Tag: how to decorate

Which Floor Suits what Style of Kitchen?

As if selecting a new floor for your kitchen isn’t hard enough, you have to keep in mind the size of the tile, width of the floor plank, how it will withstand spills and marks, and the end result or mood you want to achieve.  Today, we’ll touch on the 3 most popular finishes and which style of kitchen would work best with them.


Polished Concrete

Polished concrete is the material of choice for many new homes and gives a contemporary feel to a space.  It’s a great accompaniment to industrial style kitchens, but the grey undertones could easily look too cold and uninviting for the area that’s meant to be the heart of the home.  Luckily, this can be remedied by bringing in rich tones to balance out the cool greys.  Timber cabinetry or even small touches of natural elements such as wooden spoons, cutting boards or timber stools can chase away the sterility of the cold hardness of a concrete floor.  To impart a more industrial edge, try an exposed brick wall to entirely steal the show!  Combine this with black taps and appliances and you have a winner.


You’d think that pairing timber flooring with timber cabinets, would have the same cringe worthy effect as denim on denim (and even that’s back in fashion big time!)  The beauty of timber flooring is that you could go as sleek and modern, or as traditional as you like.  Timber flooring has a timeless elegance that would go with anything and can be moulded into any style that takes your fancy.  If you want to combine timber cabinets with your timber floor, make sure that the timber tones don’t clash.  If you prefer darker timber cabinets, use the darkest shade in your timber floor as contrast.  Another way to reach visual panache (sounds fancy, doesn’t it) is to combine your timber floor with white or black cabinets and a marble look benchtop.  This combination would suit the more classic styles like Modern Country, Hamptons or even a Beachy look perfectly.  Add a bowl of fruit and fresh flowers and your design is complete!


Tiled floors give you freedom in a sense that other flooring finishes could never achieve.  Options in shape, size, colour and patterns are limitless and because of it’s ability to mimic other surfaces such as concrete or timber, the visual effect they can create are endless. You can create any design tile you like.  If you’re all about drama, apply patterned or coloured tiles.  Just take special care with your splashback when you have a screamer of a floor.  Dim the splashback down with neutral or white patterned tiles, rather than adding another colour.  Alternatively, if you’re more of a traditional girl, there’s nothing wrong with the more understated tile varieties, which can also pack a punch if used correctly.

If this stage of your renovation is still doing your head in, you might need a visit to a tile or timber floor specialist with us!  You know where to find us 🙂

Cheerio ’til next time!

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Why on Earth do I need a Rug on top of my Carpet?

Carpet has been used as flooring for thousands of years and is installed to provide warmth for cold feet, reduce sound and add colour and decoration to a room.  It helps a room to stay warmer in winter and cooler in summer.  So now I ask you… why does my interior designer want me to put a rug on top of it?


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Interior designers consider the principles of design to create a well-rounded room.  No, you don’t need to be good at Maths to figure it out, but most of the time it’s based on feelings and common sense 🙂  Not only do they want to create balance in your room, but they need to think about the atmosphere (we’re not talking about oxygen here), consider the scale in the room and ways to apply textures and colour to get you the desired result.  The first reason for putting a rug on top of your brand new carpet, is to create a zone for a space.  This is especially important in today’s open living style homes  To give an example:  If your living room is next to your dining room or kitchen, a rug placement under your coffee table and sofas will define that space as separate and create a zone for an activity in that area.  Having a rug has the added benefit of grounding your furniture so that it doesn’t appear as if it’s floating.


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Placing a rug on the floor is the perfect opportunity to add patterns and colour.  By adding these, the interest in your room is heightened immediately and the effect can be very appealing.  Always make sure that your rug complements the carpet, so that they look married to each other and not out of place.  It also need to tie in with your colour palette, whether you decide on a neutral or coloured rug.


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Textures work in mysterious ways.  It has the tendency to create comfort, dampen noise and give a room visual depth.  Not many people consider textures carefully before making their selections for a space.   The reason for this could be because they don’t realise the potential of adding textures to their design.  Jute, wicker, animal skin or shag rugs can turn a one dimensional space onto a comforting, warm and inviting cocoon, ready for guests to relax and enjoy.

