Adding the personal touch to your living room: DIY rug making

Making your home your own is the first thing we think about when we move into a new place or when re-decorating. If you are a creative and crafty person then giving your living room the personal touch with its very own homemade rug is a cool option. You can make rugs out of all sorts of materials. Homecraft Craft Supplies is a great place to start for tools, materials and rug wool.

Pom-Pom Rugs – Making pom-poms was probably one of the first things you made at school that actually looked good. But did you know you can make an entire rug out of pom-poms? To make your own funky design, you’ll need a piece of cardboard cut into two doughnut shapes of the same size, wool and scissors. The size of pom-poms you make depends on how fluffy you’d like your rug.

Place the rings together and begin winding the wool around the rings until they are nearly full of wool. Next, cut the wool around the edges. Pass a length of wool between the two pieces of cardboard, around all the strands of wool, and tie it firmly together. Now, you can remove the cardboard rings completely and you will have your finished pom-pom. You’ll need to repeat this lots of times to make enough for a whole rug. You can make your rug one colour – use a range of similar colours or try multi-colours to really give it an individual look.

Patchwork rugs – Making a patchwork rug will ensure you achieve a unique look in your living space. To make this type of rug select a range of different fabrics and lay them out to the length that you want for your new rug. Now that the fabric has been selected and laid out to your desired size and shape you will need to pin all the pieces together. If you’re a dab hand with a sewing machine use this to stitch along all the joins and make it a complete rug. On the underside you can add a block colour or if you have a slippery floor such as wood or tiles attach a non-slip pad to the underneath of the rug.

Stenciled rugs – First, invest in some reasonably priced plain solid coloured rugs. (Have a look at Wilko.com). You’ll also need some paint (acrylic craft paint is good) and some card. Make a stencil using the card of letters or pictures that you want to put on your rug and then paint away. Let your paint dry and you’ll have a simple but effective rug.

T-shirt/rag rugs – If you are looking to have a big clear out of your wardrobes and want to use up all of those old T-shirts or unwanted clothes then try making a rag rug. Start with cutting the T-shirts or your old clothes into two or three inch strips, then you can either sew, braid or knit them together to make a very unique rug. Connect the strips by placing them together at right angles and then sewing them together across the resulting square before braiding them into the shape of rug you want. Have a look at this great post on ehow.com for more tips.

Get creative and enjoy making your own unique rug.

Choosing the Perfect Carpet for Your Home

That feeling when you come home from work, kick off your shoes and enjoy a soft, cosy carpet beneath your feet just can’t be beaten. So it’s important to take your time when choosing a carpet to make your home warm and welcoming. Here are a few things to think about:

Type of carpet

Loop pile, deep pile, twist…there are so many different types of carpet out there it’s easy to get confused. The pile of carpet is basically the thickness and length of the fibres used to create the weaves on the carpet. The deeper the pile, the thicker the carpet. Loop pile has a more rustic, textured, authentic look and is hardwearing. A twist carpet also has a more textured finish. These types of carpets are best in an area where there is more traffic, for example on stairs and in hallways and landings.

Kids and pets

Having a carpet provides a safe and comfortable flooring for your kids to play and pets to curl up on. With that, however, comes the risk of muddy paw-prints, general wear and tear and stains. This is where patterned or striped designs are a good option to go for as they are generally hard-wearing and more resilient to the accidental mark.

Underlay

Make sure you are choosing the right underlay for your carpet. A lot of this does depend on your budget but you will need to think about how much traffic your carpet will be getting. If your house is cooler you will want to put in a warm underlay. The underlay is an important part of the comfort of a carpet.

Suitability

The best rooms for carpets are where warmth and comfort is needed so living rooms, bedrooms and hallways are popular choices. Kitchens and bathrooms tend to suit laminate and vinyl floorings where spillages are more likely. There are, however, specialist carpets available for these rooms if you prefer the feel of carpet underfoot in these rooms too.

