Posts Tagged ‘home improvement’

Feeling Crafty

April 14, 2011

With tomorrow’s DIY Web Chat growing ever closer, we’ve got home improvement projects on the brain! I myself am looking at getting into a little wall decorating. Doesn’t this feature strip of wallpaper just completely lift this whole room? It really seems to tie the whole scheme together, and I must say the icing on the cake is the two cuttings framed beautifully either side. Genius! Don’t you just love it when you see something gorgeous like this, and realise ‘Hey! I could do that!’. And without breaking the bank, either.

Yellow and Grey Living Room with Wallpaper

Yellow and Grey, a match made in heaven?

I am seriously tempted to spend my Easter long weekend wallpapering. I have had a few scary visions, however, of myself covered head to toe in paste and paper. Probably best to check myself into that DIY web chat over lunch tomorrow, where I shall pick the brains of none other than Tommy Walsh! Surely he will have a few tips on hassle-free wallpapering…

2010 Room Awards – woo!

January 11, 2011

2010 was a great year for home decorating and DIY. Like you, we loved the return of classic retro prints, high-tech printed wallpaper and new ways to be eco friendly and chic.

To kick-start the 2010 Room Awards we’re starting with the Best Kitchen of 2010, which is this brilliant family kitchen.

Best kitchen of 2010 | Kitchen awards for 2010 | Family kitchen-diner | Room Envy

The perfect kitchen-diner; it's a kitchen and a diner!

Why it wins? Aside from the big chalkboard – great for shopping lists and a drawing space for kids – small kitchen-diners that give the allusion of space can be tricky.

Often kitchen-diners can look like the furniture of a giant has been squeezed into the kitchen of someone from Lilliput; and the overall look can be cluttered and uncomfortable – you can’t image making a cup of tea, let alone a family meal. Or a poorly designed kitchen-diner can give the impression that the designer has rifled though the space-saving section of Lakeland and bought all the stock.

But look at the beauty of this kitchen-diner: the pastel colours – a nod to cute retro styling, and clean, functional furniture. You just know that when the kids’ have gone to bed the adults crack open a few bottles of vino, light some candles and have a delicious meal, and perhaps a adult game of Catchphrase on the chalkboard. Can we come to dinner please?

Do you love this? Tell us what was your fave kitchen of 2010?

Lunchtime Lust: decorating with grape purples

November 29, 2010

… well it is the time for mulled wine after all! I love this decorating idea from Ideal Home, it’s all about being inspired by fruity red-wine colours and creating a deliciously decadent room to wow your guests this Christmas.

Make a wall hanging to create a backdrop… or to hide an ugly feature. Use mismatched dining chairs to create an eclectic look, but make sure they’re all in the same colour and material.

dining room | dining room design | decorating ideas | Ideal Home | Roomenvy

Create a luxurious dining room by decorating with rich purple

Mix shades of deep purple for a sexy and sophisticated living room, but add liquorice-black accents to keep the scheme grounded.

living room | living room design | decorating ideas | Ideal Home | Roomenvy

Create a formal living room to wow your guests this Christmas

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Declutter an open-plan room in 5 steps

November 26, 2010

As I mentioned a couple of days ago, I’m resisting the urge to plummet into all things Christmas decorating ideas for as long as possible. In the meantime, I’m gnawing on other fab ideas in the hope they might distract me from the constant sparkle of the Christmas trends I’ve seen this year! Hi, my name’s Jenny and I’m a Christmas decorating addict.

Here’s how to organise an open-plan space in 5 steps:

1) Invest in a modular cube-unit system. Stack them high to maximise upward space or position side-by-side to create an extra worksurface.

2) Zone with a divider. A shelving unit on casters is a practical way to divide an open-plan space into a living and dining area.

3) Use the walls. Avoid day-to-day mess such as discarded magazines, papers and post, keys and pens by fixing up storage on unused wall space.

4) Add small storage. For an easy way to set the table and quickly clear it away afterwards, use a caddy or basket for condiments and cutlery.

5) Give old chairs new purpoese. Reclaimed chapel chairs have a handy box on the back that’s ideal for keeping napkins, place mats, coasters and trivets at the ready for mealtimes.

open-plan space | living room | dining room | Ideal Hoem | Roomenvy

How to organise an open-plan living room cum dining room

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Shop Envy: Caravan Style

November 24, 2010

How come it’s only homes interiors that get all the credit, when the pretty shops that sell us all these wonderful homes products are just as show-stopping. I’m starting a little ‘shop envy’ series, scouting for the high street for those cosy shops you’d happily live in.

I’m hunting for the most eye-catching shop in London, so feel free to send over any shops that have caught your eye! That’s right, I’m encouraging you to go shopping for decorating research purposes!!

Let’s kick things off with the ultra homely and welcoming Caravan on London’s Redchurch Street. Complete with modern country accessories and the friendliest cat in the world, Stylist Emily Chalmers has created a cosy space with an eclectic feel to it.

hallway decorating ideas | decorating ideas | caravan style | modern country decorating

Modern country hallway decorating idea with colourful accessories and soft furnishings

decorating ideas | caravan style | interior design | modern country

Eclectic modern country decorating ideas from London boutique shop, Caravan

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Lunchtime Lust: Sexy and swanky stripes

November 24, 2010

I’m finding myself teetering on the edge of a very steep Christmas cliff at the moment, a mere breath away from plummeting into a world of Christmas decorations, ideas, gift ideas and festive Crafts… so why I’ve still got my balance, I thought I’d continue with some general (albeit it absolutely stunning decorating schemes).

