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    Houzz feature: Why the old-fashioned vestibule is worth considering

    April 20, 2017 3:26 PM by emily.bailey

    Friday, April 21, 2017

    Why the old-fashioned vestibule is worth considering

    This classic entry room, sometimes called a mudroom, offers energy-saving and other comfort-inducing perks.

     

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    A vestibule is a small, enclosed entry chamber that traditionally has served as a buffer in winter between indoors and outdoors, to trap air and minimize heat loss. Vestibules today also help keep air-conditioned air inside and hot air outside in summer. There’s no denying that the old-fashioned vestibule, sometimes called a mudroom, used to be far more popular than it is now, but it remains a charming way to create an inviting and practical entrance to a home.

    Create a place to pause

    Beyond the practical concerns of stabilizing a home’s temperature, the vestibule eases the transition from public to private life. If you’ve ever walked into a home whose front door lands you smack in the middle of the living room, you can probably understand the appeal of bridging the indoor-outdoor gap. A vestibule gives you an extra moment to adjust to the indoor temperature while allowing you to pause and collect yourself before greeting the household.

     

    Combining exterior materials like outdoor siding with indoor materials like a finished ceiling and wood flooring reinforces the in-betweenness of the space.

    Merge indoor and outdoor materials

    Even if you use mostly indoor materials for the walls, you can still opt for brick for the flooring, or concrete for a more industrial vibe. In wet or snowy climates, these materials will hold up better than wood. 

    “A patio even covered with a trellis doesn’t provide the same protection from the elements” as a vestibule, says Jace Levinson, principal at Jace Architecture. “Sure, it costs more. But at the same time, you’re adding square footage to your home that can increase its value.”

    In this vestibule in Calgary, Canada, we see another strategy for blurring the line between indoors and outdoors: The interior doorway’s windowpanes mirror those on the front door. The net effect serves to elongate the transition while preserving sightlines.

    Consider pocket doors

    If you don’t like the look of two sets of doors in a row, how about interior pocket doors? This way you can hide the interior doors when you want to open up the whole space. Additionally, doors inset with glass let the two parts of the home feel connected even when the doors are slid shut. 

    The tile floor here also provides an ideal surface for stamping off muddy boots and bridging the interior and exterior realms.

    Increase intimacy

    The front door doesn’t need to be parallel to the interior door for your space to count as a vestibule. You simply need the ability to close off one room from the other. Here, the antechamber doubles as a full-fledged entry hall. Placing the interior doorway perpendicular to the front door creates a sense of intimacy and privacy.

    Make peace with your property

    A vestibule can also be a terrific way to take advantage of a sloping grade. While a staircase leading to the front door is rarely appreciated when one is fumbling with luggage or groceries in the cold, a vestibule like this allows an entrant to quickly park the groceries inside, and then shuttle everything up the stairs and into the home in relative warmth.

    Pull it all together

    This architect-designed home outside Chicago makes use of several principles of a well-designed vestibule: A covered porch is the first layer of this multitiered entry, while the formal vestibule continues the outdoor materials inside and places the front door perpendicular to the open set of French doors. Visitors can feel warmed and welcome in these public spaces of the home.

    Take it out back

    Creating a vestibule doesn’t always require extensive remodeling and changes to your floor plan. If there’s no feasible way to seal off your entry, you could always add a covered shelter, insulated or not, to serve as a buffer zone against the elements, whether in the front or back of the house.

    Levinson designed this contemporary mudroom for a San Francisco home. “While some people may associate a mudroom or vestibule with more traditional homes, they add the same benefits to a contemporary home and can be every bit as stylish,” he says.

    Cut costs

    A vestibule is a luxury that not every home or budget can pull off. If all you can spare is a little platform inside the front door, a single step can go a long way toward defining the entry space — even if it’s not a true vestibule with two sets of doors.

     

    Get even more entryway inspiration from houzz.com.

     

    This article first appeared on Houzz on January 23, 2017.

