Easy decorating ideas

Whether you’ve got the keys to your first home or want to give your living space a new lease of life, transform your place into somewhere you’ll love to come back to with these easy interiors ideas and need-to-know decorating tips.

True colours

From fresh white to bold colour, a coat of paint can give your room a whole new look.

  • Always use tester pots and consider the options in different lights.
  • Take inspiration from an object, fabric or picture you love – ask a paint company or DIY store to find a match or mix a shade to order.
  • Add colour in unexpected places like door ends or stair risers to give your home a unique twist.
  • Organise a paint party. Just add extra brushes, rollers, family or friends and some music – you’ll get the job done faster and have a lot more fun.

Roll with it

For a dramatic dose of pattern, choose wallpaper over paint.

  • Try a vibrant print on one wall. Pull out a colour from the design and paint your other walls to match.
  • Make sure walls are clean, dry and stripped of any old paper. Protect sockets with tape and cover floors. Cut strips of paper a few inches longer than the height of your walls, cutting each one at the same place on the repeat so the pattern matches up.
  • Apply pre-mixed paste to your paper with a paint roller and leave for the time recommended on the paste instructions, then hang the paper top to bottom, overlapping in the corners, and smooth it down with a wallpaper brush. Trim off the excess with a razor knife guided by a taping knife.
  • Buy paste-the-wall wallpaper if you can. It’s less hassle than pasting the paper and makes slapstick moments less likely.
  • Start next to a door if you’re papering the whole room – the door will separate your first and last strips so it’s less obvious if the pattern doesn’t match up exactly.
  • Paper the back of a shelving unit instead of your walls for a striking feature that’s sure to turn heads.

Picture perfect

Surround yourself with art and photos you love for the ultimate personal touch.

  • Group pictures together to create a gallery wall. Stick to one colour for your frames to tie everything together – slim black ones always look good and go with most prints. You can order made-to-measure frames and mounts online.
  • Cut paper to the size of each picture, then attach it to the wall with sticky tack to find an arrangement you like. Use the paper to mark where to drill or hammer.
  • Invest in a stud finder and a pipe and electrical wire detector to help you hang pictures securely and avoid causing damage when you put in nails or screws.
  • Check your walls. If the wall you’re using is plasterboard (it will sound hollow when you knock on it) and you’re hanging something light, simply hammer in a nail and picture hook. If you’re hanging a heavier frame, use your stud finder and hang from one of the studs behind your wall for strength. If the wall is solid, you may need a more powerful masonry bit when you drill – use an awl or a pencil to mark the spot before you start.

Small wonders

You don’t have to redecorate a room to give it a new look – sometimes it’s the smallest updates that have the biggest impact.

  • Switch up your lighting. Use dimmer switches and soft uplighters, fairy lights or LED candles for instant atmosphere, or choose colour-changing uplighters you can adjust to suit your mood. 
  • Add colour and pattern with cushions and throws, or be bold with a feature rug.
  • Create eye-catching displays – arrange books by colour, or group objects and ornaments around a theme – for example, seashells and beautiful glass bottles for a nautical feel, or a collection of vases in different shapes and sizes.
  • Use plants and flowers to bring the outdoors in.
  • Change the ambience in an instant with home fragrance, from zingy citrus to summery florals or rich scents with a hint of spice.

However you choose to decorate and accessorise your home, the important thing is to make it your own. Here’s to creating a space you love to spend time in.

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The material contained in this article is intended for information purposes only and not as advice.

You should obtain professional legal or other advice if you are unsure about the effect on you of any matter in this article.

Published: 26 January 2018