5 TOP TIPS FOR ADDING A TOUCH OF CHIC LUXURY TO YOUR KITCHEN

A kitchen makeover can be the perfect way to impress guests, add value to your property or simply make you feel cosier in your own home. Certain kitchen design trends have become tacky or outdated over the years. Getting rid of these and opting for a few modern and classic touches could help to make your humble abode feel like the home of a millionaire.   Getting inspired to redesign your kitchen is quite simple really, just have a look at kitchens through the years.  Below I’ve highlighted some of the periods…

 

50s and 60s

Though food rationing began in the 1940s, its effect continued well into the post-war era. Stripped back and functional was what comes to mind when thinking about the pre-war era of kitchen design and interiors. But as we entered the 1950s, and the age of consumerism, the fitted kitchen with household appliances became the housewife’s domain. Influenced by bold American designs, our kitchens evolved into bright semi-open plan spaces.

70s and 80s

Fridges and freezers crept into the mass market, and more families could afford to keep food cool within the comfort of their own home in the 1970s. The bulky white goods helped to evolve the kitchen – moving away from using seasonal vegetables to having the flexibility to experiment all year round. With the advent of ready meals in the late 70s, our culinary habits and home dining experiences changed drastically from the preceding decade.

90s and 00s

As we moved from the 1990s to the noughties, only 25% of UK households owned a dishwasher. The labour-saving device found its way onto the list of white goods that a fair selection of us installed. As the years went by, and the dishwasher made its way into the mass market, we exited 2015 with 45% of UK homeowners having a dishwasher. An integrated dishwasher and fridge freezer proved to be a stylish addition to our kitchens. However, as the trendy finishes became more popular, many of us now opt for bespoke fridge housings to show off our retro Smegs or stainless steel Samsungs.

2010s

Technology began to aid us further from 2010 onwards. Our kitchen appliances have come on leaps and bounds since the 50s and 60s. Hot water taps which were first seen in commercial and industrial kitchens have now entered our domestic kitchens and allowed us to whip up meals in a flash. Multi-zone induction hobs have allowed us to effectively cook larger dishes and the ever-growing smart homes has allowed us to order our shopping online with voice control.

This decade has also introduced us to such smart home stalwarts as Amazon’s Alexa and ingenious appliances – technology that allows us to enjoy our time in the kitchen more than ever before, providing recipes, music and more.

 

Our kitchens have evolved through time, shaping and shifting the way we buy and consume our food – and evolving our cooking habits from those seen back in the 50s and 60s. The advance of technology and quickening pace of life in modern times has led to a particular trend of open plan luxury kitchens that can act as a multifunctional space, equipped with high-spec appliances, where we can enjoy time with loved ones without having to be in the same small room.

 

Below I’ve shared with you 5 top tips to help you design your perfect kitchen.  Let me know what you think.

 

kitchen worktops

 

Top up your counter top

 

Replacing an old countertop could help to transform your home. Laminated wood and ceramic are good neutral choices for adding sophistication. However, if you really want to up the elegance, you should try a stone countertop – either marble or granite. These can be expensive materials. That said, you don’t always have to opt for the real thing. There are plenty of faux-granite plastics out there that can serve the same aesthetic purpose, as well as other stone materials such as concrete. 

 

Upgrade old appliances

 

Your old appliances could be taking away from the luxurious feel of your kitchen. Replacing the white goods isn’t cheap, but in some cases you could save money in the long run. Many newer models are more energy-efficient, particularly those with an Energy Star rating. Not only that, but you could get more functions out of newer appliances. For example, a new washing machine may be able to give you a greater variety of cycles to choose from for different types of laundry. There are also smart options such as smart kettles that you can turn on and off with your phone – useful if you want to turn the kettle on whilst still in bed so that you’re ready to pour your brew by the time you come down.

 

Most appliances will last for fifteen years. Generally you should try to get at least five years out of an appliance, providing it hasn’t broken within that time. Whilst having new appliances will make your home fresh, you don’t want to wasting unnecessary money constantly buying new machinery.

