So, you’ve just bought your first home – congratulations! Once the chaos of moving your all stuff is over, you can turn your thoughts to the all-important issue of making it yours. Now this is the fun part, right? But it can be daunting if you’re not sure of where to start – not to mention expensive after all the fees and taxes you’ve had to fork out for over the last few weeks. But don’t fret – this is where we can help. Read on for five tips to kick-start your decorating journey to a happy and stylish home.

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1: Start with a blank canvas

‘I always advise that when you move into a new place, start by painting the space white or an off-white neutral to begin with. You can then introduce colour gradually as you begin to get a feel for how you use the different spaces, how the light changes and which rooms you spend the most time in – especially at certain times of the day.’ Advises Rebecca Williamson, Dulux’s Senior Colour, Design and Content Manager. Taking your time to work this out will mean you’re more informed about which colours suit your space best. What’s more, if you find you’re not happy with your colour selection, you can paint again for free with the Dulux Let’s Colour Guarantee. That’s what we call stress-free decorating.

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2: Put up a good front

Saving up for your dream kitchen but can’t wait that long? Take a shortcut by swapping cabinet handles, pulls and cupboard doors – you’d be surprised at what a difference it can make to the overall look and feel of your space. Enter Superfront – the Swedish design brand make handles, feet and cabinet fronts to spruce up standard Ikea storage systems. Available in a range of different colours and finishes, you’d never guess the finished result started life as a flat-packed box in your local Ikea warehouse (and they ship to the UK). Looking for a more rustic feel? Try Zara Home or Anthropologie for a decorative selection of handles and knobs. You can give your cupboard fronts a lick of paint too, while your at it. Check out or Cupboard Paint range for more.

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3: Don’t skip on planning

Working out how a new piece of furniture will sit in your space can be hard to visualise, but it’s essential you measure up and plan properly before you put your order in so you can avoid the disappointing event of not being able to get your sofa through the door. Once you’ve found the one, a simple way to check your new sofa will work beautifully in your room is to take down its dimensions and mock up its footprint. Use old newspaper and masking tape to make the footprint, then you can move it around the room to find the best spot for it. Don’t forget to measure doors and angles of doorways too!

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4: Take to the floor

If you’ve inherited a worn out carpet or two in your new home, you’ll be looking for an alternative to replace it at the first opportunity, no doubt. While you work out your options and colour schemes, you’ll need something cushioning under foot, so invest in a large rug. Whether you opt for floorboards or carpet in the end, the beauty of a rug is that you can use it to reinvent the look and feel of your space whenever you feel like a change in the future. Look to John Lewis for a selection of quality designs that’ll last, such as this Fabonacci rug by Lyndsay Lang.

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5: Call in the experts

Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for help – using an interior designer is a really smart way to go and needn’t mean you have to remortgage the house! Dulux Amazing Space is our affordable online interior design service set up to help people love their homes even more. Trained interior designers will listen to all your likes and dislikes, then create a bespoke scheme for your chosen room. For a £75 consultation, not only will you be furnished with loads of ideas to get the most out of your space, but you’ll get a room plan, a 3D render of what your space will look like and an interactive style guide tailored to your budget. And all of that for less than the price of a couple of cushions – quids in, we say!