How To Find A Reliable Roofing Company

Getting a new roof or having the old one fixed is quite a task! Your roof provides shelter and comfort to your home, not to mention, it’s easily one of the first things people notice when they look at a house. So, how do you find the best roofing company to take care of your woes? Here are a couple of tips that you should follow:

Ask Around

There’s nothing quite better than getting local referrals. Reach out to your neighbours or folks in your extended family. It is always worth working with someone your friends and family can vouch for. This will minimize the risks of potential scams. Working with people from your community also ensures that they are familiar with local rules and regulations. Alternatively, you can narrow down your search for companies that you’d like to work with and then ask folks in your circle for an honest review.

For example, Delamere looks like a roofing company in Liverpool that people would recommend.

These reviews will take some load off your mind and will ensure you’re headed towards the right direction.

Avoid Cheapskates

Most people only consider two factors when looking for a reliable roofing company: their price and services. Understand that a lot of contractors may offer deep discounts merely because they use poor quality materials. For this reason, compare prices and services before you make a decision. Avoid deals that sound too good to be true to avoid potential problems in the future.

Check for License and Insurance

When you hire a team of professionals, you expect them to take on whatever happens next. But wait, before you sign off, ensure the roofing company is able to provide insurance documents and license. Each of their subcontractors and employees should have coverage in case of emergencies. We advise you to take proactive measures and get in touch with the insurance carrier just to make sure that their insurance is still valid. This will prevent any litigations that can occur in case of accidents in the future.proper_exterior_house_maintenance

Opt for Someone Open to Options

What’s the point of contacting a roofing company if they have limited shingle options? The company you hire should look out for your best interests and help you choose the best colour and style suited for your home. Opting for the right shingle can drastically improve the resale value of your home. Going for an upgrade might be the best way to go if you want your house to keep up with current styles and trends. It’s always a good idea to seek the opinion of a professional but you’ll be off to a better start if you do some research of your own.

Consider Safety as Your First Priority

The people you hire will be working at a great height. Ensure they have received proper training and have taken safety measures before starting the job. At this point safety should be your priority hence reach out to the company and ensure their contractors and subcontractors are all experienced folks.

Getting a roof is a huge investment, so it’s crucial you invest in a company that will get the job done roughly.

How To Renovate Your Bathroom Step By Step

The most widespread improvement homeowners do in their houses is refurbishing their bathrooms. This is popular because of the reality that bathrooms have turned out to be more than simply a place for hygiene. Numerous people rest in the bathroom and observe it as a private retreat.

To make sure we only serve expert advice in this article, we asked experts for their opinions such as and other bathroom fitters.

Consideration to Make When Renovating Bathroom


There’re so many choices to think about at the time you’re renovating your bathroom, however, the conventional rules have evolved a bit. People are now embracing all types of various ideas in their bathrooms, such as chairs and different items of furniture. The most crucial thing to note of before going into any job is the actual area you have. You need to ensure the organisation is greatly functional.

Openness and Material

Other than taking into consideration the functionality, additionally, think about openness. In case it’s not too congested, it will appear larger. One way of achieving this in a flourishing way is by fixing up the best layout. Another idea is to watch out for are the materials which can simply be cleaned and maintained.

Having all the top-quality materials and products accessible for your bathroom, you may really turn into an exceptional room. It may turn out to be more than simply a shower, a sink and a toilet.


Renovating your lovely bathroom can become extremely costly, but it will all depend on what you opt to do. If you’re just intending to effect small improvements, maybe adding brand-new fixtures or maybe a brand-new vanity top, then you may keep the prices below £1,000. But, an entire bathroom renovation may cost up to £10,000.

Renovating the Bathroom

Make Your Sink And Bathtub Look New

One great approach is to let your bathtub and sink appear new minus buying brand-new ones by having them re-glazed. You may change the colour from that antiquated avocado to a natural looking white by just re-glazing over the current tub or sink. Adjusting out the faucets and hardware can cause a big difference too. Less expensive choices that look fabulous can be located at home improvement shops everywhere.

