Captain’s House in China Merges With Seaside Cliffs

Captain’s House is a fortress-like residence dramatically embedded into a rocky landscape. Through its protruding windows, it offers panoramic sea views.

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Why You Need to Incorporate Negative Space in Your Design

negative space

Every design needs negative space. Let us show you why. Image: Bjurfors Göteborg

If you’re a regular reader of Freshome, you’ve heard about the virtues of negative space. This seemingly-small move can make a huge difference in your interiors.

Keep reading to learn more about why this feature is absolutely crucial, as well as practical tips on how to pull it off in your own home. With just a few small tweaks, you can use this maneuver to open up your designs.

psychologically pleasing

These spaces are more psychologically pleasing. Image: Terracotta Studio

They’re more pleasing, psychologically speaking

We’ve all experienced the feeling of looking at a room that’s so well put together it takes our breath away. It may seem as though the furniture or the color palette that was chosen is the thing to set this design above the rest. However, we’d argue that the use of negative space is what makes such a huge difference.

There’s a psychological basis for our reasoning. According to Gestalt Psychology, every time we enter a new space, our brains process the room as a whole first. It’s only after we are able to categorize the room by its function that we’re able to truly focus in on its aesthetic or the individual design elements themselves.

We tend to react more positively to rooms that feature plenty of negative space because they’re easier for our brains to categorize. Since the openness of the space allows it’s function to become perfectly clear, we’re able to start appreciating design choices much sooner.


Use becomes clear without clutter. Image: Platinum Series by Mark Molthan

They’re easier to use

Now that we’ve covered the psychological reasons for white space in your design, it’s time to move on to the functional reasons. Put simply, these spaces are much easier to use than ones that are hampered by a lot of excess design elements.

First, let’s consider the flow of the room. At some point, you’ve probably experienced the feeling of working your way through a cluttered space. More than likely, you found forging a pathway from one point to another frustrating and unnecessary. Negative space allows you to create clear paths around the room. Ideally, your design should allow visitors to navigate fully through the space without issue.

design choices

Allow your design choices to stand out. Image: TAA Custom Homes

Your design shines

Finally, it’s important to consider negative space from an aesthetic perspective. Think of it this way — your design is a compilation of every single element that you decide to include in the space, as well as every single element you decide to leave out. When you include the right amount of negative space in your design, it’s like striking the perfect balance between the two.

Most of the time, this will be your last step. It can be helpful to think of adding negative space as interior design editing. Often, it’s the finishing touch that allows your aesthetic to take center stage.


Use these tips to bring some negative space to your design. Image: Clarum Homes

How to create negative space

Now that we’ve discussed why negative space is so important, it’s time to talk about how to make it work in your own interiors. Every space is different, so the exact steps you need to take will vary, but we have a few tips to help get you started.

As you put together the rooms in your home, keep the following in mind:

  • Look for Double-Duty Pieces: Invest in design elements that have a functional purpose as well as adding aesthetic value.
  • Leave Pathways Clear: You should be able to navigate fully around the room without issue.
  • Declutter: It sounds self-explanatory, but if there’s any excess clutter laying around, it’s best to clean it up.
  • Edit: You know that old adage “Put on your jewelry and take one piece off”? You can apply the same principle to your design. Look around the room to seek out any elements that don’t fit in with the rest.
  • Think About Added Value: If you can’t decide whether or not a piece fits in with the rest, think in terms of added value. Does the piece add anything in particular to the space? If yes, keep it. If not, leave it out.
negative space

Are you ready to add negative space? Image: JT Photo

Negative space is an often overlooked component of many professional-looking designs. We’re here to make a case for why it should be considered a must-have. Use the post above as a reference point and, if we’ve convinced you to join #TeamNegativeSpace, use the tips above to add this feature to the rooms of your home. You’ll be surprised just how much of a difference a few small changes can make.

Have we convinced you yet? Will you make a point of including negative space in your interiors from now on? Tell us in the comments.

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Decorating With Sage Green Is a Thing for 2018, According to Pinterest

Pinterest put out their top 100 list of pins list and it looks like decorating with sage green is a favorite among pinners. Sage green is neutral, calming and can flow nicely with nearly any design style including the most popular at the moment: Farmhouse and Mid Century Modern. Sage varies in lightness and saturation. It can be earthy and warm or cool and silvery, so go as neutral or bold as you’d like.

decorating with sage green -

Sage green colors by Benjamin Moore, Valspar and .

We’re giving you the green light on decorating with sage green. Here’s some inspiration on how you can work with the color to freshen up your spaces!

