8 Ways to Create a Happier and Healthier Home

create a happier and healthier home

Healthy home, healthy life!

In the great pantheon of wellness trends, the home is strangely neglected. There are diet crazes and fitness hacks aplenty – but outside the occasional tidying fad, the home is merely a vessel, a framework in which other lifestyle regimes take centre stage.

Given that we often spend more time at home than anywhere else, this might be a little unfair.

Wellness, like most things, begins at home, after all. Here’s how to make sure that’s a good thing…

create a happier and healthier home

1. House plants

You don’t need actual woodland for forest bathing, not when there are snake plants, peace lilies and aloe veras to turn your home into a mini-greenhouse. Study after study has shown that exposure to greenery reduces stress, helps lower blood pressure and stimulates the senses.

So shrub up to calm down – from a simple cactus on the window sill, to a miniature jungle of domestic palms and pines.

create a happier and healthier home

2. Maximise natural light

Like plants, natural light is inherently invigorating and reinforces the circadian rhythms that impact our mood and sleep cycles. Just think of the hefty price hike tagged to south-facing homes, the all-glass exteriors of modern office blocks – or the sinister, claustrophobic feel of a dimly-lit basement.

Aside from the obvious (open your curtains), make sure there’s no furniture blocking your windows’ line of sight, using off-white or cream colour schemes to cultivate a lighter feel, and putting up strategically placed mirrors to send light bouncing round the room.

create a happier and healthier home

3. Declutter

They say cleanliness is next to godliness, and, though we’re not suggesting a full-scale Kondo-esque purge, a clear environment can be an aid to a clear mind. Your home is supposed to be where you recharge, and if you’re never able to find things, pressured by a pile of unopened mail, or in fear of accidentally standing on your laptop, it may be a source of stress in itself.

Time to put your ‘floor-drobe’ back into the wardrobe, and we don’t mean by just shoving it all under the bed.

create a happier and healthier home

4. Address your sleep

Poor sleep pas been linked with everything from low mood and fatigue, to shortened life expectancy in the longer term, so creating a conducive sleep environment is an essential step for a healthy home.

Make sure summer nights aren’t cut short by leaky curtains (invest in blackout linings if required), use ear plugs to cut out street noise, and dust the area around your bed. If you always sleep better in hotels, there may be a problem with your bedding, and low-quality mattresses can cause stiffness and back pain as well as disturbed sleep. It’s easy to undervalue sleep but the more priority you give to time spent in slumber, the more productive and energised you’ll be during the day.

create a happier and healthier home

5. Invest in an air purifier

Once derided as noisy and unsightly, thanks mostly to a particularly pointed episode of Friends, demand for purifiers is now rising steadily year on year and modern models are sleek, stylish and near-silent.

Exhaust fumes, chimney smoke and particulate emissions are just another part of urban life, and purifiers are here to help.

create a happier and healthier home

6. Create a designated work space

Some 1.54 million Brits now work from home in their primary occupation (millions more do so intermittently), and it’s wise to resist the temptation to work at the kitchen table in your pyjamas.

It’s hard to maintain a work-life balance when they operate in the same space, so dedicate a work area that allows you to ‘go to work’ in the morning and leave at the end of the day. Posture is paramount, so invest in an ergonomic chair as a minimum. You might even consider the benefits of a standing desk.

create a happier and healthier home

7. Get a pet

You don’t need an ’emotional support animal’ to get emotional support from an animal, and this is another lifestyle choice with the weight of science behind it. Among a whole raft of benefits, pets have been shown to increase life expectancy, substantially slash stress, and even decrease physical pain.

We hope it goes without saying that you should only opt for an animal if you’re fully willing and able to shoulder the responsibility and costs of care.

create a happier and healthier home

8. Don’t worry, be happy

It’s easy to obsess over the ‘shoulds’ and ‘shouldn’ts’ of your home, and end up neglecting what you actually want. Adding value to your home, tapping into fashionable aesthetics – it’s all well and good if it aligns with your tastes, but most homes must be residences first and investments second.

Home is where the heart is, and there’s no point crafting a masterpiece of modern minimalism if what you’d really like is a large, squashy sofa.

10 On-Trend Ways to Transform your Home in 2020

on trend home 2020

Glamour, fun and feathers all feature in this year's hottest looks - but first and foremost, individual style rules.

If you want your interiors to look fashionable and Instagrammable, then you need to know what’s hot for the home this year.

There’s full-on colour, as well as more pared-back looks with natural materials (rattan’s ruling currently), alongside some key must-haves – love seats, dressing tables, and glamorous headboards. In other words, plenty of trends and stylish items to choose from.

But what’s emerging most strongly is that this decade, there’s no need to follow the crowd.

Trends should be followed selectively rather than religiously. A successful home is where your taste rules (we’re all becoming much more informed and confident about expressing it, thanks to inspiration-filled sites like Instagram and Pinterest).

We’ve chosen some best buys (including high-street bargains) and brilliant looks to help you create your own perfect, personally-tailored space….

on trend home 2020

1. Feel the love

We’re embracing curves and cushioning in seating, as we hanker after homes which cosset and comfort us, and the love seat has become a must-have.

“Love seats are the ultimate giant armchair for those who love to stretch out and get comfy, or if you’re feeling romantic you can snuggle up together,” says Claire Wilks, from the Sofa.com design team.

“They’re also a great space-saving size for those who are tight on room. Velvet, so practical now with protective finishes, are one of the most popular upholstery choices and they ramp up the luxe effect. “

on trend home 2020

2. Turn to table-scaping

Table-scaping is the new on-trend description for creatively decorating tables. So stand down your boring workaday china and go all out with fancy cutlery, table linen and snazzy plates. It’s all about dressing to impress. For inspiration, trying searching #tabledecor and #tablesetting on Instagram.

3. Rule with ribbing

Grooved, ribbed textures are riding high this year, and the effect can be seen in upholstery, wood, and glass. We love this stripe-effect, ribbed cabinet.

4. Explore wild style

If you’re over that hot, steamy jungle look – all palm prints and tropical colours – the latest, more pared-back desert look could be just for you.

Bold tribal prints, an earthy palette, natural materials and vibrant animal prints are combined in the new George Home collection, which is so well-priced you can afford to experiment. But beware: it could inspire some serious summer wanderlust…

on trend home 2020

6. Pamper and pose

Special stand-out pieces make a room. Think cocktail cabinets which add glamour as well as holding all those drinks and glasses. Dressing tables are now vying for attention too – there’s a brilliant array of slim, handsome examples suitable for compact rooms. And by clearing all that cosmetic clutter, you’ll be well on your way to a peaceful space.

7. Let your heart rule your head

“Just as fashion trends have shifted to celebrate individuality and personal style, so have interiors,” says Lucy St George, co-founder of uber cool interiors destination, Rockett St George.