Size

Multiply the length of a room by its width to get the total amount of square metres of carpet required. If your room is an odd shape or you have fireplaces or alcoves, make sure you measure these as well so your carpet does not come short. Always order a bit more carpet than you need. It’s better to have more than not enough. You can then keep any leftovers in case they are needed in the future.

Design and colour

When fitting a new carpet for a room think about the overall look you are trying to achieve. Do you already have a colour scheme and are you looking for a carpet to match or are you decorating the room completely from scratch? Is the carpet going to be the only feature or are you thinking of adding a rug as well? Striped carpets can be quite an eye-catcher but tend to work best with plainer walls. If your wallpaper is patterned, then striped carpets can clash. Similarly if you go for a patterned carpet, keep the wallpaper quite neutral.

Does the room get much light? If not, you’ll probably want to avoid darker colours and go for a paler or bright carpet that could lighten up your room. There are more ideas at HouseBeautiful.co.uk. Bear in mind, a carpet is an investment and something you’ll have for years, so have a look at colour samples and take your time before making a decision. Get it right and you’ll be onto a winner.

Fabric Treatment Companies – FR Flameproofing

silk velvet upholstery fabric textile FR Martindale RubsWe are often asked to recommend farbic treatment companies for flame retarding in contract installations. Most treatment comapanies offer other services such as; back coating fabric for walls, and stain resistance/repellency. There are several such companies in the UK and at various times we have used all of the following:

Essex Flameproofing,

Textiles FR, and

TEK Treatments

Just click the company name to take you to their web site. Please feel free to add comments to this posting recommending any suppliers you have used but any negative comments about other companies are not permitted on this site. Thank you.

Top Interior Design of 2015

Interior design sees a constant shifting in trends for decorating the home. Decade by decade, we’ve seen the nation’s taste go through many changes, from the bright and colourful to the sleek and minimalist. While we’ve all got our preferences, we are hugely influenced by what’s popular and this is no different when it comes to interior design.

What are the latest trends taking the interior design world by storm? Let’s take a look at what’s hot and how you can transform your home into a modern, trendy space that suits your personality down to the ground.

Florals

According to the latest style trends from Elle, florals are on their way to make a huge comeback in the interior design world. Given the preference for smooth surfaces and chrome we’ve seen in recent years, this is a little surprising but certainly welcome.

Using floral wallpapers, curtains, sheets and so on makes a strong visual statement that adds a touch of class to the room. Paired with furniture made from rich woods like mahogany, it evokes a classical feeling, like you’ve stepped back into Regency times. This is definitely for people that appreciate the old-fashioned and more traditional style of interior design, though it’s certainly well suited for people looking to make a bold statement about themselves.

Eco-Design

One of the latest trends is that of eco-design; in other words, environmentally conscious interior design. It’s a huge thing right now, which isn’t surprising. We’ve been moving towards eco-friendly living for a long time, so it makes sense that it would eventually make its way into how we decorate our homes. The aim is to save you money and reduce your carbon footprint: what’s not to like?

Eco-design has a strong focus on quality and filling rooms with warmth and sustainable fixtures, offering you a way to reinvigorate your home whilst saving money in the long-term. Using fixtures such as the range of eco-heaters from VeriSmart Heating, for example, have an appealing design and allow you to control the heating in your house efficiently. Eco-design is becoming more and more popular for two reasons: the first is that this is the way the tide is turning, and the second is that the quality is constantly improving. It’s now a very desirable option for many looking to redecorate their home; it certainly offers more benefits!

Old Meets New

There’s been a meeting of the new and the traditional in modern interior design trends according to Lush Home, combining the best features of both for a fine balance between classic comforts and futuristic, minimalist design. This combination of ideas gives people more of an opportunity to explore their creative side and create a home that’s personal to them.

