Category: Decorating Tips

Quick Décor Tip – Exterior paint

Quick tips, exterior paint colour rules
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We all love to have a home that will stand out and make an impact in our street.  To have a modern and sleek look, remember to stick to the Three Colour Rule:  Have one colour for walls, one for trim and one for accents.  These colours should all complement each other and match tonally.  If you’re still struggling and not finding help at the Bunnings counter, send us an email and we could do a full exterior colour consult with specification list for your painters.

Cheerio ’til next time!

Lyndie camera

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Decor Tip: Best advice for a successful art wall

You have tried your best, but your art wall still looks terrible. Why can everyone else do it, but not you? Well, it is not as easy as one thinks! Instead of a lengthy lesson, we will just stick to one short tip today.

CHOOSE A HERO PIECE. This is the one that is bigger than the other art work so that you can focus on choosing everything else just to match one piece of art. If they all match one piece, then the rest should all work together. It helps if that piece is bigger than the rest, so that your focal colours and inspiration piece is accentuated in the hero piece of the room.

tips for an art wall
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In this image you can see the owner used the big black, white and yellow modern art work as inspiration. All the other prints and art works have either those colours or a modern painting that reflects the same style.

As easy as that!

Happy decorating,

eriana bredenhann

 

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Quick Décor Tip – Why Neutral isn’t Boring!

 

quick tips caramel palette
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Contrary to belief, neutral colours aren’t boring!  Starting with creamy neutrals, camel brown or caramels, you will have a base to add any colour to!  Try buttery yellows or a touch of teal with your base palette and see what a difference it makes.  Bringing in a few playful colours will add personality and heighten the sophisticated feel in your home.

Quick tips neutral and teal
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Cheerio ’til next time!

Lyndie camera

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Five ways to Update your Outdoor Area this Summer

I love entertaining outdoors, but during the winter months my back yard and entertainment area go to waste and become a bit of a sad space.  This week, I’ll give you a few ideas on how to get it back into tip top shape, ready to entertain the crowd this weekend.

1.  FESTIVE LIGHTING

update outdoor area festive lights
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Lighting in the form of candles, a string of LED lights or a strategically placed pendant can create an immediate festive atmosphere in your outdoor area.  If you have an overhanging branch, it can be the perfect spot for hanging pots with tea lights or wrapping string lights around.

2.  HAPPY BRIGHT COLOURS

update outdoor area bright colours
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Nothing screams summer like an abundance of bright, happy colours.  Try an attention grabbing red for a punch of energy and mix with bright tranquil blues.

3.  GO GREEN

update outdoor area potted plants
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If your entertainment area is more of an indoor space, remember to add pots of colour and greenery to bring the outdoors inside.  Experiment with different textures and shapes or try bright colours as accent points in interesting prints.

4.  A COAT OF PAINT

update outdoor area painted furniture
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If your current outdoor setting is still in good nick simply give it a new coat of paint. Don’t be afraid to play with colour either; pastel blues and greens are a great way to give furniture a whole new look.

5.  LAYERS AND TEXTURES

update outdoor layers and textures
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All the decorative elements you add to a room create interest.  By by adding textures and layers you increase physical comfort and it becomes a multi-dimensional room that’s pleasing to the eye.  Pile on the cushions and light the fire, I’ll bring the marshmallows!

Cheerio ’til next time!

Lyndie camera

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How to hang a Pendant Light in your bedroom with no hole in the ceiling?

So your husband says there’s no way in hell he pays an electrician $300 to add light fittings next to your bed for your $50 K-mart pendant lights you just bought. Everyone wants it! A pendant light next to their bed, but you don’t have fittings in the ceiling… Now what?

Lucky for us the informal rope and cord lights are very contemporary and you can now plug them into the socket next to your bed. However,  you still need to make it look like a pendant! Today we show you a few ways on how to present these lights. This is great for tenants too, as you can add quirkiness to a room without damaging the ceiling or paying an electrician.

1.  USE A TIMBER BRACKET

timber bracket pendant light bedroom
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They are cheap, and available from your local hardware store or places like IKEA. You can be fancy like in image one, and thread the rope through the bracket. Or, you can just be “arty” and drape the cord all over the bracket like in image two!

