LIVing Design Tips

Read the latest trends and best practices  from our team!

The Dish on Your Dining Room

Posted by Rebecca Marsella on

 

The arranging of the furniture in your dining room will make the difference between a spacious open feeling in the room which contributes to conversation as well as ease of movement while seating, serving, eating and relaxing. 


The first rule is to give 30-36” of walkway between large furniture pieces.  The minimum space between furniture pieces ought to be no less than 24”.  Anything less than that is a crowded space in which both people and furniture has no breathing room.


Super important is the spatial relationship of the chairs to each other. I like to allow for 24” of width for each chair so people do not feel that they are eating in their  neighbor’s lap and there is space for their place setting and elbows.  A  48” round table usually seats 4 and a 60”can accommodate  6-8—obviously  depending on how tight you want to be. You can also have the table “set” for 6 on a daily basis and if there are 8 people, add the last two chairs for that occasion so that your dining room looks and feels spacious when not in use.


 If you are considering, and have the space for, a buffet or credenza, you would want it to be at  least the height of your dining table or  taller.



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The Dish on Your Dining Room

Posted by Rebecca Marsella on

 

The arranging of the furniture in your dining room will make the difference between a spacious open feeling in the room which contributes to conversation as well as ease of movement while seating, serving, eating and relaxing. 


The first rule is to give 30-36” of walkway between large furniture pieces.  The minimum space between furniture pieces ought to be no less than 24”.  Anything less than that is a crowded space in which both people and furniture has no breathing room.


Super important is the spatial relationship of the chairs to each other. I like to allow for 24” of width for each chair so people do not feel that they are eating in their  neighbor’s lap and there is space for their place setting and elbows.  A  48” round table usually seats 4 and a 60”can accommodate  6-8—obviously  depending on how tight you want to be. You can also have the table “set” for 6 on a daily basis and if there are 8 people, add the last two chairs for that occasion so that your dining room looks and feels spacious when not in use.


 If you are considering, and have the space for, a buffet or credenza, you would want it to be at  least the height of your dining table or  taller.



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FLIP THE SWITCH ...

Posted by Rebecca Marsella on

Whatever light fixture you choose for your dining room, from a chandelier to teardrop lights, you want to be sure that it is not wider than your table. WHY? Because an overly large chandelier in a small room looks awkward while a smaller lighting fixture in a big room gets lost.   The scale is important.   One rule of thumb is the take the length and width of the room in feet, add that together and in inches that is your diameter.  For example a room is 12‘x12’ you would want a 24” diameter piece.


It is also important to center the dining room light on the table, not the room.  If you have a linear fixture make sure you give yourself 6-12” on each end of the light to the end of the table.


If you use more than one light make sure there is plenty of room between them.  My rule is 24-30” between lights.


The bottom of the light fixture should be 30-36” from the top of the table.

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FLIP THE SWITCH ...

Posted by Rebecca Marsella on

Whatever light fixture you choose for your dining room, from a chandelier to teardrop lights, you want to be sure that it is not wider than your table. WHY? Because an overly large chandelier in a small room looks awkward while a smaller lighting fixture in a big room gets lost.   The scale is important.   One rule of thumb is the take the length and width of the room in feet, add that together and in inches that is your diameter.  For example a room is 12‘x12’ you would want a 24” diameter piece.


It is also important to center the dining room light on the table, not the room.  If you have a linear fixture make sure you give yourself 6-12” on each end of the light to the end of the table.


If you use more than one light make sure there is plenty of room between them.  My rule is 24-30” between lights.


The bottom of the light fixture should be 30-36” from the top of the table.

Read more


BONES !!!

Posted by Andrea Howell on

Halloween is just around the corner, so I thought it might be a good time to talk about the BONES of your landscape.  HAHA!  Seriously, It is easy to add a new pot of annual color or colorful shrub border, but there are many other things you can do to trick out your garden and turn it into a treat. 

  1. Take a look at your trees.  Could they do with a “haircut” or maybe even removed entirely to provide a better view of your home or let more sunlight in.  As trees mature (and decline) they can shade shrubs underneath and make them appear scraggly or thin.  If you decide to go this route, be sure to look for a reputable, insured tree removal contractor, and get an estimate before starting work.
  2. Get a Mailbox that Delivers.  Create an interesting mailbox bed full of Iris, Boxwoods, and maybe a clematis vine to add instant curb appeal! Or simply consider dressing up your mailbox to one of the more interesting options out there like Copper, Traditional, or mid century modern.   Choose something that will enhance and complement the style of your home.
  3. OPEN the Front Door.   Everyone wants a front door that pops!   Matching planters are a great way to accent your front entry, but a new front door is a game changer. Going from a solid 6 panel door to a door with glass, or painting it a bold new color can change the whole feel of your home.  
  4. SEE the difference! Low-Voltage or Solar Landscape Lighting is an easy way to change the look and feel of your home at night!  It can make dark, spooky  areas  safer and more inviting. You can also shine a spotlight on your home with new accent lighting. Choose a  color that illuminates, and highlights your home’s beauty.  We always opt for warm shades of light over cooler blues.

As always we can help you LIVen up your outdoor space!! Call me with any and all your ideas and together we’ll put them to work!


Oh, and Happy Halloween!


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BONES !!!

Posted by Andrea Howell on

Halloween is just around the corner, so I thought it might be a good time to talk about the BONES of your landscape.  HAHA!  Seriously, It is easy to add a new pot of annual color or colorful shrub border, but there are many other things you can do to trick out your garden and turn it into a treat. 

