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It’s been a pleasure writing this blog for over a year, but I’m excited about the change. Be sure to subscribe to Style Spotters (via email or reader) to get all of the new articles delivered to your inbox! Thank you so much to everyone who has continued to read the posts here, I’m so grateful and I look forward to continuing the decorating conversation over at Style Spotters!

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Console Style


Secrets of Energy-Efficient Homes!

No piece of furniture is better suited for the entry than the console table. Designed to be narrow enough to fit in a skinny space like a foyer, yet wide enough to be practical for setting down keys and a phone, the console table is the perfect perch for those little things you hold in your hand as you exit or enter throughout the day.

A console table isn’t just for practicality, it’s also the first impression in an entry. You’re free to choose anything to hang above, from hooks to photographs to abstract art, and a mirror is always a no fail partnership.

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console and mirror bhg


Console tables are that first introduction to the style and personality in your home. Cottage versions are often painted in bright hues or whitewashed to reveal the beauty of the wood underneath.

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console table and lamps bhg

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whitewashed console


A warm metallic like gold leaf or brass will guarantee a dose of elegance in the entry. 

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gold console and plates bhg

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gold leaf console in entry


Acrylic and Lucite surfaces have risen in popularity in the last ten years, and are appealing when used in contrast with traditional architectural elements.

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Industrial style continues to be a desirable design choice, especially when partnered with rustic, weathered, or worn wood.

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Old World or European inspired console tables constructed of iron in combination with marble or wood showcase filigree and decorative metal in their bases.

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old world console bhg

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metal console


An antique console table is one of several ways to style an entry and possesses unique and vintage appeal.

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antique console

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antique console in entry bhg


Looking for a fab console for your entry?  Here are eight style picks!

From top left:  Tiffany console, Horchow; Arden Console, Jayson Home; Studded Gold Leaf, Zinc Door; Keys Console, Home Decorators; Rusted Iron, Ethan Allen;  Toscane Console, Willams-Sonoma Home; Brent Console, Clayton Gray Home; Cayman Console, Z Gallerie.

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Five Ways to Style an Entry

Smart Entry Solutions

Small Space Storage Solutions



10 Stylish Ways to Dress Your Windows

Written on June 28, 2013 at 1:13 pm , by


Window treatments are necessary in every home for light control and privacy, but they’re also that perfect opportunity to introduce pattern, softness, and texture too! Fabric versions soften the harder edges of a space and pull color and pattern into a room to complement the other decorative choices. Here’s a peek at the variety of styles available and the advantage each provides.

Roman Shades are an elegant choice constructed of fabric and a pulley mechanism – they fold up to bring in light and down to add privacy and can be mounted inside or outside the window frame.  Flat fold options offer clean lines whereas balloon or swag Roman shades introduce curved lines. 


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roman shade in kitchen bhg

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 yellow roman shades in breakfast nook bhg


Did you know you can make your own roman shades ? 

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no sew roman shade bhg

Follow these tips to introduce a beautiful fabric to your window without a sewing machine.


Valances.  These are smaller fabric treatments, fixed above a window and mounted outside the frame with L shaped brackets. Other blind options can be added beneath it for privacy if necessary.  A valance can be styled in several ways, pleated, ruffled, scalloped, or swag.

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A Fun & Festive Fourth

Written on June 24, 2013 at 5:00 pm , by


The Fourth of July is a little over a week away, and it’s one of my most favorite holidays. It’s so much fun to gather together with friends, families, and neighbors and share food and fireworks in celebration of our country’s history. To get you in the mood, I gathered up some decorating ideas that are so simple and each is a way to say three cheers for the red, white, and blue! 

Outdoors, tie up red striped cotton fabric with blue ribbon or rope to create your own unique bunting.

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fabric bunting bhg


On the porch or above the dining table, use colorful markers to add festive firework motifs to plain paper lanterns.

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embellished paper lanterns bhg


For an easy DIY craft, print out the template for these Happy Fourth coasters and adhere them to plain chipboard. 

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happy fourth coasters


Suspend large glittery stars on a string to set the party scene.


