A Picture Paints A Thousand Words

The beauty of dealing with design professionals is that they are visual people and can easily picture in their mind’s eye what things will look like following changes.

Fro my "Blue and White" Pinterest Board

Fro my “Blue and White” Pinterest Board

One of the best ways to convey your choices to design professionals is through imagery. When I first started in the design business some ten years ago, I tore out images from magazines and pasted them into scrapbooks. I would cart around books for lounge rooms, bedrooms, home offices, kitchens, bathrooms, courtyards, window coverings, etc.

From my "Entry and Hallways" Pinterest Board

From my “Entry and Hallways” Pinterest Board

My clients would flick through the books and point out rooms they liked and explain to me why. That way, I could get a good feel for the types of things they liked (and hated) so I could start sourcing and designing.

From my "Look Up" Pinterest board

From my “Look Up” Pinterest board

But these days, I’m finding my clients are whipping out their tablets or smart phones and showing me images they’ve pinned to their Pinterest boards. It’s just perfect for people renovating or decorating as they can start collecting images they like of items or colours for their own home. I love Pinterest and am constantly adding images to my boards.

Pinterest Boards

Pinterest Boards

Do you have Pinterest?

If you would like assistance recreating an image you have found on Pinterest, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

 

Spring/Summer at Target

It’s cold and wet here today in Sydney. Maybe a sign that Winter is finally on it’s way? So what better time to take a look at the new Spring/Summer homewares soon to be released at Target.

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A couple of weeks ago I was invited to view the new collection which I must say is alot of fun.

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As you know I’m a big colour fan so I was thrilled to see a great selection of colours.

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There is a strong emphasis on Nautical for the coming warmer months. Perfect for Sydney with all that water around.

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There were liberal smatterings of red, white and blue and a touch of yellow too.

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Of course white tableware never goes out of style and can be dressed up for the special occasion dinner or looks equally at home outdoors around the barbie.

Watercolour Cushion $20 Watercolour Bird Cushion $20

And the watercolour effect looks like it’s here for a bit longer too.

The collection will be in stores in July so make sure you hurry in and grab the items you like, ready to give your home a Spring makeover come September.

If you would like assistance finding the right homewares for your home, contact us for an appointment.

Paint makes all the difference

Often when I am assisting clients with colour for their homes, they become very cautious about painting different parts of the room with bright and bold colours. My view is that it is only paint and if you really don’t like it you can paint over it with something more sedate. But take a look at these images I have found and placed on my Pinterest board, Paint Makes All The Difference.

Scared of colour? Try adding it to just the chimney breast instead of an entire wall.

Scared of colour? Try adding it to just the chimney breast instead of an entire wall.

 

Paint the backs of open bookcases or shelving for a simple injection of colour.

Paint the backs of open bookcases or shelving for a simple injection of colour.

 

Try a feature door by painting it a bright colour.

Try a feature door by painting it a bright colour.

 

And if the entire door is too much, what about the edge?

And if the entire door is too much, what about just the edge?

 

Paint a shape on the wall to create a focal point and to anchor furniture.

Paint a shape on the wall to create a focal point and to anchor furniture.

 

This would be fun in a child's room. Paint an oversized initial on a wall.

This would be fun in a child’s room. Paint an oversized initial on a wall.

 

If you would like assistance with the application of paint and colour in your home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

Before and After Colour

About 12 months ago I was asked to advise on exterior colour for a friend of a past client. I love word of mouth client’s, they are just as nice as the client who referred them!

Before

Before

The house sat on the lower side of the road and the client wanted the house to look bigger. After I blu tac-ed a few colours onto the wall we settled for Dulux Barnfloor. The gutters, barge boards and fascias were going to be Colorbond Woodland Grey and the window frames would be Dulux Whisper White.

Colorbond Woodland Grey

Colorbond Woodland Grey

Dulux Barnfloor

Dulux Barnfloor

Dulux Whisper White

Dulux Whisper White

To make the house appear bigger, I chose to use the Whisper White on the Gable End Batons and the Verandah Beams and Brackets and Awning. I suggested the verandah posts be painted the dark Woodland Grey as in my mind the dark colour gives strength to the timber. However the client preferred to paint the posts white to lighten up the facade of the house.

New Exterior Colour

New Exterior Colour

Either way, the paint looks great and lifts the house into the current era.

If you would like assistance choosing paint colours for the exterior of your home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

 

Shopping for Art

In my opinion, it’s not until you put some art up on the walls that a house truly becomes a home. Until then a space can look bare and unloved.

Entry view from the top of the stairs

Entry view from the top of the stairs

These days it’s not so hard to find some great artworks that either tug at your heart strings or work beautifully with your decor. It’s such an individual thing. Some people love art and others know they should have something so opt for a piece that suits their home and colour scheme. There’s no right or wrong when it comes to selecting artworks.

