Give Your Living Room A Wow Factor

A rug on top of your living room hardwood is an accessory that can easily transform your space. Small rugs look great on top of sleek hardwood flooring and can add a whole new dimension to the room, especially if they include rich colors, textures or patterns.

Any carpet can be custom bound into a unique area rug. With such a wide variety of carpet styles and designs, giving your room a completely different atmosphere is simple and effortless. Consider these rug ideas for your living room design.

Durable Patterns
Houses catering to a family should include a rug that can withstand the wear and tear usually inflicted upon the floor by children.

“Real Simple’ magazine suggests patterned rugs to make the space more visually interesting, adding another element of texture to your living room.

Use Your Rug As An Accessory
The size of your rug should be smaller than the area that your furniture covers. People often make the mistake of using an oversized rug for their room, covering up more of their hardwood floor than they have to. According to HGTV, the front two legs of your sofas or chairs should be placed on the area rug, supporting the gathering space, but not taking away from the overall sleekness or openness of the room. Think of the rug as an accessory, just like your ottoman or coffee table. It shouldn’t take over your flooring, but complement it instead.

“Real Simple” recommended using a decorative rug to draw attention to a specific piece of furniture, like your bold-colored sofa. This is easily done by contrasting the color of the rug with that of the piece of furniture you want to make the focal point of the living room.

Source: Shaw Floors

Terrace-Level Transformation

MODA Floors & Interiors Project Consultant/Interior Designer: Theresa Minkoff Client: Bires Remodeling

What We Did: This project involved the entire terrace level. The original wood had been water damaged. MODA took up the original product and replaced it with the new. The product is Provenza Old World Collection – Mink – Prefinished Engineered Hardwood. The Old World Collection features a wire brushed, hand distressed and scraped hardwood in combination with an innovative smoking and carbonizing technique.

  • Species: Oak
  • Style: Light Wire Brush
  • Grade: Select to Heavy Character
  • Finish: UV Cured Oil
  • Construction: Engineered

Design Challenge: The design challenge on this project was finding a distressed/rustic product that married the existing traditional site-finished wood on the stairs and main floor with some newer updated color pallets and existing furnishings and fireplace surround at the terrace level.

As this collection has heavy character, smoking varied stain colors and carbonizing, we ordered in three separate colors in the collection so the client could see each color laid out in the room to ensure the color choice was the perfect marriage.

Choosing Area Rugs For Your Home

  • Why should a homeowner consider placing a small or large area rug in a particular room? Area rugs are an excellent option to accent a room and protect hardwoods from excessive wear. They also provide comfort in a gathering space.
  • What are the benefits of using a rug? Since many homes have hardwoods and tile, rugs protect from heavy wear and tear. They also help with sound reduction.
  • What different rug fabrics, colors, styles, shapes and sizes are available today that perhaps weren’t available years ago? Area rugs are more often made from carpet, which provides flexibility in size, shape, color and pattern. We are able to provide a custom rug within three to six weeks. Many pre-made rugs come in standard sizes that no longer fit larger spaces and to order a custom size can take several months.
  • In which rooms are area rugs most effective and why? All rooms that need softness, warmth or an extra element of design are good candidates for an area rug.
  • What are some things a homeowner should consider before choosing the perfect rug for their chosen living space? Clients should consider the use of the space. 1-Stain resistant fibers like nylon and polypropylene are best for spaces with heavy traffic, children and pets. Wool is a very durable and luxurious option. Sisal and Seagrass are natural choices that can be accented with fabric borders. 2-The size of the rug can be determined by the room or the seating space. Dining tables should always be 18 to 24 inches larger on each side to allow easy movement of chairs. 3-When choosing a rug you should have swatches or pictures of your current furnishings and fabrics. Rugs can be used to create a neutral canvas for a bold room or as an accent in a monochromatic design.
  • What is the expected lifespan of an area rug before you should consider replacing it? Area rugs require proper cleaning maintenance to achieve the longest life span, just like carpet. The fabric quality and location can also dictate the lifespan.
  • Any other tips or suggestions on this topic? When shopping for a rug bring fabric swatches, pictures of the space and a rough dimension of the room. This helps the designer or the sales person make informed suggestions.

Source: Leslie Waller, MODA Floors & Interiors project consultant/designer

Where Do You Find Design Inspiration?