Sage green kitchens

decorating with sage green -

A sage green glass backsplash adds some personality to the family kitchen. Image: 50 Degrees

sage green kitchen ideas -

Sage cabinets flow into the dining room, painted in a coordinating hunter green tone. Image: NJK Interiors

sage paint colors -

A rich sage offsets the copper backsplash of this contemporary kitchen. Image: Finch Studio

sage green farmhouse kitchens -

A modern farmhouse-style kitchen design with two-tone cabinet colors. Image: In Toto Kitchens

decorating with sage green-

Industrial accents like white subway tiles and brushed silver barstools and pendants work perfectly with sage green. Image: Godrich Interiors

Sage green bathroom ideas

sage green decorating ideas -

Sage adds a peaceful, spa-like feel to this bathroom remodel. Image: Kaner Interior Design

sage green tiles -

The sage green tiles warm up this fusion bathroom that blends Asian and Mid Century Modern styles. Image: Wertheimer Architects

Decorating with sage green in the bedroom

Combine the cool sage green color with warm spice tones for a unique and striking effect. Image: Robin Bond Interiors

The grasscloth wallpaper features shades of sage, aqua and taupe for a rich and contemporary effect. Image: Penman Interiors

A darker shade of sage adds an intimate feel to this large, bright and airy master bedroom. Image: Annie Hall Interiors

Living room sage green decorating ideas

Upholstering the lounge in a soft sage chenille fabric adds a subtle splash of color in an elegantly neutral living room. Image: Crittall Windows

sage green living room decorating ideas

An eclectic living room featuring a Mid Century Modern sectional in a silvery gray sage fabric. Image: Christina Loucks

While sage green is normally very cool in tone, a warmer shade of the tone works beautifully with golds and mustards. Image: James Thomas

Sage Green nursery and kid’s bedroom ideas

Sage can be very gender-neutral and a good alternative to classic pastel colors. Image: Home Stagers

A pale sage adds polish to this young girl’s bedroom. Image: Mead Quin Design

The sage green walls carry the landscaping of the outdoors in. Image: Tamara Mack Design

Will you be incorporating sage green into your home?

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Dueling DIY: Guest Room Gauntlet!

Dueling DIY is BACK! Between talking shit and getting shit done, I’m bringing back my favorite DIY series to face off with another master DIYer and give my guest bedroom its official makeover.

You’ve heard me hinting at it over the last few weeks. I said I would be bringing my Dueling DIY series back, and today is the official launch date! This time, it will be bigger and more badass than ever, because my friend Charlotte (from At Charlotte’s House) is absolutely PERFECT for the role of soon-to-be-beaten guest host.

With SO much going on over the next few months, I quickly realized that the guest bedroom project will quickly slide to the back burner if I don’t keep my focus. So, much like I’ve done in the past with other Dueling DIY sagas, I’ve brought back this reader favorite so I have more motivation to get ‘er done.

The backstory

If you don’t already know about Dueling DIY and what it’s all about, I’ve got the full info for you right HERE. It all started a number of years ago when I was neck-deep in 247 projects with no end to my to-do list in sight, and I desperately needed to refresh my focus. Sometimes, my project A.D.D. gets the best of me, and my ambition and the number of hours in the day just have no hope of overlapping enough. It starts to feel like I’m working and working, but nothing is being achieved. In truth, there is also a limit to how fun fixing drywall is when a second season of Stranger Things could use rewatching.

That’s where a challenge like this comes in. It helps me regroup, start making actionable goals, and really make some progress. Because there’s nothing like having your friend send you memes of how she’s kicking your ass with her own home’s progress to make you feel like a lazy chump and get you painting walls again!

First things first: the smack talk is the best part…

The fact that I get to talk a lot of shit at another blogger is, frankly, the best part of this whole thing. This challenge not only forces us both make progress on similar room/space, but also adds in a thick, delicious layer of friendly — but snarky — banter. To keep it more apples-to-apples in terms of challenge, it’s always the same project type (staircase vs. staircase, kitchen vs. kitchen, and this time, obviously, guest room vs. guest room!).

Schedule: every other Wednesday

Since Charlotte and I both have eight billion other things going on (and in just a few weeks, we’ll see each other in person at a DIY conference, so I hope we’ll have time to do a Facebook Live or something), the schedule won’t be every week like it was in previous years, but every other week. This will let us fit in the other DIYs that aren’t related to this room (I still have the shed and the master bedroom stuff going on, plus some other kitchen updates).

The goal: finish and fun

As with previous versions of this series, there is no official end date picked ahead of time. It’s meant to give the both of us something new for you guys every other week, which is plenty motivation by itself. Someone finishing first still offers plenty of bragging rights, so that threat is always looming. Maybe this time, I’ll actually have to send Charlotte a golden hammer… or maybe I’ll be a THREE TIME CHAMP.