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Play off the traditional colors of the day by inserting red blooms into a collection of blue glass cups and bottles. 


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Bold & Bright

Written on June 22, 2013 at 11:00 am , by


You want to know what makes a room very happy?  Colorful accent furniture! One of the things that struck me about the series of images below is just how cheerful these spaces are simply by introducing a bold and colorful piece of furniture.

Just about anything you already own can be painted any color you choose. If you’ve been considering painting an existing piece and introducing a fun color into the home, follow this step by step guide on how to paint furniture or these tips for using spray paint

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bold and bright furniture 1


Brightly colored ottomans punctuate a sitting area and steal the show with their friendly color placed front and center.

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bright yellow leather ottoman


Another easy way to add a modern bold accent is with a brightly painted stools or end tables, they’re versatile pieces that work as a perch for setting down a book or glass, and often as extra seating. Play off the colors that exist in a rug or introduce a fun new shade to your space.


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bright yellow stools bhg


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blue chair bright green stools bhg



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When it comes to periods or styles, color never discriminates. Bright hues are right at home in many settings, from contemporary to cottage.  


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bright purple bench bhg


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bright green hutch and end table


Neutral kitchens are another place to add a cheerful pop of color – choose brightly painted counter or bar stools to create a happy snack zone.

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I rounded up some bold and bright accent furniture for the home, many of these pieces are available in other colorful shades. 

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 bold and bright accent furniture


From top left:  Honeycomb chairs; Overstock; Crocheted Apple Pouf; Crate + Barrel; Peacock Club Chair, Overstock; Pagoda Stool, World Market; Oomph side table; Zinc Door; Carlisle Stools, Target; Casbah Chair, Pier One; Slim Console, Room + Board; Chartreuse stool, Zinc Door; Bombe Chest, Kirklands; Pink Pouf, Jonathan Adler; Linon Curve Stool, Kohls; Orange Desk, CB2; Slim Cocktail Table; Room + Board


Have you decorated any space in your home with a brightly painted piece?  What color did you choose?



Summer Mantel Style

Written on June 18, 2013 at 12:00 pm , by


I was swapping out a few accessories on the mantel over the weekend, and got to thinking about all the different ways there are to style a mantel in the summer when the fireplace is not in use.

When we’re not using it in summertime for its warming purpose, it’s still fun to accessorize the fireplace mantel to fit the style of your home. Here are a few ideas from the galleries sure to inspire your summer decorating!

Mirror Mirror on the Wall.  Mirrors continue to be one of the most popular choices for above the mantel, they play along well with the focal point philosophy and bounce light around the room. Partner them with candlesticks, and vases or urns filled with summer blooms.



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Be Artistic.  A large scale piece of art, be it an abstract or landscape, sets the tone for a space. Play off the color cues with accessories layered around the room (think vases, throw blankets, or shapely ceramics.)


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art over mantel bhg



About Kate

Greetings everyone, I’m Kate Riley, mother of three, living in Northern California. I’m a self-professed incurable DIYer and a passionate lover of all things related to home design. I love to paint and design anything from small crafts to large spaces, and I’m delighted to be part of the Better Homes & Gardens team! I’m the author of the popular home design blog Centsational Girl, and right here at Better Homes & Gardens is my personal column, Centsational Style. Here, I’ll be sharing my unique perspective on all the latest trends in home design, offering fresh perspectives on color, sharing budget friendly decorating tips, and also highlighting a few of my DIY projects along the way.

The Centsational Style blog is here to inspire you to create a stylish haven for yourself, one that reflects your personality and lifestyle, with a special focus on tips and advice for bringing affordable style indoors. I’ve been writing about design and do-it-yourself projects for years and I’ve been an avid reader of Better Homes & Gardens publications for over a decade. I’m here to help you discover your personal style and take action to reflect that style in your home. Be sure to stop by often at Centsational Style, you can also subscribe to the blog to stay up to date on the latest in home design.

Stop on by to say hello to me sometime at Centsational Girl, pay a visit to my Project Gallery, or browse the Style Files where you’re sure to find something to inspire you. Let’s decorate together, one project at a time!


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