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frIDay Interior Design: Keeping Things Clean

frIDay Interior Design: Keeping Things Clean

You might wonder how much cleanliness has to do with interior design, and you’re not alone. The truth is, no matter how cool you get your apartment in Buffalo to look, it won’t have the right feel if it’s dirty. In fact, I can think of at least three ways that cleanliness affects the quality of your interior design:

 

Appearance

Messy Room

Why do you invest time and money into your interior design look? Pretty obvious right? It’s so that your apartment looks cool. However, dust, dirt, pillows on the floor, throw blankets laying around randomly and similar issues won’t really help the look of your space. Dust, especially, just makes any effort go without purpose. So, clean up so that the look of your particular style doesn’t go to waste.

 

Comfort

Dust

As it turns out, people don’t feel very comfortable in a dirty living room. You put a lot of effort into making your space look nice so that you can feel relaxed when you sit on your couch or lay down in bed. Breathing in and seeing the dust all over doesn’t really contribute to relaxation or comfort.

 

Aroma

Candles

Similarly, keep things clean helps to keep things smelling fresh. The better everything smells, the better you will feel. So, keep dusting, vacuuming and mopping so that the aroma compliments the great appearance of your apartment.

Thursday “Things-to-Do” – Niagara River Cruise

If you live in our downtown Buffalo apartments, Grand Island is just a short easy drive up the 190. So, if you’ve ever wondered what it was like to take a cruise on the Niagara River, check out Grand Lady Cruises. With both public and private cruises available, you can get a little bit of coastal luxury without going to the Caribbean.

The Grand Lady

Here are a few specific things that Grand Lady Cruises could accommodate:

 

Date Night

Buffalo has plenty of great restaurants with incredible decor, food and drinks. But, let’s be honest, a cruise adds some extra excitement to a date. The Grand Lady does both lunch and dinner cruises, though the dinner cruise would probably be more suitable for a date. At 3 hours long, including live entertainment and a three course meal, you and your date will have a great time for sure!

 

Work Meetings & Presentations

If you want to make a good impression on some potential clients, investors, etc. – a boat will probably do the trick. You’ll definitely want to gauge the possibility of a boat cruise to see if the rental makes sense for your particular situation, but chances are that the cruise will make a good impression in a business scenario.

 

Parties, Weddings, Etc.

Again, Buffalo has no shortage of land-based event venues, but doing stuff on the water just has more panache. From wedding receptions to a simple get together, the Grand Lady has a lot of possibilities for parties both in private and public cruises.

Wednesday Boardom – “Apartment Design” by Mary Fierro

We are here again with another Pinterest Board to follow: “Apartment Design” by Mary Fierro. It’s a fairly eclectic board, but I saw a lot of arrangements that would work for our Buffalo apartments:

Reclaimed Platform Bed

 

I can’t really be sure, but I’m pretty positive that this bed frame is made from “upcycled” shipping pallets. Besides that inventive use of reclaimed material, I also dig the colors, fur comforter and printed area rug.

Antique Dresser

 

Restored antique pieces like this dresser can really compliment a modern look for an apartment. Of course, they also work great as additions to a Victorian look.

Wood Table

This is a very good example of color coordination in a room. Notice how the red tones show up in the shades, area rug and accent pieces on the bookshelf. Plus, the rustic wood desk is just cool – simple, functional and beautiful.

frIDay Interior Design: What’s What?

To some extent, it doesn’t matter what the difference is between vintage and retro interior design. So long as you know what you like, who cares what it’s called, right?

I can think of one way that you might run into some issues, though. You’re in a furniture/home store and the associate asks what kind of style you prefer. You respond, “We’re going for a retro look.” The associate proceeds to show you a 1960’s radio center that looks like a piece from the Jetsons and a bunch of other Jetsons-ish furniture. You don’t want your place to look like what people in the 60’s thought 2015 would look like. You want something like the couch in Anthropologie, or the chair in Free People. In other words, the word you were looking for was “vintage” not “retro.”

