The rush is already on to spiff up homes, so pull out the checkbook and get those projects started.

By Jake Klein, Special to The Times August 31, 2006

LABOR DAY may still lie ahead, but for anyone hoping to spruce up the home before Thanksgiving, the calendar is screaming something else entirely: Get moving.

In the photo we show here, there's a comfortable blend of the rustic - in the stone fireplace - and the traditional - especially the windows with their almost mission-style wooden framing. The furnishings are an easygoing blend of the casual - like the wicker on the seating pieces - and the traditional - like the classic mantel, wooden cocktail table and gathered, full-length draperies.

The amalgamation creates an atmosphere you could call "rustic on good behavior," naturally warm and inviting but not downright casual.

BY MOLLY MILLETT
Pioneer Press

SMITH+NOBLE
This natural woven flat shade from smith+noble illustrates the organic, minimal, earthly trend in window treatments.

NATURAL LOOK

For fall, trends in window treatments range from natural, woven materials to purple hues to panel track shades.

Wallpaper is making a strong comeback and is available in a large array of patterns and textures.

The windows in a room can be made to look larger by the addition of draperies that expand the wall space.  Don't be afraid to move your accessories from room to room.  A piece of artwork that may have been in the dining room for years, might find a new home in a bedroom or living room.

Your master bedroom most likely is last on your rooms-to-renovate priority list. There always seem to be more pressing areas of the house that need attention - kitchen, family room, new roof, furnace.

Then one day you open the bedroom door and it hits you: You've just walked into a time capsule.

Such was the case with my clients who had created a beautiful home for their family but had neglected their own bedroom.

4.jpg It's long been know that the abundance of summer sunlight brightens up not only our home and outdoor environment, but also causes us to feel happier and more upbeat in general. Some types of artificial light have even been scientifically shown to improve mood and wellbeing in areas that are sunlight-starved. But did you know that you use the colors, patterns and textures of summer to maintain some of that "summer good feeling" all year ' round?

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