Tips and Tricks – Get it right the first time.

When I first started to design and decorate my own home, there were little things that I was unsure of or just didn’t even consider. Things like how high to hang artwork, how low lights should hang or how to style a vignette. Some of these things were learnt by trial and error and not without a lot of mistakes (holes in walls, bad purchases, donations to charity shops e.t.c)

Maybe that’s the same for you too. It’s ok, you are not alone.

So to this end, I thought I would put a little cheat sheet together of these little tips and tricks to help you out. Hey that’s what friends are for!!!

And if these don’t answer those niggling little questions or there is still something that you are not sure about, then don’t be afraid to drop me a line. I am more than happy to try and help where I can.

Tip 1

Stay away from trends – I know I harp on about this (read more here), but trends are an expensive hobby to maintain. It’s your house and you should have it how you like. Use family heirlooms or vintage buys mix and match a little bit. Make it you own. Homes are personal places, they should be a sanctuary, somewhere that you feel happy. To that end fill it with what you like and not what the stores say you should have.

Tip 2

Picture hanging – for a blank wall hang picture so that their centre is approximately 1.5m from the floor (average human eye level) viewers will not have to crane their necks to view your artwork.
For hanging above the sofa or cabinet, hang approximately 15 – 20 cm above the top of the furniture item.

Tip 3

Try out paint colours – never ever be tempted to buy a paint colour and slap on your walls because you liked it on a paint chart from the hardware store. Colours can changed quite a lot depending on the amount of natural light and elevation of a room. Always try before you buy, paint a test area first and see what it looks like at various times of the day. It could save you a lot of wasted time and money.

Tip 4

Hanging curtains – hang them high and wide. Curtains should be hung at 10 – 15cm above the window if you have the space and the pole should go 10 – 20cm wider then the window.

For a fuller look, the curtain fabric should be 2.5 times the width of the window.

Tip 5

Ask for material samples – when pulling together a space, sometime it can be hard to work out what materials will work with others. When visiting textile, bathroom or kitchen showrooms don’t be afraid to ask for samples. Take them home and put them with the other elements in your design, it makes it easier to pull a design together and to eliminate elements that don’t.

Tip 6


Add greenery – Adding greenery to a space shows that you care about your environment and your home. There are so many benefits to having plants in your home (See here) and they are a great styling tool. They add texture and shape and add life to any vignette.

Even if you have a dark corner, then try some faux plants, there are some really good ones out there nowadays, just don’t tell anyone.