Lighting Tips to transform your home!

Lighting can make or break a design scheme. It is that important. Whether you’re starting from scratch and can influence your electric plan or just making a cosmetic update in a scheme where you cannot rewire, there are plenty of tips and tricks I want to share with you to help you nail that design!

Dimmers – switch EVERYTHING to dimmer, ok maybe not the cupboard under the stairs or your laundry room. Low cost high impact! This has got to be the easiest trick in the book, you can then control the amount of light and play with moods at different times of day and evening.

Lamps/Light bulbs – buy the dimmable option and all the same make/voltage on each circuit. Banish the blue cold light ughhh … the amount of times I see bright white lights installed and even not dimmable – creating a harsh and unpleasant feeling. Just installing dimmable warm white is game changing!

Lighting strips – available at any DIY. These can be used as a soft back light or ambient light eg, behind mirrors, inside wardrobes/closets, or to illuminate shelves etc… Beware though of getting carried away and turning you kitchen into the Starship Enterprise, don’t allow your designer to illuminate the floor line all the way around and under kitchen cabinetry and worse still make it blue!

Choose dimmable warm white for residential interiors

Designer Tips… designers look at lighting in layers and if you want to steal a few tricks then here you go!

Focal Layer – typically used to highlight vertical surfaces and 3D objects including architectural features, artwork etc, although considered cosmetic, importantly, it determine how we perceive the brightness of the space. A room where the vertical spaces are lit (not only the horizontal, floors tables etc) will feel brighter and more spacious. This focal layer blends in and highlights something else. Place down lighters aprox 150mm in from walls to allow them to wash down.

John Cullen Lighting raised porcelain tiles under the stairs are accentuated with floor spots and stair treads illuminated for extra safety and effect.
John Cullen Lighting highlighting subway tiles creates texture in a very neutral scheme and side by side mirror lights are the only way to light your face well.

Task Layer- it illuminates specific tasks eg over a kitchen island, task lighting can also save energy in not lighting the whole space. Never position your down lighters in a grid across the ceiling (known as developers acne!) Think of the ceiling as a reflection of your floor plan and place them to highlight areas you above working areas and not in standing areas or you will create a shadow over what you are doing. Task lighting can also be decorative, on a recent kitchen project we did below I used handmade porcelain lamps to illuminate the island and antique brass library lights to illuminate the surfaces either side of the cooker. Under the hood are more powerful lights only needed when cooking.

Kitchen by Jacober Interiors – task lighting can also be decorative – no need for grids of down lighters
Jacober Interiors – just out of sight I used a bronze picture light to highlight an antique Danish painting to also be task lighting on the work surfaces.

Decorative – ornamental, think nice lamps, a chance to add a design element.

John Cullen Lighting showing Decorative (lamp) and Task (reading spot)
Modern Light by CTO Lighting is fundamental to this decorative scheme.

Ambient – creates mood/background light, allows you to navigate a space safely by lighting other objects eg picture lights and texture walls.

Project by Jacober Interiors ambient light from back lit mirror with warm white dimmable light strip.
John Cullen Lighting these stair uplighter capture the texture of the walls
Pinterest: Ambient lighting strips in bookcase, focal lights by mantlepiece and decorative light from table lamps.

Having the layers dimmable and on different circuits means layers can be controlled independently. Creating lighter and darker areas, highlighting textures and objects makes the area appear interesting, special and larger. You can crank things up when you need to find the Netflix remote, and dim them down when you want to smuggle that extra biscuit with your tea!

Daylight – our best friend, we need Vitamin D to give us a feel good factor and it allows us to see true colours. Especially important in workspaces, schools and public spaces as it makes you more mentally aware. Using window treatments you can control it in your home to enhance or limit as required. You can also add it to your home installing roof lights or light tunnels/solar tubes to dark areas to create a feeling of wellbeing.

Before and after light tunnel/solar tube running down from roof, free light!
Pinterest: Roof Lantern particularly important to light original kitchen area.

Hope I have shed some light on the topic! (pardon the pun!) Happy designing!

If you have any questions or need lighting advice in your home, don’t hesitate to contact me.