 

kitchen design

 

Freshen up your taps

 

Modern taps are very different to the taps of twenty years ago. Pull-down taps are a popular option that could allow you to better reach all the corners of your sink, as well as helping to thoroughly rinse out pots and pans. An even more ultramodern trend is boiling water taps. These can instantly fill up a mug or a pan with boiling hot water with the flick of a switch (these taps do come with a safety feature to stop kids getting their hands on them).

 

Fix up flawed flooring

 

Linoleum is no longer the rage in households. Old and tired lino can particularly bring down the appearance of a home. Instead consider options such as laminate wood or ceramic tiles. Both approaches needn’t involve pulling up floorboards.  Chessboard patterns and controversial colours could devalue your home if you ever plan to sell it.

 

Let there be light

 

A luxurious kitchen needs to feel bright. The solution to this could be to add in more artificial light. Spot lighting can help to brighten up dull corners of the room. A cheaper option meanwhile could be track lighting which involves fitting a track on the ceiling and positioning lights on it pointing in different directions to brighten up all the corners of the kitchen. Try to suit your lighting’s intensity to the tone of the kitchen. Ceramic whites and chrome steels may be better complemented with cool lighting, whilst warm lighting may help to brighten up wooden surfaces.

 

There are also ways to let in more natural light. Reflective surfaces such as chrome steel countertops or mirrored cabinets may help to reflect more sunlight into the room. If you’re using woods you could opt for lighter types such as beech and oak rather than the likes of mahogany and sapele (although these latter choices can help bring a sense of sophistication to an older property). Painting cabinets with a glossy white could also help to brighten the place up.

 

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These top 5 tips will help you add a touch of luxury to your kitchen from worktops, appliances and flooring. Head over to read more.

 

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6 THINGS THAT WILL MAKE YOUR LIVING ROOM SUPER COZY

At this time of year, there is one room that has become the heart of our home, our living room.  We spend a lot of time there as a family, especially at the end of the evening when it is dark outside, snow is on the ground and all you want to do is cuddle up on the sofa with a hot chocolate with marshmallows!

 

Our living room is a place for us to unwind therefore putting in some extra effort to make it a restful, warm place for the whole family to spend time together is worth the effort.  Check out these 6 things that will make your living room super cozy and let me know what you think.

 

 

Fireplace

fireplace

The hearth is often seen as the heart of the home and no wonder, spending time around the fireplace is such a lovely thing to do this time of year.  I came across this beautiful 20th Century White Carrara Marble Fireplace from Westland London, and is just the thing to make your home super cozy. Can you imagine lighting a fire and sitting as a family around this stunning fireplace?

 

Lighting

lighting

Having the right lighting in place can make such a difference to how cozy a room feels.  This stunning light is in the Regency style, made of brass and can be purchased from Westland London.  It would most certainly give the right amount of ambiance to making a room super cozy for you and your family to relax in the evening.

 

 

Sofa

sofa

Photo credit: Laura Ashley

 

This timeless country elegant sofa will make your room feel super cozy this time of year.  We often curl up on the sofa and watch movies together when the wind outside is howling!  We love putting our feet up, snacking on some popcorn and watching Groundhog Day over and over again.

 

 

Soft Furnishings

throw

Photo credit: Dunelm

A throw is a must to make your living room super cozy.  This one is so cute from Dunelm.  Knitted with pom poms I mean what more could you ask for.  It’s big enough for 2 people or more if you have some small people to keep nice and cozy.  Another idea is to layer up cushions to mix and match with the throw.  I have to admit to having a thing for cushions often needing two or three just for myself!

 

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Candles

candles

Photo credit: The White Company

I have a thing for candles.  Candles in the living room, candles in the hall, candles in the bathroom!  They really do make any room feel super cozy.  Not just this time of year but any time.  I adore the Signature range from The White Company  The aroma is so inviting and has a warm and spicy scent of cinnamon and clove with a dash of fresh orange.  Just so balancing.

 

Hot Chocolate

hot chocolate

 

The finishing touch to make your room super cozy is to all sit down with a mug of hot chocolate and marshmallows!  A delight during winter but even more so at Christmas time.  Sitting down in the evening, discussing the adventures of the day all with a hot chocolate will relax you and help you as a family to engage at a time when family can take a back seat with all the hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping.

 

So that is my 6 ways to make your living room super cozy.  What do you think?

