Maureen Walters on a trajectory into the interior design industry. With 15 years of experience under her belt, we find out what key trends to look out for this spring/summer season, while learning how to upgrade our style without breaking the budget.

How did you get into interior design and styling?

I have worked as a stylist for over 15 years. Originally in the fashion industry, which incorporated visual merchandising, I then discovered the creative opportunity involved in interior design while renovating a turn of the century home. I became completely hooked on form, colour and texture in all its applications, along with working creatively with a blank canvas.

How do you describe your personal home style?

Absolutely eclectic. A heady blend of styles and trends, collected over a lifetime. I love angle-grinded brick walls, exposing earthy tones through whitewashed walls, century-old floorboards and gnarled tree branches transformed into consoles, sideboards and tables. In my home you’ll find textured cowhides offering warmth underfoot and sitting atop hand painted cement floors, dynamic canvases by both contemporary and classic artists of the last century, finished with miscellaneous statement decor pieces usually reflective of memories in travel or sentimental keepsakes from my son. I have been known to cart rocks across the country while on road trips – my home is uniquely me.  [caption id="attachment_16029" align="aligncenter" width="550"] Maureen Walters[/caption]

What is your favourite piece in your home and why?

My heart piece would have to be my son’s statement bed. It was designed with the input of a local Adelaide artist and is constructed from organic cuts of the old Glenelg jetty. Along with being a beautiful artisan piece, it evokes memories of his childhood, the beach and our time living there.

What are your top tips for styling a home?

1. Have a plan. Keep a folder with styles and trends that inspire you, and colours that you are drawn to.  2. Maximise your budget by investing primarily in key statement pieces that become your room’s focal point. 3. Be brave – don’t be led by style trends. Rather, utilise them to complement your own signature style. 4. Layer, layer, layer. The most interesting homes offer a myriad of colour, texture and form, engaging all of the senses.

What home trends will we see coming into spring?

Spring evokes the sensation of lightness, which are reflected in this season’s upcoming trends. In terms of colour, think soft sugary pastels; powdered peppermint, pops of musk, muted mauves and lemon drops. When it comes to statement spring pieces, celestial lighting will feature strongly, while textural trends of macrame, fringing, feathers and tassels will be highlighted on cushions, wall hangings, throws and accessories.

What is the best way for people to keep up with the trends, without breaking their budget?

  • Use trends wisely and to your advantage, the seasonal colour palettes help you invest in decor items; such as scatters, throws and earthenware.
  • Look at how you can enhance your existing decor, rather than replace it.
  • A stronger statement is quite often made with a more subtle application of a trend.

How often should people upgrade their furniture?

Sofas, bedroom and dining suites are hero pieces in any room and your investment in these should be reflected accordingly, complemented by coffee tables, lighting and rugs that embrace current trends and are reinvented every couple of years. Sometimes, adding new vigour to a space can be as simple as moving, adding or taking away a piece rather than replacing items. Scatters, throws and small decorative items allow you to bring trends to the fore. I suggest investing in one or two high trend items seasonally to refresh and reinvigorate your current decor.

What is the first step to take when styling a home, are there particular rooms you should start with and work from there?

Put a plan in place before shopping, working out primary needs to avoid buying on a whim. Our personalised styling service at Maroochydore Homemaker Centre will take you step-by-step through budget, how to invest and which key items to purchase first to avoid costly errors; as well as advising on trends and applying them to your existing decor. When executing home renovations most people start with their living areas, however I prefer to start on a smaller space such as your bedroom, as it allows you to experiment with colour, texture and bold decor while offering a sanctuary at the end of a long day and bringing inspiration on awakening.

What is your favourite style to work with and why?

Eclectic styling for sure. It’s a little tricky to execute, but applied correctly it offers an exciting, individual and strong statement to any room. Keep in mind to start with a strong focal point  and a bold emphasis on placement of furniture for a signature statement and eye catching result.  home page 1. find the perfect colour with taubmans paint swatches, available from Bunnings 2. Home Republic Tivoli macrame hanger fringe in natural, RRP $19.99, from Adairs, adairs.com.au 3. Meiko mint quilt cover set, RRP $109, from Pillow Talk, pillowtalk.com.au 4. Dimensions 428 rug, RRP $399, available online only at rugsamillion.com.au 5.Harper Throw in Blush, RRP $59, from Harvey Norman, harveynorman.com.au 6. Belly Basket with Tassels, RRP $39.95, from Domayne, domayneonline.com.au

Diamante I modular lounge, POA, from Design Initial, designinitial.com.au

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