Thanks for reading.

Fabric & Wallpaper as Art

Shhh… designer tip! Fabric and wallpaper is Art! Framing fabric or wallpaper is a great way of introducing pattern and spending a fraction of what it would cost for curtains or upholstery.  It also gives you the flexibility if you are someone who likes to change things around! These beautiful wall panels are actually table runners.
Framed fabric in bamboo
Frame a piece of wallpaper – Kit Kemp
Framed Fabric – Kit Kemp
The above bright and bold are eye-catching and give a curated feel.
Framed botanical wallpaper in niche
Framed botanical wallpaper as backdrop for bar
Framed blue jungle paper lightens the wall
Below, you may not want to paper the whole wall but creating a panel by papering the wall and adding a wooden beading could work.
Papered wall with frame
Framed Scarf and Textile
St. Frank
Whether you want to frame a favourite scarf or throw, or to create a panel from wallpaper you can always find ways to create your own unique space.  Go large and go bold! I hope I have inspired you to think of fabric and wallpaper as art! Thanks for reading. Amanda x  

Trend Alert – adding velvet to your interiors.

Luxurious, decadent and very tactile.  Dating from the middle ages and once the preserve of the elite for robes of high office, velvet has long been used in fashion and luxurious interior design projects.  I started seeing a lot of velvet at the trade shows in 2016, once the reserve of bedrooms and boudoirs velvet is now coming through in living rooms and kitchens. I think this trend is here to stay, so if you haven’t already succumbed, now would be a good time to add some velvet to your interiors this winter.

A quick fix would be to add a footstool and cushions.

source unknown

What actually is velvet?  Simply put, weaving two thickness of material at the same time, the fabric is then cut apart to reveal the pile.  There are about 16 different ways to make velvet but the most common are:

  • Plain, a combination of cotton and silk, has a stiffer handle and used a lot in upholstery.  Many plains now, instead of silk, contain a mix of rayon or polyester and this makes them more durable and economic.
  • Devoré is when an acid is used to burn a pattern into it.
  • Pile-on-pile, a particularly luxurious type of velvet woven with piles of differing heights to create a pattern.
  • Hammered, this type is extremely lustrous, appears dappled, and somewhat crushed.

Hammered velvet chairs really makes this room by adding a soft tactile texture in an otherwise very bland room.

source Pinterest

Pile on pile and devore fabrics are great especially when tone on tone.

source William Yeoward

A great decorators trick is to add a pop of orange velvet into a cool colour scheme – there is something about plain orange velvet!!

source unknown

Here at Jacober Interiors we use special extreme stain resistant velvets for dining and kitchen chairs. You can literally pour nail varnish remover on it and not damage it!

If you have a darker room the jewel tones create drama and entice you to curl up in winter – if you have the nerve to pull this off it is so worth it.

source unknown

A step further and you can find fabulous printed velvets. This is bold and truly a statement piece!

source Colefax & Fowler

A softer style here,  traditionally shaped upholstery with velvet inspired by ancient weaves

source Colefax & Fowler

Even if you don’t want to be too crazy, mixing velvet with woven fabrics is another decorator’s trick give a bespoke look.  This is often done with nice shaped chairs, making an element in your scheme look unique.

source A Rum Fellow



source William Yeoward

Or you can go for all out glamour and create a boudoir feel 

source Architectural Digest

source Urban Outfitters

source Angel & Boho

If you just fancy some seasonal changes every online retailer and dept store has pre-made curtains, throws and pillows galore in fabulous velvets just waiting to be loved.

source West Elm & Pinterest

Hope you have had some velvet inspiration!

thanks for reading…

Amanda x

Garden Reveal

The big reveal at last.  After our mammoth renovation project and new garden installation it is time to share!  The interiors are being finished in the next few weeks so in the meantime here is what we did… all photos by me on the iPhone!

My plan – Firstly look at what you need and want. These are two separate things!

