How to Design The Perfect Entrance Interior


I thought it was about time I spoke about interiors on my blog, starting with how to make an entrance and then working my way through the home with tips and ideas taken from our interior designs and interiors I love that tell a story. I am passionate about living well and creating beautiful homes that simply function better, taking you effortlessly from breakfast to supper.  I hope this blog will inspire you to create a home that reflects you and your ideas.


Making an entrance

  • First impressions count, so don’t let it become a dumping ground for coats and shoes. Spend time thinking about what storage solutions will work best for you to help hide the unsightly everyday items.
  • Create a strong statement with bold carpets, lighting and making the most of architectural features.

Let it shine

  • Layer up on lighting. Practical task lighting is required to help you enter and leave but have fun and create drama with statement decorative lighting such as oversized pendants and wall lighting.
  • Give thought about how you configure your light switching so you can easily light your way through the house top and bottom and pay attention of the electrical plates throughout the home as these little details make all the difference. Look at interesting metals such as satin nickel, antique brass or black.

Colour Me happy

  • When decorating you should complete this room last, however you should start thinking about this space first so you have a consistent thread running throughout your home such as a palette of colours that tonally work together, making your home feel more spacious and architectural.
  • All rooms filter off the hallway and landing so the colour palette in this space needs to tie the interiors together and create a look that’s coherent. Think about how the wall colours, flooring finishes, and materials meet.
  • Remember as you move through the house the natural light will influence the paint colour so make sure to test the paint colour in different areas around your home, give some thought on the natural light source and the direction the interior faces.

Dress to impress

  • Interior accessories will lift and bring character to the entrance. When you have taken care of the storage solutions for the everyday items in your entrance hall you have more space for the exciting elements that bring character to the space.
  • A statement chair or an oversized mirror will help reflect natural light if your hallway is a little dark.
  • Again, preplanning at the beginning allows you to configure lighting and sockets to allow you to emphasis artwork or sculptural pieces that make your house a home from the second you enter.


For more ideas to make your house a home feel contact

Images Reference

Image 1 Kelly Wearstler & Waldo Works

Images 2 Ben Pentreth & The Decorcafe

Images 3 Nikki Rees


Think outside the box – 5 ways to make storage stylish.

With the Easter holidays being a bit of a wash out I have been a little sad and enjoyed a spring clean much to my kids delight!  Their Lego is now colour co-ordinated and all toys are stored by type, cars in one box, super heroes in another.  Oh, the simple pleasures, now pass me that Lego Kraggel glue!

I spend a long time listening to my clients to understand how they want to live in their homes, what will make their lives easier and how best to hide the less pretty things that we might need every day but don’t want to see.  Storage is key for making your homes work better for you and with a little bit of thought and a creative approach to storage you can make it work effortlessly whilst still looking beautiful. Here are my 5 top storage hacks.

It’s the little details

Take time to think about what you want to see everyday and what you want to hide. creating a storage solution that works for you.  Look at the space you have available and how best to store or display your items, hiding the ugly items away to give a clean seamless look.  You should think about power, lighting and illuminating shelving to make it look more interesting and cool. I love the wall lights we added on the outside of this bespoke bookcase.  I mixed the clients art work with books and hid the boring files in the cupboard below.

Think floor to ceiling and wall-to-wall

Make your walls work for you. Think vertically to maximise the space and to create an architectural look. Break it up by creating indents for display and remember to balance the design. This loft en-suite had tricky eves so we created bespoke storage with fold down cupboards. I love the Egger wood veneer we added to the inside of the storage, it adds a little surprise and makes your bathroom products look super luxurious.


Think out side the box

In some spaces, such as alcoves, completely bespoke storage is best as you can maximise the space.  However there are many off the shelf options out there that you can ‘hack’.  I have utilised many Ikea products and adapted and personalised them to create original designs. In this loft bedroom we used the Ikea Pax system and added bespoke doors sprayed to match the Little Greene Knightsbridge 215 paint used on the walls.

