Home Decor Ideas – What Are The Options?

If you have just moved into a new place or considering a decorating overhaul of your current abode because you need a fast house sale UK, then you will need some inspiration to give your space a unique and fashionable look. Decorating needn’t be ridiculously expensive, and in fact utilising clever décor ideas you are able to add value to your flat or home instantly.

The first thing that can cause a disorganised mind and indeed put off guests or prospective buyers is clutter. We are all guilty of letting our rooms get a little cluttered or messy but sometimes it takes just a few small changes to make the space permanently clutter free. Take the bathroom, for example, where toiletries often pile up on the sink, windowsill and around the bath. A simple bathroom cabinet and a matching set of soap and toothbrush holders would freshen then space and de-clutter it completely. Placing an expensive hand wash or fragrant soap on your sink will instantly impress and pamper guests. In the other rooms in the house, such as the bedroom or living room, are bookshelves open? Is there room for another chest of drawers? An open book shelf in a small room will make it feel claustrophobic and messy, so simply close the bookshelves off using some attractive wooden doors.

When you are painting or wallpapering a room it is important to choose a colour palette and stick to it. If you are choosing a bold colour such as red or pink, then it is a good idea to have a feature wall which is painted or wallpapered in the colour and then the other walls are painted in a neutral shade like cream, white or grey. The feature wall should be the one that bears the focus of the room, in a bedroom this will usually be the wall behind the bed and in the living room the wall behind the settee. Bring the colour scheme out using colourful cushions, paintings or throws. Certain colours work well together such as gold and brown and duck egg blue and brown. If you are decorating your home with a view to selling or renting it out then decorate in neutral shades such as cream and white. This is because your taste is unlikely to match everyone else’s and a neutral scheme will make it easy for people to imagine their own style in the room.

You may have heard the term shabby chic thrown around but maybe you’re not exactly sure what it is. Shabby chic is a style of furniture and décor that is designed to have a distressed, worn appearance whilst maintaining a certain elegance. Shabby chic furniture incorporates light wood which brightens up any room with it’s airy french style. This type of décor suits individuals who want to add character to their home without losing that touch of elegance, sophistication and wow factor. Reading this you may be concerned that you will be scouring the antique shops in search of this particular style, however shabby chic is such a popular design that many antique reproduction furniture specialists develop new pieces of furniture with the shabby chic look.

Shabby chic look

Shabby chic furniture suits all types of rooms and buildings and not just older, traditional designs. This type of furniture incorporates light, feminine colours such as grey, cream, white and pale pastels and soft, round details. A set of shabby chic drawers, for example, would not appear like an old, dark antique, but a fresh, well worn, expensive piece of furniture which would blend nicely into even the most modern apartment. Shabby chic furniture is available for wardrobes, drawers, side tables, desks, beds and armchairs, so you could easily kit out your entire décor with shabby chic or just place a few select pieces to accentuate your room. In the same way antiques always have a classic look, so does shabby chic because it is made to appear like classic french furniture, which means it will never go out of fashion. So do away with the flat-pack furniture and cheaply made plastic pieces by buying a beautiful piece of shabby chic furniture that will last you a life time.

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Brighten Your Home with Flowers

Are you expecting company and you want to brighten up your home? Do you want a simple way to create a beautiful, eye-catching, piece in any room of your house? If flower delivery (16)so, fresh flowers may be just the thing for you.

Simple and affordable, fresh flowers can brighten up any room in the home. Choose one color, or a variety of colors, and change the entire atmosphere of your home. Because they are fresh and real, flowers bring life to any room in which they are displayed. If you want to create a look that is energizing and real, a fresh flower display is just the choice for you.

Whatever the occasion, you just can’t go wrong when you use fresh flowers to decorate. With a multitude of varieties of flowers out there, you can find the type that is perfect for any room in the house. Rather than purchasing a boring old knick knack or an artificial plant, consider a fresh flower display put together by professional florists.

The Internet makes buying flowers extremely easy as only have to do is sit at home, log onto a flower delivery service website, and browse the various items on offer to us so we find the perfect floral arrangement for the home or indeed for another recipient if you want to send flowers as a gift. I recently went to a friend’s house and couldn’t help but think it could do with brightening up, and as her birthday was just a few days away, I decided to send her some flowers.

Perhaps the biggest advantage of using a flower delivery service to send a gift for a special occasion is the speed at which the flowers will be sent. Even if you only remember a special occasion on the same day, it is still possible to get your gift to a recipient in time with a same-day flower delivery service. Obviously you will need to look for a company in your area if this is the case, or rather in the area where the recipient lives, should they reside in a different town.

Some companies have networks of shops over the country, such as iflorist and Interflora, when you visit the main website and your order will be dispatched to a local florist who will make sure your recipient gets it on time. Alternatively, you can look for a site that only caters to your town. Sometimes I find the small delivery services to be more personable, but it really is a matter of choice because most of them offer great flowers and fast delivery which at the end of the day is what you are looking for.

