Leslie May Shares Her Top 9 Tips for a Savvy Chic Family Home

Wipeable leather like this one from Edelman Leather is the key to a chic and functional family home.1. Wipeable Leather
Whether it is cupcake crumbs or caviar, if there is food nearby, why risk a stain. I put wipeable leather on kitchen banquettes, bar stools and antique dining chairs. My top pick is Edelman Leather Jumbo Croc.

A stylish ottoman can be a great place to hide toys in a living room.2. Stylish Spaces to Stash
Keep life close at hand with chic storage. My favorite trick is an upholstered toy box in the living room…it looks like a part of the fabric scheme, but hides a Hot Wheels roller derby beneath! This one from George Smith can come in any size, I love the corners.

A chair upholstered in durable fabric is a great way to make a statement that is indestructible.3. Couture Lines
Durable fabric is just a must for lively living, but putting the Savvy Chic in the details of the sofa or club chair will make a statement that is indestructible. I use this chair from my Savvy Chic Upholstery line in almost every project.

Grasscloth on the ceiling makes a statement that is out of reach for children and pets.4. The 5th Walls
The ceiling is probably the safest spot to splurge on a statement. Virtually indestructible. Grasscloth, like this one from Phillip Jeffries adds another element of texture.

This Royal Dutch rug is stylish and durable.5. Indestructible Under Foot
This is it, the rug that can take it all. I have had clients able to remove red wine, exploded markers and all sorts of pet mess from this one: Royal Dutch Madagascar, I prefer the Java color. It has the neutral, go with anything, look of a sisal but you can clean this one and it is soft.

Urban Electric hanging lantern.6. Let There Be Light
Hoisted high above, only flying baseballs are a real threat. Hanging lights make any space feel more intimate…I like to put them in almost every room, especially living rooms and breakfast nooks. I love this one, Venetian from Urban Electric, you can customize the colors, (kelly green and black were a recent order).

Trim is a great way to make a statement that is safe from the hustle and bustle of family life.7. Dressed for Drama
This is my absolute favorite spot to make a statement. Relatively safe from the hustle and bustle of boisterous living and the possibilities are endless. Whether you are splurging on a lux fabric or reserving your design dollars, put the Savvy Chic detail in the trim with a scalloped edge or punch passementerie (that is French for trimming)!

Contrasting trim on a couch.8. The Darling in the Details
This is where the true character of your home comes through. Contrast welting in a punching snake skin, pleated trims on the pillows, navy tortoise faux painting on the backs of book shelves…these are the Savvy Chic details that make a home glamorous but, if you look close, stand up to real living.

A patterned wallpaper makes a statement in any space.9. If These Walls Could Talk….
They would say this is a very chic abode. Wallpaper packs so much punch…I love a bold toile or a transfixing trellis to make a space feel enveloping. I also love the more subtle effects of texture with a creamy suede or woven grasscloth.