Categories
Small Interiors

Looking for Ways to Make Your Small Rooms Feel Bigger?

Here are 5 small space design tips to turn you puddle into a pond and at very little cost and you never know, you may just get kissed by a frog.
Sometimes all you need to do, and I suppose this is easier said than done, is to change the way you look at things. If you do this, the things you are looking at will change.

1. Always think Tall. Tops of walls and ceilings.

Draw the eye up. That is the trick. Once you have managed to do that the taller the room looks. Yes, it is an illusion, but then we are talking about tricks. And you want to trick the eye. So in this instance the top part of the walls and the ceiling has been well papered in a lovely pale geometric grey. Added to this is a very well suited light feature that automatically makes you look up.
white open country doors with windows

2. Lighten to brighten. Walls, doors, floors and ceilings. Brighter to bigger.

Red brick wall in small kitchen
White and red brick in little trendy kitchen

The walls, doors, cornicing and ceiling are light. This allows the natural light coming from a fairly small window to seem more prolific than it actually is. Additionally, you can invest in good wall light fixtures that give some more light into the room from a standing height, rather than false light coming from above in a ceiling light fixture. This will give the impression that the walls are brighter than they actually are, especially if you are to choose a darker wall colour. The light toned grey wall, and the natural light brick all add to the feeling of a bright and breezy kitchen. Bold use of charcoal grey for the counter tops give the whole space a nice crisp look.

Darker colours on feature walls can make a room feel cosier and add a wonderful depth to the space. Just remember that dark absorbs light it does not reflect it. So always be aware of the trade-off between adding a dark, bold dash of colour to sacrificing light. You can always try painting a wall a different colour – a pot of paint is not going to cost you much and if you don’t like it – change it.
I like to experiment with colours so I very often get my paint shop to give me small pots to work with and I live with the different colours painted in small swatches. I watch and observe. Very often the right colour will come to the fore.

But remember there is no wrong or right. This is your space and you need to feel comfortable.

3. Think out of the box. Use clever wall paper.

There are numerous places that you can search for fab wall paper to brighten up a space. So before you hit the paint shop, perhaps you should do some searching for ideas. They can be quite expensive, but the overall effect is simply stunning. Perhaps you won’t be able to live with it forever, but it will most definitely be a major talking point and focus in your small room.

A bright and breezy one like this really adds depth to a room and makes it look so much larger.
I recently applied a tree and meadow scene to a small dark room and it has made the space look so much bigger. At night choose clever lighting to really add a different dimension.

For instance, why not install recessed perimeter light strips, alongside some repositionable spotlights to cover all bases? If you are unsure about which lighting would look best in a smaller room, an electrician can help you to determine the best possible way to brighten up the space.

Accordingly, to learn more about how an electrician can help to turn your lighting dreams into a reality head to: safeandsoundelectric.com/old-greenwich-ct/. Above all researching a few different lighting options can help you to make the right decision for your room.

Sky 3D Wallpaper
Sky 3D Wallpaper

This example of wall paper on the ceiling shows how you can brighten up a room, adding a whole new dimension. We very often just forget about the ceiling and paint it the normal white. Think where you eye can be drawn to and very often it is the ceiling. The effect that is has in the shelving nook is great as it adds a sense of depth and interest to the space.

4. Place furniture strategically – this often means away from the walls.

If you can, and it will very often go against your decorating style, think about pulling your furniture at least a few centimetres away from the walls. Don’t if you can help it, place your couches right against the walls. This illusion will make the room seem larger and more open. Try it, it really works.
If furniture is pushed right up against a wall it will feel cramped. Your objective is to get away from this in a small room.

Ideally, if you have enough space put a narrowish something behind, a shelf or a narrow console table will do the trick. You can then decorate on top of it – which gives you depth and of course you could add a lamp of two there
livingroom with a grey couch

5. Elongate at every opportunity

Again, we are talking illusion. Note the clever use of wall paper in this small bedroom. Two walls are papered in vertical stripes to give a sense of height and balance the very steep ceiling. The bed footboard is vertically striped steel ensuring that a boxy look to the bed is not achieved.
Bedroom with verticle black and white wallpaper
vertical stripes in this small cloakroom give a sense of spaciousness and the accompanying gilded light and mirror really add to a sophisticated feel.
small bathroom with vertical striped, black and white wall paper
These striped curtains in an entrance hall really add a bit of drama and accentuate the door. They have been placed quite high above the door frame to draw the eye forever upwards and after all, that is the one big trick of the trade.

Black and white, vertically striped curtains
Right, so now you are the princess in your pond and you can live happily ever after.
We will be back soon with more space enlarging ideas for you to use.
Remember – be bold. No frog is going to kiss a meek and mild decorator.

Categories
Bathroom Small Interiors

Small Bathrooms with Big Personality

Decorative details make a bathroom more personal. And more comfortable. By adding small touches, you can turn your bathroom into a place of beauty and where you can wallow away happily in your own space.

1. Have a seat

small bathroom with rocking chair

By adding some furnishings to your bathroom you immediately create a sense of luxury. No reason why you can’t introduce a plush chair upholstered in some beautiful linen. It also adds a practical dimension to the space – after all isn’t it nice to be able to fling your silk dressing gown onto something luxurious. Additionally, some people struggle with getting changed due to poor mobility so this could really help. On top of that, it might be worth looking at the AHM Installations website if you feel that you would benefit from a walk in style bath or shower. A stylish chair and perhaps a small side table will give your bathroom a brand new look. You can find something at a contemporary furniture shop or you could, of course, re-upholster an old chair that has been sitting around with nothing to do. Search antique shops for something special – they very often have smaller furniture than the more contemporary shops and a lick of paint and a bit of gilding will transform an old chair perfectly for the bathroom.