 Ikea hack

Storage can be sexy

To make the storage blend into the room a simple trick is to paint it the same colour as the walls. However, if you want to make a statement think about the finish, woods or veneer options come in myriad of finishes.  Play with wallpaper or fabric and don’t forget the inside.  You can introduce a contrasting finish or a pop of colour.  For the shelving in my family room I painted the shelving the same colour as the walls but added a silk effect wallpaper on the back of the shelves to add texture. I love it as it’s calm.

Nikki-Rees-interiordesign, storage-blog, bespoke-storage, storage ideas, small-room-storage,

Handle with care

Handles give that all important finishing touch.  There are some beautiful options out there which really create a unique piece of furniture giving a personal touch to your interior design.  The Bedside tables we specified for our Maida Vale project allowed us to select gorgeous leather pulls which finished the room design by adding a touch of luxury.

Have fun with storage and don’t just settle for the practical.  We have used antique hatboxes for side tables as the client wanted something unique so make sure you also check out your local antique fairs or charity shops as you can pick up some great pieces.


Photography Credits

Bill Prentice

Claire Williams


Sisterhood, Celebrating International Women’s Day

I’m celebrating International Women’s Day by taking a moment to talk about sisterhood. Both my sister Lorraine and I started our own businesses in industries that can seem from the outside a total luxury. With interior design and beauty filling our Instagram feeds it can appear superficial and unimportant. But behind those squares we go deeper than just designing a perfect picture as we both share a passion to enhance the natural beauty of our client’s homes, face, or body and to make them feel happy in their own skin.

I started my interior design practice in 2013, I loved designing but I wanted to spend more time with my growing family. I wanted to have a more flexible lifestyle than my corporate career offered. I work more hours than I thought possible overseeing all areas of my business while organizing my family.   But it is on my terms, around school pick-ups, bedtimes and school holidays. It’s a constant challenge but I love that my sons see their mum doing a job she loves. I have found the school playground a constant source of resource and support, leaning on so many amazingly talented mums that want to be there for the school pick up but also have a desire to do something they love.

Bathroom design dark colours in bathrooms Wimbledon interior design surrey interiors bathroom decor


I’m obsessed by creating beautiful homes that tell my client’s story. With most home renovation projects I work predominantly with the wife, listening to them to create their family’s dream home. It’s a privilege to be invited on such a personal journey with them to create a home that expresses their personally in a real and honest way. This might be creating a colour scheme that makes their heart sing or taking a special piece of furniture they already own feel relevant and refreshed within the new. Interior design is more than just a styled shoot. It’s about creating a grounded home a family love to come home to and where they can make happy memories.


Growing up our Grandad was very entrepreneurial before it was fashionable and our parents started a family business when we were at school so starting our own businesses never felt too scary as our family are always so supportive and told us three girls we could do anything. Lorraine, my youngest sister, realised a long-held dream by starting up a skin aesthetic brand with two London clinics and was voted Best London medi spa by  Lorraine fell in love with skincare products and the way anti-ageing and rejuvenation treatments can not only enhance the way we look but also enrich our emotional wellbeing and self-confidence.

Toni and Guy, Eden skin clinic reception, Beauty salon, skin clinic, Interior designer London



Lorraine takes time to hand pick skin treatments that achieve visible results for her clients. Her hands-on method allows her to help clients with life-long skin or hair concerns that make such a difference to the confidence of both men and women. When Lorraine asked me to design the Eden skin clinic within the globally renowned TONI&GUY in Kensington I was keen that we could capture her spirit and fresh approach to skin care. we worked hard to create a space that was not the stereotypical ‘female’ beauty salon but reflected the state-of-the-art non-invasive aesthetic treatments she specializes in such as the Venus freeze. The clinics interior is clean and bright with accents of colour and edited imagery and playful quotes that reflect the Eden brand philosophy. We were so proud to be featured by Hello magazine who described the clinic as an “oasis of calm”. While Stylenest felt that “the family touch gives a real comforting ambience to the clinics yet the sleek design makes them current and fresh.”

