Tag : interior design

5 interior design tips for maximising natural light

5 Interior Design Tips For Maximising Natural Light

Rose Eclavea

Browse through every interior design website in Singapore and you’ll notice that the term “natural light” appears frequently. Why is that so?

Natural light is generated naturally from the sun. It is great for human health because not only does it allow our skin to produce vitamin D, but exposure to sunlight also helps to boost a chemical in our brain called serotonin.

This chemical gives us more energy and aids in our ability to remain calm, positive, and focused. Vitamin D is also an important nutrient that helps to prevent bone loss, lowers the risk of heart disease, and boosts immune function. 

Although overexposure to the sun’s UV rays can be harmful to our skin, allowing sunlight into our homes has been shown to be beneficial. It even aids in the improvement of sleep.

It is also believed that a lack of natural light and constant exposure to artificial light can cause seasonal affective disorder or other types of depression.

So, how can you make use of interior design to maximise the amount of natural light flowing into your home? 

Also Read: Ways to Inject Happiness into Your Home

1. Use light wall colours

Did you know that dark colours absorb the majority of the wavelengths of light energy? This is why when dark colours are used in interior design, it can cause the house to appear dull and dim. 

However, if you use a lot of white and bright colours, such as pale yellow, light creams, and pastels, they reflect more visible wavelengths of light that shine on them. This means that when natural light enters your home, it will bounce off multiple surfaces, illuminating most of the rooms. This eliminates the need to turn on artificial lighting to brighten up spaces.

2. Furniture arrangement

Furniture is an opaque item that, if not properly positioned, can block the flow of light into your home. To maximise light flow and reflection, we recommend arranging your furniture pieces away from windows, mirrors, or glass fixtures.

This may not be possible due to space constraints in HDB flats and condominiums, but it is a good tip to follow for landed property interior design.

3. Keep windows clean and clear

Although installing tinted windows to keep the afternoon sun out of your home may be appealing, it prevents light flow and can make your home appear dark even during the day. Choose clear windows with properties that can help keep the heat of the sun out of your home.

Over time, dirt and dust will accumulate on your windows too, obstructing the flow of natural light. Keep them clean at all times to ensure that you have beautiful windows with plenty of sunlight flowing through them every day.

4. Use mirrors and glass

Mirrors and glass are fantastic materials to have in your home if you want to maximise the amount of sunlight that comes in. Mirrors can effectively reflect light, whereas glass allows light to pass through it. However, in order for these items to serve their purpose effectively, they must be strategically placed.

We recommend placing large mirrors opposite windows to reflect more natural light into the home, making it appear as if you have added another window. For a similar effect, include coffee tables or side tables with mirrored tops.

You can also use glass or transparent furniture next to the window to let in as much light as possible while still making use of the available space.

5. Use day curtains

If you want more privacy while still allowing plenty of light in, swap your heavy window treatments out for light and airy fabrics such as linen. You can also achieve the same effect with white and sheer day curtains. 

Having natural light during the day would not be an issue for high-rise buildings such as condominiums and HDB flats. On the other hand, one will need to put in more thought when doing up landed property interior design because some properties may be obstructed by other high-rise buildings or the surrounding houses. 

However, landed property homeowners can choose to hack down walls and turn them into glass doors or windows if you want more light in your home.

There are numerous other ways to increase the amount of light that enters your home. Starry Homestead is an interior design company in Singapore who can assist you in creating beautiful interior designs for your home while keeping the flow of natural light in mind. See your dream home come to life today. 

eco friendly interior design singapore

Home Renovation Singapore: Creating An Eco-Friendly Home

Oom Oom

Global warming and climate change is becoming more apparent as daily temperatures rise and extreme weather events occur more frequently. Although governments around the world are working hard to slow climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero, these efforts will be futile unless individuals like you and me play our part.

If you care about the environment and want to live a more sustainable lifestyle, this article will show you how to build an eco-friendly home to reduce your carbon footprint.

But first, what is sustainable design?

Sustainability in interior design is the approach to creating home interiors that seeks to eliminate negative environmental effects. These designs should aid in lowering one’s carbon footprint, reducing waste, creating a healthier environment, and reducing the use of non-renewable items or energy.

