Add a touch of luxe

For the longest time in home design, velvet has been synonymous with luxury and opulence. Typically it is has been a fabric that was only available in limited colours would be hard to clean and keep looking at its best and so, was mostly reserved for formal settings.

With advances in fabric technology, today’s velvet changes all that and is gaining some serious momentum & popularity. Modern velvets are a sinch to keep clean, are available in any colour of the rainbow and add a touch of glorious luxe to almost any interior space… it’s little wonder why people are quickly jumping on the bandwagon!

If you’ve been unsure about adding some velvet into your home, I thought I’d share a few tips for how you can do this, from simply adding small touches to going all out with key pieces of furniture…

Go small – If you’re not bold enough to invest in a large piece of furniture, cushions or a footstool are an excellent place to start. Velvet cushions on a linen couch give a stunning contrast and will give a subtle elegance to casual living rooms. Adding in a footstool (bonus points if it has a metal or marble base) will make a space exude class and simplicity.

Get cosy – Occasional chairs are also a great places to start. The first piece of velvet in home happened to be an arm chair for my daughters nursery and I have to say through all those midnight feeds while she was a new born, it was the comfiest and my most favourite place to be. Velvet not only looks elegant and luxurious, but is also one of the cosiest fabrics to curl up on during the cooler months.

Go Bold – Having a sofa or bedhead in velvet is a bold move, but one I’m sure you wouldn’t regret. Choose an opulent jewel tone such a sapphire blue, emerald green or a deep violet for a dramatic look. Velvet looks stunning on almost any shape or size furniture, enhancing curves in traditional pieces and adding a touch of sleek on ultra modern shapes.

Contrast it – Contrasting velvet with rustic timbers or casual cane furniture juxtaposes the two materials in a most fabulous way. The velvet adding elegance and grace to more casual and relaxed pieces. Using this combo in a dining room is a perfect example as shown in the above image by interior designer Nate Berkus.

Mix up your textures – Just like contrasting velvet with one material will add dynamic to your room, adding in a few more will enhance it even further. Mix up velvet with jute, leather, linens, faux furs and more for a beautifully layered look. Done in neutrals or with splashes of gorgeous colour this look will give your space a dynamic, elegant and pulled – together look thats both comfortable and cosy.

Monochrome and Timber

When I picture a monochrome room, I often picture something thats quite cold and uninviting, however, thats not how it has to be! With the addition of textures, natural timbers and fresh (or faux) greenery a whole lot of life can be injected into a monochrome scheme, making it feel warm and welcoming. Check out this scheme below for a little inspiration of how you can add some warmth into this an uber-cool scheme! 

Where it’s all from:

Artwork, knitted cushion, Throw, Floor lamp, contrast cushion, table lamp, + cushion, throwarmchair, sofa, faux plant, side table, rug

Interior Design Trends 2015 – Wallpaper

One could say that designing their home around “design trends” is absolutely ridiculous, but I beg to differ.

Why? Well because design trends for the home tend to last a few years, so choosing to design your home around certain trends can definitely get you some more bang for your buck – than say buying the latest coat that is so 2015 next year!

That being said, today’s trend that I wanted to look at is wallpaper, and it’s one that has been growing a few years (a good indicator that it will most likely be around for a while). When I first started to see wallpaper making a comeback, I have to admit, I cringed a little. Memories of peeling mustard & green striped paper on my childhood bedroom wall came back way. too. fast.

Thankfully we live a in a world where technology and design have developed immensely. Now days, a quick search on Pinterest will pull up hundreds of drool-worthy rooms featuring gorgeous wall paper for any and every room of the home.

From abstract art or small scale prints to incredible textures or full wall murals – anything is possible! But as the first choice is often the hardest – choosing what look you’d like to go for – below are a few options to help narrow the field.

Abstract art: Ultra modern prints and abstract art are a brilliant way to give a modern space some serious personality and wow factor without cluttering a space with lots of “things” 

Life imitating Art: Or rather art imitating life. Anything tropical, floral or depicting our gorgeous mother nature – be it a realistic photo or something a little more artistic – these wallpapers gives a room a fresh, vibrant and welcoming feel. 

Wall murals: Think large scale images that take up a whole wall with one image of a scene, city or map. Possibly my preferred choice of wallpaper as they create a sense that the room doesn’t stop where the wall does – making spaces seem larger than they really are.

