some time now and the use of subtle lights is considered the best replacements.

Decking:

Decking, no matter what you call it, is a great addition to your pool landscape design. This suggests a good outdoor “room” where you can stay for relaxation and is very useful for additional designs such as hanging plants.

Additional designs: 

Small details are good additions to your pool landscaping designs. Birdbaths, sculptures, wildlife boxes, bird feeders, rock formations and all other imaginable items will do your landscaping some favours when strategically placed.

Visit the Pinterest Board to get some more inspiring swimming pool design ideas.

By Roelf Nel

Designing a living room you’ll love

It does not matter what your décor, budget, or personal tastes are, you can still turn your living room into a magical space that looks as if it was done by an interior design professional.

The starting point of your interior design adventure is to determine the purpose of your living room. Do you entertain a large group of guests regularly? Is your living room a place for intimate gatherings of friends and family? On the other hand, maybe, just a place to relax and kick back?

Answering this question will help determine the layout of the room. If you entertain a lot, then you want your space to be more open so guests can flow freely around the room without bumping into furniture. On the other hand, if you host more intimate groups, then you want to arrange your furniture to promote conversation.

Select furniture that matches your needs
Once you know the function of the room, it’s time to work on form. There are a lot of really wonderful pieces out on the market theses days. Not only can you get inviting sofas and loveseats, but also new ideas such as sectionals with a built-in chaise. If you entertain a lot, consider going with groupings of furniture or pieces that can be easily moved around the room. If it’s just family and friends, go with a large sectional grouping so you can all sit together in comfort and style.

Locate the large pieces first
The sofa, loveseat and sectionals should be put in place first. Again, consider the function of the room and arrange accordingly. If your pieces are heavy, you may want to draw out the room on a piece of paper and make shapes that match the measurements of your furniture. Move them around on paper before you move them around the room. This saves time and energy.

Work your way out from there
Once you have the large pieces of furniture set to your liking, it’s time to add end tables, coffee tables and other secondary furnishings to your grouping. Next, it’s time for the accents: lamps, vases, plants, etc. Finally, hang your art so that it complements the room’s new look. After painting and changing the layout, you may find that some of your art is out of place. Look in your other rooms to see if a different piece would look better.

Use colour intelligently
The right colours can really make a living room come to life. Choose wall colours that complement your furnishings. Contrary to popular belief, a dark colour makes a room appear larger, not smaller. Use accent colours for your accessories. Don’t get too wild with colours – they should work with one another, not against one another.

Go with a neutral style
Resist the temptation to buy the latest trends in furnishings or accessories. You don’t want your space to become dated. Picking up the latest lamp or gimmicky clock cheapens the space as well. Above all, don’t put too much of your personal tastes into the décor. Keep the precious memories and souvenirs in the bedroom or family room.

Let it shine
A good way to add some space to your living room is to go with reflective surfaces for tables, fixtures and lighting. White glazed cabinets are terrific for this, particularly if they have glassed doors. The same is true with lighting. A lamp with a glossy shade can make the room look bigger than it is.

Use rugs as décor
If you have a really large open space, consider breaking it into smaller areas. The easiest way to do this is to use area rugs. Though it seems odd at first, an area rug cannot only be used on wood or tile floors, but on wall-to-wall carpeting as well. When using an area rug to define a space, be sure that the furnishings either rest on the carpet or touch the edges visually.

Most of all, have fun with your redecorating project. Once you have the furniture you like, the rest can be changed easily down the road with just a few cans of paint and some artistic touches.

Visit our Pinterest Board to get some more inspiring ideas to give you living room a new fresh look.

 

By Roelf Nel

Five ways to add a touch of Glamour to your Home

Adding a touch of glamour to your room interior is not about the flash. You can tastefully add a touch of glamour to your home and transform your room into a luxurious place.

One statement piece can add a touch of glamour, whether it is a gilded Venetian mirror or a spectacular leather turquoise chaise in the centre of an all-white living room, that one piece adds a little luxury to an otherwise casual room setting.

Turn an ordinary room into one that exudes class and style by adding in crown moulding. Crown mouldings are typically decorative strips made up of wood, plastic, or fibreboard. Using crown moulding is a fabulous way to camouflage the existing flaws and ugly blotches on the walls or ceilings. Using these decorative strips adds a touch of elegance to a room, making it appear more grand and unique.

Another effective option dating back to Georgian period is Panel Moulding. Panel moulding is used to break up large surfaces, which adds a formal feeling to most designs. It is also utilized as a border separating colours or textures. Visually enhance any room with decorative panel moulding, from walls and doors to ceilings.

Adding a touch of Gold to your décor is a classy trend that seems to be staying for a while. Transform a plain kitchen into a formal space with stylish golden light fittings, and finishing off touches with gold taps, and gold cabinet handles. If gold is too flashy for you, go with the more subtle, yet elegant brass finish.

Using Colour is another way of adding glamour and elegance to your room. Either go with bold and dramatic colours or soft understated hues. Painting interior doors black creates an expensive feeling, without causing much damage to your wallet. Make sure you tie the overall design together by adding some black accessories to this space.

If this style appeals to you, visit our Pinterest Board and explore some more ideas we found.

Oriental Rugs

By Roelf Nel

Oriental Rugs add Elegance to Room Design

Oriental rugs will add timeless beauty to your home. They coordinate with any décor, and enhance any room, hallway, or entrance. They are also a favourite option when decorating home offices. These rugs are a great choice for high traffic areas because of the intricacies of their designs, which hide wear and tear. The term “oriental” refers to rugs produced on the continent of Asia, such as Persian (from Iran), Indian, Chinese, and Turkish rugs.

Making rugs by hand is an ancient art and the old designs reflect the religious and ethnic structures of the times in the countries or areas of origin. Many of these ancient designs are still produced today, sometimes hand-woven and hand-knotted, other times woven by machine. The most traditional patterns are those with a floral or garden motif, or geometric or curvilinear designs around a central medallion or a central painting-like scene.

Oriental rugs used to be constructed only with such natural fibers as wool, cotton, silk, or goat and camel hair, or blends of these materials.  Now you can find these rugs made with less expensive synthetic materials such as olefin (polypropylene), nylon, polyester, and acrylic. Wool rugs remain the first choice in durable, soft, dirt-and-fire resistant and warm rugs. However, synthetic reproductions make oriental area rugs are more affordable. They come in a variety of colours, sizes, and shapes – round, oval, rectangular, and, of course, the popular runner.

How to Choose Oriental Rugs for Your Home

Decide on how you are going to use each area rug.

  • Will it define furniture groupings or unify all the elements in the room?
  • Is its primary use to protect a floor or a carpet?
  • Is the prime function to add warmth and comfort?

The use of the rug will dictate its size and shape. Keep in mind that the colours should be harmonious with other colours in the room. If the center of the carpet will be visible, medallions or central scenes are good choices. If the center will be fully or partially hidden under a table or other furniture, it is better to go with a repetitive design or an elaborate and interesting border.

Very colourful and busy designs can make an oriental rug the focal point in a room. If the room is already colourful with intricate drapery and upholstery fabric designs, choose simple designs and subtle colours. If you are going to use two different rugs in one room, make sure the colours and patterns blend and complement each other.

Whether you choose a genuine antique oriental wool rug that has been hand woven and hand knotted in Iran, or a  machine woven rug with an oriental design manufactured locally, you will be adding beauty and warmth to your home.

Visit our Pinterest Board  and explore some of the beautiful designs we came across and the elegant use of the rugs.

By Roelf Nel

Taking a closer look at Kitchen Design Styles

While you are planning your new kitchen look, the style and design you select is very important in determining the overall feel your kitchen will portray. Whether you are going for the country charm of wood cabinets to modern-looking stainless steel appliances, kitchen design styles come in many choices and styles.

What determines your kitchen’s design style?

Many of the more successful kitchen design styles consist of many components going together the right way. The colour you select and the styles of fabrics, furniture, flooring, windows, cabinetry, appliances, and lighting can help to determine a kitchen design style. You will discover that various design elements of the kitchen provide each style with its own unique flavour.

The type of kitchen cabinets you have are an important consideration in regards to the overall kitchen design style. The cabinetry can have a powerful effect on the design of your kitchen. The style of kitchen cabinet you choose will give personality and a specific atmosphere to your kitchen.

Popular styles of kitchen cabinets today are:

English Country – Consists of open china display racks, unique paints and finishes.

Shaker – This style is characterized by purity, simplicity, and utility. Uses flat panel doors that are inset and flush with the cabinet frame. Other features include wooden counter tops, wooden knobs, and brass hardware pieces. It combines simple furniture design with clear crisp lines, and strength.

Country – This style creates an old farm kitchen look with glazes and layered finishes. Includes open shelves, pot racks for cast iron cookware, butcher block, and multi-coloured cabinet pieces that look like they are separate pieces of furniture.

