6 Essential Tips for Choosing Wallpaper

6 Essential Tips for Choosing Wallpaper

When it comes to interior styling, wallpaper is not a dirty word to be thrown in with velour couches and shag-pile carpet! In fact, contemporary wallpaper is the smart, modern way to add space, interest – and value – to your home.

“Wallpaper is a great way of bringing multiple colours and tones into a room rather than committing to one single paint colour,” assures Melbourne-based illustrator, Mairead Murphy, who recently launched a range of delectable wallpaper designs. But its benefits don’t stop there, she adds. Clever wallpaper choices can enlarge and enlighten a stale space, create an eye-catching focal point and possibly make you rethink a room renovation!

Follow these expert tips below to makeover your own home with wallpaper.

Beyond the paint

Here are four wallpaper trends to get carried away with:

1. Textures

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Adding warmth and intimacy to a cooler, more open and and even drafty space of the home is easily achievable through textural wallpaper. You can go for natural threads or patterned options, and the tactile effect creates a lovely enclosing energy.2. Floral

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Flowers can be perceived as passé or incredibly popular, but, as Mairead notes, when choosing a wallpaper for your home the most important thing is that you love it. “Everything will date to some extent and if you are too worried about something dating, you might not make the choice based on what you really think will work best in your home,” she explains. “Then you’ll miss out on having wonderful, unique walls you wish you had.”3. Geometric

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Monochrome shapes and designs can be subtly done – with ghosting tones – or more dramatically with bold black and white. Triangles, squares and multi-coloured approaches offer a hard-to-miss statement but if you find them too masculine, go for white on cream or pastel hues for a modernist touch.4. Wall as art

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Sometimes with wallpaper, less is more, so pick and choose by only papering one feature wall to create a strong focal point within a space. This is perfect for those who have few art pieces to hang but want to make impact on a room. “I think that a beautiful, illustrated wallpaper crosses into both interior design and artwork,” says Mairead. “Artwork will always play a very important role in interior spaces but wallpaper blends into the essence of a room in a different way.”6 essential tips to choosing wallpaper

1. Don’t order online

“Always order a swatch of the actual paper to look at in your space,” suggests Mairead, as she warns that papers will look different in real life and will change depending on the light you have in your room. “You might like the way the pattern looks in photos but not the texture of the paper. It’s always best to check with a sample.”

2. Work with what you have

Have a look at the colours and textures you already have in the room and even if you are going to give the room a little lift with some new fabrics, unless you are using the wallpaper as the basis for a complete overhaul, you will need to work in with colours and furniture you have.

3. Prep makes perfect

Make sure you have a well prepped surface ensuring  all old paper and glue is removed and any new plasterwork is primed.

4. Style to scale

Choose a pattern that fits the scale of your room. “Working out how many repeats you will get across your wall will give you a good idea of how the scale works,” Mairead suggests.

5. Take in the view

Think about where else in the house you might see the wallpaper from so it becomes a feature from various vantage points within adjoining spaces.

6. Create space

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“You can use a wallpaper with a vertical or horizontal pattern to emphasize the height or width of your small space,” says Mairead. “This is definitely something that can’t be achieved with a paint colour.”

5 Simple Ways to Cosy up your Home

5 Simple Ways to Cosy up your Home

These 5 styling tips from Interior Design guru Shaynna Blaze, will make hibernating at home, look and feel a whole lot better.

With the prospect of spending more time at home due to the cold winter chill, it might be worth considering a little home makeover.

Embrace the season, says Shaynna Blaze, with the best heating you can afford and these 5 styling tips.

1. Rug up

Floorboards or tiles are not much fun to walk on in winter, but even if you have carpet, a rug is always a good addition. It adds warmth, texture, colour and pattern which all work to make a room feel cozier. Besides the living room, under the bed is another great place for a rug, especially for bare feet first thing in the morning! Position the rug with the longer side horizontally under the end of the bed with enough to go around the foot of the bed and along each side just up to the bedside tables. If you have room for a larger rug, place it underneath the whole bed and bedsides, aiming for equal coverage all around.

