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Decorating tips for tenants: Five easy ways to style your home in Singapore (that you and the landlord will love)

It’s that common expat quandary: you want to make the most of your rented home, but you don’t want to blow the budget or give your landlord a coronary by adorning his magnolia walls with the season’s latest wallpaper designs. So what’s a decorator to do? We asked Caroline Chin Geyler of Arete Culture for her top tips for giving your home an instant style update – no renovations necessary! Arete are known for turning a space around in under two hours, whipping up fuss-free makeovers that are super affordable. So you’re in good hands with the below advice…

Flick through the gallery below for before and after examples of Caroline’s tips…


Tip 1: Create a feature wall
Painting a feature wall is one of the most effective ways to evoke a certain mood in a room, says Caroline. Whether you want to breathe luxe glamour into your living room, or give your bedroom a soothing seascape feel, a slick of paint on a single wall will do just that – with the added benefit that it’s easily returned to its former state once your lease is up!

Tip 2. Invest in art you love
Art adds character, depth and interest to a room, and has the advantage of being oh-so-portable – if you needed to justify it to hubby! And, as Caroline points out, it doesn’t matter what the price-tag of the piece is so long as it ‘speaks’ to you – be that a painting snapped up on your European holiday, or something you’ve been eyeing up in your local art gallery for months.

Tip 3. Choose a calm scheme for your bedroom
If your boudoir is less cocooning, more chaotic, set about getting the balance right. “Coordination is key to a successful scheme,” highlights Caroline, who advises determining the mood and style you’re going for in your bedroom, before selecting the furniture and furnishings you’ll need to achieve that look, and harmonising shades to inject into the canvas.

Tip 4. Play with pattern and accessories
As if we needed an excuse to go shopping for cushions… From statement soft furnishings to bold rugs, lamps and collectibles, accessories are what give a room that polished feel. What’s more, points out Caroline, well-placed pieces will create a space that flows and feels fluid. Noted.

Tip 5. Make the most of your outdoor space
A few potted plants can go a long way to giving your garden a lush and verdant feel, but where to start? “A combination of tall and sculptural plants with shorter, leafy varieties will add maximum interest,” says Caroline. And, when it comes to your alfresco entertaining area, spend time creating the right feel with striking finishing touches, from outdoor cushions and lanterns, to trays, coasters and table runners.

Impressed by Caroline’s awesome tips and want to get the expert in to give you a hand? See more of Caroline’s home makeover services here and even more before/after photos from Arete’s 150 projects across Singapore here. Want to give her a call? : Dial 9878-8154.
Want more home inspiration? See our home decor section!