April 12, 2015

Traditional Design...With a Twist

This post is a continuation of my chat about decorating with "traditional" style. I am looking at ways to update and make my home's traditional style a little fresher. I guess that is part of spring and looking at renewal. Anyway...I am having fun researching new ways to incorporate fresh ideas into my home's style. I invite you to join me in the journey.


I love this picture! To me it says "traditional but fresh traditional." I see an old table, an ornate mirror, and blue and white pieces. All are traditional items. So what is it that makes this room look fresh and have that new, modern, updated vibe? Is it the gray paint with the crisp white woodwork. What do you think?  

Here is a bedroom that has a fresh look...while it is still quite traditional. The four poster bed, armoire, and round side table look like antiques. Yet the room looks fresh and modern. It also has a light grey paint with crisp white woodwork, but wall to wall carpet. 

I am loving an updated traditional look right now.  So, how does one blend a love of federal style and a newly emerging "like" of fresh contemporary/transitional in their décor?  For me, it will have to be in the details, as there will be no huge overhall of my home. Wow, and too much money. But, isn't it usually in the details? It seems to me that the "details" are what contribute to a finished style.

From Southern Living Magazine...bold color, animal rug! A bit of the unexpected with the rug!

Traditional wood shakes and slate floor, with a more modern table.

David Scott Interiors

I have been studying this "traditional with a twist" for a while now. I have been looking at pictures, blogs, websites, etc. Here is an article that I ran across in my surfing the internet....

Traditional with a Twist: 

   News Flash, Classic Decor Doesn’t Have to Be Boring
 Here are some dos and don’ts for updating your traditional décor...
This article, by Cindy Hodnett,  includes a list of things to do or not to do when wanting an updated "fresh"  traditional décor.  (But of course...these are the ideas of just one person. All of us must make our homes suit ourselves, and our family.)  for more reading....

Defining “Traditional”
…Bradley defines traditional decor as a “timeless interior that has historical reference, is customized to your needs and is tailored for today’s lifestyle.” His recipe for creating “traditional with a twist” style includes the following dos and don’ts: 
·         include antiques
·         choose luxurious upholstery
·         add accessories and fine art
·         slipcover a traditional chair silhouette in a solid linen fabric
·         lacquer a piece of brown mahogany furniture in a neutral putty color
·         paint an entire room, including trim and ceiling, one color
·         frame a traditional piece of art in a plexiglass frame
·        spread a nubby-textured, natural fiber matting under a traditional oriental carpet
·        use high-gloss lacquer paper lampshades the same color as the walls in the room for all  of the lamps
·        add a piece of Parson’s style furniture to the room, whether made of mirror, lacquer, fabric or plexiglass
·        add good, contemporary, abstract art to the room

·         match your sofa fabric to your drapes
·         match your throw pillows to your sofa
·         have too many trims and tassels
·         have too many accessories spread around
·         use a too-small rug
·         use too-small furniture
·         use too many formal items in the room  
·         ignore the television and computer; include them as components in the room’s design

Classic appeal with an unexpected variation
(yes, this is what I want!)

Take a look at the next few pics. Could this much color be used in a traditional room? I love color...so I think that I could have this saturated color. Could you live with this much color? This much boldness? I love these colors, and this sofa. I tend to stay neutral with my furniture...but go with color on the walls. This sofa is so pretty to me! It would not fit into my current color scheme...but I sure like it.
source: Ballards howtodecorate.com
Ballards howtodecorate.com
Ballards howtodecorate.com
Ballards howtodecorate.com
This (timeless, confident, bold)  is getting me on the right design track. I want a timeless traditional look…with an unexpected touch of something new and fresh. Right now I have "timeless traditional"…but I am wanting something current too. I want to freshen up the "mama cave" to be more relevant…without going modern. I am thinking perhaps a lamp and a pillow are two areas I could redo. The lamp in the sitting room had a mate…but it broke during one of our moves. So, the remaining lamp is old, and nothing very special. It dates from the 1990s, and so an updated lamp may be just the ticket to freshen things up a bit in my “traditional” looking parlor.  
living room design with black and gold
(Older lamp that needs updating...in the corner. Tassel needs to go!)

I have been mulling over this “twist” thing for several months, trying to figure out how to update my room.  If I find a fabric that I love…I could make some pillows. And then I would need to find just the right lamp. And of course…those items need to play nicely with each other. 

This updating business is not easy…but I like a challenge. I have been hung up on the idea that my English looking floral on the wing back chairs would need to be slipcovered, or changed. So, the challenge gets harder if I have to find a great pillow fabric that also goes with the floral wingbacks. Hmmm.  OR  The white sofa would not be a problem…as almost anything works with it. Maybe I should make pillows that go on the sofa instead of on the floral chairs?  Ok. I need ideas here. Help!

plum chintz fabric
Floral fabric on wing back chairs...keep or cover?

I have lots of color in the wing chair fabric. Perhaps I can play off of this fabric...and bring more color to the white sofa? As you can see, this might take a while. ha! I am in no rush. I have rushed projects before...and ended up not liking what I did.  
I just wanted to let you in on my thought process of adding a fresh “twist” to my room. I have not done anything...but I am working hard thinking about it. Really...thinking can be hard work! :-)

Please send you suggestions for my little mama cave. I need your ideas! Really I do. 

Thanks for visiting.

My Kentucky Living
My Kentucky Living

Hello, I'm Sheila and my house is a giant art project! I enjoy creating an environment where my family can feel safe, secure, and loved. We are empty nesters learning to slow down and enjoy life.

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