Monday, December 1, 2014

The Art of Selecting and Hanging Artwork

Have you ever entered a room and felt like something is missing? You look around and all the pieces appear to be in place, the sofa, chairs, tables, lamps. So what is it? Perhaps it's artwork. Artwork is a critical element to completing a room and adding personality. Unfortunately, too often people feel unsure when choosing the right pieces and intimidated by the prospect of hanging artwork on the walls. In this newsletter, I address these issues and provide tips for hanging art without making Swiss cheese out of your walls!

The Art of Selecting and Hanging Artwork
Tulip Picture
Selecting art for your home can be an exciting adventure and a bring a source of enjoyment for years to come. The key to successfully purchasing art begins by determining what kind of art you like, how each piece will best fit with the rest of your interior design plans, and how to exhibit the art to the best effect in your home. Although the internet has innumerable art sources, it's not necessarily the best way to shop for art. Because colors on your monitor may vary from the actual colors, printed catalogues are still an excellent resource when shopping for art. Manufacturers take great care to print on high quality paper to insure the color accuracy of the art. Celeste Jackson Interiors, Ltd. carries a variety of lines for you to select from.
What kind of art do you like?
If you regularly visit galleries and museums, you probably have a good sense of what kind of art appeals to you. If not, browsing art within your community at local exhibitions and art fairs are an enjoyable place to start. Even small towns usually have a non-profit gallery space, and your local café or restaurant may exhibit the works of local artists. In larger cities, galleries often get together for periodic "gallery nights" where all the galleries hold open house receptions on the same evening. It's a great way to see a lot of art in a short time.  Pay close attention to the styles and medium that you are attracted to...landscape, still life, architecture, nature, pop, portrait and people. Are you drawn to oil paintings, watercolors, photography, etchings or collage? What is the style... contemporary, traditional, pop or organic?
Should the art fit the room or the room fit the art?
It depends...if you already have purchased a piece of art that you love go ahead and utilize it for inspiration to build the room around. If you are attracted to a variety of styles of artwork you can create a gallery room by keeping the focus on the art and playing down the furnishings with solid neutral colors like ivory, taupe, black or gray.  If the room is already decorated your art selections should compliment the colors and the style of the room. 
When you go to a gallery or are traveling, what is the best way to prepare before purchasing art ?
Take photos of the spaces you would like to fill with art. Write the dimensions of the wall space and the dimensions of furnishings beneath the wall space. If you have any existing art in the room that you intend to keep be sure to carry photos of those as well. If the furnishings have a strong color palette carry swatches or close up photos of the fabric.
What are the rules of thumb when hanging art?
Pictures hung over bed If your ceilings are 8-9 feet high, the center of the artwork should be approximately 60" from the floor; this is eye level for most people. If the ceilings are taller than you might want to go a little higher. Furnishings also come into play. If you are hanging art over a sofa I like to hang the art around 5-8"above so if anyone puts there head back when sitting on the sofa they don't hit their head on the frame. If you are hanging it over a console table, buffet, dresser, etc. than you can hang it 4-7" above.  You can go a little higher if you are hanging a grouping of pictures depending on the size. You want to be sure that the art ties into the furniture below.
What tools do you need to hang your art and avoid putting unwanted nail holes in your wall?
ruler2.jpg Hammer, hooks, nails, tape measure, pencil with an eraser, paper, calculator and most importantly... PATIENCE. Measure to find the center of the space you will be hanging the art then lightly mark your wall with you pencil. Measure the width of the artwork or grouping. Groupings can be established by laying them on a table or floor to find the best layout and spacing. Measure 60" from the floor to get the ideal center point. Measure the height of the picture or grouping and divide it in half. Now measure from the picture hanger or pull the wire taught and measure to the top of the frame. Write these numbers down and subtract the second number from the first one. This is the number you will use to place your picture hook or nail above the 60" mark. Go ahead and hammer with confidence. Example: If your picture is 50" tall (divided by 2 = 25) and the wire pulled taught is 5" from the top 25-5=20" above the 60" mark. If your picture is extra wide you can use 2 hooks spread an equal distance from the center point on the wall. Of course there are more complicated pieces to hang that unless you are fairly handy you might want to call a handyman. I happen to know one that I can highly recommend.
If you are still overwhelmed with the thought of selecting and hanging your own artwork, call Celeste Jackson Interiors, Ltd. for help. We can identify areas in need of art and provide you with beautiful pieces to enjoy for years. We would also be happy to rearrange existing art in your home to maximize the look in your home.
Cultivate Individuality in Your Unique Home!
Celeste Jackson

