With Autumn, Winter and shorter days just around the corner, I thought what better time than ever to start thinking about ways to beat the seasonal blues in the Home. Natural light is incredibly important for our overall mood, our health and for creating a homely living space. If you are keen to lighten up your home, read on to find out how to enhance the light already available and to bring more sunshine into your home this season.
As much as I love dark décor and wall colours, they tend to absorb light, whereas light colours help reflect it. If you have been considering giving your space a refresh then what better time to explore brighter or lighter paints. Using satin finish paints instead of matte can help to bounce light around your room. There is nothing better than a crisp white ceiling to give the illusion of space and light so keep this in mind when re-decorating.
Accessorise your home with mirrors and reflective surfaces to bounce light around the room. This will create a feeling of airiness and brightness in your space. Mirrors are a budget friendly way of increasing natural light and making your rooms feel more spacious than they actually are, one of my favourite interior styling tricks!
Now this one may seem a bit ‘state the obvious’ but windows hold the key to letting natural light flood into your home. If you are in a position to be making home improvements before Winter arrives, look at adding French or bi folding doors to rooms, skylights to an extension or adding a conservatory. Many conservatory glass suppliers offer a vast range of glass options that provide year round benefits like energy saving and temperature control which is also incredibly beneficial when it comes to the change in seasons. If new windows aren’t in your scope or budget, don’t worry. There are small things which can be done to maximise the light levels that your current windows let in. First of all, make sure your windows are as clean as possible, dirty windows can block out a surprising amount of light. Opt for light coloured curtains or blinds as dark colours may absorb the light and be sure to open them fully each day.
Mirrors are not the only home accessory that can bounce light around a room! Anything with a shiny or reflective surface will help your room appear lighter. Look to glossy finishes like tiles and worktops for optimum light enhancement. Winter is certainly the season to add touches of sparkle to your home, this too will help your space feel bright. Reach for metallics when choosing seasonal accessories and keep soft furnishings like rugs, throws and cushions light in colour.
So this one isn’t entirely about using natural light but sometimes even nature might need a helping hand right? By adding soft lighting in awkward or particularly dark spaces, you can improve the overall lightness of a room and in turn this will help maximise natural light. A few well-placed and carefully selected light fixtures is one of the most effective ways to create a bright space. Try switching bulbs to Halogen, Halogen Bulbs are a type of incandescent that gives a close approximation of natural daylight. You can also buy light therapy lamps as a great addition to a bedroom. These are used to lift mood and protect against SADS by mimicking the sunlight.
This is a sponsored post however as always all words are of my own.
As you all know I have always been a huge fan of panelling, after creating a panelled wall in our master bedroom (see here for tutorial) I have managed to incorporate it in to 3 places in the house and I have no intention of stopping there!
We have a long and thin, traditional 1930s hallway with windows on the stair side and a long blank wall running along the other. The house would have once had a separate dining and living room but these rooms were knocked through and the door filled in by the previous owner which we love, but it did leave us with a very long blank wall where a door once sat. We decided to go for a taller and more rectangular panelling than we have previously done. I actually took my inspiration from the panels in the front door, being a total sucker for period features I always try and incorporate traditional aspects into the home where possible.
As soon as my husband had got over the fact that I had convinced him to panel yet another wall, we headed to B&Q for supplies. We had already drawn and planned how many strips we would like on the wall and from that, worked out our spacing and height. We decided on 1400mm Lengths that were 80mm wide. We brought a 3mm thick large sheet of MDF from B&Q and had it cut using their in house cutting service. The MDF was only £13 and gave us enough strips of wood to do the panelling twice if we wanted to. It always impresses me how affordable panelling can be.
We used Gripfil and pin nails to attach the strips to the wall. We started with the bottom horizontal pannels that ran along the skirting, because we had all of the strips cut to the same size we needed to join strips together to do this, we got them as close to each other as possible and used a finger of wood filler on the joins where required. We then began the vertical panels, and then the top horizontal panels at the end. The project came together really quickly and we had the panelling attached and together in around an hour. We used a nail punch, to punch in any nails so they were flush with the surface, used a small amount of wood filler on any joins and then began priming. We always use Zinsser BIN for priming.
