Monthly Archives: July 2013

Looking after your interior painted surfaces

After you've gone through the process of choosing your new colour scheme and either had a professional do the work or you've gone down the DIY path, you'll want to know how to best look after that gorgeous new paint!

Resene has specific products designed especially for the care of Resene paints, such as Resene Interior Paintwork Cleaner.

If you've picked up one of these bottles from your local Resene ColorShop, then you may have already had an overview of how to use it with maximum efficiency.

The concentrated formula requires dilution before use. If your walls are only a little dirty or you're just doing a regular clean, dilute the solution at a ratio of one part cleaner to 60 parts water. For medium levels of dirt aim for one part cleaner to 50 parts water (that's around one teaspoon to a cup). If the walls are in need of a serious clean, dilute the cleaner with a one to 40 ratio.

No dilution is required for the Resene Interior Paintwork Cleaner that comes ready to use.

Use a soft, lint-free cloth to dip into the solution of cleaner and water. Avoid saturating the cloth however as this can lead to runs and streaking.

If you're using a spray pack, you can apply this cleaner directly to the surface that you wish to clean.

Use light strokes to thoroughly wipe the area clean, taking care to remove any excess solution and wringing out the cloth into an empty bucket before dipping it into the detergent solution again.

To keep away any niggling streaks, give the entire surface a once over with a clean dry cloth in the direction of the paint.

Remember that a quick dust with a feather duster can do a surprisingly good job in between regular detergent cleans.

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11 steps to your new home

Building your own home comes with all the possibilities of seeing your own dreams and ideas come to fruition – while also offering extra challenges and difficulties.

Jennian Homes has recently released a magazine article outlining the eleven steps that you can expect to take from those original thoughts all the way through to moving in to your new abode.

Your dreams

Every new home starts as a few ideas swirling around in your mind – so don't think that just because it's something you haven't done before or don't know much about that you can't turn it into a reality. These are the basics like what kind of style you're after, how many bedrooms you'll need, do you want a deck?

Gather your thoughts

Once you have the basics more or less decided, you can start to think about how everything will work together as a liveable home. You can now pull together all your thoughts and get them ready to talk through so that you can decide if it's all possible.

A personal consultation

The next step is to get a professional involved. They will be able to work with you to ensure that your walk-in wardrobe can fit in next to the luxury bathroom while still achieving a home that lives up to your eco-friendly goals. Basically, they will help to figure out the basic details with you during this important phase.

Making plans

Here you can really start ramping up your planning. You'll decide on the layout of the home and how it will reflect the personality you want to inject into your dwelling. One of the most important things here is to remember to have fun – you're literally building your future, so while it will come with its own stresses, it's also a great time to remind yourself of the joy of the job.

Money talks

Estimates are drawn up based on your designs and this is the point at which you will need to put your money where your mouth is with a deposit. Depending on your builder and your situation, you'll also be looking at setting up a mortgage at this time.

Working drawings

At this stage, you get to see your dream start to come to life with drawings outlining the details of your design with all of your choices and decisions together in one place.

A great quote

Once everything is on paper and ready to go, you will be offered a quote for the total price of construction including materials, labour and time. With Jennian Homes a five per cent deposit is required at this stage but this will vary depending on your chosen provider.

Permission granted

The next step is to sit back and relax while that provider checks through all the requirements for your build to ensure that compliances are met and all the paperwork is in order before that first hammer meets its first nail.

Building excitement

Then you get to watch as your home starts to have foundations, walls and a real structure. You will usually pay progress payments as you go, but meanwhile you will be able to make regular site visits to see it all coming to life.

Move in

Think about those first few thoughts swirling around in your mind as you walk through the front door for the first time and see it all in a physical form. There's almost no experience that will match that feeling of seeing everything come to life and finally being able to start enjoying it.

Living the dream

Finally, Jennian suggests that this is the point where you get to 'live the dream'! Start playing with the details like homewares and soft furnishings and enjoy the feeling of owning your own home!

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Be an expert in your field: Wallpaper history

Having an eye for colour and design is one thing, but being an expert in your field can be another.

Knowing a bit more than your average designer about the when and how of wallpaper won't just come in handy for your games of trivial pursuit, your customers will be doubly impressed with your dedication to the job and more likely to take your word as authority.

It all started in China around 200 BC when rice paper was stuck to the walls in homes. It wasn't until 1481 AD when Jean Bourdichon painted 50 rolls of paper for Louis XI of France. His design of choice was angels on a blue background.