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Updating a Heating System

With winter coming up we’re thinking about updating the heating system in our house. Our old oil run boiler needs replacing and I want to try and find something economical. Unfortunately, gas isn’t an option as we live in a rural area and natural gas hasn’t yet reached us. I was looking at electric storage heaters and think that they are probably the best bet. They are also easy to install.

We have an old fashioned open fireplace in the sitting room and I’d like to change it into one of those wonderful modern fireplaces marble fireplaces that look stunning that I have seen online: the type that are situated several feet off the floor. A hole in the wall fire seems much more decorative but I’m not sure that it will give off just as much heat. I feel the cold a lot and even with the thermostats on the radiators turned up, I still like the direct warmth of a wood fire.

For the hot water I’m considering an electric one that uses mainly solar power. They say that 60% of your hot water is free with that type of system. I like the ecological aspect of solar energy but the weather is so unreliable, it’s difficult to believe we’ll get enough sunshine to heat a whole house, but a good tankful of hot water seems a possibility. If it manages to cut down our heating bills it will be well worth the initial outlay.


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Selecting the Beds – Practical Ways to Get a Good Night’s Sleep

Deluxe beds not only look great but they can greatly improve the quality of sleep

There are many tips we can follow that will help us all get a good night’s sleep and eliminate disturbing factors. Unsurprisingly, the bedroom is the first port of call to make sure that we are creating the right environment in which to sleep in with the general rule being the darker the better. so bright colours which are less restful should be avoided in this room and we should try and use more calming pastel colours in the design of our bedrooms. The nicer things that we can include in these rooms – from family photographs to pleasant smelling flowers – will also help us nod off in a more calm and relaxed manner. The make-up of the bed is also vital – choosing the wrong mattresses may not give the support we require and our sleep will suffer as a result. If possible, buy deluxe beds for comfort and value – you do not have to spend a fortune and your sleep and health will improve tremendously over sleeping on an old cheap bed.

We also need to consider our lifestyle if we are struggling to get to sleep as it is common sense to try and maintain a regular routine and sleep pattern. If we nap during the day, then we are less likely to get the sleep when we most need it at night. Alcohol, stimulants such as cigarettes and caffeine and even the use of technological devices from mobile phones to televisions are all best avoided as we try to wind down. Our diets in general can also have an impact night-time; however exercise can induce better sleep as it helps lower our body temperatures.

Those of us who have the most trouble sleeping tend to be the most stressed. This is because the brain is stimulated by all of our worries instead of being in the calm and tranquil place it needs to be. As more worries set in through our active brains, sleep itself becomes a thing of anxiety. We may also not be sleeping well due to changes in our hormone levels as disturbances between these and our sleep levels turn into a vicious cycle. Sedatives should be avoided due to their short-term nature, counter-effects and possible dependency from sustained use. It is a much better idea to learn and adopt various relaxation techniques to help our bodies wind down and control our breathing.


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Home Décor Ideas for Apartments

Apartments can be a nifty alternative to owning a traditional two-storey house. As well as being cheaper to maintain, we can use the benefits of communal facilities such as gardens and cleaning services. The trick to owning a comfortable apartment though, is knowing how to decorate it so it looks like a house.

If you are moving into an already furnished rented apartment, do not hesitate to have a clear out of furniture and other clutter. Ask the property owner to store unwanted furniture elsewhere so you can make full use of the space available to you and put your personal touch on it. Box up items that you will not use and place them in cupboards. This is an important step into making a home feel like yours.

Carpets can make an apartment look small. If the apartment is your own, it will be worthwhile investing in hardwood floors, which you can place rugs on instead. If it is a rented apartment and you are not the first tenant, invest in a professional clean for carpets. You would be amazed at how dirty they can become over the years.

Have you moved into a small apartment? If so, get rid of that old style wallpaper and paint the walls in a fresh and light colour. This can make apartments appear a lot bigger than they really are.

Lights are a neglected aspect when it comes to décor yet they can create some wonderful effects for making a space seem bigger than it is. Allow all natural sources of light to flood into the apartment. If this is lacking, create artificial light sources with some impressive hanging chandeliers, floor lamps and shades.

This is part one of a series of posts on home décor for apartments. Keep checking back to see when we update with a new post!

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Antique Look – Still Classic

The reason people go to auctions to pay thousands for antiques is because they are some of the most classic, well crafted, beautifully designed pieces of furniture ever made. Only the cream of the crop are kept long enough to be antiques which is why so many people favour them over new, cheaper furniture. The classic antique style is heavy, solid furniture made from wood, usually dark, with a worn appearance. If you decide to buy antique furniture it is an investment for the future because you know that these pieces will always be desirable.

Reproduction antique furniture can look just like the real thing

However not all of us have the money to spend a small fortune on antiques but there are other options open to us such as sensibly priced reproduction antique furniture.  There

are many new pieces of furniture designed to look like antiques, which you would never know were only recently made. These are usually much more affordable in comparison to the real thing. It is, on the other hand, to remember the rule that if you buy cheap then you buy twice, and buy spending a little bit more you are likely to have a piece that lasts a lot longer.

