My favourite part about working as an interior designer is watching a room come to life. Architects and builders create the house, or the structure (and a fine job they often do!), but it's what you put inside that turns it from a house to a home. Here are some tips that are guaranteed to warm up your space...
Start at the beginning. The entrance is the first part of your home that you and your guests see. Make a great first impression by creating a warm and welcoming entrance. It's bound to make you happy every time you arrive home.
Surround yourself with things you love. Do you have a love of vintage mirrors, or a collection of treasured vases? Group them together to make an interesting display.
Of course, that goes for any of your beloved items. Having them on display in your home helps to tell a story about who you are.
Artwork is one of the easiest ways to put your mark on a space. "Art, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder"... it is very personal and often the hardest thing to choose for someone else. If it moves you in someway, and brings you joy, you should definitely have it in your home.
Another easy way to bring life to your home is to add plants and flowers. Flowers are an instant hit of colour and beauty, and plants can be a more permanent part of your decor - from a large indoor tree in the corner of your living room to a small potted succulent on your bookshelf.
Anything that has history will add depth and soul to your space. Reupholster your grandmother's antique sofa in a contemporary fabric, or repurpose your father's childhood drawers to use as bathroom vanity. Obviously a piece from your own family will have special meaning, but you can also scour the second hand shops to create this look. I love mixing older pieces with contemporary ones.
Once you have your key furniture pieces, layer them with rugs, cushions, and throws to bring warmth and comfort. This is an great way to create a cosy and inviting home.
Books, candles and photographs are the perfect items to create meaningful vignettes, and the books and photos give more clues as to who lives here. Candles, especially scented ones, create ambience and add warmth to a room.
Lighting is very important in a home. Make sure you have a variety of sources - bright task lighting is important in a kitchen and bathroom, but I often only use lamp light in living areas. Add dimmers to your main lights, and have floor and table lamps throughout your home so that you can adjust the light to suit the occasion.
These are all things that you can do yourself, but if you would like any help turning your house into a home, you need only ask!