Section 2 of my Rental Renos suggestions on perking up your rental home without investing money into things you can’t take to your next place!


Here are a couple more ideas to add colour and pattern to a bland space.

Paint something up in bright stripes – a canvas, sheet of fabric, large sheet of paper or board.I did the canvas below when we first moved in to brighten up the hall, and just blue tacked (yes, I couldn’t live without the stuff) the rabbit mask on afterwards as a second thought.


I stress that this is NOT a painting…but merely a bunch of stripes on a canvas…painting snob that I am! Super easy to do for anyone, not just artists or the craftily-inclined. Just mock up the colours you want by playing in photoshop or using strips of coloured paper and moving them around until you get a combination you like, then tape up the canvas into varying size stripes, mix the paints and go. Done in a few hours.


Suggestion- if using masking tape and acrylic paints make sure you take the tape off BEFORE it dries, or you will peel away paint with tape! (have done this before, and it sucks)


A much quicker fix would be to take boldly patterned fabric, a la Marimekko (they have been selling their fabrics stretched on canvases as ‘art’ for ages), and just stretch it on a canvas frame.


Maybe a chevron print? They are so popular at the moment!


Here is an example of a Marimekko print used to great effect:


Another idea is to cover a board or card with pattern and slide it into place.


I had mocked up this foamcore ‘table top’ for an ikea tv stand I hacked into a entry table when we first moved in, and when I replaced it with an mdf top discovered that it was the perfect width to tuck into this space under the bathroom cabinet as a temporary hit of colour in the bathroom.

As you can see from detail below, it is covered with cheap wrapping paper from Paperchase at the moment, and will not survive in the humidity, but for the moment, it is adding some much needed punch to our taupe-ly drab bathroom.


Another shot , demonstrating the old adage of making the most of boldly printed textiles!


I made these curtains out of bargain priced fabric from Ikea and edged it in black (and lined with blackout liner). I love the oversize print on these and found another image of someone using the fabric for curtains as well, but without a liner and edging they look much different:


Stylist Sibella Court has an interesting quick fix that would be easy to do. Looks like she has cut up a bunch of paper ‘scales’ and attached them to a wall.


Or what about bluetacking a bunch of book pages to a wall as wallpaper? I have seen this done really loosely with flapping edges and overlapping pages and it looks lovely.


Have a collection of old photographs? How about a photo wall like the one at Bluebird on Kings Road?


Here is a glamourous idea from the owner of VV Rouleaux, an amazing trimings store in Marylebone.


You would have to have a good wad of money to do this one, but if you could afford the crystals, a length of moulding and some screw in hooks…fabulous!

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