The antique style is set off with accessories and décor in keeping with the era of the furniture. Choose materials for cushions, curtains and bed spreads that would have been in fashion during the era, such as silk, velvet or lace. Wooden or stone flooring is more in keeping with the antique style, along with brass door knobs and iron chandelier type lights. Candles and antique mirrors set the mood off nicely. Remember you don’t have to go the whole hog to create an antique style but try to create a general atmosphere in the room by avoiding mixing new with old.

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Modern Look

As styles constantly change how on earth can you know what is the modern look? Achieving a contemporary and impressive décor is difficult because styles change year on year and we aren’t all interior designers after all. However there are certain décor rules that will help you to attain a modern look for a reasonable price that does not go out of fashion a month down the line!

The first rule is to never choose a color scheme or piece of furniture that you don’t particularly like just because it is in fashion. You are the one who is going to have to live with the design and therefore it should please you and reflect your personality. A modern look isn’t a specific color but the way the color is used, a modern room that is decorated in white with a single feature wall in a color of your choice, which is brought out in subtle accessories around the room will always look modern. A neutral carpet or light coloured wooden flooring is a very modern and simple choice, which is classic enough to stay in fashion indefinitely.

Ceiling spot lights

The next rule is to use lighting for maximum impact. There is nothing that ages a room more than it being dark and dingy. Ceiling spot lights are modern and great for small rooms because they do not infringe on any of the space and height of the room. To make a room look even brighter you should incorporate mirrors into the design, because mirrors reflect light. Place the mirror on the opposite wall to the window for it to maximise this effect. Mirrors that do not have a frame are very modern and fit in with any décor.

The hardest decision for achieving a modern look is what furniture to buy. There is a huge selection to choose from and finding the right size and style can be tough. If you are decorating a bedroom then get a matching set, which includes a bed, wardrobe and drawers and if you are decorating a living room make sure the chairs and sofa match. Mis-matched furniture makes a room look uncoordinated, which is great if you want an antique feel but not right for the modern look.

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Out of this world- Off The Wall Ideas

Seaside wall mural

If you want a truly unique home then there are plenty of crazy ideas that will take your décor from the ordinary to the extraordinary. By making a design statement you will ensure a real wow reaction from all of your guests and a house that stands out from the crowd. There are a few off the wall ideas that actually start on the wall! If you have a large budget then consider buying a designer wallpaper, there are some truly amazing designs out there with bold colours which appear more like works of art. Look out for designs by Arthouse, Tracy Kendell or Kicki Edgren. It is possible to have a wallpaper made from the image of your choice. If you wanted you could have an entire wall made from a picture of yourself! If you don’t have the cash to spend on a designer wallpaper then there are reasonably priced wall stickers and murals which can take up an entire wall.

One of the best things about off the wall ideas is that they can be a whole lot of fun. You can now buy giant garden games that make a real statement, giving your garden storybook appearance. There are plenty of classics to choose from including chess and 4 in a row. Try to buy ones that are weather proof so that you can have them displayed all the time.

If you looking for some out of this world furniture then you shouldn’t have too much trouble finding some gorgeous bed designs, including the very modern which blend materials like wood, iron and glass or go old-style with a four-poster. Next day bed delivery offered by a number of UK companies, also means you wont have to wait too long to achieve a brand new look. Unique furniture can sometimes break the budget because you are effectively paying for the design itself – however there are many mass produced items that are just as impressive. If you to spice up your living room or child’s bedroom then foam furniture and beanbags are all the rage; with the bright colours and unusual texture you will have a room that is out of this world.

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Self Sufficient Homes – Becoming More Popular?

House with solar panels

With the current economy taking its toll on us all, coupled with the rising concern for the environment, many people are trying to make their homes more self-sufficient in a bid to tackle both of these issues. As you drive around your local neighbourhood you may have already noticed solar panels adorning the roofs of some houses. Solar panels are popular at the moment because once they are fitted they save you money on energy bills because they are harnessing the free power of the Sun to make electricity. Of course the initial outlay for solar panels can be quite substantial, however there are some companies that will install the panels for free and then collect the government subsidies in return. Not everybody has the option of solar panels because of planning permission, the hassle of installing them or where they are situated. A good option for the majority of people is better wall insulation. If you invest in cavity wall insulation you will find the need to use another heating source reduced to the point where you are saving massively on energy bills and securing the future of the environment.

OK – so both of these ideas sound like they are going to cost a small fortune and perhaps you don’t want the hassle right now. If this is the case then turn your sights to the garden. An excellent way to make your home self-sufficient is to grow fruit and vegetables and even consider keeping some chickens. If you do not have outside space then window boxes work just as well for herbs and tomatoes. Living self sufficiently has so many benefits, such as the activity and enjoyment gained from your new hobby, the achievement when you cook with your own produce and finally the air-miles you will be saving from exported veg. By starting off small you may find that your enthusiasm continues to grow until the point where you could start selling your produce to family, neighbours or at local farmer’s markets. There is a whole host of ways to make your home more self-sufficient which will not only benefit yourself but also the environment.

Buying all weather garden chairs made from rattan instead of metal or plastic is another great way to save money and help the planet. Like bamboo, rattan is a natural material that looks great and is also extremely durable.

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