Your Guide To Adding Art to your life

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This is your guide to artwork and how magical it can be in the world of interior design! At Amanda’s House of Elegance we love art in all its forms and want to help you curate an art collection that elevates your home from ordinary to magical. Imagine your artwork as the icing on the cake, once you have a good base you can add your personality and express yourself through decor and artwork. Wall art draws the eye, pulls a space together and makes your home inviting; and we are ready to tell you how! 

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Part One: Decisions, Decisions 

  1. Select what you like! This is the biggest tip we could give to anyone buying art, you have to live with it and therefore you should love it! There are no rules for what art you should like, art should foster positive feelings of enjoyment, curiosity or relaxation. Pick what speaks to you!

  2. Use your walls for expression! Maybe you are in a bit of a decor rut, or you played in safe in your furnishing when initially decorating;  Now you can choose art to express your personality and style. Art can be an investment, but their are great budget friendly options for every budget. So don’t be afraid to switch things up and get something new.

  3. Act fast, most artwork is one of a kind for a reason! If you love something, take the leap!

  4. Find a starting point! Whether its the artwork itself that you are designing a room around or you are trying to pick a piece for an existing room design, you need to find a starting point! This can be a style, colour, theme, or inspiration. So pick a point and start investigating your options. 

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Part Two: The Logistics

  1. Scale, Scale, Scale! The size of your piece is one of the most important aspects to choosing art. You need to find a something that not only works style wise, but also in terms of dimensions and placement. A huge style mistake is leaving a small piece of art floating in the middle of a giant wall with nothing to ground it If a piece is too small, try pairing it with other art or photographs to bring a more cohesive look to your space.

  2. To go solo or to pair? Like indicated above, if something is too small a great way to remedy the situation is to pair it with other things. These things can be alike or in completely different genres. Try to find a common connection flowing through all pieces, try a colour or style.

  3. Negative space can be your friend! Use blank walls to your advantage, because they can turn into something beautiful. If you have large areas of blank space, invest in larger piece. A large piece of artwork that fills a space can be truly captivating

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All the artwork in this post can currently be purchased at Amanda’s House of Elegance! We hope you find the perfect piece that fosters positive feelings and adds joy to your life. We love elegant and beautiful things at House of Elegance and would love for you to fall in love with something here!

Your Guide To The Biggest Trends of 2019

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Keeping up with the newest design trends can be a hefty task to accomplish. Things are always changing and the trends seem almost too large to achieve in your home. To help you out, here is your guide to the biggest trends of 2019. This is an inside look into what the design world is morphing into this year and how you can get your hands onto whats hot!

Pattern Play

Mixing pattern of any and all kinds is the new way to go! Rugs, fabrics and tiles in all styles and patterns are all approved and appreciated. This trend is all about being confident, don’t be afraid to test different items until you find a good mix. An easy way to ease into this trend is by incorporating different pillows into your space. At Amanda’s House of Elegance, we have a ton of styles that could easily be mixed and matches to create a beautiful aesthetic. Try pairing a large striped pillow and a pillow with a smaller floral or ikat print. This will create the effect without overwhelming you all at once.

Colour Theory

In 2019 we are going back to the primary’s, primary colours that is. Thats right, 2019 is all about blue, red and yellow! While these colours are certainly bold, they can be incorporated into any space with ease with these simple tips.

  1. Don’t forget about your hallways: Hallways can be a great place to infuse some serious colour. This is because they can stand almost on their own, you can treat them with their own identity!

  2. Don’t force a colour into a room where it obviously doesn’t belong. If you already have a room with a set colour scheme, this may not be the place for this trend. Add some bolder primary colours into room where the colour maybe already exists or if the room is already generally neutral.

  3. If you are a nervous Nancy about colour, try sticking to small accents at first versus a larger piece. This way if you decide its not for you you can change it out again!

  4. The front door way be a great place to start this colourful journey! A navy blue or bright red would be lovely door colours that truly make a pop.

