Are you entering college this fall, or have children entering university or college, then first of all, congratulations! It is an exciting time to start planning a new life away from home. That also means trying to make a home out of a utilitarian and typically drab dorm room.
Looking back to my college days, there were some things that I wish that I have considered before I moved into my dorm and lived with a roommate. My top recommendation, which I mentioned in other blogs, is to make design decisions and purchases that can transition with you during your life and can be reused. This can ultimately save you money as you go from dorm to an apartment or home. I didn't do that myself in my college days and it could have saved me money. Let's avoid that mistake I made and let me help you to get your money's worth for the rest of your college years and possibly beyond.
I created three style boards with clickable shopping lists of three top styles popular with young adults: Bohemian, Industrial Chic, and Modern Eclectic. Fortunately, these styles can also be budget-friendly. All of the designs include three different functional aspects of a dorm room such as a small living area, a bed, and a desk.
Before you or your children start to shop or decorate - please check with your particular college for dorm policies to find out what is allowed or not and make sure there is space for some of these pieces.
In general, most dorm beds are a bit bigger than standard twin size and called Twin XL so please double check the size before you go out and buy and bed sets. I personally have seen parents become upset when they showed up in the room to learn they purchased the wrong size bedding for their kid. That is something we don't want to deal with.
Bohemian(known as Boho) is known for being earthy, high spirit, calm, fun, and colorful. It lends itself to create a comfortable and relaxing environment; a great place for having friends over and a meditative space for studying. If your school allows, you could add plants to your dorm to improve the quality of life and indoor environment. I selected a fun color accent chair to add a personal touch to your dorm and then mixed with different colors, materials, and textures shown on the style board above. If you're not a fan of the pink- no worries, there are different color options from the vendor. This dorm should have fun bold or lighter colors wall arts to balance the dorm look but also get you inspired. This participlar style is known as being very affordable and something we can enjoy it for years.
Industrial Chic is perfect for anyone that doesn't want a lot of color and appreciates a more masculine tone. Industrial doesn't mean that everything must be either rustic or a metallic look. It can be cozy and homey too. I created this design to be simple but functional for your needs. I mixed the materials to work with this style but still create a comfortable environment just for you. It would be ok to add a couple more colors or plants to the design to match your personality since the current design palette is neutral and would work well with most colors. An art gallery style wall would also look nice in this kind of space.
This particular style, modern eclectic is ideal for anyone that loves pieces from various different styles while still being cohesive. For instance, I love this emerald green chair so much, so you could have that chair and mix it with different patterns, materials, and colors to make it a unique space just for you. Life is short, let's make the dorm fun and stylish! That's why I selected that chair with the wall art set of Lunar prints plus faux cowhide rug to make a stylish statement for your dorm design.
I hope you find these different dorm designs inspiring and get you excited about decorating your own dorm to make it a home just for you. I wish you the best of luck in your college career and future aspirations.
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links and by clicking on them incur no additional cost to you. JJones Design Co. will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase after clicking on the link. Please understand that JJones Design Co. has experience with all of these vendors, and recommends them because they provide excellent customer service and quality products. We do not base our designs off of vendors that provide affiliate link commissions. Do not feel obligated to spend any money on these products unless you feel you need them or that they will help you achieve your goals for your design.
In the past year, from time to time I've noticed several interior designers sharing their work on social media and using a type of rendering which is really unique and different compared to what I typically use and see most designers use. I became curious about this type of rendering and after reading up on it, learned it's called drop-on rendering. You probably wondering what is it or what is the difference compared to other types of renderings. We will discuss about it on this blog.
Some of you guys have been following me since the early days. I discussed in an older, and one of my most read, blogs about 2D Rendering vs. 3D Rendering which described the differences between these two different types of renderings. They are the 2 most commonly used in the industry, so I'm really excited to share with you about this new one. See the image above? That is what drop-on rendering can look like. You take a really good picture of your space then you edit it in Photoshop to add items to improve the spaces look. It's kind of like a marriage between a 2D and 3D Rendering. Let me show you what it looked like before the editing.