French Country – So many elements go into the French country kitchen including the use of large pieces of furniture that are made mainly of light coloured woods and can be decorated with ornate carving. Natural materials are an important element in walls, cabinetry, and furniture that is used in the design of French country kitchens.

Arts and Crafts – This kitchen design style is becoming a popular style for kitchens. In this type of style glass doors and natural wood tones with a matte sheen are used. The style can be eclectic and artistic.

Contemporary – Kitchens that are done in the contemporary kitchen design style often use plastic laminates, special wood veneers, enamels, lacquers, or metal foil laminate for the kitchen cabinet facings. Cabinet doors in this kitchen design style usually use frameless construction with overlay door and no toe kick panel.

Homes can come in many different styles, and built using a variety of materials. So the same goes for kitchen design styles. However, in most cases, people will want their kitchen to match the overall design and style of their home.

It may not be absolutely necessary to select a kitchen design style that is the same as your home’s exterior architectural style. Although it is considered a good idea that you should really try to select the kitchen design style that will best complement your home’s style.

Visit our Pinterest Board  and get inspired by the kitchen ideas we came across.

By Roelf Nel

Using Area Rugs in your room Design

Area rugs are a great way to accentuate portions of a room and add to the mood and ambience of the interior decoration by harmonizing colours and shapes. Ideally, the primary colours of the rug should complement the wall, furniture, and furnishing colours. The rugs can be used to focus attention on another aspect of interior decoration or can be used as the centre of attraction. Large, centrally placed medallion rugs garner maximum attention. Area rugs are available in a variety of materials, textures, and shapes.

Area rugs are an excellent combination of form and utility and beautifully crafted hand rugs are real works of art. Most handmade rugs are made from fine quality wool that is capable of withstanding the rigors of heavy traffic and regular cleanings.

Area rugs have evolved into unique shapes and designs all over the world.  They are popular even today and oval braided rugs in shades such as brown, blue, or green lend a rustic feel to a room. Area rugs can also have a luxurious lush pile in warm colours that accentuate a feeling of cozy comfort. Mexican rugs and dhurries from India can alter the tone of an arrangement of furniture such that it acquires a characteristic distinct from the rest of the room.

Area rugs require to be taken care of and if the rug is not too bulky, it can be taken to the cleaners who have the expertise of handling area rugs made from different materials. Care should be taken that furniture is not placed on the newly washed wet rugs otherwise the rugs will carry permanent marks. Spills should be diluted with water and brushed gently from outside to the center.

The cost of an area rug depends upon its manufacturing process and materials used. Handmade Persian and Oriental rugs can be expensive. Machine-manufactured rugs that are durable and can stand wear and tear are available; at the same time there are area rugs that can cost a few thousand rands and are often used in mansions and hotel lobbies to complement the fine furniture in these places.

Wood floors and area rugs complement one another amazingly well; wood floors are elegant and easy to clean and area rugs offer a variety of options to accentuate the character of a room with wooden flooring and also act as a source of warmth for the feet on cold winter days. Area rugs fit in with the décor of every room and this adds to their appeal; they not only enliven a dull room but also help to reduce noise levels.

Visit Pinterest Board for more ideas on using area rugs in your room design.

By Roelf Nel

Different Types of Sunrooms

Sunrooms come in many shapes and forms. Some are covered patios while others are enclosed completely with glass walls from floor to ceiling. Others are in the form of a solarium or conservatory.

No matter what shape or size a sunroom comes in, deciding to add one to your home is a great idea. Do some research and then decide which style is best to suit you and your family’s needs.

Sunrooms
Sunrooms are typically an addition to the back of your house that is enclosed with glass walls and screens. A sunroom is designed to make the most out of the design so that light filters in at optimal times and levels. A sunroom has many benefits, such as providing a spot to hide out from the rest of the house when you are feeling cooped in, or a great place to have people over for lunch. Sunrooms offer the bonus of you not being bitten by bugs and insects while still enjoying the great outdoors. They can be used as an extra space for guests or even as a home office. You can even install a ceiling fan to give you that balmy, breezy effect. Sunrooms also offer the added bonus of improving your home’s equity.

Screen Rooms or Patio Covers
Screen rooms are a little less expensive than the addition of a complete sunroom. A screen room can take an already existing patio and enclose it in screening. Another great thing about a screen room is that it does an amazing job of keeping the bugs out. A patio cover works in much the same way. A patio cover can keep the glare and heat from the sun out, but cannot do much in the way of repelling insects and bugs.

