Fin­ish­ing touches

Com­pleted your DIY project? Don’t for­get those al­limpor­tant fi­nal flour­ishes, says LES­LEY TAY­LOR

Gloucestershire Echo - - YOUR HOME -

Un­der­tak­ing a mas­sive ren­o­va­tion project can be a daunt­ing task. And af­ter days, weeks and some­times months of toil, there is noth­ing more sat­is­fy­ing than re­lax­ing in your new liv­ing space. But just be­fore you pop the ket­tle on or stream the lat­est boxset on Net­flix, take one fi­nal look around. Is there any­thing miss­ing from your space? Any­thing that will take your fin­ished project from beau­ti­ful to stun­ning? A few fi­nal flour­ishes here or there can truly trans­form your home, and here are my ideas for some in­spi­ra­tional fin­ish­ing touches.

SCENT FROM ABOVE

You can’t see it, or feel it, but fra­grance adds char­ac­ter to the home. Lux­ury shops and ho­tels have been pump­ing their sig­na­ture scent through­out their prop­er­ties for some time and now the trend is mov­ing into the home too. In fact, you can hire the ser­vices of a home fra­grance ex­pert who will cre­ate a be­spoke fra­grance scheme for you and your home. How­ever, if you want to pull to­gether your own sig­na­ture scent there are plenty of op­tions. Can­dles are fab­u­lous for bring­ing to­gether smells and am­bi­ence. They work es­pe­cially well in bath­rooms and din­ing ar­eas and can truly cre­ate a mood. For an in­stant in­jec­tion of your favourite smell, wax melts are cur­rently the go-to (thanks in no small part to Instagram sen­sa­tion Mrs Hinch and her love of them). Like can­dles, they add am­bi­ence, but they re­lease fra­grance quicker. How­ever, wax burn­ers do re­quire a lit­tle TLC and reg­u­lar clean­ing. Dif­fusers are per­fect for sub­tle background smells. While they are not as strong as their burn­ing coun­ter­parts, they give off a con­stant aroma – just re­mem­ber to turn the reeds ev­ery few days. When it comes to scents, a ones­mell-fits-all for­mula doesn’t need to ap­ply to your home. You may want some­thing floral in the liv­ing ar­eas, but some­thing a lit­tle more re­lax­ing – such as a laven­der scent – in the bed­room. Have a play around to see which suits. Like per­fume or af­ter­shave, go for the fra­grances you like first and see how they work in a real set­ting. There are no hard and fast rules, so any­thing goes.

CU­RATED COL­LEC­TIONS

I hear the word ‘or­na­ment’ and thoughts of pot horses and fig­urines en­ter my head. How­ever, or­na­ments, trin­kets, what­ever you want to call them, are care­fully cu­rated in­te­rior trea­sures you cher­ish. They may re­mind you of a fam­ily mem­ber, a favourite hol­i­day des­ti­na­tion or even a ca­reer you once loved. And while you might be tempted to hide them away, wor­ried they won’t fit into your new aes­thetic, em­brace them. Adding per­son­al­ity to your home is never wrong. Find new ways to use them. For­get the tra­di­tional, round the fire­place mantra, and pop your favourite pieces in the bath­room, place them un­der a glass cloche or use as a book­end.

FLORAL DANCE

House plants are en­joy­ing a mas­sive resur­gence, with home­own­ers not just lov­ing the botan­i­cal breezi­ness they bring to the home but their calm­ing pow­ers. As we fast ap­proach sum­mer, this trend will not only con­tinue but will evolve with fresh blooms be­ing brought into the mix. Whether you choose a shop-bought bunch or a hand-se­lected pick from your lo­cal flower mar­ket, be sure to show them off to their full po­ten­tial in a strik­ing vase. Choose wisely and the vase will look great as a stand­alone fea­ture, even when the blooms have been shipped out to the com­post heap.

Les­ley Tay­lor is the au­thor of 10 in­te­rior de­sign books and has ap­peared on a range of net­work TV shows, in­clud­ing This Morn­ing, giv­ing in­spi­ra­tional advice on home styling. For more in­for­ma­tion on her work, head to les­ley­tay­lor.co.uk

Can­dles will not only bring fra­grance to the home but a sense of am­bi­ence too

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