10 clever small space living hacks that will transform your home

Habitat and Topology Interiors - small space living

 Are you in need of some achievable, cost-effective ideas for making small spaces look bigger? Whether you’ve got a tiny living room or bedroom, or you’re living in a shoebox sized flat in the city, there are lots of clever ways to enhance the space.

Interior design gurus, Athina Bluff and Amy Brandhorst of Topology Interiors, have teamed up with home furnishings brand Habitat for a new small space living campaign to help you get the most out of your space.

Topology Interiors


Hang a mirror opposite a window. Whilst this is a simple hack, it’s extremely effective in terms of cost and visual impact. ‘The mirror will reflect natural light and instantly brighten up your space, as well as making the room appear more spacious,’ explains Topology Interiors. ‘If you’re feeling creative, play around with different shapes or multiples to reflect as much light as possible. More light equals more sense of space.’

Habitat - small space living with Topology Interiors - bedroom mirror



When it comes to floors, create an unbroken flow of space. Topology’s top trick is to continue the hallway flooring into your small room. This will ‘make it appear as though it’s one big area and it also creates the illusion that the floor is expanding’.

Flooring - hallway - Habitat - small space living with Topology Interiors



Get the paint brushes out! The interior designers suggest painting walls, skirting boards and door frames all the same colour. But why? ‘Painting them different colours can actually break up the space and emphasise the shape and (small) size of the room,’ Topology explain. ‘If they’re all the same colour, they will blend in and make the room appear bigger.’

Habitat - small space living with Topology Interiors  - living room



This is one for the brave, but don’t be afraid of going dark in small spaces.’ It may sound daunting but dark shades – navies, greys – can actually disguise the perimeters of a room, blurring boundaries which can make a room appear bigger than it is,’ say Bluff and Brandhorst. ‘So, don’t feel like you have to “Brilliant White” absolutely everything to achieve a sense of more space – trust us, it works.’

Habitat - small space living with Topology Interiors - dining room



Go for multipurpose furniture that can be folded or expanded as and when you need them. ‘If there’s only two of you most evenings, opt for a folding table by weekday which can be turned into a four-person dining table by weekend,’ they suggest. ‘Same for when you invest in a sofa – check to see whether there is a sofa bed option which will turn the sitting room into a bedroom for guests to stay. And always think about storage – storage ottomans, pouffes, attractive looking trunks, coffee tables etc. If there’s a design that also hides clutter(the enemy of small spaces), then do it!’

Orange sofa living room design - Habitat and Topology Interiors - small space living



When you’re considering furniture for a small living space opt for ‘weightless’ or transparent furniture. ‘The more you can see around the object (or through the object) the bigger the room will look as you’re allowing light to flow through the room and maximising the sense of space,’ explains Topology. ‘Glass furniture, sofas raised on legs, skinny framed shelving – these will all help.’

Habitat - small space living with Topology Interiors



Maximise light at night with multiple light sources. Topology says you should ‘aim to have around six light sources around the room which will “replace” natural daylight and flow through the space, as well as being reflected from mirrored and metallic surfaces’. Metallics are also great to reflect warm light, and again, creating a sense of space.

Habitat - small space living with Topology Interiors



Bedrooms can be tricky if you don’t have any built-in storage and your bed seems to take up most of the space. But, Topology says you should follow the ‘weightless’ idea. They advise: ‘Avoid bulky, heavy furniture. Instead of a wardrobe how about a clothes rail for a lighter, more compact look? For bedside tables look for wire mesh, Perspex or floor lamps that have a shelving element to them.’

Habitat and Topology Interiors - bedroom - small space living



Sliding doors are a great alternative to traditional doors in places where you’re short on space and can’t install a 90-degree open door. Bluff and Brandhorst say it’s particularly great for en-suites and small bedrooms which just fit a double bed, and also for wardrobes – if you don’t go down the clothes rail route. ‘Sliding doors mean you won’t have to fight for space with other pieces of furniture (or people when you’re trying to get ready!)’

Habitat and Topology Interiors - small space living - sliding doors


HACK #10

‘As you don’t have a lot of floor space to play with, think upwards and make use of walls instead,’ advise the experts. ‘Think floating shelves, wall lights, clothes hooks, wall mounted magazine racks and bike hooks.’ This will allow you to store folding chairs or display belongings without taking up valuable square floor footage. And don’t forget to make use of dead space such as corners – adding wall mounted shelves into corners is a great way of maximising storage space.

