Adding Accessories to a Home

When you move into your first house, you think about all the big things you need—beds, a sofa, a television stand—but adding accessories to a home is what completes it.

I love my house, having renovated it all over a six month period, but it feels so bare and unfinished. It isn’t cosy because adding accessories to a home is what makes it cozy and comfortable.

So, what accessories can you add?

Artwork

I’ve been searching for some artwork to put above my fireplace. It is such an empty space, and a large piece of art will draw the attention away from our 50” monstrosity.

 

Adding accessories to a home

 

The problem is, artwork is expensive. Well the artwork, not so much, but the frames can cost an extra £100. This is why we’ve put off buying any house accessories until the wedding is over in 7 months time.

Art.co.uk have some wonderful pieces, from classics by Monet to prints, maps and abstract paintings.

Rugs

Rugs are another accessory than can be pricey, especially if you’re like me and want a huge one to cover your entire 8-person dining table. With wooden floor through the dining room and kitchen, it still feels a bit echoey.

I would love a rug to go over the wooden floor to soften it all up. I think I’m a bit apprehensive though, especially of crumbs and stains getting on the carpet!

dining table and chairs with rug

Don’t worry, those teal seat covers are GOING

Curtains and blinds

The only rooms we have proper curtains in is the bedroom. The bathroom, landing, lounge and kitchen diner don’t have them yet. Curtains and blinds are another expense that we’re not spending until after the wedding. Curtains will really help to soften the room, and can make the ceiling look higher when hung correctly.

Blinds can also be used to reflect light so we’ll be investing in some blinds for the landing and kitchen windows.

Lighting

I’ve been really fussy, more so than I thought, with lighting. I’m yet to find wall lights for the landing that I actually like, and we haven’t got a ceiling light in our lounge yet, only two lamps and a bare wire hanging out of the ceiling, which is demonstrated below.

 

living room with sofa and lighting

 

Again, these aren’t entirely a priority for me, but they transform the look of a room without much effort.

Adding accessories to a home can make a huge difference. You’ll be surprised what a rug or a picture frame can do. Have you ever experimented with your accessories, and did it make a difference?

 

 


 

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Mummy in a Tutu

5 Designer Tips for Styling your Coffee Table

A coffee table can so easily become a place where you leave your empty mugs and remote controls, but I’m here to help you out with these 5 designer tips for styling your coffee table.

A coffee table needs to make a statement. When you think about the furniture that you might have in your living room, your sofa and coffee table are the focal point. They sit in the middle of the room and attract the most attention. So don’t let your coffee table become a sad place for empty mugs. When you’re styling your coffee table, you want to create a piece of artwork that will bring the whole structure of your living room together.

All of the below are elements you need on your coffee table to complete the piece. Take one out, and the look won’t work the same. So if you don’t want to have to call in the Santa Monica interior designers to help you, follow these tips for styling your coffee table.

Use a tray as a foundation

You need to create a solid foundation for the table. I know, you’re thinking, But the table is the foundation? It is, but everything needs to be layered correctly. A large bowl works just as well as a tray, like this one from Shea at Studio McGee:

 

styling your coffee table with ornaments and books

 

See how the dark wood of the bowl stands out against the light coffee table and the light coloured books she’s used to decorate.

A tray is also very useful when you want to clear the coffee table quickly. Just had a big parcel arrive and need somewhere to put it quickly? Any items in the tray can be lifted off quickly and with minimal damage.

Add height and layers through ornaments

Getting an ideal coffee table style is all about height and layers. A flat coffee table won’t do any compliments, and will look worse than if you left it empty. Kimberly from Swoonworthy has achieved this height perfectly.

 

white, gold and pink themed coffee table styling

 

Note that she has a tray with ornaments on that are at varying heights. She’s also raised the gold birds by putting them on a pile of books. The table looks well balanced and definitely not overcrowded. She’s even got a mug on a coaster in the picture. It’s stylish and you can see the gold, white and pink theme runs through the rest of her living room. This is also key. You need to match the style of the coffee table with the rest of the room, otherwise it’ll look disjointed.

Make use of plants and foliage

Plants add some fresh greenery to the coffee table, and to the rest of the room. They lighten and brighten, and can also be used to achieve varying heights. You can do this by opting for some small succulents or cacti, or go bold with a tall plant such as an orchid.

I love trailing ivy so this is how I’ve styled mine at home.

home coffee table

 

I love the way it drapes nicely over the books. The books I’ve used are interior design/home books that have nice brightly coloured spines. I’ve got a bowl on the table, and of course the look wouldn’t be complete without some candles.