Masculine vs Feminine

This trend is all about how to mix the feminine side of style and the masculine side. The masculine being leathers, dark metals, dark colours, and dark woods. The feminine being white and creams, linen, floral patterns and curvier shapes. While leather couches and dark wood furniture are nothing new, this trend is about finding the perfect balance between them to appeal to all preferences.

Organic Shapes

Bring on all things curvy! Straight and streamlines are on the decline and 2019 is seeing lots of curvy furniture and more organic shapes. Not only are they beautiful to look at, they offer a manipulated perception of spatial awareness. Using this correctly means that there will appear to be a lot more space than there actually is, allowing for your home to feel larger! Let’s be honest, no one has ever wished for less space. Look for rounded accents to bring this trend to your home in 2019.

Daring Direction

Minimalism in on its way out and in the process is making room for maximalism! The phrase “more is more” is going to be in full swing and 2019 is bringing a surge of creativity in these busier room designs. Maximalism doesn’t just mean more stuff, because stuff is never the answer. This trend is about not being afraid to fill your space with patterns, texture, meaningful belongings, and life! Your space should feel lived in and welcoming compared to the clean lines and starkness of minimalism.

Mixed Texture

Texture has been in style for the last couple of design seasons but it is gaining even more momentum in 2019. Mixed texture means combining many different materials and fabrics to create and overall fuller and warmer space. This means combining the rich (velvets, leathers), with the cozy (wool, linen, fur) and throwing in some highlights (mirror, glass, metals). Don’t be afraid to combine many different materials to create the depth that your space deserves.

Bold Rugs

At Amanda’s House of Elegance we love a great rug! Bold rugs are on trend and we want to help you bring a beautiful rug into your home. The rug is not only a necessity, but it is also an easy way to update your space. There are three ways you can go with this trend, you can bring in a bold colour, or a bold pattern, or something that has a bit of both! At House of Elegance we can custom order a rug that will fill all your desires!

Stocking Stuffers Galore, and All Under $30!

Crazy to think about how quickly we are approaching Christmas. Only 14 days to go and we are excited. At Amanda's House of Elegance we definitely have you covered for all your gift giving needs. We have a plethora of amazing stocking stuffers for every person on your list, including yourself :) Make your way downtown and come visit us, you are sure to find something to add a bit of elegance to your life and those you are gifting to! All of these stocking stuffers ideas are under $30 and are waiting to be purchased by you!

  1. Medium WoodWick Candles

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With scents such as Vanilla and Sea Salt, Warm Wool and Bergamot and Basil, you are sure to find a scent to suit anyone on your list! These medium candles ($22.95) have a burn time of 28 hours, though we also have larger sizes that range from 50 to 85 hours of a lovely crackling fire sound around your home. You have to hear these candles in action to believe it, but they truly sound like your own little personal fireplace.

2. Mittens

black - $19.95, cream - $13.95

black - $19.95, cream - $13.95

We have a few different styles and colours of mittens and gloves in the store and you won’t believe how warm and comfortable they are. A pair of mittens is always a great stocking stuffer because no one likes being cold; and like sock, one mitten always seems to be missing when the winter clothes get brought out each year making these the perfect necessity.

3. Earrings and other Jewelry

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We are so proud to carry two different jewelry lines! The first is Glee Jewelry; they are based out of Vancouver and are influenced by nature and designed for beauty. The also have natural elements reflected in every piece. Glee uses a variety of high quality platings such as gold, rose gold and silver and they are all coated with an anti-tarnish polish to ensure a long life. All of the metals Glee uses are completely hypoallergenic as they are nickel and lead free. All of their pieces are stunning and a store favourite.

The other jewelry line at Amanda’s House of Elegance is Jacqueline Kent Jewelry. This line is from Toronto and boasts unique and “one of a kind” designs. Each piece of jewellery is hand crafted with unique gemstones such as pearls, abalone shell, Swarovski zirconia, garnets, cubic zirconia, hematite and cut crystals. The metals used in Kent’s line are high quality base metals which include sterling silver, brass, steel and others. All pieces are nickel, cadium and lead compliant meeting North American safety standards and they are all hypoallergenic. If you love a stunning statement necklace this will be your new go to line.