Our next blog will be about how to get rid of guests that enjoy being in your home too much (only kidding!)

Cheerio ’til next time!

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Is pink too girly for an accent colour?

My husband will surely threaten to move out if I would suggest pink as my accent colour in our house. To be honest, 10 years ago I would never have thought of it either. Gradually pink was introduced into fashion as a very soft accent colour and we all got used to adults wearing pink again. If you walk into any clothing store now, the coral pink shade will be seen everywhere. I took my 15 year old daughter for her summer shopping last weekend. (Gosh, hard on the feet, hard on the wallet and even more challenging on the patience…) I only realised afterwards how many pink and white clothes she bought. Even the accessories were rose gold and black. So pink is here to stay for a while. Remember how surprised we all were when grey was announced as the new white? Hands up, how many of you love grey now?!

If you do it correctly, pink can be an amazing decor colour to work with. Add shades of grey and black to ground it, and you will have a romantic and relaxing room. It’s important to use the correct pinks though. Not baby pink or fluoro pink. Look at the style board below we delivered to a client this week. She wanted a contemporary Scandi look, with some pink accent colours. We gave her a few style boards with many options. It turned out beautifully.

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As you can see above, the furniture pieces are all neutral. They form the base of the design and now we just need to add pink accent pieces. The client can now change the cushions, throws and artwork if she wants to inject a different colour in the future. As soon as all the furniture has arrived, we will go shopping for the accent pink accessory pieces. (She was so happy with the furniture, she ordered everything within 24 hours of receiving her design!)

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As pink will make a statement, you only need to add a few pieces to pull off a beautiful design. Pink works best with a Scandinavian, French or Contemporary design style. Don’t buy a lot of pink furniture, but one statement piece like a sofa or accent chair that can become a great talking point. Especially because people might not expect you to be so bold!


Above is another style board of a living room we recently created for a client. Wallpaper installation etc only happens in two weeks from now, but soon, we will be able to show you how this room has turned out. A beautiful baroque styled living room with pink and gold accents. We ordered a stunning bright pink velvet sofa… can’t wait to show you! You can see how the two clients both chose pink, but the style and design is completely different!

In the beginning of 2016 pink (Rose Quartz) was actually announced as the Pantone colour of the year, together with a soft beautiful blue called Serenity. Read our previous blog about these colours.

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Be brave and see if you can pull off a pink room somewhere in your house! A quick way to add pink is to buy a huge bunch of pink flowers (maybe lily’s?) and place them on your dining room or coffee table. Add small pink accessories on your coffee table like a tray, vase or small ornament. Personally, I am still far away from painting a wall pink or to buy a pink rug.

Pink is playful, romantic and very relaxing at the same time.

Happy decorating,

eriana bredenhann interior designers hills district sydney


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Three tips when buying decor accessories

For once, forget your budget or priorities. Today you will learn how to “prepare to shop” for accessories. These small, random little items around your house never get the acknowledgement they should. You can have the best furniture, expensive rugs and beautiful art work, but you need to add stylish accessories to “pull it all together’, or your home might look soulless, empty or lacking in personality.

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Be prepared. We all have smartphones. Open the notebook app. Now walk around every room in the house and make a list of every corner that needs an ornament, candle, book or plant. Don’t think about priorities or your bank balance. Think like a designer! You’re not spending anything yet. Take a photo of each room and store it on your phone. Grab a measuring tape and measure your display shelves, the size of your coffee table, the size of your sofas and tables. Make a quick hand drawing if necessary and scan it into your phone. Now keep a paper made measuring tape in your handbag. Like forever. (Grab one from IKEA or buy one in the needlecraft section at your local shop.) It weighs nothing. Now you’re ready to hit the shops. Most of the time we see what we like when we don’t expect it, but now you can grab your paper measuring tape and notebook app on your phone whenever you spot an accessories you like. This will help you to never buy the wrong size (or colour!) again.


