Do you swap out your home’s decorative accessories seasonally?

feature image: pezula interiors & design monarchy

by Rose McClement

Marica recently posed an interesting question to our social media audience. Before publishing the post, we had a brief chat about it. Like we generally tend to do.

The question was “Do you swap out your home’s decorative accessories or scatters seasonally?” I didn’t really give it much thought at the time, because I knew my own answer as being “NO, I don’t“.

I knew that I wasn’t even in the slightest bit inclined towards such a move. I have a friend who does that, but then she is a seamstress and likes to sew new covers for her cushions and other little things.

Me, on the other, I’m no seamstress and have always had a bad relationship with a sewing machine.

A punchy and lush collection of decorative accessories and scatters. | source: Decoholic

It was only when the answers from my friends started rolling in, that I stopped to notice my own resistance to something like this. Yes – what I had put down as my own lack of interest, was actually resistance. I saw others offering one or two of my own type of “Nah, why should I?” kinda comments. Others said, “I don’t have the storage space“- a fair response. Yet, when I stop and scratch a little bit further, that answer falls by the wayside. Scatter cushion covers can be stored in your linen cupboard, along with your other linen goodies – one would not need a lot of space.

A few of my friends had taken the time to comment, and I’d say the majority voiced the same reply: “I keep it the same all the time“. In other words, day in and day out, week in and week out, month in and month out, year in and year out – I keep the same décor accessories in place. Kinda like X marks the spot for X. 

Whoa, hold up here!! I am not judging them and their way of being in their home. Not at all – I am doing the same thing remember. The only difference is that I like moving my (same) decorative accessories around the space. I tend to move the cushions from one sofa to the other and shuffle the decorative items around a bit. But – that is about it! No seasonal cover changes for me.

A beautiful and calming selection of scatter cushions and decorative items – perfect for the colder months. | source: Halfway Wholeistic

Okay, you might be asking yourself: “So what is this decorator banging on about?!” Why is this even worth writing about? Is there really any value or benefit in switching up your décor accessories occasionally? The truth is, that despite the fact that I don’t indulge in this practice, it doesn’t minimize the value and appreciation of it. There is real value to be had. Not only from a practical point of view but also aesthetically, emotionally, and mentally! Really?! From scatter cushions?

Do I really have to be satisfied with the same ole same ole all year round I asked myself? Then the ‘dig deeper’ type questions started to rise to the surface. Once I began to see and own my reluctance, I had a shift in thinking. 

With a neutral backdrop, it would be easy-peasy to swap out the scatters and bed throw in your bedroom should you desire a change of scenery. | source: oh.eight.oh.nine

So, let’s do a bit of self-exploration together. Just easy-does-it self-exploration, done with a hint of playful curiosity. Ask yourself the following without being self “judgie” or self-justifying: 

What is really holding me back?  Is it something I want to do or even need to do?

Do I like what I have here? Does it make me feel good in this space? Or would something new and fresh make me feel even better?

Am I putting up with what I have got going here?

What have I got to loose by not switching up accessories?

With a layered approach like in this image, it would be quite simple and effective to change the tone of your bedroom. Exchange the beautiful rust-coloured cushions for teal or swap the striped cushions for floral – et voila. | source: Jojo Barr | House Nine Design

Now, which one or more responses in the list below do you connect with? Remember – not self judgy-ness!

I like what I have got going right now. It took me a while to get the right accessories and I don’t feel the need for change.

Trends come and go so quickly. No need to follow those.

My spending plan can’t cope with this extra unnecessary expense.

I have no storage facility.

I don’t know what to do, what to switch up, or even where to begin!

It’s going to take time and energy to decide on the items and change – and I don’t have that to give.

It is what it is!

My husband / family like what there is now. 

Why bother – the family just mess it up anyway.

I prefer the comfort of familiar items.

It just takes one or two key changes to completely transform the feel of your interior. Warm or cool, playful or opulent, sleek minimalistic or vintage – it just takes one quick swap. | source: La Grange Interiors

I have to wonder what are the chances that in truth we need to own the fact that the only thing that we are resisting might well be CHANGE!

Ah – there it is!! There is the real culprit that is lurking in the shadows, not wanting to be seen or heard. That word that shall not be spoken! CHANGE!!  