Plants are also good for your home, and help to purify the air. In a space such as a living room, which we spend a lot of time in, this is an added bonus.

Stack some books to add height

When you’re styling your coffee table, reading material is a must. It adds height to the table, something we’ve discussed is very important. It also shows your guests what your interests are, and could be a talking point. It’s best to add some sort of ornament on top of the books, so they taper off into a pyramid point. Put the biggest books at the bottom and the smallest on top. Then add an ornament for that final bit of height and the tip of the pyramid.

See this example from Lark and Linen.

 

white styled coffee table with plant and books

 

The books are in size order with the largest at the bottom, and then she’s placed a tall and more narrow ornament on top.

Don’t forget that books can also be stacked on the floor at the base of the coffee table, like this example from The Every Girl

books underneath living room coffee table

Again, the books are all varying height, and stacked in size order to add to the aesthetic.

Pile of coasters

A coffee table still needs to be practical. A pile of coasters either placed in the tray, or set in one corner makes it easy to put a cup of tea (read: glass of wine) down in the evenings.

The most important tip is that you need to leave some space. Don’t over clutter the table. You still need a place to put your mugs and TV remotes so the coffee table is still practical for your everyday needs.

 

 

Combine those tips for styling your coffee table to make a statement of your living room. I’d love to see photos of your coffee tables, so send them over!

All pictures have been sourced and credited.

 

 

Mummy in a Tutu

How to Make your Hallway Appear Bigger and Lighter

Need some advice on how to make your hallway appear bigger, or add some natural light? This is the article you need.

Our hallway is probably the most important area of our home, but it seems to be the room that gets left to suit itself. So how to make your hallway appear bigger without undergoing any major renovations?

“It’s the first space to greet you each time you walk through the door, and it’s also the first glimpse guests get of your home,” houzz.co.uk editor Victoria Harrison tells the Express.

Hallways can be a difficult space to organise, but think about their main purpose. What is a hallway supposed to do?

Well, it’s the place that welcomes us in after a long day at work. It’s a place to store our coats and boots, and a place to take them off as we come in. This is how a hallway can become messy, cluttered and, let’s be honest, a bit of a dumping ground. It can be so easy to close a door and forget about the mess in there.

Your hallway should be a reflection of the rest of your house. What can your guest expect from the rest of the house, based on the hallway?

This guide is for those who get a bit stuck in a rut with their hallway. It answers queries such as how to make your hallway appear bigger and lighter and how to make it more inviting.

 

Style a Small Hallway

Keep it neutral

It’s best to keep a small hallway light with neutral colours. Any small room won’t normally take a bold colour unless there’s a large window to balance out the light. If you love colour, it can be introduced through artwork, flowers, decorative ornaments or rugs. Neutral never means boring.

See this hallway: it has white walls, but the unit, pictures and rug by the front door really help to make the space feel cosy. It doesn’t feel bare.

 

how to make your wall appear bigger

 

The hallway is probably the most walked-through area of the house, so a hardwearing, eggshell paint is a great option as it is easy to remove any scuffs from people always coming and going.

High mirror shine

This tip is also good for a dark hallway, as mirrors reflect light. But more importantly, mirrors amplify the space around you. You could add a large statement mirror for major impact. It also means us ladies’ can check our appearance right before we leave (we’re all guilty of it).

Turn your coats and shoes into accessories

If your hallway is small, avoid chunky cabinets and shoe storage with doors and large handles. These will make the space feel smaller. Instead, choose shelving. The openness of it means the unit will look smaller than it actually is, especially if you can see the wall through the back of the shelving unit.

See this unit from Garden Trading. The unit doesn’t look too bulky. You’ll just have to try and keep your shoes tidy all the time!

 

Add hooks above instead of shelving to hang your coats and scarves on.

Invest in a runner

Runners are an amazingly cheap way of making your hallway appear bigger. They draw your eye right down the length of the room, making it feel longer. This also works up the stairs too. Putting one up the stairs will almost feel as though your hallway has doubled in size. Suddenly, the hallway includes the stairs.

Though this picture doesn’t use a runner, your eye is drawn down to the back wall of the hallway because of the lights. If you look at where the back wall meets the floor, it’s actually a relatively small hallway.

 

You could use this idea on a more minor, less psychedelic scale by adding small LED spotlights along your floor.

Add some beautiful botanicals

Botanical prints and plants are everywhere in people’s homes this season. If you have a windowsill or ledge in your hallway, add a plant to it. Think about whether you want one that trails down a piece of furniture, or a taller plant to add height to the room.

