Lighten up this fall

When fall comes around, the holidays are fast approaching. Getting your space ready for entertaining can not only be fun, but can take your holiday experience to a whole new level.

One thing that’s easy to adjust is the lighting in your dining space.

This season, it’s all about inciting an industrial revolution. When it comes to lighting, industrial-chic fixtures look especially cool in the kitchen. As the heart of a home, the kitchen is always a central focus. Infusing it with plenty of light is key to making your space shine (quite literally).

Long, rectangular pendants with ceiling mounts are perfect for kitchen islands, tables, and breakfast bars. And a bonus: they’re much easier to hang than other options, like staggering pendant lights.

Mixing metal and wood works great in an all-white kitchen. Adding depth and drama, a multi-textured pendant compliments subtle tones like no other piece can.

So, as you can see, adding industrial-inspired fixtures transform a nicely done space into one that looks professionally designed—an instant mood-booster for holiday festivities. So… light it up!


Fall Blues

With summer winding down, you may find yourself itching to add some color inside your home. It can be a tricky task. Paint swatches start to look the same after countless comparisons while holding them up to your walls for the thousandth time. Choosing the right accent pieces can be overwhelming, too.

It doesn’t have to be, though. With a few simple switches, you can give your home a pulled together look with a homey, welcoming vibe.

So, what’s hot for fall? Blues!

2017 has been a great year for color, especially blue (and it’s only getting better for fall). It’s cool, calm, and collected. There are so many shades—from colors for your walls to pillows and accessories. Here are a few different ways to accent your rooms with blue for fall:

Floor them with color (and some fluff)!

One of the easiest ways to incorporate a new color in a room  is by adding a rug. Rugs (and pillows to match them) are easily interchangeable and can dramatically shape the look of a room. Add a patterned rug to your floor to liven up the entire room. Go crazy mixing different textures and layers of pillows. After all, there can never be enough fluff!

Wonder walls.

Painting your walls is a bit more complicated than adding a rug or switching pillows—but it is totally worth it. Adding a shade of blue on an accent wall sets the mood for the entire space. You can make the room warm and inviting or dark and sultry. The beauty of blue is that it works well in all spaces and can evoke the mood of your choice.

Hang it up!

One or two large pieces of abstract wall art in a range of blue hues can be calming and thought-provoking. It can bring out the best in your furniture, and make a house really feel like a home. Creating a wall collage that includes blue images with different frames, and any other pieces you love, adds your personality to any room.


Shelf the mess (and the stress).

Back to school means back to books. Everywhere.

If visions of books sprawled all over your dining room table are dancing in your head, it might be time to find some accessories to declutter and destress.

Having the right bookshelf or storage piece to properly (and fashionably) display books is a great way to add elements of function and style to your home… instead of clutter.

Not to mention, homework can be less stressful for your kids—and less messy for you—when you’re organized.

From offices and bedrooms to family rooms and living rooms, bookcases can work anywhere. Here are a few tips to have easy access to your favorite reads, while making an organized space that also shows off your style.

  1. Be open to dividing. With an open floor concept, tall and open bookcases can be used as visual room dividers.

Trishley light brown wood open faced cabinet with four shelves and storage drawer




2. Get low. Bookcases with lower drawers or cabinets are perfect for a family room. Keep books, photos, and accents in view and use the hidden storage areas to help eliminate clutter and keep your living space neat.

Starmore wood and metal modern rustic large bookcase

3. Out of sight, not out of mind. If you have a small book collection and don’t feel the need to display it, consider getting an accent cabinet. A bookcase with doors provides lots of hidden shelf space.

Brown wood Reickwine cabinet

4. Got lots of books? If the bookcase you select can’t hold everything you want to display, consider putting identical bookshelves next to each other for a pleasingly symmetrical way to double up your space.

Lobink contemporary set of two asymmetrical large bookcases


5. Make a statement. Much like a fireplace, a stylish bookcase can become a focal point and statement piece in any room. The top of this accent cabinet is open for beautiful displays, while books and other objects are kept nicely displayed behind glass doors.