1. Work with the right interior design company

The home renovation process in itself can be a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. Large amounts of emissions and waste can be avoided if you work with the right interior design company

When they conceptualise an interior design for your home and go through the home renovation process, interior designers wield a great deal of power. It is up to a designer’s expertise to create designs that use as few materials as possible while reducing the amount of waste generated by your home renovations. So, for example, using the same piece of material for different parts of your home so that you don’t have bits and pieces of material to throw away.

2. Create timeless spaces

When interior designers plan, the lifespan of the materials should also be considered. This is to avoid having to replace the materials or remodel your home every few years due to damages and wear and tear.

Furthermore, if you choose to have your home designed in a timeless style, such as the minimalist design style, your house will never be out of style, and you will never have to remodel it to stay in trend.

Minimal interior design also means using fewer products, materials, and energy, lowering your carbon footprint.

3. Choose sustainable materials

Instead of choosing manmade materials that go through multiple stages of processing, which can contribute to a large amount of carbon emissions, choose organic materials with the least environmental impact, such as wood, wool, natural stones, or bamboo. Terrazzo is another good choice because some of them are made from recycled materials. You should also use non-toxic materials.

It might seem irresponsible to use natural materials, but if you were to only purchase from sustainable suppliers, this wouldn’t be a problem. For example, responsibly sourced wood is sourced from environmentally friendly forests, and trees that were felled for our use will be replanted and allowed to grow fully.

There are labels, standards and certifications that provide credible information about the origin of a product, which can help you better identify which products you can purchase for your sustainable home. 

4. Energy-efficient design

Last but not least, in order to truly reduce your carbon footprint, you must keep an eye on your energy consumption. Energy consumption is a major contributor to climate change, and your consumption will have an effect on our environment.

Through their design, your interior designer can do a lot to help improve the energy efficiency of your home. Among the factors are:

  • Installing windows that can keep the sun’s heat out, keeping your home cool and avoiding the use of air conditioning. Even if you do turn on the air conditioner, the air conditioner will not have to work extra hard to keep your home cool. Thus, reducing your energy consumption.
  • Choosing the right lighting and colours for your home so that you don’t have to turn on any additional lights. Lighter colours reflect more light, while dark colours make your home appear darker. When you use more vibrant colours in your home, light bounces off surfaces, illuminating every part of your home.

Creating an eco-friendly home for sustainable living is an excellent way to begin reducing your impact on the environment. Eco-friendly homes can also look beautiful, just like any other home.

Starry Homestead is an interior design company in Singapore that specialises in residential and commercial interior design. The team is dedicated to transforming spaces into stylish and functional interiors that meet your needs. Get in touch with us today to build your dream home.

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House Everything? Episode 6: The Understated Elegance of Light French Style


How would you design a new home for a family of music lovers? Find out more in this episode of House Everything?, Channel 8’s reality TV show about decluttering and home renovation. In this episode, we are introduced to a family of three comprising a retired couple and their daughter.

The Scenario

While the living room was relatively clean and neat, the father’s passion for audio and stereo equipment, PCs and laptops resulted in a significant portion of the space being taken up to store these items. Coupled with their habit of hoarding used cardboard boxes, the family had barely any space left for relaxation in the cluttered room.

Additionally, the odd arrangement of the furniture made daily activities difficult, and a tall shelf placed at the window blocked natural light from entering the room.

Out with the old, in with the new!

The Challenge

The challenge for the team is to transform the living room into an area for the family to relax and enjoy watching TV and listening to music. It should also be a place for the daughter to play the piano and for the granddaughter to play in.

The Solution

After taking into consideration the taste and interest of the family, Designer Jayne Pang has decided on the design concept of Light French style. The concept features a clean yet elegant design that is often associated with exquisite taste and sophistication. Jayne has felt that a classic interior design style would suit the family since they enjoy the finer things in life, such as music and reading. And because their living room is rather small, she has wanted a minimalist look so as not to clutter the interior any further.

The primary colour is reserved white, chosen for its lightness which makes the room look more spacious. Splashes of bolder colours are added through furniture such as the sofa and artwork. On one side of the wall, customised cabinets are built to provide storage and as a design element. Cornices are added to the walls and cabinet doors with matching door knobs from Italy to bring out the light French style. To brighten up the space, general, task and accent lightings are used in accordance with the functionality and style.