Trends change. Your grandmother’s old trinkets stored in the shed, or some childhood toy might suddenly be your latest find. Walk through your house and think what items can be re-used in a different, funky way. Maybe you should move some accessories in your bedroom to your living room for a change.  I constantly move ornaments, cushions and rugs from one room to the other. This makes everything feel fresh again.  Don’t forget the power of books. Invest in a few decor books for your coffee table or hobby books in your book shelf. Can you reframe old photographs? Maybe paint all the frames black? Can you repaint a vase or candle holder? Pack out cupboards you haven’t opened for a long time and see if there is not maybe a hidden gem. Especially kitchen cupboards. You might find a beautiful glass vase you have forgotten all about. Bring some greenery into your home. Succulents grow easily, so bring the outside inside.

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There are beautiful affordable trinkets available from home ware stores. However, do not only buy small accent pieces. Also invest in at least two to three more expensive focal pieces per room. You need to have a good combination to keep it tasteful. Every room needs at least one conversation piece. It might not be extremely expensive, but should have some character or a history.

Now off you go, start measuring and taking those photos!

Happy decorating,

eriana bredenhann interior designers hills district sydney



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Best tips you will ever need for a Hamptons Style Home

Most people fail when they try to decorate in the Hampton’s style. Why?

We visited a new client this week, and she loves the Hampton Style for her project. So I thought maybe I will share the Hampton’s style with everyone today.

Two key features are usually overlooked when decorating Hamptons:

  1. GO ALL THE WAY HAMPTON’S – or give up now. It’s about creating the style throughout your home, and not a theme you create in your living room only. Hampton’s style is creating an overall timeless look for your entire home, that represents a classis, sophisticated look. Don’t combine it with other styles in your home, as it wants to be the hero. Hampton’s is not a theme, but a lifestyle. It’s also important to have a lot of natural daylight in your home.
  2. INVEST IN HIGH END ITEMS – after all, the Hamptons style originate from the upper class elite and their holiday region in Long Island, New York. Not some beach town somewhere in nowhere.
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Two focal points all Hampton styled homes must have:

  1. DRAMATIC ENTRANCE – Hamptons style insists on making a first impression. Either you have a beautiful staircase, or a double volume entrance hall with a huge pendant light. If you can add a small table with a huge bunch of fresh flowers that look like your butler has just arranged it, you’ve got a winner!
  2. HAMPTONS KITCHEN – The kitchen forms the centre point of the Hamptons design style. It will define the style for the rest of your entertainment areas. It’s actually easy to create a Hamptons kitchen with just a few elements, e.g. panelling or shaker doors, white subway tiles, crisp white finishes and glass pendant lights.
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Image source: Entrance Hall
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Image source: Hamptons Kitchen

Walls & Floors:

  1. Stick to white walls as far as possible (Dulux Natural White is great, as it has a soft undertone)
  2. Add some white wall panelling for character if you can.
  3. Timber floors (of course) work well with either a white washed look or a deep chocolate brown colour.
  4. Add natural rugs like sisal or jute.
  5. Hamptons love dramatic but neutral curtains. You can also go for white plantations shutters or white sheer curtains.
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Image source: Hamptons floors, walls and curtains

Furniture & Accessories:

  1. Linen upholstery – a must have!
  2. Add wicker or cane elements – High End pieces of course, because wicker can quickly look cheap and worn if not quality products.
  3. Mix old and new furniture, but in a classy way. Timber furniture must still have a classical style, but be freshly painted, in good working condition and timeless. Here you can save a lot of money if you have a keen eye for second hand furniture.
  4. Add accessories like driftwood, a few (only a handful) of shells, glass jars, a butler’s tray and a little bit of bling. It must still be stylish, even though it does not have to be expensive. Think high end… Not your uncle’s old marine rope in his shed or an anchor you bought on gumtree. Keep that for your nautical style beach house…
  5. Down lights are not really Hamptons style, but we all need them. Make sure you alternate the down lights with a few pendant lights, especially with glass and iron features.
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Image source: Hamptons style accessories

Don’t feel overwhelmed, just remember that the Hamptons style does not mean you need to overspend, but it definitely means you need to think carefully that each item has meaning and has a flair for the high end. Proper planning is essential, and it’s best to choose Hamptons if you have a clean slate to work from.

Enjoy lying on your sun loungers with your cocktails in your Hamptons house! (Hopefully there is also a butler and pool boy to keep you company!)

Happy decorating,

eriana bredenhann interior designers hills district sydney



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