Texture: I’m talking wood grain effects, brick walls (like this one below), fabrics or the ever coveted sea grass /grass cloth wallpapers. These styles completely change the look and feel of a room by visually changing the feel of the architecture of a space. Genius.

Wall Stickers: From inspirational quotes to polka dots or sweet animals for nurseries – wall stickers are great as they are easily removable and give you the ability to be the designer. Want something a little asymmetrical? Or would you prefer all your ducks in a row? With wall stickers the choice is yours to lay out the design however YOU like. 

So tell me, whats your favourite? Have you already got wallpaper at home? How did you decide what was going to adorn your walls and are happy with the results? 

Design Trends 2015 – Deep Blue

Blue, like red is a colour that never goes out of fashion. It’s a staple classic that is always found in design trends in varying shades or hues. At the moment it’s all about Deep blues, navy blues or indigo. In the lighter shades, we’re seeing a lot of green based blues such turquoise or duck egg, but today we’re all about the deep hues that are currently taking center stage. Take a look at some of the images below for some inspiration on how you can use this colour for any look – from the crisp classics to something with a more tropical vibe…  

Interior Design trends – Metallics

It seems the world has gone mental for metallics. From art, to cushions, copper to gold, over the past few months metallics have been growing more and more in popularity. At the moment it’s all about copper and gold, but there’s also a surge in brass starting to rise. Whether you are trying to create an industrial or glam look, metallics can be an excellent way to had that edge that many other materials cannot. For an industrial look, aged or hammered metallics are a perfect addition, whereas a hint brushed of polished metals will instantly add a little glam and sparkle to any room of the house! Take a look at the below images for some inspiration for bedroom to the bathroom and all that’s in between… 

Copper in the Kitchen…

Metallic hints in artwork….

A touch of glam in the bedroom…

Mixed metallics in the lounge…

Brass in the Bathroom…

Interior Design Trends 2015 – Layers and Texture

Adding in Layers and textures to a room will always give the space a feeling of ‘home’ and it’s for that reason alone that this is one design trend that should be here to stay.

So say goodbye to the days of minimalism or sparse decorating, and hello to homes that are filled with us – personality, character, layers of memories and textured moments.

It’s natural that the more time when spend in our homes, the more things we acquire and want to have on display. Homes that are filled with memories in photos, unique find that have been picked up on holiday or given to us by someone special are beautiful reminders to fill our home with.

It takes time to achieve this look and it’s a look that is ever-evolving as we create new memories or travel to new places. The most important thing to remember with this look is to not try too hard or try to complete a room in one day. Let it evolve naturally. Rather than purchasing a furniture suite from one store, wait to find something you absolutely love and develop your look from there. As the seasons change, allow you room to evolve with throws or rugs for the cooler months or fresh flowers and vibrant art when the weather warms up.

Living in home that looks like it’s straight out of a furniture catalog is one thing, but living in a home that is filled with layers of memories and texture is like receiving a big comforting hug every time you walk in – and that’s one trend I’m definitely on board with!

Interior Design trends 2015 – Pastels

Spring always brings with it a fresh set of colours in the form of pastels, but this year something has been different. They’ve stuck around for Summer, Autumn and now were in the middle of Winter and they’re still here. Usually kept on reserve for nurseries or (as mentioned) Spring, pastels this year have been made modern by pairing with black and gorgeous timbers. From blond oaks to rustic chunks the combination of pastels with timber is a match made in heaven, throw in a little black to add some contrast and the look is sleek, modern and fit for any room of the house….

Design Trends 2015 – Statement Lighting

It goes without saying that the right lighting can make a room go from drab to fab. Along with colour, lighting has always been one my favourite aspects about design – it’s one of the key (and to me, most important) aspects for any room of the home. Insufficient lighting in the bathroom or kitchen can make the space a nightmare to work in, while incorrect lighting in living or sleeping spaces can really alter the mood of the room. So, it’s no surprise that this design trend sits close to my heart – Statement lighting is both practical and gorgeous, it can be implemented in any room and it can be as cheap or as expensive as desired. I thought today I would share a few tips for every room of the home to make choosing and installing pendant lights that little bit easier.

