1. PILE ON THE CUSHIONS
Adding cushions may be a cliché but they truly are the default mode of decorating, the failsafe way to recharge a tired room. A clutch of custom-made cushions will neatly bring you bang on trend.
Splurge on two or three amazing fabrics (you don't need much, after all), then fill in the gaps with cheaper plains. Or use designs from a single collection for a sure-fire pattern mix.
Fabrics above are from Wabi Sabi, scion.uk.com; prints from £26 a metre, weaves from £32 a metre.
2. THROW DOWN A RUG
If a rug is too big it will dominate and make a room look small. If it is too small it will just look whimsical. Take a newspaper and experiment with sizes. "Create zones," says Paul Vowles of rug specialists WovenGround in King's Road (wovenground.co.uk).
For example, try a seating zone with space all around. This Geo rug, hand-carved in pure wool (£1,499), is designed by Ella Doran for WovenGround. Call 020 7731 7704, or visit wovenground.com.
3. PLUG IN A LAMP
All you need is a power point to transform a bleak spot. Lamp bases can be beautiful in their own right. "Think big," says Andrew Hills, director of lamp specialists Porta Romana, "little lamps can look silly."
Experiment with shades — shapes, sizes, colours, linings, laminated, quirky or pleated — and get expert help to explore the options. This is the Jazz lamp with honey satin shade by Porta Romana (020 7352 0440)
4. PICK UP A PAINT POT
Graded colour (aka ombré and dip-dye) is big in fashion and furnishing fabrics, but it's easier/cheaper to do with paint. Use this effect to romance an all-white room. Or go for colour blocking, buying small pots, and painting, say, drawers or cupboard fronts in different hues.
Shown here are Bermuda Cocktail and Sapphire Springs emulsion by Dulux, £24.29 for 2.5 litres; see exactly how to do it at dulux.co.uk.
5. PULL UP A CHAIR
A chair can be a soft sculpture rather than just a place to plonk your body or (worse) your coat. You could go for a big-name contemporary designer, or a last-century modern classic.
And here, also, is the perfect outing for a fabulous fabric, or appliqué or patchwork. Loaf's Lucky chair, with solid oak legs, is upholstered in Nottingham with an exclusive fabric dyed, woven and embroidered in Rajasthan. Cost — £595 at loaf.com, or call 0845 459 9937.