Kitchens and Interior Design

A kitchen is a functional room that every home needs, and, being in everyday use, you should ensure that it is a room you can also enjoy being in; a room that reflects your style and taste.

An interior designer might not be top of your list when you think of the people you should consult about your kitchen design, but they can be a great asset to have on-board; they will work with your kitchen designer to not only look at the practical element of the space but also inject that all-important personality and style through use of colours and textures so that the end result is everything you want it to be – and more!  Of course, if you have a small or awkward shaped room, the design element can be of even more importance. Your head might be filled with ideas of beautiful islands, marble worktops and storage galore; your interior designer will help you make sense of your ideas and create a cohesive look ensuring tones and finishes are complementary throughout.

Some of our top tips are:

  • Plan out your kitchen before work commences, a well-thought out kitchen is key to a successful kitchen long term.
  • Give your kitchen some personality using accessories, colour, wallpaper and fabrics. This will make your kitchen more welcoming, and soften the hard edges.
  • Think about how your kitchen will be organised; a space for everything and everything with a space. This is the mark of a well-thought out kitchen; for example tray spaces, wine storage and ironing board storage and so on, will all make a big difference to how easy to use the kitchen is in the long run.
  • Keep the clutter away by ensuring that you have enough cupboard space to keep ugly and bulky gadgets and appliances behind closed doors.

 

In Sallie’s kitchen, this bold French blue stripe elevates a simple white kitchen and is easy to change while simple natural wood toned accessories like the chairs clock and picture frames add warmth and depth.

Accessories can make all the difference to a kitchen, whether you want to revive the space or start from scratch and refit the room. Here are some of our favourites:

Brushed Wire Kitchen Baskets from Anthropologie

Song Bird Tray from Graham and Green

White Concrete Clock from Nordic House

Waterfall Stemless Glass from Anthropologie

Rose Gold Sensor Bin from Simplehuman

White Marble Shelf from Not on the Highstreet

If you need some help designing your kitchen, whether at home or at work, contact us and we can help you create your perfect culinary workspace.

Interior Design Inspiration for Awkward Spaces

It’s not often that you find a home full of large, rectangular rooms with not a challenging corner in sight. Our homes, and therefore the rooms, are all unique. While that leads to a lot of variety, it can leave home owners confused about how best to decorate and furnish an awkward shaped room. Maybe you have a long narrow living room, and L shaped bedroom, or a room with sloped ceilings or curved walls. There is a design for every place.

Have a look at our tips for dealing with some spaces to give you some ideas:

Asymmetry

We often strive for symmetry in a room, but with a small or awkward space this may be compromised. Try for balance rather than symmetry, for example if you are using a tone or pattern in one area of the room for curtains use it on lampshades or cushions in another area. With the right choice of furniture and accessories, it can be a stylish space that doesn’t feel compromised.

Zone a Large Room

You may not consider a big room to be awkward to design, but sometimes a bigger space leads to too many decisions resulting in a confusing or muddled space. Use furniture and colours and patterns to divide a room into different sections with different functions. The result is a well-organised room with clearly defined areas.

Embrace the Quirk

Instead of trying to hide or disguise an awkward, embrace it, for example an awkwardly shaped alcove could become a desk space with the help of a simple shelf! Use bespoke elements, maybe an usually shaped mirror, or make a feature with a bold pattern or accent colour.

Nooks and Corners

Utilise the space with fitted storage. A bespoke storage system will make any space functional and can be designed in keeping with the rest of the room. This technique is also useful for a small or awkward shaped bedroom where you need storage built around the bed. In narrow spaces consider a sliding door rather than one opening into the area for a more spacious feel, and use mirrors to bounce the light around the room.

With space planning and thinking outside the box, any room can reach its full potential. Work with the space you have and don’t be afraid to be bold.

For more ideas for small and awkward spaces, see our Facebook page and check out the May edition of ‘Ask the Expert’ in House Beautiful.

Interior Design for New Build Properties

You might think that interior design is all about updating décor and refreshing a look, but as interior designers we work with a lot of blank canvases too; new build flats and houses. There are two main reasons why you might get a designer involved, one if you are the purchaser of a newly completed project and two if you are a property developer.

Home Owners

When you’ve bought a new property, you have often waited quite some time for its completion, and you’re raring to move in. If you have just bought a brand new, freshly decorated home, you may be wondering why you would consider changing anything at this stage. It is usual for a new home to be finished in a fairly bland style, with magnolia paintwork and neutral carpets for example. Nothing about the house says anything about your style; about your personality. Interior design not only brings your personality to each room but it allows the very best use of the space throughout.

