Orly’s Dog Bedroom

Who remembers when I was all excited to create a summer camp style bedroom for Orly? I was planning log bedside tables, brightly coloured wall pennants and striped blankets … then I stumbled across the most adorable curtain fabric … I fell in love and everything changed.

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EMMA BRIDGEWATER FOR TUISS BLINDS ONLINE

When I saw Tuiss Blinds Online had a range of Emma Bridgwater fabrics available for curtains and blinds, I knew I was going to love them. I popped online for a little sneak peek thinking I could use them somewhere else in my house, then I saw the Dogs Multi fabric. I knew I had to use them, I would happily put them in any room of my house but I decided they would look amazing in Orly’s room. I showed Orly and he loved them too.

Orly’s only request for his room was to use his favourite colour – orange. When the fabric sample arrived I knew it was going to be fabulous, the colour palette is warm with shades of brown ranging from tan, to mocha and rust through to greys and a touch of black. I knew I could mix a burnt orange into this mix perfectly. I didn’t waste a second ordering them, I chose a pencil pleat curtain with the light filtering lining. I hung them on simple black rods to flow with the rest of the house.

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I had already painted his room green (Dulux Backyard) ready for his summer camp room. I really love the colour and although I probably wouldn’t have chosen this colour to go with the new look I decided to leave it and if it didn’t work I could easily repaint. In theory, using split complimentary colours on the chart, I knew it should work, especially if I added a little bit of blue to balance it all.

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So, the curtains were locked in, the wall colour was flexible and we decided to keep his bed frame, then we worked the rest of the room around these elements.

 First we addressed the practical problems in this room. Storage! Although he has a double wardrobe, it is quite small and he didn’t have any drawers. I decided to use drawers as a bedside table, unfortunately I could only fit them on one side of his bed, if I had more room I would have used them on both. I wanted to encourage the modern country vibes of the fabric and I went to Facebook Marketplace and found a beautiful old set of drawers complete with brass handles. They are a perfect fit while still keeping the bed centred under the window (I’m totally OCD about that).

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 The next issue in this room is only a problem in summer, but his room faces west and the sun really heats up his room in the afternoons. It makes it uncomfortable to go to bed when it’s so hot. Plantation shutters provide awesome insulation properties, they keep the heat out in summer and help retain the heat inside during winter. You really can’t beat the clean lines and versatility of shutters, being able to tilt the slats and control the heat and light is worth every cent. Plus, we ordered them from Tuiss Blinds Online again and fitted them ourselves, it saves a tonne of money and it really is surprisingly easy. I shared all the details of how to fit your DIY shutters here.
I also wanted to use shutters in this room as his window is along the front of the house, by keeping all the windows coverings the same along the front facade it creates a cohesive and stylish look.  The office is directly under Orly’s room and I used shutters in there too.

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I couldn’t fit a big bedside table on the other side of his bed due to the 45 degree turn in the wall, I hunted high and low for a vintage style round table. I couldn’t find anything I liked within my budget that was in stock (thanks Covid), so I settled on this table, which turned out to be perfect.

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The last thing I had to address in this room is how to inject Orly’s request – orange. I had intended on using blue or green bed linen with orange cushions and a throw, but then I found this coverlet in the perfect shade of orange (brick) and I decided to go for it. Yes, it’s a lot of orange, but it really warms the space up and Orly’s loves it.

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Everything else in this room we already had. His desk sits in the corner and although I’d love to use that space for some gorgeous drawers and a gallery wall, he uses it all the time, he builds lego, plays with his air dry clay and I’m hoping one day he’ll do his homework there, so it stayed. I paired it with a $20 vintage chair I found on Marketplace and recovered with a remnant of fabric.

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We also kept his basket ladder, this is such a handy piece and I could definitely use it in multiple spaces around the house, but for now it is home for his plush toy collection.

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This room seemed to evolve by me changing my mind multiple times, working with what I could find and not being scared to take risks, and I have to say I think it is my favourite out of all the children’s rooms I’ve done. Sometimes things don’t go to plan, sometimes you have to work within a budget, sometimes you can’t find what you want and sometimes you just change your mind, but sometimes all those things end up being positive and your room comes together beautifully. I love the colours, the little gallery of Orly’s art, the mismatched bedside tables and the curtains … the curtains make me so happy.