4. Bath Bombs

These bath bombs by Bomb Cosmetics are the real deal, as you can see by the video below. As soon as they are dropped into warm water they begin to fizz and release essential oils and perfumes into the water. Now all you have to do it relax, the rest is taken care of! We have many different scents available here at Amanda’s House of Elegance and all bath bombs are $8.95.

5. LAMA Soap Company

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We love the LAMA Soap Company and are so proud to carry this soap line at Amanda’s House of Elegance. We stand behind their natural approach to skincare and love how environmentally friendly they are. LAMA uses 100% pure coconut oil and only therapeutic grade essential oils for both its scent and holistic properties. The labels are all made with recycled materials and embedded with wildflower seeds so they be planted to feed the bees. Trust us when we say that these soaps are all luxury, and all natural! Each soap is priced at 10.95.

6. Lip Balm

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Bee By The Sea is a Canadian natural skincare company. The entire company is based around the Sea Buckthorn berry because of its healing benefits to the skin. It is the combination of this superfood, along with unpasteurized honey that make Bee By The Sea one of a kind. They promote the benefits of their products to combat eczema, sunburn, dry skin, scars and many more. Their lip balm’s are nourishing and have the healing properties of the ingredients within leaving lips soft and moisturized. At 3.95 per tube, this lip balm makes the perfect stocking stuffer! Come into the store to check out our other Bee By The Sea products.

7. Tea Light Candle Holders

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The candle holders are purely pretty! The glass is cut in a way to allow light to be reflected off of the sides which make these an eye catcher. These are more elegant then your average tea light holder and are sure to impress the receiver. They are 13.95 each and are the perfect gift.

8. Mugs

We have such a lovely collection of mugs at Amanda’s House of Elegance and we think they would make the perfect stocking stuffer. With many styles available, you are sure to find a new favourite mug for someone on your list. There is nothing better then curling up over the holiday season with a hot drink and a good book!

Amanda's Top Christmas Decorating Tips and Tricks

Decorating for Christmas can be a little bit daunting but also very exciting. It’s a chance to change up some decor in your home and bring out some old holiday favourites. Plus everything looks more festive with some Christmas lights! So, whether you are a seasoned pro or still getting the hang of things, we hope these tips and tricks make your decorating adventure much more enjoyable.

  1. Don’t Forget the Front Entrance

This goes for both inside and outside. The entrance or foyer is great real estate for expressing your style and bringing out all the stops. It’s the first impression of Christmas that your home makes on your guests and it can be the most fun to play around with because of the amount of space. Don’t be afraid to invest in some larger pieces to make a big impact. A great purchase from Amanda’s House of Elegance would be one of our large nutcrackers. For $798.95 each, these nutcrackers would be a great investment to be the showstopper at your door.

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2. Think Outside of the Box

This can really mean many things. Not only can you use a variety of materials around your home, but you can use different colours and themes to add interest and something a little unexpected. An all white theme in the home is lovely, but why not throw in some champagne to jazz things up a bit. Besides, a little sparkle never hurt anyone around the Christmas season. Do you have lots of greenery leftover from trimming your tree? Put extra tree boughs down the centre of your table to create a unique centrepiece.

3. Keep It Simple

I don’t mean keep your decor simple, because as I’ve said before it is great to pull out all the stops around the holidays. Though there are ways you can make your life easier and less cluttered when decorating. For example, when purchasing lights, if you know the lights will be in an inconvenient location it may be smart to purchase battery powered lights to avoid cords hanging or being brought across a room to an outlet.

4. Decorate Your Dining Table

Though you must keep in mind that people had have to eat there! The dining room is a great space to enhance because it creates a lovely environment for one of the biggest meals of the year. While we encourage you to decorate to your hearts content, if people will be eating at the table regularly maybe keep it simpler so that nothing needs to be moved when setting the table.

