Creating a welcoming Entryway UNDER CONSTUCTION

The entryway is the first thing you or your visitors see when they arrive at your place, and the last, so does it welcome you or terrify you?  A bit of decluttering and sorting may be needed, and then the fun starts.  As the hallway isn’t a place to linger, you can be as dramatic as you dare with decorating. An interesting mirror,  beautiful family photos or piece of art and a small side table is enough for a small entryway. On the hall table, place large lamps, urns of flowers, or gorgeous candelabras. (But not a giant telescope. It can look too much like a cannon and scare people. Not welcoming) If more storage is needed, a bench seat with colourful cushions and wicker storage baskets underneath or drawers will be pretty and practical or a stylish bookcase holding books and treasures. Some funky hooks can temporarily be attached to the wall by those clever commando strips. Welcome home sweet home.


Reduce Road Noise

Of course, the best way to minimise noise is to insulate your ceilings, add a layer of gyprock to the walls and double glaze the windows. These methods are also invasive to the structure and expensive. So here are some less expensive solutions.


1. Curtains

Curtains can be excellent sound barriers. If you already have curtains try an additional layer of thermal lining or a 2nd curtain.


2. White Noise

White Noise like the noise from a fountain is a less irritating and often relaxing noise that will drown out other more irritating sounds.


3. Noise Deflectors

Noise Deflectors can be as simple as a sign for your business placed between your home and the road, to a well-placed garden shed or caravan.


4. Door & Window Seals

Why does double glazing work? Because they are sealed units.

The STC (sound transmission class) rating of a window determines how much sound is blocked. The average window in your home could have an STC between around 20 and 24 and double glazed windows between about 26 and 32. Note: It’s not so much the double glazing preventing noise, importantly it’s the airtight seal and caulking preventing airflow and sound.

One cheap and useful product to seal doors and windows is Raven RP14 5mm self-adhesive foam tape (Bunnings).


5. Natural Sound Barrier – Gardens

Trees, hedges and gardens all help to reduce sound, some more than others. Large trees deflect sound and hedges and foliage absorb sound, and all of them create white noise.

Large trees deflect sound like islands deflect waves in the ocean. Enough trees will cause sound waves to collide which may also help to reduce the energy of the sound wave a little.

Hedges and foliage have small branches and leaves which vibrate when bombarded with sound. This is sound being absorbed.

A thirty-metre buffer may reduce sound by around 5 to 8db.


6. Furniture Placement

Bookshelves, cupboards and storage units all help to reduce noise. The fuller the cupboard, the more sound will be absorbed. Try to fill the space from the floor to the ceiling as much as possible.



Bedroom Storage

The bed is supposed to be the feature of this room, so what options are available? Storage beds look so cool now, think I need a new one.The draws built into the bed base look classy, even better, is when the whole mattress lifts up and there’ heaps of room for seasonal stuff; you can’t even tell it’s there. The only thing to keep in mind, according to my husband (chief furniture mover) is the heaviness factor. Something to consider if you move fairly often. Headboards can be extra wide, and some even have tiny shelves down the side. Very handy.A pair of bookshelves behind the bedhead is actually a very clever idea. First, you have great access to essentials like books and magazines. Second, all those shelves hidden by the bed are perfect for storing very important but ugly stuff your spouse refuses to part with. Under the bed plastic boxes with wheels are very handy and cheap. Or upscale with wood (cedar smells beautiful and keeps moths away), pretty handles and labels. Blanket boxes are also great for seating, as well as the obvious storage and great looks.

Many homes don’t have adequate built-in wardrobes, which can now work in our favour as there are a plethora of options. Even the minimal metal shelving units can look quite stylish, and the fabric covered wardrobes can be individulized by a favourite piece of material.

Doors can actually be quite handy for storing shoes (in a long fabric shelf),

The less clutter you own, the easier it is to store it beautifully, and efficiently.

Fix Vertical Blinds – Easy

Vertical blinds… Every rental I’ve been in has had broken blinds. How easy are they to fix?

Fortunately, simple.

When your verticals break, it’s commonly the tiny plastic vertical blind hangars, and you can get a bunch of them for a few dollars on eBay. If time is short and you can’t wait, try a paper clip. Too easy.

You could also use a toothpick or nail for a short-term fix. If you’re good with pointy nose pliers I’ve seen a larger paperclip bent into a superb vertical blind hanger, rivalling the quality of any plastic product.


Changing Locks

Re-fitting deadlocks’ is a simple task. Simply pop into your local friendly hardware store (Bunnings if you are in Australia) and you’ll find deadlocks for a price equivalent to about two cups of coffee. It beats the price of a locksmith by miles.

In many cases you won’t even have to remove the bolt, simply replace both sides (the keyhole portions)… and that’s it.

NOTE: For other locks, the metal chunky piece that holds the two screws in place may have a slightly different width. It’s a great idea to take a photo of your barrel section with you. The second photo here is of a lock that had a handle on the inside, and a lock on the outside. This was purchased for about the price of four cups of coffee and it came with a narrower barrel section that fits our other lock, and the other lock of our has a completely different back (and a much dearer replacement price 🙂 )

Butchers Blocks For Storage & Looks

Sometimes a renters kitchen may have some undesirable features, like less than exciting looks, and negligible storage.

A way to combat both of these negatives at once is to acquire a butcher’s Block. They look fabulous (crucial), they’re easy to move and they have tons of options for storage. Often with open shelving and some have cute drawers or closed cupboards. They’re really practical and they have many styles and uses; bar trolleys, extra bench space, or even bench space in the garage.

Another similar solution may be to take the garage to the kitchen and infuse your home with a more industrial style by grabbing a workbench from a hardware shop.


Sometimes floors can be less than perfect in a rental. Scratches on wood, ugly carpet, and in winter cold tile. Perfect camouflage a spectacular huge dramatic. I think my favourite ever birthday present is my incredibly lush zebra striped rug. Pretty sure people notice that first thing, and I’m happy about that.

Rugs are pretty good at hiding stains, and even preventing you putting some stains on them. They often come pre-treated. Stains on the carpet are not a good idea if you want all your bond back. Cocoa and steam cleaning still not the complete answer.

Most importantly rugs tie the whole room together design-wise and anchor the furniture.

Mirrors – The Grand Illusionists

Mirrors-are the grand illusionists. They instantly make your place have more depth, glamour and intrigue. You go drama queen! They reflect light banishing that gloomy room.  -Best to make sure they’re  reflecting  a good view and not directly opposite the toilet. Or property agent is a little creeped out because I put a mirror on our kitchen bench top- she thinks I’m vain- but it really reflects our beautiful views of the water and gum trees. ( Why have my back to that?) Yo can have fun with the frames- maybe an intricately detailed shabby chic with a modern lounge. h bigger the better- well, maybe as much as a few command hooks can carry- athough f they’re really huge, they’re great resting on the floor. 

Carpet Stains

Coming Soon

Moving Out Touch Ups

Coming Soon