Q.I have recently moved into a new build apartment, and it is very stark and bland, how can I make it feel more personal?

A.The personal touch – especially in new builds – is all about colour and flooring. Wood can be quite hard and loud and by adding a rug and using comparable colours on the walls you can create rooms that are more welcoming: just what you want after a hard day’s work.

In your living areas, select a wall to have a bold colour or a print on it – myfotowall.com will take any image and produce wallpaper. You might want to consider your favourite landscape, beach view or even a nebula taken from the Hubble Telescope. Paint the other walls in a softer colour to compliment with the feature wall. Use a large rug with sofas and easy chairs around it and a feature coffee table to make a compartmentalised seating area. Don’t forget the television, they tend to be big and ugly; you don’t want it making a feature on your wall so look at storage units that it can hide in when not in use.

In the kitchen think of changing the doors or worktop to compliment the new décor of the apartment – this is a cost effective way to make the kitchen unique. In the bedrooms you need to again feel relaxed and calm, surround yourself with photos in silver frames of your loved ones and happy memories, place a thick pile carpet on the floor so that you can dig your toes into it. Paint the bedroom in a dark colour and use lighter bed linen to brighten it up, chocolate brown or a rich jewel colour is a good choice here for the walls. Place an easy chair in one corner, perfect for throwing your clothes on, or just sitting and reading a book one evening.

In the bathrooms ask your builder to build a light box floor to ceiling and front it with a wafer thin piece of marble, granite or other interesting stone. The light shining through it makes a wonderful effect, especially useful if it’s an internal bathroom with no natural light. All of these will take a “standard” apartment and make it yours with lots of wow factors built in.