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As you can see, Skipper loves this room too, this is often where I find her snoozing during the day.

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I also love pulling the curtains closed at night, this room feels so warm and inviting. I took this photo in the middle of the day, you can see how much light the shutters stop, they are nearly complete block out. Orly loves going to bed and I have to admit I have fallen asleep in there while reading him a book. It’s such a cosy room.

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I hope you love it as much as we do. As always, I’m happy to answer your questions, you can comment here or pop over to Instagram and find me there.

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Happy Styling!

Hayley x

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Bella’s Boho Chic (but not really) Bedroom

Arabella, Bella, Beellah, Bee, BB.
Daughter, Big sister, Little sister.
Virgo.
Creative, Genuine, Quirky, Loyal, Witty, Considerate.
Alternate music fan, Thrift shopper, Crystal collector.

I love this kid … but when she requested a ‘Boho’ style bedroom I had to question where she came from. Really? Boho? in my house? Ummmmm …. NOPE!

But, I also know that we all have our our style and I want Bella’s bedroom to feel like her home, her sanctuary and her special haven. I want to let her personality shine through and let the room tell her story.

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 She told me she wanted a ‘Boho’ vibe, after discussing what that meant to her I discovered that it wasn’t really boho, it was more of a vintage and collected feel that she wanted in her room. She told me what she wanted – light colours, nothing too bright, minimal patterns and no blue. She wanted to be able to hang her own art, photos and treasures on the wall (eeeek). She wanted somewhere to display her crystals and use her record player. She also wanted block out curtains since she loves a long sleep-in.

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So, we brainstormed a plan that would fuse her style with the rest of the house. We talked about what colours she connects with and I was so relieved when she suggested shades of green or pink, mixed back with layers of neutrals like brown and tan.

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We started with the curtains since they needed to be ordered first, and in my opinion are one of the most important parts of a room, especially when they take up an entire wall like they do in this room. They really are the make or break features of a room, we gave this room a mini makeover just after we moved in and while it looked pretty, the previous window treatments let the entire room down and it always felt dated and shabby.
We already knew we wanted block out curtains with a sheer. She has a large double door that goes out to the balcony and she uses it often. Curtains made sense as they are quickly opened to access the doors. We have used the same sheers throughout the house for continuity and also because they are perfect – the Tahiti Sheer Snow curtains.

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We sat down together and ordered a few samples from Blinds Online that we both liked. When they arrived I let Bella choose from the samples, there was no bad choice and I liked them all, but I must admit, I opened them first and I totally would have hidden any I didn’t like from her first, haha!

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She chose a beautiful green linen, I was actually quite surprised as I thought she would choose a pink, but I couldn’t be happier and I ordered them immediately before she changed her mind. Since she chose a plain colour, I decided I wanted to add a little something to them. I’ve seen interior designers use beautiful trim on their curtains and I knew I could achieve the same look for much less with Blinds Online. All of the curtains and blinds from Blinds Online are already custom made to your requirements, adding a simple upholstery trim is one of those details that elevate them and make them feel designer and expensive. I ordered a couple to choose from in our colour palette from Etsy, we ended up going with the multi coloured pom pom and they looks super cute. As I have hand stitched them on with a simple running stitch, they are easily removable later on if her style changes.

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Next, we chose the wallpaper. Wallpaper takes up a lot of real estate and makes a big statement. This is where Bella and I had very different ideas on what we wanted. I would have loved to use the Buffalo Check in brown from Edge Wall Art, but Bella wanted something a bit more ‘boho and spiritual’. She really loved the Astrology Hemisphere but we decided her bedhead would cover most of it on the wall we had in mind. She also loved the Bohemian Forest but the colour palette wasn’t quite right with the green curtains. We came to compromise and decided to ask our friends at Edge Wall Art if they could do the Bohemian Forest in the same colour way as the Buffalo Check in brown. Thats the great thing about supporting small business, they print the wallpaper themselves and they can customise it to suit your needs, they can even add your kids names into some of the kids wallpapers.

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With the two biggest decisions made, it was down to the details.