“I’m always a fan of throwing away the rule book – taste is often overrated – and I believe if you love it and it makes you smile, then it deserves to be celebrated in your room.”

Take inspiration from trends and the world around you, she says, but always make your home a reflection of you and what you like. “Go to town with all your favourite things and curate displays around your home that express your individuality – so that ‘you do you’!”

on trend home 2020

8. Go green or go home

The colour – and its association with eco-friendly living – has been strong for a while and shows no sign of waning. A wall painted in a deep shade of green will ground a space, and other vibrant colours for furniture and accessories will ‘pop’.

John Lewis’ ‘Eclectics’ theme for spring/summer is a stylish blend of zingy colour and stand-out designs. Inject punchy shades with contemporary wall prints, jewel-colour lamps and cushions.

If you’re feeling flush, invest in an elegant Refine 3 Seater Sofa in a glowing Elegant Velvet Mustard, £1,299, and a Lounge Chair in a brilliant pink, blue and orange Ampana Print, £499, both John Lewis.

9. Go for gold

How to instantly add character to a room? A couple of stand-out pieces featuring that winning metallic shimmer should do the trick.

10. Bring Eastern drama to the boudoir

Staying home is the new going out, and JOMO (the ‘joy of missing out’) is a buzzword – which means spaces need spoiling with luxury touches and details.

“We’re predicting a rise in Eastern influences across interiors this year,” says Jane Rockett. “Inspired by increased global travel and our adventures around the world, trends are set to celebrate unique pieces collected or inspired by past travels, that bring back memories and create a unique and personal interior.”

The style-aware should look out for decadent dark wood, woven cane textures, oriental prints and structure furniture, adds Rockett.

10 Ways to use Classic Blue – Pantone’s 2020 Colour of the Year

classic blue colour of the year

Rich, deep and oh-so soothing, blues certainly won't be banished this season. Gabrielle Fagan shows how to add a splash of Classic Blue.

Big up the blues at home this year, if you want to be on trend. Pantone, the global authority on colour, has declared ‘Classic Blue’ its Colour of the Year for 2020, which it describes as a “timeless and enduring hue”, and “elegant in its simplicity”.

This bold but calming deep cobalt ushers in a fresh decade on the colour charts, and you’ll definitely be seeing it everywhere as designers and decor companies rush to get on board with blues.

It’s a complete contrast to last year’s choice – a peachy ‘Living Coral’ – but, in reaction to the turbulent times we’ve been living in, this year’s shade is apparently designed to bring “a sense of peace and tranquillity to the human spirit, offering refuge”.

Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of Pantone Color Institute, who says the shade is “suggestive of a sky at dusk”, explains: “We are living in a time that requires trust and faith.

“It is this kind of constancy and confidence that is expressed by Pantone 19-4052 Classic Blue, a solid and dependable blue hue we can always rely on.”

We’ve found 10 ways to give your home a beautiful blue injection, to take it from dull to dazzling in 2020 and beyond…

classic blue colour of the year

1. Splash out on a statement seat

“The popularity of blue is down to its versatility. Blues are easy to live with and simple to pair with other colours,” says Charlie Marshall, founder of furniture company, Loaf. “Plus they don’t really ever go out of style, unlike some bolder, fleeting of-the-moment shades.

“If you want to make a real statement, then a sofa or love seat in a blue fabric will add real wow-factor to a sitting room.”

If you’re baffled by blues and its many hues, Marshall advises checking out blue interiors on Pinterest and Instagram. “It will help inspire you and show you how the colour works,” he adds. “Experiment first, before you invest in a large item, by updating inexpensive, smaller accessories like cushions and throws, or introducing an artwork that features a blue palette.”

classic blue colour of the year

2. Take flight with blue

“Classic Blue is a strong, honest colour that gives you a feeling of being anchored when you look at it,” declares Anna Jacobs, one of many designers inspired by this year’s blue palette.

“There’s nothing frivolous about blue,” she adds. “This timeless colour will outlast through multiple trends. It also makes a fantastic base colour for many colour schemes, as it will support and enhance bright colours, while enlivening neutrals.”

classic blue colour of the year

3. Go grand with majestic blue

Bold decorative designs in rich dark blues will add a touch of grandeur that could turn your home into a little palace. “Although it may be considered a bold choice for walls, Classic Blue is surprisingly versatile,” points out Alex Whitecroft, head of design at I Want Wallpaper.

“It can be styled in many ways to achieve different looks. Deeper shades of blue can look regal, so add a splash of opulence to your living space with a quirky feature wall, such as one papered with a Rasch Portfolio Peacock Print.”

Alternatively, for a contemporary vibe, he advises geometric prints with metallic detailing.

classic blue colour of the year

4. Think blue & take two

Splashing out on the home, particularly after Christmas, may not be on the agenda – but you can easily add a fashionable dash of blue by styling up with a couple of affordable accessories.

Give a sofa a smart, new look with a cosy throw, and invest in that most useful of occasional seats – a plush pouffe.

classic blue colour of the year

5. Dream in blue

Colour blocking is another chic way to introduce Classic Blue while creating visual interest, enthuses Rebecca Snowden, interiors style adviser, Furniture Choice.

“Painting a blue band on the lower half of a wall, and having the upper half ivory or white, is super effective” she says. “Take the colour up to less than half the height of the room and paint the larger proportion in ivory or white. This will make the wall appear higher and is ideal for making smaller, low-ceiling rooms look airy and more spacious.”

Blues are perfect for rocking a coastal vibe, she points out. To channel this look, Snowden suggests pairing the shade with light wood and natural materials like rattan or jute, and completing the effect with sea-inspired artwork.

classic blue colour of the year

6. Feast on blue

A deep blue tone brings a summer vibe to any room, which is calming, relaxing and ideal for an eating area.

Combine fresh white and blue with a pared-back contemporary interior, free of clutter, and let the colour sing in the space.

classic blue colour of the year

7. Transform a tabletop

A successful table setting is one which is a visual feast for the eyes, but doesn’t compete or clash with colourful food, allowing the meal to star.

Serve up delicious shades of cool blue in tableware and contrast with a pure white tablecloth, or for a more rustic feel, display on a richly grained wooden table.

classic blue colour of the year

8. Guarantee a blue skies outlook

Add drama and luxury to a room by dressing windows with new curtains in a deep blue shade, reminiscent of velvety blue skies.

“It’s amazing how blue can transform a home, and a sophisticated, deep, dark blue for curtains and Roman blinds will not only be dramatic and striking but will ramp up a feeling of cossetting comfort,” says Susan White, group marketing director for blinds and shutters specialists, Hillarys.

