There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all bathroom solution, but there are certain elements that can help to deliver the bathroom of your dreams.
A bathroom is a place for reflection and relaxation, to unwind at the end of a busy day and to beautify us for the day ahead. To face the demands of modern living, bathrooms need to be customised to meet individual client needs.
More so now than ever, clients’ want the day spa experience created in their own home, but creating the ideal bathroom isn’t as straightforward as replicating an inspirational luxury hotel bathroom.
So how do you create a bathroom that meets your needs and is big on style?
Simplicity is core to creating Scandinavian interiors. Focus on creating light; using natural materials and a muted colour palette along with de-cluttering to give your home a Scandinavian feel.
Scandinavian influences have been popular within Australian design for some time now and it doesn’t look like the fascination with this design style is going way anytime soon. Scandinavian design is a timeless style that features simplicity at its best, making it increasingly popular for our relaxed Australian lifestyle.
Originating in the 1930’s Scandinavian design showcases how simple design can be highly functional and improve the user’s day-to-day life. Scandinavian interiors feature minimalism, simplicity & durability, creating a confidence that the space will stand the test of time. This is evident in the designs of Scandinavian designers such as Hans J. Wagner, Poul Henningsen & Arne Jacobsen, whose designs are still relevant today.
Here’s how you can create a Scandinavian interior within your home…
Simplicity is core to Scandinavian design! Whether through the use of materials, layout or colour palette, don’t overdo it. Select a few key features that are most important to. Cutting back on the number of accessories and object in the room will de-clutter the space and make you focus on your ‘hero’ pieces.
Light is one of the most important aspects within Scandinavian design. Due to their geographical location, Scandinavian countries experience long periods of time throughout the year, enduring days that only see a few hours of light. Therefore light is carefully considered. Natural light is important. Allow as much natural light to enter your space as possible to give you an interior that is warm and inviting. Use finishes and colours that reflect the light rather than absorb it to make your space appear larger. Include different levels and layers of lighting within your interior. For example, incorporate table or floor lamps to give you mood lighting, as well as general lighting from pendants that let the light flow throughout the entire room. Think Poul Henningsen’s PH Lamp series that throw light downwards, as well as out to the side and up onto the ceiling.
White or Muted Colours
Whites and greys are featured heavily within these interiors. Lighter colours used on surfaces will reflect light around the room, making your space feel brighter and more open. Muted colours or pastels are also used as subtle accents. Playful pops of colour are sometimes used in small amounts within accessories or objects, such as wall hooks.
Timber & Texture
Timber is seen in all Scandinavian interiors and is a vital element. The texture of timber makes Scandinavian homes feel warmer, especially in light to medium tones or with a white/lime wash. Oak and pine are the primary timber types used. Timber finishes are usually unfinished or matt to remain honest to the materials raw form. Timber is not only used as flooring but can also be seen used as wall cladding, within furniture, minimal joinery and objects. Pairing timber with soft furnishings like leather, fur and natural linens and your space will instantly feel warmer and more comfortable.
Graphic & Typographic Prints
It is uncommon to see an image of a Scandinavian interior without seeing at least a few simple prints, either leaning against a wall, on a floating shelf or simply hung on the wall. Prints make the interiors more interesting and a little playful. Bold prints of simple design are also common on cushions and blankets.
With Spring on our doorstep and armed with these tips, now is the time to incorporate a Scandinavian style to your Interior Design. Here's some inspiration to get you started...
We're looking forward to sharing our Scandinavian inspired interior in coming weeks...
Images via: pinterest and estmagazine.com.au
Most people are unaware of how much light can impact an interior. Whether it is natural or artificial, lighting can make or break a space and is often an area overlooked during a renovation or new build.
If you’ve gone to the effort, spent the money, and invested your time renovating or building, you want your newly created interior to look its best. Effective use of lighting can make your space appear more desirable. You want your lighting to draw you into a space and keep you there. If the lighting is perfect, you’ll never want to leave!
