Update your home with Shelley Ferguson

Update the look and feel of your home with simple DIY tips and tricks from interior designer Shelley Ferguson. Get inspired and create spaces that you love. 

Swap out old fixtures & repurpose old furniture 

Instantly elevate your interior without breaking the bank and utilise what you already have in your home. Update old fixtures or give an by old piece of furniture a new lease of life. Paint an unloved desk, stool or table - clean it, prime it, and give it two coats of white paint to achieve a lighter, brighter look that provides a neutral background to showcase a few beautiful objects. You can also paint outdoor concrete planters white for a fresh, modern look. 

Lighting can change the whole mood of your home yet is often overlooked. Use this opportunity to upgrade the bulbs to energy efficient LEDs in warm white rather than cool white (available at the supermarket). Softening the glare of harsh light by choosing warm white instantly adds a calmer, more inviting feel.

Swap out cabinet handles with a luxe metal option, like brushed brass or pewter to instantly revive an old piece of furniture. Browse online at hardware stores to choose cost-effective options or remove the handles and use paint or spray paint to transform them. Use a primer to avoid the paint chipping. Try to feature the same handles throughout your home on kitchen and bathroom cabinetry, wardrobe drawers and dressers to create a cohesive look. 



Give your entranceway some love

Your entranceway expresses your personality the instant people arrive, so take this time to give it some attention. Paint the floor, polish the wood, or add a rug or runner for softness and texture. Move a piece of furniture like a console or side table to the entranceway and add a lamp, small vase of greenery and a candle for an inviting arrangement. Add mirror or piece of art, a tray or bowl for keys, a basket or space for shoes, and even a couple of metal hooks for people to hang their coats on. If you’ve got time (and spare paint) how about featuring a softly coloured front door?


Bring the outdoors in

Plants are mother nature’s medicine. They calm us, clear the air and give us a sense of satisfaction from caring for them (they also make us feel bad when we kill them, so choose your varieties and where you position them carefully!). Set up a few plant stations around the house to bring the outside in. Use existing pots (or paint dated ones) and plants or transport a couple of little plants from the garden. Place them in groups with varying heights for visual interest – try three on one end of a dresser, a single plant on a stool in the living room, or several plants on a bookshelf.

Bring the outdoors in

Organise and declutter your spaces 

Decluttering and organising your home will be a satisfying task. So many homes are let down visually by cords snaking around the furniture. Streamline cords using easy Velcro wraps, white plastic or metal rods to conceal them, a cord cover kit, or small 3M hooks. If you’re handy, you can convert an existing piece of furniture like a dresser into an entertainment unit by concealing the tech unit inside and drilling a hole in the back so cords can secretly reach power points. While you’re at it sort your technology into categories – chargers, cords, devices – and store them accordingly in a dedicated drawer or storage box. Throw out what you don’t need (who can use that many USBs?).

The next step is to tackle your closet. Take everything out, wipe down the walls, and give it a good vacuum and pack what you no longer need into bags ready for donation. While you need a tall rail for longer items, try to keep this limited as you’ll gain more space by installing double hanging rails for shorter items such as shirts and skirts. Hanging bulky items like sweaters on grip hangers is a good way to save space in drawers if you have plenty of hanging space. Consider vertical space – is there room for a stacked shoe rack? Could you mount hooks on the side walls to hang scarves or even jewellery?

Pamper that pet

Why not take the time to create a special spot for your furry friend? If you’re handy on the tools you could craft a bed or kennel from timber. If not, how about a little temporary teepee, an activity station or a favourite blanket in a sunny spot?

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