You’ve spent months poring over the design of your new build or renovation and now comes the fun, yet daunting task of furnishing the entire place. The inside of our home is where we spend most of our time and the way we design our interiors plays a big role in affecting how we feel, connect & interact with those around us each day.
At Arrival Hall, we love incorporating the Scandinavian design philosophy which focuses on functionality & minimalism in our interiors. However, ensuring that a space exudes the Danish ‘Hygge’ quality of coziness, wellness & contentment can prove to be bit of an art form. Our creative director, Lisa Tay, shares her Do's & Don'ts when it comes to furnishing & styling your newly built or renovated home.
1. Be aware of lead times
When shopping for large furniture pieces such as sofas, dining tables, chairs and even lighting, it pays to be well prepared. Start your search early as certain European & Scandinavian furniture pieces are made to order and coupled with the long sea freight journey, can take up to 12-16 weeks to arrive in Australia. Start off by gathering ideas and putting together a wish list, then speak to helpful staff who can advice you on estimated delivery dates.
2. Pay close attention to furniture & room dimensions
In the case that you are not living in the space yet, refer to your building plans and plot out furniture positions to help narrow down your selections of what might work. Always remember to leave sufficient room for walkway space and flow of movement.
It does help to visualize things in the actual space before deciding on your larger purchases. So if possible, ask your builder if you can pop into the property to make some measurements. Play around with furniture lay outs by using masking tape on the floor.
3. Don't underestimate the importance of lighting
The right lighting creates ambience and enhances the aesthetic appeal of a room. It should not overwhelm but complement the furniture in the room. I usually recommend investing in pendant lights in the lounge, over the dining table and kitchen island whereas wall or table lamps tend to be more functional in the bedroom. Always pick warm globes (non-negotiable) and LED where possible as they are much more energy saving and last longer.
4. Don’t be afraid of colour
Minimalism does not mean monochrome, cold, lack-lustre interiors. Introducing a palette of complimentary tones within a room can add warmth, personality and really make a space come to life. If you're feeling bold, add colour by picking an interesting sofa fabric, large rug or curtains.
Alternatively, if you prefer to play it safe when it comes to the big ticket items, stick to neutral colours for these and introduce colour using wall paint or smaller decorative items such as cushions & wall prints, all of which can be easily refreshed & changed after several years.
5. Create warmth in the home with cosy textiles and natural woods.
The addition of the right rug, throw & cushions can instantly lift a room and add coziness to an otherwise cold or stiff space. Natural fabrics such as linens & wools are particularly tactile and effective in adding texture & dimension.
Lighter coloured hard woods such as oak can create a sense of lightness in a space whereas deep toned walnuts can feel more dramatic & luxurious.
6. Be clever with storage.
Many Scandinavian brands have storage systems that are aesthetically pleasing and brilliantly functional. Picking a shelving system that can double as a display and storage is a great way to decorate a space as well as keep a room tidy and create a sense of calm.
In smaller homes where space is limited, make clever use of walls to add extra storage. Some beautiful coat hooks in the entryway can decorate a wall while providing a spot to store your bags as soon as you come through the door.
7. Your home should reflect the people living in it.
Once all the big pieces have been decided on, be sure not to neglect the final touches that truly make the house a home. Invest in well-designed pieces of quality that will last you a long time and select items that mean something to you and bring joy when you look at them. Don't be afraid to bring your personality into your decorating.
8. Lastly, don’t feel pressured to have everything done at one go.
Styling an entire home can often take time especially with budget constraints. Trying to get it all done at once can often lead to buying pieces that you weren’t completely in love with just to fill a space. Take the time to learn about the different products, brands and design processes in order to develop a greater appreciation for your investment.
If you’re in the process of trying to decorate your home and are feeling overwhelmed, don’t be afraid to ask an expert for their help or opinion. Our staff at Arrival Hall are a bank of ideas & knowledge and will happily spend time helping you with suitable suggestions. We also provide an interior styling service if you’re after a more comprehensive service. Feel free to give us a call at the store on 0481 815 111 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.