Design Elements: Beautiful Reclaimed Wood

Want to include an aged patina to your home and save a tree or three at precisely the exact same moment? Consider sourcing retrieved wood. These boards include torn-down barns, houses or even factories. If you own an older home, you might already have some gorgeous wood behind the drywall or around the loft floor. Here are a few stellar examples of how architects, interior designers and builders are adding reclaimed wood’s wonderful texture to walls, floors, cabinets and more.

Garrison Hullinger Interior Design Inc..

Sometimes reclaiming means looking at what may be hiding behind the drywall or newer layers of paneling. Designer Garrison Hullinger brought the walls down to reveal such 100-year-old tongue-and-groove planks. Bonus: The stunning accent wall eliminates the requirement for a headboard.

Watch the rest of the home

Robert Hawkins

Architect Robert Hawkins utilized reclaimed hardwood for this perpendicular interior paneling. In terms of its prior life, ” he says,”I believe it was in an older barn arrangement in the Midwest originally. It has been milled with a shiplap profile.

“We love the warm character and feel that the material exudes to the space; understanding that the material is getting another life is a good feeling. Because the surface of the wood has a natural aged patina, no stain is necessary or desired, thereby avoiding the potential intrusion of VOCs to the inside surroundings,” he says.

Searl Lamaster Howe Architects

This gorgeous fireplace wall stands up to the scale of the soaring ceiling, making it possible to utilize a small fireplace. The wood was originally in a barn in Texas. “The house was designed to be a part of the landscape. This was accomplished by the way in which the house sits at the site, the positioning of windows and the position of walls for viewpoints,” says Pam Lamaster-Millet, the project’s architect. “We felt that the reclaimed wood was appropriate for its key focus of the living room, as an extension of the wooded site to the house, and a nod to the agricultural region of Algoma.”

Richard Bubnowski Design LLC

Architect Richard Bubnowski maintained white walls as a backdrop to emphasize a rich mixture of textures in the home. The fireplace facade is covered in local reclaimed oak, which communicates a sense of era to the new construct and performs the kitchen cabinets and island.

Watch the rest of the home

Richard Bubnowski Design LLC

Here’s a glance at that kitchen cabinet wood mentioned before, which has been whitewashed.

Jane Kim Design

The counters and shelves in this industrial kitchen are manufactured from reclaimed barn wood, which navigates between the exposed brick and stainless steel. The wood adds character and a sense of background to this slick attic.

Watch the rest of the home

Dresser Homes

If you’d like the part of reclaimed wood in your home but are not up for a renovation, you can bring it in conjunction with furniture. This coffee table is manufactured from reclaimed railroad ties.

Woodland Creek Furniture

This table’s top used to be a doorway, and is complete with the original rusty and crusty ring door pull.

Holly Marder

If you are great with tools, then you might want to accept a mirrored desk as a do-it-yourself project. A happy accident improved the appearance of the dining table, which can be created from repurposed wood planks. The appearance was inspired by a few spilled paint.

Watch the rest of the home

Rough Linen

Obviously, I can’t talk about reclaimed wood without incorporating Tricia Rose’s one-of-a-kind driftwood headboard.

Watch more of the house

Structures, Inc..

The old beams and ceiling boards in this contemporary kitchen give it a charming and hot European feel.

Joanne Palmisano, Salvage Keys

Pairing reclaimed wood with other reclaimed objects is a winning combination. This sink, salvaged from an old industrial building, sits atop cabinets fashioned from reclaimed wood.

Learn more by reading about ‘Salvage Secrets’

Summerour Architects

Engineered wood is a fantastic eco friendly alternative for flooring. If you are recycling floorboards, you can often find boards which are different sizes than the usual standards on the industry today. If you are renovating an older home, mine the loft for unfinished wide plank boards and replace the loft floor with something less particular.

10 Great Picks for Eco-Friendly Tile
10 Ways to Move Greener Through Design
Kitchen of the Week: A Warm and Eco-Friendly Update
5 Unusual Wood Floors
View a Creative Salvaged-Wood Wall

See related

Finding Part II

It’s fun to check through all the lovely, professionally designed rooms here on Houzz — such as those within this ideabook — for great ideas and inspiration. The designers make it appear simple, don’t they? But if you take a look at the Houzz Design Dilemmas segment, you understand that people frequently have a hard time getting it right and bump into mistakes all of the time.

