Breaking Area Rug “Rules”

Area rugs do much more than add coziness and comfort to bare feet. They also serve fundamental interior design functions. Area rugs contain furniture by creating subtle outlines that distinguish and define individual living areas. On top of this, they can also provide added color, pattern and texture. The right rug, therefore, can have a significant impact in completing the look and feel of a room.

Choosing an area rug for your home requires careful consideration of “pile, durability, size, shape, patterns, textures, weight, cost, dye, practicality, manufacturing processes and, last but not least, beauty,” as one design writer notes. But be careful not to get hung up on area rug “rules.” After all, there are no real rules in interior design.

One rule is that you must leave a significant amount of bare floor around the rug. In this elegant design, however, I placed the rug quite close to the hearth to help soften the expansive stonewall.

Another area rug rule is that either all furniture legs must be on the rug or at least all front legs. But in this luxurious log cabin, some of the front legs fall on the area rug, while the couch sits back with no legs on the rug. This way, the rusted brown color of the couch and the gorgeous pattern of the rug do not override each other.

In this stunning contemporary design, I happened to follow the previously mentioned “rule.” I love the way this looks because it highlights the subtle trim of the rug.

While I left plenty of inches around the edges of this table, I decided to let the rug extend out farther on one end in order to create slight asymmetry, which adds to the eclecticism.

Rather then simply placing area rugs in the hallways, I added a beautiful area rug to complement and help draw attention to the stunning stone accent wall.

To learn more about my work, browse my portfolio, and then contact Paula Berg Design Associates in Park City or Scottsdale. 

Add a Touch of Modernity with Textured Wood Ceilings

Many people automatically categorize wood interiors as old fashioned and outdated. But please don’t be fooled — knotty wood can make for the ultimate modern interior design when incorporated properly and creatively.

First, let’s talk about what exactly knotty wood is. It’s a pretty simple concept. Have you ever seen a freshly cut tree trunk? You may remember seeing a number of spots or “knots” present. These natural demarcations, when left fully intact, can help emit a natural and rustic feel in the home.

Contrary to popular belief, bold interior designs don’t have to involve use of bright colors and off-the-wall decor. Many times, it’s all about the way you use common materials in unpredictable ways. In this particular space we designed, the ceiling is much more than just its name. Acting as a fifth wall, these wood planks and beams play a vital role in adding visual texture for an overall appealing focal point.

What’s also great about this space is the overall tone-on-tone theme. Although there are lots of materials used in this room, it all comes together to produce a warm, earthy feel that’s still completely modern.

Using wood in design can do much more than make your home a modern, yet rustic haven, too. If you’re looking for deeper meaning and going green is your thing, wood that’s renewable, sustainable or even locally harvested are all ways to ensure your home project doesn’t use unnecessary resources. Not only will these options save materials, but they’re often more cost-effective as well.

I’d love to have the opportunity to blend knotty wood into your rustic home design. Be sure to check out my photo gallery to see of examples of how we’ve already done this. To speak one-on-one about your design needs, you can always reach out to one of our studios in Park City, UT or Scottsdale, AZ. The team at Paula Berg Design Associates can’t wait to speak with you!

Polished Living Rooms – Contemporary Furniture Arrangements

Arranging furniture in a contemporary style living room might seem like a fun way to spend an afternoon. But without proper planning, a one-day project can quickly become a nightmare.

Contemporary design is primarily identified by tons of natural light and plenty of open space. But furniture plays a vital role here too, as strong lines and form are key in finishing an authentic contemporary look.

Consider the room’s function. Will it be a space for gathering, or a quiet room for rest and relaxation? The purpose of the living room should guide how furnishings are arranged and how much will be needed.

Lots of people fall into the trap of pushing sofas up against the wall. But contemporary home design is all about breaking the rules. Unless your space is extremely small, centering sofas in the living room will create a more conversational atmosphere.

Also, be mindful of foot traffic. People should walk around the outskirts of a room, not through the middle if at all possible. This will make things less awkward when getting up in the middle of a conversation.

A rookie-decorating mistake is investing in a matching living room set from a single store. I firmly believe that a good living room needs variety. Play with different materials, finishes and sizes to really mix things up. Combine large and small, tall and short, rough and smooth — you might be surprised at how mixing and matching things actually falls nicely into place.

The living room pictured above is an excellent example of most of these tips. Foot traffic is forced to the outer parts of the room, while three tables take up the space in the middle. And, with the exception of the two sofas, no other pieces within this room are part of an identifiable or preconceived set.

Arranging furniture in your living room doesn’t have to be yet another chore on your list. Let Paula Berg Design Associates work magic in your home’s most social space. Contact us in Park City, UT or Scottsdale, AZ to schedule a design consultation.