Did you know you can make your skirting look bigger without removing them first? Many of us have those thin, cheap, small skirting in our home. Installed by someone who either wanted to cut costs, or has no idea that a skirting can give a room a real sense of elegance when chosen correctly! We get this question a lot from our clients. “Should I replace my old skirting?” Today we have good news. You can make your skirting look bigger without a handyman. Just one trip to the hardware store.
We really love this tutorial above from The Smiths of The House of Smiths. You just buy some trim from your local hard ware store and nail or glue it to your wall. Then paint it the same colour as the existing skirting, as well as the piece of wall in between. It now looks exactly like a big brand new skirting! Don’t you think it is a great idea?
No more excuses, grab that nail gun and paint and upgrade your skirting! It is really a job that anyone can master!
If you are brave, you can even install two skirting boards on top of each other and paint them different colours for some extra design feature. Enjoy, and send us photos of your masterpiece!
We recently helped a client to renovate her kitchen and bathroom and let me tell you, her budget was very tight! We all know the ordinary, nothing special subway tile. One of the cheapest on the market! We decided to use the subway tile (only $12-00 per square), but be creative in the different ways we could apply them. We still wanted an elegant look, but on a budget. Today I share with you some inspirational images we gathered for the Kitchen & Bathroom. These tiles come in different sizes, which also make it possible to create a unique look.
This is your traditional layout, but with a twist. Use black grout to give the subway tiles more “bang”! Especially if you use some other black features in your kitchen like cupboards, handles or black taps. Which is now very on trend of course. (I also like those cute little display cabinets on the top, in stead of using a bulkhead!)
I have not seen this layout often, but to me it suits perfectly with a kitchen that wants that bit of a vintage or retro quirkiness!
Your tiler might charge you a bit more to tile this layout.. but this pattern is so fresh and very interesting. I think this is what I am going to use in my new kitchen!
Modern, symmetrical, clean lines. Same subway tile, but suddenly creates a total different style.
Who said you can only use white subway tiles? They are now available in a range of colours. White and black are still my favourite choices though. Great for re-sale value, and it will be suitable to different people’s choice. I just love the dramatic edge these black subway tiles give to this kitchen!
Herringbone. The all time favourite! Even with simple, understated cupboard doors the herringbone pattern adds character and flair to the kitchen.
Play around with subway tile layouts. Look carefully how interesting this pattern is in the shower! A simple inexpensive tile quickly transformed this shower into an artwork!
I am totally in love with this pattern layout of thin subway tiles! Modern, sophisticated tiles at $12-00 per square! Not impressed by the size of the bath, but luckily that is not what we are focussing on now 🙂
My favourite layout again, but this time in the bathroom. It gives an interesting, but simple backdrop for the mirror, cute pendants and beautiful vanity.
I hope you feel inspired! You can save a lot of money when using these cute little inexpensive subway tiles, and just add other pretty finishes. Some of these tiles in the images might be expensive porcelain, but all of these layouts are possible with the normal subway tile. They are always on trend, and have been here for years.
I am an absolute sucker for a beautiful cushion. Going to a home ware store and leaving without something soft and decorative in tow, is like sheer torture and I would usually go back the next day to rectify my mistake. If this is the way you operate, it’s pretty easy to end up with a colourful mess on your couch or bed. To avoid these haphazard compulsive purchases, I’ve put together a few pointers on how to coordinate your arrangement of cushions in a more structured way.
1. IDENTIFY YOUR COLOUR PALETTE
Choose your cushion colours by referencing something else in the room. The room will have a more cohesive flair if repetition of colour is used, whether it is something large, like your rug, wall, or something small like a decorative item or lamp. A simple palette of no more than three colours will be more effective than a whole rainbow.
2. MIX UP THE SIZE AND SHAPE
Your cushion collection need not be the same shape and size. The most effective arrangements are those that combine different combinations with even a round one thrown in. It’s easy to go overboard if you’re a cushion lover like me! Remember to allow some space to sit comfortably on your sofa. For an informal look, place a larger one in the back and layer smaller ones to the front.