A century later, France saw the first establishment of a guild of paperhangers.

In 1879 AD, Karl Keitsch invented gravure painting in Austria which was a major milestone in the history of wallpaper and the basis of modern day wallpaper printing machinery.

Since then, wallpaper design, production and use have come a long way.

There are wallpapers especially for children's rooms, wallpaper that can be painted over, trends that leave wallpaper on the ceiling, and a myriad of colours, textures and designs available to anyone who works with it.

Who would have thought that a themed room can go the extra mile with a snakeskin design on the walls with Resene African Queen?

One of the other things to know is that there are three main wallpaper types available.

Un-pasted paper must have paste applied to the back before hanging, but these days most wallpapers don't require this step.

There are also pre-pasted papers, which come with the paste pre-applied. All you need to do is activate the paste with water.

The most modern type of wallpaper, which is a long way away from the Chinese rice paper original, is a non-woven 'paste the wall' kind, which are a lot easier to apply than previous options.

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Seven reasons why you shouldn’t wait to paint

The second you walk into an open home you already start thinking about changes you'd like to make, regardless of whether you actually intend to buy it or not.

So by the time you actually decide on a new home, go through the process of mortgages and packing and moving, you'll be well and ready to get redecorating.

And you are now perfectly placed to do so.

Debbie Zimmer from the Paint Quality Institute makes seven valid points about why you should consider painting the day you move in rather than waiting for a time further down the track.

It's easier

When you don't have a room full of furniture and things you'd prefer not to have paint on, it's much easier to move around the space and easily access walls and areas to paint. This will save you having to lug, pull and push heavy objects around and ensure that everything is well covered with sheets if you're not moving them.

It saves time

Similarly, as Ms Zimmer points out, moving around all of that furniture from room to room and covering anything you leave behind can take up a fair amount of time. Especially if you have to take down artworks, deal with picture hooks in walls and rehang wall art afterward, that's a lot of time spent that you could have saved by painting as soon as you moved in.

It can save money

Not everyone will do the job themselves, so when you hire a professional painter to get the job done you'll be looking at a higher expenditure for the manual labour involved. If you can cut down the time it takes your painter to get the job done in empty rooms, then you can decrease the time you'll have to pay for.

It can save your furnishings

No matter how well you cover your furnishings with drop sheets, how careful you are, or how careful your contractor is, paint can sometimes have a mind of its own and manage to splatter on your furniture, rugs or homewares. Take away this risk by painting before there's anything for the paint to drop on.

It can simplify your decorating

Many new home buyers will be seen in homewares and interior design stores looking a bit lost and confused. Picking a new design scheme from scratch can be an overwhelming task without a basic anchor to base decisions off, so if you have a colour palette already sorted for the walls, then you may have a better idea of the look you are hoping to achieve with your other design decisions.

It feels good

There's something about a fresh lick of paint that can make any room in any home feel all brand new. Regardless of the age of the home, paint can make it feel cleaner, fresher and much more welcoming. Often when you move into a new home it can feel like something of a fresh start and a different era in your life, so solidifying that feeling with some paint work can bring that feel good factor to a whole new level.

It's simply fun

The last point Ms Zimmer highlights is that painting is simply a lot of fun and very exciting. It adds to the excitement of moving by being able to put your own stamp on a property and seeing your vision of your home come to life. Add your favourite colours for a reflection of your own personal style and watch how paint transforms your new house into your new home.

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What’s trending in curtains

Whether you're in the middle of a brand new build or going in for a renovation job, deciding on a curtain colour and style won't be as simple as you think.

Mostly that's because the Resene Curtain Collection has so many that you'll simply love.

The decision can also be a tricky one if you don't yet have your walls painted, or perhaps your furniture hasn't made it to the room yet, or is it that you're just not sure which print is going to stand the test of time while still giving your living areas a modern feel?

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Wallpapering on the ceiling

There will always be those who push the boundaries of the accepted norms of design – and they are invariably the ones who make the most headway for innovation and new ideas.

When someone looked at a roll of wallpaper and thought to hang it on the ceiling they defied the purpose of this design product by its very name.

Yet it is not only possible, but also considered to be somewhat avant-garde in design circles, to hang wallpaper on on the ceiling.

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The power of colour

There was probably some point in high school when you studied a book where colour was of great significance (think the green light in The Great Gatsby or the red A in the Scarlett Letter) and wondered if any of it was real.