Here are our top tips to consider when applying lighting to any interior space…
1. Consider what activities will be carried out in the room. This will help determine what type of lighting should be used. If it is a walk-through space, then general lighting from an overhead source is appropriate. If it is an area where studious activities take place then consider dedicating task lighting to that area.
2. Consider what sort of mood is trying to be achieved. Is this space somewhere to relax and unwind or is it a workspace? The choice of light levels and intensity of light needs adjusting to suit the type of environment you are creating.
3. Consider using multiple sources of light in the one space. To create a multipurpose space you can apply several sources of light, such as LED down lights (general lighting), wall lights (ambient lighting) or LED strip (task lighting). The result is a room that can be used for different purposes depending on which type of lighting is in use at any given time.
4. Where possible opt for environmentally friendly lighting technology. With the fast rate at which LED technology is moving, and with such successful lighting techniques, there really isn’t an excuse not to apply sustainability into your space through lighting. Whether it’s LED down lights, LED strip or simply replacing your existing lamps with LED options. You will not only reduce your energy bills in the long term but will also reduce your carbon footprint on the environment.
5. Consider colour temperature (Kelvin). This is especially important when it comes to the finishes and colours that you have selected for your interior. Whilst a warm white (3000K) will make your space feel comfortable, it can make your space appear yellow. Likewise, if you use a cool white (4000K) you may be able to see better in the space, but the space can feel colder. It can be a good idea to test different colour temperatures to see which makes your space look its best.
6. Make your lighting a feature! This can be achieved by hiding the light source, creating beautiful lighting techniques and making the spread of light a decorative element that is also functional. When choosing pendants, wall sconces or lamps select something that has a wow factor and that is beautiful in its own right.
Designer Advice... In a renovation or new build the lighting will be one of last jobs to be completed and no doubt you’ll be tiring of the endless list of decisions that are required during this process. Our advice is to take the time to consider the impact of lighting in your space. Incorporating the right light sources into your home will make all the difference to your interior space.
Remember, the careful considerations undertaken when choosing lighting will accentuate your home’s beautiful features, by highlighting them and making them look as perfect as was your intention.
Images via Pinterest
Interior Designers are influencing bathroom design and transforming bathrooms into retreats that offer relaxation, luxury and style in both new homes and renovations. With people now spending more time in bathrooms and a list of ‘must haves’ including glamorous freestanding baths, large vanities, creative lighting and luxurious double showers, getting your bathroom design right is now more important than ever.
Bathrooms are now among the top priorities when building a new house or renovating an existing home, with many homes now having multiple bathrooms and ensuites. Designing and selecting fixtures and finishes for this small area is crucial when it comes to planning what should be included in your bathroom to ensure it meets your needs and is aesthetically consistent with the rest of your home. This is where an interior designer can simplify the process of creating your new bathroom.
3 Top Tips for Planning your perfect bathroom…
Time and Budget
Your budget is probably the most important factor when planning your new bathroom. With so many different trades required when completing a bathroom it’s easy for the project cost to creep up. An experienced designer will know what you will be able to include and the things you may need to reevaluate. They can guide you with layout and selection of fixtures and fittings to keep the cost of your new bathroom within budget.
Knowing when you need to have your project completed can determine some of your selections. It could be that the imported designer tiles you love have a lead-time of 8-12 weeks or you’d like to time the project to coincide with a trip away to minimise the disruption to your household.
Family and Lifestyle
When planning your bathroom renovation or new bathroom it's important to consider inclusions to meet the needs of your family and lifestyle and future considerations. The hotel style bathroom you have your heart set on may need some modifications to be practical for you and your lifestyle. Consideration should be given for the number and ages of people using the bathroom, activities that will take place in the bathroom and any special features that need to be included. Inclusions in modern bathrooms can include such things as heated floors and towel ladders, frameless or semi frameless glass, shower niches, laundry baskets all designed to enhance your lifestyle.