     

    Jess McBride | Houzz Contributor

    Jess McBride | Houzz contributor



    Custom decorating professional with a lifelong passion for color, pattern, and texture of every "stripe."

    6 must-have elements to unlock your foyer's decor potential

    April 12, 2017 1:07 PM by pooja.katkar

    Wednesday, April 12, 2017

    Foyer decor ideas

    Get your foyer décor right by focusing on the six most important elements of a perfectly styled entryway.

     

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    Your foyer is the first thing to welcome you home each day and the first introduction to your personal style your guests will see. Make sure it is both welcoming and coordinates with the rest of your home by including these six elements below.

    1. Coordinating door hardware

    If you're still rocking the same door hardware that was installed when you moved in, it may be time to for an update that coordinates well with other style elements in your home. Take a look at existing lighting and fixtures, consider the style of your home and choose a style and finish that adds the perfect finishing touch. You'll be pleasantly surprised by how well door hardware completes the look. Try our style selector tool to help you get started.

    2. Adequate lighting

    There's nothing more welcoming than a vibrant, well-lit space. If your entryway has the tendency to look like a dungeon, consider installing new lighting that brings it to life. You can even opt for smart lighting that illuminates as soon as you unlock your front door with one of our connected smart locks.

    3. Organization

    It's easy to get home and throw your bags, coat, shoes and everything else you're carrying on the floor or nearest table. Tackle the chaos before it starts by adding a little organization right when you walk in. Install hooks for coats and bags, a shoe tray for shoes, and even a decorative crate or bucket to catch miscellaneous accessories.

    4. Landing strip

    The landing strip is also a key component of the organization you need above but is so important, it deserves its own callout. Add a table or even a slim shelf for small entryways to catch keys, mail, your phone, and other small miscellaneous items you may be carrying.

    5. Place to sit

    Give yourself and your guests an easy place to remove shoes by adding a chair or bench to your entryway. You can even save a little room by using the space below to organize shoes and accessories.

    6. Durable rug

    Finally, add the finishing touch with a rug that is both stylish and can stand up against whatever you may track in from outside. Resist the urge to choose something too light that will need replaced after a few weeks of wear and tear but don't be afraid to have a little fun with prints and color.

    Ready to get started? Check out these DIY entryway projects to help you complete a space affordably and with your own personal touch.

    The best modern door hardware for contemporary style homes

    April 7, 2017 1:39 PM by emily.bailey

    Friday, April 7, 2017

    Modern, Contemporary bedroom style

    From finish to knob and lever style, take a look at the perfect modern door hardware pairings you should consider for your contemporary home.

     

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    Contemporary spaces rely on the simplicity of color and shape to provide their aesthetic appeal, rather than elaborate design. With a focus on clean lines and basic shapes, Contemporary style was made popular throughout the design movements of the late 20th century. If that sounds like your personal style, take a look at the perfect door hardware pairings you should consider for your contemporary or modern home.
    Modern door hardware

    Trim

    The subtle details in our trim options establish a profound foundation for your door hardware. Give your home a unique touch by choosing a trim that perfectly reflects your modern or contemporary style.

    Century Trim

    Schlage Century style trim
    The Century trim is chic, boasting a delicate, slightly curved shape that is simple yet imaginative. This trim is a Mid-Century Modern design, characterized by homes built between 1945 and 1980 and made popular in Southern Californian cities like Santa Monica.

    Collins Trim

    Modern door hardware styles
    The strong lines and square shape of the Collins trim embody refined elegance and provide this trim with a distinct, minimalist appeal. This trim stems from Northern Europe where styles like Bauhaus and minimalism flourished, giving it a modern, international flair.

    Greenwich Trim

    Greenwich trim | Schlage
    The unassuming look of the Greenwich trim is modern and stylish and lends a chic touch of simplicity to any space. With a Californian flair, this trim was inspired by the look and feel of Mid-Century Modern homes.