I gave the whole room a fresh coat of paint in a more neutral and brighter white. The last owner chose a pink based white and while I initially thought I could live with it, the constant pink glow just wasn’t working for me. I chose Dulux Snowy Mountains in 1/4 strength, and I painted all the trims and doors with Dulux Vivid White. I also changed out the door hardware to matte black which modernises them. It’s these small details that make a big difference in the overall feel of the room. I will continue these elements through the entire house.

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We shopped the house for as much as we could before deciding what we needed to purchase.

We decided to keep the furniture, we still love her bed which was a lucky eBay find years ago, but it was looking a little shabby and while I don’t mind vintage and worn furniture, this was looking more trashy than chic. I gave it a fresh coat of white paint and it looks amazing. Her bedside tables are still current at Early Settler and we both agreed the timber brought some much needed warmth to her room.

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We still needed to find a storage solution for her to display her crystals, record player and special treasures. While her room is a great size, there isn’t much wall space, between the entire wall of glass windows and sliding doors, the door to the walk-in wardrobe, the door to the bathrooms, the door to the storage closet and the entry door to her room, there was barely any wall space left. I had one skinny wall left to work with, and I mean skinny at just over 80cm wide. After much searching we finally found a bookshelf  that we both agreed on, it was deep enough for her record player, but not overly heavy and imposing on the space, and had lots of shelves for her to display her collections.

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The last big hurdle in this space was wall art. Bella wanted a wall where she could change out her photos, pictures, art and mementos, I was picturing an 80’s wall full of ripped boy band posters and smiley face stickers, Nooooo! We considered a giant cork board, but that idea didn’t excite me. Then we considered hanging vintage wooden windows and using the glass panels as frames for photos and art, again, I wasn’t very enthusiastic about this idea either. When I was putting the vintage windows back in the garage, inspiration struck me, I saw a piece of VJ board there that was leftover from my bedroom. I thought it would make a great display area, like a giant cork board, but more grown up. It would give Bella a space to display her things, but keep it confined to one area instead of exploding all over the entire wall. We screwed the VJ board to the wall and framed it with Dado rail, I painted it with the same enamel paint I used for the doors and trims. We think it’s practical and pretty.IMG_0090

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We love how this bedroom has turned out. Just a few changes have made such a big difference. The fresh paint has made it feel bright and clean. The wallpaper has given it the ‘Boho’ vibe Bella wanted. The curtains make it feel luxurious and bring the colour to the space. All the small details together have made this room a space that Bella feels is more ‘her’ and truly reflects her personality and style, while also keeping it relevant to the rest of the house.

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We hope you love it as much as we do!

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Stay tuned for Orly’s and Lucy’s rooms in the next couple of weeks.

Happy Styling!

Hayley x

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Dining Room – before & after

Hello lovely friends!

Firstly, before I show you what we did in the dining room, which really wasn’t much at all, I want to answer a question a few of you asked after my ‘winter room’ reveal. Lots of you were surprised that my sofa is from ikea and that I buy things from Facebook marketplace. I had lots of comments from you guys wondering how I ‘make it look fancy’ and why my house doesn’t look like a flea market when so many of my pieces are second hand or from budget friendly stores.

I definitely believe there are places you can save money and places where you need to spend a little more, but that doesn’t mean that it has to cost a fortune, you’ve just got to be smart and know where to spend and where to splurge.

I have young kids and pets, we don’t have adults only zones and our home is pretty relaxed, I don’t like to spend a lot of money of sofas because I know they are going to get jumped on, have food spilt on them and who knows what else! I look for an affordable option with covers that can be removed and machine washed.

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Where do I splurge?
I’m happy to spend money on quality house fixtures like taps, hardware, lighting and custom made window treatments. These are things that you don’t want to get wrong. They form the foundation for all the layers of furniture and home decor. If you get them wrong nothing will flow harmoniously.

Lets talk about window treatments today as that is what has made a huge impact in my dining room make-over.

My dining room has grey tinted glass and lots of it, the grey glass reflects a dark hue throughout the dining room. I wanted to use white sheers to change that to a bright, white light radiating in the room.

There is 2 glass doors and one window in this space, they are all different heights and widths, I’ll tell you more about this later, but their varying sizes made it impossible to get a cohesive look without having them custom made.