That will help you get it right, I’ve compiled a private collection of the top 10 decorating mistakes individuals make. See Part 1 here, along with photos showing how Houzz designers have successfully handled these decorating issues.

If a few of those design mistakes are familiar — oh, yes, I am not exempt; I’ve heard some of this the hard way — I hope that you find that this ideabook helpful.


This residence is a great illustration of a beautiful color palette that harmonizes with the exterior and flows throughout the house. The colours are warm and vivid, holding their own against the magnificent view of the ocean and landscape.

Notice how all the colours come in the painting, and the yellowish and terracotta have exactly the identical intensity. The square support column beyond the room is the main color of the home’s exterior — almost precisely the same as the wall color in this room.

This averts Mistake No. 6: Lack of color or poor color palette

I often see houses that are a sea of beige and brown with no variation in tone, texture or pattern. Snooze! You don’t need to paint your walls a bright shade, but for heaven’s sake; include just a little shade through art or accessories. Those are equally low-risk approaches.

Artwork is a terrific starting point for a color palette. For adding colours if you find some art you love, use that as your manual.


The bedroom of the same home demonstrates how you can use the same color palette in another room to find a different look. Terracotta and yellow would be the main colors again, yet this time, the white is about the walls and ceiling rather than the carpeted flooring.

The hardwood flooring in this room is not technically terracotta, however it is a really similar color. The art also picks up the mixture of colours and adds blue, which will be in full harmony with the ocean view.

The yellow and blue of the dining room may look like a surprise if you had only seen the living room revealed previously, however the exterior of the residence is terracotta and blue and it plays off of the ocean perspective beautifully.

This averts Mistake No. 7: Poor color flow from room to room

I’ve been in houses where it seems every wall is a “accent wall” and each room has a different color scheme with no link to any other room. A Cirque du Soleil point set springs to mind! Outstanding for the queen, however to your house. Bless their hearts for being courageous enough to put color in their houses, but using a well-planned color palette that flows from room to room really makes the house feel larger!

The 3 photos of this home show that each room can look quite different by varying the proportions of colours used from room to room and such as colours in some rooms but not others while still having great color flow.

Garret Cord Werner Architects & Interior Designers

Just like in the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears, everything within this dining room isn’t too large and not too little, but just right. The art is the right size for over the fireplace. The rug is big enough to allow the seats to be dragged back without going over the border and not overly big for the room. As is the centerpiece the dining table room is in proportion to the dining table.

And if you look at the back of the room, you can see that the mirror is just the right size for the wall area and sideboard and that the group of candle holders are big enough to be the only accessory on the sideboard.

This averts Mistake No. 8: Incorrect scale and ratio

The most common places where I see scale and ratio out of whack comprise:

1. Art that is too little for the wall on which it is placed: Try to cover 2/3 of the available area.

2. Bedside lamps that are too little for the side tables: The bottom of the shade needs to be about even with or just over your shoulder when seated in bed.

3. Sofas that are way too large for the room: No easy guideline here. If you are having an impossible time placing the couch, it is likely too big.

4. Accessories that are only too small: Just like the phrase “Go big or go home,” a few big accessories will probably always look better than a bunch of small objects.

5. Area rugs that are either too big or too little: there are lots of ideabooks composed on the various considerations here.

Tip: To help you get scale and ratio right, print several large photos of all of your rooms and write down dimensions of current furnishings and room dimensions. Carry them with you and store where you will find artists to assist you get sizes right. Again, I emphasize providing big photos of your spaces or rooms. There’s nothing more useless to some designer than a tiny picture in your cell phone.

John Lum Architecture, Inc.. AIA

I just can not say enough about the beauty and the wonder of built-in cabinetry. This bedroom cabinetry includes 15 — count ’em — 15 drawers in which to hide your pants, shirts and what-have-yous. The display space above provides an opportunity to respect a collection. Beautiful!

