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Designer tips for a gorgeous house

If redecorating your home is on your to-do list this year, here are seven furnishings that Long Island designers say are must-haves. Interior designers and decorators suggest their faves to help create mood in a room.

Keith Baltimore with his cyrstal optic glass cube
Photo Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan

Keith Baltimore with his cyrstal optic glass cube vase that is filled with purple orchids in his Port Washington showroom

An optic crystal cube vase in Keith Baltimore's
Photo Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan

An optic crystal cube vase in Keith Baltimore's Port Washington shop, the Baltimore Design Center.

A fabulous throw

There should be a cozy throw in each
Photo Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan

There should be a cozy throw in each room of the house, says Kim Radovich, president of Kim E. Courtney Interiors & Design based in Huntington. It will add a touch of color, a bit of texture and warmth to a room. In her home, there is a cashmere throw in her master bedroom, a cotton weave throw in her guest room, an afghan her aunt crocheted for her placed over a chair in her daughter's room, a faux fur throw in the family room and a soft handspun silk throw in the living room. The colors of a throw can vary, depending on the mood of the room, Radovich says.

The colors of a throw can vary, depending
Photo Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan

The colors of a throw can vary, depending on the mood of the room, says Radovich, pictured here in her Huntington Bay home.

A pair of ottomans

Photo Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan

"Who doesn't need extra seating from time to time?" asks Jody Sokol of Jody Sokol Design in East Northport. "And when you buy ottomans, you need to go for a pair. One doesn't look right in the room." Sokol suggests getting 16- to 20-inch ottomans because that is a comfortable size for sitting. They can be used in seating areas, under a sofa table, in an entryway or next to a wall. If there are chunky pieces of furniture in the room, go for ottomans in a cylinder shape. Bigger ottomans work well with furniture that is smaller or has cleaner lines. "It's all about finding the balance," she says.

Northport's Jody Sokol says to buy ottomans in
Photo Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan

Northport's Jody Sokol says to buy ottomans in pairs.

A cozy reading chair

A home must have a classic, comfortable reading
Photo Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan

A home must have a classic, comfortable reading chair, says Liz Cordeiro, Huntington interior designer. She suggests that the chair be deep, with a 23-inch seat. It should be a neutral color so you can change the decor of the room without having to swap out the fabric of the chair. Instead, use throw pillows to freshen its look. The fabric should be of a heavier weight and withstand wear. "But don't think old-fashioned," Cordeiro says. "You can use lighter weight linens with beautiful patterns that can be lined for extra strength and durability. The possibilities are endless." Take note: A good reading chair should last 10 to 15 years, she adds.

Huntington designer Liz Cordeiro likes to snuggle in
Photo Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan

Huntington designer Liz Cordeiro likes to snuggle in and read in this cozy chair in her living room.

Decorative mirrors

Photo Credit: Ivy Neal

"I can't live without a mirror in any of my projects," says Amy Hill of Amy Hill Designs Inc., who has offices in Quoque and in Port Jefferson. She says that even an inexpensive mirror can brighten up a room -- and the great thing about mirrors is that there are so many applications for them. Hill has used mirrors as cubes for a coffee table and to spell out words on the wall of a room. The style of mirror should vary by the room that it's in, Hill says. For example, the mirror in a living room should have clean lines that enhance the design and not distract from the overall style.

Hill used mirrors in this Southampton home to
Photo Credit: Ivy Neal

Hill used mirrors in this Southampton home to spell out words on the wall of a room.

You Look Mahvelous Mirrors (set of 4 for
Photo Credit: Ivy Neal

You Look Mahvelous Mirrors (set of 4 for $159 at landofnod.com) and Tiled Iron Rosette Mirror ($595 at Williams-Sonoma.com)

Statement art piece

Artwork makes the room, says interior decorator Robyn
Photo Credit: Noel Allum

Artwork makes the room, says interior decorator Robyn Baumgarten of Interiors by Just Design in Woodbury. The style of the space should determine the type of art chosen, she says. If the room is decorated in Restoration Hardware-style furniture (large, rustic, pieces), Baumgarten suggests a grouping of clocks on a wall. If the room is more classical in style, hang a painting of something elegant or romantic. "It doesn't have to be expensive," she says. Even prints will do, she adds.

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