Design Tips

Our five key style predictions for 2018

We’d like to preface this piece by sharing what we always say to our clients:

Go with what you love, rather than focussing on trends.

However, we do see trends in the design industry as inspirations that can be interpreted and edited for use in our own homes, if we so desire.

Explore the five key style predications we’re making for the year ahead, all centered around warmth, detail and a sense of the finer times.


Image above from here.

1. Curved lines

Just like we see in this month’s Celebrity Insider feature of Serena William’s home, curved and soft lines are being favoured at the moment in the design world. Think plush chairs with rounded arms, circular lighting options and curved mirrors and coffee tables.

ff4-1-575x869Image above from here.

2. Wallpaper as art

We are pleased to see wallpaper on the ‘hot list’ because it really does add sophisticated glamour and personality to a space. Wallpaper is now being introduced as an art piece or mural, spanning walls or entire rooms.


Image above from here.

3. Velvet

In a similar vein to curved lines, velvet is making a return into homes and commercial spaces as consumers seek more softness and comfort.

2018 will be all about tactile furniture and surface finishes, and as trend forecaster Allyson Rees told Interior Design:

“Everyone around the world is looking for extra comfort and reassurance. The home as a safe haven in a world that is so politically and ecologically turbulent.”

Easy ways to bring velvet into your home is with a beautiful velvet armchair or plush footstool as seen in our cover image.

Terracotta_Valspar_Rustic-WickerImage above from here.

4. Darker woods and warmer hues, particularly terracotta

Blonde timbers, particularly through the modern interpretation of Danish design, have been a feature in interiors for a long time.

However, the more traditional timbers, like rosewood, mango wood and walnut are on the return. These darker grains are also being coupled with beige or equally dark timber cabinetry, rather than white, that has dominated in recent times.

Terracotta continues to rise in popularity: used in its physical sense with tiles, along with terracotta as a decorative accent particularly with painted walls.

interior designer melbourne

Image above from here.

5. Maximalism

We have all heard of minimalist interiors, but 2018 is the year that more really is more.

Think LaDoubleJ‘s tabletop collection, featuring contrasting prints and patterns, and you’ll get a sense of this year’s extravagant interiors trend.

This is a move away from the Scandinavian-inspired interiors aesthetic, that has taken centre stage in recent years and a backlash against ‘cookie cutter’ interiors.

It’s refreshing to see colour, pattern and personality back.

If you would like to discuss your project and how we can introduce what you love to your space, get in touch.

Cover image: Ferm Living.

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Five tips for a successful Spring clean

Isn’t it always a delight when Spring rolls around each year, and the mornings become milder, the evenings longer and the days generally feel brighter?

As we shed our thick jumpers and jeans and clear out our wardrobes to make way for Spring fashions, Spring is also a perfect time to clean out our homes.

We have put together five tips for those looking to undertake a Spring clean this year:

1. The one year rule

If you love something, you should always keep it, but many of us hang onto things that we don’t care for anymore and that are simply taking up space. So if you haven’t used something during the past 365 days, perhaps it’s time to let it go.

Whether it’s that tablecloth in the cupboard that you were gifted and have never used, or the lamp that you don’t love quite enough to take it out of the garage and into a room, why not send these pieces off to a new home via the local op shop, sell them online or put on a garage sale? Don’t they always say that “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure”? A good tip is to sort room by room so you don’t end up overwhelmed or distracted.

2. Embrace change

As the weather changes, we can benefit from the different energy that is created by changing things up at home. Try moving around your couch and TV, rethinking the orientation of your dining table and the placement of your outdoor furniture. Little or large changes to our homes can reinvigorate and inspire us.

3. Visit the dry cleaner

Many of us use heavier doonas for winter, and swap these over to lighter ones – or even just sheets – for the warmer months. Don’t put that winter doona back into the cupboard just yet though – make a visit to your dry cleaner to freshen it up in time for when the cooler months come back around. While you’re there, why not take your pillows, mattress protectors and comforters too? Setting up routines each season helps to keep us on our best cleaning behaviour year-round!