Vlogging progress, too

As you guys already know, one of my goals this year is to mix in video with my DIYs and tutorials. It’s meant to complement the posts I write, but not replace them (like many of you, I like written tutorials and don’t plan to abandon that for video anytime soon). So, a vlog will pair with this series once a month on my Youtube channel for anything I think I can add in for the update (especially clips of me laughing at Charlotte’s defeat). I think a series like this lends itself perfectly to video… personality is such a huge part of what makes a challenge like this so fun!

You can catch my whole intro vlog describing the series for new followers, plus an updated tour of the guest room from where it was a couple of months ago (which happens to have a lot of K’s stuff in the room, coughcoughfuturepostscough) here.

And, you should also check out Charlotte’s first post and vlog about her room here (and while you’re at it, make sure you’re subscribed to both of us so that you can catch all video updates).

My guest room inspiration and plans

That’s the whole series plan in a nutshell, but what I haven’t covered yet is the actual room plans! Here’s what that’s currently looking like in my head:

contains affiliate links

Sources (clockwise from top left):ceiling fan / macramé hanging plant / paper shadowbox art / office swivel chair / paint colors: Sherwin-Williams Retreat and Stone White / rug / faux fern / wall sconce / black and white pillow / leather pillow / tassel throw

One of the biggest projects, as you can see, is the custom Murphy bed setup that will hide the bed when not in use. This room will serve double- or triple-duty as office space for my favorite bearded dude and his design work as an engineer (in fact, he’s the one who is drawing up these Murphy bed plans to turn my 2-D drawings into 3-D plans for you once we’re finished).

I’m also sticking to a really simple color palette and adding visual interest via texture. Lots of global-inspired textiles, keeping the room comfy, with a sort of eclectic influence. And of course, my favorite black and white combo! I figure this will be the best palette for allowing the multi-use space to be calming for guests and clean for every need this room will serve (but still refreshing with plants and visual interest). I haven’t really picked out art yet, but I expect a city map, some of my vintage map collection, and more botanicals to find their way in.

Other DIYs planned:

  • a coffee/info station (for things like the wifi password, toiletries, etc.)
  • art
  • curtain rod (woodworking project)
  • floating shelves

So, there you have it! If you’re the kind of person who prefers to stalk every minute of this makeover (I’ve already been sharing some sneak peeks on social), you should definitely follow me as well on Instagram. IG stories are becoming a new favorite way to share my thought process behind the scenes and give hints at what’s coming next.

Ready? Let’s jump right in! Oh, and Charlotte?

P.S. I realize that’s a number of different things to follow, but think of it as a smorgasbord to pick and choose based on preference — aka, a way (if you want) to see more stuff as we go. My posts will still cover the updates just fine. But behind the scenes stuff is going on IG between posts because it’s easy to share them there, and video is meant to add that “real life” layer in because it puts me in front of the camera. So, a little mix of everything!

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Dueling DIY: Guest Room Gauntlet


Getting My Kitchen In Shape for 2018

It’s time for the kitchen to be whipped into shape and fully finished! Below, I’ve jotted down some overall design and organization plans in 2018  to make my kitchen perform at its best.

Throughout most of January, I’ve been setting goals for the year and thinking about what else I’d like to accomplish (personally, professionally, friends & family, etc.). In case you missed those general thoughts, they are right here.

But when it comes to the house — or more specifically, when it comes to certain rooms in this house — I realized I have a little more going on in my life these days. And once that happened, there was a little more going on with how I wanted to use certain spaces in my home. I know this isn’t exactly a eureka moment and comes as no surprise, but it was also almost… a comfort? A pleasant realization that it was no longer about making things pretty, but really just using everything in the house?

So, I’ve been writing those thoughts down, room by room, starting with the kitchen. What could I add, or remove, or touch up, to make the most out of the room I use most? (If you’d like to see the full kitchen transformation up until now, check that out in my house tour here.)

Note: this post is sponsored by Sears Parts Direct and also contains affiliate links. For more info, see my disclosure page. Words are 100% my own.

Goals for Re-Organizing and Finishing the Kitchen

Purge, purge, purge

I’ve been meaning to do it for a while, and I suppose I have gone through this phase before, but I need to do another clean-out of items I don’t use. I love the idea of a minimalist kitchen with clean counters and no saving of items for a rainy day. There is at least one upper cabinet that is FULL of crap I simply don’t need! With the heaviness of entertaining over Christmas and New Year’s Eve, the list of “what I actually use” versus “what I will probably never use, even if I use every plate” is pretty clear in my mind. So, it’s perfect timing to get rid of it before I talk myself out.

