(Heart Wood image courtesy of Dulux)
It is without doubt that the colour palette for 2017 was smoky greys and dark blues. However, moving into 2018 we are seeing a trend for warmer, natural tones. Dulux revealed the Colour of the Year 2018 as ‘Heart Wood’, inspired by “beautifully warm wooden materials”, sitting “between a smokey taupe and a dusky mauve” – Rebecca Williamson, Dulux Colour and Design Expert.
Copper has been on the interior scene for a few years and is here to stay for 2018. Joining the classic metal is natural materials such as concrete, marble, stone and granite. The popularity of these aesthetically pleasing natural materials is expected to grow through 2018, with more people choosing these organic materials to compliment home interior designs.
According to Houzz editor Mitchell Parker, home owners are moving away from traditional white kitchens and are incorporating a splash of colour. Stylish sinks, made from natural materials such as stone or concrete are set to be a big hit in 2018. Around the house warmer rich tones will make our homes feel more inviting and welcoming.
Conquest designer Shameen Jivraj believes the trend for working from home will continue to grow – “During 2017 we saw a strong surge in requests for home studies, converting and redesigning space within the home. With more people working from home requiring a dedicated space, we predict the demand will get stronger in 2018.”
Home owners will continue to focus on bespoke media units, hiding cables and wires out of sight – “Lounge media units incorporating AV equipment and neatly hiding the spaghetti of wires in our bespoke hand crafted units were also very popular in 2017. With the growth of connected living and smart home automation, we anticipate a significant increase in bespoke media units this year.”
Whilst the need for media units that will display your television and associated audio equipment has been on the increase, so too have the prices of imported units. They may have been built for an incredibly low cost but that doesn’t mean that is what they’re expecting you to pay. At Conquest we have found that customers have been really surprised at how affordable a bespoke media unit is and how well it compares in terms of price to the imported ‘one size fits all’ offerings. Whilst these production line units could never compete in terms of quality or finish with a bespoke Conquest media unit, one would at least expect a correspondingly cheaper price but this is often not the case.
Talk to one of our designers about how we could help you transform your lounge and hide all media related cable and clutter, with a bespoke media unit. As part of our Winter Promotions we are offering 2 years interest free credit (T’s and C’s apply).
New Year – New Home?
Any housing expert will tell you that if you are only going to improve one room in your house to make your home more sellable, then make it the kitchen.
But you may ask yourself, ‘How much should I spend on my kitchen?’ In an article for the Daily Telegraph, TV house sale guru Phil Spencer explains that you need to match your kitchen budget to the value of your home, so if your house is low in sale value don’t go overboard on a kitchen and appliances as they won’t add the equivalent value.
However if your house is valuable, adding a cheap kitchen will devalue it, so make sure you invest in a high quality kitchen to add value to your property. Ideal Home echo this view saying ‘always keep expense in proportion to the size and current value of your property; for example, there’s little chance of adding value (or even recouping costs) if you add a bespoke £25,000 kitchen to a house that’s valued at £170,000 – even if it is in a brand-new kitchen extension. Nor is it sensible to put an £8,000 kitchen in a house that’s worth £1m!
Adding Value to your Home with Bespoke – 10% January discount
Bespoke kitchens will add real value to the more valuable properties. As well as enjoying all the benefits of a beautifully designed and fitted bespoke kitchen, Ideal home say that ‘a new kitchen will make your property more appealing to buyers and according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), can add as much as 4% to its value.”
In his article Phil goes further saying that ‘typically, a new kitchen will add 4.6 per cent onto the value’ of your home.
A bespoke kitchen provides unbeatable quality with the kitchen being made to measure and built to last, here in the UK but this needn’t mean expensive. Once you’ve fully priced up your new kitchen you’ll find that a fully bespoke Conquest kitchen is very competitively priced even against the flat pack, build cheap and import, one size fits all approach of the High Street. In addition, we are now offering a 10% discount on all of our kitchen orders in January 2018 so now is the time to give us a call, visit our showrooms in either Portsmouth or High Wycombe or have one of our designers come and talk to you.
After the visitors and guests have departed, many of us will take time in January to reflect on the New Year and changes that we may need to, amongst other things, our homes. It’s a time when we make decisions for the year ahead – improvements that we would like to make, any changes or redesigns of our rooms, extending or even moving house. When it comes to freshening up dated interiors or creating a new spaces and storage for you to enjoy, our designers can help.
The start of new year can be a very busy time for us at Conquest with many customers booking design consultations, so beat the rush and get in touch with our team to discuss the possibilities for your home in 2018.
We were delighted to welcome a group of Danish visitors to our showroom and workshop recently. The group of around twenty furniture industry experts came to England for a few days to see three companies involved in different stages of furniture making on the south coast, whilst combining it with a little sightseeing. It was a classic ‘busman’s holiday’ and one I’m really glad they made.
The group itself, Horsens Snedkerlaug is the Carpentry Guild for the area of Horsens, a town/City at the centre of Denmark’s second largest City region with over 1 million inhabitants.
There was a huge depth of knowledge and expertise amongst the group and it was great to show people around the showroom and workshop, who shared our passion for wood and woodworking.
The Chair of the group Esben Leth himself worked for 47 years handcrafting timber frames for windows. It is from him I learnt the Danish for ‘Better than aluminium’, which I can only agree with.
I hope they felt they learnt a bit more about how we make furniture here at Conquest and I know I learnt a little bit more about Hygge and was told that to understand it we really should visit Denmark which I’m now very tempted to do. Thanks to our very own Emma Slade for the fabulous Victoria Sandwich cake, lemon tart and mini scones. The scones were accompanied by clotted cream and jam which caused some confusion amongst our guests but everyone seemed to get the hang of it in the end.
I’m not too sure I’l be taking their advice in relation to the two bottles they left with us, the contents of which they assured me, should be drunk in the morning. The label reads 38% proof.
We are delighted at the response we’ve been getting in relation to the unique piece of furniture that we’ve made and installed in the foyer of the Chichester Festival Theatre.
As a long time supporter of our local theatre – the Chichester Festival Theatre, we were delighted to be given the opportunity to make something special for them and that would support one of their productions.
The furniture piece that we made and supplied to the theatre is in support of a trilogy of plays by Alan Ayckbourn, entitled the Norman Conquests.
Although the piece itself is contemporary in style, it’s illuminated and distinct display areas are perfect for displaying the artefacts of the everyday domestic scene from the 1970’s including some that have a certain kitsch quality to them. The furniture piece serves as sharp relief for this nostalgic collection that evokes 1970’s Britain.
The 3 plays are Living Together, Table Manners and Round and Round the Garden and all centre around the central character Norman and 5 other friends/family members in this absurd comic tale. Norman would like to seduce Annie though he is married to her sister, Ruth. He’s also got his eye on Sarah, though she’s married to Reg – who is Annie and Ruth’s brother. Tom, from next door, isn’t married to anyone, though he too nurses secret hopes beneath the surface. It’s all about a weekend where these six characters come together and chaos ensues basically!
Each play can be seen on its own as a standalone piece in any sequence or they can on certain days all be seen as one event.
As sponsors of the Norman Conquests – Conquest Fitted Furniture are designing a special installation for the foyer to be in place throughout the run of the production. Conquest are working with our show designer Simon Higlett to design and install a bespoke piece of furniture – this will be themed around the three plays and be a fantastic centrepiece for our Festival Theatre foyer.
Vicki Gregory, Corporate Development Manager, Chichester Festival.