Children & Pets + Beautiful Interiors
If you have pets or children you must consider the consider the implications they have on your design without compromising the vision.
Just because you have pets or children doesn't mean that you have to wait until they're all grown up to have a beautiful home. Do you really want to wait half a dozen years or longer before you are able to love your home? No! Don't you want to create memories in a space you love instead of a space you resent? You don't have to wait for the kids to go to university or the cat to cross the rainbow bridge, you just need to be clever in your design choices.
If you love velvet but are concerned about spillage or shedding, use an extra long sheepskin that will compliment your colour palette across the seat as a barrier. It's more luxurious than 'Scotchguard' (who even does that anymore?) and it won't give you cancer. Side note, any spray protectant for furniture contains typically Dupont teflon technology and there have been oodles of studies that implicate that it's carcinogenic. So I always advise that my clients steer clear. (If you haven't noticed, I geek out on scientific journals on my downtime.) Back to design, if you don't want to worry about the little one getting injured on 'sharp corners', go with an ottoman instead of a coffee table and consider round side tables instead of squares.
If you think there is a chance of an 'accident' on your area rug, choose one with an abstract pattern instead of a solid or geometric - it's far more forgiving with spills. If you're going to do white, make sure it's a durable leather and layer it with throws and toss pillows. Avoid black millwork, it shows little peoples' fingerprints like crazy! Have a big dog that likes to barrel around the house? Opt for wire brushed hardwood floors or tile so you don't have to worry about visual scratches. I could go on and on, but this isn't a DIY blog.
My point is to stop making excuses for your 'not so lovely space' and live a little. Maybe don't opt for $400 per yard mohair on the dining chairs until the kids are all grown up. But if that's in 10+ years, chances are you will need a bit of a 'refresh' by then anyway so you may as well have some lovely dining chairs to create some memories in.
The 'one day soon' syndrome isn't good for anyone. If you want to love your home, there's no excuse not to start that journey now if you have the means. I'm generalizing, of course, but in my experience it's often the children that come from lovely homes that are the most well adjusted as they've been taught at a young age to respect nice things and they've been shown by their parents not to settle for mediocrity.
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