4. Lemon fresh

Here’s one we learnt the other day: wiping the cut side of a lemon over chopping boards can help remove stains and smells. If we can get into the habit of doing this at least every Spring, our boards will last longer. That’s not the only use for lemon though: slice a lemon and put it in a bowl of water, then microwave this for 45 seconds and it will not only make the microwave smell better, but make stains easier to wipe too. You can also keep chopped up lemon in your fridge to keep smelly odours at bay.

5.  Recycling fun

If you have little ones in your life AND a pile of magazines that you know you’re not going to read again, why not plan a ‘crafternoon’? With some scissors, glue and notebooks, the kids can have fun creating their own ‘magazines’ from yours. Or, get creative yourself and put together a mood board with your favourite clippings to inspire your next interiors project!

If you have a great Spring cleaning tip, let us know in the comments below!

Image from here.

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How to: 5 ways to style a luxurious bedroom

We spend half of our time in our bedrooms, so it’s important that they are a space we enjoy and feel good in. Yet while a lot of fun can be had decorating kids’ rooms, sometimes the adults’ bedrooms can get a little forgotten. Not to worry – we have put together our five best tips to help you bring some love back into your room and create a hub of luxury and class.

1. Layer the bed

A fantastic way to add a sense of sophistication to a bedroom is to carefully layer the bed with complementary throws and cushions in rich fabrics, colours and textures. Plush, velvet cushions are always high end, as is a touch of faux fur across the bed.

2. Add soft lighting

The best way to kill the mood is to have bright lighting, and in bedrooms in particular, soft lighting is a must. If you can, install a dimmer setting onto your main lighting in the room, and regardless, be sure to add a beautiful, statement lamp or two. Mirrored bases look really glamerous, as do metallic versions, so have some fun.

3. Be bold with patterned wallpaper

Another way to introduce an extra level of luxury to the bedroom is the use of wallpaper, and in particular, textured or patterned wallpaper in dark tones. Wallpaper really does add a sense of drama to a room that paint just can’t quite achieve.

4. Opt for darker colours

While we can often be scared of using darker colour tones in the fear that they might make a room feel smaller, that rule goes out of the window when it comes to styling a luxurious bedroom. Dark greys, blacks, coffee and chocolate tones are much more sophisticated and warm compared to whites and pastels. So don’t be afraid of going all out with rich dark colours in your bedroom – after all it is a place to unwind and let the head fall heavy.

5. Choose an upholstered bedhead

Compared to a timber frame, an upholstered bedhead gives another element of depth and layering, and creates an added softness to the bedroom. Try a velvet or linen finish, and add studs for an extra touch of luxe.

Header image: from here.


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How to: Hamptons kitchen with a modern take

The Hamptons style is one of our most requested from clients. The beauty of this aesthetic is that it doesn’t date. Sure there are updates to be made from time to time, but if you get the basics of the Hamptons style right, your space will stay current for years to come.

To help you identify some key ‘must haves’ when designing your Hamptons-style kitchen, we’ve put together our four biggest tips. Take a read then explore some of our favourite Hamptons-inspired kitchens below.

1.Go all out on white

White is the colour palette of the Hamptons look and should be the foundation for your kitchen. Choose white cabinetry, white walls and white window frames. However, you can add in elements of black or very dark timber – perhaps on your island bench – to provide even more sophistication and a boldness to the design.

2. Choose your pendant lights carefully

As Hamptons-style kitchens are simple in style, choosing statement pendant lights can add personality to the space. Copper is a great option to contrast the white, while steel is a look that is very current and black works well to balance darker cabinetry. Choose a series of pendants in the same size equally positioned along the top of your island bench for the best result.

3. Have fun with your furniture

A must-have for a modern Hamptons kitchen? Beautiful upholstered or timber stools and dining chairs. Because a Hamptons kitchen is very minimal in aesthetic and doesn’t rely on intricate timber or tiles, bringing in some texture and pattern through your furniture adds depth and detail to the room (as well as comfort!).

