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Decor Styling Tips From An Interior Designer


Want to know the secret to timeless living room design and decor styling? The team at Kurio Interior Design let us in on interior design must-know styling secrets.

Introduce Kurio Design… 

Kurio Interior Design Decor Styling

We are Nikki and Katie, co-directors of ‘Kurio’ – an interior design studio in Wellington, creating high quality, bespoke interior spaces for both commercial and residential clients.

Describe your design style‚Ķ 

In short, timeless design. We mix classic styles and finishes with a touch of the unexpected through the use of colour, form, scale or juxtaposition of more contemporary pieces with a bit of an edge to them.

What do you wish everyone knew about home and decor styling? 

There aren’t any hard and fast rules as such, but there are guidelines that work time and time again to create a really successful interior space.

Achieving a ‘successful’ interior is often as simple as collating pieces or finishes that you love, and that resonate with you (the owner/occupier). Worry less about trends, and focus on items that have meaning for you, or tug at your heart strings. Objects that tell your story. From a job perspective, we wish more people realised just how much work goes into what we do when putting together an amazing interior. There are so many steps involved, so many moving parts, and our job is just as much about management and co-ordination as it is design. That is where the value of our expertise and knowledge really comes into play!

Kurio Interior Mood board home decor styling

What tips have you learned to add quick fix decor and styling tips to help refresh their home?

For a quick fix or refresh, it could be as simple as re-jigging the layout of existing furniture pieces. Because makes you appreciate your room from a whole new perspective. Get around to hanging that beloved framed artwork, switching out the cushions on your sofa, adding a new lamp or oversized vase of flowers on a sideboard, changing the colour tone/temperature of your recessed downlights … just to name a few!

What are some of your favourite must-have home decor styling elements for the home?

Never underestimate the power of a large rug to ground a space. A range of lighting – (from recessed lights to feature pendants to moodier ambient lighting put out by table lamps and wall sconces). Decor like trays for creating and collating a quick coffee table vignette or storing magazines or TV remotes. And finally, a stand-out framed art piece/photograph that gives the eye a place to land.

How can people best accent a frame in a space?

There are two directions you can go. Firstly, the rest of your interior will usually hint or indicate what your best option is. Treat the frame like a cohesive puzzle piece within the rest of the interior. For example, co-ordinate the frame style and finish with other finishes that you’ve already used elsewhere in the space, and with the artwork itself. Secondly, if your interior is built on contrast and juxtaposition and one-off feature pieces then going with a frame that is at odds colour or finish to other room elements will make it more of a feature in it’s own right. Think carefully about the colours in the artwork, as the frame colour can both give energy to the piece itself, or equally remove from it.

That’s where Framefox is so fantastic as you can literally upload your artwork and trial it with a range of frames to really get a feel of what works, and what doesn’t!

Do you have pointers for people looking to add wall art to a space? 

On a larger wall space (for instance behind a sofa), don’t be afraid to go big! Bigger is nearly always better in this instance.

On little wing walls and in corners, create ‘moments’ by pairing two small pieces together. Place frames side-by-side or stacked one above the other.

If you are stuck for a colour palette in an interior, finding an awesome piece of artwork first is a great way to create a jumping off point for colour and tone. Pick out one or two key colours. Then use these tones as your base for other elements in the room.

Think outside the square – artwork doesn’t necessarily need to be expensive. You can frame prints, photos, fabric, teatowels, old tickets/memorabilia, vintage store finds, jewellery… 

Large statement frame or Gallery Walls? And why?

For rooms that you stay put in for a fair amount of time we love a large statement piece – it’s less confusing for the eye and means you can use that art piece as a key part of your room scheme. 

Framed Wall Art Home Style

We like to use gallery walls in areas of transition ie. stairwells and hallways. They key with styled gallery wall is to always keep a running theme. Either through the imagery itself or by limiting the style of frame to just one or two, so that as a whole the gallery still looks cohesive and considered.

What is something exciting in the pipeline for Kurio Design? 

Among a myriad of smaller projects, we are working on some really exciting large scale, full house residential projects at the moment which will be coming together in early 2022. They are quite different in style but are all great showcases of our flexibility, creativity and eye for design which we’re excited to share with everyone once complete.

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Or connect with the team,  www.kurio.co.nz