Add A Wicker Chair

If you got an extra area in the bathroom, bringing in a wicker chair or a beautiful display case may additionally add a subtle touch. If you’re attempting to come up with a mood of a powder room, these alternatives will add few characters.

Do Painting

How Can Interior Designer Wirral Help Your Home

Interior Design WirralInterior Designer Wirral

Interior designing is turning out to be a trend these days. It is observed all across the globe. Indeed, there is nothing even more calming and enjoyable than to go relaxing on an organized and well-decorated home. If you just bought a new home, you should think about working with an interior designer Wirral. This is the kind of assistance you will surely need. At the end of the day, being aware of bland carpeting, and stark walls are just crucial in this activity.

With the aforementioned, it is a good idea to work with a professional interior designer. This would help in making the house look like home. There are designers out there who will be glad to render their service. One of their obligations for sure is to make a space look gorgeous. It should reflect the taste and interest of the owners too. There are still many advantages that can be observed through this. What are they?

The Way Interior Design Affects Your Home

When it comes to the aesthetic appeal of your house, you should initiate in hiring an interior designer. If you are to work with a professional one, you can ensure that the designers have really gone to the right school. What they know can be trusted. They spent years in the academe to match palettes and colors. This is a chance for them to create gorgeous homes, and they may do this in various areas. These professionals also have a full understanding of what can look good in a home.

If you are a new homeowner, you should learn how to match particular colors. You must also be aware of the patterns, and how they may appear in a space or room. Throw your DIY attempts to waste. They can make your home ridiculous if you do not know what you are doing. The appeal of your house can be maximized through the following help coming from decorators:

  1. To hire an interior designer will make the task worthwhile and easier. The person can be a specialist who will take charge in working with your best interest. In here, the taste of the provider may matter. That is why it is relevant in your search.
  2. There are instances when the designers would ask you about the best color for your home. You can be honest about this. From such, the professional will work for your space. It does not matter whether you intend to go for a more country feel or a modern chic one. It would really depend on your interest. At the end of the day, the professional will assist in making a room look unique.
  3. The person will be the one to shoot ideas and opinions prior to making the finished product. There are even times when they would show the color scheme of the room and the overall feel of it. These too may be included in the service.


Think about hiring an interior designer now.

How To Decorate a Small Patio with Style

In today’s world, house and land prices are on the rise, mainly due to the cost of modern-day conveniences like huge porches, air conditioning, and streaming grass like our grandparents had. Now, numerous house owners discover themselves with just a little porch, veranda or patio as a way to appreciate their outdoors.

However, enhancing a little patio or terrace could be a lot more enjoyable compared to managing a huge deck or backyard.

A smaller sized area is a lot more intimate for celebrations and could be far more cost-effective to equip and embellish compared to a huge room.

Whether you are wishing to utilize the little patio for entertaining or are yearning for an exclusive location to relax, these little patio concepts could help you take advantage of your tiny area.

Specify the Purpose of Your Space

Would you choose to transform it into an exclusive resort, or do you desire to utilize your little patio for entertaining guests? Will you be relaxing or having dinner at a table? Do you require the extra area for the children to play? Select one usage or 2 at best. In little areas, it is crucial that you restrict the function down to the basics.

Select and Arrange Furnishings with Care

Take into consideration the dimension and range of your patio or terrace prior to including furnishings. Home furnishings that are big or overstuffed could swiftly swallow up all of your room. Seek furnishings without arms that have easy lines and reduced backs.

Patio benches could be used along with several sides of your patio for added seats.

Seek home furnishings that have the tendency to “vanish.” For instance, acrylic or glass tables and thin-line steel chairs permit the eye to pass through them and reduce their aesthetic weight in a room, making them the best choice for tiny outdoor patios.

Remember to Maintain the Traffic of your Patio 4Little Patio

Beware to not obstruct the entryway and exits. On open outdoor patios without a great deal of landscape design or wall surfaces, furnishings and design could also be utilized to specify the traffic circulation around your patio.