3. PLAY WITH PATTERNS
Be adventurous and mix floral motives with bold graphic patterns, but make sure that you have another cushion that would match in either colour or pattern. If using large, medium and small patterns together, make sure that they share a similar palette. To separate and highlight different patterns, as well as creating a spot where your eye can rest, place a few solid or neutral cushions in your arrangement.
4. EXPERIMENT WITH TEXTURE
If using a simple palette like a monochromatic colour scheme, create some interest by throwing in textures such as waffle weave, faux fur and chunky knits.
So the two of you are taking the next step and decided it’s high time to put up house together. He likes his leather chairs in front of his big screen tv, and she likes her floral accent chairs with pastel cushions. Sounds like a divorce in the making, but how can we get around spending a fortune on lawyers before moving in together had even begun?
When we think of masculine décor, leather and animal hides, bulky furniture, dark colours, metal like copper and straight or angular lines come to mind.
Feminine décor usually refer to light colours, elegant, curvy shapes, a bit of bling like gold, and delicate patterns.
Combining the items so that both parties are happy, might take a bit of practise and a wrestle or two. I would like to suggest the following for a long and happy cohabitation:
Keep communication lines open and be willing to compromise on a few things.
Go shopping together for new items, but narrow choices down to only a few things to keep confusion to a minimum.
Don’t go too pastel or frilly. Stick to neutral colours and natural elements that would work with anything.
Present an idea as a whole and give each other a bit of time to get used to it before shooting it down.
You will get away with quite a bit if you let him think it was his idea 😉
Give him a man cave and the rest of the house will be yours to decorate as you please (kidding!)
For those of you who still fondly remember the movie “When Harry met Sally”, I leave you with a video about a quarrel about a coffee table. This will make you realise how frustrating setting up house together can be.
We all heard of “street appeal”. What if you live in a rental property where you prefer not to spend money to change the look of your house or to add personality? When friends visit your home… What is the first thing you say? “Excuse my home, it is just a rental property.”
Even though you rent, you should still add personality to your front door. Every time you come home, you should “feel home” when you enter your rental property. But how?
1. ADD A PERSONAL STORY
What can you display at your front door so that visitors know YOU live here? Do you collect cats or artwork or love travelling or fancy bonsai trees? Use whatever tickles your fancy. Think what items people will recognise and say: “Yes, this must be their home!” Think of something personal, display it and make sure no one can steal it…
2. ADD A BENCH WITH CUSHIONS
Many homes have porches at their front door. Instead of having 20 pairs of shoes and umbrellas lying there, add a pretty bench with colourful outdoor cushions that will create a certain style for your home and show off your personality. This is very inviting and instantly gives a homely feeling.
3. PUT OUT A QUIRKY WELCOME MAT
You can take it with you to your next home, it is inexpensive and will put your visitors in an instant happy mood. If that doesn’t help, you will have to consider inviting other friends.
4. ADD COLOURFUL POTS
While you’re not spending a lot of money on your rental property for maintenance etc, you can use this time to gradually buy quality items that you can take with you every time you move. You can add a whole garden with different size and colour pots. This way you can give your entrance door a formal or informal look, a modern or vintage look, or even just add colour to a boring rental front door.
5. GET A TEMPORARY COLOURFUL LETTERBOX
This is not a fixture, so you can place your beautiful and interesting temporary letterbox in your front garden, to jazz up your street appeal. You can even make your own one or buy a cheap one and decorate it! See the time in your rental home as “your time to be creative & adventurous!”
6. MAKE YOUR OWN STREET NUMBER
Many houses’ street numbers are not easily visible. Be brave and make your own one! You can really add personality by making them stand out and showing your personality. Be bold, make the number huge! An oversized number in a playful colour will surely make a statement. You can temporarily fix it to any external wall.
To style your home, means adding your personality, and not creating perfection.
