5 Designer-Approved Living Room Décor Ideas

The living room is one of the most public spaces in your home.  Here is where you receive and entertain guests and spend time with family and friends.

It’s a room which demands more than a few tired family photos and a couple of equally tired throw cushions.  The living room demands that you aspire to setting a scene which evokes a mood.  Creating that is a highly personal thing but these 5 designer-approved living room décor ideas will serve to inspire you.  Translating them into your unique style is entirely up to you.

cozy living room

1. Texture

Regardless of your style – Maximalist, Minimalist, Rustic or Mid-Century Modern – texture is an important component of any living space.

Texture is about creating depth and interest.  This can be found in organic materials.  Nubby, handwoven throws and rugs are one way to up the texture ante, but texture can also be found in art pieces (vases, sculptures) created from natural materials like stone and glass.

2. Art

There is no element of décor more potent than art on the walls.  Whether your decorating budget only extends as far as printed reproductions or if you’ve tucked away something for an original work of art, placing the right piece in the ideal position helps you create the atmosphere you’re building.

Again, personal taste dictates, but think in terms of color, form and (yes) texture.  How valuable your art will be in setting the scene you desire depends on choosing what inspires you and works with the room.

3. Wallpaper

Wallpaper is back and bigger than ever.  It has the power to transform a room, elevating it from mundane to sublime.

Today’s wallpapers are extravagantly pigmented, featuring stunning designs from large-scale florals to tropical-inspired palm frond prints.  With wallpaper, a little goes a long way.  Choose a feature wall and wow your guests with the unexpected graphic impact of this living room décor idea.

green sofa and armchairs by Silik

4. Color

Like wallpaper, highly-saturated color has made an undeniable comeback.  Not for the timid, introducing color to your living room demands an open mind and an acknowledgement that the days of the “white box” are over.

Your existing furniture gets a facelift when you add sumptuous color to your walls, floor treatments and room accessories.  Remember – you’ll be living with your choices for a while, so deploy them intelligently.  But be bold.  It’s the order of the day.

5. Lighting

Lighting isn’t just for reading or to draw attention to the art on your walls.  It serves your ambience.  Today’s whimsical offerings run the gamut from softly-lit, formed paper to ostrich feathers mounted coyly atop a pair of golden avian legs.

And if you don’t feel like painting the walls, the right lighting can do it for you, creating distinctive effects which bring another dimension to your living room.

Michelangelo Designs

Since 1985, Michelangelo Designs has been bringing the excellence of exclusively Italian furniture exclusively to the Trade in the USA.

We invite Trade professionals to contact us to schedule an appointment.  Discover the cure for the common, at Michelangelo.

Stylish Dining Room Colors and Combinations

Color is the name of the interior design game these days.  For too long relegated to the back burner, color has again surged to the forefront as a crucial component of home décor.

Stylish dining room colors and combinations run the gamut from super-saturated to subtle this year, but if one thing’s for sure, color’s in your immediate future if you’re design-conscious.

Let’s take a stroll through some contemporary colors and combinations.  Be inspired!

dining table Domus design

A Palette for Your Palate

Finding the right color or combination of colors for your dining room is down to personal style, mostly.  But you should also consider the affect certain colors have on you and your guests, as you dine.

Color can have a profound effect on the way you feel.  We know this and color in your dining room should factor in the effect it has on the psychology of those who’ve gathered to break bread.

For example, orange tones are known to stimulate your appetite, while red aids in digestion and supports a warm, welcoming environment.

The emotional landscape of your guests can be affected by the color or colors you choose – important to keep in mind.

The Greater Environment

Where you live will most probably inform your color choices.  If your home is in a region known for long winters with short days, your dining room might reflect that by choosing a shade that enlivens and welcomes.

Various yellows are always a good choice, especially for dining rooms which are interior spaces with no windows.  A French Provincial shade of yellow with white trim and Wedgewood blue furniture and other décor items, takes on the airiness of spring in the French countryside.

Deeper shades needn’t be oppressive, either.  Paprika is a red-brick shade which, while warm and nurturing, is spicy enough to add levity to any room.  Turquoise décor elements pair well with this color and can be brought onto the table with place settings, chargers and even glass wear.

dining room Oblique

Maximalist Themes

It’s impossible to talk about color right now without touching on the single most important design trend of recent years – Maximalism.  Where Minimalism forwarded an almost antiseptic aesthetic, Maximalism throws open the windows and lets in the fresh air of self-expression and bold strokes of color.

