Don’t wait! Upgrade your place right now with Karl Lohnes’ fab four essentials.
Architectural features, colour and pattern, lighting, and fixtures and hardware are often overlooked or sacrificed with all the other expenses of a move or reno, but with a little planning and stretching of the budget, they’ll add decorating drama and give your home personal style – and that’s something money can’t buy.
MATTONE PENDANT LIGHT with matte black and brushed-gold finish, from $920, Living Lighting.
Lighting is jewellery for the home and offers up many moods depending on its style. Newly built homes often come with boring, $10 ceiling-mounted glass domes; similarly, you might be tempted to trim the reno budget by going with basic, cheaper fixtures. But one of the most effective decorating secrets ever is to spend a little extra for on-trend lighting. For a designer look, vary the style of ceiling mounts: include quality flush-mounts, pendants and chandeliers. Once in place, have the electrician finish the job by installing dimmer switches – perfect for brightening a dull day or creating a soft glow at night. Be sure to choose the proper dimmer switch for the type of lighting (LED or incandescent).
2. Fixtures and Hardware
BAGGANAES KNOB, black (set of 2), $6, IKEA.
Adding extra style to the bathroom, kitchen or laundry room is as easy as adding new hardware to doors and drawers, and switching out a builder-basic faucet. Look for brushed gold and matte black as on-trend finishes, while chrome and nickel will keep things classic. Want a style that will last? Opt for hardware and faucets that combine both curved and straight lines for a look that’s great in both modern and classic rooms.
Riobel’s brushed-gold Parabola Single Hole Lavatory Faucet, $850, houseofrohl.com.
Straight lines, curves and round edges cover every angle for a transitional shape. FAUCETS that combine both curved and straight lines create a transitional look that suits many styles of bathrooms.
3. Architectural Features
Interior Studio Cartier Metal BARN DOOR with Frost Insert, $240.
Incorporating architectural details is often an afterthought during a big renovation or in a builder-basic home in a new development. But increasing the character of a plain home is easy. Decorative mouldings can be added to walls, around windows and to ceilings to add interest and create visual charm. Or try replacing plain interior doors with panelled or sliding doors. Even easier, simply paint a plain door in a dark colour to give it some pizzazz. Bonus: A painted door will also make the ceiling appear taller because the vertical line it creates will draw the eye upward.
Giving an urban or industrial look to your rooms is as easy as unhinging a plain builder-basic door and installing something with more style.
4. Colour and Pattern
Cole and Son’s Arance (lemon/seafoam colourway) WALLPAPER, through designers, leejofa.com.
White walls have been all the rage with designers (and on Instagram) for some time, but say goodbye to all this white and hello to darker colours and patterns as the next trends to incorporate if you want to create a sense of enclosure and coziness, as well as personalize your space. If using wallpaper on all the walls of a room, consider a smaller print with a lighter-toned background for a calm, soothing effect, and paint the trim in the paper’s background colour to tie the two together. Want drama? Paint walls and trim one deep colour. Blue is a 2020 choice, while deep green will take you a little further down the colour trend road.