Donna Webster

HomeOwners Library


Headboards, or the illusion of them, seem to "complete" a bed, much as a frame does to a painting. This is the place to be innovative and have some fun. The more creative the headboard, the more unique your statement!

Is your headboard and footboard old fashioned in it's style and color? A new coat of paint in a coordinating color to your bedroom's scheme might be just the trick.Or how about being a real adventurer by covering your headboard with fake fur!

Wrought iron beds are all the rage today, as are bold beds featuring canopies and four posters. Wicker headboards will offer you a charming look, and can also be painted to match your decor.

For the truly creative, how about hanging 4, 8 X 10 pictures from ribbons on a brass rod mounted behind your bed. You'll have the illusion of a headboard, but with much more creativity!

Mattress Shopping?
Read this first!

Today, your bedding options are virtually limitless. Foam mattresses, air mattresses, and a variety of coils, padding, quilting and tufting techniques make your selections difficult. The purchase of a new mattress is truly an investment, since you'll be using it for many, many years.

One of the best ways to begin this selection is to educate yourself on the features and benefits of the mattresses you're considering. Then take stock of your bedroom's size. Are you in need of a twin, full, queen or king size mattress? Where will you place your new bed? How about a headboard? What is your realistic budget range? Have you considered your overall bedroom layout as to scale and furniture arrangement?

Once you've answered these questions, you'll be a well-educated consumer with a specific plan in mind. Visit local bedding companies, and "try out" the mattresses you're interested in. That's right... actually hop up on the bed and stretch out. There's not other way to test out the comfort of your selection!

Using Prints and Patterns...
The More The Merrier!

Well, almost! In years past, using more than one print in a room was considered taboo:but not anymore! In today's free wheeling world of decorating, mixing prints and patterns is more the rule than the exception. In many traditional rooms, a single print is still used lavishly, for upholstery, drapery and even as a wall cover. But today's fashion conscious homeowners want to mix and scramble both patterns and colors with a truly uninhibited hand.

If this approach is a new one for you, start with a very simple pattern:perhaps in a single color, with a white or ecru background. It's easy to add additional patterns by keeping to the same color scheme. Try combining a large scale floral print with a plaid, stripe or check! An instantaneous decorator look will appear. Or how about adding a paisley pattern, which are perennially popular, with a simple geometric pattern.

The thing to remember is that there must be some relationship in color, pattern or theme between your desired prints. Naturally the color relationship is the easiest to establish! A general rule of thumb is to follow the 60-30-10 rule. Your main pattern will be used the most (60); your secondary pattern half as much(30); and your third(10), or splash pattern is used sparingly.

We suggest that if you find a print you absolutely love, you should consider using it on the flattest surface possible. Perhaps as a bedspread, or sofa upholstery. If this print if gather in a window treatment, you'll tend to diffuse the design that attracted you in the first place! By all means, have fun when you play with prints and patterns. Look in magazines:read books:collect swatches. Your new room will be much easier to design than you think!

No More Ruffles,
No More Frills!

That's the spirit of today's nurseries! Babies aren't infant very long, and as soon as they become active toddlers, furnishings need to be chosen with their pace and punishment in mind. That isn't to say that a nursery shouldn't be pretty: just that it must be practical and sturdy as well.

Psychologists say children like and thrive around primary colors, so stay away from proverbial pink and blue no matter how much you like them. Sunshiny yellow, fire-engine red, and brightest blue are all beauties for babies. As always in decorating, start with the largest areas first:the walls and floors. If you're painting the walls, be sure to use washable paints. Wallcoverings, too, come in myriad delightful designs and colors. Try hanging a blackboard at child-reachable height, so as to avoid scribbles on fresh new walls. Borders are also great for childrens' rooms, as are hand painted designs such as clouds and stars.

Since afternoon naps and a good night's sleep are a definite must, window coverings require serious consideration . Dark shades or fabric treatments with room darkening lining will definitely aid in nap times. Delightful curtains can be made of nursery-designed sheets. And duvets are great for bedspreads in a nursery because the covers can be easily cleaned and replaced. One special reminder: whatever fabrics you select, be sure they're washable!

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