Benefits of hiring an expert to design your home

Hire an interior designer to help you get the most of your home. And they'll ensure you make eco friendly, sustainable decisions too - for example choosing sustainable renewable materials, recycled materials and the most energy efficient appliances. 

Window restoration: a key part in maintaining historic buildings

Taking on a period house can be a long-term undertaking because you'll have to maintain its original architecture and features. Leaky windows can be a nightmare if you're trying to conserve energy, but don't rush to fit modern units because you'll almost certainly fall foul of your planning authorities and could well be asked to remove any replacements deemed not in keeping with the property. 

Architect Robert Kraus' spectacular Vienna new build

At Deco we're generally not in favour of gawping at pictures of wealthy people's houses. But this house - while far beyond most self-builders wildest dreams - is rather lovely; and on the grounds that it uses lots of sustainable European oak, has ground source heat pumps to keep it warm in winter and uses fabric from Essex-based MissPrint, well, we thought you might find it inspiring.

Dress up your home with orchids

Orchids are endlessly fascinating with their complex sculptural blooms and variegated colour. They're exquisite exotic works of art, yet they have a minimalism about them - which explains why so many contemporary interior designers love them. They have great presence yet they're not overpowering. (And yes, ok, they may not always prove the easiest plant to keep in fine fettle, but more on that later.)

bluebellgray: flowers to the people

bluebellgray is something of a phenomenon if speed of success is a measure. Because this 13-strong Glasgow-based textiles and homewares company started its journey just eight years ago as a one-woman show; on  Fi Douglas’s kitchen table to be precise, as she painted some floral designs.

Renewable energy: our futures depend on it

Renewables offer cleaner and safer types of energy, which will reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. So which are the best, most widely used and efficient sources of electricity from renewable sources?

Reasons to make your home green

Making our housing eco friendly doesn't have to cost the earth. While many of us can't afford heat pumps, solar panels or new electric boilers, there are things we can all do to help ourselves and the environment through minimising our energy consumption. Remember, around 30 per cent of the UK's CO2 emissions come from our housing stock.

Look for A, AA and AAA rated appliances

Wooden sheds remain top choice for garden storage

a wooden shed can be very eco friendly and sustainable. Sheds are perfect for storing garden equipment and can even be used as a room to work or exercise in. Make sure it's made from timber sourced from sustainable forests

Eco-friendly paints - what it means and who makes them

what is meant by eco friendly paint? did you know acrylic paints contain plastic? choose paints from brands that use no plastics or noxious chemicals if you don't want your walls to off-gas, impairing air quality in your home

Are you on a quest for a truly comfortable lounge chair?

It’s dark and cold outside, there are lots of comforting repeats on the telly, and you’re too full of mince pies to feel like moving. What do you need? The perfect lounge chair to cradle you in comfort while you disappear into the Sky Christmas channel. Here is a baker’s dozen plus one of the most eco-friendly on the market.