Smaller furniture such as a L-shaped ribbon sofa, a box functional square coffee table and an antique writing bureau are selected to fit the tiny space. The team has also constructed a low partition wall which forms a recess area behind the sofa for the family to place decorative items and travel memorabilia. To complete the look, a faux brick accent wall is created.

Another key design feature created by the team is the bi-fold door which portrays in a form of artwork. Inspired by the nostalgic floor tiles, the colours of the artwork are created by special wall paint to match those of the tiles. The artwork is used to extend the wall design visually.

The Light French style of interior decor exudes an effortlessly chic vibe.

The Bonus

The piano is one of the largest furnishing items in the living room and an essential part of the owners’ life. Jayne has repositioned the piano to a prominent place in the living room to accentuate the owners’ interest in music and to use it as a centrepiece for the interior. A niche is created to become a new home for the piano and the storage cabinet helps to enhance its design.

By designating an area for the piano, the family can now enjoy more music for the soul.

For more information about the Light French style of interior design, please contact the designer of this episode, Jayne Pang at tel. no. 6778 6866.

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House Everything? Episode 5: House With Awkward Corners


It’s time to celebrate another episode of House Everything?. This reality TV show on Channel 8 features Starry Homestead as the interior design team that helps to transform the participants’ home interior from a cluttered space to a lovely home.

In this episode, we visit a family of four that has called their HDB flat home for the past 21 years and help them deal with the accumulated clutter in their living room.

The Scenario

As two members of the family shared a love for shoes, the most apparent chaos in the home was the overflowing shoe racks at the entrance. Moreover, each family member owned multiple pair of shoes. As a result, there was insufficient storage space for all the footwear.

While the living room was rather spacious, it had an irregular-shaped layout with several awkward corners and strange angles. Shaped like a heart, its two L-shaped wings led out to the window in the living room and to the kitchen respectively. This made the placement of furniture challenging, such as the inability to align the sofa and the TV in a parallel way. Also, the dining area was comparatively darker as the only natural light was from the window in the living room area, which could not illuminate the deeper part of the room.

From old to new – same apartment with a completely different vibe!


The Challenge

The team is tasked with the challenge of providing a comfortable living room for the family. At the same time, there should be plenty of storage space to accommodate the many pairs of shoes and the various keepsakes, personal items and decorative memorabilia that the family has accumulated over the years.

The Solution

The design concept for this project is known as the Mid-century Modern style, which incorporates some prominent trends from the 50s to the 70s to create fun, cheerful and highly textured home decors. The interior design also focuses on organic and geometric forms and functionality.

Interior designer Rayson has noticed that the owners had collected many vintage decorative items, and thus, he has decided that the retro design concept would suit them well. However, through his experience, he has realised that some people may be reluctant to accept a full Mid-century Modern style, and so, he has incorporated elements of modern design into the concept.

Colours such as olive green, mustard yellow and cream white offer a warm and welcoming feel to the room.

The overall vibe is somewhat retro and nostalgic with touches of soft colours and matt finishing. Colourful 3-D wall design is included to create a textured look. A brown sofa and brown dining chairs are also carefully selected to match the overall design.

To fully utilise the odd-shaped space, curved cabinets are tailor-made to tackle the irregular corners. The wall-to-wall built-ins are designed not just to provide plenty of storage space for the family, but are also used as aesthetic narratives for the design concept. Included in these cabinets are racks for storing shoes which can conceal the unsightly bomb shelter door at the same time.

Goodbye, untidiness! Hello, hidden shoe racks!

For more stowaway space, customised settee cum storage is also built under the window. To increase the illumination of the room, a large semi-circle mirror is mounted on the wall of the dining area, allowing it to reflect light and brighten the space.

Organic curves are iconic design elements of the Mid-century Modern style. Here in the living room, Rayson has cleverly incorporated them into the built-in cabinets by carving out a perfect circle in the centre to display decorative items. The built-in TV console also has a top shelf for the family to showcase the vintage keepsakes passed down from the owners’ parents.