Organize the fridge for better cooking

Do you keep your refrigerator organized with a clean, efficient system? I have been cooking more and more over the last few months (I have a delicious winter soup recipe I can’t wait to share!), and I noticed how lacking I am in this department. So, it’s time to implement a few changes, such as these tips for the right way to store food in the refrigerator. Sears Parts Direct gave me a whole list of kitchen tips about a month ago, so I’ve been reading through them and picked up a thing or two. For example, I never really thought about how the lowest spot in the fridge is the coldest and the door is the warmest, so you should plan for food storage based on that (and that’s why the crisper drawers and such are where they are, etc.)… nerdy and neat!

Get all of my appliances to match

I will have a reveal for you guys in the coming weeks of my brand new appliances. The best part about them is that they finally all MATCH! I’ve always been a little embarrassed to take a picture of my whole kitchen as a whole because some of it was stainless steel and some of it was black (I am ok with either, but having both was a little eye-twitchy to live in the space). I bought what I could afford about 7 years ago as one of my first house purchases, and the opportunity came up to finally switch things out. Full reveal coming soon!

Get the copper pots out in the open

I have a bunch of beautiful copper pots and pans that are taking up WAY too much room in one of my lower cabinets. And once I saw this photo of Ellen Pompeo’s L.A. home, I knew my answer was a beautiful, functional pot rack that would turn them into art. I have the perfect space for them above the kitchen bar area. I’m also going to be getting a handful of new torches to learn how to weld this year (braze? solder? the vocab is new so I’ll have that info for you as I publish those projects). Maybe a beautiful wood and black metal combo, inspired by something like this?

Create a bar area

I haven’t quite figured out if I want a bar spot in the kitchen or the dining room just yet, but I know I’d like a space for putting cocktail glasses out in the open when friends stop by.

Touch up paint and figure out if I want to treat the countertops the same

I get asked about the cabinet paint and the countertops a LOT. Has the paint held up? Do you still like your butcher block?

The answer to both is yes. There are a few touch-ups needed on the lower gray cabinets where the paint has been nicked. The place that’s most affected is right above the silverware drawer, where it’s pretty obvious that I’m a little clumsy with putting forks and knives away (or just obviously my least favorite kitchen activity). I’ve still been pretty impressed that the rest of the paint has held up so well, and you can’t see a single scratch on the white uppers. In fact, I think that if I had tinted the primer for the lower cabinets to the same color as the paint,  wouldn’t even know they’re nicked (because the white primer peeks through but I still don’t see the old wood cabinet color underneath). I didn’t think of it at the time of posting this, but I’ll take a new picture in the morning of it so you can see what I mean and update.

As for the butcher block, I continue to treat it with a mineral oil and wax mixture like I always have. It gives the wood a richness and beautiful color without yellowing, and the occasional treatment doesn’t really bother me (I just let it soak in overnight after the wood gets a good cleaning). However, I’ve been thinking more and more about covering it in a more permanent type of finish — not for my own needs, but because I don’t think I would trust a new homeowner to take such good care of it once I sell. I never actually use the counter as a cooking surface, so a food-safe treatment isn’t necessarily my biggest priority. It’s also not something I’m planning on doing soon, but it is on my mind and I’m in research mode. Perhaps coating it with something think like a poly would be better for a new homeowner to care for. The downside is that a poly wouldn’t really let the wood expand and contract as easily as the oil treatment does, so unless the bottom side is also sealed the same way, it could be a risk for cracking. Still thinking it over and open to your suggestions, too (if you’re knowledgeable about sealing countertops or long wood surfaces).

Do some composting

More cooking at home has led to two big changes: more recycling, and more opportunities for composting. And dishes… but I’m choosing denial for the sake of the point I’m trying to make. K has been talking about us building our own garden next to the pub shed once we finish that this spring, so that means mulching and learning to grow a little of our own food. And with the cute little composting cans that have been on the market, it seems easier than ever. Can someone tell me if they have had success with the little ones from World Market? They’re cute but I don’t want the stink, so having a tight seal is important!

Alrighty, I assumed this would be a shorter post because I was solely focusing on kitchen changes, but as usual I got carried away and it’s nearly 1500 words later. Are you planning on changing up your kitchen this year? I’d love to hear your ideas.

