Transform Your Bathroom Into Your Own Personal Spa Retreat

Often times the bathroom is the last room in the home to receive a little TLC. But with just a little care and some thoughtful finishing touches, you can transform your bathroom so it feels more like a spa retreat. Makeover your bathroom design now with these luxurious finishing touches: Flameless candles One of the first and most obvious and instant ways to give your bathroom the spa treatment is to add a few candles. Flameless candles are an exceptional option as they never burn out. Put a few around the vanity and then some around the edge of the bath if you have enough space. Experiment with different sized candles clustered in lots of three. Heated towel rack There’s nothing like stepping out of the shower and wrapping yourself up in a warm, fluffy towel. Heated towels are soothing on the skin and give you that ‘day spa feeling.’ LED lights around your mirror Rather than always using bright, overhead lights for doing your makeup or hair, why not use LED strip lights around the outside of your mirror to provide the perfect level of illumination right where you need it? These lights also give that contemporary yet glamorous feel we all love. Plush towels, robe, and slippers Invest in a few high-quality plush towels plus a soft robe and matching slippers. When you step out of the bath or shower, you want to be able to reach for your heated towel, before putting on your soft robe and slippers on exiting the bathroom. It really is all of the little things that make the world of difference! Fresh cut flowers or indoor plant Ever notice how your favourite day spa seems to always have gorgeous bunches of fresh flowers in every room? Flowers add colour, vibrancy and fragrance. Treat yourself to flowers for your bathroom from time to time or invest in an indoor plant that’s suitable for bathroom conditions. You’d be surprised how much difference a touch of green or living colour will make. By adding just a few finishing touches you’ll be able to transform your bathroom into one of your favourite rooms in your home. Your bathroom should promote relaxation and calm and by adding a few stylish additions you’ll experience just how easy it is to recreate that spa feeling at...

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Avoiding Museum Syndrome
Oct13

Avoiding Museum Syndrome

A lot of people dream about renovating their homes. Even brand-new homes get a bit dinged up over the course of a decade or two – raising a family, a herd of dogs and cats, hosting visitors, dealing with the inevitable roof leaks, mud-tracking incidents, and the occasional flooded garage. Even if you avoid disasters, your floors will slowly get scratched up by claws and high heels and kitty litter, your walls will get scuffed and sport ancient hand-prints, and your décor will slow fade into deprecated old-fashioned-ness. That’s when people start scrutinising the design magazines and calculating the interest rates on their mortgage redraw options. And renovating, while exhausting and frequently frustrating (and always more expensive than you expected) is a lot of fun, and can completely renew your beloved old house. There’s just one thing to be careful of: Museum Syndrome. Look But Don’t Touch If you ever visited someone as a child and sat in a living room on furniture covered in plastic, you’you’ve experienced Museum Syndrome: When a home is so overly designed that it’s really not meant to be lived in, but is more of a museum of the owner’s taste. There are a few ways to identify Museum Syndrome in your home or someone else’s: The presence of furniture you’re not supposed to sit in or use. Entire rooms that serve no purpose, and which visitors are discouraged from entering. A lack of practical living areas or access to the functional areas of the house. You know the feeling, too: When you’re afraid to move or touch anything in someone’s home, no matter how gorgeous it is, they’ve turned their home into a museum and forgotten the first rule of residential interior design: The space must be usable as well as beautiful. Fabulous, but Liveable The fact is, you can make a home beautiful, inspiring, and high-end and still practical and liveable – in fact, this is the trick that separates the great interior decorators from the rest. You don’t want your home to wind up a cold, forbidding museum, but you want it to look great. Here’s a few simple exercises you can employ in the planning stages to ensure that your home comes out fabulous – but liveable. Start with Purpose Every room in your home should have a distinct purpose. The kitchen and bathrooms are obvious, as are defined bedrooms. In other areas, know what the purpose of the room will be before you start designing. Use a Mix of Durable Textures Remember that if you want a room to be alive and useful, it has to be durable. High-end,...

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Add A Touch Of Magic To Your Home With Fairytale Accents

If you want to add some whimsical magic to your home, adding fairytale accents here and there could be just what you’re looking for. Forget Disney figurines and sparkly wands. After all, the fairytale look can have a very grown up edge to it, if done properly. Here we’ll run through some beautiful interior decorating ideas to add a touch of magic to your home. Are you an Alice in Wonderful fan? This rabbit lamp is perfect for lounge rooms and dining room spaces. While it features an adorable, curious looking rabbit as the lamp base, it’s sleek design and colour means that it will perfectly match with a range of home interior styles. Bright coloured candles also bring to mind mysticism and magic. Flameless candles are a great alternative to traditional candles as they look just as good, yet never burn out. Try clustering together different candles in bright colours. They will look beautiful at night and illuminate a relaxing glow. Fairytales and folk stories are also about the impossible, the strange and the quirky. Consider this lamp that was originally designed by Charles Trevelyan. It’s unique design makes it a serious dinner party talking point while adding something uniquely different to your home. String lights, or ‘fairy lights’ as they are often called look beautiful when draped appropriately. Just make sure you purchase the right fairy lights for how you want to use them. There’s the indoor and outdoor variety. Flower-shaped solar powered string lights look dainty when draped across a courtyard or balcony. Apart from beautiful lighting accents, consider ways to incorporate natural elements into your home. Fresh flowers always add something special to any room and terrariums with natural moss and ornaments are a fun and playful way to add something magical to your home. Pine cones clustered together in a bowl and pieces of driftwood displayed correctly also look really effective, they just require some foraging on your part. By adding just a few hints of whimsy here and there, you should, on all counts, live happily ever...