Colours such as olive green, mustard yellow and cream white offer a warm and welcoming feel to the room.


The Bonus

The bonus for this episode is the refurbished dining table, which blends in nicely with the overall design concept. Rather than throwing it away, the team decided to repaint the table legs and put it to good use again.

Say no to wastage by refurbishing furniture that is still useful.

For more information about the Mid-century Modern style, please contact the designer of this episode, Rayson at tel. no. 6778 6866.

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Before And After HDB Makeover You Won’t Want To Miss


If you, like us, form part of the majority who dwell in an HDB flat, then there’s a chance that one of these magazine-worthy interiors belongs to your next-door neighbor or someone who stays in the same block as you. We never tire of transformation stories of the humble HDB apartment – mainly because most of us can relate to the situation, no matter if you’re staying in a timeworn resale flat or waiting anxiously for your first BTO apartment. Here, let us present to you dramatic before-and-after makeovers of flats from around our little sunny island that prove you can live big in a small space.

Area: Bukit Panjang Ring Road
The original condition of this resale flat may not be horrific to begin with, but it just didn’t suit the vibe of its hip young owners. Those antiquated tiles, surfaces and woodwork just had to go. A renovation was definitely in order for the couple.

Entry way
Talk about bad first impressions. The unsightly wall partition that stood beyond the home’s main door simply didn’t cut it. Now in its place is a super functional and versatile partition that also doubles as a showcase and storage piece. If you haven’t already noticed, check out the new front gate that exudes effortless old school vibe without looking passé.


Communal room
Pure white walls breathe new life into this revamped communal zone, while pale wood tone floors and wooden accent pieces ground its all-white look. There are reminders of Singapore’s yesteryears stylistically placed and interspersed within the apartment – and thankfully, no hints left of the interior’s old state.

Tight, cramped and dated cooking space – begone! The light and airy colour palette continues into the kitchen where it works its magic by making this area appear larger.

Common bathroom
We’d probably lose the urge to use the lavatory if it was still in the original condition. Fast forward to post-renovation and what we see now is what we like: a black-and-white bath space that may be simple but exudes minimal chic vibes.

Master bathroom
Black, white and grey hues make a winning combination in the bath space that once sported faded blue and yellowed tiles.

Area: Jalan Rumah Tinggi
The ‘60s was a cool era, but this flat sadly wasn’t. In fact, it exemplified everything we do not want in a home: a claustrophobic and narrow layout, tiny window openings, and loose pieces of mismatched furniture that look like they don’t belong into any sort of décor style at all.
Before: Living room

After: Living room
Atmospheric and brimming with rockstar attitude, this living quarters is barely recognizable from its former self. The daring use of dark tones that sheath the space only serves to inject it with an aura of enigma. What’s more, the stunning red brick wall offers textural appeal and brings about warmth into the apartment.

Dining room
From hawker center style plastic chairs to top-notch bar counter with an edgy vibe, the new dining area even boasts a handsome wall of display shelves that further augment the zone’s bar-like ambience.

The removal of a wall partition at the entrance of this kitchen made a massive impact. The result? A much more spacious cooking space that enables the owner to easily maneuver around the area.

From a bedroom that reeked of the past to a sleeping sanctuary that’s current, cool and on trend – this space has positively improved by leaps and bounds.

With its old-fashioned tiles and fittings, the previous bathroom truly looked like it belonged in the past – and there it should remain. The new space is covered with textured finishes that give it tons of character – making users overlook the cramped quarters and simply enjoy its ambience.

Area: Tampines
This resale flat located in the East lacked style and was terribly outdated, and it didn’t suit its young homeowners at all. To make matters worse, the wooden furniture and fittings made the tiny flat feel smaller than let on. What the home dwellers needed was a fresh start in this timeworn apartment.

Before: Living room

After: Living room
Inspired by Scandinavian homes, the living room is now brighter, breezier and perfectly built for the young couple. Who knew you could include so much in a single room? A feature worth noting is the wall partition that is used to mount the television on one side, and works as a seating and storage space on the other. We love how it effectively delineates two zones – the entry way and the living room – and also provides privacy to those unwinding on the sofa or chilling on the mini golf course.

