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Give Your Home a Refreshing New Look for 2010

It may only be the start of the year, but for many of us thoughts are turning to the idea of redecorating for the spring. But what to choose? What will be the key themes, colours and designs for the coming months? We certainly don't want to have to redo the whole thing because we have chosen last years colours!

So to make sure you are bang on trend when you get your paint brushes out this year, follow the advice below.

Themes

With the recession in full swing, people are starting to recognise the importance of buying items for the home which will last, rather than simply opting for cheap. So the theme for this year seems to be good strong pieces made of hard woods, metals and upholstery, backed up by crafted items such as knitted rugs and cushions. The major stores seem to be veering away from the minimalist looks and offering big bold patterns for furnishings and bedding.

  • English Kitsch: Using mostly pastel colours, florals and 50's inspired designs, this look is relatively easy to achieve. Patterned material can be purchased, often second hand and the range of paints available is almost never ending. Prints of nostalgic and wildlife themes are popular.
  • Eastern Glam: Quite the opposite to the English style above, this looks uses rich colours and metallics. Add in purples, reds and plenty of jewelled features and the look is sewn up.
  • Black: This look is still hanging on from last year – good for those of us who would rather not redecorate, if possible. Add some glass mosaic tiles to the bathroom, black resin and accessories to update the look.

Flooring

All too often we tend to simply stick with the flooring we already have when making over a room. New carpet or flooring can be expensive, so it is not something you will want to replace in a big hurry. But should you be looking for something new then what should you bear in mind?

  • If you are brave then once again, big bold and colourful designs seem to be making a comeback. We haven't seen this type of bravery for many years and it is something which requires a careful hand. If your carpet is going to be a the main focus of the room, then keep the rest of the furniture and decoration quite subdued.
  • If bravery is not one of your strong points then try something a little less bold. Opt for a plain carpet and add a strongly patterned rug. The best thing is you can replace this when the trend has had its day.
  • If you decide that hard floors are the way to go then the fashion appears to be turning away from wood and wood effect laminates to greys, whites and rustic finishes. These will give a kind of beach hut effect which will go well with the pastel colours indicated by the English Kitsch look.

Paints

Major Paint supplier Dulux has released the paint colours and themes they expect to be selling this year. This is something which all the designers wait for, it influences the types of interior finishes they recommend, as it is not good telling people to go for reds, when none of the suppliers will be selling it.

If you are looking to repaint, then check out the latest colours which will go on sale early in the year.

  • Basic Beliefs: Pastels, muted shades with a hint of wildlife. This focuses on the early pigments and so has a nostalgic quality.
  • Free Spirit: Individual and a bit different. It will encourage a mix of colours which people may not have thought of.
  • Silent Space: Neutral shades designed to reflect the need for calm in the home. Dusky blues, greys and silvers.
  • Fluid fantasy: These are the colours of the future. From bright turquoises to sunshine yellows. Described as vibrant and dynamic.
  • Sweet memory: Once again these shades revisit the past, but an updated and modern version. It also includes touches of gold and bronze for a more opulent look.

Wallpaper

Just a few years ago, few of us would have thought of putting up wallpaper. It seemed terribly old fashioned and difficult to change. But now, wallpaper seems to have had a new lease of life and 2010 is no different. The latest methods of production have produced a product which will last many years, or if required and be stripped and the wall re-papered.

  • Eco Paper: This style of wallpaper saw its first outing last year and is still all the rage. Most suppliers have ranges of Eco papers and designs. Many ensure that their papers are sourced from sustainable forests and the designs reflect this. Often with patterns inspired by nature, in greens and browns. Trellises and flowers feature heavily.
  • Geometric: These papers appear to be heavily influenced by the the art deco period and use lots of strong patterns and colours. Vibrant purples and metallic shades are used as well as the ever popular black and white designs.
  • Floral and pastel: Picking up on the English theme from above, these designs use flowers and animals to create a theme reminiscent of the middle of last century. perhaps something to do with the recession.
While this is certainly not a definitive list, it does give you a good idea of what styles to consider should you be thinking about an updated look for 2010. We are all staying in our homes longer these days, whether it is because we can no longer afford to go out, or we have rediscovered the joy of a lovely family home. Whatever the reason, improving your home can be one of the most worthwhile things you do.