Stylish Bamboo Fencing
By Martin Amado | 07/20/2009 - 11:22

Summer is about spending time outdoors, having barbecues and entertaining family and friends in the garden, or by the pool. Of course, we want our exterior spaces to look just as decorative as our interiors, right?

So if your backyard isn’t looking that great—especially if you have a fence made of weathered wood or a chain link that offers no privacy—a great solution is to reface your fence with reed. Reed is an inexpensive bamboo-like covering that instantly transforms your fence into a more tropical backdrop.

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Decorator Detail: Wall Murals for Children
By Martin Amado | 07/13/2009 - 16:08

Most parents would love to have a wall mural in their child’s bedroom. The main issue is that it can be quite costly to have one custom-made. You also have to wonder if the expense is really worth it since it's likely that the child will no longer want the mural as they transition into a more grown-up space.  Something to definitely think about.

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Daybeds for Guest Bedrooms
By Martin Amado | 07/06/2009 - 13:49

It would be nice to have a separate guest bedroom to use only when family and friends stay over.  But the reality for many of us is that we don’t have the luxury of extra space in our home, so the goal is to make a room multi-functional.

Of course, there’s a right way to do it and a wrong way. I’ve seen many rooms where the homeowner crams a huge mattress, a desk, and so many other pieces of furniture that the space doesn’t work as either a guest bedroom or an office.

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The Look of a Wall Unit for Less
By Martin Amado | 06/29/2009 - 11:00

I’ve walked into many homes where they still have a projection television. I get
it—it still works fine, so there’s no need to buy a new flat-screen just yet.
But it’s quite a challenge to decorate around these TVs because of their scale.
They tend to stick out like a big metal box—dare I say, eyesore—in the middle of
the room. Wall units can be very expensive, but you can easily buy individual
furniture pieces that will give you the look of an entertainment center for

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The Write Stuff
By Martin Amado | 06/22/2009 - 14:55

I’m not a big fan of bringing work into a bedroom. As a designer, I believe the two spaces should be kept separate, making your master bedroom a place of serenity and relaxation only. Yet, I also understand that due to space limitations in your home, and/or the fact that you need to stay connected via e-mail for work reasons, this is not always a realistic expectation.

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The Art of a Tablescape
By Martin Amado | 06/15/2009 - 14:46

When decorating a room, most homeowners can figure out the basics of picking a paint color, furniture, toss pillows, wall art, even accessories. But when it comes down to the details, a question I often get is, “how do I arrange everything on an accent table to make it look pretty … like you see in the magazines?”

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Ottoman as Coffee Table
By Martin Amado | 06/08/2009 - 17:25

I think when you ask anyone to describe a coffee table, the first thing that comes to mind is, “well, it’s a square wooden table with floor legs.”  And yes, it can be, but there are certainly other options we can use as coffee tables that make it a functional and unique piece of furniture. Take ottomans, for example!

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Turning Doors into a Headboard
By Martin Amado | 06/01/2009 - 13:00

Since I began writing Home Style, I’ve been sharing different ways to create the look of a headboard without necessarily buying a piece of furniture specifically made for a bed. In the past, I’ve suggested floor screens, plywood tiles and even paint. I'd now like to share another creative idea for a headboard that will give you the look for less.

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Dramatic Floor Mirrors
By Martin Amado | 05/25/2009 - 09:00

I love the look of a tall, floor mirror leaning up against a wall.  It’s beautiful in a dining room, living room, foyer, honestly anywhere in your home because it makes a bold statement in any setting.  But if you’ve priced them, they can easily costs upwards of $300. I decided to make one from scratch, which I featured on my Spanish-language home makeover program, Decorando Contigo, so, of course, I wanted to share with you how simple it is to do!

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The Beauty of Beige
By Martin Amado | 05/18/2009 - 16:00

I’ve seen many rooms where the homeowner is afraid of committing to a color choice, so they decide to leave the walls white. The result is usually a cold and unfinished environment, when all it takes to change the entire mood in the room is to paint it a warmer tone, such as a beige or khaki. It doesn’t have to be boring, and I can tell you as a designer that it’s better than leaving your walls white.

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