Do you know what a 'Cold Hard Room' is? I don't really think it's a term that is discussed a whole lot in the world of interior design, but for me and our design team...it's an important factor that must be addressed in each room that we design. Also, we have never ever had a client that didn't understand this term once we got through placing the final accessories in the room! It makes a world of difference.
So, have you guessed yet just what it is? Let me start by showing you a few photos of a COLD HARD Room. (Now, please keep in mind, I am not, by any means, knocking on the design of these rooms...just pointing out what this term is and rooms that reflect it - whether this was overlooked or perhaps just preferred by the homeowner - OK! Got it?)
A lovely design here...agreed. However, does this room really feel warm and cozy? Be honest, does it? This is one example of a room that is lovely, however it lacks because it 'feels' COLD and HARD. (Keep with me on this as the meaning will be evident in the end of this post!)
For those of you that know me, you know I love all things coastal so this is a really nicely put together room to me. But, it's also COLD and HARD....are you understanding it at all yet? Perhaps, but maybe not!
Beautiful, right? But what is it that it's missing?
And yet another...definitely COLD and HARD in here (beautiful though - love the design in here!)
This beautiful room (I must say a well designed room by a nationally known interior designer) is not as cold and hard, but it's not fully warm and cozy either. Can you even guess WHY?
OK, I won't keep you in suspense any longer! In interior design the term COLD means this...
cold lacking affection or warmth of feeling; unemotional.
synonyms: unfriendly, inhospitable, unwelcoming, forbidding, cool, frigid, frosty,glacial, lukewarm,
Again, each of these rooms are well designed and beautiful, but are they lacking something at all? In some forms, yes, in our opinion. There are many ways to address the COLD and HARD issues in a room and some are addressed in one or two ways in the above picture (especially the third one). However, for Part One of this series, we will be addressing one particular answer to this common problem.
Moving right along, now, what then is the meaning of the term HARD in a room? Let's see...
hard solid, firm, and resistant to pressure; not easily broken, bent, or pierced.
|synonyms:||firm, solid, rigid, stiff, resistant, unbreakable|
So based on the above definition it means a solid, firm, rigid, or stiff room. That's right! A HARD room is one in which almost every element in the room is HARD (solid, firm, stiff). Now can you go back up the page and look at each of these rooms in an entirely different way? Do they feel "stiff"? Do you see what I mean about them being filled with mostly HARD objects? So knowing this now...the question is...
How do we fix COLD and HARD rooms?
Like I said earlier, there are a few ways to do this, but today we will look at one way...but before I get to that I'll just say this to answer that question...
We must 'SOFTEN' the room! If you've worked with us then you are very familiar with this term of ours - 'soften'....Ha! We, at Alpha & Omega Interiors, believe that each and every room in your home (kitchens and bathrooms included!) should, in some way or ways, be softened to fully achieve the elements of a room that is NOT cold and hard. Now for the nitty gritty of how we do that...
Let's take a look at some more well-dressed rooms that ARE softened in this one way that we will be discussing today and see if you can guess what it is...OK? Ready? (Pause here if you need to refill that warm cup of coffee or tea!)
Can you guess on the first photo what this particular 'softening' element is that was used? What takes away from the COLD and HARD in here? See how warm, cozy, and inviting this room feels...why?
Do you see it (feel it) in here? I surely do!
Now this room here, with this 'hard' floor, would really feel COLD and HARD without it....are you catching on?
I'm sure you can see all of the HARD elements in here...except for one that's not hard.
Yep, it's been done in here too. Lovely and inviting!
By now it must the evident to you...such a simple FIX to this issue that really does need to be addressed in every room. There are a few ways it's actually done in here, but the first way is the common thread in each of these photos.
Should be VERY evident in this one here! Without it...oh, how COLD and HARD it would surely be.
OK, are you still with us? I surely do hope so. I know this will sound like such a simple fix that you may think it couldn't make THAT big of an impact in your room....but it does! Every room needs a softening element to take the edge off that COLD and HARD feel from all of those solid objects and the first one is...
GREENERY AND/OR FLORALS!
Once again, browse back up to each of these rooms and see if you can imagine the COLD and HARD that would be evident in the overall look and feel of each room had they not had greenery or florals added in with the final accessories. The hard objects seemingly become soft, warm, and cozy when this is added in. Such a simple feature, right?
If YOU want hospitable, friendly, inviting, cozy, warm rooms...then I dare YOU to add in these design elements now! It's easy and so very affordable to every budget! No excuses...and if you try it please be sure to send us your before and after pictures. We'd love to see your very own transformations!
I hope you enjoyed Part One of this "Softening Your Room" series. Come back again to find out more easy ways to do this!
Have a "Simply Irresistible" Day!
Image Credits: BHG, House Beautiful, Houzz, DecorPad, HGTV, Country Living, Traditional Home, Veranda