It’s that time of year again, when we start to look around our home and wonder if it isn’t the moment for a refresh. The tired décor that you’ve been putting up with for so long just won’t cut it any more – out with the old, in the new. But now you’re in the mood, it seems like everything needs doing all at once and with so many great ideas out there, where should you start? The key to all projects is to take time over the planning stages and think about what you want to do before getting stuck in. With this in mind, the Linwood team has brought together a whole host of things you should know before updating your home. Here’s our top 10 decorating ideas for the New Year and we hope they both inspire and energise you.
Update your fabrics
Changing the fabric on a key piece of furniture will make a surprising difference to your whole room, so don’t feel you have to undertake a huge reupholstery project. For example, switching the look of your bed’s headboard, an armchair or a loveseat will have a real impact and refresh both that piece and the room. Starting with a smaller item is also less overwhelming if you’ve never had anything reupholstered before. We breathed new life into this small sofa with our Lumen velvet in the Metallic colourway. This is a great choice for a family home, as although it feels soft and luxurious it is also very durable. It's important to consider if your preferred fabric will offer a return on investment by keeping its good looks in the long term. Make sure you check out our buyer’s guide to choosing the right fabric for reupholstery before making a final decision.
Decluttering your home is obviously a key way to make it feel larger but you can also maximise space in other ways too. Consider if your furniture could be better arranged to clear sightlines, as a view straight through the room can help it to appear bigger. In addition, something as simple as removing an armchair you don’t use very much can free up a lot of space. Another trick is to create a focal point that draws the eye and distracts from the rest of the room. Choose a pattern that you love for the upholstery of your sofas and chairs and place them against a backdrop of plain walls, so the fabric is the star of the show. You can mix in other patterns too, just ensure the whole scheme has complementary colours to bring it together. Our Small Prints collection of printed linen fabrics has a wealth of beautiful designs to give you some great ideas for updating your soft furnishings.
Consider a high/low scheme
Interior designers often combine high and low décor to create a successful look. It simply means choosing which pieces you need to invest in, and which can be a bit more cheap and cheerful. By considering an entire room in this way, you can still create a stylish scheme, but one that also stays looking good for longer. For example, it’s worth spending more on a bed or a sofa because it will offer both better comfort and a better return on investment, because you won’t have to replace it in the short term. By contrast, items that can quickly dress a room, such as picture frames or ceramics, are available at a reasonable price for good quality. High décor can also be represented by existing pieces in the room, perhaps treasured heirlooms. Create a beautiful display of some of these items on relatively inexpensive open shelving – the effect will be both stunning and cost effective! Here, the Linwood team have created a sumptuous guest room dressed with a generous number of Elba linen cushions (dual coloured for two looks in one), while the rug is from Wayfair, which offers a huge range of chic and very affordable designs.
Make the most of curtains
Of all window treatments, nothing dresses the room like curtains. If your curtains are still in great condition but have been up for a while, take them down and get them cleaned. It’s amazing how dust can dull the colours and it will feel like you have a whole new pair of curtains when you put them up again. If, however, they’ve been faded by the sun and really lost their lustre, it could be time to invest in new ones. Don’t rush out and buy anything – consider fabrics that will go with the rest of your scheme and order a few samples (at Linwood you can order up to six free of charge). Consider whether you want light and airy cotton, heavy and luxurious velvet or something that is hardwearing enough for a family room. Shown here is a playful linen design, Mandai in Primrose colourway, which is also suitable for upholstery (not all fabrics are). Buying new curtains can be a significant outlay, but you’ll be rewarded with a space that feels entirely rejuvenated as a result.
Upcycle old furniture with upholstery
Whether it’s furniture that’s getting worn from constant use, or pieces that have been relegated to the attic, now’s the time to see if reupholstering them could give them new life. For simpler jobs, like re-covering the seats of kitchen chairs, it is definitely worth heading into your craft room and getting out the sewing machine. It’s amazing the difference it can make to old furniture, along with a new coat of spray paint on the woodwork for a smooth, even finish in a bright colour. When it comes to reupholstering an armchair, sofa or dining chairs, however, it’s best to leave it to the professionals, unless you’re a very confident DIYer. You get the fun of picking a beautiful new fabric, though – see the difference the Close Encounters fabric from the Velvet Wonderland collection makes to this sofa.
Add pattern and colour with wallpaper
There’s a reason why bold and beautiful wallpapers are beloved of interior designers – it’s a great way to add personality to walls. Wallpapering a room is also a relatively easy update that most people can undertake in a weekend with the right preparation. Looking for something a bit different? Our Wild Rainbow wallpaper has wonderful detail to draw the eye, featuring parrots, lions and exotic flowers in a riot of colour. It looks particularly good as the backdrop to a bed with neutral headboard, pillow covers and throw. Though it would work equally well in any space, from dining room to hallway. Definitely do choose a colourful pattern for a small bathroom or cloakroom too, where it will create an impact and actually make it feel it feel bigger.