2. Mark the space with a bench

small bathroom with plush rug

Add some comfort and luxury to your bathroom with a lovely rug and an upholstered bench. Think big here – the fabric could either be matchy-matchy with your towels or tiles, but it could look sensational if you went a little off-beat and chose something bright like a lime green or chartreuse. A good upholsterer can advise you on how to really bring it to the fore; perhaps some deep buttoning or some tassels. A bench or a chair makes the perfect spot to drape your clothes on, or simply to sit and titivate.

3. On the big screen

bathroom with framelwss shower

In small spaces, you should really go or frameless showers. It will keep the look open and make the space feel so much larger. It is also a good idea to have the tiles on the floor – and please make them special – it is after all only a small space in which you are working, to run the whole way through into your frameless shower. This will draw the eye to the end of the space and make it look larger than it actually is.

4.Walls and all

Again to create a sense of space and add interest to your shower, consider tiling the floor and the walls with the same tiles. Mosaics are very in these days and they come in some really striking colours and shapes. Add into the mix a fabulous hand painted tile – perhaps in a recess or where you want your toiletries to sit. This will draw the eye to something special in the space and give it an individual personality. Tile shops as I am sure you are aware, can be quite daunting with their array of choices.

5. Don’t sweat the wet

Bathroom with wet room

If your bathroom can allow for it – it is a fabulous idea to have what is the rage at the moment – a wet room. This is where you can enclose your shower and bath by glass panels. This makes for quite a cosy effect and allows the vanity and dressing area to keep dry. Best of all would be if you can incorporate a skylight above the enclosed area. That will be the pièce de résistance! Skylights in bathrooms give an amazing feel to the space and of course, let in some natural lighting and you will feel very relaxed and special in your personal bathroom boutique.

6. Add some shelf life to the space

Bathroom with shelving

This is both practical and personal. I recently helped with a renovation of a bathroom and although it was small we were able to add an old shelving system to the back wall. The shelving was painted white and the back wall was duck-egg blue (one of my favs at the moment). Carefully curating ornaments on the shelve added a furnished feel to the space and it worked really well. You should also carefully consider where you place your bathroom’s vanity unit. If you want to make your bathroom look bigger, the placement of a vanity unit can be the deciding factor of how big your bathroom looks. For examples of the different vanity units that available, be sure to visit bathroomsandmorestore.co.uk to see what they offer!

Always be on the lookout when browsing through second hand or antique shops. You will be amazed at what a lick of paint can do and how simply it can add a decorated feel to your room. You are not – I hope – going to be spending a fortune – so it doesn’t quite work trash it or give it away!

7. Turn your bathroom into a gallery

Bathroom gallary

Think framed mirrors, pictures and plates. If you keep the walls neutral, a fabulously gilded framed mirror will look sensational as will your pictures framed in a similar style. Again, look through those shops and your scrounging will pay off. I also like black and white themes in a bathroom. White walls with black or charcoal grey framed mirrors and pictures make for a very stylish feel to the space. Old plates can look fab too and they are not going to break your piggy bank.

8. Room with a view – if you have it flaunt it

Bathroom with a view

If you are in a fortunate position to have your shower or bath with a view, then you should seriously consider shutters in the space. They can be cleverly manoeuvred to close the bottom section to screen you off and give you privacy, and to have the upper section open to the view. This is especially important when choosing a window for your bathroom that is particularly open, like bay windows; if you can see out, people can most likely see in! You can find good info on the cost for bay windows shutters at The Great British Shutter Company for your chance to preserve your privacy. The shutters can be opened to let in the natural light when you are not using the shower to prevent rust. This will add a new dimension to the small space and really make it feel larger. It might also be worth checking out Money Expert (https://www.moneyexpert.com/gas-electricity/) for a fantastic home energy quote so you can put more money into improving your bathroom and home.

Categories
Living Room Small Interiors

Small Living Room Layout Ideas

And no, you don’t have to spend a fortune to do this

The number one trick in home decoration is to make you happy and confident about the space in which you live and your living room, although small, is for relaxing and on the odd occasion for entertaining. If you’ve just recently moved from a bigger space, you may be in need of the services provided by Holloway Storage Sydney and likewise services offered by local companies to you.
Remember that the main trick, is to trick the eye! You need to do this to make the room appear more spacious – even it if is small, little tricks played can help tremendously. You want a pleasing space and one which maximises light and airiness.

Think:

  • Scale
  • colour
  • weight

Here are some tricks of the trade to make your living room feel more spacious.

Decorating Trick No. 1. Don’t over clutter and make sure your furniture fits the scene

You don’t have to go and weigh each piece of your furniture – just look at it in terms of its context within the room.

Visual weight is what I am speaking about. This is the heaviness – both perceived and real of the piece of furniture. What can affect visual weight are things like – (obviously) the size, the colour, the design and the height of the piece.

Heavier pieces of furniture will constrict a room. You don’t need this “boa” effect. Trash it, or move it elsewhere.

Select lightweight as opposed to boxy and chunky. Furnishings that don’t block out views or other pieces, will automatically open up the area.

I have got one of the handmade rugs Bazaar Velvet to make my room look bigger than it is.

An ottoman in front of a window is a good way to see out, yet still have somewhere to sit. Ottomans are my best 2017 pieces – especially for small rooms. My husband designed one for our holiday home and I gulped at the thought because they reminded me of Granny Furniture. But I think it works like a treat and a fab place to have a siesta on a hot afternoon overlooking the view.

