The Art of Design from Creators Syndicate https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Wed, 03 Mar 2021 20:37:25 -0800 https://www.creators.com/ http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss The Art of Design from Creators Syndicate https://cdn.creators.com/features/the-art-of-design-thumb.jpg https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design f002f5c686bfb71c5452d90521e5bd83 Animal Prints Gone Wild for 02/27/2021 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/02/21/animal-prints-gone-wild-3d7b0 Sat, 27 Feb 2021 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Ever since the first caveman figured out the need for food, warmth and modesty, animal skins have been common textures inside dwellings. In caves, we have learned that in prehistoric times, the skins and furs of animals were used to cover bare earth floors for warmth and comfort. Since then, there has been no doubt that these patterned skins would become a classic in interior design all the way through today.</p> <p>Of course, using skins immediately brings to mind Safari-like interiors. From very literal African style interiors to the uber-popular British colonial decor incorporate skins and animal patterns as a motif. Animal prints are used because of their exotic patterns and because they are good durable fabrics that can conceal most stains. Just open any design magazine today, and you will find leopard spots, zebra or tiger stripes, and even giraffe-esque squares.</p> <p><span class="column--highlighted-text">You have to know how to incorporate animal prints in the space. Take caution because there is a fine line between trendy and tacky. For a subtle touch, you can make an animal print an accent piece in the room.</span> This means it can be shown in a pillow, a lampshade or perhaps on the pad of a chair. Alternatively, it can be a bold and aggressive move, becoming the focal point of your room. In the latter, you might choose to incorporate these patterns of nature in a wall-to-wall carpet, to cover a large sofa, a pair of chairs or even wallpaper an entire room. This can be a playful and dramatic use all in one. Animal prints are wonderful to use if you want to create a room that stands out from the crowd due to its bold appearance, yet is inviting and comforting at the same time.<p>Updated: Sat Feb 27, 2021</p> bcfd3c95d7e82777eb55ca3c2ff633bf Window Masquerade for 02/20/2021 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/02/21/window-masquerade-78eb8 Sat, 20 Feb 2021 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Wouldn't it be nice if every room of every place had a view? Let's face it, not every house, condo or townhouse has a perfect view. In an urban environment, some views may face the wall of a building next door, an interior courtyard or the less than appealing roof of an adjacent building topped with unsightly equipment such as air conditioning units, boilers, antennas, and a sea of tar and gravel. In a suburban environment, your beautiful picture window may look over a neighbor's yard, garage or even worse &#8212; a nearby window. Everyone wants their homes to be filled with light, but how to accomplish this while respecting privacy and aesthetics?</p> <p><span class="column--highlighted-text">There are several ways to accomplish designing around a problematic view without sacrificing style. I call it playing window masquerade.</span> The first is to incorporate window coverings, another viable way is to use decorative glass, or you can use plants.<p>Updated: Sat Feb 20, 2021</p> 8d84e46989d8ebedeb334de7a1887dfe Design Destination: Venetian Winter Getaway for 02/13/2021 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/02/21/design-destination-venetian-winter-getaway-799a7 Sat, 13 Feb 2021 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Venice in the winter can be brutal. Cold and rainy on top of that wind, some would say you'd be out of your mind to travel there during the winter months. Despite all these inconveniences, Venice offers the unique opportunity to explore the city like a Venetian, sans the hordes of summer tourists and oppressing humid heat.</p> <p>During this time of the year, a thick blanket of fog covers most of Venice's Piazza San Marco and surrounding narrow streets, and they are bracing for "Aqua Alta" so 18" high platforms are in place so you can walk above the rising tides, should they rise. You peek through the cafe curtains of the classic Cafe Florian and you enter into the heart and soul of 18th century Venice. Painted boiserie panels and liveried servers pouring piping pots of hot chocolate. For those lucky enough to visit during Carnavale (second half of February), promenading costumed Venetians add to the mystery of Venice.