Are you, like me, a huge fan of BBC2’s The Great Interior Design Challenge?

A show where novice interior designers compete. Each are given a room, a brief, real clients, 2 days and a £1000 budget to transform the space.  They do crazy and amazing things with such little resources.

holiday rental interior design tipsJudges are Daniel Hopwood (President of the British Institute of Interior Design) and Sophie Robinson (interior stylist, designer and journalist).  So between, them what they don’t know about interior design and styling, isn’t worth knowing.  I adore them both!

When I found out they were running a Masterclass in Interior Design – one of the 16 places had my name on!

What an opportunity to not only meet such interior experts but to learn from them too.

The Masterclass was jam-packed with interior design tips and tricks of the trade. Tips and tricks that are as relevant when styling and presenting your holiday home as they are to your own home.  You just have to scale your ideas down a bit.

You want your holiday home to stand out, to grab guest’s attention, to be a talking point. Better to be described as the cottage with the huge, red rug, than the cottage with the beige carpet.  Which is more memorable?

Throughout the day there was time for informal chat. Over lunch Sophie and I were discussing holiday lets – how she’s styled and painted her two cottages near Brighton and what my plans are for Spring Cottage – she loved me ideas! Quite surreal really.

I can’t wait to tell hubby that our old lounge with beamed ceiling is soon going to be painted deepest blue with pale pink accent colour.  The vision is in my head,  I’ve just got to create a mood board to bring it to life.

I learnt so much and made so many notes.

Here are my top 10 take-outs when styling your holiday home:
  1. Over-scaling can make a room look expensive eg a huge headboard, a large plush throw draping over the end of the bed, an oversized downlight above the dining table.
  2. Anything in velvet adds a luxurious feel- a velvet sofa or armchair. Or scale it down and use velvet in a throw or some scatter cushions
  3. When using a neutral scheme add different tones of neural and use different textures to stop it all being meh and bland.
  4. Monochrome schemes work well in areas you pass through such as a hallway or lobby.
  5. If you’re going for a dark paint colour – do it on all 4 walls and lighten up with accessories (as per Spring Cottage’s lounge to be).
  6. Complement zinging lemon or zesty lime (acid colours) with an off-white/grey background, not a bright white background.
  7. LED tape lights are everywhere! Everywhere you want to add some interest, some extra lighting or highlight a particular feature.
  8. Go dark in the bathroom – make the room more cosy and relaxing
  9. Voiles come in many more colours than just white.
  10. It’s OK to use cheap paints but you’ll need to apply more coats!

I’m off now to create that mood board and to prep my cottage for its Autumn revamp.

If you find the whole styling thing a bit much, grab this masterclass for only £14.99 – Styling Tweaks To Get You More Bookings.  Get the interior design secrets that the professionals use and implement them into your holiday home. Click here to find out more:

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