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Get weekly updates on the latest interior design trends from our experts at Plumbs

How to Be Pretty in Pink

At the height of summer, fragrant blush coloured blooms illuminate our gardens and we are drawn to fling open our windows to experience the sun-warmed aroma of roses, peonies and hydrangea.  Our kitchens are filled with the scent of fresh herbs and new cut flowers; we crave colour and light. Pink is the perfect summer colour; rich yet fresh, bright yet not cloying (if used correctly). It works whether plain or pattern, in simple linen or rich velvet, in a hot, vivid hue or a gentle pastel.

Rich Simplicity

This rich Fuchsia furnishing fabric, plain yet adorned with simple cushions, is called Hampstead. This quality woven fabric is available for footstools, chairs, dining chairs and conservatory style furniture, making it perfect for co-ordinated looks if you want a pink haven. It works beautifully paired with lighter pinks, or with completely contrasting fabrics; a soft velvet cream for example, or a chenille stripe. Why not try sewing your own? It's super easy, especially if you use an 'envelope' or button closure (no zip sewing required!).

 

From Linkdakl

Candy Stripes

These candy striped 'Catherine' blinds are fun, feminine and summery. They'll keep the midday sun at bay, and provide a gorgeous border for your freshly scrubbed windows. They are designed to be paired with the Catherine's Garden range - suitable for sofas and curtains – another summer classic, a sweet floral in pink and white. The patterned, lighter hue co-ordinates well the plainer, stronger colour of the Hampstead fabric.

As the perfect summer day draws to a close, why not relax with a cream topped pink hot chocolate, and watch the sun set in the comfort of your cosy pink home.

If you want your home to be pretty in pink, contact Plumbs for a home visit, or else browse our vast selection of upholstery fabrics for a new look today!

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5 Steps to Black and Gold Décor

Black and gold are a contemporary and luxurious combination, which you can implement in five easy steps. We'll go through them, starting with the walls, followed by a new look for your sofa, an exquisite new lamp, rich, made to measure  curtains and a luxuriant rug to finish the room.

1. Start With the Walls



You needn't opt for busy floral wallpaper, or heavy flocked damask, to co-ordinate your walls with the rest of your look. These attractive black and gold cyclamen decals are a quick and simple way to embellish plain walls; they also have the advantage of being temporary; simply peel them off when you are bored with them!

2. Sofa Covers



The fabric used for these easily fitted sofa covers is called Jacobean Opulence. This rich cloth is a beautiful cream, printed with a softly curling black and gold floral pattern, shown here paired with marble and delicate cream blooms. The co-ordinating scatter cushions are in gold and black fabrics; but plain coloured and textured instead of patterned. Note the use of satin to enhance the deluxe feel of the sofa.

3. Lamp



http://design-milk.com/novecento-marble-table-lamps-by-davide-g-aquini/

These beautiful marble and brass table lamps combine traditional materials and contemporary design for a sculptural light source. Inspired loosely by Art Deco principles, the thick marble disks rest gracefully on a triangular stand.  Would look perfect displayed on an inlaid occasional table, or gracing a fireplace

4. Curtains



These made to measure Passirano Noir curtains combine an antique gold base fabric with a metallic black pattern reminiscent of ancient vase-work and Greek friezes. The thick, sheened fabric is timeless, ideal for all seasons, from Spring to Winter. The curtains can be weighted, and you can purchase matching accessories in the same fabric; a wide curtain tie or a new pelmet.

5.  Rug



This thick, fluffy black and gold rug is the final step in transforming your home. Luxuriant and soft underfoot, it is the perfect accent for polished wooden floors. It co-ordinates with the black and gold theme of your room without overpowering by introducing new patterns to the room.

Remember, if you want to transform your home with the contemporary luxury of black and gold, Plumbs can offer you a free, no obligation home consultation, where we can measure your curtains and sofa, so we can create the perfect bespoke furniture covers for you.

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5 Shortcuts for Beautiful Sofas

In this increasingly busy world, we're all looking for ways to save money, time and effort. After all, why spend hours hand scrubbing stained upholstery when you could be playing with your grandchildren? Or tolerate a shabby (not chic) sofa because buying new is a chancy business, thanks to big box stores selling cheap veneer copies of classic styles; which are not a patch on the sturdy quality of your treasured Parker Knoll settee.

1) Fitted Sofa Covers


Fitted sofa covers are a great way to update your settee, at a fraction of the cost of a new suite. We can make them to measure following a free home visit to assess your requirements. The covers will be delivered – and fitted if you need us to – and voila, a sofa that looks brand new!