Their Onyx Magma curtain and Roman blind range, in a blue-toned marble effect print, starts from £276, Hillarys.

classic blue colour of the year

9. Make an open & shut case

“Brightly coloured shutters make for a fantastic alternative to a feature wall,” says Chrissie Harper, customer experience manager at California Shutters.

“Full height or solid shutters work particularly well painted in a bold shade, instantly creating a major statement. Classic Blue is striking but not anchored to a season, so the shade will make your home feel cosy during the colder months but bright and open when days are lighter and longer,” she adds.

The company has a colour-matching service, which gives you the option to match your shutters to your wall so you can achieve an impressive all-over look for a room.

classic blue colour of the year

10. Quick step into blues

Interior designers always plan the floor before the walls, because they know the impact it can have on a space. Carpet or flooring in a deep, rich hue could lead your scheme and make your wall colour choice easy, as it should merely complement the floor.

“Carefully considered flooring is the perfect way to introduce blue in a subtle yet stylish way,” says Anna Del-Molino, buyer at Carpetright.

“Using a deep shade of blue on floors, curtains and walls adds depth and interest to a space. To keep the shade from overwhelming your room, complement with pops of softer colours, such as dusky pink, grey, or rich oranges, and reflect the light with gleaming metallics.”

5 Clever Time-Saving Tips for Busy Gardeners

garden tips to save time

Back to work? So when are you going to find time to get all those gardening jobs done to make sure your plot looks pretty?

garden tips to save time

Well, you can save hours later on in the year by making a few changes now to give you that time back when you most need it.

Here are five ideas to give you a head start on maintaining your garden when others will be digging, mowing, watering and weeding every chance they get…

garden tips to save time

1. Use permanent plantings in containers

Plant containers with evergreens, shrubs or perennials that will come back year after year, to save time having to replant annuals with every change of season.

Lavender is a good stalwart, or you could also choose patio roses, which make a good low-maintenance alternative to summer bedding, with a long flowering season. Plant them in a big enough container and they can stay there for several years.

garden tips to save time

2. Consider automatic irrigation

Installing an automatic watering system in your garden will save you hours in the summer months. You can introduce seep hoses into borders and subtle irrigation systems to take care of patio plants.

It may involve some effort initially to get to grips with the timers and securing the hoses where you want them, but it will be worth the effort. Some systems have sensors that are placed in the soil, which can assess how dry it is and adjust watering accordingly.

garden tips to save time

3. Stop weeds before they start

You can save hours of weeding by spreading a thick mulch over your beds and borders, which not only suppresses weeds but will also help retain moisture. Loose mulches such as cocoa shells and compost will provide nutrients to the soil, while bark chippings and gravel will be long-lasting.

Mulches should really be applied annually and should be at least 5cm (2in) thick to be effective. If you’re a busy gardener, a thicker mulch of 7.5cm (3in) of good quality bark chippings should last up to three years, and can be applied at any time, although it’s better to mulch in late spring when the soil is moist and warm but before the weeds emerge.

garden tips to save time

4. Create no-dig vegetable beds

Save time in the long-run by making a no-dig raised bed with room to walk in-between. The soil won’t become compacted because no-one will be walking on it and will negate the need to dig. Make each bed between 1-1.5m (3-5ft) wide, so you can reach to the centre from the path.

The depth of the raised bed depends on which crops you are growing, so if it’s root vegetables you will need to make it deeper, while shallow-rooted crops such as lettuces will thrive in shallower beds.

garden tips to save time

5. Go for a natural lawn

Keeping a lawn looking pristine can be extremely time-consuming, as annual jobs include removing moss and thatch, reseeding bare patches, feeding, getting rid of lumps and bumps and regular mowing during the growing season. So, go for something that will take up less time.

Create a clover lawn for a longer, more natural look. It will need much less maintenance than a grass lawn, needs no feeding and only has to be mown once to remove dead flowerheads. Clover is also a magnet for bees.

Alternatively, go for a herb lawn with a mixture of creeping thymes or non-flowering chamomile, although these won’t stand hard wear, so you may need to cut a path if you’re going to walk through your herb lawn regularly.

10 Ways to Make the Most of Your Money in 2020

money 2020

Brushing up your money habits this month could make a big difference to your finances in 2020 and beyond.

money 2020

The new year often means a fresh start – and for some, 2020 could mean turning over a new leaf when it comes to their finances. But don’t be put off by the idea of having to grapple with big numbers, as large gestures aren’t always what’s needed.

You may find small actions taken now could go a long way towards improving your financial prospects, whether it’s cutting down on daily treats or trying out online tools to help you manage your money better.

“In 2020, investing a little more time managing our money could be the best investment we make,” says Alistair McQueen, head of savings and retirement at Aviva.

Here, he shares 10 top tips for better money management in 2020…

money 2020

1. Don’t just focus on your big financial commitments – small ones can also add up

For example, did you know that over a working life of 40 years, we could spend more than £25,000 on daily coffees? Reducing this to one takeaway coffee every other day could save more than £10,000.

In 2020, it would be a good idea to think about where you spend your money and what little savings could be made.

2. Make the most of free help

Many of us are not confident when it comes to managing our money – but there are many free services to help us along the way, such as the independent Money Advice Service website.

3. Shop around

Many people don’t shop around when making financial decisions. This could be costly. A different bank account, a different pension, or a different mortgage could save you a lot of money.

money 2020

4. Understand your state pension

The state pension represents the biggest source of income for most people in retirement. But it is also complicated. In 2020, it would be a good idea to get a free state pension forecast from the government to understand how much state pension you could be entitled to, and from when. More information is available at gov.uk/check-state-pension.

5. Take control of your workplace pension

Record numbers of people have been saving into private workplace pensions. This can make a big difference to your retirement wellbeing. In 2020, it would be a good idea to understand your workplace pension, to ensure you are maximising the benefits.

6. Hunt down lost savings

It’s been estimated that more than £20 billion of people’s private pension money could have been misplaced over the years. In 2020, you could use the Government’s free pension tracing service to track down any pensions you may have lost. Go to gov.uk/find-pension-contact-details.

money 2020

7. Use your retirement freedoms

This year marks five years since the freedoms launched. More than one million people have since taken advantage, seizing greater private pension flexibility from age 55. If you are aged over-50, the Government’s free Pension Wise Service (pensionwise.gov.uk/en) can help you understand your options.

8. Make the most of online tools to help you manage your money

Many banks and pension and investment providers offer free online services to help you make the most of your money, whenever and wherever you want.

9. Keep calm during volatility

Continuing economic and political uncertainty may cause investment volatility in the year ahead. In 2020, it would be a good idea to ease your nerves by reminding yourself that the value of your investments can go up as well as down, and many investments are designed for the long term. Try to avoid short-term panic.

