Gina Sims Designs


Decatur Sunrise: How to Spruce Up the Space You Already Have

This post is a bit of a departure from my normal show-you-some-fabulous-room-I-designed post.

I mean, I am showing you a fabulous room I designed, but this time, I’m giving you some of my favorite tips for refreshing a space in your home that has solid bones but needs a little sprucing up.

Such is the case with my clients’ home, pictured here. This kitchen is clearly amazing, so we didn’t need to do any demo or major redesign.


It was just … gray. And our clients are anything but. They needed their kitchen to reflect the fun family they are, so our goal was to bring color and life into this open-concept kitchen.

Photo Credit: Cati Teague Photography for Gina Sims Designs

Photo Credit: Cati Teague Photography for Gina Sims Designs

These are the three main updates we did for the breakfast nook, and—BONUS!—you can do the same thing in any room of your house that needs fresh life breathed into it.

1.     New Furniture: Before, our clients had a dark table, so we got rid of it and had this bright-white one custom-made. We added minty green chairs and covered the banquette cushion in Crypton fabric that is basically indestructible—moisture rolls right off it! This is perfect for the three girls who will be doing their homework and eating their meals here.

Consider your space and see if a new chair or table might just transform the whole room.

2.      Textiles: Oh, I do love some good textiles, mostly because fabric and rugs bring color, pattern, and warmth to any room—and often very affordably. In this room, we did fun graphic-print Roman shades on the windows, which brings your eye up and adds color to break up the big blocks of gray from the cabinets and hood. We added a beautiful runner in the work area of the kitchen that I think is just dreamy. 

Whether you bring in a new rug, curtains, pillows, or throws, great textiles can completely transform your home. 

afeworki kitchen rug detail.jpg

3.     Lighting: Lighting is obviously essential in every room, but many people choose strictly function over form. This bums me out because there are so many spectacular choices for your ambient and task lighting needs. In this kitchen, there were plenty of can lights (which is great—they are task lighting workhorses), so we added these beautiful modern pendants with a touch of gold (my client j’adores gold) to drench the island prep area with a soft glow while chopping broccoli or sipping wine.

If you’re puzzling over how to add elegance or fun or sexy ambiance, try a chandelier, pendants, or sconces that knock your socks off. Function can be fabulous too.

So there you have it. My top three design tips on taking the space you have up a few notches. Just like we took a kitchen lacking personality and injected it with light, life, and fun—you can do the same in your home.