2. Seasonal switch

Swap summery linen or cotton scatter cushions, floor cushions and throws, with velvet, wool, cashmere or faux fur ones. In fact, cheaper acrylic throws feel just as soft and are warm too. These accessories are the quickest and most inexpensive way to give your sofa a revamp and you’ll love snuggling up to them too. Why not replace a cold coffee table with an upholstered ottoman that will double as a footstool.

3. Fireplace feature 

If you’re lucky to have a real fireplace (or even just a gas log flame heater that looks the part) then make it stand out. Paint the wall around and above the fireplace, from the skirting board to the cornice, a dark colour like charcoal, dark chocolate, deep emerald or navy. Not only will it frame the fireplace but it will provide the perfect background for artwork or a mirror to stand out above it.

4. Focus on firewood

If you have a working fireplace, don’t keep going out into the cold to stock up on firewood, think of creative ways to display it indoors – in a rustic basket, industrial chic metal container or a faux (or real) leather box. A small, vintage, soft leather suitcase with character (or a Louis Vuitton monogram!) could also do the trick. Or if you have bookshelves on either side of the fireplace then stack firewood along the bottom shelves. Keep it tightly and neatly stocked for most impact. It will add a real earthiness, not to mention the lovely scent of timber.

5. Lighten the mood

Get all moody with lighting. Forget the bright overhead lights – instead add a floor lamp or a couple of table lamps to a living room for dimmer, subtler lighting. Use a silver, crystal, timber or leather tray to group together a collection of real or flameless battery-operated candles (the safer option, especially if kids are around). Place them on a coffee or console table, on the mantelpiece or as a centerpiece on a dining table.

7 Simple Ways to Make Your House Look More Expensive

7 Simple Ways to Make Your House Look More Expensive

When it comes to creating a chic space, you don’t have to spend all of your hard-earned cash. These 7 simple yet stylish additions won’t cramp on style, or your budget.

Want to recreate the interiors featured in luxury home magazines? It’s not as difficult as you think, with a bit of time and creativity.

1. Mirror mirror on the wall

Create an optical illusion by gathering together a collection of small framed mirrors of different sizes and shapes that can be found at secondhand discount stores. Reach all greater heights and elongate the walls by painting them all the same colour and gather together to create a magic mosaic.

2. Garnish with gold

Gold exudes rich opulence and glamour. Add a liberal dose of shine by mixing brass, nickel hardware, gold coasters and copper vases together. This will evoke a mid-century modern design, and help turn your coffee table from bland to brilliant!

3. Chic sheets

High quality bed sheets with lashings of colour create a focal point in the bedroom. Add grandeur with the Goosebumps collection – they’re vibrant, playful and add the perfect amount of opulence to our little punk’s bedrooms!

4. Leaf and love

Create a chic Parisian feel and select a foil-leafed poster or painting. Such delicate high-end artistry will frame the room and help create classic European opulence.

5. Velvet touch

Velvet has been used throughout the centuries by the design royalty across homewares and fashion. It’s rich and sumptuous and will add decadence and warmth to your living space or bedroom. A simple velvet cushion will add some va-va-voom to an otherwise boring room. Now, that’s plush!

6. Run it to the riches

A table runner adds interest by creating a visual feast to a conventional dinner table. Select a dramatic colour of either black, gold or olive green which will be sure to add decadent detail for your delightful degustation.

7. Get stoned

Marble is a luscious natural rock that has been celebrated and carved for centuries. Yellow Finch Scented Candles are housed in this beautiful stone, and help create a romantic richness and sense of luxury… with aromas that glow!

8 Fashion Trends that also Work for your Home

8 Fashion Trends that also Work for your Home

Fashion trends don’t just have to be reserved for your wardrobe. Add a touch of on-trend style to your living space with these 8 ideas.

Inject a dose of style to your home with these 8 on-trend ideas.

1. It’s a blackout

The colour black has always been our friend. A timeless, elegant, simple and (erm) slimming shade that will never go out of fashion! The darker side of Goth has been embraced by many designers around the globe this season and is progressively creeping back into homes.

Get back to black – and sit down in style with a black Pick ME Stool – a small chair or side table with big personality that is cool, modern, young and vibrant, and adds instant playfulness and sophistication to any room.