Include Plants

Container yards make outstanding accents for little patio areas or porches, and landscape design around your patio is a wonderful method to improve personal privacy and/or color. But keep in mind the size of your plants prior to including them to your tiny patio. A very little pathing plant could look adorable in the shop, but it could also take control of your little area like kudzu.

Pick landscape design and plants that will certainly include shade, appearance and/or elevation, not mass, to your tiny patio. You do not desire plants using up every one of your useful (and minimal) exterior space.

Plants with pleasing fragrances are a terrific enhancement to any kind of exterior location, but stay clear of plants with incredibly solid fragrances that could promptly take over a tiny patio … and you.Patio

Less Is More

Little patio areas do not always require a great deal of tiny decoration. For instance, one big plant container has, even more, effect compared to a number of tiny flower holders, which could look messy.

Diffused, all-natural light and light shades have the tendency to open a room and make a little area really feel bigger.

If your patio is very dark, think about including some lighting, string lights or various other electric lights. Stick to light shades or neutrals in home furnishings, and make use of darker shades as accents.

Prints could function well in tiny areas. Stripes typically function well in tiny patio areas since they could be used to develop the impression of elevation or size. When picking patterns, stick to the proportion of 2:1 – 2 small patterns with just 1 sparsely-used vibrant pattern to include passion and pop.

Though the look of your tiny patio is exceptionally essential, do not forget the power of audio. A tiny water function or wind chimes could improve your little patio and mask unattractive sounds.

Is the age of knowing your neighbours a thing of the past?

A recent poll suggests it might be...

Gone are the days of popping round to borrow milk or sugar, throwing street parties or inviting your neighbours round for a barbecue. British homeowners now spend just an hour each year talking to their neighbours.

This is according to a poll of 1,507 homeowners by pensions advice specialist Portafina.

Only 23 per cent of those polled classed their neighbours as friends, and less than a third said they ‘live in a friendly neighbourhood and all talk’.

Read more: What makes a bad house guest?


Image credit: David Iliff License: CC-BY-SA 3.0

These are the top five reasons we don’t speak to our neighbours, as found by the poll:

1. Not wanting to invade their privacy
2. Liking our own privacy
3. Concern that we would have nothing in common
4. Being new to an area and not having met neighbours yet
5. Believing that our neighbour doesn’t like us

Where you live, the type of property you live in and your age may all play a significant role in your willingness to interact with those who live around you.

The survey showed that those under the age of 34 are more than twice as likely not to speak to their neighbours at all compared to over 55s.

‘As much as attitudes have naturally changed due to the digital culture we live in, my feeling is that this outcome is largely due to the huge time pressures on our young people,’ says Jamie Smith-Thompson, managing director at Portafina.

‘In our later years we tend to have more time and inclinations to build stronger relationships with our neighbours – often building lasting friendships.’


Owners of detached properties are 50 per cent more likely to class their neighbours as friends than flat/apartment owners, implying that having distance from our neighbours could actually bring us closer together.

Across the whole of the UK, these are the five locations with the friendliest neighbours, based on time spent chatting with next door on average per month):

1. Norwich
2. Glasgow
3. Dublin
4. Nottingham
5. Newcastle

Read more: The top five family-friendly cities have been revealed

Do you interact with your neighbours? Let us know what you think about the results of this poll in the comments box below…

The post Is the age of knowing your neighbours a thing of the past? appeared first on Ideal Home.

Step inside this detached Bath home filled with global glamour

Objects and furnishings from far-flung places come together in this characterful country home near Bath


Sitting on an acre of land, the owners’ home enjoys uninterrupted views across the Box Valley in Wiltshire, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The house, which is built of mellow Bath stone, was extensively altered 25 years ago. ‘You could tell the owner had done it with passion,’ say the couple. ‘We loved the scale of the rooms, as well as the stone mullion windows and flagstone floors.’

Exterior 25BH July 17 p25 Rendall Bath home

By the time the current owners moved in, the property was in need of updating. The house was decorated in rather oppressive shades of mustard, cold blue and dark pink, while the garden was a tangle of brambled and ground elder. For the couple, it was a case of adapting the rooms to suit their sensibilities. ‘Our work means that life is often busy, so we’re gradually making our way through the rooms,’ they explain. ‘There’s no great rush.’