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Spring Make-Over
Sep19

Spring Make-Over

Spring is in the air! Time to do some spring cleaning and get ready for the new season. Whether you are looking to do slight enhancement or major overhaul here are some pointers to get you started. First identify what it is you aim to do, then get an inspiration notebook to keep all your ideas in one place. I suggest the following pointers to assist you in getting ready for spring new look 2014:  Cut-out or make a copy of the inspiration room picture you so desire. Next, get yourself a notebook to help you get organized. Paste the inspiration image in your notebook, and use that page as your concept page.  Once you have your concept page, identify the elements and items that you will be needing to change or add. Some example of this can be: choosing new colors for the walls, getting new lamps, replacing an existing rug, etc. Keep this list in your notebook and don’t forget to take it with you when you go shopping!  Look for those items you already listed, and remember to always use the concept image as a reference a guide to your design – do not get side tracked with the items you like randomly! Keep referring to your list and stay focused on your inspiration concept. Now that you have your 7 pointers to help you stay on track let’s look at the “IN” colours according to Pantone Colour trends for spring 2014. Colour is super important and sometimes we shy away from bold colours but as long as you pick one main colour and use it as an accent colour then it can tie the rest of the space rather nicely.   Here is a great way to accessorise your space with some Celosia Orange. If you’re just looking for a simple enhancement to your space, you can add accent pillows, or choose a nice piece of art work to complement the pillows and the gray, adding a pop of color to enhance the space without having to change too much, patterns seem to be dominating the scene this spring as far rugs go. Here is a beautiful example of how to make patterns work in your space. Use neutral tones for the walls and accentuate with a nice pattern rug. Whether you are trying to enhance or add colour this spring, just remember to keep your ideas together and not lose focus on the ideal style you are looking for. Lots of bold colours can be used this spring to accentuate and layer with home accents. When in doubt refer to your inspiration image and have fun creating your new space for...

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Furniture up-cycled, recycled, renovated, re-worked and repurposed
Sep16

Furniture up-cycled, recycled, renovated, re-worked and repurposed

I was working my way around the stands at a trade show a few years ago when I came across this interesting piece of old furniture nestled amongst all the swish, polished, smooth clean lines of contemporary pieces. It was in an area called ‘Designers’ Block’ where I was expecting to see the weird and the wonderful, certainly not a battered old chest of drawers. Standing nearby was a young man who clearly wanted to talk so I asked him his name. “Tom”, he said and he then introduced me to the piece of furniture, “This is Aschenputtel”. He explained that it was an experimental work, the result of a collaboration between himself, Thomas Forsyth, and Owen Gildersleeve. (If you’d like to see more about this piece of furniture, as shown at Interiors UK 2010, there’s a magical little video here.) I was intrigued by the old silk ties that lined the top opening ‘drawer’ and the hand cut paper petals, now covered by a layer of clear perspex to preserve their beauty, that formed a drawer lining. I enjoyed hearing how some of the renovation was really difficult and time consuming and how it was intentional to leave the paintwork shabby. (Images of Aschenputtel courtesy Thomas Forsyth.) Since then I have come across lots of up-cycled, recycled, renovated, re-worked and repurposed items glad to see that ‘eco friendly’ and ‘sustainable’ principles are still very trendy. This piece has never left my imagination however, and I think it was the fact that it had a name. Is that silly? And I’m a sucker for colour; these were outstandingly pretty petals, offering a lovely surprise when you opened the drawer, so much so, I wonder if I would have ever used it for storage. Guide to green design Here are a few points about green design and then some images of items I’ve seen since Aschenputtel. Enjoy! Sustainability is the capacity to maintain a system for a long time, perhaps indefinitely so we can utilise and replenish the planet’s resources responsibly.  Many items are over designed and over engineered so we must ask the question, “Can it look good and do the job using less material?” Although renovation, which protects and preserves, is not necessarily a cheaper option it is right and proper to conserve the valuable and aesthetically important. Recycling is concerned with saving resources and finding innovative uses for waste material. Up-cycling brings something back to a useful life, possibly with a whole new...

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