frIDay Interior Design: Parisian Style

Posts Tagged ‘Interior Design’

frIDay Interior Design: Parisian Style

Paris is an iconic city.

Why wouldn’t you want your living space to reflect the majesty of one of the most beautiful places of the world?

Kissling intro

Maybe you’ve been to Paris and fell in love. Maybe you’ve never been there. Either way, its beauty is something hard to forget, but not so difficult to capture through careful interior design. By taking the following simple tips you’ll be decorating like a Parisian in no time.

1- Keep your walls white.
Maximize light. It’s rare that you’ll find a Paris home that doesn’t have white walls. Color can be tactfully used elsewhere.

Kissling walls white

2- Hang chandeliers.
Nothing induces the romance of the City of Love more than decorative overhead lighting.

Kissling chandelier

3- Use vintage elements.
Perhaps you already have some, but if not, it may be a good idea to visit a vintage shop. Sparkly, brand new pieces don’t have as much character or story as those that look like they’ve been previously loved.

Kissling vintage

4- Don’t be afraid to step outside the box.
In order to get a truly Parisian feel, it’s a good idea to follow these rules, but don’t get so stuck to them that you’re afraid to be yourself. Show off your style and be a little funky. Odd art pieces, abstract paintings, and geometric rugs are all welcome.

Kissling step outside the box

Paris has inspired people the world over. Chances are, if you’re reading this, it has inspired you as well. Now that the mystery has been taken away from it, go forth and decorate like a true Parisian!

frIDay Interior Design: Coastal

You know the feeling you get when you come back from a stay at the beach? Relaxed, energized, laid back. Now imagine having that feeling all year round, sans the sand.

Coastal interior design isn’t just for those who live by the sea. Sure, the nautical elements often used work well within beach cottages and cabins, but there’s so much more to coastal interior design.

Coastal design would allow you to keep a piece of summer with you throughout the harsh Buffalo winters that many of us know all too well. The soft, beachy colors and effortless flow of the space may even trick your mind into thinking you’re coming home to an oceanside paradise everyday.

Kissling coastal 3

Kissling coastal 2

Kissling coastal 1

Since Buffalo is far from coastal living, you may feel the need to limit, or even eliminate, the use of anchors, oars, coral and other sea-related objects. And while there are many color palettes you can choose from — whether capitalizing more on white, blue or a light tan — regardless of the colors and items you choose to incorporate, there are some tips you should keep in mind for your newly coastal space.

1-Don’t get caught on one color.

You don’t want to drown out a space by overloading it with one color. For example:

Kissling too white

Incorporating other sections of the color spectrum can go a long way.

Kissling color

Kissling white

2- Coastal design is just that.
Think nautical; think maps. But put a new twist on them, perhaps by cutting them into shapes and framing them.

Kissling maps

3- Weathered wood.

Not only does it add a rustic feel to the space, but a natural and soothing one.

Kissling weathered wood

4- Bring outdoors in.

Wicker chairs and tables that may be traditionally utilized outdoors have their space within a coastal home.

Kissling wicker

With all that being said, don’t be afraid to trust your instincts and be cliche if need be. As long as you can feel the fresh air and picture the waves coming in, you’ll have done it right.

frIDay Interior Design: Modern Organic

Perhaps you’ve heard about the Organic Modern interior design style and want to give it a shot. Maybe you’ve never even heard about it and are about to get inspired.

organic modern couch

What was once a popular style back in the 1940’s and 50’s went under the radar for quite some time, but has resurfaced as a popular interior design option today. The clean and open layout may lend itself to a space more conducive to the creative process by ridding the area of distractions and filling it with a natural ambiance.

While this style could be referred to as “shabby chic” to the novice interior designer, there’s nothing shabby about it. There are some things to keep in mind when it comes to turning your space Organic Modern:

1- Be neutral.

organic modern stand

Let your color palette be that of the colors in the woods. Think tree bark, grass, moss and soil. Stray from bright colors as they can break apart the soothing ambiance.

2-Use texture.

organic modern table

Linen, burlap, flax — they are all your friends. Sometimes life can be rough, as your textures can be. Provide a good mix.