What I’m Loving for Kitchens Lately:

[show_shopthepost_widget id=”3012089″]

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Getting My Kitchen In Shape for 2018


What Is Wabi-Sabi Design? Your New Favorite 2018 Interior Design Trend

wabi-sabi design

Get ready to embrace wabi-sabi design, your new favorite zen trend. Image: Black and Milk | Interior Design | London

In 2017, we were all about “hygge,” the Scandinavian design trend that focused on creating simple interiors that are infused with comfort. This year, it’s time to take things a step further. Say hello to wabi-sabi design, the Japanese-inspired trend that’s bound to become your new favorite look.

Keep reading to learn more about what wabi-sabi stands for, why it’s so compelling as a design trend, and how you can bring the look into the rooms of your own home. We’re sure that by the time you get to the end of this post, you’ll be ready to try this aesthetic out for yourself.

wabi-sabi design

Wabi-sabi is about embracing a design that is imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete”. Image: Stylingbolaget

What is wabi-sabi?

Wabi-sabi is a Japanese philosophy that has been around since the 15th century. It came about as a reaction to the dominant trends of the time, which relied heavily on over-ornamentation, lavishness, and the use of rare materials.

In direct contrast, wabi-sabi is all about finding beauty in imperfection. It involves grounding oneself by forming a deep connection to the earth and enjoying the simple pleasures of life. Above all, it centers around recognizing the importance of authenticity and striving to remain authentic in all aspects of one’s life.

For some, wabi-sabi is more of a guiding principle than a design trend. It’s about accepting things as they are, rather than spending your time wishing for something better, and retraining yourself to find the positives in less-than-ideal situations. However, even if you’re not ready to go all-in philosophically, including some of these principles into your interiors may be a great starting point.

natural materials

Natural materials play a key role in this trend. Image: Studio Duggan Ltd

Use natural materials

Since a large part of wabi-sabi is about connecting to the earth, it’s no surprise that this interior design trend relies on the use of natural materials. It’s possible to incorporate these materials no matter where your aesthetic preferences may lie. For example, someone who prefers Nordic design might build their design around light woods while someone who enjoys a Mediterranean look might include lots of terra cotta.

Whichever materials you use, remember that authenticity is key. In this case, it’s preferable to opt for the real deal over mass-produced versions. Consider taking a step outside the norm and shopping for your design elements away from big-box stores. Flea markets, craft shows, and independently-owned shops are all viable alternatives.


Simplicity is always best. Image: AUDAX

Keep it simple

Once you have your design elements in place, it’s crucial to think about how you’ll go about putting all of the pieces together. With wabi-sabi, simplicity is key. You’ll want to allow your sourced pieces space to shine on their own and, whenever possible, to bring an element of nature into the room.

As for how to go about pulling those things off, your best bet is to focus on the layout. Wabi-sabi interiors favor paired down layouts where the functional items are the focal point. Build the room around the furniture and be sure to leave plenty of negative space.

When you’re ready to consider accessories, pay special attention to items that also have a functional purpose. Decorative bowls and trays are always a solid choice, as are houseplants that can add a hint of freshness to the space.


Don’t forget to welcome imperfections. Image: Scandinavian Homes

Embrace imperfections

Our last tip is the most important one. Usually, when we discuss adding finishing touches to your interior design, we talk about how to make it look finished, or how to give it a professionally-designed edge. In this case, you’re aiming for the opposite.

Wabi-sabi is about deliberately working to find the beauty in existing imperfections. With that in mind, feel free to leave a rough edge to your completed design. That decorative bowl that you glued back together after it fell and shattered? Feel free to give it a place of honor. Your unmade bed? Here’s permission to call it “artfully mussed.”

Keep in mind, however, that there is a difference between embracing the essence of wabi-sabi and losing your design to day-to-day clutter. Where that line falls will be personal for each of us, but you’ll want to be sure that aesthetic choices always remain purposeful.

wabi-sabi design

Use these tips to create your own wabi-sabi design. Image: Antonio Virga Architecte

Design trends can come from just about anywhere. In this case, we have 15th-century Japanese philosophy to thank for bringing us the components of wabi-sabi. In our minds, 2018 is all about embracing imperfections and personal authenticity, making the wabi-sabi design trend a must-have in your interiors this year. Use the advice in this post to learn how to make the look work for you.

What do you think of wabi-sabi design? Is it something that you’d consider trying out in your own interiors? Share your opinions in the comments.

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Top Designers and Architects Speak: What’s In and Out in Home Design Trends for 2018

Ready to access the design hive mind? 1stdibs, the global marketplace for dealers and collectors of home design pieces, polled 40,000 of the world’s top interior designers and architects to predict what’s in and what’s out in home design trends for 2018.