Nothing adds impact like a pop of bold colour, and for those who are fully paid up to the idea of maximalist interiors, walls in primary colours or out-size wallpaper prints will be a natural first step. If, on the other hand, your interiors are currently fairly neutral, it’s probably best to start with a few smaller elements and see how you like it. Hang an in-your-face artwork above the fireplace and add in vases, throws and other accessories that continue the bold colour theme. Then, if you decide bold is better, build up from cushions, to curtains, an armchair or even all the upholstery in the room. Our luxuriously soft Alpha velvet fabric collection is a perfect choice, as it comes in 30 bright and beautiful colours. Meanwhile, for practicality in family homes, it is woven with durable polyester yarn and has a no-nonsense stain-resistant finish.
Update any room with a fresh coat of paint
Nothing refreshes a room like a new coat of paint. It not only lifts the décor but will raise your mood too – and it doesn’t need to cost the earth. If you’re going for something totally new, call in several paint colours and see how the samples look in different places on the walls. You need to see what the shades look like in natural and artificial light, as well as how they change throughout the day. What looks good first thing in the morning may be too bright at sunset. As a general rule, in sun-filled rooms go for cooler colours and treat potentially chilly north-facing rooms to a warmer hue. If you’re only changing the paint and not the carpet or soft furnishings, make sure you choose a shade that ties all the elements together. This is what we’ve done here with the Kitty in Aqua Leaf linen, which has all the blues and beiges found elsewhere in the room within its pretty pattern. A final thought: if you’ve run out of walls to paint, don’t forget the front door! You can make a statement by choosing a bright shade (consider using spray paint for a really smooth finish) and it will give your home serious kerb appeal.
Incorporate some greenery
Not for nothing have architects and interior designers focused on biophilic design in recent years. By connecting the occupants of a building more closely to nature it creates a healthier environment to live and work in. It also works on a smaller scale. Studies show that house plants help boost your wellbeing and productivity, as well as raise your mood. In addition, they can improve air quality, which is particularly important during the winter months when we don’t open the windows enough. Oh, and they look great too! A room that is dressed with plenty of greenery will have a lushness to it, as well as providing a welcome link with nature outside. We tend to place plants on windowsills and around the sides of the rooms, but don’t confine yourself to this. Place some on the coffee table, as we’ve done here, so they make an attractive focal point that you can see them from wherever you’re sitting. As a backdrop, why not choose a stylised floral like Tanglewood, this luxurious velvet works for blinds, curtains and upholstery.
Don't over decorate
Take an honest look at your rooms and see if you just have too much of one thing. This could be anything from too many pictures crammed onto one wall to overuse of a dominant colour. We’re not advocating minimalism, but your rooms should be beautiful, functional and relaxing to be in, which is difficult if they’re over decorated. If you love pattern, don’t use it for the walls, upholstery and cushions, that would be overkill! Choose another complementary pattern and insert plain fabrics or surfaces too. You need negative space in a room to appreciate the artworks or architectural features that are designed to draw the eye. So, leave some areas of wall and floor bare so you can appreciate those focal points. Here, our beautiful Omega velvet in Mineral stands out from a wall painted in a sympathetic but not matching hue. Had they been any closer in colour, the sofa would have sunk into the background and not been the stand-out feature it is. Finally, bring some eclecticism to your rooms, don’t have everything from the same time period, for example. But it’s a difficult balance, as it’s also important not to mix too much! If in doubt, seek advice from an interior designer to ensure you get it right.
Trending home décor for 2023
If there’s one thing we want to feel in 2023, it’s cocooned. Home décor trends are all pointing towards comfort-core style, or schemes that make us feel warm and safe – if only to block out the uncertainty outside. This means soft shapes, natural wood tones and warm metallics, such as gold. This is linked to a sense of nostalgia, and you can expect to see people combining modern looks with treasured family pieces too. Not surprisingly, we also want to feel joyful, so colours and patterns should be happy and bright to promote wellbeing, rather than cool and grey.
Home décor to avoid in 2023
On the way out is anything that is the antithesis of the comfortable décor described above. So, eschew shiny and cool materials in favour of natural ones, and colder colours for warm. It’s not about getting rid of your white walls, but rather ensuring they’re elevated with a little personality to break up the minimalism. Sustainability is quite rightly at the top of our agendas too, which means avoiding buying brand-new or mass-produced items in bulk, in favour of thoughtful purchases and vintage finds.
Hopefully you’re now ready to race into 2023 and rejuvenate your home décor! Or, if all of the above has set you thinking but you still need some additional inspiration, check out our 10 modern home décor ideas, for more top hints and tips to spruce up your home.