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Interior design: 5 tips from the experts

17 Jun 2015

Changing a house into a home shouldn’t be difficult or overly expensive. 

Here are five quick tips of the trade from the Room by Room ladies Jess White and Lizzi Hines, which will help you make a house a home with pizazz and personality.  

Let your freak flag fly

If you have something unique that interests you, don’t be afraid to display it! Whether it's taxidermy, grandma’s teaspoon collection or your handmade pottery, make this ‘bit of fabulous’ stand out and give it a stage to be seen.

Get the look with Resene Cut Glass

A collection of items displayed in an ordered way looks beautiful and dynamic. Strange items displayed in dark corners look a little on the awkward side, so give them some light, so they can be seen in all their glory. One of the wonderful things about the 'eclectic collector' style is the ability to say yes to any piece of artwork or any accessory that speaks to you.

Even if it's a strange color or an interesting combination of textures and patterns, chances are, you'll find a spot for it in an eclectic home.

Prioritise areas for mess

Having areas that you allow for a little chaos and clutter gives a realistic order to your home.

Let’s be honest, (as much as we try) we can’t all have tidy homes all the time. If you do allow areas to accommodate bits and pieces, this at least consolidates where the untidy spots should be in the home. Entrance credenzas, kitchen side benches, and hidden office cupboards are perfect spots for clutter.

Also, there are so many gorgeous metal trays and baskets to hide away all those pesky letters, keys and newspapers, such as this vintage style mail box… use behind your letter box to keep the dog from chewing the bills, or as great vertical in-trays for the various bits of flotsam and jetsam that otherwise gets left on the kitchen table. 

Odd number configurations work well

Whether it's artwork, ornaments, vases or lighting, odd numbers feel less ordered, more relaxed and dynamic.

Look for nooks

Don’t forget the in-between spaces such as corridors and little nooks in your home to display items that reflect you and your personality. Family photographs, children’s artwork and small collectables work perfectly in unexpected places in the home.

Get the look with Resene Half Concrete and Resene Quarter Alabaster

Look out for your pet

As Kiwis we love our pets but that’s no excuse for an old chewed-up blanket in the corner of a room where the cat or dog likes to sleep. There are now some amazing pet beds and accessories that aren’t expensive and have style to boot.

Get clever with design and weave some pet magic into the design of your home like building in secret and warm sleep zones under the stairs or in any other unused spaces. 


Even this cat's lair was given special attention, at Watertower Steenokkerzeel inside 2 Bham Design Studio Brussels.

Jess White and Lizzi Hines own and run Room by Room, an online interior design service. Visit to discover more.

Published: 17 Jun 2015