24 May 2012

Live in the lap of luxury


Our homes are a reflection of ourselves, so it’s only right to turn them into comfort zones with just the right amount of opulence. Helen Carson reports

Luxury can be all around us with everything from a fabulous state-of-the-art kitchen to a beautiful bathroom which is a sanctuary away from the rest of the world.

Incredible furnishings which combine good-looks with practicality can also add an eclectic touch to your home. A modern take to interiors is to mix up style, so a traditional cabinet is equally at home alongside an ultramodern coffee table.

In the kitchen, we have never had so many gadgets for this room, and a real noughties addition is the coffee maker which is almost de rigeur.

Bedrooms and bathrooms have also taken on a new importance in the style stakes. Often overlooked as a the rooms few people saw, now these spaces are coming into their own with boudoir-like bedding, while bathrooms and en suites are pristine havens of relaxation with designer sanitary ware, soft-under-foot mats and exquisite candles.

Mood lighting is also a big part of transforming our homes into beautiful boltholes with soft-hue bulbs in bedside lamps and statement pendant lights in the bathroom.

Even the garden has had a makeover with fabulous furniture and more, as we make use of every square centimetre in our homes. Day beds and stoves make for awesome abodes.

And the walls that were once plain and neglected have been brought back to life with wonderful wallpaper, precious paints and gorgeous wall art.

Whether it’s the latest hot local artist gracing your walls, or trendy stickers which add style and more than a dollop of humour to the most mundane of spaces, it is has never been easier to really put your stamp on.

Of course, even the most traditional of names in Northern Ireland are adding to the impressive nature of our interiors. Important historical brands such as Belleek Pottery and Clatteringford have the most luxurious of additions for our homes — whether it’s the linen napkins which are made from the pattern used for first class passengers on the Titanic, or the uber-stylish new range of modern plateware from Belleek.

Where else is such style available in abundance?

“I love beautiful bedlinen — there’s nothing like climbing into crisp, clean sheets at the end of a long, tiring day. When decorating a bedroom I like a theme based around one thing that I can’t live without, which might be favourite bedlinen, or curtain fabric, or an accessory, and I build the scheme from there. Currently I’m embracing colour for my bedding with lots of florals, stripes and ginghams which have a vintage look with a contemporary twist, and can be matched with co-ordinating cushions, throws and feminine lampshades. Bedtime bliss!”
Kirstie Allsop 

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