How to choose the perfect curtains or blinds for your home

Curtains, Fabric, Interior trends, Window Coverings

You’ve just moved into your new home and realise you need to cover those windows that are either putting your lives on show to ALL your neighbors especially at night or you fear your up coming power bill that believe it or not will be effected by the lack of window coverings you have in your home. Having something covering the windows and close to the glass will keep the heat out in summer and the cool out in winter therefore minimizing your power bill.  With the wide range of options available you will also find a window covering that will give you the level of privacy that you need too.

A well chosen window treatment is not only functional but also a worthy investment that will add to the aesthetic of your homes interior. Your homes interior style should be considered when choosing a window covering type. For instance, curtains may not be the best solution for an ultra modern home, the same is said for slimline venetians in a period traditional home.  Consideration should be given to the amount of privacy required, architectural elements of your windows, if any furniture and furnishings need protection from direct sunlight, ease of operation, access, positioning and so much more. The aim is to add value to your home by choosing the right window covering for your needs and style.

I’m going to list the available window coverings in order of most expensive to least expensive to give you a price guide as generally I find most people don’t know the costs of window coverings due to them being a custom quoted product.

CURTAINS are an elegant window covering for a room, they are probably the best window treatment for insulation, sound and privacy especially when they are blockout lined.  There are thousand of fabric option available that can be chosen to coordinate with your interior, giving your room a truly custom finish.  Curtains can be styled in multiple ways so that they work in with your existing look, they can be dressed up or down.  Sheers can be added.  Pelmets or decorator rods and tracks along with a host of other options can be applied to create an individual look that will suit you and your home.

PLANTATION SHUTTERS are the current trend in window coverings.  They fit perfectly inside your window frame giving you the option to manipulate the blades so they are either open or closed, or allow you to fully open the actual shutter giving you complete access to your window.

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PLEATED AND HONEYCOMB BLINDS range from translucent to opaque options and can come in many forms.

TIMBER VENETIANS operate the same as a slimline however with varying slat sizes and different timbers or timber look materials.

ROMAN BLINDS are a flat blind of either your chosen fabric or standard range of translucent to opaque fabrics that concertina fold up to the top of the window.  The blind has a series of metal or timber battens to the back spaced around 20cm apart which with the use of a cord controlled pulley system helps the blind operate. For privacy and sun control the blind needs to be completely down meaning it’s opaque and can’t be seen through.

VENETIANS made from aluminum come in micro, slim or wider slats. Like verticals they can be manipulated so that they are fully closed, fully up or the blades semi, fully open to control light and privacy, all slats are on a horizontal plane. Venetians work well in a modern application.

SUNSCREEN BLINDS are a modern day holland blind with a woven semi to transparent fabric on them with a metal base bar. They work well in modern homes or commercial applications. You often see them in blacks or white/ivory.  Sunscreen fabrics filter out both heat and UV rays, they reduce glare, providing insulation and an element of protection to your furnishings from sun damage.  However these blinds don’t provide privacy at night.

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VERTICAL BLINDS like Holland blinds come blockout, semi transparent and transparent. The blades can be manipulated so they are closed or part or fully opened allowing for some privacy. Verticals are good solutions for the budget conscious.

HOLLAND BLINDS are roller blinds and are either up or down, they come blockout, semi transparent and transparent. If you are wanting to keep your costs down but still add softness you could have a sheer curtain at your window and a holland blind behind for privacy. They are very plain on their own.

This list is by no means exhaustive, there are some other window coverings on the market that vary from the above, but generally you will find the above mentioned are the most popular.

I recommend you purchase the above window coverings in a custom format as this will give the best overall quality finish for your home. My Decorator can assist you with choosing the best window treatment for your needs and style, along with a quality fabric that will drape beautifully should you decide to go with curtains or shutters/venetian suppliers who are proven to have superior quality finish where you won’t have problems with blades warping, strings deteriorating etc… We can work with your budget to create a window covering solution that will work in with your current or new interior style and meet your needs.

If you would like to call us to discuss window covering options we would love to hear from you.  Call us today:  0439 081 072

Top 3 Tips for Decorating Your Home

Marsala – 2015 Pantone Colour of the year

Colour, Fashion, Inspiration, Interior trends

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Pantone have announced Marsala 18-1438 as the colour of the year 2015.

To me this colour speaks maturity, elegance and sophistication.  Named after a fortified wine it’s richness and earthy red brown tones bring character and I think will add a lot of charm when used in interior spaces.  It is a colour that could be used on it’s own or as an accent.

Incorporate Marsala into accent pieces, decorator accessories and paint. Marsala’s plush characteristics are enhanced when the color is applied to textured surfaces, making it an ideal choice for rugs and upholstered living room furniture.

Lets explore some ways to use Marsala in home interiors.

1.  Use Marsala for upholstery.  I can see it in a velvet upholstery for a traditional wingback chair sitting next to a beautiful old fireplace in a library, old vintage rug….. you get the picture.

2.  Complimentary colours are blue, green, gold even grey will work nicely with it.

3.  Paint your dining room walls Marsala if you are feeling brave, be sure you get a lot of natural light in the room though as it is quite a strong, dark tone it could also make you feel very warm too so if you live in a warm climate you may want to consider a cooler colour.

4.  Update your current interior with some Marsala in various tones of light and dark, texture, print in the form of cushions, decorator items or art it’s a brilliant winter colour.

5.  Marsala will work well with a contemporary interior as well, add more earthy tones and bring in some white to keep it all light and minimalist.