You might say: “Oh, for Pete’s sake, don’t be silly! How on earth can one view being uninclined towards switching up décor accessories as an indication of resisting CHANGE?!” Well, the possibility could exist! I certainly wouldn’t discount it. In our line of work, we often encounter resistance along these lines – in all shapes and forms.

We are only all too aware of the fact that life is very full and busy for most folk. The last thing anyone needs is to direct their attention to small changes. Even easy peasy changes are unwelcome.

What is important for me is this: small changes are needed to power us towards the bigger changes. It gets us outta our comfort zone and willing to entertain change on a regular basis.

Sadly, in my own life, I observed that because I resist change, I begin to “put up” with dissatisfying situations. It all stays the same. REALLY! Is that what I want?  I don’t think so. It seems that the question really is much bigger than merely switching up decorative items.

Enough said for now. Lots to think about and explore. More along these lines in the next post.

Ciao,

10 Sleek & Chic Bar Cabinets | via The Design Tabloid

10 Sleek & Chic Bar Cabinets for Your Home

feature image: PepperJack Interiors via Elle Decor

by Marica Fick

Last month, inspired by a post we spotted on Emily Henderson’s blog, we wrote an article about the current trend of using armoires, traditionally meant for the bedroom, as feature pieces in the rest of the home.

We accompanied the post with a lovely roundup of locally-found contemporary storage cabinets that could serve as statement display units in every room of your home.

10 Sleek & Chic Bar Cabinets | via The Design Tabloid
The stylish and chic LaSalle bar cabinet by Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams is both sleek and versatile: easy to imagine as a bar or as a statement piece in an entryway. The doors feature a raised diamond-parquet pattern in a rich wood veneer and is accented with antique brass details. | source: Domino

Now, while I was prepping the article and curating our “8 Contemporary Storage Cabinets for Your Home” shopping list, I was quite astonished by the number of striking bar cabinets I came across during my search. Not only were these drinks cabinets absolutely gorgeous, they were also all local available – the majority being exclusive pieces designed and manufactured by South African designers. Elite to say the least!

I immediately bookmarked a few designs and made a mental note to follow-up our contemporary storage unit article with one about bar cabinets.

Where previously the open display of alcohol in the home might have been deemed a tad vulgar and Mid-century kitsch, the ever-growing popularity of boutique and craft spirits and liquors has resulted in a home bar revival. I mean, what is the point of owning beautifully designed bottles filled delicious, locally-stilled, limited-edition drinks and then not being able to show it off?! I bit hipster, I know, but I can’t help it!

Read More »

8 Contemporary Storage Cabinets | via The Design Tabloid

8 Contemporary Storage Cabinets for Your Home

feature image: bo bedre

by Marica Fick

Rose recently spotted a lovely article on Emily Henderson’s blog that set the inspiration cogs in our heads turning. In the post, “Why You Should Be Using Armoires in Every Room”, Emily elaborates why furniture pieces like armoires should not be hidden in the bedroom but incorporated as feature pieces in the rest of the home.

Before we get all tripped up over terminology, let’s quickly look at the definition of “Armoire”

As we have previously defined in our Decorating Dictionary, an Armoire is a large loose-standing two-door cabinet, usually containing shelves, hanging space, and sometimes drawers below. Generally used for storing clothing or household items, interestingly enough it was originally used for storing arms.

8 Contemporary Storage Cabinets | via The Design Tabloid
IKEA’s black-painted BJÖRKSNÄS Display Cabinet serves as a sleek and stylish office storage unit in this home workspace. The design has its roots in Scandinavian handicraft tradition – durable natural materials with fine joinery details and proportions that make suitable for any room of function. | source: IKEA

8 Contemporary Storage Cabinets | via The Design Tabloid
The interiors of this classic Victorian mansion has been impeccably modernised for contemporary family living. What a statement this bold and contemporary armoire makes in one of the bedrooms – and the striking deep blue colour is to die for. | source: est living | interiors: Clare Cousins | photography: Shannon McGrath

Emily had the following to say about this atypical trend:

Let’s talk wardrobes, or armoires if you’re feeling fancy, and how to bring it into our modern day lives because even though likely none of us are currently living in a sprawling French chateau, these heavier pieces of furniture can be used successfully (and VERY chicly) in nearly every room of the house. It’s one of those pieces that are often overlooked, but let’s all agree to stop that right now and consider the armoire.