Eden Skin Clinic, Beauty salon interior styling,, media spa interior design, workspace consultancy, Interior designer Wimbledon London


Design and beauty is always a personal journey and we both enjoy taking the time to closely work with so many amazing women to create homes that they enjoy every day, which reflect their values and personality or give them a new confidence in their own skin. It’s exciting to make such a difference and to be on this journey with my sister as we support and inspire each other by sharing ideas, tips and clients it’s a true family affair.

Eden Skin Clinic, treatment room, Beauty salon,, media spa interior design, workspace consultancy, Interior designer Wimbledon London

Today is a good day to think about the women in our lives. Mums, sisters, daughters and girlfriends and how we can all support and challenge each other to be our best selves, to be happy and to follow our dreams every day. Make IWD your day! – everyday!

#IWD2018 #PressforProgress


Masion & Object

On a rainy Sunday in January I woke up bright and early and headed to Paris with Debbie from the Decorcafe. We were on a mission to absorb as much inspiration as we could in one day at Masion & Object, the largest trade show for furniture, lighting and interior design. The show was awash with bold solid colours, with shades of greens mixed with warm terracotta emerging as a strong trend. My absolute favourite stand was Petite Friture, I loved their use of graphic colour and illustration. Their furniture and lighting felt so fresh and original I could have spent all day on their stand.


I loved seeing on many stands the mix of natural materials such as leather, woods and rattan. There was a real trend for mixing miss matching metals together, with woods and marbles. Think mixing different shaped coffee tables together or clusters of mirrors in all shapes and sizes. A great idea if you want to add to existing furniture instead of replacing everything.


Bringing the outside in was a big trend in 2017 and its here to stay, if something stood still long enough at the show there was a plant placed on it. But think bigger plants and trailing plants for shelving displays. I had to pop down to my local florist the minute I got home to purchase a couple of trailing succulent plants just bring so much life into a home especially in these cold dark months.


It was great to see a homelier feel filtering into office furniture, with a simple paired back style that could be recreated in a corporate or home office. So many of us are working from home now that this space needs more thought than ever to keep us inspired and motivated. Office furniture in the past has always been too hard and utilitarian, but now it is becoming cooler with a focus on woods and muted colour and textiles that are practical. I have been designing workplace for several years and it’s always been challenging to find furniture that is not hard or in scary bright colours.


The day was a long one with 22,000 steps on my Fitbit, I felt I soaked up as much inspiration as I possibly could, I loved to see the interesting European brands with young designers emerging from Belgium and Portugal with a fresh approach. What I also found interesting was how many UK based brands I got to meet for the first time who do not always exhibit in the UK, therefore I will be popping over next year as I loved the day.


I thought I would end this blog with my favourite product of the day. I loved the shape of this stunning floor lamp, totally gorgeous.


Bathroom Interior Design tips

Happy 2018, I’m currently in the middle of designing 3 bathrooms for a lovely client so I thought it was the perfect time to share with you a few tips and ideas as so many of us have removed the Christmas decorations and started to see our homes again in a different light. Winter makes me want to soak in the bath for hours with a candle and a good book and I feel a bathroom needs to be designed with a little wanderlust in mind. You can take inspiration from a luxurious hotel and their use of opulent materials or by taking a few tips from stunning spas with their scents, reflective surfaces and natural woods and then make it your own.

You need a sense of glamour and luxury to help soak away the stress of the day. But in turn when you are rushing to get the family out of the house in the morning, washed and dressed you need to consider the logistics and design the layout to make it easy to reach the towel from the shower and not make the floor soaking!

Create a Sense of Space

A bathroom layout is key. You want to create a sense of space, a light and airy feel so you can move around freely.  Don’t try and cram too much into a small space. Be practical in your space design and plan the layout to make the room a comfortable haven.

Smart storage solutions are vital for a decluttered bathroom. If you are designing a contemporary bathroom, look at added recesses or hidden storage to hide away the boring everyday stuff and display the prettier things.

Think about your lighting and how it complements the layout.  Remember to have lighting just in-front of your face so you can see when putting on your make up, a lit mirror or wall lights can create a stunning center piece to a bathroom.

bathroom design domus tiles waters bath bathroom layout
Material Finishes

I like a bathroom to feel like an extension to your living space. It does not need to be tiled wall to wall, ceiling to floor, but it can be softened with paint or by adding pattern and texture. Matt paint such as Little Greene’s Intelligent matt emulsion and stunning wallpapers will add texture and a material finish looks stunning in a bathroom.

