As you know the Dining Room project is well underway now, and we’re having great fun turning this tired room into a space that gets used more, is practical, and looks fun. I definitely don’t want it to be too serious, but equally it needs to be well functioning too! For my part, that means hours of research and hunting out accessories that will complete the look. I spend ages deciding what will work well together, and what won’t, and what the final look will be. It’s this part of designing a room that I really love; the process of bringing it altogether gives me the inspiration to actually do the boring parts of the decorating.
So it transpires I’ve become a little addicted to online shopping in the last few weeks! But then again, who isn’t? We all lead incredibly busy lives these days, fitting in our work, our family, our friends and even a little hobby now and again (huh!) and there just isn’t time to spend a whole day trawling the high street doing our shopping. I live in a big city, and we have pretty much every shop and department store there is. As much as I love shopping, and I do love it, there just isn’t the time to always walk the high street.
Having said that, I’d hate to think the high street was to die out. I know it’s very difficult for stores to survive in this current economic climate, and we do need to support our shops, but personally I’ve cut down on the number of times I go shopping in a month. Many shops now have an online presence anyway giving them further ways to reach shoppers. And this is often how I do my interiors research and purchasing.
So, I’ve put together a few of my Top Tips for successful online shopping for the home:
- Online stores are a godsend, often showcasing a bigger range than physical shops can, but make sure they have a good returns policy. If you do buy an item that isn’t right for you, you’ll need a simple way to send it back.
- If you’re buying furniture online, do make sure you take the correct measurements. If unsure, measure again! One thing I often do is make a template out of newspaper and cellotape. It can be very difficult to visualise how the item will look in your room setting. If you’re like me and have trouble envisaging dimensions, templates are a necessity.
- Take note of how the shop brings together a look. This can often help for your own interior designing. Buy items from the same ranges to be sure colours and patterns will complement each other. But if you’re feeling confident, do mix and match looks to get your own individual design.
- Subscribe to updates from the online store so you get to know first hand of any sales or offers taking place. This is a great way to pick up some bargains, particularly if you’re updating the look of your room with some new soft furnishings or textiles.
- Order samples of fabric, wallpaper and paint before committing to the final order. Testing them out in your own home is essential, particularly when ordering online, as colours will often look different on the screen, and most good online stores will offer this facility.
And so, do enjoy your online shopping. It’s a great way to spend an afternoon or evening, but just remember to keep one eye on the bank balance as well as your interior design!