12 Feb 2016

Before you get Gauci Decorating in, do some research into the biggest interior design trends to have emerged this year if you want your home to look cutting edge and beautifully designed. Here are our top three.

#1

Oversize pictures

Wall galleries have long been popular among homeowners looking to prettify their spaces and while these will always have a place, now’s the time to consider going big with your art. Position a huge painting or photograph above your sofa or bed for a truly contemporary look this year that will stand the test of time. Keep the colour of the wall plain and simple so your artwork stands out.

#2

The 70s

If you’ve been paying attention to the fashion world of late you’ll know that the 70s is really back with a vengeance in 2015 – and now it’s extended into our homes as well. Bring in some shag rugs, geometric wallpaper and wood panelling for a great look you’ll love for years.

#3

Go white

The minimalist Scandinavian look has been popular for years and all-white decor seems to show no signs of slowing down. However, the trend now is for a cosier interpretation of this particular style so go for a few throw blankets and rustic touches here and there. As long as they’re white, you’re alright.

These are just a few ideas to keep you going. We’d advise that you talk to your Manchester painting contractor before making any decisions as they’ll be able to help you work out what looks best and where.

12 Feb 2016

The new year could be a great time to update your home office with the help of the best painters and decorators Manchester has to offer.

Homeworking has grown in popularity in recent years, with increasing numbers of self-employed people going it alone. Employees were also granted new rights this year to request flexible working, meaning many more people are working from home than ever before.

When planning an update for your home office, consider the following:

  1. Choose your colour

Winters are cold and gloomy, and can be depressing if working alone with little change in scenery. Consider adding pops of bright or even neon colours against trendier neutrals like grey.

  1. Consider the ceiling

Interior designers sometimes refer to the ceiling as the fifth wall. Can you extend colour up there? Can it be a different colour to the other walls? Consider the size of the space. Lighter ceilings will make a room look larger, but brighter and darker colours can give a room a cosy feeling when used on the ceiling.

  1. And the floor

Do you have traditional carpets or can you consider floorboards in your office space? Painted floorboards can brighten a room and give a great vintage look. Bare floorboards can also smarten a space with a more traditional feel.

  1. Think about how you work

Do you have a large desk top you need to accommodate or do you tend to work off a laptop? If you use a laptop you could make the workspace more flexible with a number of seating options. A studio or practical workspace could mean simplifying the furniture you use.

  1. Finishing details

Separate storage for work-related items is a must for most homeworkers. Have a look at fitted shelving options as well as buying freestanding units. There are a number of options available, whatever your budget.

12 Feb 2016

Ask your Manchester painting and decorating team about magnetic wallpaper if you’re redoing your office or if you’re planning to do up your child’s bedroom – it’s the next big thing to sweep the interior design world and could definitely revamp the way you interact with your space.

This kind of wall covering comes with ferrous backers so that high-powered magnets can hold all sorts of items in place – perfect if you’ve got lots of drawings, photos or plans that you want to put on display but are quite keen not to have lots of little holes in your walls.

When it comes to introducing it into your home or workplace, just have a look at the space you’ve got and decide what would work best. You could go for an entire wall or just have a wide strip running from one side to the other in a bright colour, which will look lovely and be highly practical as well.

If you work in a serviced office and the regulations stipulate that you can’t hang anything on the walls, then magnetic wallpaper would also be an obvious choice.

Additionally, if you’re redoing a child’s bedroom having a magnetic strip or a statement wall with this kind of wallpaper would be perfect for bridging the gap between childhood and young adulthood. Younger children will enjoy hanging up their drawings while older ones will be able to put up pictures of their friends and so on without damaging the walls of your home. It’s a win win!

12 Feb 2016

Garage conversions are proving popular among homeowners these days, with new figures revealing that while 61 per cent use this space for storage, 31 per cent have either converted or are thinking about converting it. If this is of interest, why not contact the best providers of painting and decorating Manchester has to offer to see if they can help with the job?

According to figures from The Co-operative Insurance, 42 per cent of people in the UK never park their cars in their garages, so converting this part of the house into something more useful certainly seems like a good idea.

It could even add value to your property, with 60 per cent of those who have completed such a project believing their house is worth more as a result.

“The research clearly demonstrates that garages now have a multitude of uses beyond their original purpose for housing a car,” director of insurance with the organisation James Hillon remarked.

He went on to remind homeowners, however, that given how often garages are used to store possessions, it’s important to make sure that it is secure and that changes are made to home insurance policies to make sure they are covered should damage, theft or loss occur.

This comes after Ocean Finance statistics revealed that 54 per cent of people with their own homes plan to do some renovating this year, with 12 per cent planning to either complete an extension, give their garage a makeover or convert their loft or cellar.

12 Feb 2016

Once you’ve hired the best painters and decorators Manchester has available to sort out your new home or to revitalise your office this year, you’ll want to add in a few personal items to really make it a pleasant environment to be in – and plants are a great way to go about this. But what are the best plants for feng shui? Here’s our pick of some of the best.

Boston ferns
Improving the quality of the air at home or at work is vital for good feng shui, so invest in Boston ferns or an Areca palm in order to achieve this quickly and easily.

Bamboo
Bamboo is thought by many to be one of the luckiest houseplants out there, so if you want to turn your fortunes around this year, then this could well be the way to do it.

Ficus
Bring in a big ficus at work or in your living room if you’ve got low ceilings and often feel a bit hemmed in. These plants are also great for purifying the air.

African violets
The leaves of this particular plant are said to resemble coins, so it’s come to symbolise wealth – perfect for the office if you’re doing all you can to maximise profits at the moment.

Philodendron
This magical little plant thrives very well in artificial light so if you don’t have big windows at work, it would be a great choice. Through its heart-shaped leaves, it’s said to represent fire so if you’ve got a cold office that needs a little warmth, bring this one into work.