    Greyson Trim

    Contemporary door hardware
    The Greyson trim is elegant, with contemporary appeal that adds a tasteful modern touch to any space. This trim has a chic, urban aesthetic, inspired by fast-paced metropolitan spaces like Manhattan.

    Upland Trim

    Modern door hardware styles
    The Upland trim offers a fresh take on simplistic design by focusing on the beauty of its shape alone. It takes significant style cues from the Bauhaus design movement, best known for open floor plans, functional furniture and smooth facades. This style was made popular in Germany and often featured a muted color palette of blacks, whites and greys.

    Knobs & levers

    Take your contemporary style up a notch by choosing the perfect knob or lever to accentuate your favorite trim above. These classic looks below never go out of style.

    Broadway lever

    Broadway Lever | Modern door hardware
    The minimal, tubular design of the Broadway lever offers a tastefully reserved, yet high-style look. This lever is influenced by the urban style found in large metropolitan cities. Its tubular design is a sub-genre of the Bauhaus movement.

    Latitude lever

    Latitude lever | Contemporary door lever
    The Latitude lever offers a crisp perspective on minimalist design with its clean lines and rectangular features. The modern look of the Latitude lever stems from Mid-Century Modern design and urban town centers like the vibrant city of Miami.

    Manhattan lever

    Manhattan lever | Contemporary door lever
    The Manhattan lever offers a modern touch of elegance to any space, bringing with it clean lines, a simple design and a commercial appeal. This lever finds its roots in Mid-Century Modern design and works particularly well in modern environments.

    Merano lever

    Merano lever | Contemporary door handle
    The Merano lever has a graceful curve that makes this style as delicate as it is chic. This lever gets its sophisticated style from Italian designs of the 1980s and 1990s. 

    Northbrook lever

    Northbrook lever | Modern door handle
    The Northbrook lever is imaginative and refined, offering a new view on minimalist design. This lever stems from Eastern European style—particularly that of Germany and the Bauhaus architectural movement. However, the inventive transition from square handle to round shank illustrates a fresh interpretation of true Bauhaus design.

    Bowery knob

    Bowery | Modern door knob
    The Bowery knob’s clean lines and minimalist design give it a futuristic look that’s as modern as it is stylish. The smart style of the Bowery knob stems from its Mid-Century Modern roots that are ever-present in Schlage’s contemporary line.

    Finishes

    Complete your contemporary door hardware set with a finish that coordinates perfectly. Here are four we'd recommend below.

    Satin nickel

    Satin nickel
    Satin Nickel is a versatile finish, full of brushed silver hues, that offers a tasteful and flattering accent to any project. This classic finish saw its rise to popularity alongside the Victorian and Mid-Century Modern design movements.

    Bright chrome

    Bright chrome
    The smooth, mirror-like finish of Bright Chrome gives it a dramatic allure that never fails to make a statement. Bright Chrome finds its inspiration in the Art Deco movement and the jazzy style of the roaring 20s, but is able to seamlessly transition into the minimalist approach of the 1930s and 40s as well.

    Polished nickel

    Polished nickel
    The Polished Nickel finish is a glamorous designer finish that’s adaptability allows it to blend into nearly any décor without being overlooked. It was inspired by the timeless sophistication of the Victorian Era. Made from solid nickel, it can change its color and appearance with a simple change of lighting.

    Matte black

    Matte black
    The striking appearance of the Matte Black finish creates an elegant look that’s sure to be noticed in any style setting. Matte Black is unique in its ability to serve as a bridge between the worlds of modern and traditional styles.
    For even more help building the perfect door hardware set for your contemporary home, check out our style selector tool.

    Houzz feature: No reason to go grand when a little glam will do

    March 24, 2017 4:49 PM by emily.bailey

    Friday, March 24, 2017

    Glamorous chandeliers

    See 5 great spots where mini chandeliers can add some understated glamour to your home.

