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Talk Takeaway: Design with Kristan Cunningham

Posted on Oct 17, 2012 10:50pm

Lifestyle expert Kristan Cunningham shows us the latest "Fall Home Trends for 2012."

Decorate with Navajo-inspired accessories.
Navajo pillows:  In fashion and decor, anything Navajo is "in like Flynn" right now. Lucky for us, vintage Navajo pillows are fairly easy to come by at flea markets and discounted web sites. The look is graphic and classic at the same time... It's a perfect way to usher in fall because the look is handsome and heavy versus sweet and airy. A couple strong Navajo patterned pillows on your sofa can be an absolute room changer.

Navajo rugs: Navajo rugs offer an eclectic touch to any home. Navajo rugs represent a perfect example of just one of the art forms acquired by the Navajo people and transformed.

Combine industrial art and personal pieces.
Industrial Art: From Cage lights with Edison bulbs to old carts as tables, everyone wants pieces with history and a focus on how something was made and what it was made for. The word "utilitarian" is used to indicate "cold" for most people... But as the recycled look has become more and more relevant in good design, so has our appreciation for the beauty in simple functional things. These decorative machine gears are a perfect example of something that was once put to such hard use, but now is a work of art in itself. For those of you who have a home that leans more traditional or soft, this is an element that can be incorporated seamlessly and still have a ton of impact. It's also a great way to bring some visual weight to your space for fall.

Personal photos as real art:  With social media playing such a big part in our lives, we've conditioned ourselves to document nearly everything, and smart phones have turned virtually everyone into good photographers. There are so many filters and apps right at our fingertips that are capturing a moment beautifully! It's just as simple to take it a step further and turn that moment into art. So often, our art dictates the color scheme and design direction of our spaces since it tends to be the most specific and most expensive part of our furnishings. But bringing in earthy tones is important to achieve our fall vibe.  Take some pictures of the newly turned leaves, or the lake where your family has vacationed for years, and print a couple out at your local printer store.  You can do this for a few bucks at virtually any size and use frames of the art you already have hanging on the wall. No new nail holes, no cost of framing, but a whole new moodier vibe on the walls for the cozier months ahead.

Use natural elements.
Driftwood: For fall, it's a no brainer... You just need simple, natural elements with a bit of visual weight, and a bit of sparkle to add some life to the whole shebang. A piece of driftwood (or a branch from your yard) can really impact the fireplace and make a bold statement.

White pumpkins: A few white pumpkins are a great fall statement. Also, they're a way of creating a solid accent while looking effortless.

Make the most of the dining table.
Dinnerware: Our dining tables tend to be the largest piece of "visual real estate" we have when it comes to furniture, and creating a "tablescape" can be daunting. Use dinnerware plates and glasses to complete the fall look of the table. The fall dinnerware trends right now are copper cups, tarnished silver platters, teak and brass flatware, and wooden bowls.

Wine bottles: Wine bottles with the labels removed look beautiful in their new role as candlesticks. Simple and utilitarian, but inherently beautiful, thanks to the greens and ambers of the glass. Stick with one shade of candles to unify the look, but trim the bottoms of the tapers at different heights to add some interest.

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