Habitat and Topology Interiors - small space living


8 modern oriental decorating ideas for your home

Modern Oriental decorating ideas - style inspiration
Styling by Marisa Daley. Styling Assistant: Amy Neason. Photography: Carolyn Barber


1Relaxed approach

Modern Oriental decorating ideas - style inspiration
Styling by Marisa Daley. Styling Assistant: Amy Neason. Photography: Carolyn Barber.


Cushions in golden hues and sky blue shades look stunning piled on a grey sofa. Furniture with clean lines allows light to circulate around the room.

2Quiet spot

Modern Oriental decorating ideas - style inspiration
Styling by Marisa Daley. Styling Assistant: Amy Neason. Photography: Carolyn Barber.


Striking black wire furniture balances beautifully with soft seating and light oak pieces.

3Wood pile

Modern Oriental decorating ideas - style inspiration
Styling by Marisa Daley. Styling Assistant: Amy Neason. Photography: Carolyn Barber.


Soften white walls with artworks featuring gentle patterns and ceramics in a variety of shapes. Add wood for natural colour.


4Tea ceremony

Modern Oriental decorating ideas - style inspiration
Styling by Marisa Daley. Styling Assistant: Amy Neason. Photography: Carolyn Barber.


Take inspiration from traditional Japanese rituals, and add modern touches with this season’s new colours – ochre and indigo.


5Soft light

Modern Oriental decorating ideas - style inspiration
Styling by Marisa Daley. Styling Assistant: Amy Neason. Photography: Carolyn Barber.


Create a sense of calm with a striking textured pendant lantern in a natural colour, surrounded by soft tones and textiles.

6Casual eating

Modern Oriental decorating ideas - style inspiration
Styling by Marisa Daley. Styling Assistant: Amy Neason. Photography: Carolyn Barber.


Dark wood and glossy cabinets get a lift with a serene teal hue above the work surface and on the rattan bar stools.


7Captivating layers

Modern Oriental decorating ideas - style inspiration
Styling by Marisa Daley. Styling Assistant: Amy Neason. Photography: Carolyn Barber.


Contrasting patterns in muted tones create a restful bedroom, while wall-mounted lights keep the bedside clear.


8Cosy corner

Modern Oriental decorating ideas - style inspiration
Styling by Marisa Daley. Styling Assistant: Amy Neason. Photography: Carolyn Barber.


Turn a small space into a quiet reading area with a simple bench. Install your own dark panelling or use wood-effect wallpaper. 


12 really useful Ultra Violet decorating tips from interior designers and style experts

Ultra Violet

 Whether you lean towards lavender, soft iris or aubergine, purple is indeed a versatile colour – one that symbolises elements of confidence, counterculture, unconventionality, mindfulness and mystical and spiritual qualities.

Late musical icons David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix and Prince brought shades of purple to the forefront of pop culture, whilst expressing their own personality. Prince was even honoured with his own purple colour ‘Love Symbol #2’ in 2017, which bears a striking resemblance to Ultra Violet.

Hillarys and Sophie Robinson team up to style a home with Pantone's Ultra Violet


Ultra Violet is a bold, vivid shade, that on the one sense evokes a sense of creativity and fantasy, and on the other, a sense of balance and harmony.

Speaking to HouseBeautiful.co.ukLeatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Colour Institute, offers a friendly reminder: Context is always a major issue when it comes to colour – it’s where and how you’re using it.’

So how can we effectively use this shade in our home? ‘Violets can be stimulating and sexy, while blue violets can be cooling and spiritual,’ says Anna Starmer in The Colour Scheme Bible. ‘Shades of violet can work well together, but may be too overpowering for most.

‘Violets also look great with greens. Blue violets work well with cool blues, and red violets look beautiful with soft pinks.’

Sheridan Australia - plum accessories


Interior designer, Sophie Robinson, adds: ‘The great thing about Ultra Violet is that it can hold its own with a diverse range of colours. It can act as a dark foil for acid brights, a cool partner for hot hues and a safe anchor for delicate pastels.

‘Leave behind all thoughts of Cadbury’s Creme Eggs, Barney the Dinosaur and Lawrence Llewellyn-Bowen in all his purple suited glory and embrace the new power of purple.’

