Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Decorating a Teenager’s Bedroom: Top Tips

A teenager’s bedroom is a multi-use area: it’s a relaxation space, a hangout zone, a place where they play computer games, listen to music, and (hopefully!) study. As they spend so much time in this space, it is important they have some sort of say in how it will look. So, aside from the basic furniture requirements for a bedroom, such as a bed, wardrobe, chest of drawers, desk and side table, they will appreciate having an input. Here, Bespoke Shutters, London, gives some top tips to think about if you are decorating a teenager’s bedroom.

Shutters London – Click here to see our full range of high quality, made-to-measure wooden solid and plantation shutters.

Privacy – Teenagers enjoy their privacy and value their independence, and some even like to have notices on their door to keep their siblings out. Aside from knocking before entering, another way to help your teenager keep their privacy is to think about installing shutters as window coverings for your London home. Whereas with curtains you only get two choices – open or closed – tier-on-tier plantation shutters gives your teenager much more flexibility as they can decide exactly how much light (if any!) they want to filter into their room. They also allow better light control when viewing computer screens, helping to avoid glare.

Paint Colours – Giving your child the freedom to choose their own paint colours is a great way for your teen to express themselves. Some teenagers want to steer away from magnolia and paint a wall in a bright colour, such as pink or blue. While a garish colour might not be your preferred choice, as they evolve and grow they will appreciate being involved in the decision-making process for their room.

Creative Board – Having a creative board, or even a free run of a complete wall, is a great way for a teenager to express themselves and feel inspired. They might want to stick photos up of their friends, cut photos and articles out of magazines, hang post-cards and inspirational messages, or even have a large ‘draw on’ wall map to dream about all the places they want to visit. This gives them a chance to unleash their imagination and express what’s important to them.

Desk – A desk is a teenager’s must-have, so they have a quiet place to study, message their friends and play their games console. A solid desk with a comfy chair and sufficient lighting will ensure they are comfortable for study. There are all sorts of desks available from large, solid wood desks, to corner desks. If the room isn’t big enough, try to find a quiet area of the home which can be turned into a study area.

Seating – Space permitting a cosy chair or a sofa will create a chill-out area when their friends pop round. If there’s not enough room for either of these, just a few comfy floor cushions, or a bean bag is ideal.

Storage – Some teenagers need lots of storage space for their clothes, shoes, books, files, grooming items, sentimental stuff and electronic equipment and accessories. However, if their room is a bit cramped, storage boxes and shelving could suffice.

Mirror – Whether you have a teenage boy or girl, the chances are they will spend quite a bit of time in front of the mirror before they head off to meet their friends, or join you for a meal out. A mirror on the front or on the inside of the wardrobe is a great space saver; alternatively, you could hang a full-length mirror behind the door.

Bed – If the bedroom is large enough, try to invest in a double bed for your teen. The bed is very much the focal point of the room and is likely to double up as seating, a desk and, in some cases, a beauty salon. It’s more comfy for your teen and gives them plenty of sleeping space. By choosing their own bedspread they can also put their own personal stamp on the space.

Shutters London – Click here to see our full range of solid wood and coloured shutters for every room in the house.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Ten Top Bathroom Decorating Ideas

The bathroom is the space to relax and unwind in the evening and is also the place where you rush to get ready on busy mornings. So, it should not only serve as a haven of tranquillity, but ideally it should be an organised space where you can quickly find everything you need. That said, the bathroom is often the most neglected room in the home where little is done to personalise this space; however, there are ways to improve on this area without opting for a complete revamp. Here are ten top tips from Bespoke Shutters London on how to transform your bathroom into a luxurious yet functional zone with the minimum of effort.

Products – Decluttering is the quickest way to turn your bathroom into a restful space. So it’s worthwhile spending a half hour or so clearing away lotions and potions and putting them aside before giving your bathroom a good scrub. Leave only one or two of your most glamorous bathroom items on display, including scented soaps, expensive shower gels, body scrubs; and decant other products, such as budget hand-soaps, into pretty bottles.

