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ADVENTURES IN LIVING – Making Dream Homes Come True with Furniture

In my last blog, I gave you some ideas for creating the look of an English cottage or a mountain retreat…no matter where you live. In our newest home adventure, I’ll show you how to transport your home to the locales of a city loft or a Paris apartment:

3. CITY LOFT: Nothing may be as much of a brave new world as loft living. You need large spaces to pull off this contemporary look–or a way to get that feeling by keeping furniture at a minimum. Steel and glass keep the clutter down. And picking a signature piece that guides you in your other selections will give you a road map to Manhattan or San Francisco. The coffee table can dictate what other pieces are compatible and there are great new looks and sizes to choose from. The chic industrial look is a perfect fit, like the Menlo Park cocktail table from Hooker Furniture. Other upscale industrial looks include the Benetton cocktail and the Ashbrook cocktail & end tables.

A neutral background with one dramatic splash of color may be a dramatic as a Warhol on the wall. Hold back on the chintz and wallpaper, but have a love affair with clean surfaces, and space. With this look, less is more and you can have a city adventure in your home every day.

4. PARIS APARTMENT: The residents of Paris do not live in cafes as one might assume from the travel posters, but in apartments so personal that no two are alike. Much of the furniture looks like it was inherited from a great-great-grandmother and there is always the painting or the accessory that dominates. If this is your yen, you will need places to put the things you doubtless adore. No matter how eccentric, this look is one that flatters collectors. After all, Paris is the city of flea markets–and who can resist the odd piece of silver or the platter with the endearing cracks of time. The daybed or chaise is also a hallmark of this style.

Be sure to include piles of books on the floor and a special table and chairs for afternoon tea (the French are even more devoted to tea than the English). A writing desk is a must. I found a perfect one from the Melange collection, the Sophia writing desk. Another French touch is a mix of chairs and cushions scattered about waiting for friends. And if your whole house won’t adapt, perhaps your private hideaway will.

Enjoy home, make it an adventure, your private stage to enjoy your interests and your family and friends–and your secret desires.

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