10. Keep fit

Last year saw the number of people in work over the age of 50 reach a record 10 million. Working longer is a very powerful way of paying for our longer lives in retirement. Keeping fit and healthy will help us do this.

money 2020

Highly Individual Newly Crafted House Conversion £450,000

Plot 1 Castlebridge header image

As the centrepiece of the new T A Fisher Castlebrook development, they have converted the Edwardian and spacious Jolly Miller village pub into four beautiful and very different new homes with all the passion and care they are renowned for.

This lovely building has a wonderful heritage. It was designed by architect Arthur J Steadman, who was commissioned by Alton -based brewery Crowley’s in 1908. So successful was his distinctive design it was replicated in a number of hostelries across north Hampshire. Sadly, although many survive none are today used as pubs.  However, every improvement we’ve made has been in keeping with Arthur’s original vision, the character of this spacious and unique building and its colourful history.

So behind the carefully restored and characterful facade, you’ll discover every conceivable contemporary convenience and the high-quality specification you expect to make the very most of today’s busy lifestyles.

When you deserve something special

If you’re seeking a different two-double bedroomed home with en-suite, integrated wardrobes and so much more, look no further than this stylish conversion.

From its own entrance hall, open plan living/dining room and fully integrated kitchen to the family bathroom and ever-handy downstairs cloakroom, this property has it all.

The living space is greatly enhanced by the French doors from the living room to the rear garden, which really help to bring the great outdoors in.

We think it’s perfect for the downsizers or professional couples who like to entertain and would love a home that’s just that little more special.

floor plans plot one Castlebrook McCarthy Holden estate agency

Take a look at the download brochure to see floor plans and specification.

To arrange to view 5 Castlebrook, and the show house at 6 Castlebrook early in the New Year telephone our Odiham branch on 01256 704851

Next re-open days for McCarthy Holden after Christmas are Friday 27th and Saturday 28th (both 10-2)

New Homes For Sale Boxing Day

Plot 5 Castlebridge Header Image

T A Fisher will be releasing for sale two new properties at Castlebrook, their small quality development in North Warnborough, near Odiham in Hampshire.

Number 5 Castlebrook will be selling at a guide of £540,000 and we are delighted to provide this news item early.

5 Casltebrook - For sale at £540,000

There are only 11 homes being created at Castlebrook, and at our 23rd November preview event plots 6 and 11 were reserved, so a flying start and the sale of these fine properties which haven’t yet been seen on property portals such as Rightmove.

5 Castlebrook is an end-terraced house, providing around 1,200 sq. ft. of space. The floor plans are shown below and the master bedroom with en-suite shower room and dressing room is an outstanding feature.

floor plans 5 6 and 7 Castlebrook

The above video tour will tell you about the area and showcase plot 6, a mid-terrace house providing around 1,200 sq ft of superb space. We think you’ll be impressed.

Architectural Detail

We have been impressed with many aspects of the T A Fisher new homes, and we were most impressed with the architectural detail of the terraced properties plots 5, 6 and 7. Some of the eye catching features are shown below – 1. Distinctive plinth brick course. 2. The soldier course brick detail to window surround 3. The elegant front doors 4. The substantial porch 4. The wealth of attractive tile hanging to the front and side elevations.

Such attention to detail and styling is to be applauded.

Castlebrook site plan McCarthy Holden estate agents

5 Castlebrook will be available from Boxing Day, and you can take a look at a download pdf brochure.

To arrange to view 5 Castlebrook, and the show house at 6 Castlebrrok early in the New Year telephone our Odiham branch on 01256 704851.

Next re-open days for McCarthy Holden after Christmas are Friday 27th and Saturday 28th (both 10-2)

Property Lifestyle and Boxing Day Event

Boxing Day property event McCarthy Holden estate agents

Find out about the next big property event on Boxing Day, an take a look at our Pre-Christmas edition of the magazine In The Country & Town, which sets out to showcase some of the most exquisite homes, as well as deliver engaging editorial content and of course comment on the house market.

In addition to some amazing properties, our editorial features includes Cocktails at Downton, Go Anywhere with Land Rover and the new film release The Aeronauts.

Just click on the image below to open a new tab and view the magazine page by page and indulge in some wonderful online reading.

Click the above image to view the full magazine

There are some fabulous properties being showcased in this magazine, in areas such as The Ridges Finchampstead and the Wentworth Estate in Virginia Water

Also of note is a £1.315m. guided Georgian Farmhouse and a £660,000 guided elegant town house in Winchfield, Hampshire.

Our new homes feature runs from page 32 to page 48, and is full of amazing new homes from diverse and individual developers, with prices from around £450,000 to £1.850m.

It’s been nearly five years since The Theory Of Everything co-stars Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones appeared on screen together – and now they’re teaming up once again for biographical adventure, The Aeronauts.

The epic – directed by Tom Harper and co-written by Harper and Jack Thorne – tells the tale of two high-flying balloonists, pioneering meteorologist James Glaisher and daredevil pilot Amelia Wren, united in a record-breaking voyage in Victorian England. And nothing says ‘reunion’ quite like filming 70% of your scenes in a confined basket, reveals the British duo.

The Official Downton Abbey Cocktail Book celebrates this sumptuous costume drama and golden age of mixed drinks.

As fans of Downton will know, the Crawleys’ love of cocktails is well storied. But it wasn’t until season two and three – when Robert asks his mother, Violet: “Can I tempt you to one of these new cocktails?” – that the family adopts the 1920s American customs of an aperitif before dinner, and hosting cocktail parties at home. Now, the Downton Abbey Cocktail Book means viewers can recreate these tipples at their own soirees.

Embracing the adventurous spirit that has defined the Discovery family for the past 30 years, the new Discovery Sport is a striking evolution of the original that does not compromise capability……. new electrified engines include a 48-volt mild hybrid from launch to help reduce emissions and fuel consumption.

If you are planning a house sale or let and would like your property showcased in the New Year edition of In The Country & Town, contact your nearest McCarthy Holden branch and ask for details.

The Next Big Property Event - Boxing Day

Boxing Day property event McCarthy Holden estate agents

Boxing Day – The Perfect Time To Put a House Up For Sale!

According to Rightmove there is a massive spike in online buyer search traffic, between Boxing Day and early January, suggesting an uplift in house buyer searches online on Boxing Day. This is why McCarthy Holden are offering a special incentive to join the next big event in property, the Boxing Day Go Event.

During November and December all a would-be house seller has to do is instruct McCarthy Holden to offer their property for sale from Boxing Day.

You can indulge in all of the traditional Boxing Day activities, happy in the knowledge that house buyers are tapping on mobile devices searching for the right property and, who knows, your house could be top of their list for viewing in the New Year.

