Separate a large, undefined space into smaller areas with a sheer drape. Pale-blue sheerness creates a beautiful glowing color, almost like a painted wall. The transparency gives the room light and life, whereas an opaque curtain would close it off.
This shade can be easily attached to the inside of a store-bought shelf unit; a clean, flat panel in a neutral color makes the look as unobtrusive as possible. And on that rare occasion when you really do want to watch, it rolls up -- almost like being at the movies.
A ho-hum space gets color and charisma with tapestry fabric hung behind a dresser in the bedroom. "It's so Old World 15th-century to hang tapestries," senior home editor Shane Powers says. "The material needs to be va-voom,with a little weight to it.This isn't a look for lightweight cotton."
Page Marchese Norman infuses her office with order, beauty, and a bit of herself. She uses yellow to add character to the space, but tempers it with neutrals. She uses canary-yellow artist's tape (which doesn't leave a residue) to label boxes and binders. You can also stick strips to mundane office occupants, like filing cabinets, for pops of color.
Purchase a wooden drapery rod, two brackets, and hanging hardware from a home-supply store. Paint the drapery rod and brackets to match the bedroom walls, and let dry. Install the brackets above the bed, positioning them at the desired height, and put the rod in place. Drape the quilt over the rod, lining up the bottom edges so that it hangs evenly.
Vintage glass knobs make attractive dish-towel hangers. A mixed-up assortment can look nice, and individual pieces often turn up at flea markets and salvage yards. Attach knobs to the wall with screws at least 3 inches long, to prevent them from loosening. Screws should fit snugly and be tightened flush against the fronts of the knobs.
Wash one big shell and one small shell. Make a ring of crumpled newspaper to cushion them as you work. Attach the big shell to the small shell, back to back, with a dab of two-part epoxy. Place the shells in the ring of newspaper, small shell down, so the paper supports the top shell and keeps it from slipping out of place. (Be sure the epoxy doesn't touch the paper.) Let dry thoroughly.
A narrow pathway through the shrubs is far more alluring when layered with tinted glass gravel. These tumbled, recycled pebbles come in various sizes and colors; we used about 50 pounds of medium-size blue gravel here. For a more contained and affordable idea, top off a large colored planter with pebbles in a matching hue.