Thursday, December 3, 2015

Open Heart, Open Home

When we think of getting ready for Christmas, images come to mind of trimming the tree, hanging the lights, wrapping presents; but if you have out of town guests, is your guest room ready for their arrival? 

Here are a few ideas to make your guests feel welcome and at home and you look like a superstar host!

Read on, you may be inspired . . .

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 d├ęcor 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.

Have a decorative tray on a dresser or plate on a nightstand to provide your guests with a clear surface to empty pockets while protecting your furniture. Make sure there's easy access to outlets for recharging cell phones and other electronics.

Have a trash can, easy to read and set alarm clock and pretty dresser or full length mirrors. All of these can be decorative yet functional and very much appreciated by guests.

Have a chair or bench so guest will have a place to sit to put on shoes or set extra belongings.

Clear the closet, dresser drawers or have a luggage stand so your guests will have a place for their clothes.
If you have a private guest bathroom terrific. You're guests will appreciate the privacy but if they're sharing the hall bath, make sure they know clearly which towels are theirs. Consider adding over the door hooks for their bath robes and towels during their stay. The hooks aren't permanent so they can be removed until the next time they're needed.
Going The Extra Mile                   
soap and shampoo
Once you have the foundational pieces in place, try adding some little niceties. Think of the things that most likely to be forgotten and have a little basket of items so guest won't feel like they're imposing on you.
Include Kleenex, toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, floss, nicely scented lotion, soap, shampoo and conditioner.

You can add a few extras like a travel sewing kit to repair a loose button or a mini first aid kit with pain reliever, band aids, Tums, etc.

BooksHave a diverse collection of reading materials, such as, mystery, fiction, biography and magazines. Having local guide books may give your guests some fun ideas on what to see and do.

If your guest are arriving late, having a basket of individually wrapped snacks, bottled water, soda or juice boxes in their room will give them the option of a late night snack without feeling like they're putting you out. Fruits such as bananas, clementines (a.k.a. "Cuties") and apples are an easy to eat healthy snacks which do not require refrigeration. 

cup of coffee
A similarly fashioned breakfast version of this snack basket with a mix of granola bars, muffins, biscotti and fruit will relieve a little pressure on the host or hostess.  Set it out along side coffee cups and spoons and a pre-programed coffee maker. Add an assortment of sweeteners, a note that the creamer and orange juice are in the refrigerator and your earlier riser guests  will enjoy the freedom to get up and move about without feeling like they're disturbing the rest of the household.
Cultivating Individuality in Your Unique Home
Celeste Jackson

Monday, November 2, 2015

Preparing for the Feast

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
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 some pop! 

For a more formal setting, use an arrangement of traditional fall flowers then strategically add a few mini pumpkins or gourds for that extra touch of fall.

Formal Centerpiece
Formal Centerpiece
By mixing in photographs, you can bring to mind those who can't join you or remember past Thanksgiving celebrations. Also remember that even on the sunniest of days, candles on your table will provide your guests  with feelings of warmth, intimacy and add a sense of occasion to your feast! 
Photo Centerpiece
Photo Centerpiece
Pear Placecard
While the place cards can be either handwritten or computer printed, you can add elegance or whimsy depending on how you choose to place the cards at each setting.

Some suggestions for a creative presentation are to pin the place cards to a gourd or piece of fruit, such as a pear or an apple, use a gold or silver paint pen to write each name on a silk fall leaf or if you have a crowded table, tie the card to the stem of a wine glass. Another idea which I have used is to place a pumpkin muffin wrapped in cellophane at each place and tie the place card with the same ribbon used to secure the cellophane. 
Leaf Placecard
Leaf Place Card


When all the family gathers around the table it is a joyous time filled with laughter and conversation but it also means we are required to sit elbow to elbow and it is hard to tell where one place setting ends and the other begins. Is this your glass or mine? To save space on the table and jazz it up a bit, place your flatware in a less conventional way like crossed on top of the plate or above the plate horizontally. 

Flatware Setting 
Crossed Flatware Setting

The Dove

This is a good fold for beginners. The end result will hold its shape more easily if you use a heavy cotton napkin.

The Dove 1

The Dove 2

The Dove 3
The Dove 4
The Dove 5
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!
Celeste Jackson Interiors, Ltd
Cultivating Individuality in Your Unique Home 

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Making an Impact: From Conception to Completion

In the past, we've shared many a mantle and fireplace makeovers with you but nothing quite like this! Take a look at this fireplace facelift, then call us to find out what we can do for your fireplace . . . go ahead, we're up to the challenge!
Making an Impact: From Conception to Completion

The challenge for this fireplace to create a warm, updated and interesting focal point with impact yet in a way that would add warmth and make the room feel cozy.

   Initial Concept Drawing
A computer illustrated rendering is a great visual tool which aids in communicating design concepts to clients before any work begins.
Details and Revisions
   Architectural Working      Drawings
Architectural Drawing Revised

The detail molding of the mantel was repeated twice above to create a pleasing frame to compliment and highlight the client's favorite artwork and again at the ceiling for a crowning finish. At each level the pilasters add stature, depth and dimension.

Design is all about the details and the corbels and applique selected for this fireplace facade added the final and most convincing details of an old world antique. 

Now the Real Work Begins!
Prepping the brick
Positioning the top portion
The men began the installation by removing the old supports for the previous mantel. The facade was fabricated off sight then brought in section by section. As you can see, this is more than a two man job. My husband even got in on this project (that's Mike adding support with a very large piece of wood).

Securing it in place

 Getting closer . . . 
Waiting for the marble for the hearth and surround

Voila! C'est Tres Magnifique!
Warm, beautiful, elegant . . . WOW! It looks like it's always been there. Now take a closer peek . . .