     

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    Grand chandeliers dripping with crystals are as timeless as they are elegant, but unless you live in a mansion they can sometimes feel over the top. Not that there’s anything wrong with over the top. But if your style leans more toward the understated or you just don’t have the square footage for a Versailles-worthy chandelier, perhaps mini chandeliers can add the right amount of glam to your home. Here are five spots to hang mini chandeliers that may spark your interest.

    1. Bedroom

    Let’s ease into the concept with a look that’s not so far-fetched: mini chandeliers over nightstands. While it’s more common to see lamps, sconces or simple pendants with nightstands, a mini chandelier on each side of the bed adds a little extra elegance to the boudoir. Combine this look with mirrored nightstands to double the sparkle.

    Another spot where a mini chandelier can do some heavy lifting is in a bed alcove in a studio apartment. When there’s just enough room for a bed and not much else, a mini chandelier can have a dramatic effect. This little alcove looks every bit as luxurious as a grand master suite.

    2. Bathroom

    Chandeliers have been associated with luxury since the days of medieval monarchies. Whether you opt for one inspired by old-school candelabras or a more crystalline style, hanging a pair above a sink in lieu of pendants or sconces will add drama and luxury. This bathroom’s two-chandelier scheme works effectively because the light fixtures are offset from the sink, eliminating the chances of banging a head on them.

    This powder room in Kansas doubles up on luxury with ornate mini chandeliers teamed with a custom wall treatment with flecks of metallic paint that catch the light as it bounces around the windowless room. A furniture-style vanity and frameless scalloped mirror complete the tasteful scene.

    3. Reading spot

    If you’re someone who prefers to stretch out on a window seat to enjoy a good book and take in the view, consider hanging a mini chandelier above it. It will provide ample light without being so large that it blocks the view.

    4. Mini bar

    Small spaces such as walk-in closets, powder rooms and built-in bars are prime real estate for adding a little glam. Since there is less surface area to cover, you can turn these areas into little jewelry boxes at a fraction of the cost. Designer Joel Dessaules added a vintage chandelier to this swanky built-in bar in a Los Angeles mid-century home.

    5. Breakfast nook

    While this breakfast nook’s wall color and upholstery might steal the show, the glass chandelier is still a savvy selection. What’s interesting to note is the use of a mini chandelier over the table, rather than the full-size fixture you might expect to see for such a substantial nook. It’s clear that the fixture is scaled to the table and not the floor space, and is intended to play a supporting role to everything else going on in the room.

    Chandeliers are most commonly found above formal dining tables, but with the trend toward a more casual lifestyle, it makes sense to see them popping up above breakfast tables too. These three ornate mini chandeliers hanging above a casual farmhouse table create a stylish juxtaposition. The space is ideal for breakfast or an elegant dinner for four.

    Installing a new chandelier is a simple project you can complete quickly for a chance to add a little glam to a casual space. Get even more lighting ideas from our friends at Houzz.

     

    This article first appeared on Houzz January 20, 2017.

     

    Jess McBride | Houzz Contributor

    Jess McBride | Houzz contributor



    Custom decorating professional with a lifelong passion for color, pattern, and texture of every "stripe."

    Refresh a single room in your home with a few details

    March 14, 2017 5:15 PM by emily.bailey

    Tuesday, March 14, 2017

    Refresh a single room in your home with a few details | Schlage

    By focusing on a few key details that tie a space together, you can give your home a refresh in no time.

     

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    Giving your home a fresh new look for spring doesn't always require a full remodel. By focusing on a few key details that tie a space together, you can give your home a refresh in no time. Here are five details that are easy to complete and will take your style up a notch.

    1. Paint the ceiling

    There's no rule that says ceilings must be white. Accentuate fun architectural details or add a unique pop of color. We love how Melissa of the Polka Dot Chair chose navy to pull her office space together. Get all the details on how she completed her office refresh in one weekend.