  • Paler colours are better than dark ones
  • Pieces that have legs are better than the boxy look – if you can see under it – cool
  • Use as much glass or Perspex – these will seem to take up less space than chunky wooden one
  • Any furnishings that allow you to see over them, or allow other pieces to be seen are preferable
  • Declutter and open up

Decorating Trick No. 2. Use mirror, mirrors on the wall

If you are anything like me, you don’t like mirrors that are in-your-face and over the top.You need them though, not in great big bold casino type décor, just subtly placed in strategic spots in the room. this will make a big difference in that they will make it look more spacious, and add a nice bit of cosiness especially at night when other lights are reflected off them.

I always have a bunch of candles in front of mine and they make the room feel relaxed and very special.

Always put a plant, or flowers or some form of decorative piece in front of them and they will shine brightly and double up on the effect!

Decorating Trick No. 3. Roaming eyes will look upwards and onwards

If you happen to have higher ceilings than the norm – you are in a fortunate position because you can draw the eye of the beholder upwards and this gives a sense of spaciousness you need. Make the most of it by using interesting paint techniques and lighting.

Another way is to always install floor-to-ceiling curtains – this will change the dimension of the room immediately. Height, length and width – the three dimensions. Concentrating on your special height will achieve the goal of making the living room more spacious. Or any room for that matter.

Roaming eyes – this is your goal.

Add some interesting artwork all the way up the wall. Don’t be intimidated – just place your pieces in a montage up and up. Those eyes will roam!

I like the way that a bookshelf above the window area has been installed – it is another clever trick to get those eyes upwards.

Decorating Trick No.4. Light windows treatments

Light, bright and breezy. If you follow this on your windows whether, in the curtains or whatever type of blind treatment you want, you will give the whole space a nice airy feel and will make the room look more spacious.

If you don’t have to decorate your windows – don’t. The less the better and sometimes bare window treatments will work really well in achieving a bigger feel to your sitting room.

Decorating Trick No.5. Small but cosy

You don’t have to do the minimalist look to achieve a sense of space in your living room. It can also feel cozy with a few pieces of furniture and clever use of lighting and colors, textures and fabrics.

This look is one of my favorites in that it is a fairly neutral (yet not drab) color palette, with the warmth coming from the clever use of lighting from the lamps and full-length windows and the use of candles (always) – these all trick the eye into a looking through the dimension of the room. When it comes to lighting, it may be worth knowing that this site has some great living room ceiling lights ideas, in case this aspect of the room needs switching up a little.

The TV on the wall is an interesting choice, as they opted to wall mount instead of using a TV unit. This adds space but reduces storage. If you’d like the idea of having a suitable unit, I’d recommend you to take a look at furniture in fashion’s TV units. You’ll get an idea of whether any would suit your small space, helping you to make a judgment on whether a unit or wall mount would be more suitable. Another interesting point is the coffee table. This feature is also serving as another seating piece and one you should always bear in mind when you have a small space in which to work.

There will be many more tricks of the trade to share with you but take note:

You will have reached perfection in your design choices only when you have nothing really more to take away from the room, rather than anything more to add.

Categories
Bedroom Small Interiors

Small Master Bedroom Ideas – Be the Master of Your Space

Small master bedrooms do not equate to small comfort. In fact, on many of my travels, I have felt the most discomfort in large, bland and characterless bedrooms. Look, one has to be able to move in a room, that is for sure and the thought of ever going back to those cheap European hotels where you have to unpack your suitcase in the corridor and dress in the stairwell does not excite me anymore.

I am happier in a normal-sized room – but if you have a small master bedroom, don’t stress. After all, there is not much that you can physically change unless of course, you are in a fortunate position to bash a wall down or heighten the ceiling for instance.

Follow these simple tricks of the trade to pimp up your compact bedroom into a bigger one.

It is a simple list you need to follow for the basic decoration of a bedroom – especially if on the small side.

  • Comfort is the number one priority
  • Keep colours light, bright and soothing – yet interesting
  • Furniture needs to be multifunctional with as much storage space as possible
  • Get rid of anything that is of no practical use
  • Keep everything clean – use Bissell products to do so
  • It can be furnished luxuriously by taking out rather than by adding
  • Use reflective surfaces as for instance in a mirrored cupboard treatment
  • Make the most of the dimensions – think height, length, and breadth

Tip # 1
Look for The Positives in The Small Bedroom Space

Bedrooms must be special places, so look for opportunities that will allow you to do a bit of boudoir dressing. This lovely natural fiber bed set is displayed to its best in a neutral setting, but with the addition of eye-catching bold print cushions that tie in with the artwork on the walls a lovely touch of color is added. The use of plants adds to the naturalness of the space and the clever use of glass side lamps gives a deceptive feeling of space where the natural light can shine in. It is simple and Classic and will not date:

Tip # 2
Focal Not Vocal

Don’t let things compete for attention in your master bedroom. Concentrate on what is naturally the focal point of the room – but you don’t need to shout about it. Being too overpowering or too vocal is not good. You don’t want an impression of jumble – you want rather create a sense of hierarchy where a melding of points of focus occurs.
Generally, in small bedrooms, the center point or focus is the head of the bed. This is where you can layer colors and textures and heights. You can also try to use tech accessories as furniture, or vice versa. iBeani make tablet pillows that can be used to support your tablet, as well as for plonking your head on when you need asleep. Great use of space and a nice piece of furniture!

In this instance, the bed is competing with the window for a focal point. So, the thing to do is choose one of these and not both. Here the bed has been decorated with fabulous spotty linen resting on a simple yet effective bed head and the window treatments are almost non-existent; it recedes into the background gracefully. The eye is drawn to the interesting treatment of the bed which has been made to look the hero of the room, not the bed and the window. It gives a light airy feel and most definitely opens up the small space in the bedroom.