 

Style a Dark Hallway

So you’re thinking how to make your hallway appear bigger? The amount of light that is let in can make a big difference. A dark room will always look smaller. Hallways are dark because there is a wall separating all the rooms off. If you live in a semi-detached, it might also mean that there is no window there either. This can make the hallway a very dark and dingy space. So here are some simple tips to help you lighten your hallway, thereby making it seem larger.

Consider a new front door

Front doors can be pricey, but if your current door has one small stained glass window, it might be worth investing in something that lets more light in. One that’s all glass will look ultra modern, and will make your hallway feel much bigger.

Paint your balustrade white

If your current balustrade is a mid- or dark wood, it might be worth painting it white for a much lighter, airier feel. It will also soften the look of the stairs to make your hallway feel larger.

…or go all glass

An all-glass balustrade can look stunning. The light will flow straight through it so you’ll think you haven’t even got stairs. The slats in this staircase give the appearance of a wall, whilst still letting lots of light up the stairs.

Borrow light from somewhere else

Hallways often have no windows, and a wall with lots of doors. It might be a good idea to buy some new glass doors, or doors with glass panels. This means if your living room gets flooded with light for most of the day, the glass will let some of this through to the hallway.

how to make your hallway appear bigger using light from other rooms

So there’s your guide on how to make your hallway appear bigger. I hope it can help someone transform their space.

Do you have any hints or tips you’d add to the list?

 

Sources:

http://www.idealhome.co.uk/hallway/hallway-ideas/small-hallway-ideas-176110

http://www.homedit.com/easy-ways-make-hallways-look-bigger-brighter/

https://www.houzz.co.uk/ideabooks/70790166/list/10-ideas-for-tackling-a-dark-hallway?irs=US

This post contains an affiliate link, which means I may get a small commission for any purchases you make by clicking through from my post.

A Shopping Haul with Homesense

Some of you might not have heard of Homesense, but it’s one of my favourite places to shop.

Whilst TK Maxx sell clothes, Homesense is its sister brand which sells homeware and furniture. Most of their stuff is 40-60% off the retail price, meaning you get great quality at a cheaper price.

Homesense Watford - store interior display

 

I often find the easiest way to shop there is to have nothing in mind.I knew I wanted cutlery, but had no idea of style or brand. I bought a Sophie Conran cutlery set which was half price. We got our 32-piece set for £75!

For Jay’s birthday, I bought him this biscuit tin to go with our new kitchen. It’s a bit of an inside joke. He once ate three packets of digestives in one sitting. They also do a tea/coffee/sugar set in the same style. I’ve since managed to buy the tea but haven’t yet found the sugar or coffee!

Homesense biscuit tin

 

I’ve been on the lookout for some highbacked, fabric dining chairs to go at the heads of the table. I found this lovely one in Homesense, but again, they only had one. Hence the price I think. £40!

 

 

Then, the cushion isle. Actually, the throw and cushion isle which makes it even better. This department might be my favourite. I’m scoping out some cushions, though I don’t know where they’ll go yet.

 

 

Homesense cushions isle

Have you ever visited a Homesense? With 42 stores now nationwide across the UK, there will definitely be one near you somewhere.

This is not a collaborative post, I just really like Homesense. Cover photo credit: Design Maze

Designing my Living Room Interior

I’m far too excited about designing my living room.

I posted a blog post earlier today about how we can’t live without technology. The post has a mood board to go with it, and now it’s got me thinking about designing my living room. So that’s what this post is about.

I didn’t think that I would be very good at interior design. I can be indecisive and fussy, and it takes me forever to reach a decision. However, with designing my house, I’ve been making good decisions, fast.

I love my bathroom tiles which were completed last week. I love my kitchen tiles, which are in the process of going up. The colour I have chosen for the living room is absolutely lovely (not that I’m bragging or anything…but I am).

Every decision I’ve made so far seems to be right (touch wood!). The only decision that wasn’t right was the carpet I picked for the living room, but I changed my mind in plenty of time.

I’ve really surprised myself, and I can ‘see’ how I want things to be. Even down to the position of the spotlights, and which way the wooden flooring should go.

Designing my living room

Moodboard for our living room theme

Sometimes, grey can feel a bit cold. The paint I chose is grey with a slight brown tinge to it, so it feels a lot warmer.

Like this:

 

The living room is very bright because it’s an open space with a large window at the front. However, I would like to add some colour somehow. Though I haven’t thought this far ahead.

Some green would be nice to go with the brown and give it a natural, earthy feel. We bought a brand new sofa and armchair to go in the living room. Though they’re currently sat in our garage whilst we wait for the carpet to be fitted.

If you were redecorating, what would your choice of colour be? I’d love to hear from you!