3-Most importantly, be natural.

Organic modern plants

Don’t incorporate any plastic furniture in your space. Try to have as many items that look like they were inspired by nature as possible. Plastic sends a sterile vibe that just clashes with the style in an Organic Modern home.

So when you think Organic Modern, think rustic, but with a modern flair. Once you partake in your Organic Modern interior design adventure, your space will start to shape itself.

frIDay Interior Design: Art Deco

You’ve probably heard of the Art Deco style of art and design popular in the 20s and 30s, but considering it for your home is a much more involved task. This style was born of the post-World War I optimism and offered a more elegant and eccentric form of expression. Let’s take a look at some of the most prominent characteristics that define the Art Deco style.

Rich Colors

The most common colors from this era of art and interior design were palettes of black with green and red, including highlights of gold, chrome, or silver. The rich assertiveness of these color schemes serves to portray a minimalist mindset while also bringing in the boldness of the pre-World War II years.

Art Deco Colors


Textures and Surfaces

The sleekness of this era comes through in the smooth textures of furniture and finishings. Tables and counters will often be left clear in a minimalist style, and sometimes glass is used as an accent piece to really soften and smooth out the feel of a room. Smooth-finished wood and clean designs really bring the Art Deco style to life.

Art Deco Smoothness

Streamlined Furniture

Sleek and modern, but comfortable, Art Deco furniture often features chrome accents and an influence from many different countries from around the world. The post-war era brought about a new excitement for travel and international interest, and this showed through in the styles and designs. Pieces made after French, English and Mediterranean styles would have been extremely common, and Art Deco often brought a little of all of this together in one unified fashion.

Art Deco Furniture

Beyond the Wall: Creative Uses for Wallpaper

When you sign the lease on your apartment, there can be limitations that come along with the living space, and as a result, you can’t always paint walls or put up wallpaper wherever you’d like. At The Kissling Interests, we try to be as flexible as possible with our tenants, but we also try to assure that our future tenants will enjoy the best experience possible as well, so we have to institute certain rules. So if you found some wallpaper that you absolutely love, but can’t use it on your walls, here are some great ways to be creative and spice up your apartment.

Frame It

Some wallpaper is artistic enough to stand on its own without having to rely on the wall behind it. If you can find a particularly cool pattern or even a mural-style design, find some good frames and go for it. You’ll save some money as opposed to buying a painting, so this solution is perfect for your walls and your wallet.




Paper Your Furniture

This idea is perfect if you have an old shelf or dresser that’s looking a little worse for wear. Try using wallpaper right on your furniture to provide an accent and liven things up a bit. If you work within the color palettes of your rooms, you can find a nice, bold accent color to really make things pop, or work with a softer complement color to help tie things together.





In the same way you can bring a room to life with wallpaper on your dressers, you can really make a statement with a DIY lampshade. Find a look that fits your style and give it a try! You’ll never know if it’ll work or not until you see it live, and doing it yourself is a lot cheaper than buying an expensive lamp to accent your room.




These cool ideas are just a start for your inspiration. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box, and if you aren’t sure if something will violate your lease, you can always call the friendly staff at our management office. Happy papering!

frIDay Interior Design: Modernism

If you’re unfamiliar with the concept of modern interior design, you might think it just refers to a style of design in alignment with current trends and contemporary developments, but that’s not necessarily the case. The heart of modern design actually mirrors the traits of the modern art movement, which was a noted departure from the lavish styles or the artistic movements that preluded it. But while modern art often delves into the abstract and the experimental, modern interior design keeps a focus on simplicity and function.

Here are some defining characteristics of modern interior design and why you might want to consider including them in your living space.

Straight Lines

In keeping with the simplicity of the modern theme, rooms designed in a modern style usually feature straight lines and clean patterns. In contrast to the carved decorations and textured furnitures that preceded modern design, this style will keep things simple and mostly flat without adding additional detail and complication.

modern apartment design

Bold Use of Color

Modernist thinking was all about shaking free of the norms, and this can be seen in the use of bold colors that add visual contrast and stand out from the rest of the space. It is common in modern designs to see one sitting chair or an accent pillow of bold contrasting color included to set itself apart from the room around it. Use of modern art itself hung on walls can be a way to bring out strong colors or add a sense of abstractness to an otherwise straight and even space, adding to the modern design aesthetic.