    Painted office ceiling | Schlage

    2. Install new door hardware

    With an easy guest bedroom makeover, Better Living proves that the details can bring a space to life. We love how this Satin Brass lever pops adding the perfect finishing touch to this luxurious guest room

    Satin Brass door lever | Schlage

    3. Add accessories and organization on your walls


    Kill two birds with one stone by adding storage and organization that doubles as decor. Kari of U Create perfectly repurposed wooden hexagons by painting them in different shades of blue for an ombre look that perfectly accents her bathroom makeover. Find out how she gave her small bathroom an affordable update.

    Bathroom organization | Schlage

    4. Brighten things up with new lighting


    Nothing drags the style of a space down more than inadequate or unflattering lighting. Consider swapping harsh or dull lighting out for a classic fixture that works well with other hardware in the space. That's what Karrie of Happy Money Saver did to bring a neglected bathroom to life.

    Bathroom lighting ideas | Schlage

    5. Give your hallway some style

    The hallway may be the last place you would think to decorate or remodel but just like all the little projects above, it's a simple detail that can give your home more personality and style. Diane of In My Own Style perfectly embraces her dark hallway by choosing to take a risk and go bold in a small space.

    Navy hallway ideas | Schlage
    Which room in your home would be the easiest to refresh? Comment below to let us know!

    5 design details that tie an entire room together

    March 9, 2017 3:30 PM by emily.bailey

    Thursday, March 9, 2017

    5 design details that tie an entire room together | Schlage

    Here are five design details that are easy to update and make a major impact on the style of your home.

     

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    When it comes to interior design, the details matter. It's easy to become focused on the major elements, like paint colors and furniture, and overlook the little things. When it's all said and done, it's the details that really set a room off and tie everything together. Here are five elements that are easy to update and make a major impact on the style of your home.
    5 design details that tie an entire room together | Schlage

    1. Door hardware

    Updating your door hardware is an easy project that puts the finishing touch on your space. Try upping your style game but installing a new style and finish that coordinates well with existing hardware and accessories in your home.

    2. Lighting

    Whether you want to add style or function to your space, new lighting can freshen up any room. Try a finish that coordinates with your door hardware and opt for a fixture that brings adequate light into the space.

    3. Hinges

    Don't let the fear of installing new hinges keep you from trying a new finish on your door hardware. Replacing hinges with a coordinating finish is an easy project when you follow a few simple steps. Check out our step-by-step guide to installing new hinges to see for yourself.

    4. Plumbing & fixtures

    Consider updating your bathroom and kitchen faucets to a style and finish that complements your personal style. Uncoordinated hardware can be the single element keeping your home from feeling put together.

    5. Accessories

    Once you've completed installation of your new hardware, set it off with a few accessories that either match or complement the finish. Add a few pops of color for a fun twist or stick to a neutral palette for a sophisticated look. Whatever your personal style, bring it to life in the details.

    We want to help you complete the details in your home and simplify your next DIY project. Follow along with us on Facebook and Instagram for plenty of inspiration.

    Update your home's style from start to finish

    March 1, 2017 1:45 PM by emily.bailey

    Wednesday, March 1, 2017

    Update your home's style from start to finish | Schlage

    Check out this video to see how door hardware can make a major impact on the style of your home.

     

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    Whether you want to revamp your curb appeal or give your interior a quick upgrade, Schlage's door hardware makes it easy to add the finishing touch to your home. Check out this video to see how door hardware can make a major impact.

     

    The best door hardware for traditional style homes

    February 16, 2017 1:15 PM by emily.bailey

    Thursday, February 16, 2017

    The best door hardware for traditional style homes | Schlage

    From finish to knob and lever style, take a look at the perfect door hardware pairings you should consider for your traditional home.

     

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    Sometimes, where we've been in the past can light the way forward. What was beautfiul before remains beautiful today. And, in the right hands, a nod to tradtion becomes a thrilling departure from the ordinary. That's what Schlage refers to as traditional style.

     

    Traditional style is rooted in the past and is focused on familiarity, comfort and romanticism. This style is often sophisticated and luxurious featuring floral patterns, fringe and tassels, and scalloped edges. If that sounds like your personal style, take a look at the perfect door hardware pairings you should consider for your traditional home.