This is where you splurge.
When I say splurge it doesn’t actually mean you need to spend a lot of money. There are ways to get custom made, professionally finished curtains, crafted from quality materials at a fraction of the price you would pay an Interior Decorator. It just means you need to measure them and hang them yourself.
I talked about choosing your window treatments here and installing them here.
It really is very easy, promise!

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Back to my dining room sheer curtains, you’d think choosing would be pretty easy, right?

I went to Blinds Online to order my sheer curtains and discovered there were quite a few to choose from. I decided to order samples just to make sure I got exactly what I wanted. You can order up to 10 samples free of charge!

I have a little trick that I use to help me choose my sheer curtain fabric. I sticky tape all my samples to the window where the curtains are going and observe them in different lighting. It’s the best way to see how your curtain fabric will look in the room and against the window.

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I chose TAHITI VOILE SNOW with a Pinch Pleat head and centre parting panels.

There wasn’t much to do in the dining room. It is in an open living area with the ‘winter room’, the two rooms are separated by one of the bench seats that we did while we were doing that living space. The living space is ‘sunken’, 2 steps lower than the dining room. I love how cosy it feels in there.

The only real change we made to the room was to refresh the paint, add pendant lights and curtains.

We patched all the holes in ceiling and the walls, my husband started out in the building industry as a plasterer, it’s very handy! Then we gave everything a fresh coat of paint.

I chose two oversized rattan pendants, they have a beautiful aged patina and even though I thought they were going to be too big when they arrived, once we got them up they looked perfect.

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The real hero in this room is the new curtains, they’ve made a huge impact and they make the room so bright and light. They way they dance in the breeze is dreamy, it’s like something from a beautiful movie. It’s worth putting sheer curtains in your house just to get your movie moment.

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 There are three windows/sliding doors in this area, two are in the actual dining room and one is on the adjoining wall. They can all be seen at the same time from multiple views, but they are different heights which is not pleasing to the eye and disrupts the harmony. Both the sliding doors also lead out to a central courtyard area which I am planning on making into a seating area, so I thought it was important to make them feel cohesive.

I decided to hang them all at the height of the highest door which was just under the cornice, and to be honest I probably would have chosen to hang them there regardless because the added height makes the windows feel larger.

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It’s important to measure all your windows, don’t just assume they are all the same height. I thought my ceiling to floor measurements was the same throughout this area, but there’s a 15mm difference from one side of the room to the other. This is very common, especially in older homes, so check your measurements.

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I chose the same curtain rods I used in the living room, firstly for continuity and secondly because I like being able to pull the curtains completely to one side or the other of the rod without a centre support interrupting them. The rod system is simple and unobtrusive which lets the curtains steal all the attention.

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As for the furniture in this space, there’s a mixture of old and new. I’ve had the chairs for about 10 years, they are a classic French Provincial design, they’ve been moved to and from 4 houses, they’ve been tipped over by kids, they’ve been broken and repaired … but I still love them.

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I bought the table 3 houses ago, again it’s a timeless design, very simple in a warm timber with a parquetry top. It’s a long table at 270cm, almost impossible to find tablecloths, but I like that I can fit 4 chairs each side. I love a beautiful carver chair at the end of a table, but sometimes I don’t want to block the view down the table to what’s at the other end. This is one of those times …

I bought the huge cabinet especially for this room. I wanted somewhere special to display all my collected and sentimental china and all the shelves and glass doors in this cabinet was perfect. The cabinet gives me the ability to add personality to an otherwise very simple room.

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Eventually we will remove the carpet from this room and do either timber or stone floors. I personally don’t like carpet in dining rooms, especially when you have kids, they are feral creatures and spaghetti bolognese doesn’t mix well with wool carpet! The floors are always the last thing we do in a house, we’ve learnt from experience that flooring can get damaged during a renovation and it’s best to leave it till last unless you need to do it due to a change in floor plan.

Thats about it in this space, lets have a quick look at the before and after to see what a huge difference a few small changes can make.

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Before we moved in.
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During, progress.
AFTER!
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Before we moved in and AFTER
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Before we moved in.
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AFTER

As always, I’m happy to answer questions, e-mail me or find me on IG anytime.

