Nothing beats a stylish living room for enjoying family time or entertaining others, and The Block NZ 2019 teams have worked hard this week creating luxurious living spaces.
For this week’s room reveals Stacy and Adam again take top honours, winning $7000. They took on the mammoth task of creating both a living space and separate media room.
Some note-worthy design themes were highlighted by each team. Newshub has done the research for you. We spoke to a team of experts from Città, Farmers, Noel Leeming, and Resene to discover the best ways to create these awesome styles in your own home.
Genius bar and TV concept in living room
A bar in your lounge offers the ultimate entertaining experience for guests, as well as some glamour. Equally glamorous is Sophia and Mikaere's choice of electronics that prove we no longer need to compromise style for function. Their Samsung TV from Noel Leeming is a focal point of the room with a range of art displays to choose from, it's attractive in its own right.
Noel Leeming television category manager Philip Stainton explains TV's no longer have to be black mirrors when turned off. They can display world-famous artworks, your own pictures or attractive patterns that blend into your wall. "TV's are becoming smarter - say it and the TV will play it with digital voice assistants, personalised recommendations and built in streaming apps," he says. "One of the biggest choices you are going to make when selecting a new TV is the screen size, and the positive is that screens are getting bigger and cheaper."
There’s nothing more inviting than a fireplace in a cosy living area. Ethan and Sam paired a lovely Resene Evolution khaki green wall colour with honeycomb patterned Resene wallpaper and the end result is a warm and welcoming atmosphere.
Farmers home merchandise manager Andrea Hume says for the upcoming season we’re seeing a rise in using natural materials and colours, bringing the outside inside. She highlights comfort is a key priority for the living room, and a simple way to make your room feel homey is through adding texture with cushions and throws.
People are looking for ways to recycle materials, and there’s something very appealing about timber shelves, and touches of timber, in a living area. Lisa and Ribz have wonderfully included recycled timber into their room, earning a bonus point for their wooden shelf along the way.
According to Città styling consultant Federica Contardi people are creating "rustrial" spaces. This is where industrial style is complemented with a more rustic and cosy style. "This can be achieved when natural materials—such as wood and jute—are paired with the likes of metal, steel and cement," she says.
This helps to put a modern twist on rustic design and helps to create a balanced look. The use of natural materials helps to give warmth to the space.
Conversation starters - colour and wallpaper
Room reveal winners Stacy and Adam continued their distinctive wallpaper and captivating colour concepts from the kitchen into their living room, for a vivid and vibrant impact.
Resene’s Karen Warman says wallpaper features are continuing to be popular with a fresh line-up of designs to choose from. Styles range from faux finishes through to quirky conversational pieces that bring a sense of energy and life.
"Interesting wallpapers are an instant conversation starter and the perfect way to express your personality on your walls. It’s part of a trend of creating talking points in a home – interesting features, artworks, wallpapers and colour combinations that get guests talking – and that are photo friendly for sharing online," she says. "Collections like the Resene Portobello Wallpaper Collection use fun designs in sophisticated colourways to work well in a wide range of homes and add a little levity to otherwise serious spaces."
These days people aspire to have a realistic cinema, or sport-watching, experience - in their own homes. As well as their living room Stacy and Adam from Apartment One also created a separate media room.
Karen of Resene says media rooms are the perfect place to escape from everyday life for a while and the busy world outside the door. “Take inspiration from cinemas and the theatre and create a cocooning space using dark colours, such as Resene Charcoal or Resene Twilight Zone in matte finishes, or Resene SpaceCote Flat. A pared back colour palette will free you from distractions so you can focus your attention on whatever is playing on your own large screen. Consider continuing your wall colour onto the ceiling for a seamless look that you can hunker down into and watch your favourite shows.”
Noel Leeming recommends using Philips Hue LightStrips, which are used to great effect in Stacy and Adam’s media room. Added behind the couple’s television, these innovative lightstrips prevent eye strain and make your viewing experience easy and enjoyable.
Living in smaller spaces
Federica from Città points out houses and apartments are getting smaller, so people are embracing open-plan spaces. This means using the space available and making it seem bigger than it is.
"You can create a division within a room with carefully placed furniture. Shelves can also be used to display books, pieces of art and greenery.
"People are also leaning towards subtle colours in their homes. This can be complemented with accents of colour—such as a boldly coloured walls or a neutral-coloured couch adorned with patterned cushions," she says.
Current colour craze
In terms of colour palettes Andrea from Farmers says olive is still around from last season and works well alongside the terracotta hues, which we are seeing become more prominent. "Mustard has evolved into a focus on ochre, which continues to be the most popular colour in décor."
Karen from Resene thinks deep greys are a popular pairing with neutrals, a trend that started outdoors and is being embraced indoors too. "When you’re opting for tones of grey indoors, make sure you consider your lighting and accessories when you choose your paint colours so your room doesn’t feel too cold or dark."
Check out an image gallery of all four apartments on the The Block NZ Fanzone.
This article has been created for Città, Farmers, Noel Leeming and Resene - proud partners of The Block NZ on Three.