Tiles have become more gorgeous and interesting allowing you to play around with different sizes and finishes within the same pallet. Try and mix different finishes such as a Carrara marble and a wood finish such as an oak for a stunning and timeless style. I’m currently using the new Mimica Statuario Venato Matt from Mandarin stone, a stunning large format matt porcelain Carrara style tile which I can’t wait to share the photos of with you.


Colour Me Happy

Don’t worry about the size of the room, you can use a dark colour in a small bathroom or cloakroom as it will create a cocooning environment.

A darker wall colour contrasted against white sanitary wear to create a sharp and contemporary look and feel.

Select a colour palette that makes you feel relaxed. As a starting point consider looking at the colours of the seasons and which season you can relate to the most, for example warm tones for summer, luxurious white on white for a winter feel. Colour is so personal, select a colour by how it makes you feel. In a bathroom, you should feel your most Zen ready for another day.


If you would like help with a bathroom design Please contact


How to create a Christmas window on a shoe string

We have been working harder in the studio this month than Santa’s elves completing the finishing touches to a couple of interior schemes so our clients can enjoy their homes in time for Christmas. We were also in the festive spirt early this season as we have enjoyed working with a handful of local businesses in South London to create simple, yet stunning, Christmas window campaigns on a shoe string. As a little gift to our local small businesses here are our top 5 window display tips.


Christmas Hero
The key inspiration this holiday season is to ‘hero’ your product in the window and less about theatrics. This is perfect for smaller retailers as you can create a real impact with a little imagination and a sprinkling of fairy lights (which are definitely not just for Christmas!) At Paint the Town Green an Eco Paint company based in Wandsworth, we wanted to hero their paint. We created a simple yet effective window by stacking their beautiful graphic paint pots into the shape of an abstract Christmas tree. We decorated a few pots with gorgeous oversized red bows and draped them with fairy lights to add a little sparkle. We then made sure to continue this in-store to make a bigger festive statement. A very cost effective yet bold statement for Christmas that was easy and quickly achieved.

Brand your window
Remember to always keep your brand message clear, yet seasonally inspired. Try to create an experience for your customers. Our Christmas message for Paint the Town Green was “Give the Gift of Colour”, highlighting their gorgeous colours as well as advertising the Christmas gifting pop up shop created instore. So many designers and artists this year have collaborated with brands and Paint the Town Green have cleverly collaborated with local artists and small creative businesses from the Decorcafe to create a stunning mix of thoughtful gifts and original homeware within their pop up gifting shop. This is a perfect idea for small retailers such as furniture and kitchen showrooms that want to increase footfall over the festive season while supporting other local creative business that complement your brand.

Winter Wow Factor
I have designed for many luxury brands and you don’t have to spend a small fortune to make a window look festive and luxurious, you just need to give your scheme a little thought. Simple oversized Christmas decorations grouped together and repeated can look stunning and impactful. Fresh real garlands giving the customer a full sensory experience or olive trees look super stylish and are a modern twist this season. DZD and Moorplan are specialist visual merchandising retailers who have plenty of window display ideas, you don’t have to buy in bulk and you can tailor to look bespoke. Also, high street favorites such as Paperchase and Muji are brilliant resources. You just need to keep your brand aesthetic in mind and think about the customer experience.

Let it shine
You need balance in the window scheme so think about creating height in the form of a pyramid shape with product and not just filling the whole window as your customer won’t know where to look. Remember to look at the shape of your window and to focus the display. Items always look better arranged in multiples of 3 and 5 rather than 2’s and 4’s – trust me it’s a visual trick. Try and tell a story by grouping items with a similar theme together or arranging by colour to create a bold statement. Give special items space to ‘breathe’ – abundance is good for bestsellers but a 100 of an expensive item tends to devalue the item!

