There are several ways to create the feeling of a spacious beautiful room, especially if you start in the house planning stages. Here are some deco tips to appear this month in the St. Maarten Daily Herald.
1. Square rooms are more comfortable than rectangular rooms. This is not Feng Shui, it’s simply instinct. We feel great outside in open spaces, and a square room is more representative of open space than a long room.
2. When choosing tile and grout, make sure they are complementary colors. The grid effect of highly contrasting tile and grout colors has a restrictive visual impact. Avoid white grout unless you are using white tile.
3. Tiles come in all shapes and sizes these days. Rectangular tiles placed vertically or horizontally can have a striking difference in the look of a room. Whether bathroom windows are placed horizontally or vertically can indicate the best direction to pose a rectangular tile.
I am presently building Villa Ever Summer at the top of Oyster Pond Estates. Here is a bathroom window. I am placing the large rectangular tiles horizontally to complement the view.
4. For small to medium sized rooms, use soft, light, luminous, neutral colors on the walls. Paint a few special accent walls and columns a few shades darker than the rest. It’s also possible to paint two accent walls in an L shape, and leave the other two walls in a lighter shade. Four same color walls give a boxed in effect. The ceiling should be the lightest shade of the same pallet.
5. The larger the room, the more you can afford to use dark colors. Dark colors are a luxury to be enjoyed when it’s not necessary to create the illusion of space.
6. Consider using stain rather than paint for doors and door frames. Our concrete homes can use this touch of warmth.
7. Bring out the beauty of wood wherever possible. Translucent white stain is a novel twist to beautify open rafter beam ceilings, while preserving the spacious feel of a light color overhead.
8. As with paint colors, use neutrals for large surfaces on furniture, such as sofas. Reserve the bright colors and prints for throw pillows and accent chairs… and art, of course! Our Caribbean art is so bright and colorful, furniture and fabrics should act as a canvas to highlight the art. Unless you are sure of your artistic ability, don’t use fabrics with prints everywhere.
9. If you are renting, consider glass surfaces. They are not as fragile as wood and can easily be replaced.
10. In St. Maarten, the land of salt, the most durable and beautiful outdoor furniture is synthetic weave with drain drip cushions. One of the world’s best outdoor furniture companies is Laneventure. See their unique cushion manufacturing method in this online video: http://laneventure.com/ultimatecushion.aspx