2.  USE A LADDER

pendant light rope light ladder bedroom
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You can use any old furniture or crates and drape your rope light around it. An old vintage styled ladder can add lots of character to your room.

3.  USE HOOKS IN THE CEILING

pedant rope cord light gold glass
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This method is my favourite as you can really get the feeling that the light is hanging from the ceiling. Make sure you choose a chord that is funky and suits your decor. Don’t try to make it look perfect, as the untidiness is part of the charm!

bedroom pendant lights rope french country recycled head board
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So I hope you feel inspired to grab these (mostly!) inexpensive cord lights and make them a feature of your room!

You can buy them online from many places, but my top choice is FAT SHACK VINTAGE. Just make sure you order the “Pendant Light cord with wall plug.”. They cost about $65-00.

If you are a tenant, and you also want to know how to display artwork without using tools, read our blog about “8 WAYS TO DISPLAY ART – NO TOOLS REQUIRED “

Until next time,

eriana bredenhann

 

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Quick Décor Tip – Why furniture should not be against the wall

Quick tips furniture layout
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A lot of us instinctively want to push our furniture up against all four walls, thinking that this will create more space in our room.  This could turn out a very impractical layout, as guests will end up shouting across the room to be heard.  Try to keep things simple by grounding the area with a rug and going for a more balanced layout.  Consider a layout where guests can have a conversation, have enough room to walk around without bumping into furniture, as well as a place to put a coffee cup or glass.

For more information on furniture styling, read our blog “How to Create a Cosy Home”

Cheerio ’til next time!

Lyndie camera

 

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Secret Bar Cart Business – 8 Tips to Stock and Style it to Perfection

Summer is the time to entertain and have great get togethers with friends and neighbours.   I know that most of us have a few items handy when guests come over, but this would usually also include a mad dash to the bottle store before we hear the knock on the door. Today we’ll show you a few ways on how to style a bar cart so that everything is on hand and in place when your guests arrive.

1.  THE ESSENTIALS

bar cart essentials
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2.  GLASS WATER DISPENSER

bar cart, water dispenser
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Although I don’t have many water drinkers among my friends, we all need the stuff to stay hydrated.  Nothing screams Summer like a lovely water canister filled with lemons, mint or cucumber slivers.  Put it on display and let everyone help themselves.

3.  PRETTY PACKAGING

bar cart pretty packaging
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Even if you’re not a big fan of alcohol, make sure your bottles on display are pretty to look at.  Mix it up with a few personal items and different textures to entice your guests this party season.

4.  MIRROR OR PAINTING

bar cart mirror
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A beautiful mirror or art work above your bar cart will give more substance to the area and make it feel more part of your décor.  A mirror will reflect whatever stands in front of it and make the area appear larger.  It will even look as if you have double the amount of alcohol!

5.  FRESH ACCENTS

bar cart add flowers or greenery
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Flowers or some foliage will create an air of liveliness and just pretty up the whole thing instantly.

6.  A FEW FUNKY BITS

bar cart a few funky bits
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Add a few items of interest, like a pineapple, a vintage item or cute straws and funky vessels.  If you have guests that don’t usually have much to say, give them something to talk about that they’ve discovered on your bar cart (just until the alcohol kicks in!)

7.  DEFINED PALETTE

bar cart palette
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Your bar cart should be seen as part of you décor, so try to let it blend into your home, not stick out like a sore thumb.  If you have an interior with a modern country look, try to look for a few vintage items and a country vibe for your cart.  The same goes for a more classic, refined look – add a few art deco items and a bit more crystal or bling and you’re on your way.  It’s also important to stick to a colour scheme that would complement the existing one in your home.

8.  ORGANISE

bar cart water
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If you’re planning a cocktail party, make sure you have all your utensils, mixer drinks and frilly bits handy.  If it’s more of a casual get together in front of the fireplace, stock up on red wine and brandy – don’t forget to always have a soft drink option, water and ice on hand.

Hope this will ease you into your next get together!  For more tips on making your guest feel welcome, read our blog on Creating a Cosy atmosphere in your home.

Cheerio ’til next time!

Lyndie camera

 

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STOP these SEVEN colour mistakes right now!

