If the start of this year has left you feeling like you want a do-over, why not start with your home? You spend so much time in your home, it’s worth considering how the interior of your home makes you feel. Does it make you happy? Calm? Productive? Whether you’ve already started, or the idea is just a wee seed germinating in the back of your brain, we’ve got some tips to help you on your way.
An easy place to start is with colour and unique styling.You can combine multiple styles to inject personality, from modern with country to natural, traditional and classic. If you’re nervous about colour, ease into it with nature-inspired coastal blues and greens or stay neutral with whites and wood tones. Integrate nature into your living spaces by adding house plants, natural light, and natural materials.
Go bold with accents – splashbacks, wallpaper, or artwork. Or, if you’re more confident, dive in and embrace a dark, moody palette of deep greens, purples, and blues, especially in bedrooms and bathrooms. If you’re looking for a sense of height and airiness in a space, but still want to go dark, ensure there’s plenty of light. Talk to your local NZCB builder about whether you can open up the ceiling space, or add in skylights.
To up the drama in a small space, keep the wall colour, furniture, and drapes all in similar hues, then create visual interest by layering different textures with fabrics, wall finishes and decor. Or you can contrast bright colours to elevate an everyday room into something mood-lifting.
Your kitchen is usually the workhorse of your home – not just a space for cooking, but a hub for entertaining friends and loved ones or educating your children. In order to accommodate these greater needs, you may need to make your kitchen bigger and multi-functional. Great kitchens adjoin to other areas and have large islands with flexible functionality – for food prep, dining, and work. Or you may want to add a butler’s pantry. These highly popular, enhanced pantries are configured for both work areas and storage for food and small appliances.
Other kitchen trends include vibrant finishes, smart technology, and a focus on sustainability. Easy-clean surfaces are being incorporated, as are splash-backs with less grout, and benchtops made from engineered stone. If you’re pushed for space, you could also integrate laundry facilities.
Many homeowners are adding large windows, with fewer panes, and glass doors to connect their kitchen to the outdoors. It’s worth bearing in mind that this reduces your wall space for cabinetry, so you’ll need to plan storage for your kitchen and the rest of your home carefully.
Maximise space in your home by optimising any under-utilised areas. These are usually transition areas such as an entry foyer, landing at the top of stairs, the joining of two passageways or a back porch. With clever design, imagination, and some help from your local NZCB builder, these spaces can be transformed into functional areas which add value to how you live in your home. It might be a handy place to put your groceries as you take your shoes off, a comfortable spot to put your shoes on when you’re leaving home, or a place to sit and read. Define spaces with rugs, furniture, paint, shelves, and good lighting.
Working from home continues to be a priority for many, so it pays to create space for a proper office set-up. Ideally, your home office should be comfortable, functional, and efficient but also inspiring. Consider the storage, shelving or surfaces you need in your office and be creative with colours – this is a chance for your working space to reflect your style and personality. Not to mention it’ll give you a more interesting background for all those inevitable Zoom meetings!
For many, adding a home office is only one half of the puzzle – many are also dedicating space to their wellbeing, with spaces for activities like meditation, stretching and exercise, or infrared saunas. Or, if you’d rather spend time outside, build an outdoor kitchen, larger decks, or other exterior living spaces.
If you’re paying attention to sustainable products and solutions in your home, as well as to the practices of manufacturers, talk to your local NZCB builder. They can advise you on which quality products meet your needs. You should also think about energy and water-saving options, such as LED lighting and energy-efficient appliances. Additionally, technology can offer further options, such as smart controls for the home via mobile devices, voice control, touchless tapware, integrated lighting, and smart appliances. You could also add dedicated charging stations.
Image credit : Open2View