Monday, July 19, 2010

Paper Lanterns - Decorating on a Budget

I've had a few requests to repost this article! I hope some of you find it helpful! PAPER LANTERNS - DECORATING ON A BUDGET

Paper lanterns are the solution you have been searching for!

Wanting to change the look and feel of a room without blowing the budget? This is a challenge faced by us all at some point in our lives, but one we can now easily overcome! Here is the solution for the most simple and effective way to add some colour, texture and excitement to your living spaces – paper lanterns!

Starting at just $1.85 per lantern, this is an inexpensive, do-it-yourself solution that can completely transform the biggest or smallest of rooms in minutes. All you need is a step-ladder, some fishing line, thumbtacks or hooks, and of course, some lanterns.

As an Interior Decorator and Colour Consultant, I find the biggest obstacle most people come across is indecision and fear - not knowing where to begin or how to make the right colour choices, so I’ve put together a few helpful tips to get you started:

Are you wanting to create a particular mood or vibe in the space? Here’s a list of the most popular colours, and the ‘feelings’ they evoke. This is really helpful for choosing paint colours or general decorating too!

WHITE - hope, purity, cleanliness, peace
BLACK - sophistication, elegance, mystery, power
PINK - gentleness, friendly, kindness
RED - love, vitality, passion
ORANGE - cheerful, social, warmth, creativity
YELLOW - optimism, sunny, happiness
GREEN - refreshing, balances energy, relaxation
BLUE - serenity, peace, cool, relaxation
PURPLE - richness, royalty, elegance, spiritual
BROWN - earthy, nature

Do you already have a colour scheme in place? Or is your room a blank canvas?? – either way its all very easy! A colour wheel is a great tool to help guide you. It will give you the confidence to create colour harmony.




• Are you looking to add an accent colour to a very neutral room? Think of using a colour opposite on the colour wheel to your existing scheme. This will give you the strongest impact and a real ‘wow’ factor. For example, if you have yellow/creamy walls and flooring – choose purple lanterns, or if your scheme is currently very green, decorate with red lanterns. By selecting an ‘opposing’ colour, this will make your accent lanterns the feature of the space.

• Are you wanting a more subtle lantern decorating feature? If so, choose a colour which is already heavily featured in the room. For example, if you have a monochromatic scheme(consists of one colour in various shades and tints) choose lanterns in the same colour too. You may already have various blue shades, so adding pale blue or sapphire blue lanterns would be perfect!

• Be inspired by nature. Take a look around at all the colour and beauty of our natural surroundings. Mother nature is the greatest colour consultant of them all – she puts colours together beautifully: blues and yellows at the beach, greens and blues of the grass and sky, black and orange on a tiger, or even the 7 colours of a rainbow all together – perfect!

• Maybe you just want to add lots of colour. Then, there’s no rules – just pick all the colours you like and go for it! As you can see from the picture below, lots of different colours look great together. Especially for childrens rooms or parties, the more colour the better!




Now that you’ve chosen the colours, here’s some some hanging suggestions to create different effects.

- hang smaller lanterns in clusters (uneven numbers work best)
- use a variety of sizes at different heights
- stick to one colour but mix up the shapes/sizes/textures
- combine prints with plains in same or opposing colours
- make a string of lanterns either horizontal or vertical
- keep it simple – a single large lantern in the centre of the room





images from here

Paper lanterns can also be a fantastic temporary make-over tool, great if you are renting or just wanting a particular ‘theme’ for a short period of time. For example, Christmas, or Chinese New Year. And, they are recyclable!! They fold flat when not in use for easy storage, so you can use them over and over again (unlike balloons)!

For more ideas visit the inspiration photo gallery at www.lanternshop.com.au

HAPPY DECORATING with paper lanterns!
Karen Gaffney
www.lanternshop.com.au

I'd love to see your lantern decorating DIY pics and post them here on the blog - feel free to send to me at info@lanternshop.com.au.