Find even more feng shui ideas here.

12 Feb 2016

Buying a property is a big decision and not one to be rushed into lightly, yet many in the UK appear to be doing just that, with new figures suggesting that ten per cent actually regret buying their house and 57 per cent dislike their properties.

According to Ocean Finance, 28 per cent admitted that they believed they had rushed into it, 20 per cent said they don’t like their neighbours, 12 per cent state that it needs more work than they realised and 16 per cent said it’s just not big enough.

“The key lesson from our survey is to spend more time choosing a house before you buy. Getting to know the area and the neighbours before committing is really important, as is making an honest assessment about the amount of work that the property needs,” Ocean Finance spokesman Ian Williams remarked.

Of course, if you really don’t like your house you can always get the best painter and decorators Manchester has available around to come and help you change the décor, which can make a huge difference to the feel of your home.

They’ll have tonnes of experience and will be able to advise you on what would look best and what types of materials to invest in. Have a look online as well – there is a wealth of resources available to anyone doing up their house, whether you want DIY tips or ideas on what projects to actually take on. Just make sure you get some professional advice before you begin.

12 Feb 2016

Everyone dabbles in a bit of DIY from time to time, but it might be better to call in the best painter and decorator Manchester has available before you reach for the brushes, as research has revealed that this is in fact one of the most botched jobs that people attempt to do.

According to LV= home insurance, an increasing number of homeowners in the UK are having to call in the professionals in order to repair damage that they themselves have caused by trying to do work they do not have the skills for.

It was seen that one in ten have had to make a home insurance claim because of DIY damage to properties, with the worst jobs emerging as tiling, applying bath sealant and painting and decorating.

Managing director of the company Selwyn Fernandes advised people to remain practical about what they can and can’t achieve. “Be realistic about whether you have the skills and the time to undertake such a task and to take all the necessary precautions to avoid damaging your property or injuring yourselves,” he remarked.

You could end up having to fork out a lot more money by attempting DIY at home if it does go wrong than if you had just called out a professional team of people in the first place.

And you might well think that you can learn anything from online videos but these are very often produced by professionals who know exactly what they’re doing, so they make it look really easy and achievable. It’s definitely best to call in the experts before having a go yourself, particularly if the job involves plumbing or electrical work.

12 Feb 2016

Not everyone can be blessed with gigantic rooms and endless amounts of space (although it would be nice, wouldn’t it?), but as any commercial painters Manchester has available will tell you, maximising your workplace or home is really easy with just a few interior decorating tricks of the trade.

It could be something as simple as just making sure that your curtains are the same colour as your walls, as this will do a surprising amount when it comes to making your space look bigger. Or you could just make sure that your colour palette is both neutral and light as this will brighten everything up and create the illusion of space quickly.

When it comes to painting, you need to make sure that your colours are uniform so shop for rugs and other fabrics that come in plain shades or very small prints. And, of course, one of the oldest tricks in the book is to hang a few mirrors here and there, as the reflections make a room look much bigger than it actually is.

If you have lots of shelving, perhaps don’t fill them up completely as this can make a small space look quite cluttered. Leave a few gaps here or there and you’ll add to the airy feel of your office or living room.

And finally, if you’ve got quite a low ceiling, think outside the box ever so slightly and paint it in a very bright colour as this will encourage the eye to move upwards when in the room and make it feel as though the ceiling is much higher than it is. Need more ideas? Buzzfeed has a further 19 tips to help you out.

12 Feb 2016

If you’re cursed with working in a north-facing office and are sick of the fact that it doesn’t get enough sunlight, there’s no need to panic – have a chat with the best commercial painters Manchester has available and ask them to give it a lovely new lick of white paint.

The first thing you should ask them to do is paint the ceiling white as this will automatically lift the room, since the colour will bounce any light off it rather than absorbing it. If your decorator suggests that grey would be the way to go, stick to your guns and avoid colder colours – anything yellow or cream-based will help to make the room seem brighter.

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again – mirrors are one of the best weapons you have in your arsenal when it comes to interior design. Invest in some mirrored furniture or hang a few of them on the walls. Remember that if you hang one opposite the window, any light coming in will be maximised and will help to make the room feel much bigger and a lot brighter indeed.

If you own the building, you could even think about knocking an adjoining wall down to make even more space – although this will probably be unfeasible for a lot of business owners out there. There are much easier ways of brightening up a space without having to resort to sledgehammers, after all.

Whatever you end up doing, just make sure that you seek professional decorating advice first and don’t try to do any of it yourself. You could end up making your working environment worse than it was before!

12 Feb 2016

It can be pretty tricky to keep warm at this time of year, but there are clever ways you can make your interior design choices work harder for you and help to keep you snug until the summer. If this sounds appealing, make sure you ask the best commercial painters Manchester has around to paint your offices in various shades of grey.

This colour is a particularly trendy one at the moment so not only will it help to make your workspace or home feel a lot more relaxing and warm, but you know you won’t have to redecorate any time soon as it doesn’t look like this hue is going to be falling out of favour any time soon.

When the weather takes a turn for the worst, it’s important to have a refuge that you can bunker down in to shelter from the storm, so do all you can to make your place of work an inviting, welcome space for you and your members of staff.

Anything with a yellow base will help to make your greys that much warmer, so have a look to see what different paints there are out there. If you don’t know what to look for, tell your decorator what you want – they’ll definitely be able to source the right products for you.

Blue-green greys are also proving to be increasingly popular, so for a look that is truly timeless and that won’t fall out of fashion all that quickly, think about going down this route with your colour palette. For more tips on choosing your grey, you can find some further advice on Mad About The House.