Melissa’s tips for your home makeover

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Looking for advice for your home makeover project? We asked HOMEmade interior designer, Melissa Greenough, for her top tips to help you find your inspiration, as well as some practical advice for navigating your way to a great outcome.

Where do you find inspiration for design projects?

I find inspiration in a number of ways. A lot of the time through travel, but it can be as simple as the colour pallet of a sunset sky, the ocean, or a fabric I fall in love with. Pinterest has great images to draw inspiration from and I love that, depending on what room or what project you’re doing, you can pull up visuals very easily.

I have a few favourite magazines – Australian Belle and Australian Vogue Living. I also love The Denizen for sourcing great on-point products available in New Zealand.

I don't have a favourite interior designer, but I would say Antony Todd based in NYC (whom I used to work with) is a big inspiration. I also love English designer, Elise Crawford.

What’s the best starting point when embarking on a home renovation or makeover?

I would say the best starting point is deciding which area is a priority, and sourcing images and inspiration to draw ideas from. I usually make up my own pin-board of different images, fabrics, paint colours, flooring and lighting together so I can physically visualise what the space may become.

If you don't want to do this yourself, or simply have no idea what you do or don't like, that's when you can call on experts, like an interior designer, to help bring it all together. From here, it’s a good idea to get a few quotes from different suppliers and price up before you embark on the journey – there can be certain things that may be more expensive than you thought, so budget needs to be managed from the get go.

What are your top three tips for people renovating on a budget?

  1. Always spend your time researching different suppliers as prices can vary for very similar products and services.

  2. You can find great accessories without spending a fortune. These details give a room personality. Things like art work, cushions and lighting.

  3. Paint works wonders! What’s one item for your home that you think is worth investing in? Good window treatments – so many people don’t think of these as an important investment, but they can make or break a room and provide privacy and warmth.

What’s your favourite part of being involved with HOMEmade? (apart from getting to work with Dion!)

It’s working with a great team of people and being able to make a big difference to a space in such a short period– seeing the happiness we give people is very rewarding.

What’s your favourite item or part of your home?

The favourite things about my own home would be the fat blade, white shutters that I have on all my windows.

About the writer:


Melissa Greenough is an award-winning interior designer and an Auckland real estate agent. Her career has seen her lead a design team at interior design company, Antony Todd in New York, where she regularly worked with high profile clients including Martha Stewart. She was also interior designer for TVNZ 1’s popular primetime show, Kiwi Living. Melissa’s clever solutions for planning and decorating a room in only two days will give the HOMEmade audience plenty of makeover inspiration.

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