Well, it is.

Colours are an important part of the way we see the world, affecting not just the aesthetic appeal of an object or a design, but also having an effect on our physicalities and thoughts.

Knowing the power of colours and understanding how they can be used to enhance the meaning of a message has been a great advantage to marketers and communicators for years – think about the common knowledge that red can make you hungrier and yellow can cheer you up, and how McDonald's uses this colour scheme.

As an interior designer, you are a communicator, and telling a story with your decisions is part of what makes you so good at your job!

On the other hand, home owners too may be interested in finding out more about the hues they choose.


White or various shades of off-white are common throughout homes, businesses and accommodation options.

It is often referred to as the colour of purity, cleanliness and transparency. White helps the mind to be open, clear and receptive, but if someone is feeling isolated, the shade can encourage them to feel even more cut off from the world.


The meaning of red can be twofold, as it is both accepted as the colour of love, and the colour of war. 'The woman in the red dress' is often the centre of attention as this vibrant hue is an eye-catching colour that stands for passion.

It can help to regulate blood pressure, cold hands and feet, and hypertension.

Darker reds or severe shades have the ability to over-stimulate and agitate.


Green is the colour of nature, and can therefore be considered a very calming design choice.

Brighter greens are known to excite the central nervous system and when used with clear blues and whites, this shade encourages physical activity.

On the other hand, dark greens can assist blood circulation and help with concentration, which you can remember by thinking that actors often wait in a 'green room' before a performance.

Pale greens offer soothing and anti-stress qualities, as well as promoting a steady heart rhythm.


This summery shade is commonly used to bring a pop of bright colour to an area, particularly in kids rooms or kitchens.

Effects can include mental stimulation, especially when used with bright blues, yet very sharp yellow tones can be tiring and trigger headaches.


As the colour of the ocean and the sky you can expect blue to bring an airy, open feeling to a space.

Pale blues encourage rest and self-reliance while offering a balance for too much activity.

Both dark and bright blues can help to boost the immune system, and some headaches and stomach aches can be improved with these shades.


Orange is a colour that has been popping up in design circles recently, and this bright hue tends to be either loved or hated.

This cheerful and lively colour can help with muscular tension and liver disorders, as well as offering warmth and a social atmosphere to the room.


The colour of night, shadows and the monsters under our beds, black is often feared as an interior design option, yet when used well it can add drama to a space.

It can even be used to rest the mind and body as it is associated with zero-light situations, and therefore night time and rest as well.

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Paint colours for your nursery

One of the most exciting aspects of a pregnancy is getting ready for the arrival of your wee one, and in a stage that is officially known as 'nesting', many parents will be especially keen to set up a bedroom for their baby.

Traditional colours focus around pale blue and pink, and while there's certainly nothing wrong with either of these sweet hues, there are plenty more options available.

Other colours are more gender neutral yellows and greens (perhaps for those who are waiting to find out the gender of their baby!), or purples and reds.

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Paintable wallpapers for the best of both worlds

Interior design is an exciting part of owning a home, as you can essentially do just about anything you want (whether that's a good idea or not may be a different matter!).

As soon as you start seeing all of the options available to you in terms of colour, texture and shape, it's up to you to take it as far as you like and make your own unique haven with paints, wallpapers and curtains.

One of the up-and-coming trends combines the best of both paint and wallpaper, allowing you the fun of textured or patterned walls in any colour you can imagine.

This is all possible with Resene's paintable wallpapers. As the name suggests, first you apply the wallpaper to your living areas, then paint over the design with a colour of your choice.

You can go for a subtle look and pick a basic design, such as this simple stripe, and paint it with any colour from the thousands available in the Resene Colour Library.

Alternatively, you can go for a colour that matches the patterns in some way. For example, pasting this clover design paintable wallpaper to your wall and finishing the job with a couple of coats of a green hue will make for a natural-looking design scheme.

Another option is to simply paint over the wallpaper in a stark white. This will allow you to still see the patterning just as well, while highlighting the decoration rather than the colour.

Or, go crazy and use more than one colour or a cool paint effect such as ragging or colourwashing. With so many wallpaper and paint options, the possibilities are simply endless.

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Finding inspiration in nature


Interior designers are constantly asked to come up with new ideas, palettes and designs for homes and buildings.


Anyone who has been in the industry for a while, however, will know that finding new inspiration isn't always easy, and creativity can sometimes simply give up and walk out the door – right when you need it the most!

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