Are you ever worried technology will be an eyesore? The team at Fluent Home in Irving, Texas put these words of wisdom from interior designers and technology savants around the globe to keep your home beautiful polished.
1. Home Smarts over Style
Transforming your home into a smart house can seem like a large overwhelming task. Some fear a land of wires or electronic tools everywhere. But adding some smart home technology doesn’t have to take away the beauty of your smart home in Texas.
“There are zero reasons to sacrifice style when it comes to choosing technology for your home,” speaks Carley Knobloch, a digital lifestyle expert who works with HGTV, The Today Show and The Inspired Home. “There are many great options that are clean and minimal, or jazzy and colorful.”
2. Where to Put a Device
There’s a smart device for everything nowadays—music, television, lighting, doors, even your dog bowl —but where are the best spots to place these devices?
Since many need to grab your speech, “Voice-control devices want to be where people congregate—a kitchen counter is perfect,” advises Knobloch. Perhaps a centrally located media center.
“For anything like speakers or lamps, I’d place them exactly where you would put non-smart pieces of the same kind.”
3. Layer, Layer, Layer
Once your new high tech device is in the best spot to call their home, the common universal tip is to give it a few friendly companion devices to sit with.
“Layer your tech items with other decor pieces,” says Decorist Creative Director Jessica McCarthy. “For example, place your Amazon Echo on your bookshelf with a stack of books or a fresh arrangement of flowers. The key to designing with smart devices is to blend them into your everyday life, not have them stand out.”
Knobloch shares that opinion: “For pieces like the Amazon Echo, I’d style them like any other decorative accessory,” she says. “It’s nice to set vases or candles in sets of three, so add Alexa to a decorative grouping.”
4. Upgrade the Current Tech
A smart home isn’t just about adding an Amazon Echo. The tech you’d find in an everyday house—TVs, DVRs, wi-fi routers, thermostat—have not only been upgraded with new smarts, but also with fresh designs.
“Have you seen the TiVo Bolt, or the eero router? The former is a show-stopping sculpture that also happens to be a killer DVR, and the latter is a beautifully rounded wireless router that you can hide in plain sight,” Knobloch says. At Fluent we put a lot of time and discussion into the design and aesthetics of our devices.
5. Lighting to Love
Smart lightbulbs are a perfect way for integrating smart tech into your home. They are very affordable and don’t require a big installation project. Additionally, smart lightbulbs can enhance your home’s aesthetics.
“I love Hue lightbulbs,” says Knobloch. “They’re not trying to be anything but light bulbs, they’re seamlessly integrated into your home, and provide an upgrade to regular bulbs by offering a variety of colors, smart controls, and energy savings.”
Knobloch also promotes smart lighting. “I like putting smart lamps in front windows so that they’re scheduled to light the window at night, and turn off in the morning. It’s a pretty effect, and doesn’t require you to turn it off each morning.”
6. A Smarter Kitchen
Routers and lightbulbs aren’t the only electronics that have gotten a stylish smart makeover. McCarthy is a fan of smart fridges, which takes the idea of the fridge as a family bulletin board and turn it into a digital hub for everyone in the house.
“For a modern kitchen, Samsung’s Family Hub Refrigerator has a sleek stainless steel design that’s good looking, and the technology is incredible,” says McCarthy. “You can be at the grocery store and pull up the app to see if you’re low on milk or need eggs.”
7. Design in Mind
Knobloch is very familiar with the world of wonderfully designed devices. “I love Beoplay’s speakers, as well as Vifa’s— they’re both sculptural and beautiful, and come in colors that will compliment anyone’s design scheme,” she says.
Knowbloch also pointed out that even the most functional gadgets can be beacons of style. Fluent’s thermostat comes in a beautiful design that helps it blend with your decor, or be a jewel on the wall.