COOL HALLOWEEN DECORATING IDEAS

You know Halloween is on its way when the temperate drops and leaves start falling from the trees.  If you haven’t decided on how to decorate your home then this post should be useful.

I’ve tried to gather the most cool and interesting Halloween decorations I could find on Etsy to help you create a perfect spooky ambience this Halloween season.

Below are some interesting finds, but remember not to forget that carved pumpkin!  There are plenty of ways to decorate it if you’re not that great with your carving skills!

Let me know what you’re up to this Halloween and hopefully you’re home will be as spooky as they come!

 

Halloween Wreath

Wreaths are not just for Christmas, this one is delightful and made of wood which will last year after year.

halloween decorating ideas

 

Autumn candles

Spice up your home with these lovely smelling Halloween themed candles.

 

halloween decorating ideas

 

Blood Splattered Halloween Chocolate

These are not for giving out – they are just too delicious – more a treat for you to celebrate Halloween with a glass of wine!

 

halloween decorating ideas

 

Handmade Halloween decorations

How cute are these handmade decorations?  They would look lovely around your home or hanging from your door handles.

halloween decoration ideas

 

Halloween Window Sticker

How fab are these?  It’s just what I need to make my home look spooky!  What do you think?

Halloween decorating ideas

 

Halloween Wine Glasses

Once all that treat and treating is over, sit back with your feet up and sip some wine in these wonderful Halloween themed wine glasses!

 

Halloween decorating ideas

 

If you’d like to dress up for Halloween but don’t know how, head over to my blog post on No Effort Halloween Costumes to find out how!

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IS OPEN PLAN LIVING REALLY FAMILY FRIENDLY?

View a selection of new build family homes and you’d be hard pushed to find a design that doesn’t include at least one open planned room, unless you’re looking at really large properties. Walk around some small to medium-sized homes marketed at new or growing families and you’ll likely be presented with one or more open plan living spaces. In fact, you may even find that as many as three rooms have been rolled into one in the name of embracing ‘family friendly’ living space. A recent survey by one homebuilder Countryside claims that open plan living is very much in demand with 65% of buyers looking for an open plan living, kitchen and dining area because they are ‘family friendly’.

 

Let’s be honest, there’s a fairly obvious reason why developers have embraced open plan living. Missing out a wall here and there allows for a lot better flow of light and air and can make smaller spaces look larger. And of course, you save a few bricks and time on building too. But is it all about creating an illusion of space and saving a few quid or are there real advantages to opening up your home? Let’s look at the pros and the cons to see if open plan living could be a fit for your family…

The pros

You won’t miss a thing

An open plan space is perfect for sharing with the whole family and especially good for keeping a close eye on cruising toddlers! Whether they’re reaching for things they shouldn’t or taking a peaceful nap, it’s easier to watch over them to ensure nothing is amiss. Plus, with bigger areas to explore, there’s more room for toys and less likelihood of bumping into things. And, if you have guests over for entertaining, you’ll have a bigger space to dine or party in too.

There’s more space for furniture

When your rooms are on the compact side, squeezing in a sensible furniture layout can become problematic. This means family friendly furniture such as a proper dining table is often sacrificed in order to conserve floor space. With an open plan living-dining room or a kitchen-diner, much smaller homes can accommodate furniture favourites such as table to share family meals around or a larger sofa to snuggle up on to watch movies together.

It’s easier to decorate

If you’re an interiors enthusiast you’ll know the struggle of seamlessly linking your décor as you step from room to room. With open plan living it’s much easier to create a logical flow with colours, prints and textures that work together. There are larger walls and floors that allow you to experiment with different techniques more easily and can make things like wallpapering and laying flooring or carpets easier. Plus, with fewer rooms to decorate, you may even find you save a few pounds on the overall finish.

open plan ideas

The cons

Noise and smells travel

It’s not just special moments and a larger space you share with open plan living spaces. In fact, depending on the layout on the activities of different individuals, you can end up sharing some pretty annoying things too. The potent smell of the nappy bin might waft through you’re communal chill out area or if you’re ground floor is entirely open plan, the scent of last night’s tea might hang in the air while you’re watching TV. That could be enough to put fish permanently off the menu in some households! Then of course, there’s the noise. If cooking in the kitchen is usually your quiet haven, you can forget having a peaceful five minutes if the kids are playing in the same space. Likewise, if someone’s trying to do some homework in your dining area it will be hard to persuade the rest of the house that the TV should remain switched off for the duration.

Privacy is a precious commodity

As kids get older, open plan living starts to throw up more issues. Along with needing a quiet spot to work in, you or they might want to spend some time alone without heading up to your own bedroom. You might need to factor in younger children playing with toys whilst older children try and chat with friends. It’s also common to could contend with everyone playing on multiple devices like mobiles and tablets all in the same space, which can result in lots of annoying beeping. Having some separate spaces to retreat to can be beneficial for all the family and makes it easier to accommodate each other’s moods, hobbies and interests.