 

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6 THINGS THAT WILL MAKE YOUR LIVING ROOM SUPER COZY

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6 REASONS WHY YOU NEED TO GO TO B&M FOR YOUR CHRISTMAS DECOR

So Christmas is almost here and it’s that time of year when your home just needs a little bit of cheering up with decorations.  I know a lot of us love decorating our homes but at times the decor pieces can be expensive and are often not worth the money.  This is where B&M come in.  The lovely people at their head office sent me a voucher to see what I could purchase.  Below are my 6 reasons why you need to go to B&M for your Christmas decor now!

 

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Everything below I purchased and tested, all views are my own.  I would point out that I was extremely impressed with the quality of the items plus being budget friendly certainly helps too!  Why not make your home look amazing this Christmas with these wonderful decor ideas from B&M?

 

So check them out below and let me know what you think!

 

Christmas Baubles

To make your tree stand out these gold Christmas baubles are a must.  These are proper luxury with 20 in a pack and only £2.99.  A really stunning array of baubles indeed.

 

 

Christmas Star

I’ve a thing for stars!  In fact my star fairy lights have remained up in our hallway all year!  Let’s face it we can look up at the night sky and see stars all year round so you can keep your stars up too!  This star is full of gold glitter, it has a hanging hook and is huge and at £2.99 a steal!  I intend to stand this up on the hall table to compliment my star fairy lights and I might keep it up all year too!

 

Nutcrackers

 

I have admired these nutcrackers for a while now but never had the opportunity to purchase them.  B&M have a pack of three for only £5.99.  They are 38cm tall and you can purchase in these gold and silver ones like I did or opt for the more traditional ones which are red and blue.

 

 

Candle Jar

Christmas would not be Christmas without candles.  Indeed I use them all year round but come Christmas the scent changes to cinnamon and other lovely Christmas smells!  These candle jars are beautiful and make it easy to place a candle inside or you could opt to put in some sweets!  Really the decision is yours.  At £4.99 you could also buy more than one!

 

Christmas Wrapping Paper

I love gold and cream wrapping paper, there is something that screams luxury!  Well the wonderful B&M have an array of Christmas wrapping paper to suit all tastes.  I opted for this one which has a truly luxury feel and at £4.99 it will do for all my presents!

 

Dinner time

There is one thing that I never had and one thing that I always need on Christmas day – a gravy jug!  I found this cute one at B&M for only £1.99!  How great is that.  They also have beautiful plates to match.  I’m sorry I didn’t get them at the same time but sure that’s another trip to B&M to look forward to!

 

So there you have it.  My 6 reasons why you need to shop at B&M for your Christmas decor.  Whether you need Christmas tree decorations, wrapping paper, presents, Christmas decor or candle holders, there are plenty of budget friendly items in B&M. Who says you have to pay huge prices for cute, quality items?

 

Do you like B&M?  I’d love to know what you think.

 

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For candle holders, candles, Christmas decor, Christmas baubles and all things Christmassy I show you 6 reasons why you should go to B&M for your Christmas decor.

 

Image credit:  B&M

 

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3 AMAZING WAYS TO ADD MORE LIGHT TO A DARK ROOM

So you would like to add more light to a dark room?  Did you know that how much natural light you get can really affect your mood?  Those wonderful rays of sunshine or looking up at the sky can have a positive impact upon you and of course vitamin D from the sun is a must.  Having a bright room will not only improve your mood, it will make you feel happier, more radiant and more positive.  Do you need help to add light to a dark room? Here are my 3 amazing ways to add more light in to those dark rooms.

 

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Adding more light to a dark room

The first step to getting more light in to your room is to determine where your problems lie.  Do your rooms need more natural light?  Do you have dark walls and dark floors?  Is your room cluttered and have dark foreboding furniture?  Are small windows an issue?

 

Paint Colours for Dark Rooms

Lighter paint colours will have an impact and add more light to a dark room.  With paint you can add warmth with light neutral colours.  You don’t need to paint the whole room in white or neutral tones, you can still have colour as long as it’s just a splash of colour.

 

top tips to bring more light in to a room

 

 

Mirrors to add light

A tried and tested trick to add more light to a dark room is to place a large mirror or two in your room.  Place it strategically so that it catches whatever natural light is coming in to your room.  Using more than one will increase the light dramatically and give the illusion of the room being lighter than it actually is.