That could also be an issue in Google searches for furniture or when people ask what you want for Christmas.

So, here are some common mix-ups to help you fill your Buffalo apartment with pieces you actually like.

 

Vintage vs. Retro

Vintage can mean anything from the 20th century, though it tends to zero in on the ’40s, ’50s and ’60s. Retro tends to refer to older technological pieces or furniture from the following few decades (’60s to the early ’80s). While the distinctions for each are subtle, a simply Google search for “retro couch” and then “vintage couch” will help you to figure out what style you prefer.

Vintage

“Vintage Couch”

Retro

“Retro Couch”

 

Vintage vs. Antique

As we just covered, vintage refers to a specific period (for the most part). Antiques, on the other hand, are pieces at least 100 years old, especially pre-Industrial Revolution pieces.

 

Modern vs. Contemporary

Modern pieces are those which reflect the values of modernism (streamlined, functional, etc.). Contemporary pieces highlight all that is current and new.

 

Antique vs. Victorian

Though many antiques come from the Victorian Era, the two things are not the same, since many antiques comes from both before and after this time period.

 

Southwestern vs. Native American

Though the Southwestern look can draw inspiration from Native American motifs, it also relies heavily on influence from south of the border. Furthermore, you will see more diverse natural materials, such as stone, stucco and wood, featured heavily in the Southwestern style than you will in the Navajo print and animal-heavy Native American interiors.

 

Gothic vs. Medieval

The Medieval looks tends to rely on the old, run-down castle aesthetic, where the Gothic look leans toward the dark German church aesthetic. If you’ve ever seen Lord of the Rings, you could liken Medieval to the Rohan look and Gothic to Isengard.

Thursday “Things-to-Do” – Downtown Architecture Walk

You probably know that Buffalo has a rich architectural history. With buildings designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and parks laid out by the greatest landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted, it’s easy to see perfection in both the individual buildings and the city’s plan as a whole.

So, if you’re ever looking for a reason to get our of your apartment on a beautiful day and you like beautiful buildings, here are a few to check out, take the tour. Whether you prefer architecture or history, you’ll have a blast seeing these buildings in person:

The Hotel Lafayette for Carmina Wood Morris and R&P Oak Hill

 

Guaranty Building

 

1932-Exterior

Wednesday Boardom – “Apartment Design” by Kari Günther

Kari Günther’s “Apartment Design” board features a lot of plant life in various apartment interiors:

Table with Plant

In addition to the small plant, this farmhouse-style table makes for a great, natural look, especially alongside the simple leather sofa and the print area rug.

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The hanging plants and the tree stump coffee table really give this space a feeling of life, nature and comfort. Very cool.

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Again, more plants, this time spread throughout the kitchen. The place almost looks like a greenhouse!

With it being spring, it’s a good time to get some plants to bring into your Buffalo apartment. Get them growing nice a strong through the summer and they shouldn’t have a problem growing through the winter too!

frIDay Interior Design: Utilizing Reclaimed Wood

If you have any access to wood for reclaiming (whether through an old barn or a junk yard), I suggest you use it! Reclaimed wood not only makes for easy, beautiful DIY, but it can turn a rented apartment space into a unique extension of yourself.

Depending on how handy you are, you might find certain projects more doable than others. Below, you’ll find a few ways that you can use reclaimed wood for your interior design.

 

Wall Accents (Or an entire Wall)

Reclaimed Wood Wall

You may want to limit the extent to which you do this in an apartment, you applying reclaimed wood to a wall can add a natural, rustic feel to a space.

 

Table/Desk Tops

Reclaimed Wood Table

Applying reclaimed wood to a table or desktop can turn an ugly piece into a work of art. If you ever find yourself disappointed with the look of a tabletop, try finding some old wood to throw on top!

 

Storage

Barnwood Storage

Bookshelves, boxes and storage in general can be kind of boring. But, taking some old barn wood and making a craft out of it can make your storage into a focal point of a room.

