Decorating Ideas
MainDo-It-Yourself GuidesDecorating TipsRoom PlanningBuying GuidesGlossary



Art Deco - Art deco is a decorating style that was popular during the latter 1920s and early 1930s. This style originated in Paris, France and is known for its geometric patterns, angular shapes and bold colors.

Art Nouveau - Originating in Paris, France, art nouveau is a decorating style that was popular during the 1920s. In French, art nouveau means "new art" and is defined by organic and flowing lines.

Arts and Crafts - Arts and Crafts was a decorating style that flourished from the late 1800s to the 1920s in Europe and America. Because the look features clean lines and straightforward style, furnishings and textiles feature simple motifs in a nature-inspired color palette.

Axminster - A type of machine made rug.


Bombe - A bombe chest is a short, squatty dresser. The sides and front bulge out from the frame.


Cabriole Leg - A style often found in Queen Anne furniture.

Chaise Lounge - A reclining chair with a long seat that supports the outstretched legs.

Chandelier - A branched, decorative lighting fixture that holds a number of bulbs or candles and is suspended from a ceiling.

Chenille - A velvety fabric used in upholstery and drapes.

Color Wheel - A color wheel is a chart that shows the spectrum of colors and how they relate to one another.

Complementary - Colors that are opposite from one another on the color wheel are called complementary colors.


Deacon Bench - A broad term applied to many bench styles. Typically it is made of wood including both back and arms. The legs, back and arms are usually carved in a spindle style.

Damask - A rich patterned fabric of cotton, linen, silk or wool.


Etagere - A series of shelves supported by columns. Used to display collectibles and other decorative items.


Flokati - A flokati rug is a thick rug with extremely long pile. Authentic flokati rugs are made in Greece.

French Provencal - French Provencal is a country style of decorating from France that features bright colors, floral prints and painted wood furniture.


Gauge - Gauge describes the thickness of an aluminum slat. Aluminum blinds come in 6-gauge (.006" thickness) and 9-gauge thickness (.009" thickness). Thicker blinds are generally more durable.


Hand Knotted - To create a hand-knotted rug, a weaver individually ties thousands of knots to create the design of the rug.

Hand Tufted - A hand-tufted rug is made by hand with a tufting gun that is put into a pre-marked canvas. All hand-tufted rugs are held together with a backing called a scrim.

Hand Hooked - Hand-hooked rugs have the look of embroidery. Yarn is punched through the canvas using a special tool. Latex is placed on the back to keep the yarn in place.




Kiln Dried - Lumber is dried slowly in a kiln to prevent warping and cracking, and is superior to air drying because the speed and air temperature can be controlled.


Loveseat - A small sofa or double chair that seats two people.

Lowboy - A low chest or tables with drawers.


Machine Made - A machine known as a Wilton loom and power loom, produces a machine-made rug.


Natural Fiber Rugs - Made of sisal, jute, seagrass, coir or bamboo, natural fiber rugs are often used in casual settings such as a porch or family room.


Oriental Rug - Strictly defined, an Oriental rug is one that is hand knotted in Asia. This category includes Persian rugs.


Patina - Patina is an aged or faded look.

Persian Rug - A Persian rug is one that is made within the borders of Iran.


Queen Anne - A style of architecture and furniture reviving elements of Queen Anne design, popular especially in England in the late 19th century.


Routeless - Normally, the ladder on a horizontal blind is routed through the slats, leaving small holes that allow light to show through. The routeless feature offsets the route holes to prevent light from shing in. Routeless is an excellent feature for a bedroom, or for any place where you need total light control.


Scallop Shell - Emphasized the curvilinear element in Queen Anne furniture.

Sideboard - Also known as a buffet or credenza. Sideboards are typically used as an accessory item during meals. It is a wide cabinet with drawers or doors.

Sommelier - A restaurant employee who orders and maintains the wines sold in the restaurant and usually has extensive knowledge about wine and food pairings.


Tertiary - Tertiary colors are those created by combining primary and secondary colors.

Transitional - Transitional is a broad category to define the style between traditional and modern.

Tufted - This look is achieved by sewing a button through the upholstery. The pattern created by multiple buttons creates a "tufted" appearance.



Veneer - Veneer is the paper-thin sheet of wood that sometimes covers the surface of furniture and is approximately 1/100- to 1/4-inch-thick.

Victorian - Victorian era decorating features ornate carvings in furniture and architecture from the mid-1800s. Heavily printed floral drapes, upholstery and rugs are used.


Wrought Iron - While the iron is hot, the iron is bent, pounded and cut to form furniture shapes.