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Waste not Want not: Where to Buy Unloved Furniture!

Published by Emma Day in

A third alternative to the popular struggle of  'buying new or making do' when your furniture is concerned can be answered simply! Do both!  If you want a change from your sofa, chair or suite but have had enough of your current style, there's still a choice besides having to buy brand new.  Why not consider  taking in unloved, second hand furniture and really putting your stamp on it with re-upholstery or loose covers in the fabric of your choice?!  Great compromise right?

So where do you find these furniture treasures I hear you ask?  My port of call is always online - there are a wealth of brilliant websites where you can really pick up a bargin.  Consider auction sites like ebay or private listings like Preloved.  You could even visit a recycling site where second hand goods are literally given away for better use in a new home!  Look at freecycle and recycle to find unloved furniture in your area that could really benefit from loose covers or re-upholstery.


Another great resource you could consider is your local newspaper.  You can find lots of unwanted suites or sofas in the classified ads section of your paper.  Some supermarkets may even have a notice board of similar posts.  And finally, never forget about the good old fashioned second-hand store!  There's bound to be one near you that may just have what you're looking for.


Wherever you decide to find your perfect sofa, remember the one golden rule:

Don't be put off by even the ugliest of sofas.  With loose covers or re-upholstery you could completely transform it! Click here to find out more about how Plumbs loose covers and re-upholstery can make old, unloved furniture beautiful again!


Top 5 Home Office Designs

Published by Emma Day in

When the weather is beautiful outside, the last thing you want to do is be stuck in a dull and dreary office. So now could be a great time to revamp your work space at home and be inspired throughout your day! Have a look at our top 5 designs for something that will suit you and your home...


The simplicity of Scandinavian design lends itself well to a home office for the easily distracted worker.  A collection of bare essentials and one or two nic-nacs mixed with a simple, yet bold colour scheme creates a simple space in which to concentrate on the job at hand!

For a feminine touch, opt for a pastel colour scheme and incorporate pretty patterns and co-ordinating textiles for a calming atmosphere.  Soften office essentials by making your own pin boards with nice fabric and choosing patterned storage boxes.

Utilise your loft space and make a quiet, cosy retreat.  Exposed wood and simple textiles will give a rustic feel.  The only downside - the kettle is likely to be 2 floors down so you may find you minimise your tea breaks!

Bring the outdoors in and be inspired by nature.  Surround yourself with plant life and position your desk with a good view of your garden.  Better yet, convert your garden shed for an office away from home, at home!

Don't despair if you've limited space to work with.  There are so many office space solutions available to you, like a simple cupboard office.  The beauty of this look is that you can fit it into your living room and close the door on your work when you're done!

With these in mind, we better get back to work!  Keep checking back for more great home design ideas!


Room Staging: Showing your Home's Full Potential

Published by Emma Day in

A popular means of showing your home to its greatest potential, room or house staging is often used when trying to sell a home.  But there’s no reason that you couldn’t use the techniques to make the best use of your home space for yourself.

When thinking about your living room for example, the following room staging tips can appeal to potential buyers or help to create a calm, spacious environment to entertain friends and spend time with your family.

Tip 1. – Make it Social

Arranging furniture to face each other or creating social clusters will encourage conversation and make for great entertainment space.

Tip 2. Create Space

Even in the smallest of living rooms, you can create an illusion of space by simply arranging your furniture appropriately.  The key is to ensure there is a clear path around the room for you to easily manoeuvre around your furniture.

Tip 3.  Neutral doesn’t have to be boring

Another way of creating a spacious effect is to keep your palette light and neutral.  Particularly appealing to potential buyers, a neutral palette will allow them to see your home as a blank canvas for them to put their mark on.  For you however, neutral doesn’t have to be boring – choose a bold accent colour to suit your personality and use sparingly for maximum effect.

Tip 4.  Re-cover worn furniture

A quick and easy way to spruce up your furniture is to opt for loose covers.  A new fabric can instantly freshen your room.  Click here to find out more about Plumbs Loose Covers.

Tip 5. Focus on interesting architecture

Forget the TV as a focal point and make a feature out of interesting architecture or a fireplace.  Arrange your furniture around the feature to emphasise and create a talking point!


Bring the Outdoors In with Nature Inspired Home Decor

Published by Emma Day in

The natural world makes for a beautiful home for so much wildlife, so why don’t we take a leaf out of nature’s book (no pun intended!) and bring a bit of the outdoors into our homes this Spring? One of the best sources of design inspiration, nature can offer up beautiful rich, earthy palettes, interesting textures and quirky decorative ideas. Come – explore the elements with me!

Natural Wood

Whether you opt for real wood floors, solid oak furniture or something a little bit different, like this log wood coffee table, using real wood in the home brings instant outdoors appeal.

Plants and Decorative Twigs

Like wood, introducing living plants around your home is a great way to pay homage to the great outdoors.

If green isn't your colour, why not choose colourful flowers for a bold accent or choose decorative twigs for a cooler feel.

Earthy Palette

If natural materials don’t suit your style, you can still take inspiration from nature and adopt a rich, earthy palette. You could opt for fresh, luscious greens or dark, moody browns to create your interior oasis. Combining the two contrasting shades can also give a nice effect.

Remember, you don’t have to go bold with your colour palette – why not opt for subtler shades of green and brown for an understated look.

Nature Inspired Patterns

When all else fails, you can always cheat and bring nature into your home with printed patterns. Florals are a classic with varying designs giving both traditional and modern feels.

Another popular print at the moment are birds; take for example, Sanderson’s new Swallows design.

