Unsurprisingly, I could spend hours, possibly weeks, poring over pictures of hip homes in interiors magazines, and dreaming... If you've ever pondered the secrets of these pads' photogenic success and wanted to emulate them, here's what the experts advise...
"Most photoshoots capture pictorial vignettes – the sofa, the casually draped throw," says Beth Worth, who provides affordable home makeovers at lovehousedesign.com. "So it's not just about furniture; create a little narrative."
Go into detail
"A photographer's nightmare," explains Rachael Smith, who takes pictures for magazines such as World of Interiors, "is a room with no possessions on show. Editors love details – knick-knacks make a home a home."
Set great store
Smith also values good storage. "But not expensively built-in: photographically that's dull. Try a 1950s junk-shop cabinet for books or a haberdasher's cupboard for clothes."
"Try different ways of displaying," suggests Emily Blunden, a stylist for Homes and Gardens among others. "Old apple crates make lovely shelves." (See http://bit.ly/q5k1jS)
All the little things
Bold doesn't have to equal expensive, believes Worth. "If you're nervous, build on a neutral base, then take risks with accessories: zingy cushions or throws, a ceramic jar – cheaper than getting the wrong sofa."
Rachael Smith's biggest bête noire? "TVs! They're so huge now – and not pretty. Hide giants in a cupboard – and never hang one over a fireplace."
"Forget having the 'right' or fashionable thing," says Blunden. "The best style is your own personality. And nothing is forever."
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