Sure, with a name like “wardrobe,” you’re thinking they have to be relegated behind closed bedroom doors. But we’re all for thinking outside the box around here at EHD and like to be trailblazers in anything if we can. We’re not in this instance, but we’re loving what we’re seeing from other like-minded people. Because really, armoires are essentially just cabinets for storing things so why can’t we use one anywhere and everywhere we need storage, right? Plus, because they take up more vertical space than horizontal, they’re great for smaller footprints.”

In her blog post, Emily shared some gorgeous examples of both traditional and contemporary armoires used as storage and display in various unexpected parts of the home – from the bathroom and entryway to the dining room and living room.

Read More »

8 Trendy & Chic Rattan Furniture Items for Your Home

by Marica Fick

As we mentioned in the Trend Alert post we shared a couple of weeks ago – RATTAN is back and in a big way! Talk about a 70s blast from the past! What is next – Macrame and Moroccan shag-pile rugs?! Oh wait… that already happened too! Gotta love the cyclic nature of home and decor trends.

The element I most enjoy about the trend’s current incarnation is that it fuses vintage rattan pieces with new, contemporary designs. These fresh designs are slightly more simplified – almost minimal in a way.

While researching our Trend Alert article, I was surprised to see how quickly the rattan trend has spread to the South African retail market. This is something that usually happens at a snail’s pace. A quick online search of our local furniture and homeware stores delivered a lovely selection of gorgeous rattan and cane pieces. This is good news for those who want to incorporate rattan elements into their interior space.

SO, for all you lovers of rattan and cane, here is our round-up of trendy, chic, and beautifully contemporary rattan furniture pieces for your home…Read More »

Our Quirky KARE Wish List

by Marica Fick

Quirky, off-beat, unique, out-of-the-box, and sometimes… just plain weird. Those are just some of the terms that come to mind when trying to describe KARE‘s unusual style of furniture and decorative accessories.

Never heard of them? No sweat, we’ll give a quick introduction to this European design cult brand…

KARE describes themselves as an unconventional furniture company which strictly rejects run-of-the-mill concepts. Instead, they strive to create an innovative range of unique, non-conformist and authentic furniture pieces.

Friends, Jürgen Reiter and Peter Schönhofen, established KARE in 1981 as a quirky alternative after being frustrated with the either terribly drab or elitist furniture market of the time.

For unconventional and romantic spirits, for the wild and the style-conscious, for birds of paradise and all those who cast off all constraints when it comes to furnishing their own home.

AND, it just so happens that KARE has recently opened its first ever store in Joburg, South Africa! So all this weird, quirky fun could be yours!

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Pinterest Picks: Lovely Living Rooms

Rose and I were pretty excited to get stuck into our first Pinterest Picks blog post of 2018. For those keeping tally, this is our fifth post in the series, having previously selected our favourite bedrooms, nooks & nichesworkspaces and bathrooms.

Now, I have the word “were” emphasised above for a reason. Turns out, this was our most challenging Pinterest Pick post yet! In fact, we reached a point of such frustration that Rose remarked that she was “getting very disillusioned with Pinterest” – gasp! Why was this so difficult? I don’t know. Maybe it is because we both have such a specific picture in mind for our ideal living room that the beautiful lounges on our board were just not cutting it this time. Nevertheless, we soldiered on!

Just to quick refresh on this series and its criteria: we are in essence playing a little game of “I wish“, as in “I wish I had that interior” – be it lounge, bedroom, kitchen or anything in between. After spending some time scouring our various Pinterest boards, we each select our favourite interior image – the space we most desire to have as our own. We then explain exactly why we coveted that particular space and if there is anything we would like to change.

Naturally, we ended up choosing two “runner-up” interiors… because deciding on just one room is just too difficult!

For this instalment, we decided to select our favourite images for our “Living Rooms” Pinterest board. The board is a collection of Design Monarchy‘s favourite and most beautiful lounge/living room finds.

After much, MUCH deliberation, here are our top 3 nominations for the loveliest, most desirable living rooms…
Read More »