Distressed antique cabinet with glass doors and shelving


Once you start using furniture to organize your library, it’ll be easier to find your favorite book, encourage the whole family to read, and—most importantly—help everyone be more relaxed this school year!

Trays are all the rage

How to style a serving tray.

One of the biggest trends in home design this year is styling serving trays. What does that mean and why do it? It’s simple, really. It adds character to your room, it’s an affordable decorating option, and it’s fun to do. Here’s how to get started:

#1 Understand Your Personal Style

Personal style is important when styling a tray. It shows your guests who you are, and it also tells the vibe of your home. While figuring out your design aesthetic, think about the trends that catch your eye.

Are you French farmhouse or more modern? Clean or eclectic?

#2 Pick a Tray

Once you settle on a signature style, it’s time to pick your tray. They come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and patterns—and we have tons of styles to consider. Here are two trays, along with a tutorial on how to tastefully accessorize them in a few different aesthetic styles:

#3 Organize into 4 Quadrants

The most difficult part of styling a tray is visualizing the look and feel that you want to portray. It’s easier to style when you break them out into quadrants or categories. These 4 tips will guide you on how to visualize and choose the appropriate accessories:

  • Quadrant 1: Reading Material – Grab a few reading materials—old books, new books, or even magazines.

  • Quadrant 2: Nature – Add your favorite flower, topiary, or terrarium.

  • Quadrant 3: Personalize – Whether it’s your favorite antique or an old knickknack, add it to your tray for a personal touch. We added vintage forks and spoons for uniqueness and charm.

  • Quadrant 4: Conversational Piece – This quadrant speaks for itself, literally. Add a unique item that will spark a conversation with your guests.

Here are a few examples:

Farmhouse and Fruits: Some fresh apples and wood carvings will make your guests’ look twice.

Modern Minimalist: A gold geometrical figure adds a unique design element to catch the eye.

Artsy and Abstract:  Spice things up by adding different heights and stacked levels for a balanced look.

#4 Style It Your Way

However you choose to style your tray, make sure it’s the style you want, made of things that you like. Also, don’t forget to try placing your trays in unique locations. For instance, on your bed, coffee table, or kitchen counter. The more the merrier!

Don’t get furniture stored

Getting furniture stored can happen to anyone.

You walk in. You see a bedroom set that would make your best Pinterest board blush. Everything is placed to perfection within a glorious, interior-designer-inspired wonderland. You think, “Yep, that’s the one.” It has to be yours. You purchase it. You get it set up in your home, only to find it looks nothing like the furniture dream world from which it came. Fail, right?

No way.

Getting furniture stored is so avoidable. Selecting some simple accessories—right at the time you’re picking out your furniture—will amplify the look of your new furniture when you bring it home. In our HomeStores, interior designers carefully source and style every piece within the collections we show. Decorative boxes, table top trays, pillows, wall art… you name it, you can replicate the look by taking the exact pieces as shown, or mixing and matching from other collections with similar styles. Paired with some personalized flair, like your favorite colors, pictures frames, and photos, you’ll have the room you envisioned without ever feeling like it looked better in the store.

Break the rules for fashion and function

The definition of ‘names’ is interesting. It’s simply arbitrary labels.

We call a dresser a dresser; a table a table; a bench a bench, but who’s to say they have to serve as such in the function and style of your home?

Sometimes the best interior design is inspired by breaking the rules—to make functional, fashionable use of traditional pieces in your home, in a not-so-traditional way.

Saving space and getting the biggest bang for your buck is what it’s all about. Here are a few ideas that can help you do just that when it comes to finding pieces that serve alternative purposes in your home.

Change a dresser into a changing table.

Having a baby doesn’t mean having to sacrifice space and style in your home.