Many of our clients have already asked to go live on the Boxing Day Go property launch, so if you are contemplating a house move in 2020 then go to our home page and click on valuation, for a free property appraisal and discover the benefits of being part of the no sale no fee and no obligation Boxing Day Go property event.

Full Time Career Opportunities In Estate Agency

career icon photo at mccarthy holden

Start a new career as a property negotiator / property consultant in 2020, by joining McCarthy Holden at either their Fleet or Hartley Wintney branches in Hampshire.

Positions are available at both of these branches, for either individuals already working in estate agency as an experienced negotiator, or for individuals who are currently in a career sector such as the service industry.

If you are an estate agency negotiation with around two years experience we would welcome the opportunity to meet you and explore the career opportunities at McCarthy Holden. We find negotiators who join us with this kind of experience stay with us, many now for 10 to 20 years so we hope this indicates that the real skill of negotiating is something that is highly valued, as opposed to relying on algorithms and online property portals.

For those of you not currently working in estate agency, the refreshing news is that some of our most successful property consultants moved from careers such in the hospitality, retail and wider services business sectors. A couple of examples are shown below.

Victoria at McCarthy Holden estate agents
Victoria - Fleet branch

Victoria joined McCarthy Holden in 2010, when she left a career in the hospitality industry. She has forged a very successful career at McCarthy Holden and is highly respected by customers and colleagues alike.

Matthew at McCarthy Holden estate agents
Matthew - Fleet branch

Matthew left British Rail in 2015, to pursue a negotiating and client management career at McCarthy Holden. His career in estate agency is now firmly established and just like Victoria he is much respected by customers and colleagues.

We are looking for people with a healthy work ethic, who in return for high property sales performance will bring high salary rewards, and yes there are long working days, with frequent out of hours needs of customers to be dealth with.

At McCarthy Holden we won’t crush your spirit with targets for selling financial services, but instead allow you to care for obtaining the best possible price for our vendors by applying negotiating skills and following though with managing the sale process from start to finish.

Every day will be varied and different, but one thing that will not change is our desire to deliver our services with traditional values of trust, honesty and respect for our customers and colleagues. These values are very important, so only candidates that who can truly deliver on these essential traits should apply.

Excellent communications skills are essential.

Because we are looking for both experiences and career change candidates, the salary / rewards scales are varied so please apply in the knowledge that we aim to match or exceed the market levels in the area of salary rewards.

email sholden@mccarthyholden.co.uk with your cv to apply

6 Ways to Prevent Condensation in Your Home

prevent condensation in your home

Lisa Salmon speaks to a property expert to find out the best ways to avoid the moisture menace which can lead to damp.

Condensation is something none of us want in our homes, as it’s the most common cause of damp problems.

It’s actually a very common issue, affecting one in five homes – and it can be found in properties of any age, size or design. It occurs when humid warm air comes into contact with a cold surface. Warm air can hold a lot more water vapour than cold air, so when it’s rapidly cooled by a cold surface, it can quickly form into the water droplets typical of condensation. Everyday activities, such as cooking, boiling the kettle, using hot water in the shower or bath, or drying clothes inside, can contribute to condensation forming inside a property.

Richard Walker, national technical and development manager at property preservation experts Peter Cox (petercox.com), explains: “Condensation is the visible consequence of the production of moisture within a building, and most commonly occurs between October and April. On average, a family of four produces 14 litres (24 pints) of water vapour each day, so keeping a house correctly heated and well ventilated is an important part of preventing condensation. If left unaddressed, mould and damp can also begin to form, which is not only unsightly, but may create health risks for the occupants.”

Here, Walker suggests six ways to help address a condensation issue, but points out that if it persists or deteriorates despite trying everything, homeowners should consider contacting an accredited surveyor to investigate the cause and suggest a solution.

prevent condensation in your home

1. Ventilate your house

Where possible, ventilate the house to let the build-up of water vapour escape, particularly if you’re drying clothing indoors. If you have double glazing, then keep the trickle vents open. When cooking or boiling a kettle in the kitchen, or using hot water in the bathroom, close the doors and put the extractor fan on to prevent the moisture from escaping to colder rooms and collecting on the walls.

2. Consistent central heating

When you turn the central heating on, heat the whole property on a low heat, rather than leaving some rooms cooler and susceptible to condensation. ‘Yo-yo’ heating doesn’t warm the fabric of the building and unnecessarily increases the risk of condensation forming.

3. Avoid dehumidifiers

Despite their popularity, dehumidifiers merely mask the condensation problem and don’t address the real cause. They can require frequent emptying and will stop once the collector unit is full. Moreover, they’re noisy and can be costly to buy and run.

4. Don’t let condensation settle

If you spot condensation forming in the home, it’s always advisable to wipe damp surfaces down, rather than letting it settle. Remember to wring the cloth out in a sink, rather than letting it dry in the room. When condensation is allowed to settle on a surface for more than six hours, it creates the conditions for mould to form, which in some cases, can damage surfaces by staining.

5. Regular maintenance and expert advice

Regular maintenance is key to preventing ongoing issues. Identify any problem areas as they occur and seek professional advice to address them immediately. Every case is different, and property care specialists are trained to evaluate the specific causes of condensation issues and advise homeowners on how to prevent any reoccurrence.

6. Consider installing a Positive Input Ventilation system

Positive Input Ventilation (PIV) units are sophisticated ventilation and condensation control units to aerate entire homes. Property surveyors may recommend the installation of a PIV system to help to ventilate a building, by diluting and displacing any damp air. From installation, the unit gently ventilates the home with fresh air, which is pushed back down into the house and redistributed. Such systems tend to cost around £250-£400.

Want to Measure Up in the Style Stakes? 10 Ways to Embrace this Season’s Geometric Trend

geometric styling

Gabrielle Fagan reveals simple ways to do the decor maths and ensure your rooms have all the right angles.

geometric styling

Shape up if you want stylish rooms this Autumn. Geometrics are figuring on designs for everything from wallpaper to carpets right now, and set to be the most fashionable way of bringing pattern into rooms this season.

You can be playful and introduce bold and stimulating colourful shapes – take your pick from triangles to eight-sided octagons – or keep it elegant, with just a few touches sporting the barest hint of the pattern.

“Geometric pattern came to prominence in the 1920s and became synonymous with the Art Deco movement,” explains Tom White, design director, Parker Knoll. “In a decade renowned for its opulent and sophisticated style, geometrics challenged traditional design, with sleek and elegant motifs which came to symbolise wealth and status.”

Now they’re back, thanks to our renewed passion for pattern and more decoration in our homes. “Geometrics boast a breadth of choice in shape, colour and scale, so can be adapted to suit a vast range of tastes and styles,” promises White.