Design and Style
Planning your bathroom layout can be easier and more cost effective if you are simply updating the fixtures and finishes to suit existing plumbing or electrical. You may want to undertake structural changes to improve your design? Either way, knowing what you like/dislike about your current bathroom will assist with the new design. Think about the items you need to store in your new bathroom and whether you prefer drawers, open shelving or cupboards. Custom joinery can enhance both the look and functionality of your bathroom. Another vitally important aspect of a bathroom is the lighting and getting the right mix of ambient and task lighting will enhance your everyday experience in your new bathroom.
Once the layout is established, selecting the fixtures, finishes and lighting to create your dream bathroom is all that is left. While some people know they style of bathroom they desire and this is the fun part, others are happy to be guided by a professional to achieve their dream bathroom.
Designer Advice… Creating a bathroom that has that ‘wow’ factor and will meet your expectations is challenging; take the time and seek advice. If full service interior design is out of your budget and you feel confident with making the selections of fixtures and fittings, engaging an Interior Designer to create a cohesive design concept allows you to shop around and secure ‘like for like’ trade quotes with your own set of drawings.
Click here for further information on bathroom design packages.
Images via Bekdon Richards, Bisazza and Pinterest.
"After finally deciding to put a new kitchen in, we were overwhelmed with the decisions and ensuring the final product would be one we would be happy with".
I think we all know where this is heading, but in reality, it doesn't need to.
I’ve just received a wonderful review on Houzz for a kitchen design I completed at the end of last year. It got me thinking about what could have been installed in place of the kitchen I designed.
Using an Interior Designer wasn’t even a consideration for this client. Like most people who make the decision to undertake a kitchen renovation or kitchen makeover, she contacted a local kitchen company and a cabinetmaker to discuss her new kitchen. The kitchen company designed a very basic kitchen leaving the tough job of selecting finishes to the client. Fortunately, the cabinetmaker discussed the option of using an Interior Designer to create the best kitchen for the available space and within the required budget.
At our first meeting we discussed the functional and aesthetic requirements for the new kitchen and the rest of the living areas in the home. From here I worked on a design that allowed us to retain the existing timber flooring and create a functional and stylish kitchen that I knew would push the boundaries for the clients but I also knew would be perfect for their lifestyle and home.
Here's the final design sketches...
In choosing the finishes for the kitchen I started with the island bench that is now the focal point. The client wanted to make a statement with her new kitchen but also wanted a fairly neutral colour scheme.
Here's the final working drawings showing colours and finishes...
Polyurethane was selected as the finish for the cabinetry. Although more expensive than melamine, it allows for a seamless finish to cabinetry without handles and greater flexibility for colour choices. Rather than just one colour for the cabinetry, it was recommended that a colour with similar tones to the bench top be combined with white for a fresh finish.
The final colours selected for the cabinetry were Dulux Lexicon White Half and Dulux Palace Stone. Feature timber open shelving and cabinetry trim were used to provide contrast and a bright turquoise splashback to tie in with artwork in the living area was selected. For the timber feature we used Polytec Natural Oak melamine to keep within budget contraints. The image below shows Eveneer Even Romano Quartered. The splashback colour is Dulux Sparkling Cove and the wall colour is Dulux Whitsunday Island.
Here's the final colour palette...
To create this look on a budget, you could consider using the following finishes...
I'm thrilled that I've made a difference to this clients lifestyle and that the kitchen I delivered is more than they could have imagined. One of my goals as I set up Bella Vie Interiors was to make Interior Design more accessible and reading this review, I believe this is what I am doing.
Click here for further information on the kitchen design process.
Click here to see the Bella Vie Interiors Design Packages.
Invite us in to commence planning your dream kitchen or read what others have to say.
Images via Pinterest.
Award-winning Interior Designer at Bella Vie Interiors.