Monday, November 17, 2014

Thanksgiving 2014

 While periodically marked by an election, for most of us flipping the calendar to the month of November brings to mind the Thanksgiving holiday. Today, Thanksgiving is marked by food, football and the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, but it was 1863 at the height of one of our nations darkest periods that Abraham Lincoln called upon us as a nation to express our gratitude for the abundance God has bestowed upon us thus establishing our annual Thanksgiving celebration. 
Despite the war and economic struggles that our nation is currently experiencing, there is still so much for which to give thanks. These turbulent times cause me to appreciate all the more my home, family, friends and loyal clients. I would like take the opportunity this holiday provides to convey my gratitude in the manner I know best by sharing with all of you my creativity and resources for creating a beautiful and memorable Thanksgiving Day table.
Preparing for the Feast
Giving Thanks
A Thanksgiving Table to Remember
There is so much thought and preparation that goes into the Thanksgiving celebration. Often the menu and guest list requires most of our time and attention leaving the setting of the table to the last minute. Today I have compiled for you some easy and inexpensive yet beautiful ideas to make your table live up to the feast you set upon it!


Centerpiece with Pumpkins & Gourds
Centerpiece with Pumpkins

Photo Centerpiece

Leaf Placecard
Have a Happy & Enjoyable Thanksgiving!
Cultivating Individuality in You Unique Home.
Celeste Jackson
Interior Designer
A variety of mini pumpkins, gourds, fall fruits and vegetables colorfully mixed in a beautiful bowl create an eye catching cornucopia of vibrant fall colors. Fill in the gaps by tucking real or artificial fall leaves to really add s some pop! 

For a more formal setting, use an arrangement of traditional fall

Monday, October 6, 2014

Creating a 5 Star Guest Room

Open Heart, Open Home
As I anticipate the holidays, I think of the friends and family who'll visit. While trimming my home with festive and cheerful seasonal decorations, I'm planning the delicious meals I'll serve to them.

Even though most of my loved ones are within commuting distance of my home, I'll often have overnight guests. Whether they've traveled from out of state or it's just too late to safely drive home, I want my guests to feel welcome and comfortable in my home as I'm sure you do as well. Here are some suggestions on making your home a 5 star retreat for your guests.
Creating a 5 Star Guest Room
If you want your overnight guests to feel welcome, the first step is to make them to feel that you're prepared for their visit. Whether large or small, a guest room in a soothing color palette that feels as luxurious as a 5 star hotel room yet as comfortable as being at home is a guest room that says "Welcome, we've been waiting for you".

All too often, "guest rooms" are a mere step above storage rooms; a hodge-podge of mismatched furniture from by gone eras. But a beautifully decorated room with pleasant amenities will give your guests a welcome they won't soon forget.

Fresh linens are just a start to having a room at the ready. Begin with a comfortable bed. Have you spent a night in your own guest room? Try it, it maybe quite enlightening. A comfortable mattress with a pretty bed or headboard is a great place to start.
Out with the old and in with newly purchased, high-thread count bedding and add extra pillows of differing firmness and thickness for back, side and stomach sleepers. Put extra blankets in the room because everyone has a different feel for what is  "warm and cozy". The same is true for warmer nights so, if possible, have a ceiling fan to cool the room for guests with high personal thermostats.

Nightstands provide guests with a place for eyeglasses, a glass of water or a place to set a book all without having to get out of bed. Have a bedside lamp for the same reason, to access light without having to get out of bed and stumble around in the dark.

Room darkening window treatments allow your guests to decide whether they want to be an early riser or sleep in.

Have strategically placed lighting. Having a lamp or light switch close to the door makes it easy for guests to find their way into an unfamiliar bedroom. A light within easy reach of the bed makes bedtime reading more enjoyable and safer for those middle of the night trips to the bathroom.

Clear the clutter. While beautiful décor is desirable, having a lot of knick knacks is not. In addition to scenic artwork, here are a few suggestions for things that serve a practical purpose while beautifying your guest room.
Cultivating Individuality in Your Unique Home
Celeste Jackson Interiors, Ltd.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Windows That Wow!

Windows That WOW!

Decorative window treatments might seem like a frivolous expense these days but what you might not realize is that they offer so much more than mere beauty.  Some other benefits of decorative window treatments are energy efficiency, better acoustics, accentuating your home's architecture, as well as, pulling your room together.
Add Energy Efficiency to Your Windows!
Energy Efficient Windows Window treatments that can be opened and closed can insulate your home and help make it more energy efficient by keeping the heat from summer sun out and prevent the warm air from your furnace from cooling against cold winter windows. 
Improve Acoustics                   
Famiy Room With the increased popularity of tile and hardwood floors and high ceilings, sound is an ever present issue. Sound waves from stereos and in home theatre systems bounce off hard surfaces like a rubber ball. Adding soft fabric treatments will absorb some of the noise and echo. 
Picture This . . . Framing a Beautiful View
Dining Room
Just as the right frame will enhance a painting, so soft draperies will frame a beautiful view without blocking or deterring from it.
Cultivating Individuality in Your Unique Home!
Celeste Jackson IDS