With our knowledge and expertise we can recommend what works, both for style and practicality, and we can source everything for you. What might take you months to decide and find, we can present to you in a fraction of that time. With the decisions made, you’re ready to go with the designs and for the work to be carried out. Potentially, at this point, you are in a great position to employ an interior designer and get the work done prior to moving in. If this is an option for you, you will be able to avoid the inevitable hassle that comes with living in your home whilst the work happens around you.

You can see our work on a contemporary new build in the gallery section.

Services for Property Developers

We can help developers design and shape their properties from the outset so that they appeal to the widest market of potential purchasers. This can include curating decisions on paint and floor, and choosing the right kitchens and bathrooms – these are all critical elements in creating the right atmosphere and attracting the right kind of buyer for your property. We can also dress the project for sale to help buyers envisage how the space will be used as an empty, bare house does not demonstrate its potential to best effect. Houses need to stand out from the crowd to sell quickly and achieve the best possible price. We can, cost-effectively, dress the house, inject ambience and personality, and show prospective buyers the lifestyle that can come with owning the property.

We work to developers’ brief, however strict or vague; selecting kitchens, bathrooms, paint colours, taps and tiles as well as providing stylish and desirable furniture to showcase your property at its very best.

We have recently completed a project for a number of flats in Bedford; you can see the results here. (link to photos to be added).

If you have a new home that needs the wow factor, contact us now. And remember, we’re on Facebook too.

Interior Design for a Home Office

It’s back to school and work now we’ve hit September, so we’re thinking about how to make the best of our home office spaces! Maybe you own a small business and work from home permanently, or periodically you spend a day working from home instead of the office. Whatever the scenario, you need to make sure that you have a suitably designed environment where you can focus and concentrate. But where to begin when you are designing the room?

 

An office needs the right balance of comfort, practicality and character. A bland, generic office space, however practical, will not entice you in to work. Likewise filling the space with beautiful furniture that doesn’t serve the practical service won’t be a satisfactory end result. As an interior designer, it’s our job to put together the perfect space for every client’s needs.

 

The key pieces required in the majority of home offices are a desk, a chair and some storage.

Desks

 

We like this desk from Ikea for space saving, which we recently recommended to a client for space saving. This is what it could look like in situ.  Other items of furniture can be used as desks if you need more space or a space for the occasional email rather than lots of files. We recently used this gorgeous Anthropologie dining table as a desk in a client’s luxury home in Surrey – we love the gold legs and fine frame that enhance the feeling of space in the room.

Chairs

 

This desk chair from My-furniture is a bargain at just £49 in the sale or if you’re at your desk all day and need support and comfort this chair from Made.com is great for a home office as it’s stylish as well as practical.

 

Storage, be it drawers, shelves or cupboards, provides a practical element to the room, as well as a way to keep organised. You can choose open storage and display your items as a feature, such as a classic book collection on show or you can choose to keeps things hidden away and maintain an uncluttered space; we love this upright sideboard from Dwell for a contemporary office space that needs plenty of storage but in a compact area. The pieces you choose can add to the style of the room; practical doesn’t need to be boring.

 

You will need to ensure that you have adequate lighting including task lighting from an angled desk lamp, this little gold number is on our desk here at Interiorsat58! You can introduce texture and colours with your choice of curtains and blinds.

 

Accessories, such as a piece of artwork or ornaments, enhance a room but take care to avoid overcrowding in the room which could lead to distraction. Choose pieces that inspire you and you won’t go far wrong!  We love this quirky stapler for injecting some personality to your desk space – its predecessor the Dachshund Stapler was regularly featured in the style press and this one is just as fun! It would look great with this super stylish desk set!

 

If you need help or guidance with interior design for your office, whether it’s home or commercial, contact Interiorsat58.

 

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Interior Design Inspiration

A question that often comes up is “where does the design inspiration come from?”. A good interior designer will get to know their clients and truly understand their styles and tastes. Then they can begin to put together a room or a home that reflects the client’s personality and interests. If a client is unsure about what direction to take their project we often start with images from magazines and Pinterest that the client likes and piece together their desired look. Then once the project is underway the client can see it all come together on a bespoke mood board which really brings the inspiration to life!

Travel can be a great place to look for ideas; think of countries you have been to and what you love about the typical look of that region.  Throughout the world, different cultures have iconic styles that you may wish to replicate in your own home, office or working environment.

Scandinavian and French styles are extremely popular for interior design and have quite a timeless feel, they can be used on their own or mixed successfully with other looks such as vintage or modern.

If you fancy a minimalistic look with clear lines, then a Scandinavian look could be for you. You’ll see wood, often reclaimed timber, playing a big part in a Scandinavian styled room, with wooden floors and wooden furniture. Tapered and angled legs on furniture are a signature look of this style. Neutral, light colours create an airy light room with accessories and furnishings used to add colour and texture to the room.

