The idea for this piece came to me last week when I visited the AW17 press launches for Habitat, Sainsbury’s and Argos. I am constantly and pleasantly surprised by the quality of design by the supermarket and high street brands – they are seriously upping their game. Often, their own in-house design teams are producing collections that would seamlessly blend into a much more expensive schemes.
It is so easy to spend hugely on every item if you are looking at the décor piece by piece (believe me, building and decorating a house from scratch is an absolute money pit!)
But if you know your style, have an overall scheme in mind and an authentic approach, you can tailor and combine price points to save massively!
If you read my blog regularly, you’ll know that I love showing you how to layer a range of different pieces that reflect your own personality with a modern base. High/low can be a really clever way to do this.
Mixing high value or bespoke staples with changeable lower value items can result in a unique interior that’s on budget, and one that you can update as and when you feel the need (or creativity!) to do so.
In the interior design world, buying everything from the same place is a definite no-no, unless you want your home to end up looking like a showroom!
So here's how to steal some style tips from the pros to mix it up for a stylish finish.
1. Choose the larger high value or bespoke pieces that you really love
You want these to make a real impact in a room, to be unusual and of good quality so that they will last for years – your investment-worthy pieces.
I would suggest that these could be your larger pieces, like a designer sofa, antique bed, vintage sideboard, statement artwork, a custom-made dining table, a special rug, a knockout light pendant or that extra-special hand-printed wallpaper that you’ve fallen in love with.
2. Layer your mid-value items
The high street is a great place to head for your mid-value items. Choice can be overwhelming, but if you’ve already decided on your larger high value items, you’ll know your own style and have a great starting point.
Choose mid-value items for quality that you’d like to last for a good few years. These could be items like armchairs, dining chairs, side tables, lamps, occasional rugs, towels and cutlery.
3. Balance the budget with those economical pieces
Find those bargains – look in unexpected places. Next time you’re doing the food shop at the superstore, stop by the homeware isle to see what’s new. You'll be surprised at what you can find! Or if you’re shopping for new jeans, there’s very likely a home section (à la Zara Home or H&M Home) – stick your head in and have a look.
Low items can vary according to your preference, but choose items that you want to last for a couple of years, and then possibly change out down the line to freshen the look. Try items like tableware, glasses, cushions, throws, storage items, vases, bathroom accessories, kitchen utensils, placemats and house plants. You can even find beautifully and thoughtfully designed larger items like sofas, side tables, lighting and desks if you're on a smaller budget.
4. Finish with some luxury
An absolutely great way to finish a room is to add those special touches that make you happy and that improve your well-being in your home. Some may see these as a luxury, but I see them as essential. Your home is where you recharge and rejuvenate so I strongly recommend saving some of your budget for the things that you touch and smell. Indulge in the most expensive bed linen you can afford. Buy the softest towels. Light that expensive soy wax candle with natural essential oils!
Taking inspiration from the fab pieces I've recently seen at great price points, I've created this mood board to show exactly how
to mix a modern High/Medium/Low bedroom using a bespoke headboard in one of my favourite fabrics – green velvet –as the centrepiece.
Wallpaper: Backgammon by Helen Strevens/Tektura
Headboard: Custom-made in green velvet
Cushion: Nissa cowhide cushion: Made.com £35
Rug: Etch rug Habitat 170mmx240mm £360
Pendant: Round Deco Opal Glass Pendant Ceiling Light Rockett St George £110
Planter: Hanging Metal Planter in brass West Elm £49
Throw: EVORA cotton throw Maisons Du Monde £47.99
Side Table: Sainsbury's Renaissance Boutique Range AW17 £42
Grey Marble Object: Sainsbury's Renaissance Boutique Range AW17 £14
Glass Tumbler with gold trim: Sainsbury's Renaissance Boutique AW17 £5
Carafe with gold trim: Sainsbury's Renaissance Boutique AW17 £15
Striped Cushions: VÅRGYLLEN cushion covers Ikea £4
Green velvet cushion: FORÊT velvet cushion in green 45 x 45cm Maisons Du Monde £5.70
Cup: Argos Navajo Range AW17
1000 Thread Count White Egyptian Cotton Bedding: Pillowcase from £50 John Lewis
The new Sainsbury's, Habitat and Argos AW17 Ranges are out Sept/Oct '17.