 

My tips on how to get more light to dark rooms

 

 

Open up a dark room with Velux Roof windows

You can add more light to a dark room with Velux Roof Windows.  Light can often be absorbed and the culprits are wood, darkly painted walls or indeed the size of a room.  Another option to get more light in your room and at the same time add style and drama is to transform your room with a Velux Roof Window.   Bringing more daylight in to your room can open up more possibilities for you.  Increased natural light, wonderful fresh air drifting in to the room as well as adding a touch of freshness and newness to your room.  You also don’t need to worry about your current architecture as Roof Windows Veluxshop have an array of designs to choose from making this an ideal option for adding more natural light in to your otherwise dark room.

 

Top ways to add more light to dark rooms.

 

 

Soft furnishings for a dark room

Another tip to add light to a dark room is to consider soft furnishings.  Soft furnishings can help offset an otherwise dark room.  Add light coloured throws, bedding, or indeed pillows to your current furniture to ensure a more relaxing atmosphere.  White is so on trend at the moment, and could balance out any dark furniture in your room.

 

top tips for adding more light to dark rooms

 

 

So, what do you do to add more light to dark rooms?  I’d love to hear from you.

 

 

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Need to add some light to a dark room? These top tips show you how from paint choice, soft furnishings to Velux Roof Windows. Head over to my blog to read more.

 

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3 SIMPLE TRICKS TO ADD A TOUCH OF BEAUTY TO YOUR BEDROOM

These days we lead such busy lives that we rarely have time to spend in our bedrooms. Most of us simply fall into bed and switch off the lights after an exhausting day! That doesn’t mean you should leave the decor of your bedroom to become an afterthought. In fact, it is thought that a bedroom that is carefully planned and decorated could even aid good sleep. If you’re looking to add something extra to your bedroom, then try some of these beautiful ideas for a new look:

 

Flowers

If you love the beauty and the scent of flowers and blooms, then add a vase or two to the bedroom. Lavender, in particular, can aid sleep. You can buy fresh lavender almost all year round these days. The colour is particularly attractive and can easily be incorporated into your theme or colour palette. Soft lavenders and powder pinks are ideal for this room.

 

bedroom decorating ideas

 

Don’t forget, you can also include floral wallpapers or bedding to your bedroom. Petite patterns like this have come back to popularity, so there are plenty in the stores to choose from. Some window blinds feature this type of pattern too. Prints or sketches of flowers in light pastels or pencil could become perfect wall art material for your bedroom as well.

 

decorating ideas

 

Furniture

You can choose elegant metal bed frames that offer a more feminine and pretty look for the bedroom. An antique brass finish can be very attractive. Some Serene Furnishings beds have an elegant ivory finish for a softer look in the room. This can be ideal if your bedding is in ivory, or you have pale curtains in the room. It can also match any rugs that you might be using. Bedside cabinets can also be painted the same shade if you have a wooden cabinet to upcycle.

 

ideas for your bedroom

 

Dressing tables are essential. If you continue the ivory or metal theme here, you will find you have plenty of choices. The table and the table-top mirrors should match. You can place a vase of flowers here, and the colour from them will be reflected in the mirror. Why not add a delicate lace or crochet topper? A couple of ornaments or trinkets will finish this off beautifully.

 

Flooring

Stripping your floors bare and painting them can open up a lot of choices in the bedroom. You can use a thin lacquer or varnish to protect and highlight the grain of the wood. Or you can paint them ivory, duck egg blue, or a soft lavender colour. Add a couple of rugs for a soft finish. Why not paint the skirting boards in a feminine colour too? If you have floor-standing radiators, it might be worth painting these the same colour too.

 

Bedrooms can be elegant, feminine and beautiful. They can be painted and furnished in any colour you like to suit your mood or suit the season. Add a few pillows, cushions and a throw to the bed, and you’ll have a room you’ll love to use. Perhaps you’ll make it to bed a little earlier tonight?

 

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5 Overlooked decor touches to add to your home

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PLEASE PIN THIS POST

These simple decor tricks will help you add a touch of beauty to your bedroom.  Featuring easy and low cost ways to enhance your bedroom.  Head over to my blog to read more.

 

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