How High Should Your TV Be?

Screen Shot 2015-04-28 at 4.10.45 PMToday we look at an important question to consider when locating your television: How high should you set it?

A home without a television is like a castle in the clouds — it exists only in fairy tales. And that’s only a slight overstatement. The Nielsen Company reports that 96.7 percent of U.S. homes have television sets. In my experience, over the course of hundreds of home construction projects, I can’t recall a single instance in which one of our clients designed a home without the television’s location in mind.

This reality creates design challenges as home designers consider room orientation with the competing possible focal points of exterior views, fireplaces and televisions. Today we will look at one critical factor to consider when locating your television: height. It’s not the only thing you should think about, to be sure, but if you place your television too high in relation to its space and intended use, you might end up with regrets and, quite literally, a pain in your neck.

The Case for Hidden Storage

sotrageImagine how much more peaceful your home would feel with cleared surfaces. And that’s just one reason to stow your supplies.

It’s easy to fall in love with beautifully styled open shelves, and to feel swayed by the convenience of keeping frequently used items sitting on the kitchen counter, bathroom sink and desk — but are these methods of storing your belongings really helpful? While there’s certainly nothing wrong with keeping things out in the open, I’ve recently been discovering that making fuller use of hidden storage makes for a cleaner, neater, more peaceful and easier-to-maintain space. Read on and see if you become convinced to give the surfaces in your home a clean sweep.

15 Bright Ideas for Kids’ Bathrooms

Screen Shot 2015-04-20 at 1.05.36 PMSplash on the color and have fun with decor to make a child’s bathroom a cheerful place

Whether you have a dedicated kids’ bathroom or share space with the pint-size set, keeping track of whose soggy towel is whose can be made easier — and more fun — with a few smart design moves and cheerful touches. From double (or triple!) sinks to tub-side seats and rainbow-inspired color palettes, see which of these ideas appeals to you and yours.

How to Fix a Stinky Garbage Disposal

Screen Shot 2015-04-17 at 11.17.01 AMNo plumber’s fee or even a trip to the hardware store is required with these easy solutions

Does this sound familiar? You’ve cleaned your kitchen to spotless hygienic perfection, but you catch a whiff of something rotten every time you pass the sink. There’s a piece of something you threw down there and ground up days ago that’s stuck in the garbage disposal, and the smell only gets worse no matter how many times you run it. Inspired by recent events in my own kitchen, I reached out to three experts to get their advice on how to de-stinkify the garbage disposal.

6 Strategies for Making Color Work for You

Screen Shot 2015-04-17 at 11.14.51 AMColor can play up or play down architecture, create a positive experience and more. Here’s how to put it to work for you

We all want our homes to provide comfort and ease. And something instinctual tells us that color — whether a can of paint, a bright new patterned rug, maybe that sun-drenched painting you saw at the last art opening you attended — can change our world for the better.

Springtime home maintenance offers a new opportunity to add the color we crave. And picking the right colors for our homes is not magic. The process simply requires that we look at the physical qualities of our home’s architecture and apply color that will put the focus where we want it. Here’s how.

9 Tricks to Boost Your Home’s Appeal for Less Than $400

Screen Shot 2015-04-14 at 4.15.33 PMWhether you’re redecorating or just doing a quick update, check out these ways to enhance your home on a budget

Following my story on ways to boost your home for less than $75, I’m upping the ante and exploring some tips and tricks around the $400 mark. Even if you’re not planning to sell your home anytime soon, these touches could help you make a welcome change to your home environment for a relatively low price.

Kitchen Ideas: How to Choose the Perfect Backsplash

Screen Shot 2015-04-14 at 4.13.05 PMBacksplashes not only protect your walls, they also add color, pattern and texture. Find out which material is right for you

The humble backsplash has come a long way. Once upon a time, its purpose was purely functional: a tiled area behind the stove and sink to protect kitchen walls from stains and splashes. Today the availability of all manner of materials in a wide array of finishes means your backsplash can make more of a statement. To help you decide which material would work best for you, we offer expert advice on the 10 most popular backsplash materials.

How to make any room look bigger [infographic]


10 Pretty Ways to Refresh a Gray Palette

Screen Shot 2015-04-07 at 9.38.59 AMEnergize your favorite gray shades with pick-me-up accents as fresh as a spring day

Gray has proved to be one of our collective favorite color picks for the home in recent years. We’ve been strutting our gray stuff for a few seasons now, and the trend shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. But with the spring sunshine, it’s definitely time to uplift our beloved palette of charcoal, pebble and dove with a few dashes of color and print. Be inspired by these 10 gray refreshes, guaranteed to put a spring in your step.