A smart way to maximize room and storage in the nursery is to select a stylish dresser and use it in place of a traditional changing table. Flat surface… check! Just add a changing pad or soft blanket, and you’re set to go. Diaper drawers… check! Fill them up with all sizes so you’re ready for every stage. Mirror… check! Your baby will stay occupied staring at the reflection.

The best part? Once your baby is done with diapers, you still have a new, stylish piece to keep for yourself!

Betwixt, a bench!

A bench, most certainly, doesn’t have to be a bench. It’s one of those fabulous, versitle pieces that can serve its intended function as a seat, but is just as great as a coffee table or statement piece. Literally, anything goes… so get creative!

An island of dreams.

Love the idea of an island in your kitchen? Hate the idea of bolting it to the floor?

Who says it has to be attached?! Get the style and function without the commitment and waste of space. A narrow pub table or rolling cart can be an island in an instant. Add some benches, or leave it open, for a stylish, space saving design win!








The moral of the story? Think differently about the pieces you put in your home. With a few simple, sporadic design decisions, you can uncover new functions for standard pieces in your home—saving space and adding style!

DIY Dining: Furnishing Farmhouse Chic

farmhouse2There’s something undeniably charming about the rustic dining spaces that come standard in old farmhouses. There’s no doubt that an older home has built-in character that creates an authentically comfortable backdrop for living and entertaining, right from the start.

Focusing on rustic, farm-inspired interior design choices can emulate that feeling anywhere.

Although living in an urban or suburban setting may not be exactly farmhouse-friendly when it comes to real estate, creating that same charming, comfortable environment is possible—no matter where you live—if you just find the right furniture and accessories. Not to mention, it’s much easier (and certainly more affordable) than buying an old country home.

Taking shabby chic interior inspiration from old homes and mixing it with contemporary colors and accessories brings a unique, modern appeal to classic style. From mixed natural woods to textured, layered spaces and rustic accessories, creating the look and feel of an older home is possible to pull off in any style home—and you can do it yourself.

Here are our 7 Ashley picks, with some simple DIY design tips, that can make it fun and easy to furnish farmhouse chic dining spaces in your home:


Mix up wood and metal textures throughout the room and pair them with eclectic acoutrements, like old windows and mirrors layered in pairs. Balance the look by placing accents, like tall candlesticks, on top of storage pieces and fill them with light-toned dish ware that stays on display.


Distressed wood brings shabby chic to life in any dining space. Blend different wood tones and offset them with light upholstery to create sophisticated contrast. A unique light fixture can serve as the focal point that brings it all together.


Mixing and matching chairs with different colors, fabrics, and wood is a great way to add some style to traditional dining pieces for an irresistible rustic-chic vibe.


A variety of textures in a room creates a naturally relaxing atmosphere. Leather, metal accents, woven accessories, and soft patterned area rugs are great options, but don’t stop there! Let your imagination run wild and use nature to inspire accessorizing. Colorful fruit or fresh-picked flowers can bring an unexpected spark of style to your dining table or storage pieces.

Country classics with subtle modern twists can really make a bold statement in your dining room. Off white trim with dark wood is a great way to create elegance without being over the top. Basic glassware and streamlined, clear lighting options add delicacy, while staggered statement pieces on the wall make the space exciting and inviting.


Simplicity can rule when it comes to modern-meets-farmhouse style. Substantial pieces, like large family-style tables and a wall-sized storage pieces, work wonderfully with a basic beiges and soft white tones as the backdrop. Elegantly simple accessories, like matted picture frames and rustic pottery, bring simple sophistication to turn basic into bold!


A classic pub table and industrial-chic stools are a match made in modern farmhouse heaven. A minimalist-inspired table is beautifully anchored by the boldness of tall bar stools in a contrasting material and color that will make anyone want to have a seat and stay awhile.



See store for availability, pricing, and details.  5-piece dining sets include table + 4 side chairs. Tanshire 6-piece dining set includes pedistal base and table top + 4 side chairs. 