Kitchen-diner 25BH July 17 p25 Rendall Bath home

The pair started with the kitchen, as it was ‘particularly miserable’, with its striped pine cupboards, chipped tile worktops and dingy yellow walls. The room has been transformed with units in a pale palette of soft grey topped with luxurious Carrara marble that maximises the light. The owners have a love of collecting pieces from all over the world, and the striking Marco Zanini fruit bowl, which belonged to the late David Bowie, is one of their more recent auction acquisitions.

Get the look
Buy now: Laura Ashley Artisan wall tiles in French Grey, £59.95 per sq m, Walls and Floors
Buy now: Rajasthan pillars, Indigo Asian Antiques & Interiors

Dining room

Dining room 25BH July 17 p25 Rendall Bath home

With its chequered grey-and-white painted floorboards and Swedish-style furniture, the elegant dining room has a Gustavian aesthetic. What really stands out though is the tin tile ceiling, which lends a modern edge to the space and creates a stunning feature.

Get the look
Interior design: Claire Rendall
Buy now: Brooklyn Tin Tiles wallpaper, £219 per roll, Rockett St George

Dining room corner

Dining room corner 2 25BH July 17 p25 Rendall Bath home

A favourite addition to this space are the tiles in the dining room fireplace, which the owners had painted in Delft style. Closer inspection reveals that each one has a picture that is meaningful to the couple. ‘We’re enjoying adding our own personal touches,’ they say.

Get the look
Buy now: similar dining chairs, Sweetpea & Willow

Living room

Living room 2 25BH July 17 p25 Rendall Bath home

In the living room, the mood is different, with fine walnut antiques and classic, buttoned sofas rubbing shoulders with Australian Aboriginal art and Indian statuary. ‘We love so many different styles that we didn’t feel that we had to stick to just one,’ explain the owners. ‘We wanted the rooms to be individual and distinctive from each other.’

Get the look
Buy now: Real Charmer sofa, from £2,045, Sofa Workshop
Buy now: Madison coffee table, £1,450, Tom Faulkner


Fireplace 25BH July 17 p25 Rendall Bath home

What comes across throughout the house is the couple’s passion for collecting art and intriguing objects. In the living room, the fireplace provides a perfect frame for displaying treasured pieces.

Get the look
Buy now: similar rug, Trend Carpet


Cloakroom 25BH July 17 p25 Rendall Bath home

A moody wallpaper injects a sense of drama into this compact space, taking it from functional to ‘wow.’ Colourful artworks and antique lights on the walls add to the character of the scheme.

Get the look
Buy now: Nuvolette wallpaper from the Fornasetti II collection, £255 per roll, Cole & Son at Wallpaper Direct

Main bedroom

Main bedroom 25BH July 17 p25 Rendall Bath home

Whitewashed furnishings keep this attic area bright and welcoming. Chests of drawers double as bedside tables to ensure there’s adequate storage, despite the sloped ceilings. ‘Each room has its own unique look,’ say the owners. ‘That way we never get bored of the interiors.’

Get the look
Buy now: similar table lamps, £74 each, Oka
Buy now: similar bed, Wayfair

En suite

Vanity unit 25BH July 17 p25 Rendall Bath home

A monochrome palette perfectly complements the black and white Ettore Sottsass vase. Classic modern sanitaryware has been eschewed for a more luxurious vanity unit that is a great match for the beautifully veined marble backdrop.

Get the look
Buy now: Georgica Pond marble wall tiles, £89.75 per sq m, Fired Earth

Attic bedroom

Attic bedroom 25BH July 17 p25 Rendall Bath home

Wooden beams add to the character of the space, creating a cosy atmosphere in this attic bedroom. A predominantly white scheme helps to make the most of modest room proportions. Modern cushion prints ensure the room feels modern, while adding a hit of colour.

Get the look
Buy now: similar bed, £1,345, The French Bedroom Company

The couple continue to travel and are always on the lookout for new objects that will enhance their interiors. ‘We love having an eclectic home,’ they say. ‘And this house lends itself so well to a wide mixture of styles, from ultra modern pieces to glamorous antiques.’

