Roderick’s Tips


What’s Worth Celebrating? By Roderick Reed What a year. The never ending Presidential Campaign and election are finally over. Everyone feels the fatigue. There have been wars, terrorism, and climate disasters .Much news about shootings of and by police.  An escalating civil war in Syria. 2016 has provided an amazing assault on our senses with all the overwhelming news this year. Did we forget the surprising results of England voting to leave the EU? How do we face all this uncertainty in the world and still manage to be hopeful and content? The answer is to Stay Home. French Philosopher Blaise Pascal famously wrote, “All of humanities problems stems from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.” I am not suggesting that we all send ourselves to a self-imposed solitary confinement. The “spirit” of his words reminds us that home can be a place comfort and renewal. I think people have forgotten that your home is a sanctuary where you can control the information you receive, or overhear, what you see, the music and even what’s served for dinner and there’s no tipping required! Be a little old school. Ignore all the media devices such Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest etc. Instead read a paper book, listen to music or hear silence. Alternatively you may watch a little TV or cuddle with your wife in front of the fireplace. Make this the time to think of your home as a place of beauty and not simply the place where you hang your hat. Turn your home into a place of reflection and respite. If being home starts to heal your worn out “2016 state of mind” than what could better than to share it. Invite friends over and simply order a pizza. Or have a neighbor over and merely open a bottle of wine and look at the ocean we are so fortunate to have at our disposal. Having family and friends over brings its own set of complications. Opinions, misunderstandings and feuds bring their own set of headaches. Invite those people anyway. Distance never improved any of those situations. The bottom line is to rediscover your home. The money you save by not leaving your home to dine, dance or watch a movie may now be available to buy “that painting “ you love. Hang it and adore your evolving home environment. You may find your home is the coolest place that you could possibly be. Celebrate...

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Why do we like to look into the homes of others? There is a simple voyeuristic pleasure of course, other times we just like to be nosy. Millions of people read thousands of magazines and watch TV shows which give us a glimpse into the homes of others. Magazines like Architectural Digest take us inside gorgeous homes. TV shows like MTV Cribs etc. keep us and our appetites fulfilled. For centuries artists from Vermeer to Matisse have lovingly depicted interiors. The reason most people look at these pictures is the hope that some idea will spring forth that one can apply to their own home. Most don’t get around to it though even if you find the right inspiration. Still it’s fun to look into the home of someone you think you know like a celebrity and see how they live. The interior of one’s home and the way people live inside of their homes is a peak at someone’s soul. What kind of art do they have? Is it messy or organized, traditional or contemporary?  Do you have an artistic flair or maybe more of a dorm room style? How to make a House feel like a Home? Add lots of family photos. Frame them in harmonious frame styles. Maybe have a collection of photos at that are all ‘Funny” Add candle light – Tapers, votives or pillars. Use soy candles so that you don’t put toxins into your air. Texture and color– Add colorful throw blankets and pillows, area rugs. Stacks of books. Sheer curtain panels– Sheer curtain panels filter light and add a soft natural light to your room. Perfection– Avoid it. Don’t make it look to perfectly styled Your home reflects you, so what does yours say? Is it 1972 or 1987? It is hard to look at your house and realize it’s tired, but if you pretend your house belongs to someone else you will notice the things that are dated. Take away knick- knacks, pillows and art that is dated. Make dated kitchen and bath cabinets look more up to date by changing the hardware. Small changes like switching the hardware make a big impact. Plus it’s easy! 5 cheap, easy ways to refresh your home for Spring. SWITCH PLATE COVERS- Replace your ugly plastic switch plate covers with something decorative. For only a few dollars you can add some charming detail to your room. You can pick plates by theme. Kid’s room motifs etc. Switch plates come in metals, wood and printed patterns. Most hardware or home stores have an entire section dedicated to switch plates PAINT– Paint gives your home big...

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Laguna Beach interior design inspiration is where you find it. No matter what kind of work you do finding the inspiration to  get the wheel turning and keep it turning is a challenge. Designers, artists, writers and other creative types know the dilemma well. For those fortunate enough to live in Laguna Beach or Newport Beach, there is sometimes an answer to inspiration perspiration available with a walk out your back door. Sometimes… I am an interior designer who is fortunate to be busy with plenty to do. The dilemma is to have inspired ideas in an assembly line type quickish fashion.  In my current project I was looking for a certain color to inspire one of the rooms I was working on. It was not” happening” so frustrated , as I often do; I got on my bike I decided to hit the trails at Top of World in Laguna Beach and take a break. Beautiful Day, hardly anyone on the trail, I pedaled along the fire road and made a fast decent down one of my favorite trails. I decided I was now in the best mood and started to think about looking for whatever it took to make me feel creative. Of course a well-timed  good mood and a front tire caught in a crack in the dirt make a devilish combination. The trail I was on is called Rocket.(Rock-It) Not because it is fast ( it is) but because it is vertical and slippery, slidey, forearm burning on the brakes, rocky. All the way down. Over the handle bars, pedal clips now disengaged flying through the air I am wondering if I will make the front page of the “Independent” with narrative about a helicopter rescue of a Laguna local whose friends and family are planning an event to raise money for my new prosthetic legs. What lame day. This is the worst day ever and it is not even 9:00am yet! Thump. Backside stabbed by cactus I am laying on my back. Then it happened. The perfect green to harmonize with the gray I had selected for my interior design project! That beautiful, curvy, attractive cactus offered me the perfect green! I took a picture with my phone. You know the saying , Inspiration is where you find it. I never really understood that saying until that day. In Laguna everything is beautiful and sometimes the most unlikely source can inspire. Even a cactus. I went back later and dug the cactus up, where it now sits in a pot on my deck, her name is...

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Newport Beach Interior Design with Books A book is one of life’s simple pleasures, even after being read it still has many uses. Books add a layer of personality to any setting. – If a book has great interior pages, display the book open. You can display it open flat or better yet put it on a small easel. -Use books to elevate something.  A stack of three might give some extra stature to a clock or a set of candle-holders. – Stack books on your coffee table. They make a space feel inviting. Use picture books. You and your guests will enjoy looking at them more than if they are just stacked on a book shelf! – Organize the books by color to harmonize with your color scheme. – When arranging books on a shelf don’t forget to include other pieces in with the arrangement:  Antiques, photos, lamps, collectibles,...

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