Brighten up with a brand new look

Scatter cushions, like these made in Sanderson fabrics, can brighten up a plain sofa.
Scatter cushions, like these made in Sanderson fabrics, can brighten up a plain sofa.
Former Great British Bake Off contestant Enwezor Nzegwu takes part in a 24-hour treadmill relay at Portsmouth University Gym to raise money for cystic fibrosis. Fellow participant Dannii Hutchins gives support. 'Picture Ian Hargreaves  (180224-1)

Bake-Off star organises 24-hour charity run at University of Portsmouth

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Refurnishing a room or a house needs planning if you want your home to reflect you and make you feel happy.

If you are embarking on any home furnishings, a top tip is to start a scrapbook.

Give yourself time to think about what you want the room to look like. Put in ‘living room ideas’ or whatever applies as a search topic on the internet and hit ‘images’ .

Alternatively, go to the Channel 4 website or buy magazines. The idea is to find pictures of rooms that you like the look of and are similar to yours in scale. You can then start thinking about what it is you like about these rooms.

Is it the wall colour, the furniture, the curtains, the blinds, the layout? Build a file or scrapbook of images of things you like and then put them together to see if they work. Where possible get samples of fabric and paint and try them out in the intended room to see what the light in that room does to the colour.

Think about scale. If it’s a small room you need smaller furniture and vice versa. Similarly a small mirror or picture on a big wall can look lost.

The furniture and accessories need to be proportionate to the room, with one exception; a big mirror in a small room can add to the sense of space and light.

One large standout piece in a small space can also give the illusion of the space being bigger if it is the main feature piece.

What colour is the room going to be? Dark colours bring a room inwards, light colours help it feel bigger.

Is it a big room that needs to be made to feel more intimate or a small room that needs to feel bigger? If you are opting for a neutral colour scheme consider introducing splashes of colour. Are there tiles in a fireplace or a colour in a picture which could be used as an accent colour that will help to harmonise the room?

A neutral colour scheme can be given so much ‘depth’ by clever use of texture within the room. Silk, wool and velvet scatter cushions can add visual interest to a sofa covered in a plain textured weave. Glass coffee tables on a wooden floor and a leather chair work well together, as do metal chairs with a wooden table.

Create focal points. A piece of art, window treatments in beautiful fabrics, an interesting chair, an assortment of interesting scatter cushions can all create focal points in a room which can stop it from being bland and utilitarian.

Try not to make the television on the wall the only focal point in the room.

Make the ordinary extraordinary. Investing in stunning scatter cushions or making Roman blinds in a gorgeous fabric can be cost-effective ways of making an ordinary sofa come alive or creating a focal point at a window.

Adding beads or velvet piping to scatter cushions or the edge of a pelmet can transform your furnishings from plain to beautiful.

Particularly in your

living room, think about lighting all the dark areas of your room to create a warm cosy glow around you.

· Simone and business partner Jane Patterson run The Interior Trading Co . Southsea,