What was it we needed? – Shade because it is SW facing. Space, I wanted to open the garden to its full potential, and use it to extend the feeling of space in the house. We have a long narrow living room 10m x 4m and the garden runs the length of the living room. With many full length windows I wanted to extend the feeling of the house

What was wanted? –  I wanted a space for dining with family and friends and sitting quietly to admire the plants and relax. The shape was a rectangle so the space immediately by the house was laid to paving and since I did not want a lost space and I wanted to add charm. I designed a  stepping stone walkway around the outside of the sitting area, to see the plants and a bench to sit on and give the garden more depth since this happens when you create an area to draw your eye through. 

Gardens not only add a great deal of charm to a house they are also a good investment!

Reflect your interior especially if like me you want to increase the feeling of  your interior space.  I wanted a calm restful mood, casual to reflect the style of the interior.  Luckily we have a forest as the backdrop to give instant greenery, on a new build landscape you need to work much harder to achieve this.   Connecting your garden to the surrounds and blur the lines is also a good way to give the impression your garden is bigger. We have sloping areas that connect with the forest beyond and I wanted water to connect to the lake we see. It is not exactly infinity style but nevertheless still works.   The sound of slowly moving water also creates a calm mood.

Lake of Zurich from our house in Erlenbach

I gave the gardener a mood board showing the plants and style of planting I  wanted. I gave him a plant list based on the orientation to the sun and shade given by the structures around.  Some plants had to thrive in full sun and others needed shade. This was a simple scheme.  You can find everything you need on Pinterest.  If you are making new beds as we did we could choose any soil we needed so that gave more freedom.  You need to know if you have chalk or clay soil and once that is done you can choose.  By comparison to our garden in London, which is sheltered and not too cold in winter I had a few compromises to make!! 

I sourced the stones locally, it was about -10 degrees that February day!! I wanted grey with some warm tones.

Designer Tip: always consider the surrounds of your home – the Vernacular –  otherwise your  garden will look out of place and faux.  When you have cold long winters warm coloured Mediterranean stones look quite out of place so I sourced landscaping granite locally. The seasons are reflected in the planting with some evergreens for structure when winter comes and all plants are cut back and sleeping under the snow.   Unless you live in a permanently warm climate you really need to consider how things will look throughout your seasons and plan to have something happening in each.

How I maximised space:

  • cutting back old shrubs and pushing the garden further towards borderlines
  • re-planting around the edges of the property with plants that takes less space but create screening.
  • I moved the steps to the lower pond garden and gained a large patio area
  • created zones and planting that made the area feel larger

So without further ado, even though its a brand new garden with fairly young plants, this is what it looks like now! Starting small….


BEFORE: was an overgrown area only to store our bins.AFTER: a larger, looking lighter area to grow herbs and teas and sit in the shade on hot sunny afternoons.  All pots are terracotta and the flowers (hydrangea/geranium/hosta) are all white.  This pops in the shade. In my mind I think I may add some raised vegetable beds then I remind myself to be serious!!



BEFORE: Shady grassy area not really used much.  Large copper beech had grown too large for the garden and was touching the roof.  It’s big plus was shade.  This garden was a legacy of past owners. There was no form/structure, no contesting textures to add interest, and a lack of colour. It all had to go!

So we removed everything …..BEFORE: We moved the existing stairway down to pond garden across the garden to make more space. AFTER: a much more open interesting space…. don’t you think? 

Design is about form/structure.  This was achieved with the paving/gravel areas, creating a stepping stone pathway and fencing area around.  The flower beds had 5 plants repeated this makes things more calm. Contrasting hard and soft. 

Below in the Living room garden shade lost by the removal of the tree is given now by large awnings which span 40m2 fully extended.

Decked Terrace outside Kitchen/Diner: S/SW

We took away the steps down to this terrace,  and raised all on decking to create a larger space.

A focal point in the garden is the stone water feature, it really anchors the area. The swiss grey granite has warmer tones which blend well with the gravel and wooden elements making things softer/warmer and less hard landscaped.  I selected plants that grow tall and that sway, you can look through them and this makes the garden feel deeper by making you eye look through something… Being a new garden it will take a few seasons to grow up into itself, but the Verbena bonariensis (Purpletop vervain) carried the garden this summer whilst the rose bushes and lavenders and grasses grew. Over the summer the garden was full of hummingbirds, dragonflies, bees and butterflies. They definitely approved of the choice of planting! We do not use any chemicals in the garden so perhaps that is why we were so well visited. 