On that note, get some Ultra Violet decorating tips from the experts below and find out what they really think about the colour of the year:

1. ‘Pantone’s electrifying colour of the year sent shockwaves through a nation acclimatised to neutral and natural colour codes. It signifies a seismic movement in the way we decorate our homes; grounded tones will still be in demand in 2018 but artificial shades that embrace technology are set to lead the way to a brighter future.’ – Lorna McAleer, Interiors Expert at Style Studio

FARO kitchen in matt aubergine finish by ARAN Cucine


2. ‘A welcome change from Pantone’s 2017 nature-hued colour of the year, Ultra Violet is the perfect shade to inject life and a dramatic pop of colour into your home. If you’re feeling bold, create a focal point in your room with a stunning ultra violet sofa. Not quite ready to go all-out purple? This statement shade works well when introduced through soft furnishings like cushions and throws. Balance out the look with gold metallics and add some vibrant plant life to give any room a fresh, contemporary style.’ – Shelby Pearson-Hendry, Interior Stylist at Sofology

3. ‘Purple is made up of warm and cool elements, both blue and red. Red being very exciting and blue very relaxing and tranquillising, but when you put the two together, you create a really interesting colour and this particular purple leans a little bit more to the blue side. It’s a very creative, exciting a colour, but there’s a little drama attached to it too. I think for other colours, it’s a matter of working your way around the colour wheel. Ultra violet across greys of any variation – from the lightest to the darkest – is spectacular. It’s a wonderful punch of colour to use across neutral tones.’ – Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Colour Institute

Debenhams bedroom - J by Jasper Conran


4. ‘This exciting choice for colour of the year works brilliantly in many different ways, for all different interior schemes. For the brave, go hard on block colours and mix this vibrant hue with other visceral and stimulating colours in your home in a Mondrian style. This will give your space a stylish edge – a heady cocktail of punkish rebellion and regal opulence. Alternatively, the intoxicating purple sits wonderfully with the popular grey, earthy tones of 2017’s interior trends. Alongside these greys and ochres, the tones are softened and are much more seamlessly introduced to pre-existing interiors. Another great way to introduce a softer version of Ultra Violet is to opt for cashmere or wool soft furnishings in the punchy tone. For splashes of Ultra Violet, add a silk or satin piping to cushions, curtains or armchairs.’ – Brian Woulfe, Founder and Managing Director of Designed by Woulfe

5. ‘For 2018, purple and the spectrum that Pantone’s Ultra Violet encompasses will be dominating sales. It is both a warm and cool tone, depending on the rest of your interior scheme. Pair with ochres and warm oranges for warmth, or with greys for a cooler décor.’ – Natalie Littlehales, Consumer Marketing Manager at Brintons

Damson carpet from the Bell Twist range, Brintons


6. ‘The great thing about Ultra Violet is that it can hold its own with a diverse range of colours. It can act as a dark foil for acid brights, a cool partner for hot hues and a safe anchor for delicate pastels. Don’t be tempted to simply paint a feature wall in Ultra Violet and leave it at that. Instead, keep your walls neutral and let the soft furnishings do the design work for you. Avoid going all matchy matchy and instead mix florals with geometrics to give a more interesting look.’ – Sophie Robinson, Interior Designer

Hillarys and Sophie Robinson team up to style a home with Pantone's Ultra Violet


7. ‘Inspired by the night sky, Pantone’s Colour of the Year for 2018 is full of possibilities. We love pairing Ultra Violet with serene shades of blue for an ethereal effect. For a luxurious take on the trend, we recommend sofas and armchairs in inky navy and midnight black, with amethyst cushions and throws throughout the space to provide subtle pops of colour from the same palette. Finally, try a pendant light or a table lamp in soft copper to catch the light and add brightness to the overall look.’ – Hannah Thistlethwaite, Textiles Buyer at Heal’s

8. ‘Lots of people are rather daunted by the colour purple. But used with confidence, Ultra Violet can help you create an exciting and original interior. From a design perspective Ultra Violet offers a whole spectrum of opportunities – from highly original interiors full of texture and contrast to blended shades that subtly express one’s own design personality.’ – Susan White, Marketing Director, Hillarys

Original Style - Odyssey Collection - tiles - Alhambra - Indigo and dark Blue on Dover White


9. ‘Pantone’s 2018 colour choice speaks to the growing popularity over the past year of bold jewel tones, and the shift away from the softer pastels that have recently dominated the world of design,. While many may think a deep violet is melancholy, it can also be playful in its references to science and space travel. For example, pair ultra violet with metallics to elicit a whimsical and celestial atmosphere.’ – Eleonora Valle, Art Director at Onefinestay


10. ‘Ultra Violet looks spectacular on window blinds, especially when backlit with the sun shining through the blind. Experiment with Ultra Violet as solid blocks colour on blinds and other key pieces around the room. Alternatively incorporate with a bohemian design that reflect the colour’s spiritual/creative nature.’ – Mike Stephen, Design Director at Apollo Blinds.