However you choose to decorate this Spring, don’t forget to be inspired by all that is around you. Failing that, keep an eye on the Plumbs blog for more design tips and ideas!

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Plumbs at the Country Living Spring Fair 21-25 March

Published by Emma Day in
Spring is the perfect time of year to redecorate your home.  There's nothing better than giving your home a wonderfully fresh feel after an uninspiring winter.

So what better place to gain a wealth of inspiration for your homes and gardens than Country Living’s Spring Fair?  Coming to The Business Design Centre in Islington, London next week 21-25 March, the annual fair will be host to over 400 independent designers, small producers and craftspeople from across the UK.

What’s more, Plumbs will be one of them!  So while you’re enjoying a great day out why not make it even better and give us a visit!  We’ll be at stand M142 with details of our products, fabric ranges and real life re-upholstery live on the stand!

For more details of events we are attending close to you, click here to see this year’s events calendar!  Otherwise, we look forward to seeing you next week!

Keep your Winter Blues!

Published by Emma Day in
If pretty pinks and feminine florals aren’t your thing, then why not give your home an alternative Spring makeover?  There are many other beautiful palettes that can bring a brand new look to your home this coming season, and one of my favourites is on-trend Navy!

That’s right; the blues don’t have to be confined to Winter!  In fact, fellow design blogger Carole King recently posted some great ways to use Navy in the home on her blog Dear Designer.  She contrasts the rich hue of navy with stark white for a great, dramatic effect.

If the bold colour is a little dark for your home this Spring, you could break up the Navy with creams and golds for a warm, luxurious bedroom, or a light, inviting living room, as seen from Laura Ashley and Fired Earth.

So what’s the verdict?  Are we liking Navy blue for Spring?


Get Your Home Ready For Spring

Published by Emma Day in
Give a whole new meaning to 'Spring Cleaning' this season with a fresh Spring make-over for your home. With light, warmer days and beautiful blooms sprouting at every turn, Spring is the ideal time for bringing a fresh new look to your home!  Pastels are a must for Spring with soft greens and pinks featuring heavily in this season's shop window displays.  For extra zest, break up the subtle palette with vibrant shades of pink.  Don't forget, Spring is all about pretty florals, so embrace them to the full with floral fabrics and wall art!  And with Easter around the corner, it can't hurt to throw in the odd endearing bunny rabbit for good measure!

That in mind, we've put together some of the best buys for Spring home decor available this season...

1. Colour Scheme inspired by Pantone colours:  Orchid Pink(13-2010 TXC), Pink U and Seafoam Green (12-0313 TXC).

2. Thomas Kent Willow Arabaic Mantle Clock -

3. Embroidered Rosa Pink Canvases – Next

4. Reupholstery in Timeless Chenille fabric - Plumbs Reupholstery

5. Crackle Ball Floor Lamp - Very

6. Rita Rabbit Door Stop - Marks & Spencer

7. Lily Flame Daisy Dip Candle in a Tin – John Lewis

8. Made-to-measure Curtains in Orchids fabric - Plumbs Curtains


Show your Stripes

Published by Emma Day in

Once upon a time stripes in the home would automatically point to a nautical or seaside theme.  And while there’s nothing wrong with this ever-popular design trend, it just seems so limiting of a great, versatile pattern.

Today, stripes are making a come back, and not just in beachside bathrooms!  There are so many ways you can use stripes in your home décor.  So scour the shops for inspiration and show your stripes in your home!

Stripes for Drama and Impact

Dark, rich colours are always a winner for adding drama to a room.  When used together in stripes, the heavy lines can become a real show-stopper.  You could opt for chunky stripes as shown on our Italian Stripe design, or even thin stripes can provide maximum impact when combined with a metallic colour scheme and dramatic features.

Stripes for Subtle Elegance

If you prefer a calmer atmosphere, you could choose a subtler stripe.  Offering a little more texture than plain designs, subtle stripes can often be found in two tonal and complementary colours.  Contrasting with a vibrant colour will add depth to a room, or complementing with similar neutral shades will keep your home atmosphere relaxed.

Stripes with florals

For a feminine feel, you can even mix stripes with floral patterns.  The contrasting designs can bring interest to a room.  Remember to opt for co-ordinating colours to retain a sense of unity with your décor.


Have you turned your heating off yet?

Published by Emma Day in
With the sun shining through the office window today and the first signs of Spring slowly emerging from the Winter gloom, I’m itching to turn my heating off and lower those pesky energy bills.  How many of you feel the same?

The transitional period of Spring can often be a gamble with crisp, cool mornings turning into warm afternoons and nights retaining a mild chill.  It can be difficult to know how much heating you’ll need.  It could be time to look into alternative methods of keeping your home the right temperature and say goodbye to rising energy bills.

Try the curtain method! When the weather is a little milder one of the best courses of action is to turn off the radiators and reap the benefits of lined curtains.  Lined curtains are proven to reduce the amount of heat loss in your home by preventing warm air escaping and cool air getting in through your windows.

Not only are they great for heat control, you could kill two birds with one stone and refresh your home for the Spring.  Fresh, vibrant florals are popular this season, with modern and traditional designs available.  Look for soft, pastel palettes like greens and pinks for a typically feminine feel.  Or consider yellows and greys for more neutral appeal.

For added style and further protection from the cooler nights, you could even include blinds with your curtains.  The extra layer can really add depth and drama to your windows, especially when using co-ordinated fabrics.

So do your purse strings a favour and flick off the heating! Your home will be left prepared for Spring, looking fresh and your bills will be much kinder!  Click here to browse our curtain fabrics.


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