It’s not just for Christmas
There are so many simple off the shelf modular systems out there now that you could hack and use to create an effective window display. You should not just think about Christmas when planning the window so keep things reusable – a simple set of wooden crates or cubes can be transformed with a lick of paint each new season! Your shop front is the window into your brand and should be as big a focus as any social media message so make them work together and have the same look and feel, whether it’s too celebrate the Tennis in Wimbledon fortnight or to highlight the new spring summer range these are the little details that enhance your brand and make you stand out on the high street. But most of all try and enjoy the process and have fun with it.

We hope this helps and if you’re still struggling – we offer a practical and hands on approach to visual merchandising giving inspirational advice for window and in-store displays, project management through to installation. Contact us if you want to know more.

Mums the word

When I first started my interior design practice a good friend of mine tried to talk me through branding. He asked me did I want to brand myself as a designer who also happens to be a mum or a mum that designs? I did not have a clue and put this in the too hard pile along with marketing, sales and scary financials. So, I decided to just get on and do what I know and start designing and that’s what I did and I’m fortunate that I’m still doing it to this day.

A second child later and while I’m sort of on maternity leave (I’m not too good at taking time out) I decided I should properly start thinking about my “brand”. I found Instagram quickly became my obsession while breastfeeding in the middle of the night. I quickly discovered how many amazing mothers are out there juggling a family life while trying to run a creative business and posting gorgeous images and blogs. So many women have started completely new paths as their careers could never work with their family life. Their words are inspiring, honestly funny and creative. They think outside the box because let’s face it as a mum there is no neat little box. Each kid brings a different dynamic and challenge, if you bring this free way of thinking to your business it can only be inspiring and give you an edge over the big boys as they have so much red tape.

Back to my friend’s question, do I want to brand myself as a designer that happens to be a Mum or a Mum that designs, well currently on my instrgram page it’s all about the kids with a few interior shots when I remember, my goal is to always work the business around my family and that is my daily challenge as it’s hard to get the balance right as I can never stop thinking about new design challenges. I can always make more money or sleep more but I can never get this time back. Design is a passion and I need that for my sanity. I am fortunate that I love what I do so it never really feels like work. I know I over share about my kids with my clients and I bore them with their achievements but I decided if you work with me they come as part of the package. Harry has had a cuddle with all my clients and Jack is always on hand to give me his keen creative eye before a major presentation.

Some days it’s hard but this is not a sob story this is a thank you to all my amazing Mum friends including my own amazing Mum who all give honest advice whether I want it or not. Thank you to the Mums who have their own challenges but get by with so much grace and with a big smile on their faces and to the oh so cool creative mums on Instagram who keep me company in the small hours when I can’t sleep as I’m either worrying I have forgotten something or I’m feeding the munchkin, to you all I wish you a Happy Mother’s Day.


  • Remember to enjoy it all. Put the iPhone down and get on the trampoline with your kids. We had a little night time trampoline in the summer and Jack has not stopped talking about it. These are the memories they, and us, will have forever.


  • If you are working Mum enjoy it, if you are a stay at home Mum enjoy it, but whatever you do don’t judge another Mum for their choices, working or not, its not cool.
  • I have realised there is no such thing as a balanced life, you just have to take it as it comes and plan your family life like you would a work project, that way the year does not run away with you.
  • You will hear your Mum’s words coming out of your mouth and it will scare the life out of you. But it’s ok. I now realise my Mother was winging it just as much as I am. I think she did a pretty good job so hopefully so can I.
  • When I had Jack I realised I knew no one in my local area with kids, all my friends were in the City working and I had never felt so isolated. I tackled it like speed dating! I turned up at as many Mothers groups as possible and introduced myself to everyone I could. It was so scary but it was worth it as I have a strong group of friends I can turn to. Your network of friends is so important, you need to surround yourself with people that make you feel good about yourself and who you can have a laugh with when the sh!t hits the fan, or the down the slide in my case

My Top 5 Christmas ideas

Whilst at University I spent a summer working in a farm house on a country road called Christmas Pie lane. There I was armed with a glue gun sticking baubles onto garlands and Christmas trees, which would then be displayed in high streets up and down the country.  During my visual merchandising career we would start planning Christmas window schemes in July with Christmas songs playing while drinking ice lattes in the studio. I love the run up to Christmas. So I always feel a little late when decorating my home in December.

