As Carl and I have been building and renovating our new home I’ve been doing a lot of research and I thought it would be useful for me to share it with you as we found out some pretty cool tips and tricks from a lot of clever people. You won’t need to get anyone in to help you yourself can change the feel and look of your interior with a few tiny tweaks and DIY jobs. Below you can find the quick fix tips from a few interior designers that I researched!
Squeezed for the cash for a new kitchen? You could change it’s aesthetic instead. You can buy a new kitchen door from as little as £5 (I KNOW!) from companies like kitchendoorworkshop.co.uk. They also provide you with online tutorials on how to change your old ones which is super useful. If you are one of those lucky people who already own an IKEA kitchen its new range of Hyttan solid oak-framed doors (which start from £22) are absolutely stunning and look a lot more expensive than their price tag. If you’re after something a bit more luxurious you could go to a company such as Kitchen Magic, who offer tailor-made doors.
You touch them everyday, so why not have door handles you love? Replacing them with something more ergonomic or beautiful will transform the look of your home. Architects know it is all in the detail, and many of the UK’s most high-profile practices have designed their own ranges, which are available through companies such as Izé and Olivari. You might not be able to afford an extension designed by the architects David Adjaye or 6a, but you could have the hardware they use in their projects.
Marisa Varma, the head of interiors at the designer Harrison Varma, suggests lighter bed linen for the new season. “Remove fur throws and heavy cushions left over from the winter,” she adds. Washed linen offers a casual, Scandi summertime take on hygge. Try Muji’s soft organic cotton duvet covers in fresh white and pale mushroom.
Sarah Quilliam, the head of design for Hillarys, the interiors company, suggests switching to light voiles on the windows. “Heavy curtains are great in the winter, but as the weather warms up, bright and breezy window dressings are a game-changer.” Crystal Ice roman blind voiles from Hillarys, from £101, give a modern, Japanese screen-like feel.
“The addition of colour is an easy, cheap and relatively quick way to freshen up your home,” says Andy Greenall, the head of design for Little Greene paint company. “A word we are hearing more in this context is layering; much like clothing, the tone and style of any interior can be enhanced by adding depth, without having to rethink what you already have.”
He says bold yellows and greens are on trend, but you could also use bright accents to adjust the focal point in a room. He suggests Tuscan Red, Cordoba, Sage Green and Yellow-Pink, which work well with greys. For something more subtle Little Greene has a colour scales collection with four stepped shades that complement each other. The French Grey colour scales family is Victorian in origin, says Greenall, “but has become a timeless foil to the most cutting-edge design”.
If you don’t want to touch the walls, or pay for new chairs and tables, paint your furniture, says Sarah Weightman, the owner of Everlong Paint. “A simple pop of colour can add warmth and character to your space. Do not be afraid to experiment. Everlong Superior Chalk Paints can be mixed to create your own bespoke shade.”
If your garden bench is looking tired, Farrow & Ball has outdoor emulsion in all of its 132 colours, including exterior metal and masonry paint.
Patterned wallpaper can bring a room to life, says Roselind Wilson, an interior designer. You can extract a colour from a feature paper and apply it to the rest of the walls in the room, perhaps incorporating some gentle texture. “This will create a strong foundation for the room,” she says. “Large patterns create an impact, but it’s important to consider the fabrics and furnishings, so as not to create a space in which the elements fight for attention.”
Hughes says to avoid overly busy statement walls and go for a mad pattern to fill a whole room.
Green is the colour of 2017. Embrace it by filling your home with concrete, zinc or terracotta pots, particularly in the bathroom. Cheese plants, succulents and aloe vera remain in vogue on Pinterest and Instagram; new trends include air plants, weeping fig and olive trees kept inside. Cato Cooper, an interiors expert and the owner of The Emporium Somerset, says seasonal wreaths are popular: “Hanging one on a door or above a fireplace shows everyone you’re ready to embrace the new season.”
I hope this was useful to you. Do you have any good interior tips and tricks to share with us? We’d love to hear from you!