Here’s 10 ways to do your decor sums and ensure your home measures up in the style stakes…

geometric styling

1. Check out all the angles

“For me, geometric shapes will always have a universal and timeless appeal,” enthuses Martha Coates, surface and pattern designer for Habitat.

“I don’t think they’ve ever really gone out of fashion, as many pattern stories tend to do,” she points out. “I love that the geometric designs created and popularised over 100 years ago by the iconic Bauhaus movement still feel relevant in our modern interiors. They sit seamlessly alongside the contemporary and colourful designs in our ranges.”

Coates pays tribute to the versatility of geometric pattern. “Minimalist, contemporary and familiar in their structure, they’ll complement existing lines and shapes within the architecture of practically any room,” she says. “Their structured balance will allow you the freedom to be braver with colour and texture.”

geometric styling

2. Divide and rule on the wall

Get creative and paint your own geometric shapes on a wall. Simply stick strips of masking tape to the surface to create triangle, trapezoid and rhombus shapes (look them up if that’s already confused you!).

The more tape you crisscross, the more shapes you’ll create. If you paint the entire wall with the tape in place, you’ll have stripes between the shapes when you remove the tape.

If that feels too brain-bending, Wallsauce has a brilliant selection of made-to-measure geometric-style wall murals, ranging from in-your-face colourful to the more subtle, starting from £32 per square metre.

geometric styling

3. Make a party point

Join the geometrics party by investing in an Art Deco-style drinks trolley or drinks cabinet. Both items have enjoyed a revival in homeware, as they add a sense of occasion to entertaining. A sound style move.

geometric styling

4. Statement equals style

You don’t have to overdose on this look – just estimate how much you need to add to make an impact and burnish your style credentials. Give one punchy piece some space and a plain backdrop and it will undoubtedly become a star talking point.

geometric styling

5. Measure up with metallics

Pair a classic geometric design with metallics (gold and copper are hot choices) to play the glamour card. This combo won’t just add a winning touch of opulence, but a repeating angular pattern is easy on the eye and helps create a visual sense of order. The effect is particularly good for spaces where we want to rest and relax, like a bedroom or chill-out lounge.

One word of advice: Make sure the size of the pattern you choose works with the size of the room. Generally, large-scale patterns are more suited to big expanses of wall, so you have the room to stand back and appreciate their impact. Smaller repeating patterns suit smaller walls.

The only exception is if you opt for a statement wall of pattern, where you could be bolder and size up. For inspiration, take a look the super range of geometric papers, including Prism Geometric Wallpaper, £15.99 a roll, at Cult Furniture.

geometric styling

6. Break the rules

Sometimes, you can throw caution to the wind, ignore the ‘less is more rule’ and indulge in a pattern-fest. Just make sure you balance more decorative geometric repeating patterns with other simpler designs. This will prevent the whole effect from being overpowering, and punchy injections of colour (we’re big fans of pink and green right now) are all that’s needed to make a scheme sing.

Another way of approaching this look is sticking to a colour palette of no more than two shades, which will allow the detail to shine.

geometric styling

7. Step up to the style

Style alert: Back away from the bland! A striking geometric carpet runner can transform a staircase into an eye-catching feature. Playing up the angles with an above-the-skirting stripe in a complementary shade is a master stroke in this hallway.

geometric styling

8. Pattern to the power of two

“Boasting timeless allure and contemporary flair, geometric designs work well in period and modern homes alike,” says Parker Knoll’s Tom White. “For those looking to emulate the exciting and influential 1920s – the inspiration for the look – pair geometric patterns with luxurious gold accents, rich tones and spherical accessories.”

geometric styling

9. Make it monochrome

“Typically considered an intimidating option, a bold geometric floor can add an element of design to a space and is a surprisingly versatile option,” says Anna Del-Molino, buyer, Carpetright.

“Before selecting your style, take into consideration the size of your space, alongside the colours and scales that will work within it. A larger print, in muted shades, is often better suited to smaller rooms, as intricate patterns can feel too busy in compact areas.

“Larger spaces allow for more experimentation and for a truly daring look, consider a style with multiple colours. Geometric patterns don’t need to be solely linear shapes,” she adds. “Look for florals and patterns which repeat without being too overbearing.”

geometric styling

10. Arty calculation

Make those shapes work on the wall with colourful geometric artwork that will show you know a right-angle from a rhombus.

Want to Turn your Home into a Botanical Bolthole? Here’s how 3 Plant Experts Transformed a Hotel

botanical hotel into your home

As the UK's first 'jungle hotel suites' are opened, Hannah Stephenson finds out how to turn your own living spaces into leafy havens.

Three designers have come together to show how people can create a horticultural haven in their homes, using tropical flora and fauna.

Award-winning biophilic designer and architect Oliver Heath, This Morning’s ‘Mr Plant Geek’ Michael Perry and Nik Southern, creative designer and founder of innovative plant and florist shop Grace & Thorn, have transformed three hotel suites into urban jungles where guests can stay, in an initiative from the The Joy Of Plants (thejoyofplants.co.uk) and Leman Locke hotel in London.

The buzzword is ‘biophilia’ – the technique of incorporating plants and other natural elements in our homes to reconnect with nature. Each of the suites has been adorned with carefully selected houseplants to help boost productivity, ignite passion, and bring peace and tranquillity.

So, what can we do to create our own biophilic design at home?

botanical hotel into your home

Perk up your productive space

Heath has created a productivity suite adorned with Boston ferns, peace lilies and snake plants – all renowned for their productivity-inducing properties.

Feathery-leaved Boston ferns create a natural jungle look and inject instant energy with their powerful air-purifying properties, while snake plants, native to tropical West Africa, produce sword-like foliage bringing a raw edginess to any environment.

Their distinctive leaves are said to provide protective energies to shield negative Chi, while they also have air-purifying properties. Studies have found they can also help remove toxins such as formaldehyde from the environment.

Heath says: “Research suggests that a combination of sheltered spaces, access to nature and species-rich spaces will create the most restorative environment for a stressed individual, so the tucked-away sofa with a lot of plant fringing is the perfect opportunity for relaxation. Boston ferns and dwarf mountain palms introduce lots of natural movement, which has been shown to help us relax and restore focus.”

botanical hotel into your home

Create a cascading canopy in the bedroom

Southern has created a botanical canopy over the bed, in a heady romantic respite. Imagine enjoying the intimacy that will cocoon you and your partner in a lush green blend of cascading plants.

Signature bedroom plants she uses include Anthurium ‘Black Love’ (Anthurium hybrid), a black-to-dark chocolate-flowering variety which is low-maintenance, and Epipremnum ‘Marble Queen’, an easy-care variety with green and white marbled trailing foliage which creates a romantic vibe.

