This month on the blog this month we wanted to share a recent decorating project in the beachside location of North Bondi. This was a fun project to work on, with a client who wanted to transform her lack-lustre apartment into a fresh and relaxing space. Having bought the apartment complete with furniture from the previous owner, and with the excitement of her new home and the investment she’d already made, she had decided to ‘make do’ for a while before investing in new furniture … 3 years later and she was a bit over it! (Relate anyone?!)
Deciding it was time to finally add her own personality and flavour to her space, she reached out to us for some help. And with its fabulous beach-side location, this apartment was just the place to inject some fresh and relaxed coastal vibes!
The bones of the apartment were great, with lots of natural light, open living spaces and dark polished floors, so we set our focus on cosmetic, decorative updates that wouldn’t risk over-capitalising the property and could be retained if she decided to move. A softer, warmer colour scheme was introduced through updated furniture, furnishings and accessories, helping to breathe new life and energy into this beach-side home.
Here's a little ‘behind the scenes’ as we share the 5 simple steps we took to freshen things up and bring beautiful, new energy to her space.... follow along for how your can bring coastal style to your home.
1. Consider the room layout - make it open and light
First things first when looking to update a space - the room layout and placement of the furniture. Moving the furniture in your room can have a transformative effect on the flow and energy of a space, so if you’re feeling a bit stuck, have a think about different furniture layouts to open up the flow and change the room’s perspective.
Here, the first thing you saw when you entered the apartment was the TV, so we flipped the living room around and placed the TV on a side wall, so it wasn’t such a dominant feature in the room. It also meant the modular sofa didn’t create a barrier on entry, and helped open things up and create an inviting and welcoming space.
Also think about how you can zone your space for different uses. Here we added a casual rattan armchair near the balcony to create a little zone for a quiet cuppa in the sun.
2. Set the tone with a calming colour palette
Your choice of colour palette and materials are key in setting the tone and energy for your home. Here we choose soft neutrals and lots of natural textures for our base palette – including linen, timber, sisal and rattan – to really emphasis the coastal vibe. From there it allowed us to layer in a few carefully selected pops of colour via the accessories and décor items. Given we had a very dominant, dark floor we balanced it out with soft, mid-range tones (rather than stark white or strong colours) and added touches of black in the furniture and accessories to tie the scheme together.
3. Select furniture & lighting inspired by the coast
Next we tackled the furniture selections and upgraded from the stark, laminated and glossy existing furniture, to soft, warm timber and rattan pieces that added some lovely coastal cues.
When space is limited, it’s important to select furniture extra-carefully. For this compact living and dining area, we chose a bench seat for one side of the new dining table as a space saver, but that also worked when extra guests came for dinner, and a round coffee table to enhance the flow in the room, complete with a shelf for some storage space (hello tv remotes!)
Rugs are a great way to zone spaces, and so here we added a soft textured rug to help zone the living room, break up the dark flooring, and cosy up the space.
Lighting is also a great way to zone a space and add some magic. Pendant, floor and table lamps provide softer light than harsh downlights, so think about how you can add these to your space. The new pendant light over the dining room helped define the dining space and create a soft mood at night.
4. Bring your personality by repurposing and upcycling
Remember you don’t always have to get rid of everything and start from scratch. Here we kept the sofa, which was in good condition and could still work in the new space. Doing that also freed up the budget to invest in other important things … like a beautiful rug.
We loved the client’s antique drinks trolley, so put that front and centre as a display piece and a spot to drop your keys when you came in the front door. Finding treasures in your home that reflect your story are a great way to inject your personality into your home. So have a look around and see what’s hiding - you just might find the perfect pieces to repurposed.
5. Soft flowing window treatments and final touches
Window treatments (curtains and blinds) can really make or break a space. In our North Bondi project we were lucky enough to already have plantation shutters on some windows, so all we needed was an update for the dining area. We recommended simple, floaty curtains to help filter the strong afternoon light and create a lovely soft backdrop to the dining area in the evening.
And to round out our coastal vibe we added some décor - gorgeous artwork, linen cushions and a heap of greenery… palms of course!
So there you have it, 5 simple steps you can follow to bring coastal style into your home and take your space to the next level.
We were thrilled - as was our client - with the outcome of this living room makeover. From the selection of the colour palette and materials, through to careful curation and styling of furniture and décor, we were able to create a home that is warm, nurturing and inviting.
I hope you find these tips helpful if you're thinking of undertaking a makeover in your home. Of course, if you’d like some support designing your space and bringing your home dreams to life, then I’d love to help! You can book in for a complimentary 20min Discovery Call by simply clicking here. Or enquire about working together here, and we will be in touch.