This house tour originally appeared in 25 Beautiful Homes, July 2017.

Image credits: Rachael Smith

The post Step inside this detached Bath home filled with global glamour appeared first on Ideal Home.

Downsizing can be tricky – but this striking home shows how great it can be

After retiring, the owners made the decision to downsize, and found smart ways to fit their treasures into their new home

Close thumbnail

On retiring from their full-time jobs in education, the owners decided to challenge themselves. This involved the adventurous couple spending several months in France, finding new passions (horse racing and art) and even renting a Gothic pile.

Then a move from Hertfordshire to a cottage owned by their son in Rutland in the East Midlands made the couple come up with a new house rule. ‘We liked the area, but we didn’t know a soul,’ they recall. ‘We agreed that we would never turn down an invitation to anything, so we would make new friends and become involved in the local community.’

Their time spent in Rutland was so successful, the pair decided to find a place of their own, close to their new circle of friends. They found just what they were looking for in the form of a three-storey house, part of a former hunting lodge dating back to the 17th century. ‘We immediately liked its homely feel and, although the property isn’t huge, the rooms are generously sized,’ they say.

Exterior 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

Needing help to downsize, the pair turned to an interior designer. ‘She helped us develop ways of bringing our sometimes random collections together and encouraged us to upcycle,’ they say. ‘This not only saved us money, but it also meant we avoided falling into the trap of acquiring yet more stuff.’

Living room

Living room from other side 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

To create a sense of unity, walls are painted in soft neutrals throughout the house. In the living room, pale-coloured upholstery creates a calm scheme that’s balanced by a bright rug. Aside from built-in, traditional-style shutters, the windows have been left undressed to let light flood in. Cushions on the window seat add a hit colour and plenty of comfort.

Get the look
Buy now: walls painted in Old White Estate Emulsion, £43.50 for 2.5ltr, Farrow & Ball
Buy now: sofas and cushions, made to order, Elizabeth Stanhope Interiors

Living room from other side

Living room 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

While there is a strong sense of their love for all things vintage and antique in their home, the couple also enjoy contemporary design, including shelving units by Sir Terence Conran and modern ceramics in the living room.

Get the look
Buy now: Balance Alcove shelving, from £599, The Conran Shop


Kitchen 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

Mohican, a contemporary limited-edition print by US artist Ludwig Sander, adds a warm burst of yellow to the neutral kitchen.

Get the look
Buy now: walls and cabinetry painted in James White, from £43.50 for 2.5ltr, Farrow & Ball

Kitchen corner

Kitchen corner 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

An Aga lends the kitchen a strong country feel – and on cold days, the armchair is the perfect spot to sit and warm up from the heat it gives off.

Get the look
Buy now: similar cooker, Aga

Dining area

Dining area 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

The kitchen is very spacious, with enough room for a large dining table and chairs – ideal for gatherings with friends, but cosy enough to enjoy meals à deux as well.

Get the look
Buy now: similar floor lamp, £189, Heal’s


Stairwell 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

The owners particularly enjoy creating stylishly grouped collections around the house. ‘Things don’t need to be of the same vintage. We just like to make an interesting arrangement,’ they say. ‘It might be a wall of artistically arranged prints and old decorative mirrors, or a group of perfume bottles on an antique tray.’

Get the look
Buy now: similar antique mirrors, Selling Antiques

Guest bedroom

Guest bedroom 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

This romantic space was inspired by French vintage style. Neutral colours let the toile de Jouy curtains become a beautiful feature and focal point. Careful placement of a round mirror helps to break up a block of wall space.

Get the look
Buy now: similar toile de Jouy fabric, Just Fabrics
Buy now: similar bed, The French Bedroom Company

Dressing area

Dressing area 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

An ornate dressing table adds to the luxe feel of the guest bedroom. Mirrors are very important to the couple. In fact, their old mirrors are their favourite pieces. ‘Some are beautiful as they are,’ they say. ‘Others we repainted.’

