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16 December 1999
This three-storey regency style town house has received rave reviews from the many visitors who have passed through its doors, and Andrea, who is originally from the North West, explains how she created this stunning look.
The most important thing any design team can do before they start work is to listen to what the client wants. It sounds obvious, but it is so fundamental. When we're working on a show house we are appealing to a certain lifestyle. Our job is to enhance the special features of the house and draw the eye to them.
In the living room we used a natural base with butterscotch carpets and walls. Natural checks and pure silk curtains all add to the mood of understated elegance. It's comfortable and not stuffy. The sort of room you can see yourself in after dinner.
We wanted to pick up on the millennium theme to create a tailored down look - our lives are moving forward. We've used natural textiles and metallics and where possible we ensure that what we use is organic, which means that it's not full of chemicals. Design should not be about cost; it's about quality of life.
The kitchen is fast becoming the heart of the home, as it was many years ago. It needs to be functional but also very warm and welcoming. This home looks right onto a garden and therefore we used crisp greens to bring the garden into the room, so that the inside and outside work in harmony together. Because the kitchen serves a practical purpose, the textiles we used reflected the colour and feel of crunchy vegetables.
There are several bathrooms in the Dunham and so we were able to demonstrate different design ideas. Despite being functional spaces they don't have to be clinical. You can be functional and still have fun. Bathrooms are great places for mixing and matching. We used a big mahogany chair in a bathroom with chrome finishing. The contrast looks really great.
Bedrooms are no longer the room you just go to sleep in, they should be about senses and space. The master bedroom in the Dunham is huge and we had a lot of space to add in a sofa and other bits and pieces that perhaps normally you couldn't. The bedroom has, in a lot of ways become another family room, the place where the children and the dog join mum and dad to relax on a Sunday morning.
The top floor at the Dunham can be used in a variety of ways, in this instance we decided to make it a children's bedroom. This is the room where we really had fun. We used an Alice in Wonderland theme, but not too overtly. The thing to remember about any child's bedroom is that the child will grow up. To ensure you don't have to keep redecorating every couple of years, we opted for gingham which is suitable for a new-born right up to teen."
There is a fabulous landing space on this floor and you could easily imagine little children sitting at the top of the stairs trying to listen to a grown up party below. We've kept this space as the children's space- it's cluttered and full of toys, just the way the kids like it, but far enough away in the house so that mum and dad won't really notice it.
Riverhouse are the exclusive interior designers for Countryside Residential (North West) Ltd and really enjoy working on the properties.
Countryside homes are a delight to work with, said Andrea. They are spacious and light and because many of them tend to be 3-storey you have so much more room to demonstrate a wide variety of looks. However, whatever the age and size of your home, make sure you pick a look that is right for you and your family. After all you're living in it!
The Parr Woods Sales Centre and show home are open to visitors seven days a week from 10.30 am to 5.30 pm or you could visit the Countryside website at www.countrysideresidential.co.uk or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively you can contact Andrea Goudie at Riverhouse on 01789 299200.
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Information correct as at 16/12/1999