What do you think?

Happy Decorating!

Hayley x

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Blinds (and curtains) Online

Would you be happy to live naked, completely exposed to the world at all times?
What about a sheet? Would you be happy to wear a sheet in lieu of a beautiful frock?
Of course not!

Then why do we leave our windows stark naked and expose our lives to the whole world with no privacy?
Then we decide we need privacy ….. so we staple ugly old sheets up on our windows, is that look you are trying to achieve?
In my case the ugly sheets may have been a better option, I inherited these putrid pink curtains with our new house, I say putrid not because of the colour but because I’m pretty sure they had been hanging there for 20+ years, and I’m pretty sure they had never been cleaned, they were PUTRID! They were also very heavy and dark and I had no option to control the light in the room other than open or closed. They made the room feel dark, dated and dirty.

Some of us live with our current situation because window coverings can be tricky, the options are endless and confusing and we don’t know where to start. Or maybe you decided to take the plunge and got a a local curtain maker around for a quote and were blown away by the price. Or maybe you got savvy and decided to order them online but the process of ordering and hanging them yourself was a little overwhelming.

I’ve done the research, got the quotes and made the mistakes, now I’m here to share all my tips for getting the perfect window treatment at the best price without the hassles and headaches.

Your first step is deciding what type of window covering you would like in your space.
You need to consider both practical and functional elements, as well as the decorative factors of how it will make your room look and feel.

Lets talk about practicality and functionality.
Think about your natural sunlight or light from other sources like street lights or adjacent building. How much you do you want to control it? Do you need a full blockout, or do you want to filter the light? Also consider which way the window is facing, the sun can be harsh in Australia and choosing the right lining can help you with heat and energy efficiency.

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Sunscreen Roller Blind

Often a bedroom will require a sheer for privacy and a blockout for sleeping, this can’t always be achieved with one layer and you might need to consider a blockout blind with a sheer curtain, or a blockout curtain and a sheer curtain, or a double blind.

Double Roller Blind

What other elements do you need to consider in this space? If it is a bathroom you might need to consider water and condensation and choose a material that can withstand the moisture.

Honeycomb Blind

Next, think about your furniture placement. Are you putting a piece of furniture under a window? In that case I would choose a blind, curtains never fall nicely if they are tucked behind a piece of furniture, and sill length curtains don’t give you the same impact a beautifully made roman blind or classic plantation shutters will.

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Roman Blind

Lastly, where are you going to hang your window coverings and/or stack them? Do you have room to hang a curtain rod above your window? If you don’t have room above your window, can you hang curtains from the ceiling, or can you fit a blind recessed inside your window architrave? Do you have space to stack your curtains to the side? If you chose a plantation shutter, have you got room to open it to access the window?

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Plantation Shutters

Now lets talk about the look you want to achieve and how to choose fabrics and colours.
What is your decor style? Do you want your space to feel casual and relaxed or would you prefer a more tailored and formal look? Some types of window coverings work better with certain styles than others, for example, a floral curtain would be perfect in a cottage, but probably not in a sleek and modern highrise with minimalist style. It would take me days to go through all the different styles and options available, I would suggest popping on to Pinterest and finding your style, then have a look at the window treatments that are used in the rooms you love.

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Pinch Pleat Curtains

Often larger rooms with large windows look beautiful with curtains and smaller rooms benefit from the more streamlined look of blinds, but this isn’t always the case and each room needs to be considered individually. Maybe you have an tiny window with an amazing outlook, curtains are a great way to frame your view.

Curtains framing a small window

When you are choosing your fabric and colours consider what other elements are already in the room, things like floor coverings, paint colours or wallpaper and existing furniture. Remember, you don’t have to create a matchy matchy space, but you want all your colours and patterns to compliment each other. If in doubt, choose a beautiful sheer curtain or neutral fabric, they are timeless and won’t date.

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S-Fold Sheer Curtain

Lastly, don’t forget to consider what your house will look like from the outside? You might prefer all your window coverings to be the same colour from the front of your home, or it might not matter to you at all.

When I finished my research and I was confident I would make the right decisions, I took the plunge and ordered my curtains and blinds for my living room from Blinds Online.