Get the look
Buy now: similar dressing table, Melody Maison

Main bedroom

Main bedroom 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

Up in the eaves is the main bedroom, which is full of beautiful textures in soft off-whites and pretty pastels.

Get the look
Buy now: walls in Stone 11 Pure Flat Emulsion, £46.50 for 2.5ltr, Paint & Paper Library


Bathroom 25BH July 17 p80 Close downsizing

A traditional slipper bath and Victorian-style taps give this room classic appeal. A wooden peg rail keeps towels close to hand, but ensures they won’t get splashed.

Get the look
Buy now: walls in Slaked Lime Intelligent Matt Emulsion, £47 for 2.5ltr, Little Greene
Buy now: similar bath, £1,075, Laura Ashley

Now that the owners have finally emptied the garage and finished downsizing, do they have any plans to move again? ‘I’m sure there are more interesting times ahead,’ they say, ‘but we will be staying put, as we feel very happy and settled here.’

This house tour originally appeared in 25 Beautiful Homes, July 2017.

Image credits: Rowland Roques-O’Neil

The post Downsizing can be tricky – but this striking home shows how great it can be appeared first on Ideal Home.

Tile grouting ideas – tips for choosing grout colours and finishes

Grout has changed! Once a boring basic, it's now a great way to make a statement in a kitchen or bathroom

Grout. It’s not exactly the most exciting word, is it? Perhaps that’s why, when it comes to making decorating decisions, choosing grout is usually bottom of the list. Which is a shame, because, as you’ll see from our tile grouting ideas, this stuff can be – whisper it – rather sexy.

No, we’ve not lost the plot. It’s just that grout choices have moved way beyond white versus off-white. There’s a whole rainbow of colours to choose from, and even sparkly options. What’s more, the shade you choose can dramatically change the look of your tiles, and transform the plainest ceramic into something glamorous or dramatic.

Topps Tiles’ head of marketing and online, Sian O’Neill agrees. ‘Grout can play a crucial role in the overall finish of a room, which is why homeowners should take their time when considering which grout they want to use,’ she tells us.

‘It also has a significant effect on the look and feel of the tiles used in a project, and is instrumental in either creating a seamless finish through a coordinating shade, or adding structure and definition through a contrasting tone.’

Already picked your grout? Read: How to grout tiles – a step-by-step guide for kitchens and bathrooms

Read on, and discover why grout is so great.

Create a contrast with white tiles, black grout


Image Credit: Matthew Williams

Add instant wow-factor to your kitchen with this simplest of ideas. Just team a white tile – Metro tiles being the classic choice – with a dark grout and, boom, your room just got a whole lot cooler.

‘We’re finding that a dark grey grout is particularly popular with a classic white metro tile,’ says Sian O’Neill. ‘This shade not only disguises marks, but gives a defined edge to the tile, creating a bold, geometric look that highlights its shape.’

Combining white tiles and dark grout is not only an easy trick to pull off, it’s also one to remember if you’re working to a strict budget, as you can take an affordable plain tile and turn it into something altogether more dramatic. You could even re-grout an existing wall with darker grout to overhaul the look of your kitchen or bathroom.

There are lots of ways to decorate around this look. You could really go for it and embrace monochrome full-on, with white kitchen units and black appliances, or a clean white bathroom suite with matching black-and-white floor.


Image Credit: Jonathan Jones

If that look is too stark for your tastes, there are plenty of ways to warm things up. You could team your tiles with pale wood furniture, plants, metallics or a combination of all three. We love the way the tiles and grout here are offset by soft sage units and copper fixings…


Image credit: Jonathan Jones

…but the prize for all-out opulence must go to this monochrome/gold combo. And you’ve got to love those accent tiles.


Image credit: David Parmiter

Add glamour with glitter grout and grout glitter

Next up, something relatively new to the whole grout, er, ‘scene’. But if you want to add a bit of bling to your bathroom or kitchen, this is the grout for you. Glitter grout and its partner in crime, grout glitter, can add a bit of sparkle to the plainest of tiles – or turn an already snazzy tile into something truly special. If you’re decorating a smaller space, glitter is a dab hand at reflecting light, too.