Picking wall colour can be an excruciating exercise for some and one of the most difficult elements in design to get right.  So many factors have to be considered, for example the quantities you’re using, what levels of lightness or darkness you have in a room and what colours are suitable to be used together.  Today, I’ll try to lighten the load with a few pointers:

colour mistakes, colour wheel 2
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1.  THE LIGHT FACTOR

colour mistakes, paint-color-options2
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Light is one of the most important factors when considering a wall colour.  Don’t ever try to select a paint colour off a sample at the paint shop, especially under harsh lighting!  Order a large paint sample online (no smaller than A4) and put it against the wall in the room you’re planning to paint, for at least 24 hours.  At least then you’ll have a good idea on what the paint will look like in artificial light, daylight, as well as in the evening.  If still uncertain, you’ve got our number! 😉

2.  BALANCE, NOT JUST FOR GYMNASTS

colour mistakes, too many colours
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If your room is feeling cluttered and busy, it’s most likely that you’re using too many colours in the wrong quantities.  There aren’t any hard and fast rules for the amount of colours you can splash around in a room, but try this one before going haywire:  start with one or 2 primary colours and balance it with a few secondary colours.  Remember to use a few neutrals as well and as soon as you feel the room starting to feel a bit claustrophobic, it’s time to pair back. Getting to know the colour wheel will help greatly in these decisions, but a quick call to the professionals (mwah) will be even better 😉

3.  SEARCHING FOR YOUR “FOREVER’ COLOUR

We tend to put a lot of pressure on ourselves to get that perfect colour for a room and end up repainting the walls in the colour it’s always been, for simplicity’s sake.  Remember that after you’ve done your research about different colours, you have to trust yourself that you’ve made the right decision and can always start with one room to see how you’re feeling about the new look.  Our lives and fashion continually change, so our rooms need to change with it.  At the end of the day, it’s only paint!

4.  YOUR EYES NEED REST TOO!

colour mistakes, balance with neutrals
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It’s easy to go overboard once you fall in love with a colour.  You want to be able to see it everywhere, on your walls, in ornaments, rugs and cushions!  This can create too many focal points of screaming colours, so try to create pockets of resting places for your eyes.  Offset your colours with “blank spaces” i.e. applying lots of neutral elements to your room.

5.  USING COLOUR IN ONE HUE ONLY

colour mistakes, purest hues
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So you decided your perfect colour is blue and you want to use it as an accent wall in it’s purest form.  When applying colour to a large area, be careful that it’s a colour that would draw you in, not let you jump back in fear and nausea.  For a more subtle look, try using tints (white added) or shades (black added) for a more dramatic or uplifting appearance.  Leave the stronger hues for your child’s next birthday party.

6.  MATCHING EVERYTHING

colour mistakes, playing too safe
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I fondly remember the mauve walls in our spare bedroom in my mother’s house, paired with maroon floral curtains which matched the duvet cover precisely.  Matching all your colours can have the opposite effect you’re aiming for – it could make you rooms feel unlived in and bland.  Try steering away from safe colours and install that kitchen with bright yellow doors if it makes you happy.  A punch of colour repeated throughout the house will create great appeal and uplift the dullness of everything matching perfectly.

7.  COHESION, GET YOUR ROOMS TO TALK TO EACH OTHER

colour mistakes, cohesion
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If that’s your thing and you can live with it, you could have a different colour palette in every room of your house!  Although that could create a rather hectic atmosphere, there are ways to make each room individually appealing by having them “talk” to each other without matching everything precisely.  You might need your colour wheel for this exercise, so keep it handy.  It’s best to have a few colours complementing each other from one room to the next, especially if you have a view of the adjoining room.  This way, the colours aren’t matching, but create a lovely flow from room to room.

For more expert colour advice, read our blog, How to decorate with Red, or Get the Knack for Decorating with Black.

Cheerio ’til next time!