Eco-friendly paints from Lakeland Paints


11. ‘I just love this intense and insightful colour – it’s bursting with curiosity and optimism for the future. 2017’s colour palettes were characterised by grounded colour choices that connected with the natural world – this bright, sparky shade flips that idea on its head, crashing through boundaries, celebrating creativity and revelling in the unchartered realms of technological advances.’ – Alex Whitecroft, Head of Design at I Want Wallpaper

12. ‘Strong purples certainly give a room a feeling of uniqueness, and this year’s colour of the year, Ultra Violet, sees the darker blues of 2017 move on to reveal a warmth and richness for 2018. As this shade evokes different responses from different people, there are a number of ways it can be interpreted and used too. For some, purple adds a feeling of energy, whereas for others, their perception of purple is more luxurious and in some aspects quite regal. Wherever you fall on this spectrum, the shade gives you the freedom to use as much or as little colour as you want.’ – Lucy Shore, Creative Designer at Swish

Highgate and Kensington Ultra Violet Dining Set


The 5 golden rules for choosing a sofa

Stocksund two seat sofa - Ikea


The average sofa has a seat depth of at least 60cm, which gives plenty of room to manoeuvre if you have long legs, and allows you to tuck them under if you’re shorter. But seat depths do vary, so try out different styles to ensure you get good back support. When it comes to seat height most designs are between 45cm and 50cm high. There’s no right or wrong height so try before you buy to make sure it suits the whole family. Finally, check the total width, excluding armrests, if you like to stretch out.



House Beautiful DFS Cassidy sofa


Spend as much as you can afford on a quality frame – it will see you through many years of lounging. Take note of the guarantee before you commit, some manufacturers are so confident about their frames that they offer a lifetime guarantee. A solid hardwood frame is a good option, but be wary of a particleboard or metal construction.


Remember that what’s inside a sofa is just as important as what’s used on the outside. Feather-filled cushions are high on comfort but they will need regular plumping, while foam or fibre fillings may flatten out and lose their shape over time. The team at Sofa.comrecommends choosing a combination of feather and foam as ‘feathers give the squish while the foam provides structure’. A good combination is back cushions filled with feathers and seat cushions filled with foam or fibre.


Yellow and grey colour scheme living room - styling by Kiera Buckley-Jones, photography by Rachel Whiting


Whether you go for a bold colour, pattern or a neutral, your choice of upholstery fabric will have a huge impact on the room, so choose carefully to ensure it fits with your scheme. Natural materials may fade in strong sunlight so go for a synthetic fabric if the sofa will be near a window. It’s particularly important in a busy family home, and if you have a dog or cat, opt for a fabric that’s easy to spot clean. Loose covers are worth investigating, as they can be removed for cleaning and some are washable.


Get out the tape measure and make sure you’re certain of the maximum sofa dimensions that will fit, and suit, your space. Also, check the dimensions of any doors and stairways the sofa will have to pass through on delivery. If access is limited, you may need to opt for a low-back style, one with removable legs or even a modular design that can be delivered in sections.

How to make gilded gold vases

Gilded gold vase
 Gold vases add a touch of glamour to any celebration. Whether for a wedding or lunch on Mother’s Day, create the perfect table setting for with this easy DIY that looks far grander than it is.

You can be as messy or as adventurous as you like with this make. Create clean lines with masking tape or simply apply the glue to where you’d like, for a more natural look – you can even seal it so it will last a long time too.

gold leaf vase


We love the vintage style that bridal blog The Nuptial has gone for, but Sas and Rose’s version is just as fancy.

This tutorial uses a simple vase or jar and some gold leaf to create a dip-dyed look. It’s inexpensive and you can use any type of vase with liquid gold leaf or gold leaf sheets to spruce it up ready for your Mother’s Day lunch – it’s as easy as that. Here’s how to make it.

