Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Painting and Decorating Your Home – Tips and Tricks

Whilst the remodelling or redecoration of your home is a matter of taste and purpose, there are a host of simple but effective ways to transform a space and bring your vision to life.

Bathrooms

Always use paints and wallpapers that have been designed for use in the bathroom as they can be wiped clean and contain properties that make them resistant to mould, mildew and grime. A bathroom is an excellent space in which to be a little more adventurous with your decorating - try stronger colours such as blues, greens and aquas or keep it neutral for a more relaxed, spacious feel. Careful use of mirrors can enhance natural light and add a sense of space - a mirrored storage unit is a great way to achieve this whilst hiding clutter such as toothpaste and shampoo etc.

For a quality finish, pay attention to details such as taps and tiles, but avoid using large tiles in small bathrooms.

Bedrooms

Your bedroom is a private space, not often seen by others, and this makes it the perfect place to showcase a particular style or to make a personal design statement. Use cool, light colours to give bedrooms a much more restful, spacious feel, including soft hues of blue, green, white or cream. Warmer colours and textures can make a room feel cosier, whilst decorating one wall with patterned wallpaper will definitely make a striking feature. Children`s bedrooms lend themselves well to a themed approach to decorating, perhaps using murals, stencilling or wall stickers. Remember that the most important design consideration for your child`s room is that it needs to be functional and have plenty of storage, whilst being both colourful and interesting.

Living rooms

Start with a fabric or accessory that you love and use it to define the colour palette of the room - it is much easier to match paint to fabrics than the other way around. Patterned wallpaper is great for accentuating areas although be wary of over using bold or oversized prints. particularly in a small space. Choose paints that are durable and pick flooring that is resistant to stains and spills and easy to keep clean, particularly if you have children or pets.

Light is important in a living room, so buy test pots and test various shades of paint to see how the light falls upon them, as well as how the colour looks in artificial light. Position seating to make best use of a focal point, such as a window, fireplace or the television.

Kitchens

Like bathroom paint, kitchen paint also needs to be practical, hardwearing and resistant to grease and grime. For a quick and easy refresh without the hassles of messy re-tiling work, it is also possible to paint over existing tiles using a specialist paint. The same applies to cupboard doors and drawer fronts.

For walls, choose colours that complement the colour of your kitchen cabinets and tiles, rather than clash with them. You can update a kitchen without fully replacing it by investing in new worktops, taps, appliances and door and drawer handles.

Colours and Techniques

Although bold paint colours have their place, they can be overwhelming and quickly wear out their welcome if not used wisely. That said, don`t be afraid to experiment and remember that you can add splashes of colour with cushions, rugs or throws. The use of paint effects gives a further dimension to the colour that you choose. Clouding, for example, might be used to create a sky scene for a child`s bedroom ceiling. Rag rolling can be used to blend colours and achieve a textured effect. Stippling, using a special brush, also adds texture and can be used to combine colours, whilst sponging techniques can create a marble effect. You might also choose to use textured paint, particularly if your walls are not in great condition.

How to choose a professional decorator

Although your costs will increase when you hire professional help, your project will be completed in a lot less time and in theory you should get a quality finish that otherwise may not be achieveable. This is especially true for things like tiling, wallpapering and the more complicated painting jobs.

Ask friends and family if they can recommend a proficient and reliable decorator, as word of mouth is usually a good measure. Your local Trading Standards department may have a list of approved tradesman or you can search online for decorators in your area and then ask them for testimonials.

Be sure to discuss your budget to ensure it is realistic for the project, and agree timescales before work starts.

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