Modern design focuses on removal of the unnecessary and inclusion only of pieces that provide function or purpose. This leads to a general lack of clutter and open floor plans. It is common in modern interior design for walls to be minimized and shelves or other storage to be built into recesses instead of protruding out into the floor plan.



Photo Credit: 1, 23

frIDay Interior Design: Happiness at Home

Your apartment style is a big part of the way you and your guests will feel while hanging out at your place, but there are a lot of small aesthetic changes you can make to your living space to make it more conducive to good moods and positive feelings. Aside from your place of work, your home is probably where you spend most of your waking hours, so staying happy while you’re there is important to your overall quality of life.

Here are some easy tips to think about that can revamp the energy at your apartment and get you back to feeling the good vibes.


This might seem like a no-brainer, but you’re more likely to feel depressed and down if you aren’t getting adequate lighting into your living space. Try to get at least two or three different lighting sources in each room at your house or apartment, and consider changing up the intensity or mood of each light. You might not always want to sit under bright fluorescent lighting, so change it up and try getting some softer lamps to change the color temperature of your rooms.

Be sure to take advantage of windows and natural lighting, too. Sunlight can work wonders on your mood and your apartment if you can find good ways to let it in. If you have an apartment with a lot of windows, open up your curtains, and let the light in.



Plants have a great way of freshening up your living space and bringing life into a room. If your space is lifeless and dull, you’ll probably feel that way too.


Reduce Clutter

Look around your apartment and take an inventory of all the stuff you have laying around. Do you really need it all? Is that stuff that’s been sitting on your desk or your floor really important to hang on too? If the answer is no, just ditch it. Having lots of clutter and garbage around can add tension and stress to a room or to your mind.

And on that note, cleaning up in general never hurts. Dust and mildew can affect your ability to breathe clean air and harm your health, and all of that leads to a sadder you. Even cleaning once a week or once every other week can really turn around the mood in your apartment.


Shake It Up

If your apartment feels stale and stagnant, move things around! Re-arrange your bedroom or your living room and try out new setups for your furniture. Day after day of the same routine and the same living space setup can wear you down, so try getting creative with your space and changing it up every once in a while when you get sick of it.




Photo Credit: 1, 23, 4

Apartment Necessities: Art and Decor

Unless you’re going for the most minimalist feel possible, you’ll probably want to find something to hang on the walls in your apartment to spice things up a bit. You may have missed the Allentown Art Festival this year, but with mass distribution of art made easier through the internet, there are still plenty of sources out there for you to find some picture-perfect decor to bring your walls to life. Here are some great things to keep in mind while you decorate:

Your Living Space Has Personality

From the colors you’ve chosen to highlight your apartment with to the style of your furniture, everything in your space builds up to a personality. What you hang on the walls is a big part of this. When you’re shopping around for the best new artistic pieces, remember the look and feel you’re going for. A piece that contrasts intensely with the other colors in your apartment will jump out and be more visually aggressive for you and your guests, while something that fits with your color palette will blend in and create a measured, calming environment. Whatever you’re going for, keep the personality of your space in mind.


Plenty of Options

Local art shows are great places to check out possible decor for your space, but don’t forget to check online, too. There are plenty of websites like Etsy.com that have huge varieties of artwork to choose from, and the prices are usually reasonable. Don’t settle for something that you don’t think is perfect for your apartment, because you’ll probably have to look at it for a long time.

Create Something Yourself

If you can’t find something that really speaks to your personality as well as the feel of your apartment, why not try making something yourself? Photo collages or large-sized photo prints are great ways to take a memory or a favorite photo and bring it to life in your living space. You don’t have to be a professional artist to create something of your own to decorate your apartment, and once you’re done, you can show it off and create easy conversation when you have company over. Don’t be afraid to get creative!


Whatever you decide to decorate your space with, the important part is that you like it. If you surround yourself with positive emotions, your living situation will be a lot better.



Photo Credit: 1, 2

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 Couch”


“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.

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!



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.