    The best door hardware for traditional style homes | Schlage

    Trim

    The subtle details in our trim options establish a profound foundation for your door hardware. Give your home a unique touch by choosing a trim that perfectly reflects your traditional style.

    Addison Trim

    Addison trim
    The Addison trim has a distinguished look that incorporates subtle details without losing its classic simplicity. This trim was inspired by Edwardian architecture—particularly the windows and window treatments associated with that style.

    Brookshire Trim

    Brookshire trim
    The elaborate Brookshire trim features ornate details and an opulent design aesthetic. It's reminiscent of styles seen in areas like San Francisco and Cape May, and takes its inspiration from the rich, ornamental look of the Victorian Era.

    Camelot Trim

    Camelot trim
    The Camelot trim’s scalloped architectural details can make any room charming and approachable. This trim draws on colonial inspiration, but fits just as well into the transitional category because of its Victorian Era edge detailing.

    Wakefield Trim

    Wakefield trim
    The Wakefield trim is soft and simple, bringing a warm, welcoming style to any room. This style is inspired by classic Federal-style homes made popular in towns like Arlington, Virginia.

    Knobs & levers

    Take your traditional style up a notch by choosing the perfect knob or lever to accentuate your favorite trim above. These classic looks below never go out of style.

    Andover Knob

    Andover knob
    The Andover knob is traditional but versatile, with delicate details and a subtle hint of elegance. It is reflective of Federal-style homes, like those constructed around the time of the original thirteen colonies and those that continue to be constructed on the East Coast today.

    Siena knob

    Siena knob
    The Siena knob’s eye-catching oval shape gives it a unique and memorable look. Inspired by Federal-style homes found throughout the United States, particularly in the Midwest, the Siena knob is best paired with the Wakefield or Camelot trim.

    Birmingham lever

    Birmingham lever
    The ornately styled Birmingham lever spares no attention to detail, providing a touch of refinement everywhere it goes. This lever draws its inspiration from the Victorian Era—particularly Victorian plumbing that featured delicate flourishes and ornamental touches, making it a perfect match for the Brookshire trim.

    Flair lever

    Flair lever
    The elegant Flair lever’s ornate details are reminiscent of a paper scroll, giving the lever a dramatic bit of – yes, flair. The Flair lever pairs best with the Addison, Brookshire or Camelot trim.

    Finishes

    Complete your traditional door hardware set with a finish that coordinates perfectly. Here are three we'd recommend below.

    Antique brass

    Antique brass
    Rich brown hues and golden undertones lend a warm, inviting appeal to the Antique Brass finish. This finish closely resembles the look of natural brass and is undeniably Victorian, with hints of Colonial Era style occasionally peeking through.

    Aged bronze

    Aged bronze
    The elegant sophistication of the Aged Bronze finish is apparent in the warm, copper tones that break through its darker, aged exterior. It's a traditionally inspired finish that finds its style rooted in the Victorian Era, but also heavily in the Arts & Crafts movement—Aged Bronze works exceptionally well with ornate, handmade, craftsman-style furnishings.

    Matte black

    Matte black
    The striking appearance of the Matte Black finish creates an elegant look that’s sure to be noticed in any style setting. Matte Black is unique in its ability to serve as a bridge between the worlds of modern and traditional styles and looks most stylish with the Addison trim.
    For even more help building the perfect door hardware set for your traditional home, check out our style selector tool.

    Houzz feature: How brass hardware can boost your bathroom style

    February 2, 2017 1:50 PM by emily.bailey

    Friday, February 3, 2017

    How brass hardware can boost your bathroom style | Schlage

    See what to mix with this trendy alloy, how to keep it from showing water spots and more.
     

     

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    Brass is the biggest home design material trend to emerge (or re-emerge, rather) in recent years. It’s been steadily popping up everywhere, including in the bathroom, where it works wonderfully. But many homeowners fear that the metal might not be a good fit for wet environments. To put your mind at ease about indulging in this coveted look, here are some tips and facts showing that when it comes to bathrooms, brass is full of class.