Maximalism is all about who you are, so choose shades which complement each other, but still provide sufficient contrast.  The trend to a lacquered finish on walls is something Maximalism wholeheartedly embraces.

Why not lacquer a feature wall in Chinese red, papering other walls with something lush and monochromatic.  Geometrics are a key feature in Maximalist interiors, so don’t be shy.  Just add feature lighting over the table and massive flower arrangements and watch your guests’ jaws drop.

The point here is that white is no longer the default.  In fact, it seems rather boring when you’ve invited over a group of friends for a great meal and scintillating conversation.

Shouldn’t your dining room be as fascinating as your guests?

Contact us to discover a cure for the common.

Ideas to Create a Cozy Living Room

Is there any greater pleasure than curling up with a good book in a cozy corner of your living room?  But sometimes, our desire to model style over comfort heads us off.  We become victims of our own excellent taste.

What purpose does form serve if it’s not meshed with function?  Any reader will tell you that coziness is a priority when you’ve settled in for the night with an engrossing read.  So, how do you unstiffen your surroundings to create a sense of coddling, cozy comfort?

cozy living room with fireplace

Here we share some ideas to create a cozy living room equal to your demands for stylish sophistication but not so serious about itself that it’s not nurturing.  And now that winter is coming, cozy is the goal.

Sensual and Tactile

Home is where your heart is and when the weather gets cold, it’s where you settle in on a cold night, with no intention of moving.

Because baby, it’s cold outside.

This is the time of year that sensuality and tactility take center stage.  Cozy throws across the backs of chairs and your sofa invite snuggling up.  Add artificial candles with LED lights and drink in the coziness. Heighten the sensuality by adding feather cushions in a contrasting jewel tone to add warmth.

Why Get Up?

The new look of living rooms abandons the traditional coffee table in favor of small table groupings, accessible from all seating in the room.  These are usually grouped in 2s or 3s and maybe topped by those candles we were just talking about, other décor items, or simply employed as the convenience they’re intended to be.

There’s nothing more nurturing than having a surface close by to place a hot cup of cocoa, a glass of wine, or a snack.  The sense is one of relaxed self-pampering, as you weather the cold in the cozy comfort of your own home.

No Fireplace?  No Problem

Fireplaces aren’t as regular a feature in homes as they may have been in recent decades.  But there’s nothing cozier and if you don’t have one, you may miss the comfort of those warming, flickering flames.

But you can change that with a freestanding electric fireplace.  They generate considerable heat and don’t require the constant prodding and poking of a wood fireplace (which also needs its chimney cleaned).

A solution for an existing, non-functioning fireplace is an insert.  While these don’t usually generate heat, they add a cozy glow that puts a cold, winter night in its place.

Add Luxury

You may love that old wingback in the corner but is it cozy?  If you’ve had it for a while, the upholstery may need an upgrade to restore it to fully functioning coziness.  When reupholstering, consider a fabric upgrade, choosing a rich velvet or weathered leather.

Add a footstool in a contrasting color and a sheepskin (even an artificial one) and you’re in cozy heaven, laughing in winter’s face.

Michelangelo Designs has been bringing the design riches of Italy to US Trade professionals since 1985.  Contact us.  Discover our cure for the common.

5 Italian Furniture Brands You Need to Know

Italian furniture has firmly established itself as a leading source of quality for the home, office, fine dining establishments and luxury hotels.  Inimitable in quality, it transcends the common.

But the array of brands is dizzying.  Such is the life of fine furnishings in one of the most vibrant sources of design in the world – Italy.  This post will introduce you to 5 Italian furniture brands you need to know.

These are exemplary brands, stamped with a singular style that brings Italian sophistication and style home to America.

1. Opera Contemporary

An offshoot of the Angelo Capellini furniture design house, known for its exceptional craftsmanship and faithful Regency and Louis reproductions, Opera Contemporary is a modern interpretation, advancing the uniquely Italian adoration of beauty.

Tradition meets simplicity in this contemporary line, wrapping offerings in rich velvet and sleek, modern metal finishes.

luxury bed Opera Contemporary

2. Scappini

A gift from the fabled city of Verona to the world of furniture design, Scappini is noted for its devotion to fine detail, in its labor-intensive treatments of classic designs.

Bringing a graceful past into the present, Scappini & C. Classic Furniture evokes the sweetness of a past rooted in comfort, and a gently lived life.

Scappini table

3. Domus Design Collection

Cool sophistication is the watchword of this sought-after, contemporary design house.  Created for sweeping, confident spaces, Domus brings discerning lovers of fine furniture artful living, with bold directions in Italian design.

Recipient of numerous design awards, you’ll find Domus’s unique visions in the homes of artists, designers and those who appreciate the quality, beauty and integrity of Italian style.

4. Carpanelli Furniture

For those who believe that fine craftsmanship is a thing of the past, Carpanelli stands in defiance.  Inlay techniques which have stood the test of time, employing rare woods, are continued in the loving hands of Carpanelli’s skilled artisans.

If you have a vision of exquisite detail, then you’ll love what Carpanelli creates.  With elements as precious as mother of pearl ingenuously integrated into the production of luxurious pieces, you’ll find a friend in Carpanelli.

Carpanelli dining table

5. Diemme Furniture

The architectural is explored in this exceptional line, featuring designs created to accommodate the human body, intelligently and ergonomically.

Founded in the 1990s, Diemme is dedicated to creating quality for the office and home, with seating which speaks your language, while marrying function to form effortlessly.

Demanding that style serve function, Diemme is the synthesis of ultimate comfort with inimitable and unforgettable design.

Diemme sofa

Find them at Michelangelo Designs

Since 1985, Michelangelo Designs has been bringing the glories of exclusively Italian furniture exclusively to the Trade in the USA.

With the first and only Italian Design Center in the nation. Michelangelo offers a cure for the common, bringing professionals in interior design, real estate development, retail and architecture the finest design houses of Italy.

The mundane isn’t equal to the task of creating elegant spaces which evoke comfort, style and harmony.  That’s why we’ve created a cure for the common, answering the need for the exceptional.

We invite Trade professionals to contact us for an appointment.

Luxury Bedding Care Guide

We spend fully 1/3rd of our lives sleeping, if we insist on the requisite 8 hours per night, which we should.  So, shouldn’t our sleeping space be as luxurious and comfortable as possible?

At Michelangelo, we certainly think so.  If you’re as passionate about quality bedding as we are, you’ll appreciate this brief luxury bedding care guide.

Caring for your bedding extends its life and makes it even more of a pleasure to sleep on every night.

luxury bedding

Luxury Demands Curation

If you’ve invested in luxury bedding, you’re committed to caring for it.  That means getting it right from the start.

New bedding should be pre-laundered prior to putting it on your bed.  Taking the step of a cold pre-soak serves to preserve the fibers and colors.  For the first wash, use minimal detergent.

Whatever you do, leave the fabric softener on the shelf.  Fine linens don’t need it, as time and washing with soften it naturally.

Start a Rotation

Many people think of linens in terms of “one on the bed, one in the wash”.  But adding a 3rd set of bed linens allows the fibers to rest.  One on the bed, one in the wash and one in the linen cupboard is the rule of thumb for luxury bedding.

Wash your linens in a full set.  For example, ensure that matching pillow covers are washed with sheets.  This allows the set to age consistently, instead of some pieces appearing less used than others.

Check the Label

Be sure to check the label on your bedding for fabric composition.  This will make it clear what type of wash cycle and water temperature to use.

Set your machine to gentle, with warm water and cold rinse.  PRO-TIP:  use only half the amount of laundry detergent generally prescribed.  And please – no bleach.  This product degrades the fibers in luxury bedding.

When drying, don’t use a high heat.  Also, prior to loading the dryer, untwist or shake out the bedding to ensure more consistent drying.

Taking your bedding out of the dryer while still damp is a great way to avoid wrinkling.  But if you can, drying your luxury bedding the old-fashioned way is best.  Fresh air and gentle sunlight freshen your bedding and provide a natural disinfecting effect.

Let It Breathe

Fine, luxury bedding needs to breathe.  Your linen closet should provide adequate ventilation, as well as being cool and dry.

Long term storage of luxury bedding should never be in plastic, or cedar.  Cedar can stain the fabric and plastic offers no air circulation.

With proper care and storage, your luxury bedding will be gracing your bed for many happy, restful nights to come.

Michelangelo Designs

Michelangelo brings the furniture design riches of Italy to the USA’s shores, exclusively for Trade professionals.  Here, retailers, architects, real estate developers and interior designers discover the cure for the common we’ve been known for since 1985.

We invite professionals in the Trade to schedule an appointment.  The cure for the common is yours, at Michelangelo Designs, bringing Italy’s genius to your professional endeavors.