Introducing Heritage Road


Close your eyes and imagine that the holidays are here. All of your family is gathered in the living room, cuddled up with plaid pillows and fur throws, absorbing the warmth of the fireplace. The aroma of your honey baked ham seeps from the oven. Everyone is laughing and having a great time with apple cider in hand. As you close the oven and stand to look around, a sense of pride overwhelms you. You are so proud of your home. You’ve worked so hard to create a stylish, sophisticated space to entertain, and you’re grateful to share it with your family. This is home.

Such is the inspiration for Heritage Road—Ashley HomeStore’s newest lifestyle, debuting just in time for the holidays. This warm and inviting Lifestyle is exclusive to the HomeStore – so you won’t find these furnishings anywhere else.

Read the full story!


Color is a beautiful thing: Create inviting, calming spaces with PANTONE® colors of the year

col·or | noun
A phenomenon of light; the visual perception that enables one to differentiate and appreciate otherwise identical objects.


By definition alone, life without color would be pretty dull. When you think about color, it’s a whole lot of science that makes a whole lot of art possible. The foundation of creativity and design; without it we couldn’t perceive even the most basic experiences.

So, what’s in a color? Take a look through and you’ll quickly realize there’s a lot to it; most notably, the annual pick for ‘PANTONE® color of the year’ (and we’ll talk more about that in just a minute!).

The world authority on color, PANTONE® is an organization with the primary function of communicating color across a variety of industries. Pretty cool gig, huh?

PANTONE® is known worldwide as the standard language for color communication—from designers to manufacturers, to retailers to customers. It ensures that colors are standardized, while providing countless resources for proper distribution and use.

This directly affects consumers at home. A great example is that gallon of paint you bought in a store to spice up your living room walls. It has a unique color code that distinguishes it from other colors. The code assures that it’s the same, regardless of where it’s purchased or how it’s applied. This same system is used by fabric manufactures, interior designers, and other style-oriented industries to assure consistency and conformity in all products. Kind of important in our line of work!

Needless to say, when PANTONE® names its pick for color of the year, we listen. The yearly proclamation ultimately drives interior design trends, runway fashion, graphic design, and more.

That said, 2016 is a unique year. For the first time in its history, PANTONE® identified not one, but two colors of the year to be used in concert—Rose Quartz and Serenity, a selection that’s an amazing source for style and design inspiration in the home.

pantone2016Rose Quartz is the gemstone for love, so naturally it’s a perfect fit for making a house feel more like a home. Matched with the relaxed vibe of a soft blue tone, a love-filled, Zen-like home is totally attainable with this color combinaiton.

To prove it, we sat down with our fabulous designer, Matthew, and chatted all about this year’s colors and how he feels they can work in tandem to easily create inviting and calming spaces in the home.

rosequartz“Rose Quartz, in its natural state, is a perfect stone to place in the corners of a room. The pink hues increase feelings of love and positivity,” said Matthew. “The other hue, Serenity, is soft and it speaks to a more holistic approach to the color wheel. Both colors introduce a more non-traditional color trend that is proving how colors can have an emotional impact, showing the importance of our surroundings.”

Inspired by the PANTONE® picks, Matthew selected a few of his favorite Ashley collections that make it easy to generate feelings of love, comfort, and positivity when integrated with Rose Quartz and Serenity in the home. Here are his top picks:


The Kieran sofa, paired with the Ballor coffee table, combine both feminine and masculine tastes. Softer tones are anchored by a darker-toned table.


Simple black and white wall art pairs beautifully with soft tones in any room.

Ashley HomeStore top of bed options are great for this color combination, especially the earth tones seen in this patchwork design. Paired with light woods and a mix of brown and darker blue accessories, the room instantly gains a comforting look and feel.


Bringing bold themes of nature into a room with earth-toned wall art provides a gorgeous contrast to soft tones.

These stylish selections, and many others that complement the 2016 PANTONE® colors of the year, are available to browse at your local Ashley HomeStore.