Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Interior DecBROrator ~ 3 Ways to Impress Your Parents & the Ladies

TODAY WE ARE INTRODUCING A NEW FEATURE called "Interior DecBROrator." P4D has Mr. Chris Nussman with us today - a guy who enjoys having a nicely decorated home (gasp!) & is here to help, please take it away Chris:

If you’re an average 20-something guy, the bulk of your interior design expertise begins and ends with figuring out how to best position a roomful of hand-me-down furniture around a television set in a group apartment. Obviously, this IS important, but there are few easy steps any dude can take towards making their space cool, modern, and less like a college dorm room without breaking the bank.

Step #1: Frame It. If it’s on the wall, it has to be in a frame. No more thumbtacks! Framing bumps up the level of sophistication in a room, and choosing the right frame will actually make the piece look even better, even that sweet vintage Spuds McKenzie poster. Frames of all kinds and sizes can be found at places like Target, but this writer prefers craft stores (such as Michael’s) because they are pretty much always running sales of 25%-40% off frame collections.
Must haves: Chunky, flat, black wood frames; Float frames for displaying records or other non-traditional art

Step #2: Go green. Even if you have never taken care of a living thing besides goldfish or hermit crab, picking up a few easy to care for plants is a cost effective way to brighten up any space and prove what a nice, sensitive gentleman you have become. There are hearty, virtually unkillable plants that will thrive in low light places, like basement apartments with limited natural light. And make sure to accentuate your plants with the right pot – one that makes sense with colors in the room.
Must haves: Snake Plant, Eternity Plant, Bromeliad; colorful and modern planters

Step #3: Create a clutter-free space. Clearing up the clutter will make any home a much more pleasant place to spend time and will help alleviate stress. Storage pieces with doors are great for creating a clean look in a room. For things you may want to store out in the open (books, records, DVDs, etc), think about asymmetrical layouts and incorporating accessories into the storage to keep it from looking like a library.
Must haves: Storage bench, cube storage, cool bookcase, and, of course, a mini bar

Bonus Step!: Diversify. It is really easy to go to Ikea and furnish an entire apartment on the cheap in under 5 hours (and have a delicious meal of Swedish meatballs and lingonberry juice as a bonus). But you don’t want guests feeling like they just entered the showroom when they come through your door. Booooring. Shop around, take your time, and try to identify “must haves” from various stores that fit with whatever theme or style speaks to you. And remember, everything winds up on sale eventually. Even at stores that you may think are beyond a modest budget, you can find great deals on floor samples and end of season leftovers. Also, don’t be afraid to cruise Craigslist to find both great bargains and unique pieces.

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