How do you make your pad look jaw dropping cool? It’s actually not as elusive or as difficult as you might think. You don’t need oodles of cash nor do you need to hire a million dollar decorator, you just need some cool interior design ideas and tricks of the trade. A bit of out of the box thinking is required but that’s the fun part right?
Banish clutter behind closed doors
First and foremost if you want to make your space feel supremely glam, take a few tricks from the magazines and put the ugly stuff behind closed doors. I use a multitude of storage systems; from shelves boxed out with storage below, to chests to floor to ceiling cupboards. All the ugly stuff – computer leads, paperwork, remotes – get shoved in here. Once you start banishing the clutter behind closed doors you’ll be surprised at how much you’ve actually opened up the space. Rather than your eye alighting on all the clutter, it will now focus on the cool stuff!
I’m not talking expensive lighting here but rather having a layered lighting scheme with lots of little pockets of lights glowing softly in the room.
I’m obsessed with table lamps as they can enliven any nook, shelf, console or table. If you have recessed lighting put it on dimmers so you can change the mood when the light drops. Throw in the odd floor lamp and a pendant or two and suddenly you’ve got a super glam lighting scheme on your hands!
Invigorating colour scheme
Why follow the crowd when it comes to colour? Add a vibrant hue to give your space a touch of unconventionality. You could paint a side table out in a scarlet red, treat an alcove in an intoxicating burnt orange, or even go the whole hog and paint the walls in an off-beat hue. Adding colour is the best game-changing trick. It will knock your room right out of the park!
Displaying personal treasures
Displaying personal treasures, such as photographs, books, jewellery and mementos from far-flung places, gives a room heart and soul, making it feel personal, unique and cool. So instead of storing stuff away in the attic, ensure that such curiosities get the kudos that they deserve. All too often, shelves, mantelpieces, coffee tables and bookcases become an unsightly muddle, so you will need to consider a few design tips to make the most of your display.
One fool proof way is to group according to colour. Another idea is to heap some of your latest reads in a little pile to reveal their colourful spines and then use as a wonderful plinth for vases, bowls and so forth. Odd numbers work better visually than even, as does varying the height of the objects or zigzagging items instead of arranging them in a straight line. Elevate your finds in this way and you’ll have no trouble making beautiful still-life displays.
Artwork is another game changer. Anything goes from kids drawings, an original canvas, a print reproduction or a photographic image. Art makes a huge impact in your home. Original artworks needn’t cost the earth: I’ve found some fab finds at junk shops and ‘open house’ events (look out for them in artists’ communities), where you can buy direct without paying a gallery commission.
How you arrange pictures can have just as much impact as the artworks themselves. While some statement pieces deserve to be hung alone, others (such as drawings, photos and small-scale prints) work best in groups, clustered by a staircase, above a sofa or simply strung along a wall.
Professional looking, gallery-style hanging relies on a few simple principles. The important thing to remember is that the images when put together should create a visual rhythm that is greater than the one made if each one was to be hung separately. When placing art above furniture, go with your intuition. Lowering an image to waist height relates it to, say, the sofa. But if you want to draw the eye upward to highlight an architectural detail perhaps, then hang your picture higher to help accent it.
One of the easiest ways to upgrade the look of your furniture is with new knobs and handles. Some hardware choices involve huge bucks but others are unpardonably cheap and all can be installed in the blink of an eye. Before deciding whether to opt for handles or knobs you’ll need to take the weight of the door or drawer into account – heavy loads will need handles as they distribute the weight more effectively.
Otherwise, there’s no need to worry about restraint – go for all-out daring and razzle-dazzle. The possibilities are pretty endless from glass and crystal for a shimmery glow to brushed nickel – super modern. Ceramic handles lend a softer vibe to your décor, leather (wild) can look beautiful and resin handles are available in a plethera of psychedilic colours adding a funky artistic touch. The possibilities are literally endless.
Implement any of these cool interior design ideas and not only will you have a home with oodles of panache, you’ll have created a home that’s like no other!
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