To clarify, glitter grout is usually available pre-mixed in tubs, but costs a little more. To save pennies, or if you just enjoy a more hands on approach, you can buy bags of specialist grout glitter that can be added to certain types of grout.


Use it with pebble-effect tiling like this, squint, and you can almost imagine sand or water running between the stones.

Buy Now: Glitter Grout, £14.99 for 1kg, Staffordshire Silicones


Apply it to a stunning metallic mosaic, and the glamour factor is multiplied. Plus those glittery bits do a fine job of detracting from any dirt. Hurrah!

Buy Now: Mapeglitter Silver glitter, £9.99 for 100g, Tile Giant

You can use glitter grout and grout glitter with ceramic or porcelain tiles, and – disco divas take note – it comes in some pretty awesome colours. Like pink…

Love this trend? Read: Glitter grout is a thing and you need it in your kitchen NOW

Experiment with coloured grout

Not sold on glitter grout? How about something colourful without the sparkle? You’d be amazed by the different looks that can be achieved, just by switching the shade. Take these examples from Topps Tiles.

You could go for an energising coral-coloured grout…


…keep things fresh and calming with turquoise…


…or settle in with a sophisticated smoky grey.


All three are taken from Topps Tiles’ new pastels grout range, available in stores and online later in August.


Metallics are also available at Tile Mountain, which can be coordinated with your taps or shower fittings. We love this winning combination of silver and gold.

Be practical with dark grout on the floor

Grout can be the stuff of nightmares – particularly on a tiled floor, where dirt builds up quickly. It’s therefore worth considering a darker grout that will mask any grime. Just promise you won’t use it as a reason not to clean your floors regularly!


Image credit: Jonathan Jones

When you have a patterned floor like this, try to match your grout to one of the tones in the tile for a cohesive look.


Here, grey grout creates a smart contrast, and won’t look as grubby as a pale alternative. If you have a family or pets, it’s a no-brainer.

Found your perfect grout, but need tiles? Read: Bathroom tile ideas

Who knew that the process of choosing this most practical of finishing touches could be so creative?

The post Tile grouting ideas – tips for choosing grout colours and finishes appeared first on Ideal Home.

Before and after: from tiny en suite to supersized shower

Enlarging their cramped and dated bathroom and ditching the tub finally gave the owners the spa-style super-luxe shower room they'd always wanted

Le-Mare-makeover-split supersized shower

The owners bought their house knowing that they could make a big difference to what was already there and create the sort of home they’d dreamed of.

‘When we moved in, the house had a bathroom you really wouldn’t want to spend too much time in, and a tiny en suite,’ they say. ‘We were keen to improve the property, so we decided to extend the master bedroom and en suite. We had a good idea of what we wanted the new shower room to be like, but in order to make the most of the space, we employed an architect to help us draw up the plans.’

The pair already had a great local builder in mind to carry out the project. ‘We knew him before and had inspected his work, so we were confident it was up to scratch,’ they say. ‘He did such an amazing job.’

The new en suite is much bigger than it was and, as it’s only the couple that use it, they decided to treat themselves by recreating a hotel spa look, with plenty of natural stone and mirrors.

After SAH July 17 p86 Le Mare supersized shower

‘We’ve always liked Villeroy & Boch bathrooms,’ say the owners. ‘And as we’re not planning to work on this room again for a long time, we splashed out on our sanitaryware. We also chose gorgeous tiles that are different sizes, but all made of luxurious grey stone.’

Rather than having blinds, the couple added opaque glass for privacy. For a similarly fuss-free look, the shower fittings were kept very streamlined. ‘We looked hard to find a shower with as little chrome as possible,’ they say. ‘And we chose a glass shower enclosure because we wanted it to look almost transparent when you walk in.’

Shower cubicle SAH July 17 p86 Le Mare supersized shower

The one thing the couple had kept from the previous bathroom was a radiator. ‘Now it has a lot more space around it, so it’s more effective,’ they say. ‘And because everything else is neutral, we treated ourselves to bright hammam towels to add bursts of colour.’

