YOUR HOME: Changing just one wall gives new focus to any living space
It’s easy to assume that to really change the look of a room, you’ve got to tackle the whole of it, but creating a ‘feature wall’ is a simple and effective way to give a room a great new look.
Adding colour or pattern, or both, to one wall is the most obvious way to create a feature. When choosing a paint shade, try out some tester pots first to see how the colours work with the other walls and the rest of the room – then take the plunge.
Painted stripes also look fabulous on a feature wall, but they are more fiddly to do. You’ll need to use low-tack masking tape for adjoining stripes, and try a tester piece of tape first in case it’s not as low tack as it claims to be and takes the paint off with it. Alternatively, do freehand ‘rough’ stripes with a paintbrush or roller and no tape – it is much less time-consuming, but the result can be quirky and an acquired taste.
And if you really want to go all out with the paint pots, try a mural. Plan your design first and then let your artistic side loose. You can always paint over it if it doesn’t work.
Wallpaper is another great way to ramp up a room – and enables you to enjoy some eye-catching designs without
overpowering the space. Perhaps you like the idea of adding texture to a room but not more colour?
This is easy to do with wallpaper – use a paintable textured wallpaper for your feature wall, and paint it the same colour as the other walls. This textured wallpaper is also an effective way to conceal less than perfect plaster. Feature walls can be practical as well as pretty. For example, you can have a tiled one in a bathroom or shower room, and a chalkboard one in a kitchen or playroom.
Chalkboard paints are available in different colours, so your feature wall doesn’t have to be black.
If you’d prefer something less permanent, wall stickers – adhesive designs that you can stick to the wall then remove without residue – are the way forward. Widely available, wall stickers come in lots of different designs, colours and sizes. They enable you to create a unique look that you can easily change if and when you tire of it.
Finally, for a really personal focus, group together lots of framed photos on one wall. You can go for a theme, such as all black and white prints, frames with the same colour, or go for a more retro, cluttered look and mix up different frame sizes and shapes.
CELEBRITIES AND THEIR HOME TRUTHS – WHICH IS YOUR FAVOURITE ROOM IN THE HOUSE?
Kylie Minogue, singer and actress – The star has her own collection of bed linen and says: “I love my bedroom – bed should be a place for just two things – love and sleep.
I love making beds with fresh linen – either from my At Home range or vintage – but I hate hospital corners. I like to be able to pull things around me.
“I have a gorgeous eiderdown from the 1930s that I found a couple of years ago on eBay, beautiful vintage fabrics I have owned for close to 20 years and my focal point is the silk and crystal-studded panelled wall of my bedroom.”
Marco Pierre White, celebrity chef, restaurateur and television personality – “I like all areas of my home but, of course, I spend most of my time in the kitchen which is set up to the standard of a professional one,” says White.
“I’m comfortable in this room and have things around me which delight me, including my collection of antique toys. I don’t have a dishwasher, instead I wash everything in an old Belfast sink as I was taught to do as a trainee years ago.
My pride and joy are two black 3-oven AGA Total Control cookers. It means I have six ovens, four solid tops and lots of space – you can’t ask for more.”
Jane Seymour, actress and artist - “My art studio at my beach-side home in Malibu,
“It overlooks a koi pond with a waterfall and a rose garden and it’s a quiet spot with beautiful light.California. It’s a really personal, really private place and very inspirational to me,” she says.
“I can lose track of time there, forget my worries and become totally absorbed when I’m designing furniture, lamps, jewellery and fabrics or painting.”