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5. The Fireplace

Again such great real estate for decor. Remember to decorate both the mantle and the ground in front of the fireplace, as the fireplace is often the focal point of a room it’s important to dress it up. Candles and floral sprays are a great way to achieve this.

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6. Don’t Take Away Too Much

There is really no need to take away your everyday decor for the holidays. To simplify your life, just add decor to add Christmas spirt to your home. Adding red fruit like cranberries and pomegranates to your fruit bowl instead of the usual bananas and oranges, or adding some twinkly lights to your staircase are easy ways to add and not have to subtract any decor making it easier for you in the long run.

Mix and Match Ornaments

One of the biggest debates around Christmas time is when to start pulling out the Christmas decor. Here at Amanda’s House of Elegance, while we don’t expect you to de decorating too early, we are not ashamed to admit that its never to early! If you have been into the store recently you will know that we have already brung in the Christmas spirit with beautiful sprays, Christmas decor and an abundance of Christmas ornaments. We love the look of mixing in a variety of ornaments into your tree during the holidays, though style points go to those who can mix and match and making it all blend together beautifully. Here are our favourite combinations currently in the store! Come on in and check them out for yourself! Currently our ornaments are on SALE! Buy 4, get one FREE. Your tree will be the most stylish on the block.

White and Whimsical

Such whimsical shapes to connect these ornaments. Don’t be afraid to connect different colours and genres to create a unique set.

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Rose Gold and Glam

So many pretty pinks and rose golds this season, we love how these match but aren’t all the same colour.

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Play With Shape and Colour

I love how the shapes of these three play together. While all very different, they all have elongated shapes which bring them all together!

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Winter Whites

White is such a versatile colour. These ornaments look beautiful together and will really pop off the tree.

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Silver Snow

These ornaments will truly shine against all the lights on your tree. While subtle in colour, the different shapes will catch everyones eye.

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The Do's and Don'ts of Decorating For Christmas

If you haven’t been into Amanda’s House of Elegance recently, you must head in. It is a full on Christmas wonderland and is sure to get you into the Christmas spirit. We are sure many of you are starting to think about decorating for Christmas and we are here to help! Not only do we have a plethora of elegant Christmas options for every room in your home, we have lots of tips and tricks to turn your space into a Christmas wonderland as well. Here are our favourite do’s and don’ts for the season.

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Do’s:

  1. Do you hate clutter? Stick to decorating the mantel and banisters on your stairwell to get a huge impact without cluttering your home. These locations add instant Christmas appeal without making your home feel crowded or cluttered. If you have small children or pets, these locations also are out of reach for the smaller occupants of the home.

  2. Use seasonal elements to allow your decor to last longer! By incorporating decor that is winter themed versus Christmas themed, you can start decorating earlier and leave your decor up longer. We all love Christmas decor, and are not telling you to skip the Christmas theme, but having a mixture of both will do you better in the long run.

  3. Be thoughtful an deliberate. By putting thought into all the spaces in your home, you will end up loving your decor for the happiest season of the year. Start thinking about your decor early and give yourself some time to wrap your head around colours and styles you like.

  4. Use lots of lights! Lights are the easiest way to get big impact on Christmas. Incorporate twinkly lights and candles into your decor and you are sure to end up with a beautiful Christmas display.

  5. Personalize your space. Don’t feel pressured to stick to one idea of Christmas, Decorate with whatever speaks to you. We love seeing personalized Christmas displays, this is also a great way to incorporate some of your kids and loved ones pieces into the home.

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Don’ts

  1. Don’t limit yourself to red and green. Christmas is a time for lots of colour to be incorporated and we want you to get inventive. We love seeing blues, golds, whites and silvers in all kinds of Christmas decor but truly any colour can be incorporated into your home. Your current home decor can be a great jumping off point for your holiday decor.

