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Get weekly updates on the latest interior design trends from our experts at Plumbs

Be Inspired By… Monet's House

French Impressionist Claude Monet was one of the founders of impressionism. The limpid swirls that composed his work – as well as the strong, natural themes – have inspired countless designers, artists and poets throughout the world. His home, and the garden made famous by his Water Lilies series, provided much of the impetus for his work.

Kitchen


Monet's kitchen is a surprisingly beautiful place from which to draw inspiration – delicate blue and white tiles, probably inspired by Monet's love of the Orient; aqua and sunflower yellow paint; accented by polished brass pots, already a byword for chic in 2013. Note as well, the vintage light fittings, and the polished black and gold Aga.

Yellow & Blue


The romantic combination of pale yellow and dusky blue complements exquisitely tiled floors and neutral furnishings. There is an element of the riverboat in this room, with an almost concealed grandfather clock, discreetly overseeing the room, which showcases some of the artist's Japanese prints. Consider referencing this trend with rich golden curtains in our 'Francesca' fabric.

The Garden


Many say the garden is another room of the house, and for Monet this was certainly so. He lavished attention on it, resulting in a landscape of flowers, trees etc. This luxury Spring Blossom fabric evokes the gentle beauty of the artist's water gardens. The fabric, which is perfect for loose covers and features a soft ‘slub’ effect, can also be used in re-upholstery.

Take inspiration from these Monet inspired fabrics and contact Plumbs today for a free, no obligation home visit, or else browse our vast selection of upholstery fabrics for a new look today!

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5 Shortcuts for Beautiful Sofas

In this increasingly busy world, we're all looking for ways to save money, time and effort. After all, why spend hours hand scrubbing stained upholstery when you could be playing with your grandchildren? Or tolerate a shabby (not chic) sofa because buying new is a chancy business, thanks to big box stores selling cheap veneer copies of classic styles; which are not a patch on the sturdy quality of your treasured Parker Knoll settee.

1) Fitted Sofa Covers



Fitted sofa covers are a great way to update your settee, at a fraction of the cost of a new suite. We can make them to measure following a free home visit to assess your requirements. The covers will be delivered – and fitted if you need us to – and voila, a sofa that looks brand new!

2) Re-Upholstery



Re-upholstery is an earth friendly way to 'recycle' a beloved old piece of furniture. After all, some pieces have such sentimental value that they are impossible to replace; but you still don't want your favourite soft furnishings looking down at heel.

3) A Knitted Throw





Knitted throws are a great – and particularly affordable - way to add texture and warmth to a sofa. They can hide a multitude of sins, and can be woven in a wide range of designs and colours. They are a perfect DIY project, or can be bought from artisans who specialise in handmade crafts.

4) Cushion Covers




Rattan furniture is a popular choice, particularly for garden rooms and conservatories. However infrequent use and sun exposure can lead to either bleaching or darkening of the fabric. You can easily revamp your conservatory furniture with fresh cushion covers, and make it look beautiful again.

5) Fresh Trimmings





Trimmings can make a drab piece come alive again. These can range from piping in a contrasting colour, to co-ordinating braid around the back. Or you could choose from our range of valances, which include pleated, tasselled and skirted options.

Take advantage of these easy shortcuts to a more beautiful sofa by contacting Plumbs today for a free, no obligation home visit, or else browse our vast selection of upholstery fabrics for a new look today!

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Inspired By… The Lake District

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="560" caption="Ullswater from Gobarrow Park by J.M.W. Turner"][/caption]

The beautiful landscapes of the English Lake District have inspired artists like J.M.W Turner, poets like Coleridge and writers like Beatrix Potter. It boasts beautiful lakes, lush valleys of ancient woodland, meadows carpeted with wildflowers and mountains that are popular with climbers, fell walkers and campers.

There's nothing more beautiful than waking in the hot sunshine; a short stroll to the larkspurs and forget-me-nots dotted around the shores of Ullswater. Once there, you can walk around the expanse of water, or hire a boat and explore the lake on a more personal level. If you fall in love with the place you can end up wanting to take a little piece home with you.

To that end, we've hand-picked 3 beautiful fabrics that will remind you of the beauty and charm of England's Lake District.

Magnolia Gardens



Magnolia Gardens is a stunning, duck egg blue upholstery fabric reminiscent of water plants drifting lazily across a lake, or of flowers outlined and highlighted in a fresh new summer sky. Its large scale floral pattern references both the fifties and this season's couture fashions, where designers plucked fresh colourful blooms from history and arranged them across maxi skirts. You can use this fabric to cover your furniture and channel the beauty of the lakes into your living room.

Mandalay's Fern Green




Our Mandalay Fern Green fabric evokes the soft lacy stems of ferns that wind over the open fields and brisk mountains of the Lake District. The golden-green sheen of the upholstery cloth gives the muted fabric the glow of a summer's afternoon, stirring memories of waterside sunbathing and the sweet scent of crushed grass in the sun.

Delphina Blue




The exquisite blue purple of this upholstery fabric is an exquisite tribute to the wild delphiniums of July, although considerably more comfortable. The soft creamy yellow backdrop sets off the more definite colour beautifully, a gentle contrast that has undertones of early lake mornings. A pot of Delphinium Sungleams are the perfect finishing touch for a Lake District inspired room.

Remember, if you want to bring the Lake District into your home, with a bouquet of floral patterning or new, limpid blue upholstery for your sofa, Plumbs can offer you a free, no obligation home consultation, where we can offer you advice about shades, fabrics and styles for your dream home. Contact us today!

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Discover Pantone's Poppy Red

Do you want a brighter, more up to date home? Then Poppy Red, a surprise addition to Pantone's Spring 2013 colour report, could be the colour for you.

Why Pantone Poppy Red?



In the Japanese language of flowers, Hanakotoba, the red poppy means 'fun-loving', and it makes sense! Poppy Red is a vibrant, lively colour with a playful slant; and meshes particularly well with crisp white walls. One designer, Carmen Marc Valvo, commented that he loved the colour because of its passion and sense of optimism, and Pantone picked Poppy Red because it had oriental influences, currently a major trend in fashion and interiors.

Inspiration


Red has been the accent colour of choice for a few seasons now. The re-invented Valentino fashion  house has announced the Valentino's

'Rockstud Red' collection for its 2013 Fall / Winter collection, the poppy motif has become exceptionally popular with interior designers, and Olympic Champion Victoria Pendleton wore the colour at Ascot this year. Red lips and nails dominated the catwalk, and poppies themselves are just bursting into bloom this June and July.


Mix It Up


Another great thing about Poppy Red is how easily it can be paired with other hues. White and cream are popular shades, but by no means the only choices. Other neutrals that align well include a soft mocha (especially if executed in suede) and linen, its companion on this summer's Pantone colour chart. More bold options include black and white in graphic hues, or grey home accessories in an industrial chic. Soft gold hues can work well, just be careful that they are not too overpowering, unless you want to reference the Oriental trend more overtly.

Remember, if you want to brighten your home, with a pair of poppy print curtains or new, poppy red upholstery for your sofa, Plumbs can offer you a free, no obligation home consultation, where we can offer you advice about shades, fabrics and styles for your dream home.

Request a Home Visit.

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