4. Contrasting timber floors

Our final must-have for Hamptons-inspired kitchens are timber floors in a mid to deep timber tone. As you scroll through the images below, look carefully at the different floor options and you’ll see that the darker tones really pop and add a wow factor to the space. Consider the rest of the timber throughout your home and be sure to match the tones so that your new kitchen complements rather than clashes with your existing designs.

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All images from our Kitchen Pinterest board.

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Four ways to turn your home into a winter haven

As we reach mid-winter, long summer days become a distant memory as we bunker down and spend more time indoors. So let’s take a look at how we can make winter more bearable with some of our favourite cool-weather decorating tips.

1. Invest in beautiful throws

We all love a leather sofa but they can be cold and less inviting in the winter months. A simple way around this is to invest in beautiful throws, which can be draped across your sofa to cozy-up the space and give you something to snuggle up to on those cold winter nights.


2. Reconsider your window dressings

In summer, our main concern for window dressings is to provide privacy in the evenings when it’s still light outside. This can see us choose options that are little more than screens. However, window panes, particularly the over-sized varieties in modern homes, can be a huge heat vacuum in winter, so we want to be choosing window dressings to insulate our homes. Ferrari Shutters have great thermal properties – to keep your home cool in summer and warm in winter, while being a timeless choice. Curtains can also be installed over shutters to add an extra layer and further insulate your home.


3. Fool yourself with lighting

When we imagine a cosy, warm space, soft lighting often comes to mind. Indeed, lighting is one of the best ways to create ambience in a room. So this winter, as night falls, consider turning on lamps and lighting candles to create a cocoon in your home or install dimmers.


4. Explore gas log fire options

Sometimes, central heating just doesn’t do the job. If you’re after something a little more, a gas log fire can be a great option to add a focal point to your living space as well as a whole lot of warmth. There are a huge range of options on the market, but the ‘floating’ variations, as seen below, are one of the boldest statements you can make.



Images from our Pinterest account.

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Three fabulous table settings for you to try this Easter

Easter is just around the corner, so it’s a perfect time to gather your friends and family and enjoy good food. In celebration of this, we’ve found three favourite table settings to inspire you to try something a little special this Easter. Take a look..

1. Scandinavian cool

The Style Files has used blonde timber, white accessories and relaxed linen to create a calm, fresh and modern space. Using raffia to create nests with monochrome speckled eggs placed in the middle, the colour theme is consistent to the finest detail.

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2. Feminine glamour

Blogger Julie Blanner has created a feminine yet glamerous table setting with special Easter touches. She filled eggcups with pinches of moss and cuttings from her redbud tree to create individual place settings for each guest, finished with relaxed linen and a huge glass chandelier.

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3. Bright and whimsical

Minty House blog has focused on childhood delights to create a cheerful Easter dining scene. Cakes, floral crockery and striped straws take center stage, accompanied by ‘flying’ fabric birds and speckled eggs for decoration. The yellow spotted tablecloth adds fun and colour to the magical setting.

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See more of our favourite Easter images on our Pinterest board.

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A modern take on a Hamptons weekender

When a young Manhattan couple purchased their weekend home in the Hamptons, they had a vision in mind, but they also wanted their interior designer to bring new ideas.

The couple – a real estate investor and early education teacher – tasked James Huniford of Huniford Design Studio with creating a new identity for their 1910 shingled farmhouse in the town of Water Mill.

Often people dream of a white beach house, but the end result can feel quite sterile. In this home, the subtle use of patterns, timber features and the introduction of beige, grey and blue tones bring warmth and calmness to the space. It was this approach that enabled Huniford to establish a contemporary take on the traditional beach retreat; one that emphasised the home’s coastal location but also the sophisticated aesthetic that his clients desired.

Huniford set to work removing walls and built-in cabinetry along with ripping off wallpaper and tearing out carpets. During this stage, he discovered wooden beams across the full length of the living room ceiling and made the decision to keep these exposed as a design feature. Other quirks of the home are the sliding barn door, the claw foot bath and a 1940s rocker, which was found at a local antiques shop and re-upholstered in floral fabric.

