Blur those lines, paint doesn't have to be pedestrian so get creative with how you apply your chosen colours and you could end up with a truly individual look. Layer an accent colour over the top of a base colour and dry-brush half way up the wall to create a dip-dye effect. From ombré to watercolour washes, the two-tone trend shows no signs of fading away. Go deep, Create a brooding sense of intrigue by painting your walls and surfaces in a dramatic shade. Dare to use darker shades of paint – it may feel like a risky move but, in the right context, shadowy tones come into their own. Use a deep grey to add moody sophistication to a library or cosy nook. Create an entire backdrop that blends in by painting a radiator and a wall of shelves to match and bringing in a carpet in the same colour. Deep turquoise, jade green, true pink, amethyst, citrine and emerald. This group of gorgeous colours work naturally together for a vibrant, non-clashy mix. Offset them with black, grey and white to create a successful scheme. Walls painted in a flat steel grey let you use jewel tones fearlessly on fabrics and accessories.
If you have an open plan dining area in your living room (as many new homes do), ensure about 4ft distance between the table and the wall, or the dining space will feel cramped and lessen the dining experience. If you want to unify the different components of different spaces in an open plan living room, such as the dining area or reading nook, you can use area rugs to almost create “wall-free” rooms within the large room. Experiment! Move things around, measure them, look at your room from all angles and picture it from an aerial point of view for an idea on available floor space. What's important is that it's comfortable and feels like home. Having the bookcase there allowed me to display some family photos and a few more decorative items that would otherwise just be stored in a box. It also works well because there's no back on the bookcase which allows the light to shine through and not close in the space. Of course I would love to have something that fit exactly and looked more built in but this is just a rental for the year and I'm all about making things work and look nice, even if it's only temporary.
The first step when lighting any room is to ask yourself: what happens here? Different activities require different types and levels of light. A well-lit living room will have three different types of lighting: general, task and accent. These are used at different times of day and for different purposes, and key to a functional lighting scheme it to know how and when to mix and use them. Not all homes have a ceiling fitting in the living room, and if you have lots of natural light during the day, you might not need overhead light at all. But if you have the fitting, a central pendant or chandelier helps to zone the space and create a focus. Similarly, potlights or angled spotlights will create a even layer of overhead lighting. In the absence of any overhead lights, a large, arced floor lamp will do the trick.
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