All About ReDecorating
February, 2004 edition

Redecorating Solutions: Quick, Easy and Affordable

By Jan Creamer Girouard

When I’m consulting with my clients many mention that their living rooms or family rooms aren’t cozy or inviting enough. They always ask me if there is anything that could be done to warm up their rooms without spending a lot of money.

Here are some ideas to think about. Add new pillows and throws and that will cozy up your room immediately. Change your drapes or valances for the spring and summer and next fall bring back your original drapes. If possible, rotate your artwork each season to bring a new fresh approach to the room. Also, add picture lights on your artwork that will add more perimeter lighting. Make sure your lighting is adequate, and to create a warmer ambience, have your lighting on dimmers. Place candles on your coffee table and hang candle sconces on a wall. Arrange candles in your fireplace. This is a great idea for those of you who don’t have a working fireplace and will give you instant gratification, as well. Just by changing or adding new accessories in your room will automatically enhance the look your desire with little investment.

Here are some e-mails I received recently.

Questions & Answers

Q: I need more book shelves in my home office, but I don’t want anything enclosed. It’s mainly to organize my books and office supplies. Any suggestions?
Lori T. Warwick

A: You should check out Pottery Barn and the Studio Wall Shelf. It’s very flexible and it comes in black, white and mahogany stain. They’re especially good in small rooms and are very attractive, too.

Q: I have a small dining room and it feels closed in. Is there anything you could recommend that would open it up?
Donna B. Smithfield

A: Mirrors, mirrors, mirrors! When you hang a mirror in a small room the area opens up immediately. A mirror gives the appearance of having another window of sorts reflecting light that is coming through your windows and reflecting light from your chandelier or wall sconces. You’ll be amazed how much brighter your dining room will be by doing so. Just a quick note, make sure your chandelier and wall sconces are on dimmers.

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