Sometimes I get really busy with lots of e-design projects with many having the same deadline. I decided to get smarter with my work without hurting the quality of my design and or the final presentation for our client. I sometimes ask my clients for good pictures of their spaces so I can do drop-on renderings to save time. That does make a big difference for me but more importantly, it looks professional and is great for the client to envision the space before the makeover. Here are a few more examples of my other recent e-design projects that included drop-on renderings.
This rendering was my first drop-on rendering work for the client. All I did was just add the wallpaper, window treatment, chair, task lamp, laptop, and accessories for the built-in shelves. Does it help you to see how you could style your built-in shelves with this type of rendering?
See the outdoor living space photo? This space didn't need much work, so I added the outdoor pillows, fire, nest lounge chairs and side table to this picture. The rendering is simple but still helps the client to envision the space better.
This one was a very simple e-design project request. The client only wanted to see how their new console table, candles, and basket look like for their foyer before they purchased it. I only added three items to this photo to help the client to see it to make the decision and provide guidance.
After doing a several drop-on rendering works - I really pleased to see how much it really help our clients to envision their spaces better. From now, I would encourage my clients to take a few good pictures of their spaces so I can do drop-on rendering works for their spaces. If quality pictures at the right angles aren't doable, then I go back to the tried and true 2D and 3D renderings.
I would love to hear your thoughts on these drop on renderings.
Where did the time go? Springtime is almost here! I've lost track of time already. In the last three months, I've been working on a bunch of different kinds of e-design projects with amazing people from all over the US, Canada, and Greece. I'd like to share some of my favorite with you.
This client wanted a nice playroom that can also work for adults. I suggested the client think about long-term design solutions so the playroom would continue to be functional as the children aged. They could turn the playroom into a family room or teenager hangout lounge and use some of the same furniture. I also recommended a wallpaper to create an accent wall for this TV wall so it would look more stylish for the adult's taste.
I work with a client that needed my help to redesign her guest room into a bedroom for her son. He loves sports and is a huge fan of the Atlanta Falcons and wanted me to include it in his bedroom design. Spacially, it was a bit challenging to design because there are two doors and large closets which made it almost impossible to fit a bunk bed into this bedroom. After a lot of searching, I found the perfect bunk bed that fits the space without blocking access to any doors. Regardless of the challenge, it was fun to work on this project since I don't work with this type of project very often.
I was really excited to work on this unique e-design project because I'm a huge fan of high rise lofts with exposed ceilings, visible plumbing/venting, and it had an amazing view of Chicago. The challenging aspect of this project was that the client was considering removing the fireplace to make the space feel bigger. It didn't really take up much space and I was concerned that they would lose a bit of home value if they removed it. Secondly, how to fit all the living and dining furniture into a medium sized area between the windows and kitchen. The client wanted to keep some of their furniture and include the speakers around the space. We managed it to make it work for the family of four without making it look too cluttered. I'm really pleased with the way it turned out. As was the client!
When I was assigned to this project - I got really excited because the client wanted a modern boho style home office/guest room and this is currently one of my favorite styles to work with. I was pleased how the project turned out and it was a dream to work with the client because we were always on the same page with the direction I wanted to go. It was a bit challenging to find a sleeper sofa that would fit in this space since it is is very small and I couldn't block access to the doors when the bed is pulled. This is one of my all the time e-design project favorites.
The modern boho office client was so thrilled with the result they re-hired me to design their master bedroom. This was a complete design since the client only had a matress to start and no furniture at all! I made the suggestion to do a blue accent wall, a unique open latticework bed and a fabric billowy chandelier to be the statement pieces for the design. The client loved the furniture and went forward with this design plan for their master bedroom project.
This client had just moved into a beautiful new house and needed my help to figure out which furniture layout for the living room space and update the look. They were debating between a layout of two sofas facing each other or having a large sectional and which of the two would make the most sense for this space. I created two different floor plans with both furniture layouts to show. We decided two sofas facing each other would work best for this space because it created more open space and flow in the room.
This client had just moved into her new apartment and got a new job that required her to work from home. She needed my help with the home office layout and furniture. It was challenging work on this project because this client wanted a large table that would work with her current table lifter. When she gets tired of sitting all day she needed the option of standing and working. The space wasn't large enough to fit everything that she wanted for this project. I had to look around for right storage/filing cabinets solution that would fit her chair between the table and window wall. I managed to make it work for her needs so she would be able to work in and feel comfortable with the new work environment.