</p> <p>A small vaporetto ride from the train station is the stop for Academia. A first stop at the Ca' Pisani to drop off bags; Ca' Pisani is a small design hotel in a restored 14th century Venetian palazzo. The architectural elements such as windows and doorways have remained untouched, but the interiors show a strong Art Deco influence with original furniture from the 1930s, evoking this strong period in Venice's design evolution. The Hotel houses some of the artwork of one of the key figures of the Italian Futurist movement, Fortunato Depero (1892-1960). Sketches of furniture that still exist inside the hotel adorn the walls. Gouaches by Ugo Sissa, an artist that was long active in Venice, as well as artwork by other 20th century painters can be seen throughout the lobby, corridors and stairwells. Well thought out details like the handrails and sparkling bathroom designs make this property unique.<p>Updated: Sat Feb 13, 2021</p> 2862d5f1eb92b08c1c26c94b70340ca1 Entry Hall Decor for 02/06/2021 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/02/21/entry-hall-decor-f7c69 Sat, 06 Feb 2021 00:00:00 -0800 <p>An entrance to any home is a special and vulnerable place. It is the gateway from the public realm to the private. It is often the only interior space that visitors to your home may see. It is also a functional and ceremonious place, a significant one where someone picks you up, drops off a food delivery or the perfect refuge for a first kiss after a good date. Depending on the architectural treatment, it can be called entry, entrance, entry hallway, hall, reception, vestibule and foyer.</p> <p><span class="column--highlighted-text">Decorating an entrance hall or foyer can be a great deal of fun. It can be the one space in your home that is a little over the top to suggest the overall tone of the decor of the home. It is also the location where many choose to decorate with elements that have inherent meaning to establish good luck and protection. These decorative accessories have historically and culturally carried meaning. </span></p> <p>A horseshoe is a classic symbol of good luck generally placed above the front door. Placed with its open side facing up is supposed to contain good fortune for those that live in the home. Placed with the opening side down, mean good luck bestowed on anyone who walks underneath it or through the doorway.<p>Updated: Sat Feb 06, 2021</p> cc9d25deea9cd73986563537a117e552 Interior Close-Up for 01/30/2021 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/01/21/interior-close-up-b12de Sat, 30 Jan 2021 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Like the work of the novelist, setting up a house involves telling a story. The space you inhabit is an extension of who you are. In order to get to know you better, there are interior designers who need three or four interviews with their clients to get to the heart of the project. What are you expecting from your designer? Many times we believe that we want a space with certain characteristics. </p> <p>Although many consider interior design frivolous, the truth of the matter is that your home is usually one of your largest investments, creating the backdrop for most activities in your life. Making mistakes is not a way to start a project as important as this one. That's why I advise you to be realistic with your goals. <span class="column--highlighted-text">Each room is like a chapter in a book, and every selection offers a nuance and gesture of your story. Here are some suggestions to make your story a best-seller:</span></p> <p>&#8212;Do your homework. Find some shelter magazines and try to find the design of your dreams. Make notes on what you like in an image. Take your time to plan properly; rushed decisions make for bad execution, and although your instincts can guide you, your ideas can be polished throughout the process of design. Thus, the result will be a perfect mix between what you wanted and what you have learned during the long journey.<p>Updated: Sat Jan 30, 2021</p> 6b64b842c015e562fe9cc784f70e03a0 Mixing Colors and Patterns for 01/23/2021 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/01/21/mixing-colors-and-patterns Sat, 23 Jan 2021 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Working with color is the fun part of pulling your home together. Initially, don't get caught up in getting it right the first time you select your colors, fabrics and patterns. Learning and editing is part of the process. Don't let all the decisions get in the way of your own imagination and enthusiasm. The sky's the limit when it comes to designing your home. Making the right choices is a matter of time and experience, so take your time so you are able to learn what it is that you really like. Mixing colors and patterns reveals the style and tone of your home. Let's explore a little bit about how to get this accomplished.</p> <p><span class="column--highlighted-text">I am of the school of thought that believes that almost any color can complement another color, if the right hue, shade or intensity are chosen.</span> In almost any decorating scheme, there is always a predominant color. Usually, walls and floors occupy this role. Make sure that your selection of a predominant color is flexible enough, and that you like it enough, so that any other selection plays second fiddle. Second colors play a supporting role in a decorating scheme. Usually, second colors are represented in upholstery, casegoods and accessories. Additionally, any other color is considered an accent color. These can be experienced in the millwork, accent wall or in fabrics used in small quantities throughout your room.</p> <p>An important part of a room is the patterns or lack thereof. While there is nothing wrong with using one pattern in a room, using a few patterns can liven up a room and make them interesting. Patterns come in all types and sizes. There are so many, but here are a few to give you some food for thought: floral, plaid, stripes, dots, animal skins, abstracts and tie-dye. They can be mixed with solids or intermixed to create a well-decorated and layered home. There are no right or wrong ways, and there are no written rules. Your eyes will be the best judge of whether it feels nice or not.<p>Updated: Sat Jan 23, 2021</p> a60222c74b6eeeca28441fcf6324ef7e Understanding the Designer Design for 01/16/2021 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/01/21/understanding-the-designer-design-d3c35 Sat, 16 Jan 2021 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Unbeknownst to many, some of the most influential interior designs have come from architects and not interior designers. Take, for example, Mies van der Rohe's Barcelona Pavilion or Frank Lloyd Wright's Falling Water residence: these are the works of professionals trained as architects, and commissioned to do interior design. As a designer with a Bachelor's and Master's in architecture, I am often asked how I approach a project, and whether discipline overrides another. <span class="column--highlighted-text">Describing the thought process of a designer is complicated, but here goes.</span></p> <p>When one is involved in the world of the design, you quickly realize that every selection made has a bit of your personal style. That nervousness, which is natural and primitive, invades us at the moment of considering an idea, and is nothing more than the fear of rejection of a creation. Although we know that fear is irrational, we cannot avoid the butterflies in the stomach feeling of the big day when the design is presented to a client and more so, when the design installed or delivered.</p> <p>In my opinion, there are several paths to build a theoretical basis for any selection, proposal or project: something that will give us an arsenal of arguments and tools to defend it, and just not as a whim or an abstract creation based on inspiration, but with the coherence necessary of a well-articulated good debate with a lot of logical reasoning behind it.<p>Updated: Tue Jan 19, 2021</p> 6b727e84505c8ca932652420c8dfff14 House Diet for 01/09/2021 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/01/21/house-diet Sat, 09 Jan 2021 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Every year for the past 10 years, toward the beginning of the year, I try to tackle a column about living life lighter. Oh, I am not talking about weight or other New Year's resolutions that very few keep up after a couple of days. I try and give advice and lead the way to lightening up your surroundings so that any activity or new endeavor can be done without clutter. This is what you can call a "house diet."</p> <p>I doubt I will ever be a minimalist. Given the profession of interior design, I am always buying something for clients or myself. My mother, who was always shopping, said: "Shopping is my therapy. I have many therapists (salespersons) all over the city, and each one offers me a kind word or the best advice." I imagine many think that way, but just never divulge it as a psychological treatment of sorts.</p> <p>At the end of my mother's life, she had two storage units packed to the gill, which took me the better part of three years to sell or give away, bit by bit. There was a bit of everything &#8212; clothes, household items, knickknacks and even some furniture that I had never seen or noticed in her home. Some things were never even used or used once and put away for a better day or occasion. <p>Updated: Sat Jan 09, 2021</p> 94adbc012059676a02e727f45391bf56 Who's Zooming Who? for 12/19/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/12/20/whos-zooming-who Sat, 19 Dec 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Video chats have been the major shift for communication in both business meetings and family gatherings since the beginning of the pandemic. Of course, we have seen a great number of gaffes, from inappropriately clad business associates to screaming children to barking dogs. In the process, we have also become cinematographers and theatrical set designers of sorts. Now we know what angles work, the benefits of light rings to get the best-lit images, and what works as a background for our Zoom meetings and presentations.