small space decorating

Decorating a Small Space

Just because your room is small, doesn't mean it can't have style and style doesn't have to be expensive. You can add tons of personality to your small space with just a little paint, lighting and the right accessories. Don't believe the myth that a dark color makes a room feel smaller. If your room is small, it's small and a wall color isn't going to change that. And what's wrong with small? I like a room that feels cozy and welcoming. One of my favorite colors to use is called Oyster Bay by Sherwin Williams. It's a beautiful gray with blue and green undertones. And its sister color, Sea Salt, is also one of those colors that you will love for years to come.

Sherwin Williams, Oyster Bay

One question I get asked a lot is about painting one wall an accent color. Honestly, I'm not a fan of this unless your room is large and the accent wall is truly highlighting something beautiful. If you love a paint color, but you aren't ready to commit to painting your entire room with it. Then, bring that color in with a rug, art or on a piece of furniture.

My biggest piece of advice, before you paint your walls, is purchase a sample container. You can either paint big squares directly on your walls or on a poster board. A color will look totally different in your room, than in the store and those 1 inch sample cards are not to be trusted!

Lighting is one my favorite parts of any project. It's truly the "jewelry" in your room and not only includes what hangs from your ceiling, but lamps as well. If you can live without a ceiling fan, a chandelier in a small bedroom adds a ton of personality and doesn't take up any floor space. You can also use wall-mounted lamps if you don't have room for night stands.

Jennifer Taylor Design; Tallahassee, Florida

When hanging lights, make sure they are hung at the correct height. The best height for a chandelier over a table is 32 to 36 inches from the bottom of your light to the top of your table. Pinterest has some great information on lighting placement.

Finally, another great way to add personality to your small space is with accessories. Invest in a few larger pieces instead of a ton of smaller things. It feels less cluttered and is less to keep clean! Accessories also look best in odd number groupings - 1, 3 or 5. Also, varying the height will give you a true designer look.

It's really easy to fall into the trap of picking up accessories at the big retailers, but finding accessories that tell a story are so much better. Like something your child made at art camp, crafts from local festivals or even something you find while on vacation. These are things that will truly bring personality into your small space.

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A Place All Your Own

Finding a place in your home, just to call your own, can be difficult.  Even if you have the physical space, carving out an area that is just for you is sometimes impossible.  But, you don't need an entire room and the bathroom doesn't count!  Just a comfortable chair or a desk could prove to be that little slice of heaven in a hectic world. I work from home and one of our bedrooms is totally dedicated to my studio.  It's a messy chaos most days and I could never claim that area as my sanctuary.  I have lofty dreams of it becoming that one day, but even if I fill it with every cute basket out there, it still is my office and office = work.  The kind of space I'm talking about today is one where you can sit and pay a bill (and you don't have to search through piles of paper to find it), write a thank you note (those are still important) or catch-up on the latest Facebook news on your laptop.  All of these tasks require very little space, but a lot of creativity!  The key take away here is to think out of the box.  Look around your favorite room and see if you can find a place to tuck a comfy chair or small table you can use as a desk.

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The Latest

School starts Monday and I'm having very mixed feelings about it.  On one hand, I'm ready to get our routine back, but I sure have loved having my boy around so much this summer.  He definitely would be happy if summer was longer!  So, we have bought new shoes, ordered uniforms and are frantically getting through the summer math. Just this week, I've gotten the approval to start three new projects.  It's crazy to think I might finally be in a place to put clients on a waiting list.  What?!  I have finally come to realize I can only do so much and being too busy isn't best for my clients.  With that said, I've got a few larger projects coming to an end and I can't wait to share them with you.  My Bird Dog Point project is almost done.  We are waiting on a few tables to arrive, as well as those last few perfect accessories.  Here are a few progress photos from my last installation...

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I've been working on a kitchen renovation these last few months and I can not wait to share the final results!  The before and afters are going to be amazing.  We took a small kitchen and bathroom (that was also the laundry room) and created all brand new spaces.  My client wanted storage and we gave it to her.  Here's a quick before and after shot of one area we totally transformed.  As you can see, it used to be a very tiny eat-in kitchen nook.  We enlarged the opening into her dining room and added new cabinetry. Beautiful and functional storage, with a wine fridge.


My Bucklake project will be gearing back up in a few weeks.  We had a mad rush in June and July preparing for a party my client was having.  We remodeled a powder bath and added tons of wall decor and accessories throughout her main living spaces.  It was tough, but we did it.  The next phase is ordering new furniture for three rooms, as well as window treatments, lighting and rugs.  I will have lots to share with you on this as we finalize all the details.  Here are a few before and after shots from my install last month.

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So, there is the latest of what has been going on at JTD.  I'll leave you with a photo from our vacation two weeks ago.  If you are looking for a resort, I highly recommend Hammock Beach on the east coast of Florida.  Our room was nice, Wes loved the pool and I loved the beach.  And having someone bring you drinks and food, while you lounge around wasn't too bad either.

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Chez Sois {take seven}

It's been a while since my last update on the Chez Sois project, but that doesn't mean we haven't been making some great progress.  All good things come to those who wait, right? The exterior is complete and it is stunning!  We didn't do anything structural to the actual townhouse - paint, new door, lighting and mailbox - it was the landscaping that made all the difference.  My BEFORE photos aren't that great, but you should get the idea.  The stucco was light green with dark green trim and a brown front door.

Duggan Before Exterior

The AFTER is definitely a transformation!  We painted the stucco a light gray, the trim went white and a navy blue front door.

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Now, onto the inside.  We've gotten all the upholstered pieces in the family room and just finalized all the pillow fabrics.  Those will add some much needed pattern and bring the space together.

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We've also installed a window treatment in the kitchen and delivered a few goodies in the master bedroom, which includes a custom, tufted headboard.  More to come, so the photos are just detail shots.

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