Storage –Store any products that you don’t want on show in cabinets. A stack of small boxes or wooden chests also look appealing and can double up as seating. For very small bathrooms, hang hooks or racks behind the door to make the most of this space. If you don’t have room for a cabinet, shelving is another option, with all your essentials stored in boxes or baskets.

Towels – Gorgeous oversized fluffy bath towels and bathrobes feel luxurious against the skin and are just what you need after a soothing bath or shower. Face cloths stored in a basket by the sink can be used by you and your guests as mini-hand towels. If you don’t have room for a chest in your bathroom, a stack of folded hand and bath towels on shelving looks good and avoids clutter.

Windows – As in any room of the home, making the most of natural light is uplifting, and bathroom and waterproof shutters help create a light and airy space. Tier on tier and full- length plantation shutters allow you to adjust the slats to let the light in, while still maintaining privacy on busy London streets. Plantation or solid café style shutters are ideal for homes in more secluded areas.

Lighting –You don’t necessarily have to go for conventional lighting in a bathroom. A chandelier looks elegant, and side lighting and candles add a romantic touch. It’s well worth investing in a dimmer switch, as this helps set the mood. It means you can alter the brightness for getting ready in the morning, or when you just want to relax and unwind in the evening.

Furniture – Another way to individualise your bathroom is with furniture, such as a bathroom cabinet or wooden chest. If you have a large bathroom, either a side table, chair, chest of drawers, cupboard or even a wooden rocking horse all adds charm.

Mirrors – While mirrored cabinets create a streamlined, minimalist look, feature mirrors add drama and impact and create a focal point. Meanwhile, sumptuous ornate or gilt framed mirrors are ideal for traditional homes.

Artwork – Hanging restful pictures or quirky wall art is a great way to add individuality to this part of the home. Add a splash of colour with a vibrant print to bring this space to life, or, for a more traditional feel, black and white pictures are chic and stylish. For those who prefer artwork inspired by nature, a driftwood heart hung on the wall, or a decorative handmade wooden or metal wall feature adds a contemporary touch and makes a fantastic focal point.

Fragrance – Diffusers, potpourri and fragrant sprays all evoke a relaxed spa feel and create an inviting environment when friends or family come to stay. Lit scented candles on shelving will also make your bathroom feel homely – they not only smell great, but they look stylish too.

Flowers – Another way to vamp up your bathroom is by putting a small vase of flowers on a table, window sill, or by the sink. This adds beauty and fragrance to the room and visitors or family are bound to admire your creativity.

Bespoke Shutters London – Click here to see our full range of bathroom and waterproof shutters.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Five of the Most Calming Colour Schemes

Your home is your sanctuary; a place to relax and unwind in. If you lead a busy work, social and/or family life, your interior should provide a restful environment where you can shelve any thoughts of stressful events of the day and just put your feet up. While it may not be possible to switch your mind off completely from the day’s activities, research shows there are certain colour choices that can help make your environment feel more tranquil. Here, The Bespoke Shutter Company, who supply and install wooden blinds and shutters in the London area, reveals five of the most calming colour schemes.

Shutters London –  Click here to find out more about our high quality made-to-measure wooden shutters and blinds.

Pink – While pink is not everyone’s top choice of colour scheme, it is associated with femininity and love, and is thought to be the ideal choice for bedrooms and living rooms as it is a peaceful colour. If you feel a pink room is too sickly, you can tone it down by mixing it with neutral colours such as grey or white. For instance, one idea is to paint the walls pink, the ceiling grey, install grey shutters, and finish your London room with a combination of white soft furnishings (such as sofas, beds and bedding) and pale blue furniture, such as tables and dressers. If you don’t like the idea of painting all the walls of a room this colour, a bedroom with a duvet cover featuring pale pink detailing is soothing.