</p> <p>What was once considered as a homemade video now competes with professionally produced content. Much thought has to go into today's presentations, as many presentations go from iPhone or GoPro to a multitude of media platforms.</p> <p>The go-to furniture item this year is the bookcase, which helps create the illusion of an office in almost any corner of a room. Also gaining traction because of its simplicity is the open-shelving concept. Both create a backdrop that sends the message that you are knowledgeable in your game. If you pay attention, you'll notice that when celebrities and journalists appear on television, they usually have organized and well-placed items, books and, well, if they've got some, awards. It's OK to brag and show off your accomplishments. <p>Updated: Sat Dec 19, 2020</p> 3890da2042df4b61a1354d862aedfeed Home Style for 12/12/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/12/20/home-style Sat, 12 Dec 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Having been through a few months of lockdown and working from home, we are all more familiar with everything in our homes than we ever have been before. Minutes, hours, days, weeks and months have given us every opportunity to check out every scratch, blemish and wrinkle. We are now keenly aware of what we like and what we don't. Comfort, above all, is what we all want today. It is the ultimate luxury.</p> <p>As we face an uncertain future, which may entail longer periods of cooking, playing, living and even working from home, everyone seems to have comfort at the top of their list for every room in their home. Comfort can mean different things to different consumers, but we can all agree to certain rules about the rooms in our home. Bedrooms, living rooms, dining rooms, bathrooms and kitchens all have certain standards about what makes them comfortable.</p> <p>Some adults' fondest memories are set in the homes they grew up in. When you ask someone to describe their idea of a comfortable home, they usually describe something resembling their childhood home, where they felt protected and warm and had good times with family and friends. Some of the time, these are idealized memories, but they define in our mind what we consider a comfortable home style.<p>Updated: Sat Dec 12, 2020</p> b3c110c069510a1f05e29ee568c39d13 Visual Menagerie for 12/05/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/12/20/visual-menagerie Sat, 05 Dec 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p>An insider secret to creating a room that takes your breath away is layering. The most interesting rooms always have layers upon layers of detail, no matter what the style. This, of course, is visible in traditional interiors, where an accumulation of furnishings and collections is the norm. But what about more modern interiors? <span class="column--highlighted-text">Even in contemporary architecture and interiors where minimalism reigns, there are layers of details, albeit restrained. In my book, all rooms are full of potential and can have the required layers to make the room interesting.</span></p> <p>Understanding the layers of a room is a bit like peeling the layers of a fruit. The skin or outer layer contains art and accessories, which can encompass everything from objets d'art, vases, lamps, family pictures, books, decorative pillows and throws. These are the most revealing items of the inhabitants of any home. Also, in terms of quantity, this layer is likely to have the most items of the room.</p> <p>The next layer is composed of window treatments and flooring. Both of these ingredients are visually impactful, because they dictate the stylistic direction of a room. These can be elaborate and have patterns that add interest to a room, or they can be plain and subdued and act just as background for the furnishings. Depending on the materials selected, flooring can also have a great design impact on the room. Stone or wood floors are still the most venerated materials. They can be intricate and have a lot of patterns, or they can be simple. Flooring in and of itself can have layers of its own, such as when you have an area rug.<p>Updated: Sat Dec 05, 2020</p> 7397544b43ff5d8840f36829c2a0be94 The Color of Architecture for 11/21/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/11/20/the-color-of-architecture Sat, 21 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Who hasn't heard the phrase "beauty is in the eye of the beholder"? The old adage is appropriate for almost every aesthetic concern. However, there is much controversy about what constitutes beauty and the appropriate color for the exterior of a home. Most homeowners will regard this matter as one of personal preference, and that is true to some extent. Homeowners sometimes fail to see the importance of selecting a color, which impacts the public realm. Something as simple as color on the exterior of a home has an impact for five to 10 years, which is the life span of a good paint job.