Tip # 3
Small Rooms Need Mirrors or Anything That Can Reflect Light

Yes, same old cliché – use mirrors on your walls, and on your furniture and on your cupboards and so on and hence forth. These are the saving grace of small room interiors. They also add a bit of boudoir boutique glamour.
The back wall of this bedroom could easily have been plastered and painted, but what in interesting feature this open brick work is allowing for a contemporary yet old-world space. And to add glamour an oversized mirror as the backing to the bed is simply a fabulous bedroom idea that makes a very big statement.

The touch of the chandelier lights as bedside lights gives it a feeling of sophistication.

Tip # 4
Give an Illusion of Height

In this bedroom, the corona placed from the ceiling tricks the eye into an upward movement and it gives an illusion of height in the space. You can have a fancy one or as in this example, a simple white voile does the trick. It adds impact, height, and interest.
Note the bold use of color behind the bed from which the white corona is splayed to perfection.

Tip # 5
Open it all Up

You must consider, again I am repeating this, the dimensions of the room. Don’t go out and buy the biggest bed, with accompanying box-like bedside tables. It might look comfortable in the shop, and you may have dreamed of owning one all your adult life, but if it doesn’t fit, it will make you feel very cramped and constricted in all other aspects of decorating that small bedroom.
In this instance, the iron bed with a non-intrusive backing and footboard allows for a more spacious feel. And, yes, it fits in with the dimensions of the room, neither detracting from the high ceilings nor cramping the unusual ceiling angle of the corner of the room.
It looks cozy, yet practical. The open plan shelving and the glass tables also add to a less cluttered look. Note the use of the difficult space in the back corner – the perfect hideaway for that unsightly and cumbersome TV.
A simple rug or two on the floor again adds spaciousness to the bedroom.

Tip # 6
Headboards Don’t Take Up Space – They Make Up for It in Their Impact!

Yes, I am afraid so. You have to go and invest in a headboard. A master bedroom, no matter what size needs one.
They have a big visual impact and can be creative yet simple. The taller the headboard the taller the room will look. You can go wild on this element in a room, but I like this simple yet elegant one that does not compete with the geometric wall paper nor the window treatment.

Tip # 7
Go Forth, Be Brave and Have Fun!

And let us not forget to save some money while making the most out of our bedrooms. My friend recently switched their energy bills through Simply Switch.

Categories
Bathroom Small Interiors

Small Bathroom Floor Plans and Tips to Create a Unique and Cool Space

If we are going to rank “attention to detail in the home”, bathrooms fall just behind kitchens.

So folks, get your bathrooms up to scratch. No point in having a fab newly decorated home and ignore the bathroom. This space is not only for getting clean and spruced up, it is supposed to be a place where there is a bit of a “Wow” factor. Remember, the layout and the finishes in the bathroom are not dictated by size.

Having no real limitations on design then, there is no excuse for a tatty and drab bathroom.

Tip No. 1. Standard size measurements – understand how they can work for you.

The common layout in a compact bathroom is all based around one plumbed wall where the fixtures are operating off one source of water supply and outlet drain. This is purely an efficient way of operating in a bathroom, as it saves on all the plumbing required as well as the distribution of the heated water supply.
So before you rush off and start planning all sorts of fixtures across all walls, first work out your plumbing layout and then work within the following guidelines for bathroom fittings. If you need any further guidance or information regarding your plumbing, it might be a good idea to have a look at a somewhere like https://www.emergencyedinburghplumber.co.uk for more information.

Bath:

Standard = 152 cm long x 76 to 81 cm wide. The depth can vary between 35 to 50 cm.
If your bath is mainly for showering, a shallower one might be best. But if you intend to use it primarily as a bath then you might invest in a deeper one.

Toilets:

Minimum is 76 cm wide, but best your work with a space of between 81-91 cm. you need about 61 cm of space in the front of where your toilet is placed. In older homes or apartments this may not be the case, but if you are renovating then you will need to keep this in mind as there are regulations on this.

Shower:

If you are choosing to have your bath as your shower as well you will need to consider how high the glass enclosure should be. If there is a steam-function, then the glass must reach the ceiling and be completely enclosed. Otherwise, the top should reach about 193 cm above the floor.

If you have enough space for a separate shower – the bigger the better. If it cannot swing a wet cat in it, do not fit it in. Glass showers are all the rage at the moment, as they make a bathroom seem bigger than it actually is and fit in with almost any room style! You can have the floor flush with the floor of the bathroom which gives a nice barrier-free design or you can go for a curb to define the parameters of the shower. A curb is normally about 8-10 cm high and 10-15 cm wide. Consider looking at walk in showers as well. This will give you further ideas on how to save space in your bathroom, whilst keeping it fashionable, trendy and useful.

Single basin or sink:

Minimum is 76 cm. A comfortable size is between 91-107 cm.

Double basins or sinks:

If you really need them then you can work within 152 cm minimum, but 183 cm is a better, more comfortable dimension.

Counter height:

These vary from 81 to 91 cm.

Medicine cabinet:

The depth of these need to be about 10-13 cm and between 9-11 cm for the interior shelving. Most prebuilt ones are about 46 cm wide and 76 cm high.

Towel rail:

These are normally about 91 to 107 cm above the level of the floor. If you are wanting to use larger bath towels, then it is best to set them at between 122 to 127 cm high.

Ceiling:

Most ceilings in smaller bathrooms, on average, are about 244 cm high.

Mirror/top of the tiles and window alignment:

It is a good idea to get your lines in a row. So it is a good idea to have the top of the mirror and the top of the tiling in the shower area all in line with the top of your window. This works by getting your eye to look upwards encompass all heighten aspects. It gives a cleaner look.

Tip No. 2. Draw out your shape and fit your fittings accordingly.