  1. Take a look at your trees.  Could they do with a “haircut” or maybe even removed entirely to provide a better view of your home or let more sunlight in.  As trees mature (and decline) they can shade shrubs underneath and make them appear scraggly or thin.  If you decide to go this route, be sure to look for a reputable, insured tree removal contractor, and get an estimate before starting work.
  2. Get a Mailbox that Delivers.  Create an interesting mailbox bed full of Iris, Boxwoods, and maybe a clematis vine to add instant curb appeal! Or simply consider dressing up your mailbox to one of the more interesting options out there like Copper, Traditional, or mid century modern.   Choose something that will enhance and complement the style of your home.
  3. OPEN the Front Door.   Everyone wants a front door that pops!   Matching planters are a great way to accent your front entry, but a new front door is a game changer. Going from a solid 6 panel door to a door with glass, or painting it a bold new color can change the whole feel of your home.  
  4. SEE the difference! Low-Voltage or Solar Landscape Lighting is an easy way to change the look and feel of your home at night!  It can make dark, spooky  areas  safer and more inviting. You can also shine a spotlight on your home with new accent lighting. Choose a  color that illuminates, and highlights your home’s beauty.  We always opt for warm shades of light over cooler blues.

As always we can help you LIVen up your outdoor space!! Call me with any and all your ideas and together we’ll put them to work!


Oh, and Happy Halloween!


Read more


MANTEL or MANTLE...Which is right?

Posted by Andrea Howell on

The other day there was a lot of confusion at my daughters spelling bee over how to spell the word mantle. Was it MANTEL or MANTLE? The definition they were seeking was for the ledge over a fireplace and no one could seem to remember which way to spell it.

 

Luckily, in  this day and age we have our friend, Google, to settle these matters quickly.  In this case, we learned that the piece of wood or stone over a fireplace is spelled: MANTEL.


 Thinking about this one little example of how easy it is to confuse words, their spellings and meanings, especially in an unfamiliar or specialized discipline, I decided to look more deeply into the matter. Several examples sprung to mind:   Is it shrubs or bushes? Contemporary or modern? Do you have a Chevron or herringbone pattern in your brick pathway? 


Here’s some insider information! 

 

As a landscape designer, the word bushesis thrown around a lot by people. I hear it used by my clients to refer to anything from a perennial to a small tree without real focused definition.


 A SHRUB, on the other hand,  is anything in your landscape that can be groomed, pruned, or shaped, while bushes are usually left to grow wild.  So to keep things simple, and to help when you  communicate when you  go to the nursery, think of shrubs as what you will purchase to be  in the landscape areas of your yard as opposed to BUSHES which  are more typically found in the woods and roadsides.

 

Contemporary vs modern suffers from some of the same confusion.  People tend to use these two words interchangeably when in fact they do have different meanings.  


Modern refers to a specific design period and  style  that came about in the 20th century.  Contemporary is a broader term that does not relate to a specific time period, but rather just signals  what is currently popular.

 

Lastly, there is the distinction between chevron and herringbone.  A chevron pattern is a continuous V” pattern with a 45 degree angle at the ends.  A herringbone pattern has a square end, which creates more of a zigzag effect.  To me a herringbone is always a little more classic, but either will make a beautiful walkway.


If you have questions or ideas about how you might like to create a  more meaningful landscape to make your statement, do not hesitate to contact me at Liv Design Partners so we can talk about it!


Keep growing! 


Sincerely, 



Read more

MANTEL or MANTLE...Which is right?

Posted by Andrea Howell on

The other day there was a lot of confusion at my daughters spelling bee over how to spell the word mantle. Was it MANTEL or MANTLE? The definition they were seeking was for the ledge over a fireplace and no one could seem to remember which way to spell it.

 

Luckily, in  this day and age we have our friend, Google, to settle these matters quickly.  In this case, we learned that the piece of wood or stone over a fireplace is spelled: MANTEL.


 Thinking about this one little example of how easy it is to confuse words, their spellings and meanings, especially in an unfamiliar or specialized discipline, I decided to look more deeply into the matter. Several examples sprung to mind:   Is it shrubs or bushes? Contemporary or modern? Do you have a Chevron or herringbone pattern in your brick pathway? 


Here’s some insider information! 

 

As a landscape designer, the word bushesis thrown around a lot by people. I hear it used by my clients to refer to anything from a perennial to a small tree without real focused definition.


 A SHRUB, on the other hand,  is anything in your landscape that can be groomed, pruned, or shaped, while bushes are usually left to grow wild.  So to keep things simple, and to help when you  communicate when you  go to the nursery, think of shrubs as what you will purchase to be  in the landscape areas of your yard as opposed to BUSHES which  are more typically found in the woods and roadsides.

 

Contemporary vs modern suffers from some of the same confusion.  People tend to use these two words interchangeably when in fact they do have different meanings.  


Modern refers to a specific design period and  style  that came about in the 20th century.  Contemporary is a broader term that does not relate to a specific time period, but rather just signals  what is currently popular.

 

Lastly, there is the distinction between chevron and herringbone.  A chevron pattern is a continuous V” pattern with a 45 degree angle at the ends.  A herringbone pattern has a square end, which creates more of a zigzag effect.  To me a herringbone is always a little more classic, but either will make a beautiful walkway.


If you have questions or ideas about how you might like to create a  more meaningful landscape to make your statement, do not hesitate to contact me at Liv Design Partners so we can talk about it!


Keep growing! 


Sincerely, 



Read more


Inspirational Images...the good, the bad, the truth.

Posted by Elsa Hoffman on

Why do we ask you to send images of looks and homes and rooms and objects that inspire you along with the images of your home as it is now? Because our job is to help you to create your ideal vision as we approach your project.

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Inspirational Images...the good, the bad, the truth.

Posted by Elsa Hoffman on

Why do we ask you to send images of looks and homes and rooms and objects that inspire you along with the images of your home as it is now? Because our job is to help you to create your ideal vision as we approach your project.

Read more