Green – The colour of leaves, shrubs and grass, green evokes harmonious thoughts of nature and the environment, so it is a restful choice for an interior. Not only is it a good colour for bedroom walls, it’s also a great choice for living rooms too, and a green room teamed with white shutters makes a stunning combination. There’s is one downside though: it is said that too much green can make you feel very laid back! So, use home accessories to introduce other colours for energy.

Blue – Reminiscent of the sky and the ocean, this interior colour is a firm favourite as it generates feelings of serenity. Ideal for home offices and bathrooms, it is also a good choice for bedrooms too as it is said to ward off bad dreams! The only disadvantage of blue is that it can look cold at times, but one way to counteract this is to team it with white, such as white soft furnishings and shutters. The trick is to choose a grey based blue for a more relaxed environment.

White – White is light, clean and airy, so it’s the obvious choice for a tranquil interior. If you are short on space, it also has the added benefit of making a small room look larger. The only downside is that a white room, with white walls and furniture, can look dull and dreary. One way to add interest is to inject bold bursts of colour with artwork, fabrics, rugs and furnishings.

Brown – Brown is a solid, earthy colour and is again associated with nature and a calm environment. Mixed with reds, it can evoke feelings of warmth as it brings about thoughts of wrapping up warm on a cool autumn day. If you don’t like the idea of painting the walls brown, choose solid wood furniture and brown leather sofas for a secure and cosy feel. Finish the look with white shutters.  

Bespoke Shutters London –  Click here to see our full range of high quality shutters and blinds.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

How to Make a Comfortable Guest Bedroom

If you are transforming a guest room, this is the one room where you can really go to town on.  It’s the only space where you don’t have to think about where to place your possessions; instead you can concentrate purely on making a comfortable retreat for your visitors, and build a sanctuary where they feel relaxed, welcome and can sink into soft sheets at the end of the day.

Plantation Shutters London – Click here to see our full range of plantation and solid wood shutters.

For those who are decorating a guest room from scratch, you have a clean slate to try out your hospitality skills. Perhaps a good starting point is to take inspiration from some of the best hotels that you have stayed at, or maybe a friend’s home. Think about some of the things you liked most about the décor. Was it the comfy mattress and pillows, the tranquil colour scheme, the calming artwork, quirky furniture, lack of clutter, beautiful choice of window coverings and/or the lighting that most inspired you? Write a list and see if you can incorporate some, or even all of these things in your own guest room.

It is generally the attention to detail that really matters when dressing a spare room, as these are the things that visitors remember the most. Here are some of the elements that you might want to think about when decorating a spare room.

Natural Lighting If you have a room with generous windows, having sunlight stream into the room during the day, can be incredibly uplifting. However, you still want to ensure that your guests enjoy their privacy and aren’t woken up by the sun too early in the morning. One of the most flexible window coverings are plantation shutters, as visitors can adjust the slats to vary the light levels. It also helps keep the noise out if the guest room faces a busy London street.

Artificial Light If the room is too small for matching bedside lights or wall lights, there are other ways to make the bedroom cosy. Think about adjustable desk lamps or floor lamps so your guests can point the light where they need it. For something that feels a bit more luxurious, why not choose a side lamp that can be switched on or off when your guest just touches the shade.

Towels and Toiletries – A cosy bath towel, hand towel and flannel neatly positioned at the end of the bed is a great way to make guests feel welcome. If you want to go the extra mile, why not put a miniature soap, shampoo, conditioner and/or shower soap on top of the towels? Or, maybe hang a fluffy bathrobe by the door for your guest/s to use? All these little extras work just as well in a domestic setting as in a hotel room.

Welcoming Scents – A room that smells heavenly feels instantly comforting.  Perhaps you might want to put some potpourri in a dish on top a chest of drawers or dressing table, or put some fresh flowers by the bed? Another way to keep the room smelling fresh is to spray the bed linen with the soft scent of lavender, to ensure your guest gets a full night’s rest.