I hope you've enjoyed seeing some our latest work this past season! I have some really cool e-design projects in the pipeline so stay tuned for that early summer. :)
If you're feeling inspired and need my help for your own projects - you can get started here.
It has been a while since Jeffry and I had a real vacation - we have been working lots of hours lately. We realized that it was time for us to take a breather and decided to go to Victoria, B.C. for five days. It's been years since we went there last and we did a triple celebration for both our March birthdays and our upcoming 10 year anniversary together. Technically our anniversary will be in May, but we know that our schedules won't permit us to get away then.
We decided to try a seaplane flight to Victoria from Vancouver. It was our first time doing it and one of my bucket list items. We flew with Harbour Air Seaplane. It was a quick and easy trip; only a 30 minutes flight. Initially, we imagined it might feel like being on a speedboat since it's on water - nope! It was a lot smoother than we expected, with a really easy landing. If given the opportunity, I highly recommend you to do so during nice weather so you can enjoy the amazing view from a flight so low to the ground compared to a jet engine plane.
We checked in one of our favorite hotels, The Fairmont Empress which is an iconic hotel in downtown Victoria. We had a really wonderful experience with this hotel since they always provide excellent guest service. Another reason why I love this hotel is the architecture of this hotel, especially the interior blending both Victorian and Georgian elements, which is something we don't see much of it on the west coast. Recently, they went though a major renovation to upgrade the look. It looks really fresh and they managed to keep the character while modernizing to make it look like modern Victorian. I only wish they would have kept the ivy exterior, as it lent such charm to the exterior; though I understand the maintenance and upkeep reasons why they removed it.
We went walking around beautiful downtown Victoria. We love Victoria for the beautiful and historic buildings with lots of little hidden gems and alleys. Most are in good to great condition with colorful storefonts and historical charm. The Chinatown section of downtown has especially improved in the care to the buildings and area and we noticed the addition of a lot of new stores and restaurants to the area. While some are of the chain variety, it's encouraging to see that most of the businesses in the historical core are still independent.
Victoria is the capital of British Columbia and every time we've visited in the past, the beautiful British Columbia Parliament Building had been closed to the public. This time they were open. Yay! It was so gorgeous building to tour around and learned some tidbits of info about the Canadian and BC government we were unaware of. We also popped into the public gallery to watch the legislature in action during a Ministery of Transportation Commitee meeting and debate.
Of course, we went to one of most famous gardens in the world, Butchart Gardens. Sadly, we were there just before the blooming season so there were only a few spot blooms providing little pops of colour to enjoy. It was fine with us because it's still a gorgeous landscape and being the off-season, there weren't the hordes of tourists which can detract from enjoying the simple splendour and serenity of the place. I think there were only 20 people in the entire grounds while we were there. Perfect! I highly recommend you to check this beautiful garden out when you go to Victoria.
Another item to check off my bucket list was experiencing a proper afternoon high tea. The Empress is known especially for their high tea and it didn't disappoint. We received the traditional tiered stand with personal notes to say "Happy Birthday" and "Happy Anniversary" from our sweet and thoughtful server Marlene...who we learned later has been working at the hotel nearly 50 years!!! The tea and food were amazingly delicious, especially the signature scones and their homemade strawberry lavender jam! If they had been selling it I would have scooped it right up! We will definitely come back again next time we are in town.
While we were in town, several people recommended we check out Beacon Hill Park. We went walking around the park - we were blown away by how beautiful this park really is, reminding us a bit of New York City's Central Park. We enjoyed walking around and watching the ducks and peacocks that stroll around the park. Let me tell you, this place is a duck metropolis; I have never seen so many ducks in one place in my life before.
Sadly, our five days vacation in Victoria ended so quick. We flew back to Vancouver via seaplane. Good thing we rode it during the beautiful day which allowed us to get to see more what is down there. We enjoyed the sightseeing of beautiful islands between Vancouver Island to the mainland. That reminds us why we love Pacific Northwest region. Fantastic vacation...but now back to reality.