Just as I have done here – fairly simple arithmetic and a simple layout will give you a picture of what you can fit into your space. And by disciplining yourself to do this you can then have a better understanding of how to brief your architect or builder, (or partner in R&R renovation and renewal!).

Tip No. 3. Once you have worked out your dimensions and know what you are dealing with do some homework and upgrade your finishes.

You are saving on swings and roundabouts here. Less material needed, may allow you to upgrade your finishes. That means you can have really fab floor tiles, or the latest modern taps and showerhead. These do make a big difference, so it is really well worth the investment. The lighting fixtures placed on both sides of the mirror will give a sense of glamour to your daily grooming (and after all don’t we all need a bit of that dears?) and the natural wooden shelving gives a nice clean solution for storage. You could spend this money you’ve saved on something like windows if they need replacing. James Hardie Denver has a selection of windows worth a look. Windows are very important as you want your bathroom to be light and bright and ventilation is vital due to the warm and wet nature of a bathroom.

Categories
Bedroom Small Interiors

Three Tricks to Transform that Small Master Bedroom into Something More Spacious

You can’t create more space in your small master bedroom, without putting a ten-pound hammer to work, but you can give the illusion of a bigger space. Here are some ideas to wave that magic bigger-wand of yours without getting outside contractors in to do the job.

Do you need a look that looks big? Simple tricks coming up and they won’t pull on your purse strings. They are fairly simple tips and nothing too drastic on your purse strings.

Want this?

Small master bedroom with windows

Got this?

small and narrow bedroom

Well, my friends, help is in the magic wand hand of yours. Take some advice and go out with confidence and simply wave that small bedroom space of yours away.

Designer Trick No. 1
“Mild” Colours. Not “Bland” or “Neutral” You have heard this over and over from me – but I think in Black/White/Grey/Nude and then I repeat it. These colours make walls disappear and you will believe in the magic wand if you paint in mild hues. A receding wall is what you are after to create that more spacious look. The cooler the hue the more receding, the warmer the hue the cosier the space becomes. Remember that with most colours you get a warm tone, and a cool tone. So, select your theme, and then decide on the tone for whatever effect you are after. Whatever colour you decided to paint you room, you want to make sure that all the furniture will be safe in the process. You can cover it with a white sheet. But you could also look into using storage units in perth to keep your furniture safe from any paintwork that you are getting done. I’m sure you’ll be able to find a storage unit near you too, no matter where you live. Once the work is complete, you can retrieve all your possessions. You’ll finally have the room that you have always dreamed of, just with a simple change of colour.

Using a cool white with a splash of cool grey gives this bedroom a spacious look. It is very Scandinavian, which is very contemporary at the moment. You have to be brave to do this and of course very controlled – no, you cannot add that crochet grandma’s blanket with a million and one colours. Not in this look and feel. This colour scheme makes the room look bright and breezy.

small master bedroom

The incorporation of the small dressing table/mini office is a clever way of utilising space in this small room. Imagine if this section were in an array of different colours and tones – it would make it look cluttered and messy.

Designer Trick No. 2
Go up up and away…

My very best thing in a house is a high ceiling. They are very special and if you have them be very grateful – these can add a massive design effect if cleverly used.

The delightful big and bold monochrome wallpaper on the bedside wall adds a completely different dimension and tricks your eye into thinking there is more to come in this space. The natural light does help to add to this effect.

Many designers would insist here on a tall bed with a possible 4 poster effect, but I believe that the wallpaper does the job just perfectly on its own. By fiddling with the height and structure of the bed in this room, would in my opinion, be too much – you may be adding too much heft to the space. Rather keep it simple.

That is not to say though that in a different shaped room with a tall ceiling you can’t proportion up your bed. You most certainly can. It all depends on the shape of the room.

The beautiful height of this bedroom allows for a very detailed and heavy look back-panelling and headboard. Note the use of the chandelier and the clever lighting to add further depth. The eye is automatically drawn upwards to the interesting ceiling space and the well-proportioned overall feel detracts from the fact that the room is narrow.

Designer Trick No. 3
Be Bold. Or Italic. Never Regular!

Obviously, we know that paler, cooler hues on the walls and lighter in scale furniture makes a bedroom look more spacious. That’s why you keep an eye out for it when you look for Modern Furniture Toronto. But, yes we know, there are exceptions to the rule; bigger and bolder can very often work in a small spaced bedroom.

Take for instance this small bedroom which has a four poster bed and bold colours scattered throughout the space. The grey backdrop emphasises the natural earthy tones of the bed.

The furniture here stands out in a bold fashion. You are drawn firstly to this piece and not to the surrounding small space. It has a wow-effect and double whammy by tricking you into thinking the bedroom space is larger than it actually is. So the constraints of the space are overwhelmed by the larger than norm bedroom furniture. If you are thinking of redecorating your bedroom furniture then it might be a good idea to check out something like this Bedroom Furniture by Hudson to give you a better idea of what you could do to your bedroom.

One thing I found difficult to get right was finding the perfect mattress. When we purchased our new bed, we decided it was the right time to change our mattress too! We ended up making a list of the things we liked about them, and the things we didn’t like to help us make our final decision. Some websites did this for us, such as casper vs leesa which saved us so much time. In the end, we managed to find the one right for us, and I just couldn’t wait to get everything together.

The pairing of the bold colours of the cushions and accessories with a simple white linen bed cover, adds a sense of drama and also tricks the eye away from the dimensions of the small space. I couldn’t have been happier with how it looked.

small bedroom colour ideas

Categories
Kitchen Small Interiors

How to Make Your Small Kitchen Look and Feel Bigger

Wanting to create more space in your simple kitchen to give it a bigger feel? These simple kitchen ideas will help. If you are renovating your small “can’t-swing- a-cat-in-it” kitchen and are not able to add or move walls, you need to take some design advice that will help you in establishing a bolder and more impactful look. Some people decide to try and achieve this look through building their own kitchen cabinets. Creating that bolder look by deciding to buy a stainless steel flat bar and create bolder cabinet door handles. There are a bunch of different ways to achieve this bolder look. Most of all, though, a look that looks big.