</p> <p>The style of architecture should be one of the main elements taken into account when selecting a color for a home. Generally, the more complex or sophisticated a particular architectural style is, the more subdued palette should be. Simpler architectural styles can opt for more colorful and saturated colors, which will make up for any architectural details that a home lacks. Architectural styles that are harder to discern or homes that lack a definite architectural style can benefit from an "anything goes" palette or a simple white or neutral color scheme.</p> <p>Taking into account the architectural fabric and existing color palette throughout the area is another important factor when selecting colors for your own home. Some homeowners, however, are at a loss as to what to do as they weigh what is considered good taste versus striking out for a fresh approach to colors. Curb appeal, obviously, is the one thing that most homeowners are after. Color selection can affect how one perceives a neighborhood. <span class="column--highlighted-text">Curb appeal can lure a potential homeowner to a certain area or neighborhood. The colors of the homes can give identity to a neighborhood or particular district and speak volumes about whether an area is stable and established or an up-and-coming fringe neighborhood. Needless to say, you can see how color could affect the value of a home and marketability of a neighborhood.</span><p>Updated: Sat Nov 21, 2020</p> db4beed808a942e1cbebc2ec826360fb Al Fresco for 11/14/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/11/20/al-fresco Sat, 14 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p>"Al fresco" is an Italian term meaning outside. This can mean many things in Italy and Europe. Tiny tables set alongside a narrow street, a sidewalk cafe, an ample terrace facing a main street or tables set within an open-air courtyard or loggia are generally acceptable, and even preferred, dining locations when weather allows. For hundreds of years, many have enjoyed dining outdoors, and with the current situation of the pandemic, dining al fresco is something that has been advocated by medical professionals and politicians alike. Besides the enjoyment of nature and architecture, the breezes help keep the air flowing and fresh.</p> <p>If you must dine inside, it's a good idea to open your windows and door. Cities throughout the United States have adopted outdoor dining as means of keeping their doors open and offering dining venues for a single diner or a small group of up to four or six diners. Keep dining outings small, and if they are members of your quarantine group or household, even better. </p> <p>Many will say that their living quarters may not offer an adequate place for dining. However, today's requirements of social distancing mean thinking a little outside the box. If your home has a front porch, front stoop with a wide sidewalk, or even a front yard, these can function as places to dine in a relatively healthy environment. For those in cooler areas, outdoor heaters are available, and you can also get a four-post tent that will provide cover from the evening dew and help keep some heat near your diners.<p>Updated: Sat Nov 14, 2020</p> 203e81385b370b43daebc502a9f0b4c5 Hunting for a Collection for 11/07/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/11/20/hunting-for-a-collection Sat, 07 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 <p>Collections are an important component of decorating. They can give even the most bland decor a point of view. Actually, here is something most designers know: Collections show best in what most homeowners would consider a bland interior design. Think about it. Museums and galleries alike look for a neutral space or an all-white space in order to shift the focus to the art, not the particulars of a room.</p> <p>Back to the art of collecting. Some say that their collection of a particular item or artist is because they LOVE the item or the message or the technique of a work of art. Well, this is partly true. Many collect because they identify with a particular form of expression, color or information that an artist is trying to communicate. Collectors generally become quite knowledgeable about whatever it is they are collecting. Some try to forge friendships with the artists or craftsmen, or whoever is considered the authority on a work of art, as a means to gain more knowledge about their collection.</p> <p>There are those who are guided by their educated eye, and there are those who collect on a whim or because something catches their attention. Even though there is an emphasis on accumulating a certain item and a pride in ownership, most collectors, even myself, find a great thrill in the hunt. For many collectors, the process of going out and scouring shops, galleries and estate sales, finding a work of art, and then classifying and authenticating it is the ultimate satisfaction.