This averts Mistake No. 9: Inadequate or unsightly storage alternatives

I encounter poor storage most frequently in bedrooms and home offices. Do you have a giant armoire plus a few dressers lined up across the wall in your bedroom? I run across this scenario frequently.

One dresser or armoire won’t deal with the storage needs, so another and yet another is purchased and lined up like they’re in a firing squad. Whenever two or even three storage pieces of furniture are lined up at a row on one wall, the room looks busy and oppressive, even if the furniture pieces are good quality and fine looking.

Rather than buying several storage pieces, put your cash to a well-designed built for the best utilization of storage area. Customized cupboard storage is better than regretting several dressers at a room.

Warmington & North

Here is yet another bedroom with beautiful built-in cabinetry. Incorporating window chairs and building at around the windows was a superb idea. They have a single armoire into the left and the rest of the storage needs are cared for by the built-ins. So much nicer than extra dressers would have been.

Ana Williamson Architect

If you have an office lined with a conglomeration of plastic drawers and bathtubs holding everything and have piles sitting on the ground, look at this slick cabinetry made of plywood. Storage solutions don’t need to be high-end to hold all you want and look great.

Michael Abrams Limited

This last space seems to embody everything I’ve been talking about up to now. The window treatments are all impeccable. Furnishings are nicely proportioned, comfortable, durable and therefore are arranged to encourage interacting. The color palette and lighting are all beautiful. Just how does a room get everything? This space was clearly well planned out.

This averts Mistake No. 10: Lack of planning

Have you ever done something and then had to reverse that something in order to do anything else you should have done before? This sentence will make perfect sense to you in case you did not plan your house project nicely.

One of the first things I have my clients do is sit down and compose an inventory of all their wishes and desires for their property. Many clients don’t execute all their decorating or remodeling plans at a single stroke for many reasons. The list is ensured by sense of urgency and budget, but we also evaluate everything to be sure projects follow along at the perfect order.

As an example: if you’re planning to paint the interior walls and ceiling, and you wish to include lighting fixtures at the ceilings or walls, then you should do all the electrical work. Otherwise, you might find yourself having to cut open a wall or ceiling to run wiring and then having to repair drywall and paint all over again.

Coming up with a master plan provides you the best shot at good design. It stops you from making expensive mistakes and out of boxing in because of decisions that were made without respect to future endeavors.

This finishes my best 10 common decorating mistakes. Check out Part 1 out of this week for help on the other five stumbling blocks to good design.

How on your experience? Is there another mistake that you think belongs in the top 10?

How to Receive Your Own Window Remedy Right
How to Acquire the Pendant Light Right
How to Layer Patterns Right
How to Receive Your Area Rug Right

See related

Making the Perfect Guest Room

So, the joke is that you shouldn’t make your guest room overly fine because your friends or family will overstay their welcome. However, that is only an old expression rather than something to be taken. There’s something special about creating a warm and inviting living area for the guests — it shows how much you care. Take a room in your home and fill it with all the best amenities to create a relaxing environment. Then send out the invites. Your guests will appreciate the thought that went into their stay.

Making the ideal guest area is a fairly simple process. Here are six ideas on how to make your guests feel welcome and encourage them to hang outside for some time.


1. Infuse a sense of humor. Tell your guests, “The fish was ‘that’ big!” (While holding your arms out as if you are telling a fishing story). In what is a beautiful and well-appointed guest room, the bluefin tuna mounted on the wall brings in a much-appreciated humorous touch.

2. Play with color. In my view, a guest room should be fun and vibrant with something a little unexpected. This tasteful black green and white area is all about color color and more color. With three or four different shades of green, a tasteful chandelier over the bed and a bevy of black and white patterns, this room is wrapped in color.

Lisa Benbow – Designs that are Garnish

Bright splashes of crimson and a graphic object of art balanced against cool blue make me feel of the beach. This guest room feels like an ideal landing spot after a day on the beach or strolling the boardwalk.

