Just as a scarf can pull an outfit together, tossing a few throw pillows on a sofa or chair can instantly transform a room – indoors or outside.
Made to weather the elements, outdoor throw pillows bring the luxe comfort of interior spaces outside. Plus, they’re the easiest way to experiment with color and pattern. Here are three way s to maximize their impact.
If you like symmetry, use an even number of pillows. A pair arranged on either side of the sofa is most traditional. Four allows for more variation of size and color. But even with pairs, you’re not boxed into the corner. With two pillows, you can easily update the look by placing them in the center of the sofa.
For a more eclectic look, the odds are in your favor. Odd numbers can be arranged more artfully – and here’s where you can really be creative with shape, size and pattern. Don’t be afraid to mix patterns, but it’s best to stay in the same color palette.
Layering different shapes and sizes on your outdoor furniture creates a true designer look – and makes you want to sink in and stay awhile. Large square pillows (20″ or 24″) look dynamite when peeking from behind smaller boxy ones. Round tambourine or rectangular lumbar pillows add contrast to these traditional square shapes. Bolsters can be used for arm support or simply for decoration.
The right trim can take a pillow from colorful prop to artful fashion statement. Simple contrast cording finishes a pillow with a tailored look. Playful tassels and delicate eyelash trim bring unexpected touches of luxury outdoors.
Because throw pillows are so easy to swap out, you can update your outdoor look every few months. Selecting colors and patterns that reflect the change in seasons instantly gives your outdoor living space a look and feel.
For more ideas on decorating outdoors, watch the video Create a Beautiful Outdoor Space.
Sometimes, the most meaningful celebrations are the most informal. Take Mother’s Day. Not every mom wants a lot of fanfare. For some, the best way to celebrate is by sleeping in, going for long run or to yoga, and then coming home to a relaxed meal with family on the patio.
Relaxed doesn’t mean unrefined. Set your outdoor dining table with the same attention you would indoors. Start with a gorgeous bouquet of flowers. Then, use beautiful dinnerware. You could even surprise mom with a few new pieces like a charming elephant pitcher or playful Scalamandré plates. Complete the look with crystal glassware (for a toast, of course) and linen napkins.
And for the meal itself? It should be special, too. Set out an array of fruits and pastries, and then wow her with delicious (and surprisingly simple) brown butter crepes.
A low-key celebration like this is all that’s needed to make Mother’s Day one she’ll truly appreciate and never forget.
Written by: Bob Barnett
If you’re trying hard to eat a balanced diet, getting plenty of exercise and keeping your stress in check, but you’re still not losing weight—or you’re gaining it—there might be a surprising reason why. Getting a good night’s sleep on a regular basis may be the missing ingredient in your weight-control plan. Research has revealed that too little or poor-quality shut-eye can make it easier for you to put on pounds and make it harder for you to lose them.
Most people need between 7 and 9 hours of quality sleep a night. A 16-year study of 68,000 nurses found that those who got 5 or fewer hours of sleep a night had a 15 percent higher chance of being obese than those who slept 7 or more hours a night. Losing even one night’s good sleep can disrupt the complex harmony of brain chemicals that affect blood-sugar control, body fat, appetite, motivation and energy in ways that make it harder to control weight. Yes, you can catch up on one bad night of sleep, but a pattern of chronic sleep deprivation can make a big difference. Here’s what happens when you don’t get enough quality sleep:
Poor sleep can lead to weight gain, but the converse is true, too: Being overweight can make it hard to get a good night’s rest. “With weight gain, you get a bigger neck, and you crowd your airway, causing what’s known as sleep apnea,” Dr. Dedhia explains. You may fall asleep but, for a moment, actually stop breathing. You wake up with a loud snort and catch your breath, interrupting your rest, and then fall asleep again. It can happen hundreds of times a night without you even knowing it.
Quality rest, night after night, is key to achieving a healthy weight, but improving sleep takes time. “You’ve built up sleep deprivation—you didn’t get there overnight,” Dr. Dedhia says.
Start by exploring habits that may be affecting your sleep. Each drink of alcohol gives you an hour of being relaxed—and then an hour of arousal during sleep. Drinking caffeinated beverages in the afternoon is another common culprit. “What can wake you up at night? Snoring, apnea, sadness, anxiety, hot flashes or your bladder,” Dr. Dedhia says. Explore your triggers.
Once you address things that disturb your sleep, you can Create a Soothing Bedtime Routine that works for you. “Thirty minutes to an hour before bedtime, dim the lights, shut off the electronic screens, and perhaps take a warm shower or bath,” Dr. Dedhia suggests. These types of soothing tweaks to your nighttime routine can help you get your Zzzzs—and potentially help you control your weight. The gentlest actions, it turns out, are sometimes the most powerful.
If you think sleep apnea could be affecting you (common symptoms are extreme daytime sleepiness, snoring and dry mouth), speak with your doctor. You may benefit from consulting with a sleep specialist.
Continue your journey towards a better night’s sleep – and improved health and wellness – with a visit to Whole Beauty by Canyon Ranch for expert advice, recipes and more. And shop the Canyon Ranch Collection by Frontgate.
From icy to indigo, blue is the most popular color in the world. For good reason, too. It’s the color of sky and sea, serenity and sleep. And as Cinderella actress Lily James has shown us, it’s this season’s belle of the ball.
As if fashioned from a fairy tale, deep dusky blue feels warm and romantic when contrasted with snowy white and soft candlelight.
A Cuddle Chair with cushions in a transcendent shade of blue makes it easy to create your own blue heaven. Promising moments of serenity … in a place to call your own.
Deeper shades of blue can take on a surprisingly exotic flair, especially when paired with deep browns and rich textures.
Does anything seem more indulgent – even aristocratic – than your own outdoor daybed? Soaring like a cathedral, let this private oasis whisk you away. Long live the daydream … and the daybed.