January is over! it’s time to think about how to brighten and update our homes. Whether you’re in the market for a complete renovation or just looking to freshen up a space, below are some of the best ideas for 2014!

1. COLOR! Pantones 2014 fashion and interior color report pairs soft pastels with vivid brights. Select one of these trendy colors to paint a room in your home for a fresh and updated look. Great to use as an accent or in a small room, such as a powder room. My favorites are Paloma for a soothing neutral and Violet Tulip for a soft splash of color. Visit www.pantone.com for more information.

2. PILLOWS! The quickest way to give your living room new life is to replace your throw pillows with current colors, patterns, and textures. They come in a variety of shapes and fabrics to easily enhance your space. You may find ready made pillows at any home store or if you are feeling creative with a bigger budget, you may have some custom pillows made to get exactly what you want.

3. GO GREEN! The easiest update you can tackle this year is to convert to energy efficient lighting throughout your home. Compact fluorescents are readily available for most applications. LED lighting is more affordable lately, which helps the eco-friendly and energy efficient technology gain momentum. The bulbs last longer, are mercury-free and stay cool to the touch.

4. TECHNOLOGY! The U-Socket is an inexpensive way to upgrade and modernize your home. This AC receptacle with built-in USB ports that will power any device using USB like iPods, iPhones, and iPads. In addition to being ultra-convenient, it’s 5-star energy rated to automatically shut off when the device is fully charged.

5. LIGHTING! Recessed lighting has taken a step in the right direction. Broan has designed a recessed fixture that incorporates a powerful and quiet ventiliation system HIDDEN behind the light. This fixture will match perfectly with other 4” fixtures. www.broan.com

6. EDIT! Need I say more? Keep and use only those things you love.

7. VINTAGE! Sustainability continues to be a hot and important topic. Make something new out of something old this year. Visit resale shops, flea markets, or one of my favorite places, Sarasota Architectural Salvage.

8. GRAPHIC PRINTS! Black and white geometric patterns make a bold and modern statement. Select new accessories such as vases, rugs, or pillows to bring this powerful print into your home in 2014.

9. LANAI! Think of the 3 “P’s” this year when updating your outdoor living areas: Pillows, Panels, and Planters. Bring color and texture outside by accenting with weather resistant fabrics and bold ceramics.

10. GO GLAM! Add mirrors and metallics to add a little glitz to your décor. Mix gold and silver metallic for softer look.

11. LAYER YOUR LOOK! Mixing of textures, wood finishes, and fabrics create a more in-depth and custom look to your home. Think of how layering in fashion often makes an outfit more interesting – same for your home!

12. UNIVERSAL DESIGN! You’ll be hearing more and more about this topic in the coming year. This KEY design philosophy helps to add tremendous value to your home when renovating and updating by making it easier for residents to live in, and for guests to visit now and in the future, even as needs and abilities change.

13. VALUE! Whether your 2014 design plans are small or large in scale, the key is to marry style and function to achieve the greatest value and return on investment.

14. WINDOWS! Adding decorative treatments to your windows is like putting your jewelry on! Need I say more? Ok, well, for practical purposes…. the latest and greatest window coverings offer huge value in energy efficiency and privacy.

Best wishes for a fulfilling year in your home and beyond!