We all take pride in our cribs and aim at a glamorous home look. We want our apartments to look the very best that they can and to best represent us – our passions, our lifestyles, our families, our livelihoods. We are constantly searching for inspiration, in shelter magazines and on websites such as this one. You might think that much of what you see is unattainable, but it doesn’t have to be. There are ways of creating similar looks. There are ways of replicating expensive tastes without spending a fortune, or very little for that matter.

You want your home to look glamorous, dazzling. You’d be surprised at how simple it is, and how the slightest effort can transform your home from drab to glamorous. I recently spoke with Lynda Quintero-Davids an Interior Stylist and Design Blogger with a reputation for creating a luxe look for less and below she shares her thoughts and tips.

Where does one start when making one’s home glamorous?

There are foundation and essentials to a glamorous home. A glamorous home is always organized. Being neat and tidy goes goes a long way. As does a clean home. Keep your surface clean, and shiny. Glass and metals should always be polished. Your accessories should be edited. This simply means there is no need to have everything you own all out for the world to see all at one time. Rotate your collections, or pull out certain types of accessories seasonally.  You may want to add, shift or rotate your color palette according to the seasons. Wintertime tends to feature darker, richer colors, with lots of shiny metallics for the holidays, whereas by contrast summertime may feature calming tones reminiscent of the sea.

Another place to start is to follow your inspirations. Which classic design icons do you like the best? Which do you identify with most in terms of style and lifestyle. Study their work and follow their leads.

Where do we look for glamorous things on a budget?

People too often think sparkle when they think of “glam.”  Sparkle and bling are not the same. Sparkle means shiny whereas by contrast bling can get tacky- a bit over the top, and that’s not glamorous. Glamour is striking a balance.  With this knowledge You can easily find shiny, sparkling pieces for even the smallest budgets at thrift and consignment stores. Look for items from cut crystal stemware to cleaned glass containers for candles to silver serveware to display in a hutch, open kitchen shelving, or even as a collection on a dining room wall.  

It might be a good idea to shop with a smart phone. While you’re shopping, be sure to turn items over, especially silver, and look for the names. You will find many brand names at a bargain.  As you’re shopping use Google to find a name and its value to help validate your deal on a budget.  Rich fabrics and trims can also add an aura of luxury to a space – sumptuous silk panels in a dining room or bedroom.

What makes something glamorous?

Something is glamorous when it looks special. It could be something as simple as an advertisement for Ralph Lauren. The ads sparkle and shine. The fabrics just look rich and luxurious and the scene in the ad draws you in, giving you a special feeling and a longing to have the items in the ad.  Materials can be glamorous. Metals can be glamorous. Colors can be glamorous. These all evoke a feeling of richness and sophistication.

What pieces are worth a splurge?

Investing in quality craftsmanship that will last, for example, a well designed sofa, is a splurge that is worth your while and your money. Highly recognizable and well known items such as a Chesterfield, or Parisian area rug, custom lined draperies with trim, quality made furnishings with rich bookmarked veneers and gilded details will always be a good investment. Furniture and rugs that are well made are wonderful investments. Anything with staying power is worth the splurge. Trendy pieces that are here today but most likely will not be tomorrow are not worth the money.

Where should we look for bargains?

There are so many places to go for a bargain these days. Thrift shops, consignment shops, flea markets and some antique shops often  have accessories for entertaining – from vintage bar ware to crystal stemware – to silver service that just needs a little polishing. These all can add form and function to the look of a glamorous lifestyle. You will also be able to find objects d’ art, even furniture with history and good bones, just needing to be cleaned, refinished, or reupholstered, such as a settee, a leather top desk, or a marble top chest of drawers.  

How do you define glamorous?  

Designers like Ralph Lauren and Carolyne Roehm  help define “glamorous” in home decor… It’s having an air of allure, adventure, romance and excitement. Glamorous is a space or objects in that space that are smart and beautiful. Glamorous can also be sophisticated and elegant, handsome and bold. Glamorous stands out. Glamorous pulls you in. It’s desirable and not unattainable.

Are there certain colors that are glamorous?

Blue and white porcelain, rich silks in blues and reds, deep velvets in greens, purples, and gold. These are tradition and classic colors that evoke a feeling of glamor. The application of  fine materials, fabrics or finishes  all can be very glamorous, especially when paired with rich metals and sparkling cut crystal. Neutrals in grey linen or refined weathered woods with gilded details are often thought to be very French, which translates to very glamorous. Deep greys in rich tweeds and wools paired with deep woods can also be thought to be glamorous.

Are there certain objects or styles that are naturally glamorous?

Classical, traditional and transitional styling can be glamorous. Glamour requires a certain restraint. Without that restraint, one could easily get carried away and go over the top which is not at all glamorous. Glamorous can also be defined as tailored & classic.  Glamour is about quality not quantity so you have to be careful about not having so much that it appears to be over the top. By contrast, dust, dirt, grime, fingerprints, the overuse of many trends are not glamorous.

Glamour can be formal but it doesn’t have to be. It’s more about representing a fine living, a lifestyle that is somewhat luxurious – a life well lived. It’s not about money per se, it’s about classic and timeless design, a certain amount of elegance, subtlety and sophistication.

With many thanks to Lynda Quintero-Davids. For more glamourous ideas please visit her site, Focal Point Styling.