A far cry from the days spent in a dull and inspiring cooking space, the revamped kitchen enjoys a sense of spaciousness with spanking new white and pale wood cabinet fronts combined with a sandy toned counter top. Notice the contrasting dark blue accent? We love how this unexpected jolt of colour adds a youthful vibe into this part of the home.

No more struggling to find space to hang towels or to stash away toiletries, the current bathroom is fully equipped with concealed storage, drawer compartments, towel rails, as well as handy nooks to keep the area free of chaos.

Minimal, clutter-free and completely Zen, this master suite allows the love birds to focus solely on getting their well-deserved R&R.

Qanvast SuperTrust 2016


Starry Homestead has done it again. For the second year running, Starry Homestead has officially received our 2016 SuperTrust from Qanvast. We are proud and humbled to be awarded this prestigious ID award.

Firstly, we want to thank our amazing customers for your continuous support. We couldn’t have done it without you. We are committed to making our homeowners happy and will continue to do so 🙂

To our Starry team and designers, thank you for all your hard work and dedication. You are our superstars!

Last but not least, a big thank you to Qanvast – Interior Design Ideas for this award. We are incredibly honoured to be one of your top 20 IDs receiving the award.

(Source: https://qanvast.com/sg/articles/inside-qanvast-supertrust-2016-960)

Choose the right Interior Designer

With hundreds of Interior Design (ID) companies out there to choose from in Singapore, it seems hard to find the right one. Choosing the right ID to renovate your home doesn’t have to be tedious process. We encourage our homeowners to look around for a few IDs. You can always book an appointment with us at Starry Homestead to see our difference.

Here at Starry Homestead, we understand the homeowner. As a leading innovative ID company in Singapore, we do our very best to meet our customer’s needs. There’s no job too small or big for us. We simply love homes! With so many questions that comes to mind, we answer some important questions to help you decide.


Is the ID company reliable?

Always make sure that the chosen ID company is a reliable one.  It’s a good idea to do some online research on the company’s background first. Do a quick search on Google. You may find that there’s plenty of great ID platforms like HomeRenoGuru or Qanvast. These websites help to recommend reputable IDs, request quotes and even show their previous projects. Also, you’ll be able to read the reviews from the real home owners themselves.


Which awards to look out for? 

In our previous blog entry, we explained the Super Trust. A Super Trust is awarded to the Designer that have been performing consistently with positive reviews from Qanvast. We are a proud recipient of this Super Trust award and will continue to maintain our high standards. We are also proud recipients of the Nippon Paint Designer of Choice and RenoTalk’s People Choice Award 2016.


What kinds of accreditations should an ID have?

Keep a look out for professional accreditations that matter such as the Case Trust with RCMA, BCA license, HDB license, and BizSafe. These accreditations can help the homeowner to distinguish which are the genuine professional ID firms in the market. The Starry Homestead team are qualified and have received the proper training and qualifications. For instance, Starry Homestead have a BizSafe level 3. Our workers comply with strict guidelines and safety regulations.


Does the company have a Case Trust?

Doing a home renovation is costly. We have heard stories of abandoned projects that leave the home owner in the dark. Having a case trust certified company gives the home owners a peace of mind. Knowing that their hard earned money and investment will be safe. In a worse case scenario, even when a company does close down, the case trust will return 100% of the money back to it’s homeowners. We have a Case Trust with Renovation Contractors and Materials Suppliers Association (RCMA). Only select companies in Singapore have earned this accreditation.


Who is the designer?

Meet your designer and get to know him/her better. It’s important that you are comfortable with your designer. Having a good relationship with your designer will help to ease communication. The renovation project will run smoothly as a result. At Starry Homestead, our designers are both friendly and creative people. We have professional designers who will guide you through the renovation process.


Why Starry Homestead?

The Starry Homestead team are filled with experience. Starry Homestead is an award winning and certified ID. Our portfolio has been featured on magazines and online media. Our team of professionals will take care of all of the renovation project from start to finish. We pay meticulous attention to detail in our work. Our happiness is helping homeowners to achieve their dream home. We will take the stress out of reno work. Book an appointment with us and come visit our showroom. Feel free to contact us for any queries. And thanks for reading! We hope that this article was helpful in starting your home reno journey.

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