Parlour Tricks: An Impressive Lounge Room

With Christmas on the way, you might be thinking of revamping your lounge room in anticipation of holiday guests, as it is usually the first place you show visitors. Back when homes were less open-plan, you would have had a separate formal lounge, sitting, or drawing room where you would receive guests and the family would gather in a second, more casual living room to do things like watch TV or play games. Nowadays, though, many homes only have one living area so it has to serve both purposes.

Even if you only have one living space, you can still make it guest-ready for the festive season. You can borrow elements from more formal room designs without turning your lounge room into a stuffy nightmare. Just follow our advice for a space that strikes a balance between impressive and welcoming.

Sitting pretty

It’s in the name – your lounge room should have furniture for people to lounge on. When choosing seating, be mindful of space. Give your furniture room to breathe so the room looks planned rather than haphazardly crammed with whatever you could get your hands on. Seating in traditional sitting rooms is more formal – think wingbacks and luxe materials – so capture that elegant air by including pieces like daybeds, lounge chairs, or a sofa with clean lines.

Be bold

Don’t be afraid to be brave with your furniture choices. When entertaining, the coffee table will get a fair amount of use and attention. Make a statement with your coffee table by choosing one with a striking silhouette or in an eye-catching finish to heighten the wow factor of your lounge room. Impress your guests with some old-fashioned flair by adding a bar cart. It’s a little bit of luxury that elevates your lounge room from being just a place to watch TV. Speaking of TV…

Picture perfect

In homes with one living area, the space often has to house the television, causing it to become the focal point of the room – but it doesn’t have to be. If your lounge room must include the TV, there are ways you can deflect attention from what can often be an eyesore amongst your beautiful decor. Tuck your TV away in a cabinet, blend it in amongst a gallery wall, or install sliding doors over it for when it’s not in use. If you’re feeling crafty, you can even DIY doors that incorporate art prints or canvases so you can have your wall art and your TV, too.

Only the best

One of the reasons why formal lounge rooms look so sleek is they aren’t littered with the mess that accumulates with everyday living. Everything has its place and the items on show are the best you have. The effect is refined and peaceful. Achieve the polished look of a formal living area by only displaying your favourite decor objects and give things like TV remotes and tissue boxes a home out of sight when they’re not being used. You’ll be amazed at the difference it will make.

Get more advice on designing a lounge room with wow factor by talking to a friendly team member at an Andersens showroom near you.

Making a Small Bathroom Sing

Does your home suffer from a small bathroom? Suffer no more! Everyone wants a place to unwind after a hard day at work and having limited space does not mean a stylish bath time retreat is out of your reach. Use these suggestions to inject luxury into a little room.

Maximise space

Consider abandoning traditional cabinetry for less bulky alternatives. A floating vanity with a shelf takes up less space than a vanity and under sink cabinet but still provides storage for necessities. Give the separate bathtub and shower a miss for a shower/tub combo or drop the tub altogether for a spacious walk-in shower. Take advantage of vertical space by mounting towel racks or shelves above one another. Build convenient storage by including an alcove inset from the wall. Create the illusion of space with a frameless door on your shower or a simple panel of glass to guard the spray.

Let the sunshine in

Lighting can make such a difference to how we perceive the size of a space. For small bathrooms, you need plenty of light to ensure the space doesn’t feel dark and cramped. Leave the window coverings behind for higher set windows to let natural light in. For larger windows, plantation shutters are a clean-looking option with great privacy control. Not much wall space for windows at all? Look up! A skylight will light your bathroom from the heavens and give it that “WOW” factor. Ditch nasty, cheap fluorescents for dimmable downlights to create a zen ambience at night.

The magic of mirrors

A mirror is a bathroom essential, but if it’s too small or in the wrong spot, your morning routine will be repeatedly frustrating. Why not convert the whole wall above your vanity into a mirror? The mirror will open up your space and you’ll have more room to get ready, especially if your bathroom is shared. Alternatively, install a mirrored cabinet for extra storage and a handy reflective surface in one.

Fancy fittings

Taps and shower heads are an opportunity to add flair to your small bathroom without taking up extra space. Do you like sleek, shiny chrome, or trendy, brushed brass? Antiqued pewter or minimalist matt black? Choose fittings in a finish and style to suit the look you want to create. A ceiling-mounted or rainforest shower head is a bit of modern luxury that you can add to a small bathroom when a freestanding tub isn’t an option. Consider wall mounting your faucets for a more streamlined effect and easier cleaning.

Upgrade your tiles

Bathroom renovations are costly, but the upside of having a smaller room to renovate is that you’ll need less of everything, including any pricier products you wish to use. Spring for a more expensive tile for your accents or select a bold patterned tile to breathe life into the small space. You don’t have to make everything in your bathroom plain white just because of its modest size.

For more help with your bathroom renovation, talk to a friendly team member at an Andersens store near you.