They are fairly simple tips and nothing too drastic on your purse strings. I recall when my husband and I first moved in together he took one look at the kitchen which to me looked like a shoe box and regaled – “Perfect. Only one cook and bottle washer in this kitchen at one time and clearly it is not going to be me!” That is so not the case today and we are constantly reminded that no matter what the size or shape of the home, the kitchen is still one of the most important rooms in the house. In my dealings with small space design, the kitchen is the focal point of a home! And will be for a long time to come. Within all these tips, I am starting with a clean palate and suggesting that you focus on using lighter colours. Before you do anything then, select a group of complimentary hues that are, what I refer to, as MILD. Neutral is too bland for me. Mild allows you to feel the space and be happy in it. This does not mean you can’t have a bright red fridge or yellow bar stools, it means that the feel of the surround is calm and peaceful. A mild colour palette will open up the space and visually add dimension and light. I recently was involved in a pink-hued kitchen. Wow – it turned out to be fabulous! Who would have thought about doing this a few years ago?

Designer Tip No. 1

Space and light and order. Trash and rehash to make the most of your natural light. Yup folks, spend the money and get rid of any dinginess in any cabinetry, countertops or floors. Kitchens cannot be dingy; they must be clean and orderly. Small kitchen colours I am assuming here that you have some natural light in your kitchen coming from a window. This is a huge plus and must be honoured with pride of place and treated as a focal point. The colour of the cabinets should be, as I say, mild and this will allow reflection to take place from the natural light. The latest fad is to go for grey-whites or green-whites to achieve the look of scandinavian white kitchens. A hint of colour to a white foundation will add a touch of warmth and prevent the dreaded stark feeling of a space. We may differ here, but stark is not in my vocabulary when you are designing an interior. Stark is for hospitals and morgues. Add a touch of texture here with similar hued tiles, or plank-flooring and a graphic printed fabric on the window or as in this instance a fabulous splashback to adds a sense of prismatic colour.

Designer Tip No. 2

Streamline the look by integrating appliances and using similar materials. Country kitchen Face the fact that you cannot have that country kitchen that you have always yearned for. But you can achieve, within a very small space an open and clean feel by utilising the same materials throughout. A small-scale kitchen needs to be as streamlined as possible to open the area and allow you to have as much counter space to work on. You might find that one way to get more counter space is by investing in a dishwasher, such as this spt sd 2201 to help you save on space when you need to clean your dishes. Think about tucking the microwave and coffee machine into a cupboard and hide the fridge behind a cleverly designed wall panel. If you are looking for some compact kitchen appliances, then take a look at review sites such as https://buyersimpact.co.uk/ for some inspiration. Ask yourself where you will put any other gadgets out of the way, but mostly ask yourself do you actually use all your gadgets and hand-me-down pots and pans? Will you one day have only the top of the range stuff and not a medley of bric-a-brac? By using the same material, i.e. in this instance wood/white cabinetry and countertops you will immediately achieve a feeling of symmetry and one theme throughout. You can always choose a different colour for the base cabinets and the top ones – just remember to work within the same palette of colours.

Designer Tip No. 3

Upper cabinets can be upped and away sometimes. If you have smart cabinets below that are able to efficiently tuck away your kitchen necessities, then ask yourself if it is really necessary to have upper cabinets that in many instances are design obstructions rather than efficient storage. I am totally in favour of hanging artwork in a kitchen. But you do sacrifice that upper cabinet. You weigh it up. I think that open shelves give a much lighter and interesting design to a kitchen. You can of course, not put your artwork on the walls, but rather fill the shelves with beautiful ceramics, herbs, cookery books and your collection of antique teapots, for instance. Quirky and artistic. Like the rest of your home. Small kitchen with bright colours

Categories
Small Interiors

Ten Easy Tips to Transform your Home in 2017

You are living in La La Land if you buy things you don’t need with funds you don’t have – all to impress people you don’t even like!

So take it from me, it is quite easy to cost-efficiently spruce up your interior design. You can even hire interior designers in phoenix to make it easier for yourself! I was recently asked to help a friend to style-up her dreary, outdated home. A big task indeed. (Hope she is not reading this!)

My interior design ideas to transform my own home came from:

  • My inner creative skill and yes, I am patting myself on the back. Look deep, very deep; only you know what you want. Although sometimes you don’t know what you want until you see it.
  • Visiting interior design shops.
  • Searching online to see what is available locally.
  • Collaborating with my partner to try and avoid the dreaded “C” word; compromise.
  • The good, the bad and the ugly. Looking at other people’s homes and getting some tips and advice from them. (Emulate the good, discard the ugly, and avoid the bad mistakes)
  • Magazines and TV shows helped me tremendously. It is inspiring to watch a professional transform a home so effortlessly with a little DIY and some creative flair.
  • Speaking to interior designers from the same planet. Don’t whatever you do feel ashamed that you are asking for help. These people are the professionals – just make sure they are on the same wavelength as you.

In order for me to share my tips with her in a succinct way, I needed to articulate my creative thought processes and follow a systematic plan of action. It was a tricky one as I didn’t quite know where to start.

And then I was reminded of our family beach house in Cape Cod, where I’ve spent many lazy summers soaking in the sun. My pal, Steve Bobola is among the best Cape Cod renovation contractors and out of sheer curiosity and an inherent flair for décor, I would often tag along with him to see the lovely interiors and home designs his mind concocted. Ended up learning so much! Hope you do too with these tips on transforming your home are basic design 101; nothing really new, but it is a start and will give you food for thought.

