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DECORATING ADVICE : Growing Roses on Both Sides of Border


Question: I want to redecorate my small bedroom. I am enclosing a piece of the border that I want to use. I have a bedspread and dust ruffle that is the same design as the border. Both were purchased in Ireland. I can purchase matching lampshades, pillows and additional material if necessary. However, I don't want to overdo this pattern.

The bedroom contains a single bed, dressing table and chaise lounge. I have considered replacing the chaise with a small chair. The bedroom size is about 12-by-11 feet. It has two small side-by-side windows. What color should the walls and carpet be? What type of window treatment should I use?


Answer: Thank you for sending your rose-pattern border. The pink and yellow roses with green leaves and beige scrollwork make a charming Irish design.

Make balloon shades of the fabric for your windows. Trim the balloons with a soft-pink chintz, and use soft-pink fabric for your bed skirt. For the walls, select a soft cream on white stripe, and I would paint all of the trim with a white semi-gloss enamel. My carpet color selection would be blush pink, ivory or pale green. For the chaise lounge or small chair, I would use pink moire.

Q: I have dark-pine Colonial tables. Could I make a transition from Colonial to Irish country? I need casual shutters or draperies for a west-facing window. I have a collection of oil landscapes in shades of peach, aqua, cream and green.


A: Of course you can go Irish country with your dark-pine Colonial pieces. And the fact that you have some attractive landscape paintings really helps. For your walls, choose a soft-peach and pale white wallpaper with a damask-type texture. Use the wallpaper with a border trim of peach, pink and green flowers on a cream background. The carpeting should be light green. At the windows, hang cream-colored draperies, trimmed in green on deep pine-stained poles.

Q: Help! I need a new look for my kitchen.


A: It's easy to create a bright, new look for your kitchen. Here are great ways to refurbish all of the major components:

* Floors. The great new flooring designs are bright and shiny, and they'll enhance every decor. Tiles come in vibrant colors such as yellow, aqua, green and red. Black and white checkerboard tiles are also a winner. Picture a kitchen with walnut cabinets, their pulls made of shiny brass. The walls are bright red, and the floor consists of black and white tiles laid on the diagonal. Now that's a snappy look!

* Walls. For those who choose not to use paint, there are wall coverings of every texture. Check out the stucco-textured vinyl wall coverings--they look like the real thing! And they are a great way to bring a Western look to your kitchen. Pair that with flooring of an adobe clay color.

The kitchen cabinets can be a soft light pine, edged in aqua and light coral. And of course, a Santa Fe kitchen would be nothing without a grouping of clay pots decorated with aqua, pink and melon Southwestern designs.

* Light fixtures. Say goodby to the ceiling light. Today's kitchen is illuminated in a number of unique ways. Lighting placed underneath counters and cabinets gives the contemporary kitchen a new slant. And in a home that sports the Americana style, a wrought-iron fixture with silhouettes of chickens, cows and roosters adds a whimsical note.

* Kitchen accessories. Catalogues that feature cooking supplies and accessories for the kitchen seem to be breeding in my mailbox. There is so much to chose from! China patterns, for instance. You can decorate with everything from daisies to dandelions, from fried-egg patterns to watermelons.

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