Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Woonsocket North Smithfield 05-14-2020

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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8 SPRING IN THE VALLEY – HOME EDITION MAY 14-20, 2020 | VALLEY BREEZE Major shares easy ways to make home a haven Elyse Major is the editor-in-chief at Providence Media, which puts out Providence Monthly, East Side Monthly, SO Rhode Island, The Bay and Hey Rhody, and is widely regarded as a master of all things interior decorating. Her genius can be seen throughout her own Smithfield home. Given how much time our readers have been spending at home of late, we asked her to share some of her wisdom about these places where we live. Here's what she had to say. What's one of your favorite trends in decorating from the past five years and why? I have to admit that I'm a fan of shiplap, which if you're unfa- miliar, is a popular Farmhouse Style wall treatment that started quite humbly as home insulation. Shiplap is interior paneling made of wood boards cut to fit tightly with grooves, resulting in a seal. One day Joanna Gaines (Magnolia Market) uncovered shi- plap beneath layers of wallpaper and now the look is so coveted, you can even buy adhesive wallpaper to achieve the look. What's your favorite room in your house for function- ality and livability and how did you get it that way? I would say our living room and my goal for it has always been to be comfortable but pretty. When my now-teenage boys were toddlers, I decided to embrace Shabby/Cottage style, which is a look all about chipped and worn finishes, faded textiles, and com- fortable furniture. I still use decorative accents that are unbreak- able like galvanized tin, gathered seashells and stones. I'm also a longtime fan of slipcovered sofas where covers can be removed for washing. Easy care makes for an easier time keeping things nice. This style especially kept me sane when the boys were little and crash-landings of the Millenium Falcon on the coffee table were regular occurrences. At one point I had a large bowl out – not wish vase fillers – but Matchbox cars. With regard to paint sprucing up tired spaces, what are some useful tips for making a maximum impact with minimal effort? It's amazing what a bucket of paint can do. For example, paint in a singular color can unify a disparate group of wood furniture into a unified set. I have a pine armoire from the '90s that was looking dated so I rolled on leftover wall paint, distressed with a bit of sanding, adding pale aqua stripes to the center of each door, and now it's one of my favorite pieces. I've painted the steps in our stairway, even the tiled bathroom floor! My thought is, if it doesn't work out, layer on something else, but it usually works out. For people who don't typically spend much time at home and want to make it more of a haven now that they're stuck there, what are some easy ways they can do so? Rearrange the furniture a certain way? Add more color? Here are things I like to do to make the most of what I cur- rently have at home. First, let in light! Sunlight is the best home accent and all you need to do is lift the shades to lift your spirits. Each night before going to bed, tidy up, and each morning when you wake up, make your bed. You'll feel a slight sense of control and order. Almost every afternoon I forage a handful of flowers or greens to bring inside; simply plop them into a jelly jar for a little windowsill pick-me-up. Rearranging the furniture can be a fun thing – even "shopping" your own home and switching pieces from room to room. Also, assemble items on a shelf like a styl- ist – by theme or color. I like looking at Pottery Barn catalogs for reference. - Q&A by Ethan Shorey

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