Refreshing Your Living Room

With summer here, it might be a good time to shake up your living area. Who knows, you might be hosting get-togethers or perhaps your living room’s overdue for a spruce up. Here’s some top tips


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Maximise Light

Rearrange your furnishings so that the spots you want illuminated bask in that summer sunshine. Mirrors are a wonder in this department, giving the illusion of more space and sunlight, especially in smaller rooms.


Statement Furniture

If you love ‘scandi’ design you know that decluttering an area can be meditative. But be careful, too minimalistic may make your room lose character.


Maybe not like the above example though. To bring some oomph back into your spaces, try out a piece of statement furniture. It could be an ottoman, or even a floor standing lamp in an eye-catching shade or design.



With that fresh summer breeze rolling through, adding diffusers or incense can really freshen up a room. Most diffusers are quite vogue in stores & don’t detract from a room’s style. If you have wooden furniture in your living room, now would be the time to give them some TLC. Furniture oil & varnish give off a wonderful natural smell once cured so getting two birds with one stone could be for you.



Brighten the Curtains

If your living room has curtains, a fresh style of curtains or rails could spice up your room. Brighter palettes can make the room feel bigger & airy.


Rearrange Your Staples

Is your living room full of great fixtures, books, & trinkets? A creative way of rearranging can breathe new life into assortments. It also gives you the opportunity to give them all a good dusting and cleaning! You could try colour coding your books, or arranging your trinkets in highlighted spaces.

Is your house in average decorative condition or newly refurbished? Update your records here.


Is A Mud Room For You?

Baches, ranger huts & alpine lodges share a common room. Often overlooked in a house, a mud room is a practical workhorse in a home.

A mud room is used as a transition area from inside to outside. This is especially handy if you work on a farm, are out skiing, or are washing the sand off of your jandals from a day out.

Mud rooms vary by location. A beach bach isn’t going to contain snowboard boots & an alpine lodge isn’t going to have space for the surfboard.  So what should all mud rooms have?


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Appropriate storage doesn’t have to be a simple washing basket filled with dirty boots. Head down to your local hardware store and see what ideas you can come up with. Remember, practicality & maximisation of space are the key here. Plenty of inspiration can be found on the internet. Recycled timber is a great place to start!



You’ll probably need a space to sit down if you’d like to take off your muddy boots or sandy sandals. A bench or comfortable array of practical seating is a must.


Easy To Clean?

Why would you want carpet in a mudroom? Even if you’re a city slicker that encounters a large puddle, you’ll still want surfaces that are robust and easy to clean. After all, these spaces will get dirty very quickly. You want materials that are easy to clean. Think tile flooring or concrete, or timber.


Shower Suitable

It might be as simple as attaching a shower head outside your mudroom if you’re by a beach, or a hose if you just need to wash off the sand. Having a ‘wet’ area like a bathroom in your mudroom not only serves a practical purpose, but can add value to your bach or lodge.

Got a Mud Room or Laundry Room? Update your records here.

Prepping A Deck For Summer

The BBQ season is upon us! Here’s some top tips to prep your deck for the warmer times ahead.

There’s nothing quite like having your friends and family over for a cook-up & a relaxing time in the summer sun. Having a clean bbq alongside with a spectacular view can certainly help in this department, a slimy deck… not so much

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It’s All About Prep

Depending on the condition of your deck, the prep work varies! If your deck is particularly slimy, you might need to give it a water blast. Water blasting is particularly savage to decks so only use one if you really need to! Ask a friendly neighbour to borrow one if you don’t want to fork out a rental fee or buy one outright.

If it’s not too slimy, dirty, or untreated there are a myriad of products that can be used to either spray and leave, or spray and wash off immediately.

If your deck is just needing a top up, sometimes just a bit of soapy water or a simple brush down may be in order.

Once your deck has been prepped, it’s important to let it dry out completely.


Picking a stain: Water? Varnish? Oil? What does it mean?

When confronted with the multitude of products at your local hardware shop, it can be difficult to understand exactly what the benefits and uses of each are. Here’s a quick breakdown.


Not really suitable for a decking project. Varnish dries ‘hard’ which is unsuitable for walking areas outside. However, applying a lick of varnish on top of stained outdoor furniture is a fun side project!

Water Based Stain

Dries very quickly and is best used for touch up & reapplication jobs. Can be used on top of pre-stained timber, oil or water based. Generally less durable than oil based stains & less penetrative.

Oil Based Stain

Durable and penetrates deep into the wood to protect it. Takes a little longer to dry, but much easier to manage evenness & application.

Hardwood? Softwood?

Your deck is most likely made of ‘hardwood’ Radiata pine which takes to staining very easily! Unless you’ve built your deck or are obsessed with the utmost quality, an oil based or water based stain should make your deck look great.



Oil based & water based stains are easily applied to a deck. A foam applicator pad assists greatly. A handy hint is to be generous when applying an oil based stain to get amongst the grooves. You can always wipe off excess to get an even coat. A paintbrush kept handy will help you get into those tight to reach spots & edges.

Let dry completely, curing takes a good few hours, even on hot summer days! Now enjoy your fresh deck with some friends & family.

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