Above –  Pleached trees around and behind bench.  They are grown on a large trellis and trimmed to be flat.  You gain screening without losing space.  They are also great windbreakers and are very popular in the Netherlands which are quite flat and windy. Having the bench in the corner lengthens the space, and gives a reason to walk around the stepping stones. All of the space is used.

A few months earlier: we used recycled granite blocks to extent towards the street and create something that looked like it has been here a while.  Recycled materials can work our more cost effective if you don’t mind the limited supply and randomness.

To screening the street and neighbours opposite instead of the standard laurel I planted a slow growing and dense Prunus Lucitanica (Portugese Laural) hedging. This does the same job taking less space.  Topped off by pleached Evergreen Photina (Red Robin) to screen above.  This is more interesting that just a larger laurel,  both evergreen with red stem interest in winter/spring. I carried the Photina around the garden where I needed screening about the fence. In a couple of years this will be dense and we will remove the bamboo frames.

You can see how the recycled granite was blended into the rockery. The stones create a soft fall towards the street with swaying grasses to soften the look and evergreen Japanese Ilex (a great alternative to Buxus Sempervirens (Box) which needs chemicals to combat moth blight)  to give some interest in winter.  These will grow larger in time.  These stones were a mix of all the colours at the stone yard blending cool and warm – they will also look good in the snow!


As mentioned I repositioned the steps to our pond garden. This is the view from below. I reused all of the existing granite blocks and added a few more recycled ones and new granite steps.  I designed minimal handrails to match the rest of the railings.
We only needed to add an new wood deck at the pond and a few flower beds in the lower garden to link the two gardens and it all worked out as if it had been designed like that from the beginning! The area behind the pond (not really seen) sloping down to the forest will be a project for next year! 

Before: A granite cobbled area and large laurel hedge taking up a lot of space in the garden.  There was an evergreen sloping garden which was not very interesting. After: By setting the garden more to the right it opened up the house and made it more welcoming. The front stone garden was continued around to the front door.  The block paving remained. We added a new porch area with new doors to balance the house.  A new doorstep, mailbox and little pathway into the garden was added.
Hope you’ve enjoyed a sneak peek at what I did!

If you want more design advice regarding gardens check out my blog on The RHS Chelsea flower show here 

Thanks for reading!




7 Design Tricks for an Entryway

Getting the entrance to your home just right, gives you not only a lovely feeling when you get home, it keeps you less stressed by being organised and it is always a great way to welcome visitors and perhaps show off a little!

Whether you have a small spot by the front door in an open plan living area, or a large entrance hallway – getting the basics right means any space can work for you. Before deciding on the cosmetics, get the practicalities fixed.  Depending on your available space try to add as many of these as you can….

For Project Weinberg the entryway was too small for the house.  A family home requires quite a lot of organising to run smoothly and a few changes were required.

The entryway was extended forward in line with the garage – planning restrictions prevented a larger extension, if you have the space then a larger area would have been better but I found another space further inside for coats so the area became big enough for what I needed.

I look forward to showing the proper ‘After’ in a couple of months…

Outdoor flooring inside is a great twist of the unexpected…  I wanted an outside-in feel for the entryway and found some good inspiration in the images below.

The wood panels and brick floor are a lovely contrast with the antique console and buffet. Don’t be afraid to mix woods…




Source: Patina Farm

Above: If I was living in a warm climate I would love an entryway like this… but all the glass and a Swiss climate would not work so well!  This works with an elegant rustic limestone and a rusted garden console.

Below – you don’t need to reserve stone for the floor.

source: pinterest

Below a cosy cottage feel with tongue and groove panelling, the light grey is the perfect contrast to antique brick.

Table or shelf

source: pinterest



source: pinterest

I love the use of outdoor lights inside a hallway…

Limewood Hotel UK: photoby me

Purpose build coat storage/seating can be useful for smaller spaces… 

Even the tightest spots can accommodate all you need….

source: pinterest

I look forward to showing you how I have incorporated these elements into Project Weinberg Entryway soon… make sure you subscribe I’ll keep you posted!

