Steal the spotlight with the silver-backed needles of ‘Horstmann’s Silberlocke’ Korean fir. This evergreen has striking cones that sit upright on branches. Plants are striking and worth adding to the landscape. Hardy in Zones 5-7. Botanical name: Abies koreana ‘Horstmann’s Silberlocke’
An artist herself and alum of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Jamie Steele has created a way to support art and artists with a spacious gallery Camayuhs, she maintains in her home. Her focus is on group shows of artists from Atlanta and across the country, often spotlighting female artists.
This Spanish Modern house is home to a young family of four. The design is a graceful blend of Art Deco and midcentury styles, with fun pops of color that add life to the rooms. Here, in the living room, white space is just as important as the art pieces, helping to create a sense of peace as well as spotlighting special moments, like the niche above the fireplace.
Add color and light to your kitchen with pendants and decorative vases on the island. This island, by designers Cate Dunning and Lathem Gordon of GordonDunning, uses hydrangeas and greenery in blue and white china vases to add color to the mostly white kitchen. The greenery on the island accentuates the small pops of green in the background, while the Kichler Everly Pendant creates a spotlight for the arrangement.
Some classic summer annuals can hold their own well into fall, even standing up to early light frosts. Orange tones steal the spotlight in this autumn theme hanging basket, featuring grass-like Toffee Twist carex, Flirtation Orange diascia, Diamond Frost euphorbia and Superbena Royale Peachy Keen verbena. These annuals withstand varying degrees of frost. In mild winter regions, they’ll deliver color through early December.
New growth steals the spotlight with ‘Moonlight’ philodendron. Fresh leaves unfurl in shades of glowing chartreuse, fading to deep green as they mature. Bright light coaxes the strongest color on leaves. This is a clumping or upright philodendron. It’s a perfect choice for filling a pretty cachepot near an east or west window. Count on ‘Moonlight’ to help scrub indoor pollutants from air—it’s an oxygen purifying houseplant.
To showcase the collector's items in the living room, designers chose a neutral color palette to make the bold colors of the statues and other antiques pop. The bold, rich colors of the trunks, statues and the fireplace mantle bring warmth to the space, all the while being spotlighted by the large windows that allow in tons of natural light. This lights reflects off the white sofas and neutral walls, making these special pieces the focal points of the room.
If you like your cabinets but want a bit more pizzazz, put a spotlight on them with lighting. Designer Judith Wright Sentz used LED ribbon lights inside and low voltage lights underneath. Not only does this showcase the beautiful leaded glass doors and items on display, it also provides additional functional light for the kitchen. Sentz says the kitchen, which was a 2016 National Kitchen + Bath Association Design Competition winner, was once very dark, so she took care to add as much light to the space as possible.
The simple elegance of this dining room spotlights the homeowner's collection of fine art and antique furniture. Two large windows flood the space with natural light and reflect off the white walls to bring the collector's items to the forefront of visitors' sights. Even the table is designed to be as unobtrusive as possible with its glass tabletop to direct the eye to the artwork and fine furniture in this space. Since the collector's items afford the only color in the space, the decorative antique dresser and the statue and painting are the focal points of the room, showcasing the homeowner's elegant taste.
Saucer magnolia (M. x soulangeana) is the single most popular magnolia, and it’s easy to see why. Its showy pink flowers steal the spotlight in early to mid-spring. The tree quickly grows to its mature height of 20 to 25 feet. Large blossoms to 8 inches across exude a beautiful perfume. In regions with lingering late spring frosts, don’t plant it near the southern side of a structure because retained heat might trigger early flowering, which frost can quickly wipe out. Hardy in Zones 4-9.
Place houseplants to provide a leafy contrast to the hard lines of windows and furniture. Peace lily is a natural for filling a corner, especially if you select the one known as Sensation. This beauty grows to 6 feet tall and easily commands attention in a large room. It holds its own beside a large window, where it receives the high light necessary to promote steady bloom. Tuck it into a simple dark container to let glossy leaves and stately flowers steal the spotlight.
If you’re an avid rock collector, you can put your collection to good use as a lawn edging along flower beds. With this type of lawn edging, use any size of stones, arranging them to create a visual tapestry of color and texture. Many gardeners who opt for a mixed stone edging rely on a spritz of grass killer to keep turf from growing around and between rocks. It creates a look like this at first, with the grass being straw colored and dead. After the grass dies, it breaks down, and the rocks take the spotlight.
Introduced in 1998 at the famed Chelsea Flower Show in England, this double clematis steals the spotlight in any planting. Flowers unfurl in shades of lilac, with a lighter ruffed center. The outer, largest petals (botanically they’re called tepals) fade and drop, leaving a petal pompom in the center of blooms. Flowers last up to 4 weeks, filling the summer garden with striking color. For best flowering, remove top growth by one-third in early spring. Vines grow 6 to 8 feet tall by 3 feet wide. Grow on a trellis or fence, in a pot or through a shrub rose. Hardy in Zones 4 to 9.