Transform your Home – 10 Tips

Tip 1: Plan, plan, plan and then take action

If you don’t know where you are going, you will inevitably end up someplace else.

You need to know the basic dimensions, construction materials, and directional aspects of the house etc. This will help in deciding on every feature that you may want to be changing or adding to; no point in buying that outdoor patio set if it ain’t going to fit.

Tip 2: Articulate your objectives – use objective boxes to tick or scratch off.

  • lighten up the house.
  • make rooms look bigger or smaller.
  • bring the garden into the house – as all clever Passionistas of Design are doing this.
  • Improve the flow in the house and the garden/patio with furniture you can get on sites like GardenSite. Even adding simple additions like a bench or a garden sofa can make all the difference to the overall aesthetic of your garden.
  • Bash down or transform. Ask yourself or instance if the bathroom can be transformed with a simple makeover or do you really need a new stylish – at great expense- Cleopatra’s lair?
  • decoration style/s: cosy and traditional, modern, contemporary, minimalist, etc.

Tip 3: You may not be able to draw but you must do one with a budget

I have never heard of an unlimited budget in my neck of the woods. Clarify which areas of spend you need to concentrate on.

Are your floors needing attention? This is a big outlay. A carpet can sometimes do the million-dollar trick by hiding those old jaded beige tiles. New lounge furniture or will the existing couches and chairs, once re-covered in a neutral tone, be a better option?

Tip 4: Frisbee Principle – Fling it out as far as you can

If things are really finished – then trash. Don’t waste your time or your money trying to resuscitate something that died a long time ago.

Tip 5: Timing is of necessity

Nothing happens yesterday. You will need to work out the realistic date of completion and then work back to ensure you have each element ordered or made in time.

Curtains and blinds will take approximately 3 weeks to have made. New flooring may necessitate uplifting of the existing floor, re-doing a screed and then the new tiling or wood flooring needs to be ordered, delivered and then installed.

Tip 6: Work with experts

Rest assured it is Sod’s Law, that the tiler you have chosen, (because he was the cheapest) over committed! All in all, you want to ensure that the level of frustration is kept to a minimum, by dealing with good contractors. Get recommendations.

Tip 7: Create a scrapbook of your Likes. The edit and edit and edit until you reach the core.

Searching through magazines and online articles will give you some great ideas. Cut them out, print them and start a collection. You will, if you are anything like me, end up with a gazillion pictures that will fire you up.

However, in order to fine tune this collection you have to be ruthless. Yes, you can be. After all it is a SCRAPbook. Form a succinct and clear collection that sums your LIKES up.

Tip 8: Make lists.

All the stuff in your house. No, it is not a waste of time because to be truly creative you need to look beyond the norm; that bathroom cupboard you have wanted to ditch forever could be used on your patio. Give it a lick of paint – preferably a fab new trendy colour.

Tip 9: DIY – nothing is impossible.

It is easier than you think, just follow some clever How-To guides. Remember that painting a feature wall is not a life threatening disease; it can be reversed.

Tip 10: Open up your mind and your home

Open is what is IN. Aim to get your indoors out and your outdoors in. This will add depth, and most of all create a feeling of harmony.

If you’re a longtime homeowner and are looking to find a new way to make money in your retirement, you may wish to explore the the benefits of drawdown equity release. That’s it, folks. Don’t forget that being happy does not come from buying something you don’t have but more often than not, from recognizing and appreciating what you do have.

Categories
Small Interiors

How to Define Your Style 2017

Well actually, if you have to define your style – perhaps it isn’t “style” in the true sense of the word.

Remember that your style is a means of describing who you are WITHOUT SPEAKING about it. So whether you decide to do this yourself or use the assistance of a
home Interior Design company to create a style for your home, it’s all about having a theme that runs throughout. This may be an easier way to define a style.

Think of those people whom you admire and try to articulate their style – difficult, isn’t it? They are simply stylish, and their homes more often than not will reflect the same flair.

Some people can pull it off with irritating ease. Some people lost the plot a long time ago. Some people can put together a nice interior design after looking at inspiration like these kitchen and bath designs by ANZZI, they get there in the end but they need help along the way. And some people just simply are not on the same inter-styler wavelength; the non-followers who don’t care a fig.

Which category do you fall into? Does it matter?

The answer, my friends is blowing in the wind and it is inevitably a NO. What does matter is how you feel about your home and how you look. It’s called THE LOOKFEEL TREND. And it does not go out of fashion.

Feel, care and be proud. So what if you don’t win the Olympic Platinum Medal for Style – decorating your home is not a competition, remember. The interior of your special space is for you.

Here are some style concepts that will make you look clever when you are next attending your Flair Forum.

Modern vs. Contemporary Style?

Most people get this wrong and debates go on endlessly as to what is which. The two style terms are often used interchangeably, making it quite confusing on where the line should be drawn.

Modern is timeless, iconic and forward-thinking. It is innovative.

Contemporary is a way of describing a style that is current. It is en vogue.

In the good old days, modern was the Bauhaus credo – form follows function. This was basically a popular decorative movement that started in the early 19th century and it was epitomized by clean lines and open planning spaces. The Bauhaus was a German school of design and through this, the concept of “modernism” came about. It was based on egalitarian principles and clean designs were espoused; in all types of materials – furniture, textiles and art. This was factory design and not craftsmanship in the true sense.

Personally, I don’t like an interior that is purely modern. I like a mix of things. You can mix modern furniture with some vintage styled wall mounted lights, and blend other elements as and when you find what’s right together. After all, that is what makes for a characterful home.