Lyndie camera

 

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Coastal styling with a VINTAGE twist

Tired of beach styled decor with old shells and broken surf boards? Learn how you can give your beach style a vintage twist this Summer. We all love the blue tones and soft palette of a nautical home, even if we’re not lucky enough to live at the beach. Today we will give you some inspiration on how to get the coastal style, but add your own Vintage style twist. You can also see it as having a vintage style, but adding a beach decor twist! So how do you combine these two styles successfully without having to replace half your furniture?

beach style vintage oars
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Beautiful vintage timber furniture will be a fantastic accent to the all neutral coastal style. The richness of the natural timber, combined with natural cane will complement your treasures from the sea. Make your vintage furniture the focal points of your room, and play around with coastal displays in neutral colours.

beach design style decor vintage influence timber
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The white floor planks, white walls and neutral furniture creates a fabulous backdrop for your natural vintage treasures. Stay away from bright colours and see your home as a mini art gallery to display your treasures. Antique lanterns, old hats and bottles are all references to the sea.

beach style vintage neutral pallette decorate
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Weathered furniture painted with chalk paint will give you that old coastal feeling. (We will soon blog about this new chalk paint phenomenon and how to do it!) Don’t be afraid to use soft blues as your accent colour. With the vintage style it is always nice to re-use furniture for a different purpose as initially intended. A chair becomes a bedside table and a ladder becomes a wardrobe. Don’t forget that you can make a beautiful head board from old marine timber!

beach style vintage decorate blue cupboard pastel
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A coastal home with a vintage feeling will always have beautiful old bottles that looks like they’ve washed out onto the beach. Fill them with succulents or candles.

The coastal style can be interpreted in so many different ways.  Also read our other blogs about the Coastal Style:

Happy decorating,

eriana bredenhann

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SIX ways to work around a wall colour you hate in a rental home

Searching for a place to rent can take forever.  When you finally come across one with a kitchen and bathroom you could force yourself to live with for a couple of years, it might not have the wall colour that would work particularly well with your existing furniture.  I suppose you have to compromise somewhere, so in today’s blog, we’ll give you a few tips on how to make that awful wall colour less of an eyesore.

1.  HIDE IT BEHIND FABRIC

hiding wall colour - wall hanging
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These days, there are hundreds of fabrics available in a myriad of colours and prints to hang against your walls.  Even a colourful rug, macramé or a simple timber canvas frame covered in your choice of fabric will do the trick.  You could also install a curtain rod and treat the wall as you would a window, covering the entire wall in a fabric of your choice.  The larger the fabric, the bigger the impact and, of course, the more of the ugly wall colour you will cover.

2.  REPAINT IT

Some rental properties are in such a bad state, that the landlord wouldn’t mind a fresh coat of paint which he wouldn’t have to pay for.  Check with your agent before going down this avenue, so it doesn’t leave you out of pocket come moving time… This is an option if you plan to rent that home for at least two or three years. For a few hundred dollars, you can make it feel like your own home. (Or bribe your husband to paint it)

3.  WORK IT INTO YOUR COLOUR SCHEME

hiding wall colour - colour wheel
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Incorporating your wall colour into the colour scheme in your rental home, is easier than you think.  All you need is a good understanding of the colour wheel, how light affects colour, how different colours affect your mood, cool vs warm colours, the difference between tones, shades and tints and a few paint chips!  (OK, a gallery wall might be easier…)  Another option is to get the Vanilla Slate girls in for a colour consult to sort you out in a jiffy 🙂

4.  GALLERY WALL

hiding wall colour - gallery wall
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Although framed pictures won’t cover up the wall colour, it could become a welcome distraction.  Bold prints will make a fabulous impact,  obstructing the ugly wall colour and become the new focal point. Best part is, you can take all the pictures with you when you move. Just remember to use the 3M Command Picture Hanging strips in a rental property.

5.  WALLPAPER IT

hiding wall colour - wall paper
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If you haven’t heard of removable wallpaper, you’ve been living under a rock for the past few years!  This is a great alternative to repainting your walls and available in a huge range of patterns, colours and images. You do not need glue, and it does not leave marks when you remove it.  See what’s on offer at The Wallpapercompany

6.  LARGE POSTER

hiding wall colour - poster
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Try large posters such as maps or interesting prints to cover large parts of your wall.  Hard to Find has some lovely inexpensive options available, as well as Typo.

Read our blog about putting your stamp on a rental home’s kitchen, as well as how to personalise your home with art, to get you settled into your new home.

Cheerio ’til next time!

Lyndie camera

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