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Published September 6th, 2015
At Home with Amanda
Wallpaper added to this powder room is a wonderful way to add pop. Photo provided

Everyone likes to be up-to-date with the recent design trends, but how can you incorporate them into your homes while still embracing timeless design? One simple step: start small. The following are some easy items you can bring into your home without worrying if it's going to date you in a few years. (Can you say avocado green countertops?)

Wallpaper has been making a comeback for a few years now, but I still get clients who look at me sideways when I suggest it. I'm sure we have all either grown up with, or knew someone who had some hideous floral-print wallpaper (OK, I admit it, I have too). Or worse, the dreaded wallpaper border. Well I'm here to tell you that wallpaper has come a long way, baby.
When I suggest wallpaper to clients today I advise that "a little goes a long way." Geometric designs, grass cloth and large print patterns are all on point. As for placement, try it out in a small powder bath, make a statement in your entry, or even try it out on that fifth wall - the ceiling.

No, the '80s haven't called and asked for their brass back. We are not talking about the shiny, cheap brass toilet paper holders and shower door trims of old. Today it's the warm classic brass and more specifically the unlacquered brass that develops a patina over time. I encourage my clients to mix their metals. There is nothing wrong with having, say, brass pendants in your kitchen with a chrome faucet, brass cabinet hardware and stainless appliances.
And just like with wallpaper, a little goes a long way. Start off small, incorporate a brass lamp in your living room, or try a small brass side table. I love sourcing unique brass pieces at local vintage shops, flea markets, Etsy and eBay. Even mainstream retail stores are getting in on the brass love. (Check out Target, West Elm and Restoration Hardware.)

Color is a great way to express yourself in your home. You do not necessarily have to commit to a mustard yellow sofa or paint your walls pink, but you can bring it into the space in small doses. By keeping your big upholstery pieces neutral you can bring in color with accent pillows, rugs, accessories or artwork. Or maybe add a painted piece of furniture. Some popular colors currently are any and all blues - especially navy - greens, from light pale sage to dark emerald, pinks and blush-tones, orange and warm mustard yellow.

Organic Materials
There has been an increase in natural organic elements being brought into the home. Natural stone, rustic wood pieces, petrified wood, natural fabrics and live green plants are all actively in use. Bringing these pieces into your home can create both warmth and texture and create a great "layered" look if paired with warm metals like brass.
And while we are on the topic of trends, next month I will be attending High Point Market in North Carolina. High Point is the largest home furnishings industry trade show in the world, with over 10 million square feet of showrooms by roughly 2,000 exhibitors. In other words, it's Disneyland for designers.
I will be posting my market finds on social media and providing those who follow along a sneak peek into all the best new items the home furnishings industry has to offer. You can follow me both on Instagram @amandacarolinteriors and on our Facebook page: Amanda Carol Interiors
Until next time dear friends!

Small pops of color, like this green dresser, pillow and plant, can make a simple elegant statement, while the organic weave in this rug adds texture. Photo provided
As the Owner and Principal Designer of Lamorinda-based Amanda Carol Interiors, Amanda Eck believes your home's interior should be both approachable and well- appointed. She often asserts, "Beauty is a necessity." With a distinct sense of style that mixes contemporary and classic design she fashions spaces that are both elegant and inviting. Her design aesthetic is inspired by anything visual but especially fashion, architecture and art. Visit http://amandacarolinteriors.com for more design ideas.

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