What’s your go-to resource for finding design inspiration for your home? Pinterest, Houzz, magazines or somewhere else? Showhouses are another excellent resource, and many times proceeds from these events go to support a worthwhile cause. To quote Oscar Wilde, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.”

Designers at the 2018 Southeastern Designer Showhouse and Gardens were big into wallpaper, pastels and global design. Check out this article from HGTV. 

Although this event is one for the history books, here are two other showhouses you might want to consider attending.

The Serenbe Designer Showhouse starts Sept. 14 and runs until Oct. 7. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Art Farm at Serenbe, which is an art complex that provides a place to bring people together in support of the arts. The five-bedroom home is designed as a modern farmhouse with a board & batten exterior and a beautiful stone chimney. The showhouse will feature the work of more than 10 top interior designers.

Presented by Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles, the 10th Annual Home for the Holidays Designer Showhouse, scheduled Nov. 15-Dec. 9, is a very large Buckhead estate that sits on 1.5 acres. The English country abode features a locally sourced limestone and brick exterior and open spaces filled with daylight.

What design ideas have you picked up from pervious showhouses that you like and have incorporated into a home?

How Do I Clean Grout?

Cementitious grout is porous – it can absorb a stain. Looked at under a microscope, there is a large surface area to absorb stains. For this reason, many owners choose to seal their grout – usually the better the sealer, the more the grout joint is protected. Even better, if epoxy grout is used, it is virtually as stain proof as the tile.

Removing stains from cementitious grout is similar to removing stains from clothing. The same cleaners you might use on clothes to get out a stain should also work on grout.

Keep in mind though, that grout is based primarily of cement and sand. Sand, like glass, is unaffected chemically by most cleaners. Cement is not – rather it is alkaline based and is dissolved by acids. As baking soda and vinegar react, so do grout and vinegar.
Accordingly, it is better to clean grout with an alkaline cleaner (Spic and Span, Mr. Clean, etc.) than an acid based cleaner. There are also specialty cleaners available at most tile retailers that are designed for tile and grout. There are also cleaners with enzymes that attack stains similar to enzyme pre-soaks for laundry.

The same cleaner that works on the grout generally will work well on the tile. In fact, since the tile is usually so easy to clean, the tile can often be cleaned with water.
Just a few more important points: As the grout can absorb the soap as well as a stain, do not clean with oil or wax based cleaners (Murphy’s Oil soap, Pine Sol, etc.). These products will leave a waxy or oily film in the grout. Even good alkaline cleaners, if not properly rinsed, will leave a sticky soap film. This usually attracts dirt. In fact, truly clean ceramic tile without any sticky soap film will stay very clean as tile does not tend to hold an electrostatic charge (which can attract some kinds of dirt).

The absolutely best way to clean grout is to apply the cleaner and then vacuum (“shop vac”) up the dirty water. This lifts the dirt off the joint. Apply rinse water and vacuum that water up. This lifts off any remaining soap film.

Just to mention it, there are tile installers that remove very stubborn stains on grout with an acid (like straight vinegar or a stronger acid). There they have elected to dissolve the top layer of grout molecules so the stain is no longer attached to anything. While this works, it is not recommended by the grout manufacturers – needing to regrout is sometimes the result. Also, extreme care should be used when handling any acids.

Should you be unable to get your grout clean through conventional methods, you may also want to try steam. Some stains that do not respond to conventional cleaners will come clean when subjected to pressurized steam. As a last resort, some installers elect to cut out the grout and regrout. This is possible although care must be taken to not damage or loosen the tile. Generally it is not possible to grout directly over the old grout without cutting the old grout out. The same contaminants that made the old grout dirty may prevent new grout from sticking properly.
Source: The Tile Council of North America

Townhouse Gets Total Update

Treads PhotoMODA Floors & Interiors Project Consultant: Tasha Elrod
Client: Cruickshank Remodeling
Location: Atlanta

Goal: A rather tired townhouse was given new life in a total makeover by Cruickshank Remodeling. The work included updates to the kitchen and baths, along with flooring, lighting and interior painting.

What We Did:

Dining Room PhotoMain Floor and Treads: Shaw Floorte (Water Proof Core) Antica HD Plus 578 Temporale
Bedrooms: Dreamweaver Town Square 12’ 945 Castle Carpet
Master Bath: CC Mosaics Octagonal Snow White & Grey

Design Challenge: Budget

Photos: Cruickshank Remodeling