Forget the expected - rethink the rulebook of decorating.
Read on for heaps of inspiration and lots of clever and creative ideas...
When I walk into a space, I want the room to feel welcoming and inviting. I think it should reflect the owner's personality, their passions and interests. I love the concept of 'emotive decorating', which is contrary to the rulebook approach. I like to create spaces that make my clients feel happy and relaxed, and aren't just about displaying the latest "it" chair. Decorating should be a fun process, and rooms should reflect that.
Rule breaker #1: embrace colour
These days, clients are very nervous about using colour. With neutral tones playing such a key role in today's modern decorating schemes we have all become afraid of colour. So I say, splash it around and have some fun with it - afterall we are talking about a beach house here! In order not to overdo it - restrict it to one or two colours and keep it balanced with lots of white or neutrals.
Rule breaker #2: paint everything!
Paint is your best friend. It is a cheap way to freshen up a house and give it a new look. A coat of paint can make a world of difference to a tired looking house. Paint everything :- walls, ceilings - even floors! A great way of breathing new life into vintage or unwanted furniture is to slap on a coat of paint. White is always a fool proof winner or have some fun with a soft, beachy tone like these pale blue timber shutters.
Rule breaker #3: the three Rs
I am a big believer in the three Rs: reupholster, repaint and revamp. Rework and re-invent pieces that you no longer use or love. Rather than going out and paying big dollars for a new piece - hunt around for furniture and accessories with character in antique shops, thrift stores, garage sales and on the sale tables. I shop for furniture from shops that sell ex-display furniture and I always manage to find a bargain or two!
Rule breaker #4: rethink spaces
Rule breaker #5: layer up
Rule breaker #6: supersize scale
Playing with scale scares clients but mixing up the scale and sizes of pieces adds individuality and interest to a room. Incorporating unexpectedly larger scaled pieces into a room lightens the mood, adds an element of whimsy and feels more relaxed. In order to not overdo the look only 'supersize' one piece in each room.
Rule breaker #7: triple your lights
One of the most important element in a room is lighting. Make sure you make the most of the natural light then incorporate different types of artificial light. Light creates warmth and ambience in a home - you can never have too many lights!. Hunt around for interesting fittings and it will add design interest to your home. Think about incorporating a mix of various lighting sources such as pendants, wall lights, step lights and downlights. Also put some thought into decorative lighting such as table lamps and floor lamps.