2) Re-Upholstery


Re-upholstery is an earth friendly way to 'recycle' a beloved old piece of furniture. After all, some pieces have such sentimental value that they are impossible to replace; but you still don't want your favourite soft furnishings looking down at heel.

3) A Knitted Throw


Knitted throws are a great – and particularly affordable - way to add texture and warmth to a sofa. They can hide a multitude of sins, and can be woven in a wide range of designs and colours. They are a perfect DIY project, or can be bought from artisans who specialise in handmade crafts.

4) Cushion Covers


Rattan furniture is a popular choice, particularly for garden rooms and conservatories. However infrequent use and sun exposure can lead to either bleaching or darkening of the fabric. You can easily revamp your conservatory furniture with fresh cushion covers, and make it look beautiful again.

5) Fresh Trimmings


Trimmings can make a drab piece come alive again. These can range from piping in a contrasting colour, to co-ordinating braid around the back. Or you could choose from our range of valances, which include pleated, tasselled and skirted options.

Take advantage of these easy shortcuts to a more beautiful sofa by contacting Plumbs today for a free, no obligation home visit, or else browse our vast selection of upholstery fabrics for a new look today!

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Transform Your Lounge in an Afternoon

Summer is the perfect season to brighten and refresh your home's décor. However it's also the time when many of us want to be outdoors in the sunshine – not hanging curtains and sweeping the pantry! Fortunately you can completely transform your lounge in the space of a Bank Holiday afternoon – with sofa covers, scatter cushions and even some easy-to-hang curtains.

Loose Covers


Sofa and suite covers are an absolute lifesaver for the decorator in a hurry. Regardless of the size or shape of your furniture, you can get attractive and professional stretchy loose covers designed and sewn to fit your sofa perfectly. Simply book a no obligation sofa cover consultation, and get your covers measured and fitted. When they arrive (delivered for free!), you can simply pop them on, and voila! Washable, perfectly fitting covers for your stunning 'new' sofa.

Eyelet Curtains

 

Getting a pair of beautiful, custom made curtains made is a worthwhile investment, especially if you have bay windows or another unusual shape. Eyelet curtains are the easiest kind to hang once they are made; simply 'thread' the curtain pole through the eyelets, replace on top of the struts and affix. They can be easily accessorised with braided, twisted or silken curtain ties, or simply left loose for an attractive, carefree look.

Scatter Cushions

Cushions are one of the easiest ways to transform a space; you can have them made in the same fabric as your curtains, for example, and create a matching look, or opt for a bold contrast. All you need do with these versatile accessories is arrange them prettily; adorning a sofa, placed on the ground for an al fresco air, or brightening a window seat.

If you want to transform your lounge in an afternoon, let us do the preparation for you – all you need to do is get in touch for custom made stretch loose covers, bespoke curtains and a selection of scatter cushions made to your specifications. Contact us today on 0800 019 0505!

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July's Top Five Special Offers

Thanks to the recession, we're all looking for a good deal, but that doesn't have to mean sacrificing your sense of style. There are plenty of things you can do to keep yourself and your home looking its best. Here at Plumbs, we're glad to help out, with new special offers every month. We're offering fantastic deals on half price curtains, loose covers, blinds and re-upholstery, and here are July's top five specials.

1)     50% off Suite Covers in 'Catherine's Garden' + £50 in FREE Accessories!



Bring a fresh bouquet of flowers into your home with these gorgeous 'Catherine's Garden' suite covers, now 50% off and coupled with £50 worth of FREE accessories. These half price suite covers can be applied to any kind of furniture and are fully machine washable. Show here in the Ruby colour-way, you can also have matching curtains made up for a fully co-ordinated look.

2)     50% off 'Gemma' Curtains



These curtains in 'Gemma' are now at half price, and are available in 15 colours. 'Gemma' is a versatile, unadorned design that is perfect for either a minimalist home, or combined with other colours and patterns for a more eclectic look. Shown he re in a rich turquoise, in a pencil pleat. Simply contact a Plumbs consultant today for a free, no obligation quote.

3)     3 for 2 Re-Upholstery with 'Mayfair Stripe'



Have 2 pieces of furniture reupholstered in 'Mayfair Stripe' fabric and get a third item reupholstered FREE! Pictured here in a classic duck egg blue, this beautiful, bold stripe is available in six colours, including an antique gold hue.  The price of re-upholstery will depend on your furniture - with the cheapest item re-upholstered for free.