Added Cosiness – If your house gets quite chilly in winter and your guest room is well used, you might want to invest in a heated blanket, or at the very least a hot water bottle. Leave a couple of throws or blankets by the bed on cold nights, and possibly an extra pillow or two for additional comfort.

Tranquil Colours – Try to decorate this room in colours that feel soothing for your guests. Soft blues, greys, and/or whites are all very relaxing and will help your visitors feel at home. Choose artwork that blends well with your chosen colour scheme and is not too distracting, to help your guests drift off to sleep.

Adequate Storage Space – You only need the essentials for this room, such as one or two bedside tables, a wardrobe, and/or a chest of drawers for your visitors to put their clothes in. The trick is not to clutter your guest room with furniture, so the room feels spacious and inviting. If you have the space, however, a window seat with a few books beside it, can add a great finishing touch.

If you are looking to install high quality wooden shutters or blinds for your London home, at Bespoke Shutters we have an excellent reputation in our field. We supply and install a full range of shutters including plantation shutters, solid wood shutters, coloured shutters, bathroom shutters and motorised shutters. Click here to see our full range of made-to-measure wooden shutters.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Home Office Decorating Ideas

An increasing number of Londoners work from home to take advantage of greater flexibility and to save on high office rental costs. Research shows an average of five cent of people in London work mainly from home, although according to the Greater London Authority this figure rises to around seven or eight per cent in the Kensington, Chelsea and Richmond area.

While some houses and apartments have a designated home office, householders with limited space are forced to become more creative with their workspace. Desks and workstations are cropping up almost anywhere in the home, from bedrooms to landings, living rooms, under stairs, above garages, in attics and gardens. If you are moving to a new home, or revamping an existing property, this article looks at the benefits of decorating a home office with shutters.

Bespoke Shutters, London, design and fit made-to-measure wooden shutters for all shapes and sizes of windows. Click on the above link to see our complete range.

The Designated Home Office

If you work from home it is vital to make the most of natural light as research shows this helps improve health and productivity. Studies show that a good source of natural light streamed into your workspace also has a positive effect on the quality of your sleep, which ultimately improves mood, according to researchers from the Northwestern University in America.

Making the most of natural light is one of the many reasons why plantation shutters are a superb investment for a London home office. If you live in a built-up area, where your office faces either a busy street, or the house opposite, shutters benefit your workplace in three main ways: they act as a ‘double or triple glazing’ and help block out the noise from traffic and passersby, they ensure privacy, and tier-on-tier shutters allow for greater flexibility than curtains or shutters as you get to decide how much light flows into your office.

Why Tier-on-Tier Shutters Are a Good Investment?

Tier-on-tier shutters are opened vertically in the middle and have a top and bottom half that can be opened or closed independently from one another. So, for example, you can leave the top half of the shutters open, while opening the slats on the bottom half, to allow for natural light and privacy. Or, if you want to take advantage of a beautiful view to inspire creativity, you can open the bottom half of your shutters, or better still, keep the shutters fully opened during the daytime.

The Traditional Home Office

Traditional home offices look chic, sophisticated and timeless and are best suited to period properties decorated in this style throughout. If your job involves a lot of research work, you may want a few free standing or purpose-built bookshelves to house reference books and manuals. To hide clutter and paperwork, place a few files discreetly in boxes on shelving so they don’t detract from this space.

An antique style desk looks spectacular against a background of stripped wooden floors. A cosy rug and a few armchairs adds warmth to this space, and creates a place for client meetings. Plantation shutters or solid shutters suit all types of homes, including traditional properties and makes your home office look light and airy.

The Contemporary Home Office

If you prefer a contemporary home office, you can make the most of your creative skills as almost anything goes. From glass desks to solid wood workspaces, there are a variety of contemporary desks to choose from.