The tourist season is still a few months away but it's a great time to start thinking about updating your vacation rental property. It is good time to explore your options to update it to better attract tourists to maximize your revenue generating potential from your property.
The most important part of attracting people to rent your vacation home is the first impression. When most people today are using the web and room sharing websites like Airbnb to find a place to rent, people do judge a book by the cover. The web has opened up a wealth of rental opportunities and expanded marketplace but there is also lots of competition now for the renters' dollar.
I totally get that you might have some emotional connection with your vacation rental property from seasons spent there in the past, but renters would think otherwise. If you want to have a successful vacation rental property business - you have to be honest with yourself by asking this question yourself - is your vacation rental home in great shape? If not, then you need to seriously consider an update. Let's not get ourselves overwhelmed with what to improve the property - let focus on one room at a time.
The living room is where most people typically spend their time in to relax, have a conversation or watch a movie together. In general, the living room should be simple but a comfortable space for anyone. As for the living room design, stay away from themes because it tends to come across cheesy and probably will turn off many potential renters. You want a stylish living room with designer touches. As for which style - think about the reason that people are coming to your area. People often travel to experience what an area is known for. I said to stay away from themes, but that doesn't mean not doing a New England beach cottage vibe if your property is on Cape Cod, MA. People are traveling to your area to experience what is authentically local. Look at other popular vacation rental properties in your area and see what kind of style that attracts people. Use that style in your own way to make it stand out from your competitors. It will help you get more people to rent your property out.
Lots of people prefer to cook from their vacation rental to save money or just as a way to bond with family and friends. It is important to think about updating both the kitchen and dining area. If renting out a full home, often a large family group of friends will rent it out to enjoy cooking meals together so you want to make sure your kitchen has a larger counter or island for more prep stations. Here is my designer tip: you want a timeless kitchen design by making it lighter and airy and avoid using dark colors. A kitchen update can be a big investment. Keep in mind that in current times the kitchen is the most important room of the home for both social gatherings and preparing meals. Just like if you were to sell the house, you will see a return on this investment when you rent it out.
For the dining area - you want to keep it simple so it would be easier for anyone to clean up after meals. The dining room design should be understated elegance and comfortable since that is where people will take their meals, have a conversation or play a board game together.
I understand it can be challenging to figure out how many dining chairs are good enough for the dining area. Here is my tip - for the first bedroom start with four seats then add two more chairs for each additional bedroom. You're welcome! ;-)
For the bedroom, obviously a comfortable bed with a quality mattress is a must, but think about making a bedroom a special space; a retreat within a retreat. Some people might want to use your property for a romantic getaway trip as a couple or have an experience like they're staying at a luxury villa. You want to consider investing in decent bedroom furniture to improve the guest experience. And think about making sure the bathrooms are updated as well. Bathrooms are often the second most important rooms after a kitchen and will net a return on your investment as well.
The bottom line - when people have a wonderful experience renting out your vacation home - they are more likely to tell their relatives, friends, neighbors, and co-workers about it and give you a positive review. That would be great for your vacation rental property business as it allows you to increase your rental rate. If you're inspired to update your vacation rental home and need design help - you can get started here.
2017 was a big year for us doing through lots of changes, expansions, and working with so many amazing clients. Let's look back to what we've done in the past year.
In early 2017, we made the decision to re-brand our business from Roomz Design to JJones Design Co. We wanted to indicate we could design more than just residential and we also can do hospitality and commercial via an e-design platform as well. The same time we did our re-brand we launched our brand new website (which we built ourselves!!).
In the past year, we've worked with over 60 e-design projects throughout the USA, Canada, and one in Greece. It was lots of fun collaborating with some amazing people. It gave us the opportunity to work on various styles that we often work with and some that stretched our design muscles. More importantly are the many clients we worked with in the past year, developing wonderful relationships so that they invited back into their homes with multiple projects. Sometime we feel like we are great friends even never having met in person. This is something I really value and will treasure it forever.
It was really difficult for me to reflect back and decide which e-design projects in the past year may be our all time 2017 favorites. I already shared some on Instagram a few days ago but it only showed 10 pictures via their gallery. I'll add on to that and show you little more of some of my favorite e-design projects in the slideshow below.
