Achieve your ideal lighting by layering these three common types. Think about whether you use the space ­­for work or entertaining, then begin.

How to Choose the Right Lighting

Ambient
Ceiling lights. Floor lamps. Any fixture meant to evenly illuminate an entire space. Usually directed downward.

Task
Over a reading chair, at a desk, under cabinets in the kitchen – function-based and intended to target a specific spot.

Accent
Purely for show and aesthetics. Think wall lights highlighting a painting, outdoor spotlights on a house or tree, or a stylish lamp used for decorative purposes.

Illuminate every corner at our Gallery of Lights: Lamps, Chandeliers, & More Boutique on Wednesday, February 19, at 3PM ET.

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February 19, 2014

The key to a productive home-office environment? Keeping it professional, even if a homemade lunch is steps away. Ensure your chair is comfortable enough to sit in all day, but not too comfortable (i.e., stay away from recliners). And for the sake of your eyes, double up – both overhead and task lighting are musts. But before all that, you have to build the area. Follow these guidelines to get started.

How to Build a Productive Home Office

The Space
Try to carve out a separate location. If not a different room, pick a corner visibly detached from cozy areas that feel personal. Your mind should automatically associate this space with work.

The Desk
Do you need an L-shaped option with room for a computer and extra reading space? Or a deep rectangular desk for sketching? Think about how your work and space will coexist.

The Setup
Imagine working. Picture where you will naturally reach for files, pens, or the phone. Then, you’ll know exactly where to place your essentials.

Get started with our Update Your Work Space: Home-Office Essentials Boutique on Friday, February 14, at 3PM ET.

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February 14, 2014

 

Brunch platters. Home-office storage. Planters for spring buds. The options are endless with the must-use-everywhere Mine collection from Kosta Boda. With unexpected sweeping hues and the artist’s signature serpent featured on every piece, these striking glassworks are more like objets d’art.

Kosta Boda Mine Collection

Start your glass collection at our Kosta Boda & Orrefors Boutique on Thursday, February 13, at 3PM ET.

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February 13, 2014

Designer-obsessed? Us, too. But today we’re looking beyond that beloved handbag. From Jill Rosenwald‘s graphic, vibrant prints to Martha Stewart‘s more traditional looks, these luxe rugs will inspire an entire room with just one hand-tufted piece.

Rug Designers to Know

Candice Olson
The artist: Toronto-based interior designer and TV personality
Her style: Soft colors in warm and cool hues with simple, subtle patterns fit for both traditional and contemporary homes
Manufacturing: Hand-tufted in India of 100% New Zealand wool

Martha Stewart
The artist: Former model–turned–business magnate
Her style: Earthy green, grey, and natural hues with geometric patterns and a lustrous finish
Signature fabrics: Cotton, wool, and silk

Jill Rosenwald
The artist: NYC-born, Massachusetts-based designer of ceramics, throw pillows, and décor
Her style: Bold, bright colors and vibrant, graphic patterns for the modern home
Technique: Handmade out of wool

See something you like? Start rug shopping at our Roll Out the Red Carpet: Designer Rugs Boutique on Wednesday, February 12, at 3PM ET.

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February 12, 2014

Infusing something noticeably surprising into a room does not  require an absolute overhaul. In fact, simple changes can make the biggest impact. Here, a few tweaks to try.

Easy and Artful Home Updates

 

Add drama to your windows
Install rods just an inch or two above the window. Then, let those curtains drape low, creating a puddling effect on the floor.

Incorporate extra seating
Store an ottoman or stool under a console. When guests drop by? Pull these out for chic, space-saving seats.

Play with pillow proportions
The fastest way to change up a room’s look: throw pillows. Try mixing oblong or round pieces in with your all-square arrangement.

Start building your creative spaces with The Total Home It List Boutique, opening Saturday, February 8, at 3PM ET.

By Julia Ivins, Staff Writer

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February 8, 2014

Humidifier? Nope. Nail dryer? Think again. It’s a wireless speaker and dock by Brookstone.

Brookstone Speaker

This gadget amplifies power just like a floor-to-ceiling sound system, but it’s only 20 inches high. That’s right. The next party you host? Inside or out (oh yeah – it’s weatherproof, too), simply dock your iPhone® and transmit music up to 150 feet away, even through walls and ceilings.

Better alert the neighbors. Things are about to get loud.

Grab this speaker here, then visit our Must-Have Gadgets for Spring: Brookstone & More Boutique on Wednesday, February 5, at 3PM ET.

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February 5, 2014

Neutrals upon neutrals throughout the house can create a serene, made-to-kick-back space. But whether in the form of wall paint or accent pieces, a hint of color will add life to your neutral scheme. Here, three combinations to try.

How to Pair Neutrals & Color in the Home

January 23, 2014

Admit it. When you picture the ideal summer day, this chair – plus a light beer, a book, and you in a swimsuit – is part of the scene. It was, after all, created in 1903 in the Adirondack Mountains, the epitome of summertime escapes. Since then, it’s become an American mainstay of alfresco R&R. Here? The story behind its staying power.

About Adirondack Chairs

 

  • It’s known for its wide armrests, curved seat, and high back – i.e., all-around comfort for every body type.
  • Yellow cedar wood, which Adirondack chairs are often made from, is naturally resistant to moisture, decay, and insect damage.
  • When topped off with protective polyurethane paint, these chairs can withstand the harshest winter or summer weather.

 
The days are getting longer. Ready yourself for sunsets by the shore with our Prep the Patio for Spring: With Furniture & More Boutique on Friday, January 17, at 3PM ET.

By Julia Ivins, Staff Writer

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January 17, 2014

Those home essentials you’ve been eyeing? Now’s the time. Scoop them up and give your abode a little revamp. Here are three ideas to get you inspired.

Update Every Room with the Rue La La White Sale

In the Living Room or Outdoor Patio
Grab multiple decorative pillows now and swap them throughout the year for a quick and easy changeup.

In the Dining Room
Can’t decide between your two (or three) favorite rugs? You don’t have to. Get them all and start layering.

In the Bedroom
Stock up on extra sheet sets that would otherwise be a big investment.

Ready to get started? Visit The White Sale on Thursday, January 16, at 3PM ET.

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January 16, 2014
Alegre? It means “cheerful” in Portuguese. And we have to admit, this label lives up to its namesake. Glass antique-like candlesticks in yellow and mint. Personality-packed mugs. Earthenware place settings inspired by fresh dinners at home. Encouraging family-style dining with inviting colors and textures, this brand proves that setting the table doesn’t have to be a chore.
Casa Alegre by Vista Alegre on Rue La La

 

Start your collection at our Casa Alegre by Vista Alegre Boutique on Friday, January 10, at 3PM ET.

By Julia Ivins, Staff Writer

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January 10, 2014