<p>Updated: Sat Nov 07, 2020</p> cdf37dea659796a6c7423088a962564a Back to the Future for 10/31/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/10/20/back-to-the-future-308a7 Sat, 31 Oct 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p>It has been a long time, probably since the 1920s and 30s, since the small home has been on the minds of architects and designers. It's not that there aren't capable professionals to design small; it's that the profession as a whole has been too busy designing bigger and bigger houses to conform to Americans' needs. However, it seems that, just like life, the real estate market has come full circle.</p> <p>Recently, there has been a rebirth of the small house movement, which has sprouted up all over the world, mainly as a reaction to overconsumption and the effects of global warming. Many people want houses that are more tailored, and they are conscious of the impact of construction on the Earth. This movement is opposite to the idea of the McMansion of the 1990s and 2000s.</p> <p>Today's consumers, and those who are enlightened about our global situation, want quality products of minimal size. For small houses to be successful, they must have good construction methods and materials that are nontoxic to the environment yet are durable and have aesthetic appeal. Other aspects that are important to small homes are proper orientation with regard to the amount of sunlight and shade. Orientation will affect what kind of insulation is required, the amount and type of windows, and mechanical and/or passive systems for cooling and heating. Finally, everyone wants their home to be aesthetically pleasing.<p>Updated: Sat Oct 31, 2020</p> 98d4d344b26e44b45009ba25ce054bd9 Bamboozled for 10/24/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/10/20/bamboozled-43014 Sat, 24 Oct 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Bamboo, rattan, reed, cane and wicker have been around since the beginning of civilization. There is historical evidence of these natural grasses being used for household goods since 8000 B.C. From Egypt to China, samples have been found, all claiming to be the oldest pieces furniture and accessories in existence. Indisputably, ancient baskets and containers are a part of the history of mankind throughout the world due to their daily use.</p> <p>Furniture of wood and grasses span civilizations from Mesopotamia to ancient Rome and Greece. Initially, furniture was enjoyed by kings and the upper classes as a form of art. Designs were made to show off the strength and quality of the weavers and furniture makers. As the material was easily grown in Japan, China and the Philippines, bamboo and rattan furniture were widely used in Asian furniture.</p> <p>Although sometimes the terms "bamboo" or "rattan" are both used to describe any casual wood furniture, there is a great difference between both materials. Bamboo is from the grass family, and it is hollow and unbendable, whereas rattan is a type of palm tree, and its core is solid and therefore can be bent and woven into intricate designs. "Wicker" is a term to describe the process where slim strands of bamboo or rattan are woven around wood or metal frames. Wickerwork was highly coveted because of the extravagant shapes, especially curves that could be elaborated.<p>Updated: Sat Oct 24, 2020</p> dccb3ad3d958497e325ef4c9ef8c5c33 The Luxury of Your Bedroom for 10/17/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/10/20/the-luxury-of-your-bedroom Sat, 17 Oct 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Home has never been at the forefront the way it is now. Lockdowns and quarantines have impacted young and old alike, and this has caused every imperfection in your dwellings to raise its head like an ugly pimple. One of the areas prone to need some help is your bedroom. </p> <p>Let's aim straight for the head. Change your headboard. Almost any headboard can be revamped with either paint or fabric. If your current headboard is mainly made out of wood or metal, paint is your first go-to solution. Painting your headboard a new color is a super quick fix. This change can be done in less than an hour ... just make sure to mask or lay paper down around the headboard so as to not paint the floor or other components of the bed. Alternatively, fabric, batting material and a staple or hot glue gun will help you transform your headboard, which is the focal point of your furniture in the bedroom.</p> <p>I'm always an advocate for changing the color of a room, in this case, a bedroom. If this sounds too challenging, just try painting the wall that the bed is positioned against. For example, let's say your room is a neutral, inoffensive shade of ivory; you can paint a contrasting color on one wall, and voila, you are done. For those willing to take a chance and experiment, you may accent the wall with white paint in a freehand pattern &#8212; or go the opposite way, blue tape in hand, and paint distinctive shapes and geometric patterns in a dark paint color for contrast. <p>Updated: Sat Oct 17, 2020</p> d825a036484fb4fa90f578da31ff6779 It's My House, and I Live Here for 10/10/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/10/20/its-my-house-and-i-live-here Sat, 10 Oct 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>The living room has historically been an overdecorated room used mainly to receive and impress visitors. This room was a status symbol for outside guests, which is why the decor was typically dressed up or done to the nines. The American living room has changed a lot in the last two or three decades. In today's homes, we see less and less the idea of a formal living room &#8212; aside from older homes or exceptionally large homes, where square footage and budgets are of no consequence. For the rest of us, lifestyles have evolved, and formal living rooms are things of the past.