Interior design is all about making the home yours, and this trend gives you the chance to make use of prints, colours and furniture that you wouldn’t have necessarily put together before. Results can range from cool and modern to unique and quirky; it’s up to you!

What other trends have you noticed in interior design this year, and are they going to carry into 2016?

5 Tips for Designing Your Home Office

If you have decided to convert a room in your home to create an office, it’s important that you plan this room well to accommodate your working needs. Choosing the correct furniture and the best type of storage space is important. You will also want the room to be comfortable as you may be spending long periods in this space and a colour scheme that aids calm and stree-free work would be ideal…

 

  1. Lighting

 

Choosing the correct lighting for your office is probably one of the most important things to get right. If you are going to be sitting at a desk most of the time a good quality table lamp – such as those featured here on Homebase – will help to protect your eyes from straining. Get as much natural light as possible – without staring directly into the sun – and use lamps and lights to illuminate your desk once the sun goes down.

 

  1. Colour schemes

 

An article in the Guardian says that working from home can be difficult due to distractions from family members or the TV. It states: “However, if you have set up a home-based business you have little choice but to make the best of your home office, customise your living space”.

 

This could mean painting your office in totally different colours than the rest of your home, therefore setting the tone that this is somewhere where the serious business of work is carried out. When choosing the colours for an office you will want something neutral and not distracting. Gentle shades with a brilliant white ceiling should do the trick for a calm but functional living space.

 

  1. Storage space

 

The online magazine Creative Digest explains how every office should be clear from clutter and as tidy as possible. This is not always an easy task, but it is important. If it is possible then keeping all of your important documents on a computer, rather than printed out and put in a filing cabinet, will save you space and reduce your carbon footprint. For those items you simpy have to have in hard copies, there is a wide range of home storage solutions on the market and these can vary from click together plastic boxes to cardboard folders which can be stored on shelves. Get items that pack in the maximum amount of items into the smallest possible space so that your office doesn’t become cramped.

 

  1. Choosing the right furniture

 

When you’re setting up a home office it is important that you choose the correct furniture for your needs. If you’re going to be using a computer most of the time then having a comfortable chair and desk is the first thing you should look at. If you draw out a plan of the room, with the dimensions, you will be able to decide where items of furniture will fit. You don’t want to block radiators or electrical sockets. Making the most of your office space will allow you to have more room to relax in while working. You could install an easy chair too, as you will need to take breaks if you’re using the computer all day.

 

  1. Blinds or curtains

 

Once you have planned your office and are ready to work you’ll also need to decide what you’re going to do about the windows. Most big businesses just have blinds or clear glass with no covering at all, but when you’re working from home you’ll want to stop any distractions. If you have built your office on the ground floor then people passing by could irritate you, so having blinds might be the best answer. This is all a matter of personal taste but it’s important to remember that you’ll have to be able to focus once you enter your office in order to carry out your work. Blinds allow you to shut out as much of the outside world as you wish.

 

Be Bold. Be Brass.

Source: Be Bold. Be Brass.

Very dark perhaps with a bit of brass. Very unusual with the colour scheme but it works.

We love the low lying seating with the off-black upholstery faux leather.

KOTHEA have a wide range of contract and residential fabrics including many types of faux leather

5 most common questions to Interior designers

Source: 5 most common questions to Interior designers

I imagine the most popular questions is “How much?”. You can see the other answers in the link.

 

What drew my attention to this image was: the black and cream contrast of the faux leather;  the contrast of hard and soft; the contrast of natural and man-made. Contrast really. But done well.

KOTHEA have a wide range of contract and residential fabrics including many types of faux leather

Trend: Mismatched Dining Chairs

Source: Trend: Mismatched Dining Chairs

We’ve heard of upholstering chairs with different fabrics on different panels and having contrasting items standing out in otherwise relatively monochromatic schemes but we’d never taken the jump to mis-matched dining chairs. Obvious when you think about it! You could probably be even more adventurous with colour and style than the image.