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Design Talk No. 15 with Andreia - La Bonne Vie - The Good Life...

Updated: Apr 20, 2020

Design Talk is back.....Can you guys actually believe we are in the 20's again! And this is my first blog of 2020 too!!!

For 2020 I am going to be interviewing a selection of homeowners that have generated huge followings with there amazing style and tastes through home renovations, crafty DIYs and even blogging. I will also be chatting with some super talented interior designers both from Ireland and around our little globe. This is where I really wish I had a podcast or something so you could hear the excitement in my voice atm. I have so many brilliant designers lined up for you guys I just cannot wait!

Because there has been a huge interest in the series this year I am delighted to share that I will be uploading a design talk interview every fortnight!!! How EXCITED are you guys!!! This week I am chatting to the super glam Andreia from the UK. Andreia is a homeowner who has created a 'La Bonne Vie or Good Life' in her humble abode! This week she is going to share some tips on how to recreate her STUNNING style, challenges she faced when renovating her home and the big one what mistakes she made when renovating that we can avoid! So if you are currently renovating or planning to! This is worth a read xx Enjoy my Design Luvas xx

1: So Andreia, firstly love your home and thanks so much for joining the Design Talk series, Delighted to have you on board! Your Instagram feed has generated a huge following due to your home renovation and as January is a popular time for people to start new interior projects can you please share some tips on starting a new home renovation?

Thank you for having me and including me in your series! I absolutely love the interior Instagram community. I have been inspired by the designs of so any others so the fact that I have also inspired other people is just amazing! My first tip for starting a new home renovation is to look for inspiration and create a mood board for each space you are designing so that you have a clear vision of what you want the final product to look like. Browse Instagram or Pinterest for ideas and when you start finding things you like put them together on a mood board. Create a timeline for your renovation listing the time you expect each stage to take and a date you aim to complete it by. This will help adjust your expectations of how long it will take so that you don't get frustrated when you are well into the renovation and things are taking a long time. I would also advise making a realistic budget before you set off on your renovation and get a true understanding of pricing, both with materials and labour, so you can adjust your expectations accordingly. Finally, prepare to live in discomfort for a while, while renovation works are underway. We had to live without a kitchen for 8 months. That was tough. I also love nothing more than a clean and tidy home. So dealing with dust and rubble was no laughing matter. But just think, it will be all worth the pain!

2: What has been your favourite area of your home to work on and why?

My favourite part of the renovation has been completing our one-story extension and creating a large open plan kitchen/living/dining area, a downstairs shower room, utility room and new garage. This was the hardest part of the renovation but we are so pleased with how it has turned out. We now have the kitchen of our dreams! Also we have added so much more space to our home. It is like a totally different home!

3: And now :) what was the hardest area or biggest challenge you faced?

The hardest part of undertaking a renovation is the stress that comes with it due to financial constraints, living in discomfort and having spent a lot of time away from the other half while he worked constantly on the extension in his spare hours and I worked a part time job to pay for it. This was especially hard as whilst we were completing the extension, I had major spinal surgery and spent most of that time off work and recovering. However, the stress and struggles we went through only brought us closer together.

4: Did you learn anything new from renovating your home and if you made mistakes that the readers could learn from?

I have definitely become quite savvy with regards to building and decorating and knowledgeable on what is actually involved when renovating. I learnt that it is not as easy as you think but when you set your mind to something and your determined to stay committed to the project, it is always worth it in the end. One mistake we made was not getting a plumber who was qualified to fit a boiler, to fit it. Our boiler tank exploded last year which led to a flood in the entire house! We had house insurance, so luckily it was okay in the end but do doublecheck that your trader is qualified in whatever it is they are doing. 

5: You have a beautiful glam style in your home! Which I am in LOVE with! do you have any tips on how readers could recreate this style?

Thank you very much. I love the glam, luxurious style. My absolute favourite thing is duck-feather filled cushions so you can create the karate-chopped cushion look. Soft furnishings such as cushions and throws in gorgeous fabrics and patterns are essential. I also absolutely LOVE having flowers all over the house, whether real or artificial! They instantly spruce up any home and can be placed everywhere, from the kitchen counter to the bedside table. Try picking one colour scheme, like elegant white orchids, and use similar vases in different sizes where possible. Anything mirrored is soooo glam. I love mirrored furniture and mirrors in general. They add light to a room due to the reflection and look so elegant.  

6: What are your go-to interior shops?

I love dunelm for a good bargain! For cushions and throws it has to be House of Sew Glam. Made By Yasmin for glam and luxurious home fragrances. Mirrored furniture from Lifestyle Furniture. Beds from the Luxury Bed Company or Arista Living. Wallpaper from I Love Wallpaper. Paint from Impera Italia. Dining room furniture from Dwell and Housing Units. Lighting from Pagazz Lighting or Iconic Lights. Bedding and towels from Hampton and Astleyy. Bathroom tiles from Tile Mountain and bathroom furniture from Easy Bathrooms. Flowers from Belle Fleur Home. Accessories from BDI Kent or Garland Street Interiors. Those are my faves.

7: Finally, What interior designer has inspired you the most in your design career and why?

I love Kelly Hoppen's style. I love her neutral design but with touches of opulence and glamour.

Thanks so much, Andreia for taking part in the first interview in for 2020! If you would like to keep up today with Andreia and her beautiful home check her out on instagram.

Design Luvas don't forget to pop back on the 27th to see my chit chat with the lovely Irish ladies from North Design...

Style So Simple - Aoife xx

If you would like to be featured in next seasons Design Talk, get in touch!


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