4)     30% off Roman Blinds in 'Woodland'



These beautiful roman blinds in the attractive 'Woodland' fabric are 30% off and come in five exquisite colour-ways and are the perfect window dressing. Why not match them with a pair of 'Gemma' curtains (at 50% off)? Turquoise and pink make a beautiful combination, especially for a fresh, colourful lounge or pretty bedroom. There are matching accessories available in this fabric, so why not decorate your window seat with co-ordinating scatter cushions?

5)     40% off 'Mandalay' Sofa Covers + £50 Free Accessories!



We're offering 40% off 'Mandalay' sofa covers, along with £50 worth of FREE accessories! The fabric pictured is an especial favourite; a rich, creamy ivory, woven with an intricate gold edged design. There are another thirteen colours available, all luxurious, opulent colours; champagne, burgundy, midnight blue. The fabric is an easy to care for 'superweave', fully washable and designed not to shrink or crease.


If you want to take advantage of any of our amazing special offers, just get in touch today for a free no obligation quote, and give your home a fresh new look for less!

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Inspired By… The Lake District

The beautiful landscapes of the English Lake District have inspired artists like J.M.W Turner, poets like Coleridge and writers like Beatrix Potter. It boasts beautiful lakes, lush valleys of ancient woodland, meadows carpeted with wildflowers and mountains that are popular with climbers, fell walkers and campers.

There's nothing more beautiful than waking in the hot sunshine; a short stroll to the larkspurs and forget-me-nots dotted around the shores of Ullswater. Once there, you can walk around the expanse of water, or hire a boat and explore the lake on a more personal level. If you fall in love with the place you can end up wanting to take a little piece home with you.

To that end, we've hand-picked 3 beautiful fabrics that will remind you of the beauty and charm of England's Lake District.

Magnolia Gardens

Magnolia Gardens is a stunning, duck egg blue upholstery fabric reminiscent of water plants drifting lazily across a lake, or of flowers outlined and highlighted in a fresh new summer sky. Its large scale floral pattern references both the fifties and this season's couture fashions, where designers plucked fresh colourful blooms from history and arranged them across maxi skirts. You can use this fabric to cover your furniture and channel the beauty of the lakes into your living room.

Mandalay's Fern Green

Our Mandalay Fern Green fabric evokes the soft lacy stems of ferns that wind over the open fields and brisk mountains of the Lake District. The golden-green sheen of the upholstery cloth gives the muted fabric the glow of a summer's afternoon, stirring memories of waterside sunbathing and the sweet scent of crushed grass in the sun.

Delphina Blue

The exquisite blue purple of this upholstery fabric is an exquisite tribute to the wild delphiniums of July, although considerably more comfortable. The soft creamy yellow backdrop sets off the more definite colour beautifully, a gentle contrast that has undertones of early lake mornings. A pot of Delphinium Sungleams are the perfect finishing touch for a Lake District inspired room.

Remember, if you want to bring the Lake District into your home, with a bouquet of floral patterning or new, limpid blue upholstery for your sofa, Plumbs can offer you a free, no obligation home consultation, where we can offer you advice about shades, fabrics and styles for your dream home. Contact us today!

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Discover Home Accessories for Small Spaces

Published by Emma Day in blue cushions, linen, neutrals

Summer is a great time to update your home, but if you have a more compact space - for example an apartment or smaller house - it can be difficult to introduce new elements without making your home look cluttered and 'busy'. However, carefully selected home accessories are an affordable and easy way to make your space seem lighter, brighter and bigger.

Loose Covers

A new set of lovely loose covers can be easily slipped over shabby or worn upholstery to give your room a new lease of life. This textured oatmeal fabric, combined with plump cushions, will give your home a fresh, seaside air that is open and inviting – and from a practical perspective, will reflect more light than darker colours, making the creamy, natural colour much more suitable for the summer months. Additionally, loose covers can be easily washed, easily replaced, and pressed, so are far easier to maintain than normal upholstery solutions (a boon for grandparents and pet owners).

Curtains

Remember that small spaces can be easily overwhelmed by curtains that have too much texture, colour and bulk. Think light; ideally you want light coloured, lightweight and light reflecting. In practice, this means white or cream colours, plain and in thin, weighted cotton or a firm yet breathable linen. You can pair them with translucent voiles for privacy, and keep them tied back to frame your window panes, keeping the windows open to stimulate air flow.

Scatter Cushions

Cool blue scatter cushions are the perfect accompaniment to a summer living room. In plain fabrics, the colour is calming, unobtrusive and gives an otherwise light, airy room a colourful focal point that makes an impact without overpowering the other elements in the room. If placed strategically they can seem to expand the room, especially if situated in the corners, opposite a reflective surface.