Southern says: “It might seem ambitious to create a canopy in your own home but there are plenty of hacks to make something similar. You could hang a traditional pulley clothes airer to the ceiling and attach plants with vines such as devil’s ivy and strings of hearts to create a dramatic canopy. Make sure you choose the right planters that will prevent water leaking below.”

Alternatively, create a living love seat in her design in your sofa area, using banana plants and rubber tree plants to create a cosy, intimate area in an open-plan room, she suggests.

botanical hotel into your home

Escape to your urban jungle spa room

Perry, aka Mr Plant Geek, has packed his suite with tropical plants, creating an oasis of calm in the city, showing that people can enjoy a forest-bathing experience at home.

His design features houseplants such as bromeliads and a variety of monsteras (Swiss cheese plant), from deliciosa to obliqua, while in the bathroom there’s a dedicated plant meditation space and a clean sleep zone containing the world’s most air-purifying plants.

He says to create a spa room, ideally you want to have the feeling of being completely surrounded by plants. Calming ferns, helxine and fittonia offer jungle vibes while bromeliads punctuate the setting with colour.

Perry says: “Suction pots allow you to easily hang plants from wall surfaces, without creating any fixings and are incredibly versatile. Bromeliads are used to rainforest conditions and thrive in bathroom environments – a quick spritz of water every few days is all the moisture they need.”

He also advises using ferns in low light level rooms but avoid using succulents and cacti in spa rooms, as they prefer a drier environment.

And don’t forget that any potted plants will need drainage, so put in a layer of gravel at the bottom of the pot and keep a check on watering.

The indoor plant jungle hotel will be open for bookings until November 10, 2019. To book your stay, email thejoyofplants@lockeliving.com.

botanical hotel into your home

Flights of Fancy: How to Make the Most of your Staircases, Without Compromising on Safety

stunning stairs without compromising safety

The aesthetic qualities of the humble staircase are too often underrated, says Luke Rix-Standing.

stunning stairs without compromising safety

Something of a no-man’s land within the home, it’s easy to see why staircases are so often overlooked on the interior style front. Rarely more than a means of getting from A to B, why would you choose to spend time and money on stairs, when it could instead be spent on key living spaces elsewhere?

But these thoroughfares inevitably see high footfall and are important for safety as well as style – and even if it’s not your first thought when planning your decor, they do have a big visual impact too.

So, with this in mind, apartment dwellers and bungalow owners look away now – here’s how to make sure your stairs work well for both eyes and feet…

stunning stairs without compromising safety

Safety first

First things first, it’s important to keep in mind that the run-of-the-mill staircase can be one of the most dangerous obstacles you negotiate during your day. According to statistics, there is a fall on Britain’s staircases approximately every 90 seconds, while staircase-related incidents account for roughly 250,000 trips to A&E every year.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has a checklist of conditions to help you practice safe stairs, asserting that they should be well-lit, have handrails at appropriate heights, have good ‘slip resistance properties’, and be free of trip hazards.

The ‘nosing’ of a step (aka the edge), should be well-defined and ideally square, to stop the stairs blurring into one. Just as important is consistency, as research has shown that even small variations in angle or distance between steps can cause a topple.

Those with small children face an obvious extra risk, and baby gates are a must for both the top and bottom. Do not attempt to vault the gate out of laziness – it’s ironically common for adults to injure themselves by misusing gates put in place to protect their kids.

Of course, structural changes only go so far, and human factors play a determining role in most stair-related incidents. Residents are far more at risk if they’re rushing, distracted, or carrying heavy loads without a free hand to grab the rail or banister.

stunning stairs without compromising safety

Step up the style

Now that we’ve got function and safety out of the way, we can turn our attentions to fashion. The staircase may not seem a natural place for prize pieces of art, but, like your bathroom or loo, it’s a quick way of making sure everybody sees your carefully-chosen pieces. Try to limit yourself to small decorations like miniature frames or photos, and line them up gallery-style at the same gradient as the stairs.

As with all constricted areas, your biggest challenge is creating a sense of space. Avoid claustrophobic dark colours where possible, and use a lighter shade on walls and ceilings to help draw the eye upwards.

As with any space, mirrors provide the illusion of depth, and don’t be afraid to go big on the lighting. Utilise ‘accent’ lighting – focused light sources creating contrast – rather than a solitary overhead bulb (just remember those safety rules!). The result should be less subterranean tunnel, more breezy indoor boulevard.

As for the stairs themselves, your main allies are the risers – the vertical slats between each step. You can apply wallpaper, paint them to match the walls, or pattern them to match your lower floor.

For those wedded to quirk, you can fashion your steps as piano keys, book spines, or bands of the rainbow. Just be sure to consider the look from every angle before laying down your first brushstroke – no one wants a staircase that looks like a work of art from the ground floor, and a cubist mess from the first.

Otherwise, carpets remains the most popular add-on. Option number one is full carpeting: 100% coverage of a stairway that can obscure unsightly surfaces but can be comparatively complex and costly to install.

Option number two is to use carpet runners – a wide strip of carpet running down the centre of the stairs, held in place with slim poles affixed to the join between riser and tread. Cheaper and simpler than full carpeting, generally speaking, the different textures can fit really well into a broader aesthetic.

stunning stairs without compromising safety

Starting from scratch

Of course, if you’re overseeing major structural renovations, you may have the chance to design your staircases anew. We’re not going to delve into the engineering – that depends entirely on the specs of your dwelling – but there are a few styles finding particular prominence in modern homes.

For space-starved householders, consider the spiral staircase – an aesthetic, self-contained unit that can easily be erected in the corner of the room. So-called ‘floating staircases’ are increasingly popular in modern minimalist homes – isolated blocks without risers protruding straight out of the wall. They’re obviously not as stable as their banister-ed cousins, and are not for those with uncertain step (i.e. large swathes of the population).

We can’t imagine many houses will have room for grand medieval stairwells, but you can still channel a country house aesthetic with elaborate hand rails and metalwork panelling.

For the very chicest in staircase design, consider installing light sources – under-lit bulbs that emit a warm glow from beneath the tread. These not only look lovely during the long winter evenings, they may also stop you coming a cropper when you get up to go to the loo.

Outstanding Selection Of New Homes Property For 2020

new homes 2020 form McCarthy Holden Estate Agents Hampshire

As we prepare for 2020, McCarthy Holden are pleased to be offering our best selection of new homes in amazing locations form rural Eversley in Hampshire, to Virginia Water in Surrey.

The developers we will be representing in 2020 are as diverse in size and their personal history as you can imagine, but they all share the same passion for creating beautiful homes and leaving a legacy to their brand and reputation.

Finding Best Buyer Engagement

Key to our agency appointments, is the delivery of property marketing with professional video content which increases the level of buyer engagement online.