The best way to start is to choose a theme and work round it – for example you may want a white space to evoke feelings of calm and tranquillity, or go for bold or bright colours to keep you alert. Whichever type of office you opt for, your work space should be comfortable, and have an adjustable chair, if possible, so you can ensure you are sitting at the correct working height.

Do you feel contemporary prints and artworks inspire creativity? Or, adding colour to your office (in the form of a vibrant rug or painted shelving) makes you feel more energised? If you are looking to add a subtle splash of colour, Bespoke Shutters supply and install shutters in a wide range of colours to suit your office décor.

The Work Station

If you don’t have room for a separate office, you can create your own workspace anywhere in the home. Just make sure that it is positioned where you feel comfortable working, and you won’t have too many distractions (if you have a busy family home, you may want to avoid a kitchen or living room area).

Wherever you choose to site your desk, make sure that it is has enough natural light to have a positive effect on your output. If the landing is your preference, you may want to sit the desk by the window. You can easily create more privacy inside the home by placing a bookshelf or screen near your desk if needed. Again shutters are a good choice as you can maximise light without compromising on privacy.

The Bespoke Shutter Company is experienced in supplying and installing made-to-measure shutters in the London and Hertfordshire area. For more shutter ideas, just click on the link below.

Shutters London –  Click here to see our complete range of wooden plantation shutters and solid shutters. 

Friday, April 17, 2015

Four Decorating Ideas for a Modern Attic Room

With the rising cost of London homes, more people are choosing to enlarge their property, rather than move house. And, one of the top ways of extending a property is an attic conversion, which will also add value to your house when you come to sell. According to BBC Homes, Victorian or 1930’s houses are best for loft conversions because of the large amount of roof space they have. Here, we look at how to decorate a contemporary attic room with shutters.

Bespoke Shutters, London, design and fit window coverings for all shapes and sizes of windows including loft style, round, half round and hexagonal windows. Click here to find out more.

Shabby Chic Attic

The shabby chic look has been topping the fashion stakes for some time and because it is light, airy, and eclectic, where almost anything goes. Distressed finished wooden furnishings on stripped wooden flooring, or white painted floors, are a great choice for a shabby chic attic. And if you are the creative type with time on your hands, you can even buy second hand furniture and customise it yourself using stencils or have a go at the distressed look.

This type of decor has an air of romance; so French metal beds, decorative white framed mirrors, lace bedspreads and lots of cushions complete the look…not forgetting a cosy rug to sink your feet into on a cold night. It’s a great choice for a guest room, and for extra comfort, you can even go all out and place a Victorian bath in the centre of the room. Finish the décor with white wooden shutters which is ideal for this space as you can adjust the slats to make full use of natural light.

Industrial Style Attic 

Industrial style furniture is all the rage at the moment, with factory-inspired furniture – such as apothecary chests, industrial cart coffee tables, school blackboard coat hangers, pallet tables, benches and stools with adjustable screws – taking pride of place in attic style apartments and homes across the country. Although original factory style furniture is hard to find, many furniture companies are recreating vintage furniture.

This type of furniture, which has its roots in yesteryear, is an ideal choice for a minimalist style attic. The mix of steel and solid wood is not only interesting and appealing, it looks fantastic in an attic rooms with exposed beams and brickwork. Timeless shutters fit perfectly with this sleek London style, which includes clean lines and fuss free designs. It is an ideal choice for an attic that doubles as a bedroom/home office.

Light Wood Attic Room 

If you prefer a room with natural wood furnishings, light wood is a great choice because it gives the illusion of space, making the room appear roomy and welcoming. Sleek modern wooden bed frames with white bedspreads, reclaimed wooden chests of drawers and wardrobes, a cosy rug and a comfy chair is one way to decorate this space.

You can also add finishing touches such as picture frames in natural materials, a driftwood mirror, large vase containing twigs wrapped in fairy lights, and contemporary lighting. Shutters are a flexible choice of window covering, and if your window is too high to reach, motorised shutters are available through Bespoke Shutters.

