Varsity Moves

In high school athletics, the top of the totem pole was to make it to the varsity first string in any sport, especially football. Not only did you represent the best of the school in athletics but you have worked your way up the ranks and now you have arrived. When you are on varsity you are expected to have more experience, greater knowledge and make bigger moves than your JV counterparts. So then, time and experience is our friend and practice perfects our skills. If this is true in sports does it ring true in the world of decorating? Let’s take a look at some spaces in which varsity decorating moves scored big somewhere in the heart of The Villages.

• Ceiling treatmentsCoffers and the lighting really show off the Ceiling - Home Décor by Ruth Dyer - in the Villages of Florida.
Cover the ceiling in bead board, shiplap, coffers, or a fabulous wood. If you have a house with popcorn ceilings and you don’t want to have them scraped, you can cover them with a wood treatment. I just had my living room ceiling covered in bead board and I love it. I know that right now the product price would be really high but this could be a varsity move that you wait to execute. I would wait until wood prices go down and product is more available, then I would make my varsity move.

• Side panels raise the roof
Long side panels make the window look amazing and the room look tall! The secret to great side panels is to hang them high and hang them wide. This creates the optical illusion that the window is larger than it really is. It also draws the eye up in a room and makes the entire space look larger. Tip: Look at decorating magazines and you will find long side panels often in fabulous spaces.

• Big Mirrors
I have used big mirrors of all types through the years and it is a great varsity move.
Mirrors cannot be too big! I say this because it is a mirror. A mirror is going to reflect anything in front of it so it cannot reflect too much. Mirrors add light and height to a space. Most spaces in most homes benefit from having more light and more height so if you are thinking of adding a big mirror then go ahead and make that varsity move.

• Raise the cabinets
If you are getting new cabinets then raise them high! A high and straight line is a current and classic look. It does not matter that you cannot reach the high cabinets. The high cabinets are for long term storage. Raising the upper cabinets create the illusion that the space is bigger by drawing the eye upward. The cost to increase the height of the cabinets is nominal and a worthy investment.

• Full granite backsplash
I always recommend a full granite or quartz backsplash. A full backsplash will provide a seamless and upscale look. There is no grout to seal or clean with a full granite or quartz backsplash. The backsplash is installed on the same day as the countertops when it is a full granite or quartz backsplash. Under cabinet lighting makes the full granite backsplash shine and brings out the depth of the stone. Finally, a full granite or quartz backsplash makes the space look bigger because it is seamless. Having no seams means there is nowhere for the eye to linger so the eye takes in the entire space. The result is that a small space looks bigger and a big space looks even bigger.

• Larger rugs
Many times when we have removed wall to wall carpeting and replaced it with wood or tile, we need rugs to add warmth and sound control back into the space. When purchasing a rug, customers are very concerned that the rug should not be too big but how can it be too big when we just removed wall to wall carpeting? Any rug suggestions or rules are made to be broken by the varsity move. Laying down area rugs is not covering the wood floor that you just purchased it is adding layers back into the home. A well done room needs layers such as rugs, pillows, and décor. There will still be lots of wood or tile floor to look at when you walk around your house. No living room should have a 5’x 8’ rug because most living rooms can accommodate and 8’x10’ rug. Varsity moves mean big moves.

• Group big collections
So often, I will see large pottery and large vases relegated to a corner in the room. I would suggest rather than putting the great vase or pot in the corner, group large scale items together in a space to create interest and make a bold statement.

• Molding
The power of molding painted white around windows is amazing. I use molding to add interest to windows, bar areas, and artwork. If you have a large wall and want to draw interest to a piece of art, consider a large box made out of molding and paint the molding white as well as the wall within the molding. Once the picture is hung up in the center of the molding it will look like a frame within a frame and it will pop!

P.S. –Attention all club presidents! We give free decorating seminars. It is lots of fun and very informative. Call and schedule your club today. Also, we are on-line check out our web-site at and you can always e-mail us at or Call Ruth your full service decorator at 352-804-2056.

After Pics Below