25 Amazingly Cool Treehouses

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EVERYBODY wants to live in a treehouse. Even if it’s just for a warm summer’s night or a lazy weekend in the autumn when the leaves around your house are changing.

We collected 25 images of the most magical, fairytale treehouses we could find to tickle your imagination. Many of these are made from sustainably sourced materials, like reclaimed hardwood, corrugated steel reused from shipping containers, and many other unique materials that you could only use on projects like these ones.

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pantone colors of the year 2016

Every year, Pantone – the color experts – release a statement revealing the upcoming year’s official color. This year, they’ve announced two. Serenity, which is a soft light blue, and Rose Quartz, a very gentle and warm pink. Pantone picks this yearly color based on what they think will be a relevant choice for the upcoming year’s trends in fashion, home décor and multiple design disciplines.

In their annual press release today, Pantone’s Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Institute, explained their decision this year to include both colors.

“In many parts of the world we are experiencing a gender blur as it relates to fashion, which has in turn impacted color trends throughout all other areas of design,”

“This more unilateral approach to color is coinciding with societal movements toward gender equality and fluidity, the consumers’ increased comfort with using color as a form of expression which includes a generation that has less concern about being typecast or judged, and an open exchange of digital information that has opened our eyes to different approaches to color usage.”

The 2015 color of the year was Marsala, an deep and sultry red.

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Japanese Kotatsu Heated Table Beds

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We recently came across several articles on different design blogs all coveting the same thing – Japanese Kotatsu heated table beds, which are, exactly what they sound like. Perfect little pods of warm coziness that anyone would want as a central piece in their tv room or den. How do they work? Imagine a sectional sofa, with a center table, set up with a super comfortable blanket over top, with a heater installed beneath the table to warm the space created in the tent blanket. That’s basically how it works. The entire concept dates back to the 14th century, when the first Kotatsu arrangements started to appear in Japanese homes.

Check out these awesome pictures of the Kotatsu in action!

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“I wanted to focus on practicality and functionality and skip any unnecessary elements. My goal was to come up with a timeless design that fits any space and living situation.”

— Till Könneker

This is how the Living Cube‘s designer describes how he came up with the idea for this brilliant piece of furniture, that is really so, SO much more than just furniture. From the site, the Living Cube is described as a unit in which the user can “combine eight to twelve different pieces of furniture into one very small footprint: an entertainment unit that can fit a 42″/107 cm flat panel screen, shelves suitable for books, records and/or clothing, work space, wardrobe, closet, shoe rack, drawers, bike & skateboard storage, minibar, a queen-size bed-ready loft, and interior ‘New Room’ for additional storage or workspace utility.”

It’s completely customizable, and is sold as a Mini Cube, an Urban Cube, a Living Wall or your own configuration. We love it’s minimalist simplicity, and we can imagine a unit like this changing the way small apartments are designed.

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MIT Developing Self-Assembling Furniture

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The smarty-pants at MIT are going to change the way we build furniture, so we hope IKEA is paying attention! The lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology calls this new technology “programmable” furniture. They have been showing off a prototype at the Salone del Mobile in Milan, and its a table that has been designed using a tensile fabric affixed between wooden frames.

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How does it work? The flexible wood frame comes flat-packed (much like our old pal IKEA does their furniture) which makes it easy to ship, store etc. Then, when the moment comes, it maneuvers itself into a table by using the fabric to pull the legs into place.

This is next level furniture design from the Self Assembly Lab at MIT and we are going to be watching carefully to see what these brilliant designers come up with next! IKEA, get your bid in now!

Here’s a cool video about how other self-assembling furniture works!

Pantone Color Design Trends: Olympian Blue

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We love colors, and we love that Pantone pays colors all kinds of respect by celebrating them, and even choosing a design color of the year, every year. One of the most lovely Pantone colors is Olympian Blue (#19-4056) which is a bright and striking blue that shows hints of royal with a touch of cobalt and sapphire. Blues are very calm and relaxing colors that can really bring life to a room, whether you paint your walls with it, or choose accent pieces that have this gorgeous color in them.

I’ve collected some images for you to check out Olympian Blue in all it’s bright glory, so check out the gallery to find your inspiration!

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20 Simple, Modern and Cool Concrete Sinks

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I love the aesthetic of concrete in an otherwise warm space, and the bathroom and kitchen are two of the warmest, most inviting spaces in the home. Concrete brings an industrial edge to any design, and the material is built to last. In most cases, concrete sinks have to be custom made, which although can be expensive, it means the sky is the limit when it comes to the shape and look of your sink. It’s very important to have concrete sinks sealed properly, since concrete is porous, and it’s also a very heavy material, so you will want to ensure that your kitchen or bathroom is properly equipped to handle the extra weight.

One of the great things about concrete sinks, apart from their incredible look, is the fact that you can have an entire custom counter top built that contains your sink, which will make for a seamless, and absolutely gorgeous feature in your kitchen or bathroom. Take a look at my gallery of amazingly designed concrete sinks, and get inspired!

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When it comes times to paint walls in a room in your house, you may feel inclined to just go with the classic white. I’m here to tell you that there are surprisingly warm and inviting options out there for you that you might never have guessed. I’ve already done a post on painting your bedroom walls black, and a post about painting your kitchen black, and in both I have shown that that color can be just as comforting as any other color choice.

With this post, I want to inspire you to consider grey as a color option for almost any room. There are so many shades that you can use, from a sultry dark grey to a brighter grey that feels nautical and fresh. Grey makes a room feel stately but not oppressively so. It is extremely regal looking, but also contemporary enough that your room won’t feel old-fashioned in it’s styling.

Grey looks gorgeous in almost every room, and I’ve included in my image gallery examples of grey being used brilliantly in almost every room in the house, so take a look and embrace the grey!

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Inspired Designs for Small Studio Apartments

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Studio apartments are often the most cost effective way to live in an otherwise expensive city, and the people who live in these small apartments have figured out ingenious ways to make the most of that space. Efficiency is key when designing the interiors of these sized homes. You want to feel like you have enough space to move around, and you want to make sure you have space to entertain a few guests while making sure you have a small work area, and that you’re not confined to a single bed.

Storage issues are not uncommon for studio apartments, but a few cleverly installed shelves can be a solution when you’re working with far less square footage. Another great design rule of thumb when putting together your studio apartment is that if you can’t spread out, you must go up! Which is why studio apartments are often fitted with raised loft beds. If yours isn’t, you can buy a loft bed at a number of retailers.

Here are some of the most well-designed studio apartments out there, so take a look at the gallery and find some great ideas on how to make the most of your small space!

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Faux Fur Home Decor and Accents We Love!

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A couple years ago I bought a faux fur throw blanket from Restoration Hardware, and my love affair with the soft, luxurious material began. Since then I’ve complimented that throw with a bean bag chair, throw pillows, and even a comfy pair of slippers!

So what exactly is fake, or faux, fur made of anyway?

Faux fur is a type of material which has been created to look and feel like genuine animal fur. It is a pile fabric and is usually created from polymeric fibers that are processed, dyed, and cut to match whichever animal’s fur texture and color that the faux fur is trying to replicate. Faux fur has been around for almost 100 years and the technology to create it keeps getting better, improving quality so much that its almost indistinguishable from real fur.

Check out all these amazing faux fur items that you can use to bring a look of rich luxury and warmth to any space!

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