Connell's

Sorted by Tag:  ' benches ' 

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

A Perfect Playroom

Child’s play is essential and a playroom encourages it! Create the perfect space to foster growth and imagination within your kids. Our homes are designed around our own needs and conveniences, but children should have a place of their own. While an entire room is ideal, it isn’t necessary. No matter the size of your home, a playroom is possible. A closet is big enough for a reading nook or computer area. Read on for ideas to create a sacred space for your little ones.

Identify the ideal space based on the size of your home and the age of your children. Map it out. Basements, attics and small spaces underneath the stairs are ideal choices for a child’s playroom, especially in smaller homes. Choose colors and theme. Include your children in the planning if they are old enough to make informed choices. Will the walls be plain or have designs? Are you artistic or do you know someone who is? If free-hand painting isn’t an option, removable art decals are another option for adding a whimsical feel to the room. A playroom is the perfect place to showcase expression and creativity.

Consider design based on the ages of the children who will use the room. Plan for today and tomorrow both. When choosing furniture, less is more. Allow plenty of open space for play. Keep pieces simple and in neutral colors so they continue to adapt and function over the years.

Create a few “stations” for various functions. If space in one room is an issue, identify a few separate play areas within your home. A reading corner allows for quiet introspection, while an art area encourages creativity. Choose furniture that suits each station. Chairs, benches, shelves and lighting are essentials in the reading nook, while a large flat surface provides the space needed in an art area. Storage is essential in all play areas to keep it organized. Choose options easiest for kids to get in and out of effortlessly.

Stop by one of the two beautiful Connell’s locations in Mt. Vernon or Newark today for other ideas and inspiration to enhance your home.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Unused Spaces

Category: ,

Homes aren’t like they used to be! Before plumbing, outhouses were our only restroom option. Formal dining rooms were a necessity in the ’50s to keep clutter under control and to serve as a place to entertain. Rooms are now larger, more open and functional for a variety of reasons. One room alone may serve as a kitchen, dining area and lounge. But what about older homes with smaller rooms and less open area? No worries! Turn those unused spaces into functional, multi-purpose rooms designed for practical everyday use. Think outside of the box and change it up with the seasons. Read on for tips to turn unused spaces into favorite places!

An entryway can become a catch-all for everything coming and going. Control clutter and turn your entryway into a functional seating and conversation area. Install hooks along the wall beside the door. Place a bench and cubbies for extra seating and storage of shoes, backpacks and more. An end table or sofa table serves as a place to add extra lighting and store keys easily and within reach as you are walking out the door.

Gone are the days of the formal dining room, but not functional dining rooms with additional seating for family and guests. Dress up that dining room table with bright, floral, fun tablecloths and runners. Remove a few chairs and install a bench for the little ones. Place a few functional, comfortable chairs in the corners and add splashes of color. Voila! Your formal dining room becomes a place the whole family wants to hang out, whether it’s dinner time or not!

Extra Bedrooms are often the most unused spaces. Turn that extra bedroom into a craft or sewing room. Find cabinets and counter tops at discount home improvement stores for additional storage and functionality. Remove the bed and put in a sofa sleeper for double duty. You’ll still have room for guests and can use the room any other time you’d like a quiet place to read or work.

Chances are if you live in an older home closets are sparse – and likely packed full. But if you have the luxury of an extra closet or two, turn that closet into a craft space, office area or homework nook.

Don’ t waste a room with a view! Install a window seat to turn it into your favorite place in the house. Throw in some houseplants to freshen up the air, and give it texture and beauty. Add additional storage shelves to conceal clutter when not in use and allow the kids to enjoy the view with you. Turn the room into a lounge and entertaining area, without television of course. With a view like that, who needs TV?

Every room in your home can and should be functional and usable. Try these tips or come up with some of your own. You know your home and your habits. Let them be your guide. Change is good. It provides new perspective. Change with the seasons, family events or just because you think it’s time to do so! And by all means, stop by one of the two Connell’s locations in Mt. Vernon and Newark for ideas, inspiration and beautiful home furnishings!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Great Design for Small Spaces

Don’t let a small room cause decorating problems! Instead, get creative. Utilize every inch of the area to create an exquisite dream room, even if space is an issue.  Follow the design tips below to breathe fresh life into any small space and make it seem bigger than it actually is.

Be flexible and versatile. Painting the room in a lighter color can make the room feel bigger. Choose antique white, cream or taupe. Place lamps of varying shapes and sizes in locations throughout the room to draw the eye around the room.

Choose furniture in light colors. It’s true, dark furniture can make the room feel small. Buy vibrant accessories such as pillows and wall hangings to add bursts of color.

Keep scale in mind. Add a small sofa or loveseat as opposed to overstuffed pieces that will dominate space.

Place mirrors strategically throughout the area. Mirrors create a sense of openness, tricking the eye into believing there is extra room. Consider hanging a mirror near a window to reflect the outdoors into the room.

Arrange larger pieces of furniture, such as a sofa at an angle. Doing this draws the eye down the diagonal length of the sofa instead of the shorter wall, creating an illusion of depth. An added benefit is the storage space automatically created behind the sofa where you can store items.

Choose pieces of furniture that serve multiple purposes. Storage cabinets or armories will hide a television when not in use. Also, ottomans with hidden storage are perfect for small spaces. Add benches in lieu of chairs in your dining room to save on space and create an open atmosphere.

Finally, take a look at your technology, which tends to take up considerable space. Consolidate by moving your music to a specified computer or music player and get rid of CDs. Also, flat panel televisions are great new alternatives and save on space.

There are numerous ways to create a beautiful and spacious look in any small space. Visit one of the two Connell’s locations in Mt. Vernon and Newark and let our knowledgeable sales representatives help you get started!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Love Your Kitchen

The last 100 years have brought tremendous change to the kitchen. Dual income families and indoor plumbing have both played a role in the way we now use this central part of our home. A place to cook, eat, share and laugh, the kitchen truly is the heart of the home, and a few simple changes will transform an uninspired kitchen into a room that draws families together.

Create a gathering space. With hectic schedules, the kitchen is always the gathering spot after a long day. Allow it to be functional. Define a space for kids to do homework comfortably while snacking. Make room for a computer or laptop for family use, to pull up favorite recipes, read current events together and research schoolwork.

Clutter control. Most active families are busy with events outside the home. Organize the kitchen. Clear clutter from countertops, making meal prep easier and more efficient. Leave out only functional items and store decorative accessories. Pull pots and pans out and hang them in easy reach, thereby making space for other items to be stored.

Shine on. Find ways to creatively light your kitchen based on use. A bright overhead light is great for preparing meals in the evening, while a soft low light provides a more pleasant dining experience. A crisp white light should be used for homework and natural light cascading through windows is best for all circumstances when it’s available.

Update appliances. If either space or design are issues in your current kitchen, browse all of the kitchen appliance options available today. Older appliances can and should be replaced with more energy efficient models. Most appliances are also available in smaller versions to save space in currently cramped kitchens.

Keep multi-function use in mind. The kitchen serves so many functions. It’s a place to prep and cook food, eat, study, do crafts and family activities, listen to music, even watch television on occasion. Install a smaller flat-screen TV in one of the less traveled corners of the room. Create a lounging area by arranging seating with functional multi-use storage benches and cushions.

Whatever your style, let your Connell’s sales representative show you some kitchen design ideas the next time you stop in one of our two locations, Mt. Vernon and Newark.