Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Pet Projects

If you’re anything like us, you go a little crazy for your pets. We’re the type to purchase overpriced, organic dog treats and Egyptian cotton cat beds (even though Fluffy much prefers napping the bathroom sink). We love our pets, but we don’t love what our pets often do to our home. From tracking mud to shedding hair, keeping our homes clean in the presence of pets is a big job. Here are a few ideas for how to (stylishly) pet proof:

Blanket Solution
It’s mostly our fault, because we like the puppy snuggles so much, but our dog is pretty comfortable hopping up on our expensive sofa. We love the idea of wrapping a durable but aesthetically lovely blanket around the cushions to protect from hair, dirt and scratches.

Photo: Design Sponge

Under the Rug
If you know you are a pet devotee, skip the wall-to-wall carpeting and instead opt for stylish area rugs. They are easier to keep clean and vacuum around, and have the added benefit of being available in small patterns and dark colors, both of which aid in making pet hair a less obvious nuisance (along with many other such challenges).

Photo: Design Sponge

Fitting Fabrics
Give some thought to your fabric choices when bringing Fido or Fi Fi home. Some are great for dogs, awful for cats, or perfect for pets in general. For example, velvet can be a magnet for a pet hair, and it isn’t the easiest to clean, but it’s an excellent way to combat cat scratching (it isn’t a looped fabric), so always consider the way in which an animal will interact with your fabrics before purchasing.


Faux Fur

While it may seem silly, matching your home d├ęcor to your pet’s fur color will save you a lot of time, money and headaches. If you’ve got a yellow lab, dark fabrics are going to show the shedding really quickly. Try out paler options first. If you are one of the non-superstitious saints who has adopted a black cat, dark fabrics will be your friend.

We hope these tips are helpful enough to have you headed to your local Humane Society to adopt a first, second or third four-legged addition to your family! 

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Cozy Up

The dog days of winter are upon us (we think it’s a thing). February snow is still hanging around, temperatures are low, and after a brutal string of storms this winter, we’re all just a little burnt out. Here are a few quick and simple ideas for cozying up the home a bit to help our moods before the big thaw arrives.

Photo credit: Better Homes and Gardens
Table Layers

Summer is a better time to let beautiful tables really show their stuff. This time of year, add a lovely fabric covering to make the dining table more inviting when the temperatures take a dive. Tablecloths are pretty standard, but an unexpected table runner (a repurposed scarf perhaps?), especially in a thick, durable fabric, can work just as well. 

Photo credit: Better Homes and Gardens
Mind the Nook
At Hillsdale Furniture, we love reading nooks. But we especially love them this time of year, particularly when they are located near a heating vent. Find a cozy corner or space in your home to repurpose as a reading nook, even if only for the season. Grab a blanket, pillow, cup of tea or hot chocolate, and spend a few hours with your favorite novel on the next snow day.

Photo credit:
Skirt the Table
For a new look that both cozies AND hides clutter, try out table skirts. Full-sized covers for night stands, end tables and coffee tables are both chic and cozying by covering bare table legs, but they can also hide unsightly stashes of books, paperwork and general junk. They are great solutions for last minute gatherings and parties. 

Bask in Bedtime
Add an extra dimension of coziness to the bedtime routine with an upholstered bed or headboard, a much warmer option than traditional metal or wood designs. Hillsdale’s own Barrington Bed is a classic that will work with a variety of aesthetics.  It is finished in khaki linen, and features an elegant wingback headboard and footboard. Check out to view all of our upholstered bed options. 

How do you stay cozy on chilly, winter days and nights? 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Table for Two

If you are anything like us, then difficult reservations and expensive prix fixe menus give you a worse Valentine’s Day headache than that box of chocolates. We’ve been rewriting the traditional V-Day playbook though, and have moved the festivities into our own dining rooms, giving us a brilliant excuse to indulge in the kitchen and dress up our dining room tables. Join us this Friday, February 14 with a few of these fun ideas:

Love Letters

Take the traditional XO symbolism to the next level. Purchase (or make) a large X and O, and adorn in bright red or pink glitter using the old school crafting techniques of painting on glue then adding on a thick layer of glitter. Place in the center of the table, on a white or black tablecloth, and through a little extra glitter onto the table around it for that something extra. 

Have birch trees or pale-colored, narrow logs on your property or available for purchase? Trim into 4-5 small sections, about a foot tall each, and carve initials into each one, preferably with the traditional heart and arrow accents as well. These not only make a fabulous centerpiece, but are also fun gifts to give and receive. 

Conversation Starters
Have a lot of candy hearts on hand (perhaps even from last year)? Put them to work before you indulge. Fill your vases and pretty glass jars about halfway full with the token Valentine’s candy, then place an appropriately sized candle on top. Wrap a red or pink satin around the base and tie in a pretty bow. Make three or four of these in a variety of different jars for a festive alternative to classic candlesticks. 

The Base
Nothing brings out the best in Valentine’s (or any holiday) centerpiece quite like a beautiful table, and we’ve got our fair share at Hillsdale Furniture. One of our newest additions—the Marsala Pub Set—would make a lovely Valentine’s gift, especially when dressed up for the occasion. Boasting a more traditional finish but whimsical design, the laser cut design features a floral-like motif, glass table top and matching 360-degree swivel stools. The set is constructed of sturdy metal and finished in an eye catching gray base with heavy rust highlighting.

Be sure to check out all of our new additions at, and have a wonderful Valentine’s Day, no matter how you celebrate. 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Don't Stop the Music

We aren’t musicians ourselves, but that doesn’t mean we don’t daydream about having a beautiful, warm and cozy music room in our homes. Home music rooms come in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors and aesthetics, but they are all designed to get the creative juices flowing in a welcoming and relaxing atmosphere.

Other than being a habitable environment for vulnerable instruments, there isn’t much these rooms have in common. Some are surrounded by bright walls, others in muted wood. Some have a view, others appear to be ensconced in the basement or library, but they are all lovely. Here are a few of our favorites to get your own creative energy going:

Do you play music? Where do you prefer to play in your home?