Conservatories
Conservatories have an origin of summer days gone by in the English countryside. Today, they add beauty and elegance to your home. They also add much in the way of home equity. A tastefully done conservatory can let in the light, be a place to entertain, or even be a lush, plush sanctuary garden. Just the look and style alone add a touch of elegance to your home’s exterior.

Solarium
A solarium is typically an enclosed sunroom, but the intrinsic difference is that it typically has a glass roof as well. A solarium has a more modern design than a conservatory and can be a stand-alone site or a greenhouse for plants.

These are just some of the different types of sunrooms that you can explore to see which one is best for you. Visit our Pinterest Board and gather some ideas to create your dreamy area to hang out on those lazy days.

By Roelf Nel

How to Display Artwork

Artwork is used both as an accessory and a unifying element to tie a room together. Depending on the art that you chose, it will be the defining factor for an energizing, warming, or formal environment.

The use of artwork as an element of décor incorporates both colour and definition into a room.

Pieces of art help determine the focal point of a room and should be displayed so that they draw the eye progressively from and to the focal point of the space.

Artwork adds character and flair to a room. It distracts and defines the emotions and the mood that the intended space conveys.

Large artwork should be placed strategically as an attention-catcher. The wall where the art is placed should be relative to the size of the painting and large enough to allow for a good amount of wall space to frame the artwork and draw the eye.

To showcase your art and make it stand out, install lighting directly below or above it. In this way you highlight its colours, and the overall effect on the impact of the room is more significant than if hung without individual lighting.

To achieve a more dramatic effect, group paintings and create asymmetric arrangements. This is another way to catch the eye with a few small paintings, which would otherwise be hard to achieve if they were scattered throughout the room.

Paintings can also be set in a symmetrical series, spaced evenly apart for an ordered, clean look. Add interest with black and white images, or add depth and complexity with a gold leaf frame that features intrinsic woodwork.

Visit our Pinterest Board and get inspired with some of the great pins we came across.

By Roelf Nel

Slate tile flooring

Slate tile stone flooring is flexible in nature and can be used almost anywhere. People have been using it extensively in the kitchen, front hallway, bathroom and outdoor uses such as pool surrounds and patio. One of the most brilliant features of this stone is that it has got a naturally slip-resistant surface. The tile is also widely known for its durability and decorative nature.

Natural face or split-face slate tile is one of the most popular choices when it comes to slate tile flooring. The split is a region where the slate has been removed from the slate bed. Hence, you can be sure of the fact that this variety of slate tile maintains the natural and uneven texture. The texture makes this type of slate tile one of the most distinctive tile. When it comes to slate tile, you can always expect a thickness variation from tile to tile. You need to consult your local flooring professionals to get an approximate idea of slate tile thickness.

Here are some do’s and don’ts you need to keep in mind with slate tile flooring.

Do’s:

  1. You should be sure of the fact that the area in which you desire to install your slate tile flooring is apt for the climate, foot traffic and other important factors. A sales representative will be able to help you in this matter.
  2. You must expect colour variations when it comes to slate tile flooring and utilize them to your advantage.
  3. It is necessary to keep yourself informed of the warranty details. Try to read all the instructions or information related to the slate tile flooring purchase.
  4. Slate tile flooring sealant is very important. You can choose from several varieties available such a high-gloss sealant that provides the tile a lustrous look, a low sheen that is reflective and no sheen that provides slate a natural look.

Don’ts:

  1. Never ever forget to allow for breakage and waste while placing your order. Remember that accidents can happen anytime.
  2. Don’t install slate tile flooring on a wet surface. The moisture trapped on the surface may make installation difficult for you.
  3. Don’t apply a sealer to a slate tile floor that has been oiled or waxed and not cured. The marks can prove to be very difficult to remove later.

When it comes to practicality and beauty, slate tile is considered to be the optimum choice. With slate, you can never slip. Visit our Pinterest Board for more inspiring ideas.

 

1 2 3 6
French Country Kitchen Design
Elements to consider for your Pool Landscape Design
Designing a living room you’ll love
Five ways to add a touch of Glamour to your Home
Oriental Rugs
Oriental Rugs add Elegance to Room Design
Taking a closer look at Kitchen Design Styles
Using Area Rugs in your room Design
Different Types of Sunrooms
How to Display Artwork
Slate tile flooring