Research firm Surveys & Forecasts, LLC took the responses and tabulated them to find out what home design trends will dominate in 2018, what 2017 trends are on the way out and the most common mistakes clients make when redesigning a space. Here are the highlights:

What’s out for 2018

Minimalism will be minimized

An ultra-minimalist space in Tel Aviv. Image: Toledano Architects

The most surprising findings in the survey is that minimalism, which has been a favorite look for so long, is out. According to the survey, the look is down 3% from 2017 and designers will be looking to other styles for 2018. Here’s more:

White is no longer “having a moment”

All-white design is no longer on-trend, according to a survey of 40,000 interior designers and architects. Image: Home Designing

White interiors have been popular for so long many thought it would be a classic by now. But the survey found that designers and architects are planning to add more complexity in both color and details, making the all-white room treatments a thing of the past.

Millennial pink is over

millennial pink is out

Millennial pink adds a feminine feel to a room setting. Image: The Chriselle Factor

It had a short run in popularity, perhaps because of the catchy name. It’s really not a bad shade of pink. But designers and homeowners don’t want to hear the term again — or see the soft blush shade in their home, unless it’s in a little girl’s bedroom.

Metal finishes are a thing of the past

A room setting featuring mixed metals in golds, silver and rose gold. Image: The Chriselle Factor

The vintage-inspired vibes of mixing lots of brass, gold and rose golds will be relinquished back to the past. Architects and designers think they indulged in too much of a good thing when they encouraged mixed metals and an abundance of the finishes.

What’s in for home design trends in 2018

So what will designers and architects be replacing the out list with? Here are the favorite home design trends for 2018, according to the 40,000 design pros polled.

Vibrant color will replace light neutrals

home design trends 2018

Teal blue is a popular replacement color for white. Image: Brandon Barre

home design trends 2018

Richer colors and jewel tones add warmth and a fresh look to spaces for 2018 and beyond. Image: BTL Property London

It’s hard to get 40,000 designers to agree. But 26% said that vibrant jewel tones will be hot for 2018. Teal, eggplant and emerald green topped the list. You might see bolder tones sneaking in slowly, with accessories or a single focal point. Rich and saturated will definitely be more common. As for white and pale grays, they will fade in style.

A more complex, textured contemporary style

home design trends 2018

The new contemporary features more layering, texture, color and individual style. Image: Sisalla

An overwhelming 65% of designers and architects prefer contemporary design projects for 2018. But it will be different this time. Geometric patterns (mentioned by 24%), florals (32%) and layered textures will be incorporated to make contemporary design warmer and unique.

Softer, more tactile and organic surfaces

Softer, organic surfaces and warmer, richer colors will freshen up what most recognize as contemporary style. Image: L Works

Velvet and stone are the top choices and on the rise by 12% as designers look to create warmer, more inviting interiors for their clients.

Top client mistakes

In addition to being asked what’s in and what’s out for 2018, designers were asked about their experiences with clients. The top mistakes they felt the clients made included:

1. Not trusting their designers (44%). Most designers said they wished their client would invest in a quality sofa or a dining table instead of lots of small items, which leads to the second mistake…

2. Choosing cheaper, poor-quality furniture and home accents in an attempt to buy many things for less.

3. Being afraid to follow their own individual styles instead of following trends.

Conclusion: What’s In and What’s Out — Home Design Trends for 2018

To keep it simple, here are what architects, designers and homeowners think will be in and out for 2018:





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How to Create a Guest Bathroom That Will Make Entertaining a Breeze

guest bathroom

Ready to set up your guest bathroom like a pro? Keep reading. Image: EURO Design Build

Usually, when you read about bathroom design ideas, the master bath is the focus. While your ensuite can serve as your own personal escape, it’s not the only washroom that deserves consideration. A well-thought-out guest bathroom, for example, can be both a gift to your family and friends and a source of never-ending compliments.

If you’re ready to take your guest bathroom design to the next level, you’re in luck. We’ve put together a list of our best tips to help inspire your redesign. With just a few small tweaks, you may just find that you have a new favorite room in the house.


Keep it neutral. Image: Wellbuilt Company

Keep it fairly neutral

When dealing with a master suite, personal style reigns supreme. Are you someone who prefers a claw-foot tub for long baths over a quick shower? Done. On this project, though, your goal is to appeal to the masses: your best friend, your mother-in-law, and everyone in between.

To pull this off, we recommend that you stick to a fairly neutral look. Think about incorporating a monochromatic color scheme in your design. This color combo adds a sense of classic elegance to the space and will never go out of style.

