Ciara Jordan of Dublin-based Amour Design shares some expert advice on how to easily and effectively redesign your home...
Veteran tiler Ciara Jordan spent 13 years honing her skills on building sites before setting up her own bathroom design business in 1999. 17 years later, Amour Design?has been transformed into a full-service, luxury design'studio'specialising in plumbing, tiling, carpentry and?electrics, as well as project management.
Having overseen many a top-to-bottom redesign,?Ciara has plenty of sage?advice for anyone contemplating a home makeover...
1. Find yourself a good starting point. If you're planning an entire house the?kitchen is an excellent place to start, most families spend a huge amount of?time in the kitchen.
2. When planning a room, pick one thing that you love and centre the design around that. A piece of fabric or?wallpaper can unfold an entire room.
3. Think practically and in terms of longevity. Don't?use materials that look good for the first six months - make the money that?you are spending matter.?Get good advice on building materials and keep up with the latest products?on the market.
4. Always try and go with good-quality flooring where budget allows, as this will'stand the test of time. Wallpaper and paints are much cheaper to replace?than flooring.
5. Tank and seal all wet areas. You need to think of your pump, cylinder and tank?before thinking about tiles and sanitary ware for bathrooms.
6. Never stick tiles directly onto wood, even if it's marine?plywood. Use a material suitable for tiling such as cement board.
7. When tiling use mould resistant grouts like BAL Microflex. Never?use white grout as it's a disaster for cleaning.
8. Always test paints in large areas. A small patch on the wall is not'sufficient to see the full effect of a colour in a particular room. Light effect paint that looks?great in your friend's house could look completely different in your own.
9. When finishing rooms, be daring with fabrics.?This is where the fun starts. Don't be afraid - it's not life or death; it's only curtains and cushions. Be'sensible with building decisions, but have fun with the finishes.
10. If you need help, get it. Spending your money on project management and'design can save you a lot of'stress on any project you undertake in?your home.
So there you have it! Now skip over to our house tours'section for'some delectable design inspiration...