{expert advice: updating color combinations}

Give your home a fresh new look with an updated color scheme.

Paint color has the power to transform and revitalize a tired look. Color expert Kate Smith from Sensational Color realizes this and uses color to engage and create welcoming home environments. If you’re trying to achieve a fresh new look without changing all the colors in a room, follow these color scheme tips from Kate. Read the rest of this entry »

{window treatment wednesdays: sliding doors}

Long-Vue from the Sienna Honeycomb Collection

Long-Vue from the Sienna Honeycomb Collection

Window treatment solutions for sliding doors is tricky business. Fashion and functionality can combine with solutions from Hirshfield’s. Shannon, the Hirshfield’s Shop at Home resident window treatment expert, shares how to stay stylish while controlling light and allowing functionality with window treatments for difficult to fit sliding doors.

Ask yourself these questions before selecting a window treatment

How often do you use the door? If the door is connected to a deck, chances are you use that door often in the summertime. Consider putting a window treatment that can traverse across a track. Options include Luminette, Verticals, Skyline Sliding Panels, Averte Natural Drape, Vertiglide or Long-Vue sliding cellular.

When the product is raised, is there enough room for you or someone taller to walk out the door without ducking? There are many shade styles that will raise, lower and come large enough for a patio door. Some styles that work well are roller or honeycomb shades.

How much room do you have to stack product, either above the patio door or to the side? The “stack” of a window treatment refers to the amount of space the treatment takes up when it is fully opened. The stack of a blind, for example, is the measurement from the top of the headrail down to the bottom of the blind when the blind is fully lifted to the top of the window. By knowing this, the experts at Hirshfield’s can help determine if a product will fit properly. It will also allow us to determine if product will stack on the window or off. Read the rest of this entry »

{expert advice: matching undertones}

Choosing color based on undertones.

Paint color can transform and revitalize your home. Color expert Kate Smith from Sensational Color realizes this and uses color to engage and create welcoming home environments. The undertones in color are an important aspect in paint selection that should not be ignored. Kate advises on how to match undertones when painting a room. Read the rest of this entry »

{interior paint solutions: caulk failure}

Caulk failure is the loss of the protective moisture seal due to the loss of initial adhesion and flexibility.

Caulk failure is the loss of the protective moisture seal due to the loss of initial adhesion and flexibility.

Good caulk will help you save energy, avoid moisture damage and prevent pest problems. The best caulk for the job depends on the situation. If you didn’t get it right the first time around, there are ways to improve and fix caulk failure.

There are three types of caulk failure: adhesive, cohesive, and substrate. Simply put, the bond between the caulk and the substrate can fail, the caulk itself can tear, or the substrate can break. Problems with caulked joints are commonly due to one of two errors. Either the substrate was not effectively prepared, or the wrong product was selected. Consider how it will be used before choosing a product.

First, consider what materials the joint is made of and how much movement it is likely to encounter. Silicone, for example, adheres well to glass and tile but poorly to wood. Paint won’t stick to pure 100 percent silicone caulk. Although products with different chemistries claim to be flexible, some are better suited for frequent joint movement. For most interior painting, 100 percent acrylic caulks, are recommended. They will seal cracks and adhere to most surfaces, even when moisture is present. Remember that caulk generally is not recommended for gaps that exceed .5″ wide at their midpoint.

To spearhead the problem from the beginning, try priming. Priming is essential for better adhesion, sheen uniformity and durability. The following Hirshfield’s products will ensure the caulk will have the best chance to succeed: #88-1250 Drywall Primer for the interior, Hirshfield’s #88-4250 Latex or #88-6050 Oil for exterior. Then select a top quality Hirshfield’s interior paint in the color and sheen of your choice.

{expert color advice: test boards}

Benefits of sampling paint colors on test boards.

Paint color can transform and revitalize your home. Color expert Kate Smith from Sensational Color realizes this and uses color to engage and create welcoming home environments. Kate advises sampling your paint first to ensure the color creates the desired effect. Rather than painting directly on the wall, use test boards to avoid regrettable painting mistakes.

