Need some swishy new home decorating ideas that won't break the bank? Here's what 13 interior design pros love about their own houses
If you're looking for home decorating ideas then a good old snoop around the houses of interior designers is a pretty good place to start.
From perspex book stands and golden dish racks to antique chairs from FreeCycle, here are the small, affordable ways interior designers make their own houses look amazing.
'Brass adds warmth and texture to a room'
'I got these two brass jacks for around $90 (£68) from Jayson Home in America. Brass adds warmth and texture to a room which is why it's a favourite with interior designers. The shape of the jacks draw your eye, whether they're sitting on a pile of books on the coffee table, perched on your fireplace or adding a finishing touch to your bookshelves.' Katkin Martin-Prud'homme, Director of Pringle & Pringle
'Who says functional items can't be fabulous?'
'In gleaming gold, my drying rack (£40) adds a touch of glamour to my kitchen counter top, elevating a usually unremarkable necessity into a hero feature.' Nadia McCowan Hill, Resident Style Advisor at Wayfair
'A new way to display coffee table books'
'My favourite piece in my house under £100 is my Taschen book stand (centre left). Coffee table books are an absolute must in any home, but so often they're stacked on a bookshelf collecting dust or closed on a coffee table. What I love about this stand is it allows you to display the book open for everyone to see the interesting and beautiful content. Place the stand in a passing spot for guests to have a look through while they're visiting your house, like your hallway, and change the book or page at least once a month!' Zara Kaba, Director and Founder of Huxley Home
'Mismatched chairs can be brought together with matching cushions'
'I love these two armchairs. I got the one of the left from Battersea Car Boot Sale for £10 and the one on the right was on Freecycle. I used leftover fabrics to re-upholster them, and they're now a key feature in my sitting room. Despite being completely different shapes they sit so well together once you put matching cushions on them. If only we had more time in our day to sit there and play chess!' Katie Goring, Interior Designer and Founder of Studio Goring
'A piece of history from my honeymoon'
'You can pick up home decorating ideas wherever you are. I spotted this salvaged window in Zanzibar when we wandered into a carpentry workshop on our honeymoon (as you do!) It is made of teak and was originally designed so the women of the house could watch the world go by. I love the intricacy of the carving and the fact that it still has its original padlock - I find it interesting to look at in any setting and I love imagining its history. It cost £70 - and was worth every penny!' Arabella Rowe, Interior Designer at Albyns London
'How I add fun to a slick, modern home'
'I display this promotional cast-iron give-away Bibendum - commonly referred to in English as the Michelin Man - inside a 19th Century bell jar. This sums me up perfectly: mixing influences, areas and products. It's also a great way to add fun to a slick modern home. The Bibendum was found in a flea market in Guernsey and the dome in an antique dealer in the French countryside' Josephine Lecoufle-Vinet, Interior Design Consultant and Founder of JLV Design
'Something quirky to offset my monochrome kitchen'
'I like a plain and monochrome kitchen colour scheme so I can then add a bit of fun with unexpected pieces, like this lovely owl ceramic jar (£48) from Anthropologie that I adore. I keep cookies in it but you can use it to store anything. It adds that Je ne sais quoi you need to make a house feel like a home.' Sara Rocha, Interior Designer at Randklev Interiors
'This makes mundane tasks feel glamorous'
'I love this golden mirrored tray from Zara (I think I even bought it on sale) and we use it on our 1970s console daily. My husband and I normally use it as a place to drop our keys when we first come in from work, but I just feel that it just makes even the most mundane tasks of everyday seem much more happy and glamorous. In the evenings, if we have friends over or host a supper party, it makes a good base for popping down decanters of wine.'
'I also love this marble and brass shelf from Cox & Cox, that costs £80. I have it above my home computer in the kitchen and I just love how simple it is, it makes my home work area feel much more considered.' Nia Morgan, Interior Designer and Founder of Nia Morgan Interiors
'A compact bulb lamp for my bedside table'
‘I love this lamp as it’s petite and compact – perfect for London living, allowing me to fit everything else I want on my bedside table. I bought it from th2studio for £65. The contemporary style with the filament bulb has updated my room, and a touch of brass adds a bit of cool glam to the concrete base.’ Sophie Procter, Interior Designer at th2designs
'A cool antique tray for entertaining'
'This art deco tray has a mirrored inner, gorgeous curved handles and a chrome and rosewood frame. I found it at Ardingly Antiques Market and knew it would make the perfect cocktail tray with a compact size that's ideal for my London living room. I am an avid collector of antiques so it has become a treasured possession and looks wonderful dressed with vintage glasses, a classic cocktail shaker and coloured bottles.' Jess Lavers, Interior Designer and Founder of Jess Lavers Design
'Their imperfect shape adds a cosy vibe'
'I love these two candlesticks (left) because their particular shade of green is traditionally used in the pottery of Moroccan regions close to the Sahara. Their organic, imperfect shape adds a cosy vibe to any room and scheme. I found them at a souk in the medina of Marrakech and paid about £30 for both after some haggling.' Katharina Wein, Interior Designer at Albyns London
Home decorating ideas (for less than £20)
'Mix high street with high end pieces'
‘I wanted to add some colour into my sitting room and spotted these fab emerald green textured cushions for £12 each. When I think of Sainsbury’s I do not think of homewares, but they have inexpensive pieces that can lift a room. These cushions add the touch of colour that I was looking for – and they’re also super-soft!’ Sophie Mackay-Lewis, Interior Designer and Founder of SVML London
'Find affordable items you can repurpose'
'These Ikea wall lights cost just £15. I then sprayed them with red Plastikote to add a pop of colour that complements the neutral tones of my bookshelves.' Sarah Peake, Associate Director at Tod Hunter Earle Interiors
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