You will need:

  • Vase (clean jars will work for this, too)
  • Gold leaf (either liquid gold leaf or gold leaf sheets)
  • Metal leaf adhesive
  • Sealer or varnish to seal
  • Paintbrushes
  • Masking tape (optional)

To make:

1. Mark out where you’d like to place your gold leaf. We liked the dip dyed look as it’s simple to make and looks great. If you’d like clear edges, mark this out with masking tape. Apply the adhesive to the bottom of the vase and wait for it to become tacky. It should change from white to clear in colour and this should take at least 15-20 minutes.

Turn jar into a vase


2. Apply the gold leaf either by using your fingers to place small pieces onto the vase, painting it on with a paintbrush or by placing the gold leaf sheet with the shiny side facing up directly onto the vase. Since the gold leaf is delicate, it’s best to work with small pieces and keep adding to your vase as you go along, covering all the empty spaces.

How to apply gold leaf


3. Once you’re happy with the positioning of your design, smooth it down with a clean, soft paintbrush. It doesn’t matter if your vase doesn’t look quite perfect – the imperfect edges and finish will give it a rustic look.

4. Apply a sealer to secure your gold leaf design and allow your vase to dry fully before using it. Once it is dry, fill your vase with water and fresh flowers to make a beautiful table centrepiece for your Mother’s Day lunch.


Everyone knows that making your bed in the morning sets the tone for the rest of your day. At least in theory, right? Well, I say making your bed with a beautiful grouping of pillows makes it that much easier to want to make your bed! I wanted the look of boutique-bought pillows on a box store budget, so I picked up a set of inexpensive shams and 100% cotton pillowcases, used some plant-based dye magic, and ended up with a pillow scape (is that a phrase?) that looks a little more luxe and so much prettier! Mom will be proud to know my bed has been made every day this week!

For more please visit our site:- http://ihomebee.com

Naturi Naughton’s Nursery Reveal!

Naturi Naughton Nursery Reveal-6

I’m sure you all know actress Naturi Naughton from her role as Tasha St. Patrick on the hit crime drama Power on Starz. She recently gave birth to her beautiful baby girl Zuri in July and I had a blast working with her to design her nursery! Pottery Barn Kids collaborated with us to help create a dream nursery space for Naturi and Zuri to enjoy and I’m excited to share a peek inside the room plus the scoop on how it all came together!

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

When Naturi and I first chatted about designing a nursery for her baby girl she wasn’t quite sure how she wanted the space to look but she knew how she wanted it to feel. She wanted the space to be peaceful and serene and inspire the idea that her baby girl can go anywhere she wants in life – the sky is the limit! So with that in mind, I set out to design her dream nursery. For context, here’s a peek at what the space looked like before.

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

The room was a complete blank slate when we started but she’d recently had her apartment painted including Zuri’s room and had already had the walls painted a fun, minty green shade. 

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

This is what the room looks like today!  The wall color has a lot of energy to it so I balanced that with pale pinks for a feminine touch mixed with soft neutrals since Naturi mentioned she loves earthier tones.  The space is so bright and airy now! I also created a space that felt more sophisticated so that it could easily transition as Zuri grows older.

Naturi Naughton's NurseryHints of Naturi’s Caribbean heritage were brought into the room which was a key item on her wishlist for the nursery. Naturi and her boyfriend’s families are from Barbados and St. Croix so she wanted to pay homage to where they came from. I found these lovely vintage maps of Barbados and the West Indies online. These maps were the foundation for bringing in other global accents throughout the space and this global vibe became a subtle theme throughout the room.

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

In keeping with this globally-inspired theme, I commissioned a custom world map art print to serve as a focal point above the crib and it’s one of Naturi’s favorite elements in the room. I started with a royalty-free digital map file and had a graphic designer recolor it and add the words “Oh the places you’ll go” from the famous Dr. Suess title. It symbolizes the bright future ahead for baby Zuri and ties back to the idea that the world is her oyster! Can we also just take a moment to appreciate Naturi’s post-baby snap back? These photos were taken about six weeks after Zuri was born!

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

I also picked out a lovely rug with an ethnic-inspired medallion pattern while the elephant motifs bring to mind far-flung places where wild elephants roam. And how cute are these metallic woven baskets? Since the room is on the smaller side, they provide some much-needed extra storage and are super stylish to boot.

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

We wanted to incorporate Zuri’s name in subtle ways throughout her room. The ballerina artwork from Minted over the changing table was custom printed with Zuri’s name. I especially love that there’s a ballerina option for every skin tone! We also incorporated a lovely monogrammed tassel pillow from Pottery Barn Kids and used it as a decorative element for the crib whenever Zuri isn’t sleeping there.