2. Magic metallic

Shine on this season! Inspired by international fashion trends, each piece of Incy Interiors metallic collection has a high shine reflection, and provides a flashy after-dark fashion statement for our little folk. Style your bedroom with an empowering richness and opulence that is fun and futuristic.

3. Slogan t-shirts

For those who just need a sign, slogan t-shirts are the latest craze to hit the runway! Everywhere you look, from the high street shops to street style fashionistas and bloggers alike, T-shirts have been emblazoned with attention grabbing statements.

Whether it’s for the office, study or nursery, Brainspiration provides unique, creative and affordable scripture wall art prints for any purpose. Now, that’s something to write about!

4. Winter white

Fashion enthusiasts are opting for all-white which is having a similar optical illusion-effect to all black. White is chic, fresh and fashion-forward and super sprightly!

Add lashings of bright white love with Lucie Kaas, and bring to the table a collection of fluted vases, bonbonniere and candleholders from Urbaani Homewares. Now, that’s Scandi-stylin!

5. Time to fringe

There’s no doubting fringes are having a well-deserved moment. From clothing to accessories, to homewares, this boho trend has definitely made a comeback. Fringed drapes are helping shade us from the sun, while fringed doilies are decorating our kitchen tables with a delightful decadence – now, that’s dreamy!

6. Ruffle your feathers

Be prepared to ruffle a few feathers this season. Fashionable birds all around town have opted for statement feathered fashion – from skirts to stilettos, bomber jackets to bedding.

Feathered finesse can be enjoyed in your home – replace the traditional flower centrepiece with a collection of feathers or be light and select a statement picture to dress your desk with an airy  LisaKath Moen piece.

7. Rainbow connection

Colour me happy! Power pink, mellow yellow and avocado green are making a huge comeback into our wardrobes this season.

Cosi Towel’s fresh and contemporary collection consciously boast an exotic colour scheme and playful set of shades are sure to add a teeny-tiny amount of artistic delight to our little tot’s bathrooms. It’s time to soak!

8. Say it with stripes

Stripes add a strong statement to your wardrobe. Whether it’s the traditional nautical that knows no wrong, or the pinstripe suit that is playfully professional – stripes will never flat line. They’re here to stay!

Add some contemporary stripes to your lounge room with a black and white rug to create a lived-in look without being over precious.

7 Tips to Get the Monochrome Look in your Home

7 Tips to Get the Monochrome Look in your Home

The combination of a black and white colour palette makes for a sophisticated statement in your home. Not sure how to get this contemporary interior trend right?

Online homewares and furniture retailer TheHome.com.au’s interior stylist Emma Blomfield shares the dos and don’ts of the monochrome look!

1. Touch of texture
The monochrome look can be intimidating, so make sure to soften with texture. Cosy furnishings such as knit throws, velvet cushions and shag pile rugs will sharpen out the edges and make your room more inviting.

2. Just a hint of print
Don’t overwhelm with graphic patterns. Take the less is more approach by styling detailed black and white motifs only where you want the room’s focus to be.

3. Composition with height
By using just two colours in your furnishings and décor, you always run the risk of the space looking a bit monotonous. Avoid this by playing with height and composition. Make sure the items on your bookshelf or the prints on your wall are all placed and hung in different heights – this makes the room more lively and interesting.

4. Add a touch of life
A great way of introducing a third colour to a monochrome room is by adding plants. The greenery will instantly make the black and white space more welcoming and warm, and plants always breathe life into any room.

5. Go for gloss
Want to go for a glamorous and edgy space that makes a statement? Create drama with high-gloss monochrome accessories.

6. Light up
Use statement lighting to define key areas in a large monochrome space. Floor lamps will provide interest in unused corners, and table lamps are beautiful accents for the middle of a living room.7.

7. Go Scandi
For a super modern look, pair monochrome with pale timbers. Monochrome and natural materials are a match made in heaven, and celebrate the Scandi ethos of simple design.

How to Choose the Perfect Bed Linen

How to Choose the Perfect Bed Linen

Cushions and curtains are so last season. Bed linen is now the biggest business in styling your home – for any age group! Emma Bangay pulls the covers back to reveal the top styling tips for any slumber lover.

As we head into winter, it’s the perfect time to warm up your bedroom through the use of textures, prints and layering. Don’t know where to start? Follow these guidelines to inject a sense of warmth and life into your existing design.