I love these luxurious decorating schemes from Homes & Gardens, they show just how stripes offer the perfect way to make a stylish statement.

An elegant wallpaper with wide horizontal stripes will give a living room the illusion of width.

stripes living room room | living room decorating ideas | Homes & Gardens

Smart and sophisticated living room with wide stripes wallpaper

Use plain linen for both walls, curtains and pelmet, then embellish with wide bands of different coloured velvet ribbon.

stripes dining room | dining room decorating ideas | Homes & Gardens

Elegant dining room with striped wallpaper and upholstery

Choosing an ebullient mix of stripes in one bright hue will create an uplifting and welcoming mood.

red bedroom | bedroom design ideas | Homes & Gardens

Red twin bedroom with candy cane striped bedlinen and upholstery

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Spring decorating trend: Orange blossoms

November 17, 2010

I never thought I’d see the day when I calmly said, ‘Hey folks, guess what the hot colour for Spring/ Summer is? Orange.’ But now that day has arrived, and I tell you, the sun-drenched shade is going to be big news for decorators in 2011.

Don’t be scared. Just think of all the good things that come in this citrus hue – Florida oranges, vitamin C, sunshine (sort of), flowers, Reese’s pieces, fake tan.. oh, wait, rewind on that one. The point is, orange objects inspire happy thoughts, so let’s try to embrace the warmth. Just take a look…

Hot House range - Laura Ashley - roomenvy

Hot House range - Laura Ashley - roomenvy

Toned down in a more muted shade of naranja, Laura Ashley’s Hortense Zinnia print (featured on wallpaper, fabric and even pendant shades in the Hot House range) has a lovely retro vibe.

Tangerine range - Bhs - roomenvy

Tangerine range - Bhs - roomenvy

Full on, fluoro, and mixing futuristic with florals, Bhs teamed its statement-making Tangerine range with black and white accents for a true colour impact. This one’s for the brave amongst you…

Tangerine range lighting - Bhs - roomenvy

Tangerine range lighting - Bhs - roomenvy

If only we didn’t have to have anything else – such as storage – in a hallway! An amazing display of electric-coloured lighting would make life so bright, even if the monthly utilities bill was trebled!

Clean range - H&M Home - roomenvy

Clean range - H&M Home - roomenvy

The new H&M Home range took a similar route, mixing and matching Missoni-esque monochrome prints with a bright and brilliant shade of orange. Their selection of home accents used a richer, red-based shade, making it more workable for the colour-shy.

So, there you have it. Orange is in. Just don’t go overboard, as we’ll know when you’ve been tangoed!

If that’s just whet your appetite for juicy shades and forward-thinking design, find more inspiration and Spring/Summer 2011 decorating trends at

Monday’s gonna be all white!

November 8, 2010

I’m worried I’ll put up these really relaxing crisp white schemes and make you all sleepy …er than you already are after the weekend’s Bonfire Night and fireworks excitement – but I couldn’t resist.

Take snowy shades to greater depths by layering texture and pattern for a modern spin on the classic white space.

Sharpen a white living room scheme with strong lines. The grooves of this unusual horizontal cladding work with the fan of the chair seat and the folded metal lamp.

white living room | living room decorating ideas | living rooms |livingetc

Blink and you'll miss it living room furniture...

For a new way to do white dining room walls, cover it with a black-and-white scenic view. Brrrrrr!

white dining room | dining room design ideas | Livingetc | roomenvy

Narnia-esque dining room with striking feature wallpaper

Update traditional buttoning with an oversized, zigzag-stitched headboard in white linen. Barely there geometric wallpaper echoes and reinforces the design.

white bedroom | bedroom design ideas | Livingetc | Roomenvy

Crisp whites for a modern minimalist bedroom

Refresh the slick whites of the bathroom with pretty, oversized florals.

bathroom | bathroom inspiration | bathrooms | Livingetc | Roomenvy

Elegant snowy white bathroom scheme

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Friday’s Fetish: decorating with chilli reds – that’s hot!

November 5, 2010

I love Ideal Home‘s take on decorating your home in chilli reds: ‘Just as a slick of scarlet lipstick takes an outfit from so-so to super-sexy, fiery red can be a short cut to sophistication in your home, too!’ These decorating schemes are red hot, nothing can beat a eye-popping shot of colour to make an impact in your home!

Put Jalapeno red pieces against a slate wall to make them really stand out!

red living room | decorating ideas for living rooms | living room decorating ideas | Ideal Home

Accents of chilli red bring this modern living room to life

The key to this strong bedroom look is getting the balance right: use tabasco red and white in strictly equal quantities on walls, fabrics and accessories.

red bedroom | bedrooms | bedroom design ideas | Ideal Home

Liven up your bedroom with this season's chilli reds

No floor space for a sideboard in the dining room? Wall mount slim storage units instead.

dining room | dining room design ideas | dining table | Ideal Home.jpg

Add a vibrant feature wallpaper to your contemporary dining room

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Looking for a handsome lunch date?

October 14, 2010

What’s better than spending your lunch hour with a handsome man? If the answer is Pret I INSIST you reconsider and join housetohome’s home improvement webchat with Channel 4’s George Clarke.

TV presenter and now carpet design guru for Fun on the Floor, George will be on hand to answer all your home improvement questions, from how to add value to your home to basement conversion advice. Boyfriends can wait for an hour, this guy can help you with your decorating projects without complaining about being dragged away from Sky Sports (a sore point!)

See you there! Click here to register for an email reminder, so you don’t miss out on the action.

p.s Keep it clean, people!


kitchen | kitchen remodeling | home improvement | George Clarke

kitchen | kitchen remodeling | home improvement | George Clarke


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