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

Naturi Naughton's Nursery
Naturi Naughton's Nursery

The window was had a tricky layout with three separate panels that Naturi likes to be able to access easily. I teamed up with The Shade Store on her window treatments and selected a beautiful ivory linen roman shade with a pink trim to cover the windows. The shade has a blackout liner so the room can go completely dark when Zuri sleeps. Since the roman shade is a blackout, Naturi still wanted a way to let light in but still maintain privacy because her neighbor’s balcony has a partial view into the room. The solution was to layer a sheer roller shade underneath the roman, which allows the light in but still gives her privacy when she needs it. There is a shade for each of the window panels so she can have easy access to open and close the windows.

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

A comfy chair is a must in any nursery and Naturi loves this modern wingback glider and recliner that I tucked into a little corner. It’s SO comfortable and since Naturi is breastfeeding this is where she nurses Zuri and rocks her to sleep. This cozy little corner nook is now the main spot where Naturi and Zuri share their precious mommy-daughter bonding time.Naturi Naughton's Nursery

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

Storage was a challenge in the room which has just one small closet so we incorporated the Elsie dresser which provides extra storage for clothes and also doubles as a changing table.

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

These super cute wall-mounted bookshelves also added clever storage to an unused wall without taking up any additional space. A fun fact about Naturi is that she plays the piano! The artwork above the bookshelves of a little girl playing the piano is a piece Naturi loves and has had for ages. Hopefully baby Zuri will follow in her mommy’s musical footsteps!

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

Naturi Naughton's Nursery

I hope you enjoyed this peek inside Naturi Naughton’s nursery! Naturi couldn’t have been more lovely to work with and I’m so excited for her journey as a new mom! We’re both thrilled with how beautifully the nursery came together and it wouldn’t have been possible without a few fantastic partners. Big thanks to Pottery Barn Kids for collaborating to provide all of the furniture and accessories in the nursery and to The Shade Store and Minted for also partnering with us! See how to get the look of Naturi’s nursery below! (Photos by Stephania Stanley)

10 Trends That Are Taking Over Homes In 2018

2018 home trends


Ready or not, 2018 is around the corner. And it’s not coming quietly, either. Designers and brands expect home decor to be bolder than years before, with vivid jewel tones and luxe velvet and brass balanced out with organic accents. As always, stick with what you love, regardless of what’s in or out. But if your New Year’s resolution is to refresh your home (whether with a new coat of paint or a pretty piece of furniture), here are the top trends to try—along with some you should skip.

OUT: All-White Kitchens

We said it this fall and we’ll say it again: All-white interiors are on their way out. Kitchens in particular will continue to brighten up in the new year, swapping stark white for warm wood tones and new neutrals including cream, blue, and gray, Houzz reports. 

OUT: White and Stainless Steel Sinks
2018 home trends that are out

Sinks will follow suit with darker, more daring designs. We’ve already seen it with the copper farmhouse sink trend, but also watch out for concrete and stone styles.

OUT: Accent Walls
2018 home trends that are out

So long, lone wall. This is one fad Lauren Liess, interior designer and host of HGTV’s Best House on the Block, is ready to retire. “Accent walls were big in the ’80s and ’90s and are an instant way to make a room look like it was decorated then,” Liess explains. Instead, for interest, incorporate timeless texture such as millwork and wainscoting (Houzz says both are trending for 2018) or statement ceilings, one of Pinterest’s top home predictions and something we saw coming back in the fall.

OUT: Word Art
2018 home trends that are out

Sure, signs or throw pillows spelling out sentiments such as “Home,” “Family,” or full quotes may seem like a simple way to create a fun focal point. But the concept has become overdone in recent years (with the exception of vintage signs, charts, and other objects repurposed into art, of course). In 2018, look for less literal ways to express yourself.

OUT: Random Architectural Elements
2018 home trends that are out

We love barn doors just as much as the next country gal, but architectural elements should be cohesive with the style of your home, Liess says. For example, barn doors just don’t look right in an otherwise traditional house, nor do formal columns in a suburban space. “All of these things are amazing in the right setting but when applied inappropriately and all over the place, they quickly become dated trends,” Liess says.

IN: Jewel Tones

Fall and winter were all about dark, cozy colors, and 2018 is set to make a similarly bold entrance. Pantone just named Ultra Violet its Color of the Year, while Sherwin-Williams selected Oceanside SW 6496 (think emerald green meets sapphire). Both shades are said to be especially invigorating—just the motivation we need as we head into the new year. 

