7 Small-scale Renovations That Could Transform Your Space
A major renovation may not be on the cards, but there are still key things you can do to refresh and revive your home
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After dark, lighting can make or break the feel of a room, even one that’s otherwise beautifully put together. If harsh spots or overhead-only illumination is getting your living room down, be inspired by the difference interior designer Claudia Dorsch made to this space by boosting its lighting.
Previously, the room only had four spotlights and the original ceiling rose had been lost at some point over the years.
Claudia installed a trio of brass library lamps on each of the bookcases at either end and a dramatic chandelier, which she had fitted to hang from a newly reinstated ceiling rose. Some electricians include replastering in their remit, although you may still need to touch up the paintwork afterwards.
See more of this Victorian terrace that gained space without being extended.
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Tired of that crazy paving put down last century, or simply keen to create a small patio area where there was none? This is a job you’ll be thankful you had done every time spring rolls around.
Talking to a garden designer or landscape architect will help you to understand the choices you have. Just a few things to consider include what your priorities are, what it will be used for, how much upkeep it will require, how far to extend it, where to put any drainage, and how to make an eco-friendly choice.
This smooth, tactile finish, designed by Habitat London, also runs into the interior for a sleek, inside-outside effect. If this is something you’re considering, you might also need to find out whether your choice is compatible with underfloor heating.
You might also like How to Choose the Best Flooring for Your Patio.
In an open-plan space or kitchen-diner, the noise of a spin cycle can ruin a box-set finale or kill a conversation dead.
REES Architects devised this space-maxing idea for a split-level flat. If you have landing space that could be put to more practical use, and a full-to-bursting kitchen, it might also be one for you. Plumbing was installed to allow the washing machine to move upstairs, where it’s now hidden discreetly behind bespoke, handleless doors.
You may also find there’s enough space in a bathroom or under the stairs for this sort of micro utility space.
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The perfect storage for any room is always the same: a space designed around the items it needs to store. Simple, yet we’re rarely blessed with bespoke cabinets all over the house. So, if you’re going to treat yourself to just one room with tailor-made storage, the bedroom isn’t a bad place to start – lack of clutter may even help you to sleep better.
In this serene space, the team at Dolphin Craft have built a wardrobe with slimline doors and smaller cupboards at ceiling level to maximise organisation. It’s been designed to blend into the architecture of the room, and the pale colour and discreet handles help what is a large piece of furniture to recede.
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A garden gate that complements your outdoor space perfectly is a small detail that can make a big difference. Yours might be falling apart, or simply be one you inherited that no longer looks quite right.
This sturdy oak gate was designed and made by Spot On Joinery to complement the surrounding materials. The colour of the wood tones well with both the cool gravel and the warm brickwork, while a nice finishing touch comes in the form of the traditional-style ironmongery, including the nice finishing touch of a Victorian-look rim lock (click on the photo and on ‘This project’ on the right to see more shots).
New colours and upgraded furniture transformed this living room dramatically, as the next, ‘after’ photo shows.
Before designer Kate Lovejoy of Kate Lovejoy Interiors got to work, the room was “very safe, very tired. The owner also felt her living room was narrower than others in the same street,” she recalls.
Kate knew this wasn’t the case, but had to measure next door to prove it. “The problem was that the room had a very blocky sofa and chairs that went down to the floor, which made it look cramped,” she explains.
To resolve this, Kate specifically sought out furniture with legs. “The more you can raise things up and see beneath them, the better the sense of space you get,” she says.
See how the designer transformed the rest of this house.
The transformative effect of a freshly painted exterior cannot be underestimated. This pretty frontage, part of a renovation by Absolute Architecture, looks clean and fresh, giving it serious kerb appeal. It’s certainly something to consider if you’re thinking of selling in the near future.
It’s not as simple as choosing a colour and setting aside a few weekends, though. Do you know the impact of different paint types, or how far back to strip old paintwork on stone details as well as woodwork? Have you thought about scaffolding? It’s a lot of effort and expense for what could result in a poor finish. A professional will ensure the finish looks crisp and lasts well.
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What projects do you have planned for your home this year? Let us know in the Comments.