Kitchens – pendant lights over a breakfast bar or island is the common and practical place for them to be installed – providing light directly over the area that is most commonly used for prep. Ensure your lights are hung high enough to not be cumbersome,  or in the way (the base of the pendant should be around 70 – 80 cm above the benchtop). If you are wanting to hang multiple pendants a good rule of thumb is to hang them approximately 50-75 cm apart (depending on your light style). 

Dining rooms – In the dining room task lighting is less important and mood lighting is generally more desired, so ensure your pendants can be dimmable. It’s also important here that lights are not hung too low as to get in the way, aside from that you can go as big and bold or as elegant and refined as so desired to suit your space.  If you have a large space, something solid like the copper pendant below is a great choice, cement and timber options are also very popular at the moment. If you don’t have the luxury of as much space, clear glass pendants are an excellent choice as they are see through and wont close the space off. 

Bedrooms – There are two options here, either a smaller pendant either side of the bed to replace traditional lamps or a larger pendant in the middle of the bed or room. If you’re opting for bedside pendants ask for them to be hung so the base of the light is sitting just above head-height when you are sitting in bed, this will set them at a height ideal for reading/sitting in bed. 

Bathrooms – Statement lighting in bathrooms is more suited to wall sconces either side of vanity or pendants central to the room. Pendants for vanity units are also starting to grow in popularity. With either type of lighting around the vanity, the most important thing to remember is the light should be at face height – there is nothing worse than having dark shadows cast over your face when trying to get ready for an evening out! It’s also important to remember that feature lighting alone wont be enough in a bathroom, down lights or some other ceiling light is crucial for creating a well lit space.

Hall Ways and Entries – As these areas are often the first we see when walking into a home, it’s a great opportunity to choose something with real wow factor, but to also consider the rest of your home and what style you’re working through the whole house. If it’s modern glam, the pendants below would be a perfect choice! High ceilings will also be relatively important here as anything hanging too low could close the space in, making it feel claustrophobic. 

5 Pendants for any budget:

Design Trends 2015 – Big Comfy Furniture

Big comfy furniture is a trend that is less about looks and more about comfort – and there is no man that is going to complain about that! Whether is a big comfy chair in a sunny spot or an over-sized sofa with extravagant chaise these plush items have definitely become a big hit over the past couple of years and it all makes complete sense. In today’s world where everything is so fast paced, rushed and (sometimes) stressful, when one gets home from a long day there is often nothing better than curling up with a nice glass of wine to de-stress. From outdoor lounges to plush sofas, furniture that is made to be ‘lived in’ has really taken off. We’ve seen outdoor furniture go crazy in popularity and while big comfy couches are nothing new, I’m definitely seeing them around a lot more and loving the look of a relaxed living space. So grab a glass, curl up and enjoy…. 

Get the look…

Interior Design Trends 2015 – Clawfoot tubs

There are a couple of items that come to mind when I think of timeless classics. Wingback armchairs, clawfoot tubs, armoires and chesterfields name a few, but today I want to take a closer look at one these that is trending big time at the moment – clawfoot tubs. Considered a luxury item in the late 19th century, clawfoot tubs have come and gone in popularity time and time again and with their classic beauty and instant elegance factor, it is little wonder why these tubs are back in vogue. From French provincial to industrial or retro to rustic, clawfoot tubs are becoming the go-to hero piece for many bathrooms and are really making me want to take a nice long soak with some bubbles and a great book….

A classic French provincial setting – Crisp white paired with soft neutrals, classic shapes and stunning tapware helps create this gorgeous French provincial inspired bathroom. Just add Champagne….

Industrial Inspiration – I love the relationship between the exposed brick and bathtub in this bathroom. The brick is really making the bath take centre stage, while the juxtaposed elegance of the bath softens the industrial setting…

Classic Elegance – The classic clawfoot tub, tapware, wall panelling and glass pendant all come together in this gorgeous bathroom to create an elegant space. I’m thinking bubble bath and scented candles to finish the picture?

A Hint of modern – Painting the exterior of clawfoot tubs has also become very popular in recent days. Giving them a bright hit of colour modernises the classic piece. I’ve seen everything from hot pink to lime green (for a more retro look) but this French navy tub has to be my favourite!

Rustic Charm – Proving these tubs can sit elegantly in a variety of settings, this slightly more rustic scene with fireplace and painted floorboards would be perfect for a long soak and good read…