Thursday “Things-to-Do”: Niagara Falls State Park

Well, this is somewhat obvious, right? It is one of the natural wonders of the world, and everyone knows about it.

Niagara Falls

But, if you’re new to Western New York and you live in one of our downtown Buffalo apartments, you might not realize how close the Falls are. Even if you live in our lofts that are a bit more to the north, maybe you haven’t made it over to the wonder as of yet.

Even if you have been, maybe you didn’t know of a few things that the Falls offers:

 

Goat Island

Goat Island

Goat island offers a few great views of the falls, several smaller islands (Three Sisters) that are fun to look around, as well as some great spots for picnics. Go exploring and, even if you’ve been there before, you’ll be sure to see a side of Niagara Falls that you haven’t seen before.

 

Devil’s Hole

Devil's Hole

Devil’s Hole State Park is just a bit north of the Falls, and it makes for great hiking if you are so inclined. A fantastic way to escape the city, you’ll be sure to get a workout and see some beautiful nature – just be sure to bring a hiking buddy, since the trails can be a bit dangerous.

 

Bridge to Canada

Rainbow Bridge

If you didn’t know, you can walk over Rainbow Bridge and check out the Canadian side. Along the way over, you can see a great view of the Falls, and Canada has beautiful gardens, fun night life and even a Duty Free. Keep in mind that you will need a passport or enhanced license to get through the border, and it’s a good idea to have some cash handy in addition to any cards that you might have.

Wednesday Boardom – “Industrial Architecture” by David-Vincent Bone

I’m not entirely sure how active this Pinterest account is, but David-Vincent Bone’s “Industrial Architecture” board has some really neat work in it – some of which reminds us of our various Buffalo loft apartments.

Industrial Architecture

 

I’m not entirely certain what the above photo is, but it’s definitely emblematic of the industrial style, showing both concrete and brick, alongside hardwood flooring and large glass sliding doors. Very cool, whatever it is.

Industrial Kitchen

 

Again, brick and concrete. But this kitchen also features sturdy metal appliances and a nice stone countertop.

Industrial Bathroom

 

While you probably won’t find a bathtub quite like this one in Buffalo, but I had to include it because it’s so unique. Very cool, relaxing bathroom with it’s minimalism and very functional in its industrialism.

frIDay Interior Design: Industrial

The industrial interior design style stresses functionality – to some extent. That doesn’t mean that this particular style doesn’t look cool, though. In fact, the rustic and stripped down nature of the industrial aesthetic looks very cool, modern and comfortable, especially in spaces that already feature a bare-bones appeal (such as loft style apartments).

3-Industrial-Interior-design

Practically then, how can you pull off an industrial look in your Buffalo apartment?

 

1 – Expose the Innards

Okay, that could sound a bit weird out of context. But, you’ll remember it, right?

With an industrial look, don’t be afraid to show of the framework of a couch or the underlying brick/wood structures of your walls. Industrialism stresses the beauty of how things work. So, if you buy an antique chair that needs new upholstery: apply new fabric to the cushion and seat back, but feel free to leave the side of the chair open – like this piece from Restoration Hardware:

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You can apply the same concepts to flooring as well – exposing concrete with scattered area rugs really helps the look.

 

2 – Stick to Neutral Colors

As you might have gathered from the previous photos, neutral colors tend to work best in an industrial interior:

Contemporary-Library-Industrial-Interior-Design

 

Brown, tan, gray, beige, white, black. These colors provide the majority of color in an industrial space because raw materials (wood, concrete, leather) tend to feature them pretty heavily.

Other colors come in by way of accents. Keep furniture, walls and shelving neutral, then you have a lot of room to work with in your accent colors.

 

3 – Lots of Metal & Wooden Pieces

You’ll notice a lot of lighting fixtures that rely on heavy metal elements in their structure:

jute-office_20100919_0067-2

 

You will also notice pieces that utilize both cast iron and wood (like the table above).

Keep in mind that a lot more goes into industrialism than we’ve covered here. But, if you keep to these basics, you’ll probably be off to a good start.