From short video PR following an open day event, through to a comprehensive video tour with a presenter the outcome for the developer is outstanding marketing and PR as can be seen in the samples below.

Another key aspect of our agency appointment is of course the fact we supply experienced personnel to manage and service the needs of our new homes clients.

Delivering Engaging Video Content

Our marketing for developers is enhanced by quality video production from johnjoe.co.uk who are leading the way in property video marketing, with added benefits from voice over artist Drew Campbell.

New Homes Developments

Some of the sites to be offered in the year ahead include….

Virginia Water, Surrey – Perfectly located for train travel to London and not far from TASIS the American school in England, these high end apartments are simply stunning. Prices range from £425,000 to £1.25m.(enquiries 01252 842100)

Bagshot, Surrey – The first of these new homes will be available to view soon, and prices range from around £450,000. (enquiries 01252 842100).

Eversley, Hampshire – A small select development of 6 luxury homes by Aspire. Plot 5 is shown below and is on the market at £1.125m.

North Warnborough, Hampshire – You can’t help fall in love with this area, steeped in history with beautiful old historic buildings and places of interest such as King John’s Castle and a lovely pub and restaurant which was a watermill just across the road from this site
Castlebrook.

This is a small select development of 11 homes, 7 of which are new build and 4 highly individual and intriguing conversions. Prices yet to be release, so for now a broad guide is that buyers looking from say £500,000 to £750,000 should consider registering interest in these new homes by contacting the selling agents on 01256 704851

Wrecclesham, Near Farnham, Surrey – An outstanding high specification property in an exclusive development of just twelve new homes located on the outskirts of the historic town of Farnham. Prices from £475,000.

Hook, Hampshire – With 5 new builds and a character house conversion, the new homes at this site will follow on from the success of the T A Fisher site at Castlebrook in North Warnborough.

Acorn House Hook Plan McCarthy Holden Estate Agents Hampshire

Hartley Wintney, Hampshire – Shapley Grange is an exclusive development of 3 and 4 bedroom homes, built to a high specification on a small site of only seven houses in a prime location less than a mile from the village of Hartley Wintney. Prices range for around £470,000 to £1.0m.

Winchfield, Hampshire – Winchfield Lodge is a unique refurbishment majestically situated in the centre of a development of new-build houses. A total of four 3 and 4 bedroom homes have been superbly modelled inside the existing shell of The Lodge House, reportedly designed and built by the Victorian Architect William Burges.

Winchfield View, Hampshire – Winchfield View is a select development of stunning high specification new homes by Sunningdale House Developments, in a fine location with pleasing views situated about two miles from the village of Hartley Wintney in Hampshire. Prices from around £575,000 to £1.7m., but nearly all sold as we close 2019.

Contact the McCarthy Holden new homes department at our Hartley Wintney branch for information about land and new homes – 01252 842100.

7 of the Hottest Homeware and Interior Design Trends of 2020

interior trends 2020

From gleaming metals and rich opulence, to unfussy, functional pieces, the dawn of a new decade has something for everyone, says Sam Wylie-Harris.

It may only be autumn, but interior designers are already predicting how we’re going to be dressing our homes in 2020.

So, how’s it looking? To find out, we’ve gone behind the scenes at Top Drawer, the UK’s leading design-led trade event, where Louise Healy-Adonis – trend forecaster and senior strategist at Flamingo – shares her insider insights for the coming seasons.

These items aren’t available to buy yet – but keep an eye out for designs inspired by these themes in stores and online throughout 2020.

From the finest fabrics to brilliant basics, here, Healy-Adonis reveals the key features of 2020’s hottest-tipped interior design and homeware trends, and how we can get the look…

interior trends 2020

1. Modern Relics

A contrast of delicate and strong shapes and details, with mixed textures. The idea of unearthed antiques interplays with modern materials to create future heirlooms.

“This trend sees classic shapes given a contemporary look through new digital techniques and traditional etched surfaces. Rich textures and luxe gleaming metals add sumptuous elements to rough and irregular black surfaces of unearthed pasts. Add finishing touches to the home to complement the trend such as cushions, glassware or vases,” suggests Healy-Adonis.

interior trends 2020

2. Introspection

This trend sees muted, multiple inputs from our surroundings, dialled down into introspective subdued colours and calm tonal blocking. This is not stark minimalism – think meditative and calming with multi textures.

“Soft winter pales and warm neutrals create meditative, clean palettes that are grounded in natural materials,” says Healy-Adonis. “Mixed textures and serene scenes are seen in calm tonal blocking. Colours to invest in include whites, softened teals and olives, dusky pinks and light grey.”

interior trends 2020

3. Grounded Rituals

This one’s all about a natural autumnal, earthy, tactile vibe that’s tied to nature and wellbeing. These everyday items are elevated through the craft of honest materials and the uniqueness of nature. Answering the need for quiet restorative rituals.

“This trend brings the grounding of nature into the home through raw materials and handmade pieces. One-of-a-kind products are formed in metal accents, woven textiles and tactile wood. This restrained detailing and pared-back palette will enhance the sanctuary of the home,” Healy-Adonis notes.

interior trends 2020

4. Soft Assembly

The retro modern feel combines reassuring nostalgia with playful rounded shapes and graphic prints. Imperfect outlines are key in mid-tone brights, anchored in rich navy and coffee tones.

“Irregular graphics and mid-tone brights will add the modern retro feel to the home. Look out for organic shapes with a sophisticated crafty feel. This will be seen through dining wear, throws and cushions, and decorative items,” explains Healy-Adonis.

interior trends 2020

5. Bio Flux

This trend speaks to the mix of organic and hyper-real, where natural looks sci-fi and bio-design is the future, today.

Healy-Adonis says: “This scientific and sterile trend sees a mix of organic shell-like dark tones and iridescence modernise ombre styles. The unique and free-form nature of the materials offer interesting overlays of organic colours.”

interior trends 2020

6. Sublime Opulence

Maximalism is muted with a restrained palette of deep blues and yellow golds. Plush velvets and textured metallics reference historical detailing and add a luxurious serenity.

“Tonal blues are still a key trend for 2020, moving into a more yellow tone, adding warmth, calmness yet opulence to the home,” explains Healy-Adonis. “Historical detailing stylised with modern twists including gold-edged art prints, this is a key trend which is staying around for another season.”

interior trends 2020

7. Industrial Organics

This trend speaks to the in-between space of man-made and organic, of the chunkiness of old machinery, but with the ease and simplicity needed for an uncomplicated life.

“With the focus on unfussy functional pieces, this trend includes asymmetric bold shapes contrasted with soft tones. Pale dusty pinks and mints, rust, ochre and blues are grounded by warm naturals and stark black,” suggests Healy-Adonis.