Hello all! I'm Kendall from Finesse Your Nest! I've created this new little blog as a resource for my "on the side" decorating jobs for friends & acquaintances. This is the site I will direct them to, to see their decorating plan, inspiration boards and anything else related to the job!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Ideas for the Foyer

On the 2 little art niches that "frame" your sitting room, I would do tall matching arrangements on both. 

Here are some ideas for arrangements:

Dried branches similar to this placed in an urn or container.  Here are some container ideas...

The tall one only, in wood.

Or you could do peacock feathers, instead of dried branches...

For the inset ceiling in your entryway, I would highly suggest painting it turquoise.  This will draw attention to the architectural detail as well as really highlight the great chandelier you will hang here.  Be sure you install your chandelier on a dimmer (easy to do!) to create "mood" lighting when you need to.

Speaking of lighting, I found a few more options that aren't ridiculous prices that you may want to consider...

Home Depot $169 - I love the lantern feel of this piece.

Home Depot - marked down to $161.40 from $269 - the lights look like candles

Okay, I know this is nothing fancy, but imagine if you spray painted it oil rubbed bronze against that turquoise ceiling.  It's a little industrial but REALLY cool, and the price is awesome $29.97.  This could also be an option for lighting in the kitchen.  Imagine 2 of these hanging over your dining table.  Cool!

Look at some of the things I found at Walmart!
$70.94 (not crazy about the finish, but you could spray paint oil rubbed bronze)

Also, don't forget Craig's List as a resource for cheap chandeliers.  Don't pay any attention to finish, you can always spray paint it!  Here are some examples of things I found:

Huge piece for $75.  Spray paint over the gold.


Okay, here are some ideas for the little area by the door....

Peg wall rack to hang coats, bags, etc.

Simple rack single or double
Modern style rack with mirror and shelf

Really cool rack that doesn't take up much space and can hold a jacket and bags

Okay, without the goofy hearts!

Might be a little too modern, but I like this setup.

You might also have room for an umbrella holder...

Not so crazy about the metal one, but LOVE the owl!

The console table is a great piece.  I would make the following changes:

1.  Mirror - The mirror is too big for the table.  Can you move it into the living room to use either in the center of the large art niche or over the fireplace?  Here are some mirror ideas that would work with the foyer table:

Hang horizontal.  I really like the idea of using a non-wood material for your mirror.  This one is iron.

Hang horizontal.  Could also be oil rubbed bronze finish.

Hang horizontal.  Different finish.  I really like all the detail in this mirror.  The outer frame is an antiqued glass.

A grouping of small mirrors over the console table would look really COOL!

You can find mirrors at garage sales & on Craig's List, so check that out.  Also, if you chose to do a grouping of small mirrors (which is my FAVE idea) you can find these at Goodwill or Salvation Army.  Don't worry about finish.  You can paint them. 

2.  Accessories - I would focus on either a monochromatic (1 color) scheme in one of your accent colors (lime, turq or navy) or do 2 colors.  This is a look that really "pops"  Console table ideas:

I know this totally isn't your style, but see how the 1-2 color scheme really works?

For the top of the piece, I really like the way this one looks:
The 2 lamps, repeating your tall standing topiary in a smaller version on the top of the console table, to tie them together, a small tray for keys and smaller framed pictures.

Entry to Master Bedroom

My first thought is to paint this entire little portico your accent color. So if you are going with the lime/turquoise combo, I would paint it turquoise.  This will tie it in to the rest of the space and create some interest in this small area.  

For decor here, since the space is small, I would do a wall piece on the wall that you would see if you were looking at it from the living room. 

If you are painting the area turquoise, your accessories should be apple green.  If you are painting the area the Ethereal Mood color, use turquoise, navy and apple green in your accessory colors.  Just remember to keep it pretty simple.  This piece is more "art" than "function". 

Another thing to keep in mind is the depth of the piece.  You don't want something that's going to block the entry to the master bedroom or get knocked off the wall everytime you walk by.

And finally, you don't have to do a wood tone finish.  White would look great too, or black!  Also, other materials like glass, metal or rattan could be considered.

Here are some ideas:


I love the honeycomb shape of this piece. Of course, you would need a tad darker finish.  If you decide to go with a wood piece, look for something with an interesting shape like this.

Same shape in single pieces.  These are from West Elm.

This is an interesting piece too.  I would hang it low (like console table height) and then hang a piece of art, a mirror or a large framed portrait above it.

Look at these small block shelves.  They could probably be made pretty easily by "Handy Brad" (you know that's going to be his nickname from now on!)  How cool would it be to do a grouping of these high to low and then place a single fake granny smith apple on each shelf, or even a pear?!

I love the curved edges as well as the white color.

Here's the same idea in an octagon shape.

I love the long piece!

This is a cool idea, if you decide to paint this area the Ethereal Mood color.  You can find these shadowboxes everywhere.  I would paint the insides lime green, turquoise and navy.  

Another idea to add color, if you painted this area the gray color.  I love the interesting curved shape and the way they used wall decals to accent the piece.

Staining Oak Cabinets

There is a lot of information on staining cabinets out on the internet and a lot of different techniques, but after researching this subject at length, here is my suggestion on how to do this:

Supplies you will need:
Minwax Polyshades in your desired color (this has the polyurethene built in) - I would buy a couple of small jars to test the stain color before you buy the big ones.  Test the stain under your bar where it is inconspicuous.  Sand lightly first and then apply stain.  You may have to do more than one coat to achieve the desired color)
Sandpaper - Since this will be a big job, I would suggest investing in a palm sander with a fine grit sandpaper
Painters Rags (a lot)
Odorless Mineral Spirits (to clean any grease, etc off cabinet doors & frames)

1.  Clean all cabinet doors and frames with odorless mineral spirits.
2.  Remove all cabinet doors and set up on saw horse in the garage or back yard to stain.  Do the same with all drawers.
3.  Using a fine grit sandpaper, sand all surfaces to stain.  Remember, you are just "roughing up" the surface so it will take stain.  You are not sanding down to the bare wood.  Wipe all surfaces with a clean dry cloth when done.
4.  Apply stain to surfaces using a brush meant for stains.  Keep in mind how many coats you will need to apply based on your test stain.  Rub the stain into the surface with painters rag in between coats.  This will ensure a natural look.

From what I have read on message boards, etc. this is definitely a 2 to 3 day project.

I think the darker cabinets are going to look great!  You might also consider adding hardware to the doors and drawers.  You could do oil rubbed bronze or brushed nickel.

Here are a few inspiration photos of what darker cabinets will look like with the current apple green wall color:

Alternate Palette!


The Ethereal Mood color reads more gray on the computer.  I would still use the turquoise as an accent, but change the kitchen walls to this rust color.  

Here is an inspiration board showing you what the living room might look like with this color palette:

Neutral Living Room with Turquoise & Rust Accents
Neutral Living Room with 

And here's what your kitchen might look like with this color combination: