Do It Yourself Style

When it comes to decorating your log home, it pays to start the process early.

When it comes to making life decisions, your mother was right: it's best to plan ahead. Right now, decorating your future log home may seem light years away?and a relatively small task compared to choosing a floorplan, selecting a log producer and all the other details that go into building a place of your own. But don't underestimate the power of decor.

bedroomThe colors, fabrics and furnishings you choose will have a dramatic impact on how your home "feels" overall and room by room. Your home's design and decor work together to create spaces that flow well, function effectively and feel just right. Planning your overall decorating scheme during the design phase will help you strike that perfect balance: livable spaces that look great, too.


Like a jigsaw puzzle, DESIGN and DECOR work together to create comfortable, attractive and fuctional living areas. To achieve the space and style you want, consider our 6 Essential Layers for every room. 
 1 Architecture & Finishes. When planning a room, start with the "shell"?walls (full and partial), ceiling, posts and trusses. Consider which materials (log, drywall, tile) and finishes (stain, paint, wallpaper) evoke the mood you want. Also at this stage, think about surfaces like countertops, trim, baseboards, built-ins and firplace mantels, as well as window styles and placement.

Choose a focal point that works with your lifestyle. (Will you spend more time watching TV or looking at the fire?)
2 Flooring. Now consider the look and texture you want underfoot. Will you keep all flooring the same on the main level, or mix it up with reclaimed wood in the great room and ceramic tile in the kitchen? Do you crave carpet in the bedroom? Radiant in-floor heating under travertine marble in the bath? 
3  Large Furniture. In the main living area, start with upholstered furniture?from big, overstuffed seating to sleek, streamlined pieces. Then add entertainment units, shelves and other big pieces. For an open floorplan, consider how each item will impact traffic flow, activity zones and "sight lines" from other areas.

Accent Furniture. Based on the space you have left, choose side pieces that round out the room's style?and add surface areas, seating and storage. If an item is purely decorative, you should LOVE it?especially in smaller spaces.
5 Lighting. The most inviting rooms have a nice range of light and shadow?not a single "volume" of light. Work with your designer and builder on how (and where) to use recessed, task and accent lighting. Always install a dimmer?but give yourself more options with back-lit cabinetry, an Arts & Crafts reading lamp or other mini mood-setters. 

6 Finishing Touches. Textiles are an easy and affordable way to add style. Select three or four fabrics per room, including a few patterns in varying sizes and one fabric chosen for texture (nubby chenille) or finish (shiny silk). Avoid "matching" fabrics and aim for interesting harmony instead. Ditto for accessories.

Try not to overdo "themes" or crowd surfaces. Opt for well-placed groupings that allow each piece to shine.

For more tips on bringing design and decor together into a beautiful log home, read the complete article in the June/July 2005 issue of Log Home Design Ideas.