  2. Don’t expect things to be perfect. Perfection is not possible, and this is a don’t for all things holiday related, not just decor. Give yourself some time to relax and enjoy the holidays!

  3. Don’t shy away from the classics. Who doesn’t love a garland and some poinsettias? While Christmas is a great season for experimenting with decorations, we love the tested and true classics that fill your home with those warm and fuzzy feelings.

  4. Don’t overcrowd. Sometimes the simpler, the better. Take your time deciding what areas of your home should be busier than others, but don’t feel the need to add space filling decor to all areas.

We have so much more holiday content to come in the next couple of months! Happy Holidays and let the fun begin.

8 Ways to Design a Happier Home

Your home is your haven, and you deserve to be happy in it, no matter how much money you make, how big your space is, or how much you know or don't know about decorating. The good news is there are tiny tweaks you can make to boost your mood in your house, and none of them cost a fortune. Some of them are scientific, so you might not even understand how or why the happy hits you. Just go with it—and the rest of these strategies for feeling your best in your nest.

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One: Colour Everywhere

Okay, maybe not everywhere, because there's something to be said for serene neutrals and using a little bit of restraint when you decorate. But high energy shades like yellow and green have been shown to make people happier and more productive. These hues are tricky to get right as wall colors, but it's definitely doable. Don't discount the effect a new lemon-colored throw or emerald desk lamp could have either. Bigger isn't always better when it comes to color.

Two: Make Your Bed

Making your bed is the easiest way to start your day off on the right foot. You get something productive done right away that sets you up for success later that night. The last thing you see before hitting the hay shouldn't be a disheveled mess of sheets and pillows. You'll be happier for making it in the morning. Promise.

Three: Light Your World

On the whole, you're probably more smiley on sunny days as opposed to cloudy ones, right? Well, harness that happy by letting as much natural light into your home as possible. Trade out heavier drapery for sheers or go entirely without window treatments if privacy isn't an issue. Open up your windows when you can. And if you don't get a ton of sunlight in your space, fake it with an OttLite Wellness lamp, which features LED technology that's as close to the sun's output as possible. And try this trick—swap out your living room lights with pink bulbs, which make it seem like you're looking at the world through rose-colored glasses, literally.

Four: Be a Proud Plant Parent

Studies suggest that surrounding yourself with greenery can boost your mood and decrease your stress levels. Can't forest bathe in your neighborhood or turn your sunroom into a greenhouse? That's okay. Buy a couple of succulents for your windowsill or a fern for your shower. And if you're a total black thumb, bring in some crystals or shells. You can't exactly nurture those guys, but even a tiny touch of nature may make you a little more zen.

Five: Look For Furniture With Softer Edges

Pieces with round edges are much more soothing to the eye than boxy, angular shapes. Just bought a squared-off sofa? No worries. Just add some cozy, cushy throw pillows to break up the hard lines. Texture is key. Anything chunky knit will do.

Six: Trick Out Your Bathroom For “Me Time”

Treat yourself by turning your bathroom into self-care central. Get one of those across-the-tub caddies if you have the room for it or a shelf for a plant, your wine glass, and a piece of art that makes you smile. Maybe write an affirmation on your mirror in lipstick or dry erase marker if you're into that kind of thing.

Seven: Find a Happy Scent For Your Home

Smell is a very powerful tool and can often elicit memories from the depths of your mind. Think of something you have a positive association with—maybe it's the ocean, where you first learned to swim. Or a pine scent that reminds you of summer camp. Whatever it may be, start layering it around your home. Candles are an obvious choice, but consider an ultrasonic diffuser as well, especially if you have kids or pets. Pilgrim's Zoemodel ($120) works with essential oils and even has a built-in meditation light, if you really want to let the good vibes flow.

Eight: Get Rid of Clutter

File this one under "duh." But really. Ever wonder why you feel so relaxed at a hotel? Nice linens and a big fluffy robe help, though I'm inclined to think the totally clear surfaces are a big part of that "ahhhh" feeling. When your stuff isn't closing in on you, life just feels a little less overwhelming. Biggest takeaway here: "Everything in its place, and a place for everything." So toss what you don't need, and try to put things away when you're done using them. That way, you won't have a major organizing crisis on your hands at the end of the each week.