Here’s the thought process I had for my space.
It’s a tricky bay window, very large and high with multiple 135 degree angles and minimal space at the sides to stack my curtains.

BEFORE – the putrid pink curtains!

I wanted to filter the light, and would usually choose a sheer but I ruled this out as I didn’t want to block the view. The window faces East and gets the morning sun for a short period of time, I decided a roman blind would be perfect as I can lower them enough to block the sun but not close of the window entirely. We also have a fireplace in this room and I wanted it to feel cosy in the winter, so I added a curtain to layer over the blinds. Having two layers gives me the ultimate choice to control the light from partly blocked with the roman blind to nearly full blockout if I close both the blind and curtains. You can choose from S-fold, Eyelet, Pencil Pleat or Pinch Pleated curtain headings, I chose the pinch pleat for this room for it’s classic and tailored look.
I chose to recess fit the roman blinds as the windows are very high and it will only block the light I want it to block.
The curtains will be ceiling hung on a simple rod I had bent to mimic the shape of my window as this gives me the cleanest, most streamlined look and doesn’t detract from the beautiful roman blinds. I know I’m ignoring my own advice as I don’t have space at the sides to stack the curtains back on the walls, but as I also said, each room is individual and some rules need to be broken, especially when you are dealing with a tricky window.

Roman Blind – V&A William Morris Fruit, Autumn

As for fabric choices, I knew I wanted something fun, but also timeless and I wanted to add colour without it being too bright or overwhelming. I saw the Blinds Online  collaboration with V&A featuring the range of William Morris fabrics and I knew this was something I would like. I popped online and had a browse. I instantly fell in love with a fabric called Fruit (AKA as Pomegranate) in the Autumn colour palette. I knew I had to use it, but things often look different on your computer screen than what they do it person, so I ordered a few samples. You can order up to 10 samples for free to help you choose at home from Blinds Online. I knew I was having a roman blind and a curtain so I also ordered a few plain fabric samples for the roman blind that I thought would coordinate well with one of the patterned fabrics I chose.

Once my samples arrived I placed them in my space and observed how they looked throughout the day with the changing daylight. I still loved the Fruit fabric and had to use it. I knew that the curtains wouldn’t get closed often in this room and certainly not during the day, but I really wanted to appreciate the full pattern of this fabric so I decided to switch up my original plan and use it as the roman blind where I could enjoy the full design more often.
Then I chose a plain Oatmeal linen blend for the curtains, It compliments the Fruit fabric and is beautifully classic and timeless.

Curtains – Bijou Oatmeal Linen

Now I knew what type of window coverings I wanted and I’d chosen my fabrics, it was time to measure up and order online. I know this sounds scary, but it really isn’t hard at all. Before you start measuring, here’s a few things to consider –
* Even if your windows are all different, try to have your window coverings all at the same height.
* Place your curtain rods high above your window and extend it out past the window so your curtains stack on the wall not on the window, but be careful not to expose any wall between the window and curtains. This will make your windows look larger and grander. It will not reduce any daylight, but it will provide a better blockout when they are closed.
* When determining the length, nearly touching the floor is ideal, Blinds Online suggest 15mm above the floor. I know we’ve all seen the images of curtains puddled on the floor on Pinterest, it looks so luxurious and glamorous, it’s hardly practical if you have kids and pets, but if you have a space it will work in, go for it!

To measure up you will need a tape measure, something to write your measurements down on and possibly a stool if you need to reach your ceiling. I also found it handy to have another person to help me hold the tape measure in place since my window was so big.
Tip : Please don’t try and use a ruler and shimmy it along to measure a large window, you want these measurements to be as accurate as possible.
Bigger Tip : Follow the measuring instructions online from Blind Online, they are the experts who have been doing this for for 46 years, and online for more than 14 years. They know what they are doing. If you take the time to read the instructions and follow them closely, you will be fine. They are written in easy to understand language with lots of pictures and diagrams to help you. They have separate instructions for blinds, shutters and curtains.

Once you’ve placed your order you can track it here.

As soon as I’ve got mine ready to go, I’ll show you how to hang them and the before and after photos.
I can’t wait, are you as excited as me?

Happy Shopping!

Hayley x

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