Katie Wilkins splits her time between Melbourne and Newcastle. As the designer for Studio Tinta, who was also behind those gorgeous naturally-dyed silk pillowcases that went viral last year, Wilkins knows a thing or two about making a new space work quickly.
Despite it being easy to get carried away with grand ideas and Pinterest boards before moving house, once you’re in you mostly just want to set and forget (at least for a little while). So we asked Wilkins for some simple tips for settling in quick.
First, make your bed
“When I first moved house, I remember my mum telling me that whenever you move, take all your boxes inside first and then make your bed,” says Wilkins. She says her mum was on the ball: a cosy bedroom makes a house feel like home, and if done right, it can be the best part of the house.
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Wilkins always has a mismatch of Studio Tinta silk pillowcases on her bed (if you want to replicate the look, grab a dye kit off her website) along with bed linens in earthy colours so they never clash. This olive green quilt cover and caramel washed linen sheet set from Adairs are the perfect match.
Don’t forget about lighting
“When I’m styling a house, one of the first things I look at is lighting,” says Wilkins. “If you've got a really cold, bright light bulb it can make the room look sterile. I always like to choose a warm soft light globe and put them in straight away. A beautiful lamp can also make a real difference to the room.” At the moment, Wilkins loves designer Amy Vidler’s statement lamps (seen on her bedside table), which look sculptural and bring an ambience to the room. “When you have a few beautiful pieces, you don’t need to pack out the space with much more.”
Get creative with artwork
“It usually doesn’t feel like home until there’s something on the walls,” Wilkins says. “If you don’t have an art collection or the money to go out and buy a big painting, something I’ve done in the past is find a big, beautiful piece of vintage fabric and hang that on the wall instead.” A bamboo dowel is a simple solution for hanging, but Wilkins also loves the beautiful timber poster frames from Corner Block Studio, which are designed for fabric and cater to different shapes and sizes.
Indoor plants will give a dark room life
If you don’t have a lot of decorative pieces like ceramics or artwork, plants do a great job of filling up spaces and giving them life. They’re also great for spaces that need a little work. “My lounge room is quite dark,” Wilkins says. “But since I’ve filled it with plants it has a calming energy and feels like a retreat. A plant in the bathroom can also make the ugliest bathroom look beautiful. My friend has a corner shelf in her bathroom that’s stacked with plants and it just looks so good.”
Rugs: simple but effective
Likewise, rugs are great for covering up parts of the house you’re not super fond of. “We’ve just moved into a new house and I really don’t like the floors, so I’ve just gone out and bought some really beautiful Afghan rugs to cover it up and make it feel a bit more homely,” Wilkins says. “Things like this are also great when you’re renting and can’t make big changes to the property. We want to do a renovation but we’re not there yet, so it’s all about extra bits and bobs to cover up the bits that we don’t like.”
This article is produced by Broadsheet in partnership with Adairs.