Retro Attic Room 

A retro attic room is a fun choice for this space – bright colours, bold, geometric shapes and eclectic drawer fronts. To make the look work, it’s always best to choose a few colours and use this theme throughout (not too many as the look will appear too cluttered). A chair in a vibrant colour, accessorised by a rug or print which picks out this accent colour, is ideal and you can highlight this furniture piece with a photographer’s floor lamp.

This look is ideal for an attic space that is used as a bedroom as well as a sitting room. If you prefer to go for natural materials rather than bold colours, leather chairs and cow hide rocking chairs also fit the retro trend, creating a cosy but spacious look. Shutters that match the wall paint will help draw the eye to your favourite furniture pieces.

Shutters London – Click here to see our full range of made-to-measure shutters and blinds.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Create a Stylish Conservatory with Shutters

Want to create a stylish conservatory with shutters for your London home? This article shows you how.

Spring is the time that most people draw their attention to the garden area. If you are lucky enough to have a beautiful view: over a pond, river, open countryside, or even over a pretty courtyard or decked terrace, you will want to make the most of it…and a conservatory does just that.

Used most in the spring and summer, when your outdoor space is at its best, a conservatory adds beauty, vital extra space, and helps bring light into your home. However, the constant stream of sunlight in the warmer months can be overpowering at certain times of the day, making the room uncomfortably hot and bright.

A cost-effective solution is to install plantation shutters in your conservatory. This will reduce the glare of the sun, while also making the most of the natural light during the day. This article looks at the benefits of shutters for your conservatory and gives two ideas for decorating this room.

Shutters London – Click here to see our full range of conservatory shutters.

Conservatory Shutters

A conservatory is one of the top home improvements in Britain, and, according to Phil Spencer, presenter of ‘Location, Location, Location’, it can add as much as 7 per cent onto the value of your property.

One of the reasons for its popularity is that a conservatory is so versatile: it can be used as a breakfast room or dining area, children’s play area, for entertaining friends, or as a quiet retreat – to read a book, wind down with yoga, or simply to sit and enjoy the view over your garden. However, regardless of what your conservatory is used for, it is essential to choose window coverings that will provide privacy, make the most of daylight, and can be closed simply and easily.

Plantation shutters are the best choice for a London home because they are so sleek and stylish, and are designed to suit all types of conservatories. As Bespoke Shutters install conservatory shutters to exact specifications, your window coverings are made to neatly match any shape or style of glass panels, so they will guard against dazzling light coming from any angle. Just alter the slats to adjust the light levels – so you can let the morning sunlight stream in – and close the slats in the afternoon, when the room starts overheating.

It is also easy to keep the glass clean as the conservatory shutters can be moved to the side when they are not in use.

Conservatory Style Guide

If you are thinking of installing a conservatory, here are a few ideas for how to decorate it, using solid wood shutters for your London home.

The Natural Conservatory

A conservatory decorated with natural materials, such as stripped wooden floors and rattan or painted furniture, creates an easy transition between your interior and outdoor environment.

Decorate with colours such as beige, brown, white, cream, taupe, grey, blue and green, so your conservatory blends easily with your garden. Lots of plants will brighten this space and helps bring the outdoors, indoors. Adding cushions and throws will also add a homely feel.

If this is your preferred interior, consider installing natural wood rather than painted shutters for your conservatory.

The Contemporary Conservatory 

Industrial style furniture, white lacquered oriental furnishings, bright, comfy statement chairs, sofas, and vases, or dramatic sculptures…almost anything goes in a contemporary conservatory. Think clean, sleek lines and bold geometric shapes to create a room that adds interest and impact.

Consider installing white painted conservatory shutters for your interior as this will fit with almost any colour scheme, while maintaining a light, contemporary feel.

Bespoke Shutters are specialists in made-to-measure shutters and blinds in the London area. Click on the link to find out how we can help you find the perfect window coverings for your interior.