We have now painted and almost (story of our lives) completed the hallway and landing renovations. We painted the walls using The Decorating Centre Online hard wearing matte colour matched to Farrow and Ball sulking room pink. I am so pleased with the result. Panelling really is a fantastic way to transform a space on a small budget. If you give it a try, please do let me know how you get on!
When it comes to interiors my heart always rules my head. You will often find me standing in a shop, holding something impractical and trying to convince my husband that we need it in our home. If I had a pound for every time I have heard the words “Chynna we have enough cushions on the bed” I would be writing this from my sun lounger in the Maldives. Unlike myself, my husband looks to purchase useful and functional items, I am all about the look and style. In this blog post I will be delving into the good and bad of the ultimate style vs practicality item in my home. Ladies and gentlemen I present to you my most treasured possession, the bain of my husbands existence and the truth about…..
A roll top shower bath
It’s the most blindingly obvious style vs practicality example in our home, (although I am sure I could name a few). I get a lot of questions on my Instagram about the roll top shower bath and I am always sure to be honest, but I do feel that what I try to explain, may come across as confusing, so I will have a better go here. I can’t tell you the fight I had to put up to get Mr J to agree this beauty. I had always dreamt of having a roll top bath and until we knocked the toilet and bathroom together and saw what space we had, it still wasn’t a guarantee. When we were planning the bathroom we spent hours drawing out different positions and although we did eventually find a way to make a separate shower and bath fit, it just was not what either of us had envisaged and felt like it had very little floor space. Shower baths are really commonly used in bathrooms as a great way to save space so this seemed like the perfect solution to keep the bathroom feeling spacious, but I just could not let go of my roll top bath dreams. I scoured Pinterest constantly and this is when I noticed a few roll top shower baths… I was off! I gathered my evidence together in the form of the three Pinterest images I had found and a mock Victorian plumbing order and excitedly presented it to my husband. He seemed on board, he loved the look and got to work drawing a scale drawing, it looked to be the perfect solution, then in true Mr J style, he came at me with questions over functionality! “If it stands away from the wall will it not leak water down the back?” “Don’t shower curtains cling to your body and feel horrid” “what if standing in the bath causes it to become weaker” I knew I had some convincing to do…
Luckily in most cases my husband lives by the mantra ‘happy wife happy life’ and as I am sure you are all aware, I convinced him a roll top shower bath was a great idea. We have now had the bathroom completed for around 6 months so I can finally give my true verdict on whether it was a good idea or not.
We love the look- I don’t think I expected how much I would love the look of the over bath shower rail, the way the curtains fall and how well it would work with the rest of the bathroom. I could not be more happy with how the bathroom looks.
Because we saved space we got to go for a huge bath- The bath is my absolute pride and joy, it doesn’t look it in photos but the bath is a great size, even my husband who is 6ft is really comfortable in it, it is much longer than a standard bath also meaning that all 3 kiddies fit in comfortably and with it being double ended they don’t seem to flood the bathroom while playing like they used to.
No glass enclosure to clean- Lets face it glass shower enclosures are a pig to clean and with three sets of little mucky hands, I think a glass enclosure would have had sticky prints on it more often than not.
During showering water gets everywhere- Spoiler alert, Aaron was right! Water does go everywhere IF you don’t take precautions. If you clip the shower curtains at the back with a hair clip and make sure you angle the curtains correctly and don’t fling your arms about too much then its absolutely fine- my husband does not have the patience for this!
There is nowhere to place your products apart from near your feet.
Aaron is tall so when he steps into the bath it makes him even taller, meaning his head is very close to the fixed shower head
Because our shower and bath are together they are always in use, so I clean it all constantly.
So there you have it, the good, the bad and the ugly. We are fortunate that we will be planning a downstairs shower room into our extension, somewhere my husband can fulfil his shower of dreams, so this room will be used a lot less in a couple of years time. While I can totally agree with my husband that it is not the best shower I have ever been in and it’s most certainly a style over practicality purchase…. I have no regrets! I love our bathroom, it is everything I had imagined it to be and I am so glad that I went with my gut. I am learning along the way that in order to create a home you love, you have to go with the things you love, practical or not!