Originally Posted on Apartment Therapy by Danielle Blundell

How To Step Up Your Halloween Decor This Year

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There is no reason for your halloween decor to be any less elegant or fabulous then you decor for any other holiday or season! We love halloween, and know it can be done in an elegant and upscale way so that you are wowing all October long! Here are a few of our favourite tips and tricks for how to step up your halloween game for 2018!

Know Your Pumpkins

Here is a handy dandy chart for all your pumpkin needs! All orange, round, jack-o-lantern pumpkins are for the past and we are all for it. Here are a few of our favourite pumpkins to add some fun and whimsy to your halloween decor.

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Use All The Candles and Lanterns To Your Hearts Content

We LOVE this idea! At Amanda’s House of Elegance we have a ton of long tampered candles so that you can get this look in your own home. As an alternative, we think that candles and lanterns in any form bring in the Halloween feelings to any room. Come down to the store to pick up some WoodWick candles and view some of our beautiful lanterns.

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Dark Is Not A Bad Thing

If there is any holiday to bring out the black it is Halloween! We love the dark and moody presence some intense hits of black give to a room, it is sure to add some boldness to your decor. And if you want spooky, black is the way to go. Dim the lights and let the mood take your guests to another world for the night.

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Monochromatic Schemes Are Not To Be Feared

Have some fun with a monochromatic scheme! We love all white scenes with pumpkins and flowers. While it may not be the spookiest of decor, it is sure to make a statement all on its own.

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Add A Wreath

We still have a few beautiful wreaths in Amanda’s House of Elegance that you can purchase for your home! We love wreaths with notes of both autumn and halloween so it fits in the whole month long. Wreaths are a great way to add some fun to your door while staying classy and sophisticated, and there are just so many great options you are sure to find something!

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Some Of Our Favourites For Inspiration

Less than two weeks till the big day! Happy Halloween!

Interior Design Style Quiz

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Are you having trouble with the design in your home? First you have to pick a style and start to build your personal style around that! At Amanda’s House of Elegance are ready to make this whole process a little but easier for you. Here is the style quiz to answer all your questions. Not only does the quiz tell you what style you are drawn towards the most, but we have comprehensive descriptions to read through once your styles are defined. We are not claiming to be experts but we love design and think that this will be not only fun insight into your style but also very helpful. We will be consistently updating these profiles to make them better and make your life easier. Feel free to explore these style pages and also see some products in the store that match up with your style. We can guarantee that all the products will be available at all times, so you better come in as soon as possible so your favourite piece doesn’t leave without you! Have fun!

Rugs To Add Warmth To Your Space Through The Cold Months

When its cold outside, sometimes the only thing getting you through the day is the knowledge that you can get nice and cozy once you get home. There are some very easy tactics that can be used in order to add warmth and design to your home. Adding a few rugs to your space is one of these tactics. Having a warm, soft surface under foot adds so much character and keeps the house warmer all at the same time. Here are some great rug options available at Amanda’s House of Elegance that will be perfect in your home for the fall and winter and then can easily transition to the warmer months.

The Perfect Neutrals

These neutral beauties will add warmth and comfort to your space without adding too much of a statement. Even though the patterns are bold, the neutral colour palette keeps these rugs an easy statement for any home. These are great for spaces already in a neutral palette, space with colourful palettes and also spaces with wall to wall carpeting to achieve a layered effect. If you are unsure what rug would suit your space, bring in photos to Amanda’s House of Elegance and we would be happy to help.

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Add Some Colour

A colourful rug can be the perfect addition to the right space. Definitely a riskier move then a neutral choice, but the payoff can make it worth it! We love the colours in these options and think they could be a perfect purchase for your home. Sometimes a pop of colour is what is needed to really liven up a room.

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