Decorating Tips - Part 1

An example of mismatched cushions above on an Antique french 2 seater sofa upholstered in plain white canvas fabric.

This plain charcoal linen sofa at Black & Spiro looked so beautiful when we added the array of patterned and striped cushions to it. We used a mixture of charcoal, white and yellow fabrics. The yellow instantly brought the sofa to life and incorporated the yellow silk curtains which fell behind the sofa.


It is my opinion that beautiful cushions and lamps can make a room. The plainest or most outdated sofa can be brought to life by the addition of custom made cushions in an array of beautiful fabrics and a table in the corner or behind a sofa can be uplifted by the placement of a unique lamp with custom made shade.

If you are on a tight budget opt for a less expensive sofa in a plain fabric and have some special cushions made (or make your own) in a mismatch of fabrics - this will certainly make your look individual and I guarantee the cushions will enhance the look of your inexpensive sofa! The other wonderful thing about cushions is that you can change them around very easily - I often adivse clients to have two sets of cushions made for their lounge room; one set for Winter and one set for Summer. This keeps things interesting and as I always say a change is as good as a holiday.

Another great idea for people on a budget is to scour Antique shops and markets for old lamps -they can be very inexpensive; my recent lamp purchase at an Antique shop totalled $25.00. Bring vintage lamps to life with beautiful lampshades made in fabulous fabrics and again I guarantee you will add an individual and stylish touch to your room. Some old lamps can even look wonderful repainted in white or a bright colour - use your imagination!

This gorgeous vintage lamp which I placed on a table in a client's house was an Antique shop find. I had a new shade made in a Designers Guild silk which immediately brought the gorgeous and unusual lampbase back to life. It also introduced interest and colour to the timber table.


This beautiful pair of yellow lamps in Chloe Sevigny's apartment certainly make a statement - I love how these lamps contrast with the mirrored cabinet. Image courtesy of House & Garden.

For inexpensive fabrics which you can order online visit Reprodepot or Purlsoho. If you are looking for a particular type of fabric or a designer fabric visit your local interior decorator and ask to look through their library. Please note, some decorators don't like to have their sample books on show to the public. At Black & Spiro I encourage my customers to come and look through our fabric range. I would recommend you call some of your local decorators first in order to find out whether you can look through their fabrics; this will not only save time, it will also give the decorating store advance notice of your visit.