Designer Home, Pt 3

It seems like an age since I have posted in this series. What with Easter and an impromptu trip to Melbourne, things have been a little busy.

This time round, we’re going to explore a more recent trend in home decorating, as well as some old faithfuls.

Recently, it has become an overwhelming trend to embellish your walls with stickers, or decals. Now, we’re not talking any old stickers here. These ones range from removable to chalkboard. My favorites include the more simple versions, such as a chandelier silhouette or a lone branch.

The chandelier one looks perfect when positioned low over a bedside table or next to a solo chair.

Branches look good when positioned to look like they’re hanging over a sofa, bed or table.

Another couple I have found that I really like include this one with powerlines that give dimension to a flat wall and would look good in any lounge room. Although I think they would look best in the kitchen. It’s unexpected, so it gives a sense of high style to the room and kitchens are usually so utilitarian that it’s good to have some art work. Kitchens are also the perfect place for any chalkboard decals, as they make writing shopping lists and reminders very convenient.

Or you can channel Serena van der Woodsen with 3-dimensional butterflies (although to be fair, I think it was Blair who designed Serena’s room, so credit where credit is due).

If wall decals aren’t your thing then try hanging some artwork on your walls. Gone are the days when paintings were the only things people put on their walls. Now you can hang photographs, text and wallpaper.

I’m going to cover 3 basic ways to hang pictures. They’re very straight foward and simple because, let’s face it, nothing is fun if it takes too much effort. The first thing you need for this are some picture frames, in different sizes and colours (try to keep the colours complimentary – think shades of grey with black and white, any colour combined with black or white, or any two or three colours next to each other on the colour wheel). Hunt around your house or local op shop for different types of frames and then paint them your chosen colours.

Then decide what you want to display. You can either go for some wallpaper samples, which you should be able to get for free from the supplier, or some japanese rice paper prints, or some of your own photographs. I prefer my photos to be black and white but maybe throw in the occasional colour one to keep it interesting. You can even create your own text-based artwork. All you need is Photoshop and a little creativity. Start with your favourite quote or saying and go from there. You could even try the definition of your favourite word or perhaps your career (e.g. journalism, design or film).

Then it’s just a matter of deciding how you’re going to hang them. One option is to hang one large image as a series of panels. This is best done with either simple frames or no frames at all to keep the continuity of the image in tact. If you opt for the no frame option then you might try your local print shop where they can print your photo onto canvas and wrap it over a frame.

The second option is to hang 3 frames in a row, maybe 5 if the wall is large or the frames are small (always stick to odd number in this case, it just looks better), or to hang 4 frames in a square formation. Choose photos or other images that have a similar theme, whether it’s as simple as colour or as abstract as the same holiday.

The third option is to cluster frames together in an artfully abstract fashion. The key to this is to lay the frames out on the floor first and rearrange them until you have them perfect. Try to keep the spacing as even as possible. The easiest way to then transfer this configuration is to lay the frames out on a piece of paper and draw around them. Then measure the placement of the hanger on the back of each frame and draw a corresponding dot on the paper. Once you’ve done this for all the frames, tape the piece of paper to the wall in the desired position and hammer your nails through the dots. You can then rip the paper away and hang all your pictures in the perfect spot.

So get to it, start sifting through your photo collection, any old wrapping paper you may have or just print your favourite quotes and frame them.

-C

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