Once you have your color palette in mind, you can add more visual interest to the room by playing around with a variety of shapes, textures, and materials. Think about featuring things like a tastefully curved sink or an eye-catching vanity.

luxe accessories

Add in plenty of luxury accessories. Image: Evens Architects

Include luxe extras

The best part of being on vacation is the little luxuries that your hotel has to offer. Even though your friends and family won’t be staying at a company-run resort, you can recreate the experience by adding some luxe accessories to your guest bathroom.

Take the picture above, for example. In it, you can see that whoever designed the space has taken the time to add plenty of fresh towels, a plush robe, a variety of high-end soaps and lotions, plus spa-like bath treatments can be found on the back wall.

Take the time to consider how you can include touches like these into your guest bathroom. Even one or two should be enough to stop the room from feeling purely functional and help transform it into something special.

guest bathroom

Be sure to keep necessities like towels on display. Image: FOUR POINT DESIGN BUILD INC

Concentrate on your displays

Keep in mind that part of what sets the hotel experience apart from that of a typical home is that not only are these items on-hand, they’re also meticulously displayed. With just a glance, you know exactly what towels and toiletries are available to you. When designing a guest bathroom, your goal should be to have your family and friends feel the same way.

Every bathroom needs storage. For the guest bathroom, in particular, we recommend using open storage solutions. Look for shelving units, bins, or cubes that allow you to keep your linens and lotions on display. That way, your guests won’t need to root through your belongings in order to find everything they need.

Once you have your storage options in place, remember how the items are displayed is just as important as what’s available. Just as you would with any other styled surface, do your best to create specific groupings. Vary the items in each grouping by height, size and number to create visual interest. If you need to, consider looking up bathroom design ideas on Freshome for inspiration.

spread out

Make sure there’s room for your guests to spread out. Image: Toronto Interior Design Group | Yanic Simard

Leave room to spread out

This tip is more about function than aesthetics, but it is one that your guests will truly appreciate. Whoever comes to visit, they’ll likely be bringing a host of toiletries of their own and they’ll need somewhere to put them. Make sure your guest bathroom includes plenty of room for your visitors to spread out during their stay.

To do this, you’ll need to leave plenty of negative space in your design. Resist the urge to overcrowd your design with accessories or knickknacks and only use as many as you need to make the space feel pulled together. If you’re working with a small bathroom, rely on vertical height to provide some additional surface space.

guest bathroom

Let us help you bring your guest bathroom to the next level. Image: Kenihan Development

Understandably, the guest bathroom design often takes second priority beyond a high-end master suite. However, that doesn’t mean that you should neglect this space entirely. With just a few, simple tweaks you can create a space that both you and your guests will fall for. Keep our tips in mind and put your own spin on them to give your interiors a whole new look.

What do you think of our guest bathroom tips? Do you have any of your own to add to the list? Share them with us in the comments below.

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25 of the Best Coworking Spaces When You Can’t Live (or Work) Without Good Design

If you were drooling over the awesome office spaces of your favorite brands and wish you could work somewhere just as cool, you may be in luck! Coworking spaces are popping up around the world as digital nomads and entrepreneurs opt to get out of their pajamas and “adult it” in a shared office environment.

Companies like WeWork are booming, thanks to the amazing amenities and high-design spaces they offer. Some of the amenities are pretty fabulous – and random. Besides the basics, like fiber-optic internet or good coffee, they may include:

  • A terrace
  • Restaurants and catered meals
  • Bars featuring daily Happy Hours
  • Arabic calligraphy lessons
  • Open 24 hours
  • Virtual Reality gaming rooms
  • Concierge services
  • Nap Pods
  • Yoga classes
  • Local beer on tap

For a monthly fee of as little as $30 on up to $600 or more for some of the more exclusive locations, you can work or hold meetings in a shared office. Need to impress a client for a couple of hours? Many locations have an office space for the day for as little as $20. Here’s a roundup (by region) of the most beautiful and best coworking spaces in the U.S.


best shared office spaces

WeWork Chicago, Fulton Market.

best coworking spaces chicago

Level Office coworking space in Chicago, IL (River North)

MatchBOX Coworking Studio in Lafayette, IN

Industrious in St. Louis, MO

North East

qLabs New York City, NY

best coworking spaces Boston

Workbar in Cambridge, MA

best coworking spaces NY

WeWork in Brooklyn, NY

Serendipity Labs in Bethesda, MD

best cowork spaces and shared office washington, DC

WeWork in Washington, DC

Industrious in Manhattan, NY

best shared office spaces

Serendipity Labs Stanford, CT


best cowork spaces

WeWork in Miami, FL

cowork locations

Strongbox West in Atlanta, GA

Impact Hub Austin, TX (South Central)

best coworking spaces and office sharing Austin

Impact Hub Austin, TX (North Lamar)

