Greenery is the Icing on the Cake

Gainesville resident and interior designer Jen Silver encourages homeowners to complete a home space with greenery, noting that “plants are the icing on the cake.

By Amanda M. Socci, Photos by Jennifer Silver

Homeowners get ready – spring is right around the corner! With the advent of this refreshing and pleasant season comes the promise of sweet birds singing, warmer weather, and the gentle bloom of flowering plants. Rather that simply waiting for spring to burst into bloom, why not consider bringing a touch of the garden indoors into your bedroom, living room, kitchen, and any space that needs a boost of nature.

Gainesville resident and interior designer Jen Silver knows a thing or two about how to bring the garden into a home. Since launching The Silver Lining Interiors in 2014, she has done that and more as she’s planned, designed, decorated, and staged homes throughout Northern Virginia.

Every interior designer has his or her own style when it comes to decorating with greenery. Silver’s approach is minimalistic, mirroring her own philosophies on interior design. Silver refers to her design style as ‘eclectic industrial farmhouse,’ which is a modern, clean, sleek interpretation of traditional rustic interiors. Preferring simplicity over complex details that saturate the eyes, Silver offers a dreamy option to homeowners by encouraging them to complete a home space with greenery, noting that “plants are the icing on the cake.”

When asked how she selects the type of greenery used to freshen up a home space, Silver mentions the benefits of using various types of plants. Succulents, for example, are a favorite choice among interior designers due to their unusual appearance and because they are low-maintenance and retain water easily.

“Succulents soften a space and add texture and color without being overpowering,” noted Silver.

In one instance, Silver looked at her client’s end table in the living room. She placed a stack of books on the table to add interest, but the hard, jagged edges of the books needed softening. Silver deflected the rough exterior of the books by introducing succulents.

In kitchen spaces, Silver suggests homeowners concentrate on windowsills as the preferred locations for showcasing greenery. Depending on the space afforded by the window sills, homeowners may be able to introduce large potted plants or smaller cooking plants, such as rosemary or basil.

Silver recommends homeowners inspect their home carefully and look for natural sunlight as the key to deciding the types of greenery to add. Will plants be able to get enough natural sunlight to help them grow? Does a particular space contain one major window or a series of smaller windows? Obviously, the more natural sunlight that gets filtered into a space, the better chance a plant has of thriving in that spot. For spaces that have little to no sunlight, Silver recommends homeowners decorate with faux plants, which can be just as elegant as real plants, and are far easier to take care of.

When deciding how to best introduce greenery into children’s rooms, Silver believes the smartest strategy is to go faux. Children may spill things, knock things over, or may even forget to water a living plant. Faux plants add visual appeal to a child’s room without the extra work of having to maintain them.

For more about Jen Silver and The Silver Lining Interiors, including information on color consultations, complete design plans, staging, home renovations, interior and exterior painting, and custom-designed textiles, you can find them on Facebook at @thesilverlininginteriors.

Amanda M. Socci
About Amanda M. Socci 10 Articles
Amanda M. Socci is an Alexandria-based freelance writer who loves exploring different regions to interview people and write profiles about people, places, and things. Amanda splits her time between freelance writing and writing a manuscript for her first book, a faith-based memoir. Learn more about Amanda at her website: Contact Amanda by sending an email to

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