Thanks for reading.

Amanda x

Chelsea Flower Show 2017 – how to recreate 3 of the best gardens!

The Chelsea Flower show starts today. Those who have followed the blog a while you will know that I am as passionate about the exterior as I am about the interior. Every visitor who goes to Chelsea wants to take away a bit of Chelsea magic and recreate some element in their own gardens. Taking 3 of my favourites from this year I will show you how to do just that.

Before that, for those unfamiliar, I feel that you need a little bit of background information to realise what we are dealing with here! The Chelsea Flower Show is no ordinary garden show – attended by visitors from all over the world for 5 days every May, many regard it as the best there is.

The atmosphere there is quite extraordinary and you feel as if you are walking in a paradise on earth! There is a gravitas in the air, this could be because its origins are steeped in history; in 1307 the current site belonged to the Knights Templar and was used to grow their roses referred to by Shakespeare himself in Henry VI Part.

The show as we know it today started out as The Great Spring Show, in the 1800s in west London. Due to transportation problems and low visitor numbers the show moved into central London, and found a permanent home in the Grounds of the Royal Hospital, Chelsea  in 1912 – just a 5 minute walk from Sloane Square and overlooking the Thames. The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) has been organising the show since 1905. A bit of Royal patronage never goes amiss and since 1954 Queen Elizabeth II (or I if you are Scottish!) has attended all but 5 shows. At the beginning of her reign the show symbolised an optimism after the great wars and has gone from strength to strength ever since.

1954 – The Queen visiting Chelsea Flower Show photo credit: Reuters

2017 – The Queen visiting Chelsea Flower Show

Today the show comprises of various show gardens designed and built by the most prominent, established and new up-coming garden architects. There are tented pavilions housing the most spectacular specimens of flowers and plants. Cultivators spend the whole year nurturing the plants to be in perfect condition for judging at Chelsea. You can buy seeds and get advice from the very best. There are also sellers of all the quality garden accessories money can buy…..

To keep the standard so high, the RHS give awards to the very best and these are highly coveted. Many a famous career has been built on a Chelsea Gold Medal!  There is a stiff judging process before the show officially opens. The Best in Show is announced a few days in. Gardens are judged on; how the brief was executed, the overall design with choice of plants and arrangement amongst other things.

Again this year the trend is towards the natural garden, with a keen eye on preservation of water and natural habitats.

Show Garden Gold Winner – The Royal Bank of Canada Garden designed by Charlotte Harris and built by Landscape Associates 

Royal Bank of Canada – Reflecting Canadian protected boreal forest. Gold Winner

Burnt larch path and copper lined canopy with angular paving formed from slices of glacial granite boulders. This is to emulate the primitive wooden shelters and ice that formed the backdrop for early hunters and travellers. The damp woodland reflects the fact that 25% of the world’s unfrozen water is found in Canada.

The Royal Bank of Canada Garden

How simple and timeless is this garden, a look that can be recreated in a smallish town garden too!

Royal Bank of Canada Garden

For gardening buffs here is a list of plants used:

Planting key

Gold winning garden from The Royal Bank of Canada – Plant list

How to recreate this look

  • Use random sized pavers in a natural pattern and run decking paths into them at an angle.  
  • Don’t lay out items symmetrically, use asymmetric paths and planting.
  • By treating the timber with a fired method it is more hardwearing and impervious to pests or fire. Alternatively you could use a blackened wood stain.
  • Small ponds  in natural formations with rocks breaking the surface.
  • Step the height of your planting up the further you go from the paths or patio area.
  • Simple gravel paths.  

Artisan Garden Gold Winner – Gosho No Niwa No Wall, No War designed by Kazuyuki Ishihara Built by Ishihara Kazuyuki Design Laboratoray Co Ltd Sponsored by G-Lion 

This garden is a tribute to the Kyoto residence of Japanese Emperors. A garden that could never be attacked, therefore peaceful and without moat or walls.

The modern copper structure stands on stilts in the shallow pond.