Spark Louisville, KY location (opening soon)

West Coast, Rockies & Southwest

Liquid Space Seattle (Bellevue) Meeting Room

Liquid Space Seattle, WA (Bellevue) meeting room

WeWork in San Francisco, CA (Civic Center)

The Port Workspaces in Oakland, CA

Click Co+Work in Flagstaff, AZ

WeWork in Berkeley, CA

The Urban Hive in Sacramento, CA

NeueHouse Hollywood, CA

WeWork in Denver, CO (Union Station)

Industrious Los Angeles, CA (Downtown)

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The Defining a Style Series: What Is Modern Farmhouse Design?

modern farmhouse design

Ready to embrace modern farmhouse design? We’ve got all the info you need to pull this look off. Image: Gardner Homes

There’s a reason why so many of us continue to fall head-over-heels for farmhouse style. Its unique take on comfort and simplicity creates an aura that could make anyone feel at home, even if they’ve never set foot on a farm. However, some people shy away due to the assumption that this aesthetic can feel a little outdated.

We’re going to prove those people wrong. Below is our guide to pulling off modern farmhouse design. Read over these tips and keep them in the forefront of your mind as you work on your own interiors. With any luck, you’ll achieve the perfect balance between classic comfort and modern flair.


Practicality is the cornerstone of farmhouse style. Image: Ken Linsteadt Architects

Put practicality first

When you consider the ins-and-outs of farm life, it’s no surprise that practicality reigns supreme. While you should always consider functionality and usage as an integral part of any design, in this case, it needs to be your first point of consideration.

As for how to make that happen, planning is key. Before you start getting into the nitty-gritty of your redesign, take some time to look at the space. Consider details like the flow of the room, the lighting, and the furniture arrangement. Consider what’s working and what isn’t, as well as what changes you can make in order to make ease-of-use your first priority.

Then, once you’re ready to start gathering your design elements, remember that function should be your primary focus. Let your furniture and storage options take center stage in the room, above any decorative elements.

neutral colors

Stick to neutral colors for a modern twist. Image: House of Jade Interiors

Choose a neutral palette

The colors you choose will be crucial to making this look work. Gone are the sage greens and buttermilk yellows that harken to older farmhouse styles. These days, a neutral color palette is a crucial part of any modern design, and including one in your farmhouse-inspired space will be the thing that helps keep your fresh, clean, and totally current.

As always, you’ll want to keep the 60-30-10 rule in mind. Here, white is the natural choice to fulfill the role of your dominant shade. For your other two colors, think about using earthy shades like grays, tans, and browns. Bare in mind that your accent shade should be the boldest of them all.

In a farmhouse design, the finishes you choose will also play an important role. Rather than choosing crisp, bright shades like you would in a truly modern design, you may want to consider choosing colors that have a bit of a vintage or antique feel to them. This will provide a small nod to classic farmhouse style without feeling too over the top.


Comfort is also key. Image: Jennifer Robin Interiors

Mix and match furniture

Next up, it’s time to focus on furniture. Traditionally, farmhouse designs relied heavily on simple wooden furniture to fill up the bulk of their interiors. You should include that in your space as well. The type of wood and finish that you use is up to you, but whenever possible, opt for pieces that feature clean and simple lines.

To give the look a more modern twist, you’ll want to infuse another layer of comfort into the space. Think about balancing out the natural materials in the room with things like plush couches, comfy accent chairs, and cushioned bar stools. You can also enhance the feeling of the room by layerings items like throw pillows and blankets into your design.

industrial accents

Finish the look off with industrial accents. Image: Irwin Construction, LLC

Add industrial accents

Lastly, you’ll want to think of the purely decorative elements your design. Here, we’d suggest leaning strongly on industrial-inspired pieces. Not only are industrial pieces commonly based on the machinery used for farming, but they also happen to be experiencing a spike in popularity right now, making them the perfect common thread to finish off your look.

With that in mind, keep an eye out for hanging barn doors, wooden mantles, iron-inspired light fixtures, and galvanized metal storage buckets. In farmhouse design, the best accents are the ones that also play a functional role, so look for pieces that serve a purpose.

modern farmhouse design

Use this guide to bring modern farmhouse design into your interiors. Image: Sita Montgomery Interiors

Farmhouse style has been around for decades, but that doesn’t mean it has to be synonymous with grandma’s house and days gone by. Take this guide on modern farmhouse design as your inspiration. The tips and advice in this post are the keys to creating a farmhouse-inspired space that feels equal parts warm, welcoming, and current.

What do you think of modern farmhouse design? Would you be willing to try out the look in your own home? Share your opinions with us in the comments below.

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