Are you ready for winter?

Cultivating Individuality in your Unique Home!
Celeste Jackson 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Lighten Up!

With the approach of Labor Day, I'm reminded that though the days are still warm, summer is coming to an end. Soon, the days will be shorter and I'll be able to see my breath in the crisp fall air.

With this in mind, in this month's blog post I wanted to talk about the need for good lighting in our homes as well as thoughts and ideas on making the most of the lighting in your home.
I hope you are staying cool and enjoying every last bit of summer!
Lighten Up!
Because of human nature, we are inclined to take light for granted; particularly during the long days of summer. Light is all around us, shaping our lives and enabling us to see. 
When we learn of advancement in technology, it is frequently associated with computers or entertainment. Who hasn't heard of the iPhone or Blue-ray DVD's or the Apple watch? Remember when only the Jetsons could carry technology on their wrists? 

With advancements in lighting being made continually, why do so many homes still use lighting from 20, 30 or even 40 years ago? All too often poor lighting is addressed by using a higher watt bulb. While this solution may work for a small area such as a desk top, the solution for an entire room or home requires more thought and planning.

Light Bulb 

Every lighting plan begins with these questions: 

  • What type of space is being lit?  
  • How it is the light we use in a room being distributed? 
  • Will it be critical to how we feel in a space, how our eyes see the colors of our fabrics and furniture or how well we are able do the things we want to in a given space? 

Lighting needs also change with age and need to be updated accordingly. Today's lighting solutions go far beyond the incandescent vs. florescent light bulbs of the past. They require a careful assessment of the occupants' needs to identify the best quantity, placement and lighting source combination. Also, the selection of the correct light bulb with the correct light fixture can be very confusing since they are not as  interchangeable as they first appear and the results can be most unappealing. Complex lighting solutions are often best left to experts: a professional interior designer or a lighting specialist.

As we are better able to control light, we are also better able to control our environments by the way light is distributed through our homes and the feeling it creates. 
 Cultivating Individuality in Your Unique Home
Celeste Jackson 

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

So Nice, You'll Have to Look Twice

So Nice, You'll Have to Look Twice!
Faux Iron Over Fireplace
Project by Celeste Jackson Interiors, Ltd.
Tableaux Faux Iron is a remarkable product. It possesses the beauty of decorative iron but is light weight making it easy to hang indoors or out. Because it is constructed from environmentally friendly composite materials, it is only 10% of the weight of iron. It's design and dimensions can be customized to fit any window, architectural element or personal style and is available in 17 decorative finishes.

Fijal Fireplace - After
Project by Celeste Jackson Interiors, Ltd.
The decorative pieces used in the niche above this fireplace were custom sized to fit the space. These pieces provide texture, dimension and added interest to this large expansive wall space.
  Used as a window treatment, these decorative pieces add beauty and architectural interest to windows, skylights, sidelights, transoms and archways. They can also be designed to simulate window mullions.
Powder Room Window Treatment
Project by Celeste Jackson Interiors, Ltd.
Faux Iron Valance
Project by Celeste Jackson Interiors, Ltd.
Installed over the draperies, the Faux Iron cornice related to the pieces installed on the double doors.

Look Up! Ceilings!
All too often an afterthought, ceilings offer a large uninterrupted plane that's begging to be adorned.           

The Tableaux EX material used for exterior application is a water, rot, and termite resistant wood composite material.

Use it for your homes corner brackets or arches or in the garden on your patio, gazebo, terrace or trellis.
For even more great ideas, go to:
 . . . then call Celeste to learn what will work for you!

To unleash your home's true potential, call 
Celeste Jackson Interiors today!

To view more inspiring homes, visit Celeste's website at:
Cultivating Individuality in Your Unique Home
Celeste Jackson

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

First Impressions

First Impressions

Curb appeal is a term often used by realtors when selling a home but in reality it applies to all homes. This term, curb appeal, simply describes how visually attractive a home is when viewed from the street. There are a number of details that contribute to creating great curb appeal. A well maintained home with attractive landscaping, containers of flowers on the porch and a pretty wreath on the door all add color and say "Welcome" but since it can be seen from a distance, it's your home's paint color that gets noticed first. Have you ever driven past a home and wondered if the color it was painted was truly the home owner's desired end result? Maybe they wanted a warm sunny yellow but got safety vest reflective yellow instead. Choosing paint colors can be challenging.  Trying to visualize a one inch square paint chip spread over the expanse of an entire house can make it seem virtually impossible. As demonstrated in previous newsletters, Celeste Jackson Interiors, Ltd. has a unique computer program that illustrates how your home will look before any work begins. This same program can be applied to the outside of your home. Look below at what Celeste Jackson Interiors, Ltd. has done for others just like you, then, give us a call so you can see what we can do for you! 

Home Exterior - Before

Home Exterior - Computer Rendering

Home Exterior - After

Lighting the Way

lighted-jacuzzi.jpg One of the more recent home trends is to bring the inside out, including full outdoor kitchens in many new home designs. An outdoor space can provide a tranquil place for intimate conversation and sipping wine or host a celebration for friends and family. Whatever the occasion, lighting should enhance the beauty and enjoyment of your outdoor spaces. Just as it is indoors, your outdoor lighting should be layered coming from multiple sources so it illuminates without glare. Discreetly lighting your trees and plants can create a dramatic sculptured effect. Small lanterns along walks and stairs provide soft subtle light as well as safety. A ceiling fan on your covered porch or gazebo will provide a breeze on warm summer nights and help keep flying, buzzing things at bay. Light fixtures for outdoors are stylish with a myriad of design and finish options and are given the same attention to detail that was once reserved solely for interior lighting.
 Cultivating Individuality
Celeste Jackson IDS