Interior: Inject a little colour into a tired home
YOU can often look around your home and sense that it's looking a little 'tired'. The Europeans are brilliant at regularly decorating. My guess is it's because those living in colder climates, habituating inside for months, become bored with their surroundings and increasingly inspired to revamp. This got me thinking, how can we spruce up our homes without breaking the budget?
Paint yourself out of a dull corner
Firstly, chances are there are probably areas of your home that need a fresh lick of paint. There's no need to go overboard and re-do your entire home; just pass a critical eye over areas that look a little scruffy, usually the areas that are frequently in contact with grubby hands and feet, such as the skirting boards, and around the door handles or cupboards. Choose the exact colour previously used and go around with a paintbrush after thoroughly cleaning and then set about freshly re-touching with paint the scruffy areas. If you're looking for a more dramatic effect, wallpapering certain areas of a room can also add an instant effect (but no painted feature walls please - so passé!) A small room such as a separate toilet can look amazing when wallpapered, as can a nursery room.
Let there be lovely light
The next item you may want to consider is lighting. It's amazing what a new light shade or a new fitting can do to create an entirely different ambience. Or at the very least, try a new globe. There are lots of great globes on the market now, including ones with dimmers and the vintage-style filament globes.
Don't be a knob - chose wisely
Another cheap and cheerful transformation is to change knobs on doors; this applies to both knobs on doors and cupboards. I recently changed some nasty old wooden doorknobs on my bathroom cabinets with lovely faux crystal Indian doorknobs and - voila, the effect went from very ordinary cupboards to glamorous instantly!
Freshen up with plants and flowers
And finally, add fresh plants and flowers to as many rooms as possible. We all know indoor plants are great for air quality. And for my money, flowers can uplift the spirit and add colour and life to any space.