Let It Go by Robyn Kennedy

Let It Go by Robyn Kennedy

Our friend, textile artist Robyn Kennedy has recently opened an online shop over at Etsy. You will find a range of artworks starting at $90.

Eyes On Mariko by Roby Kennedy

Eyes On Mariko by Roby Kennedy

Do pop over and view Robyn’s work and see if something tugs at your heart strings.

If you would like assistance making your house a home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

Amazing Before and After

Whenever I am asked to consult on exterior colours, I will check out the home on Google Street View.

This assists in preparing me for the type of house and construction so I can make sure I take the correct tools of trade. I can also have a look at the neighbouring properties and sometimes formulate some ideas prior to arriving for the consultation.

Home as it is now

Home as it is now

This happened last week, when a previous client phoned to make an appointment for their rental property at Palm Beach. The client explained that the previous owner had been inspired by the Pastis Hotel in St Tropez. She sent me photos of the home as it is now and also a link to the hotel website.

Pastis Hotel, St Tropez

Pastis Hotel, St Tropez

But the biggest surprise came when I checked it out on Google Street View. Wow, what a transformation!

Home before

Home before

If you would like assistance choosing a colour scheme for your home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

Turn your home from drab to fab

We all love a good before and after shot. It’s amazing what can be done with different houses and rooms. One of the easiest ways to change your home from drab to fab is with a coat of paint.

Exterior of home before

Exterior of home before

A recent study of 1,000 Australian homeowners found that one quarter (24%) of people try to hide rooms away behind closed doors when visitors arrive, and 31% claim that their spare room has become a useless dumping ground. 80% of us would like to change their homes’ appearance and 57% don’t use certain rooms as much as they would like to as a result.

Exterior of home after

Exterior of home after

Taubmans and Shaynna Blaze are laying down a challenge – The Taubmans Endure Paint Challenge – trying to encourage and inspire Australians to break out of the decorating rut.

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The Taubmans Endure Paint Challenge aims to demystify home decoration and help Australians with the process of painting, from that initial spark of creativity to the final coat by providing everything they need – from inspiration and equipment, to fail safe colour palettes and expert tips. The website is full of helpful tips and advice for DIYers to finally act instead of just thinking and dreaming about a new look home.

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If you would like to change the look of your home, register for the challenge at the website, buy a can of Taubmans paint from Bunnings and keep your receipt. Take a before photo, get painting and then take an after photo and submit the images by 26 April 2014.

Paint Tin

Worst case scenario is you have that much wished for painted home. Best case scenario, you win one of the $150,000 worth of prizes which includes Bunnings vouchers and a photo shoot and magazine spread.

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If you would like assistance with your home makeover from choosing paint colours to installing window coverings, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

A Tendency Towards Teal

I’m having a bit of a love affair with the colour teal lately.

I’ve always been a blue lover (just like more than half the people in the world). I love the ocean and water and am happiest walking along the beach or sitting with a coffee looking out over the harbour. Water is something restful for me.

I'm never happier than when I can see blue water

I’m never happier than when I can see blue water

My husband, on the other hand, loves green and it would have to be my least favourite colour. When we drive between Brisbane and Sydney he will often say, “Look at those hills, all that grass, isn’t it beautiful?” And my stock standard answer is “Where’s the water?”

Green valley and rolling hills can have a calming effect on some.

Green valley and rolling hills can have a calming effect on some.

I know greens are easy to live with because of their soothing effect but blue is the colour of rest and relaxation. Combine the two and you have blue-green colours like teal, turquoise and aqua. Yay, there is a future for us after all!

Teal in the kitchen

Teal in the kitchen

While most greens emanate from the earth, I guess it’s the fact that the blue-greens are associated with the sea – calm, spacious, and cool – that draws me to them. I’ve long been a fan of turquoise in decor and love my daily fix from The House of Turquoise but with the seasons changing and we are looking for some “cosier” colours, my mind is wandering to teal.

Teal and Brown Bedroom

Teal and Brown Bedroom

Teal is seen as sophisticated. When deep blue is added to green, the shade becomes more serious. The blue-greens are complex tertiary colours and therefore are seen as more “grown-up” than straight blue or green. I’m swapping my turquoise towels in the bathroom for teal this winter. They seem happy in there and what an easy way of changing the look!

A lighter, more fresh look with turquoise bath towels.

A lighter, more fresh look with turquoise bath towels.

A stronger, warmer look with teal bath towels.

A stronger, warmer look with teal bath towels.

Blue-greens are tinted with yellow and are therefore classed as warm colours. They look good with other warm colours like red, orange and pink. Who would’ve thought that teal could solve all my problems? We might just have found a happy medium.

Teal walls in a living room

Teal walls in a living room

Do a quick Teal search on Pinterest for other great combinations and inspiration.

Teal tiles in the bathroom

Teal tiles in the bathroom

If you would like assistance adding teal to your home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

 

Look Up!