We love these vivid velvet (another huge trend continuing from fall) sofas from Barker and Stonehouse, but you could also take baby steps with a jewel-toned velvet throw pillow instead.

Doubtful of so much drama? Consider the colors’ calmer cousins, especially in restful rooms like the bedroom. Lilac, for example, is a watered-down version of violet that’s so versatile and feminine Erika Woelfel, color expert for Behr Paint, is calling it the new millennial pink.


“I’m seeing a lot of really beautiful, heavily cabineted kitchens out there,” Liess notes, calling out deVOL’s designs, like the one pictured here. “Possibly people’s backlash to open shelving but I’m seeing a renewed appreciation for cabinetry.”

Again, rather than stark-white kitchen cabinets, expect to see warm grays, blues, and creams, as well as wood grain tones.

IN: Brass

Whether you love it or hate it, brass is back and better than ever in the new year. The aged finish adorns kitchen cabinets and living room furniture and shines as serveware and vintage-inspired light fixtures alike, as in this beautiful bathroom from One Kings Lane.

IN: Wabi-Sabi
2018 home trends

Wabi-sabi is the Japanese art of finding beauty in imperfection. In home design, this translates to handmade or hand-painted items including rough linens and pottery (like the Farmhouse Pottery pictured). The result? A deeply personal, organic aesthetic.

IN: Statement Storage
2018 home trends

“Statement storage will be a growing trend in 2018,” says Anthropologie’s customer styling director Christina Frederick. “Gone are the days of sacrificing style for function. Versatile pieces like this tamboured buffet are expanding beyond media and dining rooms for creative placement throughout the home. There seems to be a growing desire for high-end organization in our personal space, a desire for things—and life—to feel pulled together.”

IN: Shapely Furniture

Couches will take cues from the ’70s this season, with quirky curves that liven up your living room. We spotted this shapely silhouette at CB2’s spring preview, and architect Elizabeth Roberts endorsed the idea in an interview with My Domaine.

IN: Bold Floral Prints
2018 home trends

We can hear Miranda Priestley’s dripping sarcasm now: Florals? For spring? Groundbreaking. But when incorporated into furniture in an overt way, as in this Liberty for Anthropologie swivel chair, flowers are fun and funky.

“Floral prints are always ‘in’ if you ask Anthropologie,” says Frederick. “Rather than a traditionally feminine look in 2018 they feel especially fresh and more interesting styled in a casual bohemian way. Juxtaposing florals with organic textures and neutral palettes evokes a new kind of elegance that is appealing.”  

Of course, if furniture covered in florals feels a bit too risky, you can always ease into the trend with classic bloom-covered bedding.

IN: Black and White

Everyone from Anthropologie to CB2to Joanna Gaines is loving the classic combination of black and white—perhaps as a way of offsetting some of the season’s more striking styles. Snag some simple linens, like these Hearth & Hand with Magnolia kitchen towels from Target.

IN: Surprising Stone

It’s not all white Carrara marbleanymore. Unexpected iterations of the stone, such as gray and green, pop up all over CB2’s new collection. And the trend extends to other types of stone as well. “This spring, high-quality materials including marble, onyx, agate, and alabaster are trending,” managing director Ryan Turf tells us. “These beautiful, natural materials add texture and depth to any design. Timeless yet very modern and fresh.”

IN: Natural Accents

And the natural look doesn’t stop at stone. Liess is loving decorative objects made of wood and other earthy materials. Hand-turned wooden spice bowls by Etsy maker Bolecraft guarantee one-of-a-kind style, as do concrete vessels and leather drawer pulls.


File Cabinet Makeover (via abeautifulmess.com)Hi, friends! As many of you know, I am in the midst of giving my home office a little refresh. I’m the kind of gal who likes to change up my surroundings fairly often, but I don’t really want to redecorate my WHOLE house every year, of course, so I usually focus on one space that I can switch around to keep things feeling fresh—and currently that space is my home office. I’ve already rearranged the furniture in this area, and I’ve been moving the overall color scheme of this space from pinks and oranges to mostly black and white. But one major feature in the room is my file cabinets, which are bright orange. As a small business owner (and over-saver of documents), I have a LOT in my file cabinets and I like to have access to my files as needed. I love the size and shape of my file cabinets, but the color no longer worked with my space, so I was looking to give them a little makeover.