Do not clutter your Entrance Door or porch. This is where guests get their first impression of your style. You should decorate this area BEFORE you decorate your home inside!
No home should look exactly like a magazine. They are styled for photo shoots and most of the time not at all cozy and inviting for your friends to grab a glass of wine or kick off their shoes. Today, I will show you a few ways to cosy up your home with just a little bit of effort and with the furniture and décor items you already possess.
TIP 1 – PUT FOCUS ON ARCHITECTURAL DETAIL
If you are lucky enough to be living in a home with character such as French windows, high ceilings or beautiful architraves, your job is half way done! These details add instant charm to any home, as long as you don’t make the mistake of covering it up with heavy curtains or blinds. It’s best to use sheer curtains or go without entirely, unless you have a peeping Tom problem in the neighbourhood.
To me, the herringbone pattern is one of the most elegant ways you can display your tiles. Even cheap old subway tiles look amazing if you just use the herringbone pattern. When I spot a real timber floor laid in a herringbone pattern, it literally makes my toes curl and I just want to lay down on the floor. But is chevron and herringbone the same?
NO !!!! Chevron & Herringbone is definitely not the same!
There is a distinct difference between Chevron and Herringbone. Make sure you give your tiler the correct information! The Herringbone pattern is timeless and elegant. It an be used in so many different rooms, with so many different types and colours and sizes of tiles or timber.(more…)
To hire an Interior Designer or Home Stager is a very effective way to get the best price for your home when it goes on the market. Unfortunately, a lot of sellers don’t realise the value in hiring expert advice. Here are a few of my best tips on how to utilise the items you already have, to make the most of the big day.
TIP 1 – CREATE CURB APPEAL
No matter how much money you spend on the inside of your home before putting it on the market, most potential home buyers will drive past the “For Sale” sign if the house looks worn and the garden a mess. Your house will be judged before anyone has even entered it, so spend some time fixing the gutters, cleaning the dusty garage doors, weeding the garden, replacing a worn entrance mat and planting a few pots of colourful flowers for instant curb appeal.
To tell you the truth, I thought my bathroom renovation would be a simple process without any headaches. I thought I had done my planning carefully, ticked all the boxes and was ready for a smooth ride. How wrong was I! On the bright side, if everything had gone to plan, I would not have been able to give you some hands on information at all! Here are my tips for getting it closer to perfect.
TIP 1 – HAVE A BUDGET AND DON’T BLOW IT!
Be aware, everything is probably going to be more expensive than you think it is! A good guideline for a bathroom budget is to not spend more than 5 % of the value of your house. It’s also a great idea to set aside 10-15 % of your bathroom budget for any unexpected costs, because believe me, there will be! During my bathroom renovation I accidentally dropped a door on the tilers brand new IPhone 6. Thus I had to replace and pay for his phone, screen protector and phone case before he could finish the job. (Note to self: Don’t do acrobatic moves climbing over rubble during a renovation process)
Yes, anyone can do it! You just need to have a guideline… and focus! So today I will teach you how to create a picture perfect coffee display EVERY TIME. Just follow my six easy steps! It is fool proof. (Please don’t prove me wrong!)
It doesn’t matter what style of coffee table you have, it is about knowing which items want to be together on the table.
STEP ONE: ALWAYS START WITH A TRAY
It is your foundation for the display! You need a place to chuck in all those loose bits e.g. TV remotes, knick-knacks or your coffee mug. Choose the style you want: Rustic, Metal, Glass, Wicket etc. Paint it, Spray it, Borrow it, Steal it. But get it!
STEP TWO: PILE UP YOUR FANCY BOOKS
Why is it called coffee table books? For a reason! To show off on your coffee table. Use your most pretty ones, with interesting colours, different sizes and for sure designer names or titles that your guests will find interesting to page through while you make the coffee. So focus on books with beautiful images… and not ones on how to improve your self-esteem or raise teenagers. Your guests want to relax! If you have many books, they should always be stacked on different heights. (more…)