Tucked up and on-trend

“I think there has been a great surge in interest in all things homewares in the past few years and yes, bed linen has absolutely been a big part of that,” says Tracie Ellis, of AURA Home fame. “One of the major shifts is that people are now seeing bed linen like fashion, something they can change each season instead of staying with the same bed linen for 30 years like our parents generation!”  Kristy Withers of Incy Interiors agrees that the popularity in pillows, doona covers and valances has been a long-time coming, but is entirely justified. “We spend much time in bed – it’s our sanctuary and the place we look forward to escaping to after a busy day, so it makes perfect sense to focus on the fashion element of it.”

Traditional tones and popping prints

Nordic stripes are a really popular perennial favourite. Update it annually with a pop of neon colour to deconstruct the formality and traditionalism of the stripe, Tracie suggests. “So by going with a traditional base – such as a nautical stripe – you can easily and playfully update it with splashes of fiery coral and neon limes mixed with beautiful soft pastel tones of mint and rose and matt metallic, for example.”

Age appropriate interior additions

What works for the kids, won’t work for a young couple. Every age group has different trend focuses this season, explains Kristy. Here is her edit:

  • Kids

Geometric pattern and fashionably delicious monochrome with pops of colour has definitely made a comeback, she says. “A subtle influence in 80s design is also coming through with fluorescent colour also providing a playful elegance.”

  • Teens

Bold block prints provide a graduation from childhood pastels. Add a quirky, uplifting twist with a fun digital print design on a pillow or metallic edging to encourage teens to appreciate design and use it as a tool for self-expression.

  • Adults

“Beautiful textures with velvets, linen and embroidered detail will be very popular this season,” says Kristy. “Adults will flip out with the extensive range of reversible prints that are now available on the market. Quite literally!”

The laws of layering

Rich textiles and various textures lend themselves perfectly to layering, says Tracie. Never more so than going into the cooler months! “To achieve this look, layer your bed with a quilted coverlet. Use velvet cushions to bring some luxurious softness to your space and chunky knits and linens to create a warming winter retreat.”

The cushion count

How many is too many when it comes to pillows and cushions? Tracie promotes a personal approach. “I usually have four pillows on my bed and two or three scatter cushions,” she says, suggesting that experimenting is key to working out what works for you. “If you’re making up a guest bed, make sure you have four pillows of different firmness so your guest can find the perfect pillow for a great night’s sleep.”

Less can be more

“Layering your bed with new colours and seasonal textures is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways to update the look and feel of your bedroom throughout the year,” agrees Kristy. But if your sleeping space is smaller – like in an apartment, warehouse or loft  (the latter whereby the bed may be visible to every visitor) you may want to pare it back a bit. “For smaller bedrooms that require a minimalist approach to styling, bed linen offers an opportunity to add luxury and formality without compromising on space,” she says. Stick with whites and light greys, worked back against a white, timber or metal bed for modern effect.

Clash dash

The bed is one domain where no rules apply with clashing colours and prints, but show some restraint or else all it will give you is a headache, rather than provide a haven. “Stand back and edit once you’ve created your look,” suggests Tracie. “Remember the bedroom should be a calming sanctuary.”

Top bed buys

  • Invest in quality sheets. “Don’t be fooled by thread count,” cautions Tracie. “Some stores market 1000 thread count sheets but that doesn’t mean they’re better quality, in some instances they are heavy cotton sheets woven with inferior yarn.”
  • Be bold with colour and texture. If colour is a new area for you, start by introducing pops of colour with your cushions and throws only. “It’s easier to change up your look each season,” Tracie says, as opposed to getting bright, riotous doona covers that you will tire of in a few months.

The throw

Throw rugs are a great transitional addition to any bed. But as Kristy points out, positioning can be key to ensure there is balance and not just a mess.

  • Throws don’t necessarily need to stay at the end of your bed, she assures. “If you have a large throw, pull it three quarters up the bed and you will add warmth as well as interest.”
  • Drape a throw in a fun print over an upholstered headboard for a new look and keep it secure and in place using Velcro.
  • “Make simple bedding look more personal by folding a throw lengthwise and draping it across the end of the bed,” Kristy suggests.