Now you have a fabulously designed home, consider the interior fitout – ideally it will match the exterior for taste and quality. Colour consultants, interior designers and decorators (not necessarily the same thing), have increased in numbers as more people realize that to achieve a certain look is not that easy.
- This is where you live – think hard about the colours and materials to be used inside.
- Interior designers can be brought in early to work with the architect or architectural designer to provide a second opinion and counterpoint on the layout of rooms and their relationship to each other.
- If you’re updating furniture and decorative elements, such as art, interior designers and decorators may save you money through the discounts they can gain that will help offset their fees.
- What colours do you like and are they appropriate for the rooms you’d like to use them in (some colours increase energy, others are ‘cold’ – consult colour consultants or look up on the internet)?
- Old furniture in a new house or antiques in a modernist home can either work or not. Consider whether you need to update your furnishings (if you can afford to).
- Soft furnishings are both functional and decorative. Closed drapes are very effective at preventing heat loss as well as providing privacy but they make up a large area so carefully consider the design before having them made and installed.
- There are fashion items that will seem dated next year so beware buying the latest hot item that may be in the bargain bin within months.
SOFT FURNISHING TIPS
It’s important to use specialists when furnishing your biggest asset and investing in the right products will make all the difference.
Here are some points to consider when looking to purchase drapes and blinds:
- Get a budget established before starting. To save you a lot of time looking at product that may not suit your situation. Custom made curtains and blinds are almost always dearer than ready-made products.
- Use a reputable company specialising in soft furnishings. They employ people of high standards, often with interior design experience. They will have a wealth of knowledge of fabric composition, colour, styles and practicalities.
- Don’t pay for quotes. You don’t need to. Companies who charge for quotes may tell you their expertise is more valuable than others. This is very unlikely, if not misleading.
- When possible choose your carpet and curtain fabrics before, or at the same time, you choose your paint colours.
- When considering the design of your drapes give thought to the size of the room. Often lifting the rods 100-200mm above the frame or even up to the ceiling will make the room feel bigger.
- Drape length can be a personal thing, whether you like them well off the floor, just to the floor, or dragging on the floor. Remember if you have them touching the floor you won’t be able to achieve a structured look from your drapes as the fabric will loose its pleated look as the fabric drags on the floor.
- If you are wanting to give your home a contemporary look use sunscreen blinds as sunfilters instead of net fabric. This gives nice clean lines to the window and looks great from the outside.
- Drapes made using linen, cotton or hemp will move up and down. They look great but make sure you have these fabrics well on the floor.
- Express your personality. Not every room in the house has to have the same fabric or style. Enjoy your designing and buying experience. Choosing a drape company that has a good reputation and that care about your purchase is important.
- Don’t assume that paying a high price for your fabric means you are buying long lasting fabric.
- Comparative quotes. If you get more than one quote make sure that you are getting “apples for apples”. In other words, make sure it is the same fabric, lining, style, meterage, and tracking. You may find the dearer quote could be the “cheaper” quote if the same product was quoted on.
- Get a written guarantee. Whilst you are covered by the Consumer Guarantees Act, you should always get a guarantee of workmanship and quality.
Suppliers - Click on those you would like to find out more about…
- Resene Curtains
- Not only is Resene New Zealand's leading paint supplier, they also do stunning curtains and drapes. See more here...
- Resene Wallpapers
- Not only is Resene New Zealand's leading supplier of paint for exterior and interior painting, but they also supply an outstanding range of beautiful wallpapers as an alternative to painting your rooms. See more here...