Temperature regulation is tricky

Hands up who turns the radiators off in some rooms but keeps other areas extra cosy because everybody in the family seems to have their own personal temperature preference? Not only do larger areas take more heating but it’s also harder to keep separate warm and cool spaces if you need to with open plan areas. For example, if you’re cooking up a storm in your kitchen diner on a hot day, you might find that the temperature in your dining room becomes too close for comfort. This can be especially the case in well-insulated modern homes.

Can you compromise?

If you’re on board with the benefits of open plan living but less enthused about the drawbacks, there are a few things you can do. Broken plan living – described here by Houzz – is a modern update on open plan living that factors in a family’s need to socialise or spend time separately. Cleverly placed furniture can provide quiet nooks and corners or if you’re planning a move or some renovations, inserting mezzanine floors is one way to instil privacy, though it won’t necessarily help contain unwanted spreading of sounds or containment of heat. An easier (and more cost effective) solution is to consider fitting doors that can be opened and closed as required. These indoor bi-folds by Vufold feature larger floor to ceiling glass panes so that you still have the advantage of free flow of light but can close the door on unwanted interruptions if you’re in need of a bit of peace and quiet.

 

What do you think of open plan living spaces? Do you find them useful for family life or do they throw up lots of problems with practicalities in your household? Do you have any other hacks to share that allow you the best of both worlds?

 

Related posts:

Ways to add a touch of character to your bathroom

5 Overlooked decor touches to add to your home

How to DIY your way to a vintage home

 

 

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Do you love open plan living? Are you thinking of open plan living? Do you ever wonder if open plan living is really family friendly? 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?

 

Related posts:

Ways to add a touch of character to your bathroom

5 Overlooked decor touches to add to your home

How to DIY your way to a vintage home

3 Simple Tricks to add a touch of luxury to your bedroom

 

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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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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. Here are just a few remodelling tips worth considering.

 

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. There are also spray-on granite paints that can make a plastic countertop look convincingly like it’s made of stone.

 

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 as found at EnergyStar.gov. 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, as you can see at sites such as TapWarehouse.com. 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 – a cheap and easy solution could be click-fit flooring. This simply sits over your pre-existing floor and is measured and slotted together. If you’re opting for ceramic tiles, be aware of going to gaudy with the colour choice. 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.

 

Related posts:

Ways to add a touch of character to your bathroom

5 Overlooked decor touches to add to your home

How to DIY your way to a vintage home

3 Simple Tricks to add a touch of luxury to your bedroom

 

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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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GIVING YOUR HOME A WELCOMING AND HOMELY FEEL FOR AUTUMN

 

At the height of summer, I usually yearn for the autumnal days, when leaves start to fall from the trees and my wardrobe staple moves to cosy jumpers and sleeper socks!

 

It is also a time when I feel the urge to redecorate our home as I start thinking of how I can make my home feel more welcoming and cosy too.

 

I can’t really put my finger on it, but there are some small differences that can make your home take on a different feeling.   I’m delighted to share with you some ideas on how I’m going to make my home feel cosier!

 

The essential ingredients for me will be my paint, fabrics, and lighting options, I want to create a soft and natural space but also, I want to ensure the atmosphere is welcoming and cosy too.

 

I’m taking the glamorous approach to my hallway

I really want to vamp up our hallway, it is long and wide and very white at this moment in time.  I have opted for soft grey on the walls and a dark natural wood floor.  I’m in love with this Dove Grey paint from Laura Ashley.

 

 

However, I want a show stopping feature as you enter but I also want elegance, so what could be more beautiful and show stopping than this chandelier from Sherwoodlighting.co.uk.

 

 

 

More is more for our living room

Our living room needs more warmth.  I going to pack away the summer fabrics and opt for more, more and even more cushions in comforting autumnal colours.

What could be more autumnal that these beautiful woven check cushions from Next?

 

 

 

Lighting in the living room is important to me so I want to scale back the harshness of our spotlights.  I’ve opted for this stunning oversized floor lamp from sherwoodlighting.co.uk.

 

 

 

I’m hoping that the warmer palette and soft lighting will make everyone want to cosy up by the fireside in comfort and feel relaxed on the chilliest of nights!

 

Our atmospheric bedroom

Our bedroom is the hardest place for me to consider when decorating.  I go from light and airy to deep and dark!  What I do know is that I want some glamour so have decided on this little feathered shade from sherwoodlighting.co.uk.

 

 

Our dark wood furniture will look stunning with a fur-style rug with the feather shade to add a touch of glamour.

 

 

So that’s what my plans are for decorating over the next 6 weeks.  What do you think?  I’d love to hear what you have planned to make your rooms have that cosy feel as we move from summer to autumn.

 

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