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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Creating a Reading Nook

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Beautiful spring days bring warmth and invite us outside to engage in activities we love, but the cooler evenings draw us into the comfort and warmth of our homes. Create a quiet, comfy spot this spring to curl up with your favorite book while sipping that cup of coffee or hot tea. Instill a love of reading in your kids by giving them the example of a quiet hour each evening in a beautiful contemplative space. Invite them into the space with their books and share in the adventure of a great story. Read on for tips to create a reading nook for your home.

Choose a quiet space, free of distractions. You don’t need much room – a corner of the bedroom, the end of a hallway, or inside a large walk-in closet are all perfect places to call your own. If you choose a larger room for your reading nook, partition the area in a way that creates a cozy, secluded feeling.

Consider lighting. Take advantage of natural light whenever possible by creating your space close to a window. Place a table lamp nearby for overcast days and evening reading time. Choose three-way bulbs with warm light so you can alternate brightness to suit your mood.

Make it your own. Pick colors and patterns that you’re drawn to and make you feel great. Place a few bookshelves nearby for easy access to books and magazines. If the space is large enough, include a small end table or cocktail table for drinks, eyeglasses and other essentials. Add photos, fresh flowers, a houseplant and other knick-knacks for ascetic appeal.

Choose a comfortable seat. Choose a big, comfy chair that you simply melt into; or one of the solid, sturdy varieties to support your back. Be certain there’s enough cushion to cradle you comfortably for long periods of time. Add in pillows for extra softness when you need it and a blanket for warmth.

What are you waiting for? Can’t you hear that corner of your home calling your name? Stop by one of the two Connell’s locations today in Mt. Vernon or Newark for more ideas to create comfortable, inviting spaces in your home.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Home Design Therapy

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Shorter days, longer nights and sub-zero weather can bring you down quickly. Do something good for yourself and your home! Combat the Winter Blues with home design therapy from Connell’s. Spice up your living space with color, texture and warmth. Change your perspective. Whether you desire a complete home makeover or small changes to a few rooms, we’ve got you covered – with the goods and the inspiration!

This winter  has been unseasonably cold in Ohio. Physically create warmth inside your home with new window treatments. Replace sheer curtains with thick draperies. Use warm colors such as burnt orange, mustard yellow and ruby red. Look for your favorite patterns, then design an entire room around them. Mix and match. Play. Have fun!

Since you’re stuck indoors, create a few gathering spaces. If you have a fireplace and it’s not a focal point, move furniture to make it so. Arrange a conversation pit. Group furniture together toward the center of the room making it perfect for family game night. Place a new flat panel television toward one end of the seating area, creating another focal point perfect for quiet, cozy evenings at home.

Little touches can make a big difference. Disperse candles with warm scents such as vanilla, hazelnut and warm apple pie throughout your home. Brighten up a dark winter night with a candle centerpiece atop your coffee or cocktail table.

Don’t wait for Spring to surround yourself with life. Sprinkle houseplants throughout your dwelling, adding color, texture and fresh air. Create live art and bursts of color by arranging oranges, lemons and limes on a platter or in a vase. Add neutral colored stones and branches for additional texture.

You layer your clothing for added warmth. Do the same in your home. Place a beautiful quilt or wool blanket at the foot of your bed for cold winter nights. Grab a few extra pillows and a fleece throw to snuggle on your sofa or love seat.

Don’t stop there. You’re only limited by the imagination. Dream away, then stop by one of Connell’s two locations to remedy your Winter Blues with Home Design Therapy!