    What is brass?

    Brass is an alloy (a mix of two metals) made of copper and zinc. The in-demand brass look of the moment is a pale yellowish hue, desired for appearing like a toned-down, demure version of gold. However, the line between brass and copper finishes can be very blurry, as the amount of red can vary depending on the specific mix.

     

    For comparison, bronze is a mixture of copper with various other metals, like tin or aluminum. It’s a duller gold hue that feels less glam and more earthy.

     

    Bronze is often “blackened” either by mixing in specific materials or by adding a coating for an almost burnt-coal appearance, but unblackened it can be very close to brass in its metallic brown warmth.


    Ultimately the usage of these alloys is similar, with bronze tending to appeal to more traditional tastes and brass reading as more contemporary.

    Will brass show water spots?

    One of the main concerns homeowners often have about introducing brass into the bathroom is how this material will hold up in a wet space. To avoid water spots, some manufacturers suggest gently patting brass fixtures dry after every use.

     

    However, it should be noted that many manufacturers actually suggest this for almost all metal finishes, including the more common nickel and chrome, so take it with a grain of salt.

     

    Maintaining a day-to-day spotless finish on your fixtures takes some work, but brass is not generally tough to take care of — although the look-at-me finish may command a little more scrutiny.

    Lacquered vs. Unlacquered

    Like other metals, brass can come in various physical finishes that give the metal a different appearance. The most common variations (for less or more shine) are brushed, satin, matte and polished, as well as faux aging for an antiqued look.

    However, the biggest determiner of how brass will change over time is whether the material is lacquered or has been left unlacquered. Lacquer is a separate finishing coat that can be applied to any metal finish.

    Lacquered brass

    Quality lacquered brass is effectively sealed and won’t age significantly (at least in your lifetime), while unlacquered brass will age naturally, developing spots and uneven tones.

     

    As brass is still a growing trend, items with a lacquer finish are usually made to order rather than stocked, so this option will typically add to the price and the turnaround time (often by four to eight weeks). So keep this in mind when shopping for brass, because you’ll want to have ordered your fixtures well before any serious construction begins.

     

    Also note that a lacquer finish does not make any material magic; fingerprints can still show on a shiny surface, so if you’re fussy about that, a matte finish may bring more peace of mind.

    Unlacquered brass

    The natural tendency of brass to show some imperfections can be a welcome characteristic for some people, so going unlacquered is not necessarily the lesser option; it all depends on your taste. Unlacquered brass is often said to have a “living finish,” and the aging process can bring out a very organic quality despite its being a manufactured material. For this reason, people often introduce unlacquered brass and bronze in an already-aged finish that can grow even more character over time, giving a room a sense of life and history.

     

    Ultimately these worn-in finishes can work in both traditional and contemporary spaces, depending on whether you apply them to clean modern shapes or scrolling traditional fixtures.

    Perfect pairings for brass.

    If you’re ready to be bold with a little brass, try one of these styling strategies.

    Navy

    Warm brass and cool navy are opposites on the color wheel, but they’re both neutral. So instead of putting each other on edge, they simply bring out the best in each other.

    Try a navy blue vanity with brass hardware, or highlight a set of sunny shower fixtures with a navy accent tile.

    Vintage meets modern

    Want the best of old and new? Try mixing more traditional or vintage pieces in a brass finish with crisp silvery modern fixtures, like this elaborate mirror and airy vanity. Keep the rest of the finishes neutral to let the interplay of old and new be the center of attention.

    Concrete

    Concrete is a favorite material for designers, but some homeowners find it a little chilly. In a bathroom, a combination of concrete and warm brass makes it welcoming and packed with personality while still feeling clean, crisp and spa-like.

    Try a one-piece vanity and sink formed in concrete with a wall-mounted polished brass faucet, or simply add some concrete accessories, like a block soap dish and vase, to contrast a brassy mirror frame.

