A Calmer Karma

PUBLISHED: 11:38 25 September 2008 | UPDATED: 15:28 20 February 2013

Natasha has kept a close eye on detail and even the blinds at the window fit her colour scheme

Natasha has kept a close eye on detail and even the blinds at the window fit her colour scheme

First-time buyer Natasha Parnham used some clever techniques to give a relaxed feel to the lounge of her modern semi-detached home near Braintree...

WHEN Natasha Parnham was deciding upon the décor for the lounge of her modern home near Braintree, her theme was relaxation.

'At the end of a busy day at work I can't wait to get home to relax,' says Natasha. 'It's my first home and I wanted it to be just right. I like to entertain and have my friends around so I decided as soon as I moved in to make one of the downstairs rooms into a real chill out room where we could all relax.' The house is fairly large and has another sitting room which is great when family visit, but Natasha was also keen to have somewhere a little more informal and cosy. 'A lot of my friends said they would have used this room as a work space, but I was hoping my idea would make a refreshingly different use of the room.' As it wasn't necessary for Natasha to have a home office it certainly did seem set to make a great alternative.

'The room faced north so I took the advice of my dad and kept the colours light,' Natasha explains. 'I also researched what I would eventually put into the room in the way of furniture and accessories.' To add a little extra interest when painting the walls Natasha incorporated a stripe using masking tape to divide the two colours. She found that this really gave the impression of extra space in the room.

Being a new home the flooring throughout the house had been done and while most of the upstairs rooms Natasha was happy to leave carpeted, she felt that a laminate floor would be more suitable in the trendy new living room. The light wooden flooring was laid by Natasha's dad over a couple of evenings and the room was transformed. Now came the fun part as Natasha added the finishing touches to the room.

A pale coloured futon was positioned along the back wall of the room and accessorised with some cushions in similar shades to the decor in the room. 'In many ways it's easy to do a room when it's so new,' explains Natasha. 'Being my first place I was happy to buy bits and pieces to help make it feel more my own.'

Some things were bought from her parents' home though and as she had recently bought herself a television and sound system she decided to give them a home in the living room as well.

From the start Natasha had been keen to add some coloured panels to the wall as art work and found time to do this in the evenings. 'My dad cut out some sheets of board and I simply painted them,' recalls Natasha. 'These completed the look that I wanted. I like it as much now as when I'd just finished it.'

Helpful House facts

Who lives here?
First-time buyer Natasha Parnham.

Type of property?
A modern semi-detached home near Braintree

What is your favourite feature?
'Besides the light in the centre of the room, Natasha is particularly pleased with the painted stripe around the room which adds the effect of space

Top tip

'Plan before you get your paint brushes out and try to think of effective ways of doing things yourself such as a bit of art work,' says Natasha

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