Be Afraid, very afraid of the “Ins” and “Outs “of Style

So you may often say I like a modern interior style when in fact you may be referring to contemporary interior style. Contemporary is slick, and it exemplifies a feeling of everything being in its place – no clutter and fine design. Most interior decorating sites these days will cover this look. It is what is “in”. It may be “out” in a few years’ time, but it is “in” at the moment.

Be careful in having only contemporary styled interiors – they look boring after a while. The last thing you want is the bland hotel room look.

Think about the last time you updated your bathroom with those fab new tiles that were so chic and elegant at the time. Today you look at your bathroom and think – time to redo it all again. The colours are not fashionable anymore, the tiles are too small, and the bathroom fittings are so 2015!

My advice is to follow the LOOKFEEL trend in 2017

If it looks good to you, it will feel good. So whatever tickles your fancy, do it. Just do it – don’t be afraid. I got advice from smart people. I mastered the craft of picking stylish people’s brains. It helped me in my interior designing. I live with Art Deco, contemporary and eclectic in my home and it makes me happy. I’ve seen great examples of art deco furniture over on the antiques world website and encourage you all to check it out. Throw in a few dogs lying on that expensive linen covered couch, a cat that scratches my fabulous ottoman, and a husband who does not really give a fig and voilà– it is a good look.

Remember fellow style passionistas, the art of being happy will not go out of style in 2017.

The following are examples of modern and contemporary design:

Example of a modern interior. Form follows function.

Breaking from the traditional space which tends to be more cluttered or full in both the visual and physical. Modern interiors are simple in adornment. Only a dash of colour here and there.

Example of a contemporary interior. Feeling of space with open plan kitchen/dining/living. Today’s type of living.

Categories
Kitchen Small Interiors

Simple Kitchen Dessert Island Ideas

Tips on how to demarcate your simple kitchen desert island and stop it being a dump site – especially in a small kitchen.

Treat your kitchen island as if it were a desert island, not a multi-layered, messy dessert trifle.

We recently had some old university friends to stay over the new year period and they arrived with loads of treats and goodies for the 4-day “rave”. Before you could say “Fiddle- me –Timbers”, the music was on and the wine was flowing.

Guess what? Before I could read them the rules of the house, they had dumped everything onto our kitchen island and expected me to stash it away. In fact, I don’t really know what they expected.

They had forgotten what a wicked witch I am. There are Rules in this HOUSE. And the first one is: do not mess with my space! I am never going to revert to those hideously cute sayings on a board that says something corny like: “My kitchen was clean last week and I am sorry you missed it!”

No folks, this island ain’t for your clutter, nor for your keys, reading glasses and books, handbags or wallets. It is a kitchen. And it is an island. Designing an island or an entire kitchen could do with a professional touch. Go to websites like laurelandwolf.com and talk to some experts who could guide you towards the ideal configuration for your space.

My kitchen island is not an Eaton Mess dessert. It is a pristine and pretty place.

So I set about clearing it all up and trying desperately to not offend anyone (yes, I have become a little less pushy), put the keys in the key bowl on the cabinet in the lounge, the reading glasses in their bedrooms and their endless supply of wine into the wine rack.

Sure as little green limes, the next day it was the same mess. “Hey, do they live like this at home?” And then the inevitable “where is my….?”, sprouts forth. Oh, help me Lord, taking another sip of champers to calm my nerves.

I got it back to what it was by hiding all the rest of their stuff and remaining ignorant as to where it all was.

This is how I arranged my kitchen island- without getting the loudspeaker out and reverting back to being the woman’s lib witch that I was at university.

Firstly – design it so that it is a special place, not a dumping ground

I took out some odd containers and filled them with flowers and greenery and arranged them on the island to make a bold yet simple statement. The best way of doing this is to have some sort of theme; either a colour theme or in this case a celebratory theme. If it is very small, three daffodils will suffice.

So some of the containers were interestingly shaped bottles of varying sizes and forms and by putting only one flower in each, and at different heights, I managed to make it look like a dining room table that everyone was about to sit down at. Heavens forbid you would put your collection of last century CDs on that! It worked like a treat.

Secondly- add layers of fruit and vegetables

I took out a basket filled it with fruit and vegetables and that sat with the collection of “vases”. My colour theme for the flowers was yellows and oranges, with a dash of deep reds. The basket was filled with lemons, oranges and pumpkins of different shapes and sizes.

Obviously, depending on your size of island, keep it in proportion. No point overwhelming the space. The design must be clean and in context with the space. If you can only fit one pumpkin, then that will still work. And if you want, fill the flower container with fruit or vegetables before putting the flowers in – this will really save space.

It worked like a treat. The keys were being put into the key bowl and not thrown onto this pristine island. Two steps further to mission accomplished.

Thirdly – add gentle lighting

I half-filled two glass vases with lentils and put candles in each. Whilst watching me do all this and reminiscing about the good old days – the reprobate friends started, albeit slowly, to get the picture. You can sit and chatter and help in the preparation of food from my island, but don’t mess with it. Whatever style of lighting you choose, it’s vital to ensure it’s installed by a trained professional. This prevents any damage to existing electrical circuits and ensures the light is safe to use. Sites like kalahari-electrical.com/brookhaven/ are available to help find a suitable electrician for the job.

Mission accomplished.

Lesson learnt.

Now I have to instill this into all visitors and family. Keep it decorated and people will admire and treat it with care. No matter what size your kitchen, the island should always look decorated, as, after all, this is really the only space that you can do this in a kitchen. My kitchen island will always stand out as it is a different colour to the rest of the kitchen – a good tip to do if you want it to be a space on its own – and it is always designed with an array of fresh fruit and flowers and lovely lighting.