Gosho No Niwa No Wall, No War Garden – Gold Winner

This perfectly curated Japanese water garden where rock pools with moss encrusted rocks are filled from a soft waterfall and surrounded by acers, bonsai conifers, sedum and iris.

Gosho No Niwa No Wall, No War Garden – gold winner

Gosho No Niwa No Wall, No War Garden – Gold Winner

Modern glass steps allow you to see the rock pool below and create a bridge from old to new. A mini garden is planted in a Japanese lantern base.

Gosho No Niwa No Wall, No War Garden – gold winner

The amazing colour combination comes from the bright acer leaves, against the weathered copper.

How to recreate this look  

  • Use a variety of acers, vibrant lime greens and dark oranges. 
  • Keep the shapes trimmed so that they form umbrellas.  
  • Conifer trees can be trained into bonsai shapes.
  • Mini gardens can be created in containers or as borders.
  • Having a shallow water garden and placing an open garden structure over it.  
  • Stepping stones or a glass and metal step if budget allows.
  • This garden works best in a shady spot and ideally build a stone garden wall with moss in the gaps if you can’t stretch to a waterfall.
  • Use moss and sedum to cover rocks.
  • A few Japanese lanterns would also not go amiss!

Feel Good Garden – The Jo Whiley Scent Garden designed by Tamara Bridge & Kate Savill built by Bespoke Outdoor Spaces

Lastly, gardens are not just about looks, smell is just as important. Jo Wiley (BBC Radio Presenter) and Jo Malone (scent lady extraordinare) have joined forces. Emotions evoked by scent, sent in from the public are cast into the concrete seating/wall structure.

The Jo Whiley Scent Garden (background shot of Royal Hospital Chelsea)

Astrantias beneath this amazing field maple is just as it would be in a woodland. Nature reconstructed.

The Jo Whiley Scent Garden

The concrete structure and box balls are a perfect form to root the multi level planting.  Aliums contrast well with the father ferns.

The Jo Whiley scent garden

This round organic water feature is underplanted with Alchemilla mollis and Thymus serpyllum.

How to recreate this look

  • Use a restrained colour palette to allow you to have much variety of shapes and heights.
  • Use box or taxus balls to give structure to the planting around and the built elements. 
  • Curved concrete elements create an enclosed cocoon feeling and provide raised gardens with seating.  If budget is a restraint use wood fencing cut into curves and wash it with a grey stain. 
  • Rounded raised pools like giant bird baths reflect the light and bring a coolness to the warm air be sure to plant around to softened into the landscape. 
  • Don’t forget to choose plants with amazing scents along pathways and near seating. 

Click here for a list of scented climbers

Click here for a list of scented flowers

Hope you have enjoyed this little trip to Chelsea!

Thanks for reading,

Amanda x

Add living space in the loft!

Hello everyone, apologies for not posting in a while, its been busy here at Jacober Interiors, organising the new roof and windows for project Weinberg.

Firstly a sneak peak at the start of the building! For this project, I designed a new roof because I needed more bedroom space and due to planning restrictions the only way was up! I managed to add floorspace under the new roof for a bedroom, bathroom and dressing room.  The space amounts to about 60m2 and with clever arranging around the 45 degree pitches something special can be created!

This pile of wood will become our roof and top floor. The pine wood comes from Switzerland and Southern Germany, in an effort to keep the build as eco as possible I wanted to source locally.

By prefabricating a wooden structure off-site it can be craned in and finished in 5 days

Wood to be used for construction

For want of a better expression, the construction is made like a sandwich   pine wood, 3 layers bonded together, being the ‘bread’ and filling between a glass fibre insulation.  The interior of house facing side of the sandwich has plasterboard attached on the inside ready to decorate when each section is slotted together on site. 

The glass fibre is made from natural quartz melted and spun into glass wool, which is fire and pest proof and keep the house warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Swiss made of course! This is also an eco product because it lasts such a long time and this outweighs the production process.

Natural quartz sand is melted and spun into glass fibre insulation.

The CAD shows the overview, then each section is cut by machine.

Pink shows internal walls

CAD of new roof structure

Below is a sliding door from hallway into bathroom.  All the electrics are pre-planned and tubes inserted into the walls ready for wires to be run through them later.