Last fall, we also did a little design for ourselves with our home office makeover. I'm sitting in this office all day long and I need a little design inspiration for my work environment too! It's made such a BIG difference for the better. I discussed more about that in other blog here. However, we are so pleased with the way it turned out.
Just before 2017 ended, we added an additional feature to our website with "Shop The Look" which gives you the ability to easily and quickly purchase some of your favorite pieces that inspire you from our designs. You can check it out here.
2017 was great year for us. We are excited to see what 2018 has to offer.
Happy New Year!
Happy Holidays! Wishing you every happiness this holiday season and through out the coming year.
Where has the time gone to? It felt like autumn was only last month! It is my all-time favorite season and wish it would last a little longer so I could enjoy a bit more. However, I have worked on several fun e-design projects with my clients across the US and Canada via both here and Decorist. Let's talk about some of my favorite e-design projects that I have worked on in the past three months.
Contemporary Living Room
The client just purchased their house in the Bay Area and did some major renovation work on the entire house to make it like new again. The renovation parts were completed and the client was ready to decorate their house to make it a home for the family. The client wanted to have a neutral and masculine tone that is contemporary for the living room but also a wow-factor space for anyone when they enter the house. I selected an off-white sofa and chairs with darker colored frames and tables to work with the style they desired for. I managed to add wall arts, design elements and a cowhide rug to make the living room an interesting and luxurious look without becoming boring with too much of neutral colors. This is one of my favorite e-design projects because of their design style that I enjoy working with and I'm very pleased with the way it turned out.
Contemporary Family Room
Same client that I worked with for the living room above, rehired me to work on their family room with a similar style. This space is unique because it has some challenging architectural elements with the fireplace and layout. It was my first time to work with a media sofa since this family wanted to able to enjoy watch television together and get comfortable by have an extra deep sofa. I selected the fun patterned rug to add some character to the room. I also added poufs with unique looking textures since working with neutrals requires other elements to make the space interesting to the senses. I'm pleased with how everything looks together with all the pieces that the client and I selected together. This is one of my all the time favorite e-design projects.
Modern Farmhouse Kitchen
This kitchen e-design project was with one of our loyal clients that we have worked together with on a few e-design projects before. This time, the client wanted to update their kitchen look since it was too dark for them and wanted to make it light, bright, and airy. We changed the room by repainting the cabinets, replacing all knobs and pulls, installed a new island, new barstools, sink, and granite counter tops. We kept the appliances, light fixtures, and backsplash since they're still in excellent condition and would work great with new changes. I decided that this kitchen need some fun colors so I selected blue tone barstools to work best with this style but also make it more inviting. It is rewarding to see how simple changes can make huge difference for a space. This is one of our favorite kitchen e-design projects so far.
Arizona Living Room
The client moved into their house in Arizona few years ago and hadn't done anything to change their home until recently. The client purchased the sectional sofa on their own but wanted to improve the overall look of the living room with a design that worked with their sofa. The client also wanted to make the space much lighter and more airy as well. I managed to select right pieces that would look great with the overall design. I selected a faded vintage rug and patterned pillows to make break up the neutrality in the room and make a statement of this space without ruining the look. We are pleased with the way it turned out. This is one of our favorite styles to work with but we don't get to work on this specific style with rustic elements often but glad the opportunity came by and made the client very happy. That is why it is one our favorite e-design projects.
Arizona Master Bedroom
I was rehired by the same client that I worked with on the Arizona living room e-design project above to work on their master bedroom project. I enjoyed working with the client because they didn't want the stereotypical American Southwest earth tones. The client wanted a similar style as the living room but wanted a pop of color to make this space a bit more fun. We selected rustic wood furniture that would work great with this specific style and choose turquoise as the pop - a nod to the Southwest. We also had to replace the tiles to rustic hardwood flooring to improve the look and provide some warmth and textural contrast to other areas of the home.
Now I am looking forward to continue work with clients on various e-design projects throughout this winter. Will share with you about that in this early spring 2018 so stay tuned.
