So it’s no secret that this generation has been royally screwed over by the recession in terms of home-ownership – or even being able to rent something halfway-decent. We’re squeezed in between escalating living costs and the protracted building crisis.
“A sense of home is absolutely vital – it’s your sanctuary from the madness of the world; a place to relax and recharge; to entertain; to live.”
So in this series, we’re going to look at home-hacks and interior DIY to help you create the type of home environment that you can be proud of. Sometimes it’s about stamping your personality, sometimes it’s about repairing visually distressing 1980s furniture, sometimes it’s about creating more space…whatever it is, we’re here to help.
First up – creating an exposed brick wall, a la New York loft living. Nothing conveys New York interiors like distressed brick – be it Girl’s Shoshannah and her super-pretty college apartment or the pseudo-hipster brick in Friends or the gritty Queens cool of Abbi’s abode in Broad City.
“A brick wall evokes space, light and let’s be honest – is a perfect backdrop to your #OOTD if that’s your thing.”
The two easiest ways to fake the brick wall at home is through wallpaper or fake brick panels. The wallpaper option is straightforward – Littlewoods have a great selection of realistic brick-pattern wallpaper. To execute, you need to call on a handy odd-job mate (who has the necessary equipment…) or take it on yourself. The Littlewoods wallpaper comes with full hanging instruction on the reverse of the label; just add patience and persistence.
The second option – the brick panel – is something we’ll go into in a little more detail.
You can buy brick panels from most large hardware stores or specialist tile shops. We found some from Decostones, priced at 36e per square metre. Simply:
- Measure the size of the wall you want covered – maybe you want a room, maybe a wall, maybe a single panel for effect. We recommend starting off small to get a feel for the look and the process.
- Order the panels and buy adhesive at the same time – you want Command Hanging Strips or try Irish brand Sugru.
- If you decide you want to paint the panel, make sure you buy a primer paint and lash on two coats before the top-colour coat.
- Grab your spirit level (everyone has one of those right?) and get hanging!
Give yourself a full weekend; don’t try and rush it in between brunch plans or you’ll do a rush job. Have some banging tunes and an assistant to ply you with coffee and treats and enjoy the transformation.