Finishing Touches

Larkspurs are one of the official flowers of July. A simple bunch, slipped into a tall glass vase with a handful of baby's breath, will instantly brighten the dullest of spaces. A mirror, affixed to the wall, will reflect and lengthen the room, making it seem more spacious. Lights should be placed near corners to enliven high ceilings, and ideally so that they reflect within the windows and mirror.

What are your top tips for making the most of a small space?

Remember, you can purchase curtains, loose covers and home accessories from our website. Contact us today for a free, no obligation quote!

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Summer Chateau Chic

Want a room that is sweet, soft and delicate as whipped lavender cream? The rich details of French, 18 th century style, composed of light, delicate colours, accentuated by gold or silver patterns, make for a delightfully opulent summer look. The subtle pastel hues so typical of the period are prevented from being insipid by the contrasting textures or metallic designs, which often reflect nature. This look is very chic; playful, bright yet rather polished. It's perfect if your front room is high ceilinged and benefits from plenty of light.


To start, re-upholster your chaise longue in a luxurious vanilla cream, with the archetypal foliage pattern of the era executed in a soft, textured velvet – try our beautiful Eleganza fabric. Next, heavy, rough silk drapes in the same hue as the sofa's pattern, and sweet metallic cream swirls.  Tie them with a braided silk golden tie, embellished with semi-precious tiger's eye beads. An elegant pouffe in matching or similar fabric can finish your selection of furniture.


Why not pair your new curtains and upholstery with a vintage bird cage? Or else buy a cheap reproduction and use a plastic based spray paint to match it with the rest of your décor – a matte, duck egg blue would work perfectly. It's better to be a little matchy matchy with this look; keep décor and accessories in the same colour, or style – or keep accessories very neutral, or better yet, metallic.


Picture via http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3A-_Bugia_candlestick_-.jpg


Candlesticks are another hot accessory, and surprisingly lovely ones are available everywhere – even mass emporiums like Ikea – bargain central for home wares. You have to wade through the brittle off white dinner plates and cheap waffle tea towels, but once there you'll find exquisite lamps, beautifully cosy throws, armfuls o0f scented tea lights for a pound and affordable accessories which are absolutely ideal if you like to customise your home (if need ideas, check out Apartment Therapy, Martha Stewart or A Beautiful Mess, for easy yet 'grown-up' DIY projects).

So if you want to explore your inner Marie Antoinette, get in touch and we can give you a free no obligation quote for new upholstery.

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Oriental Nights

One of the latest trends in the world of interior design has a distinctly oriental flavour.   Don't worry, we aren't suggesting wind chimes, dragon patterned drapes, or katana swords wired onto your living room walls.  This is a mature, sophisticated riff on the patterns and colours of the Orient, based on rich dyes and intricate designs that took talented craftsmen centuries to perfect.

Designer Carmen Marc Volvo once explained his love of Pantone's Poppy Red as "a reflection of the Oriental influence on interior design", a love which is currently experiencing a careful resurgence in chic homes across Britain.

Oriental Adventures

These Elana Lipstick curtains, in pink and gold, are a bold centrepiece for any room, drawing on the colour pink, a summer favourite. The gold references the costly embroidery typical in many an Oriental home. Here the curtains are paired with black, gold, and a beautiful matching plant in the same bright hue. Pink is a beautiful colour, however it may be challenging for some when it's this bright, especially in a main room.

Oriental Escape

You can channel the oriental trend in a more subtle way by upholstering an elegant easy chair with this delicious, kimono silk inspired fabric. It retains the exquisite patterning of the Orient in a less bold but still beautiful colourway. Pair this delightfully subtle chair with genuine – or high quality reproductions – of antiques from Japanese history. You can buy these from Etsy or Ebay, but do check how long they've been trading and their feedback to avoid being ripped off. Or else consider purchasing some vintage oriental fabric and making your own.

The Orient Express

For a quick, yet no less exciting nod to the Oriental trend, why not try these dining chair covers in Mandalay's red fabric? China has a long association with red dyes, exploiting the properties of the madder root, and safflower, to achieve beautifully rich hues. These loose covers, in a rich red, accented by the golden foliage and swirls so typical of oriental affluence, will give instant life to a neutral and pedestrian living room. Pair with soft golden accessories and a burnished copper lampshade for an exotic yet elegant look.

Remember, Plumbs offer free, no obligation advice in your own home, and a chance to browse fabric samples at your leisure. If your furniture needs a new look, and you want a bespoke, high quality solution, contact us today!

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