Eek, we are having our living room and dining room redecorated after a flood and the paint I've chosen (Dulux Light and Space, Frosted Dawn) to lighten and brighten our room is very white! Which shouldn't come as a shock I know.
Please tell me I've made the right move, I am useless at interior design! It is a newbuild and we live in gloomy lancs, so am hoping it'll make the place seem bigger and brighter.
Also, our dining room has been a playroom before so was plastered with the DC's artwork. Where can we get reasonably priced canvases/prints to inject some colour? We have a lovely one in the lounge but that cost a lot more than we can afford at the moment!
My mum haunts charity shops looking for nice frames - she then frames kids pictures, family photos etc. You can also repaint all the frames in the same colour to make them look consistent, and hang them as a large group.
A good cheap way to brighten up a room is using printed colourful fabric (the larger the print, the better) - you can stretch it on a frame to make a sort of large hanging. Much cheaper than proper printed canvases and easy to do.
Oddly, Ikea have quite a good fabric selection (and is v cheap) or you could try your local John Lewis or wherever for upholstery fabrics. Or even buy some plain fabric and get the kids to help you decorate it with fabric paint and potato prints!
You'd be amazed at how different it looks with crap vital family stuff in it. We just started putting stuff back into our nearly finished kitchen, and it's astonishing how the crap stuff conceals a multitude of problems.
we are also repainting our dining room in white, and it does look a bit bleak at the moment, as we've not got all our furniture in and pictures up. we had white in our last place though, and once all the finishing touches are in it really does look fab.
A couple of pictures on the wall and some curtains will make your room look beautiful and colourful. By choosing white you'll achieve what you want, a light room with a feeling of space. Whatever you choose to accessorise the room with will inject the colour and will of course go with the walls.