I would love to hear how you use Marsala in your home, feel free to comment below.

See links below for more uses for Marsala.

http://www.houzz.com.au/ideabooks/34755738/list/raise-your-glass-to-marsala-pantones-2015-colour-of-the-year

http://www.pantone.com/pages/index.aspx?pg=21163

Top 5 Easy Care Indoor Plant recommendations by Landscaper Dave!

Advice, Interior trends

I love indoor plants but I’ve also killed a lot of indoor plants.  Over the years I have improved my green thumb capabilities and also discovered some good hardy plants that are less likely to die if I forget to water them for a week or two.

I was chatting to my landscaper friend Dave and asked for his top 5 low maintenance indoor plants and here is what he came up with:

1. Zanzibar Gem ((Zamioculcas zamiifolia) 

Visit here for easy care tips.

Zanzibar_Gem

2. Ficus decora Tineke

Visit here for easy care tips.

Fixcus decora Tineke

3.  Dracaena Deremensis

Visit here for easy care tips.

Dracaena deremensis

4. Anthurium

Visit here for easy care tips.

Anthurium Exotic Plant

5. Aspidistra Elata (Cast Iron Plant)

Visit here for easy care tips

aspidistra-elatior-entryway-809

Indoor Plants and Interior Design

Living things bring interiors to life, I always try to include indoor plants in the interiors that I design for my clients. The plants I choose are determined usually by the look of the interior, if the space is contemporary I will choose an architectural leaf style plant that will add to the overall look and feel of the room keeping scale in mind.  Don’t be afraid to go large with your indoor plants and remember the pot that it sits in really does complete the look, so purchase a pot that is in the right proportion to the plant and the room.

Don’t forget that Indoor plants actually offer us health benefits too.  Indoor plants help filter the air that we breath of toxins from carpet, cleaning products and other nasties that are in our homes/offices.  Another good reason to include them in your interiors.

My favourites are Palms, Yacca’s, Snake Plant or Mother In Laws Tongue, Terrariums, Succulents, Ferns, Bonsai, Monstera and Cactus some of these are easy care, others not so sure.

Extra Resources:

For more low maintenance plants go here:  http://www.purityplants.com.au/ecommerce/low-maintenance-indoor-plants.rhtml

Lastly please note, I by no means am a plant expert so please be guided by the nursery or your landscaper when purchasing your indoor plants.

If you have any indoor plants that are easy care and aren’t listed, feel free to share them below in comments.

Top 3 Tips for Decorating Your Home

 

Get yourself some Radiant Orchid

Colour, Concept/Mood/Colour Board, Interior trends

 

Radiant Orchid has been named Pantone’s Colour of 2014.  I think this is a fabulous, vibrant, fun yet captivating colour that can definitely be introduced to our interiors.  Lets explore some ways to do this.

  1. Use Radiant Orchid for upholstery on your accent chairs and for scatter cushions.
  2. Yellow or Gold compliments Radiant Orchid but don’t over do it.  Less is more.
  3. Radiant Orchid walls in the right room could work a treat.  
  4. Not wanting to change your whole interior? Buy some radiant orchid toned flowers to bring your room up to date.
  5. Play with the varying tones of Radiant Orchid, along with the shades and tints surrounding it using them for for a variety of elements in your room.  This will add depth and interest.
  6. Pair Radiant Orchid with white if you are wanting a subtler look, grey/brown for drama and yellow for a bold effect.
  7. Finally add some quirk to your room (i.e. an animal coffee table perhaps?) to make it more eye catching and memory making.

I’d love to hear how you use Radiant Orchid, feel free to comment below.

Below are some more ideas of ways to use Radiant Orchid in your home:

 

How to style a bookshelf

Advice, DIY, Inspiration, Interior trends, Styling

Now there are bookshelves and then there are bookshelves. As long as I can remember I have always loved a well styled bookshelf, one that tells me something about the owner, one that tells a story and captures the imagination…. over the top? Maybe but hey, I say it’s time to make our boring book filled bookshelves beautiful.

6 Easy steps on how to style your bookshelf

  1. Take everything out of the bookshelf and begin with a clean canvas.
  2. Start putting your books into your shelf – books can be placed on the shelf both vertically and horizontally.
  3. Next…. add family photos, framed small pieces of art to your shelves.
  4. Place other meaningful decorative objects such as an interesting sculpture, a trinket that you received as a gift from your children or mother… basically anything that adds texture and interest to the bookshelf.
  5. Don’t be afraid of empty spaces.  Let the shelf breath and don’t overcrowd it.
  6. Lastly don’t make your styling too showroom perfect, you want your guests to feel relaxed in your lounge room not uptight – have some fun with it!

This bookshelf isn’t too perfectly styled, its fun and quirky.


Why not add a pop of colour to your bookshelves interior.

Why not add a pop of colour to your bookshelves interior.

 

Add some interesting shaped vases, sepia photos, gigantic shell and textured basket.

Add some interesting shaped vases, sepia photos, gigantic shell and textured basket.


You can style your bookshelf in a soft colour palette as pictured here.

You can style your bookshelf in a soft colour palette as pictured here.

 

You can use books as book ends, add letters, fresh flowers, art, bowls, woodwork, trinkets and more.

You can use books as book ends, add letters, fresh flowers, art, bowls, woodwork, trinkets and more.

I hope you feel inspired to update the look of your bookshelf, I’d love to read your comments below about any tips and tricks that you use.

Happy reading/styling!

Prue

Top 3 Tips for Decorating Your Home