Roof structure – section from hallway to bedroom

This section shows the bedroom wall with a section cut away to accommodate the chimney from the fireplace two floors below.

internal wall section with cut out for chimney

Herr Buhlmann explaining to me how he builds… in business since 1990 I got a feeling that he knew his chickens! 

Next to be produced as I left is the open doorway into the dressing room


I have chosen a concrete roof tile which is very hardwearing for the worst winter Switzerland could throw at us. I have been told that this type of roof is maintenance free for 50 years! It is a system where the tiles hang onto and clip into each other making them very sturdy.  I think that this Slate Grey Ral colour might just be perfect for the outside of the window frames, which will be in a maintenance free metal. Before I go I want to leave you with some of the inspiration I have used to design my bathroom and bedroom roof space….

source: Pinterest

source: Pinterest






source: velvet & linen

Look forward to sharing more updates soon!

Thanks for reading,

Amanda x

How to create an Eclectic bathroom

There is a new trend towards a more eclectic bathroom, there is so much choice nowadays and it is a good way to put a unique stamp on your home.  Firstly – nothing matchy-matchy. Eclectic is when you mix up different thing together to create a unique mix and style.  Whilst it is tempting to just visit the bathroom store and select a matching “suite” that is the first rule you have to break!  You want something quite timeless but interesting, maybe even unexpected.

Secondly, the toilet has to be simple and almost disappear in my opinion, wall hung with a concealed cistern if possible and white. Taking the vanity as the central focus, marble and wood or the up-cycling of existing furniture pieces creates a unique centre piece for the bathroom.

Tiles can be combined in different ways can add pops of colour and pattern to make a space stand out from the crowd. Even plain white budget tiles in an interesting shape, or laid in a different pattern can be just enough.  Grout need not be only white or taps chrome…  Read on and think out of the box…..

marble and stone 

Natural stone and marble always give a luxury timeless look – this solid marble basin is on brass legs and gives a traditional idea a modern look.

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A similar look is achieved here using a bluestone top with black taps.

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Below, the luxurious marble double vanity unit made using book matched Veneto marble with inset basins, certainly gives a 5 star feeling!

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Architecture firm Auhaus have put together a concept using concrete with precious purple veined marble and the contrast is quite surprising…

marble and concrete bathroom
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cement tiles 

These are made with coloured clay by hand using traditional moulds to form the pattern.  Traditionally from Morocco they are now a offered by many companies.  Using the bold pattern they offer you can make a small space really special and keeping to a simple colour palette you can mix and match.

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upcycle – any second hand sale room find

Fans of mid-century can customise a sideboard and have surface mounted basins added for a lovely sleek look.

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Above designer Jenna Sue has up-cycled a chest of drawers to produce a cosy and cost effective vanity.

rustic charm 

These lovely rugs cozy up the dark grey floor and look lovely with the rustic teak vanity unit with on surface mounted basins.

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Any console table can be converted into a bathroom unit. You can even use a wide shelf so whatever your budget, you can create something eclectic and not boring off the shelf thingy.

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Continuing with the rustic theme this unusual vanity has a rough stone sink.

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Add a unexpected colour and pattern

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Ceramic sink in pink, such a beautiful peony shade.

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Economic, easily painted with a waterproof paint and can be wiped clean. You can also repaint in a couple of years without hassle or spending much.

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Cladding gives a cosy mountain feel to the elegant lights and mirror.

Image: Decor Magazine












coloured grout 

Grout can be fun! (did I just write that? – shoot me now!) 

metallic grout below in gold glitter

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The finishing touches to even the most simple bathroom can make a bold statement.  Just straying out of the chrome zone gives the room a little unexpected boost.

smilar vacant lock here

Black taps look set to stay….

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Brushed bronze from Watermark


Brushed gold from

Brass yen tap from Watermark with magnetic Carrara taps

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So you can see not all bathrooms are created equal.  Pinterest has a great source for ideas and inspirations and I hope that your next bathroom renovation however small can have a lot of oomph!

Thanks for reading, Amanda x