These design features offer great inspiration for updating a home in the ever-popular Hamptons style. So, take a look at this chic, light-filled and character-rich family home…















Images from here.

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What exactly is ‘Hamptons’ style?

There is often confusion between the two popular interior styles: French Provincial (which we have covered here) and Hamptons. Both styles are elegant and refined with their soft, neutral colour palette and timber floors, which is why they often work well together.

Coastal and casual, the Hamptons interior design style – originally inspired by a group of villages called The Hamptons on Long Island, New York – has come to represent elegant and relaxed coastal living.

Some classic architectural Hamptons design features include the use of timber panelling, high coffered or pitched ceilings with exposed beams, timber floors, neutral and ocean inspired colours, natural materials and lots of natural light.

Here are some typical characteristics of the popular Hamptons style, which can be seen on our screens with the TV series Revenge and movie Something’s Gotta Give:

  • Large picture windows with ocean views
  • Sheer fabrics in sandy taupe, soft grey or white for relaxed draped curtains
  • Cane or wicker furniture and accessories for indoors or outside
  • Distressed timber furniture in limed oak, washed grey and milk paint or dark timber as a contrast
  • Blue and white striped rugs or soft neutral sisal or carpet
  • Big comfy sofas in relaxed linen fabrics with plenty of throw pillows
  • Large glass pendant lights with brass touches
  • Blue and white china and accessories scattered throughout.

Take a look at these Hamptons-style interiors:
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Images from our Pinterest page. 

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Five ways to ‘Spring-ify’ your home

As winter dies out and Spring engulfs us, it’s natural to feel restless in our homes; as though they don’t quite ‘fit’ us anymore. Fall back in love with your home with our simple ways to ‘Spring-ify’ it.

1. Add indoor plants. Spring is all about nature coming back to life after winter. What better way to embrace this than with new plants for your home. Choose a mixture of foliage and floral for the best effect.

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2. Introduce pastel colours. Pastel shades are very ‘in’ this Spring. Think dessert-inspired colours like pistachio, fairy-floss and lemon pie and introduce these with simple accessories like throws and cushions or be bold with a feature wall.


3. De-clutter with a Spring clean. Spring cleaning always comes to mind this time of year and it’s a rewarding habit to get into. Clear out whatever you don’t believe to be useful or beautiful and you’ll free up valuable space.


4. Change up your artwork. Art and nature photographic prints are so affordable and accessible these days. Add a floral or nature photographic print to bring the outdoors in.


5. Invest in outdoor furniture. You’ll be spending more time outdoors from now on so you want to be able to relax, dine and entertain in comfort and style. Invest in a new deck chair, table setting or stylish shade-cloth.



Images from our Pinterest page.

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Five ways to add a sense of luxury to your home

Forget having a huge house and an equally big budget to match: luxury is a matter of a few smart changes to replace the commonplace home furnishings with a touch of luxe.

1. Chandeliers

A really easy way to update a room is to change the light fittings. Often homes will come with very basic pendants or light-shades. Change these to statement chandeliers or sculptural light fixtures and choose dimmers to allow you to create simple mood lighting. Then, layer your scheme with lamps on your buffets and side tables and atmospheric wall sconces.

2. Curtains to the floor

The generous use of heavy fabric can add a sense of luxury to any room in the house. Try floor to ceiling curtains in your bedroom, living room or even bathroom in a neutral tone.

3. Velvet upholstery

The deep richness of velvet adds a luxe appeal to a space and can be used on sofas, dining chairs, occasional chairs, bedheads, drapes and more. Choose deep, jewel tones for a timeless aesthetic that will add warmth and depth to your home.

4. Dark colours

Whilst we tend to stick light, neutral tones for wall colours as a safe and airy option, dark blues, greys and black will add a luxe feel.

5. Statement furniture

Set your space apart from the rest with a special piece of furniture. Occasional chairs are a great way to do this and work in most rooms of the house – bedrooms, living rooms, bathrooms and more. A tan leather or velvet upholstered style will be a timeless investment.



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Photos from Ferrari Interiors’ Pinterest profile.

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