</p> <p><span class="column--highlighted-text">Today's living room has morphed into a grouping of several different rooms into one. The living room, dining room and kitchen have given way to the "great room," or the open-floor plan home. </span>This arrangement is the most popular layout for single-family homes, condominiums and apartments. Anything is possible in these rooms, and no one decorating style or formula can or should apply. Decorating these rooms is seemingly free of convention or traditional discipline. It is for this reason that one should tread cautiously when decorating. One should still attempt to have an overall design concept as the goal. Otherwise, the result can be as chaotic as your last visit to any furniture store, where you were bombarded by the sea of furniture vignettes.<p>Updated: Sat Oct 10, 2020</p> 1e589a4d90ef7b9d175231b69fb6d606 The Pediment for 10/03/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/10/20/the-pediment Sat, 03 Oct 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Pediments are probably the most recognizable architectural form alongside the column. Throughout history, they have crowned all types of buildings, from ancient Greek and Roman temples to banks and even millions of our present-day homes. This triangular-shaped wall is what creates the gable end of a roof structure. In temples, it is the shape that crowns the columns or wall below, and it creates part of the iconic and powerful imagery. Its geometry is also something that announces the entrance to a building when brought to the front of a facade. </p> <p>Although generally associated with classical architecture and exemplified by neoclassical and baroque architecture, pediments are seen in almost every type of architecture, including contemporary styles. The influence of the pediment is present all over the world. You may see homes and buildings with a pediment, from the rural architecture of the Midwestern United States to African huts to Italian in-town homes and even Argentine ranches. Its inclusion in so many architectures of the world is partly due to the fact that, although we recognize its beauty, it also has structural benefits.</p> <p>Pediments are generally a traditional form, which evokes something established. Buildings with pediments can be from B.C. or from 1933; the Pantheon in Rome, the New York Stock Exchange and even the United States Supreme Court building all embrace the pediment and its symbolism of power and stability. It is truly a classic symbol.<p>Updated: Sat Oct 03, 2020</p> d58a7f7276f3722c8e479a9a12965cb8 Shipping Container Homes for 09/26/2020 https://www.creators.com/read/the-art-of-design/09/20/shipping-container-homes Sat, 26 Sep 2020 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Yes, I am from a generation when technology virtually did not exist. I barely looked at my store-bought toys, making holidays and birthdays a nightmare for my parents. As a child, my preferred toys were empty boxes and bottles that were discarded in my home. I would play with them for hours upon hours, stacking them one on top of another. There is no doubt that there was a creative individual in the making and that I would end up studying architecture. Now, as an adult in the middle stages of life, I am equally intrigued and entertained by the emerging trend of building with shipping containers. I fear coming full circle and starting to play with my boxes again.</p> <p><span class="column--highlighted-text">Shipping container homes and buildings have gained traction in the last 10 years as people search for an alternative to traditional building methods and look for recyclable, durable products. </span>Depending on where you live and the weather in your location, these shipping containers can be assembled in configurations that will give you protection from the sun, wind and rain.</p> <p>There are some limitations to shipping container homes. Many who look into these homes are also searching for smaller homes, alternative sources of power and a smaller carbon footprint. These homes are sometimes built as beach or mountain homes, where, because of their remote locations, they are not subject to conventional building codes or adherence to sewer hookups or power sources. So, many are off-grid.<p>Updated: Sat Sep 26, 2020</p>