When renovating your home, you're presented with a great opportunity to create an interior that suits both your lifestyle and tastes
But what does this actually entail? And more importantly, how do you go about doing this? Well, we've spoken to Jo Dyson, renovations and interiors expert for the London Homebuilding & Renovating Show (4-6 October, ExCeL, London) , who fills us in on everything you need to know about re-thinking and re-purposing your interiors...
1. Routine beginnings
First things first - have an honest think about your everyday habits and routines. For instance, who will be using each space and how will they be using it? Is the room going to be the central point when you have friends round or will it be a private area?
You also need to consider the layout; open-plan spaces are still popular, but more of us are moving towards open-plan design. This helps us maintain the spacious feel of open-plan living, but also provides a certain element of privacy, thanks to zoning the spaces. Have a think about the purpose of the room and you'll help to make it suit your expectations.
Courtesy of Mae House Design; image credit Nathalie Priem
2. Light up
An important part of your interior will be the lighting - this it plays a crucial role in home design. To start, think about whether it is natural or artificial lighting that you want - and here, you need to consider how the space will be used.
In your lounge, kitchen or diner, you can arrange the lighting into zones, where you only have one area lit at a time - then, at other times, you can have the whole room lit up.
In your bedroom, you may want to try two-way designs - this way, you can turn the light on when you walk in and turn it off from the comfort of your bed.
3. Things are looking up
An easily forgotten factor in your home will be the height of the ceiling - it can make a big difference to both the look and feel of your interiors. It has an impact on everything, from the arrangement of the furniture, to the way you order and use the rooms, while also contributing to the mood of the space, and how you feel about it.
Having a lower ceiling in smaller rooms creates a cosy feeling, while a higher ceiling makes it feel bigger than it is. If you're looking to make the best use of your space, you could even think of additional storage beneath the staircase.
Courtesy of Mae House Design / image credit Simon Maxwell
4. Look and feel
There's no forgetting how important your room's appearance is, but you also need to consider the mood too. Picking an effective colour scheme sets the tone and has a huge impact on the feel of your space - for instance, in a bedroom, use darker colours to create a cosy vibe, while warmer natural shades brings about a sense of calm.
With your bedroom, try a less cluttered approach - the less you have lying around, the more likely it is to be restful. You also want to ensure you consider the storage options early on - think about where you'll store clothes, bed linen and accessories.
When you're re-modelling a bathroom, think about who and how it will be used. Will it be frequently used? By establishing these points, you can merge design and practicality, which subsequently lets you incorporate the elements like a bath and shower combination, with the end result being a pleasant and calming environment.
You can enhance your relaxing room by incorporating some natural elements - indoor plants helps to brighten your room and also purifies the air.
To maintain healthy indoor air, you need good air flow and ventilation. The key rooms here are the kitchen and bathroom - so, how do you go about this?
Well, installing an extractor hood in your kitchen will remove unwanted cooking odours, heat and smoke as air gets moved from the kitchen to the outdoors.
If you ventilate your bathroom, it lets air circulate freely, as it's crucial, not only because it prevents us from having a fogged-up mirror and keeps damp and mould at bay. It ruins your bathroom's appearance, decreasing the lifespan of its features.
Courtesy of Mae House Design / image credit Nathalie Priem
6. Heat things up
You don't want to forget your heating either. Something which isn't as expensive as it once was is underfloor heating - it lets you get rid of radiators and is also not as expensive as it once was. This, in turn, gives you more wall space, enhancing your home's energy efficiency.
Lead image courtesy of Mae House Design / image credit Nathalie Priem