Tobi Fairley Interior Design

3. Create a relaxing environment. The traditional mix of light blue and chocolate brown specify the elegant nature of the relaxing guest room. The coverlet and duvet mix is a great way to supply the necessary flexibility to how your guests like to sleep. Some like lots of covers, some like fewer.

Smith & Vansant Architects PC

4. Don’t overlook the younger guests. I see a huge slumber party going to occur in this guest room made just for your youngsters. Four bunk beds and plenty of storage provide the kids their own spot for an extended stay.

Olga Adler

5. Give a writing desk for an entire vacation experience. Part of the vacation experience is sitting down and placing pencil to book to discuss special memories with those back home. A simple writing desk can be a post card writing station or provide your guest a place to check on the hottest Houzz upgrades.

Inside this spring green area, a secretary doubles as a nightstand, which is also a excellent space-saving trick for smaller rooms.

Moroso Construction

6. Nothing sweeter than a package for your guests. A converted attic, complete with sleeping arrangements, sitting area and a writing desk gives your guests a home away from your home. Just be careful because they might never wish to leave.

Susan Diana Harris Interior Design

This little modern guest suite provides all of the conveniences of home: a mattress, TV viewing area and a desk. If they are not careful, I just might move in. The deep brown wall can help to make the room look longer than it really is.

How can you make your guests feel welcome?

Be Our Guest(s): Twin Bed Guest Rooms
Get Your House Tours Discussing

See related

Top 10 Modern Swimming Pool Designs

While the phrase ‘modern swimming pool’ sounds like a recent invention, it really refers to a trend that started in the late 1930’s when Hollywood’s rich and famous started building open-plan houses that embraced the indoor-outdoor lifestyle. This is when swimming pool design started really taking a different direction, which was characterized by blending the pool’s design with the home’s architecture instead of considering it as a standalone feature that was ‘added on’ to the house.

Another distinguishing factor about modern landscaping Littleton, CO is the use of gunite in the construction process. Gunite is a mixture of sand and concrete which when introduced was a far cry from the plywood that swimming pools were formerly constructed from. Of course, the kidney-shaped pool design by landscape architect Thomas Donell is a pioneering and iconic design that’s still in use today.

Here’s a list of our top ten favorite modern sprinkler repair Littleton, which feature various contemporary design styles.

Modern Marvel

This pool design was created to perfectly reflect and go with homes that have clean horizontal lines.

Second-Level Pool

As the name implies, a second-level pool is often built on the house’s second floor, which requires the construction of retaining walls to keep the pool balanced.

South Africa’s Spa House

The Spa House pool in Cape Town, South Africa is a wonderful example of how to effortlessly blend natural landscapes and hardscapes with man-made architecture. This pool has a floating deck protruding from its center and a well-positioned spa placed right below the waterline, creating a seamless transition from the house into the pool and vice versa.

Dolphin Mosaic

One of the best ways to expand a small outdoor space is to design the pool in an interesting shape like a circle, and use lighting to accentuate the form as well as a mosaic design at the bottom of the pool like a dolphin or a star fish, for example.

Wet Deck Design

Breaking from the normal geometric design, this swimming pool features a nice curvy shape that really enhances the landscaping around it.

Island Vista

If you’re lucky enough to live by the sea, in a place that enjoys prime views of the ocean and perhaps a nearby island, then you should design your lawn care Littleton, CO and your entire outdoor area to maximize those views. You can do this by creating a linear roofline with a swimming pool that has clean lines and an infinity edge that looks like an extension of the ocean.

Mountain Beauty

A swimming pool with a vanishing edge is the perfect design to capture the beauty of a mountainside view, which often overlooks the city or town below.

Figure 8

The figure 8 design or ‘hourglass shape’ as it’s often referred to, is another timeless swimming pool design that has been around since the 1950s.

Blue Lagoon

If you want your outdoor entertainment area to look like a beach resort, then you should definitely go for the blue lagoon look, which you can enhance with the addition of palm trees, waterfalls, fire bowls etc.

Intersecting Pools

This design is another great way of incorporating a swimming pool into a tiny place. Included in this intersecting pool are a children’s wading pool, a spa and an edge pool, offering something for everyone.