This project is in collaboration with Ace Hardware. I used Amy Howard Furniture Lacquer to paint my metal filing cabinets, which is a line available at Ace Hardware. And not only do they have a lot of different colors (in fun names!), but the Amy Howard line also has gold leaf—which I was SUPER excited to try out as well! We recently got a new Ace Hardware location in Ozark, Missouri (I live between the towns of Springfield and Ozark), and I visited it a couple times while I was working on this post. I was pleasantly surprised not only that they had a huge display of a ton of the Amy Howard line (that I needed) but the Ace associate that helped me out was super nice too, and if you’ve ever been the DIY gal at the hardware store describing your weird vision for a project and needing advice, helpful people are seriously such a relief. 🙂

Before and afterHere’s a little before and after of my filing cabinets. Before I began my project, I sketched out a few different designs. I thought about doing one all black and one all white. Maybe doing a half and half look on both, or adding small designs. In the end, I decided to do a kind of triangle and brush stroke design that sort of reminds me of a 1980s video game (just a little bit, not too 80s). So I’m going to share with you how I completed my project. But you could totally change up the design and repaint furniture you have that needs a little refresh in all sorts of ways. You do you.

-drop cloth or cardboard to protect areas around the project
–Frog tape
-Amy Howard at Home furniture lacquer and sealer (I’ll share the color names below.)
-Amy Howard gold leaf sheets
-Amy Howard at Home Gilding Size (gold leaf adhesive)
–soft bristle brush or cheesecloth

Prep cabinets for paintingFirst, prepare your furniture to paint. For me this meant covering and taping off areas that I did not want painted. I cleaned the surface of the metal so it was completely free of dust and greasy finger prints (no idea how those got there… um…), and I had two cabinets to paint, so I decided to remove the handles on one and not the other to see which was easier for painting. I found that removing handles or other hardware that you can is best. The furniture lacquer is super easy to use, but like most spray paints, it can get too thick and drip (which will mean you’ll need to sand off once dry), and I found that on the cabinet that I left the handles on, that was much more likely. So I’d recommend taking handles or other features like that off if possible.

Also, you’ll want to work in a well-ventilated space anytime you use spray paints and especially furniture lacquer like I used. This kind of paint is great for furniture, but it’s not something you want to be breathing in a lot of, so work in your garage, outdoors, or whatever well-ventilated space you can.

Amy Howard Furniture LacquerI added two layers of White Perfection (love the name!) to my cabinets and allowed that to dry.

Mask off designThen added my triangle designs to the cabinets with painter’s tape. This is going to create kind of a relief, so any area you tape will be that color by the end of the project (not the reverse).

Paint blackThen I sprayed one layer of Basic Black on the cabinets. I allowed that to dry, and then I added my handles back on before spraying the final coat of black so I could be sure to get those as well.

Once dry, it’s time for the fun part—gold gilding!

Gold leaf bookCut gold leafThe gold gilding comes in a “book” which is made up of gold leaf in between layers of tissue paper, all bound together. This makes it easier to work with as the gold leaf has a tendency to want to stick to your fingers, but not the tissue paper.

Using a brush, add brush stroke designs with the gilding size (gold leaf adhesive). Once partially dry and tacky to the touch, cut the gold leaf book so that the pieces are slightly larger than the brush areas and fold back the tissue to add the gold leaf to each tacky area. You can manipulate the gold leaf to take on any shape you’d like!

Gold leaf progressHere’s what it looked like after I added the gold leaf straight from the book. It kind of looks like the cabinets have gold bandaids all over them. 🙂

Remove excess gold leaf with soft brush or cottonAllow this to completely dry, and then use a soft bristle brush or a soft cotton cloth (I used the Amy Howard 2 in. above and cheesecloth) to gently remove the excess gold leaf.

I sealed my cabinets with one layer of Amy Howard’s Bright Idea clear lacquer after I had completely cleaned the excess gold leaf away. Once dry, my project was ready to go!

How many files a small business owner will haveAnd here’s my giant pile of file folders, ready to go back in my new pretty cabinet. These sat out in my house over the weekend while I completed this project, and it made me all the more grateful that I have pretty file cabinets to hold all these.

Also, I should probably go through everything and clean out any older documents I don’t need anymore. Spring-cleaning goal. 🙂

Best paint for furnitureI love the new look of my filing cabinets—hooray! Thanks for letting me share. xo.