    Rich grey

    Similar to concrete, a simple gray paint job (or tile color) will beautifully offset the warmth and shine of a brass finish. Try rounding this palette out with stark whites and some warm wood to get oodles of interest without introducing a single flash-in-the-pan trend color.

    Silver

    Want just a little splash of brass? Don’t be scared to introduce just one or two elements of brass, copper or bronze and contrast them against classic silvery fixture finishes.

    Lights make for a natural place to add some spice, while functional fixtures will never feel out of place in cool metals, so you don’t have to feel pressured to change all your metal finishes at once.

    Farmhouse elements

    Conversely, try using brass for just your plumbing fixtures, and go for a surprisingly traditional style with farmhouse or cottage inspirations (like this decidedly low-tech shower set with exposed piping). The quirky look is perfect for contemporary spaces that aren’t shy about mixing periods, and makes even the starkest shower look welcoming.

    Get more inspiration for incorporating brass hardware in your home by checking out these moments where brass hardware looked its best. Where would you love to see a little more brass in your home? Comment below to let us know.
     

    This article first appeared on Houzz on May 23, 2016.

     

    Yanic Simard | Houzz Contributor

    Yanic Simard | Houzz contributor



    Principal designer at the award-winning Toronto Interior Design Group and it’s talented team of designers.

    Get a jump-start on spring cleaning with a bathroom refresh

    January 24, 2017 3:40 PM by emily.bailey

    Tuesday, January 24, 2017

    Get a jump start on spring cleaning with a bathroom refresh | Schlage

    Refresh your bathroom the easy way with these five bathroom projects you can complete quickly and affordably.
     

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    With each new year, many homeowners feel the need to give their space a fresh start. Whether it's purging items you no longer need or your goal is to fully renovate to update the style of your home, it helps to take baby steps as you strive to reach your goals. 

     

    Here are five bathroom remodels from a few of our favorite designers and bloggers to inspire your next project.

    1. MAKE BUDGET-FRIENDLY UPGRADES

    You don't have to complete a head-to-toe makeover to give your bathroom a little more personality. Designer Nicole Gibbons takes her client's builder-grade guest bath from boring and a little unflattering to polished and stylish by simply updating the bathroom's hardware. A project like this can be completed with ease in a single afternoon.

    Get a jump start on spring cleaning with a bathroom refresh | Schlage

    2. TRY SOMETHING BOLD

    The bathroom is the perfect space to try something new and a little out of your comfort zone. That's exactly what these homeowners did when they opted for a deep green that covered every surface instead of their first choice - white. We love that they painted the trim the same color, making the space look even larger.

    Get a jump start on spring cleaning with a bathroom refresh | Schlage

    3. ADD THE FINISHING TOUCH

    Maybe your bathroom could benefit from one more detail that ties the entire room together. Consider swapping your door hardware for a style and finish that better reflects your personal style. It's an affordable project that any DIY skill level can accomplish. We love Amanda's - from the Fashionable Hostess - choice of door hardware. The Birmingham lever with Wakefield trim gives her bathroom a subtle touch of sophistication that completes her crisp and clean space.

    Get a jump start on spring cleaning with a bathroom refresh | Schlage

    4. CREATE FUNCTIONAL BUT STYLISH STORAGE

    Open shelving isn't just for the kitchen. Show off your cutest bathroom necessities and keep things a little more organized with this trendy update. Get the full details on the entire bathroom remodel from making it in the mountains.

    Get a jump start on spring cleaning with a bathroom refresh | Schlage

    5. FOCUS ON THE DETAILS

    Even the smallest details can take your bathroom style up a notch. We love how Jenny of the Little Green Notebook took inspiration from other architectural details in the home to give a boring vanity a little more character. It's a tiny detail that makes a big impact.

    Get a jump start on spring cleaning with a bathroom refresh | Schlage
    Are you planning a bathroom update anytime soon? Share your favorite inspiring photos and befores and afters with us on Facebook and Instagram.