Personalising Christmas

I love clean lines and simple interior design, however this all goes out the window at Christmas. My tree is full of hand made felt or knitted decs, I love monogramed miniature stockings, bespoke gift tags from the lovely Fraser and Parsley or beautiful white ceramic baubles with our names in metallic. You can’t beat the personal touch at Christmas.

Faux vs Real Tree

I’m a real Christmas tree girl. However, I also like my tree up on the 1st December thus ensuring all my decorations are on the floor come the big day with a very sad dead tree in my bay window. This year I purchased a *whispers* faux Christmas tree. It took me longer to dress as I became obsessed about angling the branches like a real tree. The benefit is I can display the heavier decorations without worrying that they will fall off and it will still look great on Christmas Day. The trick is to invest in a very good faux tree which looks real and spend the time playing with the branches and make sure it is not too uniformed. However, I do keep smelling the real Christmas trees in Wimbledon Village High Street as I walk by and ‘pine’ for a real tree.


Lights Everywhere

If something stays still long enough in my house it will end up draped with fairy lights. There is something magical about fairy lights, bistro lights and scented candles this time of year, in fact any time of year. I was a little thrown this year as my lights had broken and it seems you can only purchase LED lights now. My golden rule with lights at Christmas is it has to be soft glow lights and you always need a little more than you think. I have a 7ft tree this year and 400 lights look perfect. More than that and I would not have been able to see the tree or decs. Use a green string of lights on the tree so it is hidden but a clear string if you are draping around frames, mirrors or plants or family members if they stay still long enough.

Bringing the outside in

You can’t beat a little winter foliage to complement the metallic baubles and tinsel. I suggest using eucalyptus and foliage from your garden such as ivy, holly and rosemary. It creates a wonderful woodland feel and an amazing scent without spending the big bucks. Take the kids on a walk to forage for foliage. They will love being a part of it and making table decorations or a Christmas wreath. We always collect pinecones in the autumn and fill vintage glass vases and hurricane lamps with them. Try grouping them into 3s and dot them over the tree. Always dress the tree with pinecones or decs in odd numbers. 3’s and 5’s work best.

Little Gifts

I love giving my clients a small gift at Christmas to say thank you. Last year I gave clear bauble and filled them with chocolates, tied them with a simple bow and a Nikki Rees stamped gift tag. This year I found the cutest miniature brown paper bags, popped a little scented white candle inside and stamped the tags again. It’s just a little gift that I hand deliver. It also doubled up this year as gifts for my son Jack’s school friends. You don’t have to spend a lot it, just needs a little thought and a personal touch.

Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New year

Nikki xxx

Wimbledon Interior designer mixing business with babies

I have dithered more about the opening post for my interior design blog than any interior.

I’m writing this on my maternity leave with all the time I have, or thought I would have while my 5 month old baby boy is sleeping. A maternity leave is very different second time around, particularly when you have your own company. With Jack, now 7 years old, I worked for a corporate company and totally switched off, only counting down the months until I had to go back to work and enjoying sitting around in circles waving colourful parachutes above my head and singing nursery rhymes and blowing bubbles.

This time it’s completely different. When I get a moment to myself I can’t help wanting to be inspired and working on ideas. I have come to the conclusion that I love working! (I say with a little guilt)  I’m passionate about what I do. The highs, the lows, it’s all part of the design process and when it’s your company and an idea comes together it’s an amazing feeling. It just does not get better than having happy clients enjoying a space you have created for them. Apart from hearing the comical belly laughing from the boys. That’s what it’s all for.

So the juggling act has begun, I have always managed my design work around the school run. With 5am starts and late evening emails after story time it’s all part of the fun of a start up and wanting to be around for the kids.

So if I’m not enjoying baby yoga or pilates to lose those extra baby pounds, Harry and I are off soaking up the new cool things at trade shows, experiencing exhibitions or just taking in our surroundings wherever that may happen to be; Wimbledon, London or on our travels.

It’s going to be an exciting maternity leave and I hope to share a few new ideas with you along the way.

Nikki x