Do you want to think like an
Whether you're designing a chic living room or a functional utility area, research and inspiration is fundamental to the success and enjoyment of your project. Having formed a brief, it’s time to get inspired and create your style.
Setting the parameters:
- Look at the room, who uses it and how do you want to feel in the room?
- Do you have any strong influences? e.g. Music, gardening or a love of nature? Influence by gardens and flowers could lead to researching a botanical theme?
- Whether a piece of furniture or a painting holds special memories? A source for inspiration? Do any colours stand out?
- DO you have any items of furniture that you don’t love, but you need to keep? Could it be re-purposed by repainting or reupholstery?
- Talk to friends who have completed similar projects, ask for tips on where they researched.
Look at home Interior magazines, my favourites are:
Living etc, Elle decoration, Real homes, Homes and garden and House and garden. I also like to read Red magazine as I’m influenced by the mix of fashion & interiors.
- Pick magazines that suit your budget (luxury magazines can inspire you to find cheaper options) Tear out and keep the pages you like.
Read books on interior styles, a few books I love are:
Extraordinary interiors in colour, by Rockett st George. Making a house your home, by Clare Nolan. Be Bold, By Emily Henson and New Nordic Colour by Antonia AF Petersens.
- Browse through internet sites like Houzz or Pinterest, saving interior styles you’re drawn to.
- Take photos of paintings, restaurants, hotels or friends’ homes you like.
- It’s hard not to be led by interior trends but try to remember to choose consciously and think about sustainability and longevity.
Keep in mind COLOUR, PATTERN AND TEXTURE whilst looking at room schemes. Often a colour scheme has 3-4 main colours.
- Look at lighting and how the colour changes at different times of the day.
- Key furniture items in the room, find colours or patterns to enhance them or blend in.
- Pick out the colours you like, consider how they sit together. Always keep in mind the mood of the room, how the colours make you feel.
With a bank of ideas and inspiration you can start to narrow down and begin to form your own style.
Taking your budget in to account, start to order fabric and wallpaper samples and gather paint charts from different paint brands. Borrow flooring samples and look at what lighting you like.
The next part of the process will be to collate all your design ideas and make a mood board. This will be a reference point throughout the project.
Have fun, there are an abundance of resources!
(If you find you're struggling, I have a vast range of resources and love sharing them! It’s a passion of mine and I would love to help you on your interior journey.)
Top tip: Find yourself an A4 box so that you can keep all your tear outs, samples and research in one place.