It is great time to think about how to get your home ready for the holidays. Currently, I'm inspired to design a modern bohemian style dining room in a high rise condo in downtown Vancouver; with the holidays in mind. We usually see city dwellers in high rise condos with modern, contemporary, minimalist, or Scandinavian styles but what about modern bohemian? This particular style would work fabulous for high rise dwellers too!
What is modern bohemian? It is modern version of traditional bohemian or boho style. It tends to be a bit more simple with a minimalist feel while still adding character to the space. Elements of this style include rustic wood, faux fur pillows or blankets, metal and brass finishes, simple textiles and sometimes have bold colors to make a statement. Of course, it has to come with natural elements such as plants. You can't have bohemian style without plants! This time I included two trees that are designed to use for the holidays. For the round year, you would want to have live plants for your space too.
For this particular style, it doesn't require you to go over the top with your holiday decor. You can keep it simple but still have an elegant look for your space. This dining room design I'd suggest to decorate the dining table with three metal trees with tealight candles to add a little warmth and create a more cozy and inviting space. With the white faux fur on the chairs and added sheepskin throw; it gives a sense of an elegant white Christmas. Hope this design inspire you.
Like this look? You can purchase any item by click any item image and it will take you direct to the vendor website. Happy Shopping!
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links and by clicking on them incur no additional cost to you. JJones Design Co. will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase after clicking through the link. Please understand that JJones Design Co. has experience with all of these vendors, and recommends them because they provide excellent customer service and quality products. We do not base our designs off of vendors that provide affiliate link commissions. Do not feel obligated to spend any money on these products unless you feel you need them or that they will help you achieve your goals for your design.
Today is Thanksgiving Day in Canada. Jeffry and I are still new to Canada so we don't really have Canadian traditional Thanksgiving holiday yet. We decided to have a day trip to Richmond Country Farms after hearing about it for a while to get some pumpkins and gourds to add more to our fall decoration at our home. We both enjoy going to the pumpkin patches at different places. We missed our chance to go to the pumpkin patch last year. :( However, I like to share with you about our experiences with this farm.
Just after we arrive at this farm, this place is much bigger than we expected. I had no idea that they also sell fresh organic fruits and vegetables for great price. Of course, we ended up purchased some of them as well. We went browsing around the farm and its market area to see what they have to offer. They got lots of great selection of pumpkins and gourds. I have an obsession with gourds because they're beautiful and different than typical orange pumpkins that we usually see around everywhere every fall season. Don't get me wrong, I love orange pumpkins too but we need to think outside of the boxes when it comes to fall decoration too. Here are some more pictures of gourds we saw at the farm.
Cool huh? This farm has so much more pumpkins but we decided not to enter the actual pumpkin patch since it was crowded and had really long waiting line. This farm sells ten thousands of pumpkins at its market area too. One part of this market has really nice pumpkin display like this.
This farm has lots of adorable animals. The animals we saw: gooses, chickens, and goats. The gooses and chickens wander around the farm and market. Goats are in fenced area but were friendly enough for us to pet it.
Lastly, we discovered that this farm has wine tasting bar too! OMG! I don't recall seeing any pumpkin patches we have been to that offer wine tasting too. Of course, we went there to try their wines. We like three wines of their wine collection and ended up purchase three wine bottles. Their wine tasting bar is really cozy place just next to the pumpkin farm. It is perfect place for adults that want to escape from screaming kids running around the farm to relax. ;-)
I have to say this Richmond Country Farms have exceed our expectation. We would come back again for sure. If you haven't been to this farm yet, I highly recommend you to go check this farm out.
It is hard to believe it is September already! Summer has come and gone so fast before I realize it. However, I want to share with all of you some of my favorite e-design projects that I have worked on with my clients via both private and Decorist this recent summer.
Modern Industrial Style Master Bath
I worked with a client that is building their new house in Central Oregon. The client wanted to have an unique master bath design that reflects their style and appreciate the natural of Central Oregon and beautiful view of the cascades. I chose black chevron tiles for walls to make bold statement and create an upscale look. It also works great with natural materials including rustic wood vanity furniture, rustic barn door, and sloped ceiling. It is something you wouldn't expect to see when you walk into the master bath which is exact what the client wanted for their new house. I have to admit this is one of my all the time favorite e-design projects that I have worked so far.