If you’ve been following my blog for a while you will know that when it comes to ceilings I am definitely a white girl. I just love the crisp clean look a white ceiling gives a home. And as the majority of houses on which I consult, are period homes and therefore light challenged, a white ceiling will help to brighten a room.

White ceiling by Inside Out Colour and Design

White ceiling by Inside Out Colour and Design

However, there are always exceptions! I love when the ceiling has been considered as another plane to decorate and this can be especially important in hairdressers’, dentists’ and beauticians’ rooms. We are seeing the line between commercial and residential decor blurring. Who doesn’t want to transport that spa bathroom in Phuket and plant it into their suburban bathroom in Sydney?

Spa Bathroom from Phuket

Spa Bathroom from Phuket

Sometimes a room needs to feel like an outdoor room and a pale blue ceiling will do it as the blue emulates the colour of the sky. I recommended this colour for a nursing home in the therapy room where most of the residents were confined to wheelchairs or beds and spent the majority of the time looking up.

Sky blue on the ceiling of a verandah or outdoor room

Sky blue on the ceiling of a verandah or outdoor room

A dark ceiling will make the room feel cosy. Or if it’s a small room or one with a raked ceiling, wrap the wall colour right around the walls and ceiling.

Enveloped in turquoise! Blue walls, woodwork and ceiling really packs a punch.

Enveloped in turquoise! Blue walls, woodwork and ceiling really packs a punch.

Remember, dark colours will make the ceiling feel lower than it really is. This is fine for rooms with very high ceilings or rooms where the height really doesn’t matter and a bit of drama would be preferred.

As dining rooms are mainly used at night, a dark ceiling helps with the cosy mood

As dining rooms are mainly used at night, a dark ceiling helps with the cosy mood

In my own home, I chose to paint the ceiling of the laundry a sea green. There are full height cabinets in white and a bright yellow tiled splashback. The height of the ceiling is the lowest in the house but it’s not really important to have a high ceiling in the laundry, particularly as I don’t plan to spend too much time there!

My laundry with sea green ceiling and yellow tiles spalshback

My laundry with sea green ceiling and yellow tiles spalshback

Another treatment overlooked for the ceiling is wallpaper. It can give the room interest and a luxurious feel. The same colour rules apply, light colours give the feeling of height while dark colours bring the ceiling down.

Wallpapered ceiling for a happy bedroom.

Wallpapered ceiling for a happy bedroom.

I selected a simple lattice pattern for the ceiling in my walk in wardrobe. The paper has a metallic sheen too which helps with light reflection. The dark cabinetry and wallpapered ceiling give a luxe boutique feel to the room.

Metallic wallpaper on the ceiling of the walk in robe

Metallic wallpaper on the ceiling of the walk in robe

The photos in this post have been collected on my Pinterest board, “Look Up” where you’ll find more examples of interesting ceiling treatments. So what are you waiting for? Start planning a makeover of the ceiling in one of your rooms.

Paint stripes on the ceiling

Paint stripes on the ceiling

If you would like assistance choosing paint colours for your home, contact us for an online or in-person consultation.

Where to buy Art

Red and Gold Asian Artwork One of the last items to go into a home makeover is usually art pieces and other wall decoration. Sometimes the client already has a collection of pieces they have acquired over the years and they may choose to use them (hanging them in a different location or having them reframed) or perhaps new pieces are required.

Original artwork I find art a very personal item and therefore don’t tend to get too involved in the selection when assisting clients decorate the home in which they will live. However, over the years I’ve collected a vast array of websites and stores which specialise in artworks and I usually steer my clients towards them to make their own choices. Some of these are more decorator pieces to coordinate with the decor and colour scheme of a room. Many times that’s all a client requires, just something to fill a space and create some interest.

Blue and Yellow artwork Art galleries and dealers can be very helpful when looking for original artworks. You don’t have to pay a King’s Ransom to own original art either. There are many affordable artworks on the market. A dealer can help locate the perfect piece to suit your budget. Many local schools and charities hold Art Shows to raise funds and these too can be a great source of works.

Red and Orange Artwork However, I still feel the artwork needs to speak to the occupants of the home and be their selection. I would hate for any of my clients to tell their friends that “it’s there because the decorator said so”. A house has to reflect the personality and styles of the client to be truly comfortable. Choosing artworks can be a very lengthy process. Only purchase something when you are positive that you will be happy looking at it every day of the week.

Brown and Blue Bedroom Some of my “go to” places for sourcing artworks are listed below. Check them out for yourself. And don’t forget if you need some assistance putting the final touches onto your home renovation or make-over, contact us for a consultation.

Seaside Canvas

Botany Bay Art

La Grolla

Designer Boys

Smart Art Direct

iArt Direct

Gallery Oscar

Soho Art Gallery

Dalozzo Art Gallery

Robyn Kennedy

Karen Benton

Urban Road

Society6

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