We recently used this elegant coffee table from Coachhouse that had a bleached out Scandinavian wood top but is paired with contemporary chrome legs for an updated take on the look.

If you prefer a refined, elegant look then a French style is for you. You generally won’t see bold colours on the wall of a French style room. The décor is characterised by white walls; not a blue based cold white, you will see a warm white. Black furnishings are popular in French homes and upholstery will add some indulgent luxury into the room. Gold, gilded or metallic accessories make a statement in the room and reflect light creating a spacious feel. This cute mini French side table from Melody Maison was one we used recently.

A room doesn’t need to rigidly stick to style guidelines; it is your room and should be designed to your tastes. You can take a handful of elements initially and build on that. You can use items with personal meaning to accessorise your rooms whatever style they are, just try and group them together to create a feature or frame photos in such a way as to complement the scheme.

If you don’t know where to start on your interiors, contact Interiors at 58 for help and advice.

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Interior Design Tips For Transforming Small Rooms

At Interiorsat58 we love to make the most of a space. A misconception is that interior design is for large houses, big rooms and massive budgets; but this isn’t so. Small rooms are often crying out for some creative thinking so that you can take advantage of every inch.

Here are some of our top tips for smaller rooms.

• A well-placed mirror will maximise any space. Installing a mirror next to, or opposite, a window will mean that the natural light is reflected and you are giving the effect of another window. Having a mirror behind a lamp will also maximise the light in the room, stopping it from feeling poky and dark, however small.

• Make sure colours blend together well and are tonal.

• Keep clutter to a minimum. Accessories and artwork can add colour and character to a room, but choose them wisely. Plain walls with a statement framed picture will give a room a classic finish. Lots of ornaments can create a very busy look which gives the impression of a smaller room.

• Use soft lamp lighting and textures to make the room cosy.

• Plan your room. Put together a mood board with the colours and styles that you like and make sure that they work together to form a complementary finish; an interior designer can advise on this. And, of course measure your space and make sure everything is going to fit; especially important when space is restricted.

• When you’re thinking about the colour scheme of a small room, remember that light colours enhance the feeling of space. Don’t rush into decorating with dark, bold colours that might drain the light from the room.

• When you are choosing your furniture, be smart with your choices to make sure that your room is both well designed and functional. Source furniture that has multiple purposes. This coffee table from Wayfair includes both a handy storage drawer, and 2 stools that can be hidden away when not in use.

• Keep the furniture size appropriate and pick items of furniture that are on legs so that you can see underneath, which will give an enhanced feeling of space.

• If you choose an ottoman with a firm top it can double as a coffee table, but can also be used as a footstool to increase the comfort of a less deep and more delicate sofa.

A small space can be as desirable as a large room when it’s designed properly. If you don’t know where to start, or are struggling to imagine how the final finish will transform the room, contact Interiorsat58. We can work with you to create a completely bespoke space that reflects your personality and style, and works for the way you live.

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Using an Interior Designer

You’re thinking about using an interior design service; where do you start?

First let’s look at what an interior designer can do for you. Interior design is the art or process of designing the interior decoration of a room or building. The end results are that the rooms are more aesthetically pleasing and the environment reflects the mood you want. An interior designer plans, researches, coordinates and manages projects. To put it into real terms, an interior designer works with her clients to create their ideal space.

What are the benefits from using an interior designer?

A good question, and one I am asked a lot. The perception can often be that interior design is only for a luxury finish or big budget. In reality, an interior designer will create the finish that a client desires within their budget. Interior designers save their clients time and money; with their bank of contacts from suppliers to tradespeople, they will be able to research and source furniture, furnishings and accessories much more efficiently and cost-effectively. They can work within a budget, and their trained eye will be invaluable when it comes to recommending the best options to meet the brief.  When you employ an interior designer, you are not only tapping into her expertise and experience, you also have access to a wide range of established and recommended contacts.

You know the benefits of interior design, and you want to hire a designer; where do you look?

I would always advise to use recommended companies and individuals where you can. If that’s not an option, there are websites that list local interior designers, for example www.designdirectory.co.uk. Remember to check out their reviews and testimonials; Facebook is a good place to look for reviews. It’s important to meet with a designer prior to hiring them and make sure that you get on. Projects can be a lengthy, and you need a friendly, approachable person who you can communicate with.

You’ve hired a designer, what can you expect?

I work with my clients to achieve the finish they wish for. You can leave the whole job in my capable hands, and I will communicate with all parties throughout, suggest the décor and source everything required. I will liaise with all the other trades involved whether that’s an architect, builder or decorator. Or you can set me to work on a smaller task; this could be planning a room layout to maximise the space, or sourcing the perfect sofa.

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