Advantages of using a test board:

  1. Avoid time constraints. A test board allows you to paint colors without the obvious markings on your wall. You may have time set aside to paint your walls completely, but unexpected commitments may require you to stray from your unfinished wall. Avoid obvious signs of the incomplete project by keeping ideas scaled down to test boards.
  2. Ability to move. A test board has the advantage of movement. Test the paint in multiple lighting situations by transferring the test board around the room. Sample all situations. View the test board paint behind draperies, behind the couch, in corners, next to windows, and all surface areas. This will give you an idea if colors contrast or complement.
  3. Shopping partner. Once you have dutifully selected the perfect paint color, you can bring the color to the store with you to partner with other items. The test board gives you a realistic impression of the color in your room, rather than a paint swatch that may not match the dried color in actuality. Transform the room from drab to fab with coordinating accessories that will highlight your carefully selected color choice.

Have you used a test board? Were your resulting color choices surprising?

Since Frank and Elizabeth Hirshfield opened their first store in 1894, it has been our mission to do the best job possible meeting customer needs and solving customer problems. Hirshfield’s. People and products you can trust.

{design blogger feature: House of Turquoise}

The Twin Cities is filled with lots of great design, and lots of great design bloggers! With such a thriving design blogging community right here, we thought it would be fun to get to know each other better through some local design blogger features. First up, Erin of House of Turquoise!

Twin Cities design blog

Erin, the blogger behind House of Turquoise

If you’ve spent some time on our blog, it will come as no shock to you that we adore House of Turquoise. This is our go-to source for all things turquoise! Erin’s blog has served as the inspiration for many of our own blogs and she has even helped us out as a guest blogger, picking her favorite shades of turquoise from the Hirshfield’s and Ralph Lauren paint lines.

But there is more to Erin than just her love of this tranquil color. For example, did you know that when it comes to decorating she actually prefers a neutral background? And that she is a self-proclaimed burger and pizza connoisseur? Let’s get to know Erin a little better…

When did you start House of Turquoise?
I started House of Turquoise at the end of 2007. I actually started it as a way to organize inspirational photos of turquoise rooms that I’d run into. I was often using different computers, and more often than not, forgetting where I had seen pretty pictures. Instead of downloading them and saving them, I thought it would be a good idea to just put them up on a blog where I could appropriately tag them to make them easy to find. Plus, it would be pretty to look at!

Where does your love of turquoise come from?
I’ve loved turquoise for as long as I can remember! The color just brings me happiness, it’s so soothing and peaceful, but rejuvenating too. The first time I went to Mexico when I was 20 or so, I remember looking out over the water and turquoise filled my eyes as far as I could see. The way I felt, the power that color had over me, was something I’ll never forget! I think I’m drawn to turquoise because I’m drawn to water (or maybe it’s vice versa, I’m not sure!).

How would you describe your personal decor style?
As for my own personal decor style, I’d say it would be Modern Coastal. I love a neutral background, filled with clean-lined furniture and rustic, natural touches for texture. And loads of color and patterns in accessories!

Read the rest of this entry »

{window treatment advice needed}

A customer (potential customer) sent in a couple of photos of the windows in her living room. She wants privacy, but still would like to see out of her windows. I asked a couple of Hirshfield’s window treatment experts to take a look and offer her some suggestions…check back to see what they have to say.

Thanks, Deb, for submitting your question.

{ask Hirshfield’s a question}

If you have a decorating question, we’d love to hear from you.

Questions about what’s the best finish to use on your painting project; what steps need to be take to properly prepare a surface; should you prime or should you dare to cut corners; do window treatments offer energy-saving insulation; can I retrofit old blinds in my kid’s room; which store has the best wallpaper library; refinishing woodwork; staining the deck; et al.

Use the LEAVE A COMMENT link below. We’ll put a Hirshfield’s expert on your case (but give us at least 24 hours to post a reply).

If you desire anonymity, you may write us at this address.  You can also visit our Facebook Fan Page.

Thank you.

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