Towel rail SAH July 17 p86 Le Mare supersized shower

The plumbing is hidden by a false wall, so the owners built in a handy shelf for shower essentials.

Recessed shelf SAH July 17 p86 Le Mare supersized shower

To complete the scheme, the couple added two mirrors to throw light around the room. ‘It’s a fairly cheap way of making the space seem larger,’ they say. ‘And it’s easy to get pieces of mirror glass cut to size at a local merchant.’

Vanity unit SAH July 17 p86 Le Mare supersized shower

Want to see another hotel-chic bathroom makeover? READ: Before and after: from dark loft to hotel-style en suite

‘It’s a luxury to have this much storage,’ the pair say. ‘We’ve got a drawer each, with the inside of one divided into sections for toiletries and make-up.’

Vanity unit drawer SAH July 17 p86 Le Mare supersized shower

‘We love the shape of this basin mixer,’ say the owners, ‘and we’ve echoed it in the shower controls, so everything ties together.’

Mixer tap SAH July 17 p86 Le Mare supersized shower

The couple are so happy with their newly supersized shower. ‘You can’t keep us out of here now!’ they say.

Get the look

Buy now: wet room panel, £1,076; Venticello loo, £457.50; Venticello stone grey vanity unit, £953; and Venticello basin, £670, all Villeroy & Boch

Buy now: Bernina grey floor tiles (60 x 60cm), £66 per sq m; Bernina grey wall tiles (15 x 60cm), £57 per sq m; Bernina mosaic tiles (30 x 50cm), £64 per sq m; and Bianconero glossy white tiles, £53.80 per sq m, all Villeroy & Boch

Buy now: Zuchetti brass hand shower, £93; Zuchetti single lever basin mixer, £338; and Zucchetti chrome thermostat, £412, all The Sunbury Bathroom & Tile Company

Buy now: mirrors, £250 each, Knights Glass

This bathroom makeover originally appeared in Style at Home, July 2017.

Image credits: Colin Poole

The post Before and after: from tiny en suite to supersized shower appeared first on Ideal Home.

Aldi has launched a new upcycling range – ideal for a rainy weekend

Whether you're an upcycling pro or a complete beginner, you won't want to miss Aldi's new range of upcycling tools and equipment

This year has seen a surge in the popularity of upcycling, with people getting crafty and personalising old furniture rather than going out to buy brand new.

In line with this trend, Aldi has launched a new range of upcycling tools and equipment to help thrifty upcyclers save even more money.

Need inspiration: Check out these easy upcycling ideas

ALDI upcycling

The range will be available in store and online from Sunday 30th July – that’s your rainy day activity sorted!

Aldi’s new range includes everything budding upcyclers need to transform a dilapidated dresser into a stunning kitchen centrepiece or give a scruffy wooden chair a new lease of life. From electric power tools, including a mini bench grinder and a sander, to chalk paint and furniture wax, to pretty haberdashery accessories including buttons and ribbon, there’s something for every project.

ALDI upcycling

Prices start from 79p for Aldi’s haberdashery essentials, with brushes available for £2.99, chalk paint for £4.99 and furniture wax for £5.99. The top of the range product is the mini bench grinder, costing £26.99.

ALDI upcycling

Read more: Six reasons why you should start upcycling

‘Upcycling is a fantastic trend which gives home improvers the opportunity to create unique and personal items,’ says Tony Baines, Managing Director for Corporate Buying at Aldi.

‘We know that the special tools, paints and equipment needed to upcycle a piece of furniture can be expensive so we’re delighted to be offering a range of great-value upcycling essentials at a fraction of the price consumers might expect, without sacrificing on quality or performance.’

ALDI upcycling

‘We hope that this range will give our customers the opportunity to recycle unsightly old items of furniture into prettier pieces, worthy of a place in their homes.’

Are you a fan of the vintage